Climate

The WMO says the COVID-19 pandemic has not slowed the growth of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere

Last Updated 2 months ago by Devontae Jackson.

Image courtesy of NOAA and NASA.

The World Meteorological Organization says that industrial slowdown due to COVID-19 has not “curbed” record levels of greenhouse gasses. Rather is has cut emissions of gasses like CO2. However, the WMO says that the amount of emission cut is almost like a regular year to year fluctuation of the greenhouse gasses, especially when it comes to CO2. The WMO says, gasses like CO2 saw a “growth spurt” in 2019 and that has continued into 2020.

The WMO also reports CO2 accounts for four fifths of the 45% radiative forcing increase we have saw since 1990. We are now above 410 ppm for carbon dioxide, which continues to be record levels for CO2. The only other time this amount of CO2 was so concreted was 3 to 5 million years ago when sea levels were 10 to 20 meters higher than they are now, says WMO Secretary General, Petteri Taalas.

While the WMO says the Covid-19 pandemic is not the slowing the growth of green house gasses in the atmosphere, again it did cut emissions for some gasses. They say even though this pandemic is not a solution for climate change. It does provide key tips about what can be done to bring our net emissions down to zero. In doing that would be to change the way we think about our transportation systems, industrial, and energy. The WMO Secretary General, Petteri Taalas says, “The needed changes are economically affordable and technically possible and would affect our everyday life only marginally.”

At the hight of CO2 reduction, CO2 emissions probably fell only 17% due to stay at home orders although the total number is still unknown.

Image courtesy of NOAA and NASA.

CO2 passed 400 ppm (parts per million) in 2015 and has reportedly kept going up because of fossil fuel use, deforestation, and other things.

Now, it’s important to note greenhouse gasses are important for life here on earth but too much can be a bad thing and we are pass too much here on earth. It is also important to note the climate is always changing but we are seeing record warming of the earth because there is so much greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere.

Quick weather notes: greenhouse gasses, along other factors like albedo, radiation, etc. Determines how much much the atmosphere is warmed.

Read the report from the WMO here: Carbon dioxide levels continue at record levels, despite COVID-19 lockdown.

Image courtesy of NASA.

Here is a look at how much sea ice is in the Arctic every year since 1981.

Here is a visual of ice movement in the Arctic due to warming.

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