Geology & Geophysics News

Covering Climate with Power Plants, Scooters, and Philosophy

What Earth and space science stories are we recommending this week?

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Covering Climate Now logoDeveloping Countries Are Already Tackling Climate Change. What’s Your Rich Nation’s Excuse? This opinion piece by Nigeria’s former finance minister puts into perspective the work going into the energy revolution: “Morocco recently built the world’s largest concentrated solar facility, serving 2 million people. South Africa’s robust renewable energy auctions led to solar and wind prices lower than prices from the national utility or from new coal plants. Kenya is the world’s 9th largest producer of geothermal power, which generates nearly half its electricity.”

Heather Goss, Editor in Chief

 

Meet the Weather Observers on Climate Change’s Front Lines. What a delightful behind-the-scenes look! Weather observers check the temperature each day, and sometimes they witness a world record.

Jenessa Duncombe, Staff Writer

 

Just How Environmentally Friendly Are All Those Scooters?

Photo of a person’s feet on a scooter with a taxi in the background of a busy urban intersection
Credit: iStock.com/theverest

As I’m a scooter rider myself, this is food for thought. Taking an electric scooter is still better than driving a car the same distance, a recent study concluded. But the parent companies have all sorts of behind-the-scenes processes that give scooters a bigger carbon footprint than you (or I) would think.

Kimberly Cartier, Staff Writer

 

Marooned: Researchers Will Freeze Their Ship into Arctic Ocean Ice for a Year.

Infographic of the operations of the research vessel Polarstern
The research vessel Polarstern, operated by the Alfred Wegener Institute, will intentionally moor itself near the North Pole. Credit: Alfred-Wegener-Institut/Martin Kuensting, CC-BY 4.0

Fully grasping the impacts of the warming climate on Arctic sea ice cover means getting up close and personal with the ice itself, so researchers can observe how it and its surroundings change from day to day. This is an excellent preview of an ambitious mission to do just that, with scientists (and journalists) serving rotations aboard a ship that’s to be locked in ice for a full year.

Timothy Oleson, Science Editor

 

The Silenced: Meet the Climate Change Whistleblowers Muzzled by Trump. The Guardian spoke with six scientists who had their work altered or buried while at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Interior.

Heather Goss, Editor in Chief

 

Climate Change Is Coming for Our Fish Dinners.

Salmon fillet and vegetables
Credit: iStock.com/alle12

Human health and well-being could be at risk because of declines in the amount of omega-3 fatty acids available due to climate change and global warming.

Faith Ishii, Production Manager

 

Material World. Technically, this is a book review of Bruno Latour’s Down to Earth, but really, it’s a persistently thoughtful way to critique and reframe how we think about climate change: “The environmental movement has politicized seemingly mundane objects, pushing us to analyze our meals, vacations, even children through an ecological lens, if only to defend our choices. But it has never managed to galvanize people and build power in the way that traditional political forces have. To the contrary, environmental politics seemed to leave most people cold. Making things ‘green’ seems to suck the life out of them” (emphasis mine).

Caryl-Sue, Managing Editor

 

This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.

Citation: AGU (2019), Covering climate with power plants, scooters, and philosophy, Eos, 100, https://doi.org/10.1029/2019EO133753. Published on 19 September 2019.
Text © 2019. AGU. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0
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