Label: Climate Change

May 5, 2010

I received this great letter today from Miranda in Maryland. She didn’t tell me what grade she is in, but her Elementary School teacher is using my books in the classroom.

Here’s what Miranda wrote about GLOBAL WARMING.

Before I read your book, I did not know anything about Global Warming. Now that I read your book I know a lot. I learned that coral reefs are in jeopardy. The photograph where the coral reef is bleached white surprised me a lot. In addition, I also learned that polar bears, walruses and the seals (sic) survival might be impacted by global warming. I am glad that you are telling kids like me and grownups some ways to help stop global warming. My family and I will be sure to help stop global warming, by turning off the lights when we are out of the room and by using fans instead of air conditioning in the summer. I want to help the earth.

 

I hoped, when I wrote this book, that children would be empowered by the facts and become stewards and protectors of our Planet Earth. I was so pleased to receive this letter from Miranda!

   

Posted by: Seymour Simon

(0) Comments  •   Labels: Climate Change, Global Warming, Kids comments   •  Permalink (link to this article)

April 22, 2010

     
   

COST-SAVING, HIGHLY EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES

YOU’VE PROBABLY NEVER HEARD OF

 

         

Everyone knows that you can reduce your carbon footprint if you go out and buy a hybrid car, or replace all your household appliances with new EnergyStar models. But most people can’t afford to make these kinds of big changes.

Here are three effective actions that cost little or nothing, and you can start TODAY!

 

1. Consider eating vegetarian one or two nights per week.[1]

Producing one calorie of meat protein means burning more than ten times as many fossil fuels (generating more than ten times as much heat-trapping carbon dioxide) as does the production of one calorie of plant protein.

As surprising as it may sound, raising animals for food creates huge amounts of greenhouse gases. A recent report by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences concluded that almost a fifth of all greenhouse gas come from livestock production. That’s more emissions than from all of the world’s transportation (cars, buses, trains and planes) combined.

  

2. Get the best fuel economy out of the car you have.[2]

Not everyone can afford to buy a new hybrid, but fuel consumption is directly related to the amount of CO2 emitted no matter what kind of car you drive.

Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid...

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Posted by: Seymour Simon

(0) Comments  •   Labels: Climate Change, Global Warming, Earth Day 2010   •  Permalink (link to this article)

April 19, 2010

Our Planet Earth is putting on quite a show in celebration of the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day! For those interested in seeing photographs, the Boston Globe.com ran a feature this weekend with twenty striking images of the volcano, including shots of people on cross country skis taking photographs at the edge of the hot lava. Talk about a study in contrasts!

 The volcano continues to erupt in Iceland,  and air travel is still disrupted in northern Europe and Great Britain. If you look at this satellite image, you can see why:

 

           

Photo: AP Photo/NEODAAS/University of Dundee

   

The land mass at the top/left of the photo is Iceland. The two land masses at the bottom/center of the photo are Ireland and Britain. You can see why no planes are flying out of England - the country is enveloped in volcanic ash.

This volcano has not been studied extensively, so scientists do not know how long the eruptions might continue. From what has been observed so far, there will not be a significant impact on Europe’s weather. It takes a very big volcanic event to impact weather across a continent, or across the globe. When Mount Pinatubo erupted in the Phillippines on June 15,  1991, scientists   estimated that 20-million tons of sulfur dioxide and ash particles   blasted more than 12 miles high into the atmosphere. The eruption caused widespread destruction and loss of human life. And, the gases and solids injected into the stratosphere enveloped our globe for three weeks.That volcano caused an average 10% drop in temperatures,  affecting the world’s weather that year.

The eruption of   the Tambora volcano in 1815 (in what is now Indonesia) was one of the biggest weather influencers ever, triggering the famous Year   without a Summer in 1816. 

Scientists do not agree on whether even a huge volcanic eruption (much bigger than the one we’re experiencing this week) could ever have a long-term impact on climate.

Remember, weather is different from climate. When you talk about weather, you are talking about       what is happening in the atmosphere that day in a particular location. Weather tells...

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Posted by: Seymour Simon

(0) Comments  •   Labels: science news, Volcanoes, Climate Change, Weather, Earth Science Books   •  Permalink (link to this article)

April 18, 2010

                     

When I was in Washington, DC this weekend to speak at the Climate Rally in honor of Earth Day, I picked up this hand-out, provided by The Alliance for Climate Protection, Earth Day Network and The Nature Conservancy.

CONSIDER THESE SOBERING FACTS:

·      Climate change is linked to stronger hurricanes, more drought and increased coral deaths from bleaching.

 

·      One-fourth of the Earth’s species will be headed for extinction by 2050 if the warming trend continues at its current rate.

 

·      Oceans span 70% of the Earth’s surface. And only one percent of oceans are protected.

 

·      The current pace of sea-level rise is 50 percent faster than in the last century.

 

THINGS THAT YOU AND YOUR FAMILY OR FRIENDS CAN DO:

·      You can save 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide per year by recycling just half of your household waste.

 

·      Plant trees. A single tree will absorb one ton of carbon dioxide over its lifetime.

 

·      Turn down that air conditioner! Air conditioning and heating account for almost HALF of electricity use in the average American home.