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Climate Hustle

2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #44

Posted on 3 November 2018 by John Hartz

A chronological listing of news articles posted on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week from Sunday through noon on Friday.  

Editor's Pick

Earth’s carbon dioxide levels are likely the highest they've been in 15 million years

Earth’s average global temperature from 2013 to 2017, as compared to a baseline average from 1951 to 1980.

We’ve entered some profoundly unfamiliar planetary territory.

Amid a backdrop of U.S. politicians still questioning whether the changing climate is attributable to humans (it is), it's quite likely that we’ve actually boosted Earth's carbon dioxide — a potent greenhouse gas — to the highest levels they’ve been in some 15 million years. 

The number 15 million is dramatically higher than a statistic frequently cited by geologists and climate scientists: That today's carbon levels are the highest they've been on Earth in at least 800,000 years — as there's irrefutable proof trapped in the planet's ancient ice.

Though scientists emphasize that air bubbles preserved in ice are the gold carbon standard, there are less direct, though still quite reliable means to gauge Earth's long-ago carbon dioxide levels. These measurements, broadly called proxies, include the chemical make-up of long-dead plankton and the evidence stored in the breathing cells, or stomata, of ancient plants.

Scientists have identified this 15 million number by measuring and re-measuring proxies all over the world. 

Earth’s carbon dioxide levels are likely the highest they've been in 15 million years by Mark Kaufman, Science, Mashable, Oct 29, 2018


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