12 Oct '17, 6pm

NASA pinpoints cause of Earth's recent record carbon dioxide spike

A new NASA study provides space-based evidence that Earth's tropical regions were the cause of the largest annual increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration seen in at least 2,000 years. Scientists suspected the 2015-16 El Nino — one of the largest on record — was responsible, but exactly how has been a subject of ongoing research. Analyzing the first 28 months of data from NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) satellite, researchers conclude impacts of El Nino-related heat and drought occurring in tropical regions of South America, Africa and Indonesia were responsible for the record spike in global carbon dioxide. The findings are published in the journal Science Friday as part of a collection of five research papers based on OCO-2 data. "These three tropical regions released 2.5 gigatons more carbon into the atmosphere than they did in 2011," said Junj...

Full article: https://climate.nasa.gov/news/2639/nasa-pinpoints-cause-o...

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