How much CO2 your country can still emit, in three simple steps

RealClimate - Everyone is talking about emissions budgets – what are they and what do they mean for your country? Our CO2 emissions are causing global heating. If we want to stop global warming at a given temperature level, we can emit only a limited amount of CO2. That’s our emissions budget. I explained it here at RealClimate a couple of years ago: First of all – what the heck is an “emissions budget” for CO2? Behind this concept is the fact that the amount of global warming that is … [Read more...]

Can planting trees save our climate?

RealClimate - In recent weeks, a new study by researchers at ETH Zurich has hit the headlines worldwide (Bastin et al. 2019). It is about trees. The researchers asked themselves the question: how much carbon could we store if we planted trees everywhere in the world where the land is not already used for agriculture or cities? Since the leaves of trees extract carbon in the form of carbon dioxide – CO2 – from the air and then release the oxygen – O2 – again, this is a … [Read more...]

First successful model simulation of the past 3 million years of climate change

RealClimate - Guest post by Matteo Willeit, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research A new study published in Science Advances shows that the main features of natural climate variability over the last 3 million years can be reproduced with an efficient model of the Earth system. The Quaternary is the most recent geological Period, covering the past ~2.6 million years. It is defined by the presence of glacial-interglacial cycles associated with the cyclic growth and decay of … [Read more...]