brisbane floodClimate change was a big factor in the devastating floods that swept through Queensland and other states in January. For decades, scientists have warned that carbon pollution will lead to more frequent weather disasters.

The floods are yet more evidence that we must quickly phase out fossil fuels and embrace 100% renewable energy.

As the flood crisis began to emerge, University of Melbourne climate scientist David Karoly told ABC News on December 31 that the extreme weather was not so unexpected.

Read more: Floods: Climate link can’t be denied


Science Daily - TreesScienceDaily (Jan. 24, 2011) — Global warming is already affecting the earth in a variety of ways that demand our attention. Now, research carried out at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem indicates that many tree species might become extinct due to climate change if no action is taken in time.

According to the research, trees which disperse their seeds by wind, such as pines and maples, will be unable to spread at a pace that can cope with expected climate changes.

The research, which focused on the ecological consequences of expected changes in the climate and the environment on tree spread, was conducted by Prof. Ran Nathan, head of the Alexander Silberman Institute of Life Science at the Hebrew University; his student, Nir Horvitz; and researchers from abroad.

Read more: Climate Change Threatens Many Tree Species


“This is really a pretty big error. Imagine being off 25 percent in your accounting.” - John Downing, ISU professor

The amount of methane gas naturally released from lakes and rivers has been underestimated in scientists’ predictions about climate change, a recent study finds.

An international team of scientists, which includes John Downing, an Iowa State University professor in the ecology, evolution and organismal biology department, has found greenhouse gas uptake by land environments such as forests is less than previously thought because of methane emissions from freshwater areas. Methane is considered a greenhouse gas.

The study, published in the journal Science, finds methane gas release from freshwater areas changes the net absorption of greenhouse gases by natural land environments by at least 25 percent. Before, estimates of carbon and greenhouse gas exchanges on continents did not account for the methane gas that is produced by lakes and running water.

Read more: Research: Methane gas underestimated in climate change


KC3 Community Directory