Greenbang’s weekly Climate Change Index tracks research findings and events directly attributable to global warming. Our aim is to provide a numerical, week-to-week indicator of climate change developments.
Items that qualify for listing in each week’s index include new climate data published in peer-reviewed academic journals and extreme weather incidents or other natural events that are likely directly linked to the global warming trend.
The Climate Change Index for this week, ending 10 Jan. 2010 (details below): 6
9 January: While temperatures over the contiguous United States were the 14th coldest this past December, Alaska saw its 17th warmest December, according to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Centre.
6 January: Researchers with the International Siberian Shelf Study report an increase in methane gas emissions from beneath the Arctic Ocean. Methane is a greenhouse gas many times more powerful than carbon dioxide.
5 January: Australia saw its warmest year on record in 2009, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Last year was also the continent’s 17th consecutive year of above-average temperatures.
5 January: The head of the Beijing Meteorological Bureau attributes the country’s recent extreme weather events — including a freak snowstorm — to changing atmospheric patterns brought about by global warming.
4 January: A changing climate has brought unprecedented numbers of the deadly Portuguese man-o-war jellyfish to UK beaches in recent summers, and the trend is likely to continue in future years, British researchers report.
4 January: As the world’s oceans continue absorbing atmospheric carbon dioxide, seawater is becoming more transparent to low-frequency sound, researchers have found. The result could be growing noise levels in the oceans, with unpredictable effects on marine life.