Transition Brockville archive

Tag : Extreme weather (143)

‘Relentless’ climate crisis intensified in 2020, says UN report

The Guardian / Damian Carrington / 19 April 2021

There was a “relentless” intensification of the climate crisis in 2020, according to the UN’s World Meteorological Organization.

The coronavirus pandemic made the accelerating impacts of global heating even worse for millions of people. But the temporary dip in carbon emissions due to lockdowns had no discernible impact on atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, the WMO report said.

Last year was ranked as the hottest on record, in a tie with 2016 and 2019, despite the cooling effect of the cyclical natural climate phenomenon, La Niña. Without this, 2020 would most likely have been the hottest year yet. The decade 2011-20 was the hottest on record.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Blackouts show US deeply unprepared for the climate crisis

The Guardian / Maanvi Singh / 19 February 2021

The crises in California and Texas are different, in scale and severity. One faced fire, the other an ice storm. But experts say the power outages in both states make one thing clear: neither is prepared for the chaos of the climate crisis.

“There’s a lot of similarities, between what has happened in Texas and California,” said Roshi Nateghi, a researcher at Purdue University who studies infrastructure sustainability and resilience. “In both cases, you had an extreme climate or weather event. And in both cases, the states were not prepared.”

Over the past two decades, across the United States, severe weather has been the main cause of sustained power outages, Nateghi said.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Conservation authorities group has too many developers, no local reps: mayor

CBC News / Bobby Hristova / 1 February 2021

Hamilton city councillors and the executive director of Environment Hamilton think recent changes by the province to conservation authorities will “decapitate” them and erode years of work to curb global warming and other environmental issues.

The most recent issue raised was how no one from Hamilton or Niagara are included in a provincial working group made following controversial legislation that governs conservation authorities.

Conservation authorities oversee regional environmental and watershed protection.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

New climate data hub ClimateWest

National Observer / Carl Meyer / 20 January 2021

Canada’s three Prairie provinces are particularly vulnerable to the climate crisis, and now their governments are helping make climate data more accessible, according to the head of a new non-profit.

Jane Hilderman is executive director of ClimateWest, an organization that launched Tuesday aiming to make data on climate change accessible to municipal planners, land use planners, and other institutional-level groups in the Prairies.

Hilderman said all three provinces helped with the startup, as well as the federal government and other organizations.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

2020 was joint hottest year ever recorded

The Guardian / Damian Carrington / 8 January 2021

The climate crisis continued unabated in 2020, with the the joint highest global temperatures on record, alarming heat and record wildfires in the Arctic, and a record 29 tropical storms in the Atlantic.

Despite a 7% fall in fossil fuel burning due to coronavirus lockdowns, heat-trapping carbon dioxide continued to build up in the atmosphere, also setting a new record. The average surface temperature across the planet in 2020 was 1.25C higher than in the pre-industrial period of 1850-1900, dangerously close to the 1.5C target set by the world’s nations to avoid the worst impacts.

Only 2016 matched the heat in 2020, but that year saw a natural El Niño climate event which boosts temperatures. Without that it is likely 2020 would have been the outright hottest year. Scientists have warned that without urgent action the future for many millions of people “looks black”.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Warmer winters causing more ice-free lakes in N. Hemisphere

CBC News / Nicole Mortillaro / 23 December 2020

Climate change is having a widespread effect on lakes across the Northern Hemisphere, a new study has found.

The study, published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, examined 122 lakes from 1939 to 2016 in North America, Europe and Asia, and found that ice-free years have become more than three times more frequent since 1978.

These ice-free years not only threaten the livelihoods of people who depend on them, but they also have the potential to cause deep ecological impacts.

“Ecologically, ice acts as a reset button,” said Sapna Sharma, co-author of the study and an associate professor in the biology department at York University in Toronto.

[ 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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