NASA scientist shows how to slow global warming

Countries in Asia and the Middle East would see the biggest health and agricultural gains from emissions reductions, said a university statement.

Last Updated: Jan 17, 2012, 18:44 PM IST

Washington: Key steps on pollution control would slow down global warming by 0.5 degree Celsius, increase crop yields by 135 million tonnes and prevent thousands of premature deaths every year in India, Nepal and Bangladesh by 2050, reveals a study.
The 14 steps, highlighted by NASA scientist Drew Shindell, are the outcome of an analysis of 400 control measures by an international team, based on technologies evaluated by the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria.

"We`ve shown that implementing specific practical emissions reductions chosen to maximize climate benefits would also have important win-win benefits for human health and agriculture," said Shindell, scientist at NASA`s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), New York City.

The steps, if implemented would curb the release of either black carbon or methane, pollutants that exacerbate climate change and damage human or plant health either directly or by leading to ozone formation, the journal Science reported.

India, Bangladesh and Nepal would see the biggest reductions in premature deaths. The study estimates that globally between 700,000 and 4.7 million premature deaths could be prevented each year.

Countries in Asia and the Middle East would see the biggest health and agricultural gains from emissions reductions, said a university statement.

Shindell and his team concluded that these control measures would provide the greatest protection against global warming to Russia, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan -- countries with large areas of snow or ice cover.

Iran, Pakistan and Jordan would experience improvement in agricultural production, and the southern Asia and the Sahel region of Africa would see beneficial changes to precipitation patterns.

The scientists used computer models developed at GISS and the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany, to model the impact of emissions reductions.

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