Global Dimming

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Ratings: 8.92/10 from 24 users.

Storyline

Global DimmingSince measurements began in the 1950s, scientists have discovered that there has been a decline of sunlight reaching the Earth; they called it global dimming.

But according to a paper published in the journal Science, the dimming did not continue into the 1990s and indeed since the 1980s scientists have observed a widespread brightening. What caused the dimming to go down and what effect will it have, if any, on climate change?

The film explores the theory that pollution is shielding the oceans from the full power of the Sun, and disrupting the pattern of the world-s rainfall. There is evidence that dimming caused the droughts in sub-Saharan Africa which claimed hundreds of thousands of lives in the 1970s and 1980s.

It reveals that we may have grossly underestimated the speed at which our climate is changing. At its heart is a deadly new phenomenon. One that until very recently scientists refused to believe even existed. Alarmingly the dimming continues today, and Asia, home to half the world-s population is currently under threat.

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Comments and User Reviews

  • V

    Maybe this is what happened to the Venusian humanoids one billion years ago O.0.

  • orhan

    I know that US has been doing many unpublished projects to reduce the climate change effect since 50s. My personal opinion is they stopped the warming but they sacraficed some lands like Africa and half of the Asia but it will not be enough to save the world I guess. Look at the new hollywood projects many of them are all about global disusters and this is not just individual films they prepare us to some possible consequenses. Global financial crise? Having so little renewable energy supply which is really less then they predicted before? Look at the big picture and see that life in earth is runing out and NASA is not a organisation to biring some damn rocks from Mars they try to find the best habitable place to make human colonies to keep human race.

  • Karen

    Greeenhouse gases are a big problem.

  • chadlen

    what about H.A.A.R.P. ?

  • Brian Cohen

    I cant believe more people havent noticed this.ANYTIME there is a clear blue sky in the morning,within hours there will be a BARRAGE of planes spraying long vapor trails into the sky. Some of these planes leave normal contrails,but many of them leave GIGANTIC trails behind them THAT DO NOT DISPERSE OR EVAPORATE.
    The ones that DONT disperse tend to spread out and FORM a "dirty grayish/silvery haze" that blocks out the sunlight. The immediate effect is a lowering of the temperatures,and the second effect is precipatation the next day.
    This IS happening.Dont take my word for it.Put your cell phone down,urn your tv and computer off and look out the window once in awile!
    Now as for those of you that have seen it,many of you are wondering"WTF?"
    I personally have heard many theories about these trails from those that are aware that this is happening,and while I'm sure there is a potential for many insidious purposes,I think that the reason that makes the most sense to me is that we DO have a serious CO2 problem,and that the we HAVE to make these clouds to avoid a drastic rise in temperature!
    Clouds block sunlight---And these planes ARE making clouds--LOTS of clouds.
    AND the're doing it everywhere,NOT just over big cities.THAT tells me that we have a serious problem.
    BTW,To all the "Deniers" out there,Remember this;
    No matter what BS you hear,the fact is that CO2 DOES increase the "greenhouse effect",and the earth has a LOT more CO2 now BECAUSE OF US.
    Also,does anyone REALLY believe that all these factories belching fumes into the air NON STOP every day,year after year are NOT changing the atmosphere? OEYYYY!
    Come on folks,step up to the plate and be honest.
    We can And HAVE changed the earths climate and ecological systems.We've polluted waterways,cut down forests---and we've changed the atmosphere.PERIOD.
    And a LOT of the countries of the world are burning fossil fuels at an ever increasing rate.This CO2 is having the effect of thickening the atmosphere and HOLDING IN the infra red radiation WHICH MAKES THINGS HEAT UP.
    Sadly,some of you are choosing to believe this isnt happening,and that "its just a scam that Al Gore made up".
    Well,youre 1/2 right.Al Gore IS a con man,and he IS trying to make $$ off this.
    BUT,global warming IS happening.And as usual,we,the public are being offered only 2 choices to this crisis,BOTH of which are false!
    The first choice is to completely deny it is happening.
    The 2nd choice we are being given is to admit its happening,but to accept a "Carbon tax" that would crush the small businesses of the world,a "Cap and trade" tax that would be a completely crippling tax on the poor and middle classes.
    BTW--- BOTH are false choices,because neither deal with the ROOT of the problem---the burning of FOSSIL FUELS.
    "Cap and trade"people are on the right side scientifically,but they do NOT make any realistic plan to move away from oil---Only to PUNISH THOSE WHO USE IT.
    And guess what? The rich people will be able to afford these taxes,and the businesses will just push the costs onto the consumer. The poor and ever shrinking middle class will NOT.
    So whats the obvious solution?
    Well,The obvious solution is to stop burning fossil fuels-----Right?
    Well, hold up; Thats not so easy,IS IT??
    Think about it! EVERYTHING in our economy and our technology relies on the burning of oil.
    If you drive a car,use heat in your home or electricity,fertilizer for crops,cosmetics---well,are YOU ready to turn off/reduce your usage of these things?
    Most of us arent. Not even a LITTLE.

    In fact,most of us in the States and the western countres are USING MORE,and the rest of the world wants to be JUST LIKE US.
    Now many would argue that with solar,wind,geo thermal etc,we could gradually get off oil.
    But theres one group of people that will have the toughest time of all getting "Off oil"(Besides the oil companies)
    Who am I talking about? THE MILITARY.

    No Oil=No military!
    Missiles,rockets,tanks,trucks,jets,tankers---ALL need OIL to work.Cutting back on oil to "save the planet" is not viable for the military.You CANT fly a B-52 with solar power!
    You cant move a huge tanker thru the water with "wind power".
    No---besides having to rebuild and renergize our factories homes and cars,we'd have to rebuild our ENTIRE military from scratch.
    And THATS why these planes are up there spraying clouds.
    MY complaint is the dishonesty in which this issue is being presented.I am TIRED of being lied to and of bing presented with 2 "1/2 choices".
    Give it to me STRAIGHT DOCTAAA--- I can take it.

  • Phil

    Docs like this are dangerous, there is no absolute scientific proof and they are scare mongering with shots of Ethiopia and lines to the affect of 'you ain't seen nothing yet. Should be banned, absolute rubbish.

  • alex

    or the sun would penetrate, evaporate the water and clouds would be once more the norm. More sun more evaporation more clouds.

  • ryan g

    brian... first thing, are you from texas????? you practically copied al gore's movie!! haha
    secondly when you come up with a solution to this problem that most of us know about.. fill us in!!!
    maybe next time you can write a book and publish it!
    so glad i live in n.l. and not the u.s.a

    p.s the military is making new weapons that do not require fuel.

    1. is a laser beam that when you get close enough it will feel like your skin is on fire!

    2. another laser that sweeps across vast distance's and blinds the enemy for a few days (apparently)
    so before you think you know everything... do some research!!

  • Carl

    I'm confused- i understand both global dimming and its partner in crime global warming but this program suggests that a rise in temperature would melt the greenland ice,if that were to happen wouldn't all that fresh water turn slow down the gulg conveyor belt brinnigin temperatures down in the northern hemisphere? Would all three work alongside each other with an increase in temp?

  • Carl

    p.s

    please excuse my awful spelling... :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001096939070 Joel Christopher Du Bois

    i was not too impressed with this doc - then i read the comments below - to me it seamed like there was repeated info in the doc about the energy crisis and all that other finite shit on earth and not enough depth - i did not watch all the way through as i was not too impressed with the hippy house builders who to me were kinda out of touch ... with reality -

  • Brian

    At one time, I thought the internet would save the world. Now, I see that the spread of these totally ridiculous conspiracy theories and the id**ts it influences, has moved from out of control to dangerous.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4AUDABBORWFZSE6ZWVDJ4HHBP4 david

    CO2 makes up only 0.54% of the earth's atmosphere. Not a driver of anything. Volcanoes spew out more CO2 than all man's industrial processes combined. Try water vapor, it is a huge source greenhouse gas.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1449036614 DeeJay Pickles

    Water vapor?? evidence of this please

  • DReadrush

    Still stymied by the intellectual dark-age we seem to ‘hope’ to remain in, and the knee-jerk negativity of so many. Yes, dimming is occurring, particularly recent decades. Yes, its effects will be felt and it impact on climate and water. Read Stanhill and Cohen (S. Agric. For. Met. 107, 255–278, 2001) for an older review. More recent studies/reviews worthy of a perusal include some in Nature (yep, a pretty solid journal ….), such as Gedney et al. (Nature 439: 835-838, 2006; including pro-con commentary) regarding the impact of this, together with reduced plant transpiration due to CO2-induced stomatal closure (plants self-regulate according to CO2) on water runoff and freshwater availability; Mercado et al. (Nature 458: 1014-1017, 2009) regarding dimming, carbon emissions and aerosols; or Ramanathan and Carmichael (Nature Geoscience 1, 221 – 227, 2008) on relevance of airborne black carbon to global and regional climate. More recently a multi-institutional detailed study from scientists from Estonia, Ukraine, Russia and USA confirms a downward trend in atmospheric transparency since WW2, together with details of effects of volcanic, human and other factors over longer periods (Ohvril et al. Journal Of Geophysical Research 114: D00D12, 2009).

    Perhaps rather than knee-jerk irritation at admittedly alarmist approaches of the media (though arguably an alarming scenario worth consideration – precautionary principles and all that), it is certainly worth following up on peer-reviewed science and views (or are counter-conspiracists suggesting these outlets are conspiracy publications?).

    On the other hand, it’s a lot easier to remain ill-informed and simply refuse education, go about our selfish insular lives. It’s only a problem for our kids and their offspring after all …..

  • DReadrush

    And once again (we re-invent the wheel) ..... water vapor is the most significant of greenhouse gases, followed by CO2 (impacts are based on individual gas chemical properties together with atmospheric lifetime and % concentration). Water vapour contributes 35-70% of greenhouse effects, CO2 ~10-25%, and methane ~5-10%, with others also contributing to a lesser extent. These impacts are due to combined absorbance properties in the IR range, airborne lifetimes and relative concentrations (water vapor is relatively high - low over deserts to ~4% over oceans). In terms of content, CO2 is ~0.04% by volume, and rising measurably (see the data of those weather mongers at the Mauna Loa Observatory for the small seasonal cycling and recent net rises). Methane is low but more potent as a greenhouse gas, yett may rise with permafrost melting and bubbling from sub-ocean storage. Check the ‘nefarious’ IPCC site for its listing of gases and effects if the texts are too difficult.

    To put the ominous volcanic CO2 emissions into perspective, volcanolgists estimate volcanoes currently release 200 million tonnes of CO2 annually. Relative to a 50 billion tons anthropogenic output of CO2 per annum, volcanoes generate less than 0.5% of the human derived output. Nope, the prob ain’t the volcanoes.

  • bud oracle

    The problem is we think in linear terms and these natural systems are extremely complex. View Michael Crichton's talk to the Smithsonian Institute "Fear complexity and public policy"

  • Harekrishna Silk

    Now the Global Warming got another name to deal with Illuminati idea! great work! all the scientist are talking about Global Warming only? anyway watch this just like a modern Hollywood documentary!!

  • kaldi

    Make 150 climate models with 100 change factors that can change the outcome significantly. The models that have the most catastrophic changes in them will be the most interesting and will be the one that are published.

    Sorry people, this and the global warming is one of the biggest political
    swindle of the 2100 century.

    With best regards from Iceland :)

  • JUAN COLON

    Clean up ur SH*T and start over dont pile up the SH*T u already got going on switch to solar and wind powerd things and build creative things like world wide cooling units or huge domed cities with ac units for hospitable enviroments you got technology and money politics suk my balls and take the steps toward making everyday peoples lives or the general populations lives more normal nobody needs special treatment everyone just wants 2 live normally without super floods and droughts just do the work nd' stop being lazy greedy poloticians

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WU2NI2TTRN65GVQ5ZR7OGL3B7E TomR

    Did he take into account the mass amounts of smoke sent into the atmosphere from the 911 world trade center towers?

  • LIVEFROMLIMBO

    global warming is a scam.
    why are polar ice caps on mars melting? too many cars? i don't think so.
    there is an increase in temperature all over our solar system, and it is more likely caused by the sun itself. anyone trying to get a dollar out of this natural occurrence is banking on the average person not thinking about it enough or not thinking about it at all.

  • Chris Johanson

    .a

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bornfor-Greaterthings/100002907312933 Bornfor Greaterthings

    Your idea of Polar ice cap melting in Mars is based on single study by a single organisation.By just citing this one example we cannot neglect the fact that our climate is changing very fast.We don't need rocket science for this we are experiencing it. Compare climate of now with that of your childhood... do you think Sun did it (the same group says sun will be there for another few billion years).Do you think sun changed so much.

  • LIVEFROMLIMBO

    yes. why cannot the sun be doing it? its doing it across the solar system. yes the weather has changed since i was a kid, but everything changes. there is also more activity now with solar storms and such- they say it will effect our electronics.
    why is it so hard to believe, do you trust the people in control that much?
    have u ever wondered what the first car was? it was electric, the electric car has been around for 100 years. if industry or government really cared about so called "global warming" our lives would have already changed.
    it is totally possible for changes on the sun, did u think it would last forever anyway? all stars die- they too have life cycle.
    civilization has come and gone on earth many times before, and will come and go in the future as well.

    p.s. a volcanic eruption will put more carbon in the air than any of us can. they are trying to blame "us", (me and you) for the state of the world when its mostly their doing (the pollution) and/or it could all just be a natural happening in the life cycle or earth.

  • LIVEFROMLIMBO

    and yes i agree that it is very difficult to find good information on this topic- for obvious reasons i guess. its difficult to find good information period.

  • tomregit

    From where do you get this bogus information. Do you believe everything you read without question?
    The U.S. Geological survey states that human activity produces about 135 times as much co2 than volcanoes annually.
    Do a smattering of research and some critical thinking, or stay in limbo.

  • LIVEFROMLIMBO

    is that on average? over how long? in years where there are less volcanoes? more?
    now lets say u and the US Geos are correct?
    out of that 135 times more co2 than volcanoes, how much of that is your average person, say you or me?
    the lion's share of it would come from industry no? or do u suppose it comes from average people like you or me?

    and whats this...a carbon tax?
    ...no i have to pay 10 cents for a plastic bag at the grocery store?
    ...or i can jus buy those cloth bags and reuse them, available for purchase for only 3 dollars? made in china?
    they are trying to tell us that WE, the average person, is the problem/ reason for global warming.

    you don't need much critical thinking when its all right in front of you...well maybe YOU do- i fear you may already be too smart.

    p.s. do you doubt that you are in Limbo as well?
    if Global Warming comes to get ya, is your life not in limbo?

  • tomregit

    I merely pointed out the fact that the information you enlightened us with is absolutely false. I said nothing about global warming, carbon tax, plastic bags, "average people", China, or anything else you mention in your disjointed, rambling reply.

  • Michael Goodbaum

    Conflicts with writings from the 70s on the topic of the sub sahara which found there was a man made link, namely agriculture practiced poorly.

    The Sahara became a pure desert due to farming of cotton there, which used extensive amounts of fertilizer and pesticide. Soil was washed away without generating new soil or bringing back nutrients to the ground. This monoculture caused desert conditions which quickly spread at the turn of the 20th century.

  • http://www.facebook.com/viper42072 Richard Smith

    global dimming is caused by the Geo-engineering, and your carbon tax comes right from the agenda 21 by the U.N.

  • bumpercrop

    I would say it is a problem for all of us right now. We are having more violent storms, droughts, and wildfires due to climate change and it is costing billions. It is normalcy bias at work.

  • bumpercrop

    The truth is scary enough. Why do we have to create alternates?