AGW Observer

Observations of anthropogenic global warming

General papers on AGW

Posted by Ari Jokimäki on September 30, 2009

This list contains papers that provide general reviews, observations, and arguments on the anthropogenic global warming. I especially recommend Keller (2007) as a general overview of recent problematics of the issue. The list is not complete, and will most likely be updated in the future in order to make it more thorough and more representative.

UPDATE (April 19, 2012): Sawyer (1972) added. Thanks to J Bowers for pointing it out (in another paperlist thread).
UPDATE (April 17, 2012): Hansen et al. (1981) added. Thanks to Barry for pointing it out (in another paperlist thread).
UPDATE (November 17, 2010): Sloan & Wolfendale (2010) removed as apparently non-peer-reviewed document. Thanks to Barry for pointing this out, see the comment section below.
UPDATE (March 25, 2010): Füssel (2009) added, thanks to PeterPan for pointing it out, see the comment section below.
UPDATE (February 3, 2010): Sloan & Wolfendale (2010) added.
UPDATE (December 9, 2009): Mitchell (1989) added.

An updated assessment of the risks from climate change based on research published since the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report – Füssel (2009) “This paper presents an updated assessment of the risks from anthropogenic climate change, based on a comprehensive review of the pertinent scientific literature published since finalisation of the AR4. Many risks are now assessed as stronger than in the AR4, including the risk of large sea-level rise already in the current century, the amplification of global warming due to biological and geological carbon-cycle feedbacks, a large magnitude of “committed warming” currently concealed by a strong aerosol mask, substantial increases in climate variability and extreme weather events, and the risks to marine ecosystems from climate change and ocean acidification.” [Full text]

Assessing dangerous climate change through an update of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) “reasons for concern” – Smith et al. (2009) “Here, we describe revisions of the sensitivities of the RFCs [reasons for concern] to increases in GMT [global mean temperature] and a more thorough understanding of the concept of vulnerability that has evolved over the past 8 years.” [Full text]

Global warming: a review of this mostly settled issue – Keller (2009) “This review attempts to update what is known and in particular what advances have been made in the past 5 years or so. It does not attempt to be comprehensive. Rather it focuses on the most controversial issues, which are actually few in number.”

Attributing physical and biological impacts to anthropogenic climate change – Rosenzweig et al. (2008) “Significant changes in physical and biological systems are occurring on all continents and in most oceans, with a concentration of available data in Europe and North America. Most of these changes are in the direction expected with warming temperature. Here we show that these changes in natural systems since at least 1970 are occurring in regions of observed temperature increases, and that these temperature increases at continental scales cannot be explained by natural climate variations alone.” [Full text]

Tipping point: Perspective of a climatologist – Hansen (2008) “I describe how two fundamental properties of our climate system, its predominance of “positive feedbacks” and its ponderous inertia, have together brought climate to a great tipping point, a planetary emergency. I then discuss emerging impacts of climate change on the wild. Finally I summarize fundamental data on fossil fuels, the main driver of climate change, providing an outline of actions needed to reverse the forces driving climate change.” [Full text]

Global Warming 2007. An Update to Global Warming: The Balance of Evidence and Its Policy Implications – Keller (2007) “In the four years since my original review (Keller[25]; hereafter referred to as CFK03), research has clarified and strengthened our understanding of how humans are warming the planet. So many of the details highlighted in the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report[21] and in CFK03 have been resolved that I expect many to be a bit overwhelmed, and I hope that, by treating just the most significant aspects of the research, this update may provide a road map through the expected maze of new information.” [Full text]

Global warming – Houghton (2005) “‘Global warming’ is a phrase that refers to the effect on the climate of human activities, in particular the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil and gas) and large-scale deforestation, which cause emissions to the atmosphere of large amounts of ‘greenhouse gases’, of which the most important is carbon dioxide. Such gases absorb infrared radiation emitted by the Earth’s surface and act as blankets over the surface keeping it warmer than it would otherwise be. Associated with this warming are changes of climate.” [Full text]

The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change – Oreskes (2004) “Policy-makers and the media, particularly in the United States, frequently assert that climate science is highly uncertain. … The scientific consensus is clearly expressed in the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). … IPCC is not alone in its conclusions. In recent years, all major scientific bodies in the United States whose members’ expertise bears directly on the matter have issued similar statements. … This analysis shows that scientists publishing in the peer-reviewed literature agree with IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences, and the public statements of their professional societies.” [Full text]

Global Warming: The Balance of Evidence and Its Policy Implications – Keller (2003) “This review attempts to update what is known and in particular what advances have been made in the past 5 years or so. It does not attempt to be comprehensive. Rather it focuses on the most controversial issues, which are actually few in number.” [Full text]

Climate Science: An Empirical Example of Postnormal Science – Bray & von Storch (1999) “This paper addresses the views regarding the certainty and uncertainty of climate science knowledge held by contemporary climate scientists. … The data for the analysis is drawn from a response rate of approximately 40% from a survey questionnaire mailed to 1000 scientists in Germany, the United States, and Canada, and from a series of in-depth interviews with leading scientists in each country. … Almost all scientists agreed that the skill of contemporary models is limited. … The international consensus was, however, apparent regarding the utility of the knowledge to date: climate science has provided enough knowledge so that the initiation of abatement measures is warranted.” [Full text]

The “Greenhouse” Effect and Climate Change – Mitchell (1989) A review paper going through the basics of the issue. “The presence of radiatively active gases in the Earth’s atmosphere (water vapor, carbon dioxide, and ozone) raises its global mean surface temperature by 30 K, making our planet habitable by life as we know it. There has been an increase in carbon dioxide and other trace gases since the Industrial Revolution, largely as a result of man’s activities, increasing the radiative heating of the troposphere and surface by about 2 W m−2.” [Full text]

Climate Impact of Increasing Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide – Hansen et al. (1981) “The global temperature rose by 0.2°C between the middle 1960’s and 1980, yielding a warming of 0.4°C in the past century. This temperature increase is consistent with the calculated greenhouse effect due to measured increases of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Variations of volcanic aerosols and possibly solar luminosity appear to be primary causes of observed fluctuations about the mean trend of increasing temperature. It is shown that the anthropogenic carbon dioxide warming should emerge from the noise level of natural climate variability by the end of the century, and there is a high probability of warming in the 1980’s. Potential effects on climate in the 21st century include the creation of drought-prone regions in North America and central Asia as part of a shifting of climatic zones, erosion of the West Antarctic ice sheet with a consequent worldwide rise in sea level, and opening of the fabled Northwest Passage.” J. Hansen, D. Johnson, A. Lacis, S. Lebedeff, P. Lee, D. Rind and G. Russell, Science 28 August 1981: Vol. 213 no. 4511 pp. 957-966, DOI: 10.1126/science.213.4511.957. [Full text]

Man-made Carbon Dioxide and the “Greenhouse” Effect – Sawyer (1972) “In spite of the enormous mass of the atmosphere and the very large energies involved in the weather systems which produce our climate, it is being realized that human activities are approaching a scale at which they cannot be completely ignored as possible contributors to climate and climatic change.”
J. S. Sawyer, Nature 239, 23 – 26 (01 September 1972); doi:10.1038/239023a0.
[Full text]

Closely related

IPCC reports are an excellent resource for a thorough review on the subject.

9 Responses to “General papers on AGW”

  1. Ari Jokimäki said

    I added Mitchell (1989).

  2. Ari Jokimäki said

    I updated this list. Rosenzweig et al. (2008) and Oreskes (2004) now have links to full texts.

  3. Ari Jokimäki said

    I added Sloan & Wolfendale (2010).

  4. PeterPan said

    You may want to add this one here:

    An updated assessment of the risks from climate change based on research published since the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report – Hans-Martin Füssel (2010)
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/yj352w65g181016m/
    http://www.pik-potsdam.de/%7Efuessel/download/cc08_published.pdf

    “Many risks are now assessed as stronger than in the AR4, including the risk of large sea-level rise already in the current century, the amplification of global warming due to biological and geological carbon-cycle feedbacks, a large magnitude of “committed warming” currently concealed by a strong aerosol mask, substantial increases in climate variability and extreme weather events, and the risks to marine ecosystems from climate change and ocean acidification. Some topics remain the subject of intense scientific debate, such as past and future changes in tropical cyclone activity and the risk of large-scale Amazon forest dieback. The rise in greenhouse gas emissions and concentrations has accelerated recently, and it is expected to accelerate further in the absence of targeted policy interventions. Taken together, these findings point to an increased urgency of implementing mitigation policies as well as comprehensive and equitable adaptation policies.”

  5. Ari Jokimäki said

    Füssel (2009) added, thanks PeterPan!🙂

  6. barry said

    Ari, you should strike the Sloane and Wolfendale 2010. It can’t have been peer-reviewed – it’s exceedingly poorly conceived and written, and it’s not listed with any journal on google scholar. The word ‘deniers’ actually appears in it.

  7. Ari Jokimäki said

    Yes, that seems to be the case, thanks. I removed it but here’s the removed entry for the record:

    Man made global warming explained – closing the blinds – Sloan & Wolfendale (2010) “Here we try to explain the principles of man-made global warming in a simple way. Our purpose is to try to understand the story which the climatologists are telling us through their rather complicated general circulation models. Although the effects in detail are best left to the climatologists’ models, we show that for the Globe as a whole the effects of man-made global warming can be demonstrated in a simple way.” [Full text]

  8. J Bowers said

    Ari, how about a section on papers showing hockey sticks? There must be dozens by now, if not more, and not just proxies or tree rings or whatever the target-du-jour is. It would certainly be useful in illustrating why moaning about MBH**** is a bit of a sideshow, and as far as I can tell there’s actually no collection of them all, perhaps only blog posts on global temperature reconstructions and thus narrowly defined. Perhaps call the section ‘Hockey League’?😉

  9. Ari Jokimäki said

    Hmm… perhaps, but it’s somewhat difficult, because the term “hockey stick” has not been used that much in scientific literature. It would also heavily overlap with the existing paperlist on temperature reconstructions.

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