February 28, 2007
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Published July 1988 through June 1999
FROM VOLUME 9, NUMBER 7, JULY 1996
IMPACTS: IMPACTS ON HEALTH & SOCIETY
Two items from Clim.
Change, 32(4), Apr. 1996:
"Late 20th Century Climatic Change over the Northern Hemisphere and Its
Consequences for Numerical Weather Prediction," B. Kuemmel (IMFUFA, RUC, PB
260, DK-4000 Roskilde, Denmark), 379-385. An editorial essay discussing ways in
which rising greenhouse gases and their interaction with anthropogenic sulfate
aerosols could complicate the performance of weather prediction models, and
modifications to the models that may be necessary.
"Effects of Summer Precipitation on Urban Transportation," S.A.
Changnon (Atmos. Sci. Div., State Water Survey, 2204 Griffith Dr., Champaign IL
61820), 481-494. Uses a three-year period of data to evaluate the effect of more
rainy days and heavier rains that are predicted as potential results of an
enhanced greenhouse effect. More summer rain days, somewhat higher rain rates,
and more storms would mean more total vehicular accidents, more total injuries
in those accidents, decreased use of public transportation, and more aircraft
accidents and delays. A drier climate would likely experience fewer
moderate-to-heavy rain events, but rain events during drier conditions produced
a greater frequency of accidents and injuries per event.
Estimates of Climate Change Damages for the United States," J.B. Smith
(Hagler Bailly Consulting Inc., P.O. Drawer O, Boulder CO 80306), ibid.,
32(3), 312-326, Mar. 1996.
The major estimates of U.S. climate change damages by the year 2060
published by Nordhaus (1991), Cline (1992), Fankhauser (1992) and Titus (1992)
range from $55 billion to $111 billion, but are based in part on studies
assuming a higher level of warming than now estimated. This paper adjusts the
results of these studies to 2.5° C warming, a 50-cm sea level rise, 1990
income and population, and a 4% real rate of return on investments. After
standardization, the damage estimates range from $42 billion to $53 billion.
However, within individual sectors, such as agriculture and electricity,
standardized damages differ by more than an order of magnitude, so the apparent
agreement of the total damage estimates should be interpreted with caution.
Change and Emerging Infectious Diseases," J.A. Patz (Dept. Molecular
Microbiol., Johns Hopkins Univ., Sch. Hygiene & Public Health, 615 N. Wolfe
St., Baltimore MD 21205), P.R. Epstein et al., J. Amer. Medical Assoc.,
275(3), 217 ff., Jan. 17, 1996.
Climate is one of several factors influencing the emergence and reemergence
of infectious diseases. The mosquito-borne diseases (including malaria, dengue,
and viral encephalitides) are among the most sensitive to climate.
Climate-related increases in sea surface temperature and sea level could lead to
higher frequency of water-borne infectious and toxin-related illnesses, such as
cholera and shellfish poisoning. Human migration and damage to health
infrastructures from the projected increase in climate variability could
indirectly contribute to disease transmission. Human susceptibility to
infections might be further compounded by malnutrition due to climate stress on
agriculture and potential alterations in the human immune system caused by
increased flux of ultraviolet radiation. Analyzing the role of climate in
disease will require interdisciplinary cooperation among physicians,
climatologists, biologists, and social scientists.
and Migration from Oceania: Implications for Australia, New Zealand and the
United States of America," E.J. Moore, J.W. Smith (Dept. Geog., Univ.
Adelaide, Adelaide 5005, S. Australia), Population & Environ., 17(2),
105-122, Nov. 1995.
Assesses migration that may result in response to climate shifts over the
next thirty years, from small island states in the south-west Pacific to these
developed countries. The adverse impact of climate change will be one extra
pressure on small island states, many of which are already struggling to cope
with sustainable management of their natural resources and with the demands of
their rapidly growing populations for education, housing and employment.
Migration is likely to entail significant medium-term health, psychological and
social costs for some Pacific island immigrants, as they try to move or cope
with life in industrialized societies.
Global Warming on Energy Use for Space Heating and Cooling in the United States,"
D.H. Rosenthal, H.K. Gruenspecht (Off. Econ. Analysis, U.S. DOE, Washington DC
20585), E.A. Moran, The Energy J.,
16(2), 77-96, 1996.
Finds that a global warming of 1£ C would reduce projected U.S.
energy expenditures in 2010 for space heating and cooling by 5.5 billion (1991)
dollars, a result opposite in sign to earlier estimates by Nordhaus (1991) and
Cline (1992). Discusses reasons for the discrepancy, and makes comparisons with
similar estimates for the IPCC. Explores a variety of avenues for continuing
research on the energy impacts of global warming.
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