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Global Warming

Date: 04-14-07
Host: Art Bell
Guests: Brenda Ekwurzel

Art welcomed leading climate science researcher Brenda Ekwurzel, who addressed global warming, what's really going on with the climate, and what can be done about it.

According to Ekwurzel, man has contributed significantly to global warming by pouring an "unprecedented level of heat-trapping gases [into] our atmosphere." We're driving the climate more than natural cycles or the sun, she explained, pointing to the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report which suggested more than 50% of the observed increase in globally averaged temperature was due to man.

If global warming continues unabated, Ekwurzel warned, we could expect the continued melting of inland glaciers and the Arctic sea ice, which she said were disappearing at a rate "way beyond the natural variability." The sea levels will rise, she continued, making coastal areas more likely to experience devastating storm surges and overtaking some islands entirely.

To avoid reaching the tipping point, Ekwurzel said we must prevent the global average temperature from increasing more than 2 degrees Fahrenheit. However, even if we could turn the curve around within the next decade, she cautioned, the climate would not change instantly. We'd still have to adapt to what we've already done to the environment, she said.

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