Typhoon Haiyan ‘Off the Scale’

Typhoon Haiyan ‘Off the Scale’
Associated Press. Nov. 8, 2013

Hugh Willoughby, professor of meteorology at Florida International University, says Typhoon Haiyan, which slammed the Philippines, is so powerful that instruments can’t measure it’s force.

Biosphere 2

Biosphere 2: An American Space Odyssey – Retro Report
The New York Times. Jun 10, 2013

With dreams of colonizing space, eight people sealed themselves in a glass biosphere in 1991.
But they eventually “suffocated, starved and went mad.”

Geoengineering: ‘A Bad Idea Whose Time Has Come’

Hack the Planet By Eli Kintisch

Geoengineering: ‘A Bad Idea Whose Time Has Come’
May 29, 2010

Some scientists are taking a more radical approach to cooling the earth’s climate, like dumping iron dust into the ocean, hoping to grow algae blooms that suck up carbon.
Or putting a giant lens between the Earth and the sun to reflect some of the sun’s rays away from Earth.

It’s all part of a controversial field known as geoengineering, and science writer Eli Kintisch spent three years following the men and women who believe it can work for his new book, Hack the Planet: Science’s Best Hope — or Worst Nightmare — for Averting Climate Catastrophe.

Can Hacking The Stratosphere Solve Climate Change?

Can Hacking The Stratosphere Solve Climate Change?
August 09, 2013

David Keith’s TEDTalk:
Environmental scientist David Keith proposes a cheap and shocking way to address climate change: What if we inject a huge cloud of sulfur into the atmosphere to deflect sunlight and heat?

His forthcoming book is called A Case For Climate Engineering. He teaches policy and engineering at Harvard University, and was named Environmental Scientist of the Year by Canadian Geographic in 2006.


risk compensation

Climate Update: Warming Temperatures

Climate Update: Warming Temperatures  
August 09, 2013

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its annual “State of the Climate” assessment.
Deke Arndt, an editor of the report, discusses warming temperatures and other climate trends from 2012.
Plus, Sol Hsiang, who studies climate and violence, discusses his research connecting rising temperatures to increases in human conflict.

Last year was another record-breaking year for the global heat index. 2012 was among the 10th warmest years on record, the hottest on record in the United States according to the State of the Climate report that was just released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

… how important the Arctic is as part of our climate system, but it is a region that is covered in white stuff throughout most of the year. And when that white stuff goes away, what it does, the snow and the ice that covers the Arctic tends to reflect the incoming sunlight right back out into space.
And as that disappears, as that retreats, as the footprint of the white stuff, the frozen stuff, snow and ice, goes away, more and more sunlight is absorbed in the Arctic. And so that is what we would call a positive feedback or what folks might call a vicious cycle that tends to add to the warming of the planet.

CO2 climbed sharply over the past 5 decades

This chart shows the levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide as measured from Point Barrow, Alaska, from 1974 to 2007.

CO2 climbed sharply over the past 5 decades Swinging CO2 Levels Show The Earth Is ‘Breathing’ More Deeply  
August 08, 2013

If you look at the graph of carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere, you’ll notice that it has climbed sharply over the past five decades, from about 315 parts per million to 400 parts per million.

The Grid Of The Future Could Be Brought To You By … You

The Grid Of The Future Could Be Brought To You By … You  
August 14, 2013

States are requiring more renewable power to fight climate change

“The state [Hawaii] has an initiative to reach 40 percent renewable energy by 2030,” says Nohea Hirahara, an engineer for Hawaiian Electric Company. “I believe that’s the most aggressive of any state. And it’s coming up fast.”

Wind is a particular challenge. It doesn’t blow all the time, so it always needs a backup.
But keeping an oil-fired power plant at the ready is expensive.