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Item #d96jun50

Climate Change 1995: The [IPCC] Second Assessment Report Reviewed, April 1996, £5/$7.60 (WEC).

The IPCC assessment is a comprehensive review and a remarkable example of international cooperation. However, its Summary for Policymakers obscures the uncertainty underlying the assessment's finding of a "discernible human influence on climate." The assessment generally understates the scope of energy efficiency improvements and technical advances available, and does not stress the need to institute these advances now. There is a risk that the downward revision of the expected rise in global temperature due to cooling by sulfate aerosols may prove unjustified.

Item #d96jun51

State of the Climate Report—A World in Perspective, P.J. Michaels, Ed., 28 pp., Apr. 1996, no charge (Western Fuels).

Contains contributions from five climatologists who use scientific arguments to counter popular notions of climate change, and major conclusions of the IPCC assessment. They show the lack of any trend in global temperature as measured by satellites (R. Spencer), the lack of any detectable trend in mid-latitude storm behavior (R. Davis), the poor performance of climate models in simulating regional precipitation (D. Legates), and show that in many ways the gap between the observed and simulated global temperatures is actually widening (R. Balling).

Item #d96jun52

Are Human Activities Causing Global Warming?, 28 pp., no charge (Marshall Inst.).

Based on peer-reviewed studies of the past year. Although climate models indicate that the average temperature of the Earth should have risen about 1° C in the last 100 years in response to anthropogenic greenhouse gases, the observed rise is about half that amount, most of which occurred before 1940 and before most of the greenhouse gases entered the atmosphere. Anthropogenic contributions can only account for at most a few tenths of a degree increase. The suggestion that greenhouse warming will increase the severity and frequency of violent storms has no foundation in fact.

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