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 9, NUMBERS 10-11, OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 1996
A Review of the
U.S. Global Change Research Program [USGCRP] and NASA's Mission to
Planet Earth/Earth Observing System [MTPE/EOS]. Second Letter Report,
Comm. on Global Change Res. (Board on Sustainable Development, Natl. Res.
Council), 18 pp., May 1996 (NRC).
The NRC Committee on Global Change Research has a continuing responsibility
to provide scientific review and oversight of the USGCRP. Its first review was
published in September 1995. (See GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE DIGEST News and
Reports/general Interest, Nov. 1995.) This letter report examines federal agency
responses to its recommendations, discussed in a follow-up meeting held in March
1996. Among the topics covered are weaknesses identified but not fully addressed
in the first stage of the review: international linkages, terrestrial
ecosystems, and human dimensions. The NRC committee intends to move beyond its
NASA-centered view of this first phase and complete a balanced, comprehensive
review of the USGCRP in early 1997.
and Technology to Society's Environmental Goals, Committee on the National
Forum on Science and Technology Goals: Environment (J.F. Ahearne, H.G. Stever,
Co-chairs), Sep. 1996 (NRC/Natl. Acad. Press). Also available on-line:
This committee report results from a forum attended by representatives of
science and technology and the public, as well as from a mailed survey. The
committee selected these six of a possible 40 goals put forth during the forum:
(1) use social science and risk assessment to guide decision making; (2) monitor
environmental changes in a more thorough, consistent and coordinated manner; (3)
reduce the adverse impacts of chemicals in the environment; (4) move away from
the use of fossil fuels; (5) adopt an environmental approach to engineering that
reduces the use of resources; (6) substantially increase the understanding of
the relationship between population and consumption. The report also includes
commissioned papers on major environmental concerns.
The BSE Crisis and
UK Greenhouse Gas Emissions (Policy Briefing No. 1), S. Subak, M. Kelly, 4
pp., Sep. 1996 (CSERGE).
Cattle and their manure are sources of greenhouse gas emissions to the
extent that halving the British population would result in a 2-3% decline in UK
methane emissions. A long-term decrease in cattle numbers would also free land
for carbon sequestration through forestry. The BSE (Bovine Spongiform
Encephalopathy) crisis demonstrates the important role that individual decisions
regarding consumption play in accelerating or retarding climate change.
A Moment of Truth:
Correcting the Errors in Gregg Easterbrook's A Moment on the Earth, Environ.
Defense Fund, July 1996, $2 (Part I)/$10 (Part II), EDF.
These reports counter Easterbrook's optimist view that many environmental
problems have been overstated, and that human-caused problems, including global
warming, are small in scale and moving toward solutions. (Easterbrook's book and
some comments on it were listed in GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE DIGEST,
Books/General, Jan. 1996.)
World Directory of
Country Environmental Studies, 3rd Ed., S. Gordon, D.B. Tunstall, Eds., 272
pp., May 1996 (WRI). Also available on diskette or on WRI's Internet site.
A product of the Intl. Environ. & Natural Resour. Assessment Info.
Service. Contains bibliographic citations and abstract information on 414
reports for 181 countries, nearly all of which were published between 1990 and
1995. A summary matrix gives reports by country and by subject, and includes
climate change assessments, strategies and action plans. Information for
obtaining each report is given with its annotation; many are also available from
Guide to Publishers
Index of Abbreviations