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Posts

April 20, 2014

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11:20 PM | Long weekend viewing: Years Of Living Dangerously
This is the trailer for Years Of Living Dangerously, a nine part documentary about the impacts of climate change by James Cameron and a bunch of Hollywood filmmakers, working with some of the USA’s top TV journalists and a team of top climate scientists. There are some big names involved: Harrison Ford, Matt Damon, Jessica […]
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6:38 AM | 2014 SkS Weekly Digest #16
SkS Highlights Peter Hatfield's video, The consequences of climate change (in our lifetimes), introduced by Rob Honeycutt, drew the most comments of the articles posted on SkS during the past week. Dana's Climate contrarian backlash - a difficult lesson for scientific journals to learn attracted the second highest number of comments. Toon of the Week   h/t to I Heart Climate Scientists Quote of the Week "So is the climate threat solved? Well, it should be. The science is solid; the […]

April 19, 2014

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6:01 PM | 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #16
6 things you need to know about reducing emissions Climate change and desertification a threat to social stability Climate concerns in a time of growing ‘climate fatigue’? Costs of climate change may prove high for future Drunken trees: dramatic signs of climate change Entire marine food chain at risk from rising CO2 levels in water EPA drastically underestimates methane released at drilling sites Pope Francis urged to back fossil fuel divestment campaign Salvation gets […]
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9:34 AM | Dump fossil fuels for the health of our hearts
Cleaning up air pollution will provide immediate health gains as well as longer-term climate benefits, highlights New York University's George Thurston

Pope, C. (2003). Cardiovascular Mortality and Long-Term Exposure to Particulate Air Pollution: Epidemiological Evidence of General Pathophysiological Pathways of Disease, Circulation, 109 (1) 71-77. DOI:

Smith, K., Jerrett, M., Anderson, H., Burnett, R., Stone, V., Derwent, R., Atkinson, R., Cohen, A., Shonkoff, S., Krewski, D. & Pope, C. (2009). Public health benefits of strategies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions: health implications of short-lived greenhouse pollutants, The Lancet, 374 (9707) 2091-2103. DOI:

Horton, D., Harshvardhan, . & Diffenbaugh, N. (2012). Response of air stagnation frequency to anthropogenically enhanced radiative forcing, Environmental Research Letters, 7 (4) 44034. DOI:

Kelly, J., Makar, P. & Plummer, D. (2012). Projections of mid-century summer air-quality for North America: effects of changes in climate and precursor emissions, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions, 12 (2) 3875-3940. DOI:

Thurston, G. (2013). Mitigation policy: Health co-benefits, Nature Climate Change, 3 (10) 863-864. DOI:

Rice, M., Thurston, G., Balmes, J. & Pinkerton, K. (2014). Climate Change. A Global Threat to Cardiopulmonary Health, American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 189 (5) 512-519. DOI:

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April 18, 2014

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4:30 PM | Non-Linear Trends
Any given time series, say July average temperature in the Moscow region since 1881, might exhibit both short-term (more brief) and long-term (more lasting) patterns of change. The longer-term is certainly something worth knowing about. It might be increasing, or … Continue reading →
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8:58 AM | Global warming can't be blamed on CFCs – another one bites the dust
A paper published in the International Journal of Modern Physics B by the University of Waterloo's Qing-Bin Lu last year claimed that solar activity and human chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) emissions, not carbon emissions, could explain the observed global warming over the past century.  The journal has now published a rebuttal of that paper by Skeptical Science team members Dana Nuccitelli, Kevin Cowtan, Peter Jacobs, Mark Richardson, Robert Way, Anne-Marie Blackburn, Martin Stolpe, and […]

April 17, 2014

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9:31 AM | Mitigating climate change – The IPCC WGIII report
What is the IPCC WG III? On 14th April 2014 the IPCC Working Group III (WG III) published their latest report (link) on climate change mitigation. This is the third of three reports from the IPCC, and follows on from their previous publications: WG I ‘The Physical Science Basis’, published in September 2013; and WG II ‘Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability’, published in March 2014.  Their latest report draws together over four years of work by over 230 scientists, […]
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8:56 AM | Mitigation of Climate Change – Part 3 of the new IPCC report
      Guest post by Brigitte Knopf             Global emissions continue to rise further and this is in the first place due to economic growth and to a lesser extent to population growth. To achieve climate protection, fossil power generation without CCS has to be phased out almost entirely […]
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7:48 AM | Citibanker: the age of renewables is here
Kathryn Ryan’s interview earlier this week with Michael Eckhart, Managing Director and Global Head of Environmental Finance and Sustainability at the giant investment bank Citigroup was arresting. He was in New Zealand as a keynote speaker at the Wind Energy Conference and Ryan asked him about a recent report from Citi, Energy Darwinism: The Evolution […]

April 16, 2014

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2:18 PM | Heartland logic: More people have heard of Fidel Castro than Michael Mann, therefore global warming is false.
This is a guest post from Narahani.   Or is happening and is good for you, or has stopped happening, or is caused by CO2 but only a little, or is about to reverse due to lots of yet-to-be-discovered negative feedbacks, and clouds. And anyhow, peas and water lilies love CO2 so ramping it up to 1000 ppm would be fantastic. The logic is dizzying.   And yes, Joe Bast repeated his widely criticized statement equating people who support action to limit climate change with […]
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10:17 AM | Lip service: it’s all climate action ever gets from Key & Co
As expected, the New Zealand government’s response to the IPCC’s Working Group 3 report on mitigating climate change pays lip service to the science, while maintaining that NZ is doing all that can be expected. Climate change minister Tim Groser’s press release said that the IPCC report’s call for intentional cooperation meant that NZ is […]
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4:51 AM | Predicting the effect of anomalous sea ice loss and increasing sea surface temperatures on global storm systems
Azara Mohammadi – To become a PhD candidate at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Soumik Basu moved from his home in Kolkata, India to a region infamous for its “below zero” weather: Interior Alaska. Basu left warm weather and his family (not to mention his mother’s cooking) because “The climate is changing, so I wanted to study how these changes in the climate affect the storm activities over the Northern Hemisphere.” Specifically, Basu came to UAF to […]
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12:00 AM | Deus Dominus Machina
Let’s do something totally unproductive today: Let`s play god. Well, it`s going to be “playing god” if you go with the saying “Evolution is god’s way of issuing upgrades”. For everyone else it’s going to be “Let`s play simple-laws-that-lead-to-complex-life”*. A … Continue reading →

April 15, 2014

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10:21 PM | Hold the drill! Fracking emitting more methane than previously thought
As politically divisive as hydraulic fracturing is, we still need much more data to determine its environmental effects before deciding if it can be major source of energy during our transition away from fossil fuels.  Unfortunately, this lack of data … Continue reading →

Caulton, D., Shepson, P., Santoro, R., Sparks, J., Howarth, R., Ingraffea, A., Cambaliza, M., Sweeney, C., Karion, A., Davis, K. & Stirm, B. (2014). Toward a better understanding and quantification of methane emissions from shale gas development, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI:

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8:38 PM | 2014 SkS News Bulletin #3: IPCC Report (WG III)
Averting catastrophe is eminently affordable Climate experts sound the alarm Climate protection a 'task that can be solved' Climate report finds UN emissions target not out of reach IPCC report summary censored by governments around the world 'Modest hope' to slow warming, but no 'free lunch,' U.N. warns Nations’ handling of new IPCC report presages divisions in treaty effort Reactions to the final installment of the IPCC analysis The top 10 ways to avert a climate catastrophe UN […]
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4:46 PM | When will we reach 2°C?
A change in global surface temperature to 2°C above pre-industrial climate is often used as a threshold for ‘dangerous climate change’. Although impacts will tend to get worse as temperatures increase, there is no clear evidence yet of such a … Continue reading →
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7:07 AM | Would addressing climate change improve energy security?
By Jessica Jewell, Research Scholar, IIASA Energy Program How would action to mitigate climate change affect energy security for countries around the world? In two recent studies that I worked on with colleagues in IIASA’s Energy Program and three other European research centers, we explored this question under a range of different policy scenarios. We found … Continue reading →

April 14, 2014

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6:01 AM | Climate contrarian backlash - a difficult lesson for scientific journals to learn
Scientific journals have had a bumpy road trying to learn how to deal with climate contrarians. Poor decisions by journal staff in dealing with contrarians have often led to editors resigning and a damaged reputation in the academic community. The latest such example is the journal Frontiers and its response to bullying by contrarians over a paper by Stephan Lewandowsky and colleagues. The paper analyzed the conspiratorial psychology of contrarian comments made on public blogs. As I previously […]

April 13, 2014

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11:01 AM | IPCC WG3: it does not cost the world to save the planet
The IPCC has just released the summary for policymakers of the Working Group 3 report on mitigating climate change. It makes clear that the world has to act quickly to restrict carbon emissions to have a reasonable chance of restricting warming to 2ºC by the end of the century, but establishes that the costs of […]
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6:29 AM | 2014 SkS Weekly Digest #15
SkS Highlights Roz Pidcock's  IPCC says adapt and mitigate to tackle climate risks garnered the most comments of the articles posted on SkS during the past week. Attracting the second highest number of comments was IPCC issue official rebuttal to more David Rose/Daily Mail nonsense by John Mason. Toon of the Week   Quote of the Week "This week in Berlin, scientists and public representatives have been weighing up radical options for curbing emissions contained in the third report of […]

April 12, 2014

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5:30 PM | 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #15B
Asgard’s fire Can celebrities and prime time TV make Americans care Car, truck and airplane pollution set to drive climate change Climate targets: Australia can't be caught napping El Niño could grow into a monster, new data show Greenhouse gas emissions nearly doubled in first decade of 21st century How taking the 'perma' out of permafrost could accelerate warming IPCC explores the ethics and economics of fighting climate change IPCC: world must urgently switch to clean […]
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2:24 PM | Planning for the next Sandy: no relative suffering would be socialist
The river Waal at Nijmegen, The Netherlands. The original river is to the right. The island has been created to give the river more space and reduce flooding.The New York Times Magazine has a beautiful article on a Dutch water manager, Henk Ovink. He enrolled with Shaun Donovan, the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, serving in the cabinet of President Barack Obama to make the USA fit for the next Sandy. The Dutch approach to water management is very different and looks […]
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9:59 AM | Detailed regional data reduce warming-drought link doubts
In Portugal and Spain climate change has already driven over 2°C of warming in summer, and new findings from Sergio Vicente-Serrano from the Pyrenean Institute of Ecology are dispelling uncertainties that the temperatures are making drought more severe and widespread.

Vicente-Serrano, S., Lopez-Moreno, J., Beguería, S., Lorenzo-Lacruz, J., Sanchez-Lorenzo, A., García-Ruiz, J., Azorin-Molina, C., Morán-Tejeda, E., Revuelto, J., Trigo, R. & Coelho, F. (2014). Evidence of increasing drought severity caused by temperature rise in southern Europe, Environmental Research Letters, 9 (4) 44001. DOI:

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April 11, 2014

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3:07 PM | Measuring NEP
Some under- and post-grad students recently asked me to explain how to measure NEP in cryoconite holes, and this post represents a brief overview on their behalf – apologies to other readers […]
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5:32 AM | Climate imbalance – disparity in the quality of research by contrarian and mainstream climate scientists
A new paper has been published in the journal Cosmopolis entitled Review of the consensus and asymmetric quality of research on human-induced climate change. The paper was authored by John Abraham, myself, John Cook, John Fasullo, Peter Jacobs, and Scott Mandia. Each of the authors has experience in publishing peer-reviewed responses to flawed contrarian papers. Despite the 97% expert consensus on human-caused global warming supported by peer-reviewed research, expert opinion, the IPCC reports, […]

April 10, 2014

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2:15 PM | Camp Dark Snow 2014
Today marks the end of this semester’s teaching and hopefully a return to both research activity and posting on TTP! Greenland 2014 has become a collaborative effort with team Dark […]
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6:16 AM | IPCC issue official rebuttal to more David Rose/Daily Mail nonsense
David Rose. That name rings a bell, huh? This was the guy who last year  manufactured an IPCC crisis meeting in the UK right-wing tabloid the Daily Mail, where he hangs out and writes pages of nonsense about climate science.  At Skeptical Science, as pointed out in the above link, we have previously pre-bunked and debunked and debunked again his articles on the subject of climate change, but he continues to appear oblivious to legitimate criticism of his work or, indeed, facts. In his […]
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12:21 AM | Life at 400ppm: catching up with a Pliocene atmosphere
With global atmospheric carbon dioxide bumping along just under 400ppm, and sure to break through to higher levels in the near future, it’s worth taking a long hard look at what the climate system was like the last time CO2 was at these levels — the Pliocene period 3-5 million years ago. Professor Maureen Raymo […]

April 09, 2014

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1:30 PM | Uncertainty in an emissions-constrained world
By Matthias Jonas, IIASA, and  Gregg Marland, Appalachian State University Greenhouse gas emissions are seldom measured directly. They must be estimated from data such as on energy use and changes in land use. That means that estimates of greenhouse gas emissions from human sources are inherently uncertain. In a new study with colleagues at IIASA … Continue reading →
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6:12 AM | IPCC says adapt and mitigate to tackle climate risks
This is a re-post from Roz Pidcock at Carbon Brief The front page article of today's Spectator claims the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has "updated" its position on climate change, to accept that "climate change is now a question of adaptation". Author Matt Ridley suggests that this is such a departure from the UN climate panel's previous findings that its conclusions are now in line with those of climate skeptic lobbyist Lord Lawson. Lawson stresses "the need to adapt […]
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