Tuesday, October 04, 2016
Reservoirs play substantial role in global warming because of methane release (?)
This is a totally dishonest piece of work. In the laboratory, methane (CH4) does indeed absorb a lot of wavelengths. But in the atmosphere, water vapour absorbs the same solar wavelengths. And water vapour is many time more frequent than CH4. So there is little or nothing left for CH4 to absorb after water vapour has done its work. In real life its presence or absence in the air has virtually no effect at all
Washington State University researchers say the world's reservoirs are an underappreciated source of greenhouse gases, producing the equivalent of roughly 1 gigaton of carbon dioxide a year, or 1.3 percent of all greenhouse gases produced by humans.
That's more greenhouse gas production than all of Canada.
Writing in next week's journal BioScience, the WSU researchers say reservoirs are a particularly important source of methane, a greenhouse gas that is 34 times more potent than carbon dioxide over the course of a century. Reservoir methane production is comparable to rice paddies or biomass burning, both of which are included in emission estimates of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the leading international authority on the subject.
John Harrison, co-author and associate professor in the WSU Vancouver School of the Environment, last month attended a meeting in Minsk, Belarus, to discuss including reservoir emissions in a planned 2019 IPCC update of how countries report their greenhouse gas inventories.
Methane accounts for 80 percent
"We had a sense that methane might be pretty important but we were surprised that it was as important as it was," said Bridget Deemer, WSU research associate and lead author. "It's contributing right around 80 percent of the total global warming impact of all those gases from reservoirs. It's a pretty important piece of the budget."
The BioScience analysis, which drew on scores of other studies, is the largest and most comprehensive look to date at the link between reservoirs and greenhouse gases, Harrison said.
"Not only does it incorporate the largest number of studies," he said. "It also looks at more types of greenhouse gases than past studies."
Acre per acre, reservoirs emit 25 percent more methane than previously thought, he said.
The researchers acknowledge that reservoirs provide important services like electrical power, flood control, navigation and water. But reservoirs have also altered the dynamics of river ecosystems, impacting fish and other life forms. Only lately have researchers started to look at reservoirs' impact on greenhouse gases.
"While reservoirs are often thought of as 'green' or carbon neutral sources of energy, a growing body of work has documented their role as greenhouse gas sources," Deemer, Harrison and their colleagues write.
Gases from decomposing organic matter
Unlike natural water bodies, reservoirs tend to have flooded large amounts of organic matter that produce carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide as they decompose. Reservoirs also receive a lot of organic matter and "nutrients" like nitrogen and phosphorous from upstream rivers, which can further stimulate greenhouse gas production
In 2000, BioScience published one of the first papers to assert that reservoir greenhouse gases contribute substantially to global warming. Since then, there has been a nine-fold increase in studies of reservoirs and greenhouse gases. Where earlier studies tended to be confined to reservoirs behind power stations, the newer studies also looked at reservoirs used for flood control, water storage, navigation and irrigation.
The WSU researchers are the first to consider methane bubbling in models of reservoir greenhouse gas emissions. Also, while previous papers have found that young, tropical reservoirs emit more methane than older, more northern systems, this study finds that the total global warming effect of a reservoir is best predicted by how biologically productive it is, with more algae and nutrient rich systems producing more methane.
The authors also report higher per-area rates of methane emission from reservoirs than have been reported previously. This means that acre-for-acre the net effect of new reservoirs on atmospheric greenhouse gases will be greater than previously thought. Reservoir construction around the globe is expected to proceed rapidly in coming decades.
Fun! Electric cars are polluters too!
Non-exhaust PM emissions from electric vehicles
Victor R.J.H. et al.
Particulate matter (PM) exposure has been linked to adverse health effects by numerous studies. Therefore, governments have been heavily incentivising the market to switch to electric passenger cars in order to reduce air pollution. However, this literature review suggests that electric vehicles may not reduce levels of PM as much as expected, because of their relatively high weight. By analysing the existing literature on non-exhaust emissions of different vehicle categories, this review found that there is a positive relationship between weight and non-exhaust PM emission factors. In addition, electric vehicles (EVs) were found to be 24% heavier than equivalent internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). As a result, total PM10 emissions from EVs were found to be equal to those of modern ICEVs. PM2.5 emissions were only 1–3% lower for EVs compared to modern ICEVs. Therefore, it could be concluded that the increased popularity of electric vehicles will likely not have a great effect on PM levels. Non-exhaust emissions already account for over 90% of PM10 and 85% of PM2.5 emissions from traffic. These proportions will continue to increase as exhaust standards improve and average vehicle weight increases. Future policy should consequently focus on setting standards for non-exhaust emissions and encouraging weight reduction of all vehicles to significantly reduce PM emissions from traffic.
Atmospheric Environment, Volume 134, June 2016, Pages 10–17
Climate zealots exposed as the Arctic ice fails to melt away
I know it is only two weeks since I last reported on Arctic ice, but the latest news from that front is even more remarkable. My theme then was those sad climate activists who regularly venture into the polar regions because they have been fooled into thinking that the ice is vanishing but find it so thick that they have to be rushed back to safety. But this week’s focus is on those responsible for fooling them.
For nine years, two professors – Wieslaw Maslowski from California and Peter Wadhams from Cambridge – have been in the forefront of warning that, thanks to runaway global warming, the Arctic will soon be “ice-free”. Their every dire prediction has been eagerly reported by the warmist media, led by the BBC, In 2007 they said this would happen “by 2013”.
In July 2008 The Independent even devoted its entire front page to announcing that the ice could have gone by that September, only to find that it had by then begun a marked recovery. By 2012, when this dreadful event still hadn’t happened, Wadhams was making headlines by predicting that it would all be gone “by 2016” (only for its thickness to increase in 2013 and 2014 by 33 per cent). By June 2016, with Wadhams due to publish a book called Farewell To Ice, he was being quoted, under such headlines as “Arctic could be ice-free for first time in 100,000 years claims leading scientist”, again predicting that by this September it could have shrunk to “an area less than one million square kilometres” and by next year could be all gone.
So, with September now over, what happened? By Sept 10 the ice had reached its lowest extent, 4.1 million sq km, four times more than Wadhams predicted. But this was its earliest date of refreezing for 19 years. And what has happened since, is even more startling, The Danish Meteorological Institute reports that, since that date, it has been refreezing at its fastest rate since daily records began in 1987.
In a note for the Global Warming Policy Forum, Dr David Whitehouse, formerly science editor for the BBC website, shows how, ever since those scary predictions began in 2007, the trend of summer melting has been completely flat. Shouldn’t all those climate zealots be wondering whether Prof Wadhams is really the most reliable “leading scientist” they should be quoting on this particular story?
World Bank secretly finances Asian 'coal boom,' group says
Good to hear that the Greenie grip is being escaped to some extent
The World Bank is indirectly financing a boom in some of Asia's dirtiest coal-fired power generation despite commitments to end most funding for the sector, a development advocacy group charged on Monday.
The power plants, which contribute to climate change and deforestation as well as premature deaths due to illness, are cropping up from Bangladesh to the Philippines, all with financing provided by financial intermediaries supported by the Bank, said a report produced by the organization Inclusive Development International.
In a policy shift in 2013, the Bank said it would end virtually all support for the creation of coal-burning power plants, supporting them only in "rare circumstances" where there are no viable alternatives.
However, since that pledge, 41 coal projects have received funding from banks and investment funds supported by the World Bank's private-sector arm, the International Finance Corporation, according to the report.
Canadian farmers expected to benefit from global warming by growing corn, soy
A reluctant admission from a Greenie
Lutz Goedde, a partner with McKinsey and Co. in Denver, told the Global Business Forum in Banff on Friday that rising temperatures and longer growing seasons mean that ever-increasing areas of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba will be able to switch to corn and soybeans from wheat and canola.
"I think Canada is in a unique situation with the corn and soy belt basically moving north," he told reporters after his speech.
"The planet is heating up and there is an opportunity for Canadian farmers — and they have been executing on it — to convert wheat land to corn and soy production."
Peas and lentils for export. He said warmer weather is also allowing prairie farmers to grow more pulse crops such as peas and lentils to export to emerging markets such as India.
On its website, Agriculture Canada cites studies that suggest the Prairies will experience more pronounced warming due to climate change than the rest of the world and the milder, shorter winters will allow increased farm productivity and new crops.
It also warns that warming could increase the frequency of extreme weather events like droughts and floods and could aid in the growth of weeds, pests and diseases in livestock and crops.
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Posted by JR at 1:32 AM