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January 2017

 

We Need Science-Informed Leadership

What can you do about? A lot. So go get started…

Scientific American

Regional and global sea-surface temperatures during the last interglaciation

Understanding how warm intervals affected sea level in the past is vital for projecting how human activities will affect it in the future. Hoffman et al. compiled estimates of sea surface temperatures during the last interglacial period, which lasted from about 129,000 to 116,000 years ago.

Science

Base the social cost of carbon on the science

The potential economic damage from global warming should not be influenced by politics.

Nature

2016 Officially Declared Hottest Year on Record

2016 was the hottest year in 137 years of record keeping and the third year in a row to take the number one slot, a mark of how much the world has warmed over the last century because of human activities, U.S. government scientists announced Wednesday.

Climate Central

Climate science: The resilience of Amazonian forests

Isotope evidence suggests that, during dry periods associated with the most recent ice age, the Amazonian forest survived in a region that is sensitive to rainfall changes — settling a debate about Amazonian aridity.

Nature

Global scenarios of urban density and its impacts on building energy use through 2050

Urban density significantly impacts urban energy use and the quality of life of urban residents. Here, we provide a global-scale analysis of future urban densities and associated energy use in the built environment under different urbanization scenarios. -PNAS

PNAS

Assessing recent warming using instrumentally homogeneous sea surface temperature records

Sea surface temperature (SST) records are subject to potential biases due to changing instrumentation and measurement practices. Significant differences exist between commonly used composite SST reconstructions from the NOAA’s Extended Reconstruction Sea Surface Temperature (ERSST), the Hadley Centre SST data set (HadSST3), and the Japanese Meteorological Agency’s Centennial Observation-Based Estimates of SSTs (COBE-SST) from 2003 to the present.

Science

AirVisual Creates 3D Air Pollution Map

AirVisual, a social enterprise providing air pollution monitoring solutions, has recently launched a groundbreaking new way to visualize the Earth’s health, in real-time.

PR Newswire

Equitable mitigation to achieve the Paris Agreement goals

We identify global cost-optimal mitigation scenarios consistent with the Paris Agreement goals and allocate their emissions dynamically to countries according to five equity approaches.

Nature Climate Change

Glacial ocean circulation and stratification explained by reduced atmospheric temperature

To understand climatic swings between glacial and interglacial climates we need to explain the observed fluctuations in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), which in turn are most likely driven by changes in the deep ocean circulation. This study presents a model for differences in the deep ocean circulation between glacial and interglacial climates.

PNAS

Why is atmospheric methane surging? (Hint: It’s not fracking)

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is not the only greenhouse gas on the rise. Since 2007, methane—which molecule-for-molecule has 30 times the warming effect of CO2—has risen by more than 3%.

Science

AI and Big Data vs. Air Pollution

Physics simulations and AI combine to give pollution forecasts to city dwellers in Beijing and beyond. How best to combine physics models and machine learning for air-quality forecasts is an active research area.

IEEE Spectrum

Take a deep breath – here’s what 2016 revealed about the deadly dangers of air pollution

Beijing, London, Mexico City, New Delhi and Paris are among the cities that have drawn attention for their dangerously high air pollution levels in 2016 – but they’re not alone. The WHO has confirmed that 92 per cent of the world’s urban population now live in cities where the air is toxic. –The Independent

The Independent

2016 in news: The science events that shaped the year

Climate accords, controversial assisted reproduction and the CRISPR patent battle are among the year’s top stories.

Nature

World Energy Hits a Turning Point: Solar That’s Cheaper Than Wind

A transformation is happening in global energy markets that’s worth noting as 2016 comes to an end: Solar power, for the first time, is becoming the cheapest form of new electricity.

Bloomberg



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