Why We Should Stop Climate Change, According To Kids

More than 400,000 people showed up on Sunday for the People’s Climate March in New York City, rallying in solidarity with a planet that’s facing an onslaught of climate change, greenhouse gases and rising seas. See more of these adorable kids voicing their opinions on climate change here.

Inexpensive Mini-Greenhouse

You can build this raised garden bed mini-greenhouse to extend your growing season with used railroad ties for the base and some scrap wood and sheet plastic for the cover.

By Robert Ford

The world pumped about 564 million more tons (512 million metric tons) of carbon into the air in 2010 than it did in 2009. That’s an increase of 6 percent. That amount of extra pollution eclipses the individual emissions of all but three countries — China, the United States and India, the world’s top producers of greenhouse gases.

It is a “monster” increase that is unheard of, said Gregg Marland, a professor of geology at Appalachian State University, who has helped calculate Department of Energy figures in the past.

— Seth Borenstein, “Biggest jump ever seen in global warming gases,” AP, 4 November 2011

The most dramatic case was the death of 17 cows within one hour from direct exposure to hydraulic fracturing fluid.

Researchers at Cornell University have found anecdotal evidence of a link between fracking and illness in food animals. The technology behind fracking has radically transformed our energy economy. But given the preliminary evidence that fracking can sicken livestock, cause earthquakes and may contribute as much to climate change as diesel and coal, many activists are left to ask: Is it worth it?

Read our full story on the effects of fracking here.

Sure, change happened before humans. But we’re making these changes BIGGER and FASTER.

The world is made of an amazing web of connected processes and organisms. It’s a wonderful system that evolves and adjusts to small changes over time.

But when we as humans are changing and eradicating whole ecosystems and species in such short periods of time, the world’s cycles and processes can’t adjust quickly enough to compensate.

We are contributing to and making fast, large disturbances/changes.

Increases can also be seen in the greenhouse gases since industrialization (contributed to by burning of fossil fuels): see cycles of Carbon dioxide, Nitrogen, Methane, etc. 

Watch on newsfrompoems.tumblr.com

From the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s Earth System Research Laboratory, an animated graph of atmospheric carbon dioxide for the past 800,000 years. See also: NOAA’s most recent update of the greenhouse gas index (spoilers: it’s still climbing). 

Human emissions of carbon dioxide will defer the next Ice Age, say scientists.

The last Ice Age ended about 11,500 years ago, and when the next one should begin has not been entirely clear.

Researchers used data on the Earth’s orbit and other things to find the historical warm interglacial period that looks most like the current one.

In the journal Nature Geoscience, they write that the next Ice Age would begin within 1,500 years - but emissions have been so high that it will not.

"At current levels of CO2, even if emissions stopped now we’d probably have a long interglacial duration determined by whatever long-term processes could kick in and bring [atmospheric] CO2 down," said Luke Skinner from Cambridge University.

Dr Skinner’s group - which also included scientists from University College London, the University of Florida and Norway’s Bergen University - calculates that the atmospheric concentration of CO2 would have to fall below about 240 parts per million (ppm) before the glaciation could begin.

The current level is around 390ppm, and other research groups have shown that even if emissions were shut off instantly, concentrations would remain elevated for at least 1,000 years, with enough heat stored in the oceans potentially to cause significant melting of polar ice and sea level rise.

Read more at Link

Greenhouse gas levels rising at fastest rate since 1984

A surge in atmospheric CO2 saw levels of greenhouse gases reach record levels in 2013, according to new figures.

Concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere between 2012 and 2013 grew at their fastest rate since 1984.

The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) says that it highlights the need for a global climate treaty.

But the UK’s energy secretary Ed Davey said that any such agreement might not contain legally binding emissions cuts, as has been previously envisaged.

The WMO’s annual Greenhouse Gas Bulletin doesn’t measure emissions from power station smokestacks but instead records how much of the warming gases remain in the atmosphere after the complex interactions that take place between the air, the land and the oceans.

About half of all emissions are taken up by the seas, trees and living things.

According to the bulletin, the globally averaged amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reached 396 parts per million (ppm) in 2013, an increase of almost 3ppm over the previous year.

"The Greenhouse Gas Bulletin shows that, far from falling, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere actually increased last year at the fastest rate for nearly 30 years," said Michel Jarraud, secretary general of the WMO.

Atmospheric CO2 is now at 142% of the levels in 1750, before the start of the industrial revolution.

Continue Reading.

The global warming potential of a gas (GWP in the accompanying table) is a measure of how much a gas is estimated to contribute to the greenhouse effect. The global warming potential depends on both the efficiency of the molecule as a greenhouse gas and the length of time it remains in the atmosphere. Both factors are summarized in the table, in which CO2 is given an arbitrary value of 1 for the purpose of comparing it with other gases over a period of twenty years. The right-hand column in the table indicates that methane is 72 times more powerful as a greenhouse gas than CO2 and nitrous oxide 289 times more powerful….

Carbon dioxide is the principal greenhouse gas villain because it is the gas produced most abundantly by human civilization in the modern era. Human activities produce eight billion tons of CO2 per year compared to the largest natural source, volcanic activity, which accounts for less than a third of a billion tons. During the cold times at the height of the last ice age, the CO2 content of the atmosphere was 180ppm. The concentration has since progressed from 280 ppm in the period preceeding the Industrial Revolution (the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries) to a present-day 390 parts per million—higher than it has been for 650,000 years (based on the study of air bubbles in ice core layers from Greenland). Based on measurements taken at the top of Mauna Loa in Hawaii, the rate of increase of CO2 is accelerating and now stands at about 2 parts per million per year.

Global Climate Change: A Primer, by Orrin H. Pilkey and Keith C. Pilkey, with batik illustrations by Mary Edna Fraser (2011), pp. 4-5.

"The Orbit Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO2) is Nasa’s first Earth-orbiting satellite dedicated to studying atmospheric carbon dioxide from space.

In 2013, concentrations of carbon in the atmosphere surpassed 400 parts per million for the first time in human history.

Atmospheric carbon dioxide is at its highest level in human history and is changing our climate before our eyes. NASA’s new Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 space satellite will probe the carbon cycle like never before, telling us where the carbon is going and giving us clues as to where we will end up.”