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EARTHTALK(R): CLIMATE CHANGE

 

EarthTalk®

E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that global warming is causing our crops to be less nutritious?

                                                                                                            -- William Persson, Glendale, OH

November 9, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - It is difficult to say whether or not the climate change we are now experiencing is negatively impacting the nutritional quality of our food, researchers warn that it may be only a matter of time. “Humanity is conducting a global experiment by rapidly altering the environmental conditions on the only habitable planet we know,” reports Samuel Myers, a research scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health.

WHY SAN DIEGO'S EAST COUNTY IS A GLOBAL WARMING "HOTSPOT"

 

 

By Roger Coppock



October 7, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) Everybody has heard of global warming. There is at least one article in the news every day. Scientists who study and write about global warming have reasons to say our Earth's near surface is on average warming.  All their instruments are in agreement. During most of the last couple of hundred years things have gotten hotter.

READER'S EDITORIAL: CLIMATE CHANGE AND WORLD HUNGER

 

By Jeffrey Meyer

August 9, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – There is an unprecedented human drama unfolding in Africa that should stop every one of us in our tracks.  It is a vision into humanity's future, where we are heading and how we will exist throughout the remainder of this century.  This is about choices, by all of us and where those decisions will lead us.

EARTHTALK®: DROUGHT LESSONS FROM THE DUST BOWL



 

By Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss, E - The Environmental Magazine

June 17, 2013 (San Diego) -- Dear EarthTalk: Could it really be true that we are in the midst of the worst drought in the United States since the 1930s? -- Deborah Lynn, Needham, MA

Indeed we are embroiled in what many consider the worst drought in the U.S. since the “Dust Bowl” days of the 1930s that rendered some 50 million acres of farmland barely usable. Back then, drought conditions combined with poor soil management practices to force some 2.5 million Americans away from the Great Plains, only wreaking further havoc on an already devastated Great Depression economy. The lack of native prairie grasses or cover crops to keep the soil in place meant large swaths of formerly productive agricultural land turned to dust and blew away in so-called “black rollers.”

While we have learned a lot about maintaining soil quality since, drought conditions today are nevertheless taking a heavy toll on agricultural productivity, fresh water supplies and the economy—especially as the effects of global warming start to kick in more seriously.

CARBON DIOXIDE LEVELS TOP 400 PPM FOR FIRST TIME IN HUMAN HISTORY

 

Scripps Institution of Oceanography  in San Diego confirms findings May 9; world’s top scientists call for action

By Miriam Raftery

May 10, 2013 (San Diego) -- Measurements around the world confirm that the rise in carbon dioxide levels have surpassed 400 parts per million –the highest in our planet’s history.

Before the industrial revolution in the 1900s, when coal and oil began to be burned on a large scale, C02 levels were never higher than 280 ppm.

But in recent years, the levels have risen 100 times faster than after the last ice age—providing clear evidence that the rise is far beyond any cyclical changes ever seen before. In fact, leading scientists around the world warn, climate change may soon be irreversible unless drastic changes are made to reduce this level to 350 ppm or lower.

EARTHTALK®: GLOBAL WARMING SOLUTIONS

April 14, 2013 (San Diego) – Dear EarthTalk: What would you say are the most important steps we need to take as a nation to counter the impacts of climate change?

- Ned Parkinson, Chino, CA

Americans care more about the environment than ever before and the overwhelming majority of us acknowledges that climate change is real and human-induced. But still we continue to consume many more resources per capita than any other nation and refuse to take strong policy action to stave off global warming—even though we have the power to do so.

OVER 500 SAN DIEGANS JOIN NATIONWIDE PROTEST AGAINST KEYSTONE XL

 

Photos by Diane Lesher

February 17, 2013 (San Diego)--Mayor Bob Filner and over 500 San Diego protestors in Mission Bay Park joined similar rallies in cities across America Sunday in protest of the Keystone XL Pipeline project, beginning a massive effort to demand President Obama block it and call for leaders at all levels to take action to fight global warming.

Speaking at the San Diego rally, Mayor Bob Filner expressed his concerns about Keystone, climate change and what he wants to do in San Diego.

THE FEDERAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE “MINCES NO WORDS”

By Roy L Hales  

Reprinted with permission from: http://www.sandiegolovesgreen.com/articles/the-federal-advisory-committee-minces-no-words/

January 16, 2013 (San Diego)--Justin Gillis, of the New York Times Green Blog, titles his introduction to the recently released Federal Advisory Committee Draft Climate Assessment Report” as “An Alarm in the offing on Climate Change.” Personally, I find it reminiscent of a modern day Book of Revelation - only many of the predicted calamities are aimed directly at me and mine. The message is not new. Some scientists have been warning us about Climate change for decades. What is new, is that this is a Government report which, Gilllis writes, “minces no words”. He adds a note of caution, that “it is a draft, so we don’t know what final language will make it into the report.” 

2012 WAS HOTTEST YEAR ON RECORD FOR THE U.S. -- PLUS SECOND MOST EXTREME ON RECORD

By Miriam Raftery

January 8, 2013 (Washington D.C.) – If the weather seemed hotter last year than in the past, your memory is correct.

In its State of the Climate Report, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center reveals today that 2012 averaged the hottest temperatures ever recorded for the lower 48 states in the U.S.  Nationwide, the average temperature for 2012 was 55.3 degrees Fahrenheit—a full 3.2 degrees higher than the 20th Century average and one degree hotter than the previous hottest year on record (1998).

It was also a historic year for extreme weather that included severe drought, larger wildfires, hurricanes and storms--the second worst year on record.

View report:   http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/   and  scroll down for highlights. 

EARTHTALK®: IS CLIMATE CHANGE AFFECTING THE HEALTH OF RIVERS

E - The Environmental Magazine

Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

January 7, 2013 (San Diego)--Dear EarthTalk: How is it that climate change is negatively affecting the health of rivers and, by extension, the quality and availability of fresh water?                  -- Robert Elman, St. Louis, MO

Global warming is no doubt going to cause many kinds of problems (and, indeed, already is), and rivers may well be some of the hardest hit geographical features, given the likelihood of increased droughts, floods and the associated spread of waterborne diseases.

EARTHTALK®: IS EXTREME WEATHER LINKED TO CLIMATE CHANGE?

E - The Environmental Magazine

Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

September 24, 2012 -- Dear EarthTalk: What is the scientific consensus on all the extreme weather we’ve been having—from monster tornadoes to massive floods and wildfires? Is there a clear connection to climate change? And if so what are we doing to be prepared?                                -- Jason Devine, Summit, PA

EARTHTALK®: CO2 IN THE ATMOSPHERE

E - The Environmental Magazine 
Written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss 
 
August 28, 2012 (San Diego's East County) -- Dear EarthTalk: I read that CO2 in our atmosphere is now more than 300 parts per million. Doesn’t this mean that we’re too late to avoid the worst impacts of climate change?                                                                                                                          -- Karl Bren, Richmond, VA

ECM WORLD WATCH: GLOBAL AND NATIONAL NEWS

 
July 5, 2012 --  (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:    
 
 

 

WORLD
  • Al Jazeera: tests suggest Arafat died of radioactive polonium poisoning (USA Today)
  • Mexico’s president-elect may double security spending – aide (Reuters)
  • Iran long range missiles attack ‘mock’enemy  bases (ABC news)
  • Report describes brutal torture centers in Syria (CNN)
U.S.
  • Obama, Romney campaign to square off over energy (The Hill)
  • Congress passes student loan bill (Huffington Post)
  • The bomb buried in Obamacare explodes today – Hallelujah! (Forbes)
  • More state leaders considering opting out of Medicare expansion (Washington Post)
  • Romney campaign enters ‘message mayhem’ on insurance mandate (USA Today)
  • The Nation: Guns blamed for started wildfires in parched west  (North County Times)
  • This summer is ‘what global warming looks like’ (AP/Associated Press)
  • Deadly land hurricane strikes Midwest, Atlantic states  (Accuweather)
  • A health care Judas recounts his conversion  (CNN)
 
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.

CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE LORI SALDAÑA SHARES VIEWS ON JOBS, HEALTHCARE, ENERGY POLICIES, VETERANS AND SENIOR ISSUES, AND THE FIGHT FOR WOMEN’S RIGHTS

 
By Miriam Raftery
 
In an exclusive interview with East County Magazine, 52nd Congressional District candidate Lori Saldaña offered in-depth perspectives on top national issues—including the impacts of federal policies being felt in San Diego and East County. 
 
May 21, 2012 (San Diego) – Lori Saldaña knows how to be a tough competitor. A field hockey athlete  in college and outdoor enthusiast who led hikes through San Diego’s backcountry, she became our region’s Sierra Club President and sued to enforce environmental laws.  As an educator, she created successful job training programs. In Sacramento, she chaired  powerful committees and pushed through landmark legislation that she authored--including AB 32, California’s major measure to combat global warming and  SB 1, the million solar roofs initiative.  President Bill Clinton appointed her to co-chair a committee on water quality improvements for 10 U.S.-Mexico border states. Scrappy and determined,  she’s earned her reputation as a fighter with a winning  record.

SOLAR DONE RIGHT SUPPORTS LOCAL ALTERNATIVES TO REMOTE MASSIVE ENERGY PROJECTS

Coalition seeks to protect public lands, launches “Energy Democracy” sign-up
 
It is currently cheaper, on a per-watt basis, to install a small rooftop system in Germany than it is to install a giant desert installation in the US.
 
By Ariele Johannson
 
April 9, 2012 (San Diego’s East County)--Driving through the southwestern deserts, I’ve long been impressed by the ocotillo, a cactus-like tree with straight branches angling upwards to the sun, ablaze with red blooms. This thorny desert tree is an apt metaphor for the ways different people view energy issues-- especially proposed industrial solar and wind power projects in remote wilderness areas. Like the ocotillo, these programs and policies have a wide array of angles from which to be viewed.

WORLD METEOROLOGICAL ORGANIZATION CONFIRMS CLIMATE CHANGE ACCELERATED IN PAST 10 YEARS; 2011 WAS 11TH WARMEST ON RECORD

“This 2011 annual assessment confirms the findings of the previous WMO annual statements that climate change is happening now and is not some distant future threat. The world is warming because of human activities and this is resulting in far-reaching and potentially irreversible impacts on our Earth, atmosphere and oceans.” --WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud

  By Miriam Raftery

March 23, 2012 (Geneva) – The United Nation's World Meteorological Organization, representing 183 member nations, issued its Annual Statement onthe  Status of the Global Climate today. The report concludes that climate change accelerated in the past decade and that 2011 was the 11th warmest year since records began in 1850.

Increasingly destructive tornadoes, floods and other indicators of global warming are also occuring with heightened frequency around the world.  The new study found extreme weather events increased from 2001 to 2010 at an alarming rate consistent with global climate change. Worldwide, this included an increase in floods by 63%, drought 43%, heat waves 43%, heavy rain 43%, fires 25%, and tropical cyclones 24% among countries responding to the survey.

 

UNITING WITH SKEPTICS TO FIGHT THE CLIMATE CHANGE CRISIS

 

By Anne Tolch, Vice Chairperson, Sustainability Alliance of Southern California

September 21, 2011 (San Diego) -- For many years there was the assertion that smoking posed no danger to our health, but we now know the science community was right. It also took a while to figure out that acid rain really posed problems. Fortunately, our society has implemented policies to address these serious issues. The same is true for climate change. In the end, we will work together to solve it.

 

What climate change skeptics such as Santee Mayor Randy Voepel may not realize is that reducing our reliance on fossil fuels will provide many other benefits. These include creating good jobs and cleaner air, saving money for businesses and families, and strengthening national security. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions will also help protect farmers’ harvests and food supplies from drought, as well as reduce risks of devastating wildfires and floods.

SANTEE MAYOR TRASHES LOCAL CLEAN ENERGY GROUP

 

Voepel's beliefs share much in common with Flat Earth Society views

By Miriam Raftery
 

September 16, 2011 (Santee) – SanDiego350.org, a coalition of three dozen  community organizations, invited local officials to participate in a Sept. 24 event titled “Moving San Diego to a Clean Energy Future.” Far from fringe extremists, the group includes major entities such as the American Lung Association, U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce, San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, Sustainability Alliance of Southern California, and Earthcare at First United Methodist Church.

 

Santee Mayor Randy Voepel fired back a vitriolic response. “I do not believe that climate change is man made,” the Mayor said in an e-mail declining the invitation, calling himself a “proud, Rush Limbaugh, Tea party, Conservative that will never cease fighting socialism.”

WILL POWER REPORT: NO GLOBAL WARMING IN TEXAS?

Nothing but the truth!

 
By Will Power
 
September 8, 2011 (San Diego) -- Texas Governor Rick Perry denies there is such a thing as Global Warming, but this week the Governor had to quit the campaign trail to address a huge wildfire that burned 1,000 homes to the ground.  Texas has been in a tremendous drought for several years, decimating the cattle industry and leaving most of Texas smoldering.
 
Now its the upscale hill country where the rich folks live that is burning.  Perry had no choice but to come home and try tofight the fires.
 
 

HOW GREEN ARE SAN DIEGO'S CANDIDATES? FORUM FOCUSED ON LOCAL, STATE & COUNTY ISSUES FROM MASS TRANSIT TO GLOBAL WARMING

 

 

Story and photos by Mary E. Paulet

October 3, 2010 (San Diego)- Several East County Candidates were among those who squared off in the Center for Sustainable Energy California’s(CSE) Green Candidate forum held yesterday in San Diego.

 

The forum gave candidates a chance to discuss their positions on environmentally-related issues such as global warming, green sector jobs, mass transit, and Proposition 23 (which would suspend AB 32, a law that strengthened clean air standards and requirements to curb greenhouse gas emissions), as well as other issues. It also gave third party candidates a chance to be heard.

PUBLIC MEETING TOMORROW ON PROP 16 & A PROPOSED INITIATIVE TO OVERTURN AB 32

 

Oil and utility industry-backed measures seek to rollback global warming bill and restrict local governments' abilities to purchase clean energy

May 17, 2010 (San Diego) – Two energy measures drawing controversy this election season will be topics of discussion at an event Tuesday evening hosted by the Sustainability Alliance of Southern California.

EDITORIAL: BOLD NEXT STEPS FOR CLIMATE CHANGE

 

By Congressman Bob Filner
Democratic Representative from the 51st Congressional District

The impacts of the climate crisis are already being seen around the world through increasing hurricane intensity, melting ice caps, and refugees fleeing extreme weather conditions. Here in Southern California, we are particularly vulnerable to a variety of threats posed by unchecked global warming – threats to our environment, our economic stability, and our overall quality of life.

 

While residents of San Diego are no strangers to drought and emergency water conservation measures, climate change will bring a new generation of drought’s stranglehold on our communities as we see our water supply shrink from increasing average global temperatures. Local Scripps researchers concluded in an April 2009 report that if human-induced global warming continues to reduce runoff from the Colorado River, San Diego will be unable to deliver a regular water supply to the region (The press release can be found online at http://scrippsnews.ucsd.edu/Releases/?releaseID=977).

SDSU GETS RECOVERY ACT FUNDING FOR CARBON CAPTURE RESEARCH

 

September 19, 2009 (San Diego)--Congressman Bob Filner (D-San Diego)  announced that a $299,993 Recovery Act grant has been awarded to San Diego State University (SDSU) Research Foundation through the U.S. Department of Energy. Funds will be used for a web-based carbon dioxide (CO2) subsurface modeling project and will create training opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students to develop skills for implementing and deploying carbon capture and storage technologies. 

 

“If we are serious about cutting greenhouse gas emissions, then we need trained scientists to find ways to limit carbon emissions from coal-fired utilities,” said Filner. “This funding for SDSU carbon capture research is the key to making so-called ‘clean coal’ a potential reality.”

POLITICS IN PARADISE: FILNER, HUNTER CLASH ON HEALTHCARE, BUDGET, CLIMATE CHANGE & MORE

 

By Miriam Raftery

August 25, 2009 (Rancho Sa Diego/El Cajon)—The setting was serene, but the political exchanges were rocky at “Politics in Paradise,” a community legislative forum sponsored by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Friday evening at Cuyamaca College’s Water Conservation Garden.

 

“Welcome to East County’s first town hall yelling match on healthcare reform,” emcee Barry Jantz quipped, though the forum covered a broad range of issues. Congressmen Bob Filner D-San Diego) and Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) took center stage (photo, above) in a rare dual appearance, along with Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) and supervisor Diane Jacob.  (Assemblyman Marty Block (D-Lemon Grove) and State Senator Denise Ducheny (D-San Diego) were unable to attend the evening of impassioned discussion about issues impacting East County businesses and residents.

A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE FOR CALIFORNIA? LT. GOVERNOR JOHN GARAMENDI SPEAKS IN SAN DIEGO AUG. 5

 

July 28, 2009 (San Diego)--How can California achieve energy sustainability?  Our state's lieutenant governor, John Garamendi, wll speak on this topic in San Diego on Wednesday, August 5 from 4:45 to 5:45 p.m.  This special event will take place at the new Scripps Seaside Forum at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography on the UCSD Campus. 

 

The event is organized by United Green, a division of the nonprofit Heartland Coalition, East County Magazine's publisher.

 

SAN DIEGO COUNTY IS AMONG WORST-HIT AREAS IN NATION FROM GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE, NEW FEDERAL STUDY FINDS

climate change map.jpeg

By Miriam Raftery June 17, 2009 (Washington D.C.)—Recent warming in the Southwestern U.S. including San Diego County has been among the worst in the nation, according to a newly-released federal report begun under the Bush administration and finalized by the Obama administration. Average temperatures here have increased 1.5 degrees during the past 20 years and are projected to soar three to five degrees above the historical baseline by 2050 and up to ten degrees by the end of this century, the report predicts. Further, precipitation along the Southwestern border region has fallen as much as 40% over the past 50 years.

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