Pollution controls have contributed to a more transparent atmosphere, thus allowing for “…a staggering increase in surface solar radiation of the order of ∼20% over the last decade.”
A new paper (O’Dowd et al.) from the National University of Ireland presented this summer at the 19th International Conference on Nucleation and Atmospheric Aerosols suggests that clean air laws put in place in the 1970′s and 80′s have resulted in an increase in sunlight impacting the surface of the Earth, and thus have increased surface temperatures as a result. In one fell swoop, this can explain why surface temperature dipped in the 1970′s, prompting fears of an ice age, followed by concerns of global warming as the air got cleaner after pollution laws and controls were put in place. Read it all...
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