Cape Grim Baseline Air Quality

Cape Grim, Tasmania

Cape Grim, on Tasmania’s west coast, is a premier Baseline Air Pollution Stations in the World Meteorological Organization-Global Atmosphere Watch (WMO-GAW) network. Baseline stations are defined by the WMO to meet a specific set of criteria for measuring greenhouse and ozone depleting gases and aerosols in clean air environments.

These baseline stations are crucial points of reference for the larger global network of atmospheric gas observing stations.

Global Map of Atmospheric Gas Observing Stations

The Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station monitors Southern Hemispheric air. In the Northern Hemisphere, the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii has been continuously monitoring and collecting data related to atmospheric change since the 1950s.

Map of Cape Grim area

The Cape Grim station is positioned just south of the isolated north-west tip (Woolnorth Point) of Tasmania. It is in an important site, as the air sampled arrives at Cape Grim after long trajectories over the Southern Ocean, under conditions described as ‘baseline’. This baseline air is representative of a large area of the Southern Hemisphere, unaffected by regional pollution sources (there are no nearby cities or industry that would contaminate the air quality).

Check the CO2 levels animated graph on their site at

And for the Mauna Loa Observatory comparable data, see

Someone better tell Lord Christopher Monckton…