Clinton’s clean-air coalition

U.S. secretary of state heads effort to reduce short-lived pollutants

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has spearheaded a six-nation pact to reduce the emission of “short-lived” pollutants like black-carbon soot and methane, which dissipate much faster than carbon dioxide.

The Climate and Clean Air Coalition, which includes delegates from Mexico, Canada, Sweden, Bangladesh, Ghana and the United States, is targeting pollutants with a shorter lifespan, as recent studies have shown they are responsible for 30 percent to 40 percent of the effects of global warming, according to the California Progress Report. In addition to contributing to global warming, such pollutants also destroy millions of tons of crops and will result in millions of deaths if left unchecked.

Many of the solutions outlined by Clinton (pictured) in Washington were inspired by the climate-change research of Veerabhadran Ramanathan of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego. Ramanathan’s recommendations included replacing brick kilns used in Asia for cooking with clean-burning stoves, and adding particulate filters to diesel vehicles.