Written by sciencedaily.com Thursday, 10 November 2011 16:21
Scientists at NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory prepare the AGGI each year from atmospheric data collected through an international cooperative air sampling network of more than 100 sites around the world.
NOAA’s updated Annual Greenhouse Gas Index, which measures the direct climate influence of many greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane, shows a continued steady upward trend that began with the Industrial Revolution of the 1880s.
Started in 2004, the AGGI reached 1.29 in 2010. That means the combined heating effect of long-lived greenhouse gases added to the atmosphere by human activities has increased by 29 percent since 1990, the “index” year used as a baseline for comparison. This is slightly higher than the 2009 AGGI, which was 1.27, when the combined heating effect of those additional greenhouse gases was 27 percent higher than in 1990.
“The increasing amounts of long-lived greenhouse gases in our atmosphere indicate that climate change is an issue society will be dealing with for a long time,” said Jim Butler, director of the Global Monitoring Division of NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory in Boulder, Colo. “Climate warming has the potential to affect most aspects of society, including water supplies, agriculture, ecosystems and economies. NOAA will continue to monitor these gases into the future to further understand the impacts on our planet.”