Hint: It has to do with climate change.
Washington Post article detailing the animals killed in Australia's current fires.
A clear-eyed opinion piece that appeared in the NY Times.
Washington Post story about unprecedented oceanic changes.
“We’re really playing catch-up,” said marine scientist Boris Worm of Dalhousie University in Canada. “Everything we base our civilization on is based on the accumulated experience from the last 7,000 years, about how the world works, and how we can survive in this world that had an exceptionally stable climate.
“And we’re shifting away from that equilibrium at breakneck speed now. We’re living in a no-analog world that none of us has any experience with.”
Around the world, over 1000 people were arrested. Washington Post story.
As experts gather at the U.N. climate talks in Poland, they are considering measures that had been previously dismissed. Carbon capture and storage is one of them.
Scientists from around the world are meeting to try to work out details for the fossil fuel emissions goals agreed to in 2015 Paris climate agreement.
A couple of days ago, the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, representing 91 top climate change researchers from 40 countries, released their long-awaited report on global climate change and the possibilities for topping rising temperatures at 1.5 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels. This was a report that some vulnerable nations had requested after a larger UN meeeting in Paris in 2015 had resulted in the 2016 Paris Agreement committing participating nations to put best efforts to hold global temperature rise in this century to no more than 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels. Those nations were concerned about the consequences of even a 1.5 degrees Celsius increase.
Here's a good summary of and response to the Panel's findings, which indicate that the consequences of a 1.5 degree increase are still quite severe, and that they may come as soon as 2040. Click the following link for the Panel's headline findings: Download UN panel headline findings.
One of the Panel's key suggestions for staving off such a global temperature increase turns on a tax on carbon dioxide emissions. This is a policy recommendations developed by climate economist William Nordhaus. Probably not coincidentally, the day after the climate report was released, Nordhaus was awarded half of the Nobel Prize in Economics.
Rolling Stone article on this subject.
Citing looming threats of nuclear war and global warming, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists announced today that they had moved the minute hand of their Doomsday Clock to two minutes before midnight— "30 seconds closer to catastrophe." You can read their statement here.
The Republican majority in Congress has blocked a U.S. sea-ice monitoring program that supplies data to scientists worldwide about the world's dwindling sea ice levels. Story here.
Permafrost is ground that remains frozen year after year. This article in the New York Times predicts that Alaska's permafrost could be gone by 2050. Bloomberg reports that he thawing permafrost has buckled segments of the Alaska Highway, the key artery connecting the state with Canada and the northwestern U.S.
It's a resource allocation issue. Article here.
World scientists will gather next week to discuss the problem of resource consumption. The meeting aims to connect the dots between social behavior and ecosystem destruction. Read the story in The Guardian.