2013 March. White House Council on Environmental Quality Releases 35 Federal Agency Climate Adaptation Plans for Public Review. Center for Climate Strategies (CCS), www.climatestrategies.us. Excerpt: Executive Order 13514 (http://www.whitehouse.gov/assets/documents/2009fedleader_eo_rel.pdf), signed by President Obama on October 5th, 2009, mandates Federal agencies to develop Sustainability Plans that provide an overview of how agencies are saving taxpayer dollars, reducing carbon emissions, cutting waste, and saving energy. On February 7th, 2013, 35 federal agencies released their third annual Sustainability Plans, which for the first time included Climate Change Adaptation Plans to help federal agencies reach sustainability and climate change resilience goals. These adaptation plans (within the broader sustainability plans) are now available for public review and comment by the week of April 9, 2013. ...links to each of the Agency Plans... at http://www.climatestrategies.us/agencyplans. ...review examples of adaptation-planning activities by States and Localities on the CCS website ... (use the search engine for “adaptation”), and at the Georgetown Federal State Climate Resource Center at http://www.georgetownclimate.org/adaptation. You can learn more about sustainability and climate change impacts and resilience planning in the United States at http://sustainability.performance.gov.
2013-02-27. South Africa to tax carbon emissions from 2015. | Science, AlsertNet. Excerpt: CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - South Africa, the continent's top greenhouse gas producer, plans to tax carbon emissions from January 2015, but will introduce some exemptions to protect industry and jobs, South Africa’s finance minister said on Wednesday. The tax, set at 120 rand ($14) per tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent, has been criticised by carbon-intensive companies such as petrochemicals giant Sasol and ArcelorMittal South Africa who argue the state’s attempt to curb emissions blamed for global warming would hit profits. ...The Treasury proposed a 60 percent tax-free threshold until 2020 on annual emissions for all sectors, including electricity, petroleum, iron, steel and aluminium. ...South Africa wants to cut CO2 emissions by a third over the next decade but has little flexibility to make fast changes with major employers among the top polluters. Its cash-strapped power sector almost fully reliant on coal. The carbon tax, to be phased in over time, is one of several green initiatives aimed at reducing the carbon footprint in the continent's largest economy, including a biofuels production incentive and higher vehicle emissions taxes.... See South Africa Parliament News Release. See full article at http://www.trust.org/alertnet/news/south-africa-to-tax-carbon-emissions-from-2015/.
2013 February 03. Rise in Oil Tax Forces Greeks to Face Cold as Ancients Did. By Suzanne Daley, New York Times. Excerpt: ...In the fall, the Greek government raised the taxes on heating oil by 450 percent. Overnight, the price of heating a small apartment for the winter shot up to about $1,900 from $1,300. ...In raising the taxes, government officials hoped not just to increase revenue but also to equalize taxes on heating oil and diesel, to cut down on the illegal practice of selling cheaper heating oil as diesel fuel. ... Many Greeks, like Ms. Pantelemidou, are simply not buying any heating oil this year. Sales in the last quarter of 2012 plunged 70 percent from a year earlier, according to official figures. So while the government has collected more than $63 million in new tax revenue, it appears to have lost far more — about $190 million, according to an association of Greek oil suppliers — in revenue from sales taxes on the oil. Meanwhile, many Greeks are suffering from the cold. In one recent survey by Epaminondas Panas, who leads the statistics department at the Athens University of Economics and Business, nearly 80 percent of respondents in northern Greece said they could not afford to heat their homes properly. The return to wood burning is also taking a toll on the environment. Illegal logging in national parks is on the rise, and there are reports of late-night thefts of trees and limbs from city parks in Athens, including the disappearance of the olive tree planted where Plato is said to have gone to study in the shade. At the same time, the smoke from the burning of wood — and often just about anything else that will catch fire — has caused spikes in air pollution that worry health officials. On some nights, the smog is clearly visible above Thessaloniki, Greece’s second-largest city, and in Athens, where particulate matter has been measured at three times the normal levels. ...Elias Bekkas, who provides oil to 65 buildings around the city, said that many of his clients had not ordered any oil, and that some who had could not pay the bill. Last winter, he said, his company sold a little more than a million gallons. This season, it has sold only about 65,000 gallons, and he doubted the total would get to 225,000....
2013 January 14. Federal Advisory Committee Draft Climate Assessment Report Released for Public Review | National Climate Assessment and Development Advisory Committee (NCADAC). Excerpt: Draft Climate Assessment Report includes: Executive Summary; chapters on various Sectors (Water Resources; Energy Supply and Use; Transportation; Agriculture; Forestry; Ecosystems, Biodiversity, and Ecosystem Services; Human Health; Water, Energy, and Land Use; Urban Systems, Infrastructure, and Vulnerability; Impacts of Climate Change on Tribal, Indigenous, and Native Lands and Resources; Land Use and Land Cover Change; Rural Communities; Interactions of Climate Change and Biogeochemical Cycles). There are also chapters on specific Regions (Northeast, Southeast and Caribbean, Midwest, Great Plains, Southwest, Northwest, Alaska and the Arctic, Hawaii and the U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands, Oceans and Marine Resources, Coastal Zone Development and Ecosystems. Also chapters on Decision Support, Mitigation, Adaptation and Research. Read the full article: http://ncadac.globalchange.gov/
2013 January 09. NASA Chases Climate Change Clues Into The Stratosphere. NASA Release 13-013. Excerpt: Starting this month, NASA will send a remotely piloted research aircraft as high as 65,000 feet over the tropical Pacific Ocean to probe unexplored regions of the upper atmosphere for answers to how a warming climate is changing Earth. … flights of the Airborne Tropical Tropopause Experiment (ATTREX; http://espo.nasa.gov/missions/attrex) …will study moisture and chemical composition in the upper regions of the troposphere, …tropopause layer between the troposphere and stratosphere, 8 miles to 11 miles above Earth's surface, … where water vapor, ozone and other gases enter the stratosphere. …Water vapor and ozone in the stratosphere can have a large impact on Earth's climate. … even small changes in stratospheric humidity may have significant climate impacts….
2012 December 27. Carbon Taxes Make Ireland Even Greener. By Elisabeth Rosenthal, The New York Times. Excerpt: …Ireland… imposed taxes on most of the fossil fuels used by homes, offices, vehicles and farms, based on each fuel’s carbon dioxide emissions, a move that immediately drove up prices for oil, natural gas and kerosene. Household trash is weighed at the curb, and residents are billed for anything that is not being recycled. The Irish now pay ...yearly registration fees that rise steeply in proportion to the vehicle’s emissions. Environmentally and economically, the new taxes have delivered results. Long one of Europe’s highest per-capita producers of greenhouse gases, with levels nearing those of the United States, Ireland has seen its emissions drop more than 15 percent since 2008. …when the Irish were faced with new environmental taxes, they quickly shifted to greener fuels and cars and began recycling with fervor. … as fossil fuels became more costly, renewable energy sources became more competitive, allowing Ireland’s wind power industry to thrive. Even more significantly, revenue from environmental taxes has played a crucial role in helping Ireland reduce a daunting deficit by several billion euros each year. …A recent report estimated that a modest carbon tax in the United States ... could generate about $1.25 trillion in revenue from 2012 to 2022, reducing the 10-year deficit by 50 percent.... ...Some of Europe’s strongest economies, like Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands, have taxed carbon dioxide emissions since the early 1990s, and Japan and Australia have introduced them more recently. …Gas, always expensive in Europe, sells here for about $8 a gallon, around 20 percent more than in 2009 …. Read the full article: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/28/science/earth/in-ireland-carbon-taxes-pay-off.html
2012 December 24. California Law Tests Company Responses to Carbon Costs. By Felicity Barringer, The New York Times. Excerpt: …Beginning Jan. 1, under the terms of a groundbreaking California environmental law known as AB 32, … 350 companies statewide will begin paying for those emissions, which trap heat and contribute to global warming. Companies ... have lobbied state regulators to minimize the costs. In the meantime they are weighing their options. Should they stay and adapt or move operations elsewhere? Should they retrofit and innovate to reduce emissions? Should they swallow the regulatory costs or pass them on to customers? … Regulators do not want California companies to lose their competitive edge, because that could make other state governments reluctant to adopt this approach. …For the 200,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emitted annually by Morning Star’s three plants, the company is being awarded about 192,500 free allowances the first year; the company must buy the remainder on the open market. In the first allowance auction in November, the allowance price settled at $10.09 a ton, meaning in the first year Morning Star has to pay roughly $75,000 to cover its emissions. But over the next five years, the number of free allowances will decrease sharply to encourage further emissions cuts. At current rates, that means Morning Star will have to buy 100,000 allowances for both 2017 and 2018, by which time the prices may have doubled or tripled in an open market. The company estimates the law will cost it an extra $20 million over the next seven years. Nick Kastle, a company spokesman, said it would almost certainly pass on the new costs to makers of ketchup and frozen pizza, which would be likely to share the extra costs with consumers. “People nationwide are going to be affected by AB 32,” he said.….
2012 November 23. Cap-and-Trade for California. From Science, News of the Week. Synopsis: Sacramento. Last week California launched a cap-and-trade system to cut greenhouse gas emissions. It is the first such comprehensive scheme in the United States. It began with an auction on emissions permits for the electricity sector, with a price floor of $10 per ton of carbon dioxide to prevent a crash of emissions prices. In 2015 the system will regulating 85% of California's total greenhouse gas pollution, covering transportation, commercial, and residential fuels….
2012 November 19. Shell, Swiss Re want ‘unambiguous price on carbon’. By Ben Geman, The Hill. Excerpt: Over 100 corporations including Royal Dutch Shell, food and consumer products giant Unilever, and the big re-insurer Swiss Re called Monday for a “clear, transparent and unambiguous price on carbon emissions.” Their joint statement arrives ahead of the next round of United Nations climate talks in Doha, Qatar, that gets under way in late November. “The private sector invests trillions of dollars into energy and other infrastructure projects, but, in most cases the goal of reducing [greenhouse gas] emissions does not guide such spending. A more effective approach is required, one that provides the right incentives to shift this private investment and makes best use of the limited pool of public funds,” states the “carbon price communiqué” released Monday. The companies say that creating a cost for carbon emissions should be part of nation-based climate policies that can eventually be interwoven. Policies to “price carbon” include a tax on emissions, and imposing a cap on emissions coupled with the buying and selling of emissions credits among polluters. The companies say that while there are multiple ways to set a price on emissions, they prefer market-based approaches like emissions credit trading “which offer both environmental integrity and flexibility for business.” However, proposals to price carbon have sputtered in the U.S. and face long odds politically. Cap-and-trade legislation collapsed in Congress in 2010...
2012 November 19. No nation immune to climate change, World Bank report shows. By Anna Yukhananov, Reuters. Excerpt: All nations will suffer the effects of a warmer world, but it is the world's poorest countries that will be hit hardest by food shortages, rising sea levels, cyclones and drought, the World Bank said in a report on climate change. Under new World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, the global development lender has launched a more aggressive stance to integrate climate change into development. …The report, called "Turn Down the Heat," highlights the devastating impact of a world hotter by 4 degrees Celsius (7.2 Fahrenheit) by the end of the century, a likely scenario under current policies, …. As the first scientist to head the World Bank, Kim has pointed to "unequivocal" scientific evidence for man-made climate change to urge countries to do more. …Kim said 97 percent of scientists agree on the reality of climate change. …Kim said the World Bank plans to further meld climate change with development in its programs. Last year, the Bank doubled its funding for countries seeking to adapt to climate change, and now operates $7.2 billion in climate investment funds in 48 countries. The World Bank study comes as almost 200 nations will meet in Doha, Qatar, from Nov. 26 to Dec. 7 to try to extend the Kyoto Protocol, the existing plan for curbing greenhouse gas emissions by developed nations that runs to the end of the year....
2012 November 19. Holding Back Floodwaters With a Balloon. By Henry Fountain, New York Times. Excerpt: … The idea is a simple
one: rather than retrofitting [New York City’s subway system] tunnels
with metal floodgates or other expensive structures, the project aims to
use a relatively cheap inflatable plug to hold back floodwaters. In
theory, it would be like blowing up a balloon inside a tube. But in
practice, developing a plug that is strong, durable, quick to install
and foolproof to deploy is a difficult engineering task, one made even
more challenging because of the pliable, relatively lightweight
2012 October 13. A Grand Experiment to Rein In Climate Change.
By Felicity Barringer, The NY Times. Excerpt: …California embarks on its grand
experiment in reining in climate change. On Jan. 1, it will become the
first state in the nation to charge industries across the economy for
the greenhouse gases they emit. Under the system, known as “cap and
trade,” the state will set an overall ceiling on those emissions and
assign allowable emission amounts for individual polluters. A portion of
these so-called allowances will be allocated to utilities,
manufacturers and others; the remainder will be auctioned off…The
outsize goals of California’s new law, known as A.B. 32, are to lower
California’s emissions to what they were in 1990 by 2020 — a reduction
of roughly 30 percent — and, more broadly, to show that the system works
and can be replicated....
2012 September 11. New York Is Lagging as Seas and Risks Rise, Critics Warn.
By Myreya Navarro, New York Times. Excerpt: With a 520-mile-long
coast lined largely by teeming roads and fragile infrastructure, New
York City is gingerly facing up to the intertwined threats posed by
rising seas and ever-more-severe storm flooding. …So far, Mayor Michael
R. Bloomberg has commissioned exhaustive research on the challenge of
climate change. His administration is expanding wetlands to accommodate
surging tides, installing green roofs to absorb rainwater and prodding
property owners to move boilers out of flood-prone basements. But even
as city officials earn high marks for environmental awareness, critics
say New York is moving too slowly to address the potential for flooding
that could paralyze transportation, cripple the low-lying financial
district and temporarily drive hundreds of thousands of people from
their homes. Only a year ago, they point out, the city shut down the
subway system and ordered the evacuation of 370,000 people as Hurricane
Irene barreled up the Atlantic coast. …Others express concern for areas
like the South Bronx and Sunset Park in Brooklyn, which have large
industrial waterfronts with chemical-manufacturing plants, oil-storage
sites and garbage-transfer stations. Unless hazardous materials are
safeguarded with storm surges in mind, some local groups warn, residents
could one day be wading through toxic water. …Other cities are also
tackling these issues, .... New shoreline development around San
Francisco Bay must now be designed to cope with the anticipated higher
sea levels under new regional regulations imposed last fall. In Chicago,
new bike lanes and parking spaces are made of permeable pavement that
allows rainwater to filter through it. Charlotte, N.C., and Cedar Falls,
Iowa, are restricting development in flood plains. Maryland is pressing
shoreline property owners to plant marshland instead of building
retaining walls…. …Unlike New Orleans, New York City is above sea level.
Yet the city is second only to New Orleans in the number of people
living less than four feet above high tide — nearly 200,000 New Yorkers,
according to the research group Climate Central. …Klaus H. Jacob, a
research scientist at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, said the
storm surge from Irene came, on average, just one foot short of
paralyzing transportation into and out of Manhattan. …In 2009, a
commission warned that global warming posed “a new and potentially dire
challenge for which the M.T.A. system is largely unprepared.”. …. Read
the full article: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/11/nyregion/new-york-faces-rising-seas-and-slow-city-action.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20120911
2012 July 24. Satellites See Unprecedented Greenland Ice Sheet Surface Melt.
By Steve Cole, NASA. Excerpt: On average in the summer, about half of
the surface of Greenland's ice sheet naturally melts...this year the
extent of ice melting at or near the surface jumped dramatically.
According to satellite data, an estimated 97 percent of the ice sheet
surface thawed at some point in mid-July. Researchers have not yet
determined whether this extensive melt event will affect the overall
volume of ice loss this summer and contribute to sea level rise...The
melting spread quickly. Melt maps derived from the three satellites
showed that on July 8, about 40 percent of the ice sheet's surface had
melted. By July 12, 97 percent had melted. This extreme melt event
coincided with an unusually strong ridge of warm air, or a heat dome,
over Greenland. The ridge was one of a series that has dominated
Greenland's weather since the end of May. "Each successive ridge has
been stronger than the previous one," said Mote. This latest heat dome
started to move over Greenland on July 8, and then parked itself over
the ice sheet about three days later. By July 16, it had begun to
2012 July 10. State of the Climate in 2011 : Highlights. By
Caitlyn H. Kennedy, David Herring, Katy Vincent, LuAnn Dahlman, Rebecca
Lindsey, and Susan Osborne, ClimateWatch Magazine. Excerpt: State of
the Climate in 2011 report provides a detailed peer-reviewed update on
global climate indicators and notable weather events from 2011.... See
also NOAA news story http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2012/20120710_stateoftheclimatereport.html
2012 June 26. D.C. appeals court upholds EPA regulations to fight global warming. By
Darryl Fears, The Washington Post. Excerpt: A federal appeals court on
Tuesday upheld the Environmental Protection Agency’s finding that
greenhouse gases contribute to global warming and are a threat to public
health, a major victory for the Obama administration and a setback to
states and trade groups that oppose government regulations on carbon
emissions. The opponents, including Virginia’s attorney general, Ken
Cuccinelli II (R), argued that EPA rules setting emissions standards for
cars and light trucks, and requiring construction and operating permits
for the nation’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases, such as
coal-fired power plants, were based on a faulty interpretation of the
Clean Air Act, and therefore capricious and heavy handed. …But in a
sharply worded opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of
Columbia Circuit rejected the challenge to the agency’s authority,
saying the EPA’s "interpretation of the . . . Clean Air Act provisions
is unambiguously correct." It said the EPA’s rules targeting large
polluters could not be challenged because of the authority granted the
agency in an earlier Supreme Court ruling. …In its remarks, the
three-judge panel seemed to bristle at the opponents’ argument that the
EPA improperly relied on assessments of climate science by the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the National Research Council
and the U.S. Global Change Research Program to support its findings
that greenhouse gases contribute to warming, posing a threat to human
health. …"This is how science works. EPA is not required to re-prove
the existence of the atom every time it approaches a scientific
question, the court said. The unanimous decision covered dozens of suits
bundled together under a group called the Coalition for Responsible
2012 May 10. Science
Academies Issue 'G-Science' Statements to Call World Leaders' Attention
to How Science and Technology Can Help Solve Global Challenges. By
William Skane and William Kearney, The National Academies. Excerpt:
National science academies from 15 countries issued joint statements
today calling on world leaders who are about to meet at the upcoming G8
Summit and other international gatherings this year to give greater
consideration to the vital role science and technology could play in
addressing some of the planet's most pressing challenges. The
"G-Science" statements recommend that governments engage the
international research community in developing systematic, innovative
solutions to three global dilemmas: how to simultaneously meet water and
energy needs; how to build resilience to natural and technological
disasters; and how to more accurately gauge countries' greenhouse gas
emissions to verify progress toward national goals or international
commitments... one of the G-Science statements says insufficient
attention is being paid to the links between energy and water or, in
other words, to the fact that energy requires water and water requires
energy. Without considering water and energy together, inefficiencies
will occur, increasing shortages of both, the statement warns. It
recommends that policymakers recognize the direct interaction between
water and energy by pursuing policies that integrate the two, and
emphasize conservation and efficiency. Regional and global cooperation
will also be required....
2012 May 25. U.N. climate talks stall over rich-poor divisions.
By Associated Press, SFGate. Excerpt: U.N. climate talks ran into
gridlock Thursday as a widening rift between rich and poor countries
risked undoing some advances made last year in the decades-long effort
to control carbon emissions that scientists say are overheating the
planet…At the heart of the discord was the larger issue of how to divide
the burden of emissions cuts between developed and developing nations….
2012 May 02. Experiments Underestimate Climate Change Impacts to Plants.
By Jessica Robertson, USGS Science Features. Excerpt: As the climate
has warmed, many plants are starting to grow leaves and bloom flowers
earlier. A new study published in the journal, Nature, suggests that
most field experiments may underestimate the degree to which the timing
of leafing and flowering changes with global warming. Understanding how
plants are responding to climate change will help develop more accurate
indicators of spring, forecast the onset of allergy season or the
chances of western wildfires, manage wildlife and invasive plants, and
help inform habitat restoration plans. …the USA-National Phenology
Network (USA-NPN) also provided support and assisted with assembling and
analyzing historical phenological observations and climate data. ...The
USA-NPN brings together citizen scientists, government agencies,
non-profit groups, educators and students of all ages to monitor the
impacts of climate change on plants and animals in the United States. …
sign up through the USA-NPN website
(http://www.usanpn.org/participate/observe), or contact the USA-NPN
Executive Director Jake Weltzin at firstname.lastname@example.org. Read a University
of California, San Diego, press release--http://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/pressreleases/study_shows_experiments_underestimate_plant_responses_to_climate_change, as well as a NASA feature--http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/early-bloom.html, on this new article.
2012 Apr 13. NSF Press Release 12-071: Scientists Determined First-ever Census for Emperor Penguins.
Excerpt: A new study using satellite mapping technology reveals there
are twice as many emperor penguins in Antarctica than previously
The results provide an important benchmark for monitoring the impact of
environmental change on the population of this iconic bird, which breeds
in remote areas that are very difficult to study because they often are
inaccessible with temperatures as low as -58 degrees Fahrenheit.
Reporting this week in the journal PLoS ONE, an international team of
scientists describe how they used Very High Resolution satellite images
to estimate the number of penguins at each colony around the coastline
2012 Apr 06. NASA's New Ultra-green Building | Relevant to GSS Energy Use chapter 6, 7, 8, and Climate Change chapter
9. Excerpt: MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. -- NASA's newest building also is one
of the nation's greenest. Sustainability Base is a highly intelligent
facility designed to anticipate and react to changes in sunlight,
temperature, wind and occupancy. It is designed to achieve, and is
presently under consideration for, the U.S. Green Building Council's
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum status,
which is the highest LEED rating. Meeting the White House challenge to
lead by example, NASA has repurposed its technologies and incorporated
them into the new building. Sustainability Base features a Bloom Energy
Box, for example, that uses fuel cell technology in a clean
electrical-chemical process to produce electricity. The facility also
has a water recovery system, derived from one originally designed for
the International Space Station, which reduces unnecessary consumption
of potable water. Digital press kit of Sustainability Base: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/events/2012/sustainability-base-presskit.html Info about Sustainability Base: http://www.nasa.gov/externalflash/sustainability-base Info about Ames' green technologies: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/greenspace
2012 Mar 23. The U.S. Navy – Navigating Through a Changing Climate
| By David Titley and Robert S. Freeman, e-International Relations.
Excerpt: …As a globally-distributed force, the U.S. Navy may be the
first military service to fully experience the impacts of climate
change. …Any objective evaluation of the data will verify that the
Earth’s climate is changing, a fact the U.S. Navy acknowledges. …the
appropriate approach is to determine the impact of climate change on
future naval readiness and ensure we are prepared for the challenges
that may confront us in the future. ... the Navy has been observing the
changes in the Arctic and considering the ramifications for future
operations. … Thermal expansion of the warming ocean and melting ice
sheets and glaciers over land may cause sea levels to rise as high as
one meter in some locations by the end of the century. Since the
majority of naval facilities are located on the coasts, this could
create significant problems for our bases, including the piers and
approaches. Enhanced tides and storm surges could create infrastructure
damage and salt water intrusion may compromise water supplies. Rising
sea levels will significantly expand the area of flooding and level of
damage of the most routine storms experienced today.…
2012 March 7. NASA RELEASE 12-079: Multi-Agency Satellite Begins Climate and Weather Studies.
Excerpt: NASA has completed commissioning of the Suomi National
Polar-orbiting Partnership satellite (NPP), which is now making global
environmental observations. The satellite will provide scientists with
critical insight into the dynamics of the entire Earth system, including
climate, clouds, oceans, and vegetation. It will also gather enhanced
data for improving our nation's weather forecasting system….
2012 March. Our Changing Planet for Fiscal Year 2012 Report
Released (PDF). Since 1990, the United States Global Change Research
Program (USGCRP) has developed and submitted an annual report, Our
Changing Planet, to Congress describing the current state of the USGCRP
and ongoing Federal research activities focused on global change. The
USGCRP is committed to building a knowledge base that informs human
responses to global change through coordinated and integrated federal
programs of research, education, communication, and decision support.
Download the Report here: http://downloads.globalchange.gov/ocp/ocp2012/ocp2012.pdf
2012 January 19. NASA Finds 2011 Ninth-Warmest Year on Record [includes a video of warming from Goddard Institute for Space Studies].
Excerpt: The global average surface temperature in 2011 was the ninth
warmest since 1880, according to NASA scientists. The finding continues a
trend in which nine of the 10 warmest years in the modern
meteorological record have occurred since the year 2000….
…The difference between 2011 and the warmest year in the GISS record
(2010) is 0.22 degrees F (0.12 C). This underscores the emphasis
scientists put on the long-term trend of global temperature rise.
Because of the large natural variability of climate, scientists do not
expect temperatures to rise consistently year after year. However, they
do expect a continuing temperature rise over decades….
2012 Feb 8. NASA Mission Takes Stock of Earth's Melting Land Ice.
NASA RELEASE : 12-048. Excerpt: In the first comprehensive satellite
study of its kind, a University of Colorado at Boulder-led team used
NASA data to calculate how much Earth's melting land ice is adding to
global sea level rise. Using satellite measurements from the NASA/German
Aerospace Center Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), the
researchers measured ice loss in all of Earth's land ice between 2003
and 2010…. The total global ice mass lost from Greenland, Antarctica and
Earth's glaciers and ice caps during the study period was about 4.3
trillion tons (1,000 cubic miles), adding about 0.5 inches (12
millimeters) to global sea level. That's enough ice to cover the United
States 1.5 feet (0.5 meters) deep. …About a quarter of the average
annual ice loss came from glaciers and ice caps outside of Greenland and
Antarctica (roughly 148 billion tons, or 39 cubic miles). Ice loss from
Greenland and Antarctica and their peripheral ice caps and glaciers
averaged 385 billion tons (100 cubic miles) a year….
2012 Jan 12. NASA Study Shows Health, Food Security Benefits From Climate Change Actions
(Release 12-017). A new study led by a NASA scientist highlights 14 key
air pollution control measures that, if implemented, could slow the
pace of global warming, improve health and boost agricultural
production. The research, led by Drew Shindell of NASA's Goddard
Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York City, finds that focusing
on these measures could slow mean global warming 0.9 ºF (0.5ºC) by
2050, increase global crop yields by up to 135 million metric tons per
season and prevent hundreds of thousands of premature deaths each year.
While all regions of the world would benefit, countries in Asia and the
Middle East would see the biggest health and agricultural gains from
emissions reductions. "We've shown that implementing specific practical
emissions reductions chosen to maximize climate benefits also would have
important 'win-win' benefits for human health and agriculture," said
Shindell. The study was published today in the journal Science.
[This was chapter 8 in previous edition.]
Chapter 9 Article Archives:
Kyoto Treaty text
National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change -- is a landmark in the effort to understand what climate change means for the United States. The Assessment was called for by a 1990 law, and has been conducted under the US Global Change Research Program.
Climate Change Education.org
Carbon Mitigation Initiative - a joint project of Princeton University, BP and the Ford Motor Company to find solutions to the greenhouse and global warming problem. Researchers are developing strategies to reduce global carbon dioxide emissions that will be safe, effective, and affordable.
ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability was founded in 1990 by local governments at the United Nations Headquarters in New York as the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI). It's an association of cities, towns, counties, and local government associations ( (more than 600 in the U.S.) whose mission is to build and serve a worldwide movement to achieve tangible improvements in global sustainability.
Nature Conservancy pages on Climate Change
NOAA Global Climate Change page
a commentary site (blog) on climatology by climate scientists. Provides quick response to developing stories.
Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) - Climate & Energy Publications