tagged w/ humanitarian disasters
Disclaimer: The events depicted in this video and the previous two parts are of global climate extremes for 2011 that were unusual or extreme in scope and fit the trend that suggests the strongest link between anthropogenic global warming and weather events through extreme precipitation events, floods and droughts. Nothing was inferred by this video and any such inferment placed on this by the viewer is based on their own preconceptions and biases. All photos depict the events and all information was gleaned from public sources for educational purposes as noted at the conclusion of the video.
Previously I had posted two parts of this video series that I put together of climate extremes for 2011. Seeing just this one year in totality is an eye opener. With all three parts put together there is close to a half hour of information and pictures depicting the world we are making for our children and it is not a good report on the human species.
There is no mistaking anymore that we are affecting the cycles of this planet that provide the two most basic needs for our survival: food and water. The willful damage we are inflicting on our lifeline is irresponsible, arrogant and immoral regardless of what you think is the cause. This year requires REAL action. So please, pass this on and thanks for watching.
This was for me a labor of love and my heart goes out to all in this world who lost loved ones and who stilll deal with the effects of this crisis daily. May we collectively find the moral courage we need now to make this right as much as possibly can be done at this point.
CLIMATE CHANGE KILLS.
I thought this fit here based on the events covered in this recap video:
"Brenda Ekwurzel, a UCS climate scientist, emphasized the varying levels of scientific certainty when it comes to links between extreme weather and climate change. “In some cases, the links between extreme weather and climate change are crystal clear,” she said. “In other cases, the picture is murkier.”
Ekwurzel said scientists see the strongest links to extreme heat and shifts in precipitation away from lighter and toward heavier events, meaning longer periods of drought punctuated by heavy flooding. "
Link to enitre article is in the thread.Disclaimer: The events depicted in this video and the previous two parts are of global... more
Wendy Johnston with Oakwyn Farms in Athens, West Virginia, is deeply concerned about how shifting weather patterns are impacting farmers' ability to feed the global population.
"This year we're off to a slow start," Johnston, who farms 40 hectares, told Al Jazeera. "Last year in April we were able to plant, but this year we even had rain, cold and snow a few days in April. The weather has become very unpredictable, and that's the real problem."
Climate change is making farming more difficult for her, and she wonders how much worse things will become.
On March 31, The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) warned of "potentially catastrophic" impacts on food production from slow-onset climate changes that are expected to increasingly hit the developing world.
The report filed with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, warned that food production systems and the ecosystems they depend on are highly sensitive to climate variability and change.
Changes in temperature, precipitation, and related outbreaks of pest and diseases could reduce production, the report said. Those particularly vulnerable are poor people in countries that rely on food imports, although climate change events are already driving up food costs around the globe, including in developed countries.
April broke many weather-related monthly records in the US, including 292 tornadoes and 5,400 extreme weather events, which combined to cause 337 deaths.
The US National Climatic Data Center announced in June that April's weather extremes were "unprecedented" and "never before" seen in a single month. The center also noted drought across the southern plains, wildfires in the southwest, and record floods along the Mississippi River.
China has been wracked by both severe drought and severe flooding this year, both resulting from climate change induced shifting weather patterns [GALLO/GETTY]
"Severe weather events around the world will increase, even parts of the globe that don't normally see extreme weather events," said Steff Gaulter, Al Jazeera's senior weather presenter. "Those parts of the world that already struggle with water shortages will find matters worsening, including Australia, Mexico, the southwest United States, and parts of Africa."
Gaulter agrees with the FAO that poorer countries are likely to be the worst affected because they have less resources to cope with disasters.
"With worsening water-shortages, there will be more crop-failures, which means an increase in malnutrition," she added. "There is also likely to be an increase in disease as people drink water that is unsuitable for consumption. All of this is an added expense that will be particularly punishing for poorer regions to endure, particularly Sub-Saharan Africa."
Approximately 300 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa currently lack access to clean drinking water.
"It is also estimated that by 2020, an additional 75 to 250 million people there will also face water shortages," said Gaulter. "That's in less than ten years."
Soil in peril
Kevin Trenberth, a senior scientist at the US National Centre for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado, believes it is time to emphasize the link between extreme weather and the global climate in which it develops.
"The environment in which all storms form has changed owing to human activities. In particular, it is warmer and more moist than it was 30 or 40 years ago," Dr Trenberth said.
"We have this extra water vapour lurking around waiting for storms to develop and then there is more moisture as well as heat that is available for these storms [to form]. The models suggest it is going to get drier in the subtropics, wetter in the monsoon trough and wetter at higher latitudes. This is the pattern we're already seeing."
Climate change has generated shifting weather patterns and extreme weather events that make it more difficult for farmers to feed us. A reliance upon non-renewable energy is also a factor in impending food crises.
Professor Michael Bomford, a research scientist at Kentucky State University and a fellow of the Post Carbon Institute, is concerned about how our dependence on oil to feed ourselves is leading to soil depletion and degradation, as well as increasing prices.
"The farm is a very small proportion of the economy in the US and other developed countries, but it has a disproportionate impact on global change," Professor Bomford, who has a Master's of Pest Management and a PhD in Plant and Soil Sciences, told Al Jazeera. "Clearing land for farming releases carbon into the atmosphere and that contributes to climate change. Then by farming it, using cultivation causes soil to be lost in wind and erosion, and that topsoil took thousands of years to form. One extreme weather event can cause us to lose thousands of years of soil."
Modern farming impacts soil by the use of nitrogen fertilizers, which are energy intensive to produce and which deplete carbon in the soil.
"This erodes the soil's ability to hold nutrients, and starts a positive feedback loop," added Professor Bomford. "A lot of our soils now rely on irrigation rather than rainfall, which depletes groundwater reserves, and these have huge impacts on the soil."
William Ryerson, founder and president of the Population Media Center and president of the Population Institute, is also very concerned about fertilizers' impact on soil. He has questioned how, in the long run, this will impact agriculture.
More at the linkWendy Johnston with Oakwyn Farms in Athens, West Virginia, is deeply concerned about... more