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Charlton Crown

Flooding experts say Britain will have to adapt to climate change - and fast - 1 views

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    "You are looking at retreat," says Prof Colin Thorne, a flooding expert at the University of Nottingham. "It is the only sensible policy - it makes no sense to defend the indefensible." This assessment of how the UK will have to adapt to its increasing flood risk is stark, but is shared by virtually all those who work on the issue.Centuries of draining wetlands, reclaiming salt marshes and walling in rivers is being put into reverse by climate change, which is bringing fiercer storms, more intense downpours and is pushing up sea levels. Sea walls are now being deliberately allowed to be breached, with new defences built further back, and fields turned into lakes to slow the rush of the water, as flood management turns back towards natural methods.Thorne says the strategy of once more "making space for water" has been around for a decade, but the urgency of implementing it has increased sharply. "We thought then we were talking about the 2030s, but it is all happening a heck of a lot quicker."

    Large parts of southern England had their wettest January ever recorded, the Met Office announced on Thursday, and the Somerset Levels, much of which is below sea level, have been inundated for weeks. "I have enormous sympathy for these people," says Thorne. But he thinks the 1,000-year history of keeping the sea out of the area is coming to the end. "Can the Somerset Levels be defended between now and the end of the century? No," he says.

    Hannah Cloke, a flooding expert at the University of Reading, agrees: "We could make the choice to protect the Levels forever, but that is going to take a lot of resources. My gut feeling is that you are going to have to let that be a marshland in the end. But people live there and have their livelihoods there, so it is very tricky." Cloke says greatest priority across the country is giving people the help they need to adjust to more frequent floods, from warnings and emergency planning down to home-level protection, such as water-absorbing
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    Source: http://blog.crowncapitalmngt.com/flooding-experts-say-britain-will-have-to-adapt-to-climate-change-and-fast/






    "You are looking at retreat," says Prof Colin Thorne, a flooding expert at the University of Nottingham. "It is the only sensible policy - it makes no sense to defend the indefensible." This assessment of how the UK will have to adapt to its increasing flood risk is stark, but is shared by virtually all those who work on the issue.Centuries of draining wetlands, reclaiming salt marshes and walling in rivers is being put into reverse by climate change, which is bringing fiercer storms, more intense downpours and is pushing up sea levels. Sea walls are now being deliberately allowed to be breached, with new defences built further back, and fields turned into lakes to slow the rush of the water, as flood management turns back towards natural methods.Thorne says the strategy of once more "making space for water" has been around for a decade, but the urgency of implementing it has increased sharply. "We thought then we were talking about the 2030s, but it is all happening a heck of a lot quicker."



    Large parts of southern England had their wettest January ever recorded, the Met Office announced on Thursday, and the Somerset Levels, much of which is below sea level, have been inundated for weeks. "I have enormous sympathy for these people," says Thorne. But he thinks the 1,000-year history of keeping the sea out of the area is coming to the end. "Can the Somerset Levels be defended between now and the end of the century? No," he says.
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    "You are looking at retreat," says Prof Colin Thorne, a flooding expert at the University of Nottingham. "It is the only sensible policy - it makes no sense to defend the indefensible." This assessment of how the UK will have to adapt to its increasing flood risk is stark, but is shared by virtually all those who work on the issue.Centuries of draining wetlands, reclaiming salt marshes and walling in rivers is being put into reverse by climate change, which is bringing fiercer storms, more intense downpours and is pushing up sea levels. Sea walls are now being deliberately allowed to be breached, with new defences built further back, and fields turned into lakes to slow the rush of the water, as flood management turns back towards natural methods.Thorne says the strategy of once more "making space for water" has been around for a decade, but the urgency of implementing it has increased sharply. "We thought then we were talking about the 2030s, but it is all happening a heck of a lot quicker."

    Large parts of southern England had their wettest January ever recorded, the Met Office announced on Thursday, and the Somerset Levels, much of which is below sea level, have been inundated for weeks. "I have enormous sympathy for these people," says Thorne. But he thinks the 1,000-year history of keeping the sea out of the area is coming to the end. "Can the Somerset Levels be defended between now and the end of the century? No," he says.

    Hannah Cloke, a flooding expert at the University of Reading, agrees: "We could make the choice to protect the Levels forever, but that is going to take a lot of resources. My gut feeling is that you are going to have to let that be a marshland in the end. But people live there and have their livelihoods there, so it is very tricky." Cloke says greatest priority across the country is giving people the help they need to adjust to more frequent floods, from warnings and emergency planning down to home-level prote
Charles Crown

Watch 60 Years Of Climate Change In 15 Seconds - 3 views

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    source: http://blog.crowncapitalmngt.com/watch-60-years-of-climate-change-in-15-seconds/

    According to NASA, 2013 was tied (with 2009 and 2006) for seventh warmest year globally on record, dating back to 1880. NASA scientists have played a leading role in climate research in recent decades and the agency's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) this month updated a report analyzing worldwide surface temperatures.
    "Long-term trends in surface temperatures are unusual and 2013 adds to the evidence for ongoing climate change," GISS climatologist Gavin Schmidt said. "While one year or one season can be affected by random weather events, this analysis shows the necessity for continued, long-term monitoring."

    The NASA data finds that with the exception of 1998, the 10 warmest years in the 134-year record have all come since the latest turn of the century, with 2010 and 2005 ranking as the warmest years on record.


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    Global average temperatures for 2013 (Credit: NASA)



    To drive the point home, GISS created the below animation that shows the increase in temperatures worldwide over the past 60 years, compiled from data collected by over 1,000 meteorological stations around the globe.

    A release from NASA makes the case that the increase in temperatures over the long-term is more a social problem than a matter of eons-long natural climate patterns:

    Driven by increasing man-made emissions, the level of carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere presently is higher than at any time in the last 800,000 years.

    This summer, NASA plans to launch the Orbiting Carbon Observatory with the goal of studying both natural and manmade sources of carbon dioxide, one of the gases believed to be largely to blame for climate change.
Charles Crown

For Already Vulnerable Penguins, Study Finds Climate Change Is Another Danger - 1 views

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    Life has never been easy for just-hatched Magellanic penguins, but climate change is making it worse, according to a decades-long study of the largest breeding colony of the birds.
    The chicks are already vulnerable to predation and starvation. Now, the study at Punta Tombo, Argentina, found that intense storms and warmer temperatures are increasingly taking a toll.
    "Rainfall is killing a lot of penguins, and so is heat," said P. Dee Boersma, a University of Washington scientist and lead author of the study. "And those are two new causes."
    Climate scientists say more extreme weather, including wetter storms and more prolonged periods of heat and cold, is one impact of a climate that is changing because of emissions of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. While monitoring the penguin colony, Dr. Boersma and her colleagues also documented regional temperature changes and increases in the number of days with heavy rains.
    The study, which is being published online Wednesday in the journal PLoS ONE, is one of the first to show a direct impact of climate change on seabirds. Most studies have looked at how warming temperatures affect animals indirectly, by altering predation patterns or food supplies.
    William J. Sydeman, senior scientist at the Farallon Institute in California, who was not involved in the research, said the study linked changes in climate, which occur on a scale of decades, to the daily scale of life in the colony. "That's a unique contribution," he said.
    The colony at Punta Tombo, in a temperate and relatively dry region about midway along Argentina's coast, is home to about 200,000 breeding pairs of the penguins, which are about 15 inches tall as adults. Dr. Boersma has been working there since 1982, with long-term support from the Wildlife Conservation Society.
    For this study, the researchers compiled data on nearly 3,500 chicks that they meticulously tracked by checking nests once or twice a day throughout the six-month breeding season, w
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