Ohio: Cleveland-area nighttime temperatures indicate warming trend

 

 Michael Scott | Plain Dealer

Is global warming sneaking into Ohio under cover of darkness?

That’s what atmospheric scientists like Jeffrey Rogers, professor and researcher at the Ohio State University, want to know — because nights have been slowly getting warmer here for more than a half-century.

“Nighttime temperatures are coming up, and no one has really been paying attention to them,” Rogers said by telephone from his Columbus office, where he has also served in the unpaid position of state climatologist since 1986.

“Many people think that they will notice a warmer climate by noticing hotter summers or warmer winters,” Rogers said. “Instead, it is nighttime temperatures that could be a first indicator.”

Rogers, a 30-year teaching veteran at OSU, has produced a study that showed a clear trend over at least the last 60 years of Columbus weather records: Nighttime lows have been slowly, but certainly, gaining on daytime temperature high temperature averages.

Atmospheric scientists call that the Diurnal Temperature Range or DTR– the difference between the daytime high and nighttime low. It’s one of the markers that seem to indicate a warming climate, according to some scientists.

In any case, increasing nighttime lows are a virtually uncontested fact among meteorologists, climatologists and other scientists. What remains debatable is why it has been happening.

Continue Reading Here.

Washington: Kirkland Community Invited to Conversation about Climate Protection

Climate change, global warming, and the greenhouse effect may or may not be on the minds of all Kirkland citizens, but the City is hoping to raise awareness and inspire action about how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Kirkland. Through a public participation event, participants will be presented with the City’s climate protection efforts and asked to prioritize what actions they are willing to take to reduce their carbon footprint (a measure of the amount of carbon dioxide produced by a person). 

Using automatic voting devices similar to those on television game shows, participants will answer questions associated with ways to protect the climate through commuting, energy efficiency, waste reduction and more.  The Climate Protection Community Conversation will be held on Tuesday, February 24, 6 to 8:30 p.m., Kirkland City Hall, Council Chambers, 123 5th Avenue.  Due to a limited number of voting devices, reservations are being requested.  Please contact Erin Leonhart, Intergovernmental Relations Manager at 425-587-3009 or eleonhart@ci.kirkland.wa.us This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it  to register.  For information about Kirkland’s sustainability (“green”) initiatives, visit www.ci.kirkland.wa.us/kirklandgreen.

Mississippi: Population helping drive climate change concerns

 

PAUL SIMS | Starkville Daily News

Population is one factor driving global climate change concerns, a Mississippi State University professor said Monday.  Dr. Roger King, a William L. Giles Distinguished professor and director of MSU’s Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems, spoke to Starkville Rotarians today from his background as chief technologist for Earth Science Applications with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.  King cited statistics which showed that in mid-2003, some 6.2 billion people inhabited the planet and the United States had about 290 million residents. As of Friday, the global population figure stood at approximately 6.7 billion and the U.S. number was about 305 million.
The global population increase over roughly the last five years is about 474.1 million. Projections show that by 2025, some 8 billion people will live on the Earth.  “According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, scientific evidence confirms that human activities are a discernible cause of a substantial part of the warming experienced over the 20th century. New studies indicate that temperatures in recent decades are higher than at any time in at least the past 1,000 years. It is very unlikely that these unusually high temperatures can be explained solely by natural climate variations,” the report entitled “Climate Change Impacts on the United States” from 2000 reads.
Other documents and information on the subject of global climate change can be found through http://www.climatescience.gov/.
One point King made about the greenhouse effect is that “if it didn’t exist, we wouldn’t exist,” he said. If greenhouse gases were not in place, the planet could not capture heat, King said.   “The plant has got to warm up or we can’t live,” he said.  “It’s very much a system,” he said and noted that it’s important to monitor what happens in systems.  King noted that 2007 was the eighth warmest year on record and ice mass in at least one location is changing.  “It’s a very challenging thing to look at this,” he said.

What is the National Teach-In on Climate Change

“Continued growth of greenhouse gas emissions, for just another decade, practically eliminates the possibility of near-term return of atmospheric composition beneath the tipping level for catastrophic effects.”  —  Hansen et al. 2008

We stand at a unique moment in human history. The window for action on global warming is measured in months, not years. Decisions that we make—or fail to make—in 2009 will have profound impacts not only for our children and grandchildren, but for every human being that will ever inhabit the face of this earth from now until the end of time.

Visit the official site HERE.

February 5th, 2009, at the beginning of the first 100 days of the new administration, the National Teach-In on Global Warming will engage over a million Americans in solutions-driven dialogue. As educators, students and citizens, we owe our nation a focused conversation about the critical decisions that will determine if our descendants will inherit a prosperous or an impoverished planet.

We need your help enlisting thousands of colleges, universities, high-schools, middle schools, faith groups, civic organizations and businesses. Sign up today to organize an educational event at your institution. Help ignite the grassroots movement during the First 100 Days that can change the country, and the future.

THE NATIONAL TEACH-IN ON GLOBAL WARMING 2009
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LAUNCH WEBCAST
“The First 100 Days.” — Join David Orr, Hunter Lovins, Betsy Taylor, Ray Anderson, Billy Parish and Wahleah Johns as they discuss global warming solutions for the first 100 days.

TEACH-IN
Engage the Nation around concrete policy recommendations.

 

  1. Cut carbon 40% below today’s levels by 2020.
  2. Create millions of green jobs: Weatherize, solarize and rewire the nation.
  3. Revitalize America’s economy: Lead the world in renewable technology.
  4. Promote carbon neutral power.

CLIMATE DIALOGUE
The heart of your teach-in should be a round-table dialogue between students and key decision-makers: US Senators and congresspeople, governors, city councilors, mayors and state representatives. This kind of intergenerational dialogue has the power to break through the partisan framing of global warming, and resultant political gridlock, because for young people, this is not about left and right. It is your future at stake, and only you have the moral authority to speak for that future.

100 DAYS OF ACTION
Learn what you can do today… and tomorrow… and tomorrow… and tomorrow. Give the new President the support needed to put the planet on the path to a stable climate.

Advisory Board for The National Teach-In
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Dr. David Orr, Professor of Environmental Studies at Oberlin College.
Dr. Stephen Schneider, Professor of Biological Sciences at Stanford University.
Dr. Mohan Munasinghe, Vice Chair, U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Dr. James “Gus” Speth, Dean of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Hunter Lovins, President, Natural Capitalism Solutions.
Ross Gelbspan, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author.
Van Jones, founder of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights.
Elysa Hammond, Clif Bar Staff Ecologist.
Dr. Debora Rowe, Prof. of Renewable Energies and Energy Mgmt. at Oakland Community College.
Anthony D. Cortese, Presidents of Second Nature, Co-founder of the AASHE.
Penelope Canan, Professor of Sociology at the University of Central Florida.
Gillian Caldwell, 1Sky Campaign Director.
Dan Worth, Executive Director of the National Association of Environmental Law Societies (NAELS)
Billy Parish, co-founder of the Energy Action Coalition.
Jessy Tolkan, Executive Director of Programs for the Energy Action Coalition.
Dr. Bunyan Bryant, School of Natural Resources, University of Michigan.
Dr. William Moomaw, Prof. of Int. Env. Policy at the Fletcher Sch., Tufts University.
Dr. Jon Isham, Luce Professor of International Environmental Economics at Middlebury College.
Nino Amato, Business man

Wisconsin: UW-Manitowoc to host teach-in on global warming

 

AP

The University of Wisconsin-Manitowoc will hold a teach-in Thursday to educate the public about global warming.

UW-Manitowoc is one of more than 500 schools and organizations nationwide that plan to participate in the National Teach-In on Global Warming Solutions.

Ryan Schryver of Clean Wisconsin will give the keynote speech at UW-Manitowoc at 9:30 a.m. Thursday. A series of panel presentations during the day will address activism, science, pollution and food issues related to global warming.

Organizers say holding the teach-in during President Barack Obama‘s first 100 days in office will send a message that the environment should be one of his top priorities.

Community members are invited to attend the events at UW-Manitowoc.

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On The Net:

National Teach-In on Global Warming Solutions: www.nationalteachin.org.

Illinois: Knox College joins National Teach-in on Global Warming, February 4-5

GALESBURG — Knox College is participating in a cross-country conference on global warming on campus and via videoconference. The National Teach-in on Global Warming will be held February 4-5, 2009 on the Knox campus and across the country.

The Teach-in at Knox includes a facilitated discussion with Peter Schwartzman, chair of the Knox College environmental studies department, on February 5. The discussion is free and open to the public.

The program begins at 4 p.m. in the Umbeck Science and Mathematics Center, Room E-117, with a short video on climate change. After the video, Schwartzman will facilitate a follow-up discussion on the issues raised during the video and a videoconference with Congressman Phil Hare held the day before.

On February 4, Congressman Hare will participate in a campus-to-Congress videoconference with students from the Capitol building in Washington, D.C.

“Opportunities for creative and conscientious young people to communicate directly with national leaders are rare. College students are concerned about 2050 because it is their future,” says Schwartzman, who organized the events.

“This conference has been prepared by some of the most knowledgeable national leaders on the issue of climate change,” Schwartzman explains. “It affords a valuable occasion to hear other voices and share our ideas.”

Advisory members of the National Teach-In on Global Warming 2009 include such experts as Dr. David Orr, professor of environmental studies at Oberlin College; Dr. Stephen Schneider, professor of biological sciences at Stanford University; Dr. Mohan Munasinghe, vice chair of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC); Dr. James “Gus” Speth, dean of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies; Hunter Lovins, president of Natural Capitalism Solutions; Ross Gelbspan, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author; and Van Jones, founder of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights.

More information on the National Teach-in on Global Warming can be found at: http://www.nationalteachin.org/climatedialogue.php

Is Punxsutawney Phil responding to global warming?

Eoin O’Carroll | The Christian Science Monitor

As dawn broke on Monday morning, officials in cities and towns across the United States and Canada, engaged in an annual ritual of attempting to predict the weather by harassing a marmot.

According to the website of the Punxsutawney (Pa.) Groundhog Club, the most famous of these marmots, Punxsutawney Phil, emerged from his burrow (or more accurately, was dragged out of a box), surveyed the 13,000-person crowd that had gathered to see him, and uttered something in the obscure language of Groundhogese to Club President Bill Cooper, who then proclaimed that the large rodent had seen his shadow and we would therefore be getting six more weeks of winter.

This isn’t particularly surprising. Since 1886, when the tradition first began in the western Pennsylvania borough, Phil has presaged an early spring only 14 times.

But – as another signal of our warming climate – nine of those times have occurred since 1975.

Phil may be right in the broad outlines – it has been getting warmer lately, particularly since the 70s – but his year-by-year prediction skills could use some improvement. Investigative reporters at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution compared Phil’s pronouncements since 1994 to data from the National Weather Service. The verdict: For the past 15 years, Phil has had an accuracy rate of 50 percent, no better than a coin toss.

Of course, Phil isn’t the only weather-prognosticating groundhog in North America, and not all of them are in agreement. Atlanta’s Gen. Beauregard Lee, whom the Journal-Constitution says has only a 31 percent accuracy rate, predicted an early spring. So did Staten Island Chuck, who took the opportunity this year to bite New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, drawing blood.

Other groundhogs predicting an early spring include New York state’s Dunkirk Dave and Malverne Mel.

Joining Phil in predicting a longer winter are Woodstock Willie of Woodstock, Illinois, Jimmy the Groundhog of Sun Prarie, Wisc., and  Sir Walter Wally of Raleigh, North Carolina. Similar predictions occurred north of the border, with Manitoba Merv Ontario’s Wiarton Willie each seeing their shadow.

Six more weeks of cool temperatures would not be terribly surprising, given that this past year has been cooler than previous years this decade, mostly because of the La Niña that developed in the Pacific Ocean. The meteorology site Weather Underground, notes predictions  (by human weather forecasters) that February will see colder than average temperatures in the Pacific Northwest, and near-average temperatures to the Midwest and Northeast.

NASA meanwhile, predicts that the globe will set a new high-temperature record sometime in the next year or two.