Hurricane Sandy Speaks: Storm Surge Flooding Warning: “I have too much energy”

I’m sorry to say that I have so much wind energy from the warm ocean water I am pushing the sea into your living rooms along the mid-Atlantic coast. The ocean is like a bowl full of water, blow hard enough on an angle and it will readily spill over.

Read full post at Hurricane Sandy Speaks (crosspost)

Sandy Says: Not “Targeting” New York or Anywhere Else

To be absolutely clear: I am not “targeting” New York City or anywhere else. I am pushed and pulled by temperature and pressure differences. My winds are powered by warm water and moisture. And there is enough heat and moisture for my winds to make 12-foot high waves over a 3 million sq km area – one third the size of the US.

Read full post at Hurricane Sandy Speaks (crosspost)

Historic SuperStorm Sandy Heading for New York City

Sandy here again. Early this morning I turned north-northwest and am about 500 km (300 mi) southeast of New York City. I am probably the largest storm on record, spanning 3,200 km (2000 mi). I wanted to stay out at sea but a massive band of cold air and low pressure over the Great Lakes region has pulled me in this direction. The coming collision between very cold and moist, warm air will make me more powerful and dangerous: a historic SuperStorm.

Read full post at Hurricane Sandy Speaks (crosspost)

Hothouse Needed for Green Energy, Green Ideas Revolution

Concentrated Solar Power plant of Ain Beni Mathar, Morocco is a first in the world.

Countries cannot afford to miss the green wave of Rio+20

No alternative to low-carbon, resource-efficient economies

By Stephen Leahy

UXBRIDGE, Canada, May 25, 2012 (IPS)

Think of Rio+20 as the hothouse to grow the green ideas and values humanity needs to thrive in the 21st century.

No one is expecting, or even wants, a big new international treaty on sustainable development said Manish Bapna, interim president of the World Resources Institute, a global environmental think tank based in Washington, D.C.

“The important action will be on the sidelines of the formal negotiations,” Bapna told IPS in an interview.

Blocs of countries, civil society organisations and representatives of business will meet, create coalitions and make commitments on specific issues and on regional concerns.

“There could be some exciting specific commitments coming out of Rio,” Bapna said.

Perhaps the most important outcome from Rio+20 would be to put to rest the erroneous belief that protecting the environment comes at the cost of economic growth when it is in fact the opposite. Without a healthy, functioning environment, humanity loses the benefits of the environment’s “free products”: air, water, soil to grow food, stable climate and so on.

“One of the big hurdles to a sustainable future is that officials in many countries think they can’t afford to move onto a more sustainable pathway,” he said.

Bapna hopes Rio+20 will generate a “new narrative” – a wider understanding that there is no viable alternative to the transition to low-carbon, resource-efficient economies that alleviate poverty and create more jobs. Continue reading

Hurricane Sandy Speaks: “People call me Frankenstorm, SuperStorm, WeatherBomb…”

Hi, this is Sandy. People are calling me ‘Frankenstorm’, ‘Superstorm’ and even ‘Weatherbomb’.

I don’t mean to hurt anyone but the record moisture in the atmosphere and heat in the ocean has given me uncontrollable power. I probably will cause billions of dollars of damage in Washington, New York City Boston and other parts of the Northeast. And I will kill some people, I already have. At least 66 people died when I swept through Jamaica and Cuba a few days ago.

I am a force of nature but you have to understand this is not all my fault.

Read full post at Hurricane Sandy Speaks (crosspost)

Extreme weather new normal with Climate Change

Climate change plays a role in all extreme weather now – atmosphere is 0.8C hotter and 4-6% wetter – turns out small increases can have big impacts. — Stephen

Stephen Leahy, International Environmental Journalist

By Stephen Leahy

CAIRNS, Australia, Apr 3, 2012 (Tierramérica)

Extreme weather is fast becoming the new normal. Canada and much of the United States experienced summer temperatures during winter this year, confirming the findings of a new report on extreme weather.

For two weeks this March most of North America baked under extraordinarily warm temperatures that melted all the snow and ice and broke 150-year-old temperature records by large margins.

Last year the U.S. endured 14 separate billion-dollar-plus weather disasters including flooding, hurricanes and tornados.

A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released Mar. 28, provides solid evidence that record-breaking weather events are increasing in number and becoming more extreme. And if current rates of greenhouse gas emissions are maintained, these events will reach dangerous new levels over the coming century.

Since 1950 there have been many more heat waves and record warm temperatures than in…

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Stephen Leahy, International Environmental Journalist

By Stephen Leahy

BERLIN, Jun 3, 2010 (IPS)

Rising global wealth spells disaster for the planet, with environmental impacts growing roughly 80 percent with a doubling of income, reports the first comprehensive study of consumption.

It adds to the mountain of evidence that the gospel of economic growth must be urgently transformed into the new gospel of resource-efficient green economies, a U.N. expert panel concluded Wednesday.

What are the biggest planetary criminals?

Fossil fuel use and agriculture, the study found. Ironically, these are also the two most heavily subsidised sectors, noted Ernst von Weizsaecker of Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and co-chair of the International Panel for Sustainable Resource Management.

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“In the case of CO2, a doubling of wealth typically increases environmental pressure 60 to…

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