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Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d97sep19

"Carbon Emissions and Sequestration by Forests: Case Studies of Developing Countries," P.M. Fearnside (Natl. Inst. for Res. in the Amazon-INPA, CP 478, 69011-970 Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil; e-mail:,Clim. Change, 35(3), 263, Mar. 1997.

A brief editorial introducing the following three papers, which give some results from a project coordinated by the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and funded by the U.S. EPA, and intended to quantify emissions from tropical forests and evaluate strategies to reduce them. These very country-specific studies are far better than cruder estimates, which still predominate in discussions of the role of tropical forests in global warming.

Item #d97sep20

"Carbon Emissions from Mexican Forests: Current Situation and Long-Term Scenarios," O.R. Masera (Ctr. Ecol., Univ. Nacional México-UNAM, Ado Post. 152, Pátzcuaro, Michoacan 61609, Mexico), M.J. Ordóñez, R. Dirzo,Clim. Change, 35(3), 265-295, Mar. 1997.

Derives estimates for 1985 and for two contrasting scenarios to 2025, for both tropical and temperate closed forests. Deforestation in the mid-1980s resulted in annual net emissions corresponding to 40% of Mexico's total carbon emissions. Forest sector carbon emissions in 2025 remain positive in the reference scenario, but could become negative if a number of policy changes discussed here are adopted.

Item #d97sep21

"Carbon Flow in Indian Forests," N.H. Ravindranath (Ctr. Ecol. Sci. & ASTRA, Indian Inst. Sci., Bangalore 560012, India), B.S. Somashekhar, M. Gadgil,Clim. Change, 35(3), 297-320, Mar. 1997.

For the reference year 1986, estimates that gross emissions from deforestation plus committed emissions from deforestation in previous years are balanced by carbon sequestration from tree plantations and existing forest. This balance is expected to continue under a "business as usual" scenario through the year 2011.

Item #d97sep22

"Greenhouse Gases from Deforestation in Brazilian Amazonia: Net Committed Emissions," P.M. Fearnside (address above),Clim. Change, 35(3), 321-360, Mar. 1997.

Proposes an approach for analyzing the greenhouse gas contribution of deforestation. It relies on net committed emissions, or the emissions and uptake that will occur as deforested landscape approaches a new equilibrium condition implied by current land-use patterns.

Item #d97sep23

"Potential CO2 Emissions in the Netherlands Due to Carbon Storage in Materials and Products," D.J. Gielen (Netherlands Energy Res. Foundation, POB 1, 1755 ZG Petten, Neth.), Ambio, 26(2), 101-106, Mar. 1997.

Potential emissions refers to carbon stored in material like plastics, which is only released to the atmosphere upon combustion. Potential emissions are a problem for the IPCC approach to calculating national emissions, which ignores international trade, because this release may occur in a different country, long after the material is manufactured. The problem is illustrated by calculations for The Netherlands, which produces and exports a relatively large quantity of synthetic organic materials.

Item #d97sep24

"Comparison of Energy Sources in Terms of Their Full Energy Chain Emission Factors of Greenhouse Gases," J.F. van de Vate (Schoenbergingel, NL-6881 NL Velp, Neth.),Energy Policy, 25(1), 1-6, Jan. 1997.

Deals with methodologies and databases for comparing emissions from different sources, based largely on an international experts workshop (Beijing, 1994). Findings and recommendations cover such topics as time horizon, plant life time, materials flows, and system output comparability.

Item #d97sep25

"A 1° x 1° Distribution of Carbon Dioxide Emissions from Fossil Fuel Consumption and Cement Manufacture, 1950-1990," R.J. Andres (Inst. Northern Eng., Univ. Alaska, Fairbanks AK 99775; e-mail:, G. Marland et al.,Global Biogeochem. Cycles, 10(3), 419-429, Sep. 1996.

National estimates of carbon emissions were combined with 1° x 1° data sets of political units and human population densities to create this new data set. The data show continual growth with time over most of the world, especially in urban areas, and a slow southerly shift of emissions as Asian countries increase their energy consumption. The digital data sets are available by anonymous ftp.

Item #d97sep26

"A Carbon Budget for Brazil: Influence of Future Land-Use Change," P. Schroeder (ManTech Environ. Res. Corp., US EPA, 200 SW 35th St., Corvallis OR 97333),Clim. Change, 33(3), 369-383, July 1996.

Develops an estimate of Brazil's biotic CO2-C budget for the period 1990-2010, using a spreadsheet accounting model based on three major components: a conceptual model of ecosystem C cycling; a recently completed satellite-based vegetation classification; and published estimates of C density for each of the vegetation classes. Three alternative projections of land-use change through 2010 show Brazil to be a C source in the range of 3-5 ´ 10-9 MgC.

Item #d97sep27

"Natural and Anthropogenic Changes in Atmospheric CO2 over the Last 1000 years from Air in Antarctic Ice and Firn," D.M. Etheridge (Div. Atmos. Res., CSIRO, PMB 1, Aspendale, Vic. 3195, Australia), L.P. Steele et al., J. Geophys. Res., 101(D2), 4115-4128, Feb. 20, 1996.

Analysis of air enclosed in three ice cores from Law Dome, Antarctica, show preindustrial CO2 mixing ratios in the range 275-284 ppm, with lower levels during 1550-1800 A.D., probably as a result of colder global climate. Major CO2 growth occurred over the industrial period except during 1935-1945 A.D., when CO2 mixing ratios stabilized or decreased slightly, probably as a result of natural variations of the carbon cycle.

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