Sunday, December 3, 2023


FACT CHECK: Yes, carbon dioxide has significant effect on climate change

FACT CHECK: Yes, carbon dioxide has significant effect on climate change
March 11
15:33 2023

A social media post has claimed that there is no correlation between carbon dioxide emissions and climate change.

“There’s no correlation between carbon dioxide & climate and never was,” partly reads the Twitter post.

The post shared by Peter Clark had 84.2k views, 1,394 retweets and 2,957 likes. 

The author of the post concluded by saying: “A recent modest uptake in CO2 from 280ppm to 400ppm is only brief & has helped with a greener world. But CO2 is in trouble & in steady decline for millions of years. Temperatures are also falling, ‘not’ rising.”


A screenshot of the Twitter post was also posted on Instagram by a different social media user who amplified the tweet. The screenshot received about 142 likes and a few comments. 

But how true is the claim that carbon dioxide (CO2) emission has no correlation with climate change?



Greenhouse gases (GHGS) like carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide trap heat in the atmosphere, thereby, increasing global temperatures. This further leads to global warming, the long-term heating of the earth due to human activities.

Climate change is a long-term variation in the average weather patterns that have come to define local, regional and global climates.

A report by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a US agency that forecasts weather and monitors atmospheric conditions, said in 2021, atmospheric CO2 exceeded 400 parts per million for the first time since the mid-twentieth century.

The global average atmospheric CO2 set a new record, by pushing the figure to 414 parts per million, despite the economic drag during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021.


The study of chemistry explains that CO2 concentration is heightened as a result of the increased burning of fossil fuels, needed for human energy consumption. 

Fossil fuels like coal and oil, contain carbon which takes plants millions of years to get rid of in the atmosphere, through the process known as photosynthesis. Unfortunately, the removed CO2 is returned to the atmosphere in just a few hundred years, due to human activities.

As a result of the annual increase in atmospheric CO2 in the last decades, the temperature has risen by an average of 0.08 degrees celsius per decade since 1880, or about 2 degrees Fahrenheit in total, according to data from NOAA.

Research also reveals that the rate of warming since 1981 has nearly doubled, and as a result, temperatures continue to increase at a rate of more than 0.3 degrees Fahrenheit (0.18° C) per decade since the 1980s.



The claim that there is no correlation between carbon dioxide emissions and climate change is false. Adequate evidence shows that CO2 in the atmosphere warms the planet causing climate change.


Increased industrial human activities among others have been responsible for a 50 percent CO2 increase in less than 200 years. 

This fact check was produced by TheCable with support from Code for Africa’s PesaCheck, International Fact-Checking Network, and African Fact Checking Alliance network.


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