Posts

New climate warnings in old permafrost

by Bob Berwyn, Inside Climate News 


Highlights

  • A new study in Science Advances says that only a few degrees of warming is needed for large scale permafrost thawing, which would release methane and carbon dioxide that has been trapped in the frost 
  • The permafrost regions of the arctic hold more carbon dioxide than the Earth’s atmosphere. If this carbon is released rapidly in large amounts it will accelerate climate change 
  • This tipping point due to permafrost melt has been seen before in other warming phases of the planet’s history
  • It is uncertain how much of this released carbon could be sequestered by peatlands and new arctic shrubs that have grown due to the warming of that region
  • The melting of permafrost is impacting indigenous peoples in the arctic, as the infrastructure they rely on is built on the collapsing permafrost

Scientists are increasingly warning that to avoid catastrophic impacts from climate change, the world’s governments must implement policies for massive greenhouse gas emissions reductions and begin a drawdown of carbon from the atmosphere within ten years. With 9 of 15 global tipping points now active, what we do today can either unleash an inhospitable hothouse Earth or secure a safe climate well into the future. For a safe and healthy future for all, endorse the Climate-Safe California Platform to implement scalable solutions that can reverse the climate crisis.


Read More: https://insideclimatenews.org/news/16102020/permafrost-study-arctic-ocean-climate-change

Exxon’s plan for surging carbon emissions revealed in leaked documents

by Kevin Crowley and Akshat Rathi, Bloomberg


Highlights

  • Exxon Mobil is raising its yearly emissions to 17% by 2025, releasing an additional 21 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year according to the companies own assessment of its $210 billion investment strategy 
  • New investment and growth plans come after the company experienced losses during the pandemic and the collapse of oil demand
  • The largest U.S. oil producer has never made a commitment to lower oil and gas output, planned to become carbon neutral, nor have they ever publicly disclosed its forecasts for its own emissions
  • Exxon does not account for emissions from customers burning their fuel, meaning their new growth strategy would account for and additional 100 million tons of CO2

Increased air pollution from fossil fuel emissions makes all of us more vulnerable to the current COVID-19 pandemic. For a safe and healthy future for all, endorse the Climate-Safe California Platform to implement scalable solutions that can reverse the climate crisis.


Read More: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-05/exxon-carbon-emissions-and-climate-leaked-plans-reveal-rising-co2-output?sref=ABTRBDIh

riparian buffer zones

This Houston nonprofit is paying coastal landowners to store CO2 in their marshes

By Michael J. Coren & Dan Kopf


Highlights

  • Houston based nonprofit the Texas Coastal Exchange (TCX) has awarded grants to local landowners with marshlands on their property in order to prevent development on lands that help sequester carbon dioxide
  • Jim Blackburn, the President of TCX, explains that by paying landowners for this service, they may in turn put in additional effort to protect the marshlands over time
  • James Broussard from LaBelle Ranch, a grant recipient, says the grant gave him funds to maintain the property as is since the marshlands don’t provide any income for the ranch
  • In order to pay landowners, the TCX  uses a carbon offset fund with donations from people and corporations and raised $35,000 in their first year
  • Each acre of coastal marshland can absorb about 2 tons of CO2 per year
  • TCX also plans to expand to include grants for owners of coastal prairies and bottomlands

Implementing bold and equitable policies that will catalyze carbon sequestration through building healthy soils and restoring healthy habitats will be key to achieving drawdown greater than emissions (net-negative emissions) by 2030 for a climate-safe California.


Read more: https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/energy-environment/2020/05/21/370252/this-houston-nonprofit-is-paying-coastal-landowners-to-help-fight-climate-change-by-storing-c02-in-their-marshes/

The plan to remove a trillion tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere: Bury it

by Laura Reiley, Washington Post

Last month, carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere surpassed 415 parts per million, the highest in human history. Environmental experts say the world is increasingly on a path toward a climate crisis.

The most prominent efforts to prevent that crisis involve reducing carbon emissions. But another idea is also starting to gain traction — sucking all that carbon out of the atmosphere and storing it underground.

It sounds like an idea plucked from science fiction, but the reality is that trees and plants already do it, breathing carbon dioxide and then depositing it via roots and decay into the soil. That’s why consumers and companies often “offset” their carbon emissions by planting carbon-sucking trees elsewhere in the world.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/06/12/new-plan-remove-trillion-tons-carbon-dioxide-atmosphere-bury-it/?utm_term=.28d478b12b82&wpisrc=nl_most&wpmm=1