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Old 09-01-2016, 21:14   #1471
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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OK I found the information on the Kuwait oil fields burned for 8 months and released over 500 million tons of co2 which should have really affected the concentration of c14 in the atmosphere but the charts don't show anything.
We put roughly 8 billion tonnes C from fossil fuels into the atmosphere annually. Are you sure that the much smaller amount from the oil fields should have "really affected the concentration"?
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Old 09-01-2016, 21:26   #1472
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

The isotope studies are interesting, but there is a much simpler way to understand that the increase in atmospheric CO2 is caused by us:

Change in the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is equal to the sum of the natural fluxes plus the sum of the human-caused fluxes. So as an equation:
change_in_atm_co2 = natural_fluxes + human_fluxes

Plug some numbers in there. Currently we are emitting somewhere around 7-9 billion tonnes C per year from fossil fuel burning. At the same time the amount of carbon in the atmosphere is increasing at a rate of somewhere around 4-5 billion tonnes per year.

So, what are the natural fluxes?
5 = 8 + natural_fluxes

Solve for the natural fluxes and you will notice that they are currently negative. Yes, sailorchic is correct that there are large natural sources of CO2 such as forest fires. But she neglected to include the large natural sinks, such as regrowing forests that are recovering from previous forest fires. Currently, the natural systems are absorbing more CO2 than they are emitting. The question is, will those natural sinks continue at the same rate?
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Old 09-01-2016, 21:46   #1473
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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Originally Posted by mr_f View Post
We put roughly 8 billion tonnes C from fossil fuels into the atmosphere annually. Are you sure that the much smaller amount from the oil fields should have "really affected the concentration"?
Actually yes it should have shown a significant affect remember we are talking 1991 levels not current levels and in 1991 they say it was 4.5 billion or half of what they say today is. Which means the 500 million would be just over a 10% influx for that year.
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:00   #1474
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

Thanks for joining the discussion.

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fryewe,

If there had been no change in atmospheric composition, the 14C that is stored in plants would decline at the expected rate of decay. Instead, recent tree rings contain less 14C than expected because the ratios in the atmosphere has changed. The graph is not showing that a tree ring that contained X amount of 14C 125 years ago lost some amount through decay. It is showing that recent tree rings contain less 14C than older tree rings because there was relatively less 14C available to uptake.

Ahhh...I see. I am surprised that the slope is so great in the interval 1800-1875, pre-industrial revolution. Looks like a negative change in slope post-industrial revolution, which is consistent with the proposition.

In response to your second question about the scale on the graph of 14C following nuclear testing. I do not know the provenance of that particular graph...
It is not showing a percentage increase. The scale is labeled ∆14CO2 per mille. The following link has some (not great) explanation of how deltas are calculated. Hopefully it will point you in the right direction:
ESRL Global Monitoring Division - Education and Outreach

The link didn't work. I'll do some research. I read a different scale (delta 14CO2 (%o)). I'll clean my glasses.
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:18   #1475
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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The isotope studies are interesting, but there is a much simpler way to understand that the increase in atmospheric CO2 is caused by us:...
Few are questioning whether the CO2 increase in the atmosphere is anthropogenic...surely much if not most of it is...

The rub is some say "OMG!!!" and others say "So What?" and many others are somewhere in between.

And that puts the discussers in the starting box for endless commentary because money and influence are in play and human nature is what it is.

As for me, I'm disturbed that the discussion by the scientific community has taken on an us vs. them tone, and that the complete discussion is not fully open for review by one and all.

And, being a cynic due to endless practice, I don't trust anyone where money and influence are involved, nor when secrets are being kept.
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:18   #1476
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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Actually yes it should have shown a significant affect remember we are talking 1991 levels not current levels and in 1991 they say it was 4.5 billion or half of what they say today is. Which means the 500 million would be just over a 10% influx for that year.
Just to be clear, 4.5 billion tonnes carbon is 16.5 billion tonnes CO2. Assuming you intended the 500 million tonnes CO2 you stated earlier, then it is only around 3% bump.
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:44   #1477
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

You read the units correctly. Per mille is %o, but you were more clever typing it. But the delta is probably not the delta you expecting. That link, if it ever works, has the explanation, but the equation for 13C is this:


14C has some additional normalization done to it.


Quote:
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Few are questioning whether the CO2 increase in the atmosphere is anthropogenic...surely much if not most of it is...
I didn't expect you to question that. But, that is after all where this started. The isotope studies were posted in response to claims that most of the increase was not anthropogenic.
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:54   #1478
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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Actually carbon isotope analysis can tell the difference.

It's Our Fault | James Lawrence Powell
From your link:
First, coal, oil, and natural gas also come from plants and have the distinctive carbon isotope ratio of plants

What the link was talking about was measuring c14 in tree rings, that is trees that were not burned.

Notice that the C14 graft in the paper is still higher today then it was in 1955. So I'm going to say the paper is inconclusive. c14 is miniscule anyway. That it is still higher today then in 1950, would seem to state that more wood is being burned now then before 1955.

Human Co2 is ~5GT per year. Yet forest fires which produce ~38GT or 760% of manmade co2, a year have very similar carbon footprint to fossil fuel, least wise when sampled by air. Gee forest fires in the US alone amount to ~3GT a year of co2, more then the us fossil fuel derived Co2 at only1GT/year.

Perhaps we need to do more to manage forests and prevent fires. That might do way more to lower co2.
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:01   #1479
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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Just to be clear, 4.5 billion tonnes carbon is 16.5 billion tonnes CO2. Assuming you intended the 500 million tonnes CO2 you stated earlier, then it is only around 3% bump.
No 4.5 billion tonnes of co2 not carbon and 500 million is more than a 10% bump for that one year
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:04   #1480
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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But she neglected to include the large natural sinks, such as regrowing forests that are recovering from previous forest fires. Currently, the natural systems are absorbing more CO2 than they are emitting. The question is, will those natural sinks continue at the same rate?
LOL, Nope did not forget that. Oddly forests world wide are in decline that is there has been a net loss of over a million square miles of forests in the last 15 years. That's a loss of ~17GT of carbon sink a year or 3 times human co2 production. It's HUGE.

What to lower co2, Plant a LOT of trees.
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:18   #1481
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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No 4.5 billion tonnes of co2 not carbon and 500 million is more than a 10% bump for that one year
No, it is definitely tonnes C.



Besides the units, it is also worth pointing out that 1991 was closer to 6 billion tonnes C, or around 20 billion tonnes CO2.

Source: Boden, T.A., Marland, G., and Andres R.J. (2015). Global, Regional, and National Fossil-Fuel CO2 Emissions. Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, doi 10.3334/CDIAC/00001_V2015.
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:22   #1482
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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You read the units correctly. Per mille is %o, but you were more clever typing it. But the delta is probably not the delta you expecting. That link, if it ever works, has the explanation, but the equation for 13C is this:


14C has some additional normalization done to it.
Per mille...ppt change from a standard...change in CO2 in which the carbon isotope is C14...and a delta of 700 results from an approximate ratio of sample to standard of about 1.7, which is approximately 170 percent of the pre-atomic testing equilibrium level of atmospheric C14...so there is consistency between the plot shown and others. Thanks. (The previous link opened, so I was able to read the reasoning for additional normalization for C14.)


[/QUOTE]
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:27   #1483
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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No, it is definitely tonnes C.



Besides the units, it is also worth pointing out that 1991 was closer to 6 billion tonnes C, or around 20 billion tonnes CO2.

Source: Boden, T.A., Marland, G., and Andres R.J. (2015). Global, Regional, and National Fossil-Fuel CO2 Emissions. Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy, doi 10.3334/CDIAC/00001_V2015.
Once again a chart that doesn't match the others
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:29   #1484
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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Once again a chart that doesn't match the others
What others?

This paper agrees, and conveniently shows both scales on their graph (C on the left, CO2 on the right).

http://www.pnas.org/content/104/47/1...18-pmc=2141868
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:36   #1485
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Re: Why Climate Change Won't Matter in 20 Years

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What others?
Hit wrong key the numbers mist have been mid read by me then it was 4500 million tonnes carbon per year and an additional 500 million tonnes of carbon added in the 8 months the oil wells burned. Which is still at .east a 10% additional for the year.
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