Climate Change

Show Only... Charts / Google Maps / Maps / Photos

Energy Movement
Climate Change
Fossil Fuels
Natural Gas
Nuclear Power
Power Plants

Questions? Need an updated map? Email me

Trump Takes Aim At A Centerpiece Of Obama’s Environmental Legacy

"President Trump will sign sweeping executive orders Tuesday that take aim at a number of his predecessor's climate policies.

The wide-ranging orders and accompanying memorandums will seek to undo the centerpiece of former President Obama's environmental legacy and national efforts to address climate change.

It could also jeopardize America's current role in international efforts to confront climate change.

A senior White House official says the goal is to make the U.S. energy-independent and to get the Environmental Protection Agency back to its core mission of maintaining clean air and water."

GISS Land-Ocean Global Means Temperature, 1880-2016

The average land and ocean temperature globally between 1951-1980 was 56.7 degrees fahrenheit. NASA, with it's vast earth monitoring system of satelites and ground based equipment measure temperature around the globe to follow trends over time. They put out GISS numbers monthly and yearly, that look at the difference in temperature between the 1951-1980 average compared to today. Those numbers are widely cited on climate change blogs. While scientifically accurate, their analysis is confusing to the layman who finds it hard to understand negative and positive Celsius numbers of a few degrees.

Most of us know the weather only by Fahrenheit, and rather then use negative numbers and departure from the average, I used actual global temperature averages. In 2016, the global temperature was 58.42 degrees Fahrenheit. In contrast, in 1960, the global temperature was 56.2 degrees Fahrenheit. While 2.2 degrees Fahrenheit difference in global temperature over 66 years doesn't seem like a lot, it does mean spring comes earlier across the globe, areas freeze up later, and summer days are somewhat hotter. As the oceans are a powerful heat sink, actual global land temperature changes are less then 2.2 degree Fahrenheit difference between now and 1960, but still there is a noticeable increase there too.

Forces like el nino and la nina, and other weather patterns do change global temperatures a bit from year to year. But as carbon dioxide emissions have rapidly increased, so have temperatures. Within the next 20-30 years, it's almost certain global yearly temperatures will exceed 60 degrees Fahrenheit, which is a big jump from 56.25 degrees Fahrenheit at the turn of the 20th century.

Data Source: Combined Land-Surface Air and Sea-Surface Water Temperature Anomalies (Land-Ocean Temperature Index, LOTI).

Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Hits Record Levels

"The CO2 measured at the Mauna Loa Baseline Atmospheric Observatory in Hawaii hit 405.1 parts per million last year, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced. That’s an increase of 3 parts per million, which matched the record of 3 parts per million in 2015. It marks five consecutive years of CO2 increases of at least 2 parts per million, an unprecedented rate of growth, said Pieter Tans, lead scientist at NOAA’s Global Greenhouse Gas Reference Network."

“The rate of CO2 growth over the last decade is 100 to 200 times faster than what the Earth experienced during the transition from the last ice age,” Tans said. “This is a real shock to the atmosphere.”

"The number is significant because the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was 280 parts per million from about 10,000 years ago until the start of the Industrial Revolution. The monthly global average nosed above 400 parts per million for the first time in March 2015 and is now increasing at a faster pace, according to NOAA researchers. What’s more, carbon emissions stay in the atmosphere for years, so even as some emissions have been reduced in recent years, the global average level continues to climb. In 1960, they were about 300 parts per million, suggesting a precipitous climb in a relatively short period of time since then."

Carbon Dioxide Is Rising at Record Rates

"Last year marked a milestone, with levels passing the 400 ppm mark permanently. This year scientists expect carbon dioxide to briefly reach 410 ppm this spring before the seasonal cycle of northern plant growth brings it back down a bit, continuing the ever-rising seesaw."

"The rapid rise of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has caused the planet to warm roughly 1.8°F since the start of the Industrial Revolution. The world has had back-to-back-to-back hottest years on record since 2014. The corresponding heat has also caused glaciers to melt, seas to rise and altered atmospheric circulation patterns around the globe."

Carbon Dioxide Levels at Mauna Loa Observatory, Monthly, February 2012-2017

68% of the Earth's land is north of the equator in the Northern Hemisphere, while only 32% is south of the equator in the Southern Hemisphere. During the summer in the Northern Hemisphere, there are a lot more plants that become green and turn carbon dioxide and sunlight into sugars using chlorophyll.

This means that global carbon dioxide levels drop roughly 6 PPM between the Northern Hemisphere growing months of May through September. However, between October and April, global levels of carbon dioxide increase 7-10 PPM, which is why over time global concentrations of carbon dioxide are increasing -- sometimes as much as 3.64 PPM, as was the case between 2015 and 2016.

In April 2014 was the first time carbon dioxide levels reached 400 PPM, dipping down that summer, while and May 2015 was the last time that carbon dioxide levels will ever dip below 400 PPM in our live times.

Data Source: Mauna Loa Observatory Readings, 2012-2017.

Transportation-related Carbon Dioxide Emissions by Fuel

The post 2009 reduction in miles driven and increased fuel efficency standards have lead to lower carbon emissions by the transportation sector in America. Units are millions of tons of carbon dioxide per year.

Data Source:
US Energy Information Agency. Carbon dioxide emissions from energy consumption: transportation sector (Table 4).

Year of the Record High Temperature

The climate in Albany is most quickly warming in the winter and spring. Very few recent high temperature record exist for meteorological summer -- the months of June, July August.

As of March 3, 2017, there are:
20 record highs in meteorological winter (December/January/February), dating from 2000 or later
26 record highs in meteorological spring (March/April/May), dating from 2000 or later
3 record highs in meteorological summer (June/July/August), dating from 2000 or later
10 record highs in meteorological autumn (September/October/November), dating from 2000 or later

Carbon Emissions, Pie Chart

This is a graph of sovereign states and territories by carbon dioxide emissions due to certain forms of human activity, based on the EDGAR database created by European Commission and Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency released in 2014. The following table lists the 2014 annual CO2 emissions estimates (in thousands of CO2 tonnes) along with a list of emissions per capita (in tonnes of CO2 per year) from same source. The data only considers carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels and cement manufacture, but not emissions from land use, land-use change and forestry. Emissions from international shipping or bunker fuels are also not included in national figures, which can make a huge difference for small countries with important ports. The top 10 largest emitter countries account for 68.2% of the world total. Other powerful, more potent greenhouse gases are not included in this data, including methane.

Data Source: