Daily Archives: May 26, 2017

Withdraw from the Paris Agreement, but not from Leadership to Address Changes in Climate

There seems to be a false choice being pushed in Washington and the media that to not participate in the Paris climate agreement is to avoid the issue of climate changes, denial as they say. This is certainly not the case. Loosely paraphrased, William F. Buckley used to say there are times when you have to run down the aisle yelling “don’t do this” even though everyone on the opposite side thinks you are crazy. To continue support for  the Paris agreement appears to be one of those times.

“Should Donald Trump hamstring the U.S. economy, rip off the consumer, despoil the landscape, give succour to America’s enemies and promote junk science – all in order to keep a “seat at the table” with people who despise him and think he’s an idiot?” click here

Santer et al Study Illustrates Weakness of Climate Science “Peer Review”

This statistical manipulation essentially done quickly in response to a misquote from a government administrator’s statement does not qualify in my view as peer-reviewed science regardless of who is listed as a coauthor.  It simply illustrates the political bias and favoritism given to certain points of view regardless of the science. For rebuttals refuting Santer et al click here and here.

Benjamin D. Santer, Susan Solomon, Frank J. Wentz, Qiang Fu, Stephen Po-Chedley, Carl Mears, Jeffrey F. Painter, Céline Bonfils. Tropospheric Warming Over The Past Two Decades. Scientific Reports, 7, 2336, 2017.

Satellite temperature measurements do not support the recent claim of a “leveling off of warming” over the past two decades. Tropospheric warming trends over recent 20-year periods are always significantly larger (at the 10% level or better) than model estimates of 20-year trends arising from natural internal variability. Over the full 38-year period of the satellite record, the separation between observed warming and internal variability estimates is even clearer. In two out of three recent satellite datasets, the tropospheric warming from 1979 to 2016 is unprecedented relative to internally generated temperature trends on the 38-year timescale.

Indirect Wastewater Reuse Along the Yangtze River, China

Wang Z, Shao D, Westerhoff P. Wastewater discharge impact on drinking water sources along the Yangtze River (China).Sci Total Environ. 2017 May 17;599-600:1399-1407. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.05.078.

Unplanned indirect (de facto) wastewater reuse occurs when wastewater is discharged into surface waters upstream of potable drinking water treatment plant intakes. This paper aims to predict percentages and trends of de facto reuse throughout the Yangtze River watershed in order to understand the relative contribution of wastewater discharges into the river and its tributaries towards averting water scarcity concerns. The Yangtze River is the third longest in the world and supports more than 1/15 of the world’s population, yet the importance of wastewater on the river remains ill-defined. Municipal wastewater produced in the Yangtze River Basin increased by 41% between 1998 and 2014, from 2580m3/s to 3646m3/s. Under low flow conditions in the Yangtze River near Shanghai, treated wastewater contributions to river flows increased from 8% in 1998 to 14% in 2014. The highest levels of de facto reuse appeared along a major tributary (Han River) of the Yangtze River, where de facto reuse can exceed 20%. While this initial analysis of de facto reuse used water supply and wastewater data from 110 cities in the basin and 11 gauging stations with >50years of historic streamflow data, the outcome was limited by the lack of gauging stations at more locations (i.e., data had to be predicted using digital elevation mapping) and lack of precise geospatial location of drinking water intakes or wastewater discharges. This limited the predictive capability of the model relative to larger datasets available in other countries (e.g., USA). This assessment is the first analysis of de facto wastewater reuse in the Yangtze River Basin. It will help identify sections of the river at higher risk for wastewater-related pollutants due to presence of-and reliance on-wastewater discharge that could be the focus of field studies and model predictions of higher spatial and temporal resolution.