Tag Archives: European Union

Modern Warming and Past Cooling Correlate with Solar Activity

M.Oliva et al. The Little Ice Age in Iberian mountains. Earth-Science Reviews, 177 (2018), pp.175-208.

The Little Ice Age (LIA) is known as one of the coldest stages of the Holocene. Most records from the Northern Hemisphere show evidence of significantly colder conditions during the LIA, which in some cases had substantial socio-economic consequences. In this study we investigated the magnitude and timing of climate variability during the LIA in the mountains of the Iberian Peninsula, based on a wide range of natural records (including from glacial, periglacial, and lacustrine/peatland areas; fluvial/alluvial deposits; speleothems; and tree rings), historical documents, and early instrument data. The onset of the LIA commenced in approximately CE 1300, and cold conditions with alternating moisture regimes persisted until approximately CE 1850; the environmental responses ranged from rapid (e.g. tree rings) to delayed (e.g. glaciers). The colder climate of the LIA was accompanied by severe droughts, floods, and cold/heat waves that showed significant spatio-temporal variation across the Iberian mountains. Several phases within the LIA have been detected, including (a) 1300–1480: increasing cooling with moderate climate oscillations; (b) 1480–1570: relatively warmer conditions; (c) 1570–1620: gradual cooling; (d) 1620–1715: coldest climate period of the LIA, particularly during the Maunder Minimum, with temperatures approximately 2 °C below those at present; (e) 1715–1760: warmer temperatures and a low frequency of extreme events; (f) 1760–1800: climate deterioration and more climate extremes (i.e. cold and heat waves, floods and droughts); (g) 1800–1850: highly variable climate conditions alternating with stability (1800–1815), extreme events (1815–1835), and a slight trend of warming associated with intense hydrometeorological events (1835–1850); (h) since 1850: a gradual staggered increase in temperature of approximately 1 °C. Post-LIA warming has led to substantial changes in geo-ecological dynamics, mainly through shrinking of the spatial domain affected by cold climate processes.

No Significant Trend in Major Floods in North America, Europe

Glenn A. Hodgkins, Paul H. Whitfield, Donald H. Burn, Jamie Hannaford, Benjamin Renard, Kerstin, Stahl, Anne K. Fleig, Henrik Madsen, Luis Mediero, Johanna, Korhonen, Conor Murphy, Donna Wilson. Climate-driven variability in the occurrence of major floods across North America and Europe  Journal of Hydrology Volume 552, September 2017, Pages 704-717  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2017.07.027

Concern over the potential impact of anthropogenic climate change on flooding has led to a proliferation of studies examining past flood trends. Many studies have analysed annual-maximum flow trends but few have quantified changes in major (25–100 year return period) floods, i.e. those that have the greatest societal impacts. Existing major-flood studies used a limited number of very large catchments affected to varying degrees by alterations such as reservoirs and urbanisation. In the current study, trends in major-flood occurrence from 1961 to 2010 and from 1931 to 2010 were assessed using a very large dataset (>1200 gauges) of diverse catchments from North America and Europe; only minimally altered catchments were used, to focus on climate-driven changes rather than changes due to catchment alterations. Trend testing of major floods was based on counting the number of exceedances of a given flood threshold within a group of gauges. Evidence for significant trends varied between groups of gauges that were defined by catchment size, location, climate, flood threshold and period of record, indicating that generalizations about flood trends across large domains or a diversity of catchment types are ungrounded. Overall, the number of significant trends in major-flood occurrence across North America and Europe was approximately the number expected due to chance alone. Changes over time in the occurrence of major floods were dominated by multidecadal variability rather than by long-term trends. There were more than three times as many significant relationships between major-flood occurrence and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation than significant long-term trends.

Christopher Hitchens Got this Right

The late Christopher Hitchens got this right: Stop Islamitization while you still can. Yes, peaceful muslims should be welcomed. But Islamitization is quite something else altogether.

“In a powerful address this week, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán stated that Hungary’s “fiercest opponents” do not come from within but from abroad, and that Europe is falling victim to “Islamization.” ” click here

Burning trees to meet EU renewable energy targets produces more greenhouse gases than coal

“Chopping down trees and transporting wood across the Atlantic Ocean to feed power stations produces more greenhouse gases than much cheaper coal, according to the report. It blames the rush to meet EU renewable energy targets, which resulted in ministers making the false assumption that burning trees was carbon-neutral.” click here

China Financing, Building Coal-Fired Power Plants

Like it or not coal-fired power plants will be with us for a very long time.

“The Balkan region’s first privately-funded power plant came online on Tuesday, increasing the region’s dependency on coal-fired power stations even as environmental concerns are driving them to the brink of the extinction elsewhere in Europe. It was built by China’s Dongfang Electric Corp and financed with the help of a 350 million euro ($391.13 million) loan from the China Development Bank.” click here for full post at Not a Lot of People Know That.

Regulation of Plant Protection Product Metabolites; EU

Laabs V, Leake C, Botham P, Melching-Kollmuss S. Regulation of non-relevant metabolites of plant protection products in drinking and groundwater in the EU: Current status and way forward. Regulatory toxicology and pharmacology 2015 Jul 17. pii: S0273-2300(15)30003-9. doi: 10.1016/j.yrtph.2015.06.023.

Non-relevant metabolites are defined in the EU regulation for plant protection product authorization and a detailed definition of non-relevant metabolites is given in an EU Commission DG Sanco (now DG SANTE – Health and Food Safety) guidance document. However, in water legislation at EU and member state level non-relevant metabolites of pesticides are either not specifically regulated or diverse threshold values are applied. Based on their inherent properties, non-relevant metabolites should be regulated based on substance-specific and toxicity-based limit values in drinking and groundwater like other anthropogenic chemicals. Yet, if a general limit value for non-relevant metabolites in drinking and groundwater is favored, an application of a Threshold of Toxicological Concern (TTC) concept for Cramer class III compounds leads to a threshold value of 4.5 μg L-1. This general value is exemplarily shown to be protective for non-relevant metabolites, based on individual drinking water limit values derived for a set of 56 non-relevant metabolites. A consistent definition of non-relevant metabolites of plant protection products, as well as their uniform regulation in drinking and groundwater in the EU, is important to achieve legal clarity for all stakeholders and to establish planning security for development of plant protection products for the European market.

European Union Drinking Water Regulations 2014

European Union Drinking Water Regulations 2014

Council Directive 98/83/EC on the quality of water intended for human consumption.