CO2 concentrations set to hit record

The Earth's atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) is about to rise to 400 parts per million (ppm) for the first time in five million years, a scientist at The University of Queensland warned.  UQ Global Change Institute Director Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg said the record 400ppm level of atmospheric carbon was expected this week, according to readings at the US Government's Earth Systems Research Laboratory in Hawaii.  He said if current trends continued, atmospheric CO2 was expected to increase to more than 80 per cent above pre-industrial (pre-1750) levels by 2050 with the corresponding devastation to marine ecosystems like coral reefs.  This rate of increase has few, if any, parallels in the past 50 million years.  From tropical to polar oceans, the magnitude and speed of the changes expected as a result of global warming and increasing ocean acidity is likely to exceed the ability of many marine species to adapt and survive.

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