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Asian air pollution to intensify Pacific storms

Posted on Saturday, March 10 2007 @ 13:02:17 CET by

Scientists believe that increasing emissions of sulfur dioxide and soot spewed out by Asian power stations are causing Pacific storms to intensify in Winters:
The pollution is fed into the Pacific storm track, the typical southwest to northeast path that systems take in the winter over the northern part of that ocean. Once over the ocean, raindrops form around the pollutants, favoring a larger buildup of moisture in clouds before it rains, researchers said.

The emissions also raise warming effects in the Arctic because more soot is carried northward and deposited on snow and ice, where it reduces the reflectivity of the surface and raises absorption of the sun's warmth. The findings have the potential to change weather patterns globally, researchers said.

The increased moisture ``basically will feed up the storm track, making the storms stronger, deeper, and more energetic,'' said and study leader Renyi Zhang, a researcher at Texas A&M University in College Station, in a telephone interview.

``Those storms transfer heat from the south to the north,'' Zhang said. ``If you have a more energetic storm track, you're going to transfer more heat to the polar regions.''



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