The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has reported that in the southeastern US and eastern China, the general greenhouse warming due to anthropogenic gaseous emissions is dominated by the cooling effect of anthropogenic aerosols. To verify this model prediction in eastern China and southeastern US, we analyzed regional patterns of climate changes at 72 stations in eastern China during 1951- 94 (44 years), and at 52 stations in the southeastern US during 1949-94 (46 years) to detect the fingerprint of aerosol radiative forcing. It was found that the mean rates of change of annual mean daily, maximum, minimum temperatures and diurnal temperature range (DTR) in eastern China were 0.8, -0.2, 1.8, and -2.0 C/100 years respectively, while the mean rates of change of annual mean daily, maximum, minimum temperatures and DTR in the southeastern US were -0.2, -0.6, 0.2, and -0.8 C/100 years, respectively. This indicates that the high rate of increase in annual mean minimum temperature in eastern China results in a slightly warming trend of daily temperature, while the high rate of decrease in annual mean maximum temperature and low rate of increase in annual mean minimum temperature lead to the cooling trend of daily temperature in the southeastern US. We found that the warming from the longwave forcing due to both greenhouse gases and aerosols was completely counteracted by the shortwave aerosol forcing in the southeastern US in the past 46 years. A slightly overall warming trend in eastern China is evident; winters have become milder. This finding is explained by hypothesizing that increasing energy usage during the past 44 years has resulted in more coal and biomass burning, thus increasing the emission of absorbing soot and organic aerosols in eastern China. Such emissions, in addition to well-known Asia dust and greenhouse gases, may be responsible for the winter warming trend in eastern China that we have reported here.
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