Grim News - CO2 Concentration Teetering On Point Of No Return

We start at Cape Grim in Australia - where an atmospheric measuring station is picking up atmospheric CO2 levels that are on the verge of breaking 400 parts per million for the first time in human history.

And unlike other measuring stations where concentrations fluctuate seasonally - the station at Cape Grim is in a region with stable CO2 concentrations - meaning CO2 levels in that area won't dip below 400 parts per million once it crosses that milestone.

On May 6th - scientists picked up a CO2 reading at Cape Grim of 399.9 parts per million - meaning that within weeks the reading will be permanently above 400 parts per million.

This isn't the first station to cross the 400 ppm threshold - the first station to detect CO2 levels above 400 parts per million was the Mauna Loa observatory back in 2013.

CO2 concentrations at the Mauna Loa observatory fluctuate throughout the year - but soon CO2 concentrations there will be so high that they'll never dip below 400 parts per million, either.

And last March - the global monthly average using all global readings crossed 400 parts per million - which guarantees that truly dangerous global warming is inevitable.

James Butler - director of the global monitoring division as the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration - compared the situation to an electric blanket.

He told the Guardian that "It's like lying in bed with your electric blanket set to three. You jack it up to seven - you don't get hot right away but you do get hot. And that's what we're doing."

And that's the problem - it's difficult to know how much warming exactly we've guaranteed now that we're crossing the 400 parts per million threshold - especially considering that scientists said years ago that to avoid catastrophic warming we need to keep carbon concentrations below 350 parts per million.

What's clear is that yearly and monthly temperature averages have continued to break records regularly in the last couple of years - and with atmospheric CO2 concentrations at 400 parts per million - that trend will continue for years to come, even if we stopped emitting carbon completely today.

The fossil fuel industry has blocked and disputed the science on climate change for so long now that now we can guarantee that the oceans will continue to acidify - warm - and lose oxygen - and we can guarantee that storms will get stronger - droughts will get worse - and communities will be devastated.

We need to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for misleading the public for so long and for guaranteeing that a child born today will never know a planet with CO2 concentrations below 400 parts per million - and we need to go 100% renewable immediately.


The Glenn Beck Review's picture
The Glenn Beck ... 4 years 8 weeks ago

So why does Thom support a fracker like #CorporateClinton and not Jill Stein?

Old_Curmudgeon 4 years 8 weeks ago

Thom's reply to Glenn Beck might be WHAT?

Ocean Pete's picture
Ocean Pete 4 years 8 weeks ago

One needs to go back before the Pleistocene and then some to see when our atmosphere's CO-2 exceeded 300ppm. We also know that CO-2 and Temperatures follow in lockstep with each other such that just as one rises so does the other. At 400pm we are guaranteed an ice free Earth and that means an additional sea level rise of 180+ feet is in progress with no recourse to reversal. Just saying...

Also why blame the oil industry when it is us, as Pogo said, who are to blame as consumers.

Old paleoclimatologist.

wslifko 4 years 8 weeks ago

I find it interesting that so many people complain about the responsibility for climate change resting with the fossil fuel industry then get in their car and drive 5 miles to the store. Or 15 miles to work. In the winter they turn the heat up to 72 or blast air conditioning 24/7 in the warmer months. You're feeding the dragon. Google 'reduce carbon footprint' and take some personal responsibility. But most won't because it's easier to be lazy.

cccccttttt 4 years 8 weeks ago

Very promising tech development:.

Solar device turns CO2 in air back into fuel.

David32's picture
David32 4 years 8 weeks ago

Tell us something we don't know Thom. The fact is the only viable source of energy that doesn't impact CO2 levels is nuclear energy, but not the present technology that was engineered to create bombs, is horrifically fuel inefficient and yes somewhat unsafe with regards to spent fuel disposal. There is a nuclear tchnology. Liquid Flourine Thorium Reactor (LFTR), that is safe, fuel efficient and deployable sooner that most other technologies. Unfortunately, due to the fear mongering over the small risk of, dare I say it, RADIOACTIVITY, by the miss-informed naysayers, include yourself in that category, LFTR technology is being swept under the rug. Just a little objective research by yourself and those obsessed with finding ways to not act, we know who they are, should convince you as I am convinced, that LFTR technology can be a significant game changer in providing long term bulk energy production that will significantly reduce the use of fossil fuels, We must encourage the energy industry to buy into finding ways of making LFTR and all the other alternative sources work rather than wasting time on prolonging fossil fuels until there are no longer any left. If the oil and gas companies threw their weight behind developing solutions that don't involve fossil fuels the world will be a much better place. One strong encouragement would for the US to become a corporate tax haven, eliminating taxes on corporate profits that, as you surely realize, are paid by the consumer. It is time the lie of corporations paying their "fair share" is exposed for the scam that it is and that we understand that corporate taxes are ultimately paid by the public. Imagine the benefit to our economy if we could repatriate the TRILLIONS of dollars corporations have shipped offshore and to find other ways to curb the greed of wealthy individuals that do nothing to return their wealth to the economic health and welfare of America. We must put "middle" back in the "middle class" if America is to survive in the long term.

Queenbeethatsme's picture
Queenbeethatsme 4 years 8 weeks ago

More and more, the prognostications and predictions of Guy McPherson are coming true and the scoffed, naysayers, corporate apologists, and sycophants who vindictive actions marginalized him are shown to be the irresponsible, reckless and feckless idiots they always were.

The positive feedback loop was activated with evidence in 2010, and instead of acknowledging Rome was burning while Nero fiddled, by pulling the alarm; irresponsible scientists stuck their collective heads in the sand and assured the masses that gasoline was ok to play with near the flames.

So here we are, and there we go.


Queenbeethatsme's picture
Queenbeethatsme 4 years 8 weeks ago

Because Jill Stein can get very little done and will never be President. We have to be practical and a 3rd party candidate is just a lost cause.

Queenbeethatsme's picture
Queenbeethatsme 4 years 8 weeks ago

At this point with a 1000 year remedial time frame, it no longer matters what we do or do not do. Man kind will be long gone by the time the earth corrects itself, and most of humanity will be dead long before then.

Robertcd's picture
Robertcd 4 years 8 weeks ago

anthropogenic climate disruption (ACD), Anthropenic just means basically: caused by humanstOne thing that is true, is this issue of what is now being callled anthropogenic climate disruption (ACD), Anthropenic just means basically: caused by humans, is not something that our children will be dealing with is what we all are facing now. We have set the engine in motion and no matter what we do it's now too late. As Queenbeethatsme said Guy Mcpherson was able to think a bit bigger then some others and connect the dots. For that he is being called an eco terrorist by some in President Obhama's White House staff. But who are the real terrorists. And yes we are all to blame for this, however a I have heard Guy say many times, we are ll born into this civilation. We know nothing else. However the Oil companies did know. Their own scientists I believe it was at least 40 years ago warned those running those companies that they couldn't keep their same carbon spewing buisness model and not have serious consequences occcur. They chose to ignor those warnings then go on to lie to the world about what is really going on. And here is a link to a blog that shows that right now this is already affecting this and that many alive today will be watching our own exctinction. This isn't about something we won't have to worry about just our children. Here is the link, I think you will find it quite the eye opener.

LaurieBethKay 4 years 8 weeks ago

Big Oil is not the Big Problem. The problem is that we're wiping out our forests so that cattle can graze. The problem is that we're using our precious water for crops to feed cattle. Most adults in America, where the most animals per capita are eaten, have high cholesterol and high blood pressure from a diet of animal products. We can't stop our use of oil needed for practically every industry. It's not going to happen. Even if we have solar and wind and geothermal, we'll still need oil. The only solution is to cut back, if not eliminate completely, an animal-based diet. Then our forests will grow back and will absorb the carbon dioxide. It's all outlined in a very simple yet powerful 90-second video,

Intermittent Instigator's picture
Intermittent In... 4 years 7 weeks ago

Having Jill Stein at the "debates" (and in office) may prove helpful toward addresssing climate change.

Look out! It's Trump. It's climate change! It's the Russians! Oh, no. It's:

MicaP's picture
MicaP 4 years 7 weeks ago

REGENERATIVE ORGANIC FARMING CAN SEQUESTER %20-30 OF CO2 OUT OF THE ATMOSPHERE. Plus we would all have a lot more organic food to eat if this was employed world wide, and pollution from pesticides and herbicides and fertilizers into our waterways would be greatly reduced. A win-win-win. PLEASE LOOK INTO THIS AND DISCUSS MORE ON YOUR SHOW MR. HARTMANN. see links below:

pyrn10t's picture
pyrn10t 4 years 7 weeks ago

Gr8 article and facts Thom!

Trump has told us how he and the Republicans plan to steal this election: can we stop him and save our republic?

Thom plus logo Donald Trump became president by exploiting a loophole called the Electoral College. The majority of Americans did not want him or vote for him as president, but he's there anyway.

Now he's planning on using a different loophole, the 12th Amendment, to hang onto power.
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