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Skeptical Science New Research for Week #26 2023

Posted on 29 June 2023 by Doug Bostrom, Marc Kodack

Open access notables

At risk of fosterinjg complaency and inattention, in this week's government/NGO section we find a report likely encouraging for people with an eye on external costs and enthusiasm for private enterprise paying attention to its various footprints: 2023 Statehouse Report: Right-Wing Attacks on the Freedom to Invest Responsibly Falter in LegislaturesCollated by specialist consultancy Pleiades Strategy,  this comprehensive report finds:

This coordinated legislative effort, commonly referred to as the anti-ESG movement, generated massive backlash from the business community, labor leaders, retirees, and even Republican politicians. It is not an issue that resonates with the public. Despite all the hype, the vast majority of anti-ESG bills failed to progress through legislative chambers, including in ten states fully controlled by Republicans. At present, 21 laws and 6 resolutions in 16 states have made it through legislatures this year. Many of the finalized bills were heavily amended to reduce most of the substantive portions. Broad escape clauses were added to limit the most draconian prohibitions, which experts have warned legally contravene the basic tenets of fiduciary duty, creating a “liability trap.”

Publishing in the entirely respectable journal Earth's Future and thus assuring us of a likely decent review process, W. Jackson Davis casts what could be called an outsider's eye on the associations of atmospheric CO2 concentration on mass extinctions and biodiversity, leading to challenging conclusions surely inviting some debate:

Percent genus loss in the fossil record is discernibly correlated with atmospheric CO2, concentration, but not with long-term global temperature (“climate”) nor with marginal RF of temperature by atmospheric CO2. Therefore, increased atmospheric CO2 concentration and consequent ocean acidification is a plausible kill mechanism of most past mass extinctions, while long-term global temperature (climate) change and marginal RF by CO2 are excluded as possible causes of past mass extinctions.

It'll require expert eyes to assess validity of these claims but as of now they've passed the first hurdle; reviewers wave it through meaning this isn't the work of a crackpot. In any case, the underpinning citations in  Mass Extinctions and Their Relationship With Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentration: Implications for Earth's Future  provide a thorough review into past woirk on this topic and make the paper a worthwhile visit on their own.

Geoengineering may be part of our reluctant future despite what climate modeling suggests may be our thereby opening a Pandora's Box of unintended consequences stemming from such methods as stratospheric aerosol injection. But there are further complications. Changing local climate patterns through hail suppression systems: conflict and inequalities between farmers and wine producers in the Burgundy Region (France) confirms what probably seems intuitively obvious to many of us: we have a tendency to find blame for "bad luck" regardless of whether condemnation is truly earned. Something new and conspicuous is well suited as a scapegoat, and what could be more so than seeming god-like powers to change weather? The authors relate the situation in France to the larger context of climate engineering:

Whilst the climatic analysis shows no local or regional effects of the generators on precipitation volumes, the sociological study highlights the vulnerability of farmers to successive droughts, found to be part of a wider pattern of climate change based on water balance variables (temperature, precipitation, evapotranspiration potential, soil wetness index) over a long period (1959–2020). Our results suggest that the use of technical solutions to mitigate meteorological hazards, within a broader context of climate engineering, can lead to conflicts at the regional level, and that the climate change challenge in the context of agriculture requires a focus on wider social issues including vulnerability.

Ironically, there is serious doubt as to the efficacy of the hail suppression system employed by vineyards connected with this narrative.

137 articles in 59 journals by 884 contributing authors

Observations of climate change, effects

Changes in mean and extreme homogeneous precipitation in China during 1960–2020, Wu et al., Atmospheric Research 10.1016/j.atmosres.2023.106891

Changes in Seasonality of Saltwater Inflows Caused Exceptional Warming Trends in the Western Baltic Sea, Barghorn et al., Geophysical Research Letters Open Access 10.1029/2023gl103853

Climate transition over the past two centuries revealed by lake Ebinur in Xinjiang, northwest China, Wei et al., Journal of Arid Environments Open Access 10.1016/j.jaridenv.2023.105025

Extreme rainfall events over the Okavango river basin, southern Africa, Moses et al., Weather and Climate Extremes Open Access 10.1016/j.wace.2023.100589

Summer atmospheric circulation over Greenland in response to Arctic amplification and diminished spring snow cover, Preece et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-39466-6

Warming trends of southwestern Atlantic SST and the summer's warmest SST's impact on South American climate, Vasconcellos et al., International Journal of Climatology 10.1002/joc.8163

Instrumentation & observational methods of climate change, effects

Response of stratospheric water vapour to warming constrained by satellite observations, Nowack et al., Nature Geoscience Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41561-023-01183-6

Two-level eddy covariance measurements reduce bias in land-atmosphere exchange estimates over a heterogeneous boreal forest landscape, Klosterhalfen et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology Open Access 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109523

Modeling, simulation & projection of climate change, effects

Evaluation of future temperature and precipitation projections in Morocco using the ANN-based multi-model ensemble from CMIP6, Gumus et al., Atmospheric Research 10.1016/j.atmosres.2023.106880

Projected changes in extreme climate events over Africa under 1.5 , 2.0 and 3.0 global warming levels based on CMIP6 projections, Ayugi et al., Atmospheric Research 10.1016/j.atmosres.2023.106872

Advancement of climate & climate effects modeling, simulation & projection

Analysis of rainfall and temperature using deep learning model, Choudhary & Ghosh, Theoretical and Applied Climatology 10.1007/s00704-023-04493-2

Does CMIP6 inspire more confidence in projecting precipitation over China?, Tian et al., International Journal of Climatology 10.1002/joc.8127

Global evaluation of simulated surface shortwave radiation in CMIP6 models, He et al., Atmospheric Research 10.1016/j.atmosres.2023.106896

Cryosphere & climate change

CRYO, Smith et al., Australian Journal of General Practice Open Access pdf 10.31128/ajgp-10-20-5673

Quantifying Antarctic-Wide Ice-Shelf Surface Melt Volume Using Microwave and Firn Model Data: 1980 to 2021, Banwell et al., Geophysical Research Letters Open Access 10.1029/2023gl102744

Paleoclimate & paleogeochemistry

Large obliquity-paced Antarctic ice-volume fluctuations suggest melting by atmospheric and ocean warming during late Oligocene, Brzelinski et al., Communications Earth & Environment Open Access pdf 10.1038/s43247-023-00864-9

The response of nitrogen and sulfur cycles to ocean deoxygenation across the Cenomanian-Turonian boundary, Zhai et al., Global and Planetary Change Open Access 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2023.104182

Biology & climate change, related geochemistry

Ant nests increase litter decomposition to mitigate the negative effect of warming in an alpine grassland ecosystem, Luo et al., Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 10.1098/rspb.2023.0613

Body mass decline in a Mediterranean community of solitary bees supports the size shrinking effect of climatic warming, Herrera et al., Ecology Open Access 10.1002/ecy.4128

Brood size in an uncertain world, James et al., Royal Society Open Science Open Access 10.1098/rsos.221362

Climate change implications for the Arafura and Timor Seas region: assessing vulnerability of marine systems to inform management and conservation, Johnson et al., Climatic Change Open Access 10.1007/s10584-023-03554-9

Complex relationships between climate and reproduction in a resident montane bird, Whitenack et al., Royal Society Open Science Open Access 10.1098/rsos.230554

Compositional shifts of alpine plant communities across the high Andes, Cuesta et al., Global Ecology and Biogeography Open Access 10.1111/geb.13721

Declining tree growth resilience mediates subsequent forest mortality in the US Mountain West, Cabon et al., Global Change Biology 10.1111/gcb.16826

Delayed recovery and host specialization may spell disaster for coral-fish mutualism, Froehlich et al., Ecology and Evolution Open Access 10.1002/ece3.10209

Different trends of vegetation activity over northern extratropics during two multidecadal warming periods in the 20th century, Guo et al., Global and Planetary Change Open Access 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2023.104181

Ecological response of an umbrella species to changing climate and land use: Habitat conservation for Asiatic black bear in the Sichuan-Chongqing Region, Southwestern China, Dai et al., Ecology and Evolution Open Access 10.1002/ece3.10222

Expanding range and role change, Armarego-Marriott, Nature Climate Change Open Access 10.1038/s41558-023-01675-8

Global analysis of seasonal changes in trematode infection levels reveals weak and variable link to temperature, Paterson et al., Oecologia Open Access pdf 10.1007/s00442-023-05408-8

Heat over heritability: Increasing body size in response to global warming is not stabilized by genetic effects in Bechstein's bats, Mundinger et al., Global Change Biology Open Access 10.1111/gcb.16824

Increased sensitivity of greening to afforestation in China over the recent 20 years, Jin et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109561

Larger responses of trees’ leaf senescence to cooling than warming: Results from a climate manipulation experiment, Wang et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109568

Lemming winter habitat: the quest for warm and soft snow, Poirier et al., Oecologia 10.1007/s00442-023-05385-y

Long-term changes in Noctiluca scintillans blooms along the Chinese coast from 1933 to 2020, Wang et al., Global Change Biology 10.1111/gcb.16831

Long-term community shifts driven by local extinction of an iconic foundation species following an extreme marine heatwave, Montie & Thomsen, Ecology and Evolution Open Access 10.1002/ece3.10235

Marine extinctions and their drivers, Nikolaou & Katsanevakis Boyer Young , Regional Environmental Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10113-023-02081-8

May future climate change promote the invasion of the marsh frog? An integrative thermo-physiological study, Padilla et al., Oecologia 10.1007/s00442-023-05402-0

Oxygen availability and body mass modulate ectotherm responses to ocean warming, Duncan et al., Nature Communications Open Access 10.1038/s41467-023-39438-w

Physiologically vulnerable or resilient? Tropical birds, global warming, and redistributions, Monge et al., Ecology and Evolution Open Access pdf 10.1002/ece3.9985

Potential macroalgal expansion and blue carbon gains with northern Antarctic Peninsula glacial retreat, Deregibus et al., Marine Environmental Research 10.1016/j.marenvres.2023.106056

Predatory walls may impair climate warming associated population expansion, Durant et al., Ecology Open Access pdf 10.1002/ecy.4130

Simulated climate warming causes asymmetric responses in insect life-history timing potentially disrupting a classic ecological speciation system, Lackey et al., Ecology Letters 10.1111/ele.14268

Temperature affects the timing and duration of fungal fruiting patterns across major terrestrial biomes, Krah et al., Ecology Letters Open Access 10.1111/ele.14275

The impact of warming climate on Himalayan silver fir growth along an elevation gradient in the Mt. Everest region, Gaire et al., Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109575

The inclusion of immediate and lagged climate responses amplifies the effect of climate autocorrelation on long-term growth rate of populations, Evers et al., Journal of Ecology Open Access pdf 10.1111/1365-2745.14155

The role of body mass in limiting post heat-coma recovery ability in terrestrial ectotherms, Leong et al., Ecology and Evolution Open Access pdf 10.1002/ece3.10218

Ungulate-vehicle crashes peak a month earlier than 38 years ago due to global warming, Bíl et al., Climatic Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10584-023-03558-5

Universal temperature sensitivity of denitrification nitrogen losses in forest soils, Yu et al., Nature Climate Change 10.1038/s41558-023-01708-2

Unprecedented shift in Canadian High Arctic polar bear food web unsettles four millennia of stability, Routledge et al., Anthropocene Open Access 10.1016/j.ancene.2023.100397

What does the future look like for kelp when facing multiple stressors?, Wear et al., Ecology and Evolution Open Access 10.1002/ece3.10203

GHG sources & sinks, flux, related geochemistry

A global meta-analysis of soil organic carbon in the Anthropocene, Beillouin et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-39338-z

Effects of cropland reclamation on soil organic carbon in China's black soil region over the past 35 years, Wang et al., Global Change Biology 10.1111/gcb.16833

On physical mechanisms enhancing air–sea CO2 exchange, Gutiérrez-Loza et al., Biogeosciences Open Access pdf 10.5194/bg-19-5645-2022

Small, Coastal Temperate Rainforest Watersheds Dominate Dissolved Organic Carbon Transport to the Northeast Pacific Ocean, McNicol et al., Geophysical Research Letters Open Access pdf 10.1029/2023gl103024

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


Compressed air and hydrogen energy storage hybridized with solar energy to supply electricity and hot water for a residential settlement, Li & Siavashi, Energy for Sustainable Development 10.1016/j.esd.2023.101263

Integrated halide perovskite photoelectrochemical cells with solar-driven water-splitting efficiency of 20.8%, Fehr et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-39290-y

Optimal sizing of battery-less domestic rooftop PV systems in South Africa using a probabilistic electricity synthesiser, Ritchie et al., Energy for Sustainable Development Open Access 10.1016/j.esd.2023.101268

Phase evolution under pressure, Javanbakht, Materialia Open Access 10.1016/j.mtla.2021.101199

Geoengineering climate

Changing local climate patterns through hail suppression systems: conflict and inequalities between farmers and wine producers in the Burgundy Region (France), Petit et al., Regional Environmental Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10113-023-02076-5

Black carbon

The turbulent future brings a breath of fresh air, Stjern et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-39298-4

Climate change communications & cognition

Activism without hope? Four varieties of postapocalyptic environmentalism, Cassegård, Environmental Politics Open Access pdf 10.1080/09644016.2023.2226022

Australians' perceptions about health risks associated with climate change: Exploring the role of media in a comprehensive climate change risk perception model, Thaker et al., Journal of Environmental Psychology Open Access 10.1016/j.jenvp.2023.102064

Climate change on Twitter: Implications for climate governance research, Dellmuth & Shyrokykh , WIREs Climate Change Open Access 10.1002/wcc.848

Innovation exceeds fear of climate change in Greenland, Forbes & Stammler, Nature Climate Change 10.1038/s41558-023-01714-4

Open Letters and Climate Communication: The Professional Roles and Identities of Researchers in Times of Crisis, Graminius, Environmental Communication Open Access pdf 10.1080/17524032.2023.2225765

The Power of Moral Words in Politicized Climate Change Communication, Kim et al., Environmental Communication 10.1080/17524032.2023.2227771

The use of qualitative research to better understand public opinions on climate change, Kleinberg & Toomey , Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences Open Access 10.1007/s13412-023-00841-w

Unveiling High Mountain Communities’ Perception of Climate Change Impact on Lives and Livelihoods in Gilgit-Baltistan: Evidence from People-Centric Approach, Ali et al., Environmental Communication 10.1080/17524032.2023.2229044

Agronomy, animal husbundry, food production & climate change

Carbon footprint and life cycle costing of maize production in Thailand with temporal and geographical resolutions, Moungsree et al., The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 10.1007/s11367-022-02021-4

Climate change perception, adaptation strategies, and constraints amongst urban farmers in Anambra Metropolis, Nigeria, Olumba et al., Climate and Development 10.1080/17565529.2023.2221685

Climate change scenario projections and their implications on food systems in Taita Taveta County, Kenya, Nyambariga et al., PLOS Climate Open Access pdf 10.1371/journal.pclm.0000114

Climate-smart forestry in the world’s drylands: A review of challenges and opportunities, Stavi et al., The Anthropocene Review Open Access pdf 10.1177/20530196231182354

Enhancing rice production sustainability and resilience via reactivating small water bodies for irrigation and drainage, Li et al., Nature Communications Open Access 10.1038/s41467-023-39454-w

Evaluation of historical and future thermal conditions for almond trees in north-eastern Portugal, Freitas et al., Climatic Change Open Access 10.1007/s10584-023-03569-2

Future responses to environment-related food self-insufficiency, from local to global, Brink et al., Regional Environmental Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10113-023-02069-4

Hierarchy of value orientation and beliefs in climate change influencing the farmers’ extractive or non-extractive behavior on the farm, Karami, Environment, Development and Sustainability Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10668-023-03215-y

Sustainable meat consumption: global and regional greenhouse gas emission implications and counterfactual scenario analyses, Yip et al., Environment, Development and Sustainability 10.1007/s10668-023-03346-2

Hydrology, hydrometeorology & climate change

Do Derived Drought Indices Better Characterize Future Drought Change?, Jiang et al., Earth's Future Open Access 10.1029/2022ef003350

Dynamic and thermodynamic causes of summer extreme precipitation over South China, Fang et al., Atmospheric Research 10.1016/j.atmosres.2023.106894

Geomorphic response of low-gradient, meandering and braided alluvial river channels to increased sediment supply, Kemper et al., Earth 10.1016/j.earscirev.2023.104429

MOPREDAS&century database and precipitation trends in mainland Spain, 1916–2020, Gonzalez?Hidalgo et al., International Journal of Climatology Open Access pdf 10.1002/joc.8060

Observed and projected changes in wet and dry spells for the major river basins in East Asia, Huang et al., International Journal of Climatology 10.1002/joc.8151

Climate change economics

Conflict sensitive climate finance: lessons from the green climate fund, Scartozzi, Climate Policy Open Access 10.1080/14693062.2023.2212640

How can a carbon tax benefit developing economies with informality? A CGE analysis for Côte d’Ivoire, Timilsina et al., Climate Policy 10.1080/14693062.2023.2223530

Institutional and macroeconomic stability mediate the effect of auctions on renewable energy capacity, Mac Clay et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113685

The drivers and barriers of energy efficiency, Su, Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113598

The narrowing gap in developed and developing country emission intensities reduces global trade’s carbon leakage, Meng et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-39449-7

Tracing metal footprints via global renewable power value chains, Fu et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-39356-x

Climate change mitigation public policy research

A techno-economic quantification of carbon reduction strategies in the Trinidad and Tobago power generation sector using Carbon Emission Pinch Analysis (CEPA), Ramsook et al., Carbon Management Open Access pdf 10.1080/17583004.2023.2227159

Air quality equity in US climate policy, Polonik et al., Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Open Access 10.1073/pnas.2217124120

Analysis of the influencing factors of China’s coal life-cycle carbon emissions based on LMDI-LCA, Li & Wang, Environment, Development and Sustainability 10.1007/s10668-023-03343-5

Are future recycling benefits misleading? Prospective life cycle assessment of lithium-ion batteries, Šimaitis et al., Journal of Industrial Ecology Open Access 10.1111/jiec.13413

Assessing distributional effects of carbon pricing in Israel, Missbach et al., Energy Policy 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113672

Conceptual issue of the dynamic GWP indicator and solution, Ventura, The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment Open Access pdf 10.1007/s11367-022-02028-x

Connectedness and spillovers in the innovation network of green transportation, Inglesi-Lotz et al., Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113686

Does the green credit policy affect the carbon emissions of heavily polluting enterprises?, Sun & Zeng, Energy Policy 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113679

Electricity accounting in life cycle assessment: the challenge of double counting, Holzapfel et al., The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment Open Access pdf 10.1007/s11367-023-02158-w

Funding research using climate change mitigation: The case of the Carbone boréal research infrastructure, Faubert et al., PLOS Climate Open Access pdf 10.1371/journal.pclm.0000232

Greener together: The impact of China's mixed-ownership reform on firm carbon emissions, Yu et al., Energy Policy 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113689

Identifying policy areas for the transition of the transportation sector, Hainsch, Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113591

Impact of coupling the electricity and hydrogen sector in a zero-emission European energy system in 2050, Gawlick & Hamacher Hamacher, Energy Policy 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113646

Low-carbon urban experiments from vision to reality: a systematic review of the literature from 2005 to 2020, Lu et al., Climate Policy Open Access pdf 10.1080/14693062.2023.2205371

National climate change acts: the emergence, form and nature of national framework climate legislation, Li & Zhu , Environmental Politics Open Access 10.1080/09644016.2023.2213136

Strategies for adaptation to and mitigation of climate change: Key performance indicators to assess nature-based solutions performances, Mosca et al., Urban Climate Open Access 10.1016/j.uclim.2023.101580

The effectiveness of the Iranian building code in mitigating climate change in Bandar Abbas, Fereidani et al., Energy for Sustainable Development Open Access 10.1016/j.esd.2023.101266

Transition of the procurement process to Paris-compatible buildings: consideration of environmental life cycle costing in tendering and awarding, Scherz et al., The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment Open Access pdf 10.1007/s11367-023-02153-1

Uncovering the effects of policies, climate, and economic development on carbon neutrality in southern Tibet, China, Pan et al., Carbon Management Open Access 10.1080/17583004.2023.2227149

Why municipalities reject wind power: A study on municipal acceptance and rejection of wind power instalments in Sweden, Lindvall, Energy Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.enpol.2023.113664

Climate change adaptation & adaptation public policy research

Centering equity in the development of a community resilience planning resource, Fry et al., Climate Risk Management Open Access 10.1016/j.crm.2023.100520

Developing adaptation outcome indicators to urban heat risks, Tuomimaa et al., Climate Risk Management Open Access 10.1016/j.crm.2023.100533

Do government knowledge production and use systems matter for global climate change adaptation tracking? Insights from Eastern Africa, Njuguna et al., Regional Environmental Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10113-023-02077-4

Empowering citizen-led adaptation to systemic climate change risks, Oliver et al., Nature Climate Change 10.1038/s41558-023-01712-6

Local drying climate magnified by urbanization in West Africa, Igun et al., International Journal of Climatology 10.1002/joc.8148

Testing the reliability of adaptive capacity as a proxy for adaptive and transformative responses to climate change, Bartelet et al., Global Environmental Change Open Access 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2023.102700

The hazard components of representative key risks The physical climate perspective, Tebaldi et al., Climate Risk Management Open Access 10.1016/j.crm.2023.100516

What drives local climate change adaptation? A qualitative comparative analysis, Braunschweiger & Ingold , Environmental Science & Policy Open Access 10.1016/j.envsci.2023.03.013

Wildfire smoke, environmental justice, and young children in urban Pacific Northwest communities, Jones et al., Urban Climate 10.1016/j.uclim.2023.101581

Climate change impacts on human health

Communicating about Extreme Heat: Results from Card Sorting and Think-Aloud Interviews with Experts from Differing Domains, Sutton et al., Weather, Climate, and Society Open Access pdf 10.1175/wcas-d-22-0108.1

Climate change impacts on human culture Other

Challenging the values of the polluter elite: A global consequentialist response to Evensen and Graham's (2022) ‘The irreplaceable virtues of in-person conferences’, Whitmarsh & Kreil, Journal of Environmental Psychology 10.1016/j.jenvp.2022.101881

Consistent spatial scaling of high-severity wildfire can inform expected future patterns of burn severity, Buonanduci et al., Ecology Letters 10.1111/ele.14282

Coupled surface to deep Earth processes: Perspectives from TOPO-EUROPE with an emphasis on climate- and energy-related societal challenges, Cloetingh et al., Global and Planetary Change Open Access 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2023.104140

Imperialism, colonialism, and climate change science, Mercer & Simpson, WIREs Climate Change Open Access pdf 10.1002/wcc.851

Is Amazon deforestation decreasing the number of thunderstorms over South America?, Bekenshtein et al., Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society 10.1002/qj.4518

Prolonged thermocline warming by near-inertial internal waves in the wakes of tropical cyclones, Gutiérrez Brizuela et al., Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Open Access 10.1073/pnas.2301664120

Informed opinion, nudges & major initiatives

Climate policy must account for community-specific socio-economic, health, and biophysical conditions—evidence from coastal Alaska, Schwoerer et al., Regional Environmental Change Open Access pdf 10.1007/s10113-023-02080-9

Green premiums are a challenge and an opportunity for climate policy design, Köveker et al., Nature Climate Change 10.1038/s41558-023-01689-2

Leveraging U.S. Climate Assessment Research Gaps to Inform Science Innovation, Basile et al., Weather, Climate, and Society 10.1175/wcas-d-22-0041.1

Mass Extinctions and Their Relationship With Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentration: Implications for Earth's Future, Davis, Earth's Future Open Access pdf 10.1029/2022ef003336

Panarchy theory for convergence, Sundstrom et al., Sustainability Science Open Access pdf 10.1007/s11625-023-01299-z

State of global land regulation inadequate to control biofuel land-use-change emissions, Merfort et al., Nature Climate Change Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41558-023-01711-7

The case for the “climate humanities”: toward a transdisciplinary, equity-focused paradigm shift within climate scholarship, Cole, Sustainability Science 10.1007/s11625-023-01358-5

The effectiveness of global protected areas for climate change mitigation, Duncanson et al., Nature Communications Open Access pdf 10.1038/s41467-023-38073-9

Venturing into the field, Austin, Human Organization Open Access 10.17730/humo.67.2.951667640h74m174

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

City of Tampa Climate Action and Equity Plan, Applied Sciences, City of Tampa

The plan lays out a path to transition to renewable energy and increase Tampa’s resilience to the effects of climate change. The plan is guided by three goals: to reduce the city’s carbon emissions, build climate-ready infrastructure and support all citizens along the way. Under these goals are 143 specific initiatives organized into 10 climate action categories: Energy, water and wastewater, stormwater, transportation and land use, waste management, housing and development, community, habitat and environment, food, and governance.

A Critical Minerals Policy for the United States. The Role of Congress in Scaling Domestic Supply and De-Risking Supply Chains, Robert Johnston with Cina Vazir, Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute’s Energy & Environment Program convened a task force of experts over the last year and a half to focus on an immediate policy priority: securing a responsible and resilient critical mineral supply chain for the United States. The report is motivated by the roundtable discussions between task force members. It includes objectives, a strategic approach, findings, and recommendations for U.S. policy on critical minerals. Congress must take steps to help close what is anticipated to be a yawning gap between both domestic supply and demand. Most importantly, Congress must make it easier to extract and process critical minerals domestically by legislating a place-based approach to critical mineral permitting and by setting timelines on project adjudication. At the same time, Congress needs to encourage measures to reduce the demand for critical minerals, such as investing more in technology for substitutes and recycling. Congress also needs to take a leadership role in clarifying and enforcing the rights of indigenous communities affected by mining. It should clarify and endorse the concept of Free, Prior, and Informed Consent and see that it is adhered to

2023 Statehouse Report: Right-Wing Attacks on the Freedom to Invest Responsibly Falter in Legislatures, Connor Gibson and Frances Sawyer, Pleiades Strategy

In 2023 Republican lawmakers in 37 states introduced 165 pieces of legislation to weaponize government funds, contracts, and pensions to prevent companies and investors from considering basic, common-sense risk factors. The legislation is framed around restricting the use of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investment criteria, such as the safety and treatment of employees, the diversity of management and workforce, and readiness to withstand the impacts of climate change. Were they to become law, the inevitable result of the bills would be to manipulate the market to favor select industries, particularly the volatile fossil fuel and firearms sectors. The authors provide the first comprehensive look at this legislative campaign and the broad effort to counter it. It follows the general arc of these 165 bills — where they came from, who sponsored them, who supported and opposed them, and how they fared.

California's Underperforming Gas Plants. How Extreme Heat Exposes California’s Flawed Plan for Energy Reliability, Regenerate California

California came dangerously close to a power shortfall in 2022, but state agencies were able to keep power flowing citing an increase in market coordination and battery storage. Unfortunately, there was little analysis available at the time detailing how the state’s gas fleet performed. The authors analyze the performance of California gas generators during the 2022 heatwave, focusing on how outages and derates increased risks of power shortfalls by reducing the plants’ contributions to the electricity supply, imperiling reliability. The analysis also assesses the air emissions associated with the gas plants’ operations during the heatwave.

Pace of Progress. Electrifying the machines in our lives at the rate required to transform JUNE 2023 BASELINE REPORT the market and meet our climate goals, Rewiring America

The authors spell out the specific, annual increases in the numbers of heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, induction stoves, electric vehicles, and rooftop solar systems that Americans must purchase and install to meet U.S. climate commitments. To get to zero emissions by 2050, Americans must decarbonize their own lives, trading out fossil fuel machines, household appliances, and vehicles for clean, efficient electric counterparts. The authors say that 14 million more of these machines and systems must be purchased over the current three-year window to have a reasonable expectation of success.

Drought and Public Health: A Roadmap for Advancing Engagement and Preparedness, Bell et al., National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Integrated Drought Information System

Although drought is not typically thought of as a health hazard, the pathways to human health outcomes are prevalent and numerous. Examples include the deteriorating mental health of farmers experiencing crop loss and respiratory issues from wildfires that were amplified due to drought conditions. Health outcomes from drought can be complex, and multiple partners with different expertise are needed to work collectively to address these issues. Integration of human health impacts from drought into drought planning and preparedness activities can help deliver early warning of potential drought-related human health threats and provide opportunities for mitigation to reduce risks. The authors present the culmination of knowledge gathering from multiple events and interviews and provide insights into the connection between drought events and human health impacts with specific examples and an overview of the principles of public health and engagement. In addition, the authors provide a list of key opportunities and recommended actions to advance drought and public health engagement and preparedness based on extensive dialogue and feedback from academic and practitioner communities across drought and public health disciplines.

The 8th National Risk Assessment. The Precipitation Problem, Alfaro et al., First Street Foundation

The authors highlight the underestimation of the likelihood and severity of extreme precipitation events contained in NOAA precipitation records in a widely used model by state transportation agencies in comparison to a newly developed model. The NOAA records do not account for changes in precipitation caused by climate change over the next 30 years. The new model does. Additionally, the authors highlight the connection between the increasing probability of extreme precipitation events and the increasing risk of precipitation-based flooding at a property level and how the risk will change over the next 30 years from a changing climate.

Public Policy for Net Zero Homes and Affordability, Bakhshi et al., Wentworth Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Massachusetts

The authors identify a range of effective policy tools that policymakers can use to meet critical goals for climate emissions, housing production, and housing affordability. The authors note that models of single-family home and townhouse construction and surveys of builders of single and multi-family housing indicate that the specialized stretch energy code is likely to increase the cost of construction of single family homes and townhouses by roughly 1.8 to 3.8 percent (approximately $10,000 to $23,000 for the median single family home), depending on the pathway to compliance selected, and increase the cost of construction of large multi-family buildings by roughly 2.4 percent, at least initially. It is important to interpret these numbers in the context of an evolving and diverse marketplace. Labor and material costs have been in flux; low-carbon technologies continue to advance; and builders themselves are still working out the least expensive routes to compliance for diverse projects on diverse sites. Several large non-profit builders of multi-family affordable housing noted that as developers and contractors have become more accustomed to Passive House construction, incremental costs have declined and will continue to decline.

The 2030 National Charging Network: Estimating U.S. Light-Duty Demand for Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure, Wood et al., National Renewable Energy Laboratory

The authors present a quantitative needs assessment for a national charging network capable of supporting 30–42 million plug-in electric vehicles on the road by 2030.

Finance for Zero: Redefining Financial-Sector Action to Achieve Global Climate Goals, Sachs et al., Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment

The financial system is woefully misaligned with the world’s climate goals. As providers, underwriters, and fiduciaries of trillions of dollars of capital flows annually, financial institutions must play a critical role in decarbonizing the economy and scaling access to clean, affordable energy. The authors focus on actions the financial sector can and should do even in the absence of a robust long-term public policy framework for climate change. They also discuss how financial institutions and their alliances can contribute to improving knowledge, data, and pathways that underpin their climate strategies and engagement.

In the Hot Seat: Saving Lives from Extreme Heat in Washington State, Vogel et al., The University of Washington’s Climate Impacts Group, UW’s Center for Health and the Global Environment, the Washington State Department of Health, the Office of the Washington State Climatologist, and Gonzaga University’s Center for Climate, Society & the Environment

Extremely hot weather is more than just uncomfortable — it can be dangerous and even deadly. In 2021, more than 400 people in Washington died from direct and indirect heat-related causes during a week-long extreme heat event. Many more people suffered from heat-related illnesses, and the event contributed to significant economic hardship. Enough is already known about the risks of extreme heat, and potential solutions, to take action that will save the lives of Washingtonians when the next extreme heat event occurs. The authors describe the problem of extreme heat and outline specific, actionable guidance for short-term emergency response and long-term risk reduction. Examples include creating culturally-specific cooling centers, increasing tree canopy and shade in certain urban areas, and improving protections for workers.

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. 

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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.


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Comments 1 to 13:

  1. I have become so cynical towards a real global response to reducing our still increasing global greenhouse gases. Climate will only respond to action-the talks, studies and asessments and tools are nice, positive affirming to read but when your up against this  it's no surprise the enfolding biosphere collapse with us included is inevitable.

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  2. The pessimism of people like Prove We Are Smart is justified. But I do not agree that the end of developed human civilization is inevitable due to the current, and historical, success of pursuers of benefit from harmful unsustainable developments and the related misunderstandings and lack of awareness.

    There is a robust diversity of evidence indicating that ethical consideration, the pursuit of increased awareness and improved understanding of what is harmful and a commitment to limit harm done and repair damage caused, is not effectively governing the actions of all people, especially not the most powerful and influential. But that could be corrected.

    It will be interesting to see how the “Mass Extinctions and Their Relationship With Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentration: Implications for Earth's Future” evaluation stands up, and is responded to. In addition to identifying that, by itself, increased CO2 levels are a serious problem that has already caused measurable damage, it essentially establishes that the only helpful climate change related geoengineering is actions that effectively remove CO2 from the atmosphere. See the following Quote:

    Abstract (last part)
    ...Today's atmospheric CO2 concentration, ∼421 parts per million by volume (ppmv), corresponds in the most recent marine fossil record to a biodiversity loss of 6.39%, implying that contemporary anthropogenic CO2 emissions are killing ocean life now. The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change projects that unabated fossil fuel use could elevate atmospheric CO2 concentration to 800 ppmv by 2100, approaching the 870 ppmv mean concentration of the last 19 natural extinction events. Reversing this first global anthropogenic mass extinction requires reducing net anthropogenic CO2 emissions to zero, optimally by 2% per year starting immediately.

    Key Points
    • Past mass extinctions are correlated with atmospheric CO2 concentration, but not with long-term temperature nor radiative forcing by CO2
    • Present CO2 concentration is associated in the fossil record with a 6.39% genus loss, implying current human destruction of biodiversity
    • Future anthropogenic mass extinction can be stopped only by cutting human emissions of CO2 to zero, optimally by 2% per year starting now.

    The statement that “...cutting human emissions of CO2 to zero, optimally by 2% per year starting now.” is ethically questionable. The ethical objective would be a quicker reduction, more sooner, while maintaining the development of sustainable improvements for the portion of humanity that is not living at least a basic decent life. And the first step of the ‘optimal transition’ would be a ‘big step’ of very rapidly ending unnecessary activities that cause increased CO2 levels, even if doing that would reduce developed perceptions of ‘success or superiority’ for many people.

    In the bigger picture, the future of humanity, the concern is human actions that reduce the magnitude of the biodiversity of life, even if extinctions are not the result. And reduction of biodiversity happens due to many other human activities, not just fossil fuel use. Also, there are many other impacts of human fossil fuel activity that negatively impact biodiversity. Increased CO2 levels are not the only fossil fuel related problem. However, as the research report indicates, other actions to protect biodiversity are meaningless if action is not taken to limit the increase of CO2 levels.

    The bigger picture bottom line is the need to reduce the harmful impacts of fossil fuel use and repair damage done in parallel with rapidly ended the activity. Also, the difficult challenge we face today due to the lack of responsible harm reduction through the past 30 years indicates that limiting the damage done by fossil fuel impacts will need to happen much faster than democratic free market action will ‘choose to end it and repair the damage done’. One established certainty is that removal of CO2 will be required to minimize and repair the damage done.

    Currently developed methods for CO2 removal from the atmosphere, and measures to reduce CO2 releases from fossil fuel burning while the activity is being rapidly ended, will need to be implemented even if they are not considered to be ‘actions that are economically preferred today’.

    The challenge is getting ‘economically motivated people (people who want to personally benefit from economic activity)’ to admit that the developed systems have a history of motivating the development of damaging results (because more harmful action can be quicker, easier and cheaper). Those unsustainable developments can be very hard to correct, especially if the harmful development is popular among, or profitable for, a powerful and influential portion of global humanity that has little interest in correcting their developed perceptions of superiority relative to others.

    I am optimistic about the future of humanity (otherwise there is no ethical purpose). But I am very pessimistic about the rate of success humanity will have in efforts to govern/limit the damage done by seemingly insatiable pursuers of ‘increased perceptions of status’.

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  3. Thanks for your reply One Planet Only Forever, My countries efforts so far? , "Australia has climbed just four places to rank 55th out of 63 in this year’s global Climate Change Performance Index 2023, launched at COP27 in Egypt, a slight improvement on last year’s where it came in dead last for climate policy. See here,  "  Admitantly, our dismal climate change response was from a right wing political party in power for nearly a decade. We elected a more centrist party last year and I suspect many countries will have the same slow motion response because of this,

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  4. prove we are smart,

    Thanks for pointing to the "Climate Change Performance Index 2023".

    I appreciate your Australian Perspective.

    I live in Canada. Canada has performed poorer in the CCPI evaluations than Australia. That poorer performance happened in spite of Canada's 'centrist' leadership since 2015. The 'centrist PM' openly, and rather irresponsibly and unethically, declared that Canada would be foolish to not try to maximize the benefits obtained from extracting and exporting the massive oil sands resource.

    I am even more aware of the tragic result of populist nationalist/regionalist government captured by 'harmful pursuits of benefit'. I live in Alberta. Alberta (~10% of Canada's population) is the main reason that Canada's overall CCPI evaluation is so poor (likely similar to what would be experienced in Queensland, Australia).

    Tragically, it is likely that a threat of significant global trade penalties will be required to get responsible performance from Canada's leadership, especially from the leadership of Alberta. That will temporarily boost populist nationalist/regionalist political support. But it is probably better for harmful people to be angry about having their ability to be harmful limited than it is to compromise with them to let them be more harmful than they need to be.

    An observation regarding the CCPI rankings. The evaluation is only of 60 countries. The evaluators wisely 'locked-in' a minimum of 3 spots for the highest level of performance. None of the nations evaluated had overall performance in that top category. So the lowest rank nation is number 63 out of 60.

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  5. Correction of my comment @4,

    The CCPI evaluations are for 59 countries plus the EU - 60 listed evaluations.

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  6. I was looking for recent articles on paleoclimatogical data for CO2 vs Temperature and happened to this posting about the work of W. Jackson Davis. Based on a previous work of his claiming that CO2 concentrations did not cause temperature changes in ancient climates, REF , I would definitely advise caution when considering his works.

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  7. Just Dean @6 :

    The 2017 study you link [by W. Jackson Davis] is quite bizarre.  And overall, is a waste of time for anyone to read.

    Red flags can be seen in the Author's voluminous Conclusions.  Such as his statement:  "... that other, unidentified variables caused most (>95%) of the variance in [temperature] across the Phanerozoic climate record"  <unquote>

    Variables unknown to modern science, apparently?

    In his final paragraphs, he seems to have a political axe to grind.  Indeed, his whole extensive paper shows much Motivated Reasoning ~ a triumph of weakly-based statistical analysis over logical analysis.

    I rate his paper as 10/10 for length and 0/10 for scientific substance.

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  8. If I'm not mistaken, WJ Davis' PhD and primary area of research is sports physiology.

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  9. I am also leery of single author papers.  

    If you are interested in the some of the latest thinking in correlations between ancient CO2 and T, I recommend this presentation by Dr. Jessica Tierney, REF .  

    If you are interested in just the bottom line, you can skip to the time marker around an hour into the presentation.  If you look at her plot of GMST vs CO2 (ppmv) introduced at 1:04:08, you might imagine how if you wanted to play fast and loose with the data and do some cherrypicking you could make the correlation look fairly poor.

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  10. Just Dean @9 :

    Thanks for the J.Tierney video reference [not yet viewed by me].

    I note the name Osman listed in the video credits, and also note that the video is marked as having had 135 views in 2 months.  So, not yet setting the the world on fire [apologies to Secretary-General Guterres of the U.N.].

    Just Dean ~ broadly speaking, the paleo record conforms with the present-day understanding of the climatic actions of CO2.   Is there a special point that you are wishing to make, regarding the paleo climate?

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  11. Eclectic @10. 

    I have been following Dr. Tierney's work for sometime. I think Dr. Tierney's work is underappreciated.  I think the combination of proxy data with modeling is cutting edge for paleoclimatogy.  For instance, I think her paper in Nature with Osman may ultimately redefine the shape of the "hockey stick," REF .  

    Also, look at the quality of the fit for the Cenzoic age, this research really might start to constrain the climate models for predicting future temperatures for different emission scenarios.

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  12. Just Dean @11 :

    Yes, the Osman study shows a slightly different "shape" to the subsequent millennia following the Holocene Optimum of (very roughly)  7,000 years ago.  And yes, that is of innate interest, but it makes little difference with respect to the rocket-like rise of global temperature which is progressing during the current industrial era.

    In golfing metaphor, it is the consideration of how past holes were played . . . compared with where the ball is sited right now ~ and what we need to do playing the ball right now.

    With or without climate models, we know enough about the angle of the grass slope & the wind's strength/direction, to make a reasonable judgement on how to strike the ball.  Lack of Will, is our problem.

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  13. Just Dean @11,

    I would not agree that the Holocene paper Osman et al (2021) co-authored by Tierney is the sole reason behind what has become the “Holocene temperature conundrum.” Other studies also found an absence of a Holocene Thermal Maximum, eg Kaufman et al (2020) or Bova et al (2021), or a very weak one, eg Kaufman & Broadman (2023), or regional differences, eg Cartapanis et al (2022).

    Chen et al (2023) [ABSTRACT] characterises it as a model-proxy thing with these methods needing to sharpen their game if the conundrum is to be resolved.

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