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Volume 6 Number 4:  22 January 2003

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

Current Editorial
Newly Discovered Soluble Proteins in the Leaves of Sour Orange Trees: Do They Facilitate the Trees' Response to Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment?: Why do sour orange trees respond so positively to increases in the air's CO2 content?  Some recently published papers by the editor-writers of CO2 Science Magazine suggest some tantalizing possibilities.

Subject Index Summaries
Glaciers (Europe): In the face of global warming that climate alarmists call unprecedented over the past millennium, glaciers nearly everywhere should be in swift retreat.  So what's the story out of Europe?  Are the continent's glaciers "disappearing before our very eyes'?

Water Stress x CO2 Effects on Plants (Woody Species): Earth's trees and woody plants generally respond to atmospheric CO2 enrichment by exhibiting enhanced rates of photosynthesis and biomass production when well supplied with water.  Does extra CO2 similarly help them when water is in short supply?

Carbon Sequestration Commentary
Urban Trees: Their Long List of Virtues: Carbon-sequestering trees that are strategically planted to (1) reduce building heat loads in summer by providing shade or (2) reduce building cooling rates in winter by providing protection from wind - and which thereby further reduce the rate of rise of the air's CO2 content - have a host of additional virtues that recommend their introduction into urban environments, even if one does not believe in reducing atmospheric CO2 concentrations as a means of combating global warming.

Current Journal Reviews
Rapid Climate Changes: Dramatic warmings and coolings of incredible magnitude and swiftness are not strangers to earth's history; and climate alarmists often use this fact to raise concerns (i.e., scare people) about the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content triggering one of these climate surprises.  But are they justified in doing so?

ENSO Variability Over the Past Millennium: An analysis of five climate indices sensitive to some aspect of the ENSO phenomenon reveals how it may have varied over the last 1000 years, during which time interval the earth experienced a significant cyclical variation in air temperature that produced both the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age.

A New Temperature History from the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau: Another palaeoclimate study reveals additional evidence for the existence of the Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period in China, as well as for earlier similar cold and warm intervals of the Holocene.

Can Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment Ameliorate SO2 Damage in Wheat?: As an aerial pollutant, SO2 can reduce the growth of many crops, while CO2, as an aerial fertilizer, can increase their growth.  In this report, the authors reveal how wheat responds to both of them together.  Can you guess the winning gas?

Does Elevated CO2 Promote Establishment of Woody Species in Grasslands?: Elevated CO2 often enhances plant water-use efficiency, which provides an impetus for species to germinate and grow in areas where they previously could not survive under ambient atmospheric CO2 concentrations due to limited soil moisture availability.  A new study investigates this theory with respect to honey mesquite seedling survivorship in a Texas, USA, grassland.