Climate

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Future snows will mostly happen in big falls. Alan Lam/Flickr

Winter is coming, but don’t hold out for future snows

This weekend is predicted to be the coldest of the year in Australia. But it has otherwise been a slow start to the snow season, and my research shows that this is a sign of things to come.
It’s all in the atmosphere. David Gray/Reuters

What caused the ‘pause’ in global warming?

Many people around the world, in certain locations, have asked, “where is global warming?” This is because they have experienced very cold wintry conditions and weird weather that they do not associate…
Australia’s weather records need careful analysis to correct any introduced errors. Photographic Collection from Australia/Wikimedia Commons

No, the Bureau of Meteorology is not fiddling its weather data

Over the past week or so, the Bureau of Meteorology has stood accused of fudging its temperature data records to emphasise warming, in a series of articles in The Australian. The accusation hinges on the…
An El Niño - even a weak one - can cause reduced rainfall in eastern Australia. Tim J Keegan/Flickr

Don’t dismiss a 2014 ‘super’ El Niño just yet

It looks like it’s all over bar the shouting for the chance of this year bringing on a “super” El Niño. Or is it? The Bureau of Meteorology has brought the odds of an El Niño event down to 50%, from 70…
Australia’s weather is influenced by warm water movements in the Pacific. Flickr/Shayan USA

Explainer: El Niño and La Niña

We wait in anticipation of droughts and floods when El Niño and La Niña are forecast but what are these climatic events? The simplest way to understand El Niño and La Niña is through the sloshing around…
Incredibly cold and very pretty, but not that enlightening when it comes to climate change. EPA/RICK WARNE

US cold wave implies nothing about global warming

The central and eastern US has just been in the midst of a major cold wave, with large regions dropping below zero F (-17.7C) and wind chills reaching below -30F (-34C). That is fact. The problem is that…
Women: first to mobilise, last to be considered. Simminch

Women worse off when it comes to natural disasters

The Philippines. Pakistan. New Orleans. Sri Lanka. All have suffered catastrophic disasters in recent times. And the emergence of “climate refugees” – populations displaced by extreme weather events…
Australia’s very hot January was followed by a very warm September and a worldwide record for November. BaboMike/Flickr

2013 was Australia’s hottest year, warm for much of the world

The Bureau of Meteorology has confirmed 2013 as Australia’s hottest year since records began in 1910. Average temperatures over the continent have been 1.2C above the 1961-1990 average, breaking the previous…
Drought is part of life in Australia. Flickr/Schilling 2

Drought conditions return to Australia’s eastern states

While much of Australia has received average to above average rainfall over recent months, parts of Australia such as western Queensland are in the middle of a drought. Drought has been a feature of the…
What is the relationship between carbon dioxide and temperature rise? Werner Wittersheim

Explainer: what is climate sensitivity?

Humans are emitting CO2 and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. As these gases build up they trap extra heat and make the climate warmer. But how much warmer? Scientists have long understood that…

Melting the Ice Age

A commonly-held belief for many years - that 90 million years ago, a continental ice sheet formed during the Late Cretaceous…

Sea level affected tropics in ice age

University of Hawaii at Manoa researchers have investigated preserved geological rainfall pattern clues, or “proxies”, during…

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