"Global warming is a natural geological process that could begin to
reverse itself within 10 to 20 years, predicts an Ohio State University
researcher. The researcher suggests that atmospheric carbon dioxide
-- often thought of as a key "greenhouse gas" -- is not the cause of
global warming. The opposite is most likely to be true, according to Robert
Essenhigh, E.G. Bailey Professor of Energy Conservation in Ohio State's
Department of Mechanical Engineering. It is the rising global temperatures
that are naturally increasing the levels of carbon dioxide, not the other
way around, he says."
--Pam Frost Gorder, Ohio State University,

"The concept of lunar forcing of climate appears to be gaining
momentum in climate change discussions. According to one recent study,
the tidal force exerted by the moon is hypothesized to be an important
external mechanism responsible for regulating sea surface temperatures
tied to ENSO events. [...] Tidal forcing has also been suggested as a major
player in driving the world's great thermohaline circulation. [...] All of
these studies serve to illustrate just how complex earth's climate system
is, and that lunar, as well as solar, phenomena may be as important as
anything else in determining the climatic state of the earth."
--Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change 

"Is the media misreporting of global warming a product of bias,
stupidity, carelessness, or all three? Richard Lindzen, professor of
meteorology at MIT and one of 11 scientists who wrote the report the
National Academy of Sciences sent to President Bush last week is among
those who wonders why journalists always seem to get the facts wrong."
--Jack Kelly, Post-Gazette News, 17 June 2001

    Andrew Yee <>

    CO2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

    Eurekalert, 18 June 2001

    Harvey Leifert <>

    CO2 Science Magazine, 13 June 2001

    Post-Gazette News, 17 June 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

    CO2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

    C02 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

     Booksonline, June 2001


     Charles Petit <>


From Andrew Yee <>

Ohio State University

Contact: Robert Essenhigh, (614) 292-0403;

Written by Pam Frost Gorder, (614) 292-9475;



COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Global warming is a natural geological process that could
begin to reverse itself within 10 to 20 years, predicts an Ohio State
University researcher.

The researcher suggests that atmospheric carbon dioxide -- often thought of
as a key "greenhouse gas" -- is not the cause of global warming. The
opposite is most likely to be true, according to Robert Essenhigh, E.G.
Bailey Professor of Energy Conservation in Ohio State's Department of
Mechanical Engineering. It is the rising global temperatures that are
naturally increasing the levels of carbon dioxide, not the other way around,
he says.

Essenhigh explains his position in a "viewpoint" article in the current
issue of the journal Chemical Innovation, published by the American Chemical

Many people blame global warming on carbon dioxide sent into the atmosphere
from burning fossil fuels in man-made devices such as automobiles and power
plants. Essenhigh believes these people fail to account for the much greater
amount of carbon dioxide that enters -- and leaves -- the atmosphere as part
of the natural cycle of water exchange from, and back into, the sea and

"Many scientists who have tried to mathematically determine the relationship
between carbon dioxide and global temperature would appear to have vastly
underestimated the significance of water in the atmosphere as a
radiation-absorbing gas," Essenhigh argues. "If you ignore the water, you're
going to get the wrong answer."

How could so many scientists miss out on this critical bit of information,
as Essenhigh believes? He said a National Academy of Sciences report on
carbon dioxide levels that was published in 1977 omitted information about
water as a gas and identified it only as vapor, which means condensed water
or cloud, which is at a much lower concentration in the atmosphere; and most
subsequent investigations into this area evidently have built upon the
pattern of that report.

For his hypothesis, Essenhigh examined data from various other sources,
including measurements of ocean evaporation rates, man-made sources of
carbon dioxide, and global temperature data for the last one million years.

He cites a 1995 report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC), a panel formed by the World Meteorological Organization and the
United Nations Environment Programme in 1988 to assess the risk of
human-induced climate change. In the report, the IPCC wrote that some 90
billion tons of carbon as carbon dioxide annually circulate between the
earth's ocean and the atmosphere, and another 60 billion tons exchange
between the vegetation and the atmosphere.

Compared to man-made sources' emission of about 5 to 6 billion tons per
year, the natural sources would then account for more than 95 percent of all
atmospheric carbon dioxide, Essenhigh said.

"At 6 billion tons, humans are then responsible for a comparatively small
amount -- less than 5 percent -- of atmospheric carbon dioxide," he said.
"And if nature is the source of the rest of the carbon dioxide, then it is
difficult to see that man-made carbon dioxide can be driving the rising
temperatures. In fact, I don't believe it does."

Some scientists believe that the human contribution to carbon dioxide in the
atmosphere, however small, is of a critical amount that could nonetheless
upset Earth's environmental balance. But Essenhigh feels that,
mathematically, that hypothesis hasn't been adequately substantiated.

Here's how Essenhigh sees the global temperature system working: As
temperatures rise, the carbon dioxide equilibrium in the water changes, and
this releases more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. According to this
scenario, atmospheric carbon dioxide is then an indicator of rising
temperatures -- not the driving force behind it.

Essenhigh attributes the current reported rise in global temperatures to a
natural cycle of warming and cooling.

He examined data that Cambridge University geologists Nicholas Shackleton
and Neil Opdyke reported in the journal Quaternary Research in 1973, which
found that global temperatures have been oscillating steadily, with an
average rising gradually, over the last one million years -- long before
human industry began to release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Opdyke
is now at the University of Florida.

According to Shackleton and Opdyke's data, average global temperatures have
risen less than one degree in the last million years, though the amplitude
of the periodic oscillation has now risen in that time from about 5 degrees
to about 10 degrees, with a period of about 100,000 years.

"Today, we are simply near a peak in the current cycle that started about
25,000 years ago," Essenhigh explained.

As to why highs and lows follow a 100,000 year cycle, the explanation
Essenhigh uses is that the Arctic Ocean acts as a giant temperature
regulator, an idea known as the "Arctic Ocean Model." This model first
appeared over 30 years ago and is well presented in the 1974 book Weather
Machine: How our weather works and why it is changing, by Nigel Calder, a
former editor of New Scientist magazine.

According to this model, when the Arctic Ocean is frozen over, as it is
today, Essenhigh said, it prevents evaporation of water that would otherwise
escape to the atmosphere and then return as snow. When there is less snow to
replenish the Arctic ice cap, the cap may start to shrink.
That could be the cause behind the retreat of the Arctic ice cap that
scientists are documenting today, Essenhigh said.

As the ice cap melts, the earth warms, until the Arctic Ocean opens again.
Once enough water is available by evaporation from the ocean into the
atmosphere, snows can begin to replenish the ice cap. At that point, the
Arctic ice begins to expand, the global temperature can then start to
reverse, and the earth can start re-entry to a new ice age.

According to Essenhigh's estimations, Earth may reach a peak in the current
temperature profile within the next 10 to 20 years, and then it could begin
to cool into a new ice age.

Essenhigh knows that his scientific opinion is a minority one. As far as he
knows, he's the only person who's linked global warming and carbon dioxide
in this particular way. But he maintains his evaluations represent an
improvement on those of the majority opinion, because they are logically
rigorous and includes water vapor as a far more significant factor than in
other studies.

"If there are flaws in these propositions, I'm listening," he wrote in his
Chemical Innovation paper. "But if there are objections, let's have them
with the numbers."


From CO2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

Ocean Tides - Summary

The concept of lunar forcing of climate appears to be gaining momentum in
climate change discussions. According to one recent study, the tidal force
exerted by the moon is hypothesized to be an important external mechanism
responsible for regulating sea surface temperatures tied to ENSO events.
Cerveny and Shaffer (2001), for example, report finding a statistically
significant correlation between maximum lunar declination (MLD) and both
equatorial Pacific sea surface temperature and South Pacific atmospheric
pressure (the Southern Oscillation Index) over the period 1854-1999. Under
high MLD, circulation in the Pacific gyre is enhanced by tidal forces,
inducing cold-water advection into the equatorial region that is
characteristic of La Niña conditions.  Under low MLD, on the other hand,
tidal forcing is weakened, cold water advection is reduced, and warmer sea
surface conditions characteristic of El Niño prevail.

Tidal forcing has also been suggested as a major player in driving the
world's great thermohaline circulation (Munk and Wunsch, 1998; Wunsch,
2000); and Egbert and Ray (2000) have used Topex/Poseidon satellite
altimeter data to empirically quantify the spatial distribution of deep-sea
tidal energy dissipation, verifying predictions of Munk and Wunsch related
to this subject (see our Journal Review Lunar Tides and Climate Change).
All of these studies serve to illustrate just how complex earth's climate
system is, and that lunar, as well as solar, phenomena may be as important
as anything else in determining the climatic state of the earth.

Cerveny, R.S. and Shaffer, J.A. 2001. The moon and El Niño. Geophysical
Research Letters 28: 25-28.

Egbert, G.D. and Ray, R.D. 2000. Significant dissipation of tidal energy in
the deep ocean inferred from satellite altimeter data.  Nature 405: 775-778.

Munk, W.H. and Wunsch, C. 1998. Abyssal recipes II: Energetics of tidal and
wind mixing.  Deep-Sea Research 45: 1977-2010.

Wunsch, C. 2000. Moon, tides and climate. Nature 405: 743-744.
Copyright © 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


From Eurekalert, 18 June 2001


Contact: Nicolas R. Houtman
University of Maine

Evidence for El Niño and cultural development

In the July issue of the journal Geology, a team of researchers has
suggested that the climate phenomenon known as El Niño has been a
contributing factor in the rise and fall of ancient civilizations in Peru.
Using archeological evidence from sites along the Peruvian coast, scientists
from the University of Maine, Yale University, University of Pittsburgh and
University of Miami suggest that the fate of organized Peruvian societies
may be related to environmental changes caused by flood cycles starting
about 5,000 years ago.

Daniel Sandweiss of the UMaine Department of Anthropology and Institute for
Quaternary and Climate Studies (IQCS), is lead author of the article which
describes changes in mollusk assemblages in midden heaps. Co-authors are
Kirk Maasch of the UMaine Dept. of Geological Sciences and IQCS, Richard L.
Burger of Yale University, James B. Richardson III and Harold B. Rollins of
the University of Pittsburgh and Amy Clement of the University of Miami.

"We found that there was a change in the frequency of El Niño events about
3,000 years ago and that this correlates in time with cultural change," says

Other researchers have reported evidence from Central and North America,
Greenland and the Middle East that suggests a relationship between climate
and culture. "We don't argue that climate is the driving force behind
cultural development, but the evidence points to a strong contributory
role," says Sandweiss.

Mollusks are good environmental indicators, Sandweiss adds, because they are
sensitive to rising temperatures. Since 1982, one species, Mesodesma
donacium, has been driven further south, likely as a result of El Niño
events. Researchers have shown that another species that lives further south
along the Chilean coast, Choromytilus chorus, dies at an increasing rate
when faced with water temperatures similar to those brought on by El Niño.

In ancient Peruvian sites, these two species were common in middens between
9 and 7 degrees south latitude but had disappeared by about 2,800 years ago.
"The rapid disappearance of these species from northern Peruvian
archaeological sites probably reflects an increase in the frequency of
strong El Niño events to within the modern range of variability," the
Geology paper states.

Early cultural development in coastal Peru has been dated to just after the
apparent onset of El Niño about 5,800 years ago. It is marked by large
temple complexes and elaborate public art. These systems had collapsed by
the period between 2,900 and 2,800 years ago. The longest lasting of the
temple complexes is also the only one in which evidence of flood mitigation
has been found.

"By doing something proactive about El Niño, the leaders of this site
(Manchay Bajo) appear to have been making an appropriate response to changes
in their environment. Whether or not it really worked for the most serious
effects of El Niño we can't say, but if it did, that could have given them
more long-lasting control," Sandweiss suggests.

"The close temporal correlation between these changes in El Niño frequency
and the construction and abandonment of monumental temples in this region
suggests that climate and culture are here linked in a complex causal
network," the authors wrote.


From Harvey Leifert <>

American Geophysical Union
June 18, 2001
AGU Release NO. 01-21
For Immediate Release

Contact: Harvey Leifert
(202) 777-7507

Norwegian Sea Proposed as Storage Site for
Carbon Dioxide

WASHINGTON - Researchers in Bergen, Norway, have proposed a large scale
demonstration project, in which carbon dioxide (CO2) would be pumped
directly from offshore oil and gas fields to the deep waters of the
Norwegian Sea. The project would test the conclusions of a theoretical
study, using computer models, that suggests the Norwegian Sea, through
transport to the Atlantic Ocean, would provide safe, long term storage of
this greenhouse gas, which would otherwise enter the atmosphere and
contribute to global warming.

Drs. Helge Drange and Guttorm Alendal and Prof. Ola M. Johannessen at the
Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center in Bergen will publish their
study in the 1 July issue of Geophysical Research Letters, published by the
American Geophysical Union. They note that the oceans already absorb carbon
dioxide from the atmosphere, but the process of mixing the gas at deep
levels can take up to 1,000 years. Purposeful storage could, they say, be
viewed as an acceleration of a natural process. This option would be
successful only if certain environmental and economic considerations can be
satisfied, they note.

The Norwegian Sea is a deep basin off Norway's northwestern coast, beyond
Haltenbanken, a region on the continental shelf where oil and gas fields
produce carbon dioxide as a by-product. The modeling study assumes the
annual carbon dioxide emissions from various size gas power plants over a
ten year period. Drange and his colleagues considered the effect of
releasing carbon dioxide, collected at the source, at various depths from
350 to 950 meters [1,150-3,120 feet]. They conclude that if the initial size
of the carbon dioxide particles is four millimeters [0.2 inches] or less,
the plume would rise no more than 100 meters [330 feet] from the point it
enters the ocean.

Once the injected carbon dioxide has dissolved in the seawater, it tends to
sink lower and eventually transport to the Atlantic Ocean through passages
between Iceland and Scotland. Its acidity, higher than that of the ambient
seawater, could affect deep sea organisms, which are used to a relatively
constant chemical environment. This is an area the researchers say needs
further study. They say the level of acidity can be reduced by not pumping
all of the carbon dioxide to one point, but using rather an array of ports
located 5-10 meters [16-33 feet] apart in the cross-stream of the prevailing

The model predicts how much carbon dioxide would rapidly reach the surface
and enter the atmosphere, based on the depth at which it was originally
released. The researchers say that 600 meters [2,000 feet] is the minimal
safe depth, and 800 meters [2,600 feet] still safer. At the depth of 950
meters [3,100 feet], virtually no "outgassing" occurs, and the carbon
dioxide-enriched water stays well below the level at which it might mix with
upper ocean water. Following normal flows from the Norwegian Sea, this water
will enter the northern Atlantic Ocean as bottom water and remain isolated
from the atmosphere for centuries.

Aside from the question of possible effects on deep ocean organisms, the
process of sequestering carbon dioxide in the Norwegian Sea would have to be
economically viable, the researchers say. They find that the technology is
presently available, and the cost of implementing the project might actually
be lower than the tax the Norwegian government now imposes on emissions of
carbon dioxide from offshore oil and gas fields.

Drange and colleagues emphasize that their theoretical conclusions must be
tested in real world conditions, including the cumulative effects of
instituting many such sequestration projects, rather than just one. Among
the issues to be addressed are the impact on marine organisms and the
independent effect of increasing acidification of ocean surface waters, due
to higher atmospheric carbon dioxide levels.

The study was funded by Saga Petroleum AS, the Norwegian Research Council,
the Nordic Council of Ministers, and the EC Environmental and Climate

Notes for journalists:

The paper, Helge Drange, Guttorm Alendal, Ola M. Johannessen, "Ocean release
of fossil fuel CO2: A case study," will appear in Geophysical Research
Letters, Vol. 28, no. 13 (1 July 2001), pages 2,637-2,640. An advance copy
may be obtained on request to Dawn McGee at (indicate whether
you prefer a PDF file by email or a fax). Please include your name, name of
publication, phone, fax, and email address in your request.

The authors may be contacted as follows (from U.S.A., dial 011 first):
Dr. Helge Drange, - phone - +47 55297288
Dr. Guttorm Alendal, - phone - +47 55297288
Prof. Ola M. Johannessen, - phone - +47 55297288


From CO2 Science Magazine, 13 June 2001

Gent, P.R.  2001. Will the North Atlantic Ocean thermohaline circulation
weaken during the 21st century? Geophysical Research Letters 28: 1023-1026.

What was done
A number of researchers have run global climate model simulations into the
future in an attempt to determine whether or not CO2-induced global warming
will significantly affect the thermohaline circulation of the world's
oceans, with some of the models predicting a significant weakening of this
global ocean-water "conveyor belt." In a new study of this subject, Gent
uses the Climate System Model - a coupled general circulation model with
atmosphere, ocean, land and sea-ice components - to evaluate the strength of
the thermohaline circulation through the 21st century.

What was learned
The model simulations showed the Northwest Atlantic becoming warmer and more
saline, which changes had little net effect on the surface water density in
this part of the world and, hence, led to little net change in the rate of
deep water formation in this important deep-water source region. Thus, the
author concluded there is "no evidence of a significant weakening of the
thermohaline circulation" over the 21st century.

What it means
As with all model studies, there are a number of caveats that must be
attached to the findings of this report; and the author lists several that
could affect the outcome of his modeling exercise, stressing that
determining the behavior of the thermohaline circulation in the 21st century
is "a very demanding question to ask of current state-of-the-art coupled
climate models."  Yet, it is an important question to ask, because the
thermohaline circulation is a major contributor to world climate and that of
Europe in particular. Clearly, however, a firm understanding of this
phenomenon has yet to be achieved, which suggests that the ultimate impact
of the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 concentration is far from known with
any degree of certainty.
Copyright © 2001. Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change 


From Post-Gazette News, 17 June 2001

Jack Kelly: Facts and global warming
A prominent scientist says the media got it wrong

Sunday, June 17, 2001

Is the media misreporting of global warming a product of bias, stupidity,
carelessness, or all three? Richard Lindzen, professor of meteorology at MIT
and one of 11 scientists who wrote the report the National Academy of
Sciences sent to President Bush last week is among those who wonders why
journalists always seem to get the facts wrong.

CNN's Michelle Mitchell, whose coverage was typical, said the NAS report
represented "a unanimous decision that global warming is real, is getting
worse, and is due to man. There is no wiggle room."
None of this is true, said Lindzen in an op-ed piece in the Wall Street

"Science, in the public arena, is commonly used as a source of authority
with which to bludgeon political opponents and propagandize uninformed
citizens," Lindzen wrote. "It is a reprehensible practice which corrodes our
ability to make rational decisions."

A big problem is that journalists rarely report what the scientists
themselves said in the NAS report, or in the earlier report of the UN's
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, relying instead on misleading
summaries prepared by political aides.

"The Summary for Policymakers, which is seen as endorsing [the UN treaty
drafted at] Kyoto, is commonly presented as the consensus of thousands of
the world's foremost climate scientists," Lindzen said. "The NAS panel
essentially concluded that the IPCC's Summary for Policymakers does not
provide suitable guidance for the U.S. government."

Scientists agree that global mean temperatures are half a degree Celsius (a
little more than one degree Fahrenheit) warmer than they were a century ago;
that the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has been increasing for
two centuries, and that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas likely to warm
the Earth, Lindzen said.

But, he said, there is no agreement on whether the warming is caused
primarily by CO2 emissions, whether it will continue, or whether it would be
harmful if it did.

"One reason for this uncertainty is that the climate is always changing,"
Lindzen said. "Two centuries ago, much of the Northern hemisphere was
emerging from a little ice age. During the Middle Ages, the same region was
in a warm period. Thirty years ago, we were concerned with global cooling."

Dr. Sallie Baliunas of Harvard thinks changes in the magnetism of the sun
are chiefly responsible for changes in the climate on Earth.

"When the sun's magnetism is strong, the sun's energy output is higher and
the Earth is warmer," she said. "We can reconstruct [temperature records for
the] Northern Hemisphere about 250 years or so. The ups and downs of
temperature match almost exactly the ups and downs in magnetism."

Baliunas doubts that man-made emissions of carbon dioxide contribute much to
global warming.

"The acid test of all this is the last 22 years of satellite measurements
made of the lower layer of air of the Earth," she said. "That layer of air
should be warming quite rapidly. It's where the greenhouse effect should be
taking place. That layer has not seen a big warming trend. We've seen a
little bit of warming of the surface, but it can't be caused by that carbon
dioxide effect in that atmospheric layer, which has no warming."

Even if global warming is being caused by man-made emissions, there is
little likelihood the Kyoto treaty, if fully implemented, would do much
about it, Lindzen said.

"The press has frequently tied the existence of climate change to a need for
Kyoto," he said. "The NAS panel did not address this question.

"My own view, consistent with the panel's work, is that the Kyoto Protocol
would not result in a substantial reduction in global warming."

But if implemented in its present form, Kyoto would sandbag the U.S.
economy. It would require the United States to reduce its power production
by as much as 25 percent, which would have a much more devastating effect
than did the Arab oil embargo after the Yom Kippur war.

Prior to leaving for Europe, President Bush outlined a plan for meeting
carbon dioxide emissions goals in the Kyoto treaty without causing a
depression. The plan deserves a respectful hearing, but is unlikely to get
it from a news media which either cannot recognize the truth, or is
unwilling to report it.

Copyright © 1997-2001 PG Publishing. All rights reserved.


From CO2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

Arseneault, D. and Payette, S.  1997.  Reconstruction of millennial forest
dynamics from tree remains in a subarctic tree line peatland.  Ecology 78:

What was done
Tree-ring and growth-form sequences obtained from more than 300 spruce
remains buried in a presently treeless peatland located near the tree line
in northern Québec were analyzed to produce a proxy record of climate for
this region between 690 and 1591 AD.

What was learned
Over the course of this 900-year time period, the trees of the region
experienced several episodes of suppressed and rapid growth, indicative of
both colder and warmer conditions, respectively, than those of the present.
Cooler (suppressed growth) conditions prevailed between 760-860 and
1025-1400 AD, while warmer (rapid growth) conditions were prevalent between
700-750, 860-1000, 1400-1450 and 1500-1570 AD.

Analysis of the warm period between 860 and 1000 AD led the authors to
conclude that the warmth experienced in northern Quebec during this time
period coincided with the Medieval Warm Period that was experienced across
the North Atlantic and Northern Europe, which "exceeded in duration and
magnitude both the 16th and 20th century warm periods identified previously
[by other scientists] using the same methods."  Furthermore, on the basis of
the current annual temperatures at the author's study site and the
northernmost 20th century location of the forest, which is presently 130 km
south of the author's study site, the author concludes that the "Medieval
Warm Period was approximately 1°C warmer than the 20th century."

What it means
The results of this study demonstrate the natural oscillatory nature of
climate in the subarctic region of North America.  Furthermore, they
demonstrate that current temperatures are still about 1°C lower than they
were during the Medieval Warm Period.  The results also indicate that even
if it warms by yet another degree or so in the next few decades or coming
century, such warming would not be proof of the current politically-correct
theory of CO2-induced global warming.  It would simply prove what everyone
has known for a long time now, i.e., that climate naturally oscillates,
independent of the actions of man.
Copyright © 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


From CO2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

Kadioglu, M., Sen, Z. and Gültekin, L.  2001.  Variations and trends in
Turkish seasonal heating and cooling degree-days.  Climatic Change 49:

What was done
Trends in both heating degree-days (HDDs) and cooling degree-days (CDDs)
were analyzed at 74 stations located throughout Turkey over the period

What was learned
Much of Turkey displayed no significant trend in the annual number of HDDs
or CDDs over the period of record.  However, where significant trends did
exist, they were found to be inconsistent with what is predicted by
high-resolution global climate models. Decreasing trends in the number of
CDDs were found in all seasons of the year in the eastern part of Turkey
(signifying a decreasing trend in mean daily temperature in all seasons);
while increases in HDDs were reported for the fall in the region near the
Black Sea (signifying a decreasing trend in mean daily temperature in the
fall). In other words, over the past 70 years, some parts of Turkey have
gotten colder, not warmer.

What it means
We concur with the authors when they say the results of their study "do not
provide empirical support for the model simulations" of CO2-induced warming
in Turkey. They do, however, provide support for our claim that there has
been no global warming over the past 70 years.
Copyright © 2001. Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change 


From Co2 Science Magazine, 20 June 2001

Borehole Temperature Records:
Can They Be Used to Reconstruct Accurate Air Temperature Histories?

Zhang, T., Barry, R.G., Gilichinsky, D., Bykhovets, S.S., Sorokovikov, V.A.
and Ye, J.  2001.  An amplified signal of climatic change in soil
temperatures during the last century at Irkutsk, Russia. Climatic Change 49:

What was done
The authors examined records of soil temperature at various depths, along
with several climatic indices, including air temperature, precipitation,
snowfall and snow thickness data, at Irkutsk, Russia over the period 1898 to

What was learned
The relationship between air temperature and soil temperature was found to
be so complex that, in the words of the authors, "changes in air temperature
alone cannot explain the changes in soil temperatures in this region."
Among the list of complex findings was the observation that summer soil
temperatures cooled by up to 4°C while summer air temperatures experienced a
slight increase; while in the winter, air temperatures increased between 4
to 6°C, while soil temperatures rose even higher, by as much as 9°C.
Possible explanations for these summer and winter trends include (1) an
increase in summer rainfall and (2) an increase in early winter snowfall
coupled with an earlier increase in spring snowmelt, respectively.

What it means
According to the authors, "when changes in soil temperature are used as
evidence of climatic warming, caution is required because changes in soil
temperature are a combined product of changes in air temperature and
precipitation, especially snowfall and snow cover on ground."  Furthermore,
they stress that "present findings of the surface warming of permafrost at
high latitudes and ground warming at a certain depth below ground surface
elsewhere in the world could be fortuitous and may be misleading since air
temperature alone cannot account for such a ground warming."  Thus, the
potential exists for serious flaws to manifest themselves in temperature
histories derived from borehole analyses of soil temperature data.
Copyright © 2001.  Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change


From Booksonline, June 2001

Book Review by Philip Stott

The Little Ice Age: How Climate Made History 1300-1850 
Brian Fagan
Global warming and cooling 
From the Armada to the Irish potato famine, climate has made history

IN September 1588, the retreating Spanish Armada, widely scattered from the
Bay of Biscay to the western coast of Ireland, was daily battered by
thrashing storms, "on our beam with a sea up to the heavens so that the
cables could not hold, nor the sails serve us". Recent analysis of the
captains' logs has shown that the wind squalls were as high as 60 knots,
near hurricane strength, as a violent cyclonic depression advanced, the
probable spin-off of a tropical hurricane.

King Philip II's "Great Enterprise" lost more ships to the weather than to
the English fleet, allowing Queen Elizabeth I's spin doctors to claim that
"God blew and they were scattered". Rudyard Kipling thus got it wrong when
he wrote in Puck's Song: "Oh that was where they hauled the guns/ That smote
King Philip's fleet!" The true winner was a severe climatic deterioration
between 1560 and 1600 which was characterised by cooler winters and an 85
per cent increase in storm activity, weather that also caused wine harvests
to flow late and sour quickly, while famine followed famine upon epidemic.

Brian Fagan, one of America's leading archaeologists, has written a most
timely and riveting book examining in minute detail the ever-changing
relationship between humanity and climate.

In Europe, we are currently obsessed by "global warming", one of the great
myths of our age. But how would we have enjoyed the winter of 1309-10, an
exceptionally cold and dry year, when the Thames iced over, bread froze
indoors - even when protected by straw - and shipping was disrupted from the
Baltic Sea to the English Channel? This was just after the start of what we
call the Little Ice Age, which can first be detected around 1200 from the
evidence of tree rings and ice cores from Greenland and the Arctic. It would
go on to curse Europe with great hungers, especially in 1315-19, 1741, and
1816, "the year without a summer".

The book starts with the so-called Medieval Warm Period when Norse
settlements flourished in Greenland (c 980s) and wine cultivation graced the
gentler slopes of England. The temperature was warmer than today, "global
warming" or not, and, according to Fagan, "was an unqualified blessing for
the rural poor and small farmers". Some climatologists call it the Medieval
Climate Optimum. It is an intriguing question as to why we now fear warmth
so much.

Fagan then discusses the terrible vicissitudes of the "Cooling", a climatic
see-saw of storms, dearth, glacial advances, and prolonged winters that
occurred from the beginning of the 14th century to the middle of the 19th
century. Finally, we return to the warming of the modern era, after the
Little Ice Age had ended in the 19th Century just as it had begun, - with
famine, the An Ghorta Mor, "The Great Hunger", of Ireland.

Not all such disasters were, of course, determined by climate. Fagan rightly
points out that the social and political response to climate- change is
immensely complex. But he also shows that climate has always changed and
that such transformation cannot be ignored as a significant player on the
historical stage of Europe. It is surely a self-deception of our
post-materialist, New-Age world to believe that we can achieve harmony and
balance in this most chaotic of natural systems.

Carbon dioxide emissions have become the new witchcraft, the most recent
devil to blame for the inherent instability of climate. But Fagan is rightly
cautious about current climate-change science, commenting sensibly that
"long-term climatic projections require models of mind-boggling complexity"
which "are no better than the technology and software that run them, or the
data fed into them".

This book, however, is better than any model, for it is a study of real
climate and real people in Europe throughout the last Millennium. And the
tale is one of human adaptation, or failure of adaptation, to inexorable
change that "is almost always abrupt, shifting rapidly within decades, even
years, and entirely capricious".

Philip Stott is Professor of Biogeography in the University of London and
Editor of the 'Journal of Biogeography'. 



The Collapse of the Kyoto Protocol and the Struggle to Slow Global Warming
(Council on Foreign Relations Book)
by David G. Victor

Hardcover - 178 pages (April 1, 2001)
Princeton Univ Pr; ISBN: 0691088705 ; Dimensions (in inches): 0.75 x 8.77 x

Editorial Reviews
From Publishers Weekly

In the winter of 2000, international talks on the implementation of planned
emissions standards again faltered, a resolution again postponed. In The
Collapse of the Kyoto Protocol and the Struggle to Slow Global Warming,
scientist David G. Victor of the Council on Foreign Relations parses the
problem-ridden 1997 agreement. Victor describes the hasty initial
negotiations, the origin of an emissions trading imbroglio whereby
governments would purchase emissions credits from other countries rather
than meeting "their Kyoto obligations within their borders," the impossible
costs of "Kyoto's fantasyland" and the protocol's inevitable failure. But in
the failure lies the possibility for a manageable solution, Victor notes.
Publication coincides with Earth Day.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Book Description
Global warming dominates environmental news as legislatures worldwide begin
the arduous process of deciding whether to ratify the December 1997 Kyoto
Protocol. Though not everyone was satisfied with the specifics of Kyoto,
most politicians, policymakers, and analysts hailed it as a vital first step
in slowing greenhouse warming. David Victor was not among them. In this
clear and cogent book, Victor explains why the Kyoto Protocol is unlikely to
enter into force and how its failure will offer the opportunity to establish
a more realistic alternative.

Kyoto's fatal flaw, Victor argues, is that it can work only if emissions
trading works. The Protocol requires industrialized nations to reduce their
emissions of greenhouse gases to specific targets. Crucially, the Protocol
also provides for so-called "emissions trading," whereby nations could
offset the need for rapid cuts in their own emissions by buying emissions
credits from other countries. But starting this trading system would require
creating emission permits worth two trillion dollars--the largest single
invention of assets by voluntary international treaty in world history. Even
if it were politically possible to distribute such astronomical sums, the
Protocol does not provide for adequate monitoring and enforcement of these
new property rights. Nor does it offer an achievable plan for allocating new
permits, which would be essential if the system were expanded to include
developing countries.

The collapse of the Kyoto Protocol--which Victor views as inevitable--will
provide the political space to rethink strategy. Better alternatives would
focus on policies that control emissions, such as emission taxes. Though
economically sensible, however, a pure tax approach is impossible to monitor
in practice. Thus, the author proposes a hybrid in which governments set
targets for both emission quantities and tax levels. This offers the
important advantages of both emission trading and taxes without the
debilitating drawbacks of each.

Individuals at all levels of environmental science, economics, public
policy, and politics--from students to professionals--and anyone else hoping
to participate in the debate over how to slow global warming will want to
read this book.

From the Inside Flap
"Victor's keen institutional insights and recommendations-required reading
for those aiming to get climate change negotiations back on track-make the
book a genuine contribution to the broader literature of global diplomacy."
(Christopher D. Stone, University of Southern California Law School)

"The Collapse of the Kyoto Protocol and the Struggle to Slow Global Warming
is interesting, thoughtful, unique, and timely. Its strength is its ability
to integrate a wide variety of disciplines--economics, political science,
international law, as well as the underlying science." (William Nordhaus,
Yale University)

"David Victor's book is a rare delight and one of the finest documents I
have seen in a very long time. It is a devastating critique of the
international negotiations on global warming. . . . Victor's style is clear,
easy-to-read, and incisive. It is a startlingly good volume that should
immediately reach students of international relations, politics, and
economics." (David Pearce, University College London)

About the Author
David G. Victor is Research Fellow for Science and Technology at the Council
on Foreign Relations in New York. He is a regular contributor to edited
volumes as well as to Nature, Scientific American, and other journals.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

A Very Important Book, April 9, 2001
Reviewer: Greg Priddy (see more about me) from Arlington, Virginia United
For many who favor taking action to control global warming, a book which
points out the fatal flaws in the Kyoto Protocol is going to be somewhat
unwelcome. However, David Victor makes a very compelling case that the
Protocol is unworkable as negotiated. By creating an immensely valuable new
financial asset (emissions permits) and a trading system, it opens up
problems related to enforcement and monitoring, the protection of property
rights under international law, the inclusion of "illiberal" governments
with weak legal systems in the regime, and large politically unpalatable
(and essentially unearned) transfers of wealth to Russia and Ukraine.

How does the system deal with a government, for example, which pockets its
payments for selling emission permits, then pulls out of the regime when it
ceases to be profitable? How are additional countries to be brought into the
regime without giving them the incentive of very high "worst case" emissions
targets? How do you create an asset which is allocated based on statistical
data which may be imperfect?

[If anything, Victor is too *optimistic* about the ability to accurately
monitor CO2 emissions from fossil fuels. As an example of this one needs
only to look at Chinese coal consumption data, which has fallen by a rather
implausible amount in the last half-decade, for reasons internal to China
having nothing to do with Kyoto. Questionable official data (and the
possibility of intentionally skewed data) for developing countries is a real
impediment to their future inclusion in any regime.]

Certainly many will criticize Victor's proposed "hybrid" system, which
combines elements of emissions trading and taxation, for being even more
complex than Kyoto's "cap and trade" system, and for setting an absolute
ceiling for permit prices rather than for emissions, but he does make a set
of powerful arguments in favor of such a system.

Hopefully, this book will help produce a more informed debate about a very
complex, and immensely important, set of issues. This book is clearly a
"must read" for anyone interested in global climate change.



From Charles Petit <>

Dear Benny Peiser,

I enjoy CCNet immensely (I'm a science writer and have communicated
occasionally in the past). It is, as an advocate of your list, that I
respectfully suggest that the postings on climate change and greenhouse
warming skepticism are becoming too numerous. Items on catastrophism
generally, and impacts in particular, are exceedingly interesting, but the
debate over anthropogenic climate change appears to me to be not only a
separate, if distantly-related topic, but is also disturbing in its slant.
The heavy doses of skepticism and cynicism about global change in the
postings you select may be more appropriate on a separate list, such as the
climate change digest that David Wojick maintains. I'll keep reading it, but
look forward to more items on stray meteors and such, and fewer on whether
the Kyoto protocol addresses a real problem and whether, even if it does, it
would help solve that problem.


Charles Petit
USNews & World Report
(510) 558 8559;  fax (510) 558 3123

MODERATOR'S NOTE: Dear Charles Petit, I sympathise with your lament. I also
wish I could spend less time on this whole issue. Nevertheless, the Global
Warming controversy has turned into one of the most heated scientific
debates which, in any case, will have significant repercussions for the
technological evolution and economic development of our planet in the next
century. Despite the fact that science journalists like yourself are
bombarded daily with apocalyptic predictions by climate alarmists,
bureaucrats and politicians alike, I really try to limit the coverage of
Global Warming controversies to one CCNet issue per week. I hope that this
might serve as a consolation to those CCNet subscribers less interested in
climate catastrophism. BJP

The CCNet is a scholarly electronic network. To subscribe/unsubscribe,
please contact the moderator Benny J Peiser <>.
Information circulated on this network is for scholarly and educational use
only. The attached information may not be copied or reproduced for
any other purposes without prior permission of the copyright holders. The
fully indexed archive of the CCNet, from February 1997 on, can be found at
DISCLAIMER: The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed in the articles
and texts and in other CCNet contributions do not  necessarily reflect the
opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the moderator of this network.

CCCMENU CCC for 2001