Polluting the environment with dirty fossil fuels has always been a major issue and something that we feel passionate about changing at Innasol. However, many others probably go by the philosophy that if you can’t see it, it doesn’t exist. What if you could see the damage you were doing to the environment and how much you were contributing to global warming?
Our friends at NASA have announced they will be releasing a carbon map showing individual countries and their pollution levels. The map will show which countries are releasing the most carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Currently the Earth’s main elements – oceans, forestry and land look set to weaken as CO2 levels rise. These three elements use up half of all human emitted carbon. Therefore with this in mind and carbon levels on the rise we have less reliability on natural elements to absorb the majority of emissions.
Annmarie Eldering OCO-2 deputy project scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion lab gave the following statement “As carbon dioxide is the largest human-produced driving of our changing climate, having regular observations from space is a major step forward for our ability to understand and predict climate change”.
Ahead of the United Nations climate conference in Paris NASA has already released detailed measurements of the world’s sources of CO2 and how it travels through the atmosphere. This is set to help the leaders in their decision making and hopefully lessen the worst effects of climate change in the future.
NASA’s atmospheric scientist Lesley Ott says “The land and the ocean are really doing us a big favour. Otherwise you would have carbon building up in the atmosphere twice as fast”. Therefore it is our duty to protect them in the best possible way we can.
So how will it work?
The imagery will focus on the two main sources of carbon, burning biomass and cities. The animation will then go on to show global hotspots for carbon emissions. Red and white hotspots which can be seen over central Africa, show that there is a significant amount of biomass being burnt which could indicate possible forest fires. Other parts of the map will show blue covered areas. This will indicate carbon being emitted from cities. The majority of countries covered in blue are China, Japan and most of East Asia. This is due to these areas being densely populated by urban centres. However when the two clouds meet together across the northern hemisphere this will leave a purple cloud and most likely a cause for concern.
Statistics have shown that half of the carbon emitted by human activities remains in the atmosphere however it is the other half that causes us the problem – the main priority for NASA is to see how and where the carbon is absorbed on land and sea as this can have a significant impact. According to Michael Freilich director of NASA’s Earth Science Division “NASA is at the forefront of scientific understanding in this area, bringing together advanced measurement technologies, focused field experiments, and cutting-edge research to reveal how carbon moves around the planet and changes our climate.”
Our philosophy here at INNASOL is if you can measure it you can manage it and with this new carbon map hopefully it will be a step towards slowing down the effects of global warming.