By Gary Thomas
According to a climate model developed by a research team at the Carnegie Institution for Science, pre-industrial carbon emissions have a negative impact on global temperature over the years.
The study results have been reported in Environmental Research Letters, a journal of IOP Publishing. According to the study, pre-industrial emissions as a result of land use changes have increased the global mean temperature by 9% since that era.
The research team has simulated pre-industrial emissions from across the globe to measure the impact of emissions on the growing population, which has increased to five times between the period 850 and 1850 AD. South and East Asia, especially China and India, contributed significantly in this pre-industrial population growth.
As per the model, this population growth accounted for 20% to 40% of pre-industrial emissions in China and India. The model also shows that these emissions still have a negative impact on today’s climate. Land use changes are the key cause for these pre-industrial emissions and still affect today’s temperature due to slow rate of carbon dioxide uptake by the vegetation and oceans. Moreover, deforestation results in the immediate release of carbon into the atmosphere.
The impact of pre-industrial emissions on today’s climate can be a topic of discussion to explore the ways of distributing the burden of commitments associated with greenhouse gas reduction. The model findings demonstrate that considering pre-industrial emissions, the attribution of global temperature increase shifts from the industrialized to less-industrialized nations by 2% to 3%.
However, according to the research team the study is not intended to shift the blame on people staying in the developing world for the present climate issues, considering the fact that much larger impact on climate is being made by industrialized countries on a regular basis.