Pollution and Global Warming: Climate Change in Black and White

A summary of a new report on how fighting air pollution can help climate change is soon to be presented to ministers attending the governing council of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The report is said to feature a powerful argument encouraging certain action on two short-lived climate “forcings”, or, factors that change the amount of energy the atmosphere absorbs, but remain within the atmosphere only briefly. One of these “forcings” is black carbon, and the other is ozone. According to this report, the benefits of implementing such action would have “immediate and multiple” benefits. However, hesitations have also been raised. Doing something about these short-lived forcings is easier than tackling real issue; carbon dioxide. And the fact remains that the role that black carbon and other aerosols play in the changing climate is still rife with nuance, uncertainty, and doubt…

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