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Skeptical Science New Research for Week #46 2023

Posted on 16 November 2023 by Doug Bostrom, Marc Kodack

Open access notables

From this week's government/NGO section, Americans’ Trust in Scientists, Positive Views of Science Continue to Decline:

Overall, 57% of Americans say science has had a mostly positive effect on society. This share is down 8 percentage points since November 2021 and down 16 points since before the start of the coronavirus outbreak. About a third (34%) now say the impact of science on society has been equally positive as negative. A small share (8%) think science has had a mostly negative impact on society. When it comes to the standing of scientists, 73% of U.S. adults have a great deal or fair amount of confidence in scientists to act in the public’s best interests. But trust in scientists is 14 points lower than it was at the early stages of the pandemic.

The Effect of Trust in Science and Media Use on Public Belief in Anthropogenic Climate Change: A Meta-analysis:

Despite assumptions often made about social media, user-generated media were positively correlated with an opinion on ACC that is in line with scientific consensus. The interplay between how media show and explain the issue of climate change, on what channels, and in particular how much attention is paid to communicating the scientific consensus on the existence and urgency of this problem, is an important element in converging scientists’ and public opinion on ACC and closing the consensus gap.

Could a minimalist lifestyle reduce carbon emissions and improve wellbeing? A review of minimalism and other low consumption lifestyles (literature review): 

We conclude that while minimalism might offer wellbeing benefits, research on carbon emissions is inconclusive. Furthermore, even if minimalism did result in reduced emissions, the minimalist lifestyle maybe too individualistic to create social change.

Swarm electrification: Harnessing surplus energy in off-grid solar home systems for universal electricity access:

Achieving universal access to electricity by 2030, as set out by the Sustainable Development Goals, presents a significant challenge given the current rate of progress. A recent promising concept is swarm electrification. Its central idea is the peer-to-peer energy sharing of surplus energy in solar home systems (SHSs) to connect additional neighbors and grow a bottom-up grid. This paper studies the surplus energy in SHSs and its underlying influencing factors as a basis for swarm electrification. 

Greenland-wide accelerated retreat of peripheral glaciers in the twenty-first century:

The long-term response of Greenland’s peripheral glaciers to climate change is widely undocumented. Here we use historical aerial photographs and satellite imagery to document length fluctuations of >1,000 land-terminating peripheral glaciers in Greenland over more than a century. We find that their rate of retreat over the last two decades is double that of the twentieth century, indicating a ubiquitous transition into a new, accelerated state of downwasting.

119 articles in 59 journals by 691 contributing authors

Physical science of climate change, effects

Background Pycnocline Depth Constrains Future Ocean Heat Uptake Efficiency, Newsom et al., Geophysical Research Letters Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023gl105673

On the Physics of High CAPE, Emanuel, Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences Open Access pdf 10.1175/jas-d-23-0060.1

Observations of climate change, effects

Anthropogenic Influence on 2022 Extreme January–February Precipitation in Southern China, Hu et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-23-0136.1

Anthropogenic Influence on the Record-Breaking Compound Hot and Dry Event in Summer 2022 in the Yangtze River Basin in China, Li et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-23-0149.1

Extratropical forests increasingly at risk due to lightning fires, Janssen et al., Nature Geoscience Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41561-023-01322-z

Intensifying heatwave trends in Iran based on observational data using excess heat factor (EHF), Jangi et al., Natural Hazards 10.1007/s11069-023-06281-7

Reversed asymmetric warming of sub-diurnal temperature over land during recent decades, Zhong et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-43007-6

Shifted sediment-transport regimes by climate change and amplified hydrological variability in cryosphere-fed rivers, Zhang et al., Science Advances Open Access pdf 10.1126/sciadv.adi5019

Spatiotemporal Trends of Extreme Temperature Events Along the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau Transportation Corridor From 1981 to 2019 Based on Estimated Near-Surface Air Temperature, Wang et al., Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023jd039040

Trend analysis of widespread heat days in the Middle East and North Africa region between 1871 and 2012, Rezaei et al., International Journal of Climatology 10.1002/joc.8306

Variation of temperature extremes in wintertime over Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region in the era of sharp decline of Arctic sea ice, Lin et al., Atmospheric Research 10.1016/j.atmosres.2023.107113

Modeling, simulation & projection of climate change, effects

Aerosols overtake greenhouse gases causing a warmer climate and more weather extremes toward carbon neutrality, Wang et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-42891-2

Assessing the impact of climate change on future extreme temperature events in major South African cities, Mengistu et al., Theoretical and Applied Climatology Open Access pdf 10.1007/s00704-023-04712-w

Cascading climate effects in deep reservoirs: Full assessment of physical and biogeochemical dynamics under ensemble climate projections and ways towards adaptation, Mi et al., Ambio Open Access pdf 10.1007/s13280-023-01950-0

Modeled Multidecadal Trends of Lightning and (Very) Large Hail in Europe and North America (1950–2021), Battaglioli et al., Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology Open Access pdf 10.1175/jamc-d-22-0195.1

Observationally Constrained Projections of Twenty-First-Century Regional Warming in the Extratropical Northern Hemisphere, Liang et al., Journal of Climate Open Access pdf 10.1175/jcli-d-22-0944.1

Persistent Ocean Anomalies as a Response to Northern Hemisphere Heating Induced by Biomass Burning Variability, Yamaguchi et al., Journal of Climate 10.1175/jcli-d-23-0090.1

Projection of future drought characteristics in the Great South of Madagascar using CMIP6 and bias-correction spatial disaggregation method, Rabezanahary Tanteliniaina & Andrianarimanana, Theoretical and Applied Climatology 10.1007/s00704-023-04727-3

Revisiting the Relationship between the North Pacific High and Upwelling Winds along the West Coast of North America in the Present and Future Climate, Ding et al., Journal of Climate 10.1175/jcli-d-23-0238.1

Winter Storm Activity across Canada at the End of the Century: A CMIP5 Multi-model Projection, Basu & Sauchyn, Atmosphere Open Access pdf 10.1080/07055900.2023.2277710

Advancement of climate & climate effects modeling, simulation & projection

A Novel Method for Diagnosing Land–Atmosphere Coupling Sensitivity in a Single-Column Model, Hay-Chapman & Dirmeyer, Journal of Hydrometeorology Open Access pdf 10.1175/jhm-d-22-0237.1

Enhancing the Community Noah-MP Land Model Capabilities for Earth Sciences and Applications, He et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-23-0249.1

What about Model Data? Best Practices for Preservation and Replicability, Schuster et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-22-0252.1

Cryosphere & climate change

Climate variability a key driver of recent Antarctic ice-mass change, King et al., Nature Geoscience Open Access 10.1038/s41561-023-01317-w

Geotextile protection of glacier: Observed and simulated impacts on energy and mass balance, Wang et al., Advances in Climate Change Research Open Access 10.1016/j.accre.2023.11.001

Greenland-wide accelerated retreat of peripheral glaciers in the twenty-first century, Larocca et al., Nature Climate Change Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41558-023-01855-6

Sea level & climate change

How Sea Level Rise May Hit You Through the Backdoor: Changing Extreme Water Levels in Shallow Coastal Lagoons, Lorenz et al., Geophysical Research Letters Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023gl105512

Paleoclimate & paleogeochemistry

Bipolar control on changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide over millennial timescales, , Nature Geoscience 10.1038/s41561-023-01329-6

Global terrestrial monsoon area variations since Last Glacial Maximum based on TraCE21ka and PMIP4-CMIP6 simulations, Wang et al., Global and Planetary Change 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2023.104308

Biology & climate change, related geochemistry

Climate warming and sea turtle sex ratios across the globe, Laloë et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17004

Disentangling the drivers of decadal body size decline in an insect population, Botsch et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17014

Equivocal support for the climate variability hypothesis within a Neotropical bird assemblage, Pollock et al., Ecology Open Access pdf 10.1002/ecy.4206

Himalaya to Hengduan: dynamics of alpine treelines under climate change, Tiwari et al., Regional Environmental Change 10.1007/s10113-023-02153-9

Horizon scanning of potential threats to high-Arctic biodiversity, human health and the economy from marine invasive alien species: A Svalbard case study, Cottier?Cook et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17009

Impacts of heat and drought on the dynamics of water fluxes in a temperate deciduous forest from 2012 to 2020, Elizabeth & Arain, Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109791

Impacts of record-breaking compound heatwave and drought events in 2022 China on vegetation growth, Xu et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109799

Marginal value analysis reveals shifting importance of migration habitat for waterfowl under a changing climate, Burner et al., Ecology and Evolution Open Access pdf 10.1002/ece3.10632

Mediterranean springs: Keystone ecosystems and biodiversity refugia threatened by global change, Fernández?Martínez et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.16997

Mining plant phenology records from Kanazawa, Japan in the 1807–1838 Kakuson Diary, Shin et al., International Journal of Biometeorology 10.1007/s00484-023-02576-3

Recent and rapid reef recovery around Koh Phangan Island, Gulf of Thailand, driven by plate-like hard corals, Stahl et al., PeerJ Open Access 10.7717/peerj.16115

Revising the global biogeography of annual and perennial plants, Poppenwimer et al., Nature Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41586-023-06644-x

Shift in algal blooms from micro- to macroalgae around China with increasing eutrophication and climate change, Feng et al., Global Change Biology 10.1111/gcb.17018

Temporal shifts in the functional composition of Andean forests at different elevations are driven by climate change, Martínez?Villa et al., Global Ecology and Biogeography Open Access pdf 10.1111/geb.13774

The appendicularian Oikopleura dioica can enhance carbon export in a high CO2 ocean, Taucher et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17020

The importance of oxygen for explaining rapid shifts in a marine fish, Bandara et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17008

Variable influence of photosynthetic thermal acclimation on future carbon uptake in Australian wooded ecosystems under climate change, Bennett et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17021

“Extreme Highest” and “Extreme Anomalous”: Proposed indices for chlorophyll-a extreme events in European seas between 2003 and 2021, Sagarminaga et al., Remote Sensing of Environment Open Access 10.1016/j.rse.2023.113885

GHG sources & sinks, flux, related geochemistry

A measurement-based upstream oil and gas methane inventory for Alberta, Canada reveals higher emissions and different sources than official estimates, Conrad et al., Communications Earth & Environment Open Access pdf 10.1038/s43247-023-01081-0

An Assessment of CO2 Uptake in the Arctic Ocean From 1985 to 2018, Yasunaka et al., Open Access pdf 10.22541/essoar.168476524.42265823/v1

Characterizing Performance of Freshwater Wetland Methane Models Across Time Scales at FLUXNET-CH4 Sites Using Wavelet Analyses, Zhang et al., Open Access pdf 10.1002/essoar.10512704.1

Divergent Response of Carbon Sink to Climate Change Along Topographical Gradient in China Based on EEMD Detrending, Kong et al., Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 10.1029/2023jg007641

Ecosystem CO2 Exchange and Its Economic Implications in Northern Permafrost Regions in the 21st Century, Mu et al., Global Biogeochemical Cycles 10.1029/2023gb007750

Frozen carbon is gradually thawing: Assessing interannual dynamics of thawed soil organic carbon stocks in the Tibetan Plateau permafrost area from 1901−2020, Shen et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109793

Impacts of aboveground litter and belowground roots on soil greenhouse gas emissions: Evidence from a DIRT experiment in a pine plantation, Shen et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109792

Increased DIN Storage and ΔDIC/ΔDIN Ratio in the Subsurface Water of the Canada Basin, 1990?2015, Zhang et al., Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 10.1029/2023jc019864

Nature and origin of variations in pelagic carbonate production in the tropical ocean since the mid-Miocene (ODP Site 927), Cornuault et al., Biogeosciences Open Access pdf 10.5194/bg-20-597-2023

Ocean Carbon Dioxide Uptake in the Tailpipe of Industrialized Continents, Palter et al., Geophysical Research Letters Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023gl104822

Spatial and temporal variations of gross primary production simulated by land surface model BCC&AVIM2.0, Li et al., Advances in Climate Change Research Open Access 10.1016/j.accre.2023.02.001

The appendicularian Oikopleura dioica can enhance carbon export in a high CO2 ocean, Taucher et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17020

The Southern Ocean Carbon Cycle 1985–2018: Mean, Seasonal Cycle, Trends, and Storage, Hauck et al., Global Biogeochemical Cycles Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023gb007848

CO2 capture, sequestration science & engineering

Developing a roadmap for carbon capture, and storage in Oklahoma by assessing the viability of stacked storage, Miranda et al., Greenhouse Gases: Science and Technology Open Access pdf 10.1002/ghg.2244

Undervaluing soil carbon sequestration potential enables climate inaction, Almaraz et al., Global Change Biology Open Access pdf 10.1111/gcb.17011


A global model of hourly space heating and cooling demand at multiple spatial scales, Staffell et al., Nature Energy Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41560-023-01341-5

Ammonium cations with high pKa in perovskite solar cells for improved high-temperature photostability, Wang et al., Nature Energy 10.1038/s41560-023-01362-0

Could a minimalist lifestyle reduce carbon emissions and improve wellbeing? A review of minimalism and other low consumption lifestyles, Blackburn et al., WIREs Climate Change Open Access pdf 10.1002/wcc.865

Message framing to promote solar panels, Bär et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-42904-0

Performance analysis of MW-scale grid connected rooftop and ground-mounted solar power plants installed in Assam, India, Das et al., Energy for Sustainable Development Open Access 10.1016/j.esd.2023.101309

Prospective life cycle assessment of sodium-ion batteries made from abundant elements, Wickerts et al., Journal of Industrial Ecology Open Access pdf 10.1111/jiec.13452

Swarm electrification: Harnessing surplus energy in off-grid solar home systems for universal electricity access, Fuchs et al., Energy for Sustainable Development Open Access 10.1016/j.esd.2023.101342

Geoengineering climate

A New Era for the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP), Visioni et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-23-0232.1


Influence of natural and anthropogenic aerosols on cloud base droplet size distributions in clouds over the South China Sea and West Pacific, Miller et al., Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Open Access pdf 10.5194/acp-23-8959-2023

Observational evidence of strong forcing from aerosol effect on low cloud coverage, Yuan et al., Science Advances Open Access pdf 10.1126/sciadv.adh7716

Climate change communications & cognition

Climate change beliefs and their correlates in Latin America, Spektor et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-42729-x

How does extreme weather impact the climate change discourse? Insights from the Twitter discussion on hurricanes, Torricelli et al., PLOS Climate Open Access pdf 10.1371/journal.pclm.0000277

How politicians and the population attribute responsibility for climate change mitigation: no indication of a ‘governance trap’ in Norway, Falck, Environmental Politics Open Access pdf 10.1080/09644016.2023.2274721

How to win public support for financial climate policies: both climate anxiety and economic anticipation work, Li et al., Climate and Development 10.1080/17565529.2023.2266420

The Effect of Trust in Science and Media Use on Public Belief in Anthropogenic Climate Change: A Meta-analysis, Bogert et al., Environmental Communication Open Access pdf 10.1080/17524032.2023.2280749

Agronomy, animal husbundry, food production & climate change

An assessment of the vulnerability to climate change of winter wheat and summer maize production in Shandong Province, China, Dong et al., Theoretical and Applied Climatology 10.1007/s00704-023-04729-1

Nudging the Food Basket Green: The Effects of Commitment and Badges on the Carbon Footprint of Food Shopping, Panzone et al., Environmental and Resource Economics Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10640-023-00814-1

Sustainability governance for agrarian transformation under climate change, Liao et al., Sustainability Science 10.1007/s11625-023-01422-0

Walking back from the edge: thresholds of change reveal options for adaptation to water scarcity under climate change in the Murray–Darling Basin, Australia, Lesslie et al., Regional Environmental Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10113-023-02146-8

Weather information, farm-level climate adaptation and farmers' adaptive capacity: Examining the role of information and communication technologies, Chetri et al., Environmental Science & Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.envsci.2023.103630

Hydrology, hydrometeorology & climate change

Antecedent Hydrometeorological Conditions of Wildfire Occurrence in the Western U.S. in a Changing Climate, Chen et al., Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023jd039136

Climate change and anthropological impacts on a karst aquifer: a multi-statistical assessment, Mahdavi & Samani, Theoretical and Applied Climatology Open Access 10.1007/s00704-023-04707-7

Climatic characteristics of precipitation change and its multiscale causes over Central Qinghai–Tibet Plateau, Ma et al., International Journal of Climatology 10.1002/joc.8301

Diagnosing Mechanisms of Hydrologic Change under Global Warming in the CESM1 Large Ensemble, Siler et al., Journal of Climate 10.1175/jcli-d-23-0086.1

Drought and Flood Extremes on the Amazon River and in Northeast Brazil, 1790–1900, Granato-Souza & Stahle, Journal of Climate Open Access pdf 10.1175/jcli-d-23-0146.1

High Temperature Accelerates Onset Speed of the 2022 Unprecedented Flash Drought Over the Yangtze River Basin, Wang & Yuan, Geophysical Research Letters Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023gl105375

Mapping surface water dynamics (1985–2021) in the Hudson Bay Lowlands, Canada using sub-pixel Landsat analysis, Olthof & Fraser, Remote Sensing of Environment Open Access 10.1016/j.rse.2023.113895

Shifted sediment-transport regimes by climate change and amplified hydrological variability in cryosphere-fed rivers, Zhang et al., Science Advances Open Access pdf 10.1126/sciadv.adi5019

Understanding the Contributions of Paleo-Informed Natural Variability and Climate Changes to Hydroclimate Extremes in the San Joaquin Valley of California, Gupta et al., Earth's Future Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023ef003909

Climate change economics

Spread of the cycles: a feedback perspective on the Anthropocene, Lenton & Scheffer, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences Open Access 10.1098/rstb.2022.0254

Climate change mitigation public policy research

Ambitious near-term decarbonization and direct air capture deployment in Latin America's net-zero goal, Adun et al., Energy for Sustainable Development 10.1016/j.esd.2023.101338

Ecological Restoration Effectively Mitigated pCO2 and CO2 Evasions From Severely Polluted Urban Rivers, Wang et al., Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 10.1029/2023jg007531

Feed-in tariff or sheep farming subsidy? Implications of promoting photovoltaic energy by solar sheep raising, Marschinski & Quirion Mo Voß Schmidt Nadaï Lee Oh Baker Strausz Almeida Nadaï Schröder Wilson Leuthold Abu-Bakar Cheng Greacen Ngadi Mun?oz Venkatesh Leuthold T. Yap Arino Yap Orvis, SSRN Electronic Journal Open Access pdf 10.2139/ssrn.2532391

Governance of renewable energy procurement via private suppliers: The Ethiopian experience, Ayele et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113889

Plausible futures for the Norwegian offshore energy sector: Business as usual, harvest or rebuild?, Sayer, The Musical Times Open Access 10.2307/955555

Property rights arrangement and stakeholder networks hindering floating photovoltaics: A case of private open-access ponds in Taiwan, Chen et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113886

Renewable gases in the heating market: Identifying consumer preferences through a Discrete Choice Experiment, Rilling et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113857

The carbon footprint of the empty Castilla-La Mancha, Córcoles et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113892

The Zero Emissions Commitment and climate stabilization, Palazzo Corner et al., Frontiers in Science Open Access pdf 10.3389/fsci.2023.1170744

Unpacking the modeling process for energy policy making, Lo Piano et al., Risk Analysis Open Access pdf 10.1111/risa.14248

Climate change adaptation & adaptation public policy research

A productivity indicator for adaptation to climate change, Barnhart et al., PLOS Climate Open Access pdf 10.1371/journal.pclm.0000199

Climate change resiliency response from and within cross-cultural children activities, Datta & Datta Datta, Environmental Science & Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.envsci.2023.103634

Enablers of transdisciplinary collaboration for researchers working on climate risks in African cities, McClure, Sustainability Science Open Access pdf 10.1007/s11625-023-01426-w

How subjectivities and subject-making influence community participation in climate change adaptation: the case of Vietnam, Le et al., Climatic Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10584-023-03625-x

Localized nature-based solutions for enhanced climate resilience and community wellbeing in urban informal settlements, McEvoy et al., Climate and Development Open Access pdf 10.1080/17565529.2023.2277248

Climate change impacts on human health

Anchored in pacific protocols – climate change, mental health and wellbeing, Newport et al., Climate and Development Open Access pdf 10.1080/17565529.2023.2255563

Climate change, mental health, and reproductive decision-making: A systematic review, Dillarstone et al., PLOS Climate Open Access pdf 10.1371/journal.pclm.0000236

The potential effects of climate change on the climatic suitability patterns of the Western Asian vectors and parasites of cutaneous leishmaniasis in the mid- and late twenty-first century, Trájer & Grmasha, Theoretical and Applied Climatology Open Access pdf 10.1007/s00704-023-04726-4

Climate change & geopolitics

Europe's energy security: From Russian dependence to renewable reliance, Ah-Voun et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113856

Climate change impacts on human culture

Exploring sustainable energy consumption and social conflict risks in Turkey: Insights from a novel multiresolution ARDL approach, Mohamed & Saâdaoui, Risk Analysis 10.1111/risa.14251

Other Informed opinion, nudges & major initiatives

Advancing Understanding of Urgent Gaps and Needs in Atmospheric Science: Key Insights from the Climate, Weather, and Water Forum, Zhang et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-23-0245.1

Governing for a safe and just future with science-based targets: opportunities and limitations, Gifford et al., Climate and Development Open Access pdf 10.1080/17565529.2023.2264255

Grand Challenges in Earth Science: The Weather–Climate–Society Nexus over Northeast Asia, Ha et al., Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/bams-d-23-0237.1

Leveraging neuroscience for climate change research, Doell et al., Nature Climate Change 10.1038/s41558-023-01857-4

Why blue carbon cannot truly offset fossil fuel emissions, Johannessen & Christian, Communications Earth & Environment Open Access pdf 10.1038/s43247-023-01068-x

Book reviews

Peter Sutoris. Educating for the Anthropocene: schooling and activism in the face of slow violence, Bernstein, Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences 10.1007/s13412-023-00842-9

Review of Responding to the Climate Threat, by Gary Yohe, Henry Jacoby, Richard Richels, and Benjamin Santer (Springer, 2023) for Climatic Change, Hanle, Climatic Change 10.1007/s10584-023-03637-7

Articles/Reports from Agencies and Non-Governmental Organizations Addressing Aspects of Climate Change

Human-induced climate change compounded by socio-economic water stressors increased severity of drought in Syria, Iraq and Iran, Otto et al., World Weather Attribution

From boreal winter of 2020 onwards, a large region in West Asia, encompassing the Fertile Crescent around the rivers Euphrates and Tigris as well as Iran has suffered from exceptionally low rains and elevated temperatures. The resulting 3-year drought has led to severe impacts on agriculture and access to potable water. The drought affects a region with a highly vulnerable population due to varying degrees of fragility and conflict including war and post-war transition, rapid urbanization in the face of limited technical capacity, and regional instability. These dynamics increased vulnerability to the impacts of drought and created a humanitarian crisis. Human-induced climate change has increased the intensity of such a drought such that it would not have been classified as a drought in a 1.2°C cooler world. Thus confirming that the observed finding is indeed caused by human-induced climate change. To understand the meteorological drivers behind this change in an agricultural drought the authors also analyzed rainfall and temperature separately and found there to be little change in the likelihood and intensity of rainfall but a very large increase in temperature. They conclude that this strong increase in drought severity is primarily driven by the very strong increase in extreme temperatures due to the burning of fossil fuels.

023–2024 Winter Reliability Assessment, North American Electric Reliability Corporation

the authors identify, assess, and report on areas of concern regarding the reliability of the North American bulk power system (BPS) for the upcoming winter season. In addition, the authors present peak electricity demand and supply changes and highlight any unique regional challenges or expected conditions that might affect the reliability of the BPS. For example, a large portion of the North American BPS is at risk of insufficient electricity supplies during peak winter conditions.

Dollars vs. Democracy.Inside the Fossil Fuel Industry’s Playbook to Suppress Protest and Dissent in the United States, Chang et al., Greenpeace

Americans overwhelmingly support government action on the climate crisis. As a result, the fossil fuel industry has expanded its playbook to delay the transition to clean energy and protect its profits through efforts that undermine our right to free speech. Since the Dakota Access Pipeline protests at Standing Rock in 2016, oil and gas companies have played a key role in the creation and spread of anti-protest laws with provisions specifically intended to stifle protests near fossil fuel facilities. Eighteen states accounting for roughly 60% of oil and gas production have enacted sweeping versions of such legislation. Another four states have enacted narrower versions of the same legislation, which could be exploited by prosecutors seeking to issue trumped-up charges against peaceful protesters. Many oil and gas companies that have lobbied for anti-protest laws have also filed SLAPPs—strategic lawsuits against public participation—against people and organizations that have opposed fossil fuel expansion. Out of 116 SLAPP and judicial harassment claims since 2010, 86 were filed by companies that have lobbied for anti-protest laws, including ExxonMobil, Energy Transfer, Chevron, and TC Energy. The industry has cooperated with law enforcement agencies across the country in ways that equate non-violent protest with domestic violent extremism. This can include fossil fuel companies providing subsidies to law enforcement agencies, coordinating protest responses and sharing personal information on activists, and deploying private security firms whose personnel included off-duty police officers.

Phasing down or phasing up? Top fossil fuel producers plan even more extraction despite climate promises, Stockholm Environment Institute, Climate Analytics, E3G, International Institute for Sustainable Development and United Nations Environment Programme

The authors track the misalignment between governments’ planned fossil fuel production and global production levels consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C or 2°C. Governments, in aggregate, still plan to produce more than double the amount of fossil fuels in 2030 than would be consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C. The persistence of the global production gap puts a well-managed and equitable energy transition at risk. Taken together, government plans and projections would lead to an increase in global coal production until 2030, and in global oil and gas production until at least 2050. This conflicts with government commitments under the Paris Agreement, and clashes with expectations that global demand for coal, oil, and gas will peak within this decade even without new policies.

Climate Change and Regional Instability in the Middle East, Marwa Daoudy, Council on Foreign Relations

In the last few years, academics, policy analysts, and practitioners have tried to eschew a simplistic view of the climate-conflict relationship. Doing so allows them to examine the ways climate change itself interacts with human security as well as the further risks posed when resources and infrastructure become targets of conflict. For example, the repercussions of dam projects, water scarcity in agricultural and livestock production, displacement and migration patterns, and the mismanagement or weaponization of water all exemplify the inextricable interaction of environmental degradation, climate change, and instability. Of primary significance are the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant, where climate change and political instability acutely challenge human security.

Climate Change in Egypt: Opportunities and Obstacles, Al-Mailam et al., Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Because of climate change, Egypt’s already arid climate will suffer from additional environmental stresses, including extreme temperatures, irregular precipitation, elevated sea levels, and land subsidence, coastal flooding, shoreline erosion, deteriorating soil salinity, and persistent drought. These mutually reinforcing impacts will build on one another, worsening water scarcity, hindering food security, displacing exposed populations, and destabilizing the Egyptian economy. Climate change will therefore exert added pressures on already precarious populations and push still other groups to unprecedented levels of vulnerability. Efforts to adapt to a changing climate will also exact a steep price, exposing existing governance shortfalls and deepening deficits. As climate change escalates burdens on state capacity, it will become even more urgent for the country to take proactive measures. Egypt needs, therefore, to accelerate its climate governance efforts if it hopes to stabilize its economy and protect its vulnerable populations.

Long-Duration Energy Storage: Resiliency for Military Installations, Marqusee et al., National Renewable Energy Laboratory

The authors present a quantitative techno-economic analysis of long-duration energy storage (LDES) technology, when coupled to on-base solar photovoltaics (PV), to meet the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DoD’s) 14-day requirement to sustain critical electric loads during a power outage and significantly reduce an installation’s carbon footprint. The LDES modeled is Antora Energy’s battery energy storage system (BESS). It is currently at a technology readiness level (TRL) of 7 and is not ready for full-scale deployment. To support decisions on the value of near-term demonstrations, the analysis examined the potential value of Antora Energy’s BESS if deployed in the future.

International Public Opinion on Climate Change, 2023, Leiserowitz et al, Yale Program on Climate Change Communication (YPCCC), Data for Good at Meta, and Rare’s Center for Behavior & the Environment

The authors present the results of their international survey investigating public climate change knowledge, beliefs, attitudes, policy preferences, and behavior among Facebook users. The survey collected responses from 139,136 Facebook monthly active users (18 years of age or older). Responses were collected from 187 countries and territories worldwide, including 107 individual countries and territories and 3 geographic groups comprising 80 additional countries and territories for a total of 110 “areas,” which are the units of analysis in the reporting. The survey was conducted from August 3 – September 3, 2023. Results include that respondents in Portugal (61%), Spain (59%), and Finland (57%) are the most likely to think that climate change is mostly caused by human activities, whereas respondents in Haiti (18%) and Indonesia (20%) are the least likely.

The Fifth National Climate Assessment, US. Government

The authors provide the U.S. Government's assessment of climate change impacts, risks, and responses. They provide the scientific foundation to support informed decision-making across the U.S. The effects of human-caused climate change are already far-reaching and worsening across every region of the United States. Rapidly reducing greenhouse gas emissions can limit future warming and associated increases in many risks. Across the country, efforts to adapt to climate change and reduce emissions have expanded since 2018, and U.S. emissions have fallen since peaking in 2007. However, without deeper cuts in global net greenhouse gas emissions and accelerated adaptation efforts, severe climate risks to the United States will continue to grow.

Nationally determined contributions under the Paris Agreement, November 14, 2023, The Secretariat for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, United Nations

The authors synthesize information from the 168 latest available nationally determined contributions communicated by 195 Parties to the Paris Agreement and recorded in the registry of nationally determined contributions as of 25 September 2023. They found that national climate action plans remain insufficient to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius and meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. Even with increased efforts by some countries, the authors show that much more action is needed now to bend the world’s emissions trajectory further downward and avoid the worst effects of climate change.

Americans’ Trust in Scientists, Positive Views of Science Continue to Decline, Brian Kennedy and Alec Tyson, Pew Research Center

The authors found that the share of Americans who say science has had a mostly positive effect on society has fallen and there has been a continued decline in public trust in scientists. Overall, 57% of Americans say science has had a mostly positive effect on society. This share is down 8 percentage points since November 2021 and down 16 points since before the start of the coronavirus outbreak. About a third (34%) now say the impact of science on society has been equally positive as negative. A small share (8%) think science has had a mostly negative impact on society. When it comes to the standing of scientists, 73% of U.S. adults have a great deal or fair amount of confidence in scientists to act in the public’s best interests. But trust in scientists is 14 points lower than it was at the early stages of the pandemic. The share expressing the strongest level of trust in scientists – saying they have a great deal of confidence in them – has fallen from 39% in 2020 to 23% today.

State of Climate Action 2023, Boehm et al, Bezos Earth Fund, Climate Action Tracker, Climate Analytics, ClimateWorks Foundation, NewClimate Institute, the United Nations Climate Change High-Level Champions, and World Resources Institute

The authors provide a roadmap of how to close the gap in climate action across sectors to limit global warming to 1.5°C. They found that recent progress toward 1.5°C-aligned targets is not happening at the pace and scale necessary and highlights where action must urgently accelerate this decade to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, scale up carbon removal, and increase climate finance. Progress made in closing the global gap in climate action remains woefully inadequate — 41 of 42 indicators assessed are not on track to achieve their 2030 targets. Progress for more than half of these indicators remains well off track, such that recent efforts must accelerate at least twofold this decade. Worse still, another six indicators are heading in the wrong direction entirely. Within this set of laggards, efforts to end public financing for fossil fuels, dramatically reduce deforestation, and expand carbon pricing systems experienced the most significant setbacks to progress in a single year, relative to recent trends.

Obtaining articles without journal subscriptions

We know it's frustrating that many articles we cite here are not free to read. One-off paid access fees are generally astronomically priced, suitable for such as "On a Heuristic Point of View Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light but not as a gamble on unknowns. With a median world income of US$ 9,373, for most of us US$ 42 is significant money to wager on an article's relevance and importance. 

  • Unpaywall offers a browser extension for Chrome and Firefox that automatically indicates when an article is freely accessible and provides immediate access without further trouble. Unpaywall is also unscammy, works well, is itself offered free to use. The organizers (a legitimate nonprofit) report about a 50% success rate
  • The weekly New Research catch is checked against the Unpaywall database with accessible items being flagged. Especially for just-published articles this mechansim may fail. If you're interested in an article title and it is not listed here as "open access," be sure to check the link anyway. 

How is New Research assembled?

Most articles appearing here are found via  RSS feeds from journal publishers, filtered by search terms to produce raw output for assessment of relevance. 

Relevant articles are then queried against the Unpaywall database, to identify open access articles and expose useful metadata for articles appearing in the database. 

The objective of New Research isn't to cast a tinge on scientific results, to color readers' impressions. Hence candidate articles are assessed via two metrics only:

  • Was an article deemed of sufficient merit by a team of journal editors and peer reviewers? The fact of journal RSS output assigns a "yes" to this automatically. 
  • Is an article relevant to the topic of anthropogenic climate change? Due to filter overlap with other publication topics of inquiry, of a typical week's 550 or so input articles about 1/4 of RSS output makes the cut.

A few journals offer public access to "preprint" versions of articles for which the review process is not yet complete. For some key journals this all the mention we'll see in RSS feeds, so we include such items in New Research. These are flagged as "preprint."

The section "Informed opinion, nudges & major initiatives" includes some items that are not scientific research per se but fall instead into the category of "perspectives," observations of implications of research findings, areas needing attention, etc.


Please let us know if you're aware of an article you think may be of interest for Skeptical Science research news, or if we've missed something that may be important. Send your input to Skeptical Science via our contact form.

Journals covered

A list of journals we cover may be found here. We welcome pointers to omissions, new journals etc.

Previous edition

The previous edition of Skeptical Science New Research may be found here.

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