A P MITRA (1927-2007) In the early 1990s, the US Environmental Protection Agency had come out with a report incriminating Indian rice fields of emitting 38.6 million tonnes of methane per year and

conventional scientific wisdom has it that irrigation works against global warming. But there is evidence now to shake us out of complacency. Scientists from the University of California, Merced,

Data from the satellite-based Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) show that the total atmospheric moisture content over oceans has increased by 0.41 kg/m2 per decade since 1988. Results from current climate models indicate that water vapor increases of this magnitude cannot be explained by climate noise alone. In a formal detection and attribution analysis using the pooled results from 22 different climate models, the simulated “fingerprint” pattern of anthropogenically caused changes in water vapor is identifiable with high statistical confidence in the SSM/I data.

The forecast just seems to get gloomier. Climate change may dramatically increase the risk of flooding across the globe, even far from shorelines, say scientists in the journal Nature. The reason: plants won't soak up as much moisture in a world with more greenhouse pollution.

India sent its first team to the Arctic recently. Two of its members have returned with a variety of samples, some dating back to millions of years. ARCHITA BHATTA spoke with them "We found round

Atmospheric scientist V Ramanathan fromthe Scripps Research Institute, California, USA, says brown clouds heat up the lower atmosphere. He explains to Archita Bhatta how the media misinterpreted

a ring can reveal a lot. Research suggests growth rings in teak tree trunks can reveal climatic changes over the years. The width of the rings are in direct proportion to the rainfall. A study of

Will Indian scientists measure up to the challenge of climate change? I ask this question because of the nature of the science as well as the nature of our scientists.

It is difficult to obtain fossil data from the 10% of Earth's terrestrial surface that is covered by thick glaciers and ice sheets, and hence, knowledge of the paleoenvironments of these regions has remained limited. We show that DNA and amino acids from buried organisms can be recovered from the basal sections of deep ice cores, enabling reconstructions of past flora and fauna.

Climate scientists are used to skeptics taking potshots at their favorite line of evidence for global warming. It comes with the territory. But now a group of mainstream atmospheric scientists is disputing a rising icon of global warming, and researchers are giving some ground.