May 31, 2012
Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Levels hit 400 PPM
. Global levels of carbon dioxide are reaching alarming new heights as monitoring stations across the Arctic this spring have been measuring more than 400 ppm in the atmosphere according to The New York Times
and The Christian Science Monitor
. The Arctic is considered a leading indicator for atmospheric greenhouse gas trends. Many scientists say that 350 ppm is the highest safe level for carbon dioxide however the global average now stands at 395 ppm. The last time atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were so high was at least 800,000 years ago. Before the Industrial Age, global levels were around 275 ppm but have grown steadily over the last 100 years primarily as a result of humans burning fossil fuels such coal and oil. In addition to high carbon dioxide readings, NOAA has stated that the spring of 2012 has been the warmest U.S. spring on record
and that 2012 is on pace to be the warmest year on record since recordings began in 1895.