Tracking CO2? No water vapor is the most abundant greenhouse gas. Should we be regulating water vapor. Here is the latest from NASA on how they are tracking the most abundant greenhouse gas.
Aerial view of Hawaii's Mauna Loa (center), the world's largest volcano. The CU-Boulder-led research group's experiments at Mauna Loa will provide important clues for understanding how changes in the water cycle influence changes in atmospheric circulation and global temperatures.
(UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO) -- Fifty years ago scientists began measuring carbon dioxide continuously from on top of Hawaii's Mauna Loa, the largest volcano in the world. This October CU-Boulder researchers will set up the first real-time experiments there to track Earth's most abundant, and arguably most important heat-trapping gas: water.
"There's no question CO2 is driving changes in our planet's climate, but a lot of the changes we are seeing are due to changes in the water cycle, and to the amount of water vapor in the air," said David Noone, a climate scientist with CU-Boulder's Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences. Noone, along with Assistant Professor Joe Galewsky of the University of New Mexico, are leading the water vapor-tracking project throughout the month of October.
In its vapor phase, water, like carbon dioxide, traps and radiates heat back toward our planet. As global temperatures rise, atmospheric humidity also increases, boosting the greenhouse effect.