Posted on May 20, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
In-depth coverage of the Colorado water plan is unfolding in a new series of stories for the Colorado Independent
Gotta love that Colorado River. Want to help save it? Conserve! @bberwyn photo.
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Colorado’s creeping water crisis isn’t as dramatic as a wildfire or a flood, but its consequences could be just as severe. State and federal water experts say the state will see a huge gap between supply and demand within a few decades, and possibly sooner if regional drought continues. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Colorado River, Environment, politics, rivers, water | Tagged: Colorado River, Colorado water plan, Colorado water shortages, drought, Environment, water conservation | 1 Comment »
Posted on May 18, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
A new study shows how water fleas can adapt genetically to climate change. Photo courtesy USGS.
Study shows rapid genetic adaptation to warming ponds
FRISCO — Questions abound about the ability of plants and animals to adapt to global warming, but a new study by Belgian biologists shows that one species — the humble water flea — had already done just that.
The tiny aquatic organism lives in shallow lakes and usually reproduce asexually by cloning themselves. But when food is short or the water gets too hot, they mate and lay long-lasting eggs meant to survive for a better day.
Biologists with KU Leuven said that, when compared ‘resurrected’ water fleas — hatched from 40-year-old eggs — with more recent specimens, they found that the offspring hatched from the newer eggs were more tolerant of warm water. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, climate change, global warming | Tagged: Environment, genetic adaptation, global warming, water fleas | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 17, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Bull trout in the Columbia River Basin. USGS photo.
Warming water, more winter flooding not a good combination for fish
FRISCO — A native western trout species that’s been listed as endangered since 1998 will likely be further threatened by global warming, according to biologists, who found that genetic diversity in bull trout is lowest where stream temperatures are warmest and winter flooding is highest.
With these trends predicted to continue, a new U.S. Geological Survey-led study suggests that the species is more susceptible to climate change than previously thought. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, climate change | Tagged: Bull trout, climate change, endangered species, Environment, genetic diversity, global warming | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 15, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
‘We should no longer accept the claim that there is warming missing higher in the atmosphere’
All of South America, nearly all of North America, as well as Eurasia, were much warmer than average in April 2015.
FRISCO — Decades of readings from thousands of measuring stations around the world show in excruciating detail how the Earth is warming under its thickening blanket of greenhouse gases, but tracking the temperature rise in the upper levels of the atmosphere has been more elusive.
But new research by Australian climate scientists, published in Environmental Research Letters, confirms strong warming in the upper troposphere, crushing yet another argument used by science-denying global warming skeptics who try to cast doubt on the overwhelming evidence of dangerous climate change.
The findings are based on a new analysis of data from the global weather balloon network. The evaluation found “clear indications of warming in the upper troposphere,” according to professor Steve Sherwood, with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, climate change, Environment, global warming | Tagged: climate science, Environment, global warming, global warming deniers, troposphere hotspot, tropospheric global warming | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 14, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
A widely used class of pesticides is probably responsible for a massive honeybee die-off. @bberwyn photo.
Annual survey shows disturbing rise in summer bee colony losses
FRISCO — Commercial beekeepers took another big hit last summer, reporting that they lost more than 40 percent of their honey bee colonies during the past year. Summer losses were higher than winter losses for the first time in five years, stoking concerns over the long-term trend of poor health in honey bee colonies, according to University of Maryland scientists. Continue reading
Filed under: agriculture, biodiversity, Environment | Tagged: agriculture, Environment, food, honey bee colony collapse, honey bee decline, neonicotinoids, pesticides | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 12, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Western U.S. counties violating current and proposed ozone air quality standards. Map courtesy Jeremy Nichols/ClimateWest blog.
La Niña weather pattern found to contribute to spikes in western ozone levels
FRISCO — Spring ozone formation in parts of the western U.S. appear to be linked with the hemispheric La Niña weather pattern, when the path of the jet stream forces high altitude ozone down to ground level.
After discovering the link, a team of researchers say their findings may help forecast harmful ozone episodes well in advance, which could have implications for attaining the national ozone standard. Continue reading
Filed under: air quality, climate and weather, Environment, La Niña | Tagged: air pollution, air quality, climate, Environment, La Niña, ozone | 1 Comment »