Tree Rings and Megadroughts

Mount Holyoke’s “Academic Minute” has a nice interview with Park Williams, who’s been using tree rings to flesh out the story of the current drought in the context of historic droughts, as it pertains to forests in the Southwest: I study the year-by-year records left by these rings, and they tell a fascinating story more …

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In defense of “vapor pressure deficit”

If you follow weather forecasts, you’ve heard about “relative humidity” (RH). But it’s one of those maddeningly less-than-useful measures of our weather that probably needs to be just retired. That’s wishful thinking, of course. But in an interesting introduction to their latest research into the increasing dryness of the air and the risk of fire …

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On climate, a call for more social science

David Victor on the need for better inclusion of social science in the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: The IPCC must overhaul how it engages with the social sciences in particular….¬†Fields such as sociology, political science and anthropology are central to understanding how people and societies comprehend and respond to environmental changes, …

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We don’t get to decide nature’s boundaries

My Albuquerque Journal colleague Win Quigley, intrigued by the coyotes in his Albuquerque Country Club neighborhood, near downtown, visited with the Bosque Environmental Monitoring Program’s Dan Shaw and wrote this: [C]onsider the country club neighborhood, Shaw said. Kit Carson Park and the country club golf course abut the irrigation ditch, which abuts Tingley Beach, which …

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Stuff I wrote elsewhere about deceptive bird sex

The best part of doing this story was standing by the Rio Grande at dusk with Chris Witt, watching the sandhill cranes fly in to roost. The birds were great, but the really extraordinary part was watching Chris watch them – eyes flitting, counting, listening and hearing. As they flew by, they announced their presence …

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