Wednesday, March 17, 2010

New Study Says CO2 Can Form Dome Over Cities

A new study just published in Environmental Science and Technology by Stanford's Mark Jacobson adds a slight twist to this standard view. Older research has found that local "domes" of high CO2 levels can often form over cities. Jacobson found that these domes can have a serious local impact, such as worsening the effects of local air pollutants like ozone and particulates, which cause respiratory diseases and the like. Jacobson estimates that local CO2 emissions cause anywhere from 300 to 1,000 premature deaths in the United States each year. And presumably the problem's much worse in developing countries.

These conclusions support the Cap-and-Trade approach in our opinion. To the extent we can reduce the CO2 domes over cities, probably during inversions, we can increase the health of human living in those areas.

Mark Jacobson, professor of civil and environmental engineering and director of the Atmosphere/Energy Program at Stanford. (Grist, 3/17/10)

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