I blog about environmental and social justice issues because I am very concerned about the health of the interdependent web of life of which we are a part.

Melting Arctic ice.......beautiful and frightening!

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Saturday, January 19, 2013

Amazon Degradation

An area of the Amazon rainforest twice the size of California continues to suffer from the effects of a megadrought that began in 2005, finds a new NASA-led study. These results, together with observed recurrences of droughts every few years and associated damage to the forests in southern and western Amazonia in the past decade, suggest these rainforests may be showing the first signs of potential large-scale degradation due to climate change. ..."The biggest surprise for us was that the effects appeared to persist for years after the 2005 drought," said study co-author Yadvinder Malhi of the University of Oxford, United Amazon rainforest shows signs of degradation due to climate change says NASAKingdom. "We had expected the forest canopy to bounce back after a year with a new flush of leaf growth, but the damage appeared to persist right up to the subsequent drought in 2010." ...The researchers attribute the 2005 Amazonian drought to the long-term warming of tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures. "In effect, the same climate phenomenon that helped form hurricanes Katrina and Rita along U.S. southern coasts in 2005 also likely caused the severe drought in southwest Amazonia," Saatchi said. "An extreme climate event caused the drought, which subsequently damaged the Amazonian trees."  http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/earth20130117.html
We cannot survive if we destroy our home.

The overall productivity of the biosphere is therefore limited by the rate at which plants convert solar energy (about 1 percent) into chemical energy and the subsequent efficiencies at which other organisms at higher trophic levels convert that stored energy into their own biomass (approximately 10 percent). Human-induced changes in net primary productivity in the parts of the biosphere that have the highest productivity, such as estuaries and tropical moist forests, are likely to have large effects on the overall biological productivity of the Earth.  http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/66191/biosphere/70861/The-importance-of-the-biosphere

Are we suicidal?  Consider the Alberta government's position.

Trains to Alaska. Pipelines to Churchill, Man. New refineries in Alberta. Oil shipments to Saint John. A step back from costly environmental rules. Alberta's government wants them all. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/alberta-scrambles-as-oil-pipelines-clogged-revenues-slashed/article7536306/

If we're not - if you're not - please  lobby your provincial and federal government.

We NEED to phase out fossil fuels! 

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