The Changing Atmosphere A Global Challenge John Firor

Publication date:
03 Aug 1992
160 pages: 142 x 208 x 13mm
22 illustrations, notes, index

In this book, a specialist in atmospheric research describes the causes of acid rain, ozone depletion and global warming and the evidence for each one's recent acceleration. He also provides practical and long-range suggestions for controlling these and other forms of atmospheric deterioration. The author discusses how the emission of sulphur and nitrogen substances into the air leads to acid rain, how the release of chlorine-bearing gases into the air causes destruction of ozone in the high atmosphere, and how the addition of infrared trapping gases to the atmosphere restricts the loss of radiation from the earth and thus leads to a heating of the climate. He argues that although it is almost impossible to bring the spread of chemicals into the air to a complete halt, steps to slow air pollution are technically feasible and in many cases economically beneficial. He describes these strategies, cautioning that they must be co-ordinated with a larger goal of lessening the total impact human activities have on the earth. According to the author, we can work towards this goal by attempting to stabilize populations (in the developed as well as the developing world), protect forests, encourage the use of modern energy-efficient technology in Third World countries (and the United States) and reduce poverty worldwide.