Atmospheric concentrations of the greenhouse gas methane, a major contributor to global warming, have risen for the second consecutive year by a record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOOA) said Thursday.
Meanwhile, carbon dioxide levels remain high with historically high levels.
The annual average increase in atmospheric methane was 17 parts per billion (ppb) by 2021, the highest increase since systematic measurements started in 1983, Noaa said.
World emissions of methane, which make up the second majority of anthropogenic climate change after carbon dioxide, rose to an all-time record in 2021, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Thursday.
This marks the tenth successive year in which carbon dioxide grew by more than two ppm, which is the fastest sustained rate of increase in the 63 years since the monitoring began.
“Our data show that global emissions continue to move in the wrong direction at a rapid pace,” Rick Spinrad, Noaa’s manager, said in a statement.
Methane is much less common, but approximately 25 times more potent, than carbon dioxide which absorbs heat in the atmosphere.