|The first six months of 2016 were the hottest ever recorded, NASA announced on Tuesday, while Arctic sea ice now covers 40% less of the Earth than it did just 30 years ago.
Temperatures were on average 1.3 degrees Celsius (2.4 degrees Fahrenheit) higher than average between January and June this year, compared to the late nineteenth century.
In total, the planet has now had 14 consecutive months of the hottest temperatures seen since records began in 1880.|
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
Saturday, July 23, 2016
|The temperature in Mitribah, Kuwait, surged Thursday to a blistering 54 C. And on Friday in Basra, Iraq, the mercury soared to 53.9. If confirmed, these incredible measurements would represent the two hottest temperatures ever recorded in the Eastern Hemisphere.|
It’s also possible that Mitribah’s 54 C reading matches the hottest ever reliably measured anywhere in the world. Both Mitribah and Basra’s readings are likely the highest ever recorded outside of Death Valley, California.
If you discard the Death Valley record from 1913, the 54 C reading from Mitribah Thursday would tie the world’s highest known temperature. Air temperatures of about 38 C combined with astronomical humidity levels have pushed heat index values, which reflect how hot the air feels, literally off the charts. In Fujairah, on the east coast of the United Arab Emirates, the dew point — a measure of humidity — reached 32 C at 4 p.m. local time Thursday. The 90-degree dew point, combined with the air temperature of 36 C, computes to a heat index of over 60 C.
Thursday, July 21, 2016
|Scientists on a recent recent expedition to Belyy Island in the Kara Sea off the northern coast of Russia, just off the Yamal Peninsula came across dozens of patches of grass with bubbles of carbon dioxide and methane underneath. |
It's likely a small sample of things to come as the planet warms. This summer has been unusually hot on the island. It's similar to a phenomenon that grabbed headlines when first detected in Siberia several years ago ... the formation of massive craters in parts of northern Siberia. Experts believe they were caused by explosions of methane that had built up. One such blast on the Taimyr Peninsula in 2013 could be heard 100 km away.
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Monday, July 18, 2016
Friday, July 15, 2016
|Jellyfish populations the world over are exploding. More jellyfish are coming and that’s cause for alarm. The undulating, translucent creatures are notorious for their stings, which can be lethal. About 40 people are killed by jellyfish every year, compared to about eight killed by sharks.|
|Pollution and over-fishing may be the biggest culprits. The fewer fish that swim in the seas, the more food — such as plankton — is left for the jellies. |
Overfishing also means that jellyfish have fewer encounters with the ocean-dwelling predators such as salmon.
|Jellyfish wreak havoc by choking seawater intake valves and drainpipes, and clogging fishermen’s nets. “Jellies” have even been known to capsize fishing boats.|
Researchers examined data and anecdotal evidence going back 60 years. They report that jellyfish populations are on the rise virtually everywhere, most acutely in areas with heavy concentrations of human activity. Coastal Europe and Asia and the Black Sea seem hardest hit.
Humans have little love or use for the creatures, which are sometimes called the “cockroaches of the sea.” Very few of the 2,000 known jellyfish species are considered fit for human consumption.
Thursday, July 14, 2016
The putrid algal blooms, which have been described as “guacamole-like”, have plagued the state’s waterways since last month.
|A thick and toxic algae has spread throughout the waterways of Florida.|
|Climate change is also a major contributing factor as the warmer waters create the perfect conditions for the noxious algae.|
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Friday, July 8, 2016
|June 2016 was the hottest on record for the contiguous United States, scientists from NOAA announced on Thursday.|
The average temperature of 71.8 degrees Fahrenheit is 3.3 F (1.83 C) hotter than a typical June. The record was broken with none of the Lower 48 turning in below-average temperatures for the month. NOAA said 17 states in the West, Great Plains and Southeast were well above average, rising the national average temperature to the highest ever recorded for the month of June in the national climate record starting 122 years ago in 1895.
Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Friday, July 1, 2016
|Thirty-one of the largest U.S. science societies—collectively representing millions of scientists—sent a letter to Congress this week urging lawmakers to recognize anthropogenic climate change and take decisive action to combat it and its effects.|
A previous letter with nearly identical language was sent by 18 of the 31 organizations in 2009, and some scientists are skeptical that this new document will budge the stubborn persistence of climate denial among congressional representatives. The letter warns of the numerous threats posed by climate change—including extreme weather events, regional water scarcity, heat waves and wildfires.
It also highlights the need for substantial reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.