Numbers show climate change is driving a trend towards larger fires in California. Meanwhile, Brazil’s newly appointed foreign minister believes climate change is a Marxist plot. Here are the three favourite stories of this week.
How a warmer world primed California to larger wildfires
Fifteen of the 20 largest fires in California happened in the last 20 years. At the same time, these have been the hottest and driest years of all times in the state, and, while the absolute number of wildfires has decreased since the 80s, “when wildfires happen in California, they have a better chance of growing large and destructive”.
This week, over 600 people have gone missing and at least 63 were killed in the deadliest wildfires of California.
Source: National Geographic (Alejandra Borunda, November 15, 2018)
What Brazil’s presidential election means for climate change
Since 2003, Brazil has earned praise for its strong climate policies, which included tight regulations on deforestation. Now, environmentalists worry that the newly elected president Jair Bolsonaro may irreversible hurt natural resources, especially in the Amazon. This week, the far-right politician has chosen his minister of foreign affairs: Ernesto Araújo, a mid-ranking official who recently wrote that climate change is nothing but a Marxist plot.
If Brazil quits the Paris Agreement, as Bolsonaro has hinted in the past, Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research estimates that Amazon deforestation could triple and greenhouse gases emissions could boost.
Source: MIT Technology Review (James Temple, November 14, 2018)
Researchers decode internal structure of kerogen
“Researchers from MIT and elsewhere have captured 3D images of kerogen’s internal structure, with a level of detail more than 50 times greater than has been previously achieved.”
Source: Sci News (News Staff, November 14, 2018)