Home Contents

Participants Listing ] Participants submitting research papers ] Call for Papers ] Final Program ]
Participate in Issues 2004 ] Final Program of Global Dialogue 2004  ] Newsletters ]

    Newsletter Volume 1       Issue 6,    June  2004

Earth Community Organization (ECO)
the Global Community

Climate change prelude

Table of Contents

1.0    Leaders, issues and articles concerned with above theme Read
2.0    What is climate change? What has caused the climate to change? Read
3.0    The greatest threat to all life on Earth is a trace element. Read
4.0    Global warming tic-O-tack! Read
5.0    Results from studies on climate change. Read
6.0    Local and global impacts. Read
7.0    Storing excess carbon in terrestrial and ocean systems. Read
8.0    British Columbia’s battlefield for life. Read
9.0    Preventive actions to climate change. Read

Leaders, issues and articles concerned with above theme

The following articles were copied from issues 1, 25, 26, 28, 30, 32, 36, and 47 listed on the website.

1.    Protection of the global life-support systems. Participate ]

There are many related aspects of the global life-support systems that are affected by an overpopulated planet:
* global warming
* Ozone layer
* wastes of all kind including nuclear and release of radiation
* climate change
* species of the fauna and flora becoming extinct
* losses of forest cover and of biological diversity
* the capacity for photosynthesis
* the water cycle
* food production systems
* genetic resources
* chemicals produced for human use and not found in nature and, eventually, reaching the environment with impacts on Earth's waters, soils, air, and ecology
November 2003 Newsletter: 3.1, 5.0
April 2003 Newsletter: 8D
November 2002 Newsletter: 2A, 2B, 2F
December 2002 Newsletter: 2C, 2D, 2F, 2G
January 2003 Newsletter: 2F
Press release #9

25.    The Kyoto Protocol is everyone's business on Earth. Participate ]

October 2002 Newsletter: 7I
November 2002 Newsletter: 2F, 2I
December 2002 Newsletter: 2C, 2D
April 2003 Newsletter: 8D
August 2003 Newsletter: 6B
November 2003 Newsletter: 3.1
Press release #9

26.    Earth rights and the Scale of Human and Earth Rights. Participate ]

December 2002 Newsletter: 2G, 2F
January 2003 Newsletter: 2F
February 2003 Newsletter: 2I, 2J, 2K, 2L
August 2003 Newsletter: 8B, 8C

28.    Preventive actions against the worst polluters on the planet and those who destroy the global life-support systems. Participate ]

August 1999 Newsletter: 4.b
November 1999 Newsletter: 12.e, 12.f
December 2002 Newsletter: 2G
January 2003 Newsletter: 2B, 2F
February 2003 Newsletter: 2G
May 2003 Newsletter: 7F
October 2003 Newsletter: 3C, 5A, 7I, 7K
Press release #9

30.    Scenarios of what might be humanity's future. Participate ]

June 2000 Newsletter: 8
November 2002 Newsletter: 2H
January 2003 Newsletter: 2E

32.    Global strategies. Participate ]

November 2002 Newsletter: 2Q
December 2002 Newsletter: 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H
January 2003 Newsletter: 2F
Press release #9

36.    A global sustainable development. Participate ]

November 1999 Newsletter: 12.c
June 2000 Newsletter: 6, 7, 12
January 2003 Newsletter: 2G, 2H, 2K, 2L
February 2003 Newsletter: 2I, 2J, 2L

47.    Climate change adaptation. Participate ]

October 2002 Newsletter: 7I
November 2002 Newsletter: 2F, 2I
December 2002 Newsletter: 2C, 2D
April 2003 Newsletter: 8D
August 2003 Newsletter: 6B
November 2003 Newsletter: 3.1
Press release #9

Back to top of page

What is climate change? What has caused the climate to change?

A) What is climate change?

It refers to changes in the Earth’s climate as a whole.
It refers to changes in the average temperature, precipitation and wind patterns that a given region is experiencing. A standard climate model takes into account factors such as:

1. The variation in the radiation balance of the Earth;
2. Greenhouse gas concentrations;
3. The hydrological cycle of precipitation;
4. The melting of glaciers and the Greenland ice cap;
5. Deforestation;
6. Land use conversion;
7. The ice and snow fields;
8. Contamination of the atmosphere;
9. Absorption of heat by the oceans;
10. Changes in the ecosystems of the Earth and in biodiversity;
11. Urban growth;
12. Volcanic activities; and
13. Photosynthesis in terrestrial and ocean systems.

The warming of the atmosphere over recent decades has been uneven. It is greater over mid-latitudes (40 - 70 degrees N). Antarctica has warmed at more than twice the global rate in the last 50 years, causing several of its ice shelves to disintegrate.

What has caused the climate to change?

1. Natural factors such as the solar radiation variability and volcanic activities.
2. Human activities such as deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions.

Over time these factors affected the Earth’s climate in different ways. This is best represented by the global warming time scale.

In this paper we are concerned about today, our future, and what we should do to adapt to changes caused by the Earth’s climate changing rapidly with time.

The concentrations of several greenhouse gases have increased over time due to human activities, such as:

* burning of fossil fuels and deforestation leading to higher carbon dioxide concentrations,
* cattle farming and pipeline losses leading to higher methane concentrations,
* the use of CFCs in refrigeration and fire suppression systems.

We will see that these greenhouse gas emissions worldwide are the cause of the global warming of the planet, and the global average temperature change.

The following figure was obtained from the I.P.C.C., UNEP Grid Arendal, and shows the combined land surface, air, and sea surface temperatures.

The following figure shows well that as the CO2 concentrations increase so does the global average temperature.

There are plenty of physical observations of the change in the average temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere. The melting of glaciers, warming of the permafrost, and native observations over time have been well known and discussed. The following figure shows three curves of what might be the global average temperature between now and year 2100.

Nanaimo has seen summer temperatures in the middle of the month of May is another observation.

Night-time minimum temperatures in most regions of BC are warmer on average than they were a century ago, particularly in spring and summer. Higher minimum temperatures in spring may increase the length of the frost-free season. In summer they may prevent buildings from cooling down during the night.

Change in Maximum and Minimum Temperature,
British Columbia 1895-1995
(ºC per century)

Greenhouse gases are responsible for changes in global climate.

When we drive our cars, and light, heat, and cool our homes, we generate greenhouse gases. And we also burn the Oxygen of the air.

Drivers affect three global life-support systems by:

* creating the global warming of the planet
* changing the global climate, and
* burning the Oxygen of the atmosphere

Global warming refers to a period of increase in the average temperature of the Earth's atmosphere and oceans. It is generally used to refer to the increase currently occurring, and to imply "as a result of human activity". The more neutral term climate change is used for periods of increase or decrease, or indeed change in non-temperature variables, with no particular implication of human cause. The Earth's climate system is inherently unstable and global warming can precipitate sudden climate shifts as have been discovered to have occurred within the Earth's recent past. Because climate change will likely continue in the coming decades, denying the likelihood or downplaying the relevance of past abrupt events could be costly.

In its last report, IPCC stated that average surface temperature is projected to increase by 1.4 to 5.8 °C over the period 1990 to 2100, and the sea level is projected to rise by 0.1 to 0.9 metres over the same period.

Global warming can trigger a sudden change (a shut down, basically) in an ocean current that warms Northern latitudes. If that happened, we'd have sudden and dramatic cooling, as this ocean "conveyor belt" that warms Northern Europe stopped. This change has happened in the past in response to dramatic climate changes. There are records of as much as 10°C temperature swings in just a few years in regions affected by this ocean current. This shut down is apparently caused by pulses of fresh water coming into the N Atlantic from melting glaciers and ice caps, and from the increased precipitation associated with the previous warming. Whether this kind of abrupt change may be on the horizon is hotly debated at present. Nevertheless, phenomena such this serve to remind us that the global climate system is probably full of surprises!

Climate scientists generally agree that Earth has undergone several cycles of global warming and global cooling in the last 20,000 years. The IPCC estimates that surface temperatures have risen by around 0.6°C since the late 19th century.

Causes of global warming are:

1.The trapping of heat by greenhouse gases (greenhouse effect)
2.Variation in the output of the sun (solar variation)
3.Reflectivity of the earth's surface (see deforestation)

Some of these causes are human in origin, such as deforestation. Others are natural, such as solar variation. The greenhouse effect includes both human causes, such as the burning of fossil fuel, and natural causes, such as volcanic emissions.

Greenhouse gases are transparent to certain wavelengths of the sun's radiant energy, allowing them to penetrate deep into the atmosphere or all the way to the Earth's surface, where they are re-emitted as longer wavelength radiation, mostly in the infrared region.

Greenhouse gases and clouds prevent some of this radiation from escaping, trapping the heat near the Earth's surface where it warms the lower atmosphere. Alteration of this natural barrier of atmospheric gases can raise or lower the mean global temperature of the Earth.

Based on the position of Earth relative to the sun and characteristics of Earth's surface, the average temperature of Earth's surface should be -18°C. However, the mean temperature is closer to +15°C.

Thus without an atmosphere capable of trapping and re-radiating energy, the earth's surface would be below freezing (about - 18°C) rather than the current +15°C (59°F). Thus, Earth is warmed largely from trapping and re-radiation of heat -- infrared radiation -- by gases and particles in the atmosphere. This trapping and re-radiation of heat by gases in the atmosphere is called the "greenhouse effect."

Therefore, Earth's temperature is not simply a function of our distance from the sun, but also of gases in our atmosphere.

Back to top of page

The greatest threat to all life on Earth is a trace element.

There is evidence that concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere are related to global temperatures. Evidence is from a variety of sources and reflects relationships between gas concentrations and temperatures over a wide range of time scales. Whenever there is an increase in CO2 concentrations there is also an increase in the temperature of the air and in global precipitation.

Since monitoring began in the 50s, fossil fuels burning was found to be the major contributor of the increase in CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere and, therefore, of the increase in air temperature causing global warming of the planet. Concentrations have increased approximately 21% since 1958. The average rate of increase since 1958 has been about 0.4%/year, which is an absolute increase of about 1.5 parts per million by volume (ppmv). In year 2005, the predicted value will be 402 ppmv. CO2 persists for a long time in the atmosphere and has a residence time in the order of decades to a century.

While Canada contributes only about 2% of total global GHG emissions, it is one of the highest per capita emitters, largely the result of its size, climate (i.e., energy demands), and resource based economy. In 1990, Canadians released 21.9 t CO2 eq of GHGs per capita. Over the 11-year period from 1990 to 2001, this has increased to 23.1 t CO2 eq of GHGs per capita.

Carbon Dioxide is, by far, the largest contributor to Canada's GHG emissions. The following figure shows how little the percentage contributions of the 6 GHGs has changed between 1990 and 2001. CO2 has only changed in proportion from 77.7% of emissions in 1990 to 78.9% in 2001.

Per capita emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) in British Columbia decreased by 6.3% between 1990 and 1999. Total emissions increased by 20% over the same time period. The increase in total GHG emissions was partly due to population growth, but increased emissions from the transportation sector played the largest role. The transportation sector is the single largest source of GHG emissions in British Columbia, producing 42% of the total. If current trends continue, the increase in British Columbia’s total GHG emissions from 1990 to 2010 is expected to be 38%, one of the largest predicted increases in Canada. In 1999, total GHG emissions were 63.5 megatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, an increase of 10.8 megatonnes or 20% since 1990. Population growth accounts for part of the increase in total GHG emissions; however, the increase in emissions from the transportation sector exceed the population growth rate.Transportation is the single largest source in the province, accounting for 42% of the total emissions. GHG emissions are strongly influenced by energy prices and economic activity. A decrease in GHG emissions in the early 1980s (not shown above) was largely attributed to increasing energy costs and the economic recession.

BC greenhouse gas emissions by sector, year 2000

* agriculture and forestry 5 %
* waste 8 %
* oil and gas industry 14 %
* electricity 4 %
* transportation 39 %
* residential 7 %
* commercial 5 %
* other industry 18 %

Greenhouse Gas Emission Summary, kt CO2 equivalent, for British Columbia
  1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
TOTAL 52,900 52,700 51,500 54,200 56,000 60,000 62,700 61,400 62,000 64,600 66,100 65,000
ENERGY 42,200 41,600 40,900 43,000 45,100 49,300 51,800 50,400 51,300 53,500 54,700 53,900
a. Stationary Combustion Sources 19,000 17,700 16,400 17,900 17,900 20,000 21,500 19,100 19,500 21,500 22,300 21,500
Electricity and Heat Generation 1,170 1,040 1,270 2,340 2,180 2,700 768 1,190 1,870 1,520 2,690 3,260
Fossil Fuel Industries 3,890 3,130 1,950 1,060 1,970 2,770 4,790 3,010 3,670 5,200 3,800 3,060
Mining 253 225 271 336 202 163 449 344 324 228 316 250
Manufacturing Industries 5,930 5,390 4,910 5,250 5,390 6,210 6,810 6,360 5,960 6,500 7,120 6,950
Construction 304 268 317 340 283 198 207 126 100 86 76 70
Commercial & Institutional 2,820 3,070 3,180 3,560 3,290 3,360 3,400 3,290 2,880 2,960 3,390 3,040
Residential 4,310 4,180 4,100 4,590 4,370 4,400 4,920 4,530 4,450 4,730 4,600 4,480
Agriculture & Forestry 323 375 374 374 205 155 191 270 253 263 315 357
b. Transportation Combustion Sources 19,800 20,300 20,700 21,000 22,400 23,900 24,500 25,400 25,800 26,100 26,300 25,600
Domestic Aviation 1,910 1,970 2,010 1,780 2,030 2,430 2,700 2,950 2,970 3,340 3,340 2,580
Road Transportation 12,400 12,500 12,600 13,100 13,900 14,300 14,400 15,000 15,500 15,500 15,400 15,400
Gasoline Automobile 5,370 5,320 5,300 5,360 5,410 5,320 5,250 5,380 5,450 5,330 5,100 4,920
Light Duty Gasoline Trucks 2,770 2,980 3,220 3,490 3,780 3,990 4,140 4,560 4,860 5,140 5,180 5,300
Heavy Duty Gasoline Vehicles 355 412 481 558 640 706 708 667 827 623 596 532
Motorcycles 39.2 38.4 39.2 38.6 39.6 39.3 38.3 43.0 44.9 47.4 46.4 45.1
Diesel Automobiles 75.0 70.8 68.0 65.7 63.1 58.6 64.8 65.9 69.4 71.5 64.6 59.6
Light Duty Diesel Trucks 79 60 49 43 40 37 34 41 39 26 60 64
Heavy Duty Diesel Vehicles 2,920 2,840 2,890 3,020 3,300 3,530 3,710 3,850 3,750 3,950 4,060 4,170
Propane & Natural Gas Vehicles 782.0 769.0 582.0 491.0 622.0 571.0 407.0 403.0 482.0 313.0 331.0 325.0
Railways 1,470 1,430 1,640 1,670 1,680 1,690 1,620 1,470 1,400 1,430 1,300 1,070
Domestic Marine 1,030 1,130 1,150 1,140 1,180 1,240 1,140 1,040 1,010 1,130 1,240 1,580
Others 2,950 3,290 3,230 3,400 3,660 4,280 4,680 4,950 4,950 4,690 4,970 4,980
Off Road 2,100 2,200 2,200 2,280 2,420 2,910 3,190 3,520 3,390 3,300 3,340 3,140
Pipelines 845 1,090 1,040 1,110 1,240 1,370 1,490 1,430 1,560 1,390 1,630 1,840
c. Fugitive Sources 3,460 3,600 3,840 4,100 4,820 5,430 5,770 5,840 5,930 5,880 6,080 6,810
Coal Mining 487 482 355 470 512 569 630 657 553 490 478 522
Oil and Natural Gas 2,970 3,120 3,480 3,630 4,300 4,860 5,140 5,180 5,380 5,390 5,600 6,290
INDUSTRIAL PROCESSES 2,840 2,830 2,550 3,210 3,390 3,350 2,880 2,990 2,780 2,940 3,280 2,650
a. Mineral Production 843 781 668 947 1,020 1,060 1,070 1,120 1,080 1,050 1,200 1,190
Cement 678 620 668 761 827 853 872 911 864 826 971 979
Lime 165 161 171 186 196 205 202 211 211 221 224 208
b. Chemical Industry2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Nitric Acid Production - - - - - - - - - - - -
Adipic Acid Production - - - - - - - - - - - -
c. Metal Production 1,290 1,290 1,310 1,320 1,270 1,140 1,150 1,150 1,170 1,210 1,200 1,080
Iron and Steel Production - - - - - - - - - - - -
Aluminum Production 1,290 1,290 1,310 1,320 1,270 1,140 1,150 1,150 1,170 1,210 1,200 1,080
SF6 used in Magnesium Smelters - - - - - - - - - - - -
d. Consumption of Halocarbons1 - - - - - - - - - - - -
e. Other & Undifferentiated Production2 711 758 574 944 1,100 1,150 662 714 534 685 883 381
SOLVENT & OTHER PRODUCT USE 50 51 52 54 56 57 59 60 60 61 61 62
AGRICULTURE 2,580.0 2,490.0 2,560.0 2,610.0 2,730.0 2,770.0 2,830.0 2,840.0 2,580.0 2,680.0 2,620.0 2,790.0
a. Enteric Fermentation 909.0 926.0 949.0 942.0 1,010.0 1,050.0 1,050.0 1,020.0 979.0 976.0 960.0 1,000.0
b. Manure Management 467.0 472.0 476.0 487.0 527.0 546.0 554.0 554.0 556.0 563.0 571.0 591.0
c. Agriculture Soils 1,200.0 1,090.0 1,130.0 1,180.0 1,200.0 1,180.0 1,230.0 1,260.0 1,050.0 1,150.0 1,090.0 1,190.0
Direct Sources 962.0 861.0 878.0 921.0 926.0 910.0 956.0 971.0 804.0 889.0 833.0 904.0
Indirect Sources 241.0 229.0 253.0 258.0 273.0 270.0 275.0 292.0 246.0 257.0 259.0 288.0
LAND USE CHANGE AND FORESTRY (non-CO2 only)3 1,590.0 1,850.0 1,420.0 1,250.0 518.0 205.0 453.0 444.0 443.0 443.0 495.0 492.0
Prescribed Burns 1,400.0 1,810.0 1,360.0 1,240.0 443.0 107.0 443.0 443.0 443.0 443.0 443.0 443.0
Wildfires in the Wood Production Forest 191.0 40.8 62.4 5.0 75.2 97.5 9.7 1.0 - - 52.1 48.6
WASTE 3,640.0 3,920.0 4,050.0 4,070.0 4,170.0 4,300.0 4,620.0 4,720.0 4,810.0 4,960.0 5,040.0 5,120.0
a. Solid Waste Disposal on Land 3,390.0 3,660.0 3,780.0 3,800.0 3,890.0 4,010.0 4,330.0 4,420.0 4,500.0 4,650.0 4,730.0 4,810.0
b. Wastewater Handling 185.0 189.0 195.0 200.0 207.0 212.0 218.0 222.0 224.0 226.0 228.0 230.0
c. Waste Incineration 66.7 68.4 70.4 72.4 74.6 76.7 78.7 80.3 81.1 81.7 82.4 83.0


1 Emissions Associated with the use of HFCs, PFCs, Limestone and soda ash are reported in the national industrial processes total.

2 Ammonia Production emissions are included under undifferentiated production at the provincial level.

3 CO2 emissions and removals in the LUCF sector are not included in the national totals. Non CO2 emission from fires located in the National Parks are not included in the provincial/territorial totals but are reported in the national totals.

1990-2001 GHG Emission Estimates for Canada

Greenhouse Gas Emission Summary, kt CO2 equivalent, for Canada
  1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
TOTAL 608,000 601,000 616,000 619,000 640,000 658,000 673,000 682,000 690,000 706,000 730,000 720,000
ENERGY 473,000 464,000 482,000 482,000 498,000 513,000 528,000 539,000 549,000 568,000 593,000 584,000
a. Stationary Combustion Sources 282,000 276,000 287,000 281,000 287,000 294,000 302,000 307,000 313,000 326,000 348,000 342,000
Electricity and Heat Generation 95,300 96,700 103,000 93,800 96,000 101,000 99,700 111,000 124,000 125,000 136,000 137,000
Fossil Fuel Industries 51,500 49,500 52,100 52,600 53,400 54,700 55,300 51,000 56,500 65,400 66,900 67,300
Petroleum Refining 26,100 25,800 27,000 28,000 27,200 28,400 28,700 26,900 27,000 27,400 27,800 29,100
Fossil Fuel Production 25,400 23,700 25,000 24,600 26,200 26,300 26,600 24,100 29,600 38,100 39,100 38,200
Mining 6,190 5,030 4,790 7,370 7,490 7,860 8,740 8,970 8,020 7,450 10,400 10,200
Manufacturing Industries 54,500 52,100 51,500 49,100 52,200 52,900 54,700 54,600 52,400 52,800 53,000 48,900
Iron and Steel 6,490 6,450 6,720 6,660 7,470 7,040 7,330 7,300 7,000 7,280 7,190 5,890
Non Ferrous Metals 3,230 2,610 2,830 2,730 3,310 3,110 3,500 3,180 3,410 3,260 3,190 3,500
Chemical 7,100 7,480 7,450 7,310 8,530 8,460 8,800 8,890 8,570 8,460 7,860 6,470
Pulp and Paper 13,500 12,800 12,100 12,000 11,800 11,500 12,000 11,800 11,000 11,000 10,800 9,630
Cement 3,390 2,900 2,840 2,860 3,270 3,420 3,270 3,250 3,290 3,550 3,430 3,290
Other Manufacturing 20,800 19,800 19,600 17,500 17,800 19,400 19,700 20,100 19,200 19,300 20,500 20,100
Construction 1,880 1,630 1,750 1,390 1,400 1,180 1,270 1,260 1,120 1,170 1,080 1,010
Commercial & Institutional 25,800 26,500 27,000 28,100 27,400 29,000 29,600 30,000 27,200 28,900 33,200 32,900
Residential 44,000 42,300 43,500 45,500 46,300 44,900 49,700 46,400 41,000 43,000 45,000 41,900
Agriculture & Forestry 2,420 2,760 3,270 3,060 2,560 2,790 2,950 2,940 2,610 2,690 2,570 2,210
b. Transportation Combustion Sources 153,000 148,000 152,000 156,000 164,000 169,000 173,000 180,000 184,000 189,000 190,000 187,000
Domestic Aviation 10,700 9,550 9,720 9,410 10,100 10,900 11,900 12,400 13,000 13,600 13,700 12,100
Road Transportation 107,000 104,000 108,000 110,000 116,000 119,000 120,000 126,000 127,000 131,000 131,000 134,000
Gasoline Automobile 53,700 51,200 51,600 51,800 52,300 51,300 49,900 50,000 49,700 49,800 48,300 48,700
Light Duty Gasoline Trucks 21,800 22,300 24,000 25,600 27,400 28,500 29,900 32,000 32,800 36,600 37,600 39,400
Heavy Duty Gasoline Vehicles 3,140 3,330 3,730 4,070 4,480 4,760 4,980 5,050 5,490 4,210 4,370 4,130
Motorcycles 230 220 218 219 221 214 210 221 232 233 239 242
Diesel Automobiles 672 634 631 624 617 594 602 600 597 605 605 596
Light Duty Diesel Trucks 591 507 456 429 432 416 402 505 455 500 645 643
Heavy Duty Diesel Vehicles 24,500 23,800 24,300 25,700 28,500 30,800 32,500 35,500 35,600 37,300 38,700 38,600
Propane & Natural Gas Vehicles 2,210 2,320 2,680 2,030 1,920 2,100 1,980 1,840 1,780 1,500 1,100 1,140
Railways 7,110 6,590 6,890 6,860 7,100 6,430 6,290 6,380 6,140 6,510 6,670 6,550
Domestic Marine 5,050 5,250 5,100 4,480 4,660 4,380 4,470 4,530 5,150 4,970 5,110 5,510
Others 23,400 22,400 23,000 25,100 26,700 28,600 30,400 31,000 33,100 33,000 33,400 29,700
Off RoadTransport hors-route 16,500 14,700 13,100 14,700 15,900 16,600 17,900 18,400 20,600 20,500 22,100 19,500
Pipelines 6,900 7,640 9,890 10,400 10,800 12,000 12,500 12,500 12,500 12,600 11,300 10,300
c. Fugitive Sources 37,900 39,600 42,400 44,400 46,600 49,800 52,700 52,800 52,400 52,800 54,000 54,800
Coal Mining 1,910 2,090 1,830 1,830 1,770 1,710 1,770 1,640 1,360 1,080 949 990
Oil and Natural Gas 36,000 37,500 40,600 42,500 44,900 48,100 51,000 51,200 51,000 51,700 53,100 53,800
Oil 8,570 9,210 10,500 10,800 11,300 12,600 13,700 14,400 14,000 13,400 13,900 14,000
Natural Gas 17,200 17,800 19,000 20,000 21,200 21,900 23,300 22,500 22,800 23,300 23,900 23,900
Venting 4,500 4,830 5,320 5,760 6,210 6,670 6,860 6,930 7,170 7,380 7,520 7,820
Flaring 5,780 5,730 5,780 6,040 6,120 6,830 7,180 7,250 7,160 7,590 7,820 8,030
INDUSTRIAL PROCESSES 52,900 53,700 52,500 54,000 56,400 56,200 58,400 57,200 53,300 51,500 50,900 49,000
a.Mineral Production 8,160 6,980 6,640 6,880 7,510 7,690 8,030 8,180 8,680 9,100 8,700 8,650
Cement 5,870 4,690 4,300 4,700 5,290 5,360 5,790 5,870 6,060 6,310 6,310 6,490
Lime 1,850 1,880 1,880 1,880 1,930 1,990 1,900 1,960 1,940 2,030 2,000 1,750
Limestone and Soda Use 439 418 453 299 280 343 343 359 677 758 403 403
b.Chemical Industry 16,500 15,700 15,800 15,500 17,500 18,000 18,800 17,300 12,400 9,380 8,540 7,520
Ammonia Production 5,010 4,940 5,110 5,690 5,810 6,480 6,520 6,680 6,610 6,850 6,850 5,920
Nitric Acid Production 777 766 776 777 766 782 792 786 771 786 799 795
Adipic Acid Production 10,700 10,000 9,950 9,080 11,000 10,700 11,500 9,890 5,070 1,750 900 802
c.Metal Production 19,100 21,500 21,100 21,900 20,700 19,900 19,300 19,200 19,700 20,300 20,900 20,300
Iron and Steel Production 7,590 8,900 9,080 8,760 8,090 8,440 8,290 8,100 8,320 8,500 8,510 7,920
Aluminum Production 8,610 9,330 9,810 11,200 10,600 9,560 9,600 9,760 9,840 10,100 10,000 10,300
SF6 used in Magnesium Smelters 2,870 3,260 2,170 2,010 2,040 1,880 1,360 1,390 1,540 1,670 2,310 2,020
d.Consumption of Halocarbons - - - - - 508 908 883 936 936 936 936
e.Other & Undifferentiated Production 9,220 9,560 8,960 9,680 10,600 10,200 11,400 11,500 11,500 11,800 11,900 11,700
SOLVENT & OTHER PRODUCT USE 417 422 428 432 437 442 447 452 456 459 463 468
AGRICULTURE 59,200 58,100 58,200 58,400 60,700 61,100 61,700 61,300 60,900 61,100 60,800 60,000
a.Enteric Fermentation 16,000 16,100 16,600 16,700 17,500 18,100 18,200 18,400 18,000 17,800 17,700 18,800
b.Manure Management 8,270 8,310 8,470 8,500 8,930 9,220 9,350 9,300 9,370 9,410 9,380 10,100
c.Agriculture Soils 34,900 33,600 33,200 33,200 34,300 33,800 34,200 33,700 33,600 33,900 33,700 31,100
Direct Sources 29,500 28,200 27,500 27,400 28,100 27,500 27,500 26,700 26,700 27,000 26,700 24,100
Indirect Sources 5,440 5,370 5,640 5,790 6,180 6,360 6,710 6,950 6,900 6,850 6,990 6,990
LAND USE CHANGE AND FORESTRY (non-CO2 only)1 2,260 3,840 2,430 2,720 3,040 4,670 1,840 753 2,910 1,410 660 2,080
Prescribed Burns 1,560 2,010 1,560 1,410 536 405 443 443 443 560 581 575
Wildfires in the Wood Production Forest 698 1,820 877 1,310 2,500 4,260 1,400 310 2,470 851 79 1,510
WASTE 20,100 20,700 21,200 21,700 21,900 22,000 22,100 22,600 23,100 23,800 24,300 24,800
a.Solid Waste Disposal on Land 18,500 19,200 19,600 20,100 20,300 20,400 20,400 20,900 21,400 22,100 22,600 23,100
b. Wastewater Handling 1,220 1,240 1,250 1,270 1,280 1,300 1,310 1,330 1,340 1,350 1,360 1,370
c.Waste Incineration 317 321 326 326 330 335 338 341 343 345 348 350
LAND USE CHANGE AND FORESTRY1 -107,000 -93,200 -85,900 -69,200 -42,500 -12,600 -40,200 -49,100 -34,600 -29,500 -53,300 -36,400
a.Changes in Forest and Woody Biomass Stocks -109,000 -95,000 -87,200 -70,500 -43,900 -14,200 -42,500 -51,400 -36,700 -31,600 -55,700 -39,300
b.Forest and Grassland Conversion 1,420 1,390 1,420 1,700 2,060 2,380 2,840 2,910 3,020 3,140 3,400 3,760
c.Abandonment of Managed Lands -3,240 -3,300 -3,270 -3,240 -3,220 -3,180 -3,160 -3,180 -3,210 -3,240 -3,270 -3,300
d.CO2 Emissions and Removals from Soil 3,520 3,780 3,140 2,840 2,630 2,390 2,640 2,510 2,350 2,240 2,260 2,430


1 CO2 emissions and removals in the LUCF sector are not included in the national totals. Non CO2 emission from fires located in the National Parks are not included in the provincial/territorial totals but are reported in the national totals.

The use of fossil fuels in transportation, industry, heating and power generation throughout the world has increased steadily over the past 40 years. This has resulted in increases in greenhouse gas emissions, shown here as carbon dioxide levels (the bars on the chart).

Greenhouse gas emissions have increased at the same rate as the overall world economic production, measured by the Gross World Product (GWP). The GWP reflects the increase in worldwide industrialization and human population levels.

CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere have been measured at an altitude of about 4,000 meters on the peak of Mauna Loa mountain in Hawaii since 1958. The measurements at this location, remote from local sources of pollution, have clearly shown that atmospheric concentrations of CO2 are increasing. The mean concentration of approximately 316 parts per million by volume (ppmv) in 1958 rose to approximately 369 ppmv in 1998. The annual variation is due to CO2 uptake by growing plants. The uptake is highest in the northern hemisphere springtime.

The Olduvai Theory describes the ratio of world energy production and world population. It shows that the Life Expectancy of Industrial Civilization is less than or equal to 100 years: 1930 - 2030.

World oil production in billions of barrels per year (Gb/year)

World oil production per capita, that is the ratio of world oil prodution and world population in barrels per capita per year (b/c/year).

World energy production per capita, that is in barrels of oil equivalent per capita per year (boe/c/year).

World oil and gas production.

Global warming potentials values

Global Warming Potentials (GWPs) are intended as a quantified measure of the globally averaged relative radiative forcing impacts of a particular greenhouse gas. It is defined as the cumulative radiative forcing, both direct and indirect effects. integrated over a period of time from the emission of a unit mass of gas relative to some reference gas. Carbon dioxide (CO2) was chosen as this reference gas. Direct effects occur when the gas itself is a greenhouse gas. Indirect radiative forcing occurs when chemical transformations involving the original gas produce a gas or gases that are greenhouse gases, or when a gas influences other radiatively important processes such as the atmospheric lifetimes of other gases. The relationship between gigagrams (Gg) of a gas and Tg CO2 Eq. can be expressed as follows: GWP values allow policy makers to compare the impacts of emissions and reductions of different gases.

According to the IPCC, GWPs typically have an uncertainty of roughly ±35 percent, though some GWPs have larger uncertainty than others, especially those in which lifetimes have not yet been ascertained. In the following decision, the parties to the UNFCCC have agreed to use consistent GWPs from the IPCC Second Assessment Report (SAR), based upon a 100 year time horizon, although other time horizon values are available.

TgCO2Eq = (Gg of gas) x (GWP) x (Tg/1000Gg)

TgCO2Eq = Teragrams of Carbon Dioxide Equivalents
Gg = Gigagrams (equivalent to a thousand metric tons)
GWP = Global Warming Potential
Tg = Teragrams

 Greenhouse gas, GHG  Global Warming Potential, GWP
 CO2  1
 CH4  21
 N2O  310
 HFCs  140 - 11700
 PFCs  6500 - 9200
 SF6  23900

Comparison of 100-Year GWP Estimates from the IPCC's Second (1996) and Third (2001) Assessment Reports
Gas 1996 IPCC GWPa 2001 IPCC GWPb
    Carbon Dioxide 1 1
    Methane 21 23
    Nitrous Oxide 310 296
    HFC-23 11,700 12,000
    HFC-125 2,800 3,400
    HFC-134a 1,300 1,300
    HFC-143a 3,800 4,300
    HFC-152a 140 120
    HFC-227ea 2,900 3,500
    HFC-236fa 6,300 9,400
    Perfluoromethane (CF4) 6,500 5,700
    Perfluoroethane (C2F6) 9,200 11,900
    Sulfur Hexafluoride (SF6) 23,900 22,200

Table ES-2:  Recent Trends in U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks (Tg CO2 Eq.) 

Gas/Source 1990 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002
CO2 5002.30 5602.50 5676.30 5859.00 5731.80 5782.40
Fossil Fuel Combustion 4814.70 5412.40 5488.80 5673.60 5558.80 5611.00
Iron and Steel Production 85.4 67.4 64.4 65.7 59.1 54.4
Cement Manufacture 33.3 39.2 40 41.2 41.4 42.9
Waste Combustion 10.9 17.1 17.6 18 18.8 18.8
Ammonia Production and Urea Application 19.3 21.9 20.6 19.6 16.2 17.7
Lime Manufacture 11.2 13.9 13.5 13.3 12.8 12.3
Limestone and Dolomite Use 5.5 7.4 8.1 6 5.7 5.8
Natural Gas Flaring 5.8 6.6 6.9 5.8 5.4 5.3
Aluminum Production 6.3 5.8 5.9 5.7 4.1 4.2
Soda Ash Manufacture 4.1 4.3 4.2 4.2 4.1 4.1
and Consumption Titanium Dioxide Production 1.3 1.8 1.9 1.9 1.9 2
Phosphoric Acid Production 1.5 1.6 1.5 1.4 1.3 1.3
Carbon Dioxide Consumption 0.9 0.9 0.9 1 0.8 1.3
Ferroalloys 2 2 2 1.7 1.3 1.2
Land-Use Change and Forestry (Sink)a (957.9) (705.8) (675.8) (690.2) (689.7) (690.7)
International Bunker Fuelsb 113.9 115.1 105.3 101.4 97.9 86.8
Biomass Combustionb 216.7 217.2 222.3 226.8 204.4 207.1
CH4 650.2 620.1 613.1 614.4 605.1 598.1
Landfills 210 196.6 197.8 199.3 193.2 193
Natural Gas Systems 122 124.5 120.9 125.7 124.9 121.8
Enteric Fermentation 117.9 116.7 116.6 115.7 114.3 114.4
Coal Mining 81.9 62.8 58.9 56.2 55.6 52.2
Manure Management 31 38.8 38.6 38 38.8 39.5
Wastewater Treatment 24.1 27.7 28.2 28.4 28.1 28.7
Petroleum Systems 28.9 25 23.7 23.5 23.5 23.2
Stationary Sources 8.2 7.2 7.5 7.7 7.2 6.9
Rice Cultivation 7.1 7.9 8.3 7.5 7.6 6.8
Mobile Sources 5 4.5 4.5 4.4 4.3 4.2
Abandoned Coal Mines 3.4 4.8 4.4 4.4 4.2 4.1
Petrochemical Production 1.2 1.7 1.7 1.7 1.4 1.5
Iron and Steel Production 1.3 1.2 1.2 1.2 1.1 1
Agricultural Residue Burn 0.7 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.7
Silicon Carbide Production + + + + + +
International Bunker Fuelsb 0.2 0.2 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
N2O 393.2 432.1 428.4 425.8 417.3 415.8
Agricultural Soil Managem. 262.8 294.2 292.1 289.7 288.6 287.3
Mobile Sources 50.7 59.6 58.6 57.4 55 52.9
Manure Management 16.2 17.3 17.4 17.7 18 17.8
Nitric Acid 17.8 20.9 20.1 19.6 15.9 16.7
Human Sewage 12.8 14.7 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.6
Stationary Sources 12.6 13.8 13.9 14.4 13.9 14
Adipic Acid 15.2 6 5.5 6 4.9 5.9
N2O Product Usage 4.3 4.8 4.8 4.8 4.8 4.8
Field Burning of Agricultural Residues 0.4 0.5 0.4 0.5 0.5 0.4
Waste Combustion 0.4 0.3 0.3 0.4 0.4 0.4
International Bunker Fuelsb 1.0 1.0 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.8
HFCs PFCs and SF6 90.9 135.7 134.8 139.1 129.7 138.2
Substitution of Ozone Depleting Substances 0.3 56.5 65.8 75.1 83.4 91.7
HCFC-22 Production 35 40.2 30.4 29.8 19.8 19.8
Electrical Transmission and Distribution 29.2 17.1 16.4 15.9 15.6 14.8
Aluminum Production 18.1 9 8.9 8.9 4 5.2
Semiconductor Manufacture 2.9 7.1 7.2 6.3 4.5 4.4
Magnesium Production and Processing 5.4 5.8 6 3.2 2.5 2.4
Total 6129.10 6790.50 6852.50 7038.30 6883.90 6934.60
Net Emissions Sources and Sinks) 5171.30 6084.70 6176.80 6348.20 6194.10 6243.80

+ Does not exceed 0.05 Tg CO2 Eq.
a Sinks are only included in net emissions total,
and are based partially on projected activity data.
Parentheses indicate negative values (or sequestration).
b Emissions from International Bunker Fuels and Biomass combustion are not included in totals.
Note: Totals may not sum due to independent rounding.

What is the inventory of U.S. greenhouse gas Emissions and sinks?

The Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks is a catalogue of anthropogenic, or human-generated, greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. Carbon dioxide can also be sequestered (i.e., stored) in “sinks” that result from forestry and other land-use practices. Excluding all naturally occurring greenhouse gas emissions and sinks, the Inventory provides a detailed record of all emissions and sinks directly attributable to human activities. It does not address naturally occurring emissions or sinks.

Per capita, the US will still be by far the largest polluter on the planet. In year 2005, the US will be emitting 8.130 trillion kilogram of CO2 per year. Worldwide the total emissions will be 30.0 trillion kilograms of CO2. That is the US will be emitting 8.130 / 30.0 x 100% = 27.1 % of the total CO2 emissions. Now that the US is manufacturing cars in China we will see a larger increase of pollution due to the US technology being sold abroad.

Over its long past history trade has never evolved to require from the trading partners to become legally and morally responsible and accountable for their products from beginning to end. At the end the product becomes a waste and it needs to be properly dispose of. Now trade must be given a new impetus to be in line with the global concepts of the Global Community. You manufacture, produce, mine, farm or create a product, you become legally and morally responsible and accountable of your product from beginning to end (to the point where it actually becomes a waste; you are also responsible for the proper disposable of the waste). This product may be anything and everything from oil & gas, weapons, war products, to genetically engineered food products. All consumer products. All medicinal products! All pharmaceutical products!

The worst polluters on the planet
NationYear 2000
total fuel combustion
(trillion kg)
Year 2000
total fuel combustion
(Tg CO2 Eq)
Year 2000
metric ton CO2
per person per year
United States

The worst polluters on the planet in year 2005
NationYear 2005
metric ton CO2
per person per year
Year 2005
Year 2005
total fuel combustion
(Tg CO2 Eq)
Year 2005
total fuel combustion
(trillion kg)
United States
Total worldwide
33% of the world population contributes to 63% of CO2 pollution

Applying this new way of doing business would make the US responsible and accountable of the CO2 pollution created by the car manufacturers in China (and in all othe nations) that use US technology and 'know how'. Carbon emissions coming from a car built in China using US technology and 'know how' are to be added to the US carbon emissions. We estimate that the emissions due to these new cars will create 0.20 trillion kg of CO2 to the atmosphere.

In year 2005
China alone:
4.6276 - 0.20 = 4.4276 trillion kg of CO2 per year
United States:
8.130 + 0.20 = 8.330 trillion kg of CO2 per year

The new way of doing business within the Global Community makes the US by far the worst polluters on the planet.

This makes a lot of sense! You raise a chicken on your land. You want to make sure that by the time your export your chicken to another country it has no disease and is not going to make people sick or kill them. Same idea with exporting technology and know how such as the manufacturing of US cars in China and the pollution that goes along with it destroying the global life-support systems. It is your product and you are responsible and accountable of it. That is the new way of doing business within the Global Community.

Sample of calculations

Per capita greenhouse gas emissions due to total fossil fuel combustion in the US in year 2005:
8130.0 TgCO2Eq = Gg of gas x GWP x Tg / 1000Gg = Gg of gas x 1 x Tg / 1000Gg

Gg of gas = 8130 TgCO2Eq x 1000Gg/Tg = 8130 x 103 Gg CO2 =
= 8130 x 103 Gg CO2 x 109 gm/Gg =
= 8130 x 1012 gm CO2 x 1 kg/1000 gm =
= 8.130 x 1012 kg CO2 = 8.130 trillion kg of CO2 =
= 8.130 x 1012 kg CO2 x 1 metric ton / 1000 kg =
= 8.130 x 109 metric ton CO2

Per capita CO2 emissions in the US in year 2005:
8.130 x 109 metric ton CO2 / 300,000,000 = 27.1 metric tons CO2 per person per year


1 kg = 2.205 pounds = 10-3 metric tons
i inch cube = 0.016387 liter = 16.387cm3
1 pound = 0.45359 kg
1 short ton = 2000 pounds = 0.9072 metric tons
1 m3 = 103 liters = 35.3145 ft3
1 liter = 10-3 m3
1 ft3 = 0.02832 3 = 1728 inch3
1 US gallon = 3.785412 liters
1 barrel (bbl) = 0.159 m3 = 42 US gallons = 158.99 liters
1 meter = 3.28 ft = 39.37 inches
1 acre = 43560 ft2 = 0.4047 hectares = 4047 m2
1 tera (T) = 1012
1 gega (G) = 109
1 mega (M) = 106
1 peta (P) = 1015
1 Gg = 1 Gigagrams = 109 grams = 1 billion grams = 106 kg = 1000 metric tons
1 Tg = 1 Teragrams = 1000 Gg
1 QBTUs = one quadrillion Btus = 1015 Btus = one Quad Btus
Tg CO2Eq = Teragrams of CO2 equiuvalent
1 TJ = 1 Terajoule = 1012 joules = 1 trillion joules = 2.388 x 1011 calories =
= 23.58 metric tons of crude oil equivalent =
= 947.8 million Btus =
= 277,800 kilowatt-hours
motor gasoline
1 metric ton = 8.53 barrels = 1,356.16 liters

We could calculate the effect of the invasion of Iraq by Americans.

Iraqi oil production can be as much as 3.7 million barrels/day or 1.35 billion barrels/year. The US has taken away this oil from the Iraqi people to feed its own economy back home and the war industry (approximately 50 million Americans live off the war industry).

1.35 billion barrels x 123 kg/barrel = 0.246 trillion kg CO2 / year

Counting 4 years of invasion yield 0.984 trillion kg CO2 / year to be added to the US total of CO2 greenhouse gas emissions:

8.130 trillion CO2 emissions + 0.984 trillion = 9.114 trillion CO2 emissions in year 2005

This shows that the act of plundering Irak of its resources include its gas emissions as well. Makes a lot of sense!

Iraq contains 115 trillion barrels of proven oil reserves along with 100 billion barrels in probable reserves. That will add quite a large amount of CO2 emissions due to the America alone. We should also add the carbon emissions and greenhouse effect that will be created by the burning of the Iraqi natural gas. Iraq contains 110 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of proven natural gas reserves, along with roughly 150 Tcf in probable reserves. Iraq can possibly peak to a production of 700 billion cubic feet of natural gas per year. Now if anyone has any doubt about why Americans have invaded Iraq...

We could also calculate the amount of CO2 emissions due to gasoline alone and the heat produced during the emissions; this heat also increases the temperature of air around the world and adds to the warming of the planet along with the 'greenhouse effect'.

In year 2005 there will be 30 billion barrels of oil produced around the world.

1 barrel of oil = 42 US gallons of oil = 42 gal x 3.785412 liters/gal =
= 158.9873 liters = 0.1589873 m3
1 barrel of Arabian Light crude oil = 0.136 short ton = 0.123 metric ton =
= 123 kg = 0.158987 m3 = 158.99 liters
1 kg = 1/123 x 0.158987 m3 x 103 liter/m3 = 1.2926 liters
30 billion x 123 kg = 3.690 trillion kg of oil / year

The typical weight of gasoline at 72 degrees F is around 6.25 lb/gal.
30 billion barrels of oil x 42 gal/barrel x 6.25 lb/gal x 0.45359 kg/lb =
= 3.572 trillion kg of gasoline burned every year.
For normal heptane C7H16 with a molecular weight = 100.204

C7H16 + 11 O2     ---------     7CO2 + 8H2O

thus 1.000 kg of C7H16 requires 3.513 kg of O2 = 15.179 kg of air.

Calculation of the total weight of O2 used to burn all the crude oil in the world if it was converted to gasoline.

3.572 trillion kg x 3.513 kg of O2 = 12.5 trillion kg of O2 burned / year.

Expressing this result in liters:

12.5 trillion kg x 1.293 liter/kg = 16.16 trillion liters of O2 burned / year
16.16 trillion liters x 10-3 m3 /liter = 0.01616 trillion m3O2 burned / year
Heat given up by gasoline:
3.572 trillion kg of gasoline x 43 megajoule/kg =
153.6 trillion megajoules per year = 153.6 x 1012 x 106 joules/year
= 153.6 x 106 Tj/year = 153.6 x 106 x 947.8 million Btus
= 153.6 x 947.8 x 1012 Btus = 145,582 x 1012 Btus
= 145,582 TeraBtus = 145.582 PetaBtus = 145.582 PBtus
= 153.6 x 106 x 277,800 kilowatt-hours = 42.67 Tera kilowatt-hours

These are different ways to express the heat released to the atmosphere by the combustion of gasoline alone. Thus the heating of our atmosphere is not a fake of our imagination. Other calculations such as the greenhouse effect due to CO2 acting as a greenhouse gas keeping the infrared radiation from escaping into space can be found on the website of the Global Community.

Now there are many other ways we have discovered to choke the air we breathe. Automobile exhausts, coal-burning power plant, factory smokestacks, and other waste vents of the industrial age now pump seven billion metric tons of CO2 greenhouse gases into the Earth’s atmosphere each year from fossil fuel combustion. Combustion of fossil fuels destroys the O2 of our air. For each 100 atoms of fossil-fuel carbon burned, about 140 molecules of O2 are consumed. Other factors put our Oxygen supply at risk.

Losses of biomass through deforestation and the cutting down of tropical forests put our supply of oxygen (O2 ) gas at risk. The Earth's forests did not use to play a dominant role in maintaining O2 reserves because they consume just as much of this gas as they produce. Today forests are being destroy at an astronomical rate. No O2 is created after a forest is put down, and more CO2 is produced in the process. In the tropics, ants, termites, bacteria, and fungi eat nearly the entire photosynthetic O2 product. Only a tiny fraction of the organic matter they produce accumulates in swamps and soils or is carried down the rivers for burial on the sea floor. The O2 content of our atmosphere is slowly declining. The content of the atmosphere decreased at an average annual rate of 2 parts per million. The atmosphere contains 210,000 parts per million.

In the Earth's Atmosphere, the volume % of O2 in dry air is 20.98, in order words the abundance percent by volume is 20.98%, or again the abundance parts per million by volume is 209,800. The weight % of O2 at surface level is 23.139%. We are concerned here with the troposphere. We can calculate the volume of the troposphere. The equatorial diameter of the Earth is 12,756.3 km, the radius is therefore 6378.15 km. The troposphere is the atmospheric layer closest to the planet and contains the largest percentage of the mass of the total atmosphere. It is characterized by the density of its air and an average temperature decrease with height. The troposphere starts at the Earth's surface extending at most 16 km high. The troposphere is this part of the atmosphere that is the most dense and which contains approximately 80% of the total air mass. As you climb higher in this layer, the temperature drops from about 17 to -52 degrees Celsius. The air pressure at the top of the troposphere is only 10% of that at sea level (0.1 atmospheres). The density of air at sea level is about 1.2 kilograms per cubic meter. This density decreases at higher altitudes at approximately the same rate that pressure decreases (but not quite as fast). The total mass of the atmosphere is about 5.1 × 1018 kg, a tiny fraction of the earth's total mass.

Volume of the Earth. 4 x ¶(6378.15)3 /3 = 10.8687 x 1020 m3
Radius from the centre of the Earth to the top of the troposphere:
= 6378.15 + 16 = 6394.15 km
Volume to the top of the troposphere.
4 x ¶(6394.15)3 /3 = 10.9506 x 1020 m3
Volume of the troposphere.
[10.9506 - 10.8687 ] x1020 m3 = 8.14 x 1018 m3 Total mass of the troposphere.
Assuming the density of the air is constant throughout the volume (the density is not constant as it decreases rapidly with height; it is 1.225 kg/m3 on the Earth’s surface and 0.1654 kg/m3 at the top of the troposphere, 16 km):

[1.225 kg/m3 ] x 8.14 x 1018 m3 = 9.97 x1018 kg of air in the atmosphere
[0.1654 kg/m3 ] x 8.14 x 1018 m3 = 1.346 x1018 kg
Take an average: [9.97 - 1.346 ] x1018 kg / 2 = 4.31 x1018 kg of air.
The mass of the O2 is found knowing that the weight % of O2 at surface level is 23.139% (but there again this value can hardly be used for the entire volume as the weight % changes with height).

[4.31 x1018 kg] x 23.139/100 = 1.0 x1018 kg O2
Mass of O2 in the troposphere = 1.0 x1018 kg

Now it was obtained above here that there are 12.5 trillion kg of O2 burned / year. Assuming that the combustion of gasoline could go on forever, the number of years before we run out of O2 can be calculated.

[1.0 x1018 kg] / 12.5 x 1012 kg/year = 80,000 years

If the combustion rate of 5 billion gallons of gasoline per year was to go on forever, it would take 80,000 years before we run out of O2. Of course, this value should be corrected to include all other forms where O2 is lost or burned.

These calculations are obviously not right as they do not take into account several factors that change with height. More importantly, these calculations do not reflect the impact of the combustion CO2 on the atmosphere and impact on the climate. Certainly the losses of biomass through deforestation and the cutting down of tropical forests should be included. A rough estimate is more in the range of one thousand years at the most. Even one thousand years is wrong as life on Earth will hardly survive the kind of climate change humanity has already started with the burning of O2 and deforestation. It is wrong because the burning of fossil fuels(same thing as saying the burning of O2 to produce CO2) is creating a global warming of the planet which in turn forces the climate to change. The climate change has already started and is likely to be tough on us and all life within a few decades.

In any way the total estimated resources of oil, coal, and natural gas will run out in less than a hundred years. We will run out of fossil fuels in about 60 years down the road. The following figure expresses the abundance of Oxygen in the air over time.

A bad situation will occur when several cities close to one another have no forests West of them to photosynthesize the Oxygen people need. The air will not have the time to replenish itself quickly enough and air mixing will not be happening fast enough. People gradually become ill and die of a lack of Oxygen.

Despite its small concentration, CO2 is a very important component of Earth's atmosphere, because it traps infrared radiation and enhances the greenhouse effect of water vapor, thus keeping the Earth from cooling down. The initial carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of the young Earth was produced by volcanic activity; this was necessary for a warm and stable climate conducive to life. Volcanic activity now releases about 145-255 million tons of carbon dioxide each year. Volcanic releases are about 1% the amount which is released by human activities. Atmospheric CO2 has increased about 30 percent since the early 1800s, with an estimated increase of 17 percent since 1958 (burning fossil fuels such as coal and petroleum is the leading cause of increased man-made CO2 , deforestation the second major cause).

Global warming findings predict that increased amounts of CO2 tend to increase the greenhouse effect and thus cause a man-made global warming. The widespread opinion that there is currently a warming phase and that the increased carbon dioxide amounts are a major contributor to it has led to widespread support for international agreements such as the Kyoto Protocol which aim to regulate the release of CO2 into the atmosphere.

Various scenarios of future emissions due to human activities predict that increased atmospheric concentrations equivalent to a doubling of CO2 by 2100 is unavoidable, and a tripling or greater by that time is a distinct possibility.

The magnitude of the natural greenhouse effect can be determined by observations of the atmosphere's radiation balance and surface temperatures, and is currently estimated to warm the planetary surface by about 33°C. Both the atmospheric concentrations and current anthropogenic emissions of other greenhouse gases are orders of magnitude smaller than that of carbon dioxide. However, per unit of emission, these gases have a much larger climatic effect than carbon dioxide. Each kg of CFCs and fully fluorinated compound emitted today, for example, can have an accumulated global warming potential (GWP) over the next century many thousands times greater than that of a kg of CO2. To-date, global increases in concentrations of methane, nitrous oxide, ozone, CFCs and other minor gases have added about 70% to the climatic effects of CO2 increases alone. Continued emissions of these gases in the future will significantly advance the timing of climate forcing equivalent to a doubling of CO2, perhaps before 2050.

In addition to CO2, there are other trace greenhouse gases that are causing the greenhouse effect. These other greenhouses gases (not including CO2 and water vapour) contribute collectively about the same amount of warming as does CO2! Recently, the concentration of many of them has been increasing as rapidly or more rapidly than that of CO2 (which has been increasing at about 0.4%/yr).

Methane (CH4) is another very important greenhouse gas. While it is present in lower concentrations in the atmosphere than CO2(about 1.7 ppmv vs about 402 ppmv for CO2), it is very effective at causing warming because it absorbs radiation of a different wavelength than CO2.

Mole for mole, methane is about 25 - 30 times more effective at causing warming than is CO2. Methane currently contributes about 1/4 the

warming effect that CO2 does. About 80% of atmospheric methane has originated from biological sources.

Methane is produced by:

* rice paddies
* anaerobic bacterial fermentation where oxygen is scarce, as in swamps and landfills (smelly)
* intestinal tracts of cattle and termites
* bacterial action following the melting of permafrost
* extraction and use of fossil fuels

The largest single source is wetlands; followed by mining, processing and use of coal; extraction and use of oil and natural gas; "enteric fermentation" (mainly cattle); and rice paddies.

Increases in methane are also related to production and use of fossil fuels. About 20% of total global methane emissions are related to fossil fuel production and use. It leaks from oil and gas exploration, recovery, and distribution (about 90% of natural gas is CH4), and it is also released in coal mining. Methane is formed as plant material turns into coal, and some of it is retained in the coal and nearby rock and then released when the coal is mined.

Methane has direct warming effects on its own, and it also contributes to the production of CO2, ozone, and water vapor in the atmosphere, which contribute about as much warming as the methane itself. Methane has approximately a 12 year atmospheric residence time, which is shorter than that of CO2 (which is about 100 years) or halocarbons, which are also about 100 years.

Halocarbons (chlorofluorocarbons and HCFC's) are also trace greenhouse gases. Many are involved in more than one environmental problem (for example, tropospheric ozone causes problems in its own right and also contributes to excess warming; CFC's deplete stratospheric ozone and also contribute to warming). Climate change models must take all greenhouse gases into account. The only source of these compounds is anthropogenic, as they are not naturally occurring. They are synthetic chemicals. They are halogenated carbon compounds, such as CFC11 (CFC13 or Freon) They all contain carbon and halogens, such as Cl (chlorine), F (fluorine), or Br (bromine), and, in the case of the HCFC's, they also contain H (hydrogen). They are (or were until recently, in some cases) used in refrigeration, aerosols, for puffing foams, as solvents for cleaning in the electronics industry, and in automobile air conditioners.

An HCFC known as R-22 has been the refrigerant of choice for residential heat pump and air-conditioning systems for more than four decades. Unfortunately for the environment, releases of R-22 that result from system leaks contribute to ozone depletion. In addition, the manufacture of R-22 results in a by-product that contributes significantly to global warming.

Under the terms of the Montreal Protocol, participants agreed to meet certain obligations by specific dates that will affect the residential heat pump and air-conditioning industry:

January 1, 2004:
In accordance with the terms of the Montreal Protocol, the amount of all HCFCs that can be produced nationwide must be reduced by 35% by 2004. In order to achieve this goal, participants such as the U.S. are ceasing production of HCFC-141b, the most ozone-damagingof this class of chemicals, on January 1, 2003. This production ban will greatly reduce nationwide use of HCFCs as a group, making it likely that the 2004 deadline will have a minimal effect on R-22 supplies.

January 1, 2010:
After 2010, chemical manufacturers may still produce R-22 to service existing equipment, but not for use in new equipment. As a result, heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) system manufacturers will only be able to use pre-existing supplies of R-22 to produce new air conditioners and heat pumps. These existing supplies would include R-22 recovered from existing equipment and recycled.

January 1, 2020:
Use of existing refrigerant, including refrigerant that has been recovered and recycled, will be allowed beyond 2020 to service existing systems, but chemical manufacturers will no longer be able to produce R-22 to service existing air conditioners and heat pumps.

Of course it is impossible for any government to enforce the above schedule of events. A lot more R-22 will be produced by people who have no sense of reality and no understanding of the problem they are causing. If they did understand and keep making R-22, they are very bad people and should be taken to the Earth Court of Justice. Unfortunately for them, their crime is against the global life-support systems and, therefore, is considered to be the worst crime on the Scale of Human and Earth Rights. They will face the worst punishment.

In addition to their effects on stratospheric ozone, these are important greenhouse gases. They are tremendously effective at producing warming because, even though they are present in low concentrations in the atmosphere, they absorb heat radiation of different wavelength than CO2. Mole for mole, Halocarbons are 12,000 - 15,000 times more effective at causing global warming than is CO2. Their concentrations in the atmosphere have been monitored since the late 1970's and they increased steadily and rapidly over most of that time at rates of 3-5% per year. Both production and emissions fell precipitously from 1989 on, as result of international treaties intended to halt destruction of stratospheric ozone, and now their concentrations in the atmosphere are actually beginning to decline as well. Because these compounds are very long-lived (atmospheric residence times on the order of 75 - 120 years), the decline in atmospheric concentrations lagged greatly behind the decline in emissions.

Replacements for CFC's (largely hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFC's) and hydrofluorocarbons – (HFC's)) are also greenhouse gases, but are expected to make a relatively small contribution to the global warming potential contributed by other greenhouse gases. Current models predict that warming due to all halocarbons (CHC's , halons, and their replacements) will be at most 4-10% of the total expected greenhouse warming by 2100.

Back to top of page

Global warming tic-O-tack!

Despite its small concentration, CO2 is a very important component of Earth's atmosphere, because it traps infrared radiation and enhances the greenhouse effect of water vapor, thus keeping the Earth from cooling down. The initial carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of the young Earth was produced by volcanic activity; this was necessary for a warm and stable climate conducive to life. Volcanic activity now releases about 145-255 million tons of carbon dioxide each year. Volcanic releases are about 1% the amount which is released by human activities. Atmospheric CO2 has increased about 30 percent since the early 1800s, with an estimated increase of 17 percent since 1958 (burning fossil fuels such as coal and petroleum is the leading cause of increased man-made CO2 , deforestation the second major cause).

Global warming findings predict that increased amounts of CO2 tend to increase the greenhouse effect and thus cause a man-made global warming. The widespread opinion that there is currently a warming phase and that the increased carbon dioxide amounts are a major contributor to it has led to widespread support for international agreements such as the Kyoto Protocol which aim to regulate the release of CO2 into the atmosphere.

Various scenarios of future emissions due to human activities predict that increased atmospheric concentrations equivalent to a doubling of CO2 by 2100 is unavoidable, and a tripling or greater by that time is a distinct possibility.

The magnitude of the natural greenhouse effect can be determined by observations of the atmosphere's radiation balance and surface temperatures. Both the atmospheric concentrations and current anthropogenic emissions of other greenhouse gases are orders of magnitude smaller than that of carbon dioxide. However, per unit of emission, these gases have a much larger climatic effect than carbon dioxide. Each kg of CFCs and fully fluorinated compound emitted today, for example, can have an accumulated global warming potential (GWP) over the next century many thousands times greater than that of a kg of CO2. Global increases in concentrations of methane, nitrous oxide, ozone, CFCs and other minor gases have added about 70% to the climatic effects of CO2 increases alone. Continued emissions of these gases in the future will significantly advance the timing of climate forcing equivalent to a doubling of CO2, perhaps before 2050.

Oceans add considerable inertia to the climate system, slowing it down, and hence increase the time it takes the system to respond to change. Responsive change in ocean circulation patterns, such as the thermohaline circulation system that controls the behaviour of the Atlantic Gulf Stream, can also significantly modify the primary changes in atmospheric circulation.

Greenland ice cores and ocean sediments confirm that such modifications can have dramatic effects on regional climates, effects that may occur within the space of decades, and can last for centuries. Hence oceans add an additional major element of irreversibility, on human time scales, to global climate change. The Earth's oceans dissolve a major amount of carbon dioxide. The resulting carbonate anions bind to cations present in sea water such as Ca2+ and Mg2+ to form deposits of limestone and dolomite. Most carbon dioxide in the atmosphere eventually undergoes this fate.

Oceans represent a major sink for carbon. Oceans take CO2 up through chemical and biological means. Chemically, ocean waters absorb CO2 by the formation of carbonic acid:

CO2 + H2O     =========    H2CO3

The double-headed arrow on this equation indicates that this is an equilibrium reaction. Hence, as CO2 in the atmosphere increases, more is taken up by the oceans, "pushing" the reaction towards formation of H2CO3 (carbonic acid). Cold water holds more CO2 in solution than warm water. This cold, CO2-rich water is then pumped down by vertical mixing to lower depths.

Oceans also take up CO2 biologically, largely through photosynthesis of plankton and other algae. This "fixed" carbon is eventually removed from the water by biochemical processes (for example, the algae are eaten by shell fish, which die and sink to the ocean floor, eventually forming carbonates and entering the long term geochemical cycle.

Oceans hold 50-60 time more carbon in various forms than does the atmosphere, which holds it mostly as CO2. The ratio is about 50 molecules of CO2 in the ocean for every one in the atmosphere. Some parts of the ocean are major sinks; such as the North Atlantic during the spring plankton bloom (population explosion). On the other hand, some areas of the oceans are net sources, such as the equatorial Pacific. On balance, however, oceans are net sinks for carbon.

Temperature increases may have caused CO2 concentrations to increase. This is because of effects of temperature increases on biological processes and changes in ocean circulation (or vice versa).

The oceans are currently taking up more carbon than they are releasing, but we don't know how rapidly they can take it up in response to increases in atmospheric CO2 concentration. There is much uncertainty in estimates of what fraction of extra CO2 emissions the oceans are really taking up.

Oceans were estimated to be taking up about half of the excess CO2 put into the atmosphere by human activities.

That is:

14.4 trillion kg of CO2/year input to the atmosphere from ALC + fossil fuel burning, and

8.6 trillion kg of CO2/year as net ocean net uptake
(ALC = anthropogenic land conversion)

In year 2005, fossil fuel burning and land conversion will contribute to CO2 emissions and the oceans were estimated to be taking up about 38% of the human-influenced flux into the atmosphere.

Estimates put the net input to the atmosphere at 30 trillion kg of CO2 (from ALC and fossil fuel burning). Of that, about half (14.4 trillion kg) are estimated to stay in the atmosphere, with a net influx into the oceans of 8.6 trillion kg. (Net influx means ocean uptake in excess of its giving off of CO2 back to the atmosphere).

Notice anything wrong here? 30 trillion kg into the atmosphere and only a total of 23 trillion kg accounted for! The remaining 7 trillion kg represents the "missing carbon mystery!" If 40-50% of the carbon emissions stay in the atmosphere and 15-30 % go into the oceans, what happens to the remaining 20 - 35%?

There are several ways the oceans can take CO2. Mixing and the biological pump are two of them. For now let us focus on how CO2 is taken by the terrestrial system. through the biological carbon cycle.

Historically, CO2 taken up in the biological carbon cycle was approximately equal to the CO2 released. The global production of carbon fixed by plants was then equal to the global ecosystem respiration that comprised respiration by plants plus respiration by all other living things on land. On a global basis, there was no net flux of carbon to or from the atmosphere, and there was not net change in carbon storage in terrestrial ecosystems (globally). Unfortunately, human activities have recently been converting forested landscapes to grazed, cultivated, or urban landscapes.

The biological carbon cycle on Earth was then balanced.

No net gain or loss of CO2, and the biomass of the Earth was constant.

However, during the carboniferous era, a net increase in biomass (carbon storage). Much of the biomass became our fossil fuels.

Today there is a net loss of biomass through:

a) deforestation and land use conversion
b) worldwide burning of fossil fuels

Photosynthesis, is the process by which green plants and certain other organisms use the energy of light to convert carbon dioxide and water into the simple sugar glucose. In so doing, photosynthesis provides the basic energy source for virtually all organisms. An extremely important byproduct of photosynthesis is Oxygen, on which most organisms depend.

Photosynthesis occurs in green plants, seaweeds, algae, and certain bacteria. These organisms are veritable sugar factories, producing millions of new glucose molecules per second. Plants use much of this glucose, a carbohydrate, as an energy source to build leaves, flowers, fruits, and seeds. They also convert glucose to cellulose, the structural material used in their cell walls. Most plants produce more glucose than they use, however, and they store it in the form of starch and other carbohydrates in roots, stems, and leaves. The plants can then draw on these reserves for extra energy or building materials.

Virtually all life on earth, directly or indirectly, depends on photosynthesis as a source of food, energy, and Oxygen, making it one of the most important biochemical processes known. It is a part of the global life-support systems and is a right that needs protecting at all costs. The right and responsibility that human beings have in protecting photosynthesis has the highest importance on the Scale of Human and Earth Rights.

Forests contribute to absorbing carbon dioxide and act as CO2 sinks. Conversely, deforestation largely in tropical countries is a source of CO2 to the atmosphere. CO2 releases from deforestation are about 1/6 of sources from fossil fuel combustion. Not all the CO2 is absorbed by the atmosphere; part of the CO2 is absorbed by oceans, and part by forests through the process of photosynthesis.

Water vapour and clouds are some the most important atmospheric constituents of climatic significance that cause about two-thirds of the Earth's natural greenhouse effect. Changes in the concentrations of water vapour has major influences on the radiative fluxes of both incoming sunlight and outgoing heat radiation. Such changes are largely controlled by the response of the hydrological cycle to other forces upon the thermal properties of the climate system, and hence are not primary causes for change. Indeed, the most significant atmospheric components that can be changed by both natural and human influences external to the climate system are other greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide and methane, and aerosols.

Many studies have been made on the change of the Earth’s climate. The above discussion has been useful in understanding the fundamentals of the models of climate change. Now is time to look at results obtained so far.

Back to top of page

Results from studies on climate change.

There are important findings obtained from research done so far:

* a doubling of CO2 will affect the average surface temperatures to be between 2.0 and 5.5°C;

* the rate of average global warming due to increasing greenhouse concentrations is in the range of 0.5 to 1.0°C per decade;

* both the oceans and land surfaces will warm up, land areas warm more than oceans; greatest warming being in high northern latitudes in winter;

* in winter, higher latitudes will see more precipitation and soil moisture;

* in response to melting land ice and increasing ocean temperatures, global sea levels are expected to rise about 3 to 10 cm/decade;

* terrestrial and ocean ecosystems will experience increasing stress; many species will not be able to adapt fast enough to change done by global warming; changes in ocean temperatures and circulation patterns will alter fish habitats, causing collapse of some species and migration of others;

* land use conversion (deforestation and others) and increased forest fires in stressed ecosystems and the gradual decay of Arctic permafrost will cause large increases in greenhouse gas emissions from natural ecosystems; these factors will accelerate further the global warming;

* changes in global precipitation will cause droughts and increased aridity in some agricultural regions, wetter conditions and increased flooding in others; distribution of global food supply will be affected and developing nations will find more difficult to produce or obtain food;

* as ocean surfaces warm up, frequency and severity of extreme regional weather systems will be more frequent and cause intense rainfall, droughts and heat spells, severe storms, including hurricanes, especially in mid-latitude regions; and

* climate sensitive diseases will follow the warming.

Local and global impacts.

A consequence of a warmer climate is a rise in global mean sea-level. Several countries will be more susceptible to inundations. We will see hundreds of millions of environmental refugees searching for land.The mid-latitude wheat belts of the planet will dry; forest fires will wipe out most of the forests; world food markets will have to adjust to help a starving population. Tourism and wildlife in the tropics will be seriously affected by a temperature that is just too hot.Tropical diseases will cause epidemics. Sub-Arctic communities will disappear because of the melting of the permafrost.

Major changes in evaporation and precipitation patterns will not adjust quickly enough to supply the population with water it needs to survive; agriculture will become a dying industry either because of too much water or not enough of it. In addition to an increase in ambient temperatures, the other possible consequences of global warming include a speeding of the global water cycle. It is predicted that faster evaporation caused by higher temperatures would lead to drying of soils, exacerbating drought in some areas while increasing precipitation and flooding in others.

Warmer temperatures could melt polar ice caps, leading to what some predict as a rise in sea levels of between 20 to 100 centimeters this century. Sea levels could rise by an average of 5 cm per decade. This, in turn, would endanger coastal populations and island nations and cause the degradation of coastal ecosystems. Low-lying and coastal areas face the risks associated with rising sea levels. Increasing temperatures will cause oceans to expand and will melt glaciers and ice cover over land - increasing the volume of water in the world’s oceans.

If these predictions prove true, human health will be affected directly as warmer temperatures increase the chances of heat waves, exacerbate air quality problems and lead to an increase in both allergic disorders and warm weather diseases. Agriculture, forests, natural ecosystems and vegetation patterns would also be adversely affected by both increases in temperatures and changes in the water cycle.

Human activities have recently been converting forested landscapes to grazed, cultivated, or urban landscapes. The impacts of such activities have been to:

(1) Remove a large sink for atmospheric carbon (because forests take up and store larger amounts of carbon than do other terrestrial ecosystems). Tropical and temperate rainforests have been subjected to heavy logging during the 20th century, and the area covered by rainforest around the world is shrinking rapidly. Estimates range from 1 1/2 acres to 2 acres of rainforest disappear each second. Rainforests used to cover 14% of the Earth's surface. This percentage is now down to 6% and it is estimated that the remaining rainforests could disappear within 40 years at this present rate of logging. Further estimates suggest that large numbers of species are being driven extinct, possibly 50,000 species a year due to the removal of their habitat. The largest rainforests can be found today in the Amazon basin (the Amazon Rainforest), the inner parts of Democratic Republic of Congo and on Borneo.

(2) Add a large source for atmospheric carbon (when the trees decay or are burned, releasing carbon). About 80% of the wood removed during tropical deforestation is destroyed (burned or decayed) or used as fuel wood, so the carbon stored in it is released rapidly as CO2, as opposed to the delayed slow release that occurs when used for lumber.

A mature forest stores a large amount of carbon. When cut, it is often replaced by an ecosystem that stores less carbon, resulting from this land conversion. It was estimated that the net input of CO2 to the atmosphere from ALC was about 1/4 as much as from fossil fuel burning (1.3 billion metric tons of carbon per year compared to 5 billion metric tons of carbon per year from fossil fuel combustion). Most of this increased flux now comes from tropical Africa and Asia, but until about 1920, North America actually provided the largest ALC flux to the atmosphere.

There is much uncertainty concerning the magnitude of fluxes associated with tropical deforestation, and whether it does in fact represent a net flux. The current range of estimates for fluxes from tropical deforestation is from 1.1 - 3.6 billion metric tons of C/year, which would be between 20-65% as much as from fossil fuel emissions. Quite a huge spread in estimates! Most estimates agree that between 1/5 -1/3 of the increased flux of CO2 to the atmosphere results from deforestation.

Deforestation is the removal of trees, often as a result of human activities. It is often cited as one of the major causes of the enhanced greenhouse effect. Trees remove carbon (in the form of carbon dioxide) from the atmosphere during the process of photosynthesis. Both the rotting and burning of wood releases this stored carbon carbon dioxide back in to the atmosphere.

A rainforest is a biome, a forested area where the annual rainfall is high. Some mention 1000 mm of rain each year as a limit of what is a rainforest, but that definition is far from complete. Rainforests are primarily found in tropical climates, although there are a few examples of rainforests in temperate regions as well. As well as prodigious rainfall, many rainforests are characterized by a high number of resident species, and a great biodiversity. It is also estimated that rainforests provide up to 40% of the oxygen currently found in the atmosphere.

Forests store large amounts of CO2, buffering the CO2 in the atmosphere. The carbon retained in the Amazon basin is equivalent to at least 20% of the entire atmospheric CO2. Destruction of the forests would release about four fifths of the CO2 to the atmosphere. Half of the CO2 would dissolve in the oceans but the other half would be added to the 16% increase already observed this century, accelerating world temperature increases. Another impact of tropical rainforest destruction would be to reduce the natural production of nitrous oxide (NO). Tropical forests and their soils produce up to one half of the world's NO which helps to destroy stratospheric ozone. Any increase in stratospheric ozone would warm the stratosphere but lower global surface temperatures.

Dense tropical forests also have a great effect on the hydrological cycle through evapotranspiration and the reduction of surface runoff. With dense foliage, about a third of the rain falling on the forest never reached the ground, being re-evaporated off the leaves.

Locally, deforestation results in:

a decrease in:
# evapotranspiration, # atmospheric humidity, # local rainfall, # effective soil depth, # water table height, # surface roughness (and so atmospheric turbulence and heat transfer)

an increase in:
#seasonality of rainfall, # soil erosion, # soil temperatures, # surface albedo

Global warming and agriculture

The weather conditions - temperature, radiation and water - determine the carrying capacity of the biosphere to produce enough food for the human population and domesticated animals. Any short-term fluctuations of the climate can have dramatic effects on the agricultural productivity. Thus, the climate has a direct incidence on food supply.

Demographic studies indicate that world population growth is expected to slow markedly in the next century, increasing 10 billion people by 2050. Hence, in the coming years, unless population size is stabilized, agriculture will have to face an increasing challenge in feeding the growing population of the world. World population will also have to face the perspective of global climate changes.

Assessment of the impacts of global climatic changes on agriculture might help to properly anticipate and adapt farming to limit potential food shortage. Agricultural shifts are likely.

Several types of changing parameters can have an impact on agriculture:

* a direct effect is the composition of the earth atmosphere: CO2 and Ozone.

* some indirect effects are climate parameters resulting from climate change: temperature, insolation, rainfall, humidity

* other indirect effects are the side effects due to the climatic changes:
increase of the sea level, changes in ocean currents, tornadoes, hurricanes, thunderstorms...

The assessment of these effects is different whether one considers annuals crops (cereals, leguminous) or herbaceous perennial cultures (fodder, meadows) or other cultures such as vine or fruit trees... The effects are also different depending on the latitude: in temperate countries, effects are found less negative or even rather beneficial, while in tropical and desertic countries they tend to be adverse. Finally, effects depend on altitude, mid and high altitude places rather benefiting from a warmer temperature. Climate change induced by increasing greenhouse gases is likely to affect crops differently from region to region.

Climate change is likely to increase agricultural land surface near the poles by reduction of frozen lands. Sea levels are expected to get up to one meter higher by 2100, though this projection is disputed. Rise in sea level should result in agricultural land loss in particular in South East Asia. Erosion, submergence of shorelines, salinity of water table, could mainly affect agriculture through inundation of low-lying lands.

Agriculture could be affected by any decrease in stratospheric ozone, which could increase biologically dangerous ultraviolet radiation. In the long run, the climatic change could affect agriculture in several ways:

* productivity, in terms of quantity and quality;

* agricultural practices, through changes of water use (irrigation), agricultural inputs (herbicides, pesticides, fertilizers);

* environmental level, in particular in relation of frequency and intensity of soil drainage (leading to nitrogen leaching), soil erosion, reduction of crop diversity; and

* rural space, through the loss of previously cultivated lands, land speculation, land renunciation, hydraulic amenities.

They are large uncertainties to uncover, particularly the lack of information on the local scale, the uncertainties on magnitude of climate change, the effects of technological changes on productivity, global food demands, and the numerous possibilities of adaptation.

Most agronomists believe that agricultural production will be mostly affected by the severity and pace of climate change, not so much by gradual trends in climate. If change is gradual, there will be enough time for biota adjustment. Rapid climate change, however, could harm agriculture in many countries, especially those that are already suffering from rather poor soil and climate conditions. The adoption of efficient new techniques (varieties, planting date, irrigation...) is far from obvious. Some believe developed nations are too well-adapted to nowadays climate. As for developing nations, there may be social or technical constraints that could prevent them from achieving sustainable production.

However, the more favourable effects on yield depend to a large extent on realization of the potentially benefiting effects of CO2 on crop growth and increase of efficiency in water use. Decrease in potential yields is likely to be caused by shortening of the growing period, decrease in water availability and poor vernalization.

Water is a major limiting factor in the growth and production of crops worldwide. In spite of better water efficiency use, higher summer temperature and lower summer rainfall is likely to have adverse impact. The intensification of the hydrological global cycle will have consequences such as more frequent drought in northern sub-tropical areas or desertification extension in arid areas. Soil degradation is more likely to occur, and soil fertility would probably be modified.

A soil constant is its carbon/nitrogen ratio. A doubling of carbon is likely to imply a higher storage of nitrogen in soils, thus providing higher fertilizing elements for plants, hence better yields. The average needs for nitrogen could decrease, and give the opportunity of changing the fertilisation strategies. The increase in precipitations would probably result in greater risks of erosion, according to the intensity of the rain. The possible evolution of the soil organic matter is a very debated point though: while the increase in the temperature would induce a greater mineralisation (hence lessen the soil organic matter content), the atmospheric CO2 concentration would tend to increase it.

Global climate change potential impact on pests, diseases and weeds

A very important point to consider is that weeds would undergo the same acceleration of cycle than cultivated crops, and would also benefit of carbonaceous fertilization. Most weeds being C3 plants, they are likely to compete even more than now against crops such as corn. However some results make it possible to think that weedkillers could gain in effectiveness with the temperature increase.

The increase in rainfall is likely to lead to an increase of atmospheric humidity and maybe to the duration of moisturing. Combined with higher temperatures, these could favor the development of fungal diseases.

Climate change has the potential to have serious effects on our health.

Regional differences in warming patterns, precipitation and extreme weather events mean that the health effects of climate change will vary according to where we live. Young children, the elderly, those in poor health, or those living in poor quality housing will be most vulnerable to stresses related to weather extremes.

More intense heat waves may cause an increase in heat-related illnesses (heat stroke and dehydration); respiratory and cardiovascular illness, physical and mental stress; and the spread of infections.

During the next 50 years, heat-related deaths will increase, particularly in large cities in southern Canada, unless adequate measures are taken to protect vulnerable individuals and to reduce the urban heat island effect. This effect occurs when natural vegetation is replaced by surfaces that absorb heat, such as building roofs and walls, and pavements. For example, the City of Toronto has already begun to protect vulnerable people during heat waves, and to take measures to reduce heat buildups within the city.

Air Quality

Warmer temperatures and prolonged heat waves will bring an increase in air pollution, particularly in urban and industrialized areas. Ground-level ozone, a primary ingredient of smog, results when sunlight and heat interact with pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds. These pollutants are released by the burning of fossil fuels. As temperatures go up, we will have more smoggy days.

Asthma and other respiratory problems are already on the rise; warmer temperatures with increased humidity and air pollution will cause more problems. Children are especially vulnerable to air pollution because of their smaller size, the fact that their lungs are still developing, and because they spend more time being active outdoors than adults. Hotter, more humid weather could pose special health risks for children who already suffer from asthma. Changes in wind and weather patterns can also change the amount of fungi and moulds in the air, affecting people with allergies.

Infectious diseases

Warmer temperatures could increase the range of some parasites and disease transmitted by birds, insects and ticks, bringing new infectious diseases to communities they would not otherwise reach. The recent extremely rapid and unexpected spread of West Nile virus across the US and Canada can in part be attributed to a warmer climate. Climate change might also favour the northward spread of mosquitoes capable of transmitting dengue fever, yellow fever, and malaria.

A warmer climate may bring about changes to habitats that will allow rodents to move into new areas. Some rodents can transmit illnesses, such as hantavirus, to humans through their feces or urine.

Extreme climate events will affect the quality and quantity of our water. Lower flows of water in lakes and rivers caused by heat waves and droughts can lead to poor water quality and to an increase in waterborne diseases. Surface water is also often contaminated during heavy storms and floods by storm sewer overflows, and agricultural & urban runoffs.

Hot weather can cause microorganisms to grow and cause outbreaks at recreational beaches and in shellfish. It also increases the chances of food poisoning outbreaks.

Canada's Northern Peoples

The livelihood of many Aboriginal and northern residents comes from the land, water and natural resources, and will be compromised as ecosystems and wildlife are affected by climate change over time. In the north, melting permafrost could put buildings, pipelines, roads and other infrastructure at risk. Winter roads to remote Aboriginal communities may no longer be available or available only for shorter periods, thereby increasing the cost of supplying these communities.

Canada's three Territories are already observing impacts from climate change on their communities. There have been changes in sea ice cover affecting their hunting and fishing seasons, changes in temperature causing dehydration and heat stress, and changes in wildlife causing food-borne contamination and altering their traditional ways of life.

Back to top of page

Storing excess carbon in terrestrial and ocean systems.

We can best store excess carbon by:

* land use changes from agriculture to forest ecosystems; this change could remove CO2 from the atmosphere at rates of 2000 to 20,000 kg of CO2 per hectare per year for periods of 50 years;

* soil conservation practices can help build up carbon reservoirs in forest and agricultural soils; and

* extracting CO2 from stacks and dispose of it in liquid form in underground reservoirs or deep oceans.

British Columbia’s battlefield for life.

Climate models suggest that the climate in British Columbia will continue to change during the 21st century. This will have ongoing impacts on ecosystems and communities. While the impacts of climate change will vary, it is clear that they will be significant for all provinces and territories. Whether it is impacts on agriculture, rainfall, water quality and quantity, or wildlife, Canadians can expect to feel the effects of climate change wherever they live. Some of these effects may even be present already.

Plants and animals

Warmer temperatures and changes in moisture levels affect plant and animal life. If these changes occur too quickly, many species may not have time to adjust.


In summer, warmer temperatures may promote increased evaporation, and loss of soil moisture. Grasslands may replace forest in areas that become too dry for trees. Higher temperatures and drier summer conditions may increase the frequency of forest fires. Forest disease and pest infestations may also increase as warmer summers place additional stress on trees, and warmer winters increase pest survival. Our forests are at risk from pests and drought. A warmer climate allows pests and diseases to migrate north.

These same forests become drier and more likely to catch fire. The mountain pine beetle — an important pest — may expand its range.


The average summer temperature of the Fraser River has increased by 1.1°C over the past 50 years. A warmer climate may pose problems for salmon as they migrate upriver to spawn. Salmon are sensitive to temperature; warmer water can deplete their energy reserves, and make them more vulnerable to stress, infection, and disease. Salmon migration patterns and success in spawning are likely to change.

If summer river temperatures continue to rise, fewer fish may make it successfully upriver to their spawning grounds, and some salmon populations may be at risk.

The air we breathe

A number of B.C. cities, including Nelson, Penticton, Prince George, Vancouver, and Williams Lake, lie within valleys that trap polluted air. Airborne pollutants worsen asthma, impair lung function and can even cause death. In the Lower Mainland, if summers become warmer, bad air days and their related health costs will likely increase. In the interior, if winters become warmer, and residents use less wood fuel for heating, air quality may improve.


Sea levels rose along most of the BC coast during the 20th century. Higher sea levels increase the risk of flooding in low-lying coastal areas. They may inundate wetlands, beaches, dunes, and other sensitive coastal ecosystems, and threaten Aboriginal heritage sites. They may also create drainage problems and overwhelm municipal sewage systems. Low lying agricultural lands may become too saline for cultivation. Waterfront homes, wharves, roads and port facilities may be at risk during severe storms. Sea levels are expected to rise up to 30 cm on the north coast of British Columbia and up to 50 cm on the north Yukon coast by 2050, mainly due to warmer ocean temperatures. This could cause increased sedimentation, coastal flooding and permanent inundation of some natural ecosystems, and could place low-lying homes, docks and port facilities at risk. Sea level may rise by up to 88 centimetres along parts of the BC coast.


Impacts on Canada's agriculture will be seen in the response of crops, livestock, soils, weeds and insects to the warmer conditions. An estimated three- to five-week extension of the frost-free season will be of some benefit to commercial agriculture – however, it is also expected that dry soil conditions will intensify and may result in reduced yields.


The quality and quantity of drinking water might decrease as water sources are threatened by drought.

Harsh weather

Harsh weather conditions – such as droughts, winter storms, floods, heat waves and tornadoes – will be more frequent and more severe across the country.


Our fisheries are also at risk, as climate change affects both the populations and ranges of species sensitive to changes in water temperature, and have impacts on habitat. The Pacific marine fishery is likely to see lower sustainable salmon harvests in the south, but higher and more consistent harvests in the north. The Atlantic marine fishery is likely to suffer negative impacts resulting from complex and unpredictable changes in the water currents that shape the offshore habitats.

Lakes, rivers and glaciers

Water levels in Canada's southern lakes are expected to decline, potentially affecting the quality of our drinking water, our use of the lakes for transportation, recreation and fishing, and our ability to generate hydroelectric power. In addition, storm sewers and sanitary systems in some areas may not may in good working conditions and allow access to pollution.

Glaciers in southern British Columbia retreated during the 20th century. Lakes and rivers now become free of ice earlier in the spring, and the Fraser River is discharging more water earlier in the year. These trends point to lower summer flows in some streams and rivers, and less water for agriculture, hydroelectric power generation, industry and communities.

This may pose significant problems in drier regions such as the Okanagan, where water is already in short supply. be able to deal with increased precipitation, rising sea levels or storms. Some interior rivers may dry up during the summer and early fall.The Fraser River discharges more of its total annual flow earlier in the year.

Other changes that may result from climate change include:

* In winter, increased winter precipitation, permafrost degradation and glacier retreat due to warmer temperatures may lead to landslides in unstable mountainous regions, and put fish and wildlife habitat, roads and other man-made structures at risk. Increased precipitation will put greater stress on water and sewage systems, while glacier reduction could affect the flow of rivers and streams that depend on glacier water, with potential negative impacts on tourism, hydroelectric generation, fish habitat and lifestyles.

* Spring flood damage could be more severe both on the coast and throughout the interior of British Columbia and the Yukon, and existing flood protection works may no longer be adequate.

* Summer droughts along the south coast and southern interior will mean decreased stream flow in those areas, putting fish survival at risk, and reducing water supplies in the dry summer season when irrigation and domestic water use is greatest.

* Many small glaciers in southern BC may disappear.

* Average annual precipitation may increase by 10 to 20 percent.

* Average annual temperature in BC may increase by 1ºC to 4ºC.

* More heat energy is available for plant and insect growth.

* Water in the Fraser River is warmer in summer.

In British Columbia, average annual temperatures warmed during the 20th century by 0.6°C on the coast, 1.1°C in the interior, and 1.7°C in the north. Average spring and nighttime temperatures are now warmer than they were 100 years ago. Precipitation increased by 2 to 4 percent per decade in southern British Columbia. Climate models project that the greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere will continue to drive climate change for centuries to come. By the end of the 21st century, average temperatures in British Columbia will likely be 1°C to 4°C warmer, depending on the region, than they are now.

Preventive actions to climate change.

There are two fundamental types of response to the risks of climate change:

1. reducing the rate and magnitudes of change through mitigating the causes, and

2. reducing the harmful consequences through anticipatory adaptation.

Mitigating the causes of global warming implies limiting the rates and magnitudes of increase in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, either by reducing emissions or by increasing sinks for atmospheric CO2. We know that stabilizing emissions of greenhouse gases will not stabilize concentrations. While slowing the rate of increase in atmospheric concentrations, such actions will still likely lead to a doubled CO2-type environment within this century. Considering the residence time of various greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, a reduction of 10% in methane emissions would be required to stabilize methane concentrations, reductions in excess of 50% would be required to stabilize CO2 and N2O emissions, and virtual elimination of emissions would be needed to stabilize concentrations of very long-lived gases such as fully fluorinated compounds.

Scientists will also need to become more involved in assessing the viability of response options aimed at storing excess carbon in terrestrial or ocean systems. Land use changes from agricultural to forest ecosystems can help to remove carbon from the atmosphere at rates of 2 to 20 tonnes of carbon per hectare per year for periods of 50 years or more, until a new ecosystem equilibrium is reached. Similarly, soil conservation practices can help build up carbon reservoirs in forest and agricultural soils.

Proposals to extract CO2 from smoke stacks and dispose of it in liquid form in underground reservoirs or deep oceans also need careful evaluation in terms of long-term feedbacks, effectiveness and environmental acceptability. However, much remains to be learned about the biological and physical processes by which terrestrial and ocean systems can act as sinks and permanent reservoirs for carbon.

The Global Community has created a global ministry to help humanity be prepared to fight the harmful consequences of a global warming through anticipatory adaptation. The global ministries on climate change and emergencies have now been developed and are operating.

The ministries have developed:

1. policy response to the consequences of the global warming, and

2. strategies to adapt to the consequences of the unavoidable climate change.

It is a priority for businesses to apply for one ECO, your Certified Corporate Global Community Citizenship (CCGCC), a unique way to show the world your ways of doing business are best for the Global Community. You can obtain the citizenship after accepting the Criteria of the Global Community Citizenship and following an assessment of your business.The process shown here is now standardized to all applicants. You are then asked to operate your business as per the values of the citizenship.

As a business, a government, an NGO, or a group of well-intentioned persons, you have to make economic decisions into your operations and products, and you may:

a) be corporate shareholders in good standing
b) be a socially responsible investor
c) have taken the challenge of a more integrated approach to corporate responsibility by placing environmental and community-based objectives and measures onto the decision-making table alongside with the strategic business planning and operational factors that impact your bottom-line results
d) provide not only competitive return to your shareholders but you also operate your business in light of environmental and social contributions, and you have understood the interdependence between financial performance, environmental performance and commitment to the community
e) have taken a full life-cycle approach to integrate and balance environmental and economic decisions for major projects
f) have an active Environmental, Health and Safety Committee and integrated codes of conduct, policies, standards and operating procedures to reflect your corporate responsibility management
g) have scored high on categories such as:

* environmental performance
* product safety
* business practices
* commitment to the community
* employee relations and diversity
* corporate governance
* share performance
* global corporate responsibility
* health, safety and security
* audits and inspections
* emergency preparedness
* corporate global ethical values
* standards of honesty, integrity and ethical behaviour
* in line with the Scale of Human and Earth Rights and the Charter of Earth Community

h) support a balance and responsible approach that promotes action on the issue of climate change as well as all other issues related to the global life-support systems:
* global warming
* Ozone layer
* wastes of all kind including nuclear and release of radiation
* climate change
* species of the fauna and flora becoming extinct
* losses of forest cover and of biological diversity
* the capacity for photosynthesis
* the water cycle
* food production systems
* genetic resources
* chemicals produced for human use and not found in nature and, eventually, reaching the environment with impacts on Earth's waters, soils, air, and ecology

Now is time to reach a higher level of protection to life on Earth. We all need this for the survival of our species. We can help you integrate and balance global life-support systems protection, global community participation, and economic decisions into your operations and products.

Acceptance of the Scale of Human and Earth Rights. To determine rights requires an understanding of needs and responsibilities and their importance. The Scale of Human and Earth Rights and the Charter of the Global Community were researched and developed by the Earth Community Organization (ECO) to guide us in continuing this process. The Scale shows social values in order of importance and so will help us understand the rights and responsibilities of global communities.

Scale of Human and Earth Rights

* Ecological rights and the protection of the global life-support systems

* Primordial human rights

* The ecological rights, the protection of the global life-support systems and the primordial human rights of future generations

* Community rights and the right that the greatest number of people has by virtue of its number (50% plus one) and after voting representatives democratically

* Economic rights (business and consumer rights, and their responsibilities and accountabilities) and social rights (civil and political rights)

* Cultural rights and religious rights

The Global Community can contribute in evaluating options and strategies for adapting to climate change as it occurs, and in identifying human activities that are even now maladapted to climate. For example, identification of tree species that can grow well under current as well as projected future climates will help develop reforestation programs that are less vulnerable to both climate variability and change. Genetically improved species can be developed to replace the weakess species. Assessment of the role of agricultural subsidies and disaster relief programs in actually encouraging farmers to cultivate lands which are highly susceptible to droughts or floods can improve the adaptability of the agricultural sector. Alternatively, developing socio-economic activities that can thrive under anticipated climate changes can help realize some of the benefits of climate change. Collectively, such actions will help reduce human

vulnerability to climate change, and hence raise the threshold at which such change becomes dangerous. We need to improve on our ability to:

* predict future anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases. While demographic, technological and economic factors are in many respects inherently speculative, better observations and understanding of the processes by which human activities directly or indirectly contribute to emissions are clearly required. These in particular include emissions from deforestation and agricultural activities.
* obtain more data on the effect of human emissions on atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases. Not only do we need to reduce the uncertainties about past and current sinks for emitted greenhouse gases, but we need to better understand and quantify the long term feedbacks such as CO2 fertilization and physical and biological response to climate change if we expect to improve our confidence in projections of future concentrations.
* measure direct and indirect effects of radiative forcing of greenhouse gases and aerosols.
* measure climate sensitivity to changes in radiative forcing.
* measure the response to climate change of biological and physical processes with the terrestrial and ocean systems. * obtain an early detection of the signal of human interference with the climate system against the change caused by natural forces or internal system noise is important in fostering timely and responsible coping actions.
* develop actions to limit emissions of greenhouse gases and prepare to adapt to climate change.
* live with the facts that climate change is unavoidable, atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations are already signficantly higher than pre-industrial levels, and that aggressive efforts to reduce their anthropogenic emission sources would only slow down the growth in their concentrations, not stop it. Therefore, policy response to this issue must also include strategies to adapt to the consequences of unavoidable climate change.

There are important results obtain from research done so far:

* the model equilibrium responses of average surface temperatures to a doubling of CO2 consistently lies between 1.5 and 4.5°C, and clearly exclude zero change;
* the rate of average global warming due to increasing greenhouse concentrations anticipated over the century is in the range of 0.2 to 0.5°C per decade. Inclusion of effects of increases in aerosols may reduce this by 0.1°C/decade;
* land areas warm more than oceans, and high northern latitudes more than equatorial regions. Greatest warming is in high northern latitudes in winter.
* precipitation and soil moisture increases in high latitudes in winter. Most models also project dryer summer soil conditions in interior continental regions of northern mid-latitudes;
* global sea levels are expected to rise about 2 to 8 cm/decade for the next several centuries, in response to melting land ice and increasing ocean temperatures. Such rises threaten many island states and low lying coastal areas around the world with inundation. For example, a one-meter sea level rise would displace millions of people in countries such as Bangladesh, and would affect 15% of agricultural lands in Egypt.
* margins of many terrestrial ecosystems will experience increasing stress as ambient regional climates become mismatched with those required for healthy growth of species within. While most species can migrate in response to slow climate change, paleo studies suggest than rates of change in excess of 0.1°C/decade are almost certainly too rapid to avoid disruption. Species in mountainous terrain also have absolute limits in vertical migration potential, with high elevation species threatened with extinction as climate warming eliminates their climatic ecozones. Increased vulnerability to insect and disease infestation adds to such stresses.

There are approaches to limit and regulate the pollution emissions of industrial activities. These are standards, taxes and pollution permits. The choice among these alternatives depends on the administrative structure of a nation.

In an urban community site, air usually contains materials such as nitric oxide, sulfur oxide, carbon monoxide, aldehydes, dust and many others.

A city would have a department measuring indicators and indices in order to:

a) Provide a daily report to the public

b) Define air pollution in terms of the amount of pollution created by polluters

c) Define air quality in all parts of the city

d) Measure progress toward air quality goals

e) Propose abatement steps

f) Alarm the public in case of danger

g) Provide data to researchers

h) Provide information for compliance

i) Make intelligent decisions with regard to priorities of programs toward environmental improvement

The Earth Community makes the following recommendations to alleviate the effects of climate change in the world:

* Introduction of appropriate sustainable agricultural system with balanced use of chemical fertilizers incorporated organic minerals and green manure's.

* Phase wise replacement of chemical fertilizer by organic fertilizer. Similarly biodegradable insecticide should be replace by the non-biodegradable insecticides.

* The entrepreneur should take proper mitigation measures of industrial pollution by set-up of industrial waste treatment plant.

* Control of insect, pests through biological, natural process, alternatives of using harmful insecticides or fungicides is important to introduce.

* Promotion of research activities in the field of industrial waste utilization and waste recovery process.

* Re-utilization of agricultural residues through bio-conservation to industrial products.

* Need proper implementation of Environmental Policy, Environment Conservation Act’s and Legislation.

* Enhancement of the capacity of NGOs, Govt. agencies to successfully implement poverty alleviation program including non-formal education on environmental pollution awareness.

* Immediate and honest actions by the USA, Russia, Japan and Canada, and all countries in resolving the problems creating the greenhouse gases. The ratification of the Kyoto Protocol and the implementation of measurable positive actions to resolve the problems of global warming.

* The support of the Climate Change Ministry.

The province of British Columbia should introduce measures in the following areas to reduce GHG emissions.

Government leadership – set aggressive GHG reduction targets for provincial facilities and vehicle fleets, enforce standards for major building projects;

Urban land use – use tax shifting to discourage sprawl and favour more compact, transit-oriented communities; develop a policy to promote shared energy systems; and work with municipalities to provide incentives and tools for encouraging GHG reduction targets in official community plans and regional strategies by 2005;

Transportation – implement increased funding of transit and strategic road improvements, California-style vehicle emission standards for cars, higher emission standards for light to heavy duty trucks, and incentives to purchase more fuel-efficient vehicles and lower GHG fuels;

Buildings – establish phased-in energy performance standards, with a revolving fund for energy efficiency upgrades, provincial tax relief for the purchase of sustain-able products and equipment, and other supporting policies;

Electricity – adopt a GHG emission standard and offset requirement for thermal power generation that is coordinated with the federal government and builds on the province’s current energy efficiency and clean energy objectives;

Natural gas – develop an efficient and harmonized regulatory, fiscal, and land access framework to facilitate expansion of natural gas production consistent with sustainability; and tax or other incentives to reduce fugitive emissions and to promote acid gas reinjection into depleted reservoirs for disposing of CO2 emissions;

Fuel cells – prepare a strategic plan to grow BC’s world leading fuel cell cluster; make a long-term provincial commitment to the hydrogen economy; and ensure active government participation in private and public sector fuel cell demonstrations;

Forest products – establish incentives to encourage energy from biomass; targets and support for afforestation and reforestation projects; and policies to prevent deforestation (all consistent with international carbon accounting protocols); and

Aluminum (and other sectors) – negotiate voluntary binding agreements for GHG emission reduction with the aluminum smelting and other industry sectors that are harmonized with federal initiatives.

1. Environment Canada, Canada's Greenhouse Gas Inventory 1990 - 2000

2. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Greenhouse Gas Inventory Reporting Instructions, Vol. 1; and Greenhouse Gas Inventory Reference Manual, Vol. 3, Revised 1996 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories, 1997.

3. Statistics Canada, Annual Demographic Statistics, 2000, Catalogue #91-213.

4. Statistics Canada, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), expenditure-based, annual (Dollars), CANSIM II, Table 384-0002.

5. Statistics Canada, Quarterly Report on Energy Supply-Demand in Canada (QRESD), Catalogue #57-003.

6. T.J. McCann and Associates, et al., Fossil Fuel Energy Trade & Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Prepared for Environment Canada, 1997.

7. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Review of the Implementation of Commitments and of Other Provisions of the Convention, FCCC/CP/1999/7.

8. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990-2000, Draft for Public Comment, February 2002. (Available on the internet at http://yosemite.epa.gov/oar/globalwarming.nsf/content/

9. The Government of Canada Climate Change web site at http://www.climatechange.gc.ca/english/

10. The Water, Air and Climate Change Branch website manage by the BC Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection. The website is found at: http://wlapwww.gov.bc.ca/air/climate/

Send mail to gdufour@globalcommunitywebnet.com with questions or comments about this web site.
Copyright © 2003 Global Community WebNet Ltd.