According to figures released by the World Meteorological Organization(WMO), atmospheric CO₂ concentrations reached 403.3 parts per million. This is the highest level of GHG (green house gases) for at least 3 million years, having climbed by 3.3 ppm relative to the 2015 average. These record greenhouse gas levels are consistent with the observed rise in global average temperatures, which also hit record level in 2016 aspper article published in Energy Post.
For roughly 8,00,000 years ago before industrialisation began in around the year 1750, carbon dioxide levels remained below 280 parts per million, as measured by air trapped in Antarctic ice. Geological records suggest that the last time atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide were similar to current levels was 3-5 million years ago. At that time, the climate was 2-3℃ warmer than today’s average, and sea levels were 10 to 20 metres higher than current levels. It clearly indicates where we are heading to.
It is very unfortunate that even after 25 years of concerted global attempts from Rio Summit in 1992 to date, this issue could not be properly addressed and rise of GHG concentration level and consequently global temperature rise could not be contained despite fully understanding, witnessing the impact of climate change and recognizing its horrific consequences in future usual scenario of GHG emission.
It is clear that governments have collectively failed. In the name of protecting the economy of the country, most of the governments protected the interest of powerful fossil fuel lobbies across the globe at the cost of billions of the people across the globe and their future generations. Now only NGOs, civil societies and common people can address the issue. This is the right time to nationalize the fossil fuel across the globe, and rationing of extraction of fossil fuel could be implemented to put a check on GHG emission.