Newly Discovered Greenhouse Gas ’7,000 Times More Powerful Than CO2′

Perfluorotributylamine is an unregulated, long-living industrial chemical that breaks all records for potential climate impacts.

Corey'sWorld (MDCoreBear)/Flickr

Corey’sWorld (MDCoreBear)/Flickr

A new greenhouse gas that is 7,000 times more powerful than carbon dioxide at warming the Earth has been discovered by researchers in Toronto.

The newly discovered gas, perfluorotributylamine (PFTBA), has been in use by the electrical industry since the mid-20th century.

The chemical, that does not occur naturally, breaks all records for potential impacts on the climate, said the researchers at the University of Toronto’s department of chemistry.

“We claim that PFTBA has the highest radiative efficiency of any molecule detected in the atmosphere to date,” said Angela Hong, one of the co-authors.

The study, published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, found PFTBA was 7,100 times more powerful at warming the Earth over a 100-year time span than CO2.

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