Sat Aug 05, 2006 8:37 am
Lindsey Rustad, who conducts research on climate change for the US Forest Service, ...talked to me about her international consortium of global climate change scientists, and their contributions to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report that is slated for publication in 2007. The IPCC Assessment reports are the final word on climate change in the scientific community. Lindsey says that the new IPCC report will restate the conclusions of the IPCC's last report in 2001, albeit with more forceful data about our climate's degradation.
You don't have to wait for 2007 to get their report's punch line, because somebody leaked it to the press, and the scoop appeared in a recent article in Nature. This is the crux of it:
"One critical number in previous reports has been the sensitivity of the climate to increases in greenhouse gas levels. In 2001, scientists estimated that a doubling of carbon dioxide levels would cause an increase of 1.5-4.5Â°C, but acknowledged that this range was little more than a best guess. The draft 2007 WGI report describes how new models and data sets allow the range to be properly quantified. It estimates the effect of doubling carbon dioxide as a rise of 2.0-4.5Â°C and, for the first time, suggests a single most likely figure: 3Â°C. This estimate is already widely accepted by climate scientists."
Each 1 degree C equals 1.8 degrees F, so +3.0 C = +5.4 F.
In a nutshell, Dr. Rustad says that the new IPCC report, as well as the latest research, will propose (1) increased temperature, and (2) more droughts and more intense rain events.
Tue Aug 08, 2006 1:55 pm