Carbon dioxide levels mark a near-record surge in atmosphere: Basics Explained

Scientists from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in a report said that the current amount of carbon dioxide- the heat-trapped gases- in the atmosphere is now 50 percent higher than it was before the industrial era- which shows that global climate efforts — including transitioning from fossil fuels to cleaner energy — are falling short of what scientists say is needed to stem the warming of the planet.

             Carbon cycle experts estimate, Humans put more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than natural sinks —processes that remove carbon from the atmosphere—  can remove, the total amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases every year.


ANTHROPOGENIC CLIMATE CHANGE is a change caused by human

Climate Change refers to any change in climate over time whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity.

Global warming is the long-term heating of Earth’s climate system observed since the pre-industrial period (between 1850 and 1900) due to human activities, primarily fossil fuel burning, which increases heat-trapping greenhouse gas levels in Earth’s atmosphere. The term is frequently used interchangeably with the term climate change, though the
latter refers to both human- and naturally-produced warming and
the effects it has on our planet.

Greenhouse gases allow sunlight (shortwave radiation) to pass through the atmosphere freely, where it is then partially absorbed by the surface of the Earth. Greenhouse gases are able to trap heat (longwave radiation) in the atmosphere, keeping the Earth’s surface warmer than it would be if they were not present. These gases are the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect. Increases in the number of greenhouse gases in the
atmosphere enhances the greenhouse effect which is creating global warming and consequently climate change.

So the more greenhouse gases you have in the atmosphere, the more heat stays on Earth. The principal forcing greenhouse gases are: Carbon dioxide (CO2); Methane (CH4); Nitrous oxide (N2O); Fluorinated gases.

Another reason carbon dioxide is important in the Earth system is that it
dissolves into the ocean like the fizz in a can of soda. It reacts with water
molecules, producing carbonic acid and lowering the ocean’s pH (raising its
acidity). Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, the pH of the ocean’s
surface waters has dropped from 8.21 to 8.10. This drop in pH is called ocean acidification.

Adaptation can be understood as the process of adjusting to the current and future effects of climate change.
‘Adaptation to climate change’ refers to the vast range of actions societies
can take to reduce the adverse impacts of global warming on the environment, society, public health, the economy and more. Climate adaptation includes measures such as developing and rolling out new varieties of drought-resistant crops, designing better flood-defence infrastructure to protect coastal cities or riverine communities, improving early warning systems for climate-induced disasters, and restoring ecosystems that act as buffers against extreme weather.

Mitigation means making the impacts of climate change less severe by preventing or reducing the emission of greenhouse gases (GHG) into the atmosphere. Mitigation measures include deploying renewable energy at scale, replacing internal combustion engine cars and motorbikes with electric vehicles, and improving the health of the planet’s forests. These can help slow down the growth, or in certain cases even reduce the concentration, of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.



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