Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Priorities Matter...New Research: Aerosols are Back: Black Carbon and Other Short-Term Pollutants Matter

Last week in NATURE GEOSCIENCES, NASA Climate Modeler Drew Shindell published “Climate Change Cool Ozone” research modeling global warming over the past half century and concluded that aerosols are responsible for half or more of the warming in the Arctic!

He and other scientists say that reducing emissions of black carbon and other short-lived pollutants that contribute to global warming could buy the world crucial time while governments begin the slow overhaul of global energy systems that will be required to reduce emissions of CO2, which comprise 77% of all greenhouse gas emissions.

He also makes a very logical, compelling and understandable argument on anthropogenic global warming.

“The large-scale vertical structure of temperature change in the atmosphere is an important characteristic of the forces driving climate change. Increases in greenhouse gases cause warming in the troposphere but cool the stratosphere. Greater output from the sun similarly warms the troposphere, but causes even greater warming in the stratosphere. Observations show that the troposphere has warmed in recent decades whereas the stratosphere has cooled markedly; this is clear evidence for anthropogenic warming rather than natural warming from the sun.”

In a speech given last week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made the following statement:

“Short-term carbon forcers like methane, black carbon, and tropospheric ozone contribute significantly to the warming of the Arctic. Because they are short-lived, they also give us an opportunity to make rapid progress if we limit them.”

For a copy of the complete article:

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