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May 7 2013

Greenhouse Gas to Reach 3-Million-Year High


The proportion of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is set to break 400 parts per million this month, levels not seen in 3 million years, according to one of the best climate records available.

The Keeling Curve, a daily record of atmospheric carbon dioxide, has been running continuously since March 1958, when a carbon dioxide monitor was installed at Mauna Loa volcano in Hawaii. On its first day, the observatory measured a carbon dioxide concentration of 313 parts per million (ppm). That number means there were 313 molecules of carbon dioxide in the air for every 1 million air molecules.

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