Volume 7 Number 6, June 2017
Volume 7 Number 6
- The balance of power
- Identifying authors
Britain’s energy supply is undergoing a revolution: for the first time since 1880, electricity production was coal-free for 24 hours.
A requirement for unique author identifiers will enable clearer tracking of scientific contributions.
- A road map for global environmental assessments
- Emerging clean energy technology investment trends
Increasing demand for solution-oriented environmental assessments brings significant opportunities and challenges at the science–policy–society interface. Solution-oriented assessments should enable inclusive deliberative learning processes about policy alternatives and their practical consequences.
Martin Kowarsch, Jason Jabbour, Christian Flachsland, Marcel T. J. Kok, Robert Watson
Early-stage capital providers and clean energy technology incubators are supporting a new wave of innovations focused on end-use efficiency and demand control. This wave complements expanding investments in supply technologies required for electricity sector decarbonization.
A. Bumpus, S. Comello
Books and Arts
- Whose forests, whose gain?
- On our bookshelf
- Ecological impacts: Gut-wrenching heat
- Climate governance: EU emissions benefits
- Climate dynamics: Shorter monsoon season
- Climate change impacts: Contemporary evolution
- Climate change economics: Make carbon pricing a priority
- Ecohydrology: When will the jungle burn?
- Hydroclimate: Understanding rainfall extremes
- Biogeochemistry: Tracing carbon fixation
- Forest disturbances under climate change
- A global economic assessment of city policies to reduce climate change impacts
- Population-based emergence of unfamiliar climates
- Australian climate extremes at 1.5 °C and 2 °C of global warming
- Drylands face potential threat under 2 °C global warming target
- Understanding the regional pattern of projected future changes in extreme precipitation
- Amplification of wildfire area burnt by hydrological drought in the humid tropics
- Climate mitigation from vegetation biophysical feedbacks during the past three decades
- Climate negotiators’ and scientists’ assessments of the climate negotiations
- Priority for the worse-off and the social cost of carbon
Constance L. McDermottreviews Why Forests? Why Now? The Science, Economics, and Politics of Tropical Forests and Climate Change
by Frances Seymour and Jonah Busch
Constance L. McDermott
News and Views
Estimates of the social cost of carbon vary widely as a function of different ethical parameters. Faced with values ranging from US$10 to US$1,000 per tCO2 and above, some perplexed policymakers have adopted ‘target-consistent’ carbon pricing instead.
See also: Article by Matthew Adleret al.
Fire weather indices are unsuited to forecast fire in tropical rainforests. Now research shows the area burnt across Borneo is related to drought-depleted water tables, presenting the opportunity to predict fire danger in these environments.
See also: Letter by Muh Taufiket al.
Warming induced by greenhouse gases will increase the amount of moisture in the atmosphere, causing heavier rainfall events. Changing atmospheric circulation dynamics are now shown to either amplify or weaken regional increases, contributing to uncertainty in future precipitation extremes.
Geert Lenderink, Hayley J. Fowler
See also: Letter by S. Pfahlet al.
Land surface models show large divergences in simulating the terrestrial carbon cycle. Atmospheric observations of the tracer carbonyl sulfide allow selection of the most realistic models.
Alexander Knohl, Matthias Cuntz
See also: Article by Timothy W. Hiltonet al.
Changes in forest disturbance are likely to be greatest in coniferous forests and the boreal biome, according to a review of global climate change effects on biotic and abiotic forest disturbance agents and their interactions.
Rupert Seidl, Dominik Thom, Markus Kautz, Dario Martin-Benito, Mikko Peltoniemi, Giorgio Vacchiano
Quantification of the economic costs of the urban heat island effect for the main cities around the world. The cost–benefit analyses for some mitigation options are presented and their contribution to the global mitigation efforts is discussed.
Francisco Estrada, W. J. Wouter Botzen, Richard S. J. Tol
The signal to noise ratio of temperature change can be used to determine exposure to unusual, unfamiliar and unknown climates. For large groups of the world’s population, mitigation can delay the onset of unfamiliar or unknown climates by several decades.
Dave Frame, Manoj Joshi, Ed Hawkins, Luke J. Harrington, Mairead de Roiste
Limiting warming to 1.5 °C is expected to lessen the risk of extreme events, relative to 2 °C. Considering Australia, this work shows a decrease of about 25% in the likelihood of record heat, both air and sea surface, if warming is limited to 1.5 °C.
Andrew D. King, David J. Karoly, Benjamin J. Henley
Limiting average global warming to 2 °C will not limit regional warming to the same levels. This study shows drylands have warmed, and will continue to warm, more than the humid lands that are primarily responsible for emissions.
Jianping Huang, Haipeng Yu, Aiguo Dai, Yun Wei, Litai Kang
Regional projections of daily extreme precipitation are uncertain, but can be decomposed into thermodynamic and dynamic contributions to improve understanding. While thermodynamics alone uniformly increase extreme precipitation, dynamical processes introduce regional variations.
S. Pfahl, P. A. O’Gorman, E. M. Fischer
See also: News and Views by Geert Lenderinket al.
Predictions of fire-burnt areas are typically based on climate data. Including hydrological processes in models improves projections of burnt area in Borneo, with large wildfires clustered in years of hydrological drought associated with strong El Niño events.
Muh Taufik, Paul J. J. F. Torfs, Remko Uijlenhoet, Philip D. Jones, Daniel Murdiyarso, Henny A. J. Van Lanen
See also: News and Views by David Bowman
Greening—increasing leaf area index—affects regional climate in a number of contradictory ways. The net global effect is now revealed to be cooling that has offset the equivalent of 12% of global land-surface warming over the past 30 years.
Zhenzhong Zeng, Shilong Piao, Laurent Z. X. Li, Liming Zhou, Philippe Ciais, Tao Wang
It is difficult to objectively evaluate climate negotiation outcomes. This study shows that climate negotiation participants are pessimistic about the specific approach of voluntary pledges, but are optimistic about the general usefulness of negotiations, particularly if they are more involved.
Astrid Dannenberg, Sonja Zitzelsberger, Alessandro Tavoni
The social cost of carbon (SCC) is usually calculated by an approach that gives less importance to future generations and does not consider well-being distribution. This study presents an alternative that takes these aspects into account.
Matthew Adler, David Anthoff, Valentina Bosetti, Greg Garner, Klaus Keller
See also: News and Views by Cameron Hepburn
Using carbonyl sulfide as a tracer, gross primary production in the Midwest USA is shown to significantly exceed that of any other region of North America. This approach provides a valuable means of assessing the regional accuracy of ecosystem land models.
Timothy W. Hilton, Mary E. Whelan, Andrew Zumkehr, Sarika Kulkarni, Joseph A. Berry, Ian T. Baker
See also: News and Views by Alexander Knohlet al.