Environmental Disaster Is Not All Bad, Apparently

Illustration for article titled Environmental Disaster Is Not All Bad, Apparently

Sure, lack of sunlight may be the kind of things to plunge the world into some dystopian hell ruled by vampires and sexy cyborg killers in the movies, but scientists are beginning to think of the upsides to smog blocking out the sun in the real world. The first one they've found? The reduction of the effects of global warming.

India is getting about 5% less sunlight than it did 20 years ago, according to a study by Padma Kumari and colleagues at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology in Pune. They studied data from the India Meteorological Department, measuring differences in solar radiation at 12 stations across India between 1981 and 2004.

They found that the amount of solar radiation reaching India's land mass dropped on average by 0.86 watts per square metre each year. The decrease was greater during the 1990s than the 1980s, and on average corresponded to a 5% drop in sunshine over the two decades.

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So, on the one hand, lack of sunlight is a sign of the ruination of the environment by mankind leading to the destruction of our planet. But on the other hand, at least we won't get skin cancer so easily.

Well, from the sun, at least.

Pollution is dimming India's Sunshine [New Scientist]

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