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Posts Tagged ‘Climate Change’

Climate change will affect developing countries more than rich ones

Posted by hkarner - 12. Mai 2018

Date: 10-05-2018
Source: The Economist

Temperatures in tropical climates will become far more variable

GLOBAL warming is often used as a synonym for climate change, and most discussions of the topic focus on the expected increase in average global temperatures. However, the frequency and severity of individual, catastrophic weather events depend heavily on the variability of temperatures as well as their mean. The larger the swings, the more often extremely hot or cold conditions can wreak havoc.

Unfortunately, according to a new study by Sebastian Bathiany of Wageningen University and three other scientists, poor countries are not only predicted to bear the brunt of the increase in average temperatures, but also to suffer from higher variation. Their paper finds that, as the planet warms, soil in areas near the equator will dry up, reducing its ability to dampen temperature swings. This problem is expected to be especially acute in the Amazon rainforest. Consequently, the authors expect the standard deviation of monthly temperatures to increase by nearly 20% in Brazil.

In contrast, countries in the northern latitudes, which are mostly rich, will not be affected nearly as much by changes in soil moisture. Far from the equator, countries will actually see smaller temperature fluctuations, because of changing atmospheric patterns. In terms of both means and variances, the countries that bear the most historical responsibility for climate change are likely to be the ones least harmed by its consequences.


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Why Paris is all wet again

Posted by hkarner - 1. Februar 2018

Date: 31-01-2018
Source: The Economist

Two years after it last struggled with floods, the metropole is reeling once more

IN mid-2016 the River Seine in central Paris burst its banks. It rose to 6.1 metres, briefly closed the Louvre and Musée d’Orsay, disrupted trains and affected businesses and homes. The cause: intense rainfall in much of western Europe, which led to the worst flooding in the city for 34 years. Now the waters are back. By January 29th the river had reached the 5.8 metre-mark, causing similar disorder. Some 1,500 people have been evacuated from their homes. Rats are fleeing sewers. Locals at one vulnerable spot downstream from the city, Ile de Migneaux, told a newswire, L’Agence France-Presse, that they have endured eight swampings in two decades. Are such floods becoming more common, and more disruptive, in Paris? Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Federal Regulators Rule Against Trump Administration on Power Plants

Posted by hkarner - 10. Januar 2018

Date: 09-01-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission rebuffs plan to aid coal-fired and nuclear power plants

The coal-fired Plant Scherer, one of the nation’s top carbon-dioxide emitters, near Juliette, Ga.

WASHINGTON—Federal energy regulators on Monday rejected a Trump administration proposal aimed at shoring up struggling coal-fired and nuclear power plants to bolster the nation’s electricity grid, saying the administration hadn’t persuaded them the plan was needed to ensure the system’s reliability.

The administration plan, proposed in September, is one of its biggest initiatives to help those fuels compete amid a boom in gas-fired and renewable power. The Energy Department submitted the proposal, warning that so many coal-fired and nuclear plants are under threat of closing that the country’s electric grid faced a rising risk of outages and price spikes without it.

The five-member Federal Energy Regulatory Commission ruled unanimously that the administration hadn’t provided enough evidence that the measures proposed were needed. The commissioners—including four Trump administration nominees, three of them Republicans—said the government hadn’t provided adequate justification for changing the rules currently governing competitive electricity markets and that the proposal would have unfairly limited competition.

“In addition, the extensive comments submitted by [the country’s grid operators] do not point to any past or planned generator retirements that may be a threat to grid resilience,” FERC’s order said. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Seit Beginn der Industrialisierung: Menschheit erlebt die drei wärmsten Jahre

Posted by hkarner - 7. Januar 2018

Date: 06-01-2018

Das vergangene Jahr hat weltweit einen brisanten Wärmerekord aufgestellt. Klimaforscher sind alarmiert.

Temperaturveränderung von 2017 im Vergleich zum Durchschnitt zwischen 1981 bis 2010: Besonders die Arktis hat sich erwärmt

2017 hat einen Rekord aufgestellt: Es war das wärmste Jahr seit Beginn der Industrialisierung ohne El-Niño-Phänomen – dieses sorgt alle paar Jahre für einen Wärmeschub aus dem Meer. Zugleich war 2017 das zweitwärmste Jahr seither überhaupt.

Das berichtet das Europäische Zentrum für mittelfristige Wettervorhersage ECMWF, das als erstes Institut die meteorologischen Daten des vergangenen Jahres ausgewertet hat.

Den globalen Wärmerekord von 2016, als El Niño herrschte, habe 2017 um 0,1 Grad verfehlt. 2017 war aber dafür 0,1 Grad wärmer als das bisher an zweiter Stelle platzierte 2015 – die drei vergangenen Jahre waren mithin so warm wie nie ein Drei-Jahres-Zeitraum seit Beginn der Messungen.

Einen Sprung gemacht Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Year Climate Change Began to Spin Out of Control

Posted by hkarner - 5. Januar 2018

Date: 04-01-2018
Source: Technology Review by James Temple

Fires ravaged the West, hurricanes battered the East—and still emissions continued to rise.

For decades, scientists have warned that climate change would make extreme events like droughts, floods, hurricanes, and wildfires more frequent, more devastating, or both. In 2017, we got an up-close look at the raw ferocity of such an altered world as high-category hurricanes battered the East and Gulf coasts, and wind-whipped fires scorched the West.

We’re also seeing with greater clarity how these dangers are interlinked, building upon one another toward perilous climate tipping points. And yet for all the growing risks, and the decades we’ve had to confront them, we have yet to address the problem in a meaningful way.

In fact, despite all our climate policies, global accords, solar advances, wind farms, hybrid cars, and Teslas, greenhouse-gas emissions are still moving in the wrong direction. And as long as we’re emitting any at all, we’re only making the problem worse.

Here are the five most worrisome climate developments we saw in 2017.

Emissions are rising again

After three relatively flat years, greenhouse-gas emissions from fossil fuels and industry picked up again in 2017, rising an estimated 2 percent, according to the Global Carbon Project. The shift was driven by rising carbon pollution in China and India, which more than offset a slight decline in the United States.

The news punctured tentative hopes that the recent flattening was solidifying into a trend. Among other things, it means that our collective climate efforts haven’t even prevented greenhouse-gas levels from rising, at a point when we need to be radically cutting them. Keeping temperatures from rising beyond a dangerous 2 °C will require slashing emissions as much as 70 percent by midcentury, according to the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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2017 12 28 Eine Studie über die Begrenztheit der deutschen Energiewende

Posted by hkarner - 1. Januar 2018

Dank an H.F.

Posted by Andreas van de Kamp on 28. Dezember 2017

Der frühere Ifo-Chef Hans-Werner Sinn hat ausgetüftelt, wie viel Speicher man benötigte, um wenigstens 50-60% der deutschen Stromproduktion für das Netz “auszubalancieren”, käme diese aus “Zappelstrom” durch Wind und Sonne. Ergebnis: In “Nord-Süd-Mitteleuropa” vom Polarkreis zum Brenner müssten alle topographischen Möglichkeiten ausgeschöpft und ca. 1.500 Pumpspeicher-Kraftwerke neu gebaut werden – vor allem in Norwegen . NB zur Ver-wandlung von Kultur- in Industrielandschaften.


Selbst dann wäre freilich noch nicht allzuviel gewonnen, weil

 Strom insgesamt nur 23 Prozent des Primärenergieverbrauchs in Deutschland aus-macht und
 durch die geplante Elektrifizierung des Personentransports sowie durch den absehbar vermehrten Einsatz von Wärmepumpen zusätzlicher Strombedarf entstehen wird; und weil
 damit die verringerte Produktion (das verringerte Angebot) und der zusätzliche Be-darf mit dem hier gewohnten “Lifestyle einer modernen Welt” (Raumwärme, elektri-sches Licht, Warmwasser) womöglich nicht mehr vereinbar sind. Um das zu garantie-ren, müsste die Effizienz bei der Verwendung von Strom in einem schwer vorstellba-ren Maß steigen bzw. die Nachfrage aus der heute damit betriebenen Infrastruktur müsste dramatisch sinken (sagt dieser Blogger). Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Historiker Philipp Blom: „Die Erde braucht uns nicht“

Posted by hkarner - 28. Dezember 2017

Interview Bettina Pfluger28. Dezember 2017, 08:30 derstandard.at

Digitalisierung und Klimawandel läuten das Ende der Demokratie ein, sagt Blom

Wir leben in einer Gesellschaft, in der die Zukunft keine Verheißung mehr ist, sondern als Bedrohung wahrgenommen wird. Die Verteidigung von Privilegien gilt als Geißel unserer Zeit. So schreibt es Philipp Blom in seinem aktuellen Buch „Was auf dem Spiel steht“. Darin entwirft der Historiker ein düsteres Bild von unserer Zukunft. So düster, dass er manchmal selbst damit hadert, ob er das Geschriebene wirklich glauben will. Im Buch wirft eine Forscherin aus der Zukunft einen Blick auf das Heute. Was wird sie sich fragen, fragt Blom. Wohl warum wir gegen die aktuellen Bedrohungen – Digitalisierung, Klimawandel, Hyperkonsum – nicht reagiert und gegengesteuert haben. Denn sie haben laut Blom die Macht, das Ende der Demokratie einzuläuten.

STANDARD: Sie sagen, das Versprechen, dass die Kinder es später besser haben werden als die Erwachsenen heute, gilt nicht mehr. Warum?

Blom: Weil die wenigsten glauben, dass ihre Kinder es besser haben werden. Ein Teil der Bevölkerung hat begriffen, dass unser Wohlstand nicht zu übertreffen ist. Der andere Teil sieht, dass sie keine fairen Aufstiegschancen haben. Es wird nicht gelingen, Wohlstand laufend zu steigern.

STANDARD: Liegt es also auch daran, dass eine Generation nun von Geburt an materiell abgesichert war?

Blom: Es ist unsere historische Erfahrung, dass Krieg das Wirtschaftswachstum angefacht hat. Es ist weder wirtschaftlich möglich noch politisch ratsam noch psychologisch durchzuhalten, dieses Wachstum durch Konsum und damit Identität durch Konsum weiter anzuheizen. Durch den Rohstoffabbau zerstören wir Lebensgrundlagen. Wenn wir hier nicht reagieren, kann das nur in eine problematische Richtung gehen. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Europe’s Chance in 2018

Posted by hkarner - 20. Dezember 2017

Ana Palacio, a former Spanish foreign minister and former Senior Vice President of the World Bank, is a member of the Spanish Council of State, a visiting lecturer at Georgetown University, and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the United States.

With no looming crisis and only one major election in 2018, the coming year is on track to be one of relative calm for Europe, providing a rare opportunity for the European Union to make progress on long-term challenges, from climate leadership to migration. Three areas, in particular, stand out.

MADRID – It has become a cliché to declare, each December, that the next year will be a crucial one for the European Union. The pattern is familiar: Europe has a turbulent 12 months, driven by events for which it was not prepared, jerry-rigs a response, and resolves to address the deeper structural issues. Then the next year arrives, and Europe is again overwhelmed by events, and becomes trapped again in short-term crisis-response mode. Will 2018 break the mold?

The short answer is that it might – or, at least, it can. After nearly a decade of relentless drama – a financial disaster, followed by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and annexation of Crimea, the migration crisis, the Brexit vote, and the election of a US president who has called into question the transatlantic relationship – Europe is entering 2018 in a relatively stable position. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Myth of a Fossil Fuel Phase-Out

Posted by hkarner - 13. Dezember 2017

Samuele Furfari

 Samuele Furfari is a professor of the geopolitics of energy at Université libre de Bruxelles, and author of The Changing World of Energy and the Geopolitical Challenges.

How we use energy is a hot topic for a warming world, and fears of pollution and resource strain have produced an arms race of energy efficiency solutions. But despite fears of shortages or threats from pollution, the planet has actually entered an era of fossil fuel abundance that shows no sign of abating.

BRUSSELS – How the world uses energy is a hot topic for a warming planet, and fears of pollution and resource strain have produced a virtual arms race of energy-efficiency strategies. From the European Union to China, economies are vowing to reduce their energy intensity with the help of technological innovations and legislative changes.

Yet, despite these promises, consumer demand for energy is forecast by the International Energy Agency to rise until at least 2040. With the world’s energy needs growing, how can policymakers guarantee supply? Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Natural Solutions to Climate Change

Posted by hkarner - 22. November 2017

Justin Adams is Global Managing Director for Lands at the Nature Conservancy.

At the United Nations climate change meeting that just concluded in Bonn, Germany, global leaders reaffirmed that the world cannot respond adequately to rising temperatures if governments continue to ignore how forests, farms, and coasts are managed. Now that there is a firm consensus, governments must act on it.

OXFORD – In response to climate change, land is key. Today, agriculture, forestry, and other land uses account for roughly a quarter of global greenhouse-gas emissions. But adopting sustainable land management strategies could provide more than one-third of the near-term emission reductions needed to keep warming well below the target – 2°C above pre-industrial levels – set by the Paris climate agreement.

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