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Global Climate Change Digest

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



Item #d88aug22

"North Carolina Climate Changes Reconstructed from Tree Rings: A.D. 372 to 1985," D.W. Stahle (Dept. Geogr., Univ. Arkansas, Fayetteville AR 72701), M.K. Cleaveland, J.G. Hehr, Science, 240, 1517-19, Jun. 10, 1988.

A proxy paleoclimatic record reconstructed from the Palmer drought severity index for North Carolina indicates that the growing- season climate of North Carolina has undergone many changes between significantly different regimes of drought and wetness that persist for approximately 30 years. The record June droughts in 1985 and 1986 and the preceding three decades of much wetter than average conditions both appear to have been rare climatic events, equaled only five times each since A.D. 372.

Item #d88aug23

"Non-Seasonal Changes in Total Column Ozone from Satellite Observations, 1970-86," D.F. Heath (Atmos. Lab., NASA/Goddard Space Flight Ctr., Greenbelt MD 20771), Nature, 332(6161), 219-227, Mar. 17, 1988.

These observations combined with analyses of Dobson network data suggest that the largest reduction in global ozone since 1959 occurred between 1978-1986. The existence of an Arctic region of enhanced ozone depletion with similar but less pronounced characteristics of the Antarctic region is described. Before 1983 large rates of decrease were confined to high latitudes; subsequently regions of large rates of ozone depletion have appeared at mid-latitudes.

Item #d88aug24

"Evaluation of the Montsouris Series of Ozone Measurements Made in the Nineteenth Century," A. Volz (Inst. Chem. 2, Chemie der Belasteten Atmos., Kernforschungsanlage Jülich, D-5170 Jülich FRG), D. Kley, ibid., 240-42.

Evaluation of the technique, together with the analysis of nearly 3,000 of the original daily measurements in a statistical bulletin of the City of Paris, shows evidence that ozone levels in central Europe 100 years ago averaged 10 ppb and exhibited a seasonal variation, with a maximum during the spring months. Comparisons with modern data show that ozone levels in rural areas have more than doubled over the past century and that the tropospheric ozone budget is now strongly influenced by photochemical production due to increased levels of NOx.

Item #d88aug25

"Carbon Monoxide in the Earth's Atmosphere: Indications of a Global Increase," M.A.K. Khalil (Inst. Atmos. Sci., Oregon Grad. Ctr., Beaverton OR 97006), R.A. Rasmussen, ibid., 242-45.

Increasing levels of CO can lead to an increase of tropospheric O3 and a build-up of many other trace gases in the earth's atmosphere, which may in turn cause widespread perturbations of tropospheric chemistry, global warming, and other climatic changes. Systematic measurements of CO worldwide taken over the last 6-8 years show the rates of increase of the globally averaged concentrations of CO to be between 0.8% and 1.4% per year.

Item #d88aug26

"Biologically Effective Ultraviolet Radiation: Surface Measurements in the United States, 1974 to 1985," J. Scotto (Biostatistics Branch, Nat. Cancer Inst., Bethesda, MD 20892), G. Cotton et al., Science, 239(4841), 762-764, Feb. 12, 1988.

Since 1974 UVB (290 to 330 nm) has been tracked. The fact that no increases of UVB have been detected at ground levels from 1974 to 1985 suggests that meteorological, climatic and environmental factors in the troposphere may play a greater role in attenuating UVB radiation than was previously suspected.

Item #d88aug27

"Is There a Trend in Stratospheric Temperature from 1960 to 1986 Detectable in Berlin Data?," W. Elling (Max-Planck-Inst. Aeronomie, D-3411 Lindau, FRG), H. Schwentek, Beitr. Phys. Atmosph., 61(1), 50-55, Feb. 1988.

Analysis of the set of stratospheric temperature data obtained from daily radiosonde launchings at Berlin does not show a significant trend in stratospheric temperature. There was, however, a considerable temperature enhancement at a height of 25 km, which occurred between June and August 1982 following the eruption of El Chichon on April 4, 1982.

Item #d88aug28

"An Analysis of the 7-year Record of SBUV Satellite Ozone Data: Global Profile Features and Trends in Total Ozone," G.C. Reinsel (Wisconsin Univ., Madison, Wisc.), G.C. Tiao et al., J. Geophys. Res., 93(D2), 1689-1703, Feb. 20, 1988.

Regression-time series models were performed to establish linear trend and solar flux coefficient estimates of SBUV satellite ozone data compared to measurements from 35 Dobson stations. The results show an average negative linear drift in SBUV data relative to Dobson data of about -0.4 percent per year. The rather unusual natural atmospheric fluctuations, which occurred during the period 1982-1985, prevent firm interpretations of the negative trend over the relatively short 7-year time period.

Item #d88aug29

"Global Trends of Measured Surface Air Temperature," J. Hansen (NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr., Inst. Space Studies, N.Y.), S. Lebedeff, J. Geophys. Res., 92(D11), 13,345-13,372, Nov. 20, 1987.

Station data collected from 1880-1985 was combined to provide accurate long-term variations. Meaningful global temperature change was obtained for the past century. The results indicate a global warming of about 0.5-0.7° C in the past century, with warming of similar magnitude in both hemispheres. A strong warming trend between 1965-1980 raised the global mean temperature in 1980 and 1981 to the highest level in the period of instrumental record. A computer tape of the derived regional and global temperature changes is available from the authors.

Item #d88aug30

"Southern Hemisphere Temperature Trends: A Possible Greenhouse Gas Effect?" D.J. Kardy (Dept. Math., Monash Univ., Australia), Geophys. Res. Lett., 14(11), 1139-41, Nov. 1987.

Increased concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere may lead to reduced temperatures in the lower stratosphere as well as increased temperatures in the troposphere. An index designed to identify this signal has been computed from data from 19 stations for the period 1964-85. This index has a trend of the same sign, consistent with the impact of increased concentrations of greenhouse gases, at all stations, and is significant at most stations.

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