Thursday, June 23, 2011

Climate Change Potpourri

Several items and resources of note have come across the Water Library's desk in recent days, all related in one way or another, to climate change.

Climate Hot Map - Global Warming Effects Around the World. From the Union of Concerned Scientists ("the leading science-based nonprofit working for a healthy environment and a safer world") a visually pleasing website that allows the user to explore a variety of signs of global warming. The signs include heat waves, sea-level rise, flooding, melting glaciers, earlier spring arrival, coral reef bleaching, and the spread of disease. It's important to note that there is a larger number of notations on the US and Europe and this is due to a large amount of climate change research being conducted. As research goes on in the developing world, it will be added to the map. It's a well documented website, including endnotes of references of the scientific studies.

Climate Change Beliefs study - Very interesting snapshot from Yale University and George Mason University showing American's attitudes and beliefs regarding climate change, as of May 2011. The public is skeptical today and it is less likely to believe in human impacts of climate change than it was five years ago. Big question for scientists - why is that? The report does not answer that question, it only shows the survey results over time.

What are greenhouse gases? - From the US Energy Information Administration, a detailed, science-based description of what exactly is a greenhouse gas and how much is emitted in the US. the EIA is a goverment agency whose mission is to "collect, analyze, and disseminate independent and impartial energy information to promote sound policymaking, efficient markets, and public understanding of energy and its interaction with the economy and the environment." In short, the EIA communications information we can count on.