Today, I attended an excellent talk by Dr. V. Ramanathan at the World Bank in Washington, DC. Dr. Ramanathan, of the Scripps Institute of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, is the leading expert on the effects of non-CO2 greenhouse gases on climate change. In the past decade, Dr. Ramanathan has turned his considerable talents to the impacts of black carbon (BC), or soot, on global warming. His research suggests that the impact of BC may be equal to that of CO2 in warming and melting the Himalayan glaciers. These glaciers feed ten major Asian rivers, which are the primary water source for more than 1.3 billion people.
Black carbon and climate change are interests of mine and I’ll be posting more on them in future blogs – much more – including a “primer” on BC and its effects. In the meantime, check out this great article from the New York Times. It focuses on Dr. Ramanathan’s work in India and the launch of a collaboration aimed at reducing indoor air pollution, improving public health AND reducing the melting of the Himalayan glaciers – all at the same time!