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      Simultaneously mitigating near-term climate change and improving human health and food security.

      Science (New York, N.Y.)

      Soot, Aerosols, analysis, Ozone, Mortality, Premature, Methane, Humans, Health, Food Supply, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Computer Simulation, Climate Change, prevention & control, Air Pollution, Air Pollutants

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          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.

          Abstract

          Tropospheric ozone and black carbon (BC) contribute to both degraded air quality and global warming. We considered ~400 emission control measures to reduce these pollutants by using current technology and experience. We identified 14 measures targeting methane and BC emissions that reduce projected global mean warming ~0.5°C by 2050. This strategy avoids 0.7 to 4.7 million annual premature deaths from outdoor air pollution and increases annual crop yields by 30 to 135 million metric tons due to ozone reductions in 2030 and beyond. Benefits of methane emissions reductions are valued at $700 to $5000 per metric ton, which is well above typical marginal abatement costs (less than $250). The selected controls target different sources and influence climate on shorter time scales than those of carbon dioxide-reduction measures. Implementing both substantially reduces the risks of crossing the 2°C threshold.

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          Most cited references 26

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          Global and regional climate changes due to black carbon

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            Atmospheric brown clouds: impacts on South Asian climate and hydrological cycle.

            South Asian emissions of fossil fuel SO(2) and black carbon increased approximately 6-fold since 1930, resulting in large atmospheric concentrations of black carbon and other aerosols. This period also witnessed strong negative trends of surface solar radiation, surface evaporation, and summer monsoon rainfall. These changes over India were accompanied by an increase in atmospheric stability and a decrease in sea surface temperature gradients in the Northern Indian Ocean. We conducted an ensemble of coupled ocean-atmosphere simulations from 1930 to 2000 to understand the role of atmospheric brown clouds in the observed trends. The simulations adopt the aerosol radiative forcing from the Indian Ocean experiment observations and also account for global increases in greenhouse gases and sulfate aerosols. The simulated decreases in surface solar radiation, changes in surface and atmospheric temperatures over land and sea, and decreases in monsoon rainfall are similar to the observed trends. We also show that greenhouse gases and sulfates, by themselves, do not account for the magnitude or even the sign in many instances, of the observed trends. Thus, our simulations suggest that absorbing aerosols in atmospheric brown clouds may have played a major role in the observed regional climate and hydrological cycle changes and have masked as much as 50% of the surface warming due to the global increase in greenhouse gases. The simulations also raise the possibility that, if current trends in emissions continue, the subcontinent may experience a doubling of the drought frequency in the coming decades.
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              Present-day climate forcing and response from black carbon in snow

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                22246768
                10.1126/science.1210026

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