Iconic Image: Longest-Running Measurement of Atmospheric CO2 Rises to Highest Daily Value on Record on 16 May 2013

  • warning: preg_match() [function.preg-match]: Compilation failed: disallowed Unicode code point (>= 0xd800 && <= 0xdfff) at offset 1811 in /home/wwfblogs/public_html/climate/modules/ctools/includes/cleanstring.inc on line 157.
  • warning: preg_match() [function.preg-match]: Compilation failed: disallowed Unicode code point (>= 0xd800 && <= 0xdfff) at offset 1811 in /home/wwfblogs/public_html/climate/modules/ctools/includes/cleanstring.inc on line 157.
  • warning: preg_match() [function.preg-match]: Compilation failed: disallowed Unicode code point (>= 0xd800 && <= 0xdfff) at offset 1811 in /home/wwfblogs/public_html/climate/modules/ctools/includes/cleanstring.inc on line 157.
  • warning: preg_match() [function.preg-match]: Compilation failed: disallowed Unicode code point (>= 0xd800 && <= 0xdfff) at offset 1811 in /home/wwfblogs/public_html/climate/modules/ctools/includes/cleanstring.inc on line 157.

Over the last week, both the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (University of California, San Diego) reported that the daily average concentration of carbon dioxide measured from Mauna Loa, Hawaii surpassed the historic milestone of 400.00 parts per million (ppm). On 10 May, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that the daily average concentration of CO2 at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii had for the first time gone beyond 400.00 ppm, reaching 400.03 on 9 May. Using its own slightly different methodology, Scripps reported yesterday (16 May) that the daily average baseline CO2 concentration at Mauna Loa reached 400.17 pm on 13 May.

Today Scripps reports that on Thursday (16 May), concentrations rose even higher, to 400.27 ppm.  The screenshot of the Scripps "Keeling Curve" Web site showing "400.27 ppm" and the curve of rapidly rising concentrations since 1958 merits to be among the iconic images of this era of climate disruption.

(click for larger version)

Online Resources:

The Keeling Curve.  "A daily record of atmospheric carbon dioxide from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at U.C. San Diego.

Atmospheric CO2 concentrations just passed 400 parts per million.  From 350.org.

The Last Time Atmospheric CO2 was at 400 parts per million Humans Didn’t Exist. Article by Peter Gleick on ScienceBlogs (10 May 2013).

Ice-free Arctic may be in our future, say UMass-Amherst, international researchers.  Press release (9 May 2013) from University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Climate Record From Bottom of Russian Lake Shows Arctic Was Warmer Millions of Years Ago.  Press release (9 May 2013) from NSF.

Carbon Dioxide at NOAA’s Mauna Loa Observatory reaches new milestone: Tops 400 ppm.  Press release (10 May 2013) from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Record Global CO2 Levels Impact the Future of Conservation.  Press release (9 May 2013) from WWF.

What's in a Number? New Carbon Dioxide Level Unseen in Human History. Article (10 May 2013) by Clayton Sandell, ABC World News.

Share this