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 4, NUMBER 3, MARCH 1991
A Dahlem Workshop on Limiting the Greenhouse Effect: Options for
Controlling Atmospheric CO2 Accumulation was held in Berlin in
December 1990. The invited participants--energy analysts, economists, political
advisors and climatologists--grappled with barriers to effective reduction of
greenhouse emissions. One conclusion is that human nature may be a greater
obstacle than technology, as evidence by reluctance of consumers to purchase
more efficient light bulbs. The following articles extensively discuss concerns
at the meeting, including the role of the Third World, "least cost"
utility planning, and new energy efficiency centers being set up in Eastern
"Skeptics and Visionaries Examine Energy Saving," J. Cherfas, Science,
pp. 154-156, Jan. 11, 1991.
"The First Steps Out of the Greenhouse," S. Bowler, New
Scientist, pp. 45-51, Feb. 16, 1991.
U.S. Global Change Research funding requested by the Administration
for fiscal year 1992, up 24 percent over last year, is detailed in the third
annual Our Changing Planet budget supplement. Research strategies for
the Global Change Research Program have been further detailed in a report by the
Committee on Global Change of the National Research Council. (See Reports/United
States, this Global Climate Change Digest issue--Mar. 1991.)
Smoke from Kuwaiti oil well fires should cause no prolonged effects
on the Earth's climate, except for the relatively small increase in CO2
emissions. This conclusion was reached independently by modelers at the British
Meteorological Office and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (Science,
p. 372, Jan. 23, 1991; Nature, p. 96, Jan. 10). The British team said
however that surface temperature could be lowered locally downwind, and the
Indian monsoon could be altered. The British Overseas Development Association
has been engaging agricultural consultants to determine how to deal with
possible effects on crops in India (New Scientist, p. 24, Feb. 2).
Substitutes for CFC Solvents will be easier to find through a new
database being established by the Industry Cooperative for Ozone Layer
Protection. Ozonet will eventually be available in 35 countries,
providing information on suppliers, technical data and legislation to users
along with free software and manuals. Contact ICOLP at 1440 New York Ave., S.
300, Washington DC 20005.
CO2 emission targets adopted so far by 22 industrial nations
may only cut the predicted global temperature rise by half a degree by the year
2100. This conclusion is the result of calculations arranged by Global
Environmental Change Report (pp. 1-3, Dec. 7, 1990) in conjunction with
researchers at World Resources Institute and the University of East Anglia. (See
also Nature, p. 668, Dec. 20-27.)
"Government Policies in Amazon Led to Widespread Deforestation,"
Intl. Environ. Rptr., p. 75, Feb. 13, 1991. A government-authorized
report has acknowledged that governmental policies and subsidies of the 1970s
and early 1980s that promoted land for agriculture and cattle ranching were
responsible for deforestation.
"A Sea Change in the Sahel," F. Pearce, New Scientist,
pp. 31-32, Feb. 2, 1991. Discusses the concerns of climatologists and others
that drought there is closely related to regional temperatures, and that global
warming may reveal itself in a serious onset of drought in the Sahel.
"Huge Increases for Global Environment?" D. Swinbanks, Nature,
p. 94, Jan. 10, 1991. Japan's Ministry of Industry and Technology (MITI) and
Science and Technology Agency (SCA) are likely to receive substantial new funds
for space and global environment research in the 1991 budget.
Guide to Publishers
Index of Abbreviations