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Climate Change Emergency: Greenhouse Gas Emissions

"The rise in global CO2 concentration since 2000 is about 20 ppm per decade, which is up to 10 times faster than any sustained rise in CO2 during the past 800,000 years. . . . [T]he last geological epoch with similar atmospheric CO2 concentration was the Pliocene, 3.3 to 3.0 Ma" (54).

Global Warming of 1.5°C. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2018.

"[M]ore than half of the carbon exhaled into the atmosphere by the burning of fossil fuels has been emitted in just the past three decades" (4).

"The United Nations established its climate change framework in 1992, advertising scientific consensus unmistakably to the world; this means we have now engineered as much ruin knowingly as we ever managed in ignorance" (4).

Wallace-Wells, David. The Uninhabitable Earth: Life after Warming. Tim Duggan Books, 2019.

Global Monitoring Laboratory. Trends in Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide. National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, 2021.

"[T]he harm done by carbon dioxide emissions is, in effect, irreversible on time scales of importance to human societies. A corollary is that in order to halt global warming, it is necessary to bring net carbon dioxide emissions by the world economy to zero. There is no so-called 'safe' level of carbon dioxide emissions. As long as we continue emitting any carbon dioxide, the world will continue to warm.

"Barring technological breakthroughs allowing for the active removal of massive amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the cumulative carbon we emit will determine the climate our descendants will have to cope with for at least the next 10,000 years, and probably much longer" (215).

Pierrehumbert, Raymond. “There Is No Plan B for Dealing with the Climate Crisis.” Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, vol. 75, no. 5, Sept. 2019, pp. 215-221.

"Canada is the ninth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world. Since its initial international agreement at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1992, Canada’s overall greenhouse gas emissions have increased. This increase has occurred despite the federal government’s committing to many international agreements, and developing a number of federal plans, over the past 25 years" (1).

Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development. Progress on Reducing Greenhouse Gases—Environment and Climate Change Canada: Independent Auditor's Report. Office of the Auditor General, 2017.


Greenhouse gas emissions, Canada, 1990 to 2020

Canadian Environmental Sustainability Indicators: Greenhouse Gas Emissions. Environment and Climate Change Canada, 2022.