environment correspondent
Alister's Feed
Mar 5, 2014

U.N. says China, US climate cooperation raises hopes for global deal

LONDON/OSLO (Reuters) – Closer cooperation between China and the United States, the top two greenhouse gas emitters, on combating global warming is boosting prospects for a U.N. deal meant to be agreed next year, the U.N.’s climate chief said on Wednesday.

Christiana Figueres also said a “global transformation” of the economy was needed to fight climate change and that time was short if nations were serious about the end-2015 deadline. Little progress has been made so far in negotiations since 2012.

Mar 3, 2014

Global diets get more similar in threat to food security: study

OSLO (Reuters) – Increasing similarity in diets worldwide is a threat to health and food security with many people forsaking traditional crops such as cassava, sorghum or millet, an international study showed on Monday.

The report, which said it detailed for the first time the convergence in crops towards a universal diet in more than 150 nations since the 1960s, showed rises for foods including wheat, rice, soybeans and sunflower.

Feb 27, 2014

Global warming slowdown likely to be brief – science academies

OSLO (Reuters) – A slowdown in the pace of global warming so far this century is likely to be only a pause in a longer-term trend of rising temperatures, the science academies of the United States and Britain said on Thursday.

Since an exceptionally warm 1998, there has been “a short-term slowdown in the warming of Earth’s surface,” Britain’s Royal Society and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences said in a report.

Feb 27, 2014

Global warming slowdown likely to be brief: U.S., UK science bodies

OSLO (Reuters) – A slowdown in the pace of global warming so far this century is likely to be only a pause in a longer-term trend of rising temperatures, the science academies of the United States and Britain said on Thursday.

Since an exceptionally warm 1998, there has been “a short-term slowdown in the warming of Earth’s surface,” Britain’s Royal Society and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences said in a report.

Feb 26, 2014

Heat extremes increase despite global warming hiatus: scientists

OSLO (Reuters) – Hot weather extremes have increased around the world in the past 15 years despite a slowdown in the overall pace of global warming, a study showed on Wednesday.

Heat extremes are among the damaging impacts of climate change as they can raise death rates, especially among the elderly, damage food crops and strain everything from water to energy supplies.

Feb 23, 2014

Global warming won’t cut winter deaths as hoped: UK study

OSLO (Reuters) – Global warming will fail to reduce high winter death rates as some officials have predicted because there will be more harmful weather extremes even as it gets less cold, a British study showed on Sunday.

A draft U.N. report due for publication next month says that, overall, climate change will harm human health, but adds:

Feb 23, 2014

Sun-dimming volcanoes partly explain global warming hiatus-study

OSLO (Reuters) – Small volcanic eruptions help explain a hiatus in global warming this century by dimming sunlight and offsetting a rise in emissions of heat-trapping gases to record highs, a study showed on Sunday.

Eruptions of at least 17 volcanoes since 2000, including Nabro in Eritrea, Kasatochi in Alaska and Merapi in Indonesia, ejected sulfur whose sun-blocking effect had been largely ignored until now by climate scientists, it said.

Feb 20, 2014

Big Antarctic glacier to keep raising seas, even without warming

OSLO (Reuters) – A thawing Antarctic glacier that is the biggest contributor to rising sea levels is likely to continue shrinking for decades, even without an extra spur from global warming, a study showed on Thursday.

Scientists said the Pine Island Glacier, which carries more water to the sea than the Rhine River, also thinned 8,000 years ago at rates comparable to the present, in a melt that lasted for decades, perhaps for centuries.

Feb 18, 2014

Wild weather puts climate back on global agenda before 2015 deadline

OSLO/LONDON, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Bitter cold in the United
States might appear to contradict the notion of global warming,
but with Britain’s wettest winter and Australia’s hottest
summer, extreme weather events have pushed climate change back
on the political agenda.

A spluttering world economy had sapped political interest in
the billion-dollar shifts from fossil fuels that scientists say
are needed to cut greenhouse gas emissions, but rhetoric is
changing in 2014, one year before a deadline for a new U.N.
climate deal.

Jan 20, 2014

New guidelines seek to curb risks to whales from seismic tests

OSLO (Reuters) – Safeguards on seismic testing for an oil and gas project in the Pacific have shielded endangered whales from harm and are a model for managing the deafening blasts, the world’s largest environmental group said on Monday.

Conservationists working with Sakhalin Energy Investment Co Ltd in Russia from 2006-12 said the tiny population of endangered Western Grey whales had risen about 3 percent a year to 140, despite seismic testing near their feeding grounds.