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NewsThe highest level of carbon dioxide in the air in 4 million years

The highest level of carbon dioxide in the air in 4 million years

Carbon dioxide, the gas that traps heat in Earth’s atmosphere, is reaching record highs during the annual spring peak, jumping at one of the fastest rates on record, officials said Monday.

Carbon dioxide in the air is now at its highest level in over 4 million years, due to the burning of oil, coal and gas.

Scientists said the last time the air witnessed the spread of similar amounts, the earth was the site of the spread of greenhouse gases that humans could not inhabit, before human civilization took hold. take root.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that the level of carbon dioxide measured last May in Hawaii averaged 424 parts per million.

That’s 3 parts per million higher than the May average of last year and 51% higher than pre-industrial levels of 280 parts per million.

It is one of the largest recorded annual increases in carbon dioxide levels from May to May, after only 2016 and 2019, which saw jumps of 3.7 and 3.4 parts per million, respectively.

“To me, as an atmospheric scientist, this trend is very concerning,” said Arlene Andrews, head of the Carbon Cycle Division of NOAA’s Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Group. “It’s not just that carbon dioxide continues to rise despite efforts to start reducing emissions, but it’s rising faster than it was 10 or 20 years ago.”

Arlen added that emissions were increasing at perhaps 1 part per million per year, but now they are increasing at two or even three times that rate, depending on whether El Niño occurs or not.

“The continued rise in carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere is very concerning, if not completely predictable,” said Kim Cobb, a Brown University climatologist who was not part of the research team, according to the report. Associated Press.

Carbon dioxide levels rise so that they are higher each year than the year before.

However, there is a seasonal cycle in which carbon dioxide reaches its highest saturation point in May.

This is because two-thirds of the world’s land is in the northern hemisphere and plants absorb carbon dioxide from the air, so carbon dioxide prevalence levels drop in late spring and summer. before starting to rise again in November, says Arlene Andrews.

Andrews added that carbon dioxide levels increase more during El Niño climate cycles because it is drier in the northern hemisphere, noting that an El Niño phenomenon is currently underway and an increase in 3 parts per million carbon dioxide levels may be an indication of the onset of the El Niño phenomenon.

Andrews says there are two main ways to track greenhouse gases, or greenhouse gases.

One is to watch what comes out of smokestacks and tailpipes, but almost half of that amount is absorbed by the oceans and land.

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Arab Desk
Arab Desk
The Eastern Herald’s Arab Desk validates the stories published under this byline. That includes editorials, news stories, letters to the editor, and multimedia features on easternherald.com.

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