Updated: An interesting diversion: Deutsche Asset Management’s Climate Advisors business has made a counter tallying the metric tons of greenhouse gases that have been released into the atmosphere to date. The numbers move upwards rather quickly. At 3.64 trillion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent released so far, the atmospheric concentration is about 467 parts per million (this is however a gross measure – omitting the effect of cooling gases which go into the IPCC measurements).
We went looking for similar carbon counters and found one at breathingearth.net which counts carbon emissions, although it begins at page load rather than tallying a total figure. For an even more sombre effect, it adds worldwide births and deaths:
Updated with the massive New York version of the counter, on 7th Avenue and 33rd Street.