Extremes Update: India Heatwave Killing Thousands

Keep in mind that heat deaths are under reported. For individuals with chronic illnesses, the heat is the final straw. but it’s not reported as the cause of death.

Climate Denial Crock of the Week


Times of India:

LUCKNOW: The intense heat wave condition that is sweeping across India currently could be another manifestation of an extreme weather event, said researchers from the New Delhi-based research and advocacy organisation, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), in a statement on Thursday. About 2,000 people have been killed in India by this weather condition. In the worst-affected states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, maximum temperatures have hovered around a searing 45 degrees Celsius.

According to Arjuna Srinidhi, programme manager, climate change, CSE: “Urban heat island effects can make ambient temperatures feel 3 to 4 degrees more than what they are.” Srinidhi added “Compared to 2010, heat wave conditions in 2015 so far have been of a shorter duration, yet with a higher death toll. This could be due to the sudden change in temperatures after a prolonged wet February and March that had kept the temperatures…

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Permafrost Thaw Feedback To Blow Carbon Budget ‘Faster Than We Would Expect’

The thawing permafrost was beginning to be an issue when I was an undergrad. I did a senior paper on Canadian soils for a Soil Genesis and Classification course back in 1982. At that time, changes were beginning to be observed. Tipsy houses and drunken forests were leaving people with hangovers, so to speak. Now permafrost thaw is a downright emergency, and yet that the most important public policy advisory reports, The IPCC, has yet to include this forcing in its calculations of future impacts and feedbacks. (Likewise with the disintegration of the ice sheets and it’s impacts on sea level rise, but that’s another topic.)

The root of the problem is fossil fuel emissions. There is no magic bullet to prevent the impacts from crippling civilization at this point. But, we can prevent it from getting worse than it already is.

We Need To Keep The Stuff In The Ground.


“Permafrost carbon emissions are likely to be felt over decades to centuries as northern regions warm, making climate change happen faster than we would expect based on projected emissions from human activities alone.” — Climate Change and the Permafrost Carbon Feedback

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Soil Organic Carbon Store

(Extent of Northern Hemisphere 1 meter soil organic carbon store in the now thawing and burning permafrost. At about 1,000 billion tons, it’s more than enough to put a hefty strain on the IPCC’s remaining 275 billion ton carbon budget. Image source: Stockholm University.)

For a moment, let’s consider some rather difficult to deal with numbers —

790 billion tons — that’s the so-called ‘carbon budget’ the Intergovermental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates we need to stay within to prevent 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming in just this Century (note that current stated fossil fuel reserves hold enough carbon to…

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“The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.”
— Winston Churchill