Friday, November 16, 2012

Red Eye

I'm doing some research for pitches to a local magazine, and started looking for topics akin to the kind of nature and science stuff Orion and National Geographic would cover, but in New Jersey and the east coast. In light of Hurricane Sandy, a few articles I stumbled across both surprised and disheartened me.

It seems scientists were strongly and specifically giving warnings about current and future increases in environmental warming, storms, and sea levels (all related to the global warming concept, with localized and worldwide factors considered) for some time now. More specifically, they were as geographically specific as New York and the East Coast since 2007, as far as I can tell. I haven't read in depth, but a few quotes caught my eye:

"Global warming could effect the oceans." November 5, 2009.
"This out-of-sight, out-of-mind mentality in ignoring the vast expanse of the deep ocean needs to be reversed in light of long-term datasets from two major ocean basins showing that the deep sea is strongly impacted by climate variation over a range of time scales."

 "Bigger risk of East Coast storms forecast."  May 12, 2008.
 "A U.S. meteorological service is predicting a near average number of hurricanes this year, but with an increased risk of storms along the U.S. East Coast."
 "Although we are forecasting a total of 12 named storms in 2008, Â… a relatively high percentage of tropical storms are expected to make landfall and the major threat area is farther north than normal," said Chief Long-Range and Hurricane Forecaster Joe Bastardi. "We believe at least 40 percent of named storms will cause tropical storm or hurricane conditions on the U.S. (eastern) coastline, which is about 1.6 times the norm."

"US cities becoming 'heat islands'." December 13, 2010. This actually may or may not have any relation to larger environmental trends like water levels and global warming. I have no way of telling off-hand. It's interesting though:
"The size and development patterns of northeastern U.S. cities make them unusually warm, more than 10 degrees warmer than rural areas, researchers say."

"....summer land surface temperatures of cities in the Northeast were an average of 13 degrees F to 16 degrees F warmer than surrounding rural areas during a three-year period, a NASA release said.
The phenomenon.... is called the urban heat island effect."

" Densely-developed cities with compact urban cores are more apt to produce strong urban heat islands than more sprawling, less intensely-developed cities, they found."

"Dark city infrastructure, such as black roofs and asphalt roads makes urban areas more apt to absorb and retain heat, adding to the heat generated by motor vehicles, factories and homes."

"High water threat to U.S. east coast seen." July 15, 2011.
"A strong El Nino in future years could threaten the U.S. east coast with rising sea levels and more destructive storm surges, a study says."

"High-water events are already a concern for coastal communities. Studies like this may better prepare local officials who plan for or respond to conditions that may impact their communities," NOAA researcher Bill Sweet said."
 "Study: Climate warming differs by state." June 14, 2012.
"An analysis of temperature increases in the past 100 years shows climate change is affecting some U.S. states more than others, researchers say.

Scientists from Climate Central said the state experiencing the highest temperature increase was Rhode Island, followed by Massachusetts, New Jersey, Arizona and Maine, reported."
"There were regional trends to the increases, they said, with states in the Southwest, Northeast, Upper Midwest and Northern Rockies showing the fastest warming, while states in the Southeast and Midwest regions tended to warm much more slowly."