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AGU journal highlights -- Feb. 26, 2008
Date:2/26/2008

ons. The rest are likely from particles, which would increase due to CO2-enhanced stability, humidity, and biogenic feedbacks. The author notes that many of these deaths would occur in urban populations subject to smog, as are residents of some areas of California. Extrapolating U.S. deaths to global population yields about 22,000 excess deaths expected worldwide each year.

Title: On the causal link between carbon dioxide and air pollution mortality

Authors: Mark Z. Jacobson: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, California, U.S.A.

Source: Geophysical Research Letters (GRL) paper 10.1029/2007GL031101, 2008; http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2007GL031101


5. Natural ocean thermostat may protect some coral reefs

Several negative feedback mechanisms have been proposed to explain the stability of sea surface temperature in the western Pacific warm Pool (WPWP). These ocean thermostat mechanisms are hypothesized to cap sea surface temperatures in the WPWP at around 3031 degrees Celsius. Noting that even slight changes in oceanic temperature can threaten coral survival by forcing corals to expel the colorful microscopic algae that provide them with nutrition (a phenomenon called coral bleaching), Kleypas et al. analyze data on the tropical ocean spanning 19502006, as well as data from simulations, and compare these with a database of coral bleaching reports. They find that between 1980 and 2005, only four episodes of bleaching were reported for reefs in the WPWP, much lower than in any other reef region. Further, sea surface temperatures from the WPWP in recent years have warmed less than elsewhere in tropical oceans, supporting the idea that thermostat mechanisms act to depress warming beyond certain thresholds.

(See press release: http://www.
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Contact: Peter Weiss
pweiss@agu.org
202-777-7507
American Geophysical Union
Source:Eurekalert

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