Research

High levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere can deprive the planet of clouds

According to a new study of scientists fromCalifornia Institute of Technology, the press release of which was published on the site of the institution, and a detailed analysis in the journal Nature Geoscience, our planet may lose stratocumulus sea clouds if the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reaches a certain critical point. As a result, this will lead to a dramatic warming of the climate, aggravating the situation with the already observed global warming.

Cumulus clouds play a very important rolefor our planet. They reflect the sun's rays back into space, not allowing them to penetrate the Earth. However, this natural defense itself was threatened with extinction due to the ongoing climate change on the planet.

Scientists helped come to such conclusionsthey developed new climate models, with the help of which the researchers decided to test how high the CO2 content will affect the formation of stratocumulus clouds. Having modeled the formation of such clouds, scientists carried out computer calculations for two years. The results of these calculations have led researchers to the conclusion that a steady increase in atmospheric CO2 can cause a sudden temperature jump associated with the disappearance of stratocumulus clouds.

The report says if CO2 reaches 1300 ppm(parts per million), the global temperature of the atmosphere will rise by eight degrees Celsius, which is significantly higher than the level of warming, which has already been caused by the effects of greenhouse gases. For comparison, today's figure is about three times lower and is 410 ppm. Scientists predict that increasing the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to a critical point can occur over the next century.

“I hope and believe that technological changewill lead to a slowdown in CO2 emissions, and we will not reach critically dangerous high concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. However, our results show that with climate change, there are dangerous thresholds that we did not know about before, ”commented study author Tapio Schneider.

"Layered cumulus clouds can simply stopexist. Then they can form only after the CO2 concentration falls well below the level at which the instability first arose.

Researchers explain that there is no possibilitycheck whether clouds will behave in a predicted way in a world with such high concentrations of carbon dioxide, since their formation is very dynamic and very difficult to assess by other computer models. However, the growth of the average temperature of 8 degrees Celsius, as indicated in the report of scientists, will certainly be catastrophic not only of people, but also of the animal and plant world.

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