A satellite whose mission will touch the lives of everyone on Earth by taking the planet’s environmental pulse daily for global weather forecasting and meticulous tracking of the changing climate will be launched into space Friday morning atop what’s potentially the final Delta 2 rocket.
Archive for the ‘Climate’ Category
Polar orbPolar orbiter going up to improve weather forecastingiter going up to improve weather forecastingTuesday, October 25th, 2011
When the torrent of predictions about global warming got too depressing, there were Robert Socolow’s “wedges.”
The Princeton physics and engineering professor, along with his colleague, ecologist Stephen Pacala, countered the gloom and doom of climate change with a theory that offered hope.
More than 200 million years ago, mammals and reptiles lived in their own separate worlds on the supercontinent Pangaea, despite little geographical incentive to do so. Mammals lived in areas of twice-yearly seasonal rainfall; reptiles stayed in areas where rains came just once a year. Mammals lose more water when they excrete, and thus need water-rich environments to survive. Results are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Western Europe’s exceptionally dry spring is clear to see in maps generated using data from SMOS. While these maps offer an interesting view of the stark difference in soil moisture compared to a year ago, the data are also important for agricultural and hydrological applications.
A 2,300-year climate record University of Pittsburgh researchers recovered from an Andes Mountains lake reveals that as temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere rise, the planet’s densely populated tropical regions will most likely experience severe water shortages as the crucial summer monsoons become drier. The Pitt team found that equatorial regions of South America already are receiving less rainfall than at any point in the past millennium.
ESA’s Venus Express satellite has reported an unexpected, high altitude layer of sulphur dioxide in the planet’s upper atmosphere that could act as a warning against plans to mitigate climate change on our own planet by injecting the Earth’s atmosphere with sulphur droplets.
IF NEW satellite data can be trusted, changes in solar activity warmed the Earth when they should have cooled it.
Joanna Haigh of Imperial College London studied satellite measurements of solar radiation between 2004 and 2007, when overall solar activity was in decline. The sun puts out less energy when its activity is low, but different types of radiation vary to different degrees. Until now, this had been poorly studied.
The issue of climate change generates a lot of hot air (pun intended) and conflicting opinions. The lay person who wants to be informed can find himself or herself confronted by contradictory information from sources who appear to be equally valid.
If misery really does love company, residents along the U.S. eastern seaboard should be delighted to know that millions of Europeans and Asians are also feeling the effects of one heatwave or another.
Here’s a consequence of climate change you probably haven’t thought of. Space buffs know that Earth orbit is littered with junk, including defunct satellites, spent rocket boosters, and other random debris–about 11,500 objects bigger than 4 inches across, according to NASA’s Orbital Debris Program Office
In the time before Columbus sailed the ocean blue, a cooler central Pacific Ocean has been connected with drought conditions in Europe and North America that may be responsible for famines and the disappearance of cliff dwelling people in the American West.
Greenhouse gases have a bad reputation because of the role they’re playing in global warming on Earth today. However, scientists say we also owe our lives to greenhouse gases because they might have allowed life to take hold in the first place.
University of Maine anthropologist Brian Robinson and colleagues are looking at archaeological evidence of Atlantic salmon to better understand the effects of global warming.
Two new studies out this week give the best scientific estimates of the average depth of the world’s oceans, the total amount of water they contain, and the extent to which this water warmed over the last two decades – the latter being an important measure of climate change.
The new head of the UN’s climate convention has called for ambition and transparency in UN climate talks.
Christiana Figueres also told the BBC that the process used to hammer out a deal at December’s Copenhagen summit was “not the most satisfactory”.
Age has not been kind to Glacier National Park.
The gorgeous million-acre park in northwestern Montana celebrated its 100th birthday on Tuesday. But many of its glaciers have melted, and scientists predict the rest may not last another decade.
Lounging in the shade may sound soothing, but it could be the death of many lizards if global warming continues at current rates.
Oxford University is involved in a research project to unearth 30,000 year old climate records, before they are lost forever. The rings of preserved kauri trees, hidden in New Zealand’s peat bogs, hold the secret to climate fluctuations spanning back to the end of the last Ice Age.
Ice loss from the Greenland ice sheet, which has been increasing during the past decade over its southern region, is now moving up its northwest coast, according to a new international study.