"The U.S. should offer its own political, social, and economic
vision for the future-a program to reduce global poverty. What does
that have to do with Kyoto? Plenty. To respond to any environmental
calamity-warming or cooling, floods or droughts-nations need the
resilience that comes from a strong economy. New irrigation, dikes,
transformed industries, can only be created with wealth. The U.S.
response to the European challenge on global warming, then, should be to
promote economic growth in poverty-stricken nations-by far the most
vulnerable to the dangers of any adverse change in climate.... Let the
Europeans go their own way. Their leaders preach downsizing, small
thinking, pain, and fear. The U.S. has more in common with aspiring
Third World peoples, who know that the key to better health and a cleaner
environment is economic growth-exactly what the grandees of Kyoto
--James K. Glassman, Host, Tech Central Station

"It's hard to understand how parts of the Northern Hemisphere might
have cooled to the magnitude suggested, but not North America. That
seems to imply that either the paleo- records are being misinterpreted, or
something else went on, something major that is not being accounted for.
This isn't necessarily the end of the story."
--David Rind, Goddard Institute for Space Studies

    Andrew Yee <>

    Andrew Yee <>

    Tech Central Station, 16 November 2001

    The New York Times, 20 November 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 21 November 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

     Tech Central Station, 14 November 2001


>From Andrew Yee <>

210 Pittsboro Street, Campus Box 6210
Chapel Hill, NC  27599-6210
(919) 962-2091   FAX: (919) 962-2279

News Services Contact:
David Williamson, (919) 962-8596

For immediate use: Nov. 16, 2001

No. 594

Global warming more common than thought, deep-sea drilling off Japan now


CHAPEL HILL -- Core samples from a deep-sea drilling expedition in the
western Pacific clearly show multiple episodes of warming that date back as
far as 135 million years, according to one of the project's lead scientists.
Analysis of the samples indicates warming events on Earth were more common
than researchers previously believed.

The expedition aboard the scientific drill ship "JOIDES Resolution," which
ended in late October, also revealed that vast areas of the Pacific Ocean
were low in oxygen for periods of up to a million years each, said Dr.
Timothy Bralower. A marine geologist, Bralower is professor and chair of
geological sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

"These ocean-wide anoxic events were some of the most radical environmental
changes experienced by Earth in the last several hundred million years," he

Along with Dr. Isabella Premoli-Silva, a micropaleontologist and
stratigrapher at the University of Milan, Bralower served as co-chief of the
two-month expedition. Drilling took place on Shatsky Rise, an underwater
plateau more than 1,000 miles east of Japan. Its purpose was to better
document and understand past global warming.

In geologic time, episodes of warming began almost instantaneously -- over a
span of about a thousand years, Bralower said.

"Warming bursts may have been triggered by large volcanic eruptions or
submarine landslides that released carbon dioxide and methane, both
greenhouse gases," he said. "Besides reducing the ocean's oxygen-carrying
capacity, warming also increased the water's corrosive characteristics and
dissolved shells of surface-dwelling organisms before they could settle to
the bottom."

In some especially striking layers of black, carbon-rich mud, only the
remains of algae and bacteria were left, he said.

"The sheer number of cores that reveal the critical warming events found on
this expedition -- three from the 125-million-year event and 10 for the
55-million-year Paleocene event -- exceeds the number of cores recovered for
these time intervals by all previous ocean drilling expeditions combined,"
Bralower said.

"This means that we will be able to reconstruct in far better detail the
nature of environmental changes that took place back then than was
previously possible," he said. "We'll also have a better chance of
determining the cause. Already we've seen signs in the sediments for other
undetected periods of warming, which suggests that they were much more
frequent than geologists have thought."

Among periods of warmth likely caused by methane was one occurring about 55
million years ago, the geologist said. Cores show that 200,000-year-long
event killed off 30 percent to 50 percent of deep ocean life while
stimulating evolution of new species near the surface.

Twenty-seven scientists from seven countries and 62 crew spent 35 days above
Shatsky Rise on the expedition, which is expected to boost understanding of
current global warming, he said.

The Ocean Drilling Program is an international partnership of scientists and
research institutions organized to study the evolution and structure of the
Earth. ODP is funded principally by the National Science Foundation, with
contributions from its international partners.

A consortium of 16 U.S. academic institutions known as the Joint
Oceanographic Institutions manages the program. Texas A&M University
oversees science operations.

Note: Bralower can be reached at (919) 962-0704 or .
Photos showing life aboard the drill ship during the expedition are
available on the web at


>From Andrew Yee <>

Lynn Chandler
Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.        November 29, 2001
Phone: (301) 286-2806

Cheryl Dybas
National Science Foundation, Arlington, Va.
Phone: (703) 292-8070

Release No. 01-102

Ocean Circulation Shut Down by Melting Glaciers After Last Ice Age

At the end of the last Ice Age 13 to 11.5 thousand years ago, the North
Atlantic Deep Water circulation system that drives the Gulf Stream may have
shut down because of melting glaciers that added freshwater into the North
Atlantic Ocean over several hundred years, NASA and university researchers
confirm. Since the Gulf Stream brings warm tropical waters north, Western
Europe cooled.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) funded study also finds that if a
shutdown persisted for a long enough time, the entire Northern Hemisphere
would eventually cool.

The computer model simulations of ocean and atmosphere processes used in
this study imply a similar phenomenon has the potential to occur in the
future due to freshwater additions from increased rain and snow caused by
global climate change.

"For the first time, it is shown that realistic additions of glacial
meltwater into the North Atlantic would have shutdown North Atlantic Deep
Water production over a period of a few hundred years if the initial ocean
circulation was somewhat weaker than that of today," said David Rind, lead
author of the study and a senior climate researcher at NASA's Goddard
Institute for Space Studies in New York, NY. The study appears in the
November 16 issue of Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres.

When Rind and his colleagues entered realistic estimates of freshwater from
melting glaciers into their model, they found the North Atlantic circulation
stopped completely after some 300 years. When the model was adjusted to make
the circulation weaker than it is today, cessation of the Gulf Stream took
only 150-200 years, matching current estimates based on paleo-climate
records .

Freshwater additions into the ocean through the St. Lawrence River have a
profound effect on the ocean circulation. "The more freshwater you add, and
the longer you add it, the greater reduction in the North Atlantic
circulation," Rind said. "According to our model, this is a linear

When the Gulf Stream moves warm surface water from the equator north through
the Atlantic, the water cools, gets saltier due to evaporation and becomes
very dense. By the time it approaches the coast of Newfoundland, or further
northeast in the Norwegian Sea, it becomes dense enough to sink. This
process is called overturning. The dense water then slowly travels through
the deep water southward into the Southern Hemisphere, with the return flow
to the north occurring at the surface.

But when freshwater gets mixed with the salty water in the North Atlantic,
it makes the water less dense and slows the overturning process and the
ocean circulation.

While the study finds that freshwater input could slow and stop overturning,
this would not stop the Gulf Stream entirely. That's because the stream is
partially pushed by winds. As a result, the model shows the reduced Gulf
Stream would only transport about half as much heat northward, thereby
cooling Western Europe. Were this to occur in a global warming scenario, it
would act to partly counter the effects of projected greenhouse warming in
parts of Western Europe.

Many scientists suspect more rainfall in parts of the Northern Hemisphere
during this century as a result of greenhouse warming. That's because warmer
temperatures increase the atmosphere's capacity to carry water. "The North
Atlantic circulation may already be weakening due to freshwater rainfall
additions associated with global warming," Rind said.

But the model shows a number of inconsistencies with previous studies on the
last ice age. Those studies speculate that once freshwater stopped flowing,
the ocean circulation would return within only a few decades, matching a
rapid warming seen in the climate record. The model finds that deepwater
circulation does not return for at least hundreds of years when the
freshwater additions end. Also contrary to observations, the model showed
cooling throughout the Northern Hemisphere; during the last ice age, the majority
of the United States land mass did not appear to cool.

"It's hard to understand how parts of the Northern Hemisphere might have
cooled to the magnitude suggested, but not North America," Rind said. "That
seems to imply that either the paleo-records are being misinterpreted, or
something else went on, something major that is not being accounted for.
This isn't necessarily the end of the story."

For more information, please see:


>From Tech Central Station, 16 November 2001

By Duane D. Freese, TCS Columnist

Human burning of fossil fuels isn't the primary culprit of global warming.
So said a group of four eminent scientists speaking to representatives from
congressional offices, the Bush administration, think tanks and interested
industries Thursday. Moreover, the level of such warming is not now

At a Frontiers of Freedom Forum conference called "Global Warming: Sound
Science or Science Fiction?" held at the Heritage Foundation, Astrophysicist
Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, John
Christy of the Earth System Center at the University of Alabama at
Huntsville, Patrick Michaels of the University of Virginia and German
meteorologist Gerd Weber concluded that the big problem with global warming
is the politics being played with the issue.

"The Earth's surface has warmed a bit," said Dr. Christy, who was awarded
NASA's Medal of Exceptional Scientific Achievement for his work helping
develop the global temperature data sets from satellites. "But in a way
inconsistent with catastrophe," he added.

Christy is a lead author of the chapter about troposphere temperatures in
the United Nation's reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change. He noted that temperatures in the troposphere above the surface
layer aren't warming, even though they are supposed to according to theories
of human induced warming.

"Climate always changes," Christy said. But the weather people care about -
tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, droughts - has not changed for the worse in
recent decades.

Moreover, proponents of such accords as the Kyoto Protocol, which would
require substantial reductions in human emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2),
are essentially asking people to:

* Pay 1.3 percent of their income for no tangible result
* Tax themselves based on weather forecasts for 100 years in the future
* Control something (CO2) that is not a pollutant, but helps things grow
* Surrender sovereignty to unelected bureaucrats from other countries
* Reduce access to energy, disproportionately hurting the poor

"Access to energy means longer and better lives for everyone," Christy said.

Dr. Michaels, who is state climatologist for Virginia and was program chair
for the American Meteorological Society's Committee on Applied Climatology,
took Christy's point further.

He noted that claims found in the reports of the UN IPCC that global warming
would lead to a doubling of heat-related deaths had it backwards. That
report was based upon a selective review of heat related deaths in some
North American cities. A further review of that data, though, shows that
heat-related deaths in those cities have declined, he said. And not only
have deaths declined, but the difference in heat-related death rates for
temperatures between 80 and as high as 100 degrees Fahrenheit have

What's happened, Michael said, is that use of energy for air conditioning
has helped virtually eliminate heat related death. Raising the price of
energy, as would be required to meet emissions reduction goals in the Kyoto
protocol, would likely increase heat related deaths, he said.

Michaels also criticized the media for sensationalizing coverage about the
Tuvalu tribe, which announced at Marrakech that it was leaving the islands
in Micronesia where they live because of rising sea levels, which they
blamed on global warming. Scientific studies of sea levels for their
islands, Michaels noted, show sea levels have gone down over the past 50
years. " What happened was they wrecked their islands; they mined their sand
to build buildings," he said.

Dr. Baliunas, who hosts Tech Central Station's Science for the Earth and is
deputy director of the Mount Wilson Observatory, pointed to another
distortion in the record in IPCC reports of temperatures. Those reports, she
told audience members, show graphs with a trend line depicting a steady rise
in troposphere temperatures of about 0.1 degree Celsius (0.18 degree F) over
the past 44 years based upon balloon station measurements and, from 1978,
confirming satellite data.

The only problem with such graphing is that it covers up a natural
temperature change - the Pacific Climate Shift - that occurs every quarter
century or so, she said. The temperature trend line before that shift was
actually flat as was the trend line afterward, Baliunas noted.

She pointed out that the physics of climate change, if CO2 were the cause,
would show increases in the troposphere temperatures. "But there has been no
demonstration of human-made warming in the last 50 years," she said.

If such CO2 warming is occurring, Baliunas said, "the good news is ... it is
slow." That means there is no reason to drastically cutback fossil fuel use
in ways that would disrupt the economy, she said.

In the meantime, she is studying the effect of energy changes from the sun
that show a high correlation to the change in surface temperature over
several centuries.

Dr. Weber, who is the author of "Global Warming, the Rest of the Story,"
emphasized that the forecasts from global climate models that the UN has
relied on for its forecast of future temperatures are based upon increases
in human induced greenhouse gases that occur at double the observed rates.

Further, he noted that most of the surface warming that has occurred and
which is forecast in the future would occur at night in cold, dry climates
such as Siberia.

When asked why European countries are so adamant in their pursuit of
cutbacks in greenhouse gases despite the lack of evidence of future
catastrophe, Weber said: "They are just crazy in Europe. They are mostly

He told the story of a conversation he had with a European Union politician,
saying the politician told him:

"I as a politician don't care if global temperatures are increasing or that
carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning is causing it. What, to me, is
important, is that the public believes it. If the public believes two and
two is five, then I will say it is five. I will do what they believe," he

Copyright 2001, TechCentral Station


>From The New York Times, 20 November 2001

In the continuing debate over global warming and how to fight it, some
scientists and entrepreneurs advocate using the oceans as a sponge to absorb
carbon dioxide from the air.

Others are saying not so fast. They argue that widespread ocean dumping of
carbon dioxide could unbalance the aquatic environment.

Carbon dioxide is one of the "greenhouse gases" that trap heat. Most
scientists believe that carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels is a
large factor in the warming temperatures of the last century and that
capping those emissions is essential for limiting future warming.

Much of the extra carbon dioxide already dissolves into the oceans, where it
has no effect on temperatures. Two schemes seek to augment that natural

One is to catch carbon dioxide from the smokestacks of power plants before
it enters the atmosphere, squeeze it into liquid form and then pump it into
the deep oceans.

The other is to fertilize oceans to produce blooms of algae that pull carbon
dioxide out of the air. Proponents believe that as the bloom dies off, much
of the algae will sink to the ocean floor, and the carbon dioxide -
transformed into plant material - would be safely subtracted from the
warming equation. A private company called GreenSea Venture hopes to make a
business of this.

But some scientists argue that engineering nature to avoid environmental
damage inevitably causes other, perhaps greater damage.

Writing in the Oct. 12 issue of Science, Dr. Brad A. Seibel of the Monterey
Bay Aquarium Research Institute in Moss Landing, Calif., and Dr. Patrick J.
Walsh of the University of Miami caution that carbon dioxide could harm
deep-sea creatures.

Enshrouded in perpetual cold and dark, these creatures like the anglerfish
live in slow motion, their metabolisms consuming energy at as little as
one-thousandth the rate of those closer to the surface. The slow metabolism
makes them particularly sensitive to chemical changes in their environment,
the authors say.

When carbon dioxide dissolves, it turns into carbonic acid, making the water
more acidic. But biologists have observed that a change of 0.3 in the pH
level in the blood of some deep sea creatures can halve the amount of
oxygen. "It may not kill them," Dr. Seibel said, "but they may not be able
to swim as actively as they could be before. It'd be like they were out of

Damage to deep-ocean ecosystems could eventually alter the mix of nutrients
and chemicals that well up from the depths. "It's still not known what the
links between the deep ocean and the shallow ocean are," Dr. Seibel said.
"If you damage one, you hurt the other potentially."

A small-scale experiment to pump about 40 tons of liquid carbon dioxide into
the waters off Hawaii has run into stiff opposition from some
environmentalists and has not received final approval.

Carbon dioxide does kill, as researchers demonstrated in even smaller-scale
experiments this year in Monterey Bay.

>From a small submarine, the scientists, from the Monterey Bay Research
Institute, squirted about five gallons of liquid carbon dioxide into each of
several small plastic pools at the bottom, 12,000 feet down. They then put
cages containing five sea urchins and five sea cucumbers each about a foot
and a half from the carbon dioxide pools, wanting to see how they fared
compared with others in cages farther away.

When they returned three weeks later, everything in the cages next to the
pools was dead. The researchers found that creatures like small crustaceans
living in the nearby sediment were also injured or killed. Modifying the
experiment, the researchers then placed sea urchins and sea cucumbers 6 and
15 feet away from the carbon dioxide. Those animals survived without visible
injury; tissue samples are being examined for cellular damage.

"It seems CO2 injection will have detrimental effects," said Dr. James P.
Barry, an associate scientist at the institute involved in the experiment.
"That's almost certain. The degree of damage is the question."

These cautionary notes contrast with the views of Dr. Peter G. Brewer, a
senior scientist at the research institute, who supervised the bay bottom
experiments and has advocated exploring the idea of injecting carbon dioxide
in the ocean. Still, he said the data deserved a full airing.

"Just as putting in a sewage outfall or drilling an oil well, there's an
environmental question to be asked," Dr. Brewer said, "and people should do
it in an objective way."

In a second Science article on Oct. 12, three scientists - Dr. Sallie W.
Chisholm of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dr. Paul G. Falkowski
of Rutgers University and Dr. John J. Cullen of Dalhousie University in
Halifax, Nova Scotia - strongly criticize the idea of fertilizing to counter
global warming.

Some parts of the oceans, primarily in the Southern Hemisphere, are full of
nutrients, but sparse in sea life because of a lack of iron. Several small
experiments have shown that dumping iron into these waters produces large
blooms of algae.

Proponents like Dr. Michael Markels, who founded GreenSea Venture, say the
proposal simply mimics a natural process, in which iron-rich dust and
volcanic ash blow from land to water. "It would be minuscule in comparison
to what happens naturally," Dr. Markels said.

But Dr. Chisholm contends that it is difficult to measure how much carbon
sinks and that the algae blooms could suck oxygen out of the water, chasing
away fish and that a profit motive would lead to reckless overfertilization.

"It's like saying: `What's so bad to adding carbon dioxide to the
atmosphere? There's already CO2 in the atmosphere," she said.

The GreenSea approach has not yet received widespread support, with the
Department of Energy turning down its grant proposals.

GreenSea's business plan also depends on the selling of "carbon credits"
proposed under the Kyoto treaty on global warming. The Bush administration
has rejected the Kyoto treaty and has also objected to the concept of carbon
Copyright 2001, The New York Times


>From CO2 Science Magazine, 21 November 2001

In the 15 April 1999 issue of Nature, two groups of scientists - Still et
al. (1999) and Pounds et al. (1999) - published a pair of papers dealing
with an extremely complex subject: the cause of major decreases in frog and
toad populations in the highland forests of Monteverde, Costa Rica.  These
diebacks (in which 20 of 50 local species totally disappeared) had occurred
over the preceding two decades, decades that climate alarmists describe as
having experienced "unprecedented warming."

The frog and toad declines had also been accompanied by changes in bird and
lizard populations that made the composition of the cloud-forest fauna look
a lot more like that of forests further downslope; and the ecological
mystery surrounding these changes captured the attention of a large sector
of a public already conditioned to hearing all sorts of bad things
attributed to the rising CO2 content of earth's atmosphere.  Thus it was
perhaps only to be expected that in a popular article describing the
mystery's putative solution, Holmes (1999) noted that the authors of the
Science reports made "a convincing case blaming global climate change for
these ecological events," which, of course, they truly did.

Here's how the theory developed.  Still et al. ran a global climate model
simulation for a doubled atmospheric CO2 concentration, finding - after what
Holmes says "might seem like a lot of hand waving" - that the absolute
humidity required to create and maintain the clouds that periodically shroud
the Monteverde mountain tops shifted upwards in response to this
perturbation (CO2-induced global warming, which was supposedly manifest in
increasing sea surface temperatures), especially during the winter dry
season when the forests there rely most heavily on the moisture they receive
directly from the clouds.  At the same time, the climate modelers noted an
increase in a parameter they termed the "warmth index," which change implied
a greater concurrent demand for evapotranspiration; and it was the
combination of these two changes, i.e., an implied reduction in the amount
of cloud contact with the mountain-top forest and the forest's increased
need for water, that led the modelers to believe that (presumed) CO2-induced
global warming was indeed the culprit behind the observed change in
environmental conditions (essentially more dry days) that were believed to
be responsible for the changes in animal life documented by Pounds et al.

At the time of the publication of the two Nature papers, and for a year or
more thereafter, the explanation put forth by the two groups of scientists
looked pretty strong.  In fact, to many it was compelling.  Now, however,
comes the study of Lawton et al. (2001) that suggests something quite
different, in which the authors present what they call "an alternative
mechanism - upwind deforestation of lowlands - that may increase convective
and orographic cloud bases even more than changes in sea surface temperature

Lawton et al. begin by noting that the trade winds that reach the Monteverde
cloud-forest ecosystem flow across approximately 100 km of the lowlands of
the Rio San Juan basin, and that deforestation proceeded rapidly in the
Costa Rican part of this basin over the past century.  By 1992, in fact,
only 18% of the original lowland forest remained.  The authors note that
this conversion of forest to pasture and farm land significantly alters the
properties of the air flowing across the landscape.  The reduced
evapotranspiration that follows deforestation, for example, decreases the
moisture content of the air mass; and regional atmospheric model simulations
suggest (quite logically) that there should be reduced cloud formation and
higher cloud bases over such deforested areas, which would also cause there
to be fewer and higher-based clouds than there would otherwise be when the
surface-modified air moves into the higher Monteverde region.

At this point, we thus have two theories from which to choose a candidate
mechanism for the environmental changes that have altered the Monteverde
cloud-forest ecosystem: one that is global (CO2-induced warming) and one
that is local (upwind lowland deforestation).  So how does one pick the

Lawton et al. chose an approach that pretty much proves their case.  Noting
that the lowland forests north of the San Juan River in southeastern
Nicaragua remain largely intact - providing a striking contrast to the
mostly-deforested lands in neighboring Costa Rica - they used Landsat and
Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite imagery to show that
"deforested areas of Costa Rica's Caribbean lowlands remain relatively
cloud-free when forested regions have well-developed dry season cumulus
cloud fields," noting further that the prominent zone of reduced cumulus
cloudiness in Costa Rica "lies directly upwind of the Monteverde tropical
montane cloud forest."  Hence, they demonstrated by direct observation that
the effects predicted by the theory they developed did indeed occur in the
real world, and that they occurred right alongside a "control" area that was
identical in all respects but for the perturbation (deforestation) that
produced the effects.

What is the take-home message of this intriguing story?  First of all,
CO2-induced global warming does not appear to be the cause of the
disruptions observed to be occurring in the Monteverde cloud-forest
ecosystem by Pounds et al.  Second, the reality of the climate alarmists'
"unprecedented" global warming of the past two decades is called into
question; for where there is no upwind lowland deforestation, there are no
corresponding changes in cloud properties of the type predicted by Still et
al. to result from rising temperatures.

Most important of all, perhaps, is the demonstration of how dangerous it can
sometimes be to follow the environmentalist dictum to "think globally but
act locally."  In the case of the Monteverde cloud-forest ecosystem, for
example, global thinking likely identified the wrong cause of the observed
problem.  Man was to blame for the ecosystem perturbations, all right, but
not in the way suggested by the climate alarmists; and if the original
analysis had stood, effective ameliorative actions would likely never have
been identified.

Similar global thinking may also be stalling effective local actions that
could be taken to solve a number of other important environmental problems.
One that stands out in our minds is the preservation of the planet's
threatened coral reefs, which are suffering from a whole host of vexing
anthropogenic stresses (see our Editorials of 12 and 19 September 2001).
Proponents of the Kyoto Protocol, however, have got everyone so fixated on
the deleterious consequences that global warming is predicted to have on
these species-rich ecosystems that we are slow to fund and implement
well-defined site-specific programs that could dramatically improve their
health.  And while these and many other forms of life - both aquatic and
terrestrial - enter upon what could well be preventable pathways to
extinction (knowing we have the means to help them avoid that end), we
contemplate the spending of untold amounts of money to fight an unnecessary
and unwinable battle against a friend (rising atmospheric CO2
concentrations) we will likely sorely need to provide the food and water
both we and the rest of the biosphere will require in the years ahead (see
our Editorials of 15 November 2000 and 21 February, 2 May and 13 June 2001).

Where, oh where, has reason fled?

Dr. Sherwood B. Idso
Dr. Keith E. Idso

Holmes, R. 1999. Heads in the clouds. New Scientist (8 May): 32-36.

Lawton, R.O., Nair, U.S., Pielke Sr., R.A. and Welch, R.M. 2001. Climatic
impact of tropical lowland deforestation on nearby montane cloud forests.
Science 294: 584-587.

Pounds, J.A., Fogden, M.P.L. and Campbell, J.H. 1999. Biological response to
climate change on a tropical mountain. Nature 398: 611-615.

Still, C.J., Foster, P.N. and Schneider, S.H.  1999.  Simulating the effects
of climate change on tropical montane cloud forests.  Nature 398: 608-610.
Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


>From CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

Pudsey, C.J. and Evans, J. 2001. First survey of Antarctic sub-ice shelf
sediments reveals mid-Holocene ice shelf retreat. Geology 29: 787-790.

Five small Antarctic Peninsula ice shelves have been retreating during the
period of historical observations, i.e., since about 1843.  This retreat
intensified in the late 1980s, and was followed by the breakout of two of
them (Larsen-A and Prince Gustav Channel) in 1995.  The current study was
conducted in an attempt to determine the uniqueness of these phenomena.

What was done
The authors studied ice-rafted debris obtained from four cores in Prince
Gustav Channel, which was formally (until 1995) covered by floating ice

What was learned
It was determined that the Prince Gustav Channel ice shelf also retreated in
mid-Holocene time, but that, in the words of the authors, "colder conditions
after about 1.9 ka allowed the ice shelf to reform."

What it means
Although the authors conclude that the ice shelves in question are sensitive
indicators of regional climate change, they are careful to point out that
"we should not view the recent decay as an unequivocal indicator of
anthropogenic climate change."  The disappearance of the ice shelves is not
unique; it's happened before without our help, and it could well have
happened again on its own.  In fact, the breakup of the Prince Gustav
Channel ice shelf could be nothing more than the natural culmination of one
aspect of the Antarctic Peninsula's recovery from Little Ice Age-like
conditions, as similar phenomena have been observed in many places
throughout the Northern Hemisphere and other parts of the Southern
Hemisphere as well (see Little Ice Age in our Subject Index).
Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


>From CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

Ghan, S.J., Easter, R.C., Chapman, E.G., Abdul-Razzak, H., Zhang, Y., Leung,
L.R., Laulainen, N.S., Saylor, R.D. and Zaveri, R.A. 2001. A physically
based estimate of radiative forcing by anthropogenic sulfate aerosol.
Journal of Geophysical Research 106: 5279-5293.

In setting the stage for their study, the authors state that "present-day
radiative forcing by anthropogenic greenhouse gases is estimated to be 2.1
to 2.8 Wm-2; the direct forcing by anthropogenic aerosols is estimated to be
-0.3 to -1.5 Wm-2, while the indirect forcing by anthropogenic aerosols is
estimated to be 0 to -1.5 Wm-2," so that "estimates of the total global mean
present-day anthropogenic forcing range from 3 Wm-2 to -1 Wm-2."  Now let's
see, that would be somewhere between a warming and a cooling, right?  And
that would seem to be rather shaky justification for the worldwide
institution of draconian measures to fight potential global warming, which
could well turn out to be potential global cooling, right?  Right; for as
the authors themselves say, "clearly" - and we love that word clearly, for
it is obviously most appropriate - "clearly, the great uncertainty in the
radiative forcing must be reduced if the observed climate record is to be
reconciled with model predictions and if estimates of future climate change
are to be useful in formulating emission policies."  Doing so, however,
will, as they say, "require profound reductions in the uncertainties of
direct and indirect forcing by anthropogenic aerosol," which is what they
thus set out to do, i.e., reduce the uncertainties.

What was done
In the words of the authors, they employed a strategy that consisted of "a
combination of process studies designed to improve understanding of the key
processes involved in the forcing, closure experiments designed to evaluate
that understanding, and integrated models that treat all of the necessary
processes together and estimate the forcing."  For more details - and
there's lots of them - we recommend direct consultation of their paper.

What was learned
At the end of their laborious investigation, Ghan et al. come up with some
numbers that considerably reduce the range of uncertainty in the "total
global mean present-day anthropogenic forcing," but it still stretches from
a small cooling influence to a modest impetus for warming.  Hence, they
present a long list of other things that must be done in order to obtain a
more definitive result, after which they acknowledge that "this list is
hardly complete."  Indeed, they conclude their treatment of the topic by
saying "one could easily add the usual list of uncertainties in the
representation of clouds, etc."

What it means
The bottom line, in the words of the authors, is that "much remains to be
done before the estimates are reliable enough to base energy policy
decisions upon," to which we can only say "Amen!"
Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


>From CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

Understanding how earth's clouds respond to anthropogenic-induced
perturbations of the atmosphere is of paramount importance in determining
the impact of the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content on global climate.
As Charlson et al. (2001) have noted, "man-made aerosols have a strong
influence on cloud albedo, with a global mean forcing estimated to be of the
same order (but opposite in sign) as that of greenhouse gases."  Hence, we
here present a brief review of a number of scientific papers that address
this crucial issue.

Ferek et al. (1998) determined that cloud condensation nuclei in the
airborne effluents of ships off the west coast of the United States were
responsible for producing ship tracks, i.e., brighter and more persistent
streaks, in the overlying layer of natural and less-reflective cloud, both
of which alterations create a cooling influence during daylight hours.
Based on what is known of the properties of the aerosols responsible for jet
aircraft contrails, Meerkotter et al. (1999) came to a similar conclusion,
although aircraft-induced increases in high-level cirrus clouds are
typically thought to elevate near-surface air temperature (Boucher, 1999),
as the warming effect of their greenhouse properties is believed to
predominate over the cooling effect of their solar radiation-reflecting
properties.  Nakanishi et al. (2001), for example, suggest that
aircraft-induced increases in high-cloud amount in the interior of central
Alaska may be largely responsible for the region's recent warming trend,
lifting some of the burden typically laid on the shoulders of CO2 in such

Although various of man's impacts on clouds can thus both heat and cool the
planet, Charlson et al. (2001) note that the net effect of all
anthropogenic-produced aerosols averaged over the entire world is one of
cooling.  Furthermore, they conclude that its estimated strength - which
they say is generally believed to be equivalent to the strength of the
warming effect of all anthropogenic-produced greenhouse gases - may be too
conservative.  With respect to the first of these phenomena, for example,
they report that recent studies indicate "both the forcing and its magnitude
may be even larger than anticipated."  What is more, they say current IPCC
estimates of future climate change "do not include the combined influences
of some recently identified chemical factors, each of which leads to
additional negative forcing (cooling) on top of that currently estimated,"
as we note in our Editorial of 1 August 2001.  Consequently, any new
findings in this field of research are of great significance, as they may
hold the key to determining whether warming or cooling will ultimately
result from the sum total of human activities.

In pursuit of this objective, i.e., a proper understanding of man's many
impacts on earth's climate, Facchini et al. (1999) studied the effects of
atmospheric solutes collected from cloud water in the Po Valley of Italy,
finding that water vapor was more likely to form on its
organic-solute-affected aerosols of lower surface tension - as opposed to
the less-organic-solute-affected aerosols of the natural environment with
their higher surface tension - creating more and smaller (and, therefore,
more-highly-reflective) cloud droplets, which, of course, tend to cool the
local environment.  They also observed that the organic fractions and
concentrations of the aerosols they studied were similar to those found in
air downwind of other large agricultural/industrial regions, hinting at the
likely widespread occurrence of this human-induced cooling influence.

In studying this phenomenon several years earlier, Kulmala et al. (1993)
additionally noted "it is likely that the smaller droplet size will decrease
precipitation so that the clouds will have a longer lifetime."  In addition,
their observation that "cloud formation can take place at smaller saturation
ratios of water vapor" in the presence of organic-solute-affected aerosols
suggests that clouds will be able to form at earlier times and in places
where they would not otherwise form.  In response to this particular type of
anthropogenic effluent, therefore, cloud lifetimes expand at both ends of
their existence spectrum - they are born earlier and die later - and, in
imitation of the starship Enterprise, they are able to grow where no clouds
have grown before.

How significant are these phenomena?  Approximately one decade ago, Leaitch
et al. (1992) concluded that the increased radiative cooling power due to
just the increase in cloud albedo that results from pollution-induced
increases in cloud droplet concentration averages about 2 Wm-2 over North
America, which is about half the radiative warming power that is typically
predicted to accompany a nominal doubling of the air's CO2 content.
Nowadays, and adding the impact of increased cloud cover, the overall effect
would likely be considerably greater.

In another study of the climatic implications of anthropogenic-produced
aerosols, Satheesh and Ramanathan (2000) measured the clear-sky radiative
consequences of the December-to-April northeastern low-level monsoonal flow
of air that transports sulphates, nitrates, organics, soot and fly ash
(among other anthropogenically-produced substances) from the Indian
sub-continent and southern Asia thousands of kilometers over the entire
north Indian Ocean and as far south as 10S latitude.  They found that the
"mean clear-sky solar radiative heating for the winters of 1998 and 1999
decreased at the ocean surface by 12 to 30 Wm-2," which Schwartz and Buseck
(2000) indicate is "three to seven times as great as global average longwave
(infrared) radiative forcing by increases in greenhouse gases over the
industrial period ... but opposite in sign."  This finding, however, was
somewhat tempered by the study of Ackerman et al. (2000), who suggested the
large cooling effect was likely counterbalanced by a simultaneous reduction
in cloud cover (see our Editorial of 1 June 2000).  But the very next year,
a long-term study of real-world data (Norris, 2001) proved this suggestion
to be wrong, thereby reaffirming the overall implications of the results of
Satheesh and Ramanathan.  Norris reasoned that if the conclusion of Ackerman
et al. was correct, the great increase in anthropogenic aerosol emissions
from southern and southeast Asia over the last half-century should have
significantly decreased the low-level cloud cover over the northern Indian
Ocean over this period.  A test of this idea with data from the Extended
Edited Cloud Report Archive, however, revealed that daytime low-level cloud
cover over this part of the world not only did not decrease over the last
half-century, it increased ... and it did so in both the Northern and
Southern Hemispheric regions of the study area and at essentially all hours
of the day.

In a somewhat similar study, Croke et al. (1999) determined that the mean
cloud cover of three regions of the United States (coastal southwest,
coastal northeast and southern plains) rose from 35% to 47% from 1900 to
1987, while global mean air temperature rose by approximately 0.5C.
Likewise, Chernykh et al. (2001) determined that global cloud cover rose by
nearly 6% between1964 and 1998.  These observations suggest that earth's
hydrologic cycle does indeed tend to moderate the thermal effects of any
impetus for warming and, as noted by the latter authors, is "consistent with
the decrease in diurnal temperature range evident over most of the globe,"
which tends to make for a more stable natural environment.

Another way by which clouds tend to stabilize earth's climate was suggested
by Sud et al. (1999).  Based on data from the Tropical Ocean Global
Atmosphere - Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere Response Experiment, these
investigators found that deep convection in the tropics acts as a thermostat
to keep sea surface temperature (SST) vacillating over a rather narrow
range.  Starting at the low end of the range, the tropical ocean acts as a
net receiver of energy, and it warms.  Soon thereafter, however, the
cloud-base airmass is charged with the moist static energy needed for clouds
to reach the upper troposphere; and the cloud cover thus formed reduces the
amount of solar radiation received at the sea surface, while its cool and
dry downdrafts also tend to promote surface cooling.  This "thermostat-like
control," as the authors put it, tends to "ventilate the tropical ocean
efficiently and help contain the SST between 28-30C."  Presumably, it would
also act to keep any CO2-induced warming below the same upper bound.

Yet another way in which tropical ocean temperatures may be constrained by
cloud-mediated phenomena has been described by Lindzen et al. (2001).  [See
also our Editorial of 21 March 2001.]  Based on upper-level cloudiness data
obtained from the Japanese Geostationary Meteorological Satellite and SST
data obtained from the National Centers for Environmental Protection, these
researchers determined that the cloudy moist region of the eastern part of
the tropical western Pacific "appears to act as an infrared adaptive iris
that opens up and closes down the regions free of upper-level clouds, which
more effectively permit infrared cooling, in such a manner as to resist
changes in tropical surface temperature."  Indeed, the strong inverse
relationship they found between upper-level cloud area and mean SST was
determined to be sufficient to "more than cancel all the positive feedbacks
in the more sensitive current climate models," which, of course, are the
ones that are used to predict the consequences of projected increases in the
air's CO2 content.

Earth's plant life also plays an important role in stabilizing climate.  The
pioneering paper of Charlson et al. (1987), for example, describes how an
initial SST increase leads to increased phytoplanktonic productivity, which
leads to a greater sea-to-air flux of dimethyl sulfide (DMS), which
undergoes a gas-to-particle conversion that leads to greater numbers of
cloud condensation nuclei that create more and brighter clouds that reflect
more incoming solar radiation back to space, thereby countering the initial
impetus for warming.  Ayers and Gillett (2000) recently reviewed what has
been learned in subsequent years, concluding that "major links in the
feedback chain proposed by Charlson et al. (1987) have a sound physical
basis," additionally noting there is "compelling observational evidence to
suggest that DMS and its atmospheric products participate significantly in
processes of climate regulation and reactive atmospheric chemistry in the
remote marine boundary layer of the Southern Hemisphere."  Additional recent
support for the powerful negative feedback loop is provided by Simo and
Pedros-Alio (1999), who studied the effect of the depth of the surface
mixing-layer on DMS production.

Although real-world studies thus continue to elucidate the workings of the
planet's complex climate system and improve our understanding of it, there
continue to be major problems with computer models that attempt to mimic it.
Groisman et al. (2000), for example, evaluated the ability of a number of
climate models to reproduce mean daily cloud-temperature relations at
different times of year.  Although most models did a good job in the cold
part of the year, the authors note that "large discrepancies between
empirical data and some models are found for summer conditions."  In fact,
the overall cloud effect on summer near-surface air temperature computed by
one of the models was even of the wrong sign!

In another study, Gordon et al. (2000) examined the response of a coupled
general circulation model of the atmosphere to quasi-realistic specified
marine stratocumulus clouds and compared the results to what they obtained
from their model when operating in its normal mode, which fails to
adequately express the presence of the clouds and their effects.  And what
were the consequences of this failure?  When they removed the low clouds, as
occurs in the model's normal application, the sea surface temperature warmed
by fully 5.5C.

Clearly, the current roster of climate models still has a long way to go
before being able to accurately predict the ultimate climatic consequences
of the vast array of pertinent human activities.  When one tallies up the
scorecard of empirical observations, however, the Climatic Coolers are found
to be way ahead of the Planetary Warmers.

Ackerman, A.S., Toon, O.B., Stevens, D.E., Heymsfield, A.J., Ramanathan, V.
and Welton, E.J.  2000.  Reduction of tropical cloudiness by soot.  Science
288: 1042-1047.

Ayers, G.P. and Gillett, R.W.  2000.  DMS and its oxidation products in the
remote marine atmosphere: implications for climate and atmospheric
chemistry.  Journal of Sea Research 43: 275-286.

Boucher, O.  1999.  Air traffic may increase cirrus cloudiness.  Nature 397:

Charlson, R.J., Lovelock, J.E., Andrea, M.O. and Warren, S.G.  1987.
Oceanic phytoplankton, atmospheric sulfur, cloud albedo and climate.  Nature
326: 655-661.

Charlson, R.J., Seinfeld, J.H., Nenes, A., Kulmala, M., Laaksonen, A. and
Facchini, M.C.  2001.  Reshaping the theory of cloud formation.  Science
292: 2025-2026.

Chernykh, I.V., Alduchov, O.A. and Eskridge, R.E.  2001.  Trends in low and
high cloud boundaries and errors in height determination of cloud
boundaries.  Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 82: 1941-1947.

Croke, M.S., Cess, R.D. and Hameed, S.  1999.  Regional cloud cover change
associated with global climate change: Case studies for three regions of the
United States.  Journal of Climate 12: 2128-2134.

Facchini, M.C., Mircea, M., Fuzzi, S. and Charlson, R.J.  1999.  Cloud
albedo enhancement by surface-active organic solutes in growing droplets.
Nature 401: 257-259.

Ferek, R.J., Hegg, D.A., Hobbs, P.V., Durkee, P. and Nielsen, K.  1998.
Measurements of ship-induced tracks in clouds off the Washington coast.
Journal of Geophysical Research 103: 23,199-23,206.

Gordon, C.T., Rosati, A. and Gudgel, R.  2000.  Tropical sensitivity of a
coupled model to specified ISCCP low clouds.  Journal of Climate 13:

Groisman, P.Ya., Bradley, R.S. and Sun, B.  2000.  The relationship of cloud
cover to near-surface temperature and humidity: Comparison of GCM
simulations with empirical data.  Journal of Climate 13: 1858-1878.

Kulmala, M., Laaksonen, A., Korhonen, P., Vesala, T. and Ahonen, T.  1993.
The effect of atmospheric nitric acid vapor on cloud condensation nucleus
activation.  Journal of Geophysical Research 98: 22,949-22,958.

Leaitch, W.R., Isaac, G.A., Stapp, J.W., Banic, C.M. and Wiebe, H.A.  1992.
The relationship between cloud droplet number concentrations and
anthropogenic pollution: Observations and climatic implications.  Journal of
Geophysical Research 97: 2463-2474.

Lindzen, R.S., Chou, M.-D. and Hou, A.Y.  2001.  Does the earth have an
adaptive infrared iris?  Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 82:

Meerkotter, R., Schumann, U., Doelling, D.R., Minnis, P., Nakajima, T. and
Tsushima, Y.  1999.  Radiative forcing by contrails.  Annales Geophysicae
17: 1080-1094.

Nakanishi, S., Curtis, J. and Wendler, G.  2001.  The influence of increased
jet airline traffic on the amount of high level cloudiness in Alaska.
Theoretical and Applied Climatology 68: 197-205.

Norris, J.R.  2001.  Has northern Indian Ocean cloud cover changed due to
increasing anthropogenic aerosol?  Geophysical Research Letters 28:

Satheesh, S.K. and Ramanathan, V.  2000.  Large differences in tropical
aerosol forcing at the top of the atmosphere and Earth's surface.  Nature
405: 60-63.

Schwartz, S.E. and Buseck, P.R.  2000.  Absorbing phenomena.  Science 288:

Simo, R. and Pedros-Alio, C.  1999.  Role of vertical mixing in controlling
the oceanic production of dimethyl sulphide.  Nature 402: 396-399.

Sud, Y.C., Walker, G.K. and Lau, K.-M.  1999.  Mechanisms regulating
sea-surface temperatures and deep convection in the tropics.  Geophysical
Research Letters 26: 1019-1022.
Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


>From CO2 Science Magazine, 14 November 2001

In a paper entitled "Glaciers that speak in tongues and other tales of
global warming," which was published in the October 2001 issue of Natural
History, Wallace S. Broecker of Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth
Observatory describes some scientific findings that are of the utmost
importance to our understanding of current and future world climate,
findings about which he is intensely concerned but which many other
believers in CO2-induced global warming, i.e., those we call climate
alarmists, would just as soon ignore.

Broecker begins by discussing the Little Ice Age, a period he refers to as
"a cold episode that ran from about 1300 to 1860."  He notes that glacial
evidence for this significant climatic excursion can be found all the way
from the Swiss Alps in the Northern Hemisphere to the Southern Alps of New
Zealand's South Island.  Furthermore, and in contradiction of the claim of a
group of climate revisionists who are trying to convince the world that the
Little Ice Age was but an ill-defined regional phenomenon confined to
countries around the North Atlantic Ocean, he rightly proffers the opinion
(see Little Ice Age in our Subject Index) that "the Little Ice Age cooled
not just Europe but the world."

Since 1860, however, the earth has warmed.  Yet, as Broecker notes, "roughly
half the overall warming since 1860 occurred before carbon dioxide (CO2)
emissions from human activities had reached significant levels."
Continuing, he says that some people, such as us, "take this as evidence
that most of the current upswing in temperature is merely a continuation of
the natural events that brought the Little Ice Age to a close."  Since this
hypothesis is a very real possibility that would be both foolish and
dangerous to ignore, he courageously concludes that "we need to know how
much earth's temperatures would have fluctuated in the absence of the
Industrial Revolution and whether we are now exacerbating or counteracting
these fluctuations."

Broecker's first focus in attempting to answer this question is on mountain
glaciers, studies of which can allow the reconstruction of past temperatures
with a margin of error that is often less than a quarter of a degree C.
>From a vast array of evidence - including historical records of glacier
terminus positions, the size and location of glacial terminal moraines, and
the nature of the debris within them - he concludes that several times prior
to the glacial expansion of the Little Ice Age, "Alpine glaciers pushed out
to roughly the same position they occupied in 1850."

Even more important may be the characteristics of ancient pieces of wood and
peat that regularly wash out from beneath retreating glaciers.  The carbon
dates of these materials fall into distinct groupings, with each group, in
the words of Broecker, "presumably representing a warm episode when Alpine
glaciers were even smaller than they are today."  The most recent of such
episodes, of course, would be the Medieval Warm Period (another climatic
phenomenon the climate alarmists are wroth to recognize) and before that the
Roman Warm Period.  [For still others see McDermott et al. (2001).]  The
existence of these numerous warm periods, which reduced glaciers to even
smaller dimensions than they possess today, adds even more evidence to the
argument that the current climatic state of the planet is in no way unusual
... and surely not unprecedented!

Other evidence for regularly-recurring "little" warm and cold periods comes
from the bottom of the sea, specifically, from sediments that lie beneath
the deep waters of the North Atlantic Ocean.  There, Broecker's Columbia
University colleague Gerard Bond discovered ice-rafted debris, the chemical
characteristics of which tell a story of alternating warm and cold periods
that have occurred "virtually unchanged, in both amplitude and duration,"
with a "nearly regular, 1,500-year cycle" that monotonously repeats itself
through both ice-age and non-ice-age periods alike.

With such proven and dependable regularity, it's a good bet that this
warm/cool climatic cycle - of which the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice
Age are the most recent manifestations - will not be terminating anytime
soon.  Hence, we feel confident in predicting continued modest warming,
based not on the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content, but on a
continuation of the natural 1500-year cyclical rhythm of earth's climate
that has operated as far back in time as we have sufficiently-time-resolved
data to detect (see our Journal Reviews of the papers by Oppo et al., 1998;
Raymo et al., 1998; Bianchi and McCave, 1999; McManus et al., 1999; Keigwin
and Boyle, 2000).

Clearly, to repeat some of the concluding words of Broecker, "we can state
with some confidence that natural Holocene temperature fluctuations have
been on the same scale as the human-caused effects estimated to result from
greenhouse gases."  Hence, as he continues, "we cannot assume that in the
absence of human intervention, earth's temperatures would have remained
stable."  It would thus appear to be our common conclusion that we cannot
unequivocally attribute any of the temperature rise of the past century and
a half to CO2-induced global warming.  And that is why, as Broecker states
in an earlier paper (Broecker, 1999), there exists "adequate room for
maneuvering ... for those who doubt that the buildup of carbon dioxide and
other greenhouse gases constitutes a substantial threat."

Yes, there is absolutely no way for proponents of CO2 emission regulations
to prove their case, especially when all indications suggest that nothing
climatically out of the ordinary is even on the verge of happening, or, as
climate alarmists are irrationally wont to claim, has already happened.  But
"does this mean we can all sit back, do nothing, and wait for the results to
roll in?"  Broecker answers his rhetorical question with a Certainly not.
We, however, say Yes, especially with respect to committing the nations of
the earth to mandatory CO2 emissions reductions.

With respect to this difference of opinions, it is important to note that
they are just that, opinions.  Broecker bases his on a belief in the
adequacy of current climate models.  We base ours on a belief in their
inadequacy, as well as the weight of evidence discussed above, plus the
likelihood we will need all the atmospheric CO2 we can muster in the years
ahead to prevent the catastrophic shortages of food and water that will
otherwise likely materialize (see our Editorials of 1 October 1999, 1
February 2000, 15 November 2000, 21 February 2001, 2 May 2001, 13 June

Although we thus disagree with Broecker on what he thinks we should be doing
about the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content, we have not the slightest
doubt about the sincerity of his expressed belief. And we have nothing but
the greatest admiration for his scientific insight and integrity. If
everyone on both sides of the issue were as forthcoming as he is with
respect to these matters, it would be a far, far better world.

Keep up the good work, Wally.  We love you!

Dr. Sherwood B. Idso
President  Dr. Keith E. Idso
Vice President 

PS: Neither of us has ever met the eminent scientist whose ideas we here
discuss, and we hope that our editorial brings him no embarrassment.
Clearly it shouldn't, for his life's work is of such a caliber that it can
be neither enhanced nor diminished by anything we might possibly say.

Bianchi, G.G. and McCave, I.N.  1999.  Holocene periodicity in North
Atlantic climate and deep-ocean flow south of Iceland.  Nature 397: 515-517.

Broecker, W.  1999.  Climate change prediction.  Science 283: 179.

Broecker, W.S.  2001.  Glaciers That Speak in Tongues and other tales of
global warming.  Natural History 110 (8): 60-69.

Keigwin, L.D. and Boyle, E.A.  2000.  Detecting Holocene changes in
thermohaline circulation.  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
USA 97: 1343-1346.

McDermott, F., Mattey, D.P. and Hawkesworth, C.  2001.  Centennial-scale
Holocene climate variability revealed by a high-resolution speleotherm 18O
record from SW Ireland.  Science 294: 1328-1331.

McManus, J.F., Oppo, D.W. and Cullen, J.L.  1999.  A 0.5-million-year record
of millennial-scale climate variability in the North Atlantic.  Science 283:

Oppo, D.W., McManus, J.F. and Cullen, J.L.  1998.  Abrupt climate events
500,000 to 340,000 years ago: Evidence from subpolar North Atlantic
sediments.  Science 279: 1335-1338.

Raymo, M.E., Ganley, K., Carter, S., Oppo, D.W. and McManus, J.  1998.
Millennial-scale climate instability during the early Pleistocene epoch.
Nature 392: 699-702.

Copyright 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


>From Tech Central Station, 14 November 2001

By: James K. Glassman, Host, Tech Central Station

"The Kyoto Protocol is saved." So announced Olivier DeLeuze, head of a
delegation from the European Union at the meeting of representatives from
about 170 nations who gathered in exotic Marrakech, Morocco to decide what
to do about the earth's climate.

Again, the subject was the Kyoto Protocol, which requires industrialized
countries to cut their greenhouse-gas emissions below 1990 levels. And after
two weeks of deliberations among those countries participating in Kyoto, a
deal on many of the particulars was reached. Fortunately, for America and
for the world, the United States is not a party to the treaty.

In a resolution four years ago, the Senate voted 95-0 to reject any climate
treaty that would do "serious harm" to the U.S. economy. Kyoto would
certainly do that. According to a study by President Clinton's Energy
Department, implementing the treaty would reduce our GDP by three to four
percentage points, and the cost of gasoline and utilities would rise by
$2,500 per family. Al Gore signed Kyoto anyway, but Bill Clinton never
submitted it for ratification. In March, President Bush made the U.S.
rejection official, calling Kyoto "fatally flawed."

Since then, the United States has been under enormous pressure- especially
from European nations, which face a much lighter burden under Kyoto than
does the U.S.-to do something about global warming. Bush says that
drastically cutting carbon dioxide emissions, produced in the burning of all
fossil fuels, is far too high a price to pay for a problem that exists so
far only in unreliable computer models. He wants more research.

But research, while necessary, is not sufficient. The administration should
consider a new approach, an approach that could be expanded-especially in
this new age of terrorism-to become a central pillar of U.S. foreign policy.
America's focus over the next years shouldn't be carbon dioxide, but

First, some science: Throughout the earth's history-long before the
appearance of humans-the planet has been heating and cooling in cycles. Over
the past century, surface temperatures have risen 1 degree Fahrenheit, an
increase that has probably caused more good than harm. The unresolved
question is how much of this slight warming is the result of human CO2
emissions and how much is natural-perhaps produced by variations in solar
energy. Kyoto seeks to slash human emissions, but even if the computer
models are right the effects of such expensive cutbacks on temperature will
be tiny.

But Kyoto is more than a scientific prescription. It is a distinct
political, social, and economic vision. Bjorn Lomborg, a Danish scientist
who says he once held "left-wing Greenpeace views," writes in his important
new book The Skeptical Environmentalist that the Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change (the United Nations advisory group on the subject) is "using
global warming as a springboard for other, wider policy goals." The IPCC,
Lomborg writes, wants "a society which is less resource-oriented, less
industrialized, less commercialized, less production-oriented.... It is
important to realize that the discussion is no longer primarily about

The U.S. should offer its own political, social, and economic vision for the
future-a program to reduce global poverty. What does that have to do with
Kyoto? Plenty. To respond to any environmental calamity-warming or cooling,
floods or droughts-nations need the resilience that comes from a strong
economy. New irrigation, dikes, transformed industries, can only be created
with wealth. The U.S. response to the European challenge on global warming,
then, should be to promote economic growth in poverty-stricken nations-by
far the most vulnerable to the dangers of any adverse change in climate.

Imagine the depressive global economic effects of a Kyoto regime that would
reduce U.S. output alone by up to $400 billion a year. The natural course of
economic development over the next 50 years will enrich countries that are
currently poor, allowing them to cope with effects of climate change-if such
change, human-induced or natural, occurs. Malaria-afflicted Malaysia, for
instance, will become like healthy Singapore. But if economic growth is
impeded, environmental and health progress will also stall. As its
alternative to Kyoto, the U.S. should launch a program of economic and
environmental aid to "aspiring" nations-those that protect entrepreneurship,
reject statism, and accept democratic values. Mexico and India are prime
candidates. We should enact nation-to-nation agreements, not another global
treaty with all the posturing and bureaucracy that treaty making entails.
And the emphasis must be on clean-energy sources.

Let the Europeans go their own way. Their leaders preach downsizing, small
thinking, pain, and fear. The U.S. has more in common with aspiring Third
World peoples, who know that the key to better health and a cleaner
environment is economic growth-exactly what the grandees of Kyoto disdain.

Copyright 2001, Tech Central Station

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