How does rising atmospheric CO2 affect marine organisms?

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A Five-Century Borehole Record of Australian Temperatures
Pollack, H.N., Huang, S. and Smerdon, J.E. 2006. Five centuries of climate change in Australia: the view from underground. Journal of Quaternary Science 21: 701-706.

What was done
The authors used 57 borehole temperature profiles from across Australia to reconstruct a ground surface temperature history of the entire continent covering the past five hundred years.

What was learned
The five-century reconstruction was characterized, in the words of Pollack et al., "by a temperature increase of approximately 0.5K, with most of the warming occurring in the 19th and 20th centuries." By way of comparison, they say "the warming of Australia over the past five centuries has been about two-thirds that experienced by southern Africa, and only about half that experienced by the continents of the Northern Hemisphere in the same time interval." In addition, because of the large difference between them, they found there was "effectively no overlap between the Australian and Northern Hemisphere reconstructions." Last of all, they report that "the 17th century was the coolest interval of the five-century reconstruction, perhaps representing a muted expression of the Little Ice Age widely observed in the Northern Hemisphere."

What it means
Contrary to climate-alarmist claims that the Little Ice Age was a regional phenomenon felt only in lands bordering on the North Atlantic Ocean, this evidence from Australia suggests it was likely global in scope, but that it may have been less strongly expressed in the Southern Hemisphere.

Reviewed 19 March 2008