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NOAA greenhouse gas index continues climbing; 1.29 in 2010

NOAA’s updated Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI), which measures the direct climate influence of many greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane, shows a continued steady upward trend. Started in 2004, the AGGI reached 1.29 in 2010—i.e., the combined heating effect of long-lived greenhouse gases added to the atmosphere by human activities has increased by 29% since 1990, the index year used as a baseline for comparison. This is slightly higher than the 2009 AGGI, which was 1.27—i.e., the combined heating effect of those additional greenhouse gases was 27% higher than in 1990.

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The AGGI shows a steady upward trend, reaching 1.29 in 2010. Source: NOAA. Click to enlarge.

NOAA scientists created the AGGI recognizing that carbon dioxide is not the only greenhouse gas affecting the balance of heat in the atmosphere. The AGGI includes methane and nitrous oxide, for example, greenhouse gases that are emitted by human activities and also have natural sources and sinks. It also includes several chemicals known to deplete Earth’s protective ozone layer, which are also active as greenhouse gases. The 2010 AGGI reflects several changes in the concentration of these gases, including:

  • A continued steady increase in carbon dioxide: Global carbon dioxide levels rose to an average of 389 parts per million in 2010, compared with 386 ppm in 2009, and 354 in the index or comparison year of 1990. Before the Industrial Revolution of the 1880s, carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere was about 280 ppm. Carbon dioxide levels swing up and down in natural seasonal cycles, NOAA notes, but human activities—primarily the burning of coal, oil, and gas for transportation and power—have driven a consistent upward trend in concentration.

  • A continued recent increase in methane: Methane levels rose in 2010 for the fourth consecutive year after remaining nearly constant for the preceding 10 years, up to 1799 parts per billion. Methane measured 1794 ppb in 2009, and 1714 ppb in 1990. On a gravimetric basis, methane is 25 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, but there’s less of it in the atmosphere.

  • A continued steady increase in nitrous oxide: Best known as laughing gas in dentistry, nitrous oxide is also a greenhouse gas emitted from natural sources and as a byproduct of agricultural fertilization, livestock manure, sewage treatment and some industrial processes.

  • A continued recent drop in two chlorofluorocarbons, CFC11 and CFC12: Levels of these two compounds, which are ozone-depleting chemicals in addition to greenhouse gases, have been dropping at about one percent per year since the late 1990s, because of an international agreement, the Montreal Protocol, to protect the ozone layer.

Scientists at NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory prepare the AGGI each year from atmospheric data collected through an international cooperative air sampling network of more than 100 sites around the world.

NOAA researchers developed the AGGI in 2004 and have so far back calculated it to 1978. Atmospheric composition data from ice core and other records could allow the record to be extended back centuries.



With +19C and almost 50% of the leaves still on trees yesterday, many people around here like the recent climate changes and would like to get more warming in the coming years.

Those changes are starting to show on our heating bills. Our high efficiency heat pumps perform much better year round. This may be the year with under 20 Kwh/day for our all electric place, from about 66 KWh/day 15 years ago. We are seriously thinking about the installation of a new heat pump for Hot Water, to replace our electric unit. A combo unit can supply cooling at next to no energy cost. With low cost clean electricity, a Gas unit is out of the question.


Funny how the NOAA trend in temp continues down while CO2 goes up:

UAH says it was the coldest October of century! Eeek!


Once again there is a disconnect between what the Right Wing reports the scientists as saying and what the scientists actually are saying;

Global surface temperatures in 2010 tied 2005 as the warmest on record, according to the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) analysis of surface air temperature measurements. The next warmest years are 1998, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2007 and 2009, which are statistically tied for third warmest year. The GISS records begin in 1880.

"Global temperature is rising as fast in the past decade as in the prior two decades, despite year-to-year fluctuations associated with the El Niño-La Niña cycle of tropical ocean temperature," Hansen and colleagues reported in the Dec. 14, 2010, issue of Reviews of Geophysics.


ai_ you know by now only a handful of people in State College believe GISS anymore.


Funny indeed.

Funnier still is that this group took money from the Koch brothers to say otherwise.


ai_ you know by now only a handful of people in State College believe GISS anymore.

Given their other problems - that doesn't worry me.


Given a choice between what people "believe" and what the data shows...


ai_vin...thank you for the factual information. Our lower energy consumption concurs with your information, specially for the last 10 years. This may be the first year that our heating system (SEER 25 heat pumps + electric heaters) has not started to supply heat by 12 November and may not do so before 1st Dec. The flowers are still blooming on the balcony and may to so for another two weeks with temps as high as +15 C.

We may still keep -30C in January but not too often.

We would not mind another rise of 2C to 4C (average).


correction...second last line should read...we may still get .....


As pointed out nobody believes AGW anymore except a few cranks/sick at Penn State College - now under indictment for massive corruption, fraud and criminal child abuse. Pathetic.

Rassmussen Reports 69% say "scientists" have falsified AGW research.

But to further cement NASA & Penn State's rep - they now claim space aliens will attack if con man Algore's cult is not paid off... NASA? Sheesh.

AGW = ET`s Earth shakedown FAIL.


69% Say It’s Likely Scientists Have Falsified Global Warming Research

Given a choice between what people "believe" and what the data shows... I'll go with the data.


ai_... The report tells us 70% of the population think the AGW data is corrupt.

This MAY BE because publications like The Guardian put "aliens-destroy-humanity-" news in their "SCIENCE" section. Truly pathetic.


I put that 70% in this context;

And if you don't like The Guardian's reporting, fair enough - but that was only the second http I gave you: How'd you like the first? And if that's also not good enough why not listen to Richard A. Muller own words;
or read about his study from the source;

They'll all tell you the same.


ai_ for one who likes to critique personalities - I am surprised you or alarmists want to endorse Rich Muller. He's an employee of the US Government and by fiat must parrot the guv'ment AGW agenda. He's a Berkley scientist - of course he's an alarmist! (and a nice guy prolly)

Actually his research so far questions urban heat island effect. For a guy who wrote the book "The Sins of Jesus" - you'd have to wonder how fanatic he is about AGW.

"Read my new book: The Instant Physicist. Learn why wine is required to be radioactive to be legal, and why you don't want the greenhouse effect to end. " R A Muller

Roger Pham

My personal experience with warmer and warmer climate agrees with Harvey's observation. My summer electric bills have been getting higher and higher within the last 15 years, while gas heating bills have been getting lower and lower.
We could careless who says what, to us, global warming is real. And the more people I talked to, most agree with our observations.

Reel$$, I find it hard to believe that for a scientific-minded person like you who demands absolute proof for everything, who has access to all the hard data about GW, all the hard facts about the IR absorption spectra of CO2 and how it absorbs infrared rays from the earth, yet, in turn, you believe in E-cat and AR who has not presented any scientific proof to date! A total disconnect.

Furthermore, if you believe in E-cat, that which does not consume any fossil fuels and which will help eliminate CO2 emission, why not join us in the anti-GW camp for our common fight to save humanity?


Roger, it is a matter of seeing through the BS disguised as AGW data. And understanding the motivation behind AGW campaign - redistribute wealth and set up lucrative cap n trade commodities schemes. Unfortunately just because CO2 absorbs IR doesn't make it the big bad wolf the campaign wanted it to be. It's not, the science is in. (except at the UK Guardian who say space aliens are going to attack unless humans pay a carbon tax!) WTF???

And as Rassmussen tells us 69% of the public think AGW scientists are corrupt. So, accept the campaign is dead and move on to the next level. Let's address reel issues head on: Energy Independence, ending costly foreign oil, adopting PHEV/EVs in light duty fleet, promoting biofuels and renewables to be more than 6% total energy consumption. In short, forget climate and get with energy. That and population is what this is about.

Save humanity?? Consider hubris and pride which is responsible for climate campaign fail. How bout we think global and act local - save ourselves, recycle, drive EVs, and set a good example for others? And keep in mind that Malthusians will get what they fear. Positive thinkers get what they want. A far more reasoned goal.


Muller by fiat must parrot the guv'ment AGW agenda?

Up until this year he was the great white hope of the anti-AGW campaign: BEST set out to disprove the conclusions of the AGW side and part of its funding came from the Charles G. Koch Foundation. He got glowing praise from Anthony Watts and Glenn Beck, and was openly critical of the scientists.

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