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World climate conference slidecast

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World climate conference slidecast World climate conference slidecast Presentation Transcript

  • World Climate Conference
    Geneva, Switzerland
    February, 1979
    Chris Welsh
    HIST 3ES3: Environmental Sustainability in Global History
  • World Meteorological Organization (W.M.O)
    United Nations (U.N.)
    The Palace of Nations (Geneva, Switzerland - 2005)
  • Purpose
    “To review knowledge of climatic change and variability, due to both natural and anthropogenic causes...”
    “To assess possible future climatic changes and variability and their implications for human activities.”
  • WHO ?
    Scientists
    or
    Economists
  • F. Kenneth Hare (1939 – 2002)
    • Presented paper at WCC titled: Climatic Variation and Variability: Empirical Evidence from Meteorological and Other Sources
    • At the time this paper was presented, Hare was a professor for the Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Toronto, Canada
    • Wanted to answer the questions:
    “Is there evidence that climate can and does change?”
    “If so, what do past records and present-day observations tell us about such changes?”
    “What is the nature of climatic variation and variability?”
  • Hare’s Conclusions
    • Human activities are affected by climate variability on both long and short-term time scales.
    • Regional climatic stress may not be abnormal but a product of climate variability and it does not exclude short-term regional renewal.
    • The northern hemisphere has been cooling and pollution may be offsetting the cooling trend because of the heat it can trap in the atmosphere.
    • Countries in northern latitudes will be more affected by changes in variable surface temperature than countries in equatorial and southern latitudes.
    • Variable precipitation is more likely to have a greater impact on “sub-humid or semi-arid” regions.
    • Economic practices that are aware of the possible return of regional climatic stress are the best defence against their reoccurrence .
    • In essence, climate is resilient.
  • Hare’s Follow-Up
    - In 1980, Hare renewed his position in a published paper titled, The Planetary Environment: Fragile or Sturdy?
    • Hare writes, “The release of nearly one-third of the original soil carbon, and the destruction of half the world’s original forest since Neolithic times have not plunged us into a climatic convulsion. Somehow the natural systems that we study have adapted to the changes, modulated them and masked them. They may well keep up the good work – though they will now have to contend with vastly more rapid environmental change.”
  • Ralph C. d’Arge’s Arguments
    • In his paper, Climate and Economic Activity, d’Arge argues that a reduction of 1 degree Celsius in average temperature could cost the United States upwards of 7 billion dollars per year.
    • In order to regulate CO2 emissions drastic changes in energy and deforestation would be required.
    • Although there have been proposals that the Earth is experiencing a warming trend that could result in the possibility of greater rainfall, a possible cooling trend cannot be ruled out entirely.
    • There is no scientific evidence that CO2 emissions induce global climate change ; but there is “significant indirect evidence “and “crude estimates.”
    • Accurate evidence of effects cannot be reached for 10 – 20 years.
  • Conclusions of the World Climate Conference
    • The increase of carbon dioxide in the lower atmosphere should be of urgent concern to nations
    • Dependency on the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation is seen as “likely to result in a massive atmospheric CO2 increase in future decades and centuries;”
    • These changes in CO2 levels may result in “possibly major long-term changes of global climate;”
    • Natural removal of CO2 from the atmosphere will be slow and so the impact of its increase will last longer.
    • Research should be increased in order to properly assess the impact of CO2 on the climate and other areas.
  • Image Citations
    Slide 2
    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/capitalweathergang/2010/03/world_meteorological_day_thank.html
    http://www.un.int/jamaica/
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9a/ONU_Geneva_mainroom.jpg
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/08/Flag_of_Switzerland_%28Pantone%29.svg
    Slide 3
    http://www.officialpsds.com/Planet-Earth-PSD20005.html
    Slide 4
    http://www.nps.gov/slbe/planyourvisit/images/maple_beach_forest_556x400.jpg
  • Image Citations Continued
    Slide 4 cont’d
    http://www.earthwatch2.org/LFF/Livingston/uploaded_images/diving_ocean-792387.jpg
    http://www.fs.fed.us/rm/boise/rmrs_sai/sai_subjects/images/atmosphere-nasa.gov.jpg
    Slide 5
    http://www.biojobblog.com/Scientists.jpg
    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_lXoSjZbPF9A/TMfqwWKvL_I/AAAAAAAAATU/j_fq9bjVrN0/s1600/cartoon-economists.png
    Slide 6
    http://www.odec.ca/projects/2007/mull7j2/images/haressss.jpg
  • Image Citations Continued
    Slide 11
    http://www.istockphoto.com/file_thumbview_approve/9336073/2/istockphoto_9336073-financial-uncertainty.jpg
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_zgRRzZdsKcE/SwrRb_NrFWI/AAAAAAAAGys/hxMUT7cao6Y/s1600/2.gif
    http://www.21stcenturymed.org/fear-face.jpg
    Slide 12
    http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=165753&page=3
    http://www.alaska-in-pictures.com/data/media/13/smoke-stacks_3172.jpg
    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_Q16GN8b2AzE/SI3pvc8oyYI/AAAAAAAAAps/W898fI94X5M/s400/OlympicStadium__0,,6168436,00.jpg