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China Coal Consumption Linked To Global Cooling

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Author Topic: China Coal Consumption Linked To Global Cooling  (Read 84 times)
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« on: July 04, 2011, 10:22:12 pm »

Sulfur's ability to cool things down has led some to suggest using it in a geoengineering feat to cool the planet. The idea is that injecting sulfur compounds very high into the atmosphere might help ease global warming by increasing clouds and haze that would reflect sunlight. Some research has concluded that's a bad idea.

Using enough sulfur to reduce warming would wipe out the protective Arctic ozone layer and delay recovery of the Antarctic ozone hole by as much as 70 years, according to an analysis by Simone Tilmes of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo. This is the ozone layer that is high above Earth and protects against harmful UV rays, not the ground level ozone that is a harmful pollutant.

"While climate change is a major threat, more research is required before society attempts global geoengineering solutions," said Tilmes.

Overall, global temperatures have been increasing for more than a century since the industrial revolution began adding gases like carbon dioxide to the air. But there have been similar plateaus, such as during the post-World War II era when industrial production boosted sulfur emissions in several parts of the world, Kaufmann explained.

Atmospheric scientists and environmentalists are concerned that continued rising temperatures could have serious impacts worldwide, ranging from drought in some areas, changes in storm patterns, spread of tropical diseases and rising sea levels


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