Search Results for Tag: Germany
When I visited the AWI Biological Institute on the German North Sea island of Helgoland last year for a story on how climate change is affecting marine life, the Institute’s Director Karen Wiltshire mentioned to me that cod was disappearing from the waters around the island. The Atlantic cod, it seems, are moving north, a trend confirmed by a recent research cruise by scientists from the Alfred-Wegener-Institute (AWI).
DateOctober 17, 2013 | 5:23 pm
TagsArctic, AWI, Climate, EPOCA, Germany, Greenpeace, North Sea, Ny Alesund, ocean acidification, science, Svalbard, Warming
Who needs the Arctic Coal Mine?
How’s this for a bizarre story to end the week:
Greenpeace has been protesting on Svalbard, Spitsbergen, which belongs to Norway, drawing attention to the fact that coal is still being mined there and fired – amongst other places – in German power stations!
60% of the island is still covered with glaciers – and they’re melting at a record rate. The whole Arctic, as we know, is being affected much worse and faster than the rest of the planet by climate change.
The Greenpeace protesters are targeting the German government and public in particular, given that a big German company is one of the ones using the coal. Their poltical point is also that Germany is still planning to build new coal-fired plants, in spite of the impact they will have on the climate. Greenpeace is calling on Chancellor Angela Merkel – re-elected just last weekend – to re-think the coal policy and put more of an effort into combatting climate change.
There are probably very few people who know there’s still coal being mined on Spitsbergen. Well, let’s see whether this gets onto German tv news this evening. “A hae’ ma doots”, as they say in Scotland (Translation: I have my doubts). Top marks for trying, though, it takes considerable effort to get up to Spitzbergen to mount a protest.
Greenpeace blogger from the Svalbard protest
World leaders block Arctic coal shipment??
DateOctober 2, 2009 | 2:19 pm
A last look at Arctic Tromsö for this time.
Mind your step?
The Arctic Frontiers conference came to an end in Tromsö on Friday with more presentations and q/a sessions on different aspects of scientific research and findings on the region, from deepsea observatories to melting permafrost and the problems of climate change for indigenous peoples, including reindeer-herders in Arctic areas.
The papers are all available online.
Pick up some scientific papers from Arctic Frontiers
Meanwhile there’s been no stop to developments on climate change in the headlines. President Obama is going full speed ahead with his plans to tackle climate change.
The German government has reached an agreement on a (highly controversial)package to make people scrap their old cars, buy new ones, and – ideally, in theory – reduce emissions.
The German government has also given the go ahead for the iron fertilization experiment in the Antarctic we were discussing before I left for Tromso.
Latest on iron
WWF and others are protesting. There have been some alarming measurements of warming in the Antarctic. The new international Renewable Energies Agency has been launched. And WWF has come up with a new study on the economics of combatting climate change.
The Ice Blogger could blog on all day. Instead, I’ll leave you to check out the links and enjoy a couple of pics of the amazing colours of Arctic Norway from the air.
DateJanuary 27, 2009 | 11:54 am
German Ministries responding!!
AWI insists it has looked into potential effects on the environment and biodiversity.
But the German Environment Ministry is quoted in a German newspaper and news agencies as having expressed concern that Germany’s credibility as a leading power in the protection of biodiversity could be undermined by this experiment.
Yes indeed, Minister Gabriel.
One just wonders how this could get this far, with the ship already steaming ahead to the Antartic, without the concerns of environment groups and the Convention on Biodiversity issue being adequately addressed.
The Research Ministry (which provides a considerable amount of funding to the AWI), is now having the project examined by 2 independent scientific bodies.
Let’s see what happens next.
The official “Lohafex” position on the project and the controversy
DateJanuary 14, 2009 | 9:52 am
Heading for 2009 – one of the warmest years ever?
British climate scientists are predicting 2009 will be one of the five warmest years on record. Exactly what that means is a complicated business and, of course, all part of some longer-term calculations. But as far as I’m concerned, it’s a worrying forecast and the climate data available does not make me optimistic at the end of this 2008.
Reuters summary of the forecast
In the part of Germany where I live, it has actually turned very cold over the past few days, with temperatures down to minus 10C at night. Where does that leave us with global warming, asks Christopher B. in his comment. Indeed I have heard some sceptical neighbours say “so much for global warming”. The trouble is we would like to be able to understand everything instantly and draw immediate conclusions from what we experience. And with global climate patterns, that is just not possible and we need a really long-term view. Yes, it can be colder locally and still getting warmer overall. And as a planet, we are not doing anything like enough to avert potentially catastrophic warming.
Yesterday, I was talking to a friend on a winter hike in the “Eifel” region, about a prediction on the radio the other day that the Arctic was melting much faster than expected, and a reminder that if the Greenland ice sheet melts, sea levels will rise by up to 7 metres. (I’d like to give you a link to the report we heard, but am having trouble locating it on the websites where I’d expect to find it. Strange how some worrying reports just come on a couple of time then seem to disappear.)
Anyway, I was surprised when “Siggi”, who is normally quite critical of industry, said at least the German car-makers were putting an effort into developing smaller cars that use less fuel. Now this is not what German cars are generally known for, and it seems to me they have a long way to go. But compared to the US car market, we are exemplary, Siggi pointed out. Well, everything is relative. Normally, I am more inclined to the glass being “half-full” than “half-empty” approach.
But just because another country, continent, region, sector, is even worse than we are – that doesn’t make us good. Does it?
DateDecember 31, 2008 | 2:06 pm