May 2012 climate change headlines and global warming news
May 30 - Natural gas not a fix for climate change
Natural gas has become the darling of energy in recent times, partly due
to its "green" reputation. However, not all natural gas is
equal and the pursuit of unconventional gas will contribute to
global average temperature rises well above 2C says the International Energy Agency
May 29 - Climate change toppled Indus civilization
Once spanning over more than a million square kilometers, the Indus civilization was the largest
of humanities cultures. Archeologists believe climate change played a
major role in its downfall 4,000 years ago. Read
May 28 - 31.6 billion metric tons of emissions in 2011
According to initial estimates from the International Energy Agency (IEA),
2011 saw a 3.2 percent increase in carbon emissions over 2010, with coal
accounting for 45 percent of total emissions. Read
May 26 - Butterfly increases range due to warming climate
They say it's an ill wind that blows nobody any good and that appears to
be the case for the UK's brown argus butterfly; which has been able to
expand its range over the last 20 years due to warmer temperatures. Read
May 24 - UN climate talks stall (again)
Two steps forward and two steps back seems to be the order of the day as
talks for a new global pact to address climate change took place in
Bonn; meanwhile, Rome (the planet) starts to burn. Read
May 23 - Heartland circling the drain?
After revelations about its operations that were closely followed by a
disastrous advertising campaign, the Heartland Institute is losing
donors and staff. Read
May 18 - CCS "leak" test under way
Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), also known as carbon sequestration. is
a controversial technology; akin to sweeping dirt under a rug. One of
the concerns of injecting waste carbon dioxide under ground or into the
sea bed is the ramifications of a situation where the CO2 leaks.
Researchers are looking into this by running tests in the waters off
Scotland whereby CO2 is being allow to bubble up from the ocean floor from a buried pipe.
May 17 - Australia's hottest half century
New research has found no other period in the last millenium matches the temperature
increases Australia and the region has experienced in the last 50 years.
May 14 - West Antarctic ice sheet likely doomed
West Antarctica’s Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf is hundreds of metres thick
and covers an area the size of Sweden. Due to warming waters, it's base
may disintegrate rapidly, increasing its melt rate 20-fold over
the next century and causing a very noticeable sea level rise around the
May 12 - Game over for climate - Hansen
If Canada extracts the oil in its tar sands reserves and the USA does
nothing, it will be "game over for the climate" says Dr. James
Hansen in an opinion piece published on the New York Times web site. Read
May 11 - Abusive emails sent to climate scientists released.
The Australian National University has released emails sent to its climate change scientists that contained abuse and threats, some causing enough concern to relocate the scientist to more secure locations on campus.
May 10 - Warm water fish appearing off the UK.
Fish common to the Mediterranean are increasingly appearing off the UK's
coast due to warming waters. The trend could also see trawlers having to
travel further north to catch popular commercial species such as cod. Read
May 9 - Support for climate change action wanes
While support for climate change action is still high in the USA, it is decreasing according to a recent survey. While 72 percent supported government action on climate change in 2010, this year it has dropped to 62 percent.
May 8 - Dinosaur farts and global warming
Flatulence from dinosaurs may have contributed enough methane to warm the planet
150 million years ago. The creatures may have generated more methane
than all modern sources - both natural and man-made. Read
May 7 - Heartland pulls climate change smear campaign
In less than two days after it was launched, the Heartland Institute has
pulled its billboard campaign featuring the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski,
after backlash not only from those wanting action on climate change, but
even from within the group's own supporters. Read
May 6 - Australia's carbon tax update
Australia's Clean Energy Regulator has published an initial list of 250 companies and organisations that will be liable for the nation's upcoming $23 per tonne carbon tax, which will kick in on July 1 this year. Among the entities are mining companies, local government bodies, a university and even a casino.
May 5 - Heartland's new low
The Heartland Institute appears to be scraping the bottom of the
marketing barrel with its new billboard campaigns featuring images of
the Unabomber; along with the words "I
still believe in global warming. Do you?". Read
May 3 - Global warming to boost crime rates?
Evidence exists that links increasing temperatures to higher crime
rates according to a senior lecturer in economics at Manchester Metropolitan University.
May 2 - U.S. to commence 10 year climate study
The White House has formalized a 10-year strategic plan that will focus on
human economic activity and global climate change. The plan will provide
scientific information needed to address issues arising from climate change through sustained assessments.
May 2 - Methane levels in the Arctic increase
Unexpected levels of methane have been detected emerging from the Arctic Ocean
between gaps in ice. The amount of the potent greenhouse gas suggests
the surface waters of the Arctic Ocean could be a significant source of
May 2 - Wind farm "warming" misreported.
After a recent study was released showing the immediate area surrounding
a wind farm can warm due to the action of turbines; some news agencies
and opposers of renewable energy were quick to amplify and exaggerate
the findings. Read
May 1 - Antarctic ice melt starts at the bottom
It appears it's the the warming sea, rather than increasing air
temperatures that are accelerating the melting of glaciers in
Antarctica. Read more. Read
May 1 - Cassava crops under threat
Cassava is a staple food for many millions of people, one that is under
threat due to pest and disease outbreaks triggered by climate change. Read
May 1 - Palm oil adding to climate woes
The clearing of peatlands in Indonesian Borneo for palm oil operations
is boosting greenhouse gas emissions. A recent study estimates up to 90 percent of emissions from palm oil plantations will come from peatlands by 2020.