Friday, August 28, 2009


Special thanks to Jenna for sharing this 'enlightening' story on how we can apply the THREE R's in small, simple and useful ways.....

BUDDHA, one day was deep in thought about the worldly activities and the ways of instilling goodness in human. The following is the text of the conversation between him and one of his disciples :

One of Budhha's disciples approached him and asked humbly: "Oh my Teacher! Why are you so concerned about the world and others? Why don't you look into the welfare and needs of your own disciples also?"

BUDDHA : Oaky. How can I help you?

DISCIPLE : Master...My attire is worn out and is beyond the decency to wear the same. Can I have a new one, please?

BUDDHA found that the robe indeed was in bad condition and needed a replacement. He asked the housekeeper to give the disciple a new robe. The disciple thanked the Buddha and happily retired to his room. Although He had met the immediate needs of the disciple, Buddha was not all that contented with his decision.He realised he had missed out some point. After a while of deep thought, he realised what he should have asked the disciple. He went over to the disciple's room and asked him....

BUDDHA : "Is your new robe comfortable? Do you need anything more?"

DISCIPLE : Thank you, Master. The new robe is indeed very comfortable. I do not need anything more.

BUDDHA : So, having got a new one, what did you do with the old?

DISCIPLE : I am using it as my bed spread.

BUDDHA : So you have disposed of your old bed spread?

DISCIPLE : Oh no Master... I am using the old bed spread as my wondow curtain.

BUDDHA : What about the old curtain then?

DISCIPLE : It is being used to handle hot utensils in the kitchen.

BUDDHA : Oh.. I see! Can you tell me what did they do with the previous cloths used in the kitchen?

DISCIPLE : They are being used to mop the floors.

BUDDHA : Then... the old rug that was used to wash the floor? What did they do with it?

DISCIPLE : Master, since they are torn and worn out, we could not find better use for it except to be cut up and used as wicks for the oil lamp that is now lighting up your study.

BUDDHA smiled in contentment at the resourcefulness of his disciple and wishfully hope that mankind will learn from this first lesson on the THREE R's of RECYCLE, REUSE AND help conserve earth's natural resources and to minimise wastes and wants.

BLOGGER'S NOTE : We don't have to go to extremes to do our part in SOS Planet Earth.
Every small step we take is important and counts.... treat the Earth well!!

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Let all the young and able follow this good example of our friends around the globe and help SOS Planet Earth .....

Report By : Jonathan Thatcher (REUTERS, August 20th, 2009)

SEOUL (Reuters) -

An international gathering of youth and children, billed as the largest ever of its type on climate change, Thursday pressed world leaders to do far more to curb damage to the environment.

"We young people -- 3 billion of the world population -- are very concerned and frustrated that our governments are not doing enough to combat climate change ... we feel that radical and holistic measures are needed urgently from us all," they said in a statement following their conference in Deajeon in South Korea, itself one of the world's fastest growing polluters.

"We now need more actions and less talking."

Organized by the U.N. Environment Program (UNEP), the some 700 people from 10 to 24 years old and from dozens of countries met to discuss their concerns ahead of the U.N. climate conference in December in Copenhagen.

That meeting will try to find an agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol and set limits on emissions that are driving up global temperatures.

"We are the generation of tomorrow. The decisions that are made today will define our future and the world we have to live in. So we young people of the world urge governments to commit to a strong post-Kyoto climate regime. It is our lives we are talking about," UNEP quoted 23-year-old delegate Anne Walraven as saying.

The statement also urged governments to impose strict laws on polluters, develop independently-monitored carbon action plans and encourage greater use of green fuels.

"Make engaging environmental education mandatory in schools and universities and promote community environmental awareness -- an informed public is a powerful public."

And they called on ordinary people to use alternative transport, pressure businesses to come up with environmentally-friendly products and push their own governments to act to improve the environment.

UNEP said they pledged to stage large rallies across 100 capitals to urge global leaders to take action on climate change under the U.N.'s "Seal the Deal!" campaign.

(Origin of article :

ARE WE GUILTY OF "little green lies"??

Hi everyone,

The following news article indicates how far some people would go to promote and sell their so-called GREEN PRODUCTS. Read about the signs of 'green-washing' and don't be duped into buying items that cause more harm than good to yourself and to the environment.

GREENWASHING : New Report Offers Tips for Staying Out of Trouble

Greenwashing is telling “little green lies.” Or, according to the Seven Sins of Greenwashing, it is “the act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company or the environmental benefits of a product or service.”

A new report Understanding and Preventing Greenwash: A Business Guide from Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) and Futerra Sustainability Communications outlines key environmental marketing mistakes and strategies to avoid greenwashing. The report can be downloaded from the BSR or Futerra web sites.

Ten signs of greenwashing

The ten signs of greenwash overlap with the Seven Sins of Greenwashing from TerraChoice:

1. Fluffy language. Words or terms with no clear meaning (e.g. “eco-friendly”).

2. Green product vs. dirty company. Such as efficient light bulbs made in a factory that pollutes rivers.

3. Suggestive pictures. Green images that indicate a (unjustified) green impact (e.g. flowers blooming from exhaust pipes).

4. Irrelevant claims. Emphasizing one tiny green attribute when everything else is not green.

5. Best in class. Declaring you are slightly greener than the rest, even if the rest are pretty terrible.

6. Just not credible. “Eco friendly” cigarettes, anyone? “Greening” a dangerous product doesn’t make it safe.

7. Jargon. Information that only a scientist could check or understand.

8. Imaginary friends. A “label” that looks like third party endorsement — except that it’s made up.

9. No proof. It could be right, but where’s the evidence?

10. Out-right lying. Totally fabricated claims or data.

Guide for preventing greenwash

The most useful part of the report is the “Guide for Preventing Greenwash” section. They suggest an “Impact, Align, Communicate” framework. Be sure your facts are correct, engage both internal and external stakeholders to gain support and communicate it accurately.

The report includes a list of questions to guide companies in their marketing efforts.


Is the topic of your message a significant environmental achievement?
Is the issue you are addressing material to your business?
Have you invested significant resources (time, funds, and people)?
Did you spend more money on the activity than on communications?
Have you already achieved the results in your claim?

Have you worked with multiple functions within your company?
Are other activities in your company consistent with this message?
Have you engaged stakeholders and incorporated their feedback?
Could your claim be supported by a credible third party?

Is it easy for people to understand your claim and its significance?
Do people consider your company trustworthy?
Do you have data to back up your claim?
Are you conveying your understanding of the big picture?
Is the message honest and not self-glorifying?

The challenges

I think two of the key challenges to being a true green brand is accessing accurate information on the footprint of your products and services along your value chain. It isn’t always easy to access full information. And second, I am not convinced that companies are ready to fully embrace transparency. I would have liked to see the report dive deeper into the perceived business risks of transparency and the benefits of embracing it.

SOURCE: Deborah Fleischer (GREEN IMPACT - 19th August,2009)

*** Deborah Fleischer, founder and president of Green Impact, works with mid-sized companies to launch green initiatives that encourage innovation and grow market share. She brings expertise in sustainability strategy, program development, stakeholder partnerships and written communications. You can follow her occasional tweet @GreenImpact.


Source : Roger Greenway (Environmental News Network)
Date : August 21st, 2009

Arctic Fisheries Get a New Plan — The Fish Would Approve

Global Warming is opening up new areas for fishing. We don't know that much about the ecosystems in these areas since they have been under ice until recently.

Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke approved a plan to prohibit the expansion of commercial fishing in federal Arctic waters until researchers gather sufficient information on fish and the Arctic marine environment to try to prevent adverse impacts of commercial harvesting activity on the ecosystem.

"As Arctic sea ice recedes due to climate change, there is increasing interest in commercial fishing in Arctic waters," said Locke. "We are in a position to plan for sustainable fishing that does not damage the overall health of this fragile ecosystem. This plan takes a precautionary approach to any development of commercial fishing in an area where there has been none in the past."

The Arctic Fishery Management Plan, approved August 20, will be implemented through regulations to be published in the Federal Register. Fisheries managers have identified Arctic cod, saffron cod, and snow crab as likely initial target species for commercial fishing in the region.

The plan governs any future commercial fishing for finfish and shellfish in federal waters, except Pacific salmon and Pacific halibut, which are managed under other authorities. It does not affect fisheries for salmon, whitefish and shellfish in Alaskan waters near the Arctic shore. The fishery management plan also does not affect subsistence fishing or hunting in the Arctic.

Under the plan, in any new Arctic fisheries that may be approved in the future:

Fishermen will be required to keep records that will help determine catch, production, effort, price, and other information necessary for conservation and management
Fishermen may be required to carry certified fisheries observers on board in order to verify catch quantity and composition, track at-sea discards, and collect biological information on marine resources
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council and NOAA's Fisheries Service will establish prescribed procedures before authorizing a future fishery, and will monitor and adjust the plan periodically. These adjustments might include annual total allowable catch levels and in-season adjustments through gear modifications, closures, fishing area restrictions, and quota restrictions.

For more information :

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


June 2, 2009

By: Irene Klotz (Discovery News)

Source :

Researchers were stunned to discover recently that Earth is losing more of its atmosphere than Venus and Mars, which have negligible magnetic fields.

This may mean our planet's magnetic shield may not be as solid a protective screen as once believed when it comes to guarding the atmosphere from an assault from the sun.

"We often tell ourselves that we are very fortunate living on this planet because we have this strong magnetic shield that protects us from all sorts of things that the cosmos throws at us -- cosmic rays, solar flares and the pesky solar wind," said Christopher Russell, a professor of geophysics and space physics at the University of California, Los Angeles.

"It certainly does help in some of those areas but ... in the case of the atmosphere, this may not be true," he said.

Russel and others came to this realization while meeting at a comparative planetology conference last month.

"Three of us who work on Earth, Venus and Mars got together and compared notes," Russell told Discovery News. "We said, 'Oh my goodness -- what we've been telling people about the magnetic shield is not correct.'"

The perpetrators are streams of charged particles blasting off the sun in what is known as the solar wind.

"The interaction of solar wind with Venus and Mars is pretty simple," Russell said. "The wind comes in, carries a magnetic field, which wraps around the ionosphere of the planet. The ionosphere is basically dragged away."

Earth's magnetic field interacts with the solar wind, drawing out energy that gets funneled into the planet's atmosphere along its magnetic field lines.

"The wind has to flow around this large magnetic obstacle in its path," Russell said. "The two are not friction-free."

In addition to triggering aurorae, the process causes Earth's atmosphere to heat up to the point where atmospheric gases can escape along the field lines, where they are then picked up by the solar wind.

"The visible manifestation of geomagnetic activity is the aurora -- the sun interacts with magnetosphere and causes it to glow -- but there are other things that go on when the particles interact with the atmosphere," said Scott Bailey, with the Center for Space Science and Engineering at Virginia Polytechnic Institute.

Despite the rather mind-boggling rate at which Earth is losing atmosphere -- 5×1025 molecules per second -- scientists say there is no cause for alarm. If the loss rate stays the same, the planet's atmosphere will last for several more billion years.

"Ultimately we're trying to understand why Venus, Mars and Earth atmospheres behave so different when initially the planets were pretty much the same," Russell said.

Russell presented his research at the American Geophysical Union conference in Toronto last week. He and his colleagues are working on paper that details the comparative atmospheric losses of Earth, Venus and Mars.


The Earth's oceans were the warmest ever this July, according to a study released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration yesterday.

The planet's ocean surface temperature was the warmest on record for July, breaking the previous high mark established in 1998 according to an analysis by NOAA's National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C. The combined average global land and ocean surface temperature for July 2009 ranked fifth-warmest since world-wide records began in 1880.

Interesting statistics from the NOAA analysis:

The combined global land and ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the fifth warmest on record, at 1.03 degrees F (0.57 degree C) above the 20th century average of 60.4 degrees F (15.8 degrees C).
The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record, 1.06 degrees F (0.59 degree C) above the 20th century average of 61.5 degrees F (16.4 degrees C). This broke the previous July record set in 1998. The July ocean surface temperature departure of 1.06 degrees F from the long-term average equals last month's value, which was also a record.
The global land surface temperature for July 2009 was 0.92 degree F (0.51 degree C) above the 20th century average of 57.8 degrees F (14.3 degree C), and tied with 2003 as the ninth-warmest July on record.

El Niño persisted across the equatorial Pacific Ocean during July 2009. Related sea-surface temperature (SST) anomalies increased for the sixth consecutive month.
Large portions of many continents had substantially warmer-than-average temperatures during July 2009. The greatest departures from the long-term average were evident in Europe, northern Africa, and much of western North America. Broadly, across these regions, temperatures were about 4-7 degrees F (2-4 degrees C) above average.
Cooler-than-average conditions prevailed across southern South America, central Canada, the eastern United States, and parts of western and eastern Asia. The most notably cool conditions occurred across the eastern U.S., central Canada, and southern South America where region-wide temperatures were nearly 4-7 degrees F (2-4 degrees C) below average.

Arctic sea ice covered an average of 3.4 million square miles during July. This is 12.7 percent below the 1979-2000 average extent and the third lowest July sea ice extent on record, behind 2007 and 2006. Antarctic sea ice extent in July was 1.5 percent above the 1979-2000 average. July Arctic sea ice extent has decreased by 6.1 percent per decade since 1979, while July Antarctic sea ice extent has increased by 0.8 percent per decade over the same period.

By: R. Greenway (Environmental News Network)
Date :15th August, 2009

For more info :

Friday, August 14, 2009


Hi all,

This article from HEALTHY LIVING (Thursday, 13th August 2009)is worth a read. Came upon it by channce and sharing it with you here ....


“Take a chance.”

Ever felt embarrassed after someone rebuffed your invitation to go for coffee? Ever felt hurt when you opened yourself up to another person and they didn’t react the way that you had hoped? Ever felt scared for any number of reasons?

Congratulations! You’re alive. And growing, too! If we never take a chance, if we never stretch ourselves, there are two things that we can be sure of. One is that we will never feel hurt or embarrassed or scared. The other is that we will stagnate. Safe in our comfort zone, we will find in time that comfort zone has become a prison. We have dealt ourselves a life sentence of "safety." Yet safety equals stagnation.

Be embarrassed! Be hurt! Be frightened! The rewards of growth and change are permanently rewarding. Slowly, through taking chances on people and situations, we mold ourselves into the person we want to be. We grow. We learn. We change for the better. The end result outweighs the temporary pain encountered on the journey.

Take a chance on life today.

©Meditations For Women

Reference :

Monday, August 10, 2009

Sleep tight

I totally agreed with the writer of this article that we normally ignore or do not pay much attention on our good friend, mattress... Hope you find it informative too. And a big thanks to the writer of this article.

Sleep tight

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Saturday, August 8, 2009

GREEN YOUR BATTERIES - save the environment

Here are 8 great ways we can 'green' our batteries from TREY GRANGER from :


8 Ways to Green Your Battery Use

You may not realize how often you use batteries until you have to operate for a few hours without electricity. Batteries are great at keeping a charge in our mobile devices, but the components that help generate these charges wreak havoc in landfills.

You can use Earth911’s recycling locator to find out where to recycle batteries. Here’s eight ways to optimize your battery use so you’ll create less waste in the first place:

1. Replace One at a Time
So your device stopped working, and it takes four AA batteries. Looks like you’ve got to buy four new batteries and dispose of four as well. Actually, only one of the batteries may be dead. If you invest in a battery-tester, you can find out which batteries have no charge left and only replace those. Some batteries even come with a tester on the cell itself. If they end up needing to be tossed, check out mail-back programs for all your battery recycling needs.

2. Embrace Heavy Metal
In most circumstances, searching for a product with less hazardous materials is more eco-friendly. In the case of batteries, hazardous ingredients increase your chances of finding recycling options. Consider:

Car batteries contain lead and sulfuric acid and have a recycling rate around 90 percent.
Single-use dry cell batteries have been gutted of mercury in recent years, and it’s now much more difficult to find locations that recycle them than rechargeables (which contain cadmium).
If your batteries have elements like lead, mercury or lithium, there will be more value to a recycler that can reprocess these metals. Just make sure they are kept out of the reach of children and pets in the meantime.

3. Laptops Aren’t for Laps

Keeping the battery cool will help extend its lifespan
You already know that batteries and heat do not get along together. Well, your computer generates a fair amount of heat internally, which is why your notebook computer comes with a fan. Using your laptop on a soft surface (such as your lap) restricts air flow and actually heats up your battery. You can also invest in a cooling pad if you want to use a notebook on soft surfaces.

4. Keep Your Batteries Cool
You may have heard that putting batteries in the fridge or freezer will make them last longer. While this may be the case, you’ll have to let the batteries thaw before using them to avoid condensation in your devices. Regardless, you should avoid storing batteries in hot places, because they could leak fluid.

5. Wait for Good Reception
“Can you hear me now?” That’s good for more than just your phone manners. When your cell phone has low reception, it uses more battery power to search for stronger signals. Waiting for better reception will allow your cell phone battery to last longer.

6. Insulate Your Car Battery
Think about it: your car experiences more temperature fluctuations than anything else in your life. It deals with hot and cold driving weather, gets heated up and cooled down on every trip and ends up stored in a poorly-insulated garage for the night (if it’s lucky).

You can find insulation blankets to allow car batteries to adjust better to all kinds of temperatures. The next time you’re under the hood, check to see if your battery is insulated or have a qualified professional check for you.

7. Crank Up Your Batteries
The days of hand cranks to generate power went out with draft cards and freedom marches. Or did they? You can actually find hand-cranks to charge up all sorts of devices, such as cell phones and mp3 players. You’ll also get a little exercise. Another option is charging your gadgets with solar power. These are both forms of renewable energy so you won’t have to use non-renewable electricity to power your batteries.

8. Opt for Plugging In
Many devices will come equipped with battery compartments and an A/C power adapter, including some alarm clocks and lamps. You may be saving energy by working off batteries, but you’re also producing waste when the batteries die. Don’t forget you have to spend energy to recharge batteries as well. If you have the option, plugging in will use less resources.

POLLUTION - causing cancer in Animals

A recent survey indicated that we are responsible for contributing to the many cases of cancer in wild animals:

Source : Amanda Wills (
Date : 3rd August, 2009

A recent report published in July’s Nature Reviews Cancer reveals the consequences of improper disposal and dumping. According to “Wildlife Cancer: a conservation perspective,” scientists are now concerned about humans’ contribution to carcinogenesis in wild animal habitats.

“The more we contaminate the environment, the more we will see problems. If you dump a pollutant, it doesn’t just go away,” Frances Gulland, director of veterinary science at the Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito, Calif., tells Newsweek.

According to Gulland, the problem is shockingly evident in the famous barking male sea lions on San Francisco’s Pier 39. She says she periodically receives calls about crippling tumors on the sea lions, and 17 percent of these sea lions die of renal failure or paralysis.

The tumors are linked to Otarine herpesvirus-1, and the sea lions that died of genital carcinoma had an 85 percent higher concentration of toxic polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a compound used in coolants and electrical transformers.

But PCBs aren’t the only killer in this scenario. Scientists also found a high concentration of DDT in the blubber of the cancerous sea lions, many of whom were born near the Channel Islands. While DDT was banned from pesticides in 1972, 1,700 tons of the chemical were dumped near these islands before being outlawed.

The report also highlights the impact of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) on the Beluga whale population of Canada’s St. Lawrence Estuary. PAHs are toxic compounds stemming from the incomplete burning of anything carbon-based. They are often found in aluminum smelter stacks, which, interestingly enough, line the banks of the Saguenay River which flows into the estuary.

While these specific situations were the result of industrial chemical dumping, the study is a lesson in proper disposal. Household hazardous waste can be harmful to living things, the environment and to the people handing them if they are not disposed of properly. This means HHW should not be dumped on the ground, down the drain or thrown in the trash.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Americans generate 1.6 million tons of HHW per year. The average home alone at any one time can accumulate as much as 100 pounds of HHW in basements, garages, under the sink and in storage closets.

To read this study:

Greenhouse gas emissions polluting the Arctic Ocean

Source : KATE RAVILIOUS, NewScientist
Date : 6th August, 2009

Arctic Ocean may be polluted soup by 2070
WITHIN 60 years the Arctic Ocean could be a stagnant, polluted soup. Without drastic cuts in greenhouse-gas emissions, the Transpolar Drift, one of the Arctic's most powerful currents and a key disperser of pollutants, is likely to disappear because of global warming.

The Transpolar Drift is a cold surface current that travels right across the Arctic Ocean from central Siberia to Greenland, and eventually out into the Atlantic. It was first discovered in 1893 by the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen, who tried unsuccessfully to use the current to sail to the North Pole. Together with the Beaufort Gyre, the Transpolar Drift keeps Arctic waters well mixed and ensures that pollution never lingers there for long.

To better understand the dispersal of pollution in the Arctic Ocean, Ola Johannessen, director of the Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center in Bergen, Norway, and his colleagues studied the spread of radioactive substances such as strontium-90 and caesium-137 from nuclear testing, bomb factories and nuclear power-plant accidents. Measurements taken between 1948 and 1999 were plugged into a high-resolution ocean circulation model and combined with a climate model to predict Arctic Ocean circulation until 2080.

Their model confirmed that most pollutants, including pesticide, petroleum residue and nuclear fallout, are currently washed out into the north Atlantic by the Transpolar Drift. But perhaps not for much longer.

In a "business-as-usual" scenario, in which atmospheric carbon dioxide levels double by 2070, Johannessen and his colleagues found that the Transpolar Drift stops and the Beaufort Gyre, Greenland Current and Gulf Stream weaken considerably (Journal of Environmental Radioactivity, DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvrad.2009.01.003). One reason for this sluggish behaviour is a change in wind patterns driven by global warming and rapid melting of the Arctic sea ice.

As a result, pollution takes much longer to disperse in this scenario. Much of this pollution would congregate along the non-European coastlines of the Arctic Ocean, the model suggests.

Jeff Ridley of the Met Office Hadley Centre in Exeter, UK, agrees that surface circulation in the Arctic Ocean will weaken if sea ice disappears, but he doubts it will happen quite so fast. He also points out that other currents in the region would continue to disperse pollutants.

To read this article :

MEGA DROUGHTS in AFRICA due to Climate Change

Further to the previous news report on droughts due to climate change, here is another survey from Africa.....

Source :Deborah Zabarenko, Environment Correspodent (REUTERS)
Date : 17th April, 2009

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The recent decades-long drought that killed 100,000 people in Africa's Sahel may be a small foretaste of monstrous "megadroughts" that could grip the region as global climate change worsens, scientists reported on Thursday.

Droughts, some lasting for centuries, are part of the normal pattern in sub-Saharan Africa. But the added stress of a warming world will make these dry periods more severe and more difficult for the people who live there, the scientists said.

Clearly, much of West Africa is already on the edge of sustainability, and the situation could become much more dire in the future with increased global warming," said University of Arizona climatologist Jonathan Overpeck, a co-author of the study published in the journal Science.

The Sahel is an area between the Sahara desert and the wetter parts of equatorial Africa that stretches across the continent from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Red Sea in the east.

Overpeck and his colleagues studied sediments beneath Lake Bosumtwi in Ghana that gave an almost year-by-year record of droughts in the area going back 3,000 years. Until now, the instrumental climate record in this region stretched back only 100 years or so.

The researchers found a pattern of decades-long droughts like the one that began in the Sahel in the 1960s that killed at least 100,000 people, as well as centuries-long "megadroughts" throughout this long period, with the most recent lasting from 1400 to 1750.

The scientists also described signs of submerged forests that grew around the lake when it dried up for hundreds of years. The tops of some of these tropical trees can still be seen poking up from the lake water.


During the recent Sahel drought, the lake's water level dropped perhaps 5 yards (meters). By contrast, during megadroughts the level fell by as much as 30 yards (meters).

"What's disconcerting about this record is that it suggests that the most recent drought was relatively minor in the context of the West African drought history," said Timothy Shanahan of the University of Texas, a co-author of the study.

The most recent decades of data culled from Lake Bosumtwi show that droughts there appear to be linked to fluctuations in sea surface temperatures, a pattern known as the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, or AMO, the researchers said.

"One of the scary aspects of our record is how the Atlantic ... changes the water balance over West Africa on multidecadal time scales," Overpeck said in a telephone briefing.

The cause of centuries-long megadroughts is not known, but he said the added burden of climate change could make this kind of drought more devastating.

Temperatures in this region are expected to rise by 5 to 10 degrees F (2.77 to 5.55 degrees C) this century, the scientists said, even if there is some curbing of the greenhouse emissions that spur climate change.

"We might actually proceed into the future ... we could cross a threshold driving the (climate) system into one of those big droughts without even knowing it's coming," Overpeck said.

To read this article :


Another recent news article on the adverse effects of global warming:

Source : David Fogarty - Climate te Change Correspondent, Asia (REUTERS)
Date published : 25th March, 2009

Global warming 37 percent to blame for droughts: scientist

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Global warming is more than a third to blame for a major drop in rainfall that includes a decade-long drought in Australia and a lengthy dry spell in the United States, a scientist said on Wednesday.

Peter Baines of Melbourne University in Australia analyzed global rainfall observations, sea surface temperature data as well as a reconstruction of how the atmosphere has behaved over the past 50 years to reveal rainfall winners and losers.

What he found was an underlying trend where rainfall over the past 15 years or so has been steadily decreasing, with global warming 37 percent responsible for the drop.

"The 37 percent is probably going to increase if global warming continues," Baines told Reuters from Perth in Western Australia, where he presented his findings at a major climate change conference.

Baines' analysis revealed four regions where rainfall has been declining.
The affected areas were the continental United States, southeastern Australia, a large region of equatorial Africa and the Altiplano in South America.

But there were two areas in the tropics where rainfall has been increasing -- northwestern Australia and the Amazon Basin.

"This is all part of a global pattern where the rainfall is generally increasing in the equatorial tropics and decreasing in the sub-tropics in mid-latitudes," Baines said.

"This is a little bit like the pattern that the (computer) models predict for global warming but this is coming out of the rainfall observations of the past 30 years," added Baines, of Melbourne University's civil and environmental engineering department.

The rainfall trend was also accompanied by a trend in global sea surface temperatures (SST), he said, adding he used temperature data going back to 1910.

Sea surface temperatures have been rising as the atmosphere warms.

"If you take the SST data and analyze that over a long period you can break that up into a variety of components, such a global warming component," he said.

He also looked at the influence on rainfall of major ocean circulation patterns that have a major impact on the world's weather such as the Atlantic conveyor belt that brings warm temperatures to northern Europe.

Two Pacific circulation patterns, including the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, were also studied for their influence on rainfall.

The key in the analysis was to strip out the influence of the El Nino ocean-climate pattern which causes drought in Southeast Asia and Australia and floods in Chile and Peru.

To read this article :


Hi all,

Came across this news report ... a red alert that climatic temperature is on the rise causing glaciers to melt at an unprecedented rate! Please read and see how serious an issue global warming is becoming.....

SOURCE : Yereth Rosen, REUTERS
Date Published : 6th August, 2009


Three major glaciers in Alaska and Washington state have thinned and shrunk dramatically, clear signs of a warming climate, according to a study released Thursday by the U.S. Geological Survey.

The three glaciers -- Gulkana and Wolverine in Alaska and South Cascade in Washington -- are considered benchmarks for those in alpine and maritime climates because they closely parallel other glaciers in their regions. They have also been the subject of close scientific scrutiny since 1957.

"These are the three glaciers in North America that have the longest record of mass change," said Shad O'Neel, a United States Geological Survey glaciologist in Anchorage who was one of the study authors.

"All three of them have a different climate from the other two, yet all three are showing a similar pattern of behavior, and that behavior is mass loss."

Scientists are keeping a close watch on melting glaciers, as a rise in sea-levels would threaten coastal and low-lying areas around the world.

The latest study compares records of snow and ice thickness and densities over the years, the factors used to calculate mass. The glaciers have lost mass as melting outpaced new snow and ice accumulation, and for all three, the losses were especially dramatic over the past 15 years, according to the USGS study.

By themselves, the glaciers and their changes are not proof of global warming, he said. But their behavior fits with a pattern of warmer weather or drier weather or both.

"It certainly says that the place where these glaciers are, the climate is not supportive of healthy glaciers anymore," he said.

Ed Josberger, the Tacoma, Washington-based USGS hydrologist who coordinated the study, said the results from the Gulkana, Wolverine and South Cascade glaciers mirror worldwide trends.

There is no doubt that most mountain glaciers are shrinking worldwide in response to a warming climate," Josberger said in a statement released by the Department of Interior.

To read this article:

Friday, August 7, 2009

H1N1 Swine Flu Points Importance Of Immunizations, Flu and Cold

H1N1 Swine Flu Points Importance Of Immunizations, Flu and Cold

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Massive Beef Recall Spreads in West Coast, Food Safety

Massive Beef Recall Spreads in West Coast, Food Safety

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Blast From the Past: Plague Strikes China - ABC News

Blast From the Past: Plague Strikes China - ABC News

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New photo made by the Spitzer Space Telescope

This image provided by NASA this July 23, 2009 is a photo made by the Spitzer Space Telescope of the galaxy, called NGC-1097, is located 50 million light-years away. It is spiral-shaped like our Milky Way, with long, spindly arms of stars. The 'eye' at the center of the galaxy is actually a monstrous black hole surrounded by a ring of stars. In this color-coded infrared view from Spitzer, the area around the invisible black hole is blue and the ring of stars, white. The black hole is huge, about 100 million times the mass of our sun, and is feeding off gas and dust along with the occasional unlucky star. The galaxy's red spiral arms and the swirling spokes seen between the arms show dust heated by newborn stars. Older populations of stars scattered through the galaxy are blue. The fuzzy blue dot to the left, which appears to fit snuggly between the arms, is a companion galaxy. This image was taken during Spitzer's cold mission, before it ran out of liquid coolant.

(AP Photo/NASA)