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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Black carbon, the soot produced by burning fossil fuels and biomass, is a more potent atmospheric pollutant than previously thought, according to a four-year international study released on Tuesday.

Emitted by diesel engines, brick kilns and wood-fired cookstoves, black carbon is second only to carbon dioxide as the most powerful climate pollutant, according to the study published in the Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres.

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