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NASA study finds increasing solar trend that can change climate

Since the late 1970s, the amount of solar radiation the sun emits, during times of quiet sunspot activity, has increased by nearly .05 percent per decade, according to a new NASA funded study. "This trend is important because, if sustained over many decades, it could cause significant climate change," said Richard Willson, a researcher affiliated with NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies and Columbia University's Earth Institute, New York. He is the lead author of the study recently published in Geophysical Research Letters. "Historical records of solar activity indicate that solar radiation has been increasing since the late 19th century. If a trend, comparable to the one found in this study, persisted throughout the 20th century, it would have provided a significant component of the global warming the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports to have occurred over the past 100 years," he said.

Climate changes may increase extreme rain/snow events in California

Increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere may lead to a rise in the number of annual extreme precipitation events in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, which in turn could increase the frequency of flooding in California, a NASA-funded study finds.

NASA-funded research looking at El Ni?o events to forecast western US...

A NASA-funded study uses a computer model to understand an observed link between winter and spring snowfall in the Western U.S. and El Ni?o Southern Oscillation. Almost 75 to 85 percent of water resources in the Western U.S come from snow that accumulates in the winter and early spring and melts as runoff in spring and summer. Understanding this connection and using it to predict future snowfall rates would greatly help both citizens and policy makers.

NASA satellite helps scientists see effects of earthquakes in remote areas

The unique capabilities of a NASA earth-observing satellite have allowed researchers to view the effects of a major earthquake that occurred in 2001 in Northern India near the border of Pakistan. Lead author Bernard Pinty of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability in the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission, Ispra, Italy, and colleagues from the U.S., France and Germany, used the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument on NASA's Terra satellite to observe the effects of a massive earthquake in the Gujarat province of India.

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