Nova: Season 33, Episode 16

Dimming the Sun (18 Apr. 2006)

TV Episode  -  Documentary | Biography
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 18 users  
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The scientific community took some time to accept the evidence that the level of sunlight reaching the Earth's surface had declined in recent decades because, from a narrow minded ... See full summary »

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The scientific community took some time to accept the evidence that the level of sunlight reaching the Earth's surface had declined in recent decades because, from a narrow minded perspective, it seemed to contradict the phenomenon of global warming. Nova follows the scientists working to find the cause of global dimming but the emphasis of the program is a stern warning about global worming. Written by David Foss

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Complex Issue
9 August 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This episode shows that global warming is not a simple issue. Clouds increase the planet's albedo causing measurable temperature drops but greenhouse gases prevent heat from escaping to space. We're losing important carbon sinks like the Amazon rain forest to development. Over the past 50 million years the planet has been cooling as CO2 levels have gradually fallen. There have been exacerbating events like the explosion of Mount Toba 65,000 years ago. Now with the industrial dawn of humanity that 50 million year cooling trend has reversed big-time ! Ironically about 2 billion years after the planet's formation and then again between 600 and 700 million years ago our planet froze over completely effectively decoupling the atmosphere from the oceans. What saved our planet from these 30 million year snowball events was CO2 from volcanic activity. This episode is not junk science or left wing propaganda. We do have something to worry about and the most sobering thought of all is it may already be too late to save ourselves from what's coming.


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