Blockbuster Paper Finds Just 15% Of CO2 Growth Since Industrialization Is Due To Human Emissions


CO2 Has Risen By 110 ppm Since 1750

 The Human Contribution Is Just 17 ppm 

Harde, 2017


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 COincrease over the Industrial Era is 15% and the average residence time 4 years.


Climate scientists assume that a disturbed carbon cycle, which has come out of balance by the increasing anthropogenic emissions from fossil fuel combustion and land use change, is responsible for the rapidly increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations over recent years. While over the whole Holocene up to the entrance of the Industrial Era (1750) natural emissions by heterotrophic processes and fire were supposed to be in equilibrium with the uptake by photosynthesis and the net oceanatmosphere gas exchange, with the onset of the Industrial Era the IPCC estimates that about 15 – 40 % of the additional emissions cannot further be absorbed by the natural sinks and are accumulating in the atmosphere.

The IPCC further argues that CO2 emitted until 2100 will remain in the atmosphere longer than 1000 years, and in the same context it is even mentioned that the removal of human-emitted CO2 from the atmosphere by natural processes will take a few hundred thousand years (high confidence) (see AR5-Chap.6-Executive-Summary).

Since the rising CO2 concentrations go along with an increasing greenhouse effect and, thus, a further global warming, a better understanding of the carbon cycle is a necessary prerequisite for all future climate change predictions. In their accounting schemes and models of the carbon cycle the IPCC uses many new and detailed data which are primarily focussing on fossil fuel emission, cement fabrication or net land use change (see AR5-WG1-Chap.6.3.2), but it largely neglects any changes of the natural emissions, which contribute to more than 95 % to the total emissions and by far cannot be assumed to be constant over longer periods (see, e.g.: variations over the last 800,000 years (Jouzel et al., 2007); the last glacial termination (Monnin et al., 2001); or the younger Holocene (Monnin et al., 2004; Wagner et al., 2004)).

Since our own estimates of the average CO2 residence time in the atmosphere differ by several orders of magnitude from the announced IPCC values, and on the other hand actual investigations of Humlum et al. (2013) or Salby (2013, 2016) show a strong relation between the natural CO2 emission rate and the surface temperature, this was motivation enough to scrutinize the IPCC accounting scheme in more detail and to contrast this to our own calculations.

Different to the IPCC we start with a rate equation for the emission and absorption processes, where the uptake is not assumed to be saturated but scales proportional with the actual CO2 concentration in the atmosphere (see also Essenhigh, 2009; Salby, 2016). This is justified by the observation of an exponential decay of 14C. A fractional saturation, as assumed by the IPCC, can directly be expressed by a larger residence time of CO2 in the atmosphere and makes a distinction between a turnover time and adjustment time needless. Based on this approach and as solution of the rate equation we derive a concentration at steady state, which is only determined by the product of the total emission rate and the residence time. Under present conditions the natural emissions contribute 373 ppm and anthropogenic emissions 17 ppm to the total concentration of 390 ppm (2012). For the average residence time we only find 4 years.

The stronger increase of the concentration over the Industrial Era up to present times can be explained by introducing a temperature dependent natural emission rate as well as a temperature affected residence time. With this approach not only the exponential increase with the onset of the Industrial Era but also the concentrations at glacial and cooler interglacial times can well be reproduced in full agreement with all observations. So, different to the IPCC’s interpretation the steep increase of the concentration since 1850 finds its natural explanation in the self accelerating processes on the one hand by stronger degassing of the oceans as well as a faster plant growth and decomposition, on the other hand by an increasing residence time at reduced solubility of CO2 in oceans.

Together this results in a dominating temperature controlled natural gain, which contributes about 85 % to the 110 ppm CO2 increase over the Industrial Erawhereas the actual anthropogenic emissions of 4.3 % only donate 15 %. These results indicate that almost all of the observed change of CO2 during the Industrial Era followed, not from anthropogenic emission, but from changes of natural emission.

The results are consistent with the observed lag of CO2 changes behind temperature changes (Humlum et al., 2013; Salby, 2013), a signature of cause and effect. Our analysis of the carbon cycle, which exclusively uses data for the CO2 concentrations and fluxes as published in AR5, shows that also a completely different interpretation of these data is possible, this in complete conformity with all observations and natural causalities.


268 responses to “Blockbuster Paper Finds Just 15268 Of CO2 Growth Since Industrialization Is Due To Human Emissions”

  1. AndyG55

    “Has the IPCC made a profoundly flawed assumption?”

    It is built into its very foundations. !

    15% anthropogenic CO2.

    At least that means we can still help push the atmospheric concentration up a little bit.

    Many more countries need to get on board with coal fired power stations if we are ever going to push the aCO2 concentration up where it needs to be, around the 1000ppm mark.

    1. Bartemis

      “…if we are ever going to push the aCO2 concentration up where it needs to be…”

      And even more basic flaw in the “science” – more CO2 is good. More warmth is good. If we could control atmospheric CO2, the optimal level would be substantially more than it is today.

  2. Bartemis

    It is so damned obvious. The rate of change of CO2 tracks temperature anomaly as perfectly as anyone could expect given inherent observational limitations:

    The temperature anomaly trend explains the trend in the CO2 rate of change. As human inputs also have a trend in their rate of change, adding them in produces too high a trend. Ergo, they are not responsible for it, and human inputs cannot have significant impact. Perhaps as much as 15%, but very probably much less.

    I discussed a way in which this relationship might come about in a blog comment here.

  3. Andrew M.

    No mention of the words “gigaton” or “mass” in that explanation. It’s not surprising that their conclusion violates conservation of mass.
    They also present the concluded quantities without any accompanying error, which indicates they did not even check how uncertainties in measurements affect the uncertainty of the conclusion.

    Harde cites Humlum for support, but Humlum paper used fallacious reasoning. Humlum does phase space analysis on the CO2 and temperature, finds a circular swirling pattern in phase space with a peak correlation for CO2 lagging temperature by a couple of months, and concluded the CO2 rise is coming mainly from natural ocean outgassing. In fact any model of carbon flow and temperature which includes a temperature-dependent rate for ocean absorption of CO2 and features industry as the only source of rising CO2 will also show the same swirling pattern in phase space and the same CO2 lag period after temperature change. His analysis method is flawed, as the phase and lag signature he believes to be unique to natural causation is not unique to natural cause.

    Harde cites Salby for support, but Salby’s presentation was flawed for two reasons.
    By using CO2 anomalies rather than absolute amount he erases the evidence of human causality in his first step (the step of representing the problem to be solved).
    Then in his solution he uses a rate-based argument with mathematics that had a critical mistake in the integral of temperature where he neglected the unknown constant of integration which would (if it had been inserted correctly in the integral) have shown the change in CO2 cannot be accounted for by temperature change alone. This mistake was in the second line of his equations shown at time code 13:30 of his Hamburg presentation video.

    All the above 3 papers make the same mistake, which is they try to infer what is currently happening using calculus applied to rates and ignoring conservation of mass, instead of simply deducing what necessarily happened using arithmetic and conservation of mass applied to observed absolute quantities.

    Cute picture in his “graphical abstract”, but I still prefer this older diagram as it matches all the real world observations that were available at the time.

    Conservation of mass implies the net flow of carbon is currently from atmosphere to ocean.

    Blockbuster? More like crock-busted.

    1. cohenite

      “His analysis method is flawed, as the phase and lag signature he believes to be unique to natural causation is not unique to natural cause.”

      It is unique to natural causation because human emission of CO2 is temperature independent and has no lag.

      1. AndyG55

        Would certainly be interesting to know how Andrew M thinks “the phase and lag signature he believes to be unique to natural causation” is linked to OTHER than natural causes.

        Surely he isn’t suggesting the lag and phase are linked to human produced CO2. !!

        “By using CO2 anomalies rather than absolute amount he erases the evidence of human causality in his first step ”

        WRONG. When you are looking at trends or changes over time, anomalies work just as well as absolutes.

        “Conservation of mass implies the net flow of carbon is currently from atmosphere to ocean.”

        WRONG. Henry’s law applies, oceans have been warming from solar energy.

        It will however, be from the atmosphere to ocean plant life, as it is from atmosphere to land plant life.

        The world’s biosphere is absolutely LOVING this extra available atmospheric CO2 🙂

        During Japan’s rapid expansion, no surge in atmospheric CO2

        During China’s MASSIVE expansion, no massive surge in atmospheric CO2

        Just a steady, unperturbed, natural rise.

      2. Andrew M.

        Humlum was not comparing lag of temperature and human emission, they compared lag of temperature and change in atmospheric CO2. The title of Humlum’s 2013 paper was “The phase relation between atmospheric carbon dioxide and global temperature”
        The hint is in the title!

        I don’t want to give SkS any credit, but they have explained Humlum’s numerous errors in more detail than I have.

        TL;DR : It violates conservation of mass.

    2. AndyG55

      “where he neglected the unknown constant of integration ”

      Its a definite integral.

      Going from line 1 to line 2 is correct..
      …it is defining the change between time = 0 and time = t then writing it in integral form.

    3. mothcatcher

      Andrew M –

      I do take on board that there are problems with both Salby’s and Humlum’s arguments (though not necessarily fatal ones) and I have been generally convinced by people who are on the whole sceptics of AGW that human responsibility for the rise of CO2 in the atmosphere is established. For example, the excellent Ferdinand Engelbeen, who often gets involved in these blog discussions whenever the subject comes up.
      But I may just have been accepting an argument from authority!

      However, it is entirely wrong to regard the ‘mass balance’ argument to which you defer as being good evidence. When you have natural fluxes of such vast size – they are extremely difficult to estimate, but are generally taken to be two orders of magnitude larger than human outputs – you must surely see that you cannot just take some numbers, subtract one from the other and go ‘QED’. Anyone who has any concept of dynamic biological systems will know that this is not logic at all.

      You have to appeal to much more subtle evidence to support that case. It is certainly possible to hold that the isotopic trend of atmospheric carbon gives support to the thesis, though again natural explanations can be set against it. Then you can refer to the relative stability of CO2 concentrations over the last few thousand years revealed from ice cores which, if properly representative (and there are questions there too), are certainly on your side.

      But mass balance …. never.

  4. Shoshin

    Interesting that this paper comes up with a residence time for CO2 far closer to that calculated prior to the AGW hysteria. If this paper is correct crisis averted…again…

    1. AndyG55

      There is no crisis… there has NEVER BEEN any crisis,

      The CO2 warming scare is a an unsubstantiated myth, as seb keeps on proving.

      No CO2 warming signal in the WHOLE satellite data.

      There is NO CO2 warming signal in the sea level trends


    2. Ferdinand Engelbeen


      Except that Hermann Harde used the residence time, which has nothing to do with how an extra shot of CO2 into the atmosphere is removed over time.

      The residence time indeed is ~5.3 years, but that doesn’t change the total amount of CO2, it only exchanges CO2 between the atmosphere and oceans/vegetation.
      The e-fold decay rate for any extra shot CO2 is over 50 years…

      That is the difference between the turnover of a capital and goods in a factory (residence time) and the gain or loss of the same factory (that is the e-fpld decay rate for a disturbance).

  5. cementafriend

    I have long maintained that the majority of so-called climate scientists have no qualifications and no understanding of the engineering subjects of thermodynamics, heat & mass transfer, fluid dynamics and reaction kinetics. They certainly have no idea about diffusion between phases and the reactions which can occur in liquid and gas phases. I hope I can download the paper to examine it in detail but there is enough evidence that the minute amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has no effect on weather or climate except is necessary for plant growth.

  6. Sunsettommy

    Here is an old essay written by Alan Siddons and Joe D Aleo,that is worth reading as they also say there are very little Human caused CO2 emitted over time,as it has a short resident time in the atmosphere:

    Carbon Dioxide: The Houdini of Gases

    By Alan Siddons and Joe D’Aleo
    September 05, 2007

    1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


      A few basic errors in that work: total human emissions are ~400 GtC, total increase in the atmosphere is ~200 GtC. Year by year (or even decadal) variability is of no interest, even if for some periods negative (due e.g. to cooling of the oceans and little human contribution in the early years)…

      1. Sunsettommy

        You completely missed the main point of the essay I posted.

        1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


          The authors are plotting yearly human emissions together with total increase of CO2 in the atmosphere. That is comparing apples to citrons… Either plot total emissions together with the increase in the atmosphere:

          or plot the yearly emissions with the yearly increase in the atmosphere:

          In both cases it is clear that humans emit about twice the increase in the atmosphere both in average per year and as total accumulation, at least since the measurements at Mauna Loa and the South Pole started.

          Further, they completely fail to account for the natural (temperature caused) level and variability in the early years, as the accumulation of human emissions is on top of the matural level, not below the natural level.

          They make a lot of:
          “A long-term accumulation profile for total carbon content leads to below-zero outcomes”

          So what? There is no reason at all that human emissions should give always an increase in the atmosphere. If in the early years a strong La Niña or a Pinatubo-like eruption did take more CO2 out of the atmosphere than humans emitted that year, then there is a net CO2 level sink in that year…

          1. Sunsettommy

            You still miss it. That is why so many think your main mass balance idea is wrong as you keep making assumptions about what is known.

            The essay simply used what was known human emissions were against total emissions. It is a simple thing to understand,but you add in a lot of unnecessary argument that fogs it up.

          2. SebastianH


            I’ve read the essay and it comes to incorrect conclusions.

            1) Human emissions are far lower than the actual rise of carbon in the air

            Human emissions are demonstrably higher then the rise of CO2 in the air.

            2) Accumulated emissions exceed the actual rise

            Of course they do. Obviously some CO2 produced by humans gets sinked by nature. Reason: see point 1)

            3) Correcting for the excess necessitates that carbon sinks keep growing

            They seem to grow, yes. Nature is no net source of CO2 currently. If humans could stop emitting CO2 tomorrow then CO2 concentration would decrease until it’s on a level where sinks and sources are in balance again.

            4) But an expansion of carbon sinks means that CO2 is getting recycled

            Yes, and why not?

            5) A long-term accumulation profile for total carbon content leads to below-zero outcomes

            No it doesn’t.

            We accurately track CO2 levels since the 50s. Since then – as Ferdinand Engelbeen wrote – we always emitted more CO2 into the atmosphere then the concentration increased. Even if zero gramms of the excess CO2 in the air were of human origin, it still wouldn’t be there if humans hadn’t produced the amount they actually did.

          3. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            “The essay simply used what was known human emissions were against total emissions.”

            That is the main problem of many skeptics: they only look at the ratio human vs. natural emissions, but forget that there were and are natural sinks. Even if humans influence the latter (almost all extra sink is caused by humans), total sinks were at least in the past 57 years always larger than natural emissions.

            Basic quantities (roughly):
            9 GtC human emissions input.
            150 +/- 3 GtC in/out within a year as natural cycle.
            Net sink rate: 4.5 GtC
            Remains in the atmosphere: 4.5 GtC

            Even if you attribute all the extra sink to humans, the remaining 4.5 GtC extra is also all human and the 800 GtC in the atmosphere gets 804.5 GtC of which only 0.5% in the atmosphere is human, but 100% of the increase is caused by the human injection.
            The next year the story repeats itself and then we have 809 GtC in the atmosphere of which 1.1% from human emissions. Still 100% of the 9 GtC increase is from human emissions.
            That goes on every year, but of course not all what sinks is human caused (it is always a mix of what is momentary in the atmosphere) and the exchanges remove a lot of human CO2 into other reservoirs, but currently we are at about 9% of all CO2 in the atmosphere as from fossil fuel burning, but still (near) 100% of the increase is caused by burning fossil fuels (and a small part by warming oceans)…

          4. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            The 50 GtC I did “miss” is from nightly respiration from soils and leaves, which is fully compensated by photosynthesis during the day. That doesn’t even reach the bulk of the atmosphere and is only locally measurable.

            That doesn’t change the fact that humans are responsible for near the full increase in the atmosphere, as the difference between natural emissions and total sinks is what is measured, no matter the absolute amounts cycling in nature.

            What is known with reasonable accuracy:
            Average 9 GtC/year human emissions, 4.5 GtC/year increase in the atmosphere.
            Estimates for the natural inputs and total outputs per year:
            150 GtC in, 154.5 GtC out, 6% of human origin
            200 GtC in, 204.5 GtC out, 4.5% of human origin
            1000 GtC in, 1004.5 GtC out, 0.9% of human origin

            It is of zero interest how large the natural inputs and total outputs are, only the measured (!) difference between total inputs and total outputs is what changes the amounts in the atmosphere…
            In all cases, the human contribution is fully responsible for almost all the increase in the atmosphere with a little help from a temperature increase.

            10 ppmv increase in the atmosphere in the first 100 years? As also CH4 increased in that period, some insist that human activity like rice culture and cattle herding is already responsible for that, but I don’t see any reason to quibble over the earliest part of the graph, as both temperature measurements and human contributions are far from certain…

          5. SebastianH

            4.5 GtC is not made up it is derived from the increase in concentration. While the total amount of atmospheric CO2 is also just an estimate, it is a very good one. And we know how much CO2 is emitted by mankind (also a very good estimation).

            It’s accurate enough to tell that humans output twice as much as is added to the atmosphere.

          6. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            “These are not “known” data”

            How accurate do you need the data before you accept them?

            The global CO2 increase is based on the average measurements of several basic “background” stations at sealevel (thus excluding Mauna Loa and the South Pole stations). These are accurate to +/- 0.2 ppmv, or +/- 0.4 GtC, regardless of what is already in the atmosphere.

            The recent average measured increase in the atmosphere is 4.5 +/- 0.4 GtC/year (2.15 +/- 0.2 ppmv/year), no matter what the natural fluxes were…

            Human emissions are currently 9 GtC/year, officially accurate to +/- 0.5 GtC/year. Based on official sales of fossil fuels (taxes), probably more underestimated than overestimated (due to the national sports to avoid taxes…). That makes that the net sink rate is:

            4.5 GtC/year measured increase – 9 GtC/year calculated emissions = 4.5 GtC net sink rate.
            Maximum error +/- 0.9 GtC/year.

            That is what I used in the above equations. Thus whatever the absolute height of the natural fluxes, the total of all sinks was 4.5 +/- 0.9 GtC/year larger than the total of all natural inputs.

          7. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            You seem to be one of these persons that never want to be convinced by any fact that contradicts your concreted opinion…

            As I said now multiple times: the 16 ppmv/K is the equilibrium setpoint that is as factual as any other law of physics: established over 200 years ago by Henry and confirmed by over three million seawater samples.

            That is a fact. That doesn’t imply that the measured levels in the atmosphere at any moment in time are exactly in equilibrium with the ocean surface at these established 16 ppmv/K, as a lot of natural changes move CO2 in and out the atmosphere over seasons, years, centuries and millennia. It takes months to move CO2 back to equilibrium (and never reaches it) over the seasons, where CO2 levels follow temperature levels with months. It takes 1-3 years to remove the effect of a Pinatubo or El Niño and it takes ~800 years to equilibrate the deep oceans with the temperature increase in the ocean surface.

            Thus while the setpoint is accurately known, the real value in the atmosphere is the sum of natural variations caused by the temperature effect on vegetation, volcanic emissions and the emissions by humans at one side and the time needed to add or remove CO2 from the oceans to reach that setpoint again.
            That is elementary knowledge of process dynamics. If you don’t have that knowledge, please contact any (chemical) engineer to explain that to you.

            Why does that matter? It does matter if the removal rate of any distubance is slower that the change introduced by natural or human disturbances. That is the case for the MWP-LIA change: a drop of ~6 ppmv with a lag of maybe 100 years. That is the case for human emissions from agriculture and cattle herding since ~1700 and that is certainly the case for human emissions from the use of fossil fuels since ~1850.

            If ice cores CO2 don’t follow known events, that is either because these events were hardly global (as is the case for the Younger Dryas and the 8.2 kyear event, which is mostly North Atlantic) or too short to be noticed within the resolution of the ice record. The D-O events anyway are noticed, see the temperature – ice sheets formation – CO2 graph of the Vostok ice core for the period 140-60 kyear ago:
            which shows the temperature proxy (mainly for most of the SH oceans), CO2 and CH4 levels and the reverse 18O/16O ratio in N2O, as that seems to be a proxy for ice sheet formation. As you can see, CH4 follows temperature quite fast, but CO2 needs a lot of time, especially when the temperature drops.

            Like it or not, human emissions are probably the main cause of the increase even centuries ago, highly certain since 1850 and absolutely certain since 1958, where we have very accurate measurements.

          8. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            I didn’t know about the rapid temperature changes in the deep oceans, but I did know about the Younger Dryas and the 8.2 year event. Used these in discussions with warmistas to show abrupt climate changes caused by nature, not humans.
            The Younger Dryas is not visible in the oxygen proxy of Antarctic ice cores, which reflect the average temperature of most of the SH oceans:
            and sometimes RC has usefull information:

            Neither is the 8.2 kyear event, but in both cases, the CH4 levels both in Greenland and Antarctica show a huge change. The reaction of CO2 on temperature is obviously much slower (especially when the deep oceans are involved). See:

            That doesn’t imply that there is any doubt about the effect of temperature on CO2 levels: that is 16 ppmv/K.
            For the last time: the 16 ppmv/K is what it should be. In German: “Soll Wert”, not what it really is “Ist Wert”. What it really is, is a matter of all factors that momentary influence CO2 levels: deep ocean exchanges, volcanoes, forest fires, humans…

      2. William Lawrence Hyde

        Total Human emissions ~400GtC. No, I don’t think that’s right. Just a wild guess I think. No effect at any rate. What are we arguing about? Remember when Al Gore said, “The oceans will boil!!” Now that’s what the alarm is all about, not how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

        1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


          In the early days more guesses than real I suppose, anuway based on coal use for boilers, trains and steel making, thus wit some base in reality.

          In recent times based on fossil fuel sales, you know, taxes, probably more underestimated than overestimated…

          So within +/- 0.5 ppmv that will be realistic and indirectly confirmed by the (small) oxygen decline in the atmosphere…

  7. goldminor

    What contribution to atmospheric CO2 would melting glaciers and ice sheets make? That thought just popped up as I have never heard that ever mentioned in regards to increasing levels of CO2. Is it too small, and so of little consequence? There is no doubt that natural global warming melts glaciers worldwide, and that there is some fraction of CO2 held within the glaciers.

    1. richard verney

      This might serve to lower atmospheric concentrations.

      Assuming integrity of the ice, the ice captures the atmosphere at the time of freezing. Thus if the ice formed when CO2 concentrations were say 270 ppm, when the ice melts it will release air which air will consist of 270 ppm of CO2 and the rest Nitrogen, Oxygen etc.

      Thus in effect one is adding air at 270 ppm of CO2 to air currently at 400 ppm of CO2, which ought to reduce the 400 ppm balance a little bit.

      Only a guess of course since no one understands or knows the Carbon Cycle.

      1. AndyG55

        Chlorophyll: – C₅₅H₇₂O₅N₄Mg

        and that C has to come from somewhere. !!

        1. Ferdinand Engelbeen

          Yes AndyG55,

          The problem is that the same carbon is largely recycled every year when the leaves are falling down and over the years when the plants die and rot…

          The balance is known, as plants produce oxygen when taking in CO2 and bacteria, fungi, insects, animals,… use oxygen when they digest plant food.

          The oxygen balance shows a small surplus: plants produce more oxygen than palnt decay/feed/food uses oxygen. Thus the whole biosphere is a small source of oxygen, thus a small sink for CO2 and preferably of 12CO2, thus not the cause of the firm 13C/12C ratio decline in the atmosphere. The earth is greening:

          1. AndyG55

            The REAL problem is that there is always carbon being leached from the carbon cycle by ocean life.

            That carbon ABSOLUTELY MUST be replenished if Earth is to continue to sustain life.

            Thank goodness for human use of fossil fuels !!!

            De-sequestering that precious carbon, right when the planet needs it so much.

  8. AndyG55
  9. Richard111

    Okay, layman query. Cold sea water is a good absorber of CO2, warm sea water not so good or even emits CO2.
    Why no data on sea water CO2 content with regard to temperature?
    Good to see 14CO2 is used to define atmospheric residence time.

    1. Ferdinand Engelbeen

      Seawater CO2 content is quite variable between the equator and poles. While measured, more important is the pCO2 (the equilibrium CO2 pressure of the atmosphere above a seawater sample at the measured seawater temperature). That is what gives the pressure difference and thus the CO2 flux between ocean surface and atmosphere.
      The average flux is from the atmosphere into the oceans, based on over 2 million samples in places:

      There is a problem with 14C as tracer for any excess 12CO2: its excess decay rate is much faster than for 12CO2, as what is going into the deep oceans is the current 14C/12C ratio, but what comes out is the much lower 14C/12C ratio of ~1000 years ago… That makes that the decay rate of the 14CO2 excess from the atomic bomb tests is ~14 years and for any excess 12CO2 it is ~51 years…

      See the ratio’s and quantities around 1960 at the height of the 14C excess:

  10. Pete

    Climatologists count (anthropogenic) carbon dioxide emissions in annual quanta, such as 9GTC per annum. But in the real world it does not work that way. CO2, whether it’s natural or man-made, is emitted and sequestered continuously and not in annual quanta.

    A few months back I had made a simple Excel spreadsheet based on data readily available on the ‘net by googling for a few minutes, and then translated the 9GTC per annum of man-made emissions into a daily amount and compared it to the actual carbon in the atmosphere and hydrosphere. The anthropogenic Carbon emissions on a daily basis figures out at 0.0247 GTC per day while the net mass of carbon in the Earth’s atmosphere and hydrosphere according to IPCC is 39,000 GTC.

    If my workings are correct then the result means that the daily emissions in percentage terms compared to the total mass of carbon in both atmosphere and oceans works out at 0.000064%. I stand to conclude that mother Earth would not even be conscious of this miniscule, insignificant irrelevancy of anthropogenic CO2 emissions and there’s o way how this can increase the net CO2 by any significant amount.

    1. SebastianH

      What is the FTC value for just the atmosphere? Why did you stop at a daily value? Why not CO2 emitted per second?

      1. pete

        Well, why don’t the IPCC say that we emit 9000GTC per millennium? Now that would make the whole human population commit suicide through scientific ignorance induced hysteria.

        The truth is that you have been shocked and knocked down off your chair by my simple but scientific revelation. There’s another truth:

        If, hypothetically the oceans outgas just 2% of their dissolved CO2 in one single instant the atmospheric CO2 will increase by 100%, more or less.

        1. SebastianH

          Nope, not shocked.

          Yes, if the oceans outgas what they contain the CO2 content will increase dramatically. I guess temperatures need to increase a little bit more in order for the oceans to become a net source instead of a net sink.

        2. Ferdinand Engelbeen


          What is in the deep oceans is largely isolated from the atmosphere. Only some 5% of the ocean surface is in direct contact with the deep oceans. That is mostly coastal with wind blowing off-land, which pulls deep ocean water to the surface. Near the poles you have sink places near the ice where low temperatures and freezing water give increased salt content and higher density waters which sink to the bottom.

          The only waters in direct contact with the oceans is the “mixed” layer: the upper ~100 meters of the oceans where most life is positioned, light is penetrating and warming the waters and wind and waves give a lot of exchanges with the atmosphere. That layer contains ~1000 GtC, The atmosphere ~800 GtC. Any CO2 change in the atmosphere is quite fast (half life exchange rate less than a year) redistributed with the ocean surface, but only at 10% of the atmospheric change in the ocean surface, due to ocean (buffer) chemistry. That is about 0.45 GtC/year, or about 5% of human emissions.

          While the exchange between atmosphere and ocean surface is fast, the exchange with the deep oceans is much slower: there is a ~40 GtC/year circulation from the equatorial upwelling towards the polar sinking waters, but that is only partially influenced by the increased pressure in the atmosphere: the current imbalance between upwelling and sinks is ~3 GtC/year or about 30% of human emissions sinking in the deep oceans the same year as emitted.

          The e-fold decay rate of any overshoot in the atmosphere is ~51 years for all sinks together. Or a half life time of ~35 years. How much CO2 is already in the deep oceans plays zero role in this net sink rate, but it plays a role after a few centuries: ultimately most of human emissions will end in the deep oceans. What humans have emitted since 1850 would increase the deep ocean carbon content with ~1%. That would be the new equilibrium if we ceased all emissions today: 1% residual increase in the atmosphere, or ~3 ppmv extra…

  11. SebastianH


    1. Rob

      Dear Seb

      You asked earlier “Humans emit enough CO2 to increase concentration by more than 4 ppm per year. Yet it only increases by 2-3 ppm each year. How is that possible if the current increase is caused by ocean outgasing as suggested in the paper of the blogpost? ”

      Quite frankly, I dont pretend to be an expert in this, but it seems plausible to me.

      Consider an earlier world without human CO2 emissions. And for simplicity, consider the world to made of just oceans and air. The amount of CO2 in the air must be in equilibrium with the amount in the oceans. And we know it is temperature dependent. i.e. for a given temperature there will be an equilibrium value of the ratio, R, of CO2-in-air to CO2-in-water. Let us suppose it is 2% (as it is by mass, according to wikipedia) at some temperature. Then suppose some humans come along and dump a lump of CO2 into the atmosphere at a certain point in time. The ocean-air CO2 ratio will no longer be in equilibrium, and over time the system must re-equilibrate with the ocean absorbing the excess atmospheric CO2. 98% of the lump must end up in the water to maintain R=2%. So in the long run, we could expect that most of that 4ppm will end up in the water.

      To get an idea how fast re-equilibration takes place we can do an experiment by detonating atomic bombs in the atmosphere and producing a 14C pulse.

      In fact this experiment has already been inadvertently tried with 14C produced in atomic bomb tests. Check wikipedia, you can see that after 3 decades, most of the 14C was removed from the air. This would imply that most of the CO2 emitted by humans prior to ~1990 has by now also been removed from the atmosphere.

      Now suppose that the temperature increases. This could be due to natural causes, such as the overturning of ocean currents bringing warmer or colder water to the surface, in contact with the air. Now, since the amount of CO2 stored by water is a function of temperature, we can expect R to change. Suppose at a higher temperature, the oceans can hold only 97% of the CO2 and 3% must be in air. It is a small change in percentage of CO2 in the oceans (98 to 97 %), but a huge change in air. i.e. going from 2% to 3% is like going from 200ppm to 300ppm. But nothing at all to do with human emissions.

      Well, I have over simplified by assuming all the CO2 goes into water etc. This is intended to be a “plausiblity” argument for you. Of course, one needs to plug in the numbers, account for continuing human emissions etc, to see if it is right or not. Thats beyond my time an energy but it is presumably what the author has done.


      1. Bartemis

        You have it right, Rob. Atmospheric CO2 concentration is the result of a dynamic balance between inflows and outflows. Since natural inflows are so much larger than anthropogenic inflows, the latter cannot appreciably affect that balance.

        Most of the observed rise is from changing temperature, which has a dramatic impact on the balance because it affects the entire distribution from the top of the atmosphere to the bottom of the oceans over a lengthy timeline (millennia). In the short term (centuries), this begets an integral relationship between atmospheric CO2 and temperature anomaly. This is what the data show:

      2. Ferdinand Engelbeen


        One essential error:

        The equilibrium between oceans and atmosphere doesn’t depend on the quantity in the oceans, it depends of the concentration and temperature at the ocean surface only and the concentration in the atmosphere.

        Concentration and temperature gives the equilibrium pCO2 of the ocean surface with the atmosphere. If that is higher than in the atmosphere, the CO2 flux is from the ocean surface into the atmosphere (like at the equatorial upwelling zones) and reverse at the sink places near the poles.

        The current (area weighted) pCO2 difference between ocean surface and atmosphere is 7 μatm higher in the atmosphere than in the ocean surface, the current net CO2 flux (~3.5 GtC/year) is in average (~40 GtC/year in and out) more from the atmosphere into the ocean surface / deep oceans than reverse…

        The 2.2 GtC/year net sink rate mentioned is for the reference year 1995.

      3. SebastianH


        you’ve gone to great lengths to explain ocean outgasing, but that’s not what the quote is about.

        If the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere increases by 2 ppm per year and my additional emissions – if not sinked – would increase the concentration by 4 ppm per year. Then obviously natural CO2 sources are NOT producing more CO2 to cause the increase. Instead natural sinks are binding more CO2 (it’s not increasing by 4 ppm, but by 2 ppm instead).

        That’s what the mass balance thing is all about. It doesn’t matter that natural sources/sinks are magnitudes bigger than our contribution. Those two cancel each other out. It’s the additional stuff that matters and obviously nature can’t sink all our additional CO2…

        1. Bartemis

          Ferdinand Engelbeen 26. February 2017 at 10:08 PM |

          “…it depends of the concentration and temperature at the ocean surface only and the concentration in the atmosphere.”

          So, so wrong. The concentration at the surface depends fundamentally on the flows to the deep oceans.

          SebastianH 27. February 2017 at 12:20 AM |

          “Then obviously natural CO2 sources are NOT producing more CO2 to cause the increase.”

          So, so dumb. Such a stupid argument to make when the system is dynamic, and responds proportionally to forcing. See this comment, when it gets out of moderation.

          1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Maybe they do, but only if there are huge changes in either concentration or total volume of upwelling, for which I haven’t seen any indication.
            Until now, there are no signs of increased CO2 emissions near the equator or decreased CO2 sinks in the deep oceans near the poles, just the opposite: average there is going 3 GtC more into the deep oceans than emitted.

            If the oceans were the cause of the increase, that should show up as an increase in the 13C/12C ratio, but all what is observed is a firm decrease in direct ratio with human emissions…

          2. Bartemis

            “If the oceans were the cause of the increase, that should show up as an increase in the 13C/12C ratio”

            You think. But, you do not know. It is merely an assertion.

          3. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            There we go again… If you add an acid to a base, it is a law of physics that the base gets less basic and even may get acidic.

            If you add CO2 from the oceans with a higher 13C/12C to the atmosphere, it is a law of physics that the 13C/12C ratio in the atmosphere must go up.

            Here the effect of an increased ocean – air – ocean CO2 exchange in quantitities enough to suppress the influence of humans if that was the main cause of the CO2 increase:


            Where the orange line after 1960 is the effect of an extra amount of CO2 circulating between deep oceans, the atmosphere and back.

            BTW, neither is the decline caused bymthe biosphere, as that is a net sink for CO2 and preferably 12CO2, based on the oxygen balance, thus leaving relative more 13CO2 in the atmosphere…

          4. Bartemis

            “If you add CO2 from the oceans with a higher 13C/12C to the atmosphere, it is a law of physics that the 13C/12C ratio in the atmosphere must go up.”

            It isn’t any such thing. This is not a controlled experiment under laboratory conditions. This is a system subject to many complex interactions.

          5. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            There are only two known source of low 13C on earth: fossil organics and recent organics. All other sources: oceans, carbonate deposits, volcanic vents,… all have a higher 13C/12C ratio that what is measured in the atmosphere as 13C/12C ratio.

            Thus either burning fossil fuels or vegetation decay / forest fires are the cause of the firm decay of 13C/12C ratio in the atmosphere.
            Vegetation decay can’t be the cause, as the oxygen balance shows that the biosphere as a whole is a net sink for CO2…

  12. sod

    This paper is totally insane.

    Please stop quoting such obvious fake science from a guy who did the same wrong stuff also in the past.

    1. AndyG55

      Poor sob, basically everything is beyond you, isn’t it.

      The only insane thing here is YOU. !!

      1. sod

        We know how CO2 changed in the past. The idea that the gigantic change we are seeing now is natural is utterly insane. as is the idea, that it is a coincidence that the spike is happening while we are burning all that coal and oil. It is insane.

        1. AndyG55

          “We know how CO2 changed in the past.”

          Yes we do, atmospheric CO2 has been MUCH higher in the past.

          Love those zig zag graphs , they show how close the Earth has come to running out of CO2. Man has literally SAVED THE PLANET.

          They also show that at the local peaks on CO2, the temperature dropped.

          I’m actually very glad that we have been able to desequester a small amount of carbon, and bring the atmosphere just a tad above the “dangerously low” value of the last half million of so years.

          Just because the paper does maths which is way, way beyond you ability to comprehend, and gives an answer that you don’t like, doesn’t make it wrong.

          15% seems about reasonable to me and does follow from the mathematics…

          …. although I wish we could do more.

          1. SebastianH

            No, it doesn’t follow from the mathematics.

          2. AndyG55

            Yes it does.

          3. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            That paper starts with a completely wrong assumption that the residence time (~4 years according to the abstract) has anything to do with the rate at which any extra shot CO2 above the temperature controlled equilibrium (whatever the one-way source: volcanoes, burning forests – without regrowth, humans,…) is removed out of the atmosphere back to equilibrium.

            Whatever the residence time, even it was seconds, that doesn’t change one gram of CO2 in the atmosphere as that is only about how much CO2 is exchanged between different reservoirs, not how much is removed or added from one reservoir to the other.

            The e-fold decay rate of any extra CO2 in the atmosphere is ~51 years (or a half life of ~35 years), not 4 years. That is measured and quite linear over the past 57 years of accurate CO2 data, despite a fourfold increase in yearly and total emissions, yearly and total increase in the atmosphere and yearly and total net sink…

            That renders the whole article worthless and it is just good for the dust bin, in good company with all the climate models, which all fail reality…

  13. Rud Istvan

    Based on the abstract, the paper cannot be right. The bombspike C14 ‘experiment’ shows the residence time of CO2 to be about 11 years, not 4. This is an easy thing to verify.

    1. CatB

      Wrong Mr Istvan. The bomb curve shows only the net removal of CO2,
      the actual removal minus the portion which is cancelled by re-emission into the atmosphere. The residence time, on the other hand, pertains to the actual removal, which can only be faster. [49:00]

      1. Rud Istvan

        Wrong. The bomb spike is not net because almost none of the sequestered CO2 would be re-released in the time frame. This paper is as bad as Salby’s stuff. FE upthread does a proper accounting including the efold time. Learn from it. Similar calculations in dozens of other papers.

        1. CatB

          More speculation, Mr Istvan.

          Tell it to the decaying biomass after each growing season. Likewise to soil respiration. What is indisputable is that the residence time of CO2 can be only shorter than the decrease of C14 after the bomb spike.

          1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            The seasonal CO2 cycle in the biosphere is huge and a large part of the short residence time of CO2 in the atmosphere. Seasonal some 60 GtC is going into vegetation in spring-summer (and continuous in tropical areas), some 60 GtC is released mainly in fall-winter, but also more continuously by bacteria, molds, insects, animals,… which all use vegetation as feed/food.

            Anyways, the 60 GtC/year is the throughput of CO2 through the atmosphere which contains ~800 GtC as caused by the biosphere. That gives a residence time of 800/60 or about 13 years for the biosphere part of all CO2 cycles.

            Now some external source (humans in this case) add some 9 GtC/year to the atmosphere in the first year. That means that the total amount in the atmosphere gets from the original 580 GtC (in 1959) to 588 GtC. That means that there is ~4 ppmv more CO2 pressure in the atmosphere. Does that make a difference in the seasonal cycle? Hardly, as the biosphere CO2 cycle is mainly a matter of temperature, humidity, availability of minerals and fertilisers, hardly of CO2 pressure (except where all other necessities are abundantly present like in greenhouses). Thus the 4 ppmv extra has a negligible effect on the seasonal cycle and remains in the atmosphere. That repeats itself until the extra CO2 pressure is high enough to have an influence on plant growth. That happened around 1990, when CO2 levels reached 350 ppmv, or 60 ppmv extra above equilibrium. Between 290 and 350 ppmv zero CO2 was removed out of the atmosphere by the whole biosphere, despite a 60 GtC seasonal cycle and only 13 years residence time. The residence time thus shows you nothing about how fast some extra CO2 is removed out of the atmosphere…

            Since then the biosphere removes about 1 GtC/year or 0.5 ppmv/year out of the atmosphere. That is what really matters. That is with a current extra pressure of 110 ppmv in the atmosphere. That gives an e-fold decay rate of 110 ppmv / 0.5 ppmv/year = 220 years if you have vegetation as only sink for any extra CO2 in the atmosphere.

            In conclusion: the residence time is of zero interest to know how fast some extra CO2 is removed out of the atmosphere. You need to know the e-fold decay rate…

            In theory that could be given by the fate of 14C form the bomb spike in the atmsophere, in reality that is far too short, due to the fact that the 14C bomb spike excess is removed much faster than any 12CO2 spike, as from the latter some 97% (in 1960) returned from the deep oceans, while for 14C that was only 44%…, see:

  14. Johannes Herbst

    What I understand, the C14 matter of the paper is not yet explained fully.

    CO2 is exhausted by biomass (including us) and through combustion of fossil fuel on a daily base.

    CO2 is also collected by photosynthesis of plants.

    So there are living plants especially trees, which store the C up to some hundreds of years – or as timber even longer.

    A certain amount of C is there as dead biomass, like humus and dead trees. after 0 to some hundreds of years it decays or burns and releases CO2.

    A large part of biomass is eaten by animals and stored some years, (in some cases as ham or in the deep freezer….) and finally released…

    Some of the animals sink down to the ocean ground (mostly as carbon hydrate) or in a bog for good.

    The ocean water collects CO2 in the cold regions and gasses it out in the warmer ones.

    As this is dependent on the temperature, this will have no longtime effect. Because the Oceans are heating up veeeeery slowly.

    So what counts with natural carbon Sequestration is:

    1.How quick and how much can be converted to carbon hydrate on the ocean ground?

    2.How quick and how much can be converted to living and dead plant matter, and ist that amount rising?. Means moldering and decomposition is less than conversion.

    Out-gassing of CO2 off the ocean and decomposition of biomass depends on temperature. As the temperature is not rising considerably,the oceans are not out-gassing much more. But they can sequester more through Phytoplankton, as there is more CO2 in the air.

    Also more CO2 can be converted to biomass, as there is more CO2 in the air. And this is happening already, as can be seen though satellite observations.

    So it seems to me that the that nature does a lot of sequestration of CO2, but doesn’t contribute as much than that, because the main factor of decomposition and ocean out-gassing is temperature, which is not rising considerably.

    There was a strong incline of temperature before 1998, now there is nearly no incline for almost 20 years, but you see no relation to CO2.

    So much of human-made CO2 is sequesteres by nature, the rest is added in the air.

    Where else should the the additional CO2 com from?

    1. AndyG55

      “There was a strong incline of temperature before 1998”

      No there wasn’t.

      The period 1980 to just before the 1998 El Nino was basically zero trend.

      1. Bartemis

        I think that is a bit of a cherry pick. The major data sets all agree reasonably well, except for GISS, which is a bit of an outlier.

        GISS has been altered to the extent that it gives a distorted view of things when plotted on its own, but little enough to still claim it legitimate without being obviously wrong. It is very artfully done, and fundamentally misleading.

        To Johannes’ question, the dynamic is such that the rate of change of CO2 tracks temperature. When temperature is steady, CO2 reverts to a steady trend.

        I explain a way that this dynamic can come about here.

        1. Johannes Herbst


          yes, I made this exercise

          as well, but you have to fiddle a lot until you get such a nice corelation. Sometimes CO2 is earlier, sometimes temp, but mostly parallel.

          I am no Mathematician, but I understand that’s about Rate of Change. But simply: Higher temperatures doesn’t mean higher CO2, and there is no blunt correlation of CO2 content and Temperature, as stated by the IPCC.

          But what does this Rate of change mean regarding this paper? The claim is that only 4.3% of the increasing CO2 is human.

          But where comes the rest from, as the Carbon cycle seems to be fairly stable?. We are putting a certain amount of CO2 in the atmosphere each year, which amounts to a certain increase in concentration. Say (just an example) we add each year 4 ppm, but the measured rise is 2 ppm only. 4ppm is human, nature is about 20fold, so the total yearly rise is 84 ppm. And then living matter and ocean have to sequester 82 ppm to get these 2ppm annual rise.

          Strange thing.


          Please forgive me layman, as I make an example as an explanation to my simple Math:

          – Humans add 4 ppm each year. Nature adds 80 ppm through outgassing of the warm ocean and decomposition. Cold Ocean and biomass sequesters 82 ppm each year. So 2 ppm is left. So 2 ppm net is is sequestered for good.

          Nothing new, this we know for a long time.

          And the C14 is dissapeared somewhere during its long travel through the ocean ???

          1. Bartemis

            Johannes Herbst 27. February 2017 at 12:21 AM |

            “But simply: Higher temperatures doesn’t mean higher CO2, and there is no blunt correlation of CO2 content and Temperature, as stated by the IPCC.”

            If you increase the rate of change of something, then you are going to have more of it than you would otherwise. But, you are correct that the IPCC is wrong – since it is a rate of change relationship, the arrow of causality is in the direction of temperature driving CO2, and not CO2 driving temperature.

            “Cold Ocean and biomass sequesters 82 ppm each year.”

            To be precise, cold ocean and biomass do not remove CO2 in a fixed amount, but in proportion to the amount incoming. This is where the “mass balance” argument runs aground.

            Proportional removal in this manner is what is called a feedback – the sink activity increases in response to an increase in pressure induced by an increase in input. So, if Nature were putting in 80 ppm, and humans put in an additional 4 ppm, and there is 2 ppm left, then the sinks are taking out 82/84 = 97.6%. Nature is responsible for 80*(1-0.976) = 1.92 ppm of what is left, and humans are responsible for 4*(1-0.976) = 0.096 ppm.

          2. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Bart makes a fundamental mistake where he writes:

            “To be precise, cold ocean and biomass do not remove CO2 in a fixed amount, but in proportion to the amount incoming. This is where the “mass balance” argument runs aground.”

            The amount of CO2 removed by oceans and vegetation does not depend of the income of one year, it depends of the total CO2 pressure above the temperature dependent setpoint.

            As described above, most of the in and out fluxes are caused by temperature changes: seasonal (the largest part), permanent (between equator and poles) and year by year (El Niño, Pinatubo). The huge temperature changes in the extra-tropics give a huge exchange of CO2, hardly influenced by some extra CO2 in the atmosphere: temperature dominates how much CO2 is absorbed or released by the oceans (and vegetation) between winter and summer. There is hardly any difference in absorbed – released quantities between earlier decades and later decades and most of the difference is from enhanced plant growth…

            What is observed is that the amount of CO2 which is removed in a certain year is directly proportional to the difference in CO2 pressure (pCO2) in the atmosphere and the equilibrium CO2 pressure in the ocean surface for the average temperature of the surface. That is surprisingly linear over the full Muana Loa period. Currently (2012) that is a sink rate of ~2.15 ppmv/year for the extra 110 ppmv pressure in the atmosphere above equilibrium.

            With that ratio one can calculate the theoretical net sink rate in all years since Mauna Loa and calculate how much CO2 (as mass) will be left in the atmosphere:


            That is the red line of the graph midst the noise in the monthly CO2 growth rate, which is from the influence of temperature on (tropical) vegetation. That variability levels off to near zero in 1-3 years and is not the cause of the CO2 rate of change slope: vegetation is a small, but growing sink for CO2, not a source…

          3. Bartemis

            “There is hardly any difference in absorbed – released quantities between earlier decades and later decades and most of the difference is from enhanced plant growth…”

            Another nonphysical, faith-based assertion.

            “What is observed is that the amount of CO2 which is removed in a certain year is directly proportional to the difference in CO2 pressure (pCO2) in the atmosphere and the equilibrium CO2 pressure in the ocean surface for the average temperature of the surface.”

            Once again, invalid decoupling of the natural balance from the anthropogenic input.

          4. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Another nonphysical, faith-based assertion.

            If you don’t understand what the graph I sent does imply, it is easy to reject it as “nonphysical”…

            Once again, invalid decoupling of the natural balance from the anthropogenic input.

            There is zero reason for any preference of the sinks for human CO2, thus zero reason for a specific removal of 50% of human CO2 in any specific year. The sinks remove the momentary mix in the atmosphere (with a slight preference for 12CO2), no matter the origin.
            That is the case as good for the temperature influence (4-16 ppmv/K, seasonal to multi-millennia) as for an extra pressure above the long term steady state (2.15 ppmv/year for 110 ppmv extra), whatever the cause. The latter ratio is remarkably constant over the past 57 years, despite a fourfold increase in human emissions, net sink rate and increase in the atmosphere…

        2. AndyG55

          NO, it is NOT a cherry pick. It is the section of temperatures unaffected by major El Nino events.

          Are we looking for a CO2 signature or not?

          El Ninos events are nothing to do with CO2 and should be avoided when looking for effects of CO2.

          You have to look what is happening between Major El Nino events.

          And that is NOTHING !!!

          1. sod

            ” It is the section of temperatures unaffected by major El Nino events.”

            you understand absolutely nothing., You can not ignore el nino events while keeping la nina in the data.

            Your approach is WRONG. it is also plain out stupid.

          2. AndyG55

            Poor silly sob.. the only way you can get any warming is by using the El Ninos.

            You know that, everybody knows that. And it hurts you deeply, I can see that.

            Its no use calling other people names when you can’t get around facts, is it now.

            But its all you have, isn’t it, little trollette and denier of climate change.

            El Nino warming… apart from that… NOTHING

            No CO2 warming signature anywhere.. and the reason for that, as seb has very incapably shown, is that CO2 does not cause warming in a convective atmosphere.

    2. Pete

      The origin of all CO2 in the oceans, atmosphere and sequestered as limestone, biomass etc is past and current volcanic activity. Without volcanoes life on Earth would be non existent. If all volcanoes were to shut down abruptly life on Earth would die out at 150ppm CO2, which would be just after a year or two. It was 290ppm a century ago, now it’s 390ppm, so we are now in a safer situation than a century ago. Let the volcanoes roar.

      80% of all volcanoes are located deep in the oceans and that were 80% of CO2 comes from, being dissolved straight away into ocean waters before being outgassed to the atmosphere. This geologically originated CO2 dwarfs the tiny anthropogenic component by orders of magnitude, making our burning of HCs pale into insignificance. The global warming scare is over. The climate scaremongerers need another narrative. G.O.D. would be quite funny. Global Oxygen Depletion. Don’t laugh, it’s already been touted. Google it.

      1. AndyG55

        “Global Oxygen Depletion.”

        I went body surfing the other day, medium surf.. but I tell you what, there is one heck of a lot less oxygen out the back of those waves than there was when I was younger. 🙂

      2. SebastianH

        Volcanoes today emit just 1 percent of the CO2 humans emit.

        1. AndyG55

          ” Volcanoes today emit just 1 percent of the CO2 humans emit”

          Well they better get their act together and start doing more for the planet.

          Frankly, I don’t care where the aCO2 comes from, so long as the levels keep climbing.

          If by chance humans are making a biggish contribution, all the better, because it means that as underdeveloped countries start to develop, CO2 levels will continue to climb.

          This is ALL GOOD !!

        2. Sunsettommy

          How would you know,Sebastian?

          Do you have a full count of ALL of the Volcanoes,with CO2 monitoring devices for every one of them?

          I think you are waaaay tooo suuure!

          1. SebastianH

            You mean there are thousands of volcanoes hiding out there? Undicovered by mankind? Yeah, sure 😉

          2. AndyG55

            Did you see those islands that just appeared out of nowhere.


          3. Sunsettommy

            Sebastian, you didn’t answer my reasonable questions.

          4. SebastianH

            Do I need to? Google is your friend. Volcanoes aren’t emitting that much CO2 … the resulting air pollution when a volcano errupts has a far greater influence on climate.

          5. Sunsettommy


            After Sebastian,TWICE fails to answer my questions about many Volcano there are and what we know about how much they emit,he writes this absurdity:

            “Do I need to? Google is your friend. Volcanoes aren’t emitting that much CO2 … the resulting air pollution when a volcano errupts has a far greater influence on climate.”

            This after he NEVER backed up what he wrote earlier that I challenged him on,the sole reason for asking him the much feared questions in the first place:

            “Volcanoes today emit just 1 percent of the CO2 humans emit.”

            Now his latest unsubstantiated claim,once again without support. But this man has the GALL to complain that I don’t do Google search on this,while he never backs up his OWN bullcrap claims.

            You are flubbing badly,Seb.

          6. SebastianH

            Oh boy … you are like those kids who refuse to search stuff themselves and want everything to be handed for them on a silver platter. If you were sure of your claim you’d have found some sources to support it. Instead you rant and insult (again) like a small child.

            Do you really question the influence of aerosols of vulcanic origin? Anyway, here are some sources for you:

            British Geological Survey: (a few megatonnes of carbon per year from volcanoes)

            Mörner/Etiope 2002:

            U.S. Geological Survey:

            Satisfied? Or is this all fake news and you have better sources? I called, so show your cards!

          7. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Sebastian is right in this case and you should have known better. This is one of the (too many) points which regulary pop up and give skeptics a bad name…

            The Piantubo eruption was the largest eruption of the past century, larger than all other volcanic eruptions of that century together. The net result of that eruption was a drop (!) in CO2 increase in the next year(s) as the effect of a lower temperature (oceans) and more light scattering (on enhanced photosynthesis) increased the CO2 sink rates more than the Pinatubo emitted…

            Another one that pops up every now and then: underwater volcanoes emit more than land volcanoes. Maybe, but that CO2 doesn’t reach the atmosphere directly (I hope!) and most is simply dissolved in the huge amounts already in the deep oceans under a few hundred bars of seawater pressure. That “may” increase the CO2 content of the deep oceans a little, if that is not mostly recycled carbonates from the seafloor…

          8. Sunsettommy

            Are you really that stupid,Sebastian?

            You write this bullcrap,avoiding answering my reasonable questions:

            “Oh boy … you are like those kids who refuse to search stuff themselves and want everything to be handed for them on a silver platter. If you were sure of your claim you’d have found some sources to support it. Instead you rant and insult (again) like a small child.

            Do you really question the influence of aerosols of vulcanic origin? Anyway, here are some sources for you:”

            Here are the two questions you have amazing difficulty understanding:

            “How would you know,Sebastian?

            Do you have a full count of ALL of the Volcanoes,with CO2 monitoring devices for every one of them?

            I think you are waaaay tooo suuure!”

            You have not shown that EVERY Volcano has CO2 monitoring devices on them,that you do not how many Volcanoes exist on the planet,how many are active and how much CO2 are being emitted from each of the active volcanoes.

            NONE of the three links answers my questions either,here is a partial quote from the second link abstract:

            “Our survey shows that it is still very hard to arrive at a meaningful estimate of the lithospheric non-volcanic degassing into the atmosphere. Orders of 102–103 Mt CO2/year can be provisionally considered. Assuming as lower limit for a global subaerial volcanic degassing 300 Mt/year, the lithosphere may emit directly into the atmosphere at least 600 Mt CO2/year (about 10% of the C source due to deforestation and land-use exchange), an estimate we still consider conservative.”

            A lot of uncertainty language on NON-volcanic estimates.No answer about how many Volcanoes there are,How many are active and how many have CO2 monitoring devices on them.

            When you reply the way you do,it becomes clear to me that you can’t answer the questions,instead give me the stupid run around with baseless replies,indicating to me that you are an idiot.

            I have known about the lack of coverage on Volcano emissions for more than 25 years now,that is why I knew you are full of crap on this Sebastian. You can’t answer the questions,because it is unknown.

          9. Sunsettommy

            Mr. Engelbeen,

            you did’t answer the questions I posed to Sebastian either:

            “How would you know,Sebastian?

            Do you have a full count of ALL of the Volcanoes,with CO2 monitoring devices for every one of them?

            I think you are waaaay tooo suuure!”

            Thus your first paragraph is absurd and way off base:

            “Sebastian is right in this case and you should have known better. This is one of the (too many) points which regulary pop up and give skeptics a bad name… ”

            Here it is AGAIN my questions I asked Sebastian,notice how it has nothing to do with what you babbled about,in the rest of your comment?

            “How would you know,Sebastian?

            Do you have a full count of ALL of the Volcanoes,with CO2 monitoring devices for every one of them?

            I think you are waaaay tooo suuure!”

          10. SebastianH

            What do you expect as an answer? It doesn’t matter … it’s called estimation for a reason. And even if volcanoes were emitting a trillion times more CO2 than humans it wouldn’t matter. The increase in CO2 concentration is LOWER than what humans emit.

            I asked you some question too … answer them please 😉

          11. SebastianH

            You can’t answer the questions,because it is unknown.

            And yet you are absolutely sure that it is orders of magnitude higher than human emissions.

          12. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Indeed there was another one even more explosive than Pinatubo in the early 1900’s:

            No matter that, as we have very accurate CO2 measurements since 1959, the 1991 Pinatubo eruption, the second largest of the past century didn’t show up in the CO2 increase rate, just the opposite. That means that the cooling/scathering of light had more effect on CO2 absorption by oceans and plants than the Pinatubo did emit…

            Neither does any volcano or the sum of all active volcanoes together pop up as a peak of a few years or longer in any ice core or proxy, except negative: tree rings show less/defective growth in some years and these are used to identify volcanic eruptions…

            About underwater volcanoes: how much CO2 do you think will escape to the surface under 200+ bar pressure from 2,000 meters of seawater? Some near surface (“new islands”) volcanoes may emit likewise as areal volcanoes, but that is not the case for deep oceans (or you may have found the origin of the disappearances in the Bermuda Triangle)…

          13. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Please, have a look at the monitoring around mount Etna, Sicily, Italy, the most active volcano of Europe and one of the most active volcanoes of the world:


            If you calculate the yearly emissions during eruptions and what is emitted at the flanks in all periods, then you need about 1,000 volcanoes all as active as the Etna each year again to have the same emissions as humans do today.
            The same point for continuous emissions of Yellowstone: 1/500 of human emissions. As far as I know there are not so many Yellowstones on earth.

            Moreover, the Etna is a subduction volcano (recycling carbonate sediments from the ocean bottom), which emits about ten times more CO2 than deep magma volcanoes like these of Hawaii and of the mid-Atlantic rift (under water or not).

            Thus it is simply a waste of time and money to monitor every single more or less active volcanoe if not for the people living around it, as emissions (and earthquakes) often start long before an eruption.

            Last but not least: why would you insist on volcanoes as huge source? CO2 levels in the atmosphere follow human emissions at least since the past century in exact ratio. It would be an incredible coincidence that all volcanoes on earth just start with extra emissions around 1850 and emit increasing amounts of CO2 (a quadrupling between 1960 and 2012) in exact ratio to the observed increase in the atmosphere (and human emissions)…

          14. Sunsettommy

            Sebastian claims that I implied or stated something like this:

            “And yet you are absolutely sure that it is orders of magnitude higher than human emissions.”

            How would you know,since I never said anything about it. You are being dishonest here, since all I have done was ask you questions about how much we know about Volcanoes and how many of them being actively monitored.

            You also wrote this absurdity since you just admitted that you can’t address the same reasonable two questions I keep asking you:

            “What do you expect as an answer? It doesn’t matter … it’s called estimation for a reason. And even if volcanoes were emitting a trillion times more CO2 than humans it wouldn’t matter. The increase in CO2 concentration is LOWER than what humans emit.

            I asked you some question too … answer them please.”

            Oh please you are making it clear you are dumb as hell,since you don’t know how much Volcanoes actually emit,the estimate is a wild guess since you and other warmist morons have no clue how much Volcanoes really emit,since most of them are NOT being monitored at all.

            I have ignored your “questions” since they has nothing to do with what I said, never made a statement on the the blogs veracity of its claims. Simply wanted to expose the obvious that NOBODY really knows how much Volcanoes emit.

            Estimates without a KNOWN minimum baseline, are worthless!

          15. SebastianH

            Your question implied that you don’t believe the 1% of human emissions number and it to be much higher or much more influential than human emissions.

            It’s not.

          16. Sunsettommy

            Ha ha ha….

            Sebastian,has a severe problem understanding what I am pointing out,it certainly isn’t this as he writes:

            “Your question implied that you don’t believe the 1% of human emissions number and it to be much higher or much more influential than human emissions.

            It’s not.”

            Sigh, are you [snip]?

            Never did I make the statement about your 1% being right or wrong,what I have been trying to point out AGAIN and AGAIN,that you lack sufficient emission data, for your unsupported statement,that is why I bring up the questions:

            You wrote,

            “SebastianH 27. February 2017 at 12:26 AM | Permalink | Reply

            Volcanoes today emit just 1 percent of the CO2 humans emit.”

            My reply was this,

            “Sunsettommy 27. February 2017 at 5:34 AM | Permalink | Reply

            How would you know,Sebastian?

            Do you have a full count of ALL of the Volcanoes,with CO2 monitoring devices for every one of them?

            I think you are waaaay tooo suuure!”

            To this time and day,you have yet to support your original 1% claim,thus you have failed to make your case. I don’t have to even try to debunk you,since you debunked yourself from the start, by NEVER supporting your 1% argument.

            You need to stop digging a deeper hole.

  15. Svend Ferdinandsen

    If you look at the variation in CO2 content over a year, you would realise that the sinks must be very powerfull and also the emittance of the nature.
    The fact that only half our produced CO2 is remaining in the air needs some explanations.
    The variations in northern parts are even larger (by a factor 2) than what is measured at Mauna Loa, and consequently much less in southern parts.

    1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


      The main CO2 cycles are (reasonable estimates, based on CO2, O2 and δ13C measurements):

      – oceans: + and – 50 GtC
      – biosphere: + and – 60 GtC
      As both are countercurrent, the global result is + and – 10 GtC (~5 ppmv) over the seasons for a global temperature change of ~1 K.
      Main dominance: NH extratropical forests taking lots of CO2 out of the atmosphere in spring/summer and releasing that in fall/winter.
      That vegetation is dominant can be seen in the opposite CO2 and δ13C fluxes. If the oceans were dominant, CO2 and a small δ13C change would parallel each other.

      – equatorial upwelling by the oceans: ~40 GtC
      – polar sinks in the oceans: ~40 GtC
      Based on the “thinning” of the δ13C sink rate from fossil fuels by the deep oceans – atmosphere CO2 cycle. Independently confirmed by the 14C sink rate.

      Together that is 150 GtC going in and out the atmosphere within a year in exchange with other reservoirs. That is (near) fully explained by the huge temperature swings in extra-tropical seasons and the permanent temperature difference between equatorial upwelling and polar sinks.

      Natural variability of these huge fluxes is small: +/- 3 GtC (+/- 1.5 ppmv) from year to year and again mainly caused by (this time tropical) vegetation:

      Thus on short periods of seasonal to 3 years, temperature has a huge, but temporal influence, which zeroes out after 1-3 years. Moreover, as most of the variability is caused by vegetation, that is not the cause of the CO2 increase, as vegetation is a small, but growing sink for CO2, at least since 1990: the earth is greening…

      Over longer periods (decades to multi-milennia) the oceans are dominant as ice cores show very little δ13C change for huge CO2 changes, again with temperature.

      Thus while temperature has an enormous influence on seasonal fluxes (and between warm and cold oceans), that is already a lot less for year to year variability and on (very) long term, that is not more than 16 ppmv/K, mainly form the oceans.

      The problem for removing human CO2 out of the atmosphere is that the main carbon cycles are almost completely temperature dependent and relative insensitive for CO2 pressure changes. One K higher temperature will give some more plant growth (in average) and some 16 ppmv more CO2 increase in the atmosphere from the oceans, while 110 ppmv extra CO2 only gives ~0.5 ppmv/year extra sink in vegetation and ~1.6 ppmv/year in the oceans but humans add ~4.3 ppmv/year into the same atmosphere…

      1. AndyG55

        “The problem for removing human CO2 out of the atmosphere”

        Now why the heck would any sane person want to do that..???

        We are struggling to push it much past 400ppm, and LOTS more is needed if we are going to continue to feed the world’s increasing population.

        I can see a time when Thorium nuclear is used to break down limestone to release CO2 into the atmosphere.

        Fortunately we have LOTS of fossil fuels in the interim, all we have to do is get over this moronic anti-CO2, anti-life agenda.

        1. Ferdinand Engelbeen


          I don’t want to do that either… As long time biological gardner in my own (small) garden, I know that mulching (putting organic rests like cut grass) around growing plants enhances local CO2 emissions (and gives a better water household) and thus enhances growth of the new plants, just like greenhouse owners putting 1000 ppmv CO2 – and more – in their greenhouses… And I am pretty sure that more CO2 in general is more beneficial than harmfull (if at all).

          But that doesn’t mean that skeptics should attack solid evidence from the other side with such bad science as the above article. That only undermines the skeptics case…

  16. Johannes Herbst

    Andy G55,

    Possibly you know what I mean:

    or that:

    If you set a point before or after the 1998-2001 ENSO, you will see a dramatic swing in temperature. Temps not correlating with CO2.

    Note: I never start or end a trend within an ENSO, so I stopped 2015, as the 2016 ENSO seems not yet to be over.

    1. AndyG55

      If you are looking for a CO2 signature, you have to stay away from El Nino effects. El Ninos are nothing to do with CO2.

      That effective splits the satellite temperature data into two basically zero trend section.
      (this has a small calculated positive trend, but ONLY because of where it starts and finishes on the cyclic pattern)


      1. Johannes S. Herbst

        Andy G55, do we agree that it needs a full ENSO cycle (El Nino plus following La nina) to exclude or include? If you just exclude El Nino, the you tamper the data.

        To my opinon, ENSO cyyles are just another weather exercise on top of the normal trend or swing, similar to volcanoes.

  17. Ferdinand Engelbeen

    Another strange point:

    “Under present conditions the natural emissions contribute 373 ppm and anthropogenic emissions 17 ppm to the total concentration of 390 ppm (2012).”.

    It looks like that the author started his calculations from zero CO2 at steady state? Not sure what he really means and has done here.

    The current steady state level between ocean surface and atmosphere is 290 ppmv for the current (area weighted) ocean surface temperature.
    At 290 ppmv, natural emissions and sinks are equal and the oceans do not “contribute” anything to the atmosphere. Only the extra CO2 pressure above this 290 ppmv has any effect on the balance between natural (oceanic) emissions and sinks.

    1. AndyG55

      “At 290 ppmv, natural emissions and sinks are equal and the oceans do not “contribute” anything to the atmosphere”

      ahhh…. plant are subsistence level.

      Great, just what is needed to feed the world. 🙁

    2. Bartemis

      “It looks like that the author started his calculations from zero CO2 at steady state?”

      That is the problem with your entire outlook, Ferdinand. You take the steady state as a given, and build your model on top of that.

      But, the steady state is dictated by equations of balance, and the mechanisms of balance do not just fade away after an apparent balance is established. They are still active, and they will work to balance the flows from human inputs just as assiduously as they work to balance the flows from natural inputs.

      As this is an active balance, human inputs can only affect it in proportion. Estimates are that human inputs are on the order of 3% or less of natural inputs. As a result, they cannot be responsible for more than about 3% of the overall balance.

      “Only the extra CO2 pressure above this 290 ppmv has any effect on the balance between natural (oceanic) emissions and sinks.”

      This is a faith-based assertion, for which no evidence exists.

      The natural steady state is not 290 ppm. It is an ever-changing value. Right now, it is close to 400 ppm.

      1. SebastianH

        Nope, 400 ppm is not a natural steady state of nature with human industry. Reason: the concentration is still climbing and it will climb until either natural sinks catch up or natural sources stop emitting or humans reduce their output. If nothing of the sort happens, it will climb forever. Not a steady state at all.

        Kenneth in his number twisting way is correct in his first paragraph. The value changes depending on the situation. Looking at the past few hundreds of years, the steady state for that period was around 290 ppm and then came the industrial revolution. Kenneth most likely will reply something like “but concentration naturally changed in the past, what did cause the increase back then?” … the answer being: not humans obviously. “But if it was natural, why can’t it be natural this time?” … because: human emissions exist and the amount emitted per period of time is higher than the increase in concentration.

        1. Sunsettommy

          Sebastian, what is the “natural steady state”?

        2. Kenneth Richard

          “Looking at the past few hundreds of years, the steady state for that period was around 290 ppm and then came the industrial revolution.”

          Um, no. According to law dome data, the 290 ppm “natural steady state” that you and Ferdinand Engelbeen believe in was in its “natural steady state” condition for exactly 4 years: between 1882 and 1885 (290.1 to 290.9). It was at 280 ppm for a few years in the early 1790s. Apparently you believe the industrial revolution happened sometime after 1885.

          Here’s an illustration of how the CO2 concentration rose independently of human emissions:

      2. Ferdinand Engelbeen


        You may know a lot about high frequency processes, but here you are out of your depth.

        There is a very long term equilibrium between the oceans and the atmosphere over 800,000 years completely in accord to Henry’s law for the solubility of CO2 in seawater: 16 ppmv/K. That didn’t change in the whole period and only gets smaller if the time frame is too short to establish a full dynamic equilibrium between the deep oceans and the atmosphere which needs milennia.

        SO why in heaven would the established equilibrium, confirmed by over 3 million recent and current seawater samples, suddenly change the moment that humans start to emit interesting amounts of CO2?

        As discussed many times before: the 3% human emissions are one-way, the 97% two-way, where 98.5% sinks in the oceans and vegetation. 1.5% remains in the atmosphere. No matter if what sinks is all natural or all human, the 1.5% in any case is caused by the human emissions.
        You still see the sinks as one process, while most sinks are highly temperature dependent (seasonal to 1-3 years), but human emissions increase the pressure in the atmosphere, without much influence on temperature. The removal of any extra CO2 above equilibrium is of a complete different order (factor 10 slower) than the removal of CO2 by the growth of new leaves in spring…

        That the net sink rate over the past 57 years is in direct ratio to the extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere over the established setpoint per Henry’s law is full proof for a linear process that is disturbed by an external force…

        1. Bartemis

          “You may know a lot about high frequency processes…”

          You seem to have latched onto that rationalization. It is silly.

          “There is a very long term equilibrium between the oceans and the atmosphere over 800,000 years completely in accord to Henry’s law for the solubility of CO2 in seawater: 16 ppmv/K.”

          This is a circular argument.

          I have provided a mathematically rigorous description of how the integral relationship between CO2 and temperature can come about. You are just flailing.

          1. AndyG55

            Then of course there is the merged data from 6 peer review papers using stomata data for CO2 levels for the Holocene


            The plant stomata data pretty well prove that Holocene CO2 levels have frequently been in the 300-350 ppm range and occasionally above 400 ppm over the last 10,000 years.

          2. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Your mathematical solution fails every single observation. Not one, which is enough to kill any theory, but it fails every observation. Not enough to convince you that your theory is good for the dust bin…

          3. Ferdinand Engelbeen

            Andy and Kenneth,

            Stomata data are a proxy of the average CO2 levels in the growing season at the place where the plants grow. That shows the local/regional CO2 levels over land, not in the bulk of the atmosphere. To compensate for the local bias, the stomata data are calibrated against ice core CO2 data over the past century. The problem is that nobody knows how the local bias changed due to land (use) changes in the main wind direction or even changes in the main wind direction itself.
            Bluntly said: if the stomata show an average CO2 level different from the ice cores over the time span of the ice core resolution, then the stomata data are wrong and must be recalibrated for that time span…

            The accuracy of ice cores is +/- 1.2 ppmv for multiple samples of the same core, +/- 2.5 ppmv between different ice cores for the same gas age. Best resolution over the Holocene: ~40 years and less, e.g.:

            The steady state depends of the temperature + other natural variabilities. +/- 10 ppmv is peanuts compared to the 110 ppmv today…

          4. Kenneth Richard

            Ferdinand Engelbeen: “Bluntly said: if the stomata show an average CO2 level different from the ice cores over the time span of the ice core resolution, then the stomata data are wrong and must be recalibrated for that time span.”

            Exactly what one would expect to read from someone who is convinced that we know all there is to know, and that he has access to the “facts” here. Never mind that the “laws” and formulas that you use to state your claims (16 ppmv/K) bear no relation to much of the Holocene temperature record. You believe it’s true; therefore, it is true. You believe that the “natural steady state” for CO2 concentration is 290 ppm. Never mind that it was 280 ppm in the 1790s, that it rose by 10 ppm in ~90 years (while temperatures dropped), or that the “natural steady state” only remained steady at that state for 4 years at most (1882-1885). What does it matter that the ice core record that you believe to be true on the one hand doesn’t even match up with your claims about 16 ppmv/K or 290 ppm steady state. You believe that what you believe is true is true. Therefore, for you, it is true. We’re not the believers that you are, Ferdinand.

          5. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            I may appear too sure of what I say, but that is simply the result of years of discussions and a lot of knowledge that can’t be said in a few words (most of my replies are already much too long).

            About stomata data and ice cores CO2:
            Ice core CO2 is proven reliable to within a few ppmv, even taken from ice cores with extreme differences in snow accumulation, average temperature, etc. Even with a ~20 year overlap (1960-1980) with direct measurements at the South Pole. They reflect the CO2, CH4, N2O, CFC’s, bomb test 14C, isotopic ratios of C, O, H/D,… over the past 800,000 years with high accuracy.
            The only drawback is the resolution, which depends of the snow accumulation rate. Thus what you measure in the gas fase is a mixture of years: from less than a decade for the past 150 years to 560 years for the past 800,000 years.

            About stomata data, I have had lots of discussion with Tom van Hoof, stomata specialist. Stomata (index) data of one year reflect the local average CO2 levels in the previous growing season. Still a proxy, as leaf growth not only is influenced by CO2, but also by water, nutrients,…

            The local CO2 is a problem, as CO2 in the lower atmosphere over land is badly mixed and in general has a positive bias compared to “background” CO2. To give you an idea of the problem, here the monthly data for Giessen/Linden, mid-west Germany, based on half hour CO2 samples:
            where one of the monthly averages was off-chart at over 500 ppmv.

            Thus one uses ice core CO2 + Mauna Loa as calibration for the local stomata data offset over the past century. Even so, the calibration curve gives for the same stomata index of 7% a CO2 level between 320 and 360 ppmv, not really accurate.

            My main objection is that any changes of the local CO2 bias over the centuries is totally unknown. That can have changed by (enormous) changes in land and land use, like in The Netherlands: from sea and marshes to agriculture (polders) and forests and industrialisation all in the current main wind direction. There are even indications that the main wind direction may have changed from SW to East during the LIA…

            Thus while the stomata CO2 proxy data have a better resolution than ice core CO2 data, the variability seen in the CO2 data is the variability of CO2 over land (which may be of interest), not (only) in the bulk of the atmosphere. If there is an offset between the average of the stomata data and the ice core CO2 data over the time span of the ice core resolution, then the local bias at the stomata growth base has changed and one need to recalibrate them with the ice core data.

            Not reverse: higher average stomata index data are not an indication that the ice core data are too low…

            Temperature gives the setpoint of the steady state between oceans and atmosphere, not the instantanious value. That implies that other natural influences (volcanoes, vegetation), can disturb that equilibrium and humans with the early settlements with agriculture and cattle herding.
            Even the end of the last glaciation shows CO2 levels dropping 40 ppmv only thousands of years after the drop in temperature. That is the time that the deep oceans need to get into equilibrium with the atmosphere…

            I am not at all interested in a quible over 10 ppmv more or less in periods where emissions and temperature are hardly known to any accuracy…

            Let’s focus on the past near 60 years of more accurate knowledge…

          6. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            290 ppmv IS the steady state for the current average seawater temperature. That indeed is a law as rock solid as many other physical laws. What you don’t seems to get is that the steady state is what it should be if everything was in (dynamic) equilibrium, not what is actually measured, simply because a lot of influences besides temperature can (and do) change the inputs and/or outputs beyond the temperature controlled setpoint.

            All what happens then is that the CO2 levels in the atmosphere are changing above (or below) the steady state and that the processes involved react to establish the steady state again. That is called Le Châtelier’s principle.

            Any extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere coming from volcanoes, forests fires or humans will decrease the CO2 input from upwelling deep ocean waters and increase the CO2 output into the deep ocean sinks (and in vegetation). That is in ratio to the extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere above the steady state.
            For a linear process (as the global CO2 cycle seems to be) one can easily calculate the decay rate: in this case that gives an e-fold decay rate of ~51 years or a half life time of ~35 years, ten times higher than the residence time, which has nothing to do with the decay rate of any extra CO2 mass in the atmosphere…

          7. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            Many who know me from discussions on WUWT and elsewhere do appreciate my patience in trying to explain the background of what is known and what not, even if they don’t agree with me.

            I have tried it here for you again and again, but as I explains that there is a difference between hard scientific evidence of a fixed CO2 solubility of CO2 in seawater for a fixed temperature, which changes with 16 ppmv/K and what is really measured in the atmosphere, and you only repeat your own non-relevant arguments, then I can’t help you any further.

            It only shows that you aren’t open to other opinions and that you have no idea how a simple linear process works.
            You are not a true skeptic if you don’t accept any evidence if you don’t like the outcome…

          8. AndyG55

            “You claim the “natural steady state” for CO2 is 290 ppm.”

            I stopped reading his posts at that stage.

            It just so monumentally stupid !!

          9. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            This gets ugly. If you don’t accept Henry’s law and the result of 3 million seawater samples, which confirm the solubility of CO2 in seawater, then it ends here and now.

            16 ppmv/K is what is established as what the CO2 levels SHOULD be. That is NOT what is instantly measured. That is where the CO2 levels will go, giving enough time to reach that value. As there are lots influences at work, that may give a time delay and the equilibrium never may be reached if the temperature changes more rapidly that the reaction of the CO2 levels.

            And I never said that the “natural steady state” is invariable at 290 ppmv. It is 290 ppmv for the current average ocean surface temperature. Not for the surface temperature of 100 or 1000 years ago. And certainly it is far below 400 ppmv as is measured today in the atmosphere.
            If you have any evidence that 400 ppmv is a normal value for today’s ocean surface temperature then I like to see that.

        2. AndyG55

          I would love to see the explanation as to how CO2 levels started climbing in the 1700’s

          Notice yet again, another unsupportable fudge, so ignore the graph on the right and look at the left graph..

          This shows a climb from 279ppm starting in 1661 (might be 1681) climbing to 320ppm by 1851

          This is all obviously due to human CO2 from SUVs etc… 😉

          1. Ferdinand Engelbeen

            Please Andy,

            That graph is from the late Dr. Jaworowski, a well known specialist of radionuclides in ice cores as result of the fallout of Chernobyl. He did never any experiment on CO2 in ice cores, but had a lot of comments on possible artifacts in 1992. These were point by point refuted by the drilling of three ice cores at Law Dome, published in 1996 by Etheridge e.a.

            What happened with that graph is that Jaworowski used the wrong column in the results of the Siple Dome ice core: he looked at the column of the ice age, not the average gas age. The pores in firn remain open during decennia, which makes that the average gas age is much younger than the surrounding ice. Either Jaworowski made a mistake or he was deliberately making a point of a non-event.
            See my comments on other blunders of Jaworowski here:

            And stomata data need to be calibrated to ice core data, as they show a local bias…

          2. AndyG55

            sorry Ferb, I do not follow link to the linkers own web site.

            So stomata are wrong.. because they don’t agree ??

            Whatever !!!

          3. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            I don’t have cookies on my web site ot any other sneaky spyware (may be reverse…) but here is the table from the Siple Dome ice core for which Jaworowski accused Neftel of “arbitrary shifting the data 83 years to match the Mauna Loa data”:


            He used the column “ice from (year AD)” for the left plot of CO2 levels, but there is no CO2 measured in the ice phase, that is measured in the gas phase, which is the column “Air enclosed (year AD)”, because that is much younger and has a time span. As a few measurements overlap direct measurements (don’t remember at Mauna Loa or South Pole for that core), his accusation is very strange, to say the least…

            About stomata data, I made a lot of comment but I don’t see it anymore, maybe in the spam box…
            In short: stomata data are a proxy for local CO2 data over land (highly variable), ice core CO2 are direct measurements of ancient air, but smoothed. Stomata data must be calibrated with ice core data, for any local bias, but if they show a different average in the past, the local bias has changed and the stomata data must be recalibrated against the ice cores, not reverse…

          4. AndyG55

            Self-aggrandising web sites never have any interest to me.

            Not interested in that sort of interpretation and plea to authority.

            As you say, stomata data is about where things were actually growing.

            I know which I think is more important.

          5. Ferdinand Engelbeen


            I could make a lot of the same comments again and again, that is why I composed my web site, not because I like to be in the spotlights…
            But as you fear to be contaminated by my writings, here some third party comment on stomata data and the original table of CO2 measurements in the Siple Dome ice core by Neftel:

            About the (un)reliability of stomata data for CO2 levels:

            Here the table of Neftel in his original work:

        3. AndyG55

          Also bare in mind that the 290ppm value from around 1900 is also due to what could be called a monumental cherry pick.

          1. AndyG55

            From that last link

            “A study of stomatal frequency in fossil leaves from Holocene lake deposits in Denmark, showing that 9400 years ago CO2 atmospheric level was 333 ppmv, and 9600 years ago 348 ppmv, falsify the concept of stabilized and low CO2 air concentration until the advent of industrial revolution “

  18. Scrutinizing the carbon cycle and CO2 residence time in the atmosphere | Un hobby...

    […] Also this link […]

  19. CO2, numeri impossibili… O forse no? : Attività Solare ( Solar Activity )

    […] paper è a questo link, benché ovviamente a pagamento, ma su questa pagina ce n’è un estratto abbastanza […]

  20. Nigel S

    ‘Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds nought and six, result misery.’

    Mr Micawber

  21. Kevan Hashemi

    Cosmic rays create carbon-14 at roughly 8 kg/year in the upper atmosphere. Together with the half-life of carbon-14 and the mass of carbon-14 we observe in the atmosphere, this creation rate allows us to calculate with confidence the rate at which CO2 is exchanged with the deep ocean, and how temperature and human emissions will disturb the system. If you want to see how this is done, check link below, but you are all welcome to do the math yourself.

  22. Blockbuster-Studie: Nur 15% der CO2-Zunahme seit der Industria­lisierung gehen auf menschliche Emissionen zurück – EIKE – Europäisches Institut für Klima & Energie
  23. DirkH

    Well the more CO2 there is, the more downwelling infrared radiation at a Planck temperature of -80 deg C will…

    …”warm” us….

    1. SebastianH

      Well, that’s 193 more degrees than with no downwelling IR radiation. Just kidding, of course you know how radiative transfers work and made a joke too, right?

      1. AndyG55

        poor seb.. still doesn’t comprehend basic science

        He KNOWS that CO2 doesn’t cause any warming in a convective atmosphere, don’t you seb.

        Or are you staying in your fantasy world where proof is never required?

        1. SebastianH

          Says the one with zero proof. The claim that CO2 is a greenhouse gas and its effect can be measured and has been measured. Doesn’t matter if there is convection or not. However it is likely impossible to sustain convection without ir-active gases …

          1. AndyG55

            Only person with ZERO PROOF is you, poor little brain-washed bozo.

            STILL WAITING !!.

            Nada, Zippo … EMPTY, you are.

            At least you are now admitting there is convention.

            I wonder what controls that convection.. any ideas, seb ?????

            Tiny step by tiny step you are putting reality together. !!!

          2. sod

            “Only person with ZERO PROOF is you, poor little brain-washed bozo.”

            nothing but insults again, the direct CO2 effect can be measured. The global effect must be calculated. This is science.

  24. AndyG55

    Irksome, anti-human AGW scammers are now attacking staple foods.


  25. sod

    “This is so amusing to read coming from you, as you have no idea the irony considering your own close-mindedness.”

    sorry, but you are wrong and Ferdinand Engelbeen is right.

    This whole topic is absurd!

    the paper is not a blockbuster (it is a minor paper, written by a known sceptic, who has positions that have been contradicted before).

    The main finding of the paper (humans not being the main source of the sudden CO2 increase) is obviously false.

    Any discussion about this subject is a support of fake news!

  26. sod

    ” The “natural steady state” of CO2 concentration for the planet is 290 ppm. So says Ferdinand Engelbeen. And sod. So it must be right.”

    add in a couple of thousand scientists who really have some knowledge on the subject. But hey, that is just facts!

    1. AndyG55

      “add in a couple of paid anti-CO2 climate pseudo-scientists” .. this is what you meant to say, isn’t it.

      Anyone who is NOT a denier of climate history or is NOT ignorant of the requirements of world plant life, would know that in better times for plant life, CO2 was much higher.

      But what do twerps like sob care about plant life.

      Plants, after all, are only responsible for feeding all life on Earth.

      1. Ferdinand Engelbeen

        Andy please,

        The 290 ppmv is what is measured, not an opinion from anyone paid by the governement.

        180 ppmv during glacial periods indeed was at the edge of the survival of C3 plants, I agree, and 1000 ppmv as used in greenhouses is much better, but that doesn’t change the fact that at the current average ocean surface temperature the steady state is at 290 ppmv…

        1. AndyG55

          You still think the die or survive point is steady state.

          Is 2 pieces of bread and a glass of water, “steady state ” for you?

          Man’s release of sequestered carbon has almost certainly saved the world from the continued CO2 poverty cycle it was trapped in..

  27. IPCC Carbon Dioxide Figures Exaggerated, Just 15 Percent Growth From Human Emissions, Claims Study - TechTrend

    […] new study infers that anthropogenic contribution to carbon dioxide concentration is only 4.3 percent and the surge […]

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