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Volume 5 Number 51:  18 December 2002

Temperature Record of the Week
This issue's Temperature Record of the week is from McMinnville, Tennessee. Visit our U.S. Climate Data section to plot and view these data for yourself.

Current Editorial
California Dreamin': Some Remarks on a Recent Study of Grassland Responses to a Number of Global Environmental Changes and the Inverted Interpretation of the Study's Findings by Science Magazine and Many, Many Others: When statements of prestigious sources are blindly accepted without carefully evaluating the data upon which they are based - even if the data are correct, as they likely are in this particular study - it is very easy to come to a very wrong conclusion and thus take a very bad trip down a very wrong policy path.

Subject Index Summaries
Acclimation (Agricultural Species): A review of the scientific literature indicates that under conditions of elevated CO2, many agricultural species experience insufficient sink strength, which leads to an accumulation of carbohydrates within source leaves triggering a slowdown of photosynthesis.  But is this bad?

Little Ice Age (Solar Influence): Are variations in solar activity responsible for the millennial-scale oscillation of earth's climate that produced the Little Ice Age and the smaller centennial-scale climatic oscillations embedded within that coldest period of the past millennium?

Current Journal Reviews
Were the Little Ice Age's Coldest Intervals Caused by Low Levels of Solar Activity?: Scientists studying rainfed peat bogs in England and Denmark suggest that they were.

Twelve Thousand Years of ENSO Activity: Climate alarmists periodically claim that global warming will lead to more frequent and stronger El Niņo/Southern Oscillation events.  An important new study, however, seems to suggest otherwise.

Effects of Elevated CO2 on Nitrate Reductase Activity in Tobacco Plants: Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations generally increase plant growth rates and biomass production.  However, this productivity stimulation can not continue indefinitely without an increase in nitrogen availability, which is promoted by nitrate reductase, a key enzyme involved in the assimilation of nitrogen.  In this paper, the authors thus study how CO2-enriched air impacts the activity of this enzyme in a model research plant - tobacco.

Clarifying the Interactive Effects of Elevated CO2 and Temperature on Photosynthesis: This paper reveals how C3 plants will likely respond photosynthetically to increases in ambient air temperature and atmospheric CO2 concentration.

Effects of Elevated CO2 on Tobacco Plantlets: The transfer of propagated plantlets from in vitro to ex vitro growing conditions and their subsequent acclimation to their new environment can often be very stressful.  Working with tobacco plantlets, the authors of this paper investigate whether or not atmospheric CO2 enrichment makes this transition and acclimation period less stressful.