By PAUL C. “CHIP” KNAPPENBERGER and PATRICK J. MICHAELS
Currently, details are few, but apparently the results of a major scientific study on the effects of anthropogenic aerosols on clouds are going to have large implications for climate change projections—substantially lowering future temperature rise expectations.
In a blog post from the Department of Meteorology of the University of Reading, Dr. Nicolas Bellouin describes some preliminary results from a research study he leads investigating the influence of aerosols on cloud properties. The behavior of clouds, including how they are formed, how long they last, how bright they are, etc., plays a very large role in the earth’s climate system, and is considered the weakest part of global climate models. The climate model cloud deficiency results from a combination of scientific uncertainty about cloud behavior, as well as the modeling challenges that come from simulating the small spatial and temporal scales over…
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