What’s New February 2011

This page lists changes to this site for February 2011.

See below for other updates and to get notified of changes to the site.

2010 was the warmest year on record (tied with 2005). 2010 also saw record lows as severe winters hit parts of the northern hemisphere, while others faced heat waves, floods or droughts. Other than 1998, the 2000s dominated the top 10 list of warmest years on record.

This update includes a number of updated graphs on various climate indicators as well as new charts and information on the relationship between climate change, warming oceans (where the majority of global warming is going) and colder weather in the northern hemisphere.

In 2010 scientists observed huge coral death which struck Southeast Asian and Indian Ocean reefs over a period of a few months following a large bleaching event in the region.

One of the scientists described it as the worst coral die-off seen since 1998 (a year which saw one a very bad mass global coral bleaching event). The scientist also feared the 2010 event may prove to be the worst such event known to science. Although bleaching in the past has had many causes, recent ones are attributed to rapidly rising sea temperatures due to climate change.

Coral reefs are more crucial to marine ecosystems as well as humans than most people realize given all the free services they provide. This update provides some more information and graphs on the scale and phenomenon of mass global coral bleaching.

Egypt has recently started to make headlines as public protest against Mubarak grows. But it is not just Egypt in recent days and months. Across the Middle East and Northern Africa there are signs of change: Tunisia, Algeria, Sudan, Jordan, Yemen and more.

Some of this is related to the years and decades of living under puppet, corrupt or inept regimes, while other factors such as the global economic crisis, various key document leaks, growing poverty or increasing job losses and hunger are all adding to a swell of unrest.

Western leaders are now in a conundrum: can they continue to support some of these undemocratic, autocratic or authoritarian regimes as they have in previous years, often hypocritically?

I’ve not had time to write about this recently (yet), but Inter Press Service is covering this quite well with daily news coverage, which you can follow here:

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