A report from the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) revealed that even an economic downturn and efforts to reduce greenhouse gases didn’t stop them from reaching record levels in 2009.
Noting that carbon dioxide concentrations have increased 38% and methane 158% since pre-industrial times, the scientists also reported more recent rises in atmospheric methane observed between 2007 and 2009.
WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud warned that further warming and additional methane releases from the Arctic permafrost and wetlands could lead to a tipping point that would set off runaway global warming.
Secretary-General Jarraud called for a complete halt to the emissions, stating, “If we continue business as usual, we will not achieve the level of atmospheric concentration that would allow a two-degree Celsius target.”
Experts in Arctic nations such as Norway have also been observing steeply rising levels of atmospheric methane in recent years.
Ellen Hambro – Director of Norwegian Climate and Pollution Agency: The concentrations of methane in Svalbard are very high, and that is very worrisome. We are looking into what is the cause. It may be because the permafrost is thawing, and the methane is released, and if that is the case, it means that we are approaching such a tipping point. And then it is very serious. Then it means that we have put into action an accelerating process, a self-reinforcing process that makes global warming go even faster.
VOICE: We thank Director Hambro, Secretary-General Jarraud and the World Meteorological Organization for these timely warnings, despite their disturbing nature. Our prayers that all soon turn to sustainable and planet-cooling lifestyles that renew a harmonious balance with nature.
During a September 2009 videoconference in Peru, Supreme Master Ching Hai addressed the means by which we could halt permafrost melt and overall threats of climate change.