Global carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels are projected to increase 1% in 2022, hitting a new record of 37.5 billion tonnes, scientists announced today at the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP27) in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. If the trend continues, humanity could pump enough CO2 into the atmosphere to warm Earth to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial temperatures in just nine years. The 2015 Paris climate agreement set this aspirational limit, seeking to avoid the most serious consequences for the planet.
“Nine years is not very long,” says Corinne Le Quéré, a climate scientist at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, UK, and a member of the Global Carbon Project, which conducted the analysis. There is clearly no sign of the kind of decrease that is needed to meet international goals, she says, and even with aggressive action, climate models
— source nature.com | Jeff Tollefson | Nov 14, 2022
Global carbon emissions in 2022 remain at record levels — with no sign of the decrease that is urgently needed to limit warming to 1.5°C, according to the Global Carbon Project science team. If current emissions levels persist, there is now a 50% chance that global warming of 1.5°C will be exceeded in nine years. The new report projects total global CO2 emissions of 40.6 billion tonnes (GtCO2) in 2022. This is fuelled by fossil CO2 emissions which are projected to rise 1.0% compared to 2021, reaching 36.6 GtCO2 — slightly above the 2019 pre-COVID-19 levels. Emissions from land-use change (such as deforestation) are projected to be 3.9 GtCO2 in 2022.
Projected emissions from coal and oil are above their 2021 levels, with oil being the largest contributor to total emissions growth. The growth in oil emissions can be largely explained by the delayed rebound of international aviation following COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.
The 2022 picture among major emitters is mixed: emissions are projected to fall in China (0.9%) and the EU (0.8%), and increase in the USA (1.5%) and India (6%), with a 1.7% rise
Global atmospheric concentration of methane has hit an all-time high — to 1,875 parts per billion (ppb) in 2019 from 1,866 ppb in 2018 — according to a new preliminary estimate released by the United States National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas — its potential to cause global warming is over 25 times that of carbon dioxide. Not only is the 2019 figure the highest since record-keeping began in 1983, the increase during the year was the second-largest single-year leap in over two decades.
This week a major new study revealed Greenland’s melting ice sheet will likely contribute almost a foot to global sea level rise by the end of the century — that’s twice as much as previously reported. Writing in the journal Nature Climate Change, researchers found that even if the world were to halt all greenhouse gas emissions today, higher levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide have already doomed 120 trillion tons of Greenland’s ice to melt. Without urgent action to mitigate the damage, researchers warn, sea level rise could be far higher.
“zombie” is a good term. What we found is that the Greenland ice sheet is trying to recover from damage that we’ve already done. So we’re not even talking about future climate change. This foot of sea level rise is due to the damage we have already caused. And in order to kind of correct this damage, the ice sheet is trying to shrink and readjust its position, and this is leaving ice along the margins of the ice sheet essentially dynamically disconnected from the rest of the ice sheet. It’s dead ice. It’s already committed to the oceans. And that’s why we’re calling it “zombie ice.” It’s relegated to the oceans and to sea level rise, and there’s nothing that we can do about that now. Our best hope is just try to prepare for the future and try not to make it worse.
Atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, global average sea levels, and ocean heat content surpassed previous records in 2021, underscoring the extent to which the fossil fuel-driven climate emergency is worsening in the absence of meaningful efforts to fundamentally reorganize the world’s political economy.
That’s according to the 32nd annual State of the Climate report—an international assessment involving more than 530 scientists from 67 countries—compiled by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Centers for Environmental Information and published on Wednesday.
An international team of researchers have sounded new alarm bells about the changing chemistry of the western region of the Arctic Ocean after discovering acidity levels increasing three to four times faster than ocean waters elsewhere.
The team, which includes University of Delaware marine chemistry expert Wei-Jun Cai, also identified a strong correlation between the accelerated rate of melting ice in the region and the rate of ocean acidification, a perilous combination that threatens the survival of plants, shellfish, coral reefs and other marine life and biological processes throughout the planet’s ecosystem.
The new study, published on Thursday, Sept. 30 in Science, the flagship journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, is the first analysis of Arctic acidification that includes data from more than two decades, spanning the period from 1994 to 2020.
The North Pacific Blob, a marine heatwave that began in late 2013 and continued through 2015, was the largest and longest-lasting marine heatwave on record. A new study using data collected by elephant seals reveals that in addition to the well documented surface warming, deeper warm-water anomalies associated with the Blob were much more extensive than previously reported.
The new findings were reported by a team of biologists and ocean scientists at UC Santa Cruz in a paper published July 4 in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans.
“The elephant seals collect data in different locations than existing oceanographic platforms,” explained senior author Christopher Edwards, a professor of ocean sciences at UC Santa Cruz. “This is an underutilized dataset that can inform us about important oceanographic processes, as well as helping biologists understand the ecology of northern elephant seals.”
For decades, UCSC elephant seal researchers led by coauthor Daniel Costa, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and director of the UCSC Institute of Marine Sciences