Warm Soil, Heatwaves & Microbes: Two Pieces of Climate Change-Soil Disaster Research

Alex Wierbinski's picture

By Alex Wierbinski - Posted on 01 August 2018



Two Pieces of Climate-Soil Research

1> Climate Change-driven Droughts & Heatwaves are getting Hotter

2> As temperatures rise, Earth's soil is 'breathing' more heavily



Climate Changed Soils Magnifying Droughts & Heatwaves

Climate change-driven droughts are getting hotter, UCI study finds,
University of California - Irvine, August 1, 2018.

Higher Drought Temps

"...report that temperatures during droughts have been rising faster than in average climates in recent decades, and they point to concurrent changes in atmospheric water vapor as a driver of the surge."

Hotter Hots

"Available soil moisture can remove surface heat through evaporation, but if the land is dry, there is no opportunity to transport it away, which increases the local temperature."

More Problems Now

"These changes point to a greater number of droughts and heat waves co-occurring. This can lead to such calamities as wildfires and loss of crop yields. Widespread conflagrations, spurred on by abnormally high summer temperatures, are currently burning around the world, including in parts of California, Scandinavia and Greece."

Heatwaves & Droughts Combined

"Heat waves and droughts have significant impacts on their own, but when they occur simultaneously, their negative effects are greatly compounded,"..."Both phenomena, which are intensifying due to climate warming, are expected to have increasingly harmful consequences for agriculture, infrastructure and human health."


Global N Hemisphere Heatwave NEWS: The Summer of 2018

The Heatwave Summer of 2018: Killing Ourselves and Everything Else

Climate Crash News, Weird Weather: Heat Wave-a-topia, More Heat Waves Coming





Microbial Soil Respiration Producing More CO2 Than Plants Absorbing

As temperatures rise, Earth's soil is 'breathing' more heavily,
DOE/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, August 1, 2018.

Global Soil CO2 Warming Warning
"The vast reservoir of carbon stored beneath our feet is entering Earth's atmosphere at an increasing rate, most likely as a result of warming temperatures, suggest observations collected from a variety of the Earth's many ecosystems."

"Blame microbes and how they react to warmer temperatures. Their food of choice - nature's detritus like dead leaves and fallen trees - contains carbon. When bacteria chew on decaying leaves and fungi chow down on dead plants, they convert that storehouse of carbon into carbon dioxide that enters the atmosphere."

Microbes Releasing more CO2 than Trees are Capturing

"...is happening faster than plants are taking in carbon through photosynthesis."

A Massive Change

"...such an increase on a global scale, in a relatively short period of time in Earth history, is massive."

A Massive Feedback Loop

"Soils around the globe are responding to a warming climate, which in turn can convert more carbon into carbon dioxide which enters the atmosphere. Depending on how other components of the carbon cycle might respond due to climate warming, these soil changes can potentially contribute to even higher temperatures due to a feedback loop."

A Massive CO2 Supply

"Globally, soil holds about twice as much carbon as Earth's atmosphere."

Soil Respiration

"Scientists have known that as temperatures rise, soil respiration increases. Bond-Lamberty's team sought to compare the roles of the two main contributors, increased plant growth and microbial action."

Microbes CO2 Production Outstripping Absorbtion

"The team discovered a growing role for microbes, whose action is outstripping the ability of plants to absorb carbon. In the 25-year span of the study, the proportion of soil respiration that is due to microbes increased from 54 to 63 percent. Warmer temperatures can prompt more microbial action, potentially resulting in more carbon being released from carbon pools on land into the air."


Climate Modeling Research

Climate Change News. Not an Improving Situation: Improved Climate Modeling Sees the Grim Future of the US: More Extremes Here

Worse Models Fit Reality the Best?

Two Degrees Already Baked In

Improved Models Show Grim Future

2017 Hottest in Ca History, still increasing

2015-2016 clearly warmer than any other year


The Bottom Line

Both the articles above deal with the secondary consequences of our primary increase in CO2 concentrations. It's our failure to account for these secondary effects that are making our climate models and projections of the consequences of warming terribly inaccurate.

Once again, the rate of physical changes to our weather, our environment, our oceans and our ecosystems are rapidly and radically outstripping even the dire projections of the most informed experts.

They cannot measure the effects of unanticipated feedback loops that our increasing ignorance increasingly releases. These increased releases have been bringing us lots of surprises, and will continue to surprise us in the very near future.

And, the US Corporations, their wholly-owned politicians, and their pathetic press continue to push for as much demographic growth and offshoring of our manufacturing to filthy countries, as they ever have. Have we learned nothing?
To continue with the policies that have brutally damaged our environment and society, as they both burn around us, is just plain crazy.







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