As of late January, the news reports were coming in hot and heavy. Baby sea lions were dying in droves. More than 15,000 of the pups were already lost due to starvation. And with each passing week, more than 100 of the emaciated, beleaguered, hopeless animals were washing up on California shores.
The pups staggered across beaches, wandered into vacant lots, or tottered, disoriented, along roadways. Refugees all to some unspeakable disaster. Orphans lost or abandoned by parents unable to provide them with even the most basic of sustenance.
(Starving sea lion pups taken in by the Marine Mammal Center in San Francisco. Image source: WTSP.)
Marine rescue centers, volunteer centers, and even animal shelters were inundated by a flood of desperate, dying animals. Their organs were shutting down. They could barely breathe or walk. The future generation of the more than 300,000 sea lions living along the US…
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If you deny that warmer ocean temps -> greater snowfall w/ coastal winter storms, you are not a climate denier. You are a physics denier. — from the Twitter feed of Dr Michael E. Mann, Climate Scientist
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Boston just experienced its snowiest month on record and, yes, it really is climate change, stupid. In essence, as Michael Mann notes above, it’s a matter of oceanic and atmospheric physics.
Consider the fact that the ocean surface is warming at an unprecedented rate. Consider also the fact that this observed warming is resulting in a number of powerful south to north flows of air over ocean regions and toward the polar zone.
Over the past month, these powerful warm air flows pushed strongly into both Alaska and Svalbard — causing 20-30 C above average temperatures in regions of the Arctic along the 70 to 80 degree…
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This slideshow video is of trees on the Portland State University campus Feb. 9, 2015. It shows the effects of growing in a nitrogen rich atmosphere where rampant growth takes place because of nourishment from the anthropogenic deposition of nitrogen caused mainly from the burning of fossil fuels.
These photos were taken immediately after the 13th annual Urban Ecology & Conservation Symposium. – DT Lange
Much of the landscape of Portland, Oregon is known to be burdened by dense amounts of nitrogen oxides, NO2 or NOX — all of which have negative effects on human, and plant, health.
The burning of fossil fuels are the main source of this aerosol nitrogen pollution. NOX is also a prime indicator of other “combustion-related pollutants”.
Since fossil fuel pollution also destroys our climate when it fills the global atmosphere, it also damages life in local and regional environments.
– For a fairly recent news article relating to a scientific study on this issue see: “PSU study shows Portland’s urban forest reduces air pollution but also finds hazards“
Nitrogen is also a strong plant fertilizer which promotes growth. These photos show an incongruous growth of moss and lichen on exposed urban surfaces.
– Below is a small sample of photos which illustrate the degree of NOX pollution in Portland, OR. (More to come at a later date.)
Earlier this week something rather interesting and disturbing happened to the Jet Stream.
In the extreme northwest, a large heat pool over Alaska and the Beaufort Sea in the Arctic Ocean kept temperatures in the range of 10 to 36 degrees Fahrenheit above average. To the south, a powerful super typhoon, gorged on Pacific Ocean waters ranging from 1-2 C hotter than normal, raced into the extratropical region of the Central and Northern Pacific. And to the north and east, the cold core that normally resides over the North Pole began slipping south.
(Massive warm air invasion of the Arctic earlier this week led to a major polar vortex disruption driving cold air out of the Arctic and setting off record snowfall in the region of Buffalo, New York. Image source: Climate Reanalyzer.)
As the supertyphoon’s remnants hit the warm weakness in the Jet Stream near Alaska, it bombed…
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2014: earthly methane stores, warming seas, Arctic ice loss, and major climate destabilization.
Methane spikes from warming sea bed floors have caused recent arctic atmospheric methane levels to temporarily increase by an amount equal to or higher than the entire percentage concentration of methane found in the atmosphere before the industrial revolution.
This occurred in September of last year as well, when methane levels spiked to over 2500 ppb in the arctic.
A couple of days ago, atmospheric concentrations of methane over the arctic region reached 2666 ppb.
This happens when shallow sea bed areas – previously essentially frozen solid for hundreds of thousands if not more years – warm up and thaw sufficiently to release methane otherwise tightly held in frozen clathrates along much of the upper ocean shelf sea bed floor.
How does this happen?
Each year, on average, less and less arctic sea ice – which in the past has dwindled during late summers somewhat but for the…
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Pioneering seismologist Robert Mallet, in his ‘Manual of Scientific Inquiry’ circa 1860, gave us a phrase I much admire. As part of his report to the British Admiralty, he wrote that, ” Nature, rightly questioned, never lies.” He was emphasizing that, “All evidence should, as far as possible, be circumstantial”. And that each situation investigated had its own unique physical conditions, in its own location, and in own time, etc.
My present day concerns about the present condition, and influences, on weather patterns in the Northern Hemisphere, where I reside, cause me to look closely, and ask questions about the following subject.
The upper image is a screenshot from Oct. 18, 2014 Nullschool shows anticyclonic (clockwise) high pressure winds over the Arctic Ocean. It appears to be pushing air through the Bering Strait, and feeding the (counter-clockwise) winds of a wide area of low pressure in the Gulf of Alaska. A high just to the west of this low seems to be receiving some of the air from the Arctic high. Meanwhile, a smaller area of cyclonic winds sits in the western Bering Sea — and seems to be getting some of the same wind.
The energy from these weathers are now linked together to form a chain of energy.
The lower image is a screenshot of the Oct. 18, 2014 ClimateReanalyzer Air Temperature Anomaly. A large mass of warm, or hot, air is over the Laptev Sea in the Arctic. This warmth is also part of the above mentioned anticyclonic high pressure pattern.
How much of this warm Arctic air anomaly became entrained in the low pressure air mass in the, struggling just to be cool, Gulf of Alaska?
And what chance does the Arctic have to keep cold and retain its ice? And what of the jet stream, and its role as deliverer of our weather systems?
These questions are likely to be answered by nature whether I ask them or not.
Posted simultaneously on windspiritkeeper
“California Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Resources Board (ARB)
implements the Air Quality Management Program in California. ARB’s
mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological
resources through the effective and efficient reduction of air pollutants, while
recognizing and considering the effects on the economy of the State.”
— The actual text taken from the Overview of the ARB Mission Statement as it was published in 2011.
“Smog” is but one of he toxic components of air pollution. Others go high into the atmosphere to destroy our climate.