Indications of Positive Feedback in Climate Change Due to a Reduction in Northern Hemisphere Biomass Uptake of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide

by Alexander Brown

It is commonly understood that ecosystems have been taking up more carbon dioxide (CO2) as the concentration of atmospheric CO2 increases and the climate changes. The progressive increase in CO2 uptake by terrestrial ecosystems is generally thought to continue until 2030, when the trend is expected to reverse due to ecosystem damage. However, Dr. James C. Curran and Dr. Samuel A. Curran (2016) have found evidence that the trend may have already begun to reverse. They base this on analysis of the atmospheric CO2 measurements taken between 1958 and 2015 from the Mauna Loa observatory in Hawaii, known as the Keeling Curve. These data show a continual rise in atmospheric CO2 levels within a pattern of intra-annual fluctuation. The intra-annual fluctuation consists of decreased atmospheric CO2 levels throughout the summer months (Northern Hemisphere), and increased atmospheric CO2 throughout the rest of the year. Continue reading

Climate Change and Grassroots Resistance in Bolivia

by Alexander Brown

Bolivia has been critically affected by climate change in recent years, with highlands experiencing severe flooding and lowlands experiencing drought. These disruptions have resulted in poor agricultural yields that are particularly concerning considering the reliance on agriculture for subsistence and the precarious nature of the postcolonial economy. In response to these impactful changes and the history of neoliberal structural adjustment beginning in the 1980s, a movement has formed based around anti-capitalist and ‘living well’ (Andean indigenous ideology) sentiments to address climate change in Bolivia and around the world. Continue reading