The Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite (GOSAT) is the first greenhouse gas monitoring satellite in the world. It was launched by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) on January 23, 2009. An Earth observation satellite called GOSAT examines the carbon dioxide and methane densities from 56,000 different places in the planet’s atmosphere. It was created to monitor the greenhouse effect’s gases and exchanges information with NASA and other global scientific institutions.
How does GOSAT measure carbon dioxide and methane?
The carbon dioxide and methane concentrations in the Earth’s atmosphere are measured from 56,000 different places by the Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite (GOSAT). Based on how each element and chemical reacts to different kinds of light, the satellite uses a spectrometer to measure them. GOSAT is able to measure “the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere at a super-high resolution” because to this technology.
What are the main sources of carbon dioxide and methane emissions?
- The following are the primary sources of carbon dioxide and methane emissions:
- Carbon Dioxide:
- Coal, gas, and oil extraction and transportation.
- Land use changes and deforestation.
Agriculture, including raising animals.
Fugitive emissions and gas venting from the fossil fuel sector.
Methane emissions from landfills, oil fields, pipelines carrying natural gas, and other sources.Please note that these are some of the major sources of carbon dioxide and methane emissions. There might be other sources as well.
How can we reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions?
There are several ways to reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions. Here are some of them:
- Carbon Dioxide:
- Reducing energy consumption by using energy-efficient appliances and vehicles.
- Using renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower.
- Planting trees and other vegetation to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
- Improving industrial processes to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
- Capturing methane from landfills, coal mines, and wastewater-treatment plants and using it to generate electricity.
- Reducing methane emissions from livestock by changing their diet and improving manure management.
- Reducing methane emissions from the fossil-fuel industry by minimizing gas venting and fugitive emissions.
- Encouraging the use of renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower.
Please note that these are some of the ways to reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions. There might be other ways as well.
What are the benefits of reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions?
Reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions can have several benefits:
- Health Benefits: Reducing emissions can stop dementia cases, premature deaths, hospital stays, ER visits, lost workdays, and crop losses.
- Economic Benefits: By lessening the harm caused by local air pollution, establishing green jobs, encouraging green innovation, raising energy efficiency, and addressing short-lived climatic pollutants, lowering emissions can result in economic rewards.
- Climate Change Mitigation: In the upcoming years, cutting methane emissions can help lessen the negative effects of climate change.
- Improved Air Quality: The risk of respiratory disorders can be decreased and air quality can be improved by reducing emissions.
These are just a few examples of the benefits of reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions. There might be other benefits as well.
You can find more information about the benefits of reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions on UNEP, NASA, LSE, and CFR.
How do carbon dioxide and methane contribute to climate change?
Two of the most important greenhouse gases that cause climate change are carbon dioxide and methane.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) The principal greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming is carbon dioxide (CO2). Several human activities, including the production and transportation of coal, natural gas, and oil, as well as the clearing of forests and alteration of land use, release it into the atmosphere1. Global temperatures rise as a result of carbon dioxide’s ability to trap heat in the atmosphere.
Methane (CH4) Another significant greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change is methane (CH4). Over the first 20 years after it reaches the atmosphere, it has a warming effect that is more than 80 times greater than that of carbon dioxide. Both natural and human-made sources produce methane emissions. Agriculture (including the raising of livestock), the production of fossil fuels, the breakdown of landfill waste, and natural processes like wetlands are the main sources of methane emissions. Despite having a shorter atmospheric lifetime than carbon dioxide, methane is a more efficient heat absorber than carbon dioxide.
Methane and carbon dioxide both retain heat near to the Earth’s surface, adding to the greenhouse effect. Climate change, global warming, and other environmental effects result from this.
On NASA, EDF, Stanford Earth, and Climate Change: Vital Signs of the Planet, you can get more details regarding how carbon dioxide and methane affect global warming.