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Global warning


Malcolm Heymer's letter (NCE 20 January) should surely have been entitled 'Man alone cannot be blamed for global warming'.

To state that recent evidence on solar effects indicates that global warming is not related to man-made emissions is to dangerously discount the probable effect of the unprecedented levels of CO2 and other anthropogenic gases such as methane, CFCs and nitrous oxide demonstrably present in the atmosphere.

We may not fully understand the complex dynamics of the atmosphere on which we depend but we know that it is finely balanced and that increases in the greenhouse gases definitely increase the potential for energy storage.

Surely, if the sun is hotter than at any time for the last 150 years, then we have even greater reason for concern over the consequences of increasing the atmosphere's capacity to absorb energy. The more that comes in, the more infrared outgoing radiation will be available to warm up the 'greenhouse'.

We upset fine balances at our peril.

Howard Richings (F), Shoreworks Manager, RNLI, Poole, Dorset

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