The Irony of a Climate Change Conference: COP26

I recently had the opportunity to travel to COP26 as a member of the University of Michigan’s Delegation. What an experience! Attending events and plenaries where the discussions of climate action were taking place was exciting and yet frustrating. Frustrating because the negotiations were not progressing fast enough and were not aggressive enough to combat …

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UNwelcome: The Gap between Science and the Negotiations

During my time in Katowice, Poland, I set out to get a better handle on how science and policy intertwine at the COP. After all, science is supposed to be the foundation for the work of the UNFCCC and the COP. But functionally, to what extent is climate science really the basis upon which the …

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UNEP on Ocean Acidification

Today in Cancun the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) released a report titled "Environmental Consequences of Ocean Acidification: A Threat to Food Security." The report investigates the impacts of increasing carbon dioxide emissions on the world's oceans. As the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere rises, the amount of carbon dioxide that dissolves in …

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Google Earth and Climate Change

A very cool set of videos over at Google Earth. Use Google Earth to learn about adaptation strategies that mitigate the effects of climate change. The Google Earth Outreach team and our partners have created this series of tours and videos. Fly over tree canopies in 3D, learn about how climate change affects our planet …

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Are Tropical Cyclones Changing?

Hello from Cancun and COP 16!  This afternoon the U.S. Center sponsored a talk titled "Tropical Cyclones and Climate Change".  The speakers included Tom Knutson  (NOAA), Scott Braun (NASA) and William Putman (NASA).  The discussion focused on improving our understanding of how future tropical cyclones may change due to global warming. Dr. Knutson presented the …

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The future of oil and the wedge of hope

Most greenhouse gases that people emit come from fossil fuels, so understanding how much fossil fuels we're likely to burn in the coming decades is a crucial climate issue. I've been learning a lot about "peak oil" and related ideas lately, and have been having some heretical thoughts—or at least they feel heretical to me, …

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"CO2: The Thermostat that Controls Earth’s Temperature"

As a non-climate scientist, I found Dr. Richard Alley's 2009 AGU presentation, "The Biggest Control Knob: Carbon Dioxide in Earth's Climate History," to be particularly educational.   NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies just published a modeling study that further substantiates Dr. Alley's argument that carbon dioxide acts as Earth's thermostat because of the dynamic …

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