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News July 2012

Little discussed consequences of sea ice loss

on Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Sea ice loss is featuring prominently in the headlines currently. However, there are a few other things not being emphasised, such as

  • Sea ice expected to be lost by summer 2015 or earlier
  • Consequences for agriculture likely to be profound
  • Other feedbacks are happening in the Arctic besides the ice
With respect to this last point there is evidence of increasing methane release (an extremely potent greenhouse gas over short timescales) and release of land based carbon. This link has a little more:
http://www.manchester.ac.uk/aboutus/news/display/?id=8640
The bottom line is that the loss of the sea ice is just the first in a series of powerful positive feedbacks that are underway now, and these feedbacks tend to accelerate each other.


It is not just America

on Monday, August 27, 2012

Russia is expecting a lower harvest this year due to drought
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-08-23/russia-may-run-out-of-exportable-grain-surplus-in-november-1-.html
India has had problems with the monsoon rains also
http://www.salon.com/2012/08/27/poor_monsoon_rains_hit_millions_of_indian_farmers/
The outcome in Australia is in question
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-07-30/west-australia-s-grain-harvest-seen-dropping-40-percent-on-weather
Canada and Europe (the other major producing regions) are not doing as badly but still have some issues and are unlikely to close the gap. How high will food prices get next year? What if the rate of extreme weather continues to worsen as the ice melts more?


Chasing hurricanes for food

on Monday, August 27, 2012

As is widely known the harvest in the USA this year has suffered serious damage from extreme weather - principally drought and heat (though there was also frost damage following an unusual warm spring spell and a plaque of army worms following the general absence of a proper winter). Hurricane Isaac is about to make landfall - and this site focussing on agricultural news has advice for farmers on planting "emergency grains" just before the rain from the storm may come in the hope that it provides enough rain in their region to grow something (presumably without causing flooding, which also can ruin crops).
http://www.agweb.com/article/hurricane_isaac_could_offer_some_drought_relief/
A good example of how we can expect agriculture to be squeezed in the near future as extreme weather continues to increase in incidence. Chasing hurricanes to grow some crops!


Spread the word!

on Saturday, August 25, 2012

The site now supports social media buttons, should you feel the content merits raising to the attention of your social circle or wider audience. They are located underneath the left side context sensitive menu - in case you didn't notice them already.


A well written article

on Saturday, August 25, 2012

This article is quite well written and ties together what's happening, while not perhaps explaining how rapidly and clearly a decline in agriculture would endanger modern civilisation.
http://www.campaigncc.org/node/1259


Forums - still in the pipeline

on Saturday, August 18, 2012

I'm still working on rolling out forums. Unfortunately I've just been too busy with work recently. They'll be here soon I hope - and with the scope to put in place a self moderating mechanism that keeps out undesirables from hijacking discussions.


We can be contacted

on Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Contact functionality has been released on the site now (under the "About CCG" menu). If you want to get in touch, feel free to send a message. We will add more options as the level of usage grows (for example to enable contact to specific projects we are involved in).


A growing food crisis

on Tuesday, August 14, 2012

It's increasingly clear the upcoming food crisis as a result of harvest loss around the world in key agricultural regions could become more serious than one would like to think. It's also clear that if the weather continues to worsen from now beyond the total loss of the Arctic sea ice until this is probably not a one off year and that making plans would be prudent.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-08-14/wa-wheat-production-critical-as-shortage-looms/4197006

We'll be hearing a lot more about this soon.


In the news

on Thursday, August 09, 2012

Public awareness of the problems approaching us is just starting to grow. The media is also slowly starting to pick up the story - though it's very late in the day. This story ties up some of the dots fairly well - though it doesn't spell out the obvious - failure to resort to drastic intervention in the earth system is a guarantee of imminent failure. The bottom line now though is that we don't know if we have the capability to intervene on such a scale even now.
The story: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-reese-halter/missing-sea-ice-ameg-and-_b_1753994.html


User profiles

on Monday, August 06, 2012

The site now supports rudimentary user profiles for people who have signed up for accounts. All information is entirely optional, but some is needed for certain functionality to work properly (for example, you can't receive emailed news updates if you didn't provide an email address). The profile setup may be found under the "Participate" menu.


We have news

on Saturday, August 04, 2012

The news is that we have news on the landing page now. I took the liberty of adding a couple of updates for recent events just to get the ball rolling. Coming soon - we'll allow members to receive site updates by email and to participate in discussion forums.


Our mission

on Friday, August 03, 2012

I have updated the site to include information describing our mission and the ongoing projects that represent our efforts to fulfill it. I encourage you to think about what we have to say - not just to glance at it and forget it. I also encourage you to do your own learning and verify the things we discuss on this site, so you can arrive at your own conclusions (if you haven't already).