Scripps in the News

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The Chicago Tribune
Jun 18, 2015

In a sweeping environmental manifesto aimed at spurring concrete action, Pope Francis called Thursday for a bold cultural revolution to correct what he described as a "structurally perverse" economic system where the rich exploit the poor, turning Earth into an "immense pile of filth.” Veerabhadran Ramanathan, a scientist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego,  said the encyclical is a "game-changer in making people think about this.” Francis framed climate change as an urgent moral issue to address in his eagerly anticipated encyclical, blaming global warming on an unfair, fossil fuel-based industrial model that harms the poor most. "It's not politics anymore," he said, adding that science is often difficult to understand but that people respond to arguments framed by morality and ethics.

The New York Times dot Earth blog
Jun 17, 2015

It’s been remarkable to see the lengthening line of Republican politicians, particularly presidential hopefuls, chiding Pope Francis for pressing the case for action to stem global warming given how much conservatives have stressed values-based arguments on important issues in the past. I also noted how one of the most lauded scientists at the meeting, Walter Munk of Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego, said a shift in values was critical to human success: It says much that even some of the most accomplished scientists at this meeting articulated that progress on climate, energy, equity, education and conservation of living resources will be driven by values and faith more than data and predictive models.

Jun 17, 2015

Like a scene from a B-movie, hordes of bright red crabs have taken over San Diego's coastline from Ocean Beach to La Jolla. Masses of the small red tuna crabs, or pelagic red crabs, have been washing up along the southern California shoreline for the past couple of weeks, according to local media reports. The striking sight may be the result of warm water carrying the crustaceans from their usual home along the west coast of Baja California and the Gulf of California, according to Linsey Sala, a museum scientist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego.

The Guardian
Jun 16, 2015

Later this summer the final stages of Venice’s Mose flood barrier project will begin completion as the gates arrive and are inserted into their concrete foundations on the bed of the Venetian lagoon. The gates, which will be situated in the three inlets through which water enters and leaves the lagoon, will be able to be opened and closed separately to control the flow of water and help to control the high tides, or acqua alta, that mire Venice every winter. However, not everyone agrees that Venice has stopped sinking. In 2012 a study by Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego found that Venice had not stabilised as previously thought, but was continuing to slowly sink – and to tilt eastward. “Venice appears to be continuing to subside at a rate of about 2mm a year,” says Yehuda Bock, a research geodesist with Scripps who has been studying Venice subsidence since 2001. “It’s a small effect, but it’s important.” he added.

Jun 16, 2015

Several dozen of the world’s most prominent scientists sprang from their seats and left the Vatican hall where they were holding a conference on the environment in May 2014. They were bound for a meet-and-greet with Pope Francis at the modest Vatican hotel where he lives, the Domus Sanctae Marthae. Among the horde was Veerabhadran Ramanathan, a climate scientist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. Since 2004, he has also been a member of a 400-year-old collective, one that operates as the pope’s eyes and ears on the natural world: the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. Ramanathan is one of many scientists and other advisers who have, over the last several decades, conveyed the urgency of climate change to the Vatican. “We are concerned about climate change,” Ramanathan told Francis. “The poorest 3 billion people are going to suffer the worst consequences.”

Scientific American
Jun 12, 2015

The American Chemical Society honored the Keeling Curve—a graph that displays atmospheric carbon dioxide levels since 1958—as a National Historic Chemical Landmark at a dedication event at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego in June, 2015. In March of 1958 geochemist Charles David Keeling set up infrared gas analyzers in Hawaii, Antarctica and California to measure carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Jun 12, 2015

Massive numbers of small red crabs that normally inhabit the warm waters off of Baja California have invaded San Diego’s beaches — from Ocean Beach to La Jolla. The likely reason: the region's above-average ocean temperatures. The 4-inch-long crustaceans, commonly called tuna crabs, have washed ashore with the tides during the past two weeks. The rare crab strandings that San Diego is experiencing could be an indicator of a building El Niño, said Linsey Sala, a museum scientist and collection manager of the pelagic invertebrates collection at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego in La Jolla. "We typically see them en masse in warm water intrusion events," Sala said.

Jun 11, 2015

Twenty minutes before the San Diego Tuna Harbor Dockside Market was set to open, the line was 75 people deep and starting to curl past the pier. The crowd here last Saturday didn't come for the local sand dabs or trap-caught black cod. They were bargain hunters looking to score freshly caught, whole Pacific bluefin tuna for the unbelievably low price of only $2.99 a pound. It's a low price that doesn't reflect the true state of Pacific bluefin: Scientists and environmentalists say the species is in deep trouble. Theresa Sinicrope Talley, a coastal specialist with Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego, says local fishermen like Haworth are simply catching what's plentiful and pricing it to local demand

San Jose Mercury News
Jun 11, 2015

A huge swath of unusually warm water that has drawn tropical fish and turtles to the normally cool West Coast over the past year has grown to the biggest and longest-lasting ocean temperature anomaly on record, researchers now say, profoundly affecting climate and marine life from Baja California to Alaska. Researchers remain uncertain what caused the mass of warm seawater they simply call "the blob," or what it'll mean long term for the West Coast climate. "Just the enormous magnitude of this anomaly is what's incredible," said Art Miller, an oceanographer at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. He was among nearly 100 scientists from Canada, the U.S. and Mexico who gathered recently at Scripps for the first time to share research about the warm-water mass.

Jun 11, 2015

"They often hang out around with Tuna, and Tuna love to eat them," said Charina Layman, Education Manager at Birch Aquarium at Scripps.