“Sometimes it is almost impossible not to feel hopeless and broken,”

“Sometimes it is almost impossible not to feel hopeless and broken,”
Sometimes it is almost impossible not to feel hopeless and broken,” says the climate scientist Ruth Cerezo-Mota. “After all the flooding, fires, and droughts of the last three years worldwide, all related to climate change, and after the fury of Hurricane Otis in Mexico, my country, I really thought governments were ready to listen to the science, to act in the people’s best interest.”

LINK: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/ng-interactive/2024/may/08/hopeless-and-broken-why-the-worlds-top-climate-scientists-are-in-despair

2023 smashes record for world’s hottest year by huge margin

Rapid reduction in fossil fuel burning urgently needed to preserve liveable conditions, say scientists, as climate damage deepens

Aftermath of a wildfire caused by a deadly heatwave near the city of Santa Juana, Chile, in February 2023. Photograph: Pablo Hidalgo/EPA
Aftermath of a wildfire caused by a deadly heatwave near the city of Santa Juana, Chile, in February 2023. Photograph: Pablo Hidalgo/EPA

2023 “smashed” the record for the hottest year by a huge margin, providing “dramatic testimony” of how much warmer and more dangerous today’s climate is from the cooler one in which human civilization developed.

Link to article: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2024/jan/09/2023-record-world-hottest-climate-fossil-fuel

Greenland’s ice shelves hold back sea level rise. There are just 5 left.

The vast floating ice platforms of northern Greenland, unrivaled features of the northern hemisphere that keep our seas lower by holding back many trillion tons of ice, are in stark decline, according to new scientific research published Tuesday.

These northern Greenland ice shelves, as they are called, have lost 35 percent of their overall volume since 1978, the research published in “Nature Communications” found. That’s equivalent to a loss of roughly 400 billion tons of floating ice that acted like the stopper of a decanter, preventing glaciers from flowing into the sea and accelerating sea level rise.

And now there are only five large shelves left, stretching out from their fjords toward the Greenland Sea and the Arctic Ocean. That includes three major ones — Petermann, Ryder and Nioghalvfjerdsbrae (often referred to as 79 North for its location in degrees Latitude) — whose respective glaciers could ultimately account for 3.6 feet of sea level rise if they were to melt entirely — a process that would take centuries to play out.

LINK: https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2023/11/07/northern-greenland-ice-shelves-decline/

This year ‘virtually certain’ to be warmest in 125,000 years, EU scientists say

This year is "virtually certain" to be the warmest in 125,000 years, European Union scientists said on Wednesday

This year is “virtually certain” to be the warmest in 125,000 years, European Union scientists said on Wednesday, after data showed last month was the world’s hottest October in that period.

Last month smashed through the previous October temperature record, from 2019, by a massive margin, the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) said.

“The record was broken by 0.4 degrees Celsius, which is a huge margin,” said C3S Deputy Director Samantha Burgess, who described the October temperature anomaly as “very extreme”.

The heat is a result of continued greenhouse gas emissions from human activity, combined with the emergence this year of the El Nino weather pattern, which warms the surface waters in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Globally, the average surface air temperature in October was 1.7 degrees Celsius warmer than the same month in 1850-1900, which Copernicus defines as the pre-industrial period.

The record-breaking October means 2023 is now “virtually certain” to be the warmest year recorded, C3S said in a statement. The previous record was 2016 – another El Nino year.

Copernicus’ dataset goes back to 1940. “When we combine our data with the IPCC, then we can say that this is the warmest year for the last 125,000 years,” Burgess said.

LINK: https://www.reuters.com/business/environment/this-year-virtually-certain-be-warmest-125000-years-eu-scientists-say-2023-11-08/

Living in the Time of Dying – Watch Full Documentary

Living in The Time of Dying is an unflinching look at what it means to be living in the midst of climate catastrophe and finding purpose and meaning within it. Recognising the magnitude of the climate crisis we are facing, independent filmmaker Michael Shaw, sells his house to travel around the world looking for answers. Pretty soon we begin to see how deep the predicament goes along with the systems and ways of thinking that brought us here.

Addicted to Cool

How the dream of air conditioning turned into the dark future of climate change

Addicted to Cool

In 2023, Jeep rolled out a new edition of its popular four-wheel-drive SUV. For the first time since the company introduced the car in 1986, air conditioning wasn’t an option, it was a must. This appears to be the end of an era: “The last car in the U.S. without standard air conditioning,” read the headline of an article in the automotive press, “finally gives up the fight against refrigerant.”

LINK: https://www.washingtonpost.com/style/of-interest/interactive/2023/air-conditioning-climate-change/


‘Off-the-charts records’: has humanity finally broken the climate?

Extreme weather is ‘smacking us in the face’ with worse to come, but a ‘tiny window’ of hope remains, say leading climate scientists

LINK: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/aug/28/crazy-off-the-charts-records-has-humanity-finally-broken-the-climate

Needed: Either Degrowth or Two Earths

Needed: Either Degrowth or Two Earths

In a May 30 essay for the New York Times titled “The New Climate Law Is Working. Clean Energy Investments Are Soaring,” one of the architects of last year’s Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), Brian Deese, wrote, “Nine months since that law was passed in Congress, the private sector has mobilized well beyond our initial expectations to generate clean energy, build battery factories and develop other technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

There’s just one problem. Those technologies aren’t going to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The only way to reduce emissions fast enough to prevent climate catastrophe is to phase out the burning of oil, gas, and coal by law, directly and deliberately. If, against all odds, the United States does that, we certainly will need wind- and solar-power installations, batteries, and new technologies to compensate for the decline of energy from fossil fuels. There is no reason, however, to expect that the process would work in reverse; a “clean-energy” mobilization alone won’t cause a steep reduction in use of fossil fuels.

I think top leaders in Washington are using green-energy pipe dreams to distract us from the reality that they have given up altogether on reducing US fossil fuel use. They’ve caved. This month’s bipartisan deal on the debt limit included a provision that would ease the permitting of energy infrastructure, including oil and gas pipelines like the ecologically destructive Mountain Valley fossil-gas pipeline so dear to the heart of West Virginia’s Democratic senator Joe Manchin. Meanwhile, the Biden administration has issued new rules allowing old coal and fossil gas power plants to continue operating if they capture their carbon dioxide emissions and inject them into old oil wells. And under the IRA, those plants that capture emissions will receive federal climate subsidies, even if they use the carbon dioxide that’s pumped into the old wells to push out residual oil that has evaded conventional methods of extraction. And the IRA did not even end federal subsidies to fossil-fuel companies, which could have saved somewhere between $10 and $50 billion annually. Taken together, these policies could extend the operation of existing coal and gas power plants much further into the future.


Think the Energy Crisis Is Bad? Wait Until Next Winter

Added from a friend’s recommendation.

This picture taken on October 5, 2022 shows the lignite-fired power station operated by German energy giant RWE in Neurath, western Germany. - German energy provider RWE brought forward its exit from coal power to 2030 on October 4, 2022 amid fears the country's plans to abandon fossil fuels are wobbling following the energy crisis caused by Russia's war in Ukraine. INA FASSBENDER-AFP
Jayanti is an Eastern Europe energy policy expert. She served for ten years as a U.S. diplomat, including as the Energy Chief at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine (2018-2020), and as international energy counsel at the U.S. Department of Commerce (2020-2021). She is currently the Managing Director of Eney, a U.S.-Ukrainian decarbonization company.

LINK: https://time.com/6226587/energy-crisis-next-winter/?fbclid=IwAR1cuqq-beVyokDiBDiGBpy_1EMRfw7BwPJSQ0D2LDqYNoxVTw5CZSg07t0