Consequences

Category archives for Consequences

How bad could it get?

Fast Friday feature (from Utah!): Climate Science in a Nutshell #9: How Bad Could it Get? from Planet Nutshell on Vimeo.

An elegy for the oceans

There’s always room for one more post about oceanic acidification. Even Sheril Kirshenbaum understates the threat that it poses to the planet’s ecosystems and civilization when she describes it a “huge deal.” First, let’s get one thing straight:

Lomborg v Lomborg

Much is being and will be written about Bjorn Lomborg’s volte face on climate change. After a decade of denial — not of the reality of anthropogenic warming, but of the threat it poses to civiliation — the Skeptical Environmentalist now says: “If we care about the environment and about leaving this planet and its…

Worst graph ever

A couple of scientists at the University of Montana say they have detected a small but non-negligible decline in global terretrial “net primary production.” NPP is basically a way of measuring plant growth — how much carbon they’re removing from their surroundings and turning into biomass. To my mind, there are two noteworthy aspects to…

The Earth will survive

Stanford physicist Robert B. Laughlin shared a Nobel prize in 1998 for helping explain something called the fractional quantum Hall effect. That particular phenomenon has nothing to do with climatology, and neither does the rest of Laughlin’s c.v. Still, one might expect something cogent about the public policy challenge posed by anthropogenic climate change if…

Obsessing over ice cover

There’s more than a few climate bloggers who have a dirty little secret. We like to excoriate those who can’t tell the difference between weather and climate, or herald every momentary drop in temperature as evidence that global warming has ended, or revel in each new report that suggests not every single square millimeter of…

“I thought I better come see the bears because the next time I am in this country they will be all gone.” — Polar bear tourist in Churchill, Man. Ecotourism. Sounds so responsible, or least, non-exploitative. But let’s face it: Anyone who flies long-distance to get close to some endangered piece of nature at risk…

What happened at Three Mile Island in 1979 led to a new regulatory environment that increased the costs of building and running nuclear power reactors in the U.S. The environment was so hostile to the industry that no new reactors have been ordered since then. There are several in the planning stages, but none have…

The latest report from the National Climatic Data Center reminds us that the planet is continuing to warm as expected. Most of the attention will be afforded to the global picture, for good reason:

Beyond Smoke and Mirrors