Record Greenhouse Gases Continue to Accumulate in the Atmosphere, by Henry Auer

Sep 24th, 2014 | By | Category: Climate Change

We experience weather at the local or regional level. Here, one person may be in a heavy rainstorm, while there, somewhere else in the world, another could be in an uncomfortable heat wave. Daily or weekly weather, however, is not the same as long-term regional or global climate; climate relates to yearly, multi-year, and even decade-long behavior.

The world’s climate is affected by the atmospheric accumulation of greenhouse gases (GHGs), which continued unabated during 2013. GHGs in the atmosphere preferentially retain heat radiating from the earth’s surface and prevent its escape to space.

Record High Levels of Carbon Dioxide. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO), an agency of the United Nations, reported recently that the global average concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2), a major GHG, reached a record level of 396 parts per million (ppm; volume of CO2 gas in 1 million volumes of air) in 2013 …

Atmospheric concentration of CO2 in ppm, reported monthly from 1984 to the present.

Source: WMO;

The WMO evaluates observations gathered from many land-based stations, ship-based observatories and aircraft. The increase in CO2 from 2012, 2.9 ppm, was the largest yearly change since 1984. The present CO2 concentration is 42% higher than that before the industrial revolution began during the century between 1750 and 1850. The dramatic increase in CO2 emissions in the last 160 years, coinciding with the increasing role that fossil fuels have played in powering the world’s economic growth during that period …

… Higher worldwide temperatures are leading to more, and more extreme, climate and weather events … Human health is likewise significantly harmed, as air quality is degraded and as warmer conditions make it easier for disease-bearing microorganisms to flourish and infect the population.

This is an excerpt of the original article by Henry Auer. For the complete story, visit Henry’s global warming blog: Global Warming Blog by Henry Auer: Record Greenhouse Gases Continue to Accumulate in the Atmosphere.

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