February 28, 2007
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Global Climate Change Digest
A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999
FROM VOLUME 1, NUMBER 3, SEPTEMBER 1988
METHANE AND GLOBAL WARMING
See PROF. PUBS./ATMOSPHERIC METHANE,
this Global Climate Change Digest issue--Sep. 1988, for annotations of
the papers mentioned in the following articles.
"Ice Age Air Reveals Greenhouse Gas Story," R. Monastersky, Science
News, May 7, 1988, p. 295. Swiss researchers from the University of Bern
have provided the first indication that levels of the greenhouse gas methane
have varied throughout periods of glaciation, according to Ralph Cicerone of the
National Center for Atmospheric Research (see Stauffer et al. article). Methane
levels were determined from Antarctic and Greenland ice cores.
"Methane Linked to Warming," R.J. Cicerone, Nature, July
21, 1988, p. 198. There is strong evidence that global methane concentrations
have increased by about 1 percent per year since 1978 or earlier. Recent ice
core analyses by Stauffer et al. and Raynaud et al. indicate methane has
fluctuated during several recent glacial cycles. This information will help
clarify several features of Earth's atmospheric chemistry, biogeochemistry and
climate, such as the role of methane production by wetland bacteria. Methane
concentration, like that of the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and
chlorofluorocarbons, has increased above values of at least the past 160,000
years, and human activities are clearly involved.
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