Latest Black carbon Stories

2010-06-02 20:39:26

Airplanes, ground instruments, and weather balloons to study effect of airborne particles on climate More than 60 scientists from a dozen institutions have converged on this urban area to study how tiny particles called aerosols affect the climate. Sending airplanes and weather balloons outfitted with instruments up in the air, the team will be sampling aerosols in the Sacramento Valley from June 2-28. Researchers from the Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in...

2010-05-04 08:09:46

Fulfilling Copenhagen Accord will require variety of efforts ranging from 'Herculean' to the readily actionable, scientists say Major greenhouse gas-emitting countries agreed in December climate talks held in Copenhagen that substantial action is required to limit the increase of global average temperature to less than 2 degrees C (3.6 degrees F). In a paper appearing May 3 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), Veerabhadran Ramanathan and Yangyang Xu, climate...

2010-05-04 07:27:48

Trees and other plants help keep the planet cool, but rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere are turning down this global air conditioner. According to a new study by researchers at the Carnegie Institution for Science, in some regions more than a quarter of the warming from increased carbon dioxide is due to its direct impact on vegetation. This warming is in addition to carbon dioxide's better-known effect as a heat-trapping greenhouse gas. For scientists trying to predict global...

2010-05-02 07:57:56

NSF-supported climate scientist Mark Flanner and colleagues find differences in the rates for spring warming and snow cover decline in Eurasia and North America, and are studying whether aerosols are a key factor Over the past 30 years, springtime snow melt and warming appear to be proceeding at a faster rate in Eurasia than in North America. Climate scientist Mark Flanner, an assistant professor at the University of Michigan and a recent Advanced Study Program graduate at the National...

2010-04-22 16:00:00

Pollen counts are hovering at record levels in the United States. A massive plume of ash "” released by a volcano with a tongue-twister of a name "” is causing havoc across Europe. Parts of the Himalayas are bathed in soot levels comparable to those found over major cities. Details about all of those events "” and much more "” are available from the Smog Blog, a website that monitors air pollution much like meteorologists track the daily weather. The blog, managed by...

2010-03-18 09:15:50

Such burns release less carbon dioxide than wildfires, scientists find The use of prescribed burns to manage western forests may help the United States reduce its carbon footprint. Results of a new study find that such burns, often used by forest managers to reduce underbrush and protect bigger trees, release substantially less carbon dioxide emissions than wildfires of the same size. "It appears that prescribed burns can be an important piece of a climate change strategy," says Christine...

2010-02-04 08:50:00

The fact that glaciers in the Himalayan mountains are thinning is not disputed. However, few researchers have attempted to rigorously examine and quantify the causes. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory scientist Surabi Menon set out to isolate the impacts of the most commonly blamed culprit"”greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide"”from other particles in the air that may be causing the melting. Menon and her collaborators found that airborne black carbon aerosols, or soot,...

2010-01-27 16:39:16

CORVALLIS, Ore. "“ A recent study at Oregon State University indicates that some past approaches to calculating the impacts of forest fires have grossly overestimated the number of live trees that burn up and the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere as a result. The research was done on the Metolius River Watershed in the central Oregon Cascade Range, where about one-third "“ or 100,000 acres "“ of the area burned in four large fires in 2002-03. Although...

2009-12-15 06:55:00

Soot from fire in an unventilated fireplace wafts into a home and settles on the surfaces of floors and furniture. But with a quick fix to the chimney flue and some dusting, it bears no impact on a home's long-term environment. A new modeling study from NASA confirms that when tiny air pollution particles we commonly call soot "“ also known as black carbon "“ travel along wind currents from densely populated south Asian cities and accumulate over a climate hotspot called the...

2009-12-15 06:45:00

Black soot deposited on Tibetan glaciers has contributed significantly to the retreat of the world's largest non-polar ice masses, according to new research by scientists from NASA and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Soot absorbs incoming solar radiation and can speed glacial melting when deposited on snow in sufficient quantities. Temperatures on the Tibetan Plateau -- sometimes called Earth's "third pole" -- have warmed by 0.3°C (0.5°F) per decade over the past 30 years, about...

Word of the Day
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'