Seven Key Findings from the Latest UN Climate Change Report, Japanese Homeowners Go Off-the-Grid After Tsunami Disaster, Climate Change Makes Certain Plants More Potent

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Our Thursday green news bring you the latest on green architecture, climate change, energy and communities:

climate change effects, poison ivy

Photo courtesy of Robert Benner via Flickr

  • Seven key findings from the new UN climate change report: The United Nations recently released its latest report on the science of climate change, which get published every five to seven years. It’s a result of work of several hundred scientists from around the world who summarize the current understanding of all aspects of climate change research. Among the key findings on the current state of the science of climate change are the following conclusions: 1. It is virtually certain that the planet has warmed since the mid-20th century; 2. Scientists are more confident than ever that humans are responsible; 3. Further warming is imminent, and short-term records do not reflect long-term climate trends.
  • Japanese homeowners go off-the-grid after the tsunami power plant disaster: Two years after the Fukushima power plant disaster seriously affected Japan’s power sourcing, major home builders are now incorporating alternative power sources such as solar systems into new homes as a standard feature, and moving off-the-grid. Japan can possibly become a role model for leaving the traditional power grid on a large scale and replacing it with individual sources that generate their own power.
  • Climate change makes plants such as poison ivy more potentA study published in 2006 found that a rise in carbon dioxide not only fuels the growth of certain weeds such as poison ivy, poison oak or poison sumac, but it also increases potency of the oil at the root of the rash called urushiol. As 85 percent of the population are allergic to these plants, this fact that poison ivy plants are getting bigger and more powerful due to climate change is bad news to majority of people.
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