climate change

Parts of a South Coast city’s popular oceanfront boulevard could be hit by storm waves and ocean flooding in as little as a decade, according to a new report on sea level rise.

As climate change affects the environment, experts say that worries about climate change are affecting people’s emotions,  in a new phenomenon called "eco-grief."

Professor Jennifer Atksinson defines eco-grief this way: "Distress about the state of our planet, so climate change, mass extinction, toxic pollution.”

A new report says the rise in the sea level over the coming decades could be devastating to coastal areas like Santa Barbara.

That would include iconic areas like Stearns Wharf,  as well as beaches like Leadbetter and East Beach, and areas like Cabrillo Boulevard and Shoreline Park.

There’s a unique science program that’s being taught to some middle school students on the South Coast that involves eating insects. It may sound nasty, but they’re doing it in the name of science.

Some of the greatest threats from climate change aren’t from new problems it’s causing. They are from impacts on things which are already a part of nature. That’s according to Katharine Hayhoe, an internationally known expert on climate change who's set to speak on the South Coast this week.

Photo by Community Environmental Council

Food that would normally be thrown out is now feeding the hungry in Santa Barbara County.

Restaurants, supermarkets and caterers routinely dump their excess prepared food. But instead of filling up landfills with healthy, uneaten food, the Community Environmental Council came up with an idea.

“It just seems wrong to send edible food to waste. Instead, we could be giving it to people who are hungry,” says Emily Miller with CEC.


South Coast researchers find that Democrats and Republicans have similar views on climate change, but they’re too party-focused to do anything about it.

Scientists from UC Santa Barbara and the University of Colorado Boulder conducted climate change surveys of several thousand people throughout the U.S. and found general agreement across party lines.

Photo by Paso Pacifico (Jerry Bauer/USFS-IITF)

A South Coast nonprofit is combating climate change with a campaign to plant a million trees in Central America.

Paso Pacifico, a Ventura County-based nonprofit focused on wildlife conservation, is launching the Million Tree Campaign. For every $10 donated, its team of rangers and volunteers will plant, monitor and protect one tree in Nicaragua.

Photo by A. Engstrom

Climate change is expected to cause sea level rise, which could severely impact the California coast. The County of Ventura is encouraging residents to be prepared. 

The coastal areas are already vulnerable to storms.

Photo by Kerri Frangioso

A researcher on the Central Coast is leading an international group of scientists to help prevent the global problem of dying forests.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Richard Cobb says forests worldwide are dying at an accelerated pace mostly due to drought and heat from climate change. So, he collaborated with 20 researchers around the world to develop a framework to help minimize future forest mortality rates.

Photo by Emammal

The risk of tick-borne disease could increase in the future. South Coast researchers are finding that wildlife loss and climate change can cause the number of ticks to rise dramatically.

UC Santa Barbara biologists conducted a study in Kenya and found that the experiment plot where they excluded the largest animals also experienced the largest increase in the number of ticks. Hillary Young, an associate professor in UCSB’s Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, says that was exacerbated in warmer and drier climates.

Photo by UC Santa Barbara

New research by a South Coast economist is finding that it’s unlikely that global temperatures goals laid out in the Paris Climate Agreement will be achieved.

The goal in the agreement is to limit temperature rise by the year 2100 to two degrees Celsius, which amounts to 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit.

UC Santa Barbara economics professor Dick Startz and his colleagues created a high-tech statistical model that looked at every country.

Photo by Athena Maguire

A Central Coast scientist has found that algae are resilient despite the effect of climate change on the ocean, which is good news for large sea snails known as abalone.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo biologist Dr. Jennifer O’Leary took a closer look at ocean acidification, which is caused by climate change. This happens when carbon dioxide is absorbed by seawater and chemical reactions increase the acidity of the water. She says previous studies have shown that coralline algae – which are critical to abalone’s ability to reproduce -- are sensitive to ocean acidification.

It’s a breezy, yet warm day on Santa Rosa Island. At the site of a historic ranch house, archeologists found artifacts which show that humans were here more than 10,000 years ago.

The finds support evidence that some of the oldest known human existence in North America was in the Channel Islands. University of Oregon archeologist Jon Erlandson has been studying the islands for four decades. He says the researchers have also discovered evidence of something else related to humans: global warming.

A Ventura County supervisor wants the county to take a stand on climate change.

In the wake of President Trump’s declaration that the U.S. would withdraw from the Paris climate accord, some cities and counties have taken stands saying they are still supportive of the agreement.

Ventura County Supervisor Steve Bennett wants Ventura County to join that list. Bennett has proposed a resolution which says the county is still supportive of the intent of the accord, which calls on countries to commit to substantial reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.