Tipping points accelerated climate change in the last Ice Age, new research shows

June 27, 2017 by  
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Could reaching environmental tipping points really impact the Earth’s climate all that much? New research from an international team of four scientists says yes. Their study is the first to show that in our planet’s past, gradual changes in carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations led to tipping points that then set off temperature spikes of as much as 10 degrees Celsius in only a few decades. Scientists led by Xu Zhang of the Alfred Wegener Institute were able to show how sudden changes in our climate, or Dansgaard-Oeschger events, came from CO2 concentrations that rose gradually. Researchers had known temperatures shot up thanks to Greenland ice core samples, but they weren’t sure why – and the new study provides some answers. Zhang said in a statement, “With this study, we’ve managed to show for the first time how gradual increases of CO2 triggered rapid warming .” Related: Scientists warn of uncontrollable climate change amid drastic Arctic melt The team drew on a climate model to find how interactions between the atmosphere and ocean currents led to the temperature spike of 10 degrees Celsius, or 18 degrees Fahrenheit, in Greenland during the last Ice Age, which ended around 11,700 years ago. Here’s how it works. Increased CO2 strengthened Central America trade winds, and the eastern Pacific Ocean warmed more than the western Atlantic Ocean. From there more moisture left the Atlantic, so the salinity and density of that ocean’s surface waters increased. These changes resulted in an abrupt amplification of the circulation pattern of the Atlantic, which according to Zhang can lead to sudden temperature increases. Will we see rapid changes if we hit tipping points today? Gerrit Lohmann of the institute and the University of Bremen said, “We can’t say for certain whether rising CO2 levels will produce similar effects in the future, because the framework conditions today differ from those in a glacial period. That being said, we’ve now confirmed that there have definitely been abrupt climate changes in the Earth’s past that were the result of continually rising CO2 concentrations.” The journal Nature Geoscience published the research online this month. Via the Alfred Wegener Institute and New Atlas Images via Coen Hofstede

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Tipping points accelerated climate change in the last Ice Age, new research shows

Artist "attacks" buildings with clutter to remind us of how much stuff we own

August 9, 2016 by  
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Torres has been working and living in Quebec for over a decade, where much of his artwork has been publicly displayed. “Tipping Point” was brought to Ottawa after the artist was invited by Canadian Heritage and EXMURO arts publics for an early July installation. Kayaks, construction cones, children’s toys, and patio chairs in bright, alarming colors seem to explode out of the side of the wall as observers pass by the piece. Related: Artist Veronika Richterová turns plastic bottles into beautiful plant and animal sculptures The piece is much like earlier works at a Quebec City event, named “Overflows” and “Stock in Transit”. The former portrays an explosion of multicolored plastic equipment bursting out of a tipped storage container, a metaphor for our disturbing reliance on accumulating as many things as we can buy. Each piece is meant to feel imposing and overwhelming, just like the western world’s love affair with “disposable” plastic objects. Most recently Torres’ “Canopy” piece was featured in Edmonton’s The Works Art & Design Festival . Visitors walked underneath and amongst exposed and covered passageways. The experience is meant to represent nomadism, a key theme in the artist’s life and creative work. +José Luis Torres Images via José Luis Torres

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Artist "attacks" buildings with clutter to remind us of how much stuff we own

The Strong case for sustainable capitalism

December 21, 2015 by  
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Are sustainable development goals reaching a tipping point? Maurice Strong deserves credit — and it’s time to review progress so far.

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Tapping into Nature: Thermoregulation

December 21, 2015 by  
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Looking to biology for heat regulation inspiration.

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Tapping into Nature: Thermoregulation

How the renewable energy market is evolving

November 11, 2015 by  
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Are we at a tipping point? Here’s a quick history lesson on green power to find out.

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How the renewable energy market is evolving

Is this a tipping point? Business action moves past the ‘climate A-list’

November 11, 2015 by  
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As COP 21 approaches, momentum in climate action by businesses includes real carbon mitigation.

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Is this a tipping point? Business action moves past the ‘climate A-list’

US coastlines will be flooding 30 times a year by 2050

January 16, 2015 by  
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By 2050, huge areas of the US coast could be subject to more than 30 days of flooding each year, thanks to accelerating sea level rise from global warming. Recent data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association identifies 2050 as the “tipping point” for nuisance flooding, which refers to floods that see water levels 1 to 2 feet above local high tide. The NOAA says these tipping points will affect all US coastlines , and they’ll even be exceeded in many areas. Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Read the rest of US coastlines will be flooding 30 times a year by 2050 Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 30 days of flooding , Climate Change , coastal flood , coastal flooding , flood , flooding , global warming , Katrina , natural disaster , NOAA , ocean rise , sea level rise , tipping point

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US coastlines will be flooding 30 times a year by 2050

Europe begins smart water project rollouts

November 4, 2013 by  
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Will Europe be the first region to hit the tipping point in smart water?

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Europe begins smart water project rollouts

Is building integrated solar close to a tipping point?

July 26, 2013 by  
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A focus on energy efficiency, the rise of net-zero energy buildings and breakthroughs in component design all help drive growth.

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Is building integrated solar close to a tipping point?

Is the EV market at a tipping point?

December 28, 2012 by  
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Three new affordable EVs pave the way for consumer acceptance of plug-in autos.

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