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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 #d88oct39

"Summer Heat Fires Policy Hares," Nature, 334(6182), p. 457., Aug. 11, 1988.

When the political race to "cure" the drought problem is over, it will fall to government bureaucrats to sort out a national atmosphere policy. Senator Tim Wirth of Colorado has proposed legislation to counter greenhouse warming, while EPA has just announced how it will achieve the reductions in CFC use called for in the Montreal Protocol. But the maddeningly slow bureaucratic tortoise will plod on while the political hares chase the next magazine cover.

Item #d88oct40

"Reactions on Ice Crystals," J. Pyle (Dept. Phys. Chem., Univ. Cambridge, Lensfield Rd., Cambridge CB2 1EW, UK), Nature, 334(6180), p. 297, July 28, 1988.

Results from several U.S. airborne Antarctic ozone expeditions were discussed at the Polar Ozone Workshop in Colorado, May 9-13, 1988. Ozone depletion is caused in the Antarctic vortex by a catalytic cycle based on chlorine atoms originating from man-made chlorofluorocarbons. Ice crystals in the stratospheric clouds that can form in the cold vortex are thought to be sites of crucial heterogeneous reactions that free active chlorine. Concentrations of ClO are much higher than predicted by models and could be very important globally.

Item #d88oct41

"Executive Summary of the Ozone Trends Panel Report," K.E. Trenberth (NCAR, Boulder, Colorado), Environ., 30(6), 25-26, July/Aug. 1988.

A review by Trenberth of the summary written by R.T. Watson (NASA's panel chairman). Although the September 1987 treaty signed in Montreal to protect the ozone layer is a useful first step, the Ozone Trends Panel report indicates it may need strengthening if damage to the ozone layer is to be limited. From scientific, environmental and political standpoints, it is important that the panel's full report be made available in a timely manner.

Item #d88oct42

"The Time is Now," G. Speth (editorial), Chem.& Eng. News, p.3, July 4, 1988.

In an address to the Environmental Protection Agency, Gus Speth, president of the World Resources Institute, claimed that the time to address all the atmosphere problems--local, regional, global--is now. The way to address all these problems is together. In the long run, the key to these problems is energy.

Item #d88oct43

"The Business of Planet Management," E.G. Nisbet, (Dept. Geolog. Sci., Univ. Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 0W0, Can.), Nature, 333(6174), p. 617, June 16, 1988.

Decisions made about the world's economy have consequences for Earth's climate. At their forthcoming meeting in Toronto, the leaders of the West should pay attention to the long-term threats to the global economy represented by the prospect of climatic change. Solar and hydrogen power should be considered as alternatives to deforestation and the burning of fossil fuels.

Item #d88oct44

"Ultraviolet Verdict," T.M. Beardsley, Scientific American, 258(5), 26, May 1988.

Studies reported by the Ozone Trend Panel show that the ozone depletion is a fact and, if it continues, exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun, which is associated with skin cancer in human beings and harm to plants and fisheries, will almost certainly increase.

Item #d88oct45

"International Mechanisms and Global Changes," P.S. Thacher (World Resour. Inst., 1735 New York Ave NW, Washington DC 20006), Environ. Conserv., 14(3), 191-193, Autumn 1987.

In a guest comment, Thacher describes the growing need for international cooperation to manage ecological and economic interdependence. He explains the UNEP approach to encourage governments in the mid-1970s to tackle threats to stratospheric ozone which led to the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer. The challenge is not only to improve understanding but to stimulate national and local decision-makers in ways that do not weaken the basis for future growth. Comments are based on remarks by the author at the Joint Seminar on Global Habitability, held in Geneva, Switzerland, during May 1987.

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