Open AccessArticle
Observed Regional Climate Variability during the Last 50 Years in Reindeer Herding Cooperatives of Finnish Fell Lapland
Climate 2017, 5(4), 81; doi:10.3390/cli5040081 -
Abstract
In Finnish Lapland, reindeer herders’ activity is strongly dependent on the surrounding natural environment, which is directly exposed to environmental changes and climatic variations. By assessing whether there is any evidence of change in climate in Fell Lapland over the last 50 years,
[...] Read more.
In Finnish Lapland, reindeer herders’ activity is strongly dependent on the surrounding natural environment, which is directly exposed to environmental changes and climatic variations. By assessing whether there is any evidence of change in climate in Fell Lapland over the last 50 years, this paper attempts to link global climatic trends with local conditions and respond to the need of information at the local level. It aims at assessing the changes in temperature, precipitation and snow cover at a regional and local scale, as well as determining the climatic trends for the period 1960–2011. Statistical methods were used to conduct analyses of the regional homogeneity, the annual and seasonal variability, and the cold intensity. The results show that the regional climate is not homogeneous and differences exist between locations. Nevertheless, it can be concluded that, in general, a warming trend is discernible for the period 1960–2011, frost and thaw cycles slightly increase, and variations in mean temperatures are more important in the winter. Precipitation is more variable according to the site but, in general, precipitation is increasing with time, especially in the winter, and the snow cover does not seem to contain any discernible trend. Full article
Figures

Open AccessArticle
Air Pollution and Human Health in Kolkata, India: A Case Study
Climate 2017, 5(4), 77; doi:10.3390/cli5040077 -
Abstract
Urban air quality in most megacities has been found to be critical and Kolkata Metropolitan City is no exception to this. An analysis of ambient air quality in Kolkata was done by applying the Exceedance Factor (EF) method, where the presence of listed
[...] Read more.
Urban air quality in most megacities has been found to be critical and Kolkata Metropolitan City is no exception to this. An analysis of ambient air quality in Kolkata was done by applying the Exceedance Factor (EF) method, where the presence of listed pollutants’ (RPM, SPM, NO2, and SO2) annual average concentration are classified into four different categories; namely critical, high, moderate, and low pollution. Out of a total of 17 ambient air quality monitoring stations operating in Kolkata, five fall under the critical category, and the remaining 12 locations fall under the high category of NO2 concentration, while for RPM, four record critical, and 13 come under the high pollution category. The causes towards the high concentration of pollutants in the form of NO2 and RPM have been identified in earlier studies as vehicular emission (51.4%), followed by industrial sources (24.5%) and dust particles (21.1%). Later, a health assessment was undertaken with a structured questionnaire at some nearby dispensaries which fall under areas with different ambient air pollution levels. Three dispensaries have been surveyed with 100 participants. It shows that respondents with respiratory diseases (85.1%) have outnumbered waterborne diseases (14.9%) and include acute respiratory infections (ARI) (60%), chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD) (7.8%), upper track respiratory infection (UTRI) (1.2%), Influenza (12.7%), and acid fast bacillus (AFB) (3.4%). Although the pollution level has been recorded as critical, only 39.3% of the respondents have felt that outdoor (air) pollution has affected their health. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperReview
The Impact of Climate Change on Biodiversity in Nepal: Current Knowledge, Lacunae, and Opportunities
Climate 2017, 5(4), 80; doi:10.3390/cli5040080 -
Abstract
Nepal has an extreme altitudinal range from 60–8850 m with heterogeneous topography and distinct climatic zones. The country is considered a biodiversity hotspot, with nearly a quarter of the land area located in protected areas. Nepal and the surrounding Himalayan region are particularly
[...] Read more.
Nepal has an extreme altitudinal range from 60–8850 m with heterogeneous topography and distinct climatic zones. The country is considered a biodiversity hotspot, with nearly a quarter of the land area located in protected areas. Nepal and the surrounding Himalayan region are particularly vulnerable to climate change because of their abrupt ecological and climatic transitions. Tens of millions of people rely on the region’s ecosystem services, and observed and modeled warming trends predict increased climate extremes in the Himalayas. To study the ecological impacts of climate change in Nepal and inform adaptation planning, we review the literature on past, present, and predicted future climatic changes and their impacts on ecological diversity in Nepal. We found few studies focusing on organisms, while research on species and communities was more common. Most studies document or predict species range shifts and changes in community composition. Results of these few investigations highlight major lacunae in research regarding the effects of changing climate on species comprising the Himalayan biota. Further empirical work is needed at all levels of biological organization to build on information regarding direct ecological impacts of climatic changes in the region. Countries face an ever-increasing threat of climate change, and Nepal has strong physiographic, elevational, and climatic gradients that could provide a useful model for studying the effects of climate change on a mountainous, and highly biodiverse, area. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Comparative Study of Monsoon Rainfall Variability over India and the Odisha State
Climate 2017, 5(4), 79; doi:10.3390/cli5040079 -
Abstract
Indian summer monsoon (ISM) plays an important role in the weather and climate system over India. The rainfall during monsoon season controls many sectors from agriculture, food, energy, and water, to the management of disasters. Being a coastal province on the eastern side
[...] Read more.
Indian summer monsoon (ISM) plays an important role in the weather and climate system over India. The rainfall during monsoon season controls many sectors from agriculture, food, energy, and water, to the management of disasters. Being a coastal province on the eastern side of India, Odisha is one of the most important states affected by the monsoon rainfall and associated hydro-meteorological systems. The variability of monsoon rainfall is highly unpredictable at multiple scales both in space and time. In this study, the monsoon variability over the state of Odisha is studied using the daily gridded rainfall data from India Meteorological Department (IMD). A comparative analysis of the behaviour of monsoon rainfall at a larger scale (India), regional scale (Odisha), and sub-regional scale (zones of Odisha) is carried out in terms of the seasonal cycle of monsoon rainfall and its interannual variability. It is seen that there is no synchronization in the seasonal monsoon category (normal/excess/deficit) when analysed over large (India) and regional (Odisha) scales. The impact of El Niño, La Niña, and the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) on the monsoon rainfall at both scales (large scale and regional scale) is analysed and compared. The results show that the impact is much more for rainfall over India, but it has no such relation with the rainfall over Odisha. It is also observed that there is a positive (negative) relation of the IOD with the seasonal monsoon rainfall variability over Odisha (India). The correlation between the IAV of monsoon rainfall between the large scale and regional scale was found to be 0.46 with a phase synchronization of 63%. IAV on a sub-regional scale is also presented. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
The Uncertain Role of Biogenic VOC for Boundary-Layer Ozone Concentration: Example Investigation of Emissions from Two Forest Types with a Box Model
Climate 2017, 5(4), 78; doi:10.3390/cli5040078 -
Abstract
High levels of air pollution including ground level ozone significantly reduce humans’ life expectancy and cause forest damage and decreased tree growth. The French Vosges and the German Black Forest are regions well-known for having the highest tropospheric ozone concentrations at remote forested
[...] Read more.
High levels of air pollution including ground level ozone significantly reduce humans’ life expectancy and cause forest damage and decreased tree growth. The French Vosges and the German Black Forest are regions well-known for having the highest tropospheric ozone concentrations at remote forested sites in Central Europe. This box model study investigates the sensitivity of atmospheric chemistry calculations of derived ozone on differently resolved forest tree composition and volatile organic compound emissions. Representative conditions were chosen for the Upper Rhine area including the Alsatian Vosges/France and the Black Forest/Germany during summer. This study aims to answer the following question: What level of input detail for Alsace and Black Forest tree mixtures is required to accurately simulate ozone formation? While the French forest in Alsace—e.g., in the Vosges—emits isoprene to a substantially higher extent than the forest at the German site, total monoterpene emissions at the two sites are rather similar. However, the individual monoterpene structures, and therefore their reactivity, differs. This causes a higher ozone production rate for Vosges forest mixture conditions than for Black Forest tree mixtures at identical NOx levels, with the difference increasing with temperature. The difference in ozone formation is analyzed in detail and the short-comings of reduced descriptions are discussed. The outcome serves as a to-do-list to allow accurate future ozone predictions influenced by the climate adaptation of forests and the change in forest species composition. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
The Relationship between Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentration and Global Temperature for the Last 425 Million Years
Climate 2017, 5(4), 76; doi:10.3390/cli5040076 -
Abstract
Assessing human impacts on climate and biodiversity requires an understanding of the relationship between the concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Earth’s atmosphere and global temperature (T). Here I explore this relationship empirically using comprehensive, recently-compiled databases of stable-isotope proxies
[...] Read more.
Assessing human impacts on climate and biodiversity requires an understanding of the relationship between the concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Earth’s atmosphere and global temperature (T). Here I explore this relationship empirically using comprehensive, recently-compiled databases of stable-isotope proxies from the Phanerozoic Eon (~540 to 0 years before the present) and through complementary modeling using the atmospheric absorption/transmittance code MODTRAN. Atmospheric CO2 concentration is correlated weakly but negatively with linearly-detrended T proxies over the last 425 million years. Of 68 correlation coefficients (half non-parametric) between CO2 and T proxies encompassing all known major Phanerozoic climate transitions, 77.9% are non-discernible (p > 0.05) and 60.0% of discernible correlations are negative. Marginal radiative forcing (ΔRFCO2), the change in forcing at the top of the troposphere associated with a unit increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration, was computed using MODTRAN. The correlation between ΔRFCO2 and linearly-detrended T across the Phanerozoic Eon is positive and discernible, but only 2.6% of variance in T is attributable to variance in ΔRFCO2. Of 68 correlation coefficients (half non-parametric) between ΔRFCO2 and T proxies encompassing all known major Phanerozoic climate transitions, 75.0% are non-discernible and 41.2% of discernible correlations are negative. Spectral analysis, auto- and cross-correlation show that proxies for T, atmospheric CO2 concentration and ΔRFCO2 oscillate across the Phanerozoic, and cycles of CO2 and ΔRFCO2 are antiphasic. A prominent 15 million-year CO2 cycle coincides closely with identified mass extinctions of the past, suggesting a pressing need for research on the relationship between CO2, biodiversity extinction, and related carbon policies. This study demonstrates that changes in atmospheric CO2 concentration did not cause temperature change in the ancient climate. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Mapping the Potential Global Range of the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, Halyomorpha halys, with Particular Reference to New Zealand
Climate 2017, 5(3), 75; doi:10.3390/cli5030075 -
Abstract
Originating from Asia, the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is a significant pest of horticultural/agricultural crops, grapes, woody ornamental and herbaceous plants, and is also a nuisance to people, due to its overwintering behavior in human habitation. The global range of this pest
[...] Read more.
Originating from Asia, the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is a significant pest of horticultural/agricultural crops, grapes, woody ornamental and herbaceous plants, and is also a nuisance to people, due to its overwintering behavior in human habitation. The global range of this pest is steadily increasing and previous predictions of environmental suitability have shown New Zealand to be highly suitable. Due to the economic value of horticultural and agricultural industries to the New Zealand economy, it is vital to understand the range of potential risk within the country. Global and New Zealand potential suitability for BMSB was modeled using three algorithms and the resulting predictions ensembled to predict the potential range under current climatic conditions and under trajectories of future low (Representative Concentration Pathways, RCP, 2.6) and high (RCP 8.5) greenhouse gas emissions for both 2050 and 2070. Under current conditions, models showed a high global suitability within latitudes 25°–50° N, southern South America, southeast and southwest regions of Australia and large areas of New Zealand. Modeling the effect of climate change on BMSB range in New Zealand resulted in a southerly range shift over time, particularly with high emissions trajectory. Currently, BMSB is not established in New Zealand and it is vital that this remains the case. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Decreasing Past and Mid-Century Rainfall Indices over the Ouémé River Basin, Benin (West Africa)
Climate 2017, 5(3), 74; doi:10.3390/cli5030074 -
Abstract
This study analyzed the trends of extreme daily rainfall indices over the Ouémé basin using the observed data from 1950 to 2014 and the projected rainfall of regional climate model REMO (REgional MOdel) for the period 2015–2050. For future trends analysis, two Intergovernmental
[...] Read more.
This study analyzed the trends of extreme daily rainfall indices over the Ouémé basin using the observed data from 1950 to 2014 and the projected rainfall of regional climate model REMO (REgional MOdel) for the period 2015–2050. For future trends analysis, two Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) new scenarios are considered, namely RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. The indices considered are number of heavy rainfall days, number of very heavy rainfall days, consecutive dry days, consecutive wet days, daily maximum rainfall, five-day maximum rainfall, annual wet-day total rainfall, simple daily intensity index, very wet days, and extremely wet days. These indices were calculated at annual and seasonal scales. The Mann-Kendall non-parametric test and the parametric linear regression approach were used for trends detection. As result, significant declining in the number of heavy and very heavy rainfall days, heavy and extremely heavy rainfall, consecutive wet days and annual wet-day rainfall total were detected in most stations for the historical period as well as the future period following the scenario RCP8.5. Furthermore, few stations presented significant trends for the scenario RCP4.5 and the high proportion of stations with the inconsistence trends invites the planners to get ready for an uncertain future climate following this scenario. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Germination Phenological Response Identifies Flora Risk to Climate Change
Climate 2017, 5(3), 73; doi:10.3390/cli5030073 -
Abstract
Climate change is prevalent across the world and can have large influence on plant regeneration, recruitment, survival and diversity. Regeneration and recruitment are the key phases in the plant life cycle and these two aspects are related to survival, adaptation and distribution of
[...] Read more.
Climate change is prevalent across the world and can have large influence on plant regeneration, recruitment, survival and diversity. Regeneration and recruitment are the key phases in the plant life cycle and these two aspects are related to survival, adaptation and distribution of species. This study thus aims to explore the effect of projected climate change on germination and establishment response of some timber tree species from the tropical/subtropical broad leaf forests of Nepal. Germination experiments were carried out under three different temperature regimes (20, 25 and 30 °C) and germination parameters identified from the experimental component were calibrated in the mechanistic model Tree and Climate Assessment—Germination and Establishment Module (TACA-GEM) that helped in identifying species vulnerability to climate change. The model outcome under varied climatic conditions helped in determining the species risk to projected climatic conditions. The model demonstrates that the studied species were able to increase germination under the projected climate change however, establishment consistently failed for most of the species across the hot tropical sites. This finding indicates that spatial vulnerability may limit recruitment in the future. The species-specific responses suggest that, in general, all three species (Alnus nepalensis, Adina cordifolia, and Bombax ceiba) exhibited enhanced germination and establishment in moderately warm and colder sites, indicating that these species may more likely shift their range towards the north in future. Thus, the general species response exhibited in this study may aid in regional climate change adaptation planning in the sector of forest conservation and management. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
A Study of the Oklahoma City Urban Heat Island Effect Using a WRF/Single-Layer Urban Canopy Model, a Joint Urban 2003 Field Campaign, and MODIS Satellite Observations
Climate 2017, 5(3), 72; doi:10.3390/cli5030072 -
Abstract
The urban heat island effect (UHI) for inner land regions was investigated using satellite data, ground observations, and simulations with an Single-Layer Urban Canopy Parameterization (SLUCP) coupled into the regional Weather Research Forecasting model (WRF, http://wrf-model.org/index.php). Specifically, using the satellite-observed surface skin
[...] Read more.
The urban heat island effect (UHI) for inner land regions was investigated using satellite data, ground observations, and simulations with an Single-Layer Urban Canopy Parameterization (SLUCP) coupled into the regional Weather Research Forecasting model (WRF, http://wrf-model.org/index.php). Specifically, using the satellite-observed surface skin temperatures (Tskin), the intensity of the UHI was first compared for two inland cities (Xi’an City, China, and Oklahoma City (OKC)), which have different city populations and building densities. The larger population density and larger building density in Xi’an lead to a stronger skin-level UHI by 2 °C. However, the ground observed 2 m surface air temperature (Tair) observations showed an urban cooling island effect (UCI) over the downtown region in OKC during the daytime of 19 July 2003, from a DOE field campaign (Joint Urban 2003). To understand this contrast between satellite-based Tskin and ground-based Tair, a sensitivity study using WRF/SLUCP was analyzed. The model reproduced a UCI in OKC. Furthermore, WRF/Noah/SLUCM simulations were also compared with the Joint Urban 2003 ground observations, including wind speeds, wind directions, and energy fluxes. Although the WRF/SLUCM model failed to simulate these variables accurately, it reproduced the diurnal variations of surface temperatures, wind speeds, wind directions, and energy fluxes reasonably well. Full article
Figures

Figure 1a

Open AccessArticle
Influence of Atmospheric Circulation on the Baltic Sea Level Rise under the RCP8.5 Scenario over the 21st Century
Climate 2017, 5(3), 71; doi:10.3390/cli5030071 -
Abstract
This study aims to estimate the influence of atmospheric circulation modes on future Baltic Sea level rise under the Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 (RCP8.5) climate scenario for the period 2006–2100. For this estimation, the connection between the sea level variations in two selected
[...] Read more.
This study aims to estimate the influence of atmospheric circulation modes on future Baltic Sea level rise under the Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 (RCP8.5) climate scenario for the period 2006–2100. For this estimation, the connection between the sea level variations in two selected representative locations—Stockholm and Warnemünde, and two atmospheric indices—the Baltic Sea and North Sea Oscillation (BANOS) index and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index is statistically analysed. Correlations of winter means between atmospheric indices, BANOS and NAO, and tide gauges are measured as 0.85 and 0.55 for Stockholm, and 0.55 and 0.17 for Warnemünde over the period 1900–2013. Assuming that the established connection remains unchanged, the influence of atmospheric circulation modes on future Baltic Sea level rise is estimated from the projections of atmospheric indices, which are constructed from the SLP outputs of climate models participating in phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) under the RCP8.5 scenario. The main conclusion is that the contribution of those atmospheric modes to the Baltic Sea level rise is likely to remain small over the 21st century. Additionally, corresponding trend estimations of model realizations indicate the large influence of the internal climatic variability of the CMIP5 models on those future trends. One of the most important findings of this study is that anthropogenic forcing does not play a key role in the evolution of these atmospheric indices. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Comparison of Carbon Emission Trading Schemes in the European Union and China
Climate 2017, 5(3), 70; doi:10.3390/cli5030070 -
Abstract
Given the growing evidence and scientific consensus on global climate change, carbon emission trading schemes (ETS) have been deemed crucial in mitigating the problem. Therefore, this study compares the mechanisms of ETS in the European Union with those in China. The results indicate
[...] Read more.
Given the growing evidence and scientific consensus on global climate change, carbon emission trading schemes (ETS) have been deemed crucial in mitigating the problem. Therefore, this study compares the mechanisms of ETS in the European Union with those in China. The results indicate similarities in cap determination, the coverage and calculation method of allowance allocation, trading participants and allowance category, offset credit, and MRV. On the other hand, the allocation method and supervision of allowance allocation, allowance formats and trading methods, market risk management, market linkage mechanism, and legislation security evidently appear to vary. However, the results were unable to identify which ETS is absolutely good or bad due to the political, economic, and institutional contexts and the varying developmental phases. Eventually, drawing on these findings, we conclude with implications for the promotion of ETS. Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Near-Term Pathways for Achieving Forest and Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Mitigation in the U.S.
Climate 2017, 5(3), 69; doi:10.3390/cli5030069 -
Abstract
U.S. forests and agriculture present unique opportunities to mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. U.S. forests currently remove a large amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year and store it as a terrestrial carbon sink, a trend that is projected to continue,
[...] Read more.
U.S. forests and agriculture present unique opportunities to mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. U.S. forests currently remove a large amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year and store it as a terrestrial carbon sink, a trend that is projected to continue, although at a decreasing rate over time. Agriculture is and will continue to be a net source of GHGs. To encourage additional mitigation, analyses suggest addressing forest loss, forest aging, wildfire, and encouraging greater forest growth. In agriculture, analyses suggest addressing animal operation methane emissions and nitrous oxide from fertilizer use. Absent new targeted policies to encourage mitigation practices such as these, existing programs may need to be better leveraged for GHG mitigation, even if that is not their explicit objective. Leveraging existing programs requires coordinated outreach efforts to ensure that practices are not cross-purposed. Development of standards and verification practices is also necessary to ensure desirable outcomes. Finally, greater mitigation may be possible by maximizing the effectiveness of voluntary efforts from private and non-governmental organizations, and not necessarily the implementation of new policies. This conclusion represents a departure from traditional commentary on the subject, but arguably represents a more realistic path forward to achieving climate mitigation objectives in the near-term. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Rainfall Variability in January in the Federal District of Brazil from 1981 to 2010
Climate 2017, 5(3), 68; doi:10.3390/cli5030068 -
Abstract
The Federal District is a politically and economically important part of Brazil, which suffers from water stress. Exploratory analyzes were conducted using data on rainfall in the Federal District from the monthly precipitation time series to assess the rainfall variability in January, a
[...] Read more.
The Federal District is a politically and economically important part of Brazil, which suffers from water stress. Exploratory analyzes were conducted using data on rainfall in the Federal District from the monthly precipitation time series to assess the rainfall variability in January, a month that falls in the middle of the rainy season in the region. A time series of 30 years (1981–2010), recorded at 19 rain gauges was analyzed. The resulting exploratory analyses show a gradient of increasing rainfall in the westward direction in the Federal District. Moreover, the time series shows a moderate inter-annual variability in rainfall volume, which is, however, of a stationary nature. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Influence of Parameter Sensitivity and Uncertainty on Projected Runoff in the Upper Niger Basin under a Changing Climate
Climate 2017, 5(3), 67; doi:10.3390/cli5030067 -
Abstract
Hydro-climatic projections in West Africa are attributed with high uncertainties that are difficult to quantify. This study assesses the influence of the parameter sensitivities and uncertainties of three rainfall runoff models on simulated discharge in current and future times using meteorological data from
[...] Read more.
Hydro-climatic projections in West Africa are attributed with high uncertainties that are difficult to quantify. This study assesses the influence of the parameter sensitivities and uncertainties of three rainfall runoff models on simulated discharge in current and future times using meteorological data from eight Global Climate Models (GCM). The IHACRES Catchment Moisture Deficit (IHACRES-CMD) model, the GR4J, and the Sacramento model were chosen for this study. During the model evaluation, 10,000 parameter sets were generated for each model and used in a sensitivity and uncertainty analysis using the Generalized Likelihood Uncertainty Estimation (GLUE) method. Out of the three models, IHACRES-CMD recorded the highest Nash-Sutcliffe Efficiency (NSE) of 0.92 and 0.86 for the calibration (1997–2003) and the validation (2004–2010) period, respectively. The Sacramento model was able to adequately predict low flow patterns on the catchment, while the GR4J and IHACRES-CMD over and under estimated low flow, respectively. The use of multiple hydrological models to reduce uncertainties caused by model approaches is recommended, along with other methods for sustainable river basin management. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
An Exposure-Mortality Relationship for Residential Indoor PM2.5 Exposure from Outdoor Sources
Climate 2017, 5(3), 66; doi:10.3390/cli5030066 -
Abstract
A large proportion of particulate air pollution exposure in urban areas occurs due to the penetration of outdoor pollution into the residential indoor environment. Theoretical considerations suggest that quantifying health effects due to changes to indoor particulate concentrations derived from outdoor sources requires
[...] Read more.
A large proportion of particulate air pollution exposure in urban areas occurs due to the penetration of outdoor pollution into the residential indoor environment. Theoretical considerations suggest that quantifying health effects due to changes to indoor particulate concentrations derived from outdoor sources requires the adjustment of exposure-response coefficients based on epidemiological studies of outdoor air. Using the PM2.5-mortality coefficient from the American Cancer Society (ACS) cohort study as an example, we developed a theoretical model to quantify the relationship between the published coefficient and one based on personal exposure, and explored how this adjusted coefficient might be applied to changes in indoor PM2.5 from outdoor sources. Using a probabilistic approach, our estimated average mortality coefficient for personal PM2.5 exposure is 30–50% greater than the ACS coefficient. However, since the indoor PM2.5 of outdoor origin accounts for only a proportion of the overall exposure, the average net adjustment required for indoor exposure is very modest. The results suggest that it is generally appropriate to apply unadjusted exposure-response functions derived from cohort studies to assess the health impact of changes in indoor particle concentrations from outdoor sources. However, it may be important to re-scale the coefficients for assessing exposures of population groups who spend a greater proportion of their time at home. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Assessing the Value of Systematic Cycling in a Polluted Urban Environment
Climate 2017, 5(3), 65; doi:10.3390/cli5030065 -
Abstract
The positive health effects of systematic cycling are weighted against the negative effects due to higher pollutant inhalation in the actual case of the city of Milan in northern Italy. The paper first evaluates the actual use of bikes in the city, and
[...] Read more.
The positive health effects of systematic cycling are weighted against the negative effects due to higher pollutant inhalation in the actual case of the city of Milan in northern Italy. The paper first evaluates the actual use of bikes in the city, and then considers why and how much such an active mobility style can be expanded. Two models are used to compare the outcome of cycling on the specific population sample with the equivalent path travelled by car. The first model computes the long term effects of the physical activity, and the second evaluates the exacerbation of some relevant diseases due to the exposure to high levels of pollutants, in the case at hand, mainly particulate matter with diameter smaller than 10 μm (PM10). According to these two models, the overall balance for public health is always in favour of systematic biking. Even the current level of biking, low in comparison to other European cities, allows a considerable economic advantage on the order of tens of millions euros per year. This may increase to hundreds of millions if the biking level of more bike-friendly cities is reached. Despite being much less relevant from the economic viewpoint, the study also estimates the reduction of pollution and greenhouse gas emissions corresponding to the assumed biking levels. Full article
Figures

Open AccessArticle
Adaption to Climate Change through Fallow Rotation in the U.S. Pacific Northwest
Climate 2017, 5(3), 64; doi:10.3390/cli5030064 -
Abstract
In this paper, we study the use of wheat land fallow production systems as a climate change adaptation strategy. Using data from the U.S. Census of Agriculture, we find that fallow is an important adaption strategy for wheat farms in the U.S. Pacific
[...] Read more.
In this paper, we study the use of wheat land fallow production systems as a climate change adaptation strategy. Using data from the U.S. Census of Agriculture, we find that fallow is an important adaption strategy for wheat farms in the U.S. Pacific Northwest region. In particular, we find that a warmer and wetter climate increases the share of fallow in total cropland and thus reduces cropland in production. Our simulations project that, on average by 2050, the share of fallow (1.5 million acres in 2012) in the U.S. Pacific Northwest region will increase by 1.3% (0.12 million acres) under a medium climate change scenario and by 1.8% (0.16 million acres) under a high climate change scenario. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Adoption and Dissemination Pathways for Climate-Smart Agriculture Technologies and Practices for Climate-Resilient Livelihoods in Lushoto, Northeast Tanzania
Climate 2017, 5(3), 63; doi:10.3390/cli5030063 -
Abstract
Smallholder farmers in East Africa need information and knowledge on appropriate climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices, technologies, and institutional innovations in order to effectively adapt to changing climatic conditions and cope with climate variability. This paper assesses farmer adoption of climate-smart agricultural practices and
[...] Read more.
Smallholder farmers in East Africa need information and knowledge on appropriate climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices, technologies, and institutional innovations in order to effectively adapt to changing climatic conditions and cope with climate variability. This paper assesses farmer adoption of climate-smart agricultural practices and innovation after being exposed to Farms of the Future Approach (FotF). First; we explore and assess the various CSA technologies and practices; including institutional innovations farmers are adopting. Second; we identify and document farmer learning and dissemination pathways that can enhance adoption of CSA technologies and practices. Third; we identify existing institutions that enhance adoption of CSA practices. We use household survey data, complemented by qualitative information from focus group discussions and key informant interviews. The results show farmers are adopting a variety of CSA technologies, practices, and institutional innovations to after participating in the FotF approach with use of improved crop varieties, agroforestry, and scientific weather forecast information cited as the main practices. To minimize their risks and reduce vulnerabilities, farmers are diversifying and integrating five to 10 CSA practices in one season. Matengo pits, SACCOs, and efficient energy stoves were adopted by very few farmers due to their high initial investment costs and unsuitability to the area. Ninety-eight percent of farmers reported that they receive agricultural information orally from a variety of sources including government extension workers, seed companies, researchers, traditional experts, neighbors, radio agricultural shows, religious groups, farmer groups, and family members. Lastly, farmers reported that the FotF approach is a useful tool that enabled them to interact with other farmers and learn new CSA practices and innovations. Suggested improvements to make on the FotF included include longer trip duration, increased number of farmer participants, and gender balance and age considerations to include youth. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Impact of Air Temperature on London Ambulance Call-Out Incidents and Response Times
Climate 2017, 5(3), 61; doi:10.3390/cli5030061 -
Abstract
Ambulance services are in operation around the world and yet, until recently, ambulance data has only been used for operational purposes rather than for assessing public health. Ambulance call-out data offers new and valuable (near) real-time information that can be used to assess
[...] Read more.
Ambulance services are in operation around the world and yet, until recently, ambulance data has only been used for operational purposes rather than for assessing public health. Ambulance call-out data offers new and valuable (near) real-time information that can be used to assess the impact of environmental conditions, such as temperature, upon human health. A detailed analysis of London ambulance data at a selection of dates between 2003 and 2015 is presented and compared to London temperature data. In London, the speed of ambulance response begins to suffer when the mean daily air temperature drops below 2 °C or rises above 20 °C. This is explained largely by the increased number of calls past these threshold temperatures. The baseline relationships established in this work will inform the prediction of likely changes in ambulance demand (and illness types) that may be caused by seasonal temperature changes and the increased frequency and intensity of extreme/severe weather events, exacerbated by climate change, in the future. Full article
Figures

Figure 1