NOAA reports record highs in greenhouse gas emissions and global sea levels

“It is clear that without swift action, we can, unfortunately, expect to set new records like these every year.”

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SOURCENationofChange

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) just released their State of the Climate in 2020 report which provides a detailed update on global climate indicators, notable weather events, and other data collected by environmental monitoring stations and instruments located on land, water, ice, and in space. Scientists from all over the world contribute to this report.

The report states all major greenhouse gases, including CO2, reached new record high concentrations for the year. The globally averaged ocean heat content was also at a record high, and the global sea surface temperature was the third highest on record. 

“The major indicators of climate change continued to reflect trends consistent with a warming planet. Several markers such as sea level, ocean heat content, and permafrost once again broke records set just one year prior,” says officials from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.

According to Common Dreams, although the coronavirus-driven economic slowdown resulted in an estimated 6% to 7% reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 2020, the global average atmospheric concentration of CO2 increased to a record high of 412.5 parts per million. The atmospheric concentrations of other major greenhouse gases (GHG), including methane and nitrous oxide, also continued to climb to record highs last year despite the pandemic.

“It is clear that without swift action, we can, unfortunately, expect to set new records like these every year. Building a better future for all means acting on climate now,” says Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas). 

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