February 28, 2007
GCRIO Program Overview
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Global Climate Change Digest
A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999
FROM VOLUME 8, NUMBER 3, MARCH 1995
OF GENERAL INTEREST: GENERAL AND POLICY
"Public Perceptions of Global Warming," R.A. Berk
(Dept. Sociol., Univ. California, Los Angeles, Calif.), D.
Schulman, Clim. Change, 29(1), 1-33, Jan. 1995.
Applies factorial survey methods to a sample of over 600
residents of southern California to determine public attitudes
concerning global warming, particularly willingness to pay (WTP)
to prevent various hypothetical climate scenarios. On the whole,
the public is able to understand and evaluate rather complicated
climate scenarios, but there are gaps in the public's ability to
understand climate change. The public apparently does not fully
appreciate the consequences of seemingly small climate changes,
nor the effects of climatic variation. Results on the impact of
microclimate on WTP show that climate change will be experienced
and evaluated locally, and policy makers can expect public
opinion to vary substantially by locale. Discusses why the
contingent valuation estimates presented here, although
promising, are not ready for consideration by policy makers, and
discusses other aspects of opinion research.
related items in Clim. Change, 29(2), 123-130, Feb.
"Recasting U.S. Federal Environmental R&D Programs:
An Editorial Comment," R. Bierbaum (Off. Sci. & Technol.
Policy, Exec. Office of the President, Washington, D.C.), R.
Watson, 123-130. Takes stock of the progress toward improving
federal programs, noting that for the first time the U.S. has a
comprehensive, coordinated, Cabinet-level body, the National
Science and Technology Council (NSTC), and highlighting its
activities to date. Addresses criticisms from the Carnegie
Commission, the National Research Council and others, and
presents steps to be taken for the future.
"Linking Science More Closely to Policy Making: Global
Climate Change and the National Reorganization of Science and
Technology Policy," R.D. Glasser (Ctr. Natl. Security
Studies, Los Alamos Natl. Lab., Los Alamos, N. Mex.), 131-143.
Examines national trends on this topic, and the evolution of
efforts to forge these links in the Clinton administration,
particularly with regard to the U.S. Global Change Research
Program. Although there is some concern that the NSTC exists only
by executive order with no budgetary authority, and that it could
result in the growth of a large bureaucracy, its creation is
laudable. There is some indication that lessons learned through
the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program are being
applied to global change research in that more funds are being
directed toward assessments. Nevertheless, science, policy
assessments, and policy action are uneasy partners.
"Finger on the Carbon Pulse: Climate Change and the Boreal
Forests," K. Jardine (Greenpeace, Canada), The Ecologist, 24(6),
220-224, Nov.-Dec. 1994.
Cites studies showing that global warming may already be
affecting boreal forests, as evidenced by increases in intensity
and frequency of fires, storms, and insect attacks. As forests
decline, there will be a massive net release of carbon,
triggering a runaway greenhouse effect.
"Shifting Uses for Natural Resources in a Changing
Climate," R. Darwin (Econ. Res. Service, U.S. Dept. Agric.,
1301 New York Ave NW, Rm. 408, Washington DC 20005), J.
Lewandrowski et al., World Resour. Rev., 6(4),
559-569, Dec. 1994.
In contrast to most previous studies of the impacts of climate
change on world agricultural systems, this study links economic
activities to land resources that are determined by climate. It
also accounts for farmers adopting their crop mix to altered
climate conditions. Despite negative impacts in some regions,
climate change will have a relatively small (±3%) impact on the
long term ability of global agriculture to meet future food
demands. This depends, however, on the ability to shift crop
production to new locations, even across national borders, which
could in turn damage fragile ecosystems.
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