Atmospheric CO2 has been a record for the past 23 million years. The carbon dioxide concentration reached 412 ppm, according to a study by scientists from Montclair State University, published in the journal Geology.
At the beginning of 2019, the concentration of carbon dioxide was 410 ppm – this is 147% of the figure of 1750 when the industrial revolution began.
This indicator is constantly growing – the researchers calculated that if the level of CO₂ emissions remains at the level of 37 million tons per year, by the beginning of the XXII century the concentration will increase to 1,200–1,300 parts.
In a new study, scientists studied the dynamics of the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in the Miocene, Pliocene and Pleistocene – that is, in the last 23 million years. To do this, they analyzed several dozen radioactive isotopes that have been preserved in the soil.
This allowed researchers to build a graph of the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere throughout this period. According to it, concentration peaks were observed at the end of the last ice age (170 ppm), as well as the Middle Miocene and Pliocene (350 ppm and 400 ppm), respectively.
Researchers note that the current carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere at 412 ppm is an absolutely record value over the past 23 million years.