Highest Greenhouse Gas Levels In Over 3 Million Years!
Greenhouse gases emitted by human activity is the leading cause of global warming and climate change. We are seeing today’s levels surpassing scientists' predictions and continue to rise. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) developed the Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI) to track the “rate at which we are driving global warming” (Stein,2021). The AGGI tracks 20 different gasses in our atmosphere, the most concerning being carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide. In 1990 the AGGI for the world was at 1 and set as a baseline for future assessments. Today’s levels of greenhouse gases have reached 1.49 trapping nearly 50% more heat since 1990.
What’s Causing These Record Numbers?
The most abundant gas in the AGGI leading to majority of the growth seen in greenhouse gas levels is carbon dioxide. In 2021 alone, an estimated 36 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide was emitted into our atmosphere, a substantial amount of which will persist for thousands of years. The excessive use of fossil fuels in heating, electricity, and vehicle use accounted for 87% of the carbon dioxide emitted annually. This has caused today's average carbon dioxide atmospheric levels to reach an astonishing 414.7 parts per million (PPM). Numbers like these have not been seen since the Mid-Pliocene Warm Period 3.6 million years ago, when the average temperature at that time was 7 degrees Celsius, and sea level was 78 feet higher than today.
Following carbon dioxide on the AGGI come methane and nitrous oxide. These human-emitted gases are growing exponentially month by month trapping supplementary heat in the atmosphere. They are generally emitted through the growing agriculture industry via fertilizer or livestock. Although these gasses are not as abundant as carbon dioxide, they trap and hold more than double the heat that contributes to global warming.
What can we do?
These three greenhouse gasses make up about 96% of the excess heat trapped in our atmosphere since 1990. The effects are being seen all over the world through record heat waves, sea levels rising, and severe storms. The global community will have to work together to move away from non-renewable resources and reduce our emissions, primarily carbon dioxide. Borrum Energy solutions can assist in reducing your reliance on diesel and natural gas-based energy with the Anorra and Anorra plus microgeneration wind turbines. To find out more, please visit Borrum Energy Solutions.