Transition Brockville archive

Tag : Extreme weather (133)

The great climate migration

New York Times / Abrahm Lustgarten / 23 July 2020

For most of human history, people have lived within a surprisingly narrow range of temperatures, in the places where the climate supported abundant food production. But as the planet warms, that band is suddenly shifting north. According to a pathbreaking recent study in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the planet could see a greater temperature increase in the next 50 years than it did in the last 6,000 years combined. By 2070, the kind of extremely hot zones, like in the Sahara, that now cover less than 1 percent of the earth’s land surface could cover nearly a fifth of the land, potentially placing one of every three people alive outside the climate niche where humans have thrived for thousands of years. Many will dig in, suffering through heat, hunger and political chaos, but others will be forced to move on.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Time to retreat from living on the riskiest waterfront land?

CBC News / Janet Davison / 18 July 2020

Across Canada, flooding has become the most expensive natural disaster, costing $1 billion annually in damage to homes, property and infrastructure, according to the federal Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

Insurers and many policy experts expect that number will go up. Sea levels are rising. A recent study by researchers at Environment and Climate Change Canada found that climate change has made rainfall more extreme and storms with extreme rainfall more frequent.

While experts see a variety of strategies to help deal with the situation, there is one potential solution people may not want to talk about: When might it be time to retreat from living on the riskiest waterfront properties altogether?

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Cheap, simple DIY water catchment and irrigation

resilience.org / Kara Stiff / 8 July 2020

Last year in foothills North Carolina, we had a hundred-year flood in June. Then we went three months without any rain at all. Some things produced well in spite of drought, but tomatoes really suffered and I hardly got any pumpkins. I was not able to keep things adequately watered by hand even before my catchment tank ran dry.

I know that the carbon footprint of tap water is pretty small compared to, say, tropical vacations. But I still have a philosophical problem with paying to have water cleaned so thoroughly that it’s drinkable, and then pumped for miles and miles, only to pour it on the ground. I like the idea of living within the rain budget of my area, which isn’t too hard because we usually get too much. I like the idea of having irrigation water even if I lost access to my local water utility for some reason (power outage, income outage, anything).

Most of all, I like the idea of my garden looking all big and lush like my mom’s. She waters constantly.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Coronavirus, climate change: Dealing with converging crises

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists / Dawn Stover / 8 July 2020

Like climate change, the pandemic seemed distant and unreal until it was already upon us. Now both urgently require a society-wide response. Scientists have offered clear recommendations about how to solve these problems. However, the coronavirus won’t subside without broad social cooperation on behaviors such as physical distancing, mask wearing, and hand washing—an expanded version of the neighborly help that solved my electrical problem.

Similarly, the climate won’t heal without a new “healthcare system” for the planet that has strong support from the general public. It shouldn’t take another year of killer heat waves, mega-fires, and other disasters to convince Americans that we’ll never get back to “normal” by ignoring what’s happening around us.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

More extreme rainfall due to climate change, study confirms

CBC News / Emily Chung, Alice Hopton, Tashauna Reid / 03 June 2020

Warmer temperatures due to climate change lead to wetter air, and we’ve seen more extreme rainfall and flooding across North America. But is there really evidence that the two are related?

Yes, there is.

A new study from researchers at Environment and Climate Change Canada found that climate change has made:

  • Rainfall more extreme.
  • Storms with extreme rainfall more frequent.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Building community resilience: before, during & after COVID-19

Transition US / Don Hall / 30 March 2020

Due to accelerating impacts from climate change, as well as ongoing economic and political instability around the world, these crises will continue to periodically crash up against our shores, more and more frequently in coming decades, threatening to significantly erode our capacity to respond. In order to successfully counter this reality, those of us who are called to leadership will need to learn how to respond skillfully during these periodic crises and build local community resilience long-term.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

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What the Transition movement does incredibly well is small-scale experiments which are practical, which resonate with local people, which look as if they’re doable, and that can engage people at a practical and meaningful level. It connects up the big issues and the local issues and shows you that change can happen at a local level.

— Julian Dobson, 21 Stories of Transition
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