Thursday, May 26, 2022

Carbon dioxide passes 420 ppm, another greenhouse gas record

I concluded yesterday's NOAA predicts another above average hurricane season for 2022 by telling my readers "I should write about the greenhouse gas levels recorded this spring. Stay tuned." That turned out to be timely, as WFLA News Channel 8 uploaded Carbon Dioxide Levels hit new record high causing climate change the day I wrote that.

I'm recycling the comment I left on this video as a reaction.
I was looking for Jeff Berardelli to deliver this news and here he is at WFLA instead of CBS News. Just seeing him on this channel was enough to get me to subscribe to its YouTube channel. Hi, Jeff, from one of your fans!
I featured Berardelli in last year's version of this post, Carbon dioxide at levels not seen for 3.6 million years despite economic slowdown from pandemic, so I really was hoping I'd see him report on the topic again. I'm glad I found him just when I needed him.

Since WFLA didn't include a video description beyond repeating the title, I'm going to quote The Daily Mail, which is read by the wives of the people who run the U.K. and reported Carbon Dioxide Levels hit new record high causing climate change earlier this month.*
Earth's carbon dioxide levels have hit the highest recorded level in human history, new data shows.

For the first time on record, monthly average carbon dioxide (CO2) levels exceeded 420 parts per million (ppm) in April, their highest peak since accurate measurements began 64 years ago.

They even reached 421.33 ppm on one day last week, as greenhouse gas emissions continue to soar around the world.
The day before yesterday, the CO2 concentration measured by weather balloon over Hawaii reached 421.50 ppm, another record.

That's not all. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) of the United Nations uploaded The WMO State of the Global Climate in 2021 - English last week.

Four key climate change indicators – greenhouse gas concentrations, sea level rise, ocean heat and ocean acidification – set new records in 2021. This is yet another clear sign that human activities are causing planetary scale changes on land, in the ocean, [and in the atmosphere.]

That was about the very recent past. The WMO looked to the future in the Global Annual to Decadal Climate Update - English - May 2022.

There is a 50:50 chance of the annual average global temperature temporarily reaching 1.5 °C above the pre-industrial level for at least one of the next five years – and the likelihood is increasing with time, according to a new climate[...]
This scares me, but doesn't surprise me, as I wrote in SciShow summarizes the IPCC roadmap to fix climate change.
While it's theoretically possible that we can follow this plan and Japan, South Korea, and the U.S. federal government are at least shooting to be carbon neutral by 2050, I think it's more likely that the world as a whole will follow China's efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. That involves greenhouse gas emissions peaking by 2030 and net zero by 2060. That won't keep us below 1.5oC above the pre-industrial average, but it might just be enough to keep us below 2oC of warming above that same benchmark. I hope that's good enough. At least it won't be Eocene levels of warming — I hope.
It's bad enough that we're on track for Pliocene temperatures at current rates of warming. Welcome to the 400 ppm world.

*Liberals sometimes call The Daily Mail "The Daily Fail" because of its perceived conservative social, economic, and political stances, but I have found it has decent science reporting, even if it serves the paper's tendencies to scare its readers. At least it's frightening them with something real and factual. Just the same, I may explore the nickname and perception later. Stay tuned.

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