Surviving drought: Herbivores help protect ecosystems from climate change

Plant-eating critters are the key ingredient to helping ecosystems survive global warming, finds new UBC research that offers some hope for a defence strategy against climate change. “The herbivores created space for other plants and animals to move in and we saw much more diversity and variety in these ecosystems,” said Rebecca Kordas, the lead author of the study who …

Conservation, restoration, & land management actions across global forests, wetlands, grasslands, and ag lands can provide 37% of cost-effective CO2 mitigation needed through 2030 for a >66% chance of holding warming to below 2 °C

PNAS: Natural Climate Solutions  Most nations recently agreed to hold global average temperature rise to well below 2 °C. We examine how much climate mitigation nature can contribute to this goal with a comprehensive analysis of “natural climate solutions” (NCS): 20 conservation, restoration, and/or improved land management actions that increase carbon storage and/or avoid greenhouse gas emissions across global forests, …

Antibiotic resistant bacteria are responsible for at least 700,000 deaths each year and cost billions in healthcare spending, lost wages and lost national productivity, est. $100tn and 10m deaths per year by 2050

Excerpt from The Guardian, Oct 2017 Resistant bacteria are a grave threat and getting worse. They are responsible for at least 700,000 deaths around the world each year: 23,000 in the United States, 25,000 in Europe, more than 63,000 babies in India. Beyond those deaths, bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics cause millions of illnesses – 2m annually just in …

Shifting toward renewables and not looking back: First/original nations plan for future resilience

Excerpt from Alaska’s Small Village Turn Toward Renewables and Don’t Look Back, Yes! Magazine, fall 2017 Just Transition issue People here focus on more immediate, practical issues—but that’s why renewable energy is winning. It makes economic sense. The microgrid technology has been proven, and costs are coming down.  One important lesson for the Lower 48 is the need for political …

Safe, Strong, and Just Rebuilding After Disasters: Every $1 invested in upgrades repays $4

Build back better. Rebuild infrastructure to higher standards, and support innovative solutions that can better withstand extreme weather and other risks. Update flood risk data—and use it. Flood maps should be updated and planning commence for these areas and alternatives. Prioritize communities that have the fewest resources to rebuild. Extreme weather events hit hardest in areas struggling to make ends meet and in …

Storms bringing extra rain with climate change and breakdown of polar vortex can lead to temperature lows

This year’s intense Atlantic storm season had another element tying its biggest events together: a monstrous, and sometimes deadly, amount of rain. Images of the flooded metropolises of Houston, Jacksonville, and San Juan with overtopped dams, billowing sewage, and flooded homes show that torrential rain can be one of the most devastating consequences of hurricanes, especially in urban areas where concrete makes …

Harvey Wrecks up to a Million Cars in Houston and 15% Lack Car Insurance. METRO is is working with state and federal relief agencies to distribute schedules and loaded Q cards to those in shelters and other government-paid housing.

What are some of the ways to adapt transportation for the future, in the wake of disasters and flooding like Hurricane Harvey? Of the 85% of Texas vehicle owners with insurance coverage, just three-quarters have comprehensive insurance policies that are sure to cover flood damage. Even if just 300,000 were destroyed, a lowball estimate —that’s 100,000 people who may have to …