Topic: Climate Change


Climate Change

Climate change involves natural and man-made changes to weather patterns that occur over millions of years or over decades.

In the past 150 years, human industrial activity has accelerated the rate of change in the climate due to the increase in greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide). Scientific studies describing this climate change continue to be produced and its expected impacts continue to be assessed.

In California, the California Environmental Protection Agency has found temperatures have risen by about 1.5 degrees since 1895. Looking ahead, temperatures could rise by 2.7 degrees and its sea levels by 55 inches in the next 40 years, according to the California Energy Commission and the California Natural Resources Agency. These are among the ongoing issues the state faces as it grapples with climate change.

Already, California is confronting rising demand for water and diminishing supplies. At the same time, the state’s water infrastructure such as levees is increasingly aging and in disrepair—conditions expected to be made worse by climate change.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Climate change could mean a much wetter California

Californians have been bracing themselves for a drier future accompanying a warming climate. But research by scientists at the University of California, Riverside, suggests that the state may actually get wetter in the event of severe climate change.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Marin sues energy companies over climate risks

Marin County sued 37 oil, gas and coal companies Monday asserting the companies knew their fossil fuel products would cause sea level rise and coastal flooding but failed to reduce their greenhouse gas pollution. The lawsuit was part of a coordinated litigation attack by Marin, San Mateo County and the city of Imperial Beach.

Aquafornia news Las Vegas Sun

Intensifying heat waves highlight deeper concerns about climate change

On June 19, the National Weather Service branch in Sacramento, Calif., tweeted a photo of bacon and cookies baking on the dashboard of a car, ending the post with “#heatwave.” … The West, known for hot summers, is getting a glimpse of what the future might hold if climate change continues at the current pace.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: How climate change could threaten the water supply for millions of Californians

When it comes to California and climate change, the predictions are staggering: coastal airports besieged by floodwaters, entire beaches disappearing as sea levels rise. Another disturbing scenario is brewing inland, in the sleepy backwaters of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. 

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Pentagon, Trump are at odds on climate change

An amendment to the annual defense policy bill requiring the Pentagon to submit a report on the national-security threats posed by climate change was approved by members of the Republican-led House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Trump’s plan to gut EPA gets cool reception on Capitol Hill

Lawmakers concerned about curbing pollution and a warming planet gave a cool reception to President Donald Trump’s environmental chief on Thursday as he defended the administration’s proposal to sharply reduce the budget of his own agency.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Climate change could burn a hole in Forest Service budget

Climate change appears to be fueling more wildfires as forest service officials are increasingly concerned they don’t have the funds to effectively handle another devastating season.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

US bucks trend amid increases for clean energy research

Energy ministers from around the world gathered in Beijing this week to report increased spending to help counter climate change. Yet one prominent voice, that of U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, delivered a starkly countervailing message as the Trump administration seeks to roll back spending on clean energy and promote fossil fuels.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Climate change raises new risk — Are inland bridges too low?

Even as President Donald Trump has announced his intention for the U.S. to withdraw from a global climate agreement, many of the nation’s river communities are responding to climate change by raising or replacing bridges that suddenly seem too low to stay safely above water.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

States seek to fill the void after Trump dumped the climate pact

Along with the German state of Baden-Wurttemberg, California in 2015 helped organize the Under2 Coalition, made up of state and local governments worldwide … Many in the coalition are concerned about how the effects of climate change, including rising seas, could affect their coastal cities, agriculture and ecosystems. 

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: California and Canada are teaming up to fight climate change — again

As President Donald Trump dithers on the fate of the Paris climate deal, California and other western states are banding together to reduce carbon emissions and save hundreds of millions of dollars — and now a Canadian province will join them. … BC Hydro operates 31 hydroelectric power plants, which could help California and other western states bring more solar and wind power online.

Aquafornia news KCRA Sacramento

Lake Tahoe clarity on the decline; experts blame climate change (with video)

UC Davis scientists from the Tahoe Environmental Research Center have been measuring the lake’s water clarity for nearly 50 years. The latest data shows a big drop in how far down the human eye can see into the lake.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Climate change taking toll on clarity of Lake Tahoe water

Climate change is causing Lake Tahoe to warm sooner in the spring than it has historically, disrupting the normal mixing of shallow and deep water and undercutting gains made in reversing the loss of clarity of the cobalt mountain lake, scientists say.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

‘Sobering’: How sea level rise could swamp Stockton

A worst-case sea level rise increase of 10 feet to 12 feet by the year 2100 would utterly transform Stockton as we know it today. Climate Central, a New Jersey-based climate science nonprofit, recently published maps depicting what this unlikely, yet still “plausible,” scenario might look like. 

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Extreme weather linked to greenhouse gases, global warming, Stanford study says

Weird weather and climate warming are two separate things, but a Stanford team is linking them. Using math, powerful computers and historical records, research led by Noah Diffenbaugh found that climate change has boosted the odds of extreme heat, drought, punishing rainstorms and retreating sea ice.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Study: Man-made extreme weather has hit all over the world

Most people on Earth have already felt extreme and record heat, drought or downpours goosed by man-made global warming, new research finds.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Why the menace of mosquitoes will only get worse

When the health effects of climate change are discussed, the planet-scale impacts get the attention: rising temperatures, which can cause death from overheating; earlier springs, which pump more pollen toward the allergic; runoff from violent storms, which washes fecal bacteria out of sewer pipes; changing airflows that trap ozone near the ground, stressing the systems of people living with heart disease. The unpredictable weather patterns stimulated by climate change affect infectious diseases, as well as chronic ones.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Sea-level rise in California could be catastrophic, study says

A state-commissioned report on climate change released Wednesday raises the stakes for fighting global warming, offering a clearer and, in some cases, more catastrophic picture of how much sea levels will rise in California. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

From extreme drought to record rain: Why California’s drought-to-deluge cycle is getting worse

California’s climate has long been dominated by cycles of intense dry conditions followed by heavy rain and snow. But never before in recorded history has the state seen such an extreme drought-to-deluge swing.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Governor lifts drought emergency

Gov. Jerry Brown declared the end of California’s drought emergency on Friday, stressing that water conservation must be a permanent part of life as the state adapts to climate change and prepares for the next drought.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Governor declares California drought emergency is over

tartlingly green hills, surging rivers and the snow-wrapped Sierra Nevada had already signaled what Gov. Jerry Brown made official Friday: The long California drought is over. Brown issued an executive order that lifts the drought emergency in all but a handful of San Joaquin Valley counties where some communities are still coping with dried-up wells.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Study predicts significant Southern California beach erosion

More than half of Southern California’s beaches could completely erode back to coastal infrastructure or sea cliffs by the year 2100 as the sea level rises, according to a study released Monday.

Aquafornia news Desert Sun

California water regulators expand focus on climate change

California’s water regulators are looking to strengthen their focus on climate change, adopting policies aimed at helping the state prepare for more severe floods, more extreme droughts and shrinking snowpack.

Aquafornia news New York Times

EPA head stacks agency with climate change skeptics

To friends and critics, Mr. [Scott] Pruitt seems intent on building an E.P.A. leadership that is fundamentally at odds with the career officials, scientists and employees who carry out the agency’s missions. That might be a recipe for strife and gridlock at the federal agency tasked to keep safe the nation’s clean air and water while safeguarding the planet’s future.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Global warming is slamming California. Will Trump take notice?

The drought has been declared over in most of California, with heavy winter rains sending water over the Oroville dam and forcing the evacuation of nearly 200,000 people. But climate change is still in the air, and the recent weather pattern is a harbinger of what’s to come.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Study shows how a warming world is changing the Colorado River

Above-average snowpack in the Rocky Mountains this year may bring some relief to the Colorado River Basin, which has been in a drought since 2000. But the long-term picture for the region is less rosy after a newly published study found just how much higher temperatures are impacting river flow.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Will the crisis at Oroville Dam become a catalyst for change?

Jeffrey Mount, a leading expert on California water policy, remembers the last time a crisis at the Oroville Dam seemed likely to prompt reform. It was 1997 and the lake risked overflowing, while levees further downstream failed and several people died.

Aquafornia news Desert Sun

‘Dangerously false’: Oroville Dam isn’t prepared for global warming, 2008 lawsuit says

For nearly nine years, two California counties have been waging a legal fight with the state’s Department of Water Resources over how the agency manages Oroville Dam.

Aquafornia news Sierra Sun

2016 was the warmest-ever year; what does it mean for Lake Tahoe?

Top scientists announced in January that last year was the hottest year on record — an announcement they’ve made three years in a row, with 2014, 2015 and now 2016 each being declared warmer than the previous year.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Trump official says climate-change skeptic is no longer part of NOAA transition

The Trump administration moved Tuesday to distance itself from a leading climate-change skeptic who was part of the team leading the transition for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration – an appointment that had alarmed NOAA employees.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Another alarm for scientists: Trump’s pick to guide NOAA transition

President Donald Trump is taking aim at one of the federal government’s main agencies for climate change research – the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration – and NOAA employees are girding for drastic changes in how they conduct science and report it to the public.

Blog post Gary Pitzer Gary Pitzer

Climate Change Impacts Here to Stay for California Farmers, Grower Says

California agriculture is going to have to learn to live with the impacts of climate change and work toward reducing its contributions of greenhouse gas emissions, a Yolo County walnut grower said at the Jan. 26 California Climate Change Symposium in Sacramento.

“I don’t believe we are going to be able to adapt our way out of climate change,” said Russ Lester, co-owner of Dixon Ridge Farms in Winters. “We need to mitigate for it. It won’t solve the problem but it can slow it down.”

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Storms preview sea-rise damage to California roads, cities

Ocean rise already is worsening the floods and high tides sweeping California this stormy winter, climate experts say, and this month’s damage and deaths highlight that even a state known as a global leader in fighting climate change has yet to tackle some of the hardest work of dealing with it.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

New California dam proposed to combat climate change concerns

Americans have had one primary reason for building dams over the past century: capturing water for growth, whether on farms or in cities. Now a new dam proposed on California’s Bear River offers another reason: adapting to climate change.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Global warming data that riled doubters is confirmed

A new independent study shows no pause in global warming, confirming a set of temperature readings adjusted by U.S. government scientists that some who reject mainstream climate science have questioned.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

San Rafael China Camp oyster die-off documented in new study

Powerful storms often hailed for bringing drought-busting rains to California also served to virtually wipe out a healthy growth of native Olympia oysters at China Camp near San Rafael, raising concerns about climate change, according to a new study.

Aquafornia news McClatchy Washington, D.C., Bureau

Florida’s climate scientists worry as Trump picks his Cabinet and sea levels rise

The world’s leading global-warming scientists, many of them living and working on the front lines in Florida, are hoping against hope that President-elect Donald Trump and his top advisers will not take the country backward in the fight against rising sea levels, increasing temperatures and looming environmental dangers.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Arctic’s year of crazy extremes as warming hits overdrive

Warming at the top of the world has gone into overdrive, happening twice as fast as the rest of the globe, and extending unnatural heating into fall and winter, according to a new federal report.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Trump names climate change skeptic and oil industry ally to lead the EPA

Donald Trump picked Oklahoma Atty. Gen. Scott Pruitt to run the Environmental Protection Agency, signaling the president-elect will deliver on his vow to disassemble President Obama’s landmark effort to fight climate change.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Spread by trade and climate, bugs butcher America’s forests

Aided by global trade, a warming climate and drought-weakened trees, the invaders have become one of the greatest threats to biodiversity in the United States.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Get used to heat records; Study predicts far more in future

The United States is already setting twice as many daily heat records as cold records, but a new study predicts that will get a lot more lopsided as man-made climate change worsens.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

UN report: Human footprint ‘increasingly visible’ in climate

Hot and wild and with an “increasingly visible human footprint” — that’s how the U.N. weather agency sums up the global climate in the past five years. 

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Q&A: On the Colorado River, climate change is water change

How low can the Colorado go? When will we get back to “normal” winters? Can we blame it all on climate change? To address some of these questions, the Colorado River Research Group recently released a concise four-page paper explaining how climate change is affecting the river.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Court rules species can be protected if agencies can use global-warming models to show habitat loss

In a ruling that has ramifications for land-use and water policy across the United States and California, a federal appeals court ruled Monday that scientists can draw on long-range climate projections to determine whether a species should be listed as threatened.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Court: US agency acted reasonably to protect seals

An appeals court panel on Monday ruled that a federal agency acted reasonably in proposing to list a certain population of bearded seals threatened by sea ice loss.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Species may be listed as threatened based on climate change projections, court says

Federal authorities may list a species as “threatened” based on climate models that show habitat loss in the coming decades, an appeals court decided Monday.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Forest fires have doubled in West due to climate change, study finds

Climate change from human activity nearly doubled the area that burned in forest fires in the American West over the past 30 years, a major new scientific study has found, and larger, more intense fires are all but guaranteed in the years ahead.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Human-caused warming doubled how much of the West has burned since 1984, study finds

Human-caused warming in the West has nearly doubled the area burned by wildfires over the last three decades, researchers reported Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Wildfires getting worse due to climate change, study finds

Wildfires in California and across the West have become twice as destructive over the past three decades due to climate change, taking a toll that will only continue to escalate, according to research published Monday.

Aquafornia news Tahoe Daily Tribune

Tahoe Regional Planning Agency: Lake Tahoe faces major challenges from climate change

The Lake Tahoe Basin saw continued environmental improvement over the last four years, but faces major challenges from climate change, according to a draft 2015 Threshold Evaluation Report released by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA).

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Disappearing Yosemite glacier becomes symbol of climate change

When naturalist John Muir explored Lyell Glacier in Yosemite National Park about 150 years ago, the river of ice stretched as far as 10 football fields between the peaks of the Lyell Canyon, a glacier one might expect to see in Alaska, not California.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Global warming could make the drought last for a century, says UCLA study

Released today, the study in Scientific Reports — part of the Nature Publishing Group — found that carbon dioxide and methane emitted from the burning of fossil fuels may be mimicing the effects of some catastrophic environmental phenomena the planet has previously experienced.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Record temperatures are making wildfire season worse. And it’s only getting hotter.

As Southern California firefighters battled the Blue Cut Fire last month, there was nothing they could do to fend off an unfortunate reality: Global warming is already lengthening wildfire season and increasing the likelihood of extreme fires across the West. 

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

The surprising science of wildfires and tree-killing beetles

So far this 4,636 wildfires in California have burned more than 200,000 acres. That’s more fires than this time last year and more fires than the five-year average. … California has an added challenge of dealing with a five-year drought.

Aquapedia background


While less a scientific term than a colloquial one, meadows are defined by their aquatic, soil and vegetative properties.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Obama’s first visit to Lake Tahoe, vows to return (with audio)

President Barack Obama called Lake Tahoe a pristine environment that must be protected.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Obama rips climate science skeptics in Tahoe visit: ‘You don’t have to be a scientist’

President Barack Obama, fixed against a pristine backdrop of the Sierra Nevada, issued a forceful defense Wednesday of his administration’s policies to address climate change, warning that rising temperatures could lay waste to decades of conservation efforts at Lake Tahoe and throughout the United States.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

At Lake Tahoe, Obama links conservation to climate change

Standing beneath the forest-green peaks of the Sierra Nevada, President Barack Obama drew a connection Wednesday between conservation efforts and stopping global warming, describing the two environmental challenges as inseparably linked.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

White House promises more federal aid for Lake Tahoe region

The White House on Wednesday announced a series of new funding and environmental programs to address the deteriorating health of Lake Tahoe and the surrounding forests caused in part by the increasing temperatures brought about by climate change.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: In West Coast visit, President Obama goes after climate change skeptics, praises efforts to restore Lake Tahoe

At a conservation summit on the southern shore of Lake Tahoe, President Obama on Wednesday pointed to the environmental degradation of the lake’s once-crystal-clear waters as proof of the damage caused by climate change and warned of the threat posed by Republican leaders who continue to deny its existence.

Aquafornia news NPR

Climate change complicates predictions of damage from big surf

Tropical Storm Colin ripped across the Gulf of Mexico in June and hit the coast of southwest Florida with 60-mile-an-hour winds. Before it arrived, a team from the U.S. Geological Survey used a new computer model to predict how far inland the waves would invade.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

California firefighters stretched thin as blazes sweep state

California’s state fire department is stretched thin just as the bone-dry state enters the peak of its wildfire season, with vacancy rates exceeding 15 percent for some firefighters and supervisors.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Mosquitoes winning under climate change, salmon losing

California’s iconic natural features, from salmon runs to Joshua trees, could dwindle or disappear, as climate change rearranges the state’s weather patterns and landscape, leaving much of the state hotter and drier, scientists warn.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Volcanic springs offer hope for threatened fish

Snow-capped Mount Shasta and the slumbering volcanoes of the Cascade range hold reservoirs of life-giving cold water that nourish threatened fish and could save the species when the changing climate warms downstream rivers, UC scientists say.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

President Obama will speak at annual Lake Tahoe Summit

The White House says President Barack Obama will travel to Lake Tahoe on Aug. 31 to speak about his commitment to protecting the environment and addressing climate change.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

The ‘new normal’ for wildfires in California (with audio)

Blame the increase in frequency and severity of wildfires in California on drought and climate change.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

A warmer, less clear Lake Tahoe in 2015, UC Davis scientists say

Lake Tahoe got warmer and cloudier last year, according to UC Davis researchers.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Lake Tahoe: Warmest water temperatures ever recorded threaten famed clarity, new study shows

Lake Tahoe’s average surface temperature last year was the warmest ever recorded, the latest evidence that climate change is altering California’s iconic Sierra Nevada landmark.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

New poll shows Californians’ opinions on climate change, water (with audio)

A poll by the Public Policy Institute of California shows, despite a partisan divide, 62 percent of likely voters favor the law [AB 32]. … The poll also found that water supply and drought remain the top environmental concern for Californians.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Governor’s office considering various strategies to combat wildfire amid drought and tree mortality

Gov. Jerry Brown’s office recently held the first in what’s expected to be a series of private meetings with scientists, conservationists and fire professionals to discuss how to prevent massive blazes in the face of climate change and prolonged drought.

Aquafornia news NPR

Climate change may already be shifting clouds toward the poles (with audio)

The way clouds cover the Earth may be changing because of global warming, according to a study published Monday that used satellite data to track cloud patterns across about two decades, starting in the 1980s.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Summer of Fire: Climate change driving wildfires

California’s Rim Fire in 2013 was the third largest in the state’s history, and the 2012 Rush Fire, the second largest. And last year’s Butte and Valley fires were some of the most destructive in state history. These grim statistics are part of an alarming trend in western states: The number of large fires is growing, and so is the area burned and the length of the annual fire season.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Wednesday’s Top of the Scroll: Science groups to Congress — Climate change is real threat

Thirty-one of the country’s top science organizations are telling Congress that global warming is a real problem and something needs to be done about it.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Deadly California wildfires spark debate about development

A speeding wildfire in California that turned hundreds of homes near Lake Isabella to piles of twisted rubble has forced a conversation about how to minimize destruction in the most populous state experiencing the effects of climate change.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

More wildfires, starting sooner, burning more acres (with audio)

A report by the nonpartisan Climate Central says that 11 million people in California are at risk of wildfire and that climate change is lengthening the wildfire season.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Will water sector help or hurt on climate change?

California has been diligently trying to reduce use of fossil fuels and cut greenhouse gas emissions. Last year, Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 350, which requires 50 percent of the electricity from utilities to come from renewable sources by 2030. But it’s not just energy utilities that can add more renewables to their portfolios – water suppliers can, as well, although they aren’t mandated to do so.

Aquafornia news Water Deeply

Q&A: Surprising way climate change is impacting water

To understand what the future holds, sometimes we have to look at the past, Bruce Daniels has learned. Daniels is trying to help Californians understand future water availability by examining 85 years of daily precipitation records. His analysis has shown that water managers (and the rest of us) have some reason to be concerned.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Scientists turn chief global warming gas into harmless stone

Experts say the results of a two-year, $10 million experiment called CarbFix , conducted about one-third of a mile (540 meters) deep in the rocks of Iceland, offer new hope for an effective weapon to help fight man-made global warming.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Climate change is happening on Mars, where an ice age is coming to an end

By examining swirling patterns left in ice topping the Red Planet’s north pole, scientists using radar data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter have put together an unprecedented look into our rusty neighbor’s most recent ice age.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Bay Area’s future depends on managing rising sea levels

Fifty years ago, Bay Area residents rallied around the call to save San Francisco Bay. Public action on an unprecedented scale reversed development tides that for more than a century had covered shallow waters with land for industrial parks and housing tracts, roadways and garbage dumps.

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

New study: Sierra Nevada forests shifting to higher elevations as temperatures warm

In another sign of the warming climate, key species of trees in California’s Sierra Nevada mountain range — including lodge pole pine, red fir and western white pine — are shifting to higher elevations in search of cooler temperatures, a broad new study by state biologists has found.

Aquafornia news NPR

The World Bank says a warming world means less water, with economic consequences (with audio)

We often associate climate change with too much water — the melting ice caps triggering a rise in sea levels. But a new World Bank report says that it’s too little water — the potable sort — that we also need to think about.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Why did El Niño miss SoCal? It’s complicated, National Weather Service says

A mix of rising global temperatures, mysteriously warmed waters off Baja California and unusually far-reaching storms in the western Pacific Ocean conspired to block this year’s El Niño storms from hitting Southern California, the National Weather Service said this week.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

California braces for unending drought

With California entering its fifth year of a statewide drought, Gov. Jerry Brown moved on Monday to impose permanent water conservation measures and called on water suppliers to prepare for a future made drier by climate change.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Sally Jewell: ‘Keep it in the ground’ protests ‘naïve’

President Barack Obama’s Interior secretary had some sharp words for the “keep it in the ground” movement Thursday.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Study: Warming giving US type of weather we prefer — for now

Global warming has mostly made the weather more pleasant for Americans over the last 40 years, which may explain why much of the public doesn’t rank climate change as big a threat as do scientists and the rest of the world, a new study suggests.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Interior Secretary Jewell: ‘Major course correction’ needed on conservation

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on Tuesday called for “a major course correction” in the way the nation conserves its public lands, waters and wildlife, saying climate change and other trends threaten natural areas “in existential ways.”

Aquafornia news The New York Times

2016 already shows record global temperatures

This year is off to a record-breaking start for global temperatures. … With the release on Tuesday of its global climate report, NOAA is the third independent agency — along with NASA and the Japan Meteorological Association — to reach similar findings, each using slightly different methods.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

West Coast fisheries are at risk as climate change disturbs the ocean’s chemistry

The West Coast’s abundant fisheries are at risk as the region’s waters become more acidic, a group of scientists warn.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Most Americans say climate changing, humans to blame

If you’ve heard the presidential candidates talk about climate change, you’d probably guess it’s one of America’s most divisive issues. … But polls show that a vast majority of Americans believe climate change is happening — and young people especially want the United States to do something about it.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Living with less snow in the West

Among firs and cedars high in the Sierra Nevada, scientists are using an array of instruments to monitor the health of the forest, measure the snowpack and track the water that melts and seeps into the soil. … Already, as the winters have grown warmer, the snow has been melting earlier after storms pass.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Tribe’s leader: Climate change threatens water supplies

As chairman of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, Jeff Grubbe looks at the supply of water from the Colorado River and sees an uncertain future, in part due to climate change.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Navy to require climate change reporting from vendors

The U.S. military has characterized climate change as a threat to national security since at least 2014, saying drought and other natural disasters can foster instability, conflict and extremism.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Wildfires, once confined to a season, burn earlier and longer

The first Alaska wildfire of 2016 broke out in late February, followed by a second there just eight days later. … And on the border of Arizona and California this month, helicopters dumped water on flames so intense that they jumped the Colorado River, forcing the evacuation of two recreational vehicle parks.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

A California farmer who is preparing for climate change

Don Cameron expects farmers will see some of the biggest effects as the climate changes, and he says growers need to take proactive steps to prepare. … He is one of several featured speakers at the upcoming One Nation: Climate Change forum at the Sunnylands Center and Gardens in Rancho Mirage.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

White House water summit focuses on climate threat

The White House held its first national water summit on Tuesday, seeking to put a greater focus on water challenges ranging from climate change to the old, leaky pipes that waste billions of gallons across the country every day.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Study: Farms, hydropower at risk in West’s changing climate

Climate change could upset the complex interplay of rain, snow and temperature in the West, hurting food production, the environment and electrical generation at dams, the federal government warned Tuesday.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Obama seeks more coordination on dealing with drought

President Barack Obama on Monday directed the federal government to come up with a less reactionary and more long-term strategy for dealing with drought. … The White House is hosting a “water summit” on Tuesday, which is World Water Day, to raise awareness of the importance of safe, sufficient and reliable water resources.

Brad Udall
Blog post Gary Pitzer

Average Sierra Nevada Winter Temps at Record Highs
Scientist Brad Udall says climate pattern is new normal for California

California had its warmest winter on record in 2014-2015, with the average Sierra Nevada temperature hovering above 32 degrees Fahrenheit – the highest in 120 years. Thus, where California relies on snow to fall in the mountains and create a snowpack that can slowly melt into reservoirs, it was instead raining. That left the state’s snowpack at its lowest ever – 5 percent on April 1, 2015.

Because he relays stats like these, climate scientist Brad Udall says he doesn’t often get invited back to speak before the same audience about climate change.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

13.1 million U.S. coastal residents could face flooding because of rising sea levels

As many as 13.1 million people living along U.S. coastlines could face flooding by the end of the century because of rising sea levels, according to a new study that warns that large numbers of Americans could be forced to relocate to higher ground. … As many as 1 million California residents could be affected.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Panel: Finding climate fingerprints in wild weather is valid

Climate science has progressed so much that experts can accurately detect global warming’s fingerprints on certain extreme weather events, such as a heat wave, according to a high-level scientific advisory panel.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

San Francisco Planning Department gets ready to get ready for sea-level rise

The long-term threat of a rising bay has prodded nearly a dozen city agencies to come together and respond with an action plan — “action” being a relative term.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Appeals court upholds designation of polar bear habitat

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service followed the law when it designated more than 187,000 square miles – an area larger than California – as critical habitat for threatened polar bears in Alaska marine waters and its northern coast, an appeals court ruled Monday.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Regional officials take steps to address health effects of climate change

For years scientists have warned that climate change will cause melting ice caps, rising sea levels and severe droughts and floods. But global warming’s effects can also be far more personal, seriously harming human health.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Seas are rising way faster than any time in past 2,800 years

Sea levels on Earth are rising several times faster than they have in the past 2,800 years and are accelerating because of man-made global warming, according to new studies.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Seas are rising at fastest rate in last 28 centuries

The worsening of tidal flooding in American coastal communities is largely a consequence of greenhouse gases from human activity, and the problem will grow far worse in coming decades, scientists reported Monday.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Fight brews over federal wildfire funding after devastating year

After the costliest of wildfire seasons ravaged the West last year, with three catastrophic blazes ripping through Lake County, the U.S. Forest Service may be headed for a showdown with Congress over how to cover the surging bill.

Aquafornia news KQED Public Media for Northern California

California is likely to be stormier with climate change

The types of storms that have been bringing heavy snow and rain to the West this winter, triggering landslides and floods while easing stubborn droughts, are likely to become stronger and more frequent, according to the results of a conclusive new study.

Aquafornia news KQED Public Media for Northern California

California’s water supply at risk from warmer winters

Any sign of precipitation in the forecast is a welcome sight for Californians these days. But with temperatures expected to be above normal this winter, California’s snowpack may not reach the heights it could.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Report looks at how climate change could affect Truckee River Basin (with audio)

A new federal study takes an in-depth look at how climate change will affect the Truckee River Basin. The Basin includes the Truckee and Carson Rivers, Pyramid Lake and Lake Tahoe.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

North Coast lawmakers Mike McGuire, Jim Wood seek disaster declaration for crab season

Lawmakers from coastal California are calling on Gov. Jerry Brown to declare a federal disaster for the halted crab season.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Scientists to announce ‘doomsday clock’ time

California Gov. Jerry Brown will join former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz and former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Perry for a discussion at Stanford University after the unveiling.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Gov. Jerry Brown calls for better water management

During his state of the state address on Thursday, Gov. Jerry Brown highlighted the need to better manage water and recharge aquifers while touting efforts at home to combat climate change.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

2015 was the hottest year on record, according to new data

2015 was Earth’s hottest year on record, and it appears the planet is still getting hotter.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Study: Man-made heat put in oceans has doubled since 1997

The amount of man-made heat energy absorbed by the seas has doubled since 1997, a new study says.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

As with lakes around world, water temperature in Lake Tahoe rising

Like hundreds of lakes around the world, Lake Tahoe has been warming steadily for more than 40 years, with surface temperatures rising faster than the global warming rate of oceans and the atmosphere, an international survey has detected.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

First-of-its-kind $12 parcel tax proposed for all nine Bay Area counties

In a milestone for San Francisco Bay restoration that also raises questions about who should pay to protect property from rising seas caused by climate change, a low-profile government agency is expected to place a $12 annual parcel tax on the June ballot in all nine Bay Area counties.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Researchers say less Arctic sea ice means more precipitation

The Arctic is seeing more precipitation as sea ice diminishes from climate warming, according to a research paper by U.S. and Canada scientists.

Aquafornia news USA Today

White House launches ‘moonshot for water’

The White House launched an ambitious effort to enlist the private sector in its efforts to reclaim and conserve water Tuesday, saying it’s critical for the country to better manage water supplies that are under increasing pressures from climate change.

Aquafornia news Circle of Blue

Blog: Water gained stature at Paris climate talks

The Paris conference brought cheers not only from renewable energy advocates but from water groups. For years, organizations that focus on the world’s freshwater resources felt marginalized in the climate change debate. A warmer planet means nastier droughts, bigger floods, and unsettling perturbations in the water cycle, but the question of adaptation was mostly ignored by diplomats. 

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Marin environmental group launches project to plant 10,000 redwood trees

Marin environmental activists have hatched a plan to plant 10,000 redwood trees in the Lagunitas Creek watershed that backers say will assist fish and birds and help clean the air.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Jerry Brown interview: climate change, fracking, Diablo Canyon, offshore wind, oil on his family ranch

Gov. Jerry Brown arrived in Paris Saturday to attend the international climate summit. His schedule includes 20 meetings over five days with world leaders.

Aquafornia news The Weather Channel

Five extreme weather patterns we are watching worldwide

As world leaders gather in Paris for the COP21 conference on climate change, the weather pattern worldwide happens to be entering into a pattern of extremes. 

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Gov. Jerry Brown on climate change, ballot initiatives (with audio)

The governor sat down with Capital Public Radio’s Ben Adler before leaving for the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, France. … [Gov. Jerry] Brown also declined to say if he’ll use his $20 million dollar campaign war chest to oppose a different initiative that would block his proposed Delta tunnels project.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Monday’s Top of the Scroll: Earth is a wilder, warmer place since last climate deal made

This time, it’s a hotter, waterier, wilder Earth that world leaders are trying to save. … Some differences can be measured: degrees on a thermometer, trillions of tons of melting ice, a rise in sea level of a couple of inches.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Thursday’s Top of the Scroll: Absurdly hot October as Earth sets 8th heat record this year

October’s temperature was the most above-normal month in history. … [NOAA climate scientist Jessica] Blunden and other scientists blame a potent and strengthening El Nino on top of accelerating man-made global warming.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Billions of people depend on water from shrinking snowpacks

Snowpacks are a vital source of water for humans, but they may shrink in some regions as the climate warms. A new study estimates how changes in showfall will affect water supplies.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Report: 14 wild weather events last year goosed by warming

New scientific analysis shows the fingerprints of man-made climate change on 14 extreme weather events in 2014, hitting every continent but Antarctica.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

More states wade into legal fight on greenhouse gases

A legal battle is brewing in Washington over President Barack Obama’s plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, setting states economically dependent on fossil fuels against those already suffering from longer droughts, stronger storms and higher seas.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

As scientists worry about warming world, US public doesn’t

Most Americans know the climate is changing, but they say they are just not that worried about it, according to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Gov. Brown’s link between climate change and wildfires is unsupported, fire experts say

The ash of the Rocky fire was still hot when Gov. Jerry Brown strode to a bank of television cameras beside a blackened ridge and, flanked by firefighters, delivered a battle cry against climate change.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

San Francisco Bay: Race to build wetlands is needed to stave off sea-level rise, scientists say

San Francisco Bay is in a race against time, with billions of dollars of highways, airports, homes and office buildings at risk from rising seas, surging tides and extreme storms driven by climate change. … That’s the conclusion of a new report from more than 100 Bay Area scientists and 17 government agencies that may help fuel a regional tax measure aimed at addressing the looming crisis.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Scholars urge more research on future of Colorado River

A coalition of scholars across the West is urging the federal government to partner with the National Academy of Sciences to study the future of the Colorado River, including if climate change is leading to reduced stream flow.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Q&A: California’s fire problem — Is it mostly a people problem?

The changing nature of fire, and its consequences, is Topic A at meetings of the Society of American Foresters, of which [Char] Miller is a member, and it’s also a fundamental part of his forthcoming book, “America’s Great National Forests, Wildernesses and Grasslands.”

Aquafornia news Bay Area News Group

Rising seas threaten San Francisco Bay and Delta wetlands and land

Rising sea levels threaten not only structures around San Francisco Bay and the Delta but the shoreline marshes critical to the environmental health of the estuary, and the results could be “catastrophic” if action is not taken, scientists warned Thursday.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Worst may be yet to come as drought-parched landscape is primed to burn

Experts said at least another month, possibly two, of extreme fire risk remains before hoped-for El Niño winter rains could begin to dampen dry grasses, shrubs and trees all over California.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Sierra Nevada snowpack is much worse than thought — a 500-year low

In a paper published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change, scientists estimate that the amount of snow in the Sierra Nevada was the lowest in more than 500 years. … The report is the latest in a series of studies that have sought to characterize the depth of California’s four-year drought and place it in a broader historic context.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

These researchers want California to be a global advocate about climate change

Researchers from California’s top universities agree with scientists across the globe that climate change is not some future threat but is already happening, causing extreme weather, record-breaking heat, mega wildfires and shifting migration patterns.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Climate Change Symposium kicks off in Sacramento (with audio)

California is already dealing with the effects of climate change, but scientists and policy experts are discussing how to better manage and adapt to those effects during the California Climate Change Symposium in Sacramento.

Aquafornia news KQED News

Tuesday’s Top of the Scroll: Jerry Brown’s climate campaign meshes well at Tahoe Summit

Perhaps the stunning blue lake waters were the inspiration for Gov. Jerry Brown to offer a crystal-clear message at Lake Tahoe’s annual environmental summit: Opponents in the political fight over climate change better be ready.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Gov. Jerry Brown: Climate change worsening California’s drought

Citing a new report, Gov. Jerry Brown said Thursday that climate change is worsening the effects of California’s four-year drought.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

July was Earth’s hottest month on record; scientists say climate change is worsening California drought

In a dramatic sign of climate change’s growing impact, this July was the warmest month on Earth since modern temperature records were first kept in 1880, federal scientists announced Thursday. While climate change isn’t causing California’s drought, it’s making the disaster worse, according to a separate report released Thursday.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

July was warmest month on Earth in 136 years, NOAA says

Another month, another record high for global temperatures, U.S. government scientists announced Thursday. … The report bolstered predictions from NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center that an El Niño is likely later this year. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

California drought: Climate change plays a role, study says. But how big?

A growing number of scientists have made the claim that climate change is at least partly responsible for California’s crippling drought. Now researchers have estimated the extent to which humans are to blame: between 8% and 27%.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Climate change intensifies California drought, scientists say

Global warming caused by human emissions has most likely intensified the drought in California by roughly 15 to 20 percent, scientists said Thursday … “The whole water system that we have in California was designed for the old climate,” said Noah S. Diffenbaugh, a climate scientist at Stanford who edits the journal that published the new paper. 

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Climate change could bring twice as many big El Niños

If human beings don’t slow their emission of planet-warming greenhouse gases, extreme El Niños could nearly double in frequency — from once every 28 years to once every 16 years on average, the new study found.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Get ready for the new normal — dry and drier

California in the Great Drought is a living diorama of how the future is going to look across much of the United States as climate change sets in. … Now, the large dark bruise spreading across the state on the U.S. Drought Monitor map is a preview of a bone-dry world to come.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Gov. Brown says Rocky Fire is a wake-up call, and the ‘new normal’ (with audio)

California Governor Jerry Brown says the state has a “new normal” when it comes to wildfires.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Friday’s Top of the Scroll: Jerry Brown says ‘California is burning’ and climate change is to blame

The imminent danger from the devastating Rocky Fire in Lake County diminished Thursday and residents began to return to their evacuated homes, but Gov. Jerry Brown made clear in a visit to the area that California is still in danger.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Brown’s climate message: ‘California’s burning: What are you going to do about it?’

Gov. Jerry Brown, who called a state of emergency last week and visited the [Rocky Fire] area Thursday, blamed climate change for hot weather that contributes to drier forests and increased fire danger.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Gov. Brown highlights climate change risks at site of Rocky fire

In his quest to force tougher action on climate change, Gov. Jerry Brown has traveled to China, Mexico, Canada, even the Vatican.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Most Californians link climate change, drought; split is partisan

Nearly two-thirds of Californians say global warming is contributing to the state’s drought, but there’s a distinct partisan divide, according to a survey released Wednesday. … When it comes to drought-fighting measures that hit closer to home, the survey found strong support …

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Another month, another global heat record broken – by far

Earth dialed the heat up in June, smashing warm temperature records for both the month and the first half of the year.

Aquafornia news Capital Public Radio

Climate change meets drought in California (with audio)

Jay Famiglietti is a Senior Water Scientist with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab and a Professor of Earth Systems Science at UC Irvine. We asked him if California is seeing an intersection of the drought and climate change.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Highlights of the pope’s case for environmental protection

The pope [Pope Francis] says “a very solid scientific consensus” indicates that global warming is real, and will limit drinking water, harm agriculture, lead to some extinctions of plant and animal life, acidify oceans and raise sea levels in a way that could flood some of the world’s biggest cities.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Gov. Brown preaches adaptation but ducks big fights

As for the drought, [Gov. Jerry] Brown told [Los Angeles Times Publisher Austin] Beutner that Californians need to “take water and use it and use it again and use it again. The metaphor is spaceship Earth. In a spaceship you reuse everything.” OK, but where’s the state’s crash recycling program?

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Feds say Southwest, Northwest could see major wildfires

[Interior Secretary Sally] Jewell said climate change and drought are to blame for worsening wildfires, which she said destroy homes and businesses, threaten power grids and drinking water and cause damage river valleys that cost millions and take decades to restore.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

New Fed data shows no stopping or slowing of global warming

Global warming has not stopped or even slowed in the past 18 years, according to a new federal study that rebuts doubters who’ve claimed that that heating trends have paused.

2016 Executive Briefing
Felicia Marcus, John Laird among the speakers

The Water Education Foundation’s flagship event, the 33rd annual Executive Briefing, will be held March 17, 2016 in Sacramento. The theme for this year’s Briefing is “Defining the New Normal.” 

This is the go-to conference for water district managers and board members, state and federal agency officials, city and county government officials, farmers, environmentalists, attorneys, consultants, engineers, business executives and public interest groups.

Confirmed speakers include State Water Board Chair Felicia Marcus and California Natural Resources Secretary John Laird. See announcements on the right-hand of this screen for more program information.

Doubletree by Hilton
2001 Point West Way, Sacramento, CA 95815
Aquafornia news North Lake Tahoe Bonanza

Commentary: Scientists looking for new ways to battle climate change, increasing populations at Lake Tahoe

For years, the health of Lake Tahoe was best understood by means of an annual dropping of a white disk — known as a Secchi disk — in the middle of the lake and measuring the depth at which it could still be seen.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Number of days with temperatures above 95°F to soar in Los Angeles County

By 2050, parts of Los Angeles County are forecast to experience triple or quadruple the number of days of extreme heat if nothing is done to control greenhouse gas emissions, placing further demand on the region’s drinking water and electricity, according to two new reports by UCLA scientists.

Aquafornia news U.S. Geological Survey

News Release: Climate change threatens native trout diversity

Scientists have discovered that the diversity of a threatened native trout species will likely decrease due to future climate change.  … Researchers with the USGS, University of Montana and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service examined whether bull trout genetic diversity was related to climate vulnerability at the watershed scale, which was determined on the basis of current and future predictions of stream temperature and flow and existing habitat conditions.  

Aquafornia news Sierra Sun

Climate change, corporate investment part of new era of ski business at Tahoe

When Andy Wirth became the CEO of Squaw Valley Ski Resort in November 2010, he did so amid a precipitation-laden winter that saw enormous snow loads give skiers at Lake Tahoe plenty of coveted powder days.

Aquafornia news Stockton Record

Flood plan comes at a cost

The plan by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers calls for improving 23 miles of levees, from Mosher Slough in the north to French Camp Slough in the south. This is intended to protect much of Stockton from catastrophic floods worsened by climate change.

Aquafornia news The Brookings Institution

Blog: Combating climate change and water scarcity in the U.S. (with video)

Pat Mulroy, a senior fellow with the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings and a senior fellow for climate adaptation and environmental policy at UNLV’s Brookings Mountain West, discusses the water scarcity issues that have developed over the last few decades and the realistic future of water in the U.S. … During her tenure at SNWA [Southern Nevada Water Authority], the region faced a huge crisis when one of the worst droughts in the history of the Colorado River hit the region.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Blog: Does California’s water use drive climate change?

The link between delivering or treating water and expending energy will be the topic of a Senate Select Committee on Climate Change hearing in Calabasas today.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Commentary: Tap California’s innovators to develop water policies

After 40 years of working on California water issues, it sometimes feels to me [George Miller] as if we haven’t learned anything. … The policies of the past century won’t work in a future where we will face continued population growth and the effects of climate change.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Rising temperatures are amplifying drought effects, study finds

Climate change is increasing the risk of severe drought in California by causing warm periods and dry periods to overlap more often, according to a new study.

Aquafornia news Stanford Report

News Release: Stanford scientists — Warming temperatures implicated in California droughts

In a new study, published in the March 2 issue of the journal of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers led by Stanford professor Noah Diffenbaugh examined the role that temperature has played in California droughts over the past 120 years. They also examined the effect that human emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are having on temperature and precipitation, focusing on the influence of global warming upon California’s past, present and future drought risk.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Scientists explain how climate change helps fuel California drought

Climate change is increasing the risk of severe drought in California by causing warm periods and dry periods to overlap more often, according to a new study.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Is drought the new normal for Southern California?

Increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is altering Earth’s most important atmospheric weather cell, drawing more moisture into the deep tropics and broadening areas of drought at higher latitudes, according to a new study.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

Editorial: Science documents firmer evidence on climate change. Will lawmakers act?

A panel of scientists, including several from the Bay Area, have pinpointed levels of a key heat-trapping gas long blamed for wild swings in the weather. … The fresh facts have an important role to play.

Western Water Magazine

Is California’s Water Supply Resilient and Sustainable?
January/February 2015

This issue looks at sustainability and resiliency and what the terms mean for California’s water.

Aquafornia news NPR

Climate scientist tries arts to stir hearts regarding Earth’s fate (with audio)

A decade ago, physicist Robert Davies wasn’t all that interested in Earth’s climate.

Aquafornia news San Francisco Chronicle

King tides at Candlestick Point offer glimpse of planet’s future

As this week’s king tides washed over a small beach at Candlestick Point, the San Francisco Bay became an unlikely classroom for teaching the grim reality of sea-level rise.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

Scientists call for ‘geoengineering’ tests to find ways to cool the planet

Scientists are so concerned about global warming that they’re now calling for tests to find ways to cool the planet — the first step toward exploration of a highly controversial field that sounds like science fiction.

Aquafornia news Las Vegas Review-Journal

Climate change will increase evaporation of Colorado River

The Colorado River faces a dual threat from climate change as rising temperatures increase the demand for irrigation water and accelerate evaporation at the river’s two largest reservoirs. So says a new report from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation …

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Global warming wasn’t the only reason 2014 was California’s hottest year

Explaining warmer temperatures can be complex. … But after interviews with scientists, urban policy experts and a review of reports, what made 2014 the warmest year on Earth, as well as in the western United States, was a mix of powerful forces that pushed the mercury up especially inside the heat lamps known as cities.

Aquafornia news San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Tucson-based group brings unique program on energy, drought, climate change to Whittier

Former University of Arizona chemistry professor and science adviser to two secretaries of state under President George W. Bush, George Atkinson believes the scientific method is working. … For the next six weeks, he’s bringing his method to Whittier, asking chosen representatives of the city of 86,000 to serve as a model for any town Southern California and discuss, debate and agree on a plan to address global climate change as well as droughts and energy use.

Aquafornia news U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

News Release: Predicting plant responses to drought

A new U.S. Geological Survey study shows how plants’ vulnerability to drought varies across the landscape; factors such as plant structure and soil type where the plant is growing can either make them more vulnerable or protect them from declines. Recent elevated temperatures and prolonged droughts in many already water-limited regions throughout the world, including the southwestern U.S., are likely to intensify according to future climate model projections.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Dealing with sea level rise becomes real in Marin

By next year work should be underway on National Park Service property at Stinson Beach to gird against rising seas that are predicted to swallow part of Marin’s coast sometime this century. The threat of sea-level rise is the primary reason why the park service is planning a $2.3 million revamp of a wastewater treatment system …

Aquafornia news U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

Fact Sheet: Climate Change — Evaluating Your Local and Regional Water Resources

Recently, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has developed modeling tools that integrate climate data with rigorously developed regional and local environmental data to understand the hydrologic response to climate change and the effects on regional and local watersheds and landscapes.

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Commentary: Warm rains dictate new reservoirs

We should be building more low-elevation, off-stream storage such as the San Luis Reservoir in the Pacheco Pass west of Los Banos (which could be enlarged) or the proposed Sites reservoir in the foothills west of Colusa, which would hold about a million acre-feet of water.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Can Jerry Brown truly be a climate action champion if he does not reject fracking?

California Gov. Jerry Brown has done more to fight climate change than perhaps any other elected official in the United States.

Aquafornia news U.S. Department of the Interior

News Release: President proposes $13.2 billion budget for Interior Department

President Obama’s fiscal year (FY) 2016 budget request of $13.2 billion for the Department of the Interior continues the Administration’s strong support for Interior’s core missions, protecting the nation’s cultural and natural heritage, responsibly managing energy development on public lands and waters, investing in science, and honoring the nation’s trust responsibilities to Native Americans and Alaska Natives and our special commitments to affiliated island communities.

Aquafornia news The Desert Sun

Commentary: The dance band on the Titanic

For as long as I can remember, my days have begun with a hot decaf and the morning paper, much of it filled with headlines of man’s inhumanity to man. But more and more these days, those headlines are sharing space with stories of man’s inhumanity to nature.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

Obama orders stricter flood standards for federal projects

President Barack Obama has signed an executive order requiring federal projects to meet stricter standards for withstanding flooding that scientists say could worsen because of climate change.

Aquafornia news Associated Press

NASA launches Earth-observing satellite

The satellite is on a three-year mission to track the amount of water locked in soil, which may help residents in low-lying regions brace for floods or farmers get ready for drought conditions.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

NASA launches Earth-observing satellite on third try

Amid growing concern about global weather patterns, a rocket roared into space Saturday carrying a NASA satellite that will give scientists new tools to forecast weather, track drought and monitor climate change.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

NASA moves Vandenberg satellite launch to Saturday

NASA has again postponed the launch of a satellite on a mission to gather water data that will help forecast weather, track drought and monitor climate change.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Climate models don’t over-predict warming, study shows

If you listen to climate change skeptics, Earth’s surface hasn’t warmed appreciably in the last 15 years, and any “record” set last year is just the result of the planet doing what the planet naturally does. It turns out they’re right, but for the wrong reasons, according to a study published online Wednesday in the journal Nature.

Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Blog: Michael Anderson, state climatologist — Climate, drought and change

Earlier this month, the Public Policy Institute of California held a half-day conference in Sacramento focusing on how the state can manage through another dry year and become more drought resilient. Is the current drought a sign of things to come? Michael Anderson, state climatologist with the Department of Water Resources, kicked off the PPIC conference, Managing Drought, with a presentation addressing that question.