Climate Change This Week: CO2 Passes 400 ppm, President Can Act, and More!

05/18/2015 04:15 pm ET | Updated May 18, 2016

Today, the Earth got a little hotter, and a little more crowded.

@@ Global Warming Carbon Dioxide Levels Tick Past 400 ppm

Reversing CO2 levels
will take an unprecedented worldwide effort,
say NOAA researchers.

New Global Milestone: CO2 Levels Now Pass 400 ppm reports Doyle Rice at USA Today and reports Brian Kahn at Climate Central, with March 2015 being the first month when levels of this main driver of global warming averaged above 400 ppm since the 1880s. During that time, Earth has heated up 1.6 F degrees.

What Does This Mean for Life on Earth?

@@ Climate Change Could Extinguish 16% of Wildlife - and many of us, too, through more catastrophic storms and droughts.

Remember all this next time you vote for your leaders!


OO The Next President Can Hugely Impact Climate Policy -
Even Without Congress
via using the EPA to regulate pollution, eg, from fossil fuels, that endangers public health.


Want to Stop Fracking? Go here to find out what you can do for your state. Peoplare fighting back!

Global Warming Methane Emissions Far Higher Than Thought from fossil fuel developments due to flawed methane monitors underestimating even large emissions, a new study as found, reports Lisa Song at InsideClimate News. Methane is far more potent than CO2 at quickly heating the atmosphere.

OO Huge Methane Leaks From Oil And Gas Wells
Cost Taxpayers Millions

OO Giant Methane Plume in Southwest - detected from an area dense with fossil fuel mining operations, say NASA and NOAA scientists.



OO Fossil-Fuel-Free Funds Outperformed Conventional Ones - shows an analysis done by MSCI, the world's leading stock market index company,



OO Global Warming Explained in 22 Cards - keep this handy dandy guide in your virtual hip pocket as a way of reminding yourself about the main facts -- and share with friends!



Your Winter Vegetables: Grown by California's Vanishing Water in the Imperial Valley. which supplies 2/3rds of US winter veggies reports Tom Philpott at Mother Jones. A finite aquifer is being quickly emptied to grow them and cattle feed, as the other major supply, the Colorado River, dwindles from the drought. Meanwhile, western populations are surging. Not a pretty picture.

Related Headline:

OO Small Dietary Changes Could Cut Carbon Emissions Up To 40% says a new study: cut back on meat, and processed snacks; focus on vegetables instead. Hey, pass those carrot sticks n dip!

OO US Food Companies Aren't Prepared To Deal With Water Scarcity from climate change, groundwater depletion, and population growth, says a new report, failing to incorporate these factors in their business plans.



Want a Drink? Neither do I. So why are fossil fuel companies putting waste water into our water supply?

OO Environmental Groups Sue To Stop Oil Companies
From Poisoning California's Water Supply
with injected waste water into drought depleted, supposedly protected aquifers. Someone should be jailed for this.


As Arctic ice melts sooner and faster, plankton, the fish food for all the big fisheries there, stores far less fat. This means far less food value for fish - and far fewer fish. Sources wikipedia, NOAA

Arctic Ice Melting Faster and Earlier With Dire Results for Fisheries reports Rose Hackman at the Guardian, with the lowest summer levels seen by satellite so far.

The melting also speeds global warming, since summer ice is an important planetary heat shield, reflecting 24 hour sunlight that is otherwise absorbed and transformed into heat by exposed waters.

Related Headlines:

OO Young Thin Arctic Ice Creates New Climate-Driven Era - it speeds global warming by absorbing more sunlight, melts faster, allows more energy to warm the ocean below it, and harbors much less Arctic biodiversity below it than thicker ice.

OO Warming Arctic Kills Two Researchers - as they sank through thin ice and drowned - experienced explorers, who were documenting ice loss.



OO Solar Becoming 'Least-Cost' Option for U.S. Utilities


OO History Lessons for Climate Activists - Takeaways:

* don't wait for common sense to prevail
* bring the message into people homes and lives
* reach out to engage as broad a political spectrum as possible - for ex., couch arguments in libertarian terms, as in property rights wiped out by fossil fuels and their impacts.



If we do not grow sustainably,
Our children will die inhumanely.

OO Creating Sustainable Populations Humanely - FD, I wrote this. Let's bring a little humanity to the table when we talk population. Please share!


Support and elect politicians who are sensitive to issues of reproductive choice here in the U.S. and abroad.

And there are many more actions you can do, right here.




OO US SolarCity Installs Record Amount of Solar Power So Far in 2015 - and is still set on getting one million customers by 2018.

OO 'Massive' Solar Expansion Critical for Climate says a new report from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


Check it out here, right now!




OO Hawaii Sets Goal of 100% Renewables by 2045

OO EU Agrees 'Landmark' Carbon Market Deal that claws back hundreds of millions of surplus allowances from Europe's emissions trading system. Yes!!!

Who would NOT want to avoid tar sands? Credit Howl Arts Collective,flickr

OO Investors Urged to Avoid Oil Sands After Alberta Election

OO Canada: Tar Sands Province Elects Greener Leader


OO Coal Investments Increasingly Risky, Say Bank Of America

OO Bank of America's New Policy to Limit Credit Exposure to Coal

OO Shale Boom Has Already Gone Bust


OO India: World's Worst Air Spurs Modi's $25 Billion Utility Clean-Up Push

OO China To Expand Coal Ban To Suburbs - to takle air pollution.

OO Apple Expands Renewable Energy Goal



Speaking Out:

Not in Our Waters! Say Seattle Mayor and Kayaking protestors about sheltering Arctic oil drill rigs. Source the Daily Climate

OO Seattle Mayor, 'Kayaktivists' Take On Arctic Oil Drilling - to block Shell Arctic oil drilling rigs in Seattle's harbor.

OO Judge Halts Work On Maryland Pipeline Due To Environmental Concerns

Telluride. Source the Daily Planet

OO Telluride, Colorado, And Other Mountain Towns Request Ending Coal Subsidies that support the very industry that is fueling a more erratic climate.

Good Ideas:


OO California Drought Solution: Recharge the Aquifer by creating incentives for municipalities, farmers, and other water users to percolate water down into sub-surface aquifers for later use.

OO Colorado Begins Big Effort To Save Farm Water,
Use It To Make Power

OO Feds To Require Climate Change Plans For States Seeking Disaster Relief - a good idea that GOP Congress members are attacking.

OO A Tale of 2 Thirsty Cities: One Prices Water and Uses Less
Santa Fe NM has tiered pricing, and Fresno, CA does not: an important lesson.


Credit Victor at flickr

OO Sea Level Rising Faster Than Thought says new report based on refined satellite data.



Fossil Fuel Follies

Source The Daily Climate

OO Oil Train Derails, Catches Fire, And Causes Town Evacuation In North Dakota

OO U.S States Attack Communities' Freedom to Limit Drilling - guess who's behind this?

OO Scientists Discover Fracking Chemicals In Pennsylvania Drinking Water
"This is the first documented and published demonstration of toxic compounds escaping from uncased boreholes in shale gas wells and moving long distances [into drinking water]."

Source the Environmental Health News

OO Poor in Pennsylvania? You're fracked. Fracking wells are disproportionately located in poor rural communities, which bear the brunt of associated pollution, says a new study.

OO In China, Coal Gas Means Cleaner air But Worse Climate - in past 2 years, China has enthusiastically embraced coal gasification.

Bad Ideas:

Source pinterest

OO Entertainment Devices Emerging As Energy Hogs In Homes

OO California: Land Use Policies Undermine Climate Goals - as recent land development has cut the ability of much land to store carbon.

OO Sea Rise Threatens Florida Coast, But No Statewide Plan - the state that refuses to s--- glug, glug, glug, >gasp

Clueless Leadership:


Even elephants can't survive on oil. Credit: Mary Ellen Harte

OO 'Pollute At Will' Bill Enjoys Widespread Support From House Republicans - move to slash budgets for clean air, clean energy and climate change planning called 'totally backwards' by critics.




Daily Climate Change: Global Map of Unusual Temperatures, May 18, 2015

How unusual has the weather been? No one event is "caused" by climate change, but global warming, which is predicted to increase unusual, extreme weather, is having a daily effect on weather, worldwide.

Looking above at recent temperature anomalies, much of the US and the waters surrounding it are experiencing warmer than normal temperatures: the eastern Pacific warm spot continues to prevent much rain from reaching California, sending it into further drought.

Much of the areas surrounding the North Pole are experiencing much warmer than normal temperatures - not good news for our Arctic thermal shield of ice. Hotter than usual temperatures continue to dominate human habitats.

Natural Repercussions:

Oklahoma City in May. Source

OO Warming Could Bring More Downpours Like Oklahoma City's where 7 inches in one day caused flash flooding, killing several.

Source the Daily Climate

OO California Drought Creates Potential For Devastating Wildfires - destroying homes, damaging watersheds, and costing hundreds of millions to extinguish, say scientists..

OO Intense Wildfire Season Expected in West as drought worsens; Forest Service predicts spending up the $1.6 billion to fight fires.

OO Taiwan To Rein In Water Use Amid Unusual Drought as Pacific Ocean temperatures have locked it into one of its most severe droughts in decades, prompting rationing in heavily populated areas.

There is, of course, much more news on the consequences and solutions to climate change. To get it, check out this annotated resource list I've compiled, "Climate Change News Resources," at here. For more information on the science of climate change, its consequences and solutions you can view my annotated list of online information resources here.

To help you understand just what science does and does NOT do, check this out!

Every day is Earth Day, folks, as I was reminded by these crocuses I photographed one spring. Making the U.S. a global clean energy leader will ensure a heck of a lot more jobs, and a clean, safe future. If you'd like to join the increasing numbers of people who want to TELL Congress that they will vote for clean energy candidates you can do so here. It's our way of letting Congress know there's a strong clean energy voting bloc out there. For more detailed summaries of the above and other climate change items, audio podcasts and texts are freely available.