Jim Hansen on our side
Folke Gunther, April 15, 2008
In a recent letter (yesterday), Jim Hansen says:
There is tremendous potential for reducing atmospheric CO2 via reduction of deforestation, improved forestry practices, and improved agricultural practices that increase carbon storage in the soil. If governments were to encourage such practices, rather than the converse, and if coal use were phased out except where the CO2 is captured, it would be possible to literally roll back the net human-made climate forcing to levels below those defining critical tipping points.
We must remember, at the same time, that the ability of the principal CO2 sink, the ocean, to soak up human-made emissions is limited and slow (Figure 1). If we burn most of the available coal (Figure 3) without CO2 capture, even with the lowest estimates of available coal reserves, it will be impractical if not impossible to avoid passing climate tipping points with disastrous consequences.