trexler climate and Energy Services, Inc. (TC+ES) was founded as Trexler and Associates, Inc. (TAA) in the year 1991 by Dr. Mark C. Trexler, formerly of the World Resources Institute in Washington, D.C. TC+ES is based in Portland, Oregon. TC+ES was the company that wrote the first contracts for carbon offset, and designed the first methane carbon offset project for a coal mine.
Until 1997, the company was the only one serving the private sector in climate change mitigation services. That same year, TAA worked with Stony-field Farm and its New Hampshire facility, helping the company to become the United States' first "greenhouse gas (GHG) neutral" facility. In 2000, TAA assisted Shaklee Corporation in its application to the Climate Neutral Network for the pilot certification of "Climate Neutral". The Climate Neutral Network awarded these certifications to companies who submitted worthy applications; it was to close down in 2007.
In 2002, TAA became partly run by Japan's Sumitomo Corporation. Sumitomo was established in 1919 as Osaka Hokko Kaisha Ltd., and adopted the English name Sumitomo Corporation in 1978.
Since its founding, TC+ES has worked with over 100 companies, large and small, in over 20 nations. Some of its better-known clients include the Chevron Research and Development Corporation, Fannie Mae, Nike Inc., Stonyfield Farm Inc., The Nature Conservancy, and the U.S. Department of Energy, and other institutions.
Services provided by TC+ES include achieving GHG neutrality, building ghg competitive advantage, customized price curve development, GHG inventory support, internal cost curve development, mitigation portfolio development, power plant siting and offset strategies, project design document (pdd) services, risk and opportunity assessment, and Sarbanes-Oxley compliance.
The company frequently publishes papers and reports regarding environmental strategizing and financial planning for companies interested in incorporating environmental responsibility.
sEE ALso: Department of Energy, U.S.; Global Warming; Greenhouse Effect; Greenhouse Gases; Japan; Nongov ernmental Organizations (NGOs); Oregon; World Resources Institute (WRI).
BIBLIOGRAPHY. Eberhard Jochem, Jayant A. Sathaye, and Daniel Bouille, Society, Behaviour, and Climate Change Mitigation (Advances in Global Change Research) (Springer, 2001); Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Climate Change 2007—Mitigation of Climate Change: Working Group III Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the IPCC (Climate Change 2007) (Cambridge University Press, 2007); Mohammad Yunus, Nandita Singh, and L. J. de Kok, Environmental Stress: Indication, Mitigation, and Eco-conservation (Springer, 2000).
Claudia Winograd University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
THE TRIASSIC PERIOD is the geologic time period that extends from about 251 to 199 million years ago. This is the first period of the Mesozoic era, following the Permian and preceding the Jurassic period. Both the start and end of the Triassic are marked by major extinction events. During the Triassic period, both marine and continental life showed an adaptive radiation, beginning from the starkly impoverished biosphere that followed the Permian-Triassic extinction. The first flowering plants may have evolved during the Triassic, as did the first flying vertebrates, the pterosaurs. The Triassic period is further separated into Early, Middle, and Late Triassic epochs.
During the Triassic period, almost all the Earth's land mass was concentrated into a single supercontinent centered more or less on the equator, known as Pangaea. This supercontinent began to rift during the Triassic period but had not yet separated.
The Triassic climate was generally hot and dry, forming typical red bed sandstones and evaporites. There is no evidence of glaciation at or near either pole. The polar regions were moist and temperate—a climate suitable for reptile-like creatures. Pangaea's continental climate was highly seasonal, with very hot summers and cold winters. It probably had strong, cross-equatorial monsoons. The interior of Pangaea was hot and dry during the Triassic period. This may have been one of the hottest times in Earth history. Rapid global warming at the very end of the Permian may have created a super hothouse world that caused the great Permo-Triassic extinction.
The Permian-Triassic extinction event, also known as the Great Dying, was an extinction event that occurred 251.4 mya (million years ago). This was the Earth's most severe extinction event, with up to 96 percent of all marine species and 70 percent of all terrestrial vertebrate species becoming extinct. There are several proposed mechanisms for the extinction event, including both catastrophic and gradualistic processes, similar to those theorized for the Cretaceous extinction event. The former include large or multiple impact events, increased volcanism, or sudden release of methane hydrates from the seafloor. The latter include sea-level change, anoxia, and increasing aridity. Evidence that an impact event caused the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event has led naturally to speculation that impact may have been the cause of other extinction events, including the Permian-Triassic extinction. Several possible impact craters have been proposed as possible causes of this extinction event, including the Bedout structure off the northwest coast of Australia and the so-called Wilkes Land crater of east Antarctica. In each of these cases, the idea that an impact was responsible has not been proven and has been widely criticized. If impact was a major cause of this extinction event, it is possible or even likely that the crater no longer exists. Seventy percent of the Earth''s surface is
sea, so an asteroid or comet fragment is over twice as likely to hit sea as to hit land. There is evidence that the oceans became anoxic toward the end of the Permian. There was a noticeable and rapid onset of anoxic deposition in marine sediments around east Greenland near the end of the Permian. The most likely causes of the global warming that drove the anoxic event were a severe anoxic event at the end of the Permian, causing sulphate-reducing bacteria to dominate the oceanic ecosystems and causing massive emissions of hydrogen sulfide, which poisoned plant and animal life on both land and sea. These massive emissions of hydrogen would have severely weakened the ozone layer, exposing much of the life that remained to fatal levels of ultraviolet radiation.
Pangaea's formation would also have altered both oceanic circulation and atmospheric weather patterns, creating seasonal monsoons near the coasts and an arid climate in the vast continental interior. Marine life suffered very high but not catastrophic rates of extinction after the formation of Pangaea— rates almost as high as in some of the Big Five mass extinctions. The formation of Pangaea seems not to have caused a significant rise in extinction levels on land, and in fact, most of the advance of The-rapsids and the increase in their diversity seems to have occurred in the late Permian, after Pangaea was almost complete. Thus it seems likely that Pangaea initiated a long period of severe marine extinctions but was not directly responsible for the Great Dying and the end of the Permian.
The possible causes, which are supported by strong evidence, appear to describe a sequence of catastrophes, each one worse than the previous. The resultant global warming may have caused perhaps the most severe anoxic event in the oceans' history. The oceans became so anoxic that anaerobic sulphur-reducing organisms dominated their chemistry.
sEE ALso: Global Warming; Paleoclimates.
BIBLioGRAPHY. D. Beerling, "CO2 and the End-Triassic Mass Extinction," Nature (v.24, 2002); R.A. Kerr, "Paleontology: Biggest Extinction Hit Land and Sea," Science (v.289, 2000); Triassic Period, www.ucmp.berkeley.edu (cited May 2007).
Fernando Herrera University of California, San Diego
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