Comparing environmental performance of electric and hybrid vehicles

Hybrid and electric vehicles both aim to reduce the impact of cars on the environment such as in mitigating climate change and reducing local air pollution. However, their different technology platforms set an inherent threshold on the amount of protection that they could offer to the environment. For example, electric vehicles could only offer protection … More Comparing environmental performance of electric and hybrid vehicles

Do renewable fuels solve a climate change problem or air quality problem?

Whether renewable fuels help combat climate change or solve local air quality problems depends on how cleanly the fuel could be burned. Specifically, if the renewable fuel burns cleanly and with less emissions compared to conventional gasoline, it could potentially help alleviate local air pollution problem. However, if the renewable fuel is comparable to conventional … More Do renewable fuels solve a climate change problem or air quality problem?

Carbon budget and carbon inventory: can we still use fossil fuels?

Climate change has prompted scientists and policy makers to fathom whether humanity should continue to rely on fossil fuels for energy production. Specifically, considering that a threshold of atmospheric carbon dioxide exists where there would be irreversible effects of climate change on the globe in what is known as dangerous anthropogenic interference (DAI), how much … More Carbon budget and carbon inventory: can we still use fossil fuels?

Preservation of ice cores from tropical snow capped mountains

Climate change is resulting in the loss of significant amount of ice from glaciers and ice sheets around the world, especially at the polar regions where global warming’s pace is the fastest. Thus, there is a movement in the climate change research community in cataloguing ice cores from glaciers, both at mountains and on ice … More Preservation of ice cores from tropical snow capped mountains

Role of organic particles in seeding growth of aerosols in the atmosphere

Article in Nature, Vol. 533, 26 May 2016, pp. 527, “The role of low-volatility organic compounds in initial particle growth in the atmosphere”   Summary of article: Using nitrate ion chemical ionization atmospheric pressure interface time of flight mass spectrometry, a particle growth model for organic aerosols was proposed and validated.   Comment: Organic materials … More Role of organic particles in seeding growth of aerosols in the atmosphere

Science underlying nucleation of biogenic particles

Article in Nature, Vol. 533, Issue 7604, pp. 521, “Ion-induced nucleation of pure biogenic particles”   Summary of article: Nitrate ions are shown to induce formation of aerosols such as those seeded by α-pinene. Biogenic aerosols play important roles in influencing weather events through inducing the formation of clouds. Thus, by understanding their formation mechanisms … More Science underlying nucleation of biogenic particles

How dust informs climate now, in the past and future

Article in Nature, Vol. 531, 24 March 2016, pp. 493, “The past, present and future of African dust”   Summary of article: An excellent study on calibrating the effect of wind on topography using dust as an indicator of wind speed and wind fields, which yields important information on how African dust affects weather patterns … More How dust informs climate now, in the past and future

Antarctica McMurdo research station

Antarctica is important in many ways other than its sheer scale of beauty for explorers, it is also rich in many areas of scientific research running from astronomy, cosmology, global warming, glaciology, climate change, sea level rise, social animal activities, etc. The United States run the largest scientific research station in Antarctica, McMurdo research station, … More Antarctica McMurdo research station

Carbon dioxide emissions continue to increase and has not stabilized

A recent New York Times article (Link) posits that carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere continues to increase, due to the failure of Earth’s oceans and vegetations at absorbing carbon dioxide in a scenario that carbon dioxide emissions have stabilized across the world. The pertinent time period is 2015 and 2016.   My personal opinion … More Carbon dioxide emissions continue to increase and has not stabilized