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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 #d91mar12

Comment on an article on satellite temperature monitoring by Spencer and Christy. Science, 251(4991), 316, Jan. 18, 1991.

Item #d91mar13

"A 400 Years Isotope Record of the Antarctic Peninsula Climate," A.J. Aristarain (CRICYT, Casilla de Géochimie Osotopique, DSM/DPhG, CEN Saclay, 91191 Gif sur Yvette cedex, France), J. Jouzel, C. Lorius, Geophys. Res. Lett., 17(12), 2369-2372, Dec. 1990. A proxy temperature record deduced from deuterium in an ice core indicates a temperature decline of about 2° C from 1850 to the present, probably a result of regional flow patterns.

Item #d91mar14

"A Comparison of `Global' Temperature Estimates from Satellite and Instrumental Data, 1979-88," H.F. Diaz (ERL, NOAA, 325 Broadway, Boulder CO 80303), ibid., 2373-2376.

Comparison of surface temperature changes over land and ocean areas with tropospheric air temperature derived from satellites (by Spencer and Christy) shows discrepancy in the warm half of the set of years, with agreement in the cold half. Concludes that interannual surface temperature variations over the oceans compare poorly with such variations in the troposphere above, especially when the oceans are relatively warm. The satellite measurements agree very well with an index of tropospheric temperature derived from radiosonde stations.

Item #d91mar15

"Urban Heat Islands in China," W.-C. Wang (Atmos. Sci. Res. Ctr., SUNY, 100 Fuller Rd., Albany NY 12205), Z. Zeng, T.R. Karl, ibid., 2377-2380. A 30-year comparison of rural and urban station pairs shows a general increase in heat island intensity of about 0.1° C, although the trend has not been constant.

Item #d91mar16

"Trends in Surface Ozone at Hohenpeissenberg and Arkona," P.S. Low (Clim. Res. Unit, Univ. E. Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK), T.D. Davies et al., J. Geophys. Res., 95(D13), 22,441-22,453, Dec. 20, 1990. Analysis of an 18-year data set from Hohenpeissenberg (West Germany) and a 33-year set from Arkona (East Germany) indicate a positive long-term trend in surface ozone of about 1.0% per year at both locations.

Item #d91mar17

"Effects of Greenhouse Warming on Maximum Summer Temperatures," R.C. Balling Jr. (Lab. Climatol., Arizona State Univ., Tempe AZ 85287), S.B. Idso, Agric. For. Meteor., 53 (1-2), 143-147, Nov. 1990. Analysis of temperature records from a number of stations indicates there is no sound observational basis for predicting an increase in the frequency of occurrence of extreme high summer temperatures in response to greenhouse warming.

Item #d91mar18

"Long-Term Changes in Amplitudes of Atmospheric CO2 Concentrations at Ocean Station P and Alert, Canada," Y.-H. Chan (Western Ecol. Serv. Ltd., 2-2563 Penrhyn St., Victoria, B.C. V8N 1G2, Can.), C.S. Wong, Tellus, 42B(4), 330-341, 1990.

Trend analysis suggests the growth rate of CO2 seasonal amplitude at Station P (145° W, 50° N) was 1.4% per year from 1971 to 1979, while at Alert there was no trend from 1977 to 1985. The differences are attributed mainly to the geographical differences in CO2 sources and sinks, one of which may be the biosphere. Factors are discussed, such as winter-season photosynthesis, which is probably increasing and may be altering the CO2 amplitudes.

Item #d91mar19

"Effects of Autocorrelation and Temporal Sampling Schemes on Estimates of Trend and Spatial Correlation," G.C. Tiao (Grad. Sch. Business, Univ. Chicago, 1101 E. 58th St., Chicago IL 60637), G.C. Reinsel et al., J. Geophys. Res., 95(D12), 20,507-20,517, Nov. 20, 1990. Based on methodological considerations as well as empirical analysis of total and profile ozone data, concludes that the precision of trend estimates depends critically on the autocorrelation of monthly samples.

Item #d91mar20

"Antarctic Temperatures over the Present Century--A Study of the Early Expedition Record," P.D. Jones (Clim. Res. Unit, Univ. E. Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK), J. Clim., 3(11), 1193-1203, Nov. 1990.

Analysis of air temperature records from 26 expeditions that have overwintered between 1898 and 1958 as well as more recent data suggests that Antarctic air temperatures now appear to be warmer, by at least 1° C, than those of the first decade of this century. This result is broadly consistent with changes reported for both land and marine regions over the rest of the Southern Hemisphere, but contrasts with temperature change observed over the Arctic region.

Item #d91mar21

"Detection of Climatic Change in the Western North American Arctic Using a Synoptic Climatological Approach," L.S. Kalkstein (Off. Policy Anal., PM-221, U.S. Environ. Protect. Agency, Washington DC 20460), P.C. Dunne, R.S. Vose, ibid., 3(10), 1153-1167, Oct. 1990.

Since attempts to detect global warming in long-term temperature records have led to conflicting results, the authors propose an approach based on synoptic climatological analysis of air masses. An automated synoptic index constructed for North American Arctic locations indicates that the frequencies of the majority of the coldest air masses have decreased over the past 40 years, while those of the warmest have increased. Suggests a technique to determine whether these changes are attributable to anthropogenic influences.

Item #d91mar22

"Trace Gas Measurements at the Monitoring Station Cape Point, South Africa, between 1978 and 1988," H.E. Scheel (Fraunhofer Inst. Atmos. Environ. Res., D-8100 Garmisch-Partenkirchen, FRG), E.-G. Brunke, W. Seiler, J. Atmos. Chem., 11(3), 197-210, Oct. 1990.

Presents monthly means, long-term trends and seasonal variations of measurements taken since 1978 of CO, CFCl3, CCl4, O3, N2O and CH4. CO and CH4 show very similar seasonal variations, indicating the strong connection between these gases. No significant trends are seen in CO and O3. Positive trends are found in CFCl3, N2O, CH4 and CCl4.

Item #d91mar23

"Recent Changes of the Tropical Water and Energy Budget of Midlatitude Circulations," J. Flohn (Univ. Bonn, Meteor. Inst., Auf dem Hügel 20, W-5300 Bonn, FRG), A. Kapala et al., Clim. Dynamics, 4(4), 237-252, Oct. 1990.

Atmospheric observations are analyzed for signs of possible greenhouse warming other than in the surface temperature record. This and related studies indicate trends in features such as tropical oceanic evaporation and various measures of mid-latitude circulation, which are consistent with changes predicted for CO2-induced warming in a few recent climate models with advanced parameterization of tropical convection.

Item #d91mar24

"Long-Term Trends in the Concentrations of SF6, CHClF2, and COF2 in the Lower Stratosphere from Analysis of High-Resolution Infrared Solar Occultation Spectra," C.P. Rinsland (Atmos. Sci. Div., NASA-Langley, Hampton VA 23665), A. Goldman et al., J. Geophys. Res., 95(D10), 16,447-16,490, Sep. 20, 1990.

The results for SF6 and CHCLF2, two man-made gases, were derived from 1981 and 1988 measurements by balloon-borne interferometer after comparison with the Atmospheric Trace Molecule Spectroscopy Experiment/Spacelab 3. Mean increase rates of 7.4% and 9.4% per year, respectively, were estimated. The estimate for COF2 is 10.3% per year.

Item #d91mar25

"Uncertainties in Total Ozone Amounts Inferred from Zenith Sky Observations: Implications for Ozone Trend Analyses," K. Stamnes (Geophys. Inst., Univ. Alaska, Fairbanks AK 99775), S. Pegau, J. Frederick, ibid., 16,523-16,528.

Using a radiative transfer algorithm and a model atmosphere, simulated the effects of cloud optical depth, cloud altitude, vertical distribution of ozone, temperature profile and surface albedo on the total amount of ozone inferred by the Dobson procedure. One conclusion is that appreciable error could result in deduced ozone trend should tropospheric ozone double but not be taken into account in the total ozone data processing.

Item #d91mar26

"Interpretation of an 8-Year Record of Nimbus 7 Wide-Field-of-View Infrared Measurements," R.D. Cess (Inst. Terr. Plan. Atmos., SUNY, Stony Brook NY 11794), ibid., 16,653-16,657.

Nimbus 7 satellite data show an interesting downward trend with time in the global-mean infrared emission by the surface-atmosphere system. This study demonstrates that any greenhouse gas radiative trend signal is below the level of detectability of the instrument. However, the temporal variability of the Nimbus 7 measurements is strongly correlated with observed variability of global-mean surface air temperature; the measurements provide an independent means of appraising global climate variability.

Item #d91mar27

"Inhomogeneities in the Long-Term United States' Sunshine Record," R.C. Cerveny (Lab. Climatol., Arizona State Univ., Tempe AZ 85287), R.C. Balling Jr., J. Clim., 3(9), 1045-1048. A re-examination of the controversy relating to instrument changes in the early 1950s shows that climatic change is not the dominant forcing mechanism for the significant changes in means and variances observed at many of the stations.

Item #d91mar28

"Cloud Condensation Nuclei over the Southern Ocean," J.L. Gras (Div. Atmos. Res., Dept. CSIRO, PMB 1, Mordialloc 3195, Australia), Geophys. Res. Lett., 17(10), 1565-1567, Sep. 1990. Although CCN concentrations observed recently at Cape Grim (Tasmania) are higher than those reported two decades ago for clean oceanic regions, the data do not permit confident conclusions regarding cause.

Item #d91mar29

"Assessment of Urbanization Effects in Time Series of Surface Air Temperature over Land," P.D. Jones (Clim. Res. Unit, Univ. E. Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK), P. Ya. Groisman et al., Nature, 347(6289), 169-172, Sep. 13, 1990.

Examined an extensive set of rural station data for European parts of the Soviet Union, eastern Australia and eastern China. Combined with similar analyses for the contiguous United States, they show that the urbanization influence in two of the most widely used hemispheric data sets is at most an order of magnitude less than the 0.5° C warming observed on a century time scale.

Item #d91mar30

"Recent Secular Variations in the Extent of Northern Hemisphere Snow Cover," D.A. Robinson (Dept. Geog., Rutgers Univ., New Brunswick NJ 08903), K.F. Dewey, Geophys. Res. Lett., 17(10), 1557-1560, Sep. 1990.

Analysis of NOAA weekly snow charts, produced from visible satellite imagery, shows there was less extensive cover in the last nine years than in the 1972-80 interval, with 3.7% to 8.4% lower hemispheric seasonal means. However, it is premature to ascribe this result to an anthropogenic cause.

Item #d91mar31

"Power Spectrum Analysis of the Time Series of Annual Mean Surface Air Temperatures," R.P. Kane (Inst. Pesquisas Espaciais--INPE, C.P. 515, 12201 Sao José dos Campos, SP, Brasil), Clim. Change, 17(1), 121-130, Aug. 1990.

Maximum entropy spectral analysis of annual mean surface temperature series for land masses and sea in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres indicates long-term linear warming trends of 0.12-0.56° C per century. Observed values in the 1980s are above the expected value, probably indicating greenhouse effects due to human activity.

Item #d91mar32

"Discriminating between Models: An Application to Relative Sea Level at Brest," A.R. Solow (Woods Hole Oceanog. Inst., Woods Hole, MA 02543), J. Clim., 3(7), 792-796, July 1990. Application of a simple method for discriminating between competing models of trend in a climate record show that it is impossible to distinguish between a smooth acceleration of sea level at Brest in the period 1807-1970 and one that occurred relatively abruptly.

Item #d91mar33

"The Ozone Trend in the Layer of 2 to 3 km a.s.l. since 1978 and the Typical Time Variations of the Ozone Profile between Ground and 3 km a.s.l.," R. Reiter (Fraunhofer Inst. Atmos. Environ. Res., Fritz-Müller Str. 54, D-8100 Garmisch-Partenkirchen, FRG), Meteor. Atmos. Phys., 42(1), 91-104, 1990. Measurements in central Europe from 1981 to 1988 show definitely there was no trend of ozone in this layer of the atmosphere, although a 10 ppb increase occurred from 1978 to 1981.

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