How does rising atmospheric CO2 affect marine organisms?

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Volume 4 Number 52:  26 December 2001

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

Current Editorial
Are Rising Atmospheric CO2 Concentrations Protecting European Forests From the Adverse Effects of Ozone Pollution?: The invisible hand of providence may be maintaining the biosphere in a whole lot better condition than many anti-CO2 types care to acknowledge.

Subject Index Summaries
Planetary Albedo: As the impetus for anthropogenic-induced global warming continues to grow, a number of similarly-induced, as well as natural, negative feedback phenomena concurrently raise the planet's albedo by the amount required to resist increases in air temperature that could prove dangerous to the health of the biosphere.

Seeds: Most of earth's plant life displays increases in photosynthesis and biomass production when exposed to elevated levels of atmospheric CO2.  Oftentimes, such increases lead to an enhancement of seed production, which can contribute to the maintenance of biodiversity within vegetative communities.

Carbon Sequestration Commentary
Elevated CO2 Increases Leaf Longevity, Giving Plants Extra Time to Deposit More Carbon in Earth's Soil Bank System: Following on the heels of our last Carbon Sequestration Essay, we note that not only do plants work longer days in CO2-enriched atmospheres, they also work more days, as they lengthen their productive growing seasons.

Current Journal Reviews
North Atlantic Deep Water Production: Response to Global Warming and Feedback Implications for Climate: A new climate model study casts doubt upon the recent and highly-hyped speculations of the National Academy of Science's Committee on Abrupt Climate Change, whose thesis was beginning to crumble even before its pre-publication release to the public and media.

A 1,000-Year History of Sunspot Numbers: The record reads like a climate history book, with the chapter on the past century suggesting what climate alarmists have been saying for some time, i.e., that it's currently warmer than it's been for a thousand years.  What they probably won't like, however, is that solar activity is the plot's main character, while CO2 merits not even a mention.

Effects of Elevated CO2 and Mycorrhizal Colonization on a Nitrogen-Fixing Tree: Elevated CO2 significantly increased total biomass in black locust seedlings, with the greatest percentage increase occurring in plants possessing no mycorrhizal fungi.

Effects of Elevated CO2 and Ozone on Ponderosa Pine Trees: Atmospheric CO2 enrichment significantly increased photosynthesis and stem diameters in ponderosa pine seedlings simultaneously exposed to elevated concentrations of ozone.  Moreover, CO2-enriched seedlings produced larger terminal buds that exhibited more robust elongation the following spring, but only when ozone concentrations were low.

Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment Stimulates Expansion Rates of Poplar Leaves: ... which enhances leaf growth ... which enhances stemwood production ... which enhances carbon sequestration ... which, completing the circle, slows the rate-of-rise of the air's CO2 concentration.