The CO2 Trend | Rocket Snail Image

"Today’s rate of increase is more than 100 times faster than the increase that occurred when the last ice age ended."

~ NOAA Media Release (2013)
~ Scripps (SIO UCSD) News Release (2013)


Atmospheric CO2 is rising at an unprecedented rates.  Consequences are profound for earth's temperatures, climates, ecosystems and species, both on land and in the oceans.  To see whether the speeding rise of atmospheric CO2 is slowing or speeding up, take a look at the bend in the iconic Keeling Curve.  Or, is the rate of change speeding up or slowing down?  The answer can be seen in the direction of the bend in the Keeling Curve.  And it can be seen in the data that produces the Keeling Curve.


Atmospheric CO2 Growth Rates

Decadal Average Annual Growth Rates
Mauna Loa Observatory (MLO)
1961 - 2020




Atmospheric CO2

Growth Rate

(ppm per year)

2011 - 2020 2.43
2001 - 2010 2.04
1991 - 2000 1.55
1981 - 1990 1.56
1971 - 1980 1.35
1961 - 1970 0.91

ppm = parts per million

data updated January 5, 2022

Decadal changes calculated by CO2.Earth
with NOAA-ESRL annual mean CO2 concentrations at Mauna Loa.