Greenhouse Gas Emissions Soar in 2007

Greenhouse gas emissions continue to soar Last year atmospheric carbon dioxide levels increased [ ark | moreark] by 0.6 percent or 19 billion tonnes. Methane which is twenty-five times as damaging [ark] rose by 0.5 percent or 27 million tonnes after a decade of virtually no increase. Rising carbon dioxide concentrations [search], the primary driver of anthropogenic climate change, have now gone from 280 parts per million (ppm) in 1850 to 385 ppm. As we have pointed out, this is problematic given recent indications are 350 ppm is a critical threshold beyond which impacts are permanent and not fully known. Valuable time is being lost and the lack of serious attention to the global climate change planetary emergency is most troubling.

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6 Responses

  1. R. Gates says:

    We've previously talked about the sudden resumption of the rise in methane, which is really far more serious than the well documented rising carbon dioxide.
    Methane is 22 times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Added to that, is the fact that methane is a true “positive feedback” greenhouse gas, as the more it warms the earth, the more of it is released from the large stores of it in the permafrost, peat bogs, and continental shelves. (as methane cathrates).
    While it is noble to try to prevent the rising tide of greenhouses gass, and much can be done with the proper poltical and economic will, I think more importantly, for each of you reading this, is to decide how you will adapt to the rapidly approaching collapse in human civilization.
    Take note of these trends:
    1) Decreasing food supplies, potable fresh water, ocean biodiversity, fish stocks, top soil. Many will go hungry, and already are.
    2) Increasing drought and extreme weather events will only further decimate the food supplies. Ask the Austrialians what they've been through the past 10 years!
    3) Decreasing oil supplies will only add to the 'resource wars' looming ahead.
    4) Increasing government controls as resources dwindle.
    Am I a pessimist? Not at all. Nature will find a way and always does to rebalance excesses. I BELIEVE IN THE ULTIMATE WISDOM OF NATURE. Humanity has been in excess, and a rebalancing period is now due. Remember, when the lion kills the gazelle, it may appear to be a terrible violent event, but it is, in the grand scheme of things, one of the most beautiful and ancient dances that nature has ever created.
    Be a survivor– plan now for what is sure to be a complete toppling of all that you have known.

  2. curt says:

    I think, that there is really no will among top politicians to seriously resolve the problem of CO2 emissions. Of course, the talk and talk and talk, but there is nothing really working out of that. Coal power plants are just opening and opening every day, especially in China.
    In this way, we are soon going to reach 500ppm of CO2.
    Methane is a much more complicated topic and we should focus on CO2 and Methane is going to be at least partly resolved by carbon offsetting and lowering atmospheric/ocean temperatures.

  3. No one that I have seen or heard speak out about the “world problematique” does so with more clarity of vision, coherence of mind and moral courage than R. Gates. For just a moment, please consider my feeble attempt to follow R. Gates' exemplary efforts.
    Deep within me there dwells a keen sense of foreboding as well as a dynamic urgency that results from what I see, already visible on the far horizon, as an ominous and looming, distinctly human-driven predicament, one that could threaten life as we know it and the Earth as a fit place for human habitation.
    Subjecting certain global "overgrowth" activities of the human species to careful, skillful and timely scientific examination appears to be plainly and immediately required of those with expertise in science. Scientists could be unknowingly making a fateful mistake by not reasonably scrutinizing good evidence of human population dynamics and the human overpopulation of Earth.
    Even in the next three to four years, increasing human enterprise associated with economic globalization and continously growing absolute global human population numbers could become patently unsustainable on a planet with the relatively small size and make-up of Earth.
    Scientific investigations related to the huge scale and anticipated growth of human consumption, production and propagation activities worldwide appear to be woefully inadequate. As a consequence, silence has ruled over science.
    Perhaps a sensible case can be made for changing this situation so that where there is now silence, soon there will be open scientific discussions, rigorous scientific inquiries, critiques/interpretations of scientific data, and much-needed advancements of scientific knowledge as they relate to how the world in which we live works as well as to the “placement” of the human species within the natural order of living things.
    If we do not make some changes soon in our unrestrained consumption, untethered production and unbridled propagation behaviors, then I fear for global biodiversity, original wildlife habitats, wilderness spaces, environmental health, the integrity of Earth and its resources….and for the survival of the human species, even to the year 2020.
    Steven Earl Salmony
    AWAREness Campaign on The Human Population, established 2001
    http://sustainabilitysoutheast.org/index.php

  4. This is the debate: are things going to get worse only gradually, say in the next 100 years, or rather rapidly, say in the next 10 years. That could be measured for example by counting the number of countries whose governments are toppled by food riots, or an amount of land surface covered with rising oceans… but I want to add one more point to this discussion.
    If there was, say, a 10% risk that your car would explode the next time you got into it (for reasons I could write about elsewhere), would you say “Aw heck, that is not THAT risky” or would you look for a different car, or maybe walk. Well, in our case, the best scientific minds announced more than 90% chance that we are in deep trouble. And we have another “car” – renewable energy, improved conservation, reduced consumption. These are all available now, and would improve life anyway.
    The questions remaining in my mind focus down to this: will we do enough about it quickly enough, and if not, why not?

  5. MYSELF says:

    This is horrible!!!

  6. R. Gates says:

    Will we do enough about it quickly enough, and if not, why not?
    A very on-target question!
    If you believe some– it's too late to do enough– the tipping point has passed.
    If this is true, the reason we didn't do enough comes down to a matter of the sheer numbers of humans on the planet rapidly overwhelming the ecosystems. We're a victim of our own success. Our population exploded too fast for us to understand soon enough what we were doing.
    In general, it is human nature to only take extreme measures when an extreme event occurs– otherwise, we'll just seek what is most comfortable to us.
    Nature will get extreme with us, and already is from the climate damage, but like a someone sitting on a beach when a tidal wave is approaching, you just can't move fast enough before it swamps you.

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