The wandering interests of JamaOwl

Climate and Weather part 3

More from “The Weather of the Future”, By Heidi Cullen, Harper, 2011

“If changes in solar output had been responsible for the recent climate warming, both the troposphere and the stratosphere would have warmed.” (p. 46)

“Interestingly, scientists have learned that not all carbon in the air is the same; in fact, the carbon that comes from us bears our distinct fingerprint…” (pp. 47)

“Carbon from the oceans, the atmosphere, and the land contains a healthy mix of carbon 12 and carbon 14. But carbon from fossil fuels has almost no carbon 14 at all.” (p. 48)

“According to precise measurements from mass spectrometers at several locations around the globe, the carbon dioxide molecules currently in the atmosphere have very little carbon 13 and carbon 14.” … “The chemical fingerprints of the extra carbon dioxide in the atmosphere match only the fingerprints of coal, oil, natural gas, and deforestation because these are the only sources that produce carbon dioxide depleted in carbon 13 and carbon 14.” (p. 48)

From Wikipedia I learned that this is the Suess effect.  Named for the Austrian chemist Hans Suess.

“… roughly one out of every four CO2 molecules in the atmosphere today was put there by us.” (p. 49)

“… the Sahel is consistently identified as one of the most vulnerable places in the world to global warming.” (p. 63)

I wonder about high altitude deserts.  Are they more vulnerable or less?


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