Microhabitats Enable Animals to Beat the Heat of Global Warming

Published April 16, 2014

A new study provides some real-world examples of the phenomenon, finding that “assuming uniform increases of 6°C, microhabitats decreased the vulnerability of communities by up to 32-fold, whereas under non-uniform increases of 0.66 to 3.96°C, microhabitats decreased the vulnerability of communities by up to 108-fold”… Read More

Autumn Precipitation Trends in Southern Hemisphere Midlatitudes (8 Apr 2014)
How well are they simulated by CMIP5 models? According to the researchers who conducted this study, “on the whole, CMIP5 models are unable to capture many of the observed trends in precipitation during autumn” and “further work investigating the limited ability of climate models in simulating observed historical trends in precipitation over many Southern Hemisphere regions is required”… Read More

The Power of Marine Life to Cope with Environmental Change (8 Apr 2014)
There are no “quick and dirty ways” of resolving complicated real-world questions involving complex life processes; and that is likely why nature’s secrets are typically hidden from the eyes of the impatient… Read More

A New-and-Improved 1200-Year Temperature History of the Gulf of Alaska (8 Apr 2014)
Nothing in this study suggests there is anything unusual, unnatural or unprecedented about the Current Warm Period, in that temperatures slightly warmer than those of recent times occurred a full millennium ago, when there was way less CO2 in the atmosphere than there is currently, which in turn suggests that the much greater CO2 concentrations of today need not be the cause of Earth’s current – and not unusual – level of warmth… Read More

Earthworms Working Overtime to Sequester Plant-Derived Carbon (9 Apr 2014)
In a long-term forest FACE study, the wiggly little creatures helped to sequester in the soil the extra carbon removed from the atmosphere by the rapidly-growing CO2-enriched trees… Read More

Fighting Current Real-World Threats to the Well-Being of Corals (9 Apr 2014)
Rather than fantasizing over what to do about imagined future threats to coral reef ecosystems, a new study elucidates a current real-world problem and demonstrates a workable solution to it… Read More

Modelling SST Variability in the Equatorial Atlantic Ocean (9 Apr 2014)
How well do the CMIP5 general circulation models replicate reality in this region? Among other problems noted in this review, in terms of the mean state, “29 out of 33 models examined continue to suffer from serious biases including an annual mean zonal equatorial SST gradient whose sign is opposite to observations”… Read More

Nutrient-Poor Mountain-Slope Grasses in a Warming World (15 Apr 2014)
It appears they will take whatever rise in temperature that comes their way, as “the expected upward shift of optimal climatic conditions will not necessarily lead to a shift of population and species ranges to higher elevations in the context of climate change,” as “plasticity will buffer the detrimental effects of climate change”… Read More

Indian Ocean Dipole and ENSO Teleconnections in CMIP5 Models (15 Apr 2014)
How well do the models conform to what is observed in the real world? Although the models get some things right, they get other things wrong… Read More

Recent Antarctic Warming: Unusual or Run-of-the-Millennial-Mill? (15 Apr 2014)
There is nothing unusual, unnatural or unprecedented about the current level of warmth in and around Antarctica relative to the past 2000 years. And, therefore, there is no logical basis for accusing the historical increase in the air’s CO2 concentration over the past 2000 years of having caused any unusual, unnatural or unprecedented warming of the globe, simply because there has been no such warming… Read More

Tropical Cyclone Activity as Expressed in CMIP5 Models (15 Apr 2014)
How well does the phenomenon’s theoretical expression represent reality? After many years of trying to mathematically simulate the many important aspects of global climate change, the climate modeling community has yet to produce a realistic replica of associated changes in real-world TC characteristics and behaviors… Read More

Soil Microbes and Vegetation of the Antarctic Peninsula (16 Apr 2014)
As the Little Ice Age (LIA) gradually relinquished its death-promoting grip on some of the coldest parts of the world, new opportunities for life have gradually returned to places from which life had fled during the LIA’s life-preventing tenure, with the Antarctic Peninsula being one of the most prominent of such locations… Read More

Elevated CO2 Makes Lisianthus a “Flower for All Seasons” in Japan (16 Apr 2014)
Plants exposed to air of 1000 ppm CO2 for an additional 66 days after the flower-budding stage of growth was reached, as compared to plants that remained exposed to normal ambient air, grew 3.7% taller, produced 31.5% more fresh weight, 26.6% more leaf area, 15.8% more flower buds, and an amazing 190% more open flowers. And these growth and developmental enhancements were also accomplished in a significantly shortened growth period in the CO2-enriched treatment… Read More

A Prior Millennium of Australian Tropical Cyclone Activity (16 Apr 2014)
The Australian region seems to be experiencing the most pronounced phase of tropical cyclone inactivity since the industrial revolution, adding that the dramatic reductions in TC activity “suggest that climate change cannot be ruled out as a causative factor” of the decline in TC activity in that part of the world that occurred as the Earth was in process of rebounding from the global chill of the Little Ice Age… Read More