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Where nitrous oxide – greenhouse gas 300-times stronger than CO2 – is being emitted

Quartz: “If something is burning, nitrous oxide is flowing into the atmosphere. Increasingly, the most concentrated nitrous oxide sources come from humans burning fossil fuels and transforming ecosystems. Natural sources, such as Australia’s currently raging wildfires contribute too (if those fires can even be considered “natural”). As a greenhouse gas, it gets less attention than carbon dioxide, accounting for just 6% of all emissions in 2017. But it’s a major factor intensifying climate change: NOx, as the gas is known, lasts for a century and is far more potent. It is nearly 300 times stronger than carbon dioxide at trapping heat. New Mexico’s Descartes Labs, one of the firms refining this remote sensing data into what it calls a “digital twin” of the planet, provided the data for Quartz to create these maps. The snapshots show regions with the most NOx emissions between August 2018 and September 2019. The darkest purple areas show the imprint of the human world…”

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