Atmospheric carbon dioxide levels measured at Hawai’i’s Mauna Loa Observatory breached 420 parts per million (ppm) in April for the first time in human history.
Considered the gold standard for accurate measurements of atmospheric CO2, the new measurements were released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), reports the Independent.
The NOAA data release shows CO2 levels hitting 420.23 ppm in April, eight years after they breached 400 ppm (400.2 ppm) in May, 2013.
The coldest location on the planet has experienced an episode of warm weather this week unlike any ever observed, with temperatures over the eastern Antarctic ice sheet soaring 50 to 90 degrees above normal. The warmth has smashed records and shocked scientists.
“This event is completely unprecedented and upended our expectations about the Antarctic climate system,” said Jonathan Wille, a researcher studying polar meteorology at Université Grenoble Alpes in France, in an email.
“Antarctic climatology has been rewritten,” tweeted Stefano Di Battista, a researcher who has published studies on Antarctic temperatures. He added that such temperature anomalies would have been considered “impossible” and “unthinkable” before they actually occurred.
March 20, 2022 – the Guardian
Antarctic ice shelf nearly the size of Los Angeles collapsed as temperatures soared to 40 above normal
March 25, 2022 – By Rachel Ramirez and Hafsa Khalil – CNN
Dec 13, 2021 – Paul Voosen – Science
Breakup of the Thwaites eastern shelf will ramp up sea level rise
An alarming crackup has begun at the foot of Antarctica’s vulnerable Thwaites Glacier, whose meltwater is already responsible for about 4% of global sea level rise. An ice sheet the size of Florida, Thwaites ends its slide into the ocean as a floating ledge of ice 45 kilometers wide.
Sept 9, 2021 – George Monbiot – the Guardian
If there’s one thing we know about climate breakdown, it’s that it will not be linear, smooth or gradual. Just as one continental plate might push beneath another in sudden fits and starts, causing periodic earthquakes and tsunamis, our atmospheric systems will absorb the stress for a while, then suddenly shift. Yet, everywhere, the programmes designed to avert it are linear, smooth and gradual.
Extreme, record-breaking weather is happening around the world. Thousand-year floods are drowning Europe and Asia, and unprecedented heat and drought have afflicted western North America, leading to historically low reservoirs and sparking wildfires that are destroying towns and degrading air quality for thousands of miles.
July 7, 2021 – the Energy Mix
Less than a week after a deadly “heat dome” devastated western Canada and the U.S. Pacific Northwest and burned Lytton, B.C. to the ground, an international science team is reporting that the blistering conditions would have been “virtually impossible” without climate change.
“Climate change, caused by greenhouse gas emissions, made the heat wave at least 150 times more likely to happen,” the World Weather Attribution Network said in a release.
JUNE 6, 2021 – the Energy Mix
New research is raising the alarm over a possible “domino effect” that could cause separate but interconnected climate systems to reach their tipping points at lower temperatures than previously estimated.
“In the next years or decades, we might be committing future generations to really severe consequences,” Ricarda Winkelmann.
“The Earth will get as warm as we make it, which means we’re the ones [that must] stop it,” Anders Levermann.
Collapse of West Antarctic Ice Sheet May Be Worse Than Scientists Predicted
May 21, 2021 – Olivia Rosane – Treehugger
It has been a long-cited statistic that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet contains enough ice to contribute around 10.8 feet to global sea-level rise.1
Now, a new study has found that it could raise water levels even higher than that—by as much as 3.2 feet or 30%—all because of a geological process that had previously been discounted.
The study, published in Science Advances late last month, focused on how the behavior of the bedrock beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) would impact its contribution to sea-level rise. Read more here
Atmospheric CO2 now hitting 50% higher than pre-industrial levels
the Carbon Brief – GUEST POSTS , 16 March 2021
…Records derived from ice core measurements show that the average global CO2 concentration in the atmosphere for 1750 to 1800 was around 278ppm. This is the value that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) used as the pre-industrial baseline for CO2 in its fifth assessment report (pdf), published in 2013-14.
See what the CO2 concentration at the Mauna Loa observatory in Hawaii is today- here.
Atlantic Ocean circulation at weakest in a millennium, say scientists
Fiona Harvey – Environment correspondent – the Guardian – Fri 26 Feb 2021
Further weakening of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) could result in more storms battering the UK, more intense winters and an increase in damaging heatwaves and droughts across Europe. A weakened Gulf Stream would also raise sea levels on the Atlantic coast of the US. Read more here.
Why the Ocean is Important to Everyone
Lecture by Prof. Stefan Rahmstorf – February 9, 2021