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@mospheric Post | Mar 17 2011 PDF Print E-mail

Earth's CO2 Newsletter

@mospheric Post is produced twice monthly by Pro Oxygen and distributed earthwide by 

March 17, 2011
Year 2  |  Edition 6


In this edition of @mospheric Post . . .

The Latest Climate Numbers 

Just released: 
    *  Global temperature chart for February 2011
    *  Global temperature data for February 2011

Carbon Media 

  *  CARBON MEDIA SPOTLIGHT:  EU Negotiates Humanity's CO2 Future |
  *  25 recent articles, papers and reports  From around the world.  About our world.

The CO2Now Climate Sheet 'In Brief' 

  *  17 leading measurements, benchmarks and targets for Earth's global climate.  All in one place.   
  *   Click here to see the Full Edition of the CO2Now Climate Sheet. 

About @mospheric Post

The Latest Climate Numbers

Global temperature data in this publication was released March 17, 2011 by the
NOAA National Climatic Data Center.   Data for time periods within the past year are preliminary.

Global Temperature Chart: February 2011


Global Temperature Synopsis

Global Surface Temperature  |  February

February 1880 - February 2011 




Warmest or

(Next Warmest)1880



(132 Years) 




+0.40 °C 

17th Warmest 

February 1998 

+0.83 °C  

Global Ocean 

+0.36 °C  

10th Warmest 

February 1998 

+0.56 °C 

Global Land 

+0.51 °C  

28th Warmest 

February 2002 

+1.60 °C  



NOAA NCDC  |  February 2011 Global Temperature Data & Climate Analysis 

NOAA NCDC  |  Data for global land and ocean surface temperature anomalies since 1880


More CO2Now Temperature Info 

CO2Now  |  Global Temperature Update 

Carbon Media -- Spotlight

EU Negotiates Humanity's CO2 Future 

EU €60 million bribe for Pacific Island nations to drop 350 ppm target?  |

The London Guardian reported that Pacific island states on the frontline of climate change are to receive €90m (£76m) in EU cash for climate-related projects in return for siding with the European bloc at UN climate negotiations. An organizer at comments on how the shuffle of a small sum of money for countries already backed into a corner is forcing compromise to support targets 100 ppm above atmospheric levels that scientists consider safe. 


Carbon Media

Recent articles, papers and reports.
rom around the world.
bout our world.


Green bets on black swans  |  The Economist
Vinod Khosla has a different plan to save the planet. He is investing over $1 billion of his clients’ money in “black swans”—ideas with the potential for sudden jumps in technology that promise huge environmental benefits, easy scalability and rapid payback. The catch? Mr Khosla expects nine out of ten of his investments to fail.

Group seeks forest restoration to cleanse planet  |  Sina
A non-profit organization called Archangel Ancient Tree Archive is rushing to collect genetic material and replant clones to restore the world's ancient forests and put them to work cleansing the environment and absorbing carbon dioxide, the greenhouse gas largely responsible for global warming.

Greenlight for new automotive refrigerant  | Chemical & Engineering News
The Environmental Protection Agency on Feb. 28 gave a green light to an alternative automotive air conditioning refrigerant, hydrofluoroolefin-1234yf (HFO 1234yf). The compound in current widespread use, hydrofluorocarbon134a (HFC-134a), has a much higher global warming potential, the agency says.


USDA Experiments to Help Farmers with Warming Climate  |  Solve Climate
Scientists are hanging heaters over crop fields to simulate temperatures in 2050. Their goal: to understand climate impacts on food and help farmers adapt.

Nuclear Energy Crisis

Accident triggers nuclear power debate in Germany   |  Der Spiegel
The nuclear accident in Japan has sparked a discussion about atomic power in Germany, where a massive anti-nuclear protest was already planned for Saturday. A senior Green Party politician has said that some German plants are vulnerable to the same kind of failure as happened at Fukushima 1.

Affordable, safe and clean energy plan without nuclear  |  Climate Progress
Nuclear power wasn’t going anywhere in this country before the earthquake and tsunami.  The unfolding tragedy in Japan only increases the likelihood that we won’t be building lots of new nukes by 2030. But we still must sharply reduce utility greenhouse gas emissions. Energy economics expert Craig Severance offers his detailed strategy in this repost from Energy Economy Online.

Japan's horror reveals how thin is the edge we live on  |  Guardian
Bill McKibben:  Climate change may not be responsible for the tsunami, but it is shrinking our margin of safety. It is time to shrink back ourselves

Climate Communications

RADIO: Can a Hollywood producer inspire on climate?  |  Living On Earth
A Hollywood producer is using his creative skills and contacts to try to convince the public that climate change is a problem. Marshall Herskovitz, whose credits include The Last Samurai and Legends of the Fall, said his new projects will urge Americans to dramatically reduce their energy use.

Carbon Management

Global carbon capture industry builds momentum  |  London Business Green
Twenty-one new carbon capture and storage projects got underway worldwide during 2010 despite soaring costs for the technology, a study released by Australia's Global CCS Institute today shows.

EU Climate Commissioner wins 25% carbon emissions cut  |  London Guardian
Europe's climate chief Connie Hedegaard has beaten off intense lobbying from businesses to secure a key victory in the battle over greenhouse gas targets.

EU maps ambitious path to low-carbon future. Now to walk it   |  The Economist
About half of Europe’s electricity comes from fossil fuels, with CO2 emissions as an unwanted by-product. So, Europe has set a goal of reducing emissions by 80-95% by 2050. But there is a big difference between drawing a map and actually following it.

Software helps reduce carbon footprints   |  North Shore News, Vancouver
The founders of a new carbon software company have set out to make it easy and affordable for small- to medium-sized businesses to take action on climate change.

According to Joe Kelly, co-founder of Gobi Carbon Management Solutions, organizations of all sizes are facing increased pressure to green their operations -- in terms of regulatory demands, as well as from consumers.

Why India might save the planet  |  Newsweek
If you had to name a most valuable player of December’s climate summit in Cancún, hands down the award would go to Jairam Ramesh. Ramesh brought the West and developing countries together by pointing at ways to ease access to green technology and suggesting an agreeable way to monitor progress in tamping down emissions.

China's five year plan |  Living On Earth
China's latest blueprint for the future has a distinctively green tinge. The People's Republic, already the world's second largest economy, is also the largest emitter of greenhouse gases. China's new five-year plan deals with both the environment and the economy.

China adopts 5-year blueprint for fairer, greener growth  |  Xinhua News
Chinese lawmakers overwhelmingly adopted a national plan to steer the world's second largest economy into a path of fairer and greener growth in the next five years.

Planetary Change

Warming in Taiwan twice the global average: Weather bureau  |  Focus Taiwan
The Central Weather Bureau released a stark report Wednesday on how climate change has affected Taiwan over the last century: Higher temperatures, greater rainfall and more typhoons over the last 30 years.

Soot hastens snowmelt on Tibetan Plateau   |  Science News
In high-elevation snowy regions, the warming effects of greenhouse gases pale in comparison to those triggered by soot, new computer calculations show. The finding could help explain the accelerating pace of melting on the Tibetan Plateau, which holds the world’s largest reservoir of ice outside of the polar regions.

Sea level rise due to melting to melting ice sheets  |  New Scientist
Greenland and Antarctica are losing ice at a faster and faster rate, according to a new study that has tracked the rate of melting in two independent ways. At this rate, melting ice sheets could dominate sea level rise in the 21st century.

Canada's Arctic, a hotspot for earthquakes  |  Nanatsiaq News
 In the aftermath of March 11’s devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, some are already asking if there’s a link between earthquakes and climate change.

Climate Knowledge

NASA satellite crash complicates gloomy climate budget picture  |  Science
Last week's failed Glory satellite mission doesn't just stymie scientists' efforts to maintain a 33-year record of the sun's brightness and discern the role of aerosol particles in the atmosphere. It's a blow to an already shaky and likely underfunded effort to revamp the troubled U.S. remote observation system.

JPL study shows scale of human-caused global warming  |   Pasadena Star-News
A recent NASA study designed to shed light on the relationship between movements in the Earth's core, its rotation and surface air temperatures highlights the drastic scale of human- induced warming, scientists say.

Scientists start new satellite-linked ocean research  |  Australia ABC News
Tasmanian scientists are using state-of-the-art GPS buoys to measure sea level rise. The buoys were deployed for the first time earlier this month about 30 kilometres off Bruny Island in Tasmania's south east.

Duelling Enviros

Why California enviros fight each other over climate law  |  New America Media
Last November, mainstream environmental groups and environmental justice groups joined forces to defeat a ballot measure that would have suspended California’s climate-change law. Now, the two sides are at odds—over the very same legislation they helped to save.

Climate + Gender

Climate change may hold a gender bias  |  Columbia Tribune, Missouri
Although it would seem as if the effects of a large-scale problem such as climate change would not harm one gender more than another, women in the developing world are bearing much of the burden, research suggests.


The CO2Now Climate Sheet 'In Brief'

The Full Edition is available at:
Current Edition:   The CO2Now Climate Sheet   
Current & Past Editions:  About The CO2Now Climate Sheet

0 tonnes

CO2 Emissions Target

Global CO2 emissions for long-term stabilization of atmospheric CO2

“Stabilizing atmospheric CO2 and climate requires that
net CO2 emissions approach zero”                    


 0 w/m 2
watts per square meter

CO2 Emissions Target

Global energy balance  & the end of global warming

“Stabilizing climate requires, to first order, that we restore Earth’s energy balance.
If the planet once again radiates as much energy to space as it absorbs from the sun,
there no longer will be a drive causing the planet to get warmer.” 


 0.25 - 0.75 w/m 2

Global energy imbalance from rising atmospheric CO2  |  1750 - 2000


2.07 ppm per year
parts per million

Atmospheric CO2  |  Average Annual Rise  |  January 2002 - 2011

January Data Only   The rate of increase for the latest decade is higher than any decade since the start of the atmospheric CO2 instrument record in March 1958.   

 8.07 pH

Ocean Acidification:  Average pH of Surface Oceans  |  2005

Average pH of surface oceans has declined about 0.1 units since before the industrial revolution.  This is an increase of about 30% in the concentration of hydrogen ions which is a considerable acidification of the oceans. 

“…world leaders should take account of the impact of CO2 on ocean chemistry,
as well as on climate change…we recommend that all possible approaches
be considered to prevent CO2 reaching the atmosphere.”

 12.1 °C

100-Year Average Global Surface Temperature  |  February 1901 - 2000

 12.5 °C

Average Global Surface Temperature  |  February 2011

February 2011 is the 17th warmest February on record (since 1880).  February 1998 is the warmest on record.  

Preliminary data reported March 17, 2011 by NOAA-NCDC.  

 172 ppm

Atmospheric CO2  |  Lowest level in 2.1 million years

 194 countries

Target of Most National Governments

Signatories to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

The United Nation's ultimate climate objective “is to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system.” 

 280 ppm

Atmospheric CO2  |  Pre-Industrial Revolution

Atmospheric CO2 was stable at about 280 ppm for almost 10,000 years until 1750.

 300 ppm

Atmospheric CO2  |  Highest level in at least 2.1 million years (pre-industrial)

Circa 1912, atmospheric CO2 levels breached the 300 ppm threshold for the first time in at least 2.1 million years.

 350 ppm

Atmospheric CO2 Target for Humanity

Atmospheric CO2  |  Upper Safety Limit

“If humanity wishes to preserve a planet similar to that on which civilization developed and to which life on Earth is adapted, paleoclimate evidence and ongoing climate change suggest that CO2 will need to be reduced from its current 385 ppm to at most 350 ppm, but likely less than that… If the present overshoot of this target CO2 is not brief, there is a possibility of seeding irreversible catastrophic effects.”

389.85 ppm

Atmospheric CO2  |  February 2010  |  Mauna Loa Observatory

Data reported March 8, 2011 by NOAA-ESRL

391.76 ppm

Atmospheric CO2  |  February 2011  |  Mauna Loa Observatory

Preliminary data reported March 8, 2011 by NOAA-ESRL

805 ppm

Atmospheric CO2  |  Projection for Year 2100

This scientific projection, based on an analysis on March 4, 2011, accounts for the voluntary emissions reductions pledges of parties to the UNFCCC since the Copenhagen climate talks.  The projected CO2 level represents a global temperature increase of about 4 °C.  


World Population | March 1, 2011

More than 6.9 billion people are living on planet Earth. If humanity is to achieve a stabilization of atmospheric CO2 at safe levels, this is roughly the number of people who will need to be aligned with net CO2 emissions that approach zero. (See “0 tonnes” in The Climate Sheet.)

30.8 billion
metric tonnes

Humanity's Global CO2 Emissions  |  2009

2009 global CO2 emissions were the second highest in human history.   Global fossil fuel emissions – more than 88% of all carbon emissions – are projected to increase by more than 3% in 2010.   In the past decade, 47% of CO2 emissions accumulated in the atmosphere, 27% were absorbed by land and 26% were absorbed by the ocean.  The 2009 data was published November 21, 2010

See the Full Edition of The CO2Now Climate Sheet



About @mospheric Post

@mospheric Post is an independent, volunteer-driven publication that is produced in Canada by Pro Oxygen, the maker of Pro Oxygen distributes @mospheric Post as a free information service for the advancement of climate literacy . . . starting with awareness of atmospheric CO2 and what it means.

Twice a month, @mospheric Post delivers the global numbers earthwide – straight from the atmosphere and virtually in real time. It also gives you access to the latest targets, reports and stories about our world, from around the world. Consider it your online source for getting the straight goods and the big picture on humanity's main environmental challenges.

If you would like to give feedback or a suggestion – or to make a correction – you are welcome to email us at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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