Uncertainty in the dirt: another climate feedback loop

From the Carnegie Institution  Climate change and the soil

Climate warming may not drive net losses of soil carbon from tropical forests

Washington, DC — The planet’s soil releases about 60 billion tons of carbon into the atmosphere each year, which is far more than that released by burning fossil fuels. This happens through a process called soil respiration. This enormous release of carbon is balanced by carbon coming into the soil system from falling leaves and other plant matter, as well as by the underground activities of plant roots.

Short-term warming studies have documented that rising temperatures increase the rate of soil respiration. As a result, scientists have worried that global warming would accelerate the decomposition of carbon in the soil, and decrease the amount of carbon stored there. If true, this would release even more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, where it would accelerate global warming.

New work by a team of scientists including Carnegie’s Greg Asner and Christian Giardina of the U.S. Forest Service used an expansive whole-ecosystem study, the first of its kind, on tropical montane wet forests in Hawaii to sort through the many processes that control soil carbon stocks with changing temperature. Their work is published in Nature Climate Change.

The team revealed that higher temperatures increased the amount of leaf litter falling onto the soil, as well as other underground sources of carbon such as roots. Surprisingly, long-term warming had little effect on the overall storage of carbon in the tropical forest soil or the rate at which that carbon is processed into carbon dioxide.

“If these findings hold true in other tropical regions, then warmer temperatures may not necessarily cause tropical soils to release their carbon to the atmosphere at a faster rate,” remarked Asner. “On the other hand, we cannot expect that the soil will soak up more carbon in places where vegetation is stimulated by warmer temperatures. Unlike tropical trees, the soil seems to be on the sidelines in the climate adaptation game.”

This means the observed increase in the rate of soil respiration accompanying rising temperatures is due to carbon dioxide released by the an uptick in the amount of litter falling on the forest floor and an increase in carbon from underground sources. It is not from a decrease in the overall amount of carbon stored in the soil.

Giardina noted “While we found that carbon stored in the mineral soil was insensitive to long-term warming, the loss of unprotected carbon responded strongly to temperature. This tells us that the sensitivity of each source of soil respiration needs to be quantified, and the aggregate response examined, before an understanding of ecosystem carbon balance in a warmer world can be achieved.”


This work was funded by the National Science Foundation, the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, the USDA Forest Service, and the Carnegie Institution for Science.

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July 23, 2014 10:52 pm

Translation – we need more $$$

July 23, 2014 10:55 pm

Some persons call themselves scholars but act as if they were money collectors…..

July 23, 2014 11:09 pm

Still wasting time looking in the wrong place. Wow these guys are persistent.
What part of the word “ocean” do they not understand?

July 23, 2014 11:12 pm

I don’t want to live on this planet anymore

July 23, 2014 11:14 pm

A runaway ‘treehouse’ effect

peter azlac
July 23, 2014 11:17 pm

The EU has argued for a Directive to increase the carbon content of soils – Directive 2004/35/EC. Official Journal of the European Union – in part as a means of sequestering carbon but mainly as an objective means of improving soil structure to increase the permeability so improving the capture of rainfall and reduce soil erosion from run off. This good proposal was withdrawn in 2014 largely following objections from the farming community that it would involve too much bureacracy and that farmers already take good care of soils – not true in a substantial number of cases as soil carbon levels have reached low values in many areas and much of the flooding in the EU results from low soil permeability that increases river flow rates.
That on one side, the net effect of increasing soil carbon would be to increase evaporative cooling, so decreasing maximum temperatures but also increasing minimum temperatures from the increased heat capacity with the net effect for crops and man being positive from improved crop growth.

July 23, 2014 11:23 pm

In the Uncertainty of funding… My wife is a manager of managers at a major University, she manages the operations side of 5 departments. Her budgets are shrinking for Climate Research and have since before she was hired. When hired she had three offices assigned to her. One of those offices had a $3000 ergonomic desk in it. She moves between her buildings each day, so office work space isn’t as big of an issue as it is for some.
She gave up that ergo desk for an employee who needed it today, because two of her departments budgets could not squeeze out a penny for her, to have any replacement costs. Context at a school, with about 10,000 employees of one form or another, she manages about 7% of the school workforce.
As stated, she has three offices down from 4 when her prior held the job, and she found a free replacement, point is she knows her own budgets, and couldn’t afford a desk from two of them. Its squeaking that tight now.
Ironically, the economist are the best funded with surplus… go figure.

Barclay E MacDonald
July 23, 2014 11:26 pm

Peter Azlac says “… much of the flooding in the EU results from low soil permeability that increases river flow rates.”
How about some references for such a statement!

Non Nomen
July 23, 2014 11:42 pm

“If true, this would release even more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, where it would accelerate global warming.”
Where is the evidence? Carbon dioxide increase lags behind increasing temperature…

July 23, 2014 11:44 pm

Gee, after observing that the planetary climate remained stable within a few degrees over billions of years, scientists have made the startling discovery that the system is self regulating. Better break out the outstanding achievement medals.

July 23, 2014 11:46 pm

Well, gosh and golly! Some while back while Brian Cox’s nature/science documentaries were still showing on BBC TV, he showed on a meter that CO2 in a rain forest changed more over 24 hours than the annual global level. Have not seen another program since by Brian Cox. I wonder why? /sarc?

Dr. Paul Mackey
July 23, 2014 11:49 pm

Why do these people talk a bout “carbon” when they mean “carbon dioxide”? Thet are radically different things. Are they so scientifically illiterate they cannot accurately describe the compound they are measuring?

The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley
July 23, 2014 11:59 pm

Richard111, I can assure you that Brian Cox is a dyed-in-the-wall believer in man-made climate change. He has stated so.
Dr. Paul Mackey. I couldn’t agree more. It’s lazy, apart from being totally inaccurate. Carbon is carbon. Carbon dioxide is carbon dioxide.

The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley
July 24, 2014 12:00 am

Damn auto-correct! Should be ‘Dyed-in-the-wool’.

July 24, 2014 12:05 am

hopefully, i’ll be allowed to post a little humour from The Onion:
23 July: The Onion: Report: Climate Change Skeptics Could Reach Catastrophic Levels By 2020
WASHINGTON—In a worrying development that could have dire implications for the health of the planet, a report published Wednesday by the Environmental Protection Agency suggests that the number of climate change skeptics could reach catastrophic levels by the year 2020.
According to the agency’s findings, the rising quantity and concentration of individuals who willfully deny or downplay the ruinous impact of the ongoing climate crisis will no longer be manageable by the end of the decade, leading to disastrous consequences for global ecosystems that may well prove irreversible…
“In recent decades, we have observed an alarming increase in people who refuse to acknowledge the reality of global warming, which has exceeded even our worst-case projections,” said EPA administrator Gina McCarthy, confirming a worldwide spike in the number of deniers who are actively seeking to discredit the scientific consensus that human activity is responsible for climate change. “If this trend continues at its current rate, we will pass a critical threshold of unfounded skepticism within the next six years that will have devastating repercussions on every continent and in every ocean, threatening the entire global population.”….READ ON….

July 24, 2014 12:21 am

peter azlac says:
July 23, 2014 at 11:17 pm
But the IPCC already says minimum temperatures are rising. It’s already better than we thought.

Martin A
July 24, 2014 12:23 am

“carbon stored in the soil”
Like coal? Soot? Graphite? Diamonds?

July 24, 2014 1:28 am

“The team revealed that higher temperatures increased the amount of leaf litter falling onto the soil, as well as other underground sources of carbon such as roots.”
This sentence doesn’t make sense to me – I thought trees had only a fixed amount of leaves each year regardless of the temperature. And what are they saying in the last part of the sentence?

July 24, 2014 1:48 am

Thank you Pat.
I just could not stop laughing, marvelous

July 24, 2014 2:13 am

Notice how there is a team of on-site, on the ground researchers when it comes to studying the soil in Hawaii, but when it comes to studying the Arctic or Antarctic, it’s usually models and models and more models.
If they need help counting leaves in Hawaii, I’m available.

July 24, 2014 2:43 am

Exactly what increase in temperature was this soil respiration responding to?

bit chilly
July 24, 2014 3:33 am

houston really does have a problem http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.ca/2014/07/new-paper-unexpectedly-finds-diverging.html
there goes trenberth,s missing heat,back to space .

M Courtney
July 24, 2014 3:46 am

Their work is published in Nature Climate Change.

It has reached the point where that sentence is all that is required to devalue a paper.

Pete in Cumbria
July 24, 2014 3:55 am

Have these folks read Montgomery’s ‘Dirt’ book, I don’t think so somehow.
There are questions I ask people if ever I get into a craic about ‘weather’, ‘climate’ etc, the folks I’m related to, live among, my friends and neighbours. Mostly farming types.
Q1= My house was built in a (cow pasture) field in 1960 and a hedge was planted around it to keep the cows out of the garden. My question is.. when I stand next to the hedge in the garden, the hedge is 6 feet tall. If I go into the field and stand beside the hedge, at the same length along it, the hedge is 8 feet tall.
Q2= about 125 years ago, the guy who owned my farmland at the time, made a small fortune from quarrying clay and making bricks, roof tiles etc, and especially field drainage tiles. And sure enough, he spent a shed load of money and a not inconsiderable number of tiles ‘draining’ and improving the land. I obviously now am tasked with maintaining that underground drainage system.
Whenever I do investigate faults that occur, floods, wet patches etc, I find the tiles are buried under 2, 3 or sometimes even 4 feet of pure, solid red clay. With added cobbles rocks and small boulders. Nightmare stuff to work with even with a backhoe loader let alone using a spade or shovel.
My question is why, why was so much manual labour, time and materials spent burying these field drainage tiles under an impervious layer of clay. Apart from being almost impossible stuff to dig by hand, the drainage system had not a snowball’s chance in he11 of actually working as it was supposed to.
Q3= I simply ask them how nitrogen fertiliser works, what does it do, how does it *actually* make stuff grow. What goes on there?
Q4= Concerning the single track no-through-road asphalt roadway that comes to my farmstead. Why does it appear to have been built up above the level of the surrounding fields in some place, but not others. Why is it, for the most part, 18 inches to 2 feet above the level of the fields.
Invariably when I ask these questions, folks shrug their shoulders, suggest that that is always how its been and change the subject….

Kelvin Vaughan
July 24, 2014 3:59 am

Alex says:
July 23, 2014 at 11:14 pm
A runaway ‘treehouse’ effect
Don’t worry a lot of us are cutting down trees as fast as we can.

Pete in Cumbria
July 24, 2014 4:07 am

Someone upstream was looking for a link to soil, floods, trees etc etc.
Hers a good starting point..

July 24, 2014 5:21 am

Reblogged this on Centinel2012 and commented:
More proof that the “Believers” maybe believing in the wrong things; or they are simply corrupted by the grant money for the feds; I’m not sure which is worse.

July 24, 2014 5:45 am

@non nomen
There is no persuasive evidence or logic that Co2 rises before temperature does.
Quite the reverse in my opinion.
Shouldn’t that be the starting point?
Alarmists ignore it, someone having said that it does many decades ago, although he changed his mind.
Skeptics, seem to forget it and fight the warmists on their multiple battlefields of each day, sort of accepting it as true and engage on the current fronts.
I was a default accepting warmist until I looked at the arguement. Then I thought maybe a bit of temp rise because of co2.
Now I am convinced and believe that CO2 from manmade causes has NO EFFECT on warming of the planet notwithstanding the seemingly huge amount of co2 released from fossil fuels.

Non Nomen
Reply to  neillusion
July 24, 2014 12:52 pm

My citation
“If true, this would release even more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, where it would accelerate global warming.” was referring to the introduction of this article. I think that this introductory phrase is wrong and therefore requires objection -as long as it cannot be proven.
Carbon dioxide and temperature may -may- be interlaced. But, if they are, the leading force is still unknown. Some facts and sources/citations concerning that matter were made available by co2science.org.
CO2 as the driving force of the current, so called GW which is in stasis for over 17 years now(which is a hard-boiled ostrich’s egg in the face of the warm-mongers) does not seem probable to me. Hard evidence actually is hard to obtain… So we have some sort of consensus ***GGG***.

July 24, 2014 7:05 am

bit chilly says:
July 24, 2014 at 3:33 am
houston really does have a problem http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.ca/2014/07/new-paper-unexpectedly-finds-diverging.html
there goes trenberth,s missing heat,back to space
bit people seem to be ignoring that paper……I’ve tried to draw attention to it too
New paper unexpectedly finds diverging trends in global temperature & radiative imbalance from greenhouse gases
Unsettled science:
A new paper published in Geophysical Research Letters finds that the radiative imbalance from greenhouse gases at the top of the atmosphere has increased over the past 27 years while the rate of global warming has unexpectedly decreased or ‘paused’ over the past 15+ years.
This finding contradicts expectations from AGW theory of increased ‘heat trapping’ from increased greenhouse gases. However, the finding is consistent with radiosonde observations showing that outgoing longwave radiation to space from greenhouse gases has unexpectedly increased rather than decreased over the past 62 years, inconsistent with more heat being “trapped” in the mid-upper troposphere.

Steve Keohane
July 24, 2014 7:15 am

This enormous release of carbon is balanced by carbon coming into the soil system from falling leaves and other plant matter, as well as by the underground activities of plant roots.
‘Balanced’ is not the right term, ‘fueled by’ is much more appropriate.

July 24, 2014 7:28 am

Dr. Paul Mackey says:
July 23, 2014 at 11:49 pm
Why do these people talk a bout “carbon” when they mean “carbon dioxide”? That are radically different things. Are they so scientifically illiterate they cannot accurately describe the compound they are measuring?
Dr. Mackey and others,
There is a very good reason for this: in the atmosphere it is all CO2 (and a little methane). In the oceans it is only 1% CO2, 90% bicarbonates and 9% carbonates. In plants it is mainly cellulose, some starch, sugars and a lot of other molecules which contain carbon.
To make a balance, it is much easier to keep track of the carbon in whatever form it may be converted. In all cases that balance must be kept, as no carbon can be destroyed or created from nothing (except nuclear unstable 14C, but that is a very small amount).

July 24, 2014 7:40 am

Latitude says:
July 24, 2014 at 7:05 am
I have no direct access to that article, but it would be interesting to compare the imbalance in radiation to cloud cover and water vapor changes over the same periods. Something for Willis?

Jerry Henson
July 24, 2014 8:05 am

Understanding the way topsoil really works is necessary to understand the source of the “excess” CO2.
The quality of upland topsoil, in the presence of adequate moisture, is mostly dependent upon the amount of natural gas upwelling from below.The hydrocarbons are ingested by aerobic microbes which use the hydrogen for energy and excrete the oxodized carbon. This explains the release of “60 billion tons of carbon” into the atmosphere.
Soil without the resupply of energy (natural gas) looks like the red clay around Atlanta, Ga. where a layer of granite near the surface blocks most of the upwelling gas.

Gary Pearse
July 24, 2014 8:05 am

Increasing numbers of articles like this are evidence that sceptics have had a strong influence on the science and the journals that publish (or don’t publish) papers like this. The journals are cleansing themselves, hopefully scientific institutions will soon follow suit. It is no longer sudden death to your career to publish stuff like this. Anthony and a handful of others should get a Nobel Prize for science for this. Unfortunately Nobel has been co-opted for some time now and has virtually become useless for its original purpose. We will need a new independent, non political prize established.

Bruce Cobb
July 24, 2014 8:21 am

“Surprisingly, long-term warming had little effect on the overall storage of carbon in the tropical forest soil or the rate at which that carbon is processed into carbon dioxide.”
Funny how they are always “surprised” when despite their best efforts, their findings don’t go along with, or bolster Warmist beliefs. I believe the word they want is “disappointed”.

Rhoda R
July 24, 2014 1:08 pm

Another reason for conflating CO2 with C is that carbon, in most peoples’ minds, is coal — a dirty product with soot and other disgusting stuff being thrown out when it’s burned. CO2 is a clean, transparent gas – not scary at all. So if the the propagandists for the warmist crowds can equate the two in the minds of the populace they can better sell the story that CO2 is a pollutant.

July 24, 2014 11:34 pm

The amount we actually KNOW about carbon cycling in soils or in ANY habitat is dwarfed by what we do NOT know. We don’t even know how close to accurate this statement is “soil releases about 60 billion tons of carbon into the atmosphere each year” (it could be triple that estimate for all we know). The best estimates (pulled from their asses) indicate that the human contribution of global carbon production is less than 2-4% of the total annual global carbon production. Think about that … < 2% – 4%. So, the majority of collective climate scientific output of the last 3 decades has, instead of trying to better enumerate basic concepts like just what our role in the carbon cycle actually is, has wasted itself trying to show us all just how important that 2 to 4 percent is in altering global temperatures. It has attempted to perform this rope trick by wringing certainty from trash surface station data that has so many errors, adjustments, and limitations that separating the signal from the noise is a fools errand. But they manage to do so to 3 or 4 decimal places anyway !!
So, now we have a paper that basically says we do not understand soil carbon cycling, and their definition of long term sounds like a year or two rather than the decades or centuries required & long understood. DUH…
I have NEVER understood how climate science gets a free pass from basic sampling requirements employed by the rest of the field observation science. Climate science does not deserve a free pass just because replicated random samples are hard to do. Rigorous science is ALWAYS hard to do. But most of all, scientists need to understand their own and their data's limitations.

July 25, 2014 3:54 am

@non nomen

July 25, 2014 11:51 am

BioBob says:
July 24, 2014 at 11:34 pm
BioBob, please, some reading of the more recent literature may be of help…
The 60 GtC in and out is based on δ13C and O2 balances over the seasons. These two combined can give you the difference between in/out fluxes of the oceans and the biosphere. The above study tries to understand one of the aspects of short-term variability caused by temperature in vegetation. But that doesn’t change the longer term trend.
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/287/5462/2467.short (full article free after registration)
and more recent:
The height of the 2-4% human contribution to the carbon cycle is irrelevant. All what is relevant is that it is double the residual change (directly measured) in the atmosphere, which shows that the natural carbon cycle is a net sink for CO2, not a source, and that humans are responsible for almost all of the increase…

July 25, 2014 12:41 pm

Ferdinand Engelbeen:
At July 25, 2014 at 11:51 am you say to BioBob

The 60 GtC in and out is based on δ13C and O2 balances over the seasons. These two combined can give you the difference between in/out fluxes of the oceans and the biosphere.

Clearly, you have made some typographical errors so I write to help by correcting them for you. The following provides the corrections.
The 60 GtC in and out is based on δ13C and O2 balances over the seasons. It is claimed that by use of appropriate assumptions these two can be combined to give you the difference between in/out fluxes of the oceans and the biosphere. However, the effects on the indications of the assumptions are of similar magnitude to the magnitude of the indications.

July 25, 2014 12:46 pm

Ferdinand Engelbeen:
You know that the conclusion of your post at July 25, 2014 at 11:51 am is a non sequiter.
It does NOT follow that the emission of CO2 from human activities being larger than the rise in atmospheric CO2 indicates that emission of CO2 from human activities is the cause of the recent rise in atmospheric CO2.

July 25, 2014 1:41 pm

richardscourtney says:
July 25, 2014 at 12:46 pm
You know that the carbon mass balance must be kept at every moment, as no carbon can be destroyed or created. The natural sinks were larger than the natural sources for every year in the past 55 years:
Thus the net contribution from all natural sources and sinks together is negative…
The only way that the natural cycle could be the cause of the increase is if the natural cycle increased a three-fold together with the human emissions, for which is not the slightest indication. To the contrary: the throughput of CO2 seems to be rather constant in an increasing amount of CO2 in the atmosphere: the latest estimates of the residence time of CO2 are slightly longer than the earlier estimates.

July 25, 2014 2:30 pm

Ferdinand Engelbeen:
re your post at July 25, 2014 at 1:41 pm.
I cannot be bothered to refute your circular ‘mass balance’ argument yet again.
I do not know if the rise in atmospheric CO2 (measured at Mauna Loa since1958) has a natural cause, or an anthropogenic cause, or some combination of natural and anthropogenic causes.
But I do know that all circular arguments use assumptions to prove themselves. For example, if you assume – as you do – the carbon cycle is so stable that there would have been no change to the CO2 in the air without the anthropogenic emission then a mass balance indicates the rise is anthropogenic.

Janice Moore
July 25, 2014 8:23 pm

Well, well, well, Mr. Englebeen, we meet again. #(:))
Increases in net CO2 lag temperature increases by a quarter cycle.
This assertion is articulated powerfully and thoroughly
(in English after Deutsch intro.)
by Dr. Murry Salby — bwah, ha, ha, ha, haaaa, Englebeen 🙂
(just kidding, you’re a good sport)

Easily understood by non-scientists such as I with a replay or two of a few parts.
(And a salute of acknowledgment for inspiring this post to No Name (a.k.a. Non Nomen) at 11:42pm on 7/23.)
Yes, RKS (at 2:43am on 7/24) — “… what increase in temperature…,” indeed. One that happened quite awhile ago…. . Net CO2 will, if Dr. Salby is correct, and I think he is, start to level off and, then, after a quarter cycle, fall if the COOLING of the earth’s land surface temperatures continues (and there is no evidence that this cooling is going to abate any time soon).

Janice Moore
July 25, 2014 8:41 pm

Dear Moderator, have you any idea why the Murry Salby video did not turn into a “control window” in my post above at 8:23pm, this evening? It did EVERY time I posted it before… . Hm. Just wondering. I
Now, I’ll post another video to test whether the cause is that my video –> control window privileges have been revoked on WUWT.
Here goes!
[Nope. Recommend you try your next video link on the “Test” thread from the Main Page. 8<) .mod]

Janice Moore
July 25, 2014 8:44 pm

Here’s to you, Ferdinand Englebeen, the loyal opposition!
ANOTHER gas (“Classical Gas”) and an excellent justification for why humans should continue to emit CO2: Tommy Emmanuel ….

We can agree on that one, can we not?
Your smiling opponent,

Janice Moore
July 25, 2014 8:59 pm

Thank you, O Wise Moderator (and forgot about the test page — I’m out of practice around here…)
Thanks for all your work to make WUWT a GREAT PLACE to blog!
Hope all is well with you,
Janice the Intermittent Poster

July 26, 2014 4:39 am

Janice Moore says:
July 25, 2014 at 8:23 pm
Janice, nice to see you again…
But about Dr. Murray Salby: he is wrong on several counts.
First the “migration” of CO2 in ice cores which is simply not measurable small: according to him the real CO2 levels were twice the measured amounts for ice of 10,000 years old or 10 times higher for ice of 100,000 years old. That would mean that the “real” values for each interglacial 100 kyear back in time would be 10 times higher: 10 times for the first, 100 times for the second, 1000 times for the third,… 10 to the 8th power for the 8th interglacial back in time… Which simply is impossible.
Then the increase of CO2 following temperature: that is true for glacials and interglacials, for the MWP-LIA transition and for the short term seasonal and year by year variations. That is NOT true for the increase over the past 160 years: CO2 now is much higher than expected for the LIA to current warming. That should be maximum 8 ppmv, not the 110 ppmv which is measured…
But the increase in the atmosphere does follow human emissions:
even in periods of flat (current) or negative (1945-1975) temperature…

July 26, 2014 4:51 am

richardscourtney says:
July 25, 2014 at 2:30 pm
Richard, there is no circular reasoning in making a mass balance, as the two unknowns involved have no influence whatever on the mass balance: a net sink remains a net sink, whatever the height of the natural cycle. All we need to know is the difference at the end of the full cycle, which was negative over the past 55 years. No matter if in one year the cycle is 60 GtC in and 66 GtC out and the next year it is 150 GtC in and 152 GtC out…
One exception is if the total carbon circulation increased at the same rate as human emissions: then the sinks accommodate to the total influx and not – as is today the case – to mainly the human contribution.
Anyway 800,000 years of ice cores show that the CO2/temperature ratio was quite fixed at 8 ppmv/K and the last 55 years also show that the temperature influence is quite modest at 4-5 ppmv/K. Not the 110 ppmv/K if temperature was the driving force…

Janice Moore
July 26, 2014 11:11 am

Hi, Ferdinand (well, you call me Janice, so…. hope that’s okay!),
You say (at 4:39am today), “… about Dr. Murray Salby: he is wrong on several counts. … .”
Why, I’m so surprised — NOT #(:)).
We’ll just have to agree-to-disagree about Dr. Salby’s excellent work.
Keep on posting!

Janice Moore
July 26, 2014 11:15 am

@ Ferdinand E.
P.S. Should I take your silence on Tommy Emmanuel (and “Classical Gas” — posted by me at 8:44pm yesterday) as a polite way of DISAGREEING??!! Rats. I thought for SURE we could agree about that fine artist and beautiful music… . Oh, well.
An-tho-ny Watts is fine fellow! We can AGREE about THAT, no?

July 27, 2014 9:58 am

Janice Moore says:
July 26, 2014 at 11:15 am
Sorry Janice, while I can appreciate the skill of Tommy Emmanuel, I have a more classical taste for music: Beethoven, Berlioz, Tchaikovsky,…
But indeed I do admire the enormous amount of work by Anthony and co-moderators, so we do agree on that…

Jerry Henson
Reply to  Ferdinand Engelbeen
July 29, 2014 9:47 am

CO2 Lag: The Carbon Cycle
Carbon is neither created nor destroyed excepting a small amount in nuclear reactions.
The oceans remove CO2 from the atmosphere and at great depth deposit it on the ocean floor. The colder the water the more CO2 the oceans can absorb.
For carbon to return to the atmosphere the carbonaceous layers must be recycled. At great depth the layers are forced down by the layering process, tectonic plate and convection action, and are then converted in a chemical reaction to hydrocarbons, mostly methane. These hydrocarbons make their way back to the surface. As the hydrocarbon molecules rise toward the earth’s surface, depending upon the permeability of the rock layers they hit, and the size of the molecule, they are trapped beneath impermeable layers as in the Saudi Arabian oil fields or they rise through the porous layers as those in Kansas, in the form of natural gas.
In the Kansas soil, in the presence of adequate oxygen, water, and heat, most of the natural gas is oxidized by aerobic methanatropes, enriching the soil and putting CO2 back into the atmosphere.
The portion of natural gas, not oxidized because it is too cold or too wet, mostly methane passes into the atmosphere and after a suitable time is oxidized to CO2.
Heating of the earth’s land surface and oceans facilitates the exposure and rise of hydrocarbons and reduces the oceans ability to absorb CO2, causing the buildup of CO2 in the atmosphere and the lag of CO2 levels behind temperature increase.
When the earth’s land surface and oceans cool, the rise of hydrocarbons to the surface slows and the cool oceans absorb more CO2 reducing atmospheric levels.

Janice Moore
July 27, 2014 10:29 am

I, too, also love classical music…. Bach… Beethoven…. Tchaikovsky… Chopin… and for this lovely music, Pachelbel:
“Canon” — London Symphony Orchestra.

(… rock ROCKS! …. and jazz is FUN! …. and folk is sweet and lovely…. and some bel canto is so beautiful….)
And 3 cheers for An-thon-y!
Happy Sunday, Ferdinand!

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