Monday, March 22, 2010

Hit the Road, Jack!


For aspiring nomads, The Doomer Report has a new post up with his usual trenchant analysis of "Collapse, Apocalypse and the Coming Dark Age" - enjoy!

This article from the Guardian reports that a blue-ribbon panel claims ozone causes 50,000 premature deaths per year in the UK. Vegetation is even more sensitive to ozone exposure than humans - and as the following excerpt from letter from one of the world's experts says unequivocally, background ozone is inexorably increasing:

"The other thing I have learned (as a chemist, not a biologist) is that similar symptoms on plants can arise from different causes, partly because plant responses to stress at the biochemical level can be similar, whether the stress is drought or air pollution. However, there are some responses that are visible and characteristic – e.g. stippling of leaves by ozone. That can be misleading – some plants may show stippling, and may shed their leaves early, and yet this may have little or no effect on plant growth. In other cases, plant growth may be hindered by air pollutants, but with no visible injuries.

In the UK, the pattern of ozone exposure is of a significant decrease in the peak concentrations in hot dry summers, but an inexorable increase in year-round ‘background’ concentrations, caused by the generally increasing concentrations of ozone precursors in the northern hemisphere. The decrease in peak concentrations appears to be in direct response to controls on VOC and NOx emissions in Europe."

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