New Literature Strongly Suggests CO2 Residence Time In The Atmosphere Is Exaggerated!

As usual, there are many highly interesting posts on climate science at the German Die kalte Sonne site. What follows is one of the latest, on Harde’s controversial paper:
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Is CO2 residence time in the atmosphere exaggerated?

By Dr. Sebastian Lüning and Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt
(German text translated/edited by P Gosselin)

The CO2 content in the earth’s atmosphere has risen to a level that surpasses any level seen over the past 800,000 years (Fig. 1). While during the ice ages the CO2 concentration dropped to 180 ppm, it rose to 250 – 300 ppm during the warm periods (interglacials). The reason for this CO2 development is foremost is the gassing out of CO2 from warmed up interglacial water.

Since the start of the industrial revolution the CO2 concentration has reached well above the typical range seen during the previous interglacials. Currently the atmospheric CO2 concentration is a bit over 400 ppm.

Fig. 1: CO2-concentration over the past 80,000 years. Source: Scripps Institution of Oceanography, via Climate Central.

The big question now is how long will it take nature to bring down the anthropogenic CO2 build-up if CO2 emissions were to be massively cut back? Let’s assume that beginning today all coal, oil and gas were to be banned outright. How many years would it take for the CO2 to be absorbed by the natural cycles from the atmosphere?

IPCC: 1000 years

The 5th IPCC report writes here that 60 – 85% of the anthropogenic CO2 would disappear from the atmosphere in about 1000 years. But the complete removal would take a few hundred thousands of years. In Chapter 6 from Working Group 1:

The removal of human-emitted CO2 from the atmosphere by natural processes will take a few hundred thousand years (high confidence). Depending on the RCP scenario considered, about 15 to 40% of emitted CO2 will remain in the atmosphere longer than 1,000 years. This very long time required by sinks to remove anthropogenic CO2 makes climate change caused by elevated CO2 irreversible on human time scale.”

Other experts say 100 years

According to the German Ministry of Environment (UBA) things are, however, quicker. At the UBA website we find:

Carbon dioxide is a colorless and odorless gas whose average residence life in the atmosphere is 120 years.”

German climate scientist Mojib Latif also accepts a similar figure: Infranken.de reported on 13 January 2016 on a presentation made by Latif within the scope of a Lion’s Club event:

‘CO2 remains in the air 100 years’
Climate scientist Professor Mojib Latif as a guest speaker brought attention to climate change at the New Year’s meeting. […] ‘When we blow CO2 into the air, then it stays there for 100 years,’ said Latif.”

New paper: Just a few years

Hermann Harde of the Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg described in a paper that appears in the May 2017 journal Global and Planetary Change and which is already available online presents a new approach that points to a much shorter residence time in the atmosphere. According to Harde, excess CO2 remains in the atmosphere on average only 4 years:

Scrutinizing the carbon cycle and CO2 residence time in the atmosphere
Climate scientists presume that the carbon cycle has come out of balance due to the increasing anthropogenic emissions from fossil fuel combustion and land use change. This is made responsible for the rapidly increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations over recent years, and it is estimated that the removal of the additional emissions from the atmosphere will take a few hundred thousand years. Since this goes along with an increasing greenhouse effect and a further global warming, a better understanding of the carbon cycle is of great importance for all future climate change predictions. We have critically scrutinized this cycle and present an alternative concept, for which the uptake of CO2 by natural sinks scales proportional with the CO2 concentration. In addition, we consider temperature dependent natural emission and absorption rates, by which the paleoclimatic CO2 variations and the actual CO2 growth rate can well be explained. The anthropogenic contribution to the actual CO2 concentration is found to be 4.3%, its fraction to the CO2 increase over the Industrial Era is 15% and the average residence time 4 years.”

This value is not to be confused with the residence time of single CO2 molecules in the atmosphere. Here there’s widespread agreement that the molecules themselves remain in the air only a few years before they get replaced by CO2 from the oceans in the sense of an equilibrium reaction.

 

92 responses to “New Literature Strongly Suggests CO2 Residence Time In The Atmosphere Is Exaggerated!”

  1. Curious George

    The graph is a nice but standard Alarmist trick. It shows a CO2 scale from 150 to 400 – not 0 to 400. 300 to 400 would be even more alarming, but then the graph would not look scientific enough.

    1. Don

      further, a log scale would be appropriate.

  2. Another Jim

    The decline of C14 CO2 at the end of atmospheric bomb testing in the 60’s gave a half live for CO2 of about 4 years. Look it up. An one who says that CO2 has a longer residence time in the atmosphere has denied, ignored or does not know of this real life experiment using isotopic tracer to monitor CO2 atmospheric turnover.

    1. ScottM

      The decay is due to mixing with other carbon reservoirs. There is a bidirectional exchange between these reservoirs and the atmosphere. Therefore, the decay is unsurprising (under either hypothesis) and consequently useless as evidence favoring one hypothesis over the other.

  3. Ed Caryl
  4. Another Jim

    Memory is a tricky thing.
    http://www.false-alarm.net/paper-5/
    C14 CO2 half life is 14 years, at least acording to this source.

  5. Sunsettommy

    Dr. Glassman came up with low residence time too:

    ON WHY CO2 IS KNOWN
    NOT TO HAVE ACCUMULATED IN THE ATMOSPHERE &
    WHAT IS HAPPENING WITH CO2 IN THE MODERN ERA

    “Myles Goodman at Drexel posted the following question as a comment to the Acquittal of Carbon Dioxide:

    You posit that CO2 does NOT accumulate in the atmosphere. How do you explain atmospheric concentrations of CO2 increasing over the last 100 years?

    The Acquittal shows that carbon dioxide did not accumulate in the atmosphere during the paleo era of the Vostok ice cores. If it had, the fit of the complement of the solubility curve might have been improved by the addition of a constant. It was not. And because the CO2 presumably still follows the complement of the solubility curve, it should be increasing during the modern era of global warming in recovery from Earth’s various ice epochs. These conclusions find support in a number of points in the IPCC reports.

    So the answer to the post begins with supporting background on why CO2 is known not to accumulate in the atmosphere, and then goes on to other aspects of the model that global warming causes increases in CO2, which accounts for the last 100 years or so.”

    http://www.rocketscientistsjournal.com/2007/06/on_why_co2_is_known_not_to_hav.html#more
    ==========================================================
    Lot more in the link with many reader comments at the bottom,that are replied to.

  6. Another Jim
  7. Kenneth Richard

    http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1260/095830508786238369
    The natural exchange of CO2 between ocean, biomass on land and the atmosphere is very large. In only four to five years all the CO2 in the atmosphere has been recycled through the oceans and the biomass system. The annual anthropogenic human production of CO2 is neutralized by nature in as little as 12 days. Recent studies of the solar forcing, changes in cosmic radiation and its role in cloud formations explain the global warming that has taken place since 1910.

    1. SebastianH

      So we only need to stop CO2 emissions for 12 days a year to stop the increase of concentration? Fantastic!

      Are you really sure that this is a true statement?

      1. Kenneth Richard

        “So we only need to stop CO2 emissions for 12 days a year to stop the increase of concentration?”

        Instead of making up your own version of what was said, why not respond to what was actually written? Would that be so hard? The same scientists who wrote about the 12-day recycling period do not attribute CO2 rise to anthropogenic emissions primarily. Therefore, your made-up “summary” of what they actually wrote is a misrepresentation of what they actually wrote. You knew that…and yet you dishonestly wrote it anyway.

        Anthropogenic CO2 emissions haven’t risen in 3 years. And yet the atmospheric CO2 concentration has risen by almost 10 ppm in the last 3 years. So what caused the atmospheric CO2 increase?

        1. SebastianH

          Kenneth, you emphasized the sentence with the 12 days. Does it not say that all our emissions (CO2) are neutralized in 12 days? So if we stopped emitting today for 12 days all our emissions for this year would be net neutral?

          How do you interpret such a statement?

          Anthropogenic CO2 emissions haven’t risen in 3 years. And yet the atmospheric CO2 concentration has risen by almost 10 ppm in the last 3 years. So what caused the atmospheric CO2 increase?

          Is that a serious question? We output around 35 GtCO2 per year. That’s equal to an increase by 4.5 ppm of the CO2 concentration. Do you really think CO2 emissions need to rise year over year in order for the CO2 concentration to increase?

          1. Kenneth Richard

            “So if we stopped emitting today for 12 days all our emissions for this year would be net neutral?”

            First of all, it is not possible for human beings to “stop emitting CO2 today.” So this is yet another example of your made-up, non-real-world analogies that are little more than hand-waving. That’s why I don’t even bother engaging in your game-play word-twistings: it’s pointless.

            If you really want to know where Dr. Singer got the “12 days” from, here it is (not that it matters, since you’ll just make up another irrelevant analogy):

            “According to measurements by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U S DOE, the total reservoir of CO2 in the atmosphere (expressed in carbon equivalents) is 775 Gtons, Figure 3. The diagram shows that in the oceanic reservoir there is 38 100 Gtons C of dissolved CO2, which (according to Henry’s Law) fifty times more than in the atmosphere. According to the diagram the annual flux of CO2 from the oceans to the atmosphere is 90 Gton C and 92 Gton C in the opposite direction. The biomass is absorbing 101 Gton C per year but is also releasing the same amount due to decay processes. This shows that all the CO2 in the atmosphere 775/(101 + 92) = 4 is circulated through the oceans and the biomass in approx. four years. The human contribution of CO2 to the atmosphere is estimated to 7–8 Gton C per year, which is one percent of the existing CO2 in the atmosphere. If we add the absorption of CO2 into the oceans and biomass of 92 + 101 = 193 Gton C, we can calculate that the annual human contribution corresponds to only 12 days of natural turnover. This shows that human emissions of CO2 are a very small part of the total natural circulation of CO2.”

            “Is that a serious question? We output around 35 GtCO2 per year.”

            Whoop-de-doo. Termites emit more than twice as much CO2 as humans do per year. And their numbers have grown commensurate with the massive increase in planetary greening since the 1980s.

            Natural emissions from soil are 9 times larger than human emissions, and the Earth’s land mass gains (more soil exposure, emissions) has risen by 173,000 km2 since 1985, meaning there has been a massive increase in CO2 emissions from soils in the last 30 years. You, of course, necessarily believe that the sinks for the dramatic changes (increases) in soil emissions (and termite populations due to enhanced planetary greening) in the last several decades have neatly grown in direct proportion to the increase in natural emissions during this same period. You have zero evidence that this essentially perfect natural carbon balancing act is taking place every single year…but yet you believe it anyway. I am not the believer that you are that we know exactly how much natural CO2 is being emitted vs. absorbed, as the values change every time new “evidence” comes in that re-shapes our guesses.

            “Do you really think CO2 emissions need to rise year over year in order for the CO2 concentration to increase?”

            No, but that’s because I’m not convinced, as you are, that the year-to-year increases in atmospheric CO2 are predominantly caused by humans.

            CO2 concentrations rise much faster during El Nino years (warming), and they rise much slower, if at all, during La Nina years (or years with volcanic eruptions), or when cooling occurred. Is that a coincidence?

            http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2005GL023027/full
            There is clear similarity between Figures 1b and 1c, with the positive CO2 growth rate anomalies corresponding to El Niño events, and the negative growth rate anomalies corresponding to La Niña events. The largest positive CO2 growth rate anomalies are coincident with large Niño3 values in 1973, 1988 and 1998. … It is unlikely that these anomalies can be explained by an abrupt increase in anthropogenic emissions, as the anomalies are much larger than annual increases in fossil fuel emissions. Most interannual variability in the CO2 growth rate is attributable to variations in land-atmosphere CO2 exchange with climate (e.g., associated with ENSO or volcanic perturbations)

          2. SebastianH

            First it has been “neutralized by nature in as little as 12 days” and now it’s “12 days of natural turnover”. What is it now? You don’t want to play a game of word-twisting and yet here you are, twisting everything until it supports your view of the world.

            This is indeed pointless. I made my point – as Pierre demanded – and your answer that demonstrate you don’t understand the problem stands for itself …

          3. Kenneth Richard

            “First it has been ‘neutralized by nature in as little as 12 days’ and now it’s ’12 days of natural turnover’. What is it now?”

            Huh? SebastianH, all I have done is directly quote the author of the paper by copying/pasting from the paper itself and then emboldening his words. And now you’re complaining that I have twisted his words? What are you even talking about? How am I twisting words by directly quoting Dr. Singer?

            “I made my point – as Pierre demanded”

            I highly doubt that Pierre demanded that you dishonestly make up comments, pretend others wrote them, and then call them names like “conspiracy theorists” and “deniers” as you trash made-up thoughts and conclusions that no one wrote.

            I’ll ask you again: Do you consider yourself an honest person? Do you think you have been demonstrating honesty in faithfully representing what other people have written? I’m asking because I would like to know whether you are actually aware of/willing to acknowledge what it is you are doing.

        2. ScottM

          Kenneth Richard, the Guardian article you linked to says something other than your paraphrase. The actual quote is: “Carbon dioxide emissions from energy have not increased for three years in a row even as the global economy grew, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said.”

          FYI, there are other significant anthropogenic sources of CO2 — in particular, agriculture and land use changes. Holding energy-related CO2 emissions constant is not the same as holding anthropogenic CO2 contributions constant.

          The paper abstract that you linked reads like a series of non-sequiturs. It is a huge leap from “This close relationship strongly indicates that ocean temperatures and the solubility of CO2 in seawater control the amount of CO2 being absorbed or released by the oceans” to “It is therefore likely that the increased CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is due to a natural global warming and that CO2 produced through fossil fuel combustion by humans can not disrupt this balance.”

          1. Kenneth Richard

            Kenneth Richard, the Guardian article you linked to says something other than your paraphrase.

            According to carbon budget estimates, global carbon emissions have effectively not risen in 3 years (2014, 2015, and 2016). This isn’t new information. The cited Guardian article only repeats this conclusion. So I’m not sure what your point is here.

            https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161114082243.htm
            “Global carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels did not grow in 2015 and are projected to rise only slightly in 2016, marking three years of almost no growth, according to researchers.”

            http://www.enca.com/technology/carbon-emissions-havent-grown-for-3-years
            Carbon emissions haven’t grown for 3 years

            The paper abstract that you linked reads like a series of non-sequiturs.

            The “huge leap” you refer to in the abstract is fleshed out descriptively in the paper itself. The abstract just hits the main points. But my presumption is that you are calling the abstract a series of “non-sequiturs” because you don’t particularly like what the author concluded.

  8. crosspatch

    Jim is correct. Atmospheric 14C after end of atmospheric nuclear testing showed that the average residence time is less than 20 years. By 2010 virtually ALL of the 14C was gone from nuclear testing.

  9. SebastianH

    As the article mentions residence time of a single molecule is different from the “residence time” of increased CO2 levels. I’ve plotted it for two different scenarios: http://imgur.com/a/I50km

    I) we immediately stop outputting CO2: concentration would go back to 300 ppm in around 100 years.

    II) the output decreases by 0.4 GtCO2 annually: concentration would go back to 300 ppm in 180 years.

    That’s assuming the sinks work like they did since the 50’s (using a very, very simple model). It’s entirely possible that there is a point of saturation where the sinks might not absorb as much CO2 anymore or become net sources, but it gives a rough ballpark value how long it takes for nature to get back to the preindustrial level if no new source materializes.

    P.S.: What’s interesting about the paper: the fourth graph in the paper clearly displays a link between surface temperatures and CO2 concentration. Not very anti-AGW 😉

    1. Kenneth Richard

      http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1260/095830509789876772
      It is commonly assumed (e.g. by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; IPCC) that a part of the emitted carbon dioxide will stay in the atmosphere and, therefore, large emission rate of carbon dioxide should cause large increase rate of atmospheric carbon dioxide. High temperature should also increase the atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration due to lowered solubility of carbon dioxide in the backmixed ocean surface water. However, using two-dimensional regression analysis, the increase rate could not be explained by the emissions because temperature was the dominating parameter that controlled the increase rate. The fraction of the emissions that remained in the atmosphere—or the airborne fraction—decreased significantly despite global warming.

      1. SebastianH

        Math? We emit more CO2 then the increase of concentration. So nature is a sink for “our” CO2. If we stopped tomorrow it would continue to be a sink and the concentration would decrease.

        Not in 12 days however as you’ve written above…

        1. Kenneth Richard

          “We emit more CO2 then the increase of concentration.”

          Nature (ocean outgassing, biosphere respiration) emits 25-100 times more CO2 than humans do. Termites alone emit more than twice as much CO2 as humans do, and with the massive increase in the greening of the Earth since the 1980s, the termite population has increased proportionately. Even the Earth’s soil emits 9 times more CO2 than humans do.

          So how are we to know with any degree of certainty that it is our tiny proportion of emissions that have caused the atmospheric concentration to rise relative to imbalances all the other much more substantial natural CO2? Answer: we don’t have any certainty. All this is is guesswork. One must presume every single other natural source and sink is quite neatly in equilibrium every day of every year, and only one tiny source – human emissions – is out of balance. That’s a mighty ambitious presumption.

          As you surely know, I didn’t write “12 days” above. That’s what scientists have written. Why do you dishonestly do this (purposely mischaracterize what I write) over and over and over again? Do you consider yourself an honest person, SebastianH? Because purposely misrepresenting what I have written is dishonest. This is exactly the kind of low-brow behavior that invites others to insult you and call you names.

          1. sod

            “So how are we to know with any degree of certainty that it is our tiny proportion of emissions that have caused the atmospheric concentration to rise relative to imbalances all the other much more substantial natural CO2?”

            This graph alone explains it all:

            http://kaltesonne.de/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/co2-1024×576.jpg

            800000 years. and then an absurd spike, correlating with humans starting to burn fossile fuels.

          2. Kenneth Richard

            So for you, sod, correlation = causation. What happens when correlation doesn’t go in the direction that supports your beliefs, like this: http://notrickszone.com/2017/03/20/50-inverted-hockey-sticks-scientists-find-earth-cools-as-co2-rises/

            And why did CO2 begin rising while CO2 emissions were flat…for 150 years:

            http://notrickszone.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Anthropogenic-Emissions-vs-CO2-Rise-Non-Correlation.jpg

            And why has atmospheric CO2 risen by almost 10 ppm in the last 3 years while CO2 emissions have not risen? What caused the rise?

    2. DirkH

      “P.S.: What’s interesting about the paper: the fourth graph in the paper clearly displays a link between surface temperatures and CO2 concentration. Not very anti-AGW”

      You do realize that ocean outgassing is driven by higher temperatures, right?

      1. SebastianH

        The oceans are a net sink.

        1. Kenneth Richard

          “The oceans are a net sink.”

          At what point did they cease acting as a net source? What causes CO2 concentrations to naturally fall to 180 ppm or rise to 470 ppm (like they did during the Pliocene)? Why did CO2 concentrations rise during the Holocene as temperatures plummeted? What caused that inverse correlation?

          What’s the level of certainty that you have that the estimations/guesses of the GtC emitted and absorbed by the oceans are accurate? Especially since our estimations/guesses change about whether something is a source or sink change so routinely?

          For example, just this past year, it was “discovered” that cement production is actually a net sink for CO2, not a substantial net source. Just like that, we found out that our estimations/guesses were wrong about cement. How do we know that estimations/guesses regarding the much more substantial source/sink factor (oceans) isn’t inaccurate as well?

          1. SebastianH

            Kenneth, let’s not go down that rabbit hole again.

            It is amazing with how much confidence you write about CO2 concentrations millions of years in the past. Who knows what caused increases back then, after all it was the period where North and South America finally connected and major oceanic currents were interrupted. Also the Mediterranean Sea formed …

            Oceans as sink: http://science.sciencemag.org/content/305/5682/367

            Do you have source for your claim that cement would be a net sink for CO2? All I can find is that it absorbs about half the CO2 that was emitted during production (not including emissions by burning fossil fuel during production): http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v9/n12/full/ngeo2840.html

          2. Kenneth Richard

            “It is amazing with how much confidence you write about CO2 concentrations millions of years in the past.”

            When have I ever used the word “confidence” with regard to estimations/guesses about paleoclimate CO2 concentrations? I never have. This is just you dishonestly making up thoughts/opinions that I and others don’t have. I’m sick of it. Stop fabricating, SebastianH. Do you consider yourself to be an honest person?

            Xi et al., 2016
            We find that carbonation of cement materials over their life cycle represents a large and growing net sink of CO2, increasing from 0.10 GtC yr−1 in 1998 to 0.25 GtC yr−1 in 2013. In total, we estimate that a cumulative amount of 4.5 GtC has been sequestered in carbonating cement materials from 1930 to 2013, offsetting 43% of the CO2 emissions from production of cement over the same period, not including emissions associated with fossil use during cement production. We conclude that carbonation of cement products represents a substantial carbon sink that is not currently considered in emissions inventories.

            https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161121130957.htm
            Concrete jungle functions as carbon sink, researchers find: Cement-based materials eventually reabsorb much of the CO2 released during creation

          3. SebastianH

            Kenneth, do you even read what other people write in comments or what is written in papers? I linked to the exact same paper and here you are citing and emphasizing a section that couldn’t be more clear about the nature of cement production.

            The keywords in your quote are “43% of the CO2 emissions from production” and “not including emissions associated with fossil use during cement production”.

            Cement production is NOT a net carbon sink as you have written and apparently read from a paper that clearly says the opposite.

          4. Kenneth Richard

            ‘Cement production is NOT a net carbon sink as you have written and apparently read from a paper that clearly says the opposite.”

            Apparently you have no idea what “net carbon sink” means. Perhaps the “net” part has thrown you off. I’ll continue quoting what the articles actually say. You keep on claiming whatever you want that meets your needs.

            The press release for the paper even helps you out by defining what the words “net sink” means…and yet you still apparently misunderstood it.

            https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161121130957.htm
            Cement manufacturing is among the most carbon-intensive industrial processes, but an international team of researchers has found that over time, the widely used building material reabsorbs much of the CO2 emitted when it was made. “It sounds counterintuitive, but it’s true,” said Steven Davis, associate professor of Earth system science at the University of California, Irvine. “The cement poured around the world since 1930 has taken up a substantial portion of the CO2 released when it was initially produced.”

            They found that “cement is a large, overlooked and growing net sink” around the world — “sink” meaning a feature such as a forest or ocean that takes carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and permanently tucks it away so that it can no longer contribute to climate change.

          5. SebastianH

            Kenneth, this is a prime example of you not understanding what a paper actually says and you even stay on your path when pointed to this misunderstanding of yours.

            Of course cement itself is a sink of CO2 … that has been known for quiet some time now (best example: the failed Biosphere 2 experiment in the 90s). It’s not counterintuitive either. The calcium hydroxide in cement is reacting with CO2 to calcium carbonate and water. That’s why you have to coat cement do prevent that reaction …

            But again – and you even cite it here – it only absorbs a “portion of the CO2 released when it was initially produced” and that does not include the emission from fossil fuel used during the production. The paper couldn’t state that more clearly and yet you choose to just read over it as if that statement doesn’t exist.

          6. Kenneth Richard

            Once again, SebastianH, you have misunderstood what has been written and you have twisted words to fit your straw man agenda. What a surprise.

            As the authors themselves state, it was previously thought that cement was only a net sink on geological timescales (thousands of years). The “discovery” here is that cement is already functioning as a very substantial net sink, not just on geological timescales, but currently. The net sink qualities of cement “has only recently been recognized.” Those are the authors words. In fact, this “discovery” is so new that the contemporary net sink qualities of cement are not included in today’s carbon budgets. And the net sinks for cement are substantial, with cement sequestering 1 billion tons of CO2 every year.

            This was precisely my point (now lost amidst your gotcha-word-twisting). We “discover” something new about net sources and sinks of CO2 routinely, and these “discoveries” are added/deleted to/from our estimates/guesses of carbon budgets, which just goes to show how arbitrary and feeble our estimates/guesses are. And yet it is necessarily your claim that we know with some certainty what all the net sources and sinks of CO2 are. We don’t.

            Xi et al., 2017
            “It is well known that the weathering of carbonate and silicate materials removes CO2 from the atmosphere on geologic timescales (10,000 years). However, the potential for removal by the weathering of cement materials has only recently been recognized. Our results indicate that such enhanced weathering is already occurring on a large scale; existing cement stocks worldwide sequester approximately 1 billion tons of atmospheric CO2 each year. Future emissions inventories and carbon budgets may be improved by including this cement sink [because they don’t now].”

            The overall size of the cement sink between 1930 and 2013 is significant for the global carbon cycle. We estimate that the global carbon uptake by carbonating cement materials in 2013 was approximately 2.5% of the global CO2 emissions from all industrial processes and fossil-fuel combustion in the same year, which is equivalent to 22.7% of the average net global forest sink from 1990 to 2007. The cement carbon sink of China alone in 2013 was about 0.14 GtC yr−1, which accounts for 54% to 74% of the average net annual carbon sink in terrestrial ecosystems during the 1980s and 1990s

          7. SebastianH

            There is no word-twisting involved here. The author clearly states how much of the CO2 used in production excluding use of fossil fuels is re-absorbed by cement (I guess uncoated, since coated cement will no react with its environment).

            You choose to ignore it and apparently think the production of cement can actually contribute to decrease our emissions. Maybe the word “net” is meaning something very different from what I was thinking. Isn’t that what remains when you subtract/add all outputs/inputs, e.g. the difference? So if I emit 10 tonnes of CO2 during production the usage of fossil fuels emit another 2 tonnes of CO2 and the cements then re-absorbs 4.3 tonnes (43%) of the CO2 … does that really make cement production a net sink? No … and the author clearly states that, they write cement is a net sink. And that has been true for a long time.

            The fast absorption rate of cement is at least known since the 90s, when Biosphere 2 failed. Do you remember that experiment? If that’s “recently”, then I guess you are right.

            And yet it is necessarily your claim that we know with some certainty what all the net sources and sinks of CO2 are. We don’t.

            It isn’t neccessary to know how much nature emits/absorbs in order to conclude that our emissions – which are greater than the annual increase in CO2 in the atmosphere – cause the increase. Because – and I repeat – if I give you 2 dollars a day and you end up less than 730 wealthier in a year, than it was my contribution that made you wealthier. That doesn’t change even if you happen to win the lottery and manage to spend all that money somewhere in between.

          8. Kenneth Richard

            Maybe the word “net” is meaning something very different from what I was thinking.

            Why do you think the authors use the words “net sink” when referring to the “life cycle” of cement, SebastianH? What does the “net” mean to you? And if it is so well known that cement functions as a net sink, why is this “recent” discovery not included in estimates/guesses of carbon budgets? Is that a mistake, or does having an “accurate” carbon budget not matter?

            “They [scientists] found that ‘cement is a large, overlooked and growing net sink‘ around the world — “sink” meaning a feature such as a forest or ocean that takes carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and permanently tucks it away so that it can no longer contribute to climate change.”

            “We find that carbonation of cement materials over their life cycle represents a large and growing net sink of CO2

            “It isn’t neccessary to know how much nature emits/absorbs in order to conclude that our emissions – which are greater than the annual increase in CO2 in the atmosphere – cause the increase.”

            SebastianH, once again you are presuming, without evidence, that the natural sources and sinks of CO2 are neatly in equilibrium, and thus any increase in natural CO2 emissions are quite aptly compensated by an increase in a natural sink.

            Soil exposure has naturally increased by 173,000 km2 since 1985 (through 2015), as sea levels haven’t been rising fast enough to compensate for the land mass gains. Natural CO2 emissions from soils is 9 times greater than human emissions. How do you know that an increase in CO2 concentration is NOT due at all to an imbalance in the increases in land mass/soil emissions relative to natural land sinks? You don’t know, of course. You just assume/presuppose/believe that natural sinks perfectly balance out changes in natural sources. You have no evidence this is true, but you believe it’s true anyway.

            It is only your presupposition that humans are the cause. So you operate on that presupposition from the start and then say that imbalances in all other natural sources of CO2 — which are 25 to 100 times greater than anthropogenic emissions — don’t matter because natural sinks will facilely swallow up the extra natural emissions. It’s an unfalsifiable hypothesis. Another name for an unfalsifiable hypothesis is a belief.

            I am not going to bother even commenting on your completely irrelevant “If I give you 2 dollars” analogy.

            There is evidence that there are 100,000 volcanoes underneath the seas, belching unknown quantities of CO2 (for those that are active). We have no idea how much CO2 they are emitting. We have no idea about their effects on the carbon cycle. But yet you, and others like you, think you know exactly how much CO2 is being emitted and absorbed by the oceans so that you can say, with certainty, that the oceans are a net sink. At what point did we learn all there is to know about ocean outgassing vs. absorption?

          9. AndyG55

            roflmao.

            seb, with his child-minded analogies yet again.

            ZERO science, though.

          10. SebastianH

            You still seem to intentionally overlook what that cement paper is saying by “cement is a net sink”. Cement production clearly isn’t, as is also stated in the paper and even in the quotes you cited here.

            You are also either intentionally ignoring the simple math of the “we are the cause of the CO2 increase” problem or you are leaving out information that would be helpful in understanding your point of view. On the one hand you use many words to explain that nature is not just magically in an CO2 equilibrium and might not be able to cope with additional natural emissions directly, on the other hand you seem to believe that nature is able to sink all the CO2 we emit immediately and the increase is instead caused by an imbalance in locations with no human industry?

            If that is the case and if we could just stop emitting CO2 today, wouldn’t the part of nature that is able to just absorb our emissions (according to you) then be able to absorb CO2 that is already in the air?

            The simple math:
            Nature emits A and absorbs B and we emit X. The formula is Yearly change (YC) = (A + X) - B and YC < X therefor A - B < 0. You don’t think this is true or correct. Can you tell me what is wrong with this equation? We don’t need to know the values of A or B to conclude that X is the sole reason that YC is increasing, do we?

          11. Kenneth Richard

            “you seem to believe that nature is able to sink all the CO2 we emit immediately and the increase is instead caused by an imbalance in locations with no human industry?”

            Why do you always do this? Why do you make straw man arguments? Why do you make up thoughts/positions and then pretend that others have written them?

            No, I have not written that “no human industry” causes imbalances in CO2 or contributes to increasing CO2 concentrations. Instead, I have questioned the certainty with which you maintain your presupposition that increases in CO2 are caused by humans, especially since (a) natural CO2 emissions are 25 to 100 times greater than human emissions, and thus small imbalances in natural sources vs. sinks could overshadow the human contribution, and (b) we don’t really have a complete understanding (perhaps only a partial knowledge) of natural quantities of CO2 sources vs. sinks, and thus our assumptions are little more than guesses. I’m pointing out how little we know about contributors to the carbon cycle, you just wish to ignore this uncertainty and proceed to restating your presuppositions (with the obligatory analogy).

            How do you know that the massive increase in land mass exposure since 1985 has been simultaneously matched by changes in the Earth’s natural sinks? How do you know, SebastianH? You don’t. You’re just presuming this is true.

            “Nature emits A and absorbs B and we emit X.”

            My point: We don’t know what A and B are with any degree of certainty. Huge knowledge gaps exist. Even X is arbitrarily and erroneously derived, as we, for example, exclude the newly discovered net sink life span qualities of cement in our calculations, and we rely on countries like China to report their CO2 emissions accurately and honestly (they don’t).

            Your point: We know A, B, and X with enough clarity to assume humans are the cause of CO2 increases. Knowledge gaps? What knowledge gaps? And if you don’t believe, you don’t understand simple maths.

          12. SebastianH

            Hmm, my comment again vanished …

            My point: you don’t need to know A or B. It’s simple math. And we know what X is, don’t fool yourself and accuse China of reporting to many emissions.

          13. Kenneth Richard

            “My point: you don’t need to know A or B.”

            Of course we don’t need to know what the true values of natural sources and sinks are. Guesses and assumptions are enough. All we need to do is presuppose that humans caused the atmospheric CO2 changes, that natural sources and sinks are in perpetual equilibrium, and that historical measurements of CO2 found in ice cores are not based upon arbitrary selection and are extremely reliable. If we rely upon on these presuppositions, and assume they are true, no actual evidence is needed. The hypothesized position is therefore unfalsifiable.

            It’s not much different than when Michael Mann said he doesn’t need any more evidence for climate change…all he needs to do is look out his window. What he believes is true…because it is.

            How scientific.

          14. SebastianH

            Wow, you really do not understand this basic math concept, do you?

            We don’t need to guess what A and B might be, it’s irrelevant. But we know for certain (using math and logic) that B is greater than A or in other words: nature currently is a net sink for CO2 and has been for the past decades.

          15. Kenneth Richard

            “Wow, you really do not understand this basic math concept, do you?”

            As much as you want it to be, this is not about a math concept. It’s about our scientific knowledge of natural quantities of CO2 sources and sinks, which is woefully inadequate.

            “We don’t need to guess what A and B might be, it’s irrelevant.”

            Of course you have to say that knowing the quantified values for natural CO2 emission sources and sinks is irrelevant. Because if you acknowledged it is relevant to know the natural sources and sinks values, you’d have to acknowledge that we really don’t have any idea to what extent natural sources and sinks are affecting the atmospheric CO2 change rate. If we call it irrelevant, then we can go on believing that our presuppositions are correct, and that natural sources and sinks are in nearly perfect equilibrium, that the oceans are a net sink, etc. If we don’t know the answer, just pretend that the question doesn’t matter. It’s irrelevant. And restate your beliefs. That’s exactly what you’re doing here…restating your unfalsifiable beliefs.

            “But we know for certain (using math and logic) that B is greater than A”

            So we don’t know what the values for A and B are, but we nonetheless we know with certainty that “B is greater than A”. Because it is. If we believe it’s true, therefore it is.

          16. SebastianH

            Kenneth, one last try:

            A is what nature emits per year and we have no knowledge of that value. B is what nature absorbs per year and we too have no knowledge of this value. What we know is X, the value that humans emit. And what we further know is the yearly change YC.

            And since YC = (A + X) - B and YC < X we can deduce that A < B and therefor nature is a net sink.

            This has nothing to do with beliefs.

            That’s really simple mathematics and you apparently don’t understand how this works. That might explain why you didn’t understand the simple calculation I wrote down when replying to your “by how much does the surface temperature change when the CO2 concentration changes by 10 ppm” question and why you sometimes don’t understand what’s written in papers with lots of formulas in them (I believe you also posted the paper about the negative greenhouse effect in Antarctica some time ago, didn’t you?).

          17. Kenneth Richard

            SebastianH Logic:

            -“A is what nature emits per year and we have no knowledge of that value.”

            -“B is what nature absorbs per year and we too have no knowledge of this value.”

            -“But we know for certain that B is greater than A

            So we don’t know if natural sources of CO2 are greater than natural sinks of CO2, causing the atmospheric CO2 concentration to rise. But we do know with certainty that natural sinks of CO2 are greater than natural CO2 sources…because we don’t know what the values of A and B are, and we don’t care to know…because this is irrelevant…because humans did it.

            So we’ll just ignore textbooks on atmospheric physics (like below), and believe that what we believe is true is true…because it is.

            http://www.atmosfera.unam.mx/jzavala/OceanoAtmosfera/Physics%20of%20the%20Atmosphere%20and%20Climate%20-%20Murry%20Salby.pdf
            “Together, emission from ocean and land sources (∼150 GtC/yr) is two orders of magnitude greater than CO2 emission from combustion of fossil fuel. These natural sources are offset by natural sinks, of comparable strength. However, because they are so much stronger, even a minor imbalance between natural sources and sinks can overshadow the anthropogenic component of CO2 emission.” pg. 546

          18. SebastianH

            I don’t know why you don’t understand the simple logic behind this, either you don’t want to or you really can’t. Both is kind of sad.

            Have a good night. It makes no sense to continue this discussion, but you have given me valueable insight why you always fold when math or physics is involved. To you it’s all about quotes – often cherry picked out of papers you haven’t completely read – to support your claims / point of view. You don’t care about applied math or physics.

          19. Kenneth Richard

            “you have given me valueable insight why you always fold when math or physics is involved.”

            It is so amusing to me that you think the illogical contradiction (“We don’t have any idea what the values of A or B are, but yet we know that one is greater than the other with certainty”) you espouse is about math and physics — or “simple logic”.

            “You don’t care about applied math or physics.”

            Says the same person who uses math to say that the alleged 0.2 W m-2 of CO2 forcing for 2000-2010 (Feldman et al., 2015) is greater than the alleged 0.6 W m-2 of energy imbalance for the same period (Stephens et al., 2012), and the same person who claims it is “simple physics” that lowering CO2 concentration by 0.000001 causes water bodies to cool by ____ amount even though there has never been a physical experiment with physical measurements in the real world that demonstrates lowering CO2 concentrations by 0.000001 causes cooling in water bodies. Your math that says 0.2 is greater than 0.6 (or 0.4) is wrong, and your “physics” that doesn’t actually involve real physics is illogical. As is your claim that we know value A is greater than value B even though we have no idea what the values for A or B are.

            Your entire case is a series of one spurious correlations, confirmation bias, straw man concoctions, and dishonest misrepresentations. You are doing nothing but undermining your own side’s case. So why are you here?

          20. AndyG55

            “understand the simple logic behind this”

            Easy seb, because your SIMPLISTIC logic has pretty much ZERO relationship to reality..

            As Always.

          21. AndyG55

            “You are doing nothing but undermining your own side’s case. So why are you here?’

            He is such a NIL-educated goose that he doesn’t even see the massive damage he is doing to the AGW scam-religion with his cult-like anti-science and simplistically illogical arguments

        2. AndyG55

          But some papers say heading towards a net source.

          http://earthscience.stackexchange.com/questions/4384/will-the-southern-ocean-act-as-a-net-source-or-sink-for-atmospheric-ceco2-I

          And this one says that, “the ocean CO₂ sink intensity has been weakening for several decades and has changed from a net sink to a net source since 2005”

          http://earthscience.stackexchange.com/questions/4384/will-the-southern-ocean-act-as-a-net-source-or-sink-for-atmospheric-ceco2-i

          These guys need to get their story straight.

    3. AndyG55

      Taking the atmospheric CO2 level back to 300ppm would be disastrous for food supplies around the world.

      This is the very last thing we should be trying to do.

      Levels of 700+ppm would make the world a far more sustainable place of all life on Earth.

  10. AndyG55

    “The CO2 content in the earth’s atmosphere has risen to a level that surpasses any level seen over the past 800,000 years”

    This is stupendously good news for all life on this glorious carbon-life based planet of ours.

    The near death cycle has been broken.

    And if humans are the cause.. we should give ourselves a hearty round of congratulation on a job well done.

    We should not rest on our laurels. Much more needs to be done to lift the atmospheric CO2 content up towards 1000ppm where it really needs to be.

    1. Graeme No.3

      Yes, the Precautionary Principle should apply; if the climate turns cold again as seems likely, then we owe it to our grandchildren to increase the CO2 level so it doesn’t drop to the previous low levels. Vegetation will benefit.

  11. Paul Aubrin

    “This value is not to be confused with the residence time of single CO2 molecules in the atmosphere. Here there’s widespread agreement that the molecules themselves remain in the air only a few years before they get replaced by CO2 from the oceans in the sense of an equilibrium reaction.”
    This is a very curious statement. The link says that oceans simply swap CO2 molecules. When CO2 molecules react with a sink the local equilibrium concentration is directed by the characteristics of the sink.

  12. Mark M

    “The big question now is how long will it take nature to bring down the anthropogenic CO2 build-up if CO2 emissions were to be massively cut back?”
    Even bigger question is at what decreased level will CO2 prevent it’s first drought?

  13. CO2isLife

    Not only is the residence life of CO2 exaggerated, so is its impact.
    Climate “Science” on Trial; Give a Climate Alarmist Enough Rope They’ll Hang Themselves
    https://co2islife.wordpress.com/2017/03/26/climate-science-on-trial-give-a-climate-alarmist-enough-rope-theyll-hang-themselves/

  14. Martin W

    Figure 1 and its description are nonsense. The only reason the ice core data matches actual CO2 measurements is that the ice core data was fudged. See Jaworowski (1992, 1997). Before the 20th century, we don’t know what CO2 was.

    1. Kenneth Richard

      “Before the 20th century, we don’t know what CO2 was.”

      Exactly. Which is why the claimed certainty regarding past CO2 levels is misguided posturing. The average measured CO2 concentration was ~425 ppm during 1810 to 1860…before that was arbitrarily erased because it didn’t fit the hypothesis.

      Jaworowski, 1997
      http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/2006_articles/IceCoreSprg97.pdf
      “[T]he measured 19th century CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere ranged from about 250 to 550 ppmv (Figure 1), and the average concentration estimated from these values was 335 ppmv”

      1. AndyG55
        1. Kenneth Richard
      2. AndyG55

        “before that was arbitrarily erased because it didn’t fit the hypothesis.”

        It really is amazing just how much has been “erased” or “adjusted” to fit the hypothesis.

        Almost like there was a cult or agenda or something, behind it all. 😉

        It would be very interesting to see just how many things to do with climate have been given “the treatment” or are just subject to fallacious fabrications.

        1. Kenneth Richard

          I have a large collection on this (the post 1980s “adjusting” of ice core CO2 data to fit the hypothesis). It used to be accepted (pre-1985 or so) that CO2 concentrations reached 400 to 700 ppm during the Holocene — because that’s what the measured data indicated. By carefully rejecting data that did not support the narrative, and selecting the data that did, scientists were able to concoct an historical CO2 record that made modern levels appear unprecedented.

          It’s worth an article. The temperatures and the CO2 concentrations may be fabricated…or at least we really don’t have any idea what CO2 concentrations were during preindustrial times.

          1. SebastianH

            You two are my favorite conspiracy theorists. A few comments above you are super confident that the CO2 concentration was 470 ppm millions of years ago and now all that data is worthless since it has been “treated” 😉

            If nothing else helps the data or its adjustments must be fake, right? Because it can’t be what you don’t want it to be …

          2. Kenneth Richard

            You two are my favorite conspiracy theorists. A few comments above you are super confident that the CO2 concentration was 470 ppm millions of years ago and now all that data is worthless since it has been “treated”

            Once again, SebastianH has been caught fabricating and misrepresenting what others have written, and then engaging in patronizing name-calling to boot based upon his fabricated rendering of what was written. Does it ever stop? Do you have to resort to dishonest misrepresentation so as to concoct straw man arguments?

            Never once have I ever written that I am “super confident” in ANY estimation of planetary CO2 concentrations gleaned from ice cores. In fact, I have written MANY times that our knowledge of CO2 concentrations is extremely dubious and little more than guesswork.

            Stop fabricating, SebastianH. Stop making up straw man arguments by making up points of view that no one has written. I’ll ask you again: Do you consider yourself to be an honest person?

          3. AndyG55

            Poor seb ,

            Still PLEADING for attention.

            Is your life really that pathetic?

  15. tom0mason

    This may be of interest here —

    We show that streams and rivers in the US are supersaturated with carbon dioxide when compared with the atmosphere, emitting 97±32 Tg carbon each year. We further show that regionally, carbon dioxide evasion from streams and rivers is positively correlated with annual precipitation, which we attribute to climatic regulation of stream surface area, and the flushing of carbon dioxide from soils.

    Significant efflux of carbon dioxide from streams and rivers in the United States “David Butman” “Peter A. Raymond”
    Available at http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v4/n12/full/ngeo1294.html

  16. tom0mason

    From —
    Carbon cycle modelling and the residence time of natural and anthropogenic atmospheric CO2: on the construction of the “Greenhouse Effect Global Warming” dogma.
    Tom V. Segalstad: Mineralogical-Geological Museum University of Oslo Sars’ Gate 1, N-0562 Oslo Norway

    Authors [publication year]……….Residence time (years)

    Based on natural carbon-14
    Craig [1957]……….7 +/- 3
    Revelle & Suess [1957]……….7
    Arnold & Anderson [1957]……….10
    ______including living and dead biosphere_______
    (Siegenthaler, 1989)……….4-9
    Craig [1958]……….7 +/- 5
    Bolin & Eriksson [1959]……….5
    Broecker [1963], recalc. by Broecker & Peng [1974]……….8
    Craig [1963]……….5-15
    Keeling [1973b]……….7
    Broecker [1974]……….9.2
    Oeschger et al.[1975]……….6-9
    Keeling [1979]……….7.53
    Peng et al.[1979]……….7.6 (5.5-9.4)
    Siegenthaler et al.[1980]……….7.5
    Lal & Suess [1983]……….3-25
    Siegenthaler [1983]……….7.9-10.6
    Kratz et al. [1983]……….6.7
    Based on Suess Effect
    Ferguson [1958]……….2 (1-8)
    Bacastow & Keeling [1973]……….6.3-7.0

    Based on bomb carbon-14
    Bien & Suess [1967]……….>10
    Münnich & Roether [1967]……….5.4
    Nydal[1968]……….5-10
    Young & Fairhall [1968]……….4-6
    Rafter & O’Brian[1970]……….12
    Machta[1972]……….2
    Broecker et al. [1980a]……….6.2-8
    Stuiver [1980]……….6.8
    Quay & Stuiver [1980]……….7.5
    Delibrias [1980]……….6.0
    Druffel & Suess [1983]……….12.5
    Siegenthaler [1983]……….6.99-

    Based on radon-222
    Broecker & Peng [1974]……….8
    Peng et al. [1979]……….7.8-1
    Peng et al. [1983]……….8.4

    Based on solubility data
    Murray (1992)……….5.4

    Based on carbon-13/carbon-12 mass balance
    Segalstad (1992)……….5.4

    Table 2. Atmospheric residence time (i.e. lifetime, turnover time) of CO2, mainly based on the compilation by Sundquist (1985; for references in brackets).

    You pays your money and take your choice…

    1. tom0mason

      Looks like the simple formatting has been wrecked by the limits of the website again.
      Ho-humm, I tried.

      1. Mindert Eiting

        Well, limits of the text editor. No table format survives posting on the internet and never use the mathematical symbols for less than or greater than because the programmers destined them as editor signs making that text fragments between them completely disappear.

        1. tom0mason

          But are such limitations reasonable these days?
          I do not think so.
          Whoever has the talent to fix these shortcoming in what can and can not be typed by ordinary users should be up to our(ordinary users) expectations never defined by the programmers (limited) vision!

          1. tom0mason

            Oops a decaffeinated response,
            TAKE 2.

            But are such limitations reasonable these days?
            I do not think so.
            Whoever has the talent to fix these shortcoming in what can and can not be typed by ordinary users should get on and do it.
            Software should measure up to our(ordinary users) expectations and never down to what is defined by the programmers (limited) vision!
            If you disagree with that idea then do a spreadsheet in VisiCalc on CPM, write using Wordperfect in Windows for Workgroups, or Surf the internet using Mosaic. Yes I have used all of these and so many more. They all started well and become crud… The essential problem being that each of these systems/programs became products of programmers circle jerks parties, and not what the users required.
            It is not MY problem that cut and paste to this forum does not work, it is the untalented programmers that do not advance, limiting this forum’s format interface to their vision, instead of the needs of the users.
            So programmers please understand — you are servants of the customer expectation, not their masters.

          2. SebastianH

            WordPress by default allows only certain HTML-codes in comments for security reasons (https://developer.wordpress.org/reference/functions/allowed_tags/). A blog owner can change that behaviour, install plugins for richer comments (nested by more than a few levels), etc … it’s a very flexible system. The programmers can not forsee what the owner of a blog or the users of such a blog want to do.

            It’s also the owners descision to use a mobile friendly theme (it’s difficult to comment here when typing on a mobile phone).

            Having said that, the “code” HTML tag might be the one that is appropriate here, since it generally uses a system font where all characters have the same width. Also don’t use dot-lines as three dots in a row get converted to the corresponding HTML code for an ellipsis.

            Test:

            Authors [publication year] - - - | -- - - Residence time (years)
            Based on natural carbon-14
            Craig [1957] - - - - - - - - - - | - - - 7 +/- 3
            Revelle & Suess [1957] - - - - - | - - - 7
            Arnold & Anderson [1957] - - - - | - - - 10

          3. AndyG55

            Gees, why haven’t you set up your own blog yet seb.

            I guess because you know you would have zero visitors. A lonely, lonely place.

          4. tom0mason

            As usual Seb you missed the point!

            I see that even when I go to excessive verbosity to attempt to clarify, you, as usual, choose to read the words differently.

            BTW the problem was not as you describe, but a formatting error due to tabs still being in the ‘cut and paste’ from the document I used, and the fact that WordPress deletes what it considers excess ‘space’ characters. (Try it put a word, a tab followed by three spaces between the next 2 words and WordPress will bollox up your word format.)
            These limitation reminds me of the 1980 computer days when, for a print of a document to look anything like the screen version, arcane and mystical ‘escape’ characters had to be inserted all over the document. It was not reasonable then, it is not reasonable now that HTML code has to litter commenter’s text.
            It is about time WordPress, Blogpost, and all the rest, stopped this very old limitation (its at least 10 years) on commenter’s ‘field’. I throw down the gauntlet to WordPress and their lazy programmers who have kept the status quo on this. FIX IT WordPress it’s been too long!

          5. SebastianH

            I am not aware that I missed your point (you want the programmers to solve something that is the responsibility of the blog owner). However you entirely missed my point. WordPress is built as a very flexible system. You can configure and change everything via plugins and settings and it’s completely up to the blog owner to do so. It’s the lazy blog owners who run with the defaults that you are complaining about. There is nothing that stops the owner from providing a WYSIWYG editor for comments.

            Let’s see if WordPress really deletes spaces …

            There words have multiple spaces between them.
            Tab1
            Tab2
            Tab3
            The lines above have 1,2 and 3 tabs in them.

          6. SebastianH

            Apparently it does, even in the code-tag.

            Test...with...dots
            123....test......4
            AB........1.....23

    2. Ferdinand Engelbeen

      tom0mason,

      Besides formatting, there is a problem with the content…

      The residence time of any CO2 molecule (whatever the source) in the atmosphere indeed is about 5 years, everybody – including the IPCC – agrees on that. But that says next to nothing about how long it takes to remove some extra CO2 mass in the atmosphere above the long term equilibrium between ocean surface temperature and atmosphere for CO2. The latter is called the relaxation time to make a differentiation, but both are too often mixed as “residence time”, while completely different concepts…

      Think about what happens in a factory: the turnover of goods and capital through the factory gives the “residence time” of capital within that factory and the ultimate gain (or loss) of capital of the same factory gives the “excess decay rate” or “relaxation time”. Two different times, hardly influenced by each other…

      1. tom0mason

        Well maybe you should argue the case with all the quoted authors as they all seem to congregate around entirely different figures from yours. So said then your “The residence time of any CO2 molecule (whatever the source) in the atmosphere indeed is about 5 years, everybody – including the IPCC – agrees on that. ” appears to be in error.

        1. Ferdinand Engelbeen

          tomOmason,

          I don’t need to argue with any of the authors, as I agree with what they wrote: the residence time of any CO2 molecule in the atmosphere indeed is around 4-5 years. That is the average time that any CO2 molecule (whatever the source) remains in the atmosphere, before being exchanged by a CO2 molecule from another reservoir. That doesn’t change the total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere with one gram. It only redistributes “human caused” CO2 between the atmosphere and the oceans and vegetation (as can be measured via the isotopic compositions).

          What does change the amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere? The difference between all CO2 inputs and all CO2 outputs. As that depends of the extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere above the long term (dynamic) equilibrium, that is of a different order than the residence time and the “relaxation time” is (near) completely independent of the residence time.

          See the scheme that I have made, which shows the fluxes involved and how the residence time and relaxation time are calculated:
          http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/carboncycle.jpg
          All figures are from the IPCC, the same as Hermann Harde has used in his calculations.

          Look back at the end of the translated article above:
          “This value is not to be confused with the residence time of single CO2 molecules in the atmosphere.”. That is the residence time of ~4-5 years.
          The problem is that “residence time” is often used for both the single molecule residence time and the time needed to remove an extra shot of CO2 in the atmosphere, which causes a lot of confusion, including in the title of this translation. Therefore I mostly use “relaxation time” for the removal of any extra CO2…

  17. crosspatch

    It takes about 800 years for the oceans to complete a single ventilation cycle. Ocean is still dumping CO2 as it warms post LIA. Much of the water upwelling and exchanging gas with atmosphere last did so during the LIA. Oceans have been recovering for only about 150 years. They have a lot more gas to dump yet as long as the temperatures stay where they are. If it cools down again, that might reverse.

    1. tom0mason

      crosspatch,

      “It takes about 800 years for the oceans to complete a single ventilation cycle. Ocean is still dumping CO2 as it warms post LIA. ”

      Then probably you, like me, are thoroughly bemused by all the talk of ocean acidification, if indeed most of the atmospheric CO2 rise in level is in fact from the oceans originally. From such a (valid) viewpoint, alarmist claims of oceanic acidification damaging ocean life MUST be nothing but mass hysteria fantasy from their fractured neurotic imaginations.

      1. SebastianH

        There is no evidence that oceans (global, not just some patches) are currently a net source of CO2 … they absorb more than they emit during the year: http://science.sciencemag.org/content/305/5682/367

        1. tom0mason

          From your quoted paper, the conclusion —

          There is a potential for both positive and negative feedbacks between the ocean and atmosphere, including changes in both the physics (e.g., circulation, stratification) and biology (e.g., export production, calcification) of the ocean. These processes are still not well understood. On the time scales of decades to centuries, however, most of the known chemical feedbacks are positive. If the surface ocean PCO2 concentrations continue to increase in proportion with the atmospheric CO2 increase, a doubling of atmospheric CO2 from preindustrial levels will result in a 30% decrease in carbonate ion concentration and a 60% increase in hydrogen ion concentration. As the carbonate ion concentration decreases, the Revelle factor increases and the ocean’s ability to absorb more CO2 from the atmosphere is diminished. The impact of this acidification can already be observed today and could have ramifications for the biological feedbacks in the future (26). If indeed the net feedbacks are primarily positive, the required socioeconomic strategies to stabilize CO2in the future will be much more stringent than in the absence of such feedbacks. Future studies of the carbon system in the oceans should be designed to identify and quantitatively assess these feedback mechanisms to provide input to models that will determine the ocean’s future role as a sink for anthropogenic CO2.

          From this we see that —
          1. There is a potential for feedbacks. [maybe there is maybe not, “processes are still not well understood”].

          2. Given that the process are not understood they still say “most of the known chemical feedbacks are positive” but “processes are still not well understood”.

          3. To heck with it “chemical feedbacks are positive” they say, will result in a 30% decrease in carbonate ion concentration and a 60% increase in hydrogen ion concentration. But remember “processes are still not well understood”!

          4. Oops we may have over stepped the mark so pullback with “If indeed the net feedbacks are primarily positive,” what you just said they were! However “processes are still not well understood”!

          5. They really do not know or else way say “Future studies of the carbon system in the oceans should be designed to identify and quantitatively assess these feedback mechanisms to provide input to models that will determine the ocean’s future role as a sink for anthropogenic CO2.”? Because “processes are still not well understood”!

      2. AndyG55
  18. Scott

    Dr. Murry Salby’s presentation does an excellent job with CO2 residence time as well.

  19. Svend Ferdinandsen

    I would like an explanation why only half the emitted CO2 is measured in the air. I find it a sign on the wall that human emissions might not have such a big influence on the rising of CO2 in the air.
    The natural sources and sinks are twenty fold larger than the human contribution.

  20. Douglas Proctor

    The continual conflict between alarmists/warmists and skeptics has confused me since 2009, when I first took interest. My 8-year review has concluded this: the AVERAGE global experience of EVERYTHING does not reflect any GLOBAL process.

    The problem is regional. The Earth is a vast energy transferring machine. But it is not 100% efficient in the short-term. Weird shit happens because outliers are noteworthy.

    We are, as limited human beings, intellectually unable to grasp that what we experience is not the way of the universe.

  21. sod

    What is the source of the one in 800000 years spike, if not humans?

    1. Kenneth Richard

      Our knowledge of past CO2 values is poorly understood. It is likely that our estimates of past CO2 concentrations are not accurate. Therefore, current measurements can only be compared to the last 60 years, stymieing our ability to claim modern rates are “unprecedented in the last 800,000 years.”

      Jaworowski, 1997
      http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/2006_articles/IceCoreSprg
      The ice core data from various polar sites are not consistent with each another, and there is a discrepancy between these data and geological climatic evidence. One such example is the discrepancy between the classic Antarctic Byrd and Vostok ice cores, where an important decrease in the CO2 content in the air bubbles occurred at the same depth of about 500 meters, but at which the ice age differed by about 16,000 years. In an approximately 14,000-year-old part of the Byrd core, a drop in the CO2 concentration of 50 ppmv was observed, but in similarly old ice from the Vostok core, an increase of 60 ppmv was found. In about ~6,000-year-old ice from Camp Century, Greenland, the CO2 concentration in air bubbles was 420 ppmv, but it was 270 ppmv in similarly old ice from Byrd, Antarctica. … In the air from firn and ice at Summit, Greenland, deposited during the past ~200 years, the CO2 concentration ranged from 243.3 ppmv to 641.4 ppmv. Such a wide range reflects artifacts caused by sampling, or natural processes in the ice sheet, rather than the variations of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. Similar or greater range was observed in other studies of greenhouse gases in polar ice. … Until 1985, the published CO2 readings from air bubbles in pre-industrial [Holocene] ice ranged from 160 to about 700 ppmv, and occasionally even up to 2,450 ppmv.

      The failure to resolve the notorious problem of why about 30 percent of man-made CO2 is missing in the global carbon cycle, based on CO2 ice core measurements, suggests a systematic bias in ice core data. It is not possible to explain the ice core CO2 record in terms of a system with time-invariant processes perturbed by a combination of fossil fuel carbon release, CO2-enhanced biotic growth, and deforestation.

      1. Ferdinand Engelbeen

        Kenneth,

        Forget the remarks of the late Dr. Jaworowski. He may have been an expert in radionuclides in ice, but he had zero knowledge about CO2 in ice.

        Most of his objections in 1992 were solved by the work of Etheridge e.a. in 1996, who drilled three cores at Law Dome, a very high accumulation site. Despite that, he repeated the same objections many years later, if as he never had read Etheridge’s work.

        Not only that, some of his objections were pure nonsense: accusing Neftel of “manipulating” the ice core data to “match” the Mauna Loa data, while he made a stupid error by looking at the ice dates, while CO2 is in the air bubbles, which is in average much younger than the surrounding ice.
        Further: supposing that ice core CO2 is much too low, as “CO2 may diffuse through cracks” to the outside world, while measured CO2 in ice is 180-300 ppmv and the outside world was 350-380 ppmv after drilling and relaxation of the ice cores. CO2 migration from low to high levels???
        Neftel and others explained high levels of CO2 at certain points by contaminating: at the same places with brittle ice, drilling fluid was found in the ice core itself and CO2 levels at that depth were unreliable.
        The same for Greenland ice: all (coastal) ice has some (small) inclusions of sea salts. That is no problem for Antarctic ice, but it can be a problem for Greenland ice, where frequent inclusions of Icelandic volcanic eruptions are mixed in. As these are quite acid, they set CO2 free in situ with the carbonate salts from sea dust. Even worse with the old method of measuring CO2, where the ice was melted and CO2 was measured under vacuum: the longer was measured, the higher CO2 levels were found for Greenland ice… Thus Greenland ice cores can’t be used for accurate CO2 measurements, but they still can be used for other gases like CH4.

        Let Dr. Jaworowski rest in peace, together with his ideas about the (un)reliability of CO2 in ice core measurements…

        See further:
        http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/jaworowski.html

        BTW, “The failure to resolve the notorious problem of why about 30 percent of man-made CO2 is missing”. I didn’t know that it was “missing”. Seems less than a problem than the reverse: if the increase in the atmosphere was 30% more than what humans emit…
        What is “missing” is somewhere catched by oceans and/or vegetation, no matter where it exactly is absorbed and how it is distributed in the different reservoirs…

  22. sod

    Several small point:

    1. cement is NOT a “net sink”. IF we assume that it is exposed to air over a century and IF we ignore the fossil fuels used in its production, then we regain a part of the CO2 that was released when the cement was produced.

    2. there is zero doubt about the older measurements of CO2. they were mostly false.

    3. we have extremely accurate CO2 measurements over a pretty long time. It does not jump or make other strange changes.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2

    4. the correlation between humans starting to release CO2 en mass and the CO2 increase is strong, “sceptics” have so far offered no explanation for the spike at all.

  23. Carbon Dioxide | Pearltrees

    […] Carbon Dioxide is not the Primary Cause of Global Warming: The Future Cannot Cause the Past. New Literature Strongly Suggests CO2 Residence Time In The Atmosphere Is Exaggerated! As usual, there are many highly interesting posts on climate science at the German Die kalte Sonne […]

  24. Ferdinand Engelbeen

    Over the past 57 years of accurate CO2 measurements and well known human emissions (without land use changes) and taking into account the long term dynamic equilibrium (steady state) between ocean surface temperature and CO2 levels in the atmosphere (at ~16 ppmv/K), one can deduce with reasonable confidence that the e-fold decay rate of any extra injection of CO2 above the equilibrium is quite constant at around 51 years, or a half life time of about 35 years.

    Dr. Harde did find a much shorter decay rate, but his final formula implicitely uses the (~4 years) residence time, which says next to nothing about the real time to remove any extra CO2 out of the atmosphere (*).

    The IPCC finds much longer decay rates, based on the Bern model, as for each compartment limits in maximum absorption are implied. These limits are only true for the ocean surface, hardly true for the deep oceans and not at all applicable to the biosphere.

    (*) A complete analyses of Dr. Harde’s work is finished and may be soon published for discussion.