Global warming news and climate change headlines for June 2008
June 30 - China calls for global support on climate change
China, the country many like to demonize, yet appear to be quite happy
to outsource our pollution to, has acknowledged their need to take
decisive action on climate change; but it states that developed
countries need to do their fair share. Read
June 29 - Australian government - no to nuclear power
Australia will not be pursuing nuclear power in order to reduce carbon emissions according to the country's Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd. Instead, the government will be focusing on other forms of renewable energy such as wind and solar in order to meet the emission goals of 60% of 2000's emissions by 2050.
June 28 - Ice free North Pole this summer?
According to scientists at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, the North Pole may be ice-free by this September as global warming melts Arctic sea ice.
While an ice-free Arctic was always on the cards, the center's senior research scientist, Mark Serreze is astounded it's happening so soon.
June 27 - Earth nears global warming tipping point
James Hansen, Director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies and
the man credited with first warning the world of global warming 20 years
ago, has stated humanity has reached a point of planetary emergency and
we are now reaching tipping points in the climate system where changes
will occur that will be out of our control. Read
June 26 - EPA email to White House on pollutants ignored
Senior Environmental Protection Agency officials have said that an email sent to the White House last December containing a conclusion that greenhouse gases classify as pollutants and therefore need to be controlled was not opened and government officials refused to read the communication.
June 23 - Japan government to reduce solar power costs
Japan is set to give solar power a higher profile by introducing tax
breaks to reduce the costs of system installation for householders. The new initiatives aim to see more than 70 percent of new houses equipped with solar panels by 2020.
June 22 - UK government's new climate strategies
The UK government is considering considering phasing out heating appliances with a high carbon
footprint, forcing people to insulate their homes and installing renewable energy supply when building extensions in order to meet emission reduction and renewable energy goals.
June 20 - Global warming to push feeding whales south
Recent WWF research states global warming predicted over the next four decades will result in winter sea-ice coverage in the Southern Ocean dropping by up to 30 per cent in some areas frequented by migrating whales. The loss of ice means some species may need to travel hundreds of kilometers further south to find feeding areas.
June 19 - 7th warmest spring on record
According to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, this spring was the seventh warmest since global records started being kept in 1880. the combined land and ocean surface temperature for spring 2008 was 0.94 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century mean of 56.7.
June 14 - California declares water emergency
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has declared a state of emergency due to drought in nine counties in the state's Central Valley. California has had two years of below-average rainfall.
June 14 - Global warming tipping point already reached?
An academic from Adelaide, Australia has warned that climate change related events predicted for the end of the 21st century are already
occurring. Professor Barry Brook of Adelaide University states that atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are
barrelling towards 600 parts a million and predicts global temperature increases of up to six degrees; which would have catastrophic consequences.
June 13 - Water scarcity fuels tension in Central Asia
Central Asia, one of the world's driest places, is becoming even drier. The situation is complicated by the fact that thirsty crops such as cotton are still major industries upon which millions of people are dependent. The current drought in the region coupled with poor infrastructure is placing extra pressure on impoverished people, sparking increasing squabbles over the precious liquid.
June 12 - Sea ice melt accelerating permafrost thaw.
The amount of sea ice that remains in the Arctic until the end of summer
in recent years has been hitting record lows and some scientist believe
the lack of ice on the water could also be speeding up the thawing of
permafrost on land. If the rate of summer sea-ice loss persists,
researchers from the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the National Snow and Ice Data Center
believe this could increase the rate of warming across permafrost areas
by up to 350%. Read
June 11 - Drought closes Australia's largest cattle station
Usually able to support 16,000 cattle; Australia's biggest cattle
station has suspended operations due to the most severe drought in over
a century. The 9,000 square mile plus Anna Creek station has only been
shut down twice before due to drought during its 100 years of operation.
June 10 - Japan to trial carbon trading
Japan, the world's 5th largest greenhouse gas emitter, will commence trial of a carbon trading system sometime this year and
will contribute up to $1.2 billion to a fund set up to assist developing countries fight global warming. Japan has set a goal to reduce emissions by 60-80 percent by 2050; with an interim target expected to be announced sometime within the next 12 months.
June 8 - US climate change bill squashed by Senate
New laws that that would have the implementation of a cap-and-trade system in the USA with view to reducing carbon emissions has been squashed after a vote in the Senate. The bill aimed to cut total US greenhouse gas emissions by 66 percent by 2050, but opponents to it believed it would negatively impact on employment and increase fuel prices.
June 7 - California officially in drought
For the first time since 1991, California has been declared as being
drought stricken and water rationing may soon be implemented. A law that
would require Californians to reduce water use 20 percent was also
recently passed California has experienced the driest spring in 88
years, with river runoff into reservoirs at 41 percent of average
June 6 - Climate change could impact microscopic life
While most of the attention related to the impact of global warming has
been on larger organisms such as plants and animals, researchers say it
will also affect bacteria, fungi and other microbes that perform vital functions important to life on
this planet. Read
June 6 - Rising sea levels to swamp island nation soon
The president of Kiribati, a small nation of 94,000 in the Pacific, believes that efforts to slow down climate change may be too late for low-lying islands and according to some predictions, Kiribati will be submerged some time during this century. Note Tong says his government has already begun relocating some citizens due to rising sea levels.
June 5 - 7,000 new wind turbines for the UK
The UK government has announced up to 7,000 new turbines to be constructed by 2020, boosting wind power electricity generation by 25 gigawatts, triple the current amount and reaching an overall target of 33 gigawatts, enough for all UK households' electricity requirements.
June 4 - Carbon rationing?
The UK Environmental Audit Committee has proposed that in order to
reduce consumption of non-renewable energy and therefore reduce carbon
dioxide emissions that cause global warming, every adult should be given
an annual carbon allowance. Once their allowance was used up; they would
then need to buy credits. If a person didn't use up their allowance in a
year, they would then be free to sell those credits to others. Read
June 1 - Water is the new oil
In Barcelona, Spain, the water situation is so dire that if you're
caught watering your garden, you risk up to a $13,000 fine. The city has
just received its first shipment of 5 million gallons of fresh water
from external sources, an event that will become increasingly all to
common in the future as climate change digs its claws in deeper. Water
is becoming so precious, the Dow Chemical Chairman has called it the
"oil of the new century". Read
June 1 - Ocean seeding strategy scrapped
The controversial plan to seed the world's oceans with iron in order to
stimulate phytoplankton growth, which would in turn consume carbon
dioxide has been scrapped at a UN conference. Closed to 200 countries
have agreed to a moratorium on such projects due to a lack of knowledge
of the side effects of such a drastic measure being taken. Read
June 1 - Japan's Shirakami forests could vanish this century
The world heritage listed beech forests of the Shirakami
Mountains could disappear within a hundred years according to
researchers commissioned by Japan's Environment Ministry. The study states the forests will decrease by by over 97 percent during 2031-2050, then disappear entirely after 2081 as the beech trees will be unable to adapt to the increase in temperature.
June 1 - Methane release to accelerate global warming?
635 million years ago a massive release of methane is thought to have ended a global ice age, a UC Riverside-led study reports. Much methane still lies frozen in permafrost, little warming may be needed to unleash this trapped methane, which could potentially warm our planet tens of degrees. Methane has around 30 times the GWP (global warming potential) of carbon dioxide.