New research shows troublesome effects from warmer and wetter summers. The focus of this study is on the likelihood of disease outbreaks and fungal infestations that may occur when ecosystems are disrupted beyond their natural variability. The regions most likely to be affected are the southeastern U.S., central Canada, northern Australia, southern Africa, central Asia and the African Sahel. “We’re just getting into the time period where we expect to see this effect.”
The outlook for agriculture in California is not good. The state is a world leader in the production of many specialty crops that depend on unique sets of climate conditions. A new study has analyzed the situation and expressed concern, in terms that anyone can understand and wish to see corrected.
Biodiversity loss has a messaging problem. Academic interest is high but attention in the media has not grown in the way it has for climate change. Public interest has floundered and so has an international effort that was patterned on the IPCC. The loss itself is certainly connected to climate change but like the environment is far more extensive in the nature of its causes. The urgency required for stemming the loss is just as high as for climate change, or even higher, but the consequences of failure are perhaps more difficult to visualize.
Here is a perfect example of how a vitally important ecosystem can be ruined (Mongabay). A study has counted the number of dams that have been built or are under construction in the headwaters of the Amazon, twice as many as previously estimated, and the even larger number that are being planned to meet the growing demands for power. The consequences will have devastating effects, and would seem to be avoidable since alternatives now exist.
The viability of reversing climate change by naturally sequestering massive amounts of carbon in soil is being questioned. The idea is terrific, generates much enthusiasm, and has been reflected numerous times in these letters. This post enumerates most of the reasons for being cautious about predicting the overall capacity for success, while adding a couple of ideas that would be helpful. There is no reason at all to reduce the effort or fail to see its positive effects.
A poll of young voters offers reasons to be hopeful that human attitudes will change. “More than 3 out of 4 (77 percent) young voters think we should try to stop or slow climate change, including 89 percent of Democrats, 77 percent of independents, and 57 percent of Republicans. Only 10 percent of millennial voters oppose climate action.”