CO2 concentration: record levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere

The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has reached its highest level in at least a million years.

CO2 concentration: record levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere

The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has reached its highest level in at least a million years. This was announced by the US Office for Climate and Oceanography (NOAA) with regard to data for the year 2021. The CO2 concentration has increased continuously over the past decades and has now reached an annual average of 414.7 ppm (parts per million particles). That is 2.3 ppm more than the year before.

Global warming is also continuing, according to the agency's report. Globally, the years 2015 to 2021 were the seven warmest since records began at the end of the 19th century. Sea temperature and sea level are also at record highs, NOAA said.

The increase in methane concentrations in the atmosphere has accelerated significantly since 2014, the report said. In 2021, the largest increase since the beginning of the measurements was achieved. The three greenhouse gases CO2, methane and nitrous oxide reached maximum levels last year. The high concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere ensures that less thermal radiation is emitted into space.

The annual report on the global climate, led by NOAA, is based on contributions from more than 530 scientists from more than 60 countries. "The data presented in this report is unequivocal - we are seeing increasing compelling scientific evidence that climate change is having global impacts and showing no signs of slowing down," said NOAA Chief Executive Rick Spinrad. The fact that many communities have been hit by millennium floods, exceptional droughts and historic heat this year shows that the climate crisis is already a threat.

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