Svržení uhelného krále

MELBOURNE – Počátkem tohoto roku dosáhla koncentrace oxidu uhličitého v atmosféře hodnoty 400 částic na milion (ppm). Naposledy bylo takové množství CO2 v atmosféře před třemi miliony let, kdy mořská hladina dosahovala o 24 metrů výše než dnes. Hladina moří však v současnosti opět stoupá. Loni v září zaujímal arktický ledový příkrov nejnižší rozlohu, jaká kdy byla naměřena. Devět z deseti nejteplejších let od roku 1880, kdy se začaly uchovávat globální záznamy, připadá na jednadvacáté století.

Někteří klimatologové se domnívají, že koncentrace 400 ppm oxidu uhličitého v atmosféře je už dostatečná k tomu, abychom dosáhli bodu zvratu, za nímž hrozí, že klimatická katastrofa promění miliardy lidí v uprchlíky. Podle těchto expertů potřebujeme snížit koncentraci CO2 v atmosféře zpět na 350 ppm. Toto číslo je obsaženo i v názvu 350.org, což je zdola organizované hnutí dobrovolníků ze 188 zemí, které se snaží řešit problém klimatických změn.

Jiní klimatologové jsou optimističtější: tvrdí, že pokud dopustíme vzestup koncentrace atmosférického CO2 na 450 ppm, což je úroveň spojovaná se zvýšením globální teploty o 2° Celsia, pak máme 66,6% naděje, že se vyhneme katastrofě. Stále ovšem zůstává třetinová pravděpodobnost, že ke katastrofě dojde – což je větší riziko než při ruské ruletě. Hranici 450 ppm navíc podle prognóz překonáme do roku 2038.

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