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Volume 6 Number 53:  31 December 2003

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

Editorial
Fungal-Mediated Plant Coexistence: Does it help to maintain, or even enhance, ecosystem biodiversity?  And how is it influenced by atmospheric CO2 enrichment?  Inquiring minds want to know.

Subject Index Summaries
Aerosols (Biological - Terrestrial): CO2- and temperature-induced biological processes occurring in terrestrial ecosystems possess a wide array of abilities to alter the atmosphere's complement of aerosols in ways that prevent over-heating of the planet.

Roots (Trees - Conifers): As the air's CO2 content rises, earth's trees produce more massive trunks and larger and more numerous branches that sequester ever greater quantities of carbon; but what occurs belowground is often even more impressive.

Journal Reviews
Millennial-Scale Climate Variability in Southern Africa: What part does it play in the long-running debate over the global warming of the past century and its likely cause?

The Resiliency of the Reef-Flat Corals of Ko Phuket, Thailand: How resilient are they?  And why?  Evidence mounts for the concept of symbiont shuffling.

Growth Response of Canada Thistle to the Increase in CO2 Experienced Over the Course of the Industrial Revolution: The CO2-induced growth stimulation likely experienced over this period was truly huge. But was it large enough to overwhelm the concomitant growth stimulations experienced by the crops with which Canada thistle typically competes?

Effects of Elevated CO2 on Litter Decomposition in Desert Ecosystems: Are they such as to limit potential increases in desert productivity and carbon sequestration with elevated CO2 or enhance them?

CO2 Effects on Shortgrass Steppe Grassland Productivity: In addition to the standard growth enhancement produced by the aerial fertilization effect of atmospheric CO2 enrichment, plants exposed to elevated CO2 concentrations in water-limited regions get an extra growth boost from increased soil water contents that result from CO2-induced reductions in stomatal conductance that lower plant transpiration rates.