Forest fires have crept higher up mountains over the past few decades, scorching areas previously too wet to burn, according to researchers from McGill University. As wildfires advance uphill, a staggering 11% of all Western US forests are now at risk.
The glaciers of Nanga Parbat - one of the highest mountains in the world - have been shrinking slightly but continually since the 1930s. This loss in surface area is evidenced by a long-term study of Heidelberg University. The geographers combined historical photographs, surveys, and topographical maps with current data, which allowed them to show glacial changes for this massif in the north-western Himalaya as far back as the mid-1800s.
As demand for electricity rises and climate change brings more frequent and extreme storms, residents in rural and suburban communities must have access to the minimal electricity they need to survive a large, long-duration (LLD) power outage.
Chinese researchers headed by Prof. CHEN Shengyun from the Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources (NIEER) and XUE Kai from University of Chinese Academy of Sciences have recently discovered links between reduction in microbial stability and soil carbon loss in the active layer of degraded alpine permafrost on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.
A new study led by researchers from McGill University and INRAE found that between 51-60% of the 64 million kilometres of rivers and streams on Earth that they investigated stop flowing periodically, or run dry for part of the year. It is the first-ever empirically grounded effort to quantify the global distribution of non-perennial rivers and streams. The research, which was published today in Nature, calls for a paradigm shift in river science and management.
What will the Earth be like for our children and grandchildren, as temperatures continue to rise? We can be fairly certain of some things: Some regions will become inhospitable, as heat drives their inhabitants away or causes massive declines and changes in their ecosystems. Many other physical, chemical and biological processes will also be affected by rising temperatures that threaten critical ecosystem services such as food production, biodiversity and energy security.
The influx of warmer water masses from the North Atlantic into the European marginal seas plays a significant role in the marked decrease in sea-ice growth, especially in winter.
If the agricultural sector fails to adapt better to climate change, food production is set to fall - 10% by mid-century and 25% by 2100 - affecting the supply of a growing world population. Adaptation strategies exist and are available, but they need to be applied: the study by an international team of researchers from Boston University, Ca' Foscari University of Venice and the CMCC Foundation - Euro-Mediterranean Centre on Climate Change.
Researchers from Skoltech have designed and conducted experiments measuring gas permeability under various conditions for ice-containing sediments mimicking permafrost. Their results can be useful both in tracing methane emission in high latitudes and in modeling and testing techniques for gas production from Arctic reservoirs. The study also showed that the dissociation of gas hydrates can lead to permeability increase. This, in turn, will lead to methane emissions into the atmosphere, causing a variety of environmental and technological impacts.
Paleoclimatologist Niels de Winter and colleagues developed an innovative way to use the clumped isotope method to reconstruct climate in the geological past on the seasonal scale. They show that dinosaurs had to deal with hotter summers than previously thought. The results suggest that in the mid latitudes, seasonal temperatures will likely rise along with climate warming, while seasonal difference is maintained. This results in very high summer temperatures.