The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Stunning NASA Video Illustrates a Year's Worth of Global Carbon Emissions
Here is your tax money doing something really cool.
While most of us—and virtually all climate scientists—won't deny that the carbon emissions driving climate change are real, they're still abstract. But NASA scientists have created a video model that makes them concrete and visual. "A Year in the Life of Earth's CO2" tracks the growth and dispersal of carbon in the atmosphere, compressing a year's worth data into a three-minute video. It's based on a supercomputer model of carbon dioxide levels in the Earth's atmosphere over that period of time.
The view, narrated by NASA climate scientist Bill Putnam, shows the journey of carbon into the atmosphere and its dispersal over the globe unfolds before your eyes, as emissions increase during the fall and winter, then shrink in the spring and summer as new plant growth begins to absorb the carbon. You can see the concentrations of carbon appearing over the biggest emitters: the U.S., Europe and China. And you can watch as emissions spread across the globe from their original source. It even shows carbon monoxide swirling oceans from summer forest fires in Africa and South America.
"As summer transitions to fall and plant photosynthesis decreases, carbon dioxide begins to accumulate in the atmosphere," Putnam explains. "Although this change is expected, we're seeing higher concentrations of carbon dioxide accumulate in the atmosphere every year. This is contributing to the long-term trend of rising global temperatures."
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Bernie Sanders has become the first contender in the crowded 2020 Democratic presidential primary field to pledge to offset all of the greenhouse gas emissions released by campaign travel, The Huffington Post reported Thursday.
The record flooding in the Midwest that has now been blamed for four deaths could also have lasting consequences for the region's many farmers.
By Ana Santos Rutschman
The world of food and drug regulation was rocked earlier this month by the news of a change in leadership at the Food and Drug Administration. Commissioner Scott Gottlieb resigned and will step down in early April. His temporary replacement is Dr. Ned Sharpless, director of the National Cancer Institute.
On Wednesday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the first 20 chemicals it plans to prioritize as "high priority" for assessment under the Toxic Substances Control Act. Given the EPA's record of malfeasance on chemicals policy over the past two years, it is clear that these are chemicals that EPA is prioritizing to ensure that they are not properly evaluated or regulated.
Which conventionally-grown fruits and vegetables in the U.S. are most contaminated with pesticides? That's the question that the Environmental Working Group answers every year with its "Dirty Dozen" list of produce with the highest concentration of pesticides after being washed or peeled.