Monday, July 06, 2009

Back to climate change

An article in New Scientist draws attention to the importance of methane in global warming and the fact that changes can be made faster for methane than with carbon dioxide. As a rice producing country there may be something we can do here.

The US Government has released a major new serious report on climate change which has much background information but is, of course, very focused on the US. See this article in Scientific American.

Another article in New Scientist notes recent revisions of the amount of sea level rise expected - more than predicted by the IPCC in 2007. Sea levels rose by 17cm in the 20th century. Estimates for the 21st century are now 100cm or more.

Alcohol and the drinking of it

An item on the BBC focused on a recent report on deaths and disability caused by alcohol:
"For 2004, the latest year for which comparable data are available on a global level, 3.8% of all global deaths (around 1 in 25) were attributable to alcohol."
And the problem is getting worse. According to an expert:
"We need an international framework convention for alcohol control, similar to that on tobacco, as soon as possible...".
Guyana needs to get serious about this... the recent introduction of new laws to control drinking and driving are a real step forward.

Comment on climate change

I hope to do a few quick posts to catch up so here goes... the first is to note a useful comment by Derek A Braithwaite in a letter to Stabroek News almost a month ago. He was commenting positively on the recent LCDS and focuses on the need for adaption as well as mitigation. He also mentions our need for computer simulations of climate change which are used extensively to try to predict the effects of climate change.

This is of special interest to me since I worked for a couple of years on early versions of these models at UK Met Office HQ in the 70's and have kept an interest in the field since.

A comment on this letter ascribes the whole problem to global population increases - this is only a small part of the problem. Here in Guyana our population has remained relatively constant but our emissions are rising due development and greater use of electicity, cars etc. Similar changes are occuring in other developing countries such as India, China and in Afica.