How does rising atmospheric CO2 affect marine organisms?

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Volume 4 Number 30:  25 July 2001

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

Current Editorial
Assessing the Potential for Serious Global Warming: "Catastrophic climate change Ď90% certainí."  So screams the headline of an Independent News story about a recent article in Science magazine that attempts to assign probabilities to different global warming scenarios.  Do you believe it?

Subject Index Summaries
Plant Growth Response to CO2 and Nitrogen (Grasses): Grasses and grassland species often respond positively to increases in the airís CO2 content by exhibiting increased photosynthetic rates and enhanced biomass production under favorable soil nitrogen conditions.  However, eternal pessimists suggest that positive influences of elevated CO2 on grasses will be non-existent when soil nitrogen content is low.  In this summary, we review what the recent scientific literature has to say, finding this claim to be...

Sea Ice: How do recent trends in polar sea ice compare with model predictions of global warming?  Do they bear the fingerprints of a CO2-induced greenhouse effect gone wild?  Is the predicted disappearance of the ice, like the temperature increase predicted to be driving it, of a magnitude "unprecedented" in the last thousand years?  Or do the real-world data tell us something different ... something far different?

Current Journal Reviews
Medieval Climate on the Kola Peninsula, Russia: Was there a Medieval Warm Period on the Kola Peninsula of Russia?  Subfossil trees tell the tale.

Tropical Cyclone Frequency in the North Indian Ocean: Has it increased, decreased or stayed the same?

Effects of Elevated CO2, Soil Water Content, and Soil Fertility on Wheat: Wheat is the worldís most important food crop in terms of land area devoted to its cultivation.  Hence, it is important to know how the ongoing rise in the airís CO2 content will affect its growth, especially under conditions of low soil fertility and less-than-optimum soil moisture.  This paper supplies some answers.

Effects of Elevated CO2 and Nitrogen Supply on Peat Moss: Sphagnum bogs currently play an important role in global carbon sequestration by removing more carbon from the atmosphere than they return into it.  But what about the future?  Will this botanical genus still work its wonders as the airís CO2 content continues to rise?

Effects of Increases in Atmospheric CO2 and Soil Water Content on Growth in C4 Grasses: The airís CO2 content has essentially doubled since the end of the last great ice age.  This study investigates some of the consequences of that increase for the growth of C4 plants.