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Global Climate Change DigestArchives of the
Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d92jul1

"Freezing Carbon Dioxide Emissions: An Offset Policy for Slowing Global Warming," G.E. Marchant (Kirkland & Ellis, 655 15th St. NW, Washington DC 20005), Environ. Law, 22, 623-683, 1992.

Uses lessons learned from existing emissions trading programs in the U.S. to assess the potential effectiveness of various approaches to controlling greenhouse gases, such as a carbon tax or traditional regulatory standards. Recommends in detail a CO2 emission offset program involving allocation and trading of emission allowances and the creation of carbon sinks that would remove CO2 from the atmosphere. The program would achieve substantial reductions in the future growth of U.S. emissions at the lowest possible cost.

Item #d92jul2

"Implications for Climate and Sea Level of Revised IPCC Emissions Scenarios," T.M.L. Wigley (Sch. Environ. Sci., Univ. E. Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK), S.C.B. Raper, Nature, 357(6376), 293-300, May 28, 1992.

The new set of greenhouse gas emissions scenarios produced by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change were incorporated into models that also include the effects of CO2 fertilization, feedback from stratospheric ozone depletion and the radiative effects of sulfate aerosols. Changes in temperature and sea level are predicted to be less severe than previously estimated, but are still far beyond the limits of natural variability.

Item #d92jul3

"Time-Dependent Ozone Depletion Potentials for Short- and Long-Term Forecasts," S. Solomon (Aeron. Lab., NOAA, 325 Broadway, Boulder CO 80303), D.L. Albritton, Nature, 357(6373), 33-37, May 7, 1992.

The ozone depletion potentials (ODPs) used to formulate current regulations on ozone protection through the Montreal Protocol were based on steady-state impacts. This paper demonstrates that time-dependent ODPs are more appropriate for short-term (decade-scale) forecasts, and that some of the HCFCs proposed as replacements for CFCs may induce significant ozone destruction in the short term.

Item #d92jul4

"Global Warming Implications of Replacing CFCs," S.K. Fischer (Energy Div., Oak Ridge Nat. Lab., Oak Ridge TN 37831), P.D. Fairchild, P.J. Hughes, ASHRAE J., pp. 14-19, Apr. 1992.

Reports on a technical study conducted at Oak Ridge National Laboratory to help industry, government and international policy makers reach sound decisions during the changeover from CFCs to alternative compounds and technologies. Both energy efficiency and fluorocarbon emissions must be considered.

Item #d92jul5

"Comparing the Effects of Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Global Warming," R.S. Eckaus (Dept. Econ., Mass. Inst. Technol., Cambridge MA 02139), The Energy J., 13(1), 25-35, 1992.

Analyzes the usefulness of the Global Warming Potential (GWP), a policy tool proposed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as a physical index of radiative forcing of a greenhouse gas. The economic opportunity costs of an increment in forcing will vary over time, but the GWP treats them as constant and is not useful in policy making.

Item #d92jul6

"Public Understanding of Global Warming," W. Kempton (Ctr. Energy Studies, Princeton Univ., Princeton NJ 08544), Soc. & Natural Resour., 4, 331-345, 1991.

Ethnographic interviews conducted with a small but diverse sample of the U.S. residents showed that most informants had heard of the greenhouse effect, but conceptualized global climate change very differently than scientists. Although species extinctions and range shifts are among the most significant potential effects, they were virtually unknown by respondents, and few could articulate a value for species preservation in the abstract.

Item #d92jul7

"Human Response to Environmental Changes," G.S. Halford, P.W. Sheehan (Academic Dir. of Res., Univ. Queensland, St. Lucia, Qld. 4072, Australia), Intl. J. Psychol., 26(5), 599-611, 1991.

Analyzes a range of factors involved in human responses, and argues for the relevance of the science of psychology in understanding how we cope with uncertainty. A major factor affecting decision making is that scientific information is not fully and accurately disseminated through society; the media have an important but incomplete role in this process. Suitable models for human reasoning related to environmental change are discussed, as well as motivational problems related to the sacrifices that are necessary for responding to change.

Item #d92jul8

"Inadvertent Weather Modification in Urban Areas: Lessons for Global Climate Change," S.A. Changnon (Illinois State Water Survey, 2204 Griffith Dr., Champaign IL 61820), Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 73(5), 619-627, May 1992.

The rate and extent of urban climate changes in North America approximate those being predicted globally. Adjustments to urban changes can provide guidance for adjustments to global change. Existing understanding of urban changes shows the importance of proving the existence of change in the presence of natural variability, and also shows that unexpected outcomes are likely..

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