Science

Greenhouse gas in atmosphere reaches new record again: United Nations agency

Greenhouse gas in atmosphere reaches new record again: United Nations agency”

LONDON-Atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases once again reached new highs in 2018.

"There is no sign of a slowdown, let alone a decline, in greenhouse gases' concentration in the atmosphere - despite all the commitments under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, " Taalas said, urging action to ensure the future of humanity.

'We need to translate the commitments into action and increase the level of ambition for the sake of the future welfare of mankind'. Since 1990, there has been a 43 percent increase in the warming effect on the climate resulted from long-lived greenhouse gases, of which Carbon dioxide accounts for about 80 percent. That's an increase from the global average of 405.5 parts per million in 2017, and there's no sign of the increasing concentrations slowing down.

Degrees of methane - a far more powerful greenhouse gas than Carbon dioxide - and nitric oxide also hit fresh documents, the report stated.

Concentrations of different climate-warming greenhouse gases methane and nitrous oxide also surged by greater quantities in 2018 than within the past decade.

He said the last time our planet experienced comparable concentration of Carbon dioxide was three to five million years ago when the temperature was 2-3 degree Celsius warmer and sea level 10-20 metres higher than now.

Richard Black, the Director of the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit in the United Kingdom, told The Guardian newspaper: "This record level of greenhouse gases should act as a sobering reminder to governments that so far they are collectively reneging on the pledge they made at the Paris summit, of attempting to keep global warming to 1.5C".

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Although we know that we have to reduce emissions now, the WMO predicts that global emissions are not estimated to peak by 2030, let alone by 2020.

Preliminary findings from this study, published during the UN Secretary General's special climate summit last September, indicated that emissions continued to rise during 2018.

The UN Environment Programme's annual "emissions gap" report, due on Tuesday, assesses whether countries' emissions reduction policies are enough.

"We face a stark choice: set in motion the radical transformations we need now, or face the consequences of a planet radically altered by climate change", Andersen said.

Methane (CH4) is the second most important long-lived greenhouse gas and contributes about 17% of radiative forcing.

Methane is now at 259% of the pre-industrial level and the increase seen over the past year was higher than both the previous annual rate and the average over the past 10 years.

Nitrous oxide is emitted from natural and human sources, including from the oceans and from fertiliser-use in farming. Primarily essentially based completely on the WMO, it is now at 123% of the phases that existed in 1750. When these greenhouse gases remain in the atmosphere they are able to trap heat thereby raising temperatures.



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