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Record | Climate Impacts

Carbon dioxide levels grew at record pace in 2016, U.N. says


Reuters
News Agency

Tuesday, October 31, 2017, 13:11 - The amount of carbon dioxide in the earth's atmosphere grew at record rate in 2016 to a level not seen for millions of years, potentially fuelling a 20-metre (66-feet) rise in sea levels  and adding 3 degrees to temperatures, the United Nations said on Monday (October 30).

Atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2), the main man-made greenhouse gas, hit 403.3 parts per million (ppm), up from 400.0 in 2015, the U.N. World Meteorological Organization said in its annual Greenhouse Gas Bulletin. 

That growth rate was 50 percent faster than the average over the past decade, driving CO2 levels 45 percent above pre-industrial levels and further outside the range of 180-280 ppm seen in recent cycles of ice ages and warmer periods.


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Data source: Monthly measurements (average seasonal cycle removed). Credit: NOAA

The amount of carbon dioxide in the earth's atmosphere grew at record rate in 2016 to a level not seen for millions of years, potentially fuelling a 20-metre rise in sea levels and adding 3 degrees to temperatures, the United Nations said on Monday (October 30).

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Atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2), the main man-made greenhouse gas, hit 403.3 parts per million (ppm), up from 400.0 in 2015, the U.N. World Meteorological Organization said in its annual Greenhouse Gas Bulletin.

That growth rate was 50 percent faster than the average over the past decade, driving CO2 levels 45 percent above pre-industrial levels and further outside the range of 180-280 ppm seen in recent cycles of ice ages and warmer periods.

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