Study: 14 Practical Steps Can Slow Climate Change

Try ditching wood cook stoves in developing world
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jan 12, 2012 5:24 PM CST
Hillary Clinton tours an exhibition of cook stoves alongside Dr. Kalpana Balakrishnan in India in July. Clinton is a longtime advocate of using clean-burning cook stoves in the developing world.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Just because the world can't agree on a battle plan against carbon dioxide doesn't mean we can't take big strides against climate change, scientists say. In fact, a dozen or so relatively simple steps could cut global warming by nearly 1 degree Fahrenheit by mid-century, a process that could save countless lives and increase crop production, a study in Science asserts. That's because carbon dioxide isn't the only problem: Methane and soot are big contributors to climate change, too, the Washington Post reports.

An international group of 24 researchers found that 14 practical steps would yield big results, including replacing stoves in developing countries that burn wood or dung with cleaner-burning models. Other examples: Farmers in developing countries could end the practice of burning agricultural waste, and landfills could be rigged to prevent escaping methane. "Even if you don’t believe climate change is a problem, these things are worth doing," says a NASA scientist. Trouble is, politicians are in no rush to do so, experts say—and some of the changes may be too expensive for developing countries. (Read more climate change stories.)

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