Will there be greater or fewer hurricanes in the future?

The effects of global warming on hurricane activity in the North Atlantic are uncertain. Here are two conflicting reports; one suggesting there will be more hurricanes and that they will be stronger, the other predicting that there will be fewer:

More:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7596643.stm

Fewer:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7404846.stm

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How is sea level measured?

In the UK, the National Tidal and Sea Level Facility (NTSLF), based at the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory in Liverpool, is responsible for predicting tides and measuring changes in sea level. They are also responsible for calculating the heights of possible storm surges around the UK.

http://www.pol.ac.uk/ntslf/

Satellites are now helping to map changes in global sea level more accurately:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7533921.stm

The Severn Barrage – what are the pros and cons?

The idea of a tidal barrage across the Severn estuary between England and Wales has been around for a long time, but it is being considered more seriously due to climate change and high energy prices.

In 2007, the Sustainable Development Commission gave it’s backing for a barrage:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7021835.stm

Here area some details of the plan from 2008:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7449284.stm

The idea has detractors for environmental and economic reasons:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/7448973.stm

At the beginning of 2009, a shortlist of possible plans had been drawn up:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/7850609.stm

Environmental opinion was still divided:

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/green-living/the-great-divide-green-dilemma-over-plans-for-severn-barrage-1516790.html

Cyclone Nargis hits Burma – May 2008 – how will they recover?

Cyclone Nargis hit the closed state of Burma on Friday the 2nd of May 2008. Initial reports suggest that the dfamage has been severe:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/7384858.stm

There is more detail on the growth of the storm here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclone_Nargis

There is argument over whether the authorities could have given a better warning to it’s people:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/7386695.stm

Given that Burma’s militarty government has closed itself off to the West and usually spends much of its effort oppressing its people, the ability of the government to help its people is under question:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/7384552.stm

Will international aid agencies be able to work as effectively as possible under the Burmese regime? Here an Al-Jazeera TV report shows part of the ruling regime’s respones:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4NjDAKLxo4&eurl

What sort of aid was organised to provide relief?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/7385148.stm

The loss of mangrove forests has again been highlighted as a factor increasing the vulnerability to flooding of coastal areas in tropical regions:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7385315.stm

 Here is an overview of the BBC coverage of Cyclone Nargis:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/in_depth/asia_pacific/2008/burma_cyclone/default.stm

A year on from the disaster, the British Government’s Department For International Development (DFID) explained how it had responded to the events:

http://www.dfid.gov.uk/Media-Room/News-Stories/2009/Cyclone-Nargis-One-year-on—Photo-stories/

The BBC produced an interactive map to show how people were coping a year after Cyclone Nargis struck:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/8026834.stm

Are our seas at risk?

They are according to a European pressure group called Seas At Risk. Visit their website to explore some of the issues that they judge to be facing our seas and coastlines:

http://www.seas-at-risk.org/

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is also worried about the state of our seas and coasts:

http://www.mcsuk.org/

The MCS holds an annual “beach watch” litter survey to explore whether our beaches are getting better or worse. You can find out about it and see the results here:

http://www.mcsuk.org/

What are the options for managing coastal erosion in Norfolk?

Some parts of Britain’s coastline is under increasing erosion pressure from the sea, but is the solution to try and protect it or to let it realign to a new equilibrium?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/apr/17/flooding.climatechange

Why are people having their homes demolished on the coast near Scarborough?

Landslips have caused some homes to be evacuated and others to be demolished altogether. It’s very distressing for the occupants who have often used their life savings to retire by the sea:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/north_yorkshire/7347575.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/north_yorkshire/7343093.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/north_yorkshire/7330008.stm