climate change

Thomas G. Whitham

Northern Arizona University’s Southwest Experimental Garden Array will test out the idea of “prestoration”—a kind of ecological restoration that anticipates the expected future climate.

Melissa Sevigny

A study published last week identifies regions where climate change is likely to imperil the water supply. The Colorado River Basin is high on the list.  

Ted Schuur

New climate change research from Northern Arizona University predicts frozen soils will release huge stores of ancient carbon as they warm.

The Arizona Republic

The State of Arizona has joined a lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over the federal Clean Power Plan. It’s among two dozen states fighting the new regulations that limit greenhouse gas emissions from the nation’s power plants. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports. 


The American Southwest is one of the fastest changing climates in North America. And some scientists fear many plants, and the organisms that depend on them, may not be able to adapt to the changes in time to survive. That’s why Northern Arizona University ecological geneticist Tom Whitham is cloning key species and planting them in different environments.

In the global carbon economy, forests act like leafy savings accounts. They take carbon dioxide from the air during photosynthesis, convert it into biomass, and deposit it for years or even centuries in wood and soil.

AP Photo/Matt York

Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar is touting his boycott of Pope Francis' address to Congress in a fundraising email.

The Republican represents the 4th District in the northwestern portion of the state. His email said that when the "Pope chooses to act and talk like a leftist politician, then he can expect to be treated like one."

Gosar boycotted the event in protest of the pontiff's expected focus on climate change in his speech.

Earth Notes: The Four Corners’ Methane Problem

Sep 30, 2015

The San Juan River Basin has a rich human history, visible in places like the ancient pueblo ruins of Chaco Canyon. But it is different relict of a much older history, rooted late in the Age of Dinosaurs, that is drawing attention to the basin these days: methane gas. 


The U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs recently awarded the Navajo Nation $150,000 to support a project for students to learn about and adapt to climate change. Arizona Public Radio’s Justin Regan reports.

Brady Smith, U.S. Forest Service, Southwestern Region, Coconino National Forest

Current climate change models assume that trees recover swiftly after a drought ends. That’s not true, according to a new study.

Researchers examined tree-ring data from more than 1,300 sites around the world. By comparing the rings to rainfall records, they could track tree growth before, during, and after droughts.

They found most trees grow slower than normal for 1 to 4 years following a drought.

It’s called a “legacy effect,” and it hasn’t been included in climate change models.