The Hot Zone

Climate cycles influence human conflict

Climate change destabilizes natural ecosystems, but does it also instigate war? A new study in the journal Nature sheds light on the hotly contested debate about whether climate variability plays a role in the onset of violence, especially in poor countries. The researchers led by Solomon Hsiang from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs focused on natural global climate cycles. They found that the arrival of El Niño, which raises temperatures and cuts rainfall... [Read more]

Posted by Alison Hawkes on August 25, 2011 No Comments »
Category : The Politics of Climate Change

The cold tongue

The disappearance of glaciers goes hand in hand with warming temperatures. But it turns out that the process may be more complicated than rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere. For insight, we look to the past. The Pliocene epoch was last era in which temperatures were this warm, about 3 to 5 million years ago. CO2 concentrations were 30 percent higher, sea levels 15 to 20 meters higher, and temperatures more than 5 degrees Fahrenheit hotter. And there were no glaciers, except intermittent ice caps... [Read more]

Posted by Alison Hawkes on June 14, 2010 No Comments »
Category : The Oceans


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