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16 February 2017

Ancient cave reveals recent droughts in the Middle East were most severe for over a millennium

Ancient cave reveals recent droughts in the Middle East were most severe for over a millennium

A stalagmite collected from a remote cave in the Middle East has revealed that recent droughts there were more severe than previously thought, and therefore possibly an important contributing factor for the turmoil in Syria. A research team traveled to Iraq to collect the stalagmite and used it to present the first ever detailed climate reconstruction of the Fertile Crescent extending back 2,400 years.

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15 February 2017

Researchers catch extreme waves with higher resolution modeling

Researchers catch extreme waves with higher resolution modeling

Surfers aren’t the only people trying to catch big waves. Using decades of global climate data generated at a spatial resolution of about 25 square kilometers (10 square miles), researchers were able to capture the formation of tropical cyclones and the extreme waves that they generate. Those same models, when run at resolutions of about 100 kilometers (60 miles), missed the tropical cyclones and the big waves up to 30 meters (100 feet) high.

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8 February 2017

Gas hydrate breakdown unlikely to cause massive greenhouse gas release

Gas hydrate breakdown unlikely to cause massive greenhouse gas release

The breakdown of methane hydrates due to warming climate is unlikely to lead to massive amounts of methane being released to the atmosphere, according to a recent interpretive review of scientific literature.

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Greenland Ice Sheet melting can cool subtropics and alter climate

Greenland Ice Sheet melting can cool subtropics and alter climate

A new study finds evidence that the last time Earth was as warm as it is today, cold freshwater from a melting Greenland Ice Sheet circulated in the Atlantic Ocean as far south as Bermuda, elevating sea levels and altering the ocean’s climate and ecosystems.

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6 February 2017

Greener cities could help urban plants endure summer heat

Greener cities could help urban plants endure summer heat

Urban plants offer city dwellers many benefits, such as improved health and decreased crime and pollution. And now we have even more reason to green our cities. A new study from the Water Sustainability and Climate project at the University of Wisconsin-Madison indicates that adding more greenery to the urban landscape could help urban vegetation cope better with the summer heat and a warming climate. In other words, the more plants in a city, the merrier they all are.

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27 January 2017

Global flood risk could increase five-fold with a 4-degree C temperature rise

Global flood risk could increase five-fold with a 4-degree C temperature rise

A new report looks at flood risk and economic damages under different global warming scenarios with temperature increases of 1.5 degrees Celsius, 2 degrees Celsius and 4 degrees Celsius. It concludes that, if global temperatures rise by 4 degrees Celsius, the flood risk in countries representing more than 70 percent percent of the global population and global GDP will increase by more than 500 percent.

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18 January 2017

Ice-free summers in Arctic Ocean could thwart Paris Agreement objectives

Ice-free summers in Arctic Ocean could thwart Paris Agreement objectives

A new study shows melting sea ice in the Arctic Ocean could put at risk the objectives of the Paris Agreement to address climate change. The study’s authors conclude that, due to the future increase in the sea ice-albedo feedback, global carbon dioxide emission levels would need to reach zero five to 15 years earlier than expected to meet targets set by the agreement, substantially increasing mitigation costs.

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17 January 2017

How darkness and cold killed the dinosaurs

How darkness and cold killed the dinosaurs

Climate scientists have now reconstructed how tiny droplets of sulfuric acid formed high up in the air after a large asteroid impact 66 million years ago. The new research shows the sulfuric acid cooled Earth’s climate for years to come.

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22 December 2016

Iconic bristlecone pines may not survive global climate change

Iconic bristlecone pines may not survive global climate change

Bristlecone pines—including Methusaleh, one of the world’s oldest trees—have lived in North America’s Great Basin for thousands of years. But warming temperatures due to climate change could cause trouble for the ancient trees by tipping the ecological balance in favor of the conifer’s neighbor, the limber pine, said scientists at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting.

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15 December 2016

Some corals and scallops better able to handle ocean acidification, study finds

Some corals and scallops better able to handle ocean acidification, study finds

Some coral and mollusk species are adjusting to acidifying ocean waters better than previously thought, according to new research.

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