Methane emissions have hit a record high, driven by coal mining, oil production, natural gas production, landfills and cattle and sheep ranching, according to research from the Global Carbon Project, an initiative led by Rob Jackson.
"Cows, oil and gas wells, rice paddies, landfills. These are some of the biggest sources of methane staining the atmosphere today," Rob Jackson and co-authors write in an op-ed describing their newly published studies of global methane emissions.
"Emissions from cattle and other ruminants are almost as large as those from the fossil fuel industry for methane," said Rob Jackson. "People joke about burping cows without realizing how big the source really is."
The pandemic has tugged carbon emissions down, temporarily. But levels of the powerful heat-trapping gas methane continue to climb, dragging the world further away from a path that skirts the worst effects of global warming.
Worldwide emissions of methane have hit the “highest levels on record”, according to the latest update to the Global Methane Budget from the Global Carbon Project, an initiative chaired by Stanford's Rob Jackson.
Research co-authored by Kevin Arrigo of Stanford Earth shows increased phytoplankton biomass is driving a rise in net primary production in the Arctic Ocean, or how fast plants and algae convert sunlight and carbon dioxide into nutrients.