Seminars & Workshops

Global Dimming:  How large is it?

V. Ramanathan
Scripps Institution of Oceanography
(Currently Visiting Scientist at NCAR)

Several studies have reported that there was a large reduction, as large as -10 W.m -2, of surface solar radiation worldwide during the 1950s to 1980s, and a partial recovery of this dimming during the following decades. If this was indeed the case, then this dimming trend must have played a large role in the observed climate trends. In this study, I will explore the magnitude of the dimming that can be accounted for by natural and anthropogenic factors and the implications for the observed trends in surface temperatures and rainfall. One fundamental inference from the Global Dimming studies is the need for a Global Albedo theory that can explain why it is around 30% and in addition, account for its long term variations. I will conclude with an experimental approach for developing such a theory.

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