Transition Brockville archive

Tag : Wildfires (19)

Flood, fire and plague: climate change blamed for disasters

Reuters / Robert Birsel / 14 November 2019

While the politicians argue, concern is growing about the impact on the health of a warmer world.

In China, health officials have reported a rare outbreak of pneumonic plague after two cases were confirmed this week in Beijing.

The two were infected in the province of Inner Mongolia, where rodent populations have expanded dramatically after persistent droughts, worsened by climate change, state media said. An area the size of the Netherlands was hit by a “rat plague” last summer.

The wider implications for health are sobering.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

I never thought I’d see the Australian rainforest burning

The Guardian / Joëlle Gergis / 10 September 2019

These days as a climate scientist, the line of separation between the research I do in my professional life and the events unfolding in the world at large is growing ever thinner.

The extreme events that our community has been talking about for decades are now becoming part of our lived experience, season after season, year after year across the entire planet. What we are seeing play out now is much faster than many of us ever imagined.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

World heading for point of no return, says UN

The Guardian / Jonathan Watts / 30 August 2019

The fires in the Amazon are “extraordinarily concerning” for the planet’s natural life support systems, the head of the UN’s top biodiversity body has said in a call for countries, companies and consumers to build a new relationship with nature.

Cristiana Paşca Palmer, the executive secretary of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, said the destruction of the world’s biggest rainforest was a grim reminder that a fresh approach was needed to stabilise the climate and prevent ecosystems from declining to a point of no return, with dire consequences for humanity.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Turning boreal forest from carbon sink to source

The Energy Mix / 26 August 2019

Wildfires across northern Canada are “mining” carbon from the soil and turning the boreal forest into a carbon source after millennia of acting as a carbon sink, in a process that could accelerate global climate change, according to a new paper in the journal Nature.

“This study underscores why more frequent burning in the boreal forest due to wildfires is bad from a climate perspective,” said lead author Xanthe Walker, post-doctoral researcher at the Center for Ecosystem Science and Society at Northern Arizona University.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Premiers push Ottawa for lead on local climate change strategy

NWT News/North / Nick Pearce / 14 July 2019

“Climate change is a global threat, with immediate and long-lasting, tangible impacts on the natural environment, public health and safety, as well as on infrastructure and the economy,” they stated. The comments were released on the second day of the Council of the Federation, a meeting of premiers in Saskatoon.

“Some of the changes are so significant we see it as an important job for us to educate people in the south that their actions are having a big effect on us,” [NWT Premier Bob] McLeod said told reporters Thursday.

The premiers also said their jurisdictions required “Full credit” for reduction of emissions, and federal funding to support climate change strategies as wildfires and floods become more common.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

A ‘new abnormal’ — megafires explode with off-the-charts fury

National Observer / Barry Saxifrage / 29 November 29 2018

Author’s note: The size and destruction of the Camp Fire grew significantly since this article was originally published. Now that this record-breaking fire has been fully contained, I’ve updated the charts and article to show its shocking “off-the-charts” scale.

California is on the burning edge of climate breakdown. Record-breaking drought and heat have turned the Golden State into a tinderbox. The megafires have followed. In the last two years a string of off-the-chart wildfires have exploded with stunning speed and ferocity across forests, grasslands, rural areas and city neighborhoods. California Governor Jerry Brown has called it “the new abnormal.”

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

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The Transition Framework

Resilience is the ability of a system or community to withstand impacts from outside. An indicator is a good way of measuring that. Conventionally, the principal way of measuring a reducing carbon footprint is CO2 emissions. However, we firmly believe that cutting carbon while failing to build resilience is an insufficient response when you’re trying to address multiple shocks such as peak oil, climate change and the economic crisis together.

— Transition U.S.
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