It's Climate Change I tell'ya!! IT'S CLIMATE CHANGE!!

petros

The Central Scrutinizer
Nov 21, 2008
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Low Earth Orbit
Scientists found the most intense heat wave ever recorded - in Antarctica
Temperatures in March are typically around -54C on the east coast near the Dome C. On March 18, 2022, temperatures peaked to -10C

Author of the article:Washington Post
Washington Post
Kasha Patel
Published Sep 25, 2023 • 4 minute read
Lone penguin on ice in Antarctica
Lone penguin on ice in Antarctica. Getty Images
In March 2022, temperatures near the eastern coast of Antarctica spiked 70 degrees Fahrenheit (39 degrees Celsius) above normal – making it the most intense recorded heat wave to occur anywhere on Earth, according to a recent study. At the time, researchers on-site were wearing shorts and some even removed their shirts to bask in the (relative) warmth. Scientists elsewhere said such a high in that region of the world was unthinkable.


“It was just very apparent that it was a remarkable event,” said Edward Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, author of the study. “We found that temperature anomaly, the 39-degree temperature anomaly, that’s the largest anywhere ever measured anywhere in the world.”


Temperatures in March, marking a change into autumn on the continent, are typically around minus-54 degrees Celsius on the east coast near the Dome C. On March 18, 2022, temperatures peaked to minus-10 degrees Celsius. That’s warmer than even the hottest temperature recorded during the summer months in that region – “that in itself is pretty unbelievable,” said Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, an atmospheric scientist at the University of Washington.

In the new research, Blanchard-Wrigglesworth and his colleagues investigated how and why such an unimaginable heat wave could have occurred, especially at a time of the year when there is less sunlight. They found the extreme heat is largely part of Antarctica’s natural variability, though the warming climate did have some effect.


The seeds for the heat wave, Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said, began with unusual winds. Typically, winds blow from west to east around Antarctica and help isolate the continent from warmer regions farther north, allowing it to stay cold. But just as occurs with heat waves in the United States, the winds meandered and allowed a warm mass of air from southern Australia to move to East Antarctica in just four days – “probably the first time that at least it’s happened that fast,” Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said.

The northerly winds also brought a lot of moisture, bringing significant snow, rain and melting on the eastern coast of the ice sheet.

At the same time, Antarctica was experiencing its lowest sea ice on record, though the team said their work suggests that did not appear to influence the heat wave.


Big swings in weather aren’t completely out of the ordinary in the polar regions, the study found. In an analysis of global weather station data and computer simulations, the team found the largest temperature changes from normal occur at high latitudes. Places like Europe or the United States’ Lower 48 never experience such anomalous heat waves.

There’s a basic reason the largest anomalies happen at these high latitudes, Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said – there’s more cold air to remove near the ground. Typically, air becomes colder higher in the atmosphere. But some places – like at high latitudes with a lot of snow and ice – have colder air near the ground and warmer air above it, called an inversion layer. In these spots, a warm air mass can swoop in to displace the cold air and create warm weather. These warm events often happen during or around winter, when the inversion layers are the strongest.


“That’s what we saw for the Antarctic heat wave,” Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said. “These events sort of erode that inversion, you get rid of it.”

Meteorologist Jonathan Wille, who was not involved in the study, said he’s not surprised that this Antarctic heat wave registered as the largest observed temperature anomaly anywhere. After all, the Antarctic Plateau has some of the highest temperature variability in the world.

The complete role of climate change is still under investigation, although the new study asserts that the warmer atmosphere didn’t play a large role boosting temperatures. The team ran a suite of computer models running scenarios that included increased greenhouse gas emissions vs. a world that did not. They found climate change only increased the heat wave by 2 degrees Celsius. By the end of the century, climate change could boost such a heat wave by an additional 5 to 6 degrees Celsius.


“A 2C boost for a heatwave that was 39C above average means that this heat wave would have been record shattering without the climate change signal,” Wille, a researcher at ETH Zurich, wrote in an email.

But climate change could have had another effect the models didn’t test, such as the effect on the anomalous winds that brought the warm air mass to the continent in the first place. Wille said unusual tropical downpours in the weeks beforehand created an atmospheric circulation pattern that was never observed before – leading to the extreme heat.

“It’s possible that climate change influenced the atmospheric dynamics like the tropical convection anomalies that led to the heat wave, but this is very difficult to quantify these things,” Wille said.

Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said more heat waves like this in Antarctica in a warmer world could have dire effects on the ice sheet.

“If you add another five or six degrees on top of that, you’re starting to get close to the melting point,” Blanchard-Wrigglesworth said. If these events were to become more common in 50 or even 100 years, “this kind of event might trigger some impacts that maybe we didn’t have on our radar.”
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spaminator

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Future supercontinent would 'seal our fate' as species: Study
Author of the article:Kevin Connor
Published Oct 01, 2023 • 1 minute read

A future supercontinent will be extremely hot, dry and virtually uninhabitable for humans and mammals, a new report out of the U.K. says.
The creation of a new “supercontinent” could kill all life on Earth in 250 million years, researchers predicted.


Scientists from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom, using the first super computer climate models, have predicted how climate extremes would intensify after the world’s continents merge to form one supercontinent called Pangea Ultima, CNN reported.


The researchers said it would be extremely hot, dry and virtually uninhabitable for humans and mammals.

Researchers simulated temperature, wind, rain and humidity trends for the supercontinent and used models of tectonic plate movement and ocean chemistry to calculate carbon dioxide levels.

“The formation of Pangea Ultima will lead to more regular volcanic eruptions, spewing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and warming the planet, but the sun would also become brighter, emitting more energy and warming the Earth further,” experts said in the paper, published Monday in the journal Nature Geoscience.


Alexander Farnsworth, senior research associate at the University of Bristol and lead author of the paper, said in a release Monday: “The newly emerged supercontinent would effectively create a triple whammy comprising the continentality effect, hotter sun and more CO2 in the atmosphere.

“Widespread temperatures of between 40 to 50 C and even greater daily extremes, compounded by high levels of humidity, would ultimately seal our fate. Humans – along with many other species – would expire due to their inability to shed this heat through sweat, cooling their bodies.”

Added Benjamin Mills, a professor of Earth system evolution at the University of Leeds and a report co-author, in the release: “Carbon dioxide could be double current levels, although that calculation was made on the assumption that humans stop burning fossil fuels now, otherwise we will see those numbers much, much sooner.”

This grim outlook is no excuse for complacency when it comes to fixing the climate crisis, the authors warned.
 

Dixie Cup

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Sep 16, 2006
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Future supercontinent would 'seal our fate' as species: Study
Author of the article:Kevin Connor
Published Oct 01, 2023 • 1 minute read

A future supercontinent will be extremely hot, dry and virtually uninhabitable for humans and mammals, a new report out of the U.K. says.
The creation of a new “supercontinent” could kill all life on Earth in 250 million years, researchers predicted.


Scientists from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom, using the first super computer climate models, have predicted how climate extremes would intensify after the world’s continents merge to form one supercontinent called Pangea Ultima, CNN reported.


The researchers said it would be extremely hot, dry and virtually uninhabitable for humans and mammals.

Researchers simulated temperature, wind, rain and humidity trends for the supercontinent and used models of tectonic plate movement and ocean chemistry to calculate carbon dioxide levels.

“The formation of Pangea Ultima will lead to more regular volcanic eruptions, spewing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and warming the planet, but the sun would also become brighter, emitting more energy and warming the Earth further,” experts said in the paper, published Monday in the journal Nature Geoscience.


Alexander Farnsworth, senior research associate at the University of Bristol and lead author of the paper, said in a release Monday: “The newly emerged supercontinent would effectively create a triple whammy comprising the continentality effect, hotter sun and more CO2 in the atmosphere.

“Widespread temperatures of between 40 to 50 C and even greater daily extremes, compounded by high levels of humidity, would ultimately seal our fate. Humans – along with many other species – would expire due to their inability to shed this heat through sweat, cooling their bodies.”

Added Benjamin Mills, a professor of Earth system evolution at the University of Leeds and a report co-author, in the release: “Carbon dioxide could be double current levels, although that calculation was made on the assumption that humans stop burning fossil fuels now, otherwise we will see those numbers much, much sooner.”

This grim outlook is no excuse for complacency when it comes to fixing the climate crisis, the authors warned.
OMG seriously? sigh...fear mongering about climate 250 million years from now? WOW!!
 

Ron in Regina

"Voice of the West" Party
Apr 9, 2008
23,138
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Regina, Saskatchewan
In its fervour to achieve net zero emissions the federal government is increasingly isolated internationally, while its influence on other countries has vanished as, through incompetence and worse, it has tarnished Canada’s brand as a country to emulate.

As Mike Tyson once said, “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the face.” The European Union had a plan to reach net zero by 2050 but its member states have now been hit by a severe energy crisis and are backing off in response to popular discontent.

The progressive conceit that Canada can serve as a moral leader on climate change was always egotistical nonsense.

The world is bemused by our self-harm and irritated by our hectoring, especially since we have missed our Paris Accord commitments and every other target we ever set.

Canadians are very tolerant and fair-minded, with much to be proud of. But our prime minister has talked down our brand by decrying our supposedly “genocidal” past and systemically racist present.

Because the rush to net zero is a) unattainable, b) colossally expensive and c) without appreciable environmental benefit, it should be a political loser. But true believers, rent-seekers, socialist ideologues, mainstream media devotees and compromised academics inundate the public with hyperbolic fear-mongering, while alternative voices, including reputable scientists who don’t self-censor, are banned or ignored.

Without determined political leadership to fundamentally change direction, we will fall even further behind a world that is increasingly indifferent to Canada’s climate jeremiads.

It is past time to also stop our indulgent moralizing about climate change. We need to reverse policies that are causing severe economic and social damage and start acting rationally in our national self-interest.

In a “brave new approach to politics” designed to stave off electoral defeat next year, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak reversed course and approved development of a giant offshore oil and gas field. And he delayed signing off on green policies that would have imposed “unacceptable costs” — calculated to be five times their economic benefits — borne disproportionately by blue-collar workers.

In support of Sunak’s belated awakening to economic and political reality, the Telegraph queried, “If the consequences are prohibitively expensive and involve saddling millions of households with additional expenditure for unknowable benefits in an unfair way, why would anyone make the transition?” Why, indeed, Mr. Trudeau, when according to a Leger poll only 15 per cent of Canadians think net zero is realistic? The question has added poignancy since the green policies of both countries can have only a negligible influence on global emissions and none on temperatures.

According to the EU’s top energy official, with renewables unable to make up for the disappearance of Russian natural gas, Europe will need U.S. fossil fuels for several more decades. No mention of Canada, the world’s sixth largest gas producer, since we literally cannot deliver either to Europe or to the vast Asian market. So much for Justin Trudeau’s inane comment that there is no business case for exporting Canadian natural gas. Strong global demand for oil will now be supplied by less environmentally conscious petro-states, rather than from our proven reserves, the fourth largest in the world.

Germany’s finance minister — Germany’s — recently criticized the EU for its “enormously dangerous” green plans that threaten social peace. He is busy trying to reverse the de-industrializing effect of the high green energy prices that now have people calling his country “the sick man of Europe.” In France, President Emmanuel Macron has given no date for banning fossil fuels. India’s Narendra Modi warns Western countries not to impose “restrictive” climate-change policies on the developing world, while for its part, China has six times more coal plants under construction than the rest of the world combined. Its emissions have tripled since 1990.

In the U.S., moving entirely to EVs could cut union employment by half in electorally crucial Rust Belt states. If Republicans score a 2024 trifecta of presidency, Senate and House, that likely would lead to dramatic reversals in green policies, including increased drilling for oil and gas. Then Canada would be virtually alone in its fixation on climate apocalypse.
 

Ron in Regina

"Voice of the West" Party
Apr 9, 2008
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Regina, Saskatchewan
Ottawa has no legal right to put a chokehold on how Alberta manages its electrical grid, but that’s exactly what Guilbeault is doing with his plan to force a net-zero grid on Alberta and other provinces by 2035.

He wants to spell out the rules, the Constitution be damned. He wants things his way, to hell with the social contract forged by Lougheed that has enriched us all.

And yet, for all that, few Canadians are just now complaining about Guilbeault’s move, save for Alberta Premier Danielle Smith and an assortment of conservative voices across Canada.

If Alberta is going to beat back Guilbeault’s assault on the Constitution, I reckon we first need to fully understand our rights and believe they’re worth fighting for.

The province can start by focusing its current national advertising campaign on the illegality of Guilbeault’s plan. Most Canadians won’t like to be seen backing a plan that is so obviously unlawful and colonialist.

This won’t be an easy campaign. It’s difficult to move public opinion, and especially to get folks focused on constitutional issues.

It’s not like everyone else’s electrical grid is under threat by Guilbeault. Most provincial grids aren’t powered by natural gas, but mainly by nuclear and hydro, so most other Canadians won’t face the same issue with brutal costs and deadly blackouts as Alberta will.

That said, Alberta does have one useful tool, the Alberta Sovereignty Within a United Canada Act.

Of course, many in the Laurentian elite try to paint Smith as a wingnut and the sovereignty act as pure foolishness.
They aren’t disposed to giving Alberta any kind of fair hearing, which should come as no surprise. As another strong Alberta leader, Preston Manning, noted in the 2018 book, Moment of Truth: Thinking about Alberta’s Future, “I think Westerners need to understand that for some people whose history starts well before 1867, we (in Western Canada) are upstarts. Our resources were only given to us out of their largesse, and we should be thankful. These older Canadians who came before us have a colonial mindset. It is this attitude that dominates the Laurentian elite’s thinking when it comes to ‘their’ former territories.”

It’s true that the sovereignty act does not give any special new legal power or constitutional rights to Alberta, but that’s not its purpose. Its purpose is to focus Albertans and Canadians on the right issue, the main issue, the blatant illegality of Ottawa’s colonialist intrusion into provincial rights.

The sovereignty act is Alberta’s cattle prod. It sets off folks who fail to respect Alberta’s constitutional rights and who are dead set on a solar and wind grid, no matter how ugly the price or how unreliable the system. If it takes a constitutional crisis to change their thinking, so be it.
 

Ron in Regina

"Voice of the West" Party
Apr 9, 2008
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Regina, Saskatchewan
Totally meant to stick the above here:
…but oh well. Fits in both places…
 

spaminator

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Baby polar bears can’t get enough milk when sea ice disappears: Study
'The longer they’re on land, the more the moms prioritize their own survival at the expense of providing energy to their cubs'

Author of the article:Bloomberg News
Bloomberg News
Danielle Bochove
Published Oct 05, 2023 • 4 minute read

Polar bears may be struggling to nourish their young as melting sea ice forces some populations to fast for longer periods, according to new research.


The bears — long held up as icons of the climate crisis — live only in the Arctic, around the North Pole and in northern parts of Canada, Alaska, Russia, Greenland and Norway. Their preferred habitat is the sea ice that covers Arctic waters for most of the year.


When mother polar bears are forced onto land, as sometimes happens during the summer months, they struggle to access nourishing food and the quantity and quality of the milk they produce for their cubs declines, according to a paper published Thursday in the journal Marine Ecology Progress Series.

The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Toronto, the U.S. Geological Survey and Polar Bears International, analyzed milk samples collected from polar bears in Western Hudson Bay, Canada, between 1989 and 1994. After just three months on land, the likelihood of a mother continuing to produce milk for a cub born that year dropped 53%.


For those bears that did continue to lactate, the energy content of the milk was also halved, or cut by three-quarters if they were nursing two cubs. Less milk, or poorer quality milk, lowers the chance of a cub surviving.

The study may help explain what has happened to polar bears in Western Hudson Bay since the milk samples were first collected. Between the early 1980s and 2021, the area’s polar bear population fell 50% to just 600 bears. Over roughly the same period, the amount of time the animals were forced to spend on land each summer lengthened by almost a month, as sea ice melted earlier and refroze later.

“The longer they’re on land, the more the moms prioritize their own survival at the expense of providing energy to their cubs,” said Louise Archer, one of the paper’s authors. “That can have a knock-on impact on the cubs themselves and ultimately impact the population.”


In the 1980s, it was common for bears in Western Hudson Bay to have litters of three cubs at a time, but this has become increasingly rare, Archer said. Females also now tend to stay with their cubs for about two-and-a-half years, a year longer than they used to, meaning they can’t reproduce again as quickly. Both of these trends affect population size and suggest the mothers are becoming “energetically challenged” by the longer time on land.

Polar bears’ lives are dominated by the cycles of sea ice, with most of their fat stores amassed during the fall and winter when they can travel over ice to catch seals that surface. When the ice breaks up in early summer, they move onto land, where other animal food sources, like caribou, require too much energy to catch for the amount of nourishment they would provide. This summer, the extent of Arctic sea ice was the sixth lowest ever recorded, and scientists believe the Arctic could experience whole summer months without any sea ice as soon as the 2030s due to global warming.


Of the world’s 19 known polar bear populations, most live in extremely remote areas and are not well studied by scientists. But none appear to be increasing over the long term and the three populations that have been most closely studied are shrinking, Archer said. In all three locations, sea ice is declining and the bears are spending longer on land. “So those three are kind of the indicator populations, as what we might expect in other parts of the Arctic if we continue seeing sea ice decline,” Archer said.

The study’s findings are consistent with other research suggesting healthy polar bear populations won’t be able to survive long-term in areas where sea ice disappears for much of the year, said Elisabeth Kruger, manager of Arctic wildlife at the World Wildlife Fund. “Even if we moderately reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, local extinctions of polar bears from some parts of the Arctic are likely within this century,” she said, “and if we fail to reduce our emissions, we may lose all but a few high-Arctic populations.”


The polar bear has long been a poster child for the consequences of climate change. In 1993, biologists Ian Stirling and Andrew Derocher co-authored a paper titled “Possible Impacts of Climatic Warming on Polar Bears,” marking the beginning of a link that captured the public’s imagination.

In the 30 years since, photos of lonely-looking bears adrift on tiny islands of ice as well as of emaciated bears and drowning bears have gone viral. While some have been debunked as misleading or even fake, the bears’ dependence on fast-disappearing sea ice has been been well established and the thick-furred giant carnivores have come to epitomize the tragedy of a fast-warming Arctic.

This latest paper adds to a growing understanding of how sea ice loss affects polar bears and their prey in multiple ways, said Stirling, now a research scientist emeritus with Environment and Climate Change Canada and an adjunct professor at the University of Alberta.

“These are things that take a long time to be able to measure and document,” he said. “You don’t get start to get the really big payoffs until you’ve been there a long time.”

While they are “incredibly charismatic” animals, Kruger noted, it’s important to remember that “what helps polar bears helps people.” Saving the sea ice, she said, “is not just about polar bears, it’s about all of us.”
 

Ron in Regina

"Voice of the West" Party
Apr 9, 2008
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Regina, Saskatchewan
(Scientific evidence has found that the brown bear, a species that also includes grizzly bears, was a “precursor” to polar bears, which then went on to develop specializations for inhabiting the harsh Arctic)
 
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spaminator

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Canada’s dramatic summer weather has altered fall colours this year: researchers
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Lyndsay Armstrong
Published Oct 07, 2023 • 3 minute read

HALIFAX — The customary reds, oranges and yellows of the trees, marking the arrival of fall, may have appeared early this year, or not at all.


The dramatic summer weather that brought wildfires in some parts of the country and heavy rain in others is being reflected in fall colours across Canada, researchers say.


In Nova Scotia, where summer started with forest fires and ended with stretches of overcast and stormy days, dull brown has replaced the vibrant hues usually seen this time of year in much of the province.

Mason MacDonald, an assistant professor of environmental sciences and agriculture at Dalhousie University, said the colours he’s seen so far this autumn don’t compare to the brilliant reds and oranges Nova Scotians are used to.

“What you’re probably seeing is a lot of really dull-looking colours this year. Even the reds are probably more of a dull, darker red, or rust colour,” MacDonald said in a recent interview.


“I’ve heard it from a lot of people this year, especially people from the southern parts of Nova Scotia,” he said.

As the nights get longer in the fall, trees receive less direct sunlight, and chlorophyll, which trees use to absorb sunlight during photosynthesis, begins to break down, displaying the natural pigments within the leaves.

One of these pigments — anthocyanins — creates the red shade in leaves, and it requires consistent sunlight through late summer to be produced. A drop in anthocyanins isn’t harmful to a tree, MacDonald said, adding that if next summer is sunnier, those vibrant reds will likely be back in full force.

“This year we got more rain than is typical for us, and along with that we had a whole bunch of these dark, grey, cloudy days. That’s what happened. We didn’t get the sun we would normally get. Therefore, they can’t make those colours,” MacDonald said.


Trees in Ontario, by contrast, have begun displaying the natural pigments earlier than usual.

Sean Thomas, a professor of forest ecology at the University of Toronto, says there is anecdotal evidence to suggest that smoke from wildfires in northern Ontario this summer may have triggered trees to reveal their colours prematurely.

“Wildfire smoke is a kind of chemical cocktail,” Thomas said.

That cocktail of carbon dioxide, ozone, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide and particulate matter “includes trace quantities of chemicals that play a sort of hormonal role with plants,” he said, which can cause trees to drop their leaves early.

“In our case, we got those acute smoke effects earlier in the summer, but it still may be partly what’s accounting for the earlier fall colouration,” Thomas said.


He said there is lots of colour in much of Ontario this season, but added there is reason to believe that ongoing impacts of climate change will see fall colours diminish in the coming years.

“There is good reason to think that climate change will disrupt that normal leaf colouration that we see,” Thomas said.

The combination of warmer temperatures and delayed first frosts will potentially lead to duller fall colours, he said. This effect, he added, will likely be most acute in major cities, which are generally hotter than rural areas because of the urban heat-island effect — when structures such as roads and buildings absorb and re-emit the sun’s heat.

If climate change delays the longer, colder nights in places like Toronto, “that’s a recipe that is likely to lead to much less fall colouration right in the city, and that will be exacerbated by climate change,” Thomas said.


In Cape Breton, where the Celtic Colours International Festival is underway, an event spokesperson said in an interview Thursday that trees across the region are beginning to change colour. Dave Mahalik said he’d heard that colours are less vibrant in parts of Nova Scotia this year, “and it made me wonder a bit about where we’re at and how we’d fare,” he said.

“But I’m in Sydney and there’s trees here that are starting to pop, and they’re looking like they usually do,” he said.

Mahalik said he’s hearing from his colleagues that colours are looking bright elsewhere on the island, which bodes well for the festival that’s hosting about 50 concerts in communities across Cape Breton.

“I’m excited as can be and I’m sure the colours will be as vibrant as ever,” he said.
 

spaminator

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Canadian municipalities looking to become ’spongier’ to build climate resilience
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Morgan Lowrie
Published Oct 08, 2023 • 4 minute read

MONTREAL — From green roofs in Toronto to Vancouver’s rain city strategy, Canadian cities are looking to become “sponges” in order to help mitigate some of the effects of extreme rainfall events.


In Montreal, Mayor Valerie Plante announced last week that the city plans to develop some 30 additional “sponge parks” designed to catch and absorb rainwater and keep it from flowing into overburdened sewers during extreme rain events.


Those, combined with an additional 400 “sponge sidewalks,” featuring added vegetation squares, will help the city retain the equivalent of three Olympic swimming pools in water at “half the cost of underground works,” the city said in a news release.

Melanie Glorieux, a sustainable landscape planner with the firm Rousseau Lefebvre said that while the concept of building a “sponge city” isn’t new, it’s an idea that more and more municipalities are embracing as they cope with extreme weather.


The idea, she said, is to divert stormwater into low areas or channels planted with trees, shrubs and grasses, so that more of it is absorbed on the surface and less flows into sewers, lakes or rivers. As an added benefit, the plants filter the water before it enters the system, removing some of the pollutants it picks up from streets.

“Firstly, we reduce the quantity of water (sent to sewers), and secondly, we improve the quality of what is there,” she said

The goal is to reverse some of the harm done by the last 40 to 50 years of car-oriented urban development, which involved replacing natural spaces that soak up water with impermeable infrastructure such as roads and parking lots. In place of absorption, water was redirected to underground sewer systems, which can become overwhelmed by heavy rain, causing flooding and contamination of rivers.


The sponge city concept, which first rose to prominence in China, is essentially the opposite: “limit run-off and maximize infiltration,” Glorieux said.

Green infrastructure can be incorporated into a landscape in many ways, from simple tree planting to rain gardens, swales, holding ponds and more complex bioretention systems that involve layers of filtering, she said. Some projects are also replacing asphalt with permeable paving that allows better water flow.

Glorieux said most of the green infrastructure water retention areas are designed to absorb the first 25 millimetres of rainfall, which means they should be able to handle about 95 per cent of rain events.

Emily Amon, the director of green infrastructure at Green Communities Canada, says the combination of increasingly severe weather events due to climate change and urbanization has led to “real losses on the landscape in terms of our ability to absorb that stormwater we receive.”


On July 13, Montreal received a month’s worth of rain in less than two hours, causing some 85 millimetres of rain to flood underpasses, overflow from sewers and force city officials to warn citizens to stay away from waterways due to possible contamination.

The non-profit Green Communities Canada works with other organizations to help municipalities create green infrastructure, including planting mini forests and gardens that absorb rain and removing the pavement from old parking lots. Across Canada, cities appear to be jumping on board.

Toronto has won praise for its bylaw requiring new developments greater than 2,000 square metres to have green roofs over part of their surfaces. The roofs soak up rainwater that otherwise would run off into sewers. Vancouver, Amon said, has implemented a rain city strategy that aims to integrate green infrastructure throughout planning decisions.


She said the Federation of Canadian Municipalities has started a “natural asset management program” that encourages cities to categorize and put a dollar value on their green infrastructure so it can be better managed — a strategy that was pioneered in Gibsons, B.C.

Guillaume Gregoire, an assistant professor who studies plant sciences and green infrastructure at Universite Laval in Quebec City, says green infrastructure does not really have any downside, but it has to occupy “a good part of the territory” in order to have a true effect.

He says green infrastructure can be expensive to install and “need a bit more maintenance than a simple sewer pipe,” which has made some municipalities more hesitant. However, he said comparative studies have shown that the cost over time is the same or less than that of upgrading sewer systems, even when the extra maintenance is taken into account.

All three experts say that in addition to stormwater management, the “sponge city” model brings other benefits, including increased biodiversity, reduced heat island effect, attractive public spaces and more exposure to nature, which contributes to better mental health.

Amon adds that green infrastructure can also contribute to more equitable neighbourhoods by adding food-bearing trees, culturally significant plants and more greenery to neighbourhoods that lack it.

“Green infrastructure is amazing, because it can be transformative in so many different ways,” she said.
 

petros

The Central Scrutinizer
Nov 21, 2008
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Low Earth Orbit
Canadian municipalities looking to become ’spongier’ to build climate resilience
Author of the article:Canadian Press
Canadian Press
Morgan Lowrie
Published Oct 08, 2023 • 4 minute read

MONTREAL — From green roofs in Toronto to Vancouver’s rain city strategy, Canadian cities are looking to become “sponges” in order to help mitigate some of the effects of extreme rainfall events.


In Montreal, Mayor Valerie Plante announced last week that the city plans to develop some 30 additional “sponge parks” designed to catch and absorb rainwater and keep it from flowing into overburdened sewers during extreme rain events.


Those, combined with an additional 400 “sponge sidewalks,” featuring added vegetation squares, will help the city retain the equivalent of three Olympic swimming pools in water at “half the cost of underground works,” the city said in a news release.

Melanie Glorieux, a sustainable landscape planner with the firm Rousseau Lefebvre said that while the concept of building a “sponge city” isn’t new, it’s an idea that more and more municipalities are embracing as they cope with extreme weather.


The idea, she said, is to divert stormwater into low areas or channels planted with trees, shrubs and grasses, so that more of it is absorbed on the surface and less flows into sewers, lakes or rivers. As an added benefit, the plants filter the water before it enters the system, removing some of the pollutants it picks up from streets.

“Firstly, we reduce the quantity of water (sent to sewers), and secondly, we improve the quality of what is there,” she said

The goal is to reverse some of the harm done by the last 40 to 50 years of car-oriented urban development, which involved replacing natural spaces that soak up water with impermeable infrastructure such as roads and parking lots. In place of absorption, water was redirected to underground sewer systems, which can become overwhelmed by heavy rain, causing flooding and contamination of rivers.


The sponge city concept, which first rose to prominence in China, is essentially the opposite: “limit run-off and maximize infiltration,” Glorieux said.

Green infrastructure can be incorporated into a landscape in many ways, from simple tree planting to rain gardens, swales, holding ponds and more complex bioretention systems that involve layers of filtering, she said. Some projects are also replacing asphalt with permeable paving that allows better water flow.

Glorieux said most of the green infrastructure water retention areas are designed to absorb the first 25 millimetres of rainfall, which means they should be able to handle about 95 per cent of rain events.

Emily Amon, the director of green infrastructure at Green Communities Canada, says the combination of increasingly severe weather events due to climate change and urbanization has led to “real losses on the landscape in terms of our ability to absorb that stormwater we receive.”


On July 13, Montreal received a month’s worth of rain in less than two hours, causing some 85 millimetres of rain to flood underpasses, overflow from sewers and force city officials to warn citizens to stay away from waterways due to possible contamination.

The non-profit Green Communities Canada works with other organizations to help municipalities create green infrastructure, including planting mini forests and gardens that absorb rain and removing the pavement from old parking lots. Across Canada, cities appear to be jumping on board.

Toronto has won praise for its bylaw requiring new developments greater than 2,000 square metres to have green roofs over part of their surfaces. The roofs soak up rainwater that otherwise would run off into sewers. Vancouver, Amon said, has implemented a rain city strategy that aims to integrate green infrastructure throughout planning decisions.


She said the Federation of Canadian Municipalities has started a “natural asset management program” that encourages cities to categorize and put a dollar value on their green infrastructure so it can be better managed — a strategy that was pioneered in Gibsons, B.C.

Guillaume Gregoire, an assistant professor who studies plant sciences and green infrastructure at Universite Laval in Quebec City, says green infrastructure does not really have any downside, but it has to occupy “a good part of the territory” in order to have a true effect.

He says green infrastructure can be expensive to install and “need a bit more maintenance than a simple sewer pipe,” which has made some municipalities more hesitant. However, he said comparative studies have shown that the cost over time is the same or less than that of upgrading sewer systems, even when the extra maintenance is taken into account.

All three experts say that in addition to stormwater management, the “sponge city” model brings other benefits, including increased biodiversity, reduced heat island effect, attractive public spaces and more exposure to nature, which contributes to better mental health.

Amon adds that green infrastructure can also contribute to more equitable neighbourhoods by adding food-bearing trees, culturally significant plants and more greenery to neighbourhoods that lack it.

“Green infrastructure is amazing, because it can be transformative in so many different ways,” she said.
Theyre behind the times. We have "flood parks" dug into basins to temporarily retain excess storm water. That started 50+ years ago.
 

petros

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Massive prehistoric solar storm is warning for Earth, researchers say


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Massive prehistoric solar storm is warning for Earth, researchers say​


By Kasha Patel
October 11, 2023 at 6:00 a.m. EDT
NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of a solar flare on Oct. 2, 2014. The solar flare is the bright flash of light on the right limb of the sun. A burst of solar material erupting out into space can be seen just below it. (NASA/SDO)

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The night sky lit up so bright that some people thought it was morning. Gold miners in the Rocky Mountains woke up at 1 a.m. to make breakfast and start their day. Birds began singing as if the sun had already risen. Telegraph systems worldwide went offline, and no one could send a message.


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That event in 1859, known as the Carrington Event, has long been thought of as the benchmark for the most intense geomagnetic storm observed on Earth, sending northern lights displays as far south as Florida and Central America and knocking out communication systems. But now, new research has unveiled evidence of a much larger solar storm that could reset record books.
In a study released Monday, researchers identified what appears to be the largest solar storm to hit Earth, estimated to be larger than the Carrington Event by an order of magnitude. The storm occurred 14,300 years ago, but is evidence of a yet unknown dimension of the sun’s extreme behavior and hazards to Earth.

“It’s clear that if one of these events [occurred] today … this would be quite destructive on our energy network and also internet network,” said Edouard Bard, lead author of the study. “This would really freeze, in fact, all communications and [travel] would be totally disrupted.”
Unlike the Carrington storm, the 14,300-year-old event does not have ground reports of bright, dancing lights or changes in animal behavior. Instead, scientists found traces of the solar storm in ancient tree rings in the French Alps and ice cores in Greenland.

The journey from space to our trees .
may seem fortuitous, but physics helps explain the cosmic connection, said astronomer Benjamin Pope, who was not involved in the research. Cosmic rays, or high energy particles, from space can strike Earth’s atmosphere and cause nuclear reactions. For example, the high-energy radiation can turn nitrogen atoms in our upper atmosphere into radioactive carbon-14, known as radiocarbon. The radiocarbon filters through Earth, including plants, animals, people, oceans — but also tree rings, which can preserve the records for thousands of years.

“It’s a huge interdisciplinary science involving archaeologists, chemists and physicists, which is our only real way of understanding the physics of the sun before modern times,” said Pope, a researcher at Australia’s University of Queensland.

Tree rings of a buried sub-fossil tree in the Drouzet river. (Photo by Cécile Miramont/Photo by Cécile Miramont )
The team measured radiocarbon levels in trees in the French Alps, which were older than previously sampled trees. Bard said typically these measurements are very boring and monotonous — but, in this case, a very distinct spike appeared in a single year 14,300 years ago.

The amount of radiocarbon produced may have been between five to 10 times the amount normally produced in an entire year, said Tim Heaton, a co-author of the study. The team suggests the radiocarbon spike was caused by a massive solar storm or from a huge solar flare, which sent a huge amount of energetic particles into Earth’s atmosphere.

“I certainly wasn’t expecting anything as significant as this,” said Heaton, a statistician at the University of Leeds in Britain. “It looks like it might be the biggest one that’s ever been seen so far.”

The team confirmed the radiocarbon spike by analyzing ice cores in Greenland. Just as solar particles and cosmic rays can create carbon-14, they can also create beryllium-10 isotope, which can settle in ice cores. Bard said the fact that spikes were found in both data sets “is really indicating to us that the mechanism is well understood.”

Following the spike, the study authors also found radiocarbon levels tend to stay elevated for about a century, marking a period where the sun went quiet. The sun’s activity naturally ebbs and flows through an 11-year cycle, but this event shows the peaks of several consecutive solar cycles were lower than normal — known as a grand solar minimum. Heaton explained that typically the sun’s magnetic field helps shield Earth from cosmic rays, but when the sun’s activity is lower, then more cosmic rays reach Earth enabling more radiocarbon production.
 

petros

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Part 2 The telling part.

Others are not fully convinced that the data is tied to a large solar storm. Researcher Florian Adolphi, who was not involved in the study, said the researchers also need to look at the concentrations of another type of isotope, the chlorine-36 isotope, which is more sensitive to solar cosmic radiation than radiocarbon or beryllium. Bard and his colleagues are already collecting additional data, including looking at the chlorine isotope from ice cores in Antarctica.

“Similarly, it remains to be tested, whether the event was really the strongest of the so far observed events,” said Adolphi, a senior scientist at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Germany. Overall, Adolphi said the study was “well done,” and shows compelling evidence for another past solar event, providing a great opportunity for further research investigating the exact cause and amplitude.

This 14,300-year-old event appears to be bigger than any on record, but is one of nine extreme solar storms to occur in the last 15,000 years, discovered in tree rings over the past decade. These extreme events are known as Miyake events, named after Japanese physicist Fusa Miyake, who first discovered the radiocarbon spikes in tree rings in 2012. No Miyake event has been directly observed, like the Carrington Event.

Pope said these Miyake events seem to occur at random, about once every thousand years. He estimated that could mean about a 1 percent risk of such an event occurring each decade, which is a threat to power grids, satellites and the internet.

“Even if these Miyake Events occur once a thousand years … I think [it] is pretty serious and definitely merits investment in understanding these events and how to predict and mitigate their effects, if any,” said Pope, who called it a really interesting study.

Bard, a climate scientist at Collège de France and CEREGE, said learning about the sun’s past behavior is important for forecasting future solar storms, but also for understanding the sun’s impact on Earth’s climate. The sun’s effect on Earth’s climate is not as large as warming from greenhouse gas emissions, but it is a factor to consider in climate models.

“The solar activity is also changing the output of the sun,” said Bard. “We can’t assume the sun as constant. We need also to enter its behavior over long time periods in order to calculate climate variability.”
 

petros

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Okay....if the magnetic field of the sun is linked to climate, where does the Earth’s magnetic field fit in?

It fits perfectly.

1697546541802.png

Yeah, but gasses.....?

Yeahbuts run in the bush.

The shocking details....

 
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