# Questions on the rate of global carbon dioxide increase

Guest essay by Robert Balic

A summary of a problem with estimates of the average concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and questioning of how it is possible that the rate of increase correlates well with global temperature anomalies.

I saw an interesting plot in the comments of of WUWT a while ago. It was based on the work of Murray Salby who pointed out the strong correlation between the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere (NOAA ESRL CO2 at Mauna Loa) and the integral of mean global temperature anomalies. How well the CO2 levels correlate with various temperature anomalies can be seen in this plot of the derivative of CO2 levels with respect to time (rate of CO2 level increase) alongside some estimates of global temperature anomalies – HadSSTv3 SH (southern hemisphere sea-surface temperatures) and RSS (lower troposphere temperatures from satellite observations).

The first time that I saw this, I thought that what was meant by “derivative” was an estimate from differences between consecutive months but in ppm per year (as time is in years) so I was twelve times as confident that something was amiss as I should have been. Even after realizing that the results were in ppm per month, I thought that the results were still implausible. That changes in sea surface temperature would have an effect on CO2 levels is plausible but to correlate so well and then to be measured so precisely in order to be able to see the correlation did not seem possible.

In the above plot, the CO2 levels in ppm per month were scaled by 3 to compare with temperature anomalies. If I were to use ppm per year, then I would divide by 4 to do the same comparison iehey are not the same dimensions so the scaling is irrelevant. The data clearly needs to be scaled and also offset to fit each other well so by good correlation I am referring to the way they differ from a line of best fit after scaling to have the same slope.

I have put this out there in comments on blogs and received few replies. One that I need to mention is the claim that the derivative values are some sort of concoction and are so small that they are negligible, about 0.03% of CO2 levels. I don’t know why I need to point this out but an average of 0.125 ppm per month is the rate of change of CO2 estimated using the same method since even Newton was a boy and is equal to 90 ppm per 60 years. Its not negligible but there is the question of whether the uncertainty in measurements are too large to see fine trends over a period of a few years (and you should never multiply the quotient of two values of different dimensions by 100 and call it a percent).

Eyeballing the graph, it appears that the data needs to be very precise in order to see a correlation and a little bit of math makes things clearer. Rather than using the above derivative of smoothed data (12 month moving mean), I took the CO2 levels from woodfortrees.org and the difference between values 13 months apart. Essentially the same with the results being in ppm per year.

There is a good fit to the global temperature anomalies, especially RSS lower troposphere after 1990 (and to HadSSTv3SH before 1990) when the rate of change of CO2 levels is scaled by 0.26 and offset by -0.30. The mean absolute differences between the two is 0.13 and the standard deviation (SD) is 0.17 but varies from 0.08 to 0.2 for blocks of 1 year .

Using the lower value, this is consistent with an uncertainty in GTA of 0.1 K and in monthly CO2 levels as low as 0.34 ppm as calculated using

0.26^2 x 2ΔCO2^2 + ΔT^2 = (2 x 0.08)^2 where ΔCO2^2 and ΔT is the random error of CO2 levels and GTA which would be 2SD of repeat measurements.

This assumes that when differences are at a minimum that it is solely due to random error in the two measurements but its worth remembering that HadSSTv3NH differs much more than this from the rate of CO2 change so there are obviously other errors. Its also a stretch to assume perfect correlation of the real values, especially since its claimed that CO2 levels have increased due to human emissions and the latter have been at a steady rate for the last three years. There is also the question of why such a good correlation with SH sea-surface temperatures and not NH, and why should the correlation be so perfect when things like changes in ocean currents should have a large effect on how much is sequestered into the depths of the oceans.

So unlike I first thought, the precision didn’t need to be ridiculously good to see the correlation but this is still to good to be true.

## 827 thoughts on “Questions on the rate of global carbon dioxide increase”

1. M Courtney says:

Does it make a difference if you consider that Mauna Loa is slap bang in the middle of the biggest ocean on the planet?

If anywhere should show a correlation it’s there.

• “But how about gas from the volcano? It is true that volcanoes blow out CO2 from time to time and that this can interfere with the readings. Most of the time, though, the prevailing winds blow the volcanic gasses away from the observatory. But when the winds do sometimes blow from active vents towards the observatory, the influence from the volcano is obvious on the normally consistent records and any dubious readings can be easily spotted and edited out (Ryan, 1995).”

if one can believe that “any dubious readings can be easily spotted and edited out”

• I know Steve Ryan very well. He became well known for his sulfur dioxide research at Mauna Loa, and the presence of that gas suggests the presence of volcanic CO2. So, yes, they do remove that data as being spurious. The real question is does temperature correlate well with CO2? The answer is no.

• afonzarelli says:

“…CO2 measurements at other sites, with no possibility of contamination, corraborated that the rate of rise seen in the Mauna Loa record was global”

Charles Keeling

• afonzarelli says:

• Aphan says:

“From time to time”?? If CO2 is a well mixed gas, then they can’t just “subtract out” what Mauna Loa does when it vents “from time to time”. They have to consider what every other volcano, vent etc. on land or in the oceans produce “from time to time” as well as 24 hours a day, seven days a week as well. And they simply have NO IDEA how much that is.

2013 article at Live Science.com:

“In 1992, it was thought that volcanic degassing released something like 100 million tons of CO2 each year. Around the turn of the millennium, this figure was getting closer to 200. The most recent estimate, released this February, comes from a team led by Mike Burton, of the Italian National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology – and it’s just shy of 600 million tons. It caps a staggering trend: A six-fold increase in just two decades.
These inflating figures, I hasten to add, don’t mean that our planet is suddenly venting more CO2.
Humanity certainly is; but any changes to the volcanic background level would occur over generations, not years. The rise we’re seeing now, therefore, must have been there all along: As scientific progress is widening our perspective, the daunting outline of how little we really know about volcanoes is beginning to loom large.”

http://www.livescience.com/40451-volcanic-co2-levels-are-staggering.html

Until we can monitor and measure not only every land volcano, and every land vent, AND accurately map, monitor and measure the CO2 outgassing from every active submarine volcano and vent, it is scientifically impossible and completely idiotic to presume that any scientist could possibly know, or even accurately estimate, what (let alone IF) the NATURAL atmospheric CO2 cycle amounts to, much less if it is a steady, unchanging exchange upon which a “human contribution” can be measured. The entire contribution of human CO2 from emissions fits within the “estimated margin” of how much CO2 nature exchanges every year on it’s own several times and this is without even accurate measurements, let alone estimates, of how much CO2 is actually being vented by this planet thru volcanic activity.

• 2hotel9 says:

It has been my experience that no one on the Human Caused Globall Warmining band wagon wants to speak of volcanic out-gassing at all. Period. Full stop. And they go absolutely apoplectic at the mention of active volcanic vents under West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Its fun watching the flecks of spittle spew forth like magma!

• I’ll write another post on a comparison of different sites because a quick check shows large differences between ML and Cape Grim that drops by factor of 40 after smoothing.

• Aphan,

It doesn’t make much difference if you use all available data at Mauna Loa, or only the “cleaned” data. The difference over a year is less than 0.1 ppmv, only shows a nicer daily/monthly curve if you plot only the cleaned data.

They have a simple detection of volcanic vents intrusion in the mix: when they measure high variability (>0.25 ppmv, 1 sigma) for hourly averages of the 10-second snapshots then there is a high probability of volcanic CO2 mixing in. The opposite happens in the afternoon, when slightly depleted CO2 is coming in from the valeys with upwind conditions. Both are marked and not used for daily to yearly plots. But still available if you want to see the difference. Here the plots for Mauna Loa and the South Pole, where far less disturbances are present (but mind the scale!):

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/co2_mlo_spo_raw_select_2008.jpg

For the procedures to reject or include data in the averages, see:

Volcanic emissions in general are far too low to have much influence on global CO2 levels. Continuous measurements around mount Etna (Sicily, Italy) show about 1/200 of human emissions. You need 200 as very active volcanoes like mount Etna to reach what humans emit. Subsea volcano CO2 probably doesn’t reach the surface under the high static pressure and undersaturated CO2 levels in the deep oceans…

• Jaakko Kateenkorva says:

“Volcanic emissions in general are far too low to have much influence on global CO2 levels.”

How many active volcanos Earth has?

“Subsea volcano CO2 probably doesn’t reach the surface under the high static pressure and undersaturated CO2 levels in the deep oceans…”

Compared to human activities, ring of fire is nothing? Starts sounding a bit like the sun.

http://eqseis.geosc.psu.edu/~cammon/HTML/Classes/IntroQuakes/Notes/Images_specific/ocean_age.gif

• Greg Goodman says:

A quick read up about MLO observations will reveal the considerable care which is taken to monitor wind direction and ensure readings are not contaminated by the volcano’s output.

I looked at this several years ago. Some fitlering is required to remove the fuzz and see how the datasets compare.
https://climategrog.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/ddt_co2_sst.png
https://climategrog.wordpress.com/ddtco2_sst_15mlanc/

One can also take further derivatives and see the strong similarity :
https://climategrog.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/d2dt2_co2_ddt_sst2.png

I did not look at SH only, that would be worth doing in a similar way.

Globally the relationship is not 1:1 but is striking. What should be noticed is the offset: all this is happening on top of a d/dt(CO2) which was around 1.2 ppm/year in 1970 and has been a steady 2ppm/year since 2000.

• Jaakko,

Here the measurements around Mount Etna:
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v351/n6325/abs/351387a0.html

There are not that many volcanoes on earth as active as mount Etna is an deep magma volcanoes (Iceland, Hawaii) emit 10 times less.

Deep ocean volcanoes emit in enormous water pressure in undersaturated conditions of the waters for CO2. It seldom reaches the surface and mainly when the top gets near the surface. Or you may have found the origin of all ships lost in the Bermuda Triangle…

Further, most volcanoes have a 13C/12C ratio above the ratio found in the atmosphere, 13C/12C levels are firmly decreasing in the atmosphere, thanks to human emissions…

Last but not least, it would be a hell of a coincidence that all volcanoes on earth all get more active in lockstep with human emissions: a fourfold since 1959…

• Greg says:

Ferdi, there you go with this unscientific and poorly defined “lockstep” claim again. The fact that two variables are generally rising over time does not mean they are in “lockstep” . The variability : up down , or left-right-left shows CO2 is not in “lockstep” with temperature. It would be more accurate to say that dCO2 is in “lockstep” with temperature while there is an increase in the underlying CO2 level that may be attributable to human emissions.

• Greg,

The increase in the atmosphere is quite smooth, hardly any variability visible, slightly quadratic increasing over time in absolute lockstep with human emissions in the period of accurate measurements (and reasonable accurate human emissions inventories):

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_co2_acc_1960_cur.jpg

Thus any natural cause of the CO2 increase must mimic the observed CO2 increase in the atmosphere (and the opposite δ13C decrease in atmosphere and ocean surface) in exact the same way as human emissions did: slightly quadratic over time, a quadrupling since 1958, or you can’t have the same CO2 increase curve in the atmosphere.

Temperature obviously is not a good candidate: cooling 1958-1975, cooling 1997-2012, while CO2 goes smoothly up. Neither is there any sign that volcanic activity/releases quadrupled over the same period, after the Pinatubo it gets even very quiet. Neither is there any sign that the oceanic carbon cycle increased a fourfold in the same period, or the biosphere carbon cycle.

The problem with this article and many before it (Bart, Salby,…) is that one is overfocused on the +/- 1.5 ppmv noise around the trend, which indeed is temperature related, but has no connection whatever with the 90 ppmv trend since 1958…

• Ferdinand,

You appear to be relying on two questionable assumptions:

i) That the ice core record is an accurate reflection of short term CO2 variability in the atmosphere and

ii) That the organic content of the oceans has no effect on the isotope characteristc of CO2 emitted by the oceans.

• Stephen,

I was talking over the 1960-current period of accurate measurements, not the period before. But even so, the graph doesn’t change in any way if you add the ice core CO2, which includes an overlap of 20 years (1960-1980) with direct measurements at the South Pole:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_emiss_increase.jpg

1. Ice cores don’t reflect short term variability of CO2, they reflect CO2 variability averaged over the resolution period, which depends of the local snow accumulation rate of where the core is drilled. That gives a resolution of less than 10 years over the history of the past 150 years up to 560 years over the past 800,000 years.
The repeatability of the Law Dome records over the past 150 years is 1.2 ppmv (1 sigma), good enough to detect a one-year peak of 20 ppmv or a sustained change of 2 ppmv over 10 years. As the measurements since 1958 show, the maximum variability from temperature variability is +/- 1.5 ppmv leveling off to zero after 1-3 years.

2. The organic activity, mainly in the top layer of the oceans, is included in the total biosphere O2 and δ13C balances, as there is a fast exchange for O2 and CO2 between the ocean surface and the atmosphere with a half life time of less than a year…

• TimTheToolMan says:

Ferdinand writes

Subsea volcano CO2 probably doesn’t reach the surface under the high static pressure and undersaturated CO2 levels in the deep oceans…

It would eventually at areas of upwelling.

• “I took the CO2 levels from woodfortrees.org and the difference between values 13 months apart

I understand that a 13 month average is common, and I understand the reasoning. Still, I’d like to point out the downside. In series with specific annual cycles, it reintroduces the an annual effect into the smoothing process when you’re trying to minimize that type of effect.

First your moving average has 2 Jans, then 2 Febs, … , then 2 Decs, so you’re giving the repeating month double weight. If you still want to center on a specific month, just weight the first repeating month and the last repeating month at half value.

• TimTheToolMan ,

You are right if the upwelling stream has passed undersea volcanic vents with relative huge emissions. On average, the CO2 is absorbed in already 38,000 GtC of the deep oceans. Even all human emissions since 1850 are a mere 1% of that amount when these are ultimately mixed into the deep oceans…

The point is that it would be quite remarkable that all volcanoes of the world start to get more active at the same moment that humans start to emit increasing quantities of CO2…

• Isn’t there an active sea mount over the Hawain ‘hotspot’ on its way up from the abyss to become the next Hawaian Island? Hot high pressure CO2-rich water plume rising… 2+2= a bunch of non-Anthropogenic CO2 goosing the Mauna Loa record perhaps?

• afonzarelli says:

Global satellite data is a better fit with SH than NH SSTs (where they overlap from ’79 onwards)…

• george e. smith says:

When you have the CO2 abundance, being anything but well mixed from pole to pole, and any other way you want to go, and you are going to differentiate that function, and try to relate it to temperature anomalies for a Temperature function that has a total extreme global range (at any time) of as much as 150 deg. C, I suspect you might be able to show there is a Haydn Symphony in there also.

This is just a different level of numerical origami, but that is all that it is.

G

• Its not origami. Its the just the rate of change of what NOAA supplies for global levels. Don’t twist it from impossible to observe to nothing to worry about. Its there because its part of the calculations but done properly, there would be no correlation.

• Robert B says:

I’ll just elaborate here because I don’t know if some of the following comments are unicorns, deliberate misreading or unintentional.
Global temperature anomalies must have been an input for calculations of CO2 levels. Nothing wrong with local temperatures being used but the better fit of SH than NH is strange and done properly, there would be no correlation observed.
I’m not pointing out any physical reason for it but rather there is nothing that would have such a fine effect on global CO2 levels that wouldn’t be muffled by others.

• Thanks George. Sounds about right. Just to add: outside air CO2 content globally behaves similarly, except it varies between practically unmeasurable and zero. Confirmed by OCO-2 silence.

• Robert B: I suspect the better correlation with SH temperature anomaly than with NH temperature anomaly has to do with most of the world’s ocean being in the SH.

• Robert B says:

@DLK – The NH has the largest effect on the readings. Remember that its after 12 month smoothing or difference between the same month in consecutive years. The 7-9 ppm seasonal signal is due to the NH.

• george e. smith says:

Well Robert B you will just have to point out to me, just where in my post, I said …” nothing to worry about. “…
Because I can’t find that anywhere in my post.

I’m familiar with what NOAA USED to supply for global CO2; but as I have noted elsewhere, they seem to have disappeared that three dimensioned plot of about ten years of CO2 from pole to pole.

And I have no idea what NOAA supplies as to global Temperatures; or Temperature anomalies either.

Remember that anomalies are just difference functions; which is another name for differentiation, so when you take the derivative of anomalies, you are taking the second derivative of Temperature values; all of which amplifies the random noise something fierce.

But more importantly it is an algorithmic process for which there is no underlying physical theory or explanation, and that makes it the very essence of Origami.

So long as you simply keep on employing the same algorithm; no matter what the original raw data is, you can compare it to what you got the last time you did it, and eventually generate what looks like a history.

That’s exactly what GISSTemp is; except they keep changing 100 year old measurements to something lower than what they were 100 years ago when they were actually observed and measured.

But in the end; what you have is simply GISSTemp; which is entirely a mathematical algorithmic construct.

There isn’t any underlying physical world reality that it measures, and it certainly isn’t any global mean Temperature. After all Temperatures only go down to zero; there are no negative Temperatures.

They use different algorithms from those that HADCRUd uses, so naturally HADCRud and GISSTemp are different things; perhaps one is a jumping frog, and the other is a dancing crane; but both are plain origami.

G

• Robert B says:

I might have misunderstood George, but the CO2 levels aren’t a second derivative. It just seemed as if you were diverting from what I wanted to point out.

• @G
“numerical origami”..
Lovely turn of phrase!

• Robert Balic.

You are asking the right question, more or less.

My 2008 paper on this very subject predates Salby, Humlum et al and others.

It is time that climate scientists stopped arguing “by how much can the future cause the past?”

Regards, Allan 🙂

https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/01/24/apocalypse-cancelled-sorry-no-ticket-refunds/comment-page-1/#comment-2406538

[excerpts]

I have stated since January 2008 that:
“Atmospheric CO2 lags temperature by ~9 months in the modern data record and also by ~~800 years in the ice core record, on a longer time scale.”
{In my shorthand, ~ means approximately and ~~ means very approximately, or ~squared).

It is possible that the causative mechanisms for this “TemperatureLead-CO2Lag” relationship are largely similar or largely different, although I suspect that both physical processes (ocean solution/exsolution) and biological processes (photosynthesis/decay and other biological processes) play a greater or lesser role at different time scales.

All that really matters is that CO2 lags temperature at ALL measured times scales and does not lead it, which is what I understand the modern data records indicate on the multi-decadal time scale and the ice core records indicate on a much longer time scale.

This does NOT mean that temperature is the only (or even the primary) driver of increasing atmospheric CO2. Other drivers of CO2 could include deforestation, fossil fuel combustion, etc. but that does not matter for this analysis, because the ONLY signal that is apparent in the data is the LAG of CO2 after temperature.

It also does not mean that increasing atmospheric CO2 has no impact on global temperature; rather it means that this impact is quite small.

I conclude that temperature, at ALL measured time scales, drives CO2 much more than CO2 drives temperature.

Precedence studies are commonly employed in other fields, including science, technology and economics.

Does climate sensitivity to increasing atmospheric CO2 (“ECS” and similar parameters) actually exist in reality, and if so, how can we estimate it? The problem as I see it is that precedence analyses prove that CO2 LAGS temperature at all measured time scales*. Therefore, the impact of CO2 changes on Earth temperature (ECS) is LESS THAN the impact of temperature change on CO2 (ECO2S).

What we see in the modern data record is the Net Effect = (ECO2S minus ECS). I suspect that we have enough information to make a rational estimate to bound these numbers, and ECS will be very low. My guess is that ECS is so small as to be practically insignificant.

Regards, Allan

*References:

1. MacRae, 2008

3. Humlum et al, January 2013
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921818112001658

2. pochas94 says:

The correlation between two straight lines is always 1 or -1 (perfect) regardless of the slopes of the lines. When two quantities are going in the same direction there will always be an indicated correlation, whether there is a causal relationship or not. To be meaningful, the data must include all of the variability, and in the case of CO2 vs temperature, that would require thousands of years of data. That said, I believe there is such a relationship, when appropriate time lags are considered.

• george e. smith says:

The various routinely published ” anomalies ” gathered by sundry world wide organizations, are single exactly known numbers, at each time of publication.

In that sense, they qualify as INSTANTANEOUS samples, and are mathematically equivalent to an impulse function. And being sequentially “sampled” one at a time, they carry NO future trend information whatsoever.

It is impossible to tell from any length sequence of samples, whether the next one (to be obtained) tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, whatever, will be the same as the current one, or will be higher, or will be lower. So the next segment of the piece wise linear graph obtained from connecting the sampled dots, will have a totally unpredictable slope.

So your derivative function can be nothing but random noise.

Perhaps a real physical model of the whole earth climate physics, that makes sense would seem like a prerequisite, to wasting time and paper playing with the numbers to construct some apparent correlation.

G

• See - owe to Rich says:

George, Robert B:

I think the correlation is really quite simple. We know that CO2 follows temperature of the SH oceans, becuase of the yearly up-lesser down-bigger up pattern of the Mauna Loa CO2 measurements. We also know that CO2 levels are generally rising, at a fairly constant rate. When you differentiate the function, you remove that trend part, and so you remove the anthropogenic component, leaving the change-in-temperature component, which does indeed have a visible effect and reflects the oceans emitting and absorbing CO2 as they warm and cool.

Rich.

• Joe - The climate scientist says:

There is near perfect correlation of the last 30 or so years (as compared to the last 100 years, 200 years, last 1,000 years, etc)

Therefore it proves co2 is the primary driver of AGW. (do pay any mind to the lack of correlation in the prior 1,000 years, they are ot relevant)

• Joe-tell me you are being snarky….

• Bartemis says:

Wouldn’t be the case anyway, because the correlation is with the rate of change, not the absolute level.

• Bartemis says:

The equivalent of covering your eyes, and plugging your ears, and shouting “nah, nah, nah!”

• Javert Chip says:

Joe – The climate scientist

So, Joe, which temperature numbers does your correlation use – the real (unadjusted x times) number, or the temperatures that have been “homogenized” to respond to rising CO2?

Said another way: If the actual temperature numbers have been manipulated to better track rising CO2, THEN OF COURSE YOU’LL HAVE A HIGH CORRELATION.

• Alan McIntire says:

“Bartemis April 7, 2017 at 7:10 pm
Wouldn’t be the case anyway, because the correlation is with the rate of change, not the absolute level.

From this paper,
http://www.earth-syst-dynam.net/3/173/2012/esd-3-173-2012.pdf

“…However, we find that greenhouse gas forcings might have
a temporary effect on global temperature. This result is illustrated
in panel c of Fig. 3 in which the horizontal axis
measures the change in the estimated anthropogenic trend.
Panel c clearly shows that there is a positive relationship
between temperature and the change in the anthropogenic
anomaly once the warming effect of solar irradiance is taken
into consideration.”

If there’s a correlation between rate of change of CO2 and tempratures, apparently what is measured must be changes in the heat island effect caused by additional waste heat pumped into the system by
human economic development.

• NowyKopernik says:

Joe

I find it amazingly suspicious that the people proposing all these correlations don’t take into account the nice experiment that Mother Nature performs for us every year:

In the Northern Hemisphere the coming and going of the leaves on the temperate forests “force” the CO2 to follow the seasons in an annual sawtooth like oscillation. There is much less of this “sawtooth” signature presence in the Southern CO2 data due to the preponderance of Southern plant life being plankton in the Oceans, and even the preponderance of Southern forests being Tropical [and hence not strongly tied to seasons] rather than temperate.

Hypothesis: there should be a some kind of function acting on the CO2 Sawtooth visible in the Northern Hemisphere Temperature and a much diminished [if present at all] functional dependence on the Southern CO2 annual fluctuations

Nice thing is that compared to trends and strange corrections — the Sawtooth repeats annually so there is plenty of cycles to do nice modern frequency domain analysis

I’ve yet to see anyone perform such an analysis

3. More interesting would be a correlation analysis to determine which came first, the temperature change or the CO2 change and it does look like min/max temperature peaks are generally followed by min/max CO2 peaks, most likely as CO2 enters and leaves the oceans. Clearly, a small fraction of a ppm change in CO2 will not cause tenths of a degree in temperature change, but the other direction is quite plausible.

• DMA says:

See http://www.climate4you.com/ Ole Humlum’s site for in depth analysis of time relation between CO2 and Temp. He shows it lags at all intervals with some slight exceptions in El Nino years.

• eck says:

I vote for the chicken. Wait….what?…oh, never mind. (sarc)

• Bartemis says:

The temperature change is always first. This is not a plot of CO2 and temperature, but of CO2 rate of change and temperature. The rate of change leads the absolute level by 90 degrees of phase, temperature anomaly matches the rate of change, hence temperature anomaly is always leading absolute CO2 level.

• no, bartemis. humans are emitting co2 into the atmosphere, regardless of any temperature change.

just where do you think all the co2 we’re creating goes, anyway?

• Bartemis says:

“…that is an assumption you make without evidence.”

Hardly. The plot in the article shows the agreement between the temperature anomaly and the CO2 rate of change. The rate of change leads the absolute level by 90 degrees of phase, temperature anomaly matches the rate of change, hence temperature anomaly is always leading absolute CO2 level.

That is the evidence. Are you going to make me cut and paste it again?

“…humans are emitting co2 into the atmosphere, regardless of any temperature change.”

Yes, they are, yet CO2 level is temperature dependent, as is shown by the plot in the article. That is how we know that human emissions are not a significant contributor. The only way they could be is if the were varying with temperature.

“…just where do you think all the co2 we’re creating goes, anyway?”

Natural emissions are on the order of 30X human emissions. Where do you think all that goes? They necessarily go to the same places.

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

You ask the silly question so loved by AGW believers when you write

no, bartemis. humans are emitting co2 into the atmosphere, regardless of any temperature change.

just where do you think all the co2 we’re creating goes, anyway?

The total emission of CO2 to the air “goes” into the carbon cycle, and humans emissions are a trivially small addition that total emission.

The analysis by Salby (mentioned by Robert Balic in his above article) obtains the same finding as our earlier analysis;
(ref. Rorsch A, Courtney RS & Thoenes D, ‘The Interaction of Climate Change and the Carbon Dioxide Cycle’ E&E v16no2 (2005) )

At issue is what the atmospheric CO2 concentration would be if the CO2 emission from human emissions (i.e. the anthropogenic emission) were absent.

The atmospheric CO2 concentration would probably be the same if the CO2 emission from human emissions were absent. It would probably be the same. Our analyses show the short term sequestration processes can easily adapt to sequester the anthropogenic emission in a year. But, according to each of our six different models, the total emission of a year affects the equilibrium state of the entire carbon cycle system. Some processes of the system are very slow with rate constants of years and decades. Hence, the system takes decades to fully adjust to a new equilibrium. So, the atmospheric CO2 concentration slowly changes in response to any change in the equilibrium condition.

Importantly, each of our models demonstrates that the observed recent rise of atmospheric CO2 concentration may be solely a consequence of altered equilibrium of the carbon cycle system caused by, for example, the anthropogenic emission or may be solely, for example, a result of desorption from the oceans induced by the temperature rise that preceded it.

The most likely explanation for the continuing rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is adjustment towards the altered equilibrium of the carbon cycle system provided by the temperature rise in previous decades during the centuries of recovery from the Little Ice Age.

This slow rise in response to the changing equilibrium condition also provides an explanation of why the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere continued when in two subsequent years the flux into the atmosphere decreased (the years 1973-1974, 1987-1988, and 1998-1999).

Richard

• Bart,

As argued many times before:

T changes lead CO2 changes,
dT/dt changes lead dCO2/dt changes.
T changes don’t lead dCO2/dt changes.
That is because taking the derivative of CO2, you shift the CO2 variability with pi/2 back in time, but then you are comparing apples with oranges, as you have removed most of the slope of the CO2 changes, while retaining the slope of T.
The match of the variability still is real, but the “match”of the slopes is entirely spurious: there is no slope in dT/dt, as that is the real cause and effect of dCO2/dt.

• Richard,

There are many ways that a mathematical solution can match the real CO2 increase in the atmosphere, including the theory of Bart, but there is only one “theory” that matches all observations, that is human emissions as main cause of the increase, while temperature variability is the main cause of the variability around the trend, but only s small contributor to the increase: ~16 ppmv/K according to Henry’s law. That is all equilibrium change there is, as proven over the past 800,000 years ice core record and proven by the net sink capacity over the past near 60 years of accurate measurements: the net sink capacity of all natural sinks is directly proportional to the increase in CO2 pressure (pCO2) above the long term steady state, which is ~290 ppmv for the current average seawater temperature…

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

There are many, many ways to model the rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration which each match all observations to within the inherent errors of the data.

One model which fails to match all observations is your assertion that human emissions of CO2 overload the ability of the carbon cycle to sequester all of the human emissions. The many failures of the model you promote include;
a) the model requires 5-year data smoothing when there is no plausible physical mechanism which would require it,
b) the dynamics of the seasonal variation indicate that the ‘sinks’ can easily sequester all of the total CO2 emission each year (at issue is why they don’t),
c) the OCO-2 satellite observations disagree with your model,
…. n)

Richard

• AndyG55 says:

The extra CO2 goes into the carbon cycle, where it belongs.

In case people, especially the AGW cultists, didn’t know it….

ALL LIFE ON EARTH is dependant on the CARBON in that carbon cycle.

• “just where do you think all the co2 we’re creating goes, anyway?”

Based on the objectively verifiable evidence so far, it has asphyxiated climate scientists to the point of cerebral gang green.

• Richard,

Please, don’t start -again- your “arguments” which have no merit at all.

– Human emissions fit all observations. See:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/co2_origin.html

If you have any objection to these observations, then we can have a discussion.

Further,
– “My” model doesn’t need 5 years smoothing at all.
– Seasonal changes are temperature related, practically independent of pressure changes. The removal of any extra CO2 in the atmosphere is pressure related, practically independent of temperature. Different causes, different rates of change. Seasonal changes don’t say anything on what happens with any extra CO2 in the atmosphere above the temperature related steady state.
– I have no idea what the OCO-2 satellite has to do with “my” model, as it is probably not sharp enough to measure human activity within the huge natural fluxes. That doesn’t imply that human emissions are not the cause of the increase, as we have other means to measure that…

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

Richard,

Please, don’t start -again- your “arguments” which have no merit at all.

whenever you assert your silly psuedo-mass balance argument I will refute it with empirical evidence and logical argument. Such refutation is called science and I don’t agree that science has “no merit at all”.

In fact, I think science has much more merit than the irrational assertions you provide and bolster with processed and cherry-picked data much of which is irrelevant to whatever variable assertion you choose to claim from time to time.

Richard

• Bart,

Temperature changes indeed lead CO2 changes.
dT/dt changes lead dCO2/dt changes.
There is zero lead of T before dCO2/dt.

An integral of T anomaly has no physical meaning in itself has no connection with CO2 changes, as these are directly caused by T changes (at +/- 1.5 ppmv around a trend of 90 ppmv), not by the integral of T…

• Richard,

“empirical evidence” like:

the model requires 5-year data smoothing
Smoothing which I never, ever, used (BTW I am not responsible for what the IPCC does or doesn’t)

the dynamics of the seasonal variation indicate that the ‘sinks’ can easily sequester all of the total CO2 emission each year
They don’t “indicate” anything like that. They indicate that they can’t sequester all human emissions in the same year as emitted over every year of the past near 60 years.

the OCO-2 satellite observations disagree with your model
The OCO-2 sattelite has a (theoretical) resolution of about 0.1 ppmv. Human emissions are around 0.1 ppmv/day. Would be a hell of a job to find that back…

Further:

– Empirical evidence shows that the ocean surface increases in DIC and decreases in pH and the average pCO2 in the atmosphere is ~7 μatm above the average pCO2 of the oceans: the net CO2 flux is from the atmosphere into the oceans. Not reverse.

– Empirical evidence like the O2 measurements show that the biosphere as a whole is a net sink for CO2. The earth is greening, also seen in satellites measuring chlorophyl.

– With oceans and biosphere as net sinks, where does the increase of CO2 comes from? Volcanoes? Rock weathering? Just in time and quantity to mimick the increase of human emissions? And where goes human emissions? In space?

• Bartemis says:

Long term equilibration with the oceanic depths explains the temperature dependent rise. I gave a model of how it could come about here.

• “The OCO-2 sattelite has a (theoretical) resolution of about 0.1 ppmv. Human emissions are around 0.1 ppmv/day. Would be a hell of a job to find that back…”

You said it. Would be a hell of a job for measuring too. Fraction of micro enters nano in the metric system. Perhaps OCO-2 has already discovered giga-alarmism to match.

• Bart,

The deep oceans react much too slow to have any substantial influence on the ocean surface – atmosphere steady state within centuries.
I have sent two times a reaction to Dr. Ed in your link, but it wasn’t published…

• Jaakko,

There are other means to measure the human influence than satelites…

Take a pump that circulates 1,000 liter per minute over a fountain which drops its water back into the same bassin. We measure the waterflow to within +/- 1% or +/- 10 l/minute.
Someone opens the supply valve to add 1 l/minute to fill the bassin further and forgets it all together, While the additional flux is only 0.1% of the original cycle, not even detectable in the huge pumped flux, wouldn’t you think that the bassin will overflow after some time and that only the 1 l/minute extra is to blame?

Of course the natural cycle is not fixed as in this example, but the observed variability of the natural cycles is +/- half human emissions and the net sink rate is also only half human emissions…

4. Michael Nelson says:

You need to compare the actual CO2 volume ratio and not the dry CO2 volume ratio. All reported CO2 volume ratios are reported as dry numbers, i.e. all of the water is removed from the air before the tests are conducted. This creates a higher than actual CO2 concentration (volume ratio). They are significantly different near the equator. See http://file.scirp.org/pdf/IJG_2016102714282839.pdf
or Google “Oceans, Ice & Snow and CO2”

• jorgekafkazar says:

but isn’t the difference between dry basis CO2 % and wet basis CO2 % a lot less than the difference between dry CO2 forcing and wet CO2 forcing?

• co2 is almost always expressed on a molar basis — the number of molecules.

so co2=400 ppm means 400 out of every one million air molecules is a co2 molecule.

• people should write 400 ppmv, to be clear it’s on a molar basis. but not everyone does.

5. The CO2 increase/changes are lagged behind the temperature changes however. The increase year over year in CO2 is lagged about 7 months behind the temperature changes.

Warm El Niño years always have a higher CO2 increase and cooler La Nino/volcano years are always lower in terms of the increase, but there is a lag.

Obviously, the Ocean and Vegetation CO2 sinks vary based on the temperature. The warmer it is, the lower the rate at which they sink CO2. But one should also note that the net sinking rate continues to rise every year and is now about 5 times higher than it was 60 years ago for example. The higher the CO2, the more the Oceans and Vegetation absorb each year but there is slight change in the rate of increase based on the temperature.

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Bill Illis -April 7, 2017 at 12:38 pm

Obviously, the Ocean and Vegetation CO2 sinks vary based on the temperature. The warmer it is, the lower the rate at which they sink CO2.

You 1st statement is “correct” about said sink rates varying based on temperature.

But you are 50% wrong with your 2nd statement.

So “Yes”, the warmer the ocean water is …. the lower the ocean water CO2 sink rate is.

But on the contrary, the warmer the near-surface temperatures are ….. the higher the vegetation CO2 sink rate is.

And also on the contrary and the cause of your confusion, ….. is the fact that the warmer the near-surface temperatures are ….. the higher the microbial decomposition of dead biomass is ….. and thus the higher the outgassing of CO2 into the atmosphere is, …… which results in a false conclusion about vegetation sink rates.

• Just remember that I’m not claiming anything physical dominates. Its that any correlation with any event that is temp dependent will be muffled by others that will be affected by temp differently or independent ie human emissions.

• We should also note that human emissions continue to rise (although the last three years have slowed considerably and are close to flat as electricity production has shifted more to natural gas than coal. With coal having more CO2 emissions than the new combined cycle natural gas plants

But human emissions are still equivalent to about 5.0 ppm CO2. Yet the amount remaining in the air is only about 2.5 ppm each year (3.0 ppm in a warm El Niño year and 1.9 ppm in.a cold La Niña/volcano year.)

So plants oceans and soils are increasingly absorbing more of our emissions each year. The net increase is a combination of how fast human emissions are growing, how much the natural sinks are absorbing and the temperature of that particular year (impacting the natural sink rate.)

• richardscourtney says:

Bill Illis:

You say:

So plants oceans and soils are increasingly absorbing more of our emissions each year. The net increase is a combination of how fast human emissions are growing, how much the natural sinks are absorbing and the temperature of that particular year (impacting the natural sink rate.)

Yes, but all of those variables (and others) are adjusting towards altered equilibria which combine to form the altering equilibrium state of the carbon cycle that determines atmospheric CO2 concentration.

Please see my above post.

Richard

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Bill Illis – April 7, 2017 at 7:23 pm

But human emissions are still equivalent to about 5.0 ppm CO2.

Really now, …. is that a wild guess or the result of “fuzzy” math calculations, ….. and for what reason would anyone care what the total quantity of human CO2 emissions are equivalent to?

Do ya suppose that the total human emissions of CO2 are also equivalent to …… the total quantity of human feces emissions? WHOOPEEE, … now that shur would be important to know.

Bill Illis – April 7, 2017 at 7:23 pm

Yet the amount remaining in the air is only about 2.5 ppm each year (3.0 ppm in a warm El Niño year and 1.9 ppm in.a cold La Niña/volcano year.)

Bill Illis, nowhere within the 59 years of the a href=ftp://aftp.cmdl.noaa.gov/products/trends/co2/co2_mm_mlo.txt>Mauna Loa atmospheric CO2 ppm data can anyone see, observe or find a “human CO2 emission signature” that even remotely suggests, implies or defines their anthropogenic CO2 emission quantities.

Please cease and desist from employing the junk-science of “reverse mathematics” in the silly and/or futile attempt to interpolate humanity’s contribution to the calculated/measured ppm quantity of atmospheric CO2.

• Samuel,

You are wrong on your second statement: during an El Niño, both the oceans and tropical vegetation do sink less CO2, as El Niño changes the rain patterns over the Amazon and Indonesia, drying out land and thus less uptake and more release/fires. That is clearly visible in the opposite CO2 and δ13C levels and the higher oxygen use. Vegetation is the main cause, oceans are secondary.

• Ferdinand,

You say that vegetation is the main cause (of CO2 variations) and oceans are secondary.

Plankton, algae and other organisms are vegetation in the oceans. What do you say aboiut the potential contribution of such organisms to the observed 13C levels ?

• Bartemis says:

Bill Illis @ April 7, 2017 at 7:23 pm

“So plants oceans and soils are increasingly absorbing more of our emissions each year.”

That is a rationalization. A kluge to save a dying hypothesis. An epicycle.

An alternative hypothesis which doesn’t require a kluge is that sink response to anthropogenic CO2 is the same it’s always been – it takes out just about all of it. But, as temperatures stall, so too does the rate of change of atmospheric CO2.

Occam’s Razor slices the first one away.

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Ferdinand Engelbeen – April 8, 2017 at 9:59 am

You are wrong on your second statement:

Shur nuff, Ferdinand, …….. I also noticed that mistake.

Apparently I mis-keyed when entering that “hyper-link” format.

• Bart,

Why doesn’t your theory removes all available CO2 out of the atmosphere? There is no more reason for the natural cycle to remove specific human CO2 than all available natural CO2…

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Ferdinand Engelbeen – April 10, 2017 at 1:56 am

Bart,

There is no more reason for the natural cycle to remove specific human CO2 than all available natural CO2…

There shur is a reason, Ferdi, ……. and it’s the same reason that you, Ferdinand, use for validating the quantity of CO2 that humans emit into the air each year by burning fossil fuels …… and for validating the quantity of human emitted CO2 that remains in the atmosphere as a residual of each year’s emissions …… and for validating the dozens or hundreds of years that thar human emitted CO2 stays up there floating around in the atmosphere.

Ferdinand, you musta dun forgot about that isotope of CO2 that humans are responsible for emitting that contains an H-pyron in its nucleus, …… thus permitting you and your like-believers to distinguish it from the naturally occurring CO2 molecules.

• Bartemis says:

Ferdinand Engelbeen @ April 10, 2017 at 1:56 am

“There is no more reason for the natural cycle to remove specific human CO2 than all available natural CO2…”

You misapprehend. It removes all but a slight portion of both. The same proportion, as all inputs must be treated on an equal basis.

It is because the natural input is so much larger than the anthropogenic input that the residual remainder is almost entirely due to natural inputs.

• Bart,

A 30% increase in the atmosphere (whatever the cause) has hardly any influence on the amount of CO2 removed by the largest cycles in nature: the seasonal cycles. Thus the seasonal cycle is largely indifferent for a CO2 pressure increase in the atmosphere.
Human (and volcanic) emissions increase the pressure in the atmosphere, but are apparently not removed by the largest cycles in nature, they are removed by processes influenced by pressure, which are much slower in removal rate than temperature induced processes.

Different processes at work…

• jorgekafkazar says:

‘Lag’ is an active verb, Bill, in this context. I’ve only seen ‘lag’ as a passive verb when talking about insulation. “The pipe is lagged with 3″ of calsil.”

• Bill
Do you have a chart to provide for the claim in the first paragraph. Where is the CO2 data from and where is the temperature from?

6. “Rather than using the above derivative of smoothed data (12 month moving mean), I took the CO2 levels from woodfortrees.org and the difference between values 13 months apart. Essentially the same with the results being in ppm per year.”
I don’t see what your point overall is here. But arithmetically, the 12 month moving mean of differences is 1/12 the difference between values 12 months apart. So that correspondence isn’t surprising.

7. NZ Willy says:

I see no such variations in the CO2 curve from Mauna Loa — pretty much a Keeling curve since the 1960’s — so I don’t see a valid connection. Maybe the input data (of this article) was contaminated with some temperature-related pre-processing.

• Not by me. Since its been discussed before, I’m assuming that woodfortrees has reported the results from NOAA correctly.

• Bartemis says:

This is not a CO2 curve, it is a CO2 rate of change curve.

• Thanks, I didn’t spot that he wasn’t referring to the rate.

8. Moa says:

For those that haven’t seen Professor Salby’s talks, here are some:

If you struggle to follow the maths you may wish to see the earlier videos to get an overall picture.

Professor Salby was unceremoniously fired from his university in Australia, ostensibly for some dispute with the university bureaucrats. We can support him by buying his book, as Salby literally wrote the (graduate-level) textbook “Physics of the Atmosphere and Climate”
https://www.amazon.com/Physics-Atmosphere-published-Cambridge-University/dp/B00E28A3S0/

• what institution is murray salby at these days?

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345
:
Who payed you to ask that question?

Please note that my question addresses the fact that your question is an ad hominem which says nothing about the correctness of Salby’s analysis.

Richard

• richardscourtney says:

Moa:

Salby’s findings concur with our earlier findings
(ref. Rorsch A, Courtney RS & Thoenes D, ‘The Interaction of Climate Change and the Carbon Dioxide Cycle’ E&E v16no2 (2005) )

A video of me presenting our earlier findings at Heartland 1 can be seen at
Unfortunately, the video does not show the illustrations I was explaining.

The audience’s appreciation of our findings is shown e.g. by their bursting into spontaneous applause before I had finished the presentation.

Richard

• Moa,

I was in London a few years ago where he had his speech in the Parliament buidling. Unfortunately there was little time to discuss several points of disagreement and he clearly avoided direct discussions. Several of his points are controversial even impossible: levels of CO2 in ice cores were far higher at the peaks, according to him, but that implies much lower levels during glacial periods, effectively killing all life on earth.
Further, the integration of temperature which is non-physical, to obtain CO2 levels without any mention of human emissions,…

Too many questions, never discussed out on any blog or publication…

That doesn’t make his firing at his university any more warranted, but I have my doubts about what he said on the topic of the CO2 increase, even if his book on “Physics of the Atmosphere and Climate” may be superb…

• Bartemis says:

What is a-physical is your assumption that the equilibrium dynamics for natural CO2 are decoupled from the treatment of anthropogenic CO2.

• Bart,

They are decoupled as most natural processes are temperature driven and thatis the cause of the short (~5 years) resindence time for any individual CO2 molecule in the atmosphere.
Any removal of an extra CO2 level above steady state in the atmosphere is pressure driven and has an observed e-fold decay rate of ~51 years. Or a half life time of ~35 years.

• Bartemis says:

Gibberish. You must treat inputs of the same substance on an equal footing. You are engaging in pseudo-science.

• Bart,

Natural emissions and human emissions are treated the same, if you accept that temperature changes and pressure changes have different influences on different processes.
Your theory treats all processes as one process that only responds to temperature. That has zero connection with real life processes in nature as in nature lots of different processes are at work, some mainly influenced by temperature, others by pressure and most a mix of both.
The largest CO2 fluxes are seasonal and mainly temperature driven. These are hardly influenced by 30% more CO2 in the atmosphere, whatever the source.

9. Steven Mosher says:

“So unlike I first thought, the precision didn’t need to be ridiculously good to see the correlation but this is still to good to be true.”
Otherwise known as the argument from incredulity .
Congratulations, if they served up Nobel awards for fallacies, you’d be in the running to win one.

• charles nelson says:

No ‘ifs’ about it. They gave Barak Obama a Nobel ‘Peace’ prize…so they already have one for ‘fallacies’.

• So Steven, why do you think it is in the data? Fit a curve to the CO2 levels and add half a ppm of noise to it and repeat what was done. Would you see a correlation?
Global temperature anomalies were an input into calculations of CO2 levels is what I showed. I can see why local temperatures would be part of the calculations but not global anomalies, but neither should show a correlation with the result if done properly.

10. So with rising ocean temperature the rate of absorption of CO2 by the oceans decreases, but the higher the CO2, the more the Oceans absorb each year? Perhaps I am confused by rates and amounts, but I am tempted to try applying Boolean algebra to it.

• JPaul,

Indeed it is confusing…
Points to take into consideration:

– Temperature is the main driver of seasonal changes, where oceans and vegetation react in opposite direction. (NH) vegetation wins the battle:
~5 ppmv/K global change, CO2 changes and δ13C changes in opposite direction (=vegetation uptake/release), CO2 drops with summer temperatures.

– Temperature is the main driver of year-by-year variability, where oceans and vegetation react in the same direction. Again (tropical) vegetation wins the battle:
~4-5 ppmv/K global change lasting 1-3 years and then zeroes out. CO2 changes and δ13C changes in opposite direction, CO2 rises with global temperatures.

– Temperature is the main driver for the very long term CO2 changes, where oceans and vegetation react in opposite direction. The (deep) oceans win the battle:
~16 ppmv/K, CO2 changes and δ13C changes in opposite direction, CO2 rises with global temperatures.

– Pressure differences are the main driver for the removal of any extra CO2 (whatever the source) above the temperature driven dynamic equilibrium between oceans (and vegetation) and CO2 in the atmosphere.
The current pCO2 is ~110 ppmv (~110 μatm) above the long-term equilibrium (“steady state”) of ~290 ppmv for the current average ocean surface temperature. That pushes more CO2 into the oceans (and vegetation).
Temperature has not much influence on that, as higher ocean surface temperatures increase the ocean pCO2 with ~16 μatm/K, while the atmosphere is at 400 ppmv.
For 1 K temperature increase of the ocean surface the pCO2 difference with the atmosphere drops from 110 μatm to 94 μatm, or a change of ~15%. With only 8 years of human emissions (for what remains in the atmosphere as mass), the drop in sink rate by higher temperatures is overruled…

• Bartemis says:

These are all merely assertions. Essentially random thoughts of how Ferdinand and others think things should be. Evidence for them is virtually nonexistent.

• Bart,

I get -finally- tired of your evidence free reactions. You haven’t given any straight answer why “my” (and other’s) “random” thoughts are not backed up by observations.

You don’t accept any evidence at all from any observation, if it does refute your “temperature explains all” curve fitting, which violates every single observation in the field.

Take the “horrible stupid” mass balance argument. That refutes your “natural cause” narrative, so it must be horrible stupid.
The only possibility that it doesn’t refute your natural cause argument is if the natural carbon cycles increased at least a fourfold since 1958, like human emissions and the increase in the atmosphere (and thus the net sinks) did. There is zero evidence for such an increase in natural cycles, just the opposite…

Moreover, as the total human emissions increased over time, but the increase in the atmosphere is only half that amount, the net total sinks increased also over time in the same period that overall temperature increased.
If temperature is the cause of the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere, how then is it possible that at the same time the sinks increased and where and why did they increase?

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_co2_acc_sinks_1960_cur.jpg

• Sorry, copy/paste needs more attention:

For the very long time changes (glacial – interglacial, MWP-LIA,…) the part:

CO2 changes and δ13C changes in opposite direction

must be

CO2 changes and δ13C changes in the same direction as the oceans have a higher δ13C level than the atmosphere…

• AndyG55 says:

Ferd, nobody here gives a STUFF where extra atmospheric CO2 comes from..

You are arguing like a mad hatter…

Just so long as it keeps INCREASING.

If humans happen to be a major driver, then all the better, because China, India, and other developing nations, will continue to use this cheapest and most environmentally beneficial source of energy for MANY, MANY years to come.

• Andy,

I agree that we need more CO2 in the atmosphere, but too many sceptics are giving a bad name to all sceptics by using arguments which are completely wrong, thus making valid arguments worthless. That is why I am reacting again and again on such arguments…

• Bartemis says:

“You don’t accept any evidence at all from any observation…”

I reject any interpretation of an observation as established truth until it is verified and corroborated. That is the scientific method. I will not compromise it.

“Take the “horrible stupid” mass balance argument. That refutes your “natural cause” narrative, so it must be horrible stupid.”

No, the pseudo-mass balance argument is simply stupid. It is the perspective of one who has no familiarity with the evolution of a dynamic system.

“If temperature is the cause of the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere, how then is it possible that at the same time the sinks increased and where and why did they increase?”

Because in a dynamic system, the sinks respond to the forcing. No matter the source of the rise, the sinks will respond by expanding their capacity. They will respond to all forcing, not just a portion of it – inputs of the same substance must be treated on an equal basis, and in the same proportion.

• Bart,

They will respond to all forcing, not just a portion of it – inputs of the same substance must be treated on an equal basis, and in the same proportion.

Yes, if your theory is right: human emissions increased a fourfold since 1958 and so did the increase in the atmosphere and so did the net sink rate, As a consequence of equal treatment (by the same process) that means that the natural inputs MUST have increased a fourfold since 1958. For which you haven’t delivered one shred of evidence… To the contrary: there is evidence of a decrease in residence time, thus a rather stable throughput in an increasing amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. That completely refutes (again) your hypothesis…

11. Philo says:

If I follow what you have done correctly you got a running average, adjusted the y axes on the different measures to the same scale(graph height), and adjusted the zero offset to make differences more apparent.
Adjusting the span of the Y axis in this case(assuming similar X intervals) will more or less automatically give both graphs a very similar slope. The major differences will only be in how much they may the curve differently or random differences in peaks and valleys. And, since they have different units, it’s a meaningless graph anyway. Comparing feet to feet/second doesn’t mean anything.

• afonzarelli says:

You can “curve fit” to get the exact same slope. What you can’t do (by curve fitting) is make the interannual variability AND the long term trend features match. There has to be a reason for that…

• Bartemis says:

Robert B –

Yes, it is a good fit for 59 years, since MLO started.

Ferdinand –

“If both amplitude and slopes match, that is pure coincidence…”

It would be one hell of a coincidence. The odds are vanishingly small.

“Over half of the time the slopes are even opposite to each other, that is masked by the difference in endpoints…”

Nonsense. This is based on your cherry picking short intervals. It is fitting trends to noise.

• Fonzie and Bart,

Either the amplitudes don’t match or the slopes don’t match

The appearance may be good for a wide range of factors, but if you plot both trend lines you can see the difference. That is because variability and trend are caused by different processes, independent of each other.
Near all variability is caused by temperature variability, that is proven. The slope may be influenced by temperature too, but there is not the slightest reason that it should have the same conversion factor from temperature to CO2 levels.

Moreover, it is proven that most of the variability is the reaction of (tropical) vegetation to temperature fluctuations (ENSO, Pinatubo), while the total biosphere is a net, growing sink for CO2, as proven by the oxygen balance…

• Fonzie and Bart,

Either the amplitudes don’t match or the slopes don’t match

The appearance may be good for a wide range of factors, but if you plot both trend lines you can see the difference. That is because variability and trend are caused by different processes, independent of each other.
Near all variability is caused by temperature variability, that is proven. The slope may be influenced by temperature too, but there is not the slightest reason that it should have the same conversion factor from temperature to CO2 levels.

Moreover, it is proven that most of the variability is the reaction of (tropical) vegetation to temperature fluctuations (ENSO, Pinatubo), while the total biosphere is a net, growing sink for CO2, as proven by the oxygen balance…

• Ferdinand
now you bring in the oxygen balance….
yet we all know that we cannot possibly measure oxygen in the atmosphere to the accuracy required to even show the increase in CO2 that is alleged to be caused by human activity…

Go home, Ferdinand,

and if you live in the Benelux, I am happy to include you on my list of people to meet,
during my visit to Europe in August, like I was willing to meet bindidon, but clearly he was not interested in having a meeting with me viz-a-viz…

• now you bring in the oxygen balance
yet we all know that you cannot measure O2 to the accuracy required to even prove that the increase in CO2 is real…

• Henryp,

In August we are normally at home, thus have a nice visit to Europe and you are welcome to Antwerp, where I live in the neighborhood, with many buildings of the 12th-16th century in the centre and a railway central station that is declared one of the most beautiful (top 5) railway stations in the world…
See my email address on my website to get in contact…

• I’m getting to tired to keep this up, so last one for now.
If you integrate HadSSTv2SH after offsetting to start at 0, scale by 0.26 and then offset to start at 310, you get a good fit. Do it with HadSSTv3NH or v2SH and its a poorer fit.
I’m not pointing to physical reasons for it. I’m pointing to poor calculations.

• afonzarelly,

If both amplitude and slopes match, that is pure coincidence, as there is zero connection between the variability and the slopes: these are caused by different processes. In general the “match” is not that nice: either the slopes differ or the amplitudes differ. Over half of the time the slopes are even opposite to each other, that is masked by the difference in endpoints…

• Bartemis says:

“If both amplitude and slopes match, that is pure coincidence…”

That is one hell of a coincidence.

“…as there is zero connection between the variability and the slopes: these are caused by different processes.”

Assertion. Begging the question.

“In general the “match” is not that nice…”

The match is exceptional. About as good as could be hoped with stochastic data. The SNR is obviously very high.

“Over half of the time the slopes are even opposite to each other, that is masked by the difference in endpoints…”

Nonsense. This is based on least squares fitting of short intervals, i.e., trending noise. That is not a valid analytical technique.

12. Mike Jonas says:

Frank Lansner observed this remarkable correlation many years ago. He used the 12-month CO2 difference. I would say that you are seeing Henry’s Law in operation, but others may be able to provide more detailed analysis. As Bill Illis says, CO2 lags temperature, so it’s temperature in the driving seat.

• R. Shearer says:

Yes, in analytical chemistry, it’s analogous to headspace analysis, which is derived from Henry’s law. CO2 partitions between the gas phase atmosphere and the liquid phase oceans and partitions between the two phases, the distribution coefficient being dependent largely on ocean temperature. On short time scales, one should expect good correlation as is observed.

• Mike,

According to Henry’s law, the change in temperature gives a change in CO2 equilibrium between the ocean surface and the atmosphere of ~16 ppmv/K. That would be ~290 ppmv for the current average ocean surfae temperature. We are at ~400 ppmv now, thus the main flux is from the atmosphere into the oceans, as is observed at several stations taking repeated ocean water samples.
Thus temperature variability causes the variability in CO2 uptake rate, but is not responsible for the bulk of the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere, neither of the slope in the derivative…

• On planetary scale there are other variables than outside air/water concentrations and temperature alone. That’s why I don’t think Earth systems can be explained with Henry’s law.

• Bartemis says:

Henry’s Law acts on the interface between the atmospheric and the oceans at the surface. Long term equilibration with the ocean depths takes much longer, on the order of centuries if not millennia. That, I believe, is what produces the derivative signature, as I describe here.

• Bart,

Henry’s law did work over the past 800,000 years, incuding the total overturn of the deep oceans: 16 ppmv/K that is all…
The variability of the derivatives is much too fast to have anything to do with the deep ocean overturning, that is pure correlated with the surface temperature and moreover mostly the reaction of (tropical) vegetation on short living temperature (and drought) changes.

13. Retired Engineer John says:

Your curves are interesting, but I suspect that the relationship isn’t that simple. One factor, the log curve relationship of carbon dioxide to temperature, should be present, but I don’t see it. All but 2 spectral lines in the carbon dioxide spectrum are saturated at 400ppm and the total curve is approaching a limit. Some say that line spreading will occur ;however, even though that spreading occurs in the solar spectrum and stars, I have not seen where a credible mechanism has been identified for the Earth’s atmosphere. There must be some type of feedback in the system. Also note that the Earth’s temperature has been very constant for 15-16 years while carbon dioxide has been increasing.

• george e. smith says:

The reason YOU don’t see the log curve relationship, is that there simply isn’t one.

Neither experimentally nor theoretically is there any log curve relationship between CO2 and global Temperature anomalies.

Sometimes CO2 and Temperature anomalies go in the same direction together, and sometimes they go in opposite directions, and there are no logs of negative numbers.

The Beer’s or Beer-Lambert Law, apply only to the linear propagation through a NON-SCATTERING medium, so the simple logarithmic attenuation formula does not apply to transmission through the atmosphere, where absorption results in eventual emission of energy in a totally random direction, relative to the incident beam.

G

• Retired Engineer John says:

I recall that an IPCC report stated that the effect of carbon dioxide was logarithmic. The ability of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to function as a greenhouse gas is saturated at some point.

• I’m not pointing to a physical relationship. As others have pointed out, plots similar to shown above have been around for a while. I was pointing out how well CO2 levels need to be measured so its not too noisey to see it and then making the point that there is nothing physical that could correlate so well that half ppm error wouldn’t obscure it.

• RE John The above is the derivative of CO2 levels. You can also use the integral (sum of the anomalies) firstly offsetting to start at 0, scaling by 0.26 after summing and then offsetting by 310, and that’s a good fit to CO2 levels.
Because the anomalies are close to a linear increase, the integral is close to a second order polynomial and the log of the integral of the anomalies is not far off being directly proportional to the anomalies.

• Robert,

That is the whole point: total human emissions indeed increased with a slight quadratic function over time, as year by year emissions were increasing near linear. So did the increase in the atmosphere and the difference: the net sink rate.

Temperature increased more or less linear and thus – per Henry’s law – can give only a more or less linear slope in CO2 level at about 16 ppmv/K, as is seen in the near linear increase over glacial – interglacial intervals.

There is no reason to integrate temperature: that is a non-physical entity, as there is no physical process that gives a continuous fixed flux of CO2 into the atmosphere for a fixed temperature offset. Any such flux would be completely offset by the increased CO2 pressure in the atmosphere, which pushes more CO2 in the oceans and vegetation…

• Bartemis says:

“There is no reason to integrate temperature: that is a non-physical entity, as there is no physical process that gives a continuous fixed flux of CO2 into the atmosphere for a fixed temperature offset.”

There is, and it is a real physical process. I describe it here.

• “There is no reason to integrate temperature: that is a non-physical entity,”
Agree but someone did it.

• Bartemis says:

Dismissing what you see in the data as a non-physical entity is not science. It is imposing one’s own preconception. The proper response is not “that cannot be”, but “how can that be?”

As it happens, an integral-like response is perfectly natural over short timelines in systems that act over long timelines.

• Bart,

there is no physical process that gives a continuous fixed flux of CO2 into the atmosphere for a fixed temperature offset. Any such flux would be completely offset by the increased CO2 pressure in the atmosphere

16 ppmv/K is sufficient to reduce the net influx to zero, as seen in ice cores over 800,000 years and as predicted by Henry’s law…

14. I have found the same correlation between the tropical ocean temperature and the CO2 concentration. In Fig. 1 is this correlation starting from the year 1950. There is one year delay between the ocean temperature and the atmospheric CO2 concentration as found by Humlum et al. in 2013. The physical explanation is pretty simple. The cold sea waters of the high latitudes absorb the CO2 from the atmosphere and the warmer tropical oceans dissolve CO2 back into the atmosphere.

I have developed a model for the recycling of CO2 between the atmosphere – the ocean and the atmosphere – the biosphere. By this model, I have calculated the net yearly CO2 flux increase in the atmosphere. It is depicted in Fig. 2. The correlation between the observed and the calculated CO2 flux is 0.81 if the Pinatubo eruption is eliminated. Strange enough, when the Pinatubo eruption reduced the temperature, it also caused the sun light to be more diffused – i.e. the light came from different directions and thus the leaves of plants could get more light even though its absolute flux value was smaller. As a result, this caused the decrease in the atmospheric CO2 concentration because of higher photosynthesis rate.

Since 1956 the yearly human emissions into the atmosphere have stayed in the atmosphere about 55 % and the rest has been up taken by the ocean and by the biosphere. Before 1956 the CO2 amount increase in the atmosphere was more than the yearly human emissions. Because of the recycling phenomenon the anthropogenic CO2 portion in the atmosphere is now only 8 %.

https://static.wixstatic.com/media/c266e2_7f983fb1c1e443ca9cd5a41efd9721a8~mv2.jpg
Figure 1. The tropical ocean temperature and the CO2 flux into the atmosphere

https://static.wixstatic.com/media/c266e2_72af35cb72b64ce384af1839ebecd66d~mv2.jpg
Figure 2. The measured and calculated CO2 fluxes into the atmosphere

• One more comment about my model. The basic physical connection between the atmospheric CO2 and the ocean CO2 is through Henry’s law, because it depends on the atmospheric CO2 concentration as well on the ocean temperature. Otherwise the model includes 26 equations. The correlation of this model is not causation, it is only the measure of the correlation showing that it is not perfect but it is pretty good. In Fig. 1 there is only correlation without any physical explanation but the in Fig. 2 , the calculated CO2 flux is based on the physical connections. The CO2 flux change means directly same as CO2 concentration change.

• richardscourtney says:

aveollila:

You say (I have added emphasis)

One more comment about my model. The basic physical connection between the atmospheric CO2 and the ocean CO2 is through Henry’s law, because it depends on the atmospheric CO2 concentration as well on the ocean temperature. Otherwise the model includes 26 equations.

John von Neumann said,

With four parameters you can fit an elephant to a curve, with five you can make him wiggle his trunk.

Richard

• richardscourtney. You did not understood my statement. These equations describe physical relationships without tuning or fitting anything.

15. Frank says:

Robert: You should be aware that GMST (not the temperature ANOMALY) rises 3.5 K every year during summer in the NH. So when you are plotting at the change in monthly temperature anomalies, you aren’t looking at the true physical temperature that makes CO2 less soluble in water. Temperature anomalies are for climate change.

The mixed layer of the ocean emits a minor amount of CO2 when it warms and takes it back up when it cools. If you look at the 97/98 El Nino and the following La Nina, you will see that the year-to-year rise in CO2 was 3 ppm during the El Nino and 1 ppm during the following La Nina. Every other year around that time, the increase is close to 2 ppm. In other words, the 0.3 K of warming in SST during this El Nino released about 1 ppm, that was reabsorbed during the following La Nina. Extrapolating, the 1 K temperature rising the the 20th century, would have released about 3 ppm of CO2 (and possibly a little more from cold water slowly upwelling from the deep ocean). If you look at CO2 in ice cores during the LIA and MWP, the change is near 10 ppm and the temperature change was about 1 K. The idea that 20th century warming of about 1 K is responsible for the 100 ppm rise in CO2 doesn’t make sense.

• Samuel C Cogar says:

@ Frank

The following might be of interest to you,

Maximum to Minimum yearly CO2 ppm data – 1979 thru 2016
Source: NOAA’s Mauna Loa Monthly Mean CO2 data base
@ ftp://aftp.cmdl.noaa.gov/products/trends/co2/co2_mm_mlo.txt

CO2 “Max” ppm Fiscal Year – mid-May to mid-May

year mth “Max” _ yearly increase ____ mth “Min” ppm
1979 _ 6 _ 339.20 …. + …… __________ 9 … 333.93
1980 _ 5 _ 341.47 …. +2.27 _________ 10 … 336.05
1981 _ 5 _ 343.01 …. +1.54 __________ 9 … 336.92
1982 _ 5 _ 344.67 …. +1.66 __________ 9 … 338.32
1983 _ 5 _ 345.96 …. +1.29 El Niño __ 9 … 340.17
1984 _ 5 _ 347.55 …. +1.59 __________ 9 … 341.35
1985 _ 5 _ 348.92 …. +1.37 _________ 10 … 343.08
1986 _ 5 _ 350.53 …. +1.61 _________ 10 … 344.47
1987 _ 5 _ 352.14 …. +1.61 __________ 9 … 346.52
1988 _ 5 _ 354.18 …. +2.04 __________ 9 … 349.03
1989 _ 5 _ 355.89 …. +1.71 La Nina __ 9 … 350.02
1990 _ 5 _ 357.29 …. +1.40 __________ 9 … 351.28
1991 _ 5 _ 359.09 …. +1.80 __________ 9 … 352.30
1992 _ 5 _ 359.55 …. +0.46 Pinatubo _ 9 … 352.93
1993 _ 5 _ 360.19 …. +0.64 __________ 9 … 354.10
1994 _ 5 _ 361.68 …. +1.49 __________ 9 … 355.63
1995 _ 5 _ 363.77 …. +2.09 _________ 10 … 357.97
1996 _ 5 _ 365.16 …. +1.39 _________ 10 … 359.54
1997 _ 5 _ 366.69 …. +1.53 __________ 9 … 360.31
1998 _ 5 _ 369.49 …. +2.80 El Niño __ 9 … 364.01
1999 _ 4 _ 370.96 …. +1.47 La Nina ___ 9 … 364.94
2000 _ 4 _ 371.82 …. +0.86 La Nina ___ 9 … 366.91
2001 _ 5 _ 373.82 …. +2.00 __________ 9 … 368.16
2002 _ 5 _ 375.65 …. +1.83 _________ 10 … 370.51
2003 _ 5 _ 378.50 …. +2.85 _________ 10 … 373.10
2004 _ 5 _ 380.63 …. +2.13 __________ 9 … 374.11
2005 _ 5 _ 382.47 …. +1.84 __________ 9 … 376.66
2006 _ 5 _ 384.98 …. +2.51 __________ 9 … 378.92
2007 _ 5 _ 386.58 …. +1.60 __________ 9 … 380.90
2008 _ 5 _ 388.50 …. +1.92 La Nina _ 10 … 382.99
2009 _ 5 _ 390.19 …. +1.65 _________ 10 … 384.39
2010 _ 5 _ 393.04 …. +2.85 El Niño __ 9 … 386.83
2011 _ 5 _ 394.21 …. +1.17 La Nina _ 10 … 388.96
2012 _ 5 _ 396.78 …. +2.58 _________ 10 … 391.01
2013 _ 5 _ 399.76 …. +2.98 __________ 9 … 393.51
2014 _ 5 _ 401.88 …. +2.12 __________ 9 … 395.35
2015 _ 5 _ 403.94 …. +2.06 __________ 9 … 397.63
2016 _ 5 _ 407.70 …. +3.76 El Niño __ 9 … 401.03

The above data is proof-positive of an average 5 to 6 ppm decrease in CO2 that occurs between mid-May and the end of January of each calendar year …… and that there is an average 7 to 8 ppm increase in CO2 that occurs between the end of January and mid-May of the next calendar year.

• Frank says:

Samuel: Thanks for the data. Where is it from? I had studied reviewed graphs by eye and picked out the 97/98 El Nino and 99 La Nina as biggest perturbations, but that was before 2016.

Many people say that the annual cycle of CO2 is due to the uptake by greening plants on land in the NH (from January to May), but I wonder about absorption by the larger cooling ocean in the SH. Global temperature overall is maximal in July, but I don’t know about SSTs.

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Frank, I extracted that data from NOAA’s web site as noted in my above post and then calculated the “yearly increase” in ppm by subtracting the previous year’s “max” ppm from the current year’s “max” ppm.

And Frank, without exception, the maximum atmospheric CO2 ppm always occurs around mid-May of each year ….. and the minimum atmospheric CO2 ppm always occurs at the end of September of each year. And the difference between the two (2) max figures is the “yearly increase”.

So sayith: Frank

Many people say that the annual cycle of CO2 is due to the uptake by greening plants on land in the NH (from January to May)

“Yup”, that is what many people say, …. Frank, ….. but they are simply mimicking “junk-science” claims.

And “Yup”, the “greening” in the NH begins in January in the southern latitudes and progresses to the northern latitudes by June 01 or there about. But none of the initial “greening” requires any “uptake” of CO2. And the majority of said CO2 “uptake” occurs between mid-April and August.

Also, 95% of the CO2 emissions resulting from the microbial decomposition of dead biomass ….. occurs between April 01 and August 31 ….. with said CO2 emissions compensating for most or all of the aforesaid CO2 “uptake”. Said microbial decomposition requires a moist/wet environment and temperatures >40 degrees F … but preferably >60 degrees F. Little to no “microbial decomposition of dead biomass” ever occurs in your refrigerator/freezer ……. and likewise in the NH “wintertime”.

Also sayith: Frank

but I wonder about absorption by the larger cooling ocean in the SH.

Frank, your “wondering” would be “spot on” simply because the temperature of the ocean water in the SH is determined by the “changing of the seasons (equinoxes)” …. which is the “driving force” that is responsible for the biyearly increase/decrease in atmospheric CO2 ppm ……. as well as the average annual increase in CO2 ppm as a result of the gradual “warming-up” of the ocean water …… which is explicitly defined in the Mauna Loa CO2 ppm Record and/or on the Keeling Curve Graph. Like so:

http://i1019.photobucket.com/albums/af315/SamC_40/keelingcurve.gif

• Samuel,

We have been there before: the seasonal changes are dominated by NH vegetation, not by the SH oceans.

That is proven by the much larger seasonal amplitude in the NH and hardly any in the SH, while if the oceans were the main cause the amplitude in the SH should be much larger. Additionally, it si proven by the opposite CO2 and δ13C changes, which point to vegetation as main cause. If it were the oceans, the CO2 and δ13C changes would parallel each other.

Here the seasonal CO2 changes at Barrow and Mauna Loa:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/seasonal_CO2_d13C_MLO_BRW.jpg

The seasonal CO2 changes in the SH are less than +/- 1 ppmv and opposite to the NH seasonal changes.

As the NH average CO2 increase in the NH leads the CO2 levels in the SH with 1-2 years, the source of the extra CO2 is in the NH, not in the SH. As NH vegetation and oceans are net sinks for CO2 (as can be seen in the O2 balance and the pCO2 measurements of the ocean surface), the 2 ppmv/year increase over the seasons is not from vegetation, neither from the oceans.

• Hi, Ferdinand.
Looking at your chart for seasonal CO2 changes at Barrow and Mauna Loa.
Barrow does show a larger seasonal variation but for a short period of time.
Mauna Loa shows a lower seasonal variation but the seasonal variation is spread over a longer period of time.
Taking account of that difference I would say that taking the year as a whole the SH variation is actually greater than the NH variation.
What say you ?

• Samuel C Cogar says:

@ Frank – April 8, 2017 at 2:12 pm

Frank, thanks for posting the above “composite” graph of atmospheric CO2 ppm measurements as measured and recorded at the different Global Stations.

And Frank, be very, very careful how you interpret the CO2 ppm data that is plotted on those graphs, …… either individually or inclusively as a group …….. simply because there are three (3) critical factors associated with the measurement of CO2 ppm that are all different at the different Global Stations …… and each one (1) of said factors has a direct effect on the measured CO2 ppm.

And those “factors” is why there is such a vast difference in the bi-yearly ppm amplitude “swing” at the different Global Stations.

And those three (3) critical factors are, to wit:

—– Global Station —- elevation ——— latitude —— average temperature
PTB = Point Barrow, ———- 10 feet, —- 71°23′20″N —– 9.4°F
LJO = La Jolla, ————— 633 feet, —- 32.8328° N, —- 70.5°F
MLO = Mauna Loa, —– 13,678 feet, —- 19.4721° N —– 46.2°F
CHR = Christmas Island, — ‎916 feet, —– 10.4475° S, —- 77.0°F
SAM = Samoa, ———– 6,096 feet, —– 13.7590° S ——78.0°F

And Frank, a 4th critical factors that directly affects the measured CO2 ppm quantity is water (H2O) vapor, both invisible humidity and visible droplets.

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Ferdinand Engelbeen – April 8, 2017 at 9:23 am

Samuel,

We have been there before: the seasonal (CO2) changes are dominated by NH vegetation, not by the SH oceans.

Shur nuff, been there before, ….. and that is simply because you are either protecting your “funded interests” …… or are “educationally challenged” and “learning disabled” in respect to the Biology of the natural world of planet earth.

Ferdinand, it is both devious and disingenuous for you to be claiming that the Summertime (May thru August) greening/growth “ingassing” of CO2 by the NH vegetation is responsible for the average 6 ppm decrease in atmospheric CO2 ……… when you damn well know, or should know, ….. that the Summertime (April thru mid-September) “outgassing” of CO2 by the microbial decomposition of dead biomass is surely large enough to nullify the afore stated average 6 ppm decrease in atmospheric CO2.

• Yes, I’ve noticed that Ferdinand makes assertions based on incomplete facts.
On the face of it his work is logical and persuasive but he leaves out alternative explanations that could be equally valid.

• afonzarelli says:

Richard Feynman, he ain’t… but he does bring an awful lot to the table. Too bad he has to “cotton bomb” every thread on the carbon data. (really stunts the discussion)…

• Samuel C Cogar says:

Ferdinand “squeezes” the data just as long and strong enough as it takes for it to “fess up” with the “results” that he was looking for …….. and then he takes off “racing” down a wrong path through the woods shouting “I found it, I found it” …… while turning a “deaf ear” to anyone that’s trying to tell him that he’s done got himself “lost in the forest of ‘junk-science’ conjecture”.

• Samuel,

Can you explain to me why the NH amplitude is largest, and why there is an opposite huge increase in δ13C together with a huge decrease in CO2, if the change comes from the SH oceans?

Note: the δ13C of the oceans is higher than in the atmosphere…

16. commieBob says:

… the rate of increase correlates well with global temperature anomalies …

Eyeballing this graph leads me to believe the above relationship doesn’t hold for the early 20th century warming.

• afonzarelli says:

cB, ferdinand made this nice little graph for bart showing just how the data shakes out (based on hadcrut4sh). If there is any noticable smoothing in ice cores it would be in the area where the carbon growthrate changes the most, that being the early 20th century. (the growthrate as calculated by temperature goes from .3ppm/year to 1ppm/year in just a few short decades) If there is considerable smoothing then we would expect to see inflated numbers in the cores and we do. If we go to an area of the core where we would not expect to see much smoothing (like around the turn of the century) we get a near perfect match. Had ferdinand extended the graph back to 1850 the data would match for that period as well. (there being little change in the growthrate during that period of time)…

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/co2_T_dT_em_1900_2011_B.jpg

• Bartemis says:

We do not have MLO data for the early part of the 20th century. MLO measurements were created precisely because they wanted precise measurements. If we are now going to decide the better measurements are invalid because the worse measurements do not agree with them, then that is decidedly putting the cart before the horse.

Besides, the overwhelmingly greater part of the increase in CO2 came in the latter part of the 20th century, when we had the good measurements. Whatever may have happened before that is moot.

• Bartemis says:

No, it is because they cannot be validated, and I do not think science should be about taking things on faith.

It would actually be a bigger problem for those who ascribe the buildup to human emissions than it would for me. There is a glaring disconnect behind the idea that CO2 levels were maintained at staggeringly stable levels for centuries, and then took off due to minor human perturbations.

A stable level within a tight band demands high bandwidth regulation. But, high bandwidth regulation is insensitive to perturbations. Any feedback expert would see the contradiction there.

• Bartemis says:

That does not validate them. For validation, you need independent corroboration.

• Bartemis says:

Ah, that’d be no. Science is the antithesis of faith.

• Bartemis says:

Sorry, no. You have to show independent corroboration. Until then, they remain unvalidated.

• Bartemis says:

Perhaps you are not a native English speaker. “Unvalidated” does not mean “invalid”. It is a state of limbo, like Schrodinger’s cat. Neither alive nor dead, until a corroborating observation or series of observations is provided.

• Bartemis says:

No, then it will become invalidated. Until then, or until corroborating evidence is uncovered, it remains unvalidated.

• afonzarelli says:

Bart, as always, nice to see you… What i was getting at in my comment to cB is that the temperature data DOES provide some independant verification of ice cores. To verify ice cores, we use the area of the core where we would expect to find the least smoothing. And according to ferdinand’s graph we do find it at the turn of the century…

• richardscourtney says:

afonzarelli:

You say

Bart, as always, nice to see you… What i was getting at in my comment to cB is that the temperature data DOES provide some independant verification of ice cores. To verify ice cores, we use the area of the core where we would expect to find the least smoothing. And according to ferdinand’s graph we do find it at the turn of the century…

And the stomata data refutes the ice core data, but so what?
This discussion concerns the above article by Robert Balic which concerns the MLO data that is since 1958 and not before. Also, MLO data cannot be directly compared to ice core data because they have different temporal sensitivities.

Your attention to ice core data is a distraction from Bart’s cogent comment that said.

We do not have MLO data for the early part of the 20th century. MLO measurements were created precisely because they wanted precise measurements. If we are now going to decide the better measurements are invalid because the worse measurements do not agree with them, then that is decidedly putting the cart before the horse.

Richard

• The mass balance approach is falsified if our emissions are quickly absorbed by nearby vegetation and if the organic content of ocean waters affects the isotope signatute of oceanic CO2 emissions, both of which are entirely plausible.
Ferdinand may well be barking up the wrong tree with the mass balance argument.

• Where is your data to the contrary?
The mass balance proposal is based on supposition.

• I am very familiar with Ferdinand’s posts and have spent a great deal of time identifying the flaws in his contentions.
The mass balance proposal is based on assumptions that are not necessarily correct. All that is necessary to rebut his suppositions is to present alternative possibilities. He does not have data to rebut such alternatives.

• Since the initial hypothesis has no data to make it more likely than the alternative it follows that the initial hypothesis has no merit.

• afonzarelli,

The CO2 data are from the Law Dome ice cores, where 2 out of 3 have a resolution of less than a decade. Repeatability 1.2 ppmv (1 sigma).
Thus a sustained change of 2 ppmv over 10 years would be measured in the ice cores, or a 1 year peak of 20 ppmv (as a small change of 2 ppmv).

Bart’s formula shows far more deviation and doesn’t match any long term change over centuries or millennia, except if you change the driving temperature factor again and again for each period in time.

The formula I do use does show a good fit over 800,000 years, as that gives CO2 levels in ratio to the temperature level, per Henry’s law, with only human emissions and a half life of ~35 years of the extra CO2 in the atmosphere above steady state.
Bart’s formula changes from 0.02 ppmv/year during a deglaciation to 0.066 ppmv/year cooling to a new glacial period, to 0,0 ppmv/year during (near) zero temperature changes at levels 10 K apart (interglacial periods vs. glacial periods) and then suddenly increases to 2 ppmv/year in modern times… Seems rather questionable to me…

• Some zero is missing here:

0.066 ppmv/year cooling to a new glacial period

should be:

0.0066 ppmv/year cooling to a new glacial period

or some 300 times smaller than the current increase in the atmosphere or 600 times smaller than the current human emissions…

• Bartemis says:

“Bart’s formula shows far more deviation and doesn’t match any long term change over centuries or millennia, except if you change the driving temperature factor again and again for each period in time.”

If you make the assumption that the unvalidated and unverifiable ice core data represent truth. But, so what? Even if we make the leap of faith that the ice core data are reliable, we see many instances of precipitous regime changes in the climate. If anything, a model that treats all ages as identically dynamic is a curve fit, and very suspect as being an oversimplification.

17. Samuel C Cogar says:

So saidith: Robert Balic

There is also the question of why such a good (CO2 ppm) correlation with SH sea-surface temperatures and not NH, and why should the correlation be so perfect when things like changes in ocean currents should have a large effect on how much is sequestered into the depths of the oceans.

Well now, there is a direct correlation between the quantity of atmospheric CO2 ppm and the Southern Hemisphere’s sea-surface temperatures, …… and no correlation whatsoever between the quantity of atmospheric CO2 ppm and the Northern Hemisphere’s sea-surface temperatures …… simply because of the following physical scientific facts, ….. to wit:

In the Northern Hemisphere, the ratio of land to ocean is about 1 to 1.5. The ratio of land to ocean in the Southern Hemisphere is 1 to 4.

The Northern Hemisphere is 60% land and 40% water. The Southern Hemisphere is 20% land and 80% water.

So, given the above, the total surface area of the Southern Hemisphere ocean water is twice as large or 50% greater than the total surface area of the Northern Hemisphere ocean water.

And ps, as far as atmospheric CO2 ppm quantities are concerned ….. it matters not how much CO2 is sequestered or being sequestered into the depths of the oceans …….. simply because Henry’s Law governing the ingassing/outgassing of CO2 could care less about said sequestration.

And iffen you plotted the 1979 to 2013 Southern Hemisphere’s Monthly Average sea-surface temperatures onto the following graph, …… they should correlate pretty good with the CO2 ppm plotted thereon, to wit:

http://i1019.photobucket.com/albums/af315/SamC_40/1979-2013UAHsatelliteglobalaveragetemperatures.png

• One more – look at HadSSTv2 SH and NH. There is no physical reason for the observations.

18. You are not the furst to have discivered the co2 thermometer, it was first coined bij Jarl Ahbeck on the late John Daly’s website
https://www.john-daly.com/co2-conc/updated.htm

“If the increase of CO2 concentration for one year, dCO2 (ppm), is measured (Mauna Loa), the global “Carbon Dioxide Thermometer” temperature anomaly for one year can be estimated by the regressional formula:

estimated MSU = CDT = 0.23*(dCO2 – 1.53) ± 0.2°C.”

• I’m probably not the first to notice that its not real. Just the first to stick my head above the parapet

• Bartemis says:

Actually, I’ve been going on about it for years here. And, regular commenter Allan MacRae noticed it before I did.

It’s real, and it shows beyond any reasonable doubt that human emissions are not the main driver of atmospheric CO2.

• This is where I disagree with you, Bartemis. Not that SST wouldn’t have an effect but that it wouldn’t correlate so well as to be observable. It requires everything else to be insignificant, a simple relationship that neglects ocean currents and not swamped by realistic uncertainties in measurements.
I agree, though, it isn’t consistent with human emissions being the cause.

• richardscourtney says:

Robert B:

Bart and I have been debating this for more than a decade.

Ferdinand Engelbeen asserts that the anthropogenic emission of CO2 is causal of the observed rise in atmospheric CO2 measured at MLO since 1958.
Bart argues that the the observed rise in atmospheric CO2 measured at MLO since 1958 is natural.
I don’t know if that observed rise has a human or a natural cause but its cause is most likely natural.

You say

This is where I disagree with you, Bartemis. Not that SST wouldn’t have an effect but that it wouldn’t correlate so well as to be observable. It requires everything else to be insignificant, a simple relationship that neglects ocean currents and not swamped by realistic uncertainties in measurements.
I agree, though, it isn’t consistent with human emissions being the cause.

Actually, as I explain in my above post in this thread, it is “consistent” with human emissions being the cause although a natural cause is more likely.

Richard

• Robert B says:

@richardscourtney there is a graph above http://aveollila.wordpress.com/ that you should compare with the plot above comparing with RSS. There are too many inconsistencies to say the data fits anything.
Human emissions have been at 9.3Gt per year for three years while there was a spike in the rate along with the El Nino so not consistent with human emissions.

• Robert B,

The main effect is on tropical vegetation:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_dco2_d13C_mlo.jpg

The ocean surface temperature changes with an El NIño mainly near the Amazon and that changes rain patterns and the uptake/release of CO2 by the rain forests. That vegetation gives the main CO2 reaction on temperature can be seen in the opposite CO2 and δ13C changes. If the main reaction was from the oceans, the CO2 and δ13C changes would parallel each other (the oceans have a higher δ13C level than the atmosphere).

Overall the effect is short living and zeroes out after 1-3 years. Further, vegetation is not the cause of the slope in dCO2/dt, as vegetation is a small, but increasing sink for CO2. Variability and slope are from complete separate processes.

The main problem in that graph is that you compare T with dCO2/dt, that is where it goes wrong: by taking the derivative of CO2 changes, you have removed most of the trend caused by human emissions and only the remaining slopes and all variability are compared. Either compare T with CO2 or dT/dt with dCO2/dt. That is where so many before you, including Bart, Salby,… got wrong.

There is no slope in dT/dt, but still all variability, leading almost all of dCO2/dt variability, but with zero effect on the slope, only a small offset above zero, which gives 16 ppmv/K extra CO2 caused by the temperature increase since 1958 per Henry’s law…

• richardscourtney says:

Robert B:

You write

@richardscourtney there is a graph above http://aveollila.wordpress.com/ that you should compare with the plot above comparing with RSS. There are too many inconsistencies to say the data fits anything.
Human emissions have been at 9.3Gt per year for three years while there was a spike in the rate along with the El Nino so not consistent with human emissions.

Your link goes to a page that says

Apologies, but no results were found for the requested archive. Perhaps searching will help find a related post.

Anyway, aveollila’s model is simple curve fitting that uses 26 variables!
In this thread I refuted that with reference to ‘von Neumann’s elephant’.

Clearly, you have not read my post you claim to be answering because you claim the untrue point that,”Human emissions have been at 9.3Gt per year for three years while there was a spike in the rate along with the El Nino so not consistent with human emissions.”
As I explained, that IS consistent with either natural causes or human emissions.

Furthermore, our paper demonstrates you are wrong when you say, “There are too many inconsistencies to say the data fits anything”.
In reality, every one of the six models (three of anthropogenic cause and three of natural cause) in our paper matches the modeled annual atmospheric CO2 concentration to MLO measured annual atmospheric CO2 concentration to within the stated MLO data inherent error without need for any ‘fiiddle factor’ such as the 5-year smoothing adopted b y the IPCC to get its model to match the empirical data.

Perhaps your failure to read my explanation is because I linked to where I had posted it in the thread. Therefore, I copy it to here so you don’t have to use the link.

crackers345:

You ask the silly question so loved by AGW believers when you write

no, bartemis. humans are emitting co2 into the atmosphere, regardless of any temperature change.

just where do you think all the co2 we’re creating goes, anyway?

The total emission of CO2 to the air “goes” into the carbon cycle, and humans emissions are a trivially small addition that total emission.

The analysis by Salby (mentioned by Robert Balic in his above article) obtains the same finding as our earlier analysis;
(ref. Rorsch A, Courtney RS & Thoenes D, ‘The Interaction of Climate Change and the Carbon Dioxide Cycle’ E&E v16no2 (2005) )

At issue is what the atmospheric CO2 concentration would be if the CO2 emission from human emissions (i.e. the anthropogenic emission) were absent.

The atmospheric CO2 concentration would probably be the same if the CO2 emission from human emissions were absent. It would probably be the same. Our analyses show the short term sequestration processes can easily adapt to sequester the anthropogenic emission in a year. But, according to each of our six different models, the total emission of a year affects the equilibrium state of the entire carbon cycle system. Some processes of the system are very slow with rate constants of years and decades. Hence, the system takes decades to fully adjust to a new equilibrium. So, the atmospheric CO2 concentration slowly changes in response to any change in the equilibrium condition.

Importantly, each of our models demonstrates that the observed recent rise of atmospheric CO2 concentration may be solely a consequence of altered equilibrium of the carbon cycle system caused by, for example, the anthropogenic emission or may be solely, for example, a result of desorption from the oceans induced by the temperature rise that preceded it.

The most likely explanation for the continuing rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is adjustment towards the altered equilibrium of the carbon cycle system provided by the temperature rise in previous decades during the centuries of recovery from the Little Ice Age.

This slow rise in response to the changing equilibrium condition also provides an explanation of why the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere continued when in two subsequent years the flux into the atmosphere decreased (the years 1973-1974, 1987-1988, and 1998-1999).

Richard

Richard

• I hope that you read this Richard.
What I linked to was a plot above that compares rate of CO2 increase with southern hemisphere SST as posted by aveollila (must have copied the link under his name rather than the date).
In it he shows how well they correlate until 1992 when Mt Pinatubo makes an impact – except the rate of CO2 increase follows RSS nicely at that point.

19. Robert,

The main problem with that graph is that by taking the derivative of the CO2 levels, you have removed most of the cause of the increase in CO2: human emissions.

Human emissions show a steady increase over time, hardly influenced by economic crisis and show little year by year variability, not detectable in monthly or even yearly variability of the measurements.
On the other hand, the effect of temperature on CO2 levels is a small increase (~16 ppmv/K) over time, but lots of monthly to yearly variability.

CO2 variability lags T variability, but that is small (+/- 1.5 ppmv) variability around the 90 ppmv trend since 1959. Here for the enlarged 1985-2000 period, including the 1992 Pinatubo and 1998 El Niño:

The derivative of the CO2 emissions is a (near) straight slope, as the emissions themselves are increasing slightly quadratic over time. All variability is caused by the derivative of the temperature (dT/dt), which leads dCO2/dt with several months:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_dco2_d13C_mlo.jpg

The fully synchronised opposite CO2 and δ13C rate of changes show that the main effect of temperature is on (tropical) vegetation, not the oceans: temperature and changed rain patterns (drought) in the tropics give less uptake and more decay/fires in the Amazon during an El Niño. The opposite hapened during the Pinatubo eruption.

That temperature is the main cause of the variability in CO2 rate of change is agreed by NOAA as Pieter Tans showed during his speech for 50 years Mauna Loa:
https://esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/co2conference/pdfs/tans.pdf
from sheet 11 onward.

The second problem in that graph and the reason why so many are misled, is that one compares T with dCO2/dt. That is comparing T with the detrended/flattened CO2 changes, or comparing apples with oranges. Either compare T with CO2 or dT/dt with dCO2/dt. In the latter case, dT/dt has no trend, only a small offset from zero and thus a small influence on CO2 levels, while the main increase is from the slope of the derivative of the CO2 emissions, which is twice the slope of the derivative of the observed increase in the atmosphere.

It is easy to deduce that T/CO2 variability has nothing to do with the increase in the atmosphere, as most of the variability is the reaction of vegetation on temperature variability, while vegetation is a small, but growing sink for CO2 in the past decades as can be deduced from the oxygen balance:
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/287/5462/2467.short

Why then the high synchronisation between T and dCO2/dt? That is because taking the derivative of a (more or less) sinusoid variable shifts the sinusoid 90° back in time, without changing much of the appearance. That makes that as CO2 variability lags T variability, taking the derivative from only CO2 does synchronise it with T variability, but at the same time that gives a largely spurious similarity of T with the slope of dCO2/dt, which doesn’t exist in the real world…

More in depth explanation is in an earlier work of mine here:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/co2_variability.html#The_real_world with the theory in the first chapters.
Which was fiercely discussed here:

20. 1sky1 says:

Ordinate scaling has no effect whatsoever upon the correlation coefficient. Time-lags, however, do. The well-known high correlation between delta-CO2 and temperature is apparently a consequence of Henry’s law, manifest largely in the annual cycle. At much lower frequencies, first-differencing converts the secular trend of CO2 into an ordinate offset and sharply reduces the amplitude of other low-frequency components of variability. Not only is the zero-correlation reduced by time-lags, but the cross-spectral coherence is demonstrably insignificant over the span of “Keeling’s curve.” That’s what makes the notion of CO2-induced global climatic variability a conjecture wholly unsupported by empirical data.

21. 1sky1 says:

• afonzarelli says:

“…fierce (!)…”

right you are (☺)…

• I’ll read them in more detail soon but the elephant in the room is the last El Nino while human emissions have been a steady 9.3 Gt per year for the past 3 years.

• Bartemis says:

Ferdinand just manhandled the data to produce an a-physical model that seems to jibe with reality, but accomplishes this by taking natural equilibrium for granted.

A discussion of how I believe the relationship comes about can be found here.

• Bartemis says:

The pseudo-mass balance argument is for idiots who have no idea how dynamic systems work. Occam’s Razor comes out strongly on my side. Otherwise, you have to dream up a multitude of perfectly complementary, frequency dependent processes to explain things.

Anthropogenic emissions end up the same place as natural emissions, but the latter are very significantly greater in magnitude. The natural regulatory systems barely even notice it.

• Bartemis says:

1) No, it makes it objective. They really are idiots. It’s just about the dumbest argument anyone could make. It betrays total lack of insight into and unfamiliarity with dynamic systems.

2) Basic addition et al. is not up to this task. It is a dynamic system, and analyzing dynamic systems requires calculus.

You need to review Occam’s Razor.

• Bartemis says:

No, because they really are idiots. Objectively speaking. No question about it. It is a very stupid argument.

• Bartemis says:

“How do you argue against that?”

How can you argue with it? It’s like arguing that the kid who says 2 + 2 = 3 isn’t a genius. If the argument is rejected, what do you say?

The pseudo-mass balance argument is really about that level. It is spectacularly dumb, on a very basic level.

• Bartemis says:

“wow that’s a tidy argument.”

And, hopelessly jejune.

• Robert,

I had years of discussion with Bart on that item. All what Bart has is curve fitting of a graph. For the rest, with his “temperature fits all” (variability + slope), he violates all known observations, including Henry’s law for the solubility of CO2 in seawater (~16 ppmv/K, that is all), which is exactly the same for a single static sample as for the world wide dynamics of the ocean surface with the atmosphere. Confirmed by over 3 miilion seawater samples all over the world.

But as he doesn’t accept any observation that counters his sole argument, we can rediscuss that again and again, to no avail.

Then he starts shouting about the “pseudo mass balance”. The mass balance must be obeyed at any moment of time, except if CO2 escapes to space.
That makes it very simple:

Increase in the atmosphere = human emissions + natural emissions – natural sinks
2.3 ppmv/year = 4.5 ppmv/year + natural emissions – natural sinks
natural emissions – natural sinks = -2.2 ppmv/year

In every year of the past 57 years, natural sinks were larger than natural emissions:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/dco2_em2.jpg

Further, there is no discrimination of the sinks between natural and human caused CO2 (except a small one in isotope ratio’s). Human emissions increased a fourfold between 1958 and 2012. So did the increase in the atmosphere and the difference between these two: the net sink capacity.
That is only possible if either the natural CO2 cycle didn’t change (much) at all, or if the natural cycle also increased a fourfold over the same period (as is necessary for Bart’s theory), or you violate the equality of CO2 for the sink processes. The more recent residence time estimates show an increase in residence time, thus a stable CO2 throughput in an increasing CO2 mass in the atmosphere…

The point is that variability and slope are from different processes: near all variability is the influence of temperature on mainly (tropical) vegetation (which zeroes out in 1-3 years), while near all slope is caused by the twice as high human emissions. The removal of the latter is a pressure dependent process, near independent of temperature. One can calculate the remaining CO2 level based on human emissions and the net sink rate, based on the pCO2 difference between atmosphere and the steady state level for the ocean surface temperature per Henry’s law:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/dco2_em6.jpg

• The amount is not trivially small. It is the method of separating fluxes in physics. This works for water currents, electrical currents and also for co2 currents.

• 2hotel9 says:

No, calling idiots idiots is simply stating the observable facts. Means he wins.

• Although natural emissions are 30x greater you fail to address the issue that the natural sinks are not suffitcent to absorb the growing human co2 emissions completely. That is the mass balance argument which has been explained by Ferdinand.

• Richard,

The CO2 amounts emitted by humans are about 9 GtC/year. Natural emissions and sinks are near equally at around 150 GtC/year, not including the diurnal ~60 GtC/half day in and out, as that hardly reaches the bulk of the atmosphere and doesn’t influence global CO2 levels.

Thus human emissions are about 6% of the global carbon cycle. That is not “trivial” as human emissions are one-way additions and the 150 GtC is in AND out, even more out than in.
Moreover, there is never 150 GtC (~75 ppmv) extra in the atmosphere, neither seasonal, continuous between equator and poles or year by year.
Most of these fluxes are countercurrent between oceans and biosphere. Thus these three temperature dependent sources/sinks hardly change the CO2 levels in the atmosphere: between 3 and maximum 5 ppmv/K, leveling to zero in 1-3 years. For seasonal changes, that makes a global amplitude of not more than 5 ppmv. Three years of current human emissions are surpassing the seasonal changes and 1 year is already sufficient to dwarf the year by year variability in CO2 rate of change which is from the difference between all natural inputs and all natural outputs together…

Thus while natural inputs and outputs do change, their difference over a year is only half human emissions and negative. That is all what counts for the increase in the atmosphere: zero contribution of the natural fluxes to the increase in the atmosphere. No matter if the natural fluxes are 100 or 150 or 1000 GtC/year in and out, that difference is what is observed… That is what the mass balance says…

Of course, there is one escape route for Bart’s theory: if the natural fluxes increased a fourfold since 1959 in very close lockstep with human emissions. Unfortunately for Bart, there is zero indication in any observation for an increased natural cycle, with one exception: a slight increase in seasonal amplitude over the high latitudes, due to longer growing seasons. But as more plant growth also gives more (semi) permanent carbon storage, the biosphere is a net sink for CO2, not a source…

• richardscourtney says:

Hans Erren:

Instead of admitting you were wrong you attempt to pretend I have not refuted Ferdinand’s daft assertion and you also attempt to change the subject saying

Although natural emissions are 30x greater you fail to address the issue that the natural sinks are not suffitcent to absorb the growing human co2 emissions completely. That is the mass balance argument which has been explained by Ferdinand.

Firstly, my post you purport to be answering explained why Bart was right to say only “idiots” accept the nonsensical pseudo-mass balance argument. That idiocy is the pseudo-mass balance argument which has been asserted (n.b. NOT “explained”) by Ferdinand.

Much evidence indicates the sinks are not being saturated.

Firstly, the seasonal change in atmospheric CO2 concentration measured at Mauna Loaindicates the sinks are not saturating. For each year the annual rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is the residual of the seasonal variation. That variation is a fluctuation that forms a ‘saw tooth’ with no indication of any slow down in saturation as the sinks fill.

Secondly, at present the yearly increase of the anthropogenic emissions is approximately 0.1 GtC/year. The natural fluctuation of the excess consumption is at least 6 ppmv (which corresponds to 12 GtC) in 4 months. This is more than 100 times the yearly increase of human production, which strongly suggests that the dynamics of the natural processes can cope easily with the human production of CO2. A serious disruption of the system may be expected when the rate of increase of the anthropogenic emissions becomes larger than the natural variations of CO2. But that is probably not possible.

Thirdly, the OCO-2 data shows that local sequestration processes sequester all the anthropogenic CO2 emissions from industrial regions.

etc.

At issue is why the sinks for CO2 are not absorbing all the annual CO2 emission so there is a residual rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration. Clearly, the sinks can but don’t sequester all the total CO2 emission each year. This is explicable by assuming the carbon cycle system has altered its equilibrium condition and the system is adjusting towards the altered equilibrium state.

Some mechanisms of the carbon cycle have rate constants and, therefore, the carbon cycle takes decades to adjust to an altered equilibrium. Hence, whatever has altered or is altering the equilibrium state of the carbon cycle is causal of the observed recent rise of atmospheric CO2 concentration.

There are many possible causes of the alteration to the equilibrium state of the carbon cycle. The anthropogenic CO2 emission is one possible (but unlikely) cause. The most likely known cause is the temperature rise from the Little Ice Age (LIA) that has been intermittently occurring for centuries.

Richard

• richardscourtney says:

Oh dear! I have a voice recognition software error not spotted when checking before posting.
(It is a problem with having an arm that doesn’t work).

Where I posted

“Some mechanisms of the carbon cycle have rate constants and, therefore, the carbon cycle takes decades to adjust to an altered equilibrium.”

I intended to post

“Some mechanisms of the carbon cycle have rate constants of decades and, therefore, the carbon cycle takes decades to adjust to an altered equilibrium.”

Sorry.

Richard

• Bindidon says:

richardscourtney on April 8, 2017 at 12:20 am

Considering these facts, only an idiot would think the trivially small amount of CO2 that humans are adding to the CO2 emission must be causing the rise of atmospheric CO2 concentration.

richardscourtney on April 8, 2017 at 10:12 am

The anthropogenic CO2 emission is one possible (but unlikely) cause. The most likely known cause is the temperature rise from the Little Ice Age (LIA) that has been intermittently occurring for centuries.

Well I would like to believe you, but when looking at these two charts below, I have a problem…

Fig 1: CO2 concentrtion during the last 10,000 years

Fig 2: CO2 concentrtion during the last 1,000 years

Maybe you think these two charts are fake pcitures made by warmistas?

• The ice core records do not accurately reflect past CO2 quantities.

• Richard, there is no need to admit that I am wrong because I am right. Already in 2006 you could not see your error so I don’t have any hope for you that you will ever see the light in this matter. All the best.

• Stephen Wilde:

The ice core records do not accurately reflect past CO2 quantities.

They do accurately (+/- 1.2 ppmv – 1 sigma for a single core) reflect past CO2 changes, be it averaged over 10 to 560 years, depending of local snow accumulation rates…

Any literature about the opposite opinion?

• Richard:

Firstly, the seasonal change in atmospheric CO2 concentration measured at Mauna Loa indicates the sinks are not saturating.

With the same reasoning, one can argue that there is no sea level rise possible, as the huge tidal changes show that the ocean mass is not saturated and the rise due to warmer oceans and ice melt is trivial compared to the total mass going up and down every 12 hours or so.

What you don’t take into account is that the additional CO2 is not part of the temperature cycle. No extra leaf will grow if there is no incease in the seasonal summer temperature and no extra CO2 will be absorbed. Only because of the extra 30% CO2 pressure in the atmosphere more CO2 is pushed into the plant alveoles and that gives more uptake. That are two largely separate processes each with their own exchange/decay rate and an order of magnitude slower for the extra pressure, compared to temperature influences.

Secondly, at present the yearly increase of the anthropogenic emissions is approximately 0.1 GtC/year. The natural fluctuation of the excess consumption is at least 6 ppmv (which corresponds to 12 GtC) in 4 months. This is more than 100 times the yearly increase of human production

Richard, you are comparing the second derivative of human emissions with the direct effect of seasonal temperature on vegetation. That is comparing apples with oatmeal. Absolutely zero connection between the two and thus zero proof of anything.
If you make a comparison, then compare something comparable: yearly human emissions vs. yearly increase in the atmosphere or human emissions variability to natural variability…

Thirdly, the OCO-2 data shows that local sequestration processes sequester all the anthropogenic CO2 emissions from industrial regions.

The OCO-2 data shows impossible things: high CO2 concentrations above the N.E. Atlantic where the largest CO2 sink into the deep oceans is situated… I think that they still have a lot of work to do to calibrate the instruments.

Further, not all human CO2 is sequestered in nearby plants or oceans: at least 1/3 is showing up in the atmosphere as a drop in 13C/12C ratio. Even if all human CO2 was sequestered in the next nearby tree: that doesn’t change the fact that the tree will not take in a “natural” CO2 molecule instead, thus the CO2 increase in the atmosphere as mass remains exactly the same. The only extra uptake is if the total CO2 pressure increased in the atmosphere)…

• Bob boder says:

Ferd;

Why don’t you ever address Samuel Couger point, he is clearly refuting your point and confirming Richards.

• Bob,

Which point?

I have had several discussions with him in the past…

His point in this case is that the SH oceans are the cause of the smaller uptake at higher ocean temperatures. That is ony true for a part of the story. It is not true for vegetation: in general vegetation is a net sink for CO2, increasingly with temperature. In the case of El Niño, tropical vegetation is acting opposite: due to higher temperatures and changing rain patterns (drought over large parts of the Amazon and Indonesia), less CO2 is absorbed by plants and more is released by decaying vegetation and forest fires. That makes that in such circumstances CO2 absorption is less than in reverse years (La Niña, Pinatubo).

That vegetation is dominant, not the oceans can be seen in the opposite CO2 and δ13C (and O2) changes. If the change was from the oceans, CO2 and δ13C changes would parallel each other (and O2 would hardly change).

• Bob boder says:

Ferd;

So you state but I think the satellite data is proving you wrong.

• Bob,

The satellite seems to have a lot of probems to show reality, as the data show elevated CO2 levels over the N.E. Atlantic, where the largest CO2 sink of the world in the (deep) oceans is situated. Besides that, a variability of +/- 2% of full scale is still well mixed and mainly reflects the seasonal changes in the NH.

If the accuracy of the satellite is sufficient to detect daily human emissions needs to be seen as the satellite has a possibility tp focus on specific (urban and industrial) spots for longer periods. But I have the impression that they still have too much troubles to calibrate the measurements…

22. Bindidon says:

The radiative forcing of CO2’s atmospheric concentration and the temperature anomalies deduced from the forcing should imho solely be viewed over the long term: there are too many fluctuations due to ocean vs. atmosphere exchanges, volcanic eruptions, increases / decreases of human activity inducing fossile fuel burning etc etc.
I have forgotten where I obtained this computation from:
ΔT = 1.66 ln (CO2 actual/CO2 begin)
It certainly originates from Myhre’s 1998:
ΔF = 5.35 ln (CO2 actual/CO2 begin)
Superposing it in a chart with the temperature anomalies provided by Japan’s Met Agency gives the following:
If the computation is correct, then we see that CO2’s radiative forcing accounts, as expected by many people, for a part of the global temperature increase since 1891.
Simple eye-balling by the unexperienced layman gives about 50%.

• Bindidon says:

Oh BTW I would like to express my deep gratitude for this pretty good new layout so perfectly embellishing my comments! Thank you WordPress or whoever else.

Manch einer will Autorität und Stärke demonstrieren, zeigt jedoch stattdessen bestenfalls Mangel an Souveränität und letztendlich… Schwäche.

• ECB says:

How do you rationalize the near identical 1910 to 1940 warm spurt? (human CO2 negligible)

• Bindidon says:

Sorry ECB: this is exactly the kind of question my comment won’t be able to answer to. That was the reason to publish this chart as an alternative to the WFT chart at top of thread:

It makes IMHO no sense to subdivide it into subperiods of whichever duration. BTW, I could ask you in turn: how shall we rationalize the 1940 to 1975 cooling spurt?

CO2 has always been a participant in keeping our planet about 33 °C warmer than it would be in its absence (as opposed to the main GHG water vapor, it is a noncondensing, non precipitating trace gas).

For what reason shall we think that increasing its presence in the atmosphere won’t have any consequence?

I recall for example on math work done 40 years ago by Joseph W. Chamberlain
hdl.handle.net/2060/19790010343
where he performed an impressing demonstration of the effect of even tiny trace gas concentrations due to their ability to close the atmospheric window (8 to 12 µ).

But nowhere you will see in his papers any reference on how quickly and continuouls this phenomenon takes place.

• Bob boder says:

Duh by changing the data.

• ECB says:

“CO2 has always been a participant in keeping our planet about 33 °C warmer than it would be in its absence (as opposed to the main GHG water vapor, it is a noncondensing, non precipitating trace gas).

For what reason shall we think that increasing its presence in the atmosphere won’t have any consequence?”

I think thermodynamics maintains the earths temperature, as defined by the atmospheric density.

CO2 might change the temperature profile a bit, but the vertical transfer of energy by thermodynamics will keep it very small.(abt 0.7C imo)

I see two warm bursts, separated by an equally long hiatus or slight cooling. It looks like a natural set of cycles to me, and not man made. Dr. Curry refers to this(uncertainty) often, most lately in her presentation a week ago.

23. observa says:

I should definitely put my soda pop in the fridge after I’ve opened it then?

24. crotalus says:

NOAA learned their methodology diddling with their budget projections, and can use the same peer review cast.

25. JDN says:

What makes everyone think this is a chemistry question instead of a biology question? Is life in the ocean incapable of affecting CO2 based on seasonal growth and ocean surface temperature?

26. Smart Rock says:

The chart, or graph or whatever you want to call it, appears to show a correlation between rate of increase of CO2 and temperature anomalies. This is completely absurd.

There is nothing in the greenhouse theory (whether you choose to believe it or not) that says increase in temperature bears any relation to the rate of increase of CO2. If I read the theory correctly, it says that the temperature (or temperature anomaly, whatever) bears a linear relationship to the logarithm of the concentration of CO2 There are estimates of the factor that is supposed to tie those parameters together, which has been called the “climate sensitivity” or the “transient climate response” and it varies from about 1.4°C per doubling to absurdly high numbers, according to who has estimated it.

(Digression: there should be an “effective climate response” that accounts for direct and indirect “feedbacks” (like water vapour and clouds) and I suspect that it might be so close to zero as to be undetectable, but that’s my opinion”).

Basically, there is a correlation on that graph because temperature has gone up a bit between 1958 and 2017 (not a lot of disagreement there, except perhaps as to the amount), and the “derivative”, i.e. the rate of increase of CO2 has gone up a bit too. The plot of CO2 at Mauna Loa is not a straight line; it curves upwards, i.e. the rate of increase of CO2 is increasing (as the mathematicians say, the second derivative is positive).

But the greenhouse theory says that, even if the rate of increase did not increase over time (which would make the Mauna Loa chart a linear increase), the increasing level of CO2 would still be causing the temperature to go up. If that had been the case the derivative of CO2 would plot as a flat line on the chart that we’re being asked to look at in this post, while the temperature anomalies would still be going up.

You can even envisage a situation where the rate of increase in CO2 starts to decrease. CO2 concentration would still be going up so (greenhouse theory says) temperatures keep on going up. That would have led to an antithetic relationship between the parameters shown here.

If Robert B hasn’t grasped this, maybe he doesn’t have the ability to question what he’s looking at as much as this jaded geologist who is skeptical about everything that’s put in front of him, no matter whence it comes. But honestly, this graph, whoever put it together, is the absolutely worst kind of pseudo-science. It shows a correlation between two quantities where there is absolutely no theoretical or empirical reason to believe that they should correlate – even if you believe without question the greenhouse dogma.

In other words, that chart does nothing but discredit the warmists who designed it. They are mathematically illiterate (or just stupid, and there’s a lot of that around these days). Or even worse, they just don’t care.

• afonzarelli says:

Smart Rock, i think you have causation backwards here if i’m reading you correctly here. It’s not the change in the rate of carbon growth that is causing temperature to go up. Rather, it’s the change in temperature that’s causing the rate of carbon growth to go up. (at least, that’s the claim that is being inferred by the graph)…

• Could you stop pretending that it’s gone through some algorithmic wringer. I’m not discussing any physical reason for it but lack of there being any and the correlation still being visible.

• To not so bright rock, read it again. I’m politely pointing out that its not real.

• As we can see by eye, there is a correlation between the ocean temperature and the atmospheric CO2 concentration. Robert B, you are asking, if there is any physical explanation. That is what I tried to show you. The explanation is that the atmospheric CO2 is in balance with the CO2 in the mixing layer of the ocean. This balance is based on the Henry’s law. Simple like that. The temperature dependency of Henry’s law explain very well the yearly changes of CO2 concentration. Einstein said that things should be explained as simply as possible but not simpler that that.

I have used my model to calculate the residence time for the anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere. It is possible, because I can calculate both the anthropogenic CO2 and the total CO2 fluxes. The residence time for the anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere is 16 years. It is the same as shown by the full scale test (maybe the only one) available for the climate. The residence time of the radiocarbon 14C is the same 16 years as caused by the stopping the nuclear bomb test in 1964. In this sense I can say that I can truly validate the results of my model. The radiocarbon is a perfect tracer material for testing the anthropogenic CO2 behavior, because the both elements are artificially emitted into the the atmosphere and the whole atmosphere-ocean-biosphere system did not contain this element before the test: anthropogenic CO2 starting about 1750 and the radiocarbon starting in 1940’s.

• aveollila, I’m not arguing that you are wrong that atmospheric CO2 is in balance with the CO2 in the mixing layer of the ocean. Look at the Pinatubo eruption about 1992. The rate of CO2 increase matches RSS well (see above graph)

• afonzarelli says:

Robert, IF the aggregate total of all SST temperatures determine the carbon growth rate, wouldn’t that make sense to you? Warmer areas outgassing more, cooler areas uptaking less all according to the temperature anomaly relative to the equilibrium state temperature. Note that “0” anomaly is about .7C less than SSTs as of the hiatus in warming. (this is consistent with what we believe temps were during the LIA)…

• Smart Rock says:

Yeah, I assumed it was a typical AGW piece trying to prove that carbon does bad stuff (we do see enough of that). Oops. It was apparently an attempt to show – what exactly? That observed CO2 increase all (mostly? partly?) comes from warming of the oceans? Well it doesn’t work for that either, or rather it only works if you ignore the fact that anthro CO2 emissions increased during the period being plotted. That will give you a whole lot of dCO2/dt and you would need to quantify that and see if there was any unexplained acceleration of CO2 that you could attribute to degassing of the oceans. So IMHO it’s a very weak illustration to use as a proof of anything.

Aveollila’s comments quantify atmosphere-ocean interaction quite nicely,as long as you assume that land-based carbon sinks are small relative to the oceans. There’s no reason why Prof. Salby couldn’t have dome something similar instead of showing an apparent correlation between two parameters that have both gone up a bit since 1958. As a demonstration, it’s weak because there are other theories that it could be used to support equally as well, and because it’s not quantitative enough when some of the quantities are quite well quantified.

One minor comment on Aveollila’s calculations. I’m not sure how well Henry’s law should apply to CO2 in ocean water. It’s not just a gas dissolved in a liquid, because there’s a lot of chemistry going on with carbonate and bicarbonate anions being formed. I would guess that, if anything, that the CO2 capacity of ocean water will go down faster with increased temperature than Henry’s law would suggest, because of the breakdown of bicarbonate ions with temperature (as we see when baking cakes). Principle is similar but details may differ. Experimental data are needed. Maybe they do, but it’s too late tonight for me to dig them up tonight.

• “IF the aggregate total of all SST temperatures determine the carbon growth rate, wouldn’t that make sense to you? Warmer areas outgassing more, cooler areas uptaking less all according to the temperature anomaly relative to the equilibrium state temperature. Note that “0” anomaly is about .7C less than SSTs as of the hiatus in warming. (this is consistent with what we believe temps were during the LIA)…”
The whole point of the piece was that the correlation had to be perfect with CO2 levels measured to &plumn;0.34ppm. I can see why there would be some effect but not such a good correlation.

And smart rock, take note. I don’t believe that it shows anything except someone needs to have a good look at the calibration.

• Robert,

CO2 measurements at all stations are better than +/- 0.2 ppmv. That is no problem to see that the correlation between T (in fact dT/dt) and dCO2/dt is real.
Thus the correlations between T, dT/dt, CO2 and dCO2/dt are all real with and without lags. Causation in this case is also known and both the short term reaction on temperature changes by oceans and (mainly) by (tropical) vegetation.

Variations in T cause variations in CO2, but that is constrained to the small (+/- 1.5 ppmv) noise around the large (+90 ppmv) trend. It is only by taking the derivative (and thus largely detrending the CO2 increase) that one has blown up the noise around the trend to huge proportions. No problem with that, as long as that is not used to declare that this “proves” that the +90 ppmv trend is also caused by temperature, which is not the case, as that is where human emissions are involved…

• Smart Rock. You little bit aside now. It is not about the warming effect of CO2, we are discussing here. It is about the correlation about the tropical sea water temperature and the atmospheric CO2 concentration. We do not care talk about the possible reasons for the temperature changes of the oceans. In my model I have not used any assumptions for the temperature effects of the CO2 changes. But I can show that the yearly CO2 changes in the atmosphere are related mainly to the sea water temperatures and not just on the yearly CO2 emission rates. How much the atmospheric CO2 can increase the global temperature is totally another issue.

• aveollili: “We do not care talk about the possible reasons for the temperature changes of the oceans.”

but that’s the most important question of all !!

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

If you want to decide which question is important in a thread then start your own blog.

AW is our host here and he has decided that the question of a correlation observed by Robert Balic (and several others previously) deserves attention. To that end he has invited Robert Balic to post the above article.

Only matters raised by the article from Robert Balic are pertinent in this thread. All other questions are off-topic, and it is reprehensible that you attempt to deflect the thread onto an irrelevance of your choosing.

Richard

27. the rate of co2 increase in the atmosphere depends on how fast we emit it into the atmosphere, and how much of that is taken up by the land and ocean, and only very slightly on the atmopheric temperature.

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

It seems you missed my use of the word “honestly”.
The easiest person to mislead is yourself.

Each of your excuses for your refusal to accept the evidence presented by Stephen Wilde is wrong.

The OCO-2 satellite measurements indicate that ALL the CO2 from human activities is sequestered by sinks local to its emission sites. Hence, it is observed that the CO2 from human activities is not overloading those local sinks and is not available to overload other sinks.
That is what the data indicate whatever you may want to pretend.

Richard

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

You assert without any evidence and/or argument to support it

the rate of co2 increase in the atmosphere depends on how fast we emit it into the atmosphere, and how much of that is taken up by the land and ocean, and only very slightly on the atmopheric temperature.

OK. I understand that is your superstitious belief.
I write to ask how you square that superstitious belief with the observed reality that the rate of rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is independent of “how fast we emit [CO2] into the atmosphere”.

Richard

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

Yes, the observed reality is that the rate of rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is independent of “how fast we emit [CO2] into the atmosphere”.

If the extra emission of human origin were the only emission then in some years almost all of it seems to be absorbed into the sinks, and in other years almost none.

You get an appearance of a relationship by smoothing the data to a degree that cannot be justified by any known physical mechanism.

Richard

• Bart,

Except that the integral of temperature anomaly has no physical meaning, while the integral of emissions and remaining amounts in the atmosphere are physical quantities…

• Bartemis says:

Nonsense. I’ve explained in considerable detail the physical basis. You just don’t understand dynamic systems.

• richardscourtney
“I write to ask how you square that superstitious belief with the observed reality that the rate of rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is independent of “how fast we emit [CO2] into the atmosphere”.”

oh, please. that’s absurd.

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

Yes, I know your superstitious belief is “absurd”. That absurdity is why I asked you to explain how you square it with the observed reality that the rate of rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration is independent of “how fast we emit [CO2] into the atmosphere”.

In some years the accumulation rate of CO2 in the atmosphere is equivalent to almost all of the CO2 we emit and in other years it is equivalent to almost none of the CO2 we emit to the atmosphere.

So, now you have admitted that you your superstitious belief is “absurd” so you cannot square it with observed reality, perhaps you will relate how you obtained that absurd superstitious belief?

Richard

• Richard,

It is quite simple: in every year of the past near 60 years, natural sinks were not able to remove all human emissions in the same year as emitted. Thus the huge natural in and out fluxes are mostly insensitive to the extra CO2 (pressure) in the atmosphere. These fluxes are mainly (seasonal) temperature dependent and show a year by year variability of maximum +/- 1.5 ppmv around the (90 ppmv) trend. That is all.

The removal of any extra CO2, whatever the source, needs pressure dependent processes mainly sinks into the oceans and partly vegetation. That are much slower process than the seasonal fluxes…

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

I agree that it is “very simple” but I accept empirical data so I say the “very simple” thing is your refusal to consider data which refutes your narrative. You say

It is quite simple: in every year of the past near 60 years, natural sinks were not able to remove all human emissions in the same year as emitted.

The OCO-2 data show that ALL the CO2 human emissions of a year ARE absorbed by the sinks near to their emission sources.

Richard

• Yes, that is what I inferred here:

http://www.newclimatemodel.com/evidence-that-oceans-not-man-control-co2-emissions/

and when I posted it upthread Ferdinand was dismissive without a logical reason for so being.

The problem I find with all Ferdinand’s deep and detailed work is that at base it is founded upon a limited number of assumptions relying on observations that are capable of having alternative explanations to those proposed wrongly (IMHO) by Ferdinand as irrefutable.

He has built an intricate inverted pyramid on top of a sandy base.

• Jim Ross says:

Richard and Stephen,

I have been having a discussion with Ferdinand down-thread about the alleged time lag in CO2 growth between the NH and South Pole. I would appreciate the views of others.

• richardscourtney says:

Stephen Wilde:

You have commented on my saying

The OCO-2 data show that ALL the CO2 human emissions of a year ARE absorbed by the sinks near to their emission sources.

by responding

Yes, that is what I inferred here:
http://www.newclimatemodel.com/evidence-that-oceans-not-man-control-co2-emissions/

Thankyou. That makes the matter very clear.

I do not understand how anybody who has seen that plot can honestly claim natural sinks are failing to sequester ALL the CO2 from human activity.

Richard

• Richard:

I do not understand how anybody who has seen that plot can honestly claim natural sinks are failing to sequester ALL the CO2 from human activity.

1, Because the emissions from humans (~0.1 ppmv/day) are not directly measurable by the satellite, which only takes snapshots at midday, at the height of photosynthesis.
2. Because they have troubles to calibrate the satellite: there are too many impossibilities like higher levels at the largest sink place of the world: the N.E. Atlantic.
3. Because even if all human CO2 was captured by the next nearby tree, that doesn’t change the CO2 increase in the atmosphere, as that is only less natural CO2 captured by the same tree. The tree captures whatever CO2 which is that moment around, but doesn’t capture more CO2 because it comes from humans (*).
4. Because still 30% of all human CO2 is in the atmosphere, the rest is mainly in the oceans and only a small part in vegetation as is measured via the 13C/12C ratio.

(*) Of course if the total CO2 pressure in the atmosphere increases, both oceans and vegetation will take more CO2 away, but until now that is less than what humans emit in every year of the past 60 years.

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

My reply to you appeared in the wrong place. Hopefully this copy is in the right place.

It seems you missed my use of the word “honestly”.
The easiest person to mislead is yourself.

Each of your excuses for your refusal to accept the evidence presented by Stephen Wilde is wrong.

The OCO-2 satellite measurements indicate that ALL the CO2 from human activities is sequestered by sinks local to its emission sites. Hence, it is observed that the CO2 from human activities is not overloading those local sinks and is not available to overload other sinks.
That is what the data indicate whatever you may want to pretend.

Richard

• Richard,

Your “proof” that I am wrong is only your misinterpretation of the satellite data:

The OCO-2 satellite measurements indicate that ALL the CO2 from human activities is sequestered by sinks local to its emission sites.

1. The satellites theoretical resolution is ~0.1 ppmv.
2. The satellite does follow the midday line and takes snapshots of the midday areas.
3. Photosynthesis is at maximum around midday.
4. Human emissions are average ~0.01 ppmv/day (used 0.1 ppmv/day a a comment down, that is in error)
5. Human emissions are concentrated in specific areas (towns, industrial) with higher emissions.
6. The satellite can focus on specific areas for longer periods, thus enhancing the resolution.
If human emissions are visible in the satellite data at specific areas depends of 1. – 6.

Thus it is possible that all human emissions around midday are all removed by the next available tree (which doesn’t change the mass balance with one gram), thus masking human emissions.

The satellite doesn’t measure at night, when factories still are working and emitting and heating (in winter) is at full speed in cold areas and there is no photosynthesis…

As far as I know they haven’t used the focus possibility of the satellite until now, as they still seem to have troubles to calibrate the satellite data with near ground data.

Thus sorry Richard, absence of good data is not proof of anything.

• richardscourtney says:

Ferdinand:

The data under discussion is shown by this plot of atmospheric CO2 concentration provided by the OCO-2 satellite. And the link also provides the summary by Stephen Wilde of discrepancies between that plot and your narrative.

Look at what the data shows instead of making excuses for the data refuting your narrative.

As I said, the OCO-2 satellite measurements indicate that ALL the CO2 from human activities is sequestered by sinks local to its emission sites. Hence, it is observed that the CO2 from human activities is not overloading those local sinks and is not available to overload other sinks.
That is what the data indicate whatever you may want to pretend.

But, as is your usual practice when confronted with data which refutes your narrative, you have reacted with a series of ‘epicyclic excuses’ in attempt to sustain your narrative.

You say

1. The satellites theoretical resolution is ~0.1 ppmv.

Yes. That is sufficient to show the sinks are not overloaded in industrial areas.
So what is your point?
You say

2. The satellite does follow the midday line and takes snapshots of the midday areas.

Yes. What is your point?
You say

3. Photosynthesis is at maximum around midday.

Yes. But so what?
You say

4. Human emissions are average ~0.01 ppmv/day (used 0.1 ppmv/day a a comment down, that is in error)

Yes. 0.01 ppmv/day is trivially small, and as the plot shows it is not sufficient to overload the sinks local to industrialised areas e.g. Western Europe.
You say

5. Human emissions are concentrated in specific areas (towns, industrial) with higher emissions.

Yes. And the plot shows those emissions are sequestered local to those specific areas. Much higher atmospheric concentrations exist elsewhere.
You say

6. The satellite can focus on specific areas for longer periods, thus enhancing the resolution.

Yes. But so what?

Face reality, Ferdinand; the OCO-2 data is yet another piece of evidence that refutes your narrative.

HAPPY EASTER!

Richard

• richardcourtney, explain the atmosphere’s decreasing 13C/12C ratio.

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

You demand that I assert what is not known and what available data cannot indicate when you write

richardcourtney, explain the atmosphere’s decreasing 13C/12C ratio.

The ratio change is clearly NOT a direct result of emissions of CO2 from human activities. The change is in the correct direction for it to be a result of that cause (n.b. there is 50% change that it would be because it has to be up or down), but it is wrong by 300% for it to be a direct result of emissions of CO2 from human activities. (One of Ferdinand’s epicyclic excuses is for this gross disagreement of the isotope ratio change with his narrative. He says the disagreement results from dilution which is a possibility but there is no evidence for it.)

I can make several suggestions as to possible causes of the atmosphere’s decreasing 13C/12C ratio, but nobody knows – and at present nobody can know – the true cause.

Richard

• richardcourtney – the declining atmospheric ratio of 13C/12C is consistent with an anthropogenic source for the additional CO2 in the atmosphere, and inconsistent with it being from natural sources.

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

Clearly, you have not read my answer to your question.

A discrepancy of 300% is NOT “consistent with” the “declining atmospheric ratio of 13C/12C” caused by “an anthropogenic source for the additional CO2 in the atmosphere”. And as discussions by others downthread reveal, there are – as I said – several possible causes of the “declining atmospheric ratio of 13C/12C”.

As usual, your posts are a waste of electrons.

Richard

• Bartemis says:

Yes, to the extent that temperatures appear to track CO2, it is mostly because the temperatures have been manipulated to do so.

However, it does not affect an affine comparison such as shown above in the article. It is here that we see the truth: temperature is driving CO2, not CO2 driving temperature.

28. R. de Haan says:

This is exactly how NOAA cooks the books. Tony Heller solved this puzzle a long time ago.
It’s a political dictate and NOAA delivers.

• 1) how would you like to adjust for biases?

2) adjustments -reduce- the long-term warming trend

• Michael Jankowski says:

• michael j, you avoided my question.

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

1) how would you like to adjust for biases?

Scientists do NOT “adjust” data and I am a scientist so I would not do it.
And I would NOT “like” to “adjust” data because that would be my having a bias.

When a scientist suspects an error in data then s/he attempts to quantify that uncertainty and reports that inherent error as being part of the data (e.g. a value of x +y-z at 95% confidence).

Richard

• Michael Jankowski says:

Why engage you in Q&A when your #2 statement is either painfully ignorant or deliberately misleading?

• richardcourtney: scientists constantly adjust raw data to remove biases. it’s an important part of every experiment.

you didn’t explain how you would treat the raw temperature data in light of its biases. (those biases aren’t “errors,” they are unavoidable methodological issues.)

• richardscourtney says:

crackers345:

Clearly, you have not read my answer to your question.

To avoid you needing to find it, I copy it to here. Please read it.

Scientists do NOT “adjust” data and I am a scientist so I would not do it.
And I would NOT “like” to “adjust” data because that would be my having a bias.

When a scientist suspects an error in data then s/he attempts to quantify that uncertainty and reports that inherent error as being part of the data (e.g. a value of x +y-z at 95% confidence).

Richard

29. So we are left with three possibilities.

An infinitesimal jump in CO2 causes a noticeable jump in temperature.

A noticeable jump in temperature causes an infinitesimal jump in CO2.

Something ill understood is capable of a noticeable increase in temperature and infinitesimal jump in CO2.

No way I would bet my own money on the first.

• “Something ill understood” Keeling calibration

• Jim Ross says:

Rob Dawg, I like your summary. If I may nit-pick a little, it is not a “jump in CO2”, but a “jump in rate of growth of atmospheric CO2”. I guess the view that it is an infinitesimal jump depends on how significant you consider an increase in rate of growth of 50-100% to be.

Your “something ill understood” is, of course, El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO).

30. Robert of Texas says:

The air gets warmer and the ocean either slows absorption or even emits for a short while – possibly because the near surface water (inches?) warms due to the temperature of the air rising? So rate of change of CO2 is correlated to air temperature but in the reverse of what many expect?

I don’t really see a problem with the correlation – its just we don’t know causation, people are just assuming it fits their story. I tend to believe temperature is causing CO2 release rather than CO2 is causing the short-term temperature fluxes.

As for CO2 being a well mixed gas… I think that depends on the scope of what you are looking at. CO2 is at higher concentrations in cities for example. It would not surprise me at all if concentrations around oceans were linked to near surface temperatures. If you could see CO2 concentrations in color (3D, locally) I don’t imagine you would see one color but many. Eventually it becomes well mixed, if nothing is adding or subtracting the gas (which is always happening). So maybe the air several hundred feet up is well mixed, but close to where CO2 is interacting I doubt that it is.

• Last attempt. I don’t want to talk about what might cause the correlation because nothing would make the two line up so well in the real world. Too many things going on and you need to measure the CO2 levels to ±0.34 ppm to see it.

• Robert,

Measurements at most CO2 stations are better than +/- 0.2 ppmv. more than good enough to show natural variability in uptake, not enough to show the variability in human emissions.

Still you are looking at the variability of CO2 around the trend, which is not more than +/- 1.5 ppmv around a 90 ppmv trend, all caused by temperature variability, mainly the reaction of tropical forests. That is figured out by many before you, including Pieter Tans of NOAA, from sheet 11 on:
https://esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/co2conference/pdfs/tans.pdf

That is only for the variability, the slope is NOT caused by the same processes, as vegetation is a net sink for CO2 on periods longer than 1-3 years.

• I’m sure that the measurements at single station do not vary more than ±0.2 but that is not for a global estimate from that spot. The earlier estimates of error were ±1 ppm and still there is good correlation with SH SST up until 1980 when, as admitted in Climategate emails and published articles that there was insufficient data for most of the SH oceans to get any reliable temperature anomalies.
There is no physical reason for it.
Again. I’m pointing out how precise the measurements need to be with a perfect correlation. ±0.2 instead of ±0.34 ppm still means an extremely good correlation that nobody has shown to be true as evidenced by the multitude of reasons given.

31. Robert,

The main problem with that graph is that by taking the derivative of the CO2 levels, you have removed most of the cause of the increase in CO2: human emissions.

Human emissions show a steady increase over time, hardly influenced by economic crisis and show little year by year variability, not detectable in monthly or even yearly variability of the measurements.
On the other hand, the effect of temperature on CO2 levels is a small increase (~16 ppmv/K) over time, but lots of monthly to yearly variability.

CO2 variability lags T variability, but that is small (+/- 1.5 ppmv) variability around the 90 ppmv trend since 1959. Here for the enlarged 1985-2000 period, including the 1992 Pinatubo and 1998 El Niño:

The derivative of the CO2 emissions is a (near) straight slope, as the emissions themselves are increasing slightly quadratic over time. All variability is caused by the derivative of the temperature (dT/dt), which leads dCO2/dt with several months:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/temp_dco2_d13C_mlo.jpg

The fully synchronized opposite CO2 and δ13C rate of changes show that the main effect of temperature is on (tropical) vegetation, not the oceans: temperature and changed rain patterns (drought) in the tropics give less uptake and more decay/fires in the Amazon during an El Niño. The opposite happened during the Pinatubo eruption.

That temperature is the main cause of the variability in CO2 rate of change is agreed by NOAA as Pieter Tans showed during his speech for 50 years Mauna Loa:
https://esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/co2conference/pdfs/tans.pdf
from sheet 11 onward.

The second problem in that graph and the reason why so many are misled, is that one compares T with dCO2/dt. That is comparing T with the detrended CO2 changes, or comparing apples with oranges. Either compare T with CO2 or dT/dt with dCO2/dt. In the latter case, dT/dt has no trend, only a small offset from zero and thus a small influence on CO2 levels, while the full increase is from the slope of the derivative of the CO2 emissions, which is twice the slope of the derivative of the observed increase in the atmosphere.

It is easy to deduce that T/CO2 variability has nothing to do with the increase in the atmosphere, as most of the variability is the reaction of vegetation on temperature variability, while vegetation is a small, but growing sink for CO2 in the past decades as can be deduced from the oxygen balance:
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/287/5462/2467.short

Why then the high synchronization between T and dCO2/dt? That is because taking the derivative of a (more or less) sinusoid variable shifts the sinusoid pi/2 back in time, without changing much of the appearance. That makes that as CO2 variability lags T variability, taking the derivative from only CO2 does synchronize it with T variability, but at the same time that gives a largely spurious similarity of T on the slope of dCO2/dt, which doesn’t exist in the real world…

See further the discussion at the links in my previous message…

32. Peter Sable says:

Correlations on time series data sets happen all the time. You can’t use standard statistical techniques on time series, they are pretty much meaningless.

(that’s besides that 0.4degC of the temperature increase is bogus data manipulation anyways)

33. Peta from Cumbria, now Newark says:

Why not have a simple explanation?
One that fits the observations a bit bitter?
One that might even offer causation instead of correlation.
Why not do, or observe in everyday situations, an experiment that even Al Gore couldn’t make a foul-up of – an experiment that refutes the whole GHG effect.
2 similar containers, one containing a GHG and the other not. Put a differential thermometer across them. What happens?
Why not explain the annual variation of CO2 ppm without bluster and hand-waving?
Not agriculture then? A major seasonal activity that only really happens in one hemisphere, so no global averaging
Why claim the climate is a non-linear system then utterly ignore the mother & father of all non-linearities?
<cold objects do not radiate energy to warm ones and cause them to warm even more
Why talk about ‘temperature of the surface of the Earth’ then put all the thermometers nowhere near it – anywhere from 4 feet to 400 miles above
<Why are no thermometers worth talking about actually buried in the dirt
Why talk about some nebulous “Industrial Revolution” when its clear to even a child that CO2 levels started ramping up in the late 1940’s
Totally no chance it may have been an agricultural revolution then?? Are you really saying that 10,000 yrs ago, Ugg The Chugg staggered out of his cave every morning, climbed aboard his 500HP John Deere caterpillar and let loose 180 million tons of ammonium nitrate? Did he really do that?
Why talk about Global CO2 levels then measure that level as far from anywhere as its almost possible to get?
Why claim the impossible?
An alkali solution is not going to give up an acidic species just on a few 10th’s of a degree temp change. Henry’s Law in junk for seawater
Why not directly link the observed temp changes with the observed CO2 variation with the most basic climate observation possible?
Seasons
Why come up with such a technical complicated theory (GHG and positive feedback) to explain what thermometers and CO2 levels are doing when all you need do is look out of your window now and again?
A vast area of the planet is now growing annual plants instead of perennials as it historically did

Why ignore the dirt – and the bacteria that comprise the main part of its organic content. Are bacteria not temperature sensitive. Does seasonal plant growth not occur because of what those bacteria are doing in precise symbiosis with plants?
What do those soil bacteria do and what limits what they do? Completely not soluble nitrogen?
Why does farmland treated with water-soluble nitrogen become acidic? (Please do answer that point, in your own head at least) Would that not explain the observed Ocean Acidification – primarily in slow moving estuarine water that came off farmland.

I’ll answer my own questions and it’ll make Malthus, Ehrlich, Chuckles and AH all look like saints when I do.
Therein lies the Magical Thinking that nothing is wrong, that technology will fix anything and no matter what, it is always Someone Else’s Fault.
So finally, why did Climate Change put an end to every organised ‘civilisation’ that has ever existed on the Earth. Is that what happens when The Buck finally stops.

All those fine bureaucracies never ran out of dirt, they never overused fertiliser, they never cut too many trees, never kept too many sheep & goats and never never ever, had too many babies.
No, somebody else always did those things.

• Peta from Cumbria, now Newark says:

sigh. Maybe you figured it yourself but anyway..
You get other people to accept the blame by confusing them, with science.

34. AndyG55 says:

WAKE UP people.

Why are we arguing about where the increase in highly beneficial atmospheric CO2 is coming from?

Just so long as it keeps on coming.

We really MUST turn the narrative around, and show that increased atmospheric CO2 has absolutely ZERO detrimental effect.

TOTALLY BENEFICIAL to all life on Earth.

35. A C Osborn says:

Everybody has been talking about well distributed CO2 and the measurements taken at various sites, most of which show a steady increase in CO2, however the latest US Satellite data shows no such distribution.
There is no “Global CO2” when you look at the results from the Satellite data.
NASA has been very quiet about their results, I wonder why that is.
Let me remind you of their first output
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/10/04/finally-visualized-oco2-satellite-data-showing-global-carbon-dioxide-concentrations/

• A C Osborn,

Have a look at the scales: +/- 2% of full scale variability. Seasonal exchanges are ~20% CO2 in and out. Do you expect that such huge changes are instantly mixed at every place everywhere?

36. blcjr says:

164 replies so far, and I didn’t bother to read them all. Part of the reason is that there is nothing new about this, and it is a bit frustrating that it keeps coming up again as if it is. I know I’ve posted in replies about here before, even posting images of this “effect.” I also wrote a short piece about it early last year and sent it to Anthony but he either didn’t get it or didn’t think it was timely. In any case I am going to post one of the images from the work I did on this last year, and then make some brief observations. Here is the image:

http://imgur.com/a9O3aCC

This is a plot of seasonal differences of UAH’s global temperature series and the Mauno Lao CO2 series, i.e. the first difference (what I think the author of this piece is calling a “derivative”) on an annual basis, i.e. the value in one month differenced with the value 12 months previously. I take the natural log of the CO2 series for this comparison because it seems that the CO2 series is increasing at a relatively constant rate of growth.

It is pretty obvious what is going on here. Changes in CO2 consistently LAG changes in temperature and a regression correlation with lagged variables line the two series up quite nicely, as shown in this graph:

http://i.imgur.com/HZRTkM1.jpg

Again, by now there should be nothing remarkable about this. On almost any time scale — here short run seasonal variations — temperature changes are driving CO2. This does not prove that CO2 might not itself have an effect on temperature, which by most theoretical accounts it does. But it seems to me that it is so small that it is swamped by the effect in the other direction, again on all time scales.

What is so hard to understand about this? Is it the presentation of the data in “derivative” format that is novel? I cannot understand why that would be the case. Analyzing first differences is a basic consideration in evaluating time series. If “climate science” hasn’t figured that out yet, it deserves the skepticism it gets in claiming to be “science.”

Basil

• Bindidon says:

blcjr on April 8, 2017 at 3:01 am

On almost any time scale — here short run seasonal variations — temperature changes are driving CO2.

To be honest: If I want to obtain valuable information about CO2, I rather will trust in Ferdinand Engelbeen.

• blcjr says:

Trust whomever you want. I took a look at the Ferdinand post you pointed to. Not enough detail there for me to understand how he gets to his conclusions. He seems to be saying that temperature rise since the LIA can account for only a small fraction of the rise in CO2, and he points the finger at human emissions as accounting for the bulk of it. I’m sure he has what he considers an answer to this question, but I am not sure where to look to find it: what explains the large increases in CO2 in geologic times past, when human emissions did not exist?

Basil

• Basil,

Most of the increase of CO2 in the past 1.5 century is man-made. All observations point in the same direction, here a comprehensive overview of the available evidence:
http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/co2_origin.html

The main point is that over at least the past 800,000 years there was a quite constant ratio between CO2 and temperature of ~8 ppmv/K in ice cores, reflecting polar temperatures. Translated to global temperatures, that is ~16 ppmv/K. Not by coincidence the same as the equlibrium of CO2 in seawater with CO2 in the atmosphere per Henry’s law. That means that if the temperature now is the same (or lower) than around 1200 (the MWP), we should see ~290 ppmv in the atmosphere, not 400 ppmv…

Over longer time periods the same ratio doesn’t apply as e.g. during the Cretaceous, carbonates in the oceans and CO2 in the atmosphere were much higher than today. Much of that CO2 is now buried in large carbonate deposits like in south England: the withe cliffs of Dover…

• That was a remarkable set of figures.
“a regression correlation with lagged variables line the two series up quite nicely”
Can you please provide or link to some more details about how you made those curves?

• Bindidon says:

Using the appropriate tool, you can draw a plot of anything according to your needs. Here is a chart with trendless plots of UAH6.0 and CO2 concentration:

But here the CO2 concentration unluckily seems to follow the temperature, that MUST be plain wrong, shouldn’t happen 🙂

• Bartemis says:

A) Of course it should happen. Cause precedes effect. Temperature change precedes CO2 change.

B) What we see here is a 90 deg phase lag, precisely what is expected if there is an integral dependence of CO2 on temperature.

You’ve done nothing but reinforce the conclusion here: temperature is driving CO2, not CO2 driving temperature.

• Bart,

There is a lag between T variability and CO2 variability.
There is practically no lag between T variability and dCO2/dt variability.
There is no integral dependence of CO2 on T.

37. The observation that the SH shows a better fit than the NH supports the ocean temperatures as the primary cause of CO2 levels simply because there is more ocean in the SH.
Human emissions of CO2 are primarily in the NH so if we were the cause then the NH would show a better fit.
The reality must be that our emissions are rapidly taken up by local vegetation and have little or no effect on global levels.

• Stephen Wilde,

Most variability is in the SH, as that is where the rain forests react on fast temperature changes. That is about the variability, not the trend. The trend in increasing amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere starts near ground in the NH, where CO2 increase leads the increase at altitudes and lower latitudes and the SH with 6-24 months:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/co2_trends_1995_2004.jpg

Clearly the source of the increase is in the NH, where 90% of human emissions are. The same for the δ13C trends (from low-13C fossil fuels burning): the drop is in the low lying high latitudes first and the SH lags with several years…

• Bartemis says:

Your conclusion is non sequitur. There are a host of reasons the plots might appear to be offset. These are different locations, using different equipment, different protocols, and different people. You have no control experiment upon which to base your conclusion.

• Bart,

Before you spout such a bunch of nonsense, will you please, please, please check how the data is sampled, with what methods, and how they are (inter)calibrated?

For every single station, the local data are within +/- 0.2 ppmv, regardless of the equipment used, worldwide calibrated by the same calibration mixtures.

Thus either there are regional natural sources at work and the distribution needs time or human sources are at work and the distrubution needs time.

There are huge regional sources at work in the tropics and huge regional sinks near the poles. That should show the highest CO2 levels at Mauna Loa (be it at 3,400 m height, takes time too) and Samoa (30 m ASL) and the lowest levels at Barrow and the South Pole.

Barrow (and other near sealevel stations) show the higher CO2 increase first…

38. I realise Ferdinand has already largely pointed this out, but I’ll do so again. If you plot the rate of change of atmospheric CO2 over a relatively short time interval (say about 2 decades, as Salby does) you’ll see that it is variable, but does not vary about 0, it varies about a value of about 1.6ppm/yr – there is an offset. Correlations are, however, insensitive to offsets and so if you then find a good correlation between temperature and the rate of change of atmospheric CO2, what you’re finding is a correlation between temperature and the variability about the mean, but your correlation says nothing about the almost constant offset. So, the question is, what is causing this almost constant offset? The answer, is us, as Ferdinand has already pointed out. There’s quite a good discussion of this here.

• Actually, there is a nice explanation of this correlation issue in this post by Dikran Marsupial.

• Because it’s really dumb?

• Because it’s really dumb?

No, I it’s because I wasn’t aware of DM’s excellent answer when I was commenting on the BH Discussion thread.

• Bartemis says:

Would have been better for you if you had conceded that it is really dumb. Because, it is really dumb.

• Bartemis says:

I explain why it is so dumb below.

• Correction: You explain why you think it is so dumb below.

• Bartemis says:

No, it’s pretty objectively dumb as rocks.

• Bartemis says:

That is facile. It is not the offset in the rate of change of CO2 that produces the curvature of the absolute level of CO2. That is caused by the trend in the rate of change. And, the trend in the rate of change of CO2 matches the trend in temperature anomaly, when the one is scaled to match the other’s variability.

Human emissions also have a trend. There is little to no room for them to be added in to the CO2 rate of change, once the temperature sensitivity is accounted for. Hence, human emissions cannot be a major driver.

Dikran is a computer scientist, and promoter of the horrendously shallow pseudo-mass balance argument. He has no understanding of dynamic systems, and his arguments are physically absurd.

• Bart,

There is no need to compare the trend of T with the trend of dCO2/dt, as the trend of both CO2 emissions and increase in the atmosphere are both slighlty quadratic and human emissions are twice the increase in the atmosphere.

The simplest explanation mostly is the one that fits cause and effect: human emissions cause most of the increase in the atmosphere, both the curvature of the CO2 increase in the atmosphere and the straight increase in the derivative. That is what the mass balance says and as long as you have no proof that the natural carbon cycle increased a fourfold over the past near 60 years, as human emissions and the increase in the atmosphere did, you have no leg to stand on and your theory is just one of the many others that pop up now and then without any proof in the real world.

The variability of T causes the variability in CO2 around the trend, but that is only +/- 1.5 ppmv around a trend of 90 ppmv. That is just noise and has no influence on the increase of CO2.

No arbitrary manipulation of T to fit the slope of dCO2/dt can change the fact that the influence of temperature is mainly in the small variability and hardly in the CO2 increase…

• Bartemis says:

” That is what the mass balance says…”

No, that is what the pseudo-mass balance says. And, it is dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.

Your “simplest explanation” does not explain the excellent agreement between the rate of change of CO2 and the temperature anomaly, including the long term trend over the past 59 years. Ergo, it fails.

• Bart,

I have proven beyond doubt that a combination of the trend caused by human emissions and the temperature varaibility explains the full trend in the atmosphere, including most of its variability, as good as your theory does. Here again for those few who haven’t seen it:

That human emissions are the main cause of the increase is confirmed by every single observation, That temperature is the main cause of the increase violates every single observation. All what you have is a nice match between a lot of noise around a huge trend and a spurious “match” between two straight slopes.

The temperature anomaly only explains the variability, which is the same in T and dT/dt, only shifted back in time for the derivative, which has zero trend.
It doesn’t explain the increase in the atmosphere, as that is not caused by temperature, as you have removed much of the trend of the CO2 increase before comparing it with the the temperature trend and it violates Henry’s law for the solubility of CO2 in seawater, no matter if that is for a single sample in a lab or the wrold wide ocean surface in dynamic equilibrium with the atmosphere…

• Bartemis says:

You have “proven” nothing at all. You have merely extruded the data through some finely tuned filters. And, you have to bend over backwards to do it. All I have to do is take the derivative. Occam’s Razor says mine is more likely.

But, your prescription is a-physical, because you assume a natural, underlying equilibrium, and decouple the anthropogenic forcing from those equilibrium dynamics.

• Bart,

All I have done is the application of Henry’s law for the oceans, using the observed sink rate for oceans + vegetation of ~35 years half life time) and a factor 4 for the short term influence of T on CO2 (the same factor as you have used). Nothing is filtered, except for a 12-month smoothing of the observed CO2 rate of change.

But, your prescription is a-physical, because you assume a natural, underlying equilibrium, and decouple the anthropogenic forcing from those equilibrium dynamics.

Bart, there was a temperature controlled equilibrium of CO2 between the oceans (deep and surface) and the atmosphere over the past 800,000 years. Don’t you agree on that? That equilibrium changes with about 16 ppmv/K.

Further, the net sink rate is proportional to the extra CO2 pressure in the armosphere above steady state. With three points in the total CO2 level in the atmosphere and the corresponding net sink rate one can calculate the zero sink rate for a linear process (which the sinks are in the past 60 years), that is at the steady state level. That is ~290 ppmv, not by coincidence what Henry’s law says for the current average ocean surface temperature.

The removal of any extra CO2 injection into the atmosphere is not by the same mechanism as most of the natural fluxes.

Take the seasonal changes:
~60 GtC uptake in warm months by vegetation ~60 GtC/year release, with a peak in late fall.
~50 GtC release by the oceans in warm months, ~50 GtC uptake in cold months
Average global seasonal difference ~10 GtC all temperature induced.

Does that change if we add 10 GtC human emissions in the very first year of fossil fuels use? Hardly. Still near the same quantitities wil go in and out if the temperature differences over the seasons remain the same. There is no reason for the sessonal temperature caused processes to take more CO2 out of the atmosphere.

Of course, the extra CO2 increases the average pressure in the atmosphere a little bit. With the observed sink rate of 0.02, some 0,2 GtC will be taken away by the oceans and vegetation. The rest, 8.8 GtC remains in the atmosphere… we are now at 110 ppmv above steady state and only half of human emissions (as mass) are removed in the same year as emitted…

• Bartemis says:

“Bart, there was a temperature controlled equilibrium of CO2 between the oceans (deep and surface) and the atmosphere over the past 800,000 years. Don’t you agree on that?”

No, I do not. The ice cores are the only source of that insinuation, and they have fundamental problems.

“…With three points in the total CO2 level in the atmosphere and the corresponding net sink rate one can calculate the zero sink rate for a linear process…”

All premised on the ice cores, and the requirement that the relationships are unchanging over 100s of thousands of years.

“The removal of any extra CO2 injection into the atmosphere is not by the same mechanism as most of the natural fluxes.”

Utter nonsense. All inputs of the same compound must be treated exactly the same.

• dikranmarsupial says:

“That is facile. It is not the offset in the rate of change of CO2 that produces the curvature of the absolute level of CO2.”

This is a clear misrepresentation of the SkS article, which shows that the offset causes the linear trend in the CO2 (i.e. the rise in CO2, which is what actually matters), not the curvature (which is actually rather small and of little relevance). Nobody was claiming that the offset in the growth rate causes the *curvature*, as anyone who actually read the SkS article would know:

“Essentially the correlation only explains the variability of CO2 measurements around the long term trend, but not the trend itself.”

“Thus we can see that the long term rise is principally because of the mean value of net global emission, not because of the wiggles.”

“Thus the correlation doesn’t tell you very much about the cause of the long term rise, because that is mainly due to the mean value, not the variablity around the mean.”

“Key Point: It isn’t the variability (the general up and down wiggliness) in net emissions that gives rise to the long term trend, it is the mean value of the net emissions, and the value of the correlation does not depend in any way on the mean value. Therefore the correlation with net global emission tells you very little about the cause of the long term trend.”

How much more clearly did I need to state it? How more often did I need to state it?

Sadly, having been so insulting about the mass balance argument, and those that argue against him, Bartemis has backed himself into a corner where he can no longer admit he is wrong without looking utterly ridiculous. Hence his only option is to be ever more insulting and to indulge in this kind of rhetorical misrepresentation, which is why there is little point in trying to discuss this with him. I don’t need to insult Bartemis, as I am confident the science is correct.

• Bartemis says:

It’s not an insult, DM, merely a fact. Your pseudo-mass balance argument is dumb as rocks, and you have no business inserting yourself into a discussion in an area for which you have no training or aptitude.

• dikranmarsupial says:

So I point out that Bartemis had misrepresented the SkS article, and that he has backed himself into a position where he can no longer admit he is wrong without completely losing face, forcing him to resort to insults.

How does he reply? By showing that he hadn’t misrepresented the SkS article? No, by merely being insulting, as predicted (and thereby tacitly acknowledging that he had misrepresented the article). Very sad.

• Bartemis says:

Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis doubles down again, obviously because he can’t bring himself to admit that he misrepresented my argument, which did not claim that it is ” the offset in the rate of change of CO2 that produces the curvature of the absolute level of CO2.”, but instead shows the offset gives rise to the trend in atmospheric CO2.

Perhaps you would like to point out where I did claim that it is “the offset in the rate of change of CO2 that produces the curvature of the absolute level of CO2.” (emphasis mine).

• Bartemis says:

Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.

• Bartemis says:

Response here.

The pseudo-mass balance argument is just so, so, so dumb.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis makes it completely clear that he knows perfectly well that he misrepresented my argument, but can’t admit that is what he had done after having been so insulting. It is a shame that science cannot be discussed on blogs without descending to this sort of behaviour.

• Bartemis says:

DM is a computer scientist. He has no training in dynamic systems analysis, and he has no idea what he is talking about. The pseudo-mass balance argument is junk science.

• Bart, again:

“…With three points in the total CO2 level in the atmosphere and the corresponding net sink rate one can calculate the zero sink rate for a linear process…”

All premised on the ice cores, and the requirement that the relationships are unchanging over 100s of thousands of years.

Besides that the T/CO2 ratio in ice cores IS surprisingly linear and didn’t change in 800,000 years, my remark was for the recent period with direct measurements, not for ice core measurements.

Take three snapshots on the average trend in the past near 60 years of measurements:

1959: X ppmv above equilibrium, 0.5 ppmv/year net sink rate.
1988: X + 35 ppmv, 1.13 ppmv/year net sink rate.
2012: X + 85 ppmv, 2.15 ppmv/year net sink rate.

Between 1959 and 1988:
X + 35 – X ppmv extra CO2 pressure gives 1.13 – 0.5 = 0.63 ppmv/year net sink rate
or an e-fold decay rate of 55.6 years

Between 1959 and 2012:
X + 85 – X ppmv extra CO2 pressue gives 2.15 – 0.5 = 1.65 ppmv/year net sink rate
or an e-fold decay rate of 51,5 years.

X can be calculated too, taking the longest period:
X = 85 * 0.5 / 2,15 = 20 ppmv
Or the current steady state equilibrium is around 295 ppmv…

Not bad for a rough calculation, as per Henry’s law the current steady state should be around 290 ppmv…

• Bartemis says:

Congratulations on showing how to make a linear approximation. Why this is supposed to impress, I have no idea.

• Bart,

All what I have done is calculating the steady state of the oceans for the period 1959-current by back-calculating the net sink rates with the increase in the atmosphere. That is something that can’t exist according to you.

For something that doesn’t exist, the response is remarkably linear…

• DM is a computer scientist. He has no training in dynamic systems analysis, and he has no idea what he is talking about.

What is it they say about those who resort to ad hominem arguments? (this question is rhetorical, in case that isn’t obvious).

• dikranmarsupial says:

DM is actually an electronic engineer, who has taught circuit theory and differential equations. However he posts pseudonymously (rather than anonymously) because the only thing that matters is the validity of the argument, not the qualifications of the source. Not that you need to be an expert in dynamical systems to understand that conservation of mass (the mass balance analysis) establishes beyond reasonable doubt that the natural carbon cycle is a net carbon sink and hence opposing the observed rise in atmospheric CO2, in addition to numerous other lines of evidence.

• Bart,

There is no trend in the derivative of the temperature (anomaly), thus zero contribution of dT/dt to the slope of dCO2/dt. Only a small offset from zero. When integrated, that gives the more or less linear slope of T.

By comparing T with dCO2/dt you compare the slope of T with the largely detrended slope of CO2 because you are looking at the derivative.

That is pure curve fitting and has nothing to do with any physical process…

• Yes, it does. That is how dynamic processes with long equilibration time evolve.

This isn’t even remotely questionable. You are stuck in a static world.

• Bart,

There is reason to compare T variability with CO2 variability:
Short time T variability is less than +/- 0.3°C around the T trend.
Short time CO2 variability is +/- 1.5 ppmv around the CO2 trend, lagging T variability. That gives in detail some 3-5 ppmv/K short time (1-3 years) variability.
Short time human emissions variability is less than 0.4 ppmv/year, not visible in any monthly or even yearly measurement.

Total T trend is 0.8°C since 1958, including periods (1958-1975 and 1997-2012) with negative trends.
Total CO2 trend is +90 ppmv over the same period, slightly quadratic and always positive.
Total human emissions trend is +170 ppmv over the same period, slightly quadratic and always positive.

According to Henry’s law for CO2 in seawater, the maximum influence of T on CO2 is 16 ppmv/K (static as good as dynamic) over millennia, thus the 0.8°C is good for maximum 13 ppmv of the 90 ppmv increase.

The short time variability of T and CO2 (Pinatubo, El Niño/La Niña) zeroes out in 1-3 years and have no direct influence on the trends (as they are caused by different processes).

Similar findings can be made by comparing the derivatives of T and CO2. In that case dT/dt has zero trend, only a slight offset from zero, while the slope of dCO2/dt is caused by the slightly quadratic increase of CO2 in the atmosphere.

There is no reason at all to compare T with the dCO2/dt as you then compare the trend of T with the largely detrended change in CO2 and that leads to completely unphysical conclusions.

• Bartemis says:

“There is no reason at all to compare T with the dCO2/dt as you then compare the trend of T with the largely detrended change in CO2 and that leads to completely unphysical conclusions.”

Again, what is a-physical is your treatment of the natural equilibrium as a given, and your decoupling of the anthropogenic flows from the equilibrium dynamics.

You are imposing your own vision of how you think things should be, rather than following the data to determine how things are.

• Bart,

The natural equilibrium IS a given over the past at least 800,000 years. Not only from ice cores, but confirmed by over 3 million seawater samples in the past decades.

and your decoupling of the anthropogenic flows from the equilibrium dynamics.

Most natural in/out fluxes are caused by temperature related process: from seasonal to multi-millennia. As long as the temperature changes remain similar, there is no reason for these processes to take the extra human emissions away, no more reason than that they don’t take all CO2 out of the atmosphere to the last molecule.
The only way that can be done is by the influence of the extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere on some processes.

Thus there IS an effective decoupling between most of the natural fluxes which are two-way temperature controlled and the removal of an extra addition of human (and volcanic) CO2, which is only possible by pressure sensitive processes.

• Bartemis says:

“The natural equilibrium IS a given over the past at least 800,000 years. Not only from ice cores, but confirmed by over 3 million seawater samples in the past decades.”

Not in the slightest. As far as the last several decades go, this is the very question we are debating, so it is begging the question. As far as the ice cores go, they are A) questionable B) there is no requirement that the dynamical state of the climate today has to be the same as it was 800,000 years ago.

“As long as the temperature changes remain similar, there is no reason for these processes to take the extra human emissions away, no more reason than that they don’t take all CO2 out of the atmosphere to the last molecule.”

This is again begging the question. You are drawing conclusions based on the answer you have already settled on, and using those conclusions to justify the answer you have settled on.

“Thus there IS an effective decoupling between most of the natural fluxes which are two-way temperature controlled and the removal of an extra addition of human (and volcanic) CO2, which is only possible by pressure sensitive processes.”

There can be no decoupling. Any model that purports to explain CO2 concentration must be comprehensive. It must explain the natural equilibrium, and it must subject anthropogenic emissions to the same processes which establish the natural equilibrium.

• Bartemis says:

Original response disappeared. Apologies if it resurfaces. Synopsis:

A) You are begging the question throughout

B) There can be no decoupling. The same compound must be treated the same, no matter its source.

• Bart:

there is no requirement that the dynamical state of the climate today has to be the same as it was 800,000 years ago.

It was the same until a few hundred years ago. It should be today, but it isn’t. There is no indication that any natural flux increased a fourfold or more in the last few hundred years. There is no indication that Henry’s law ceased to exist. The only point that changed with confidence is the addition of fossil fuel CO2 by humans with a fourfold increase since 1959.

The natural equilibrium between ocean surface pCO2 and pCO2 in the atmosphere per Henry’s law is ~290 ppmv for the current average ocean surface temperature, no matter static or fully dynamic all over the globe.

You are drawing conclusions based on the answer you have already settled on

I draw conclusions from observations:
– natural fluxes cause a residence time of ~5 years or a throughput of ~150 GtC in ~830 GtC in the atmosphere. Confirmed by many different estimates, based on different observations.
– human emissions are at in total twice the increase in the atmosphere, both increasing a fourfold since 1958. Either human emissions are the cause of the increase, or some natural flux increased a fourfold over the same period, dwarfing human emissions.
– more recent estimates show a lengthening of the residence time vs. earlier estimates, thus a rather stable natural throughput in a growing CO2 mass. No indications are pointing to any substantial increase of any natural CO2 flux or cycle.

There can be no decoupling. Any model that purports to explain CO2 concentration must be comprehensive.

Bart, al what you stick too is a “temperature explains all” theory. There are many processes at work in nature, some mostly temperature driven, some pressure driven and some mixed.
There is not the slightest reason that the seasonal temperature changes will grow one leaf or apple more if the temperature change over the seasons didn’t increase or decrease.
It did grow more leaves, because the CO2 pressure in the atmosphere increased with 30%. That is of a complete different order than the CO2 exchanges due to the growth and wane of leaves over the seasons and largely independent of each other.

I have shown you that it is possible to explain the same graph with a combination of temperature for most of the variability around the trend and human emissions for most of the trend. Your solution thus is not unique and one need to show which one is the right one by looking at which is more consistent with the observations.

That human emissions are the main cause of the increase is consistent with all observations, that temperature is the main cause is consistent with none…

• Bartemis says:

“It was the same until a few hundred years ago.”

Begging the question.

“I draw conclusions from observations:”

You use the observations to construct a storyline based on your own peculiar interpretation.

“There are many processes at work in nature, some mostly temperature driven, some pressure driven and some mixed.”

Without a doubt. But, what we have here is a very clear signal relating two quantities that must be related in some fashion. The data tell us what fashion. And, what they are telling us is unmistakably that the major influence on atmospheric CO2 is temperature driving the rate of change.

“I have shown you that it is possible to explain the same graph with a combination of temperature for most of the variability around the trend and human emissions for most of the trend.”

It is a-physical, because it illegitimately decouples the equilibrium dynamics from the anthropogenic processing.

“That human emissions are the main cause of the increase is consistent with all observations, that temperature is the main cause is consistent with none…”

It is not consistent with the observation that the rate of change is proportional to temperature anomaly. The temperature relationship is consistent with all observations, just not necessarily your arbitrary interpretation of them.

• Bartemis says:

“That human emissions are the main cause of the increase is consistent with all observations, that temperature is the main cause is consistent with none…”

It isn’t consistent with the fact that the rate of change is proportional to temperature anomaly. My model is physically sound. Yours assumes a magical, natural equilibrium that simply exists for no particular reason.

• Bart,

It is getting confusing with parts everywhere…

You use the observations to construct a storyline based on your own peculiar interpretation.

Several observations are unambiguous. Like the drop in δ13C in the atmosphere, vegetation and the ocean surface. Which proves that the oceans can’t be the source…

It is a-physical, because it illegitimately decouples the equilibrium dynamics from the anthropogenic processing.

CO2 from whatever source is treated the same way by different processes. The main (seasonal) in/out fluxes are quite indifferent for any extra CO2, whatever the source, but the oceans are more sensitive for increased CO2 pressure in the atmosphere, whatever the source.
The removal of any extra CO2, whatever the source, is of a different order than the seasonal exchanges.

And you have a lot to learn about what is “consistent” and what not…

• 1sky1 says:

TTP:

Indeed, the offset in delta CO2 is NOT explained by the correlation with temperature over decadal time scales. No doubt, it’s due largely to anthropogenic sources. However, it requires blind faith to attribute decadal-scale global surface temperature variations to those sources. What would be required for such CAUSAL attribution is strong low-frequency coherence at decadal (and longer) periods, along with cross-spectral phase LEADS of CO2 relative to T. With yearly-average GST estimates uncorrupted by UHI, one finds weak coherence, at best, and CO2 consistently LAGGING temperature.

It is only through the artiface of UHI-corrupted and ad-hoc adjusted GST estimates that any credible causal relationship with the Mauna Loa CO2 record can be entertained. Sadly, those who rely upon simplistic “trend analysis” for their attributions have no concept of operative transfer functions in dynamic systems–which are specified by cross-spectral relationships between input and output–and lack the field experience required to properly vet station records, eliminating corrupted ones.

39. kivy10 says:

Termites?

40. Bart says

temperature is driving CO2, not CO2 driving temperature.

Henry says
anyone who knows a bit about chemistry knows that the first smoke from a kettle that you switched on, is the CO2 being removed from it. This is what the UV from the sun is doing to the top layers of the oceans.
So Bart is right.

Like others, I don’t see the relevance of this whole debate when we have never really discussed the results of Arrhenius and Tyndall and why in principle their predictions/evaluations are not valid to theorize that the net effect of more CO2 is that of warming, rather than cooling.

• henryp,

your namesake Henry would disagree, and so do over 3 million seawater samples: the influence of temperature on CO2 levels is not more than 16 ppmv/K over very long periods (glacials – interglacials) and smaller at shorter periods (seasonal to centuries).
Thus some 10 ppmv of the 110 ppmv can be caused by temperature, the rest of the 110 ppmv is from humans, burning fossil fuels…

• Bartemis says:

You are only considering the fast dynamics of equlibration with the ocean’s surface waters. There is a much longer equilibration time needed for the deep oceans.

• Bart,

The exchange between atmosphere and deep oceans is much too slow to have any short time effect on the dynamic equilibrium between ocean surface and atmosphere. During glacial – interglacial transitions CO2 changed with 0,02 ppmv/year. In opposite direction with 0.0066 ppmv/year. Currently humans add ~4,5 ppmv/year or ~225 times more than the “fast” natural exchange with the deep oceans.

Only by increasing the CO2 pressure in the atmosphere far beyond the long term equilibrium, about half of human emissions are sequestered by the deep oceans and the biosphere.

• afonzarelli says:

Yep, Bart, there ain’t a dimes worth of difference between digging co2 up out of the ocean (via the thermocline) and outgassing it verses digging it up out of the ground (via fossil fuels) and burning it…

• Fonzie,

Ther is only one small difference: slightly more CO2 is buried again near the poles into the deep oceans than digged up near the equator, while burying again the CO2 from digged coal, oil and gas needs a little more time…

• “The exchange between atmosphere and deep oceans is much too slow to have any short time effect on the dynamic equilibrium between ocean surface and atmosphere.”

It is precisely the slow exchange which provides the integral-like response over relatively short (compared to many centuries turnover time) timelines. Temperature modulation of the exchange, however, is not slow. Taken together, these give us the response we see – temperature modulated rate of change of the CO2 concentration, i.e., an integral response of CO2 to temperature.

• Bart,

The deep oceans exchanges play near zero role in the equilibrium between the ocean surface and the atmosphere. Over the past 165 years, the natural exchange would have been around +3.3 ppmv from the deep oceans exchange if we may apply the same “speed” as during a deglaciation. Thus near the complete “static” equilibrium is between the ocean surface and the atmosphere on periods of centuries.

Temperature modulation of the deep ocean exchanges is minimal at 16 μatm/K for the ocean surface: less than 5%/K of the direct in/out flux exchanges between deep oceans and atmosphere via upwelling and sink places. Fully compensated by a 16 ppmv/K CO2 change in the atmosphere:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/upwelling_temp.jpg

Moreover, observations of ΔpCO2 over all oceans show that the oceans are a net sink for CO2, not a source, despite a small warming since the LIA.

• Bartemis says:

“The deep oceans exchanges play near zero role in the equilibrium between the ocean surface and the atmosphere.”

Warning: assertion alert. Just because you proclaim it so does not make it so, Ferdinand.

“Moreover, observations of ΔpCO2 over all oceans show that the oceans are a net sink for CO2, not a source, despite a small warming since the LIA.”

Excruciatingly dumb pseudo-mass balance argument again.

• Bart:

A temperature change of ~7°C in 5,000 years did give a change in CO2 of ~110 ppmv with a lag of ~800 years over a deglaciation as a lagged response of the deep oceans.
The temperature drop between the MWP (around 1200 AD) and the LIA (around 1600 AD) should now have its effect: a drop of ~13 ppmv in atmospheric CO2 levels over the next 400 years as a lagged response of the deep oceans…

Excruciatingly dumb pseudo-mass balance argument again.

Only from observations, something you obviously don’t like, because they refute your theory:

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/pubs/outstand/feel2331/mean.shtml
From Feely e.a.:
Distribution of the climatological mean annual sea-air CO2 flux (moles CO2/yr) for the reference year 1995 representing non-El Niño conditions…
…This map yields an annual oceanic uptake flux for CO2 of 2.2 ± 0.4 PgC/yr.

• Bartemis says:

“A temperature change of ~7°C in 5,000 years did give a change in CO2 of ~110 ppmv with a lag of ~800 years over a deglaciation as a lagged response of the deep oceans.”

Maybe it did, and maybe it didn’t. We cannot know for sure, as the ice core measurements cannot be corroborated.

But, it has no relevance to your assertion.

“Only from observations, something you obviously don’t like, because they refute your theory:”

All observations are consistent with either hypothesis, as they must be. It is a tautology – if the atmospheric concentration goes up, then the concentration of the surface oceans will go up, and vice versa.

• Bartemis says:

BTW, I explain the fundamental flaw in the pseudo-mass balance argument once again down below.

You’ve hung your hat on two very questionable premises, and one very questionable assertion. To wit:

1) The pseudo-mass balance argument, which is hopelessly wrong

2) The absolute certainty of the ice core proxies

The questionable assertion is that the present state of the climate is the same as it was for the entire ice core record.

If you winnow your arguments down, these very questionable assumptions form the basis for your case. One of the legs of that table is non-existent (pseudo-mass balance), and the other two are very wobbly at best. Take them away, and what have you got? A whole bunch of nothing.

• Bart,

Again…

1. The ice core measurements from cores with extreme differences in average (local) temperature and (local) accumulation rate show the same CO2 levels for the same average period. Even with an overlap of ~20 years with direct measurements at the South Pole.

The ice core measurements show a similar drop in δ13C level as coralline sponges in the ocean surface over the past 600 years. That is in direct ratio to human emissions and the increase in the atmosphere (as measured in ice cores, firn and atmosphere). That means that at least the δ13C drop is directly confirmed by an independent observation. As human CO2 and human δ13C are intimately connected, the confirmation extends to CO2 levels.

Further, you have zero indication that the carbon cycle between the deep oceans and the atmosphere substantially increased. If that was the case, the δ13C level in the atmosphere would increase, while we see a firm decrease, not seen in 800,000 years. Thus if there were changes, these are too small to be detected.

Thus deep ocean changes play very little role in the exchanges between atmosphere and ocean surface over the period of interest.

2. All observations are consistent with either hypothesis

The observation that the oceans for at least 30 years follows the inrease in the atmosphere is consistent with your hypotesis that the oceans are the source of the increase in the atmosphere? Who do you think to fool with that kind of remark?

3. The mass balance must be obeyed at any moment of time and space. I just shredded your “alternative explanation” into the dustbin. See below…

• Bartemis says:

You shredded nothing. It’s pitiful. An absolute flail, totally disconnected from reality. I have responded, but it has not appeared yet. If it does not soon, I will repost.

41. David L. Hagen says:

Desorption – Absorption Rachet vs changing production/sequestration?
CO2 desorption is faster than absorption. See CO2 Temperature and Ice Ages
Could we be seeing a Desorption-Absorption Ratchet?
How much of the difference between the 2 ppm difference between the 5-6 ppm decrease versus 7-8 ppm increase is due to increased CO2 and how much due to lower absorption over desorption?
Until that is quantitatively answered, we do not know how much anthropogenic CO2 is contributing to atmospheric CO2 increase etc.

• David,

For the ice ages, the long term changes did involve the full ~800 year cycle over the deep oceans at a rate between 0.0066 ppmv/year (cooling) and 0.02 ppmv/year (warming). Not comparable to the current increase in the atmosphere of 2 ppmv/year with 4 ppmv/year emissions, which is much faster than the deep oceans can absorb in the same year as emitted.
The observed e-fold decay rate for the extra CO2 pressure above steady state (into the oceans + biosphere) is ~51 years or a half life of ~35 years. Absorption rates:
– Ocean surface: ~0.5 GtC/year
– Deep oceans: ~3 GtC/year
– Biosphere: ~1 GtC/year
Total ~4.5 GtC/year or about half human emissions.

That makes ~2.3 ppmv increase in the atmosphere caused by human emissions. Seasonal cycles are entirely caused by temperature changes over the seasons and are hardly influenced by the extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere, except for the small extra uptake, which is largely independent of temperature changes.

42. Ferdinand

You avoided the issue at hand. Sorry to tell you again: there is no man made warming. At any rate, the warming is not even global, as I found out:

Concerned to show that man made warming (AGW ) is correct and indeed happening, I thought that here [in Pretoria, South Africa] I could easily prove that. Namely the logic following from AGW theory is that more CO2 would trap heat on earth, hence we should find minimum temperature (T) rising pushing up the mean T. Here, in the winter months, we hardly have any rain but we have many people burning fossil fuels to keep warm at night. On any particular cold winter’s day that results in the town area being covered with a greyish layer of air, viewable on a high hill outside town in the early morning.
I figured that as the population increased over the past 40 years, the results of my analysis of the data [of a Pretoria weather station] must show minimum T rising, particularly in the winter months. Much to my surprise I found that the opposite was happening: minimum T here was falling, any month….I first thought that somebody must have made a mistake: the extra CO2 was cooling the atmosphere, ‘not warming it. As a chemist, that made sense to me as I knew that whilst there were absorptions of CO2 in the area of the spectrum where earth emits, there are also the areas of absorption in the 1-2 um and the 4-5 um range where the sun emits. Not convinced either way by my deliberations and discussions as on a number of websites, I first looked at a number of weather stations around me, to give me an indication of what was happening:
https://i1.wp.com/oi58.tinypic.com/2mnhh74.jpg

The results puzzled me even more. Somebody [God/Nature] was throwing a ball at me…..The speed of cooling followed a certain pattern, best described by a quadratic function.
I carefully looked at my earth globe and decided on a particular sampling procedure to find out what, if any, the global result would be. Here is my final result on that:
https://i0.wp.com/oi62.tinypic.com/33kd6k2.jpg

Hence, looking at my final Rsquare on that, I figured out that there is no AGW, at least not measurable.
Arguing with me that 99% of all scientists disagree with me is useless. You cannot have an “election” about science.
You only need one man to get it right.

• Bindidon says:

henryp on April 8, 2017 at 7:54 am

You only need one man to get it right.

Yes henryp: we all know you are from your personal point of view the one and only.

• Henryp,

I was reacting on the first part: temperature rises CO2, which is true, but not 110 ppmv, only maybe 10 ppmv since the LIA…

I also disagree on the second part, as the increased absorption of IR in the CO2 band is actually masured by satellites and the increased backradiation in the same band towards the surface is measured too by two ground stations. Which still gives very little increase in temperature of the surface…

Not that I am afraid of that: in my opinion, warmer is better and the observed increase in temperature and CO2 is far more beneficial than harmful…

• Ferdinand
It seems then we are agreed now that there is no man made warming?
I don’t see the relevance of this whole debate, then, when we have never really discussed the results of Arrhenius and Tyndall and why in principle their predictions/evaluations are not valid to theorize that the net effect of more CO2 is that of warming, rather than cooling.

Namely, apart from the absorption in the 14-15 um band where earth emits, CO2 has absorptions in the 1-2um and 4-5 um band where the sun emits. Most recently, we also found a certain small band in the UV range which is how [currently] we can identify its presence on other planets.

Particularly, graphs 6 (bottom) and 7 of the report prove my point.{i.e. we can even measure the energy (radiation) reflected from earth by the CO2 via the moon}
http://astro.berkeley.edu/~kalas/disksite/library/turnbull06a.pdf

• Henryp,

We do agree that CO2 has little effect on temperature/climate, not that it is zero, that is a scientific step too far. Anyway, more beneficial than harmful…

That I always react on the (mainly human) origin of the CO2 increase in the atmosphere is because sceptics shoot in their own foot by insisting that “something else” is the cause of the increase, while all evidence points to the human origin…

43. We’re looking for causation. One before the other. So timelags: temp rises before or after CO2?

• Douglas,

T leads CO2 over the past at least 800,000 years until a few hundred years ago when humans settled and started to use land and herd cattle and in increasing amounts using fossil fuels. Here for a combination of ice cores over the past 1,000 years:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/antarctic_cores_001kyr_large.jpg

The increase after 1800 can’t be explained by temperature, as that was probably not higher than in 1200 (the MWP).
Still on short time periodes (seasonal, 1-3 years) temperature still leads the variability in rate of change, as the article shows, but that is only for the (+/- 1.5 ppmv) “noise” around the (90 pmv) trend, which is not caused by temperature.

• Ferdinand. The chart is constructed on the assumption gas concentrations in glaciers remain static at ppm level for hundreds of years. How could it be so at molecular level when glaciers themselves behave like viscous liquid?

• jaakkokateenkorva,

Indeed, ice is plastic, I have foto’s of glaciers in Alaska which show the same behaviour as sound waves after passing a narrow opening…

That is the reason why most ice cores are taken on the summits of ice domes. as these have little sideward flows, only the deeper layers are more compressed and get thinner.

The gas inclusions simply follow the ice, but have no direct connections with each other, thus gas exchanges are very limited, if at all. One has attempted to find a theoretical migration of CO2 in relative “warm” (coastal) ice cores (-23°C) ice cores by looking at the CO2 increase near remelt layers. That shows that the resolution broadens from 20 to 22 years at middle depth and to 40 years at full depth:
http://catalogue.nla.gov.au/Record/3773250
That plays no role at all for the much colder (-40°C) inland ice cores of Antarctica.

See for more background information:
http://www.pnas.org/content/94/16/8343.full

44. “CO2 has always been a participant in keeping our planet about 33 °C warmer than it would be in its absence”
==========
actually, the 33C is better explained by the conversion between Potential Energy (which does not affect temperature) and Kinetic Energy (which does affect temperature).

The average temperature of the Troposphere is 33C cooler than the surface. This is at approximately 5 km altitude on average. This temperature determined by radiation from the sun.

Without vertical circulation, the Troposphere would all be the same temperature due to conduction, and both the surface and the Troposphere would be 33C cooler.

However, due to circulation, the Troposphere below 5 km is warmer that what the sun provides, because PE is converted into KE. Above 5km the Troposphere is cooler than what the sun provides, because KE is converted into PE. This PE/KE conversion, combined with the condensation of water, gives us the Lapse Rate which on average is about 6.5 C/km.

Combining these two figures we get: 5 km x 6.5 C/km = 32.5 C = 33 C warmer without any need for CO2.

The energy to provide the 33 C of warming at the surface comes for a cooling of the atmosphere above 5 km, due to vertical circulation of the Troposphere in a gravitational field, powered differential heating by the sun.

• Correct.
The Earth’s surface is 33C warmer than the S-B equation predicts simply because PE is converted to KE in descending air columns having previously been converted from KE to PE in ascending columns.
The greenhouse effect is a consequence of atmospheric mass conducting energy in the form of KE from the surface, lifting that KE to height whilst converting it to PE and then later returning that PE to the surface in the form of KE which then adds to incoming solar radiation.
Nothing to do with radiation physics at all.

• Bindidon says:

ferdberple on April 8, 2017 at 11:46 am

actually, the 33C is better explained by the conversion between Potential Energy (which does not affect temperature) and Kinetic Energy (which does affect temperature).

http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.de/2015/07/physicist-richard-feynman-proved.html

This is probably the origin of your statement.

I know of Feynman’s ideas. But your assertion (my bold emphasis above) needs a proof, isn’t it? We have here two concurrent theories, but we do not know which one is better.

• Bindidon says:

Stephen Wilde on April 8, 2017 at 2:41 pm
See here for why it is wrong:

Published by… Stephen Wilde ha ha ha
Come back here Mr Wilde when you will have presented your ideas in a peer-reviewed paper…
Anybody can pretend anything on his/her own blog.

• I could say the same to you…come back here when you have presented your ideas in a peer-reviewed paper …while I don’t agree with some of Mr. Wilde’s ideas, at least he HAS THE COURAGE TO PUT HIS REAL NAME TO HIS WORDS, unlike you. Take a 48 hour timeout to think about it.

• Wow, so Bindidon has to publish a peer reviewed paper, but you don’t require Stephen Wilde do do the same. How about if Bindidon publishes his ideas on a blog….that would be fair wouldn’t it?

• Bindidon says:

Anthony Watts on April 8, 2017 at 6:31 pm

Replied via another channel…

45. To Ferninand Engelbeen. You say that “The main effect is on tropical vegetation”. The photosynthesis rate increases, when the temperature increases. The increased photosynthesis decreases the CO2 concentration. How do you explain that the temperature peaks – ocean temperature in my model and global temperature in the graph by blcjr – matches almost perfectly with the CO2 peaks? If your explanation would be correct, the opposite would happen: a higher temperature decreases the CO2 concentration.

• aveolilla,

Temperature increase especially in the extratropic latitudes increases – or even starts – photosynthesis. That gives the huge sink in the summer months for the NH, where most of the extratropic forests are.

That is not the case for the tropics: higher ocean temperatures during an El Niño mean changed rain patterns and large part of the tropic forests dry out and release more CO2 than they take away. That is measured by looking at the O2 use in the atmosphere: after subtracting the O2 use by fossil fuel burning, the remainder is what the biosphere uses or produces. In most years, more O2 is produced than used, thus the biosphere is a net sink for CO2. During El Niño years, the biosphere is a net source of CO2. See:
http://www.bowdoin.edu/~mbattle/papers_posters_and_talks/BenderGBC2005.pdf
Figure 7.

In the case of an El Niño, both the oceans and the biosphere are lesser sinks or even temporarely sources of CO2, thus still the correlation with (ocean) temperatures hold, but the main reaction is from tropical vegetation, not only from the oceans… In the case of a huge eruption like the 1991 Pinatubo, the opposite happens: temperatures drop somewhat, but again the main effect is in vegetation: the scattering of sunlight by the volcanic debris enhanced photosynthesis, as leaves normally in the shadow of other leaves for part of the day, then received more light from another direction…

This is clearly visible in the opposite CO2 and δ13C changes as is the case for vegetation uptake/release, while for the oceans CO2 and δ13C changes parallel each other.

• Bartemis says:

This is fundamentally a misdirection. Seasonal variation is entirely beside the point.

The plot that headlines this article is comparing yearly averages of the rate of change of CO2 with temperature. The variations that lie on top of one another are on the order of 5 years or so on average. So, seasonal variations have nothing to do with it.

• Bart,

My response and the work of Battle e.a. is specifically the reacton of the biosphere (mainly the tropical forests) on ocean surface temperature changes, which is the topic of interest.

That largely refutes your temperature-explains-all narrative, as tropical forests react opposit to temperature increases (less CO2 absorption, more emission) than extratropical forests on seasonal temperature changes. Thus short term (1-3 years) CO2 variability is mainly from tropical forests, but the long term increase is NOT from the biosphere, as that is a net sink for CO2 over periods longer than 1-3 years. The earth is greening…

Even “if” the overall CO2 increase was also caused by temperature, in any case, that is not the same process as that causes the variability around the trend…

Thus anyway, the same factor used for variability and trend has no merit…

46. Ferdinand
You have not explained from what particular experiment / test results you believe that the net effect of more CO2 in the air is that of warming rather then cooling?

Bindidon
In the city that you live in, have minimum temperatures been rising or falling during the past 20 years?

• Henry,

As CO2 retains more IR upward (as measured by satellites) and sends more IR downward (as measured by surface stations), it must give more warming than cooling (as it does in the stratosphere), because energy can’t be destroyed or created to/from nothing… If that is a lot of difference, is a different question…

• Ferdinand
You have to present a balance sheet of how much radiation is deflected 1-5 um 12 hr /day and how much is retained 24hr/ day by the odd 100 ppm extra.

• Bindidon says:

henryp on April 8, 2017 at 1:09 pm
GHCN V3 station 61710384000 BERLIN-TEMPEL
Trend for the unadjusted tmin data jan 1997 – dec 2016: + 0.28 °C / decade
Hope it helps you…

• henryp says:

Ferdinand
You have to present a balance sheet of how much radiation is deflected 1-5 um 12 hr /day and how much is retained 24hr/ day by the odd 100 ppm extra.
You have to present a balance sheet of how much radiation is deflected away from earth 0-5 um 12 hr /day in the areas where CO2 absorbs and how much is retained 24hr/ day by the absorption of CO2 in the 14-15 um range, in both cases by the odd 100 ppm extra. This cannot be done with a closed box experiment and neither can it be done “with a satellite’. On top of that we have the problem that we also sit with absorption of water [vapor] in the 14-15 um range.
Particularly, graphs 6 (bottom) and 7 of the report below prove my point that the CO2 is also cooling the atmosphere, i.e. absorptions of the CO2 in the 1-2 um that we picked up via the moon i.e. we can qualitatively measure the energy (radiation) reflected from earth by the CO2 via the moon
http://astro.berkeley.edu/~kalas/disksite/library/turnbull06a.pdf

Bindidon
the point behind my question was that you must always first find out what goes on in your own backyard, as, in my case, I got a bit of a surprise. My finding was that the increase in CO2 here in Pretoria did not cause any increase in minimum T over the past 40 years; instead it went down, even though [as we all know] CO2 went up.
I don’t know about your station Tempelhof 10384000 because I do not see data there beyond 2008.
Berlin station 726160 at the airport shows a rise of 0.58K/decade from 1996-2017 for minima. However, for means the result is almost identical. For maxima it rose by 0.65K/decade showing that the rise in Tmean and Tmin in Berlin appears to be caused by increasing solar radiation. Knowing a bit of my sun, the increase in radiation is most probably due to more sunshine hours in Berlin, i.e. less cloudiness and less rain as determined by the ‘weather’. – nobody knows which way the wind blows, exactly – but it appears that the weather is getting better. That will be a good thing as I happen to be on holiday in Germany in August; perhaps we must chat over a cup of coffee and put both our brains together. Besser, vielleicht, wenn das wetter so gut ist, machen wir ein Bier?

• Bindidon says:

henryp on April 9, 2017 at 6:49 am

Berlin station 726160 at the airport shows a rise of 0.58K/decade from 1996-2017 for minima. However, for means the result is almost identical. For maxima it rose by 0.65K/decade showing that the rise in Tmean and Tmin in Berlin appears to be caused by increasing solar radiation.

What I experience here with you perfectly fits to what you present all the time: spurious matters with no relation to reality.

You don’t need more than to google to find out where your strange Berlin station 726160 is located in:
https://de.flightaware.com/resources/airport/KBML/services/FBO/Berlin_Municipal_Airport

It’s in USA (NH). There are many cities called Berlin in the USA, henryp…

A simple Google search for station 61710384000 would have been helpful for you to understand your blind-alley.

I’m sorry henryp: you make me losing some precious time here I would rather spend for more important things. Let me wish you all the very best.

47. Joe – The climate scientist April 7, 2017 at 2:29 pm
“There is near perfect correlation of the last 30 or so years (as compared to the last 100 years, 200 years, last 1,000 years, etc)
Therefore it proves co2 is the primary driver of AGW. (do pay any mind to the lack of correlation in the prior 1,000 years, they are ot relevant)”

The correlation proves nothing unless you can prove causation.
I have here just as good correlation with the PAUSE included, but I have no means of proving causation.
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/MTC1.gif

48. Steve in SC says:

I still have difficulty with the fact that Mona Loa is next door to the most active volcano on earth.
CO2 may be well mixed but it in not necessarily evenly distributed.

• Steve,

There are about 70 stations maintained by different organisations of different countries that measure CO2 in “background” conditions, that is as far as possible away from local contamination. Even at Mauna Loa most of the measurements are done in trade wind air, only passing ocean waters for thousands of km.

Have a look at lots of stations and their data at:

• afonzarelli says:

This nice little video says it all…

• Bindidon says:

Steve in SC on April 8, 2017 at 1:54 pm

I still have difficulty with the fact that Mona Loa is next door to the most active volcano on earth.

I can understand! And there were many asking for the same.

Please have a quick look at a page dated 2008 (!)
https://www.skepticalscience.com/co2-measurements-uncertainty.htm

and follow the messages posted by commenter “Mizimi” (1, 7, 9, 11, 12) and all answers related to them.

I’m all but a fan of SKS but they bring sometimes really valuable information.

49. agfosterjr says:

As I recall there is a 3 year lag between NH and SH CO2 increase. Is that correct, and if so can it be reconciled with a mostly natural CO2 growth? That is, due to the ITCZ, anthropogenic CO2 transfers slowly from north to south, whereas if warming oceans were the primary source, it would slowly transfer from south to north. –AGF

• agfosterjr.

The increase indeed is near ground in the NH first, taking ~6 months to the height of Mauna Loa and 1-2 years to the SH, which proves, together with the opposite δ13C drop (from low-13C fossil fuels) that human emissions are the main cause, as about 90% of all human emissions are in the NH. The graph is here (but needs a more recent update!).

• The NH oceans being colder than the SH oceans, with consequent higher CO2 carrying capacity, and the SH oceans being prevented from warming further because they are already at the maximum temperature allowed by the greenhouse effect (whether radiative or mass induced) as per Willis’s thermostat hypothesis (which was actually noted by others prior to Willis if I recall my 60s education correctly) any warming of the entire system has a disproportionate effect on the CO2 content of the NH oceans.
Hence one does not need to invoke human emissions to explain observations.
Whilst I have every respect for Ferdinand and his detailed analyses the fact is that over the years I have noted that behind everything he says there are certain basic assumptions which do not necessarily hold true because alternative explanations are available such as this.

• I should have said that the SH oceans are CLOSER to the maximum temperature allowed by the greenhouse effect so that any warming (or cooling) of the entire system has a disproportionate effect on the CO2 content of the NH oceans.

• Low C13 isotope emissions from the organic content of NH oceans since the LIA ?

• Stephen Wilde:

Low C13 isotope emissions from the organic content of NH oceans since the LIA ?

Would be a little difficult as all ocean CO2 (deep and surface) have 13C/12C ratio’s (+0 to +5 per mil) above the current ratio in the atmosphere (-8 per mil)… Thus more outgassing from the oceans, wherever that would be, or even more CO2 exchanges between oceans and atmosphere, would increase the 13C/12C ratio in the atmosphere.

It seems that your ocean outgasssing theory violates some observations…

BTW, human emissions are in 13C/12C ratio far below (-24 per mil) the ratio in the atmosphere…

• Have you considered this?:

From the analyses shown, it can be seen that there is no evidence to suggest that carbon dioxide from the burning of hydrocarbons has any influence on atmospheric levels. There is significant correlation of atmospheric CO2 with ocean temperature which might be explained by Henry’s law of gas solubility in water. It is also shown that changes in CO2 occur after changes in temperature, and in particular ocean temperature. An apparent periodicity in the correlation may suggest a link toocean circulation patterns.

The idea of natural saturating CO2 sinks as suggested by the UN IPCC has been shown to be flawed because it simply is not supported by the data.By example it has been shown that cumulation of all positive time series with a slight upward trendcan be made to closely match the Mauna Loa atmospheric CO2
record even when there is no linkage between datasets. This process cannot be used to demonstrate a relationship between anthropogenic releases of CO2 from burning hydrocarbons as it is inappropriate and leads to the spurious long atmospheric lifetimes for CO2 used by the IPCC.”

and especially :

“Although not dealt with in detail in this work, isotopic changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide(13C/12C ratio) could be explained by dynamic fractionation taking place at the air/ocean interface.Global average out-gassing of carbon dioxide would inherently create a change in atmospheric isotopic ratio”

from here:

http://www.scribd.com/doc/129802522/Natural-or-Not

• Stephen,

I had some discussion in the past with Jonathan Drake, as he was the author of a theory that the CO2 levels from ice cores needed a “correction”. Don’t remember what it was (temperature?) but it was a quite strange idea at that time…

isotopic changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide(13C/12C ratio) could be explained by dynamic fractionation taking place at the air/ocean interface

There is indeed a fractionation when CO2 transfers from the oceans into the atmosphere and back. In both cases the lighter fraction increases. The back and forth transfer gives an overall drop of about – 8 per mil between ocean surface and atmosphere. That can be seen in the isotopic difference between the ocean waters (0 to +5 per mil δ13C, depends of biological activity) and the atmosphere (-6.4 per mil δ13C) in pre-industrial times. In current times, both the atmosphere and the ocean surface dropped in δ13C level, due to human use of fossil fuels. If there was more upwelling from the deep coeans (which gives abundant biolife), that would give an increase of the δ13C levels in the atmosphere, not a further decrease…

50. noaaprogrammer says:

Has anyone done research on the percent components of gasses released by volcanoes? SO2 would have a cooling effect when vented high enough in the atmosphere. What effect do other gases have?

• Bindidon says:

noaaprogrammer on April 8, 2017 at 9:13 pm

You are right to mention SO2, as this gas really is a problem subsequent to every eruption due to the change of the so called Stratospheric Aerosol Optical Depth. This has been accurately measured by satellites.

What now concerns CO2 output by volcanoes: I think Ferdinand Engelbeen informed us that it is at best 1% of what humans emit. About CH4 I don’t know anything valuable.

• noaaprogrammer,

A nice overview of volcanic gases is here:

http://volcano.oregonstate.edu/book/export/html/151

Only with explosive eruptions (like with the Pinatubo), the stratosphere is reached and SO2 transforms to SO3 (with ozone) and that attracts water vapor to form H2SO4 + water drops which reflect/scatter sunlight, cooling the earth somewhat, but also enhancing photosynthesis (thanks to the scattering). The particles drop out of the stratosphere in 1-3 years as they get heavier over time. If SO2 doesn’t reach the stratosphere, that rains out in a few days. The same for other acids (HCl, HF).

Nearby large emissions of active volcanoes (or even non-active), CO2 can suffocate plants (Mammoth Lakes in the US and some lake in Africa) and even animals/humans. Some volcanoes contain relative huge quantities of HF (Iceland), sufficient to kill grazing sheep and cows after an eruption. SO2 in large concentrations is toxic when inhaled,…

• Bartemis says:

And, according to you, the cumulative CO2 from all those events should still be in the atmosphere in a ratio of 1:2. So, where are they?

• Bart,

That remark only proves that you have no idea where you ar talking about.

Any extra CO2, whatever the origin, above steady state for the current average ocean surface temperature (which is ~290 ppmv for ~15°C) is removed by the sinks at a ratio of 0.02 per year (~51 years e-fold decay rate), surprisingly linear over the past near 60 years.

Thus a continuous emission of ~0.05 ppmv/year from volcanoes partly remains in the atmosphere until the extra pressure in the atmosphere is high enough to give an equal sink rate. That is with a CO2 pressure in the atmosphere of 0.05/0.02 = 2.5 ppmv extra above steady state.

That the current sink rate is only half human emissions is simply because the extra pressure in the atmosphere is not high enough to remove all emissions in the same year as emitted: either double it to 220 ppmv above steady state (with constant emissions) or halve human emissions.

• Bartemis says:

You are making up arbitrary rules, and treating CO2 from different sources differently. If half of human emissions remain in the atmosphere, then half of all emissions from any source must remain in the atmosphere. There is no way around this. To hold otherwise is a throwback to an age when, e.g., planets were said to arbitrarily move in perfect circles, for no particular reason than that being what the observers wanted to believe.

• Bart,

For someone as brilliant as you are, you have obviously no idea how the real world works.

I am not treating CO2 from different sources different. I do treat different processes different.

What you don’t understand (or refuse to understand) is that different processes are at work in nature.

Most of the carbon cycles are temperature driven. That kind of processes doesn’t remove one gram of CO2 out of the atmosphere after a full cycle, no matter how much CO2 is in the atmosphere: as much CO2 is going in as is going out, as long as the temperature change (seasonal, year by year) remains the same. That is the case as good as for human as for natural CO2 in any mix which that moment is available in the atmosphere (or other reservoirs). That is largely the case for atmosphere-vegetation exchanges and partly the case for the ocean surface. That gives the ~5 years residence time of any CO2 molecule in the atmosphere.
Any additional CO2 injected in the atmosphere, whatever the origin (volcanoes, humans), has no influence on this process.

There IS a temperature controlled dynamic equilibrium between ocean surface and atmosphere, controlled by Henry’s law. Any change in that equilibrium, either in the ocean surface or the atmosphere will give a change in in/out fluxes between these two, trying to re-establish that equilibrium. The influence of temperature is exactly known: between 4-16 ppmv/K for short term to very long term changes (the latter including the deep oceans).
The influence of any extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere above that equilibrium is exactly known too: a half life time of ~35 years. Or an order of magnitude slower than the residence time.
Again applicable for any mix of human and natural CO2 in the atmosphere. This is the process that is directly influenced by an extra injection of CO2 into the atmosphere.

If you don’t understand that difference in real world processes, completely based on observations, then any further discussion has no sense and you may add yourself to the gallery of misunderstood geniuses, together with Dr. Salby, Dr. Harde, Segalstad, Richard Courtney,…

• Ferdinand, you seem to be relying on an assumption that the ocean surface releases CO2 in a response related solely to global average air temperature.
I referred you to a chart that showed the main bands of CO2 to be in the areas beneath the subtropical high pressure cells where most sunlight enters the oceans.
The implication is that the thermal energy in sunlight entering those regions drives CO2 out of the sunlit waters at a far greater rate than would be expected from the operation of Henry’s Law alone.

• Bartemis says:

“What you don’t understand (or refuse to understand) is that different processes are at work in nature.”

It does not matter. They must all treat the same compound the same.

“That kind of processes doesn’t remove one gram of CO2 out of the atmosphere after a full cycle, no matter how much CO2 is in the atmosphere: as much CO2 is going in as is going out, as long as the temperature change (seasonal, year by year) remains the same.”

Assertion. Begging the question.

“There IS a temperature controlled dynamic equilibrium between ocean surface and atmosphere, controlled by Henry’s law.”

And, there is a temperature controlled dynamic equilibrium all the way down to the bottom of the oceans as well.

“…to the gallery of misunderstood geniuses, together with Dr. Salby, Dr. Harde, Segalstad, Richard Courtney,…”

I do not know much about the middle two, but am happy to be included with the first and last. He who laughs last has the loudest laugh.

• Bart,

I know that you are narrow minded if your theory is even remotely in danger…

I never, ever, discriminated between CO2 sources. Thus please don’t repeat that kind of nonsense again and again. All extra CO2 is indiscriminately absorbed by any of the sink processes.

What you refuse to take into consideration is that there are differences in absortion rates in different kinds of processes: some processes are near indifferent for extra CO2 in the atmosphere, while quite sensitive for temperature changes, others are less sensitive for temperature changes and more sensitive for CO2 pressure changes in the atmosphere. There is the difference. Not in the origin of any (extra) CO2 of what is in the mass and mix in the atmosphere at any time.

Assertion. Begging the question.

The largest CO2 in and out fluxes are from the seasonal changes.
That is about 60 GtC in and out the biosphere and about 50 GtC out and in the ocean surface. Countercurrent for both and the net result is about 10 GtC in and out the atmosphere or average globally about 5 ppmv up and down.

That is already a point of disagreement: in/out fluxes are at no moment in time all together in the atmosphere as total input or as total output: thus the residual 10 GtC two-way seasonal cycle as measured in the atmosphere from the +/- 110 GtC in/out fluxes never “dwarfs” the one-way addition of 9 GtC human emissions over a year.

From 1984 to 2003.5 CO2 levels increased with 30 ppmv or about 10% CO2 increase in the atmosphere.
Temperature went up in the same period with 0.45°C. So far so good.

Did the seasonal cycle and net sink increase with 10% to remove all human CO2 of each year? Well let us look at the net result over two equal periods around the above years (*):

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/seasonal_CO2_MLO_BRW.jpg

Only near ground in the NH, there is a slight increase in seasonal amplitude, thanks to longer growth seasons and more CO2 in the atmosphere. At Barrow (and most all near surface NH stations), the change in amplitude for 10% CO2 increase in the atmosphere is ~2 ppmv on an amplitude of ~14 ppmv or about 7%. Not bad.

If we may assume that at maximum the near sealevel stations in the NH represent 1/4th of the total mass of CO2 in the atmosphere, then the change in seasonal amplitude is less than 2% for a 10% CO2 increase in the atmosphere. Not as good.

Not only that, it hardly did help in the removal of the extra CO2: the yearly emissions still were about twice the yearly removal of CO2, thus if we may assume a 50:50 absorption rate between oceans and vegetation, the increase in net sink rate for the second period was about 0.25 ppmv (0.5 GtC), within 110 GtC seasonal in/out fluxes. Simply negligible for a 10% increase of CO2 in the atmosphere.

Conclusion: a substantial increase of CO2 in the atmosphere has hardly any influence on the bulk of the natural in/out fluxes. The removal of any extra CO2, whatever the source, needs other processes…

And, there is a temperature controlled dynamic equilibrium all the way down to the bottom of the oceans as well.

Which needs at least 8 centuries to have any measurable influence on atmospheric CO2 levels…

————————————-

(*) these periods were taken as that was from the start of regular δ13C measurements at several stations, which proves that the main seasonal CO2 change is from NH extra-tropical vegetation. I can repeat that for the first and last decade of the full period of CO2 measurements.

• Stephen,

The main release of CO2 from the oceans is due to the higher seawater temperatures near the equator and side bands, air temperatures are secondary. Sunlight of course is the main driver. The main CO2 releases are at the upwelling zones near the (Chilean/Peruvian) coast, where CO2 rich deep ocean waters are upwelling and are heatied up.
But I don’t think that there is more CO2 release than by the pCO2 difference between ocean surface and atmosphere per Henry’s law…

• Bartemis says:

“Which needs at least 8 centuries to have any measurable influence on atmospheric CO2 levels…”

No, the influence is immediate. You must have balance between what is being transported into the surface system via upwelling, and what is being transported out via downwelling, or there will be an accumulation. The accumulation needs on the order of 8 centuries to equalize. During the interim, you get an approximately integral relationship from temperature anomaly to CO2.

• Bart:

No, the influence is immediate. You must have balance between what is being transported into the surface system via upwelling, and what is being transported out via downwelling, or there will be an accumulation.

Bart, there is no observed huge change in deep oceans water circulation in the past centuries, except a seasonal and ENSO one. That is a matter of months to years. Even less for the CO2 concentrations in the deep water upwelling.

Even if there was a sudden increase in either amount of upwelling waters or concentration that would be met with a change in the atmosphere within a decade or two, fully compensating for the change in upwelling. Here for an enormous change of 10% in upwelling CO2 concentration:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/upwelling_incr.jpg

Maximum 30 ppmv extra in the atmosphere in 1-2 decades for a huge change which in reality should be much smaller and may need millennia in the deep oceans.
The reaction of the ocean surface – atmosphere tandem is simply much faster than the changes in or exchanges with the deep oceans.

The influence of temperature on the in/out fluxes is similar and fully compensated with a change of 16 ppmv/K.

• Bartemis says:

“Bart, there is no observed huge change in deep oceans water circulation in the past centuries, except a seasonal and ENSO one.”

Yet another assertion, along with fantasy math and a fantasy plot.

• Bart,

Never heard of Le Chatelier’s principle? Is perfectly applicable for the dynamics between the atmosphere and the deep oceans…

• Bartemis says:

“Never heard of Le Chatelier’s principle? Is perfectly applicable for the dynamics between the atmosphere and the deep oceans…”

Indeed, it is. The system will tend to resist a change in CO2 concentration due to our relatively tiny inputs.

51. Mass extinctions caused by — or occurring during — large increases in CO2 in the atmosphere? That gives me an idea for an SF short story, wherein such increases in CO2 cause some plants to become mobile and carnivorous — like Triffids.

52. See - owe to Rich says:

Repeated from a long way above, since it replied to a comment 2 days ago so might not be seen by many.

George, Robert B:

I think the correlation is really quite simple. We know that CO2 follows temperature of the SH oceans, becuase of the yearly up-lesser down-bigger up pattern of the Mauna Loa CO2 measurements. We also know that CO2 levels are generally rising, at a fairly constant rate. When you differentiate the function, you remove that trend part, and so you remove the anthropogenic component, leaving the change-in-temperature component, which does indeed have a visible effect and reflects the oceans emitting and absorbing CO2 as they warm and cool.

Rich.

• Fine except the seasonal component is determined by NH temperatures and the whole point was how fine the correlation is. Too small to be seen with a realistic uncertainty of measuring global levels from one spot and since many things affect the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, highly unlikely that the rate really does follow temp.

• afonzarelli says:

“…highly unlikely that the rate really does follow temp.”

And yet that’s exactly what it has been doing for the past 59 years. We have the “southern ocean” clue, so maybe it IS simply of function of changing SSTs. At some point, if the correlation doesn’t break, even the ferds of this world will have to admit the the correlation is real. In fact, a prolonged cooling spell (and subsequent reduction in the growthrate) will largely debunk the notion that carbon growth is a function of the growing rate of human emissions…

Robert, as a request, should you ever post another piece, please get with anthony and/or moderation to keep the peops from going off topic. (don’t know if they will actually do that) We certainly don’t need courtney doing that. Someone upthread raised the question as to whether the correlation would hold in the early 20th century. i replied to that person, simply answered his concerns (with a graph made by ferdinand), and richard harped on me for being off topic. Moderation recently scolded steven mosher (of berkley earth) for the same behavior as richard’s. i’d much rather have heavy handed moderation than the heavy hand of another commentor (and a canadian at that!) telling me what to do here. That might help in making your post more personally rewarding for you and everybody else as well. i know richard has been around a long time, so he does have seniority here. (and i personally love the guy) But, PLEASE, don’t encourage his behavior…

• See - owe to Rich says:

Robert, why do you say that the seasonal component is determined by NH temperatures when your graph uses hadsst3sh (for Southern Hemisphere)? And personally, I think it is highly _likely_ that the rate of CO2 change follows temperature of the southern oceans, because that is where most of the water in the world is, and they do heat up in the austral summer.

Do you know any statistics? In order to be convincing you would need to compute an R^2 value or the like, with specific data, and then we could argue about what the result means.

Rich.

• Bartemis says:

“When you differentiate the function, you remove that trend part, and so you remove the anthropogenic component…”

No, you remove the trend, i.e., the first order polynomial portion of the signal. But, the anthropogenic signal is made up of more than a trend. In particular, the trend itself has a trend, and that is not removed.

But, the temperature relationship already explains this trend of the trend. Hence, there is little to no room for anthropogenic forcing to fit. The conclusion is necessarily that anthropogenic forcing can have no significant impact.

• Bart,

You do compare the trend in temperature with the trend in the derivative of the trend in CO2. That has no bearing in any physical process: either compare T with CO2 or dT/dt with dCO2/dt.

The trend in T results in maximum 16 ppmv/K increase in CO2 per Henry’s law and its variability is good for only +/- 1.5 ppmv around the total ~90 ppmv increase, which is caused by the ~170 ppmv human emissions.

The conclusion is necessarily that temperature can’t have a significant impact…

53. On a more serious note. According to http://www.marinebio.net/marinescience/02ocean/hwgeo.htm Hawaii is in the middle of geological “hot spot”: Mauna Loa erupted in 1984 and Kilauea is considered to be one of the most active volcanoes on Earth today. On the seafloor 20 miles to the southeast of Hawaii is an active volcanic area with periodic eruptions.

Why would CO2 measurements over there reflect human activity only?

• Jaakko,

They have a simple method to see if the CO2 levels are only from trade winds or when these are contaminated by volcanic vents: if the variability in CO2 within an hour (of 40 minutes 10-second snapshots + calibration) is more than 0.25 ppmv. the data are marked and not used for daily to yearly averages. Still available if you are interested.

If you still don’t trust the Mauna Loa data, you can use these from the South Pole: same trend, only lagging the NH data with a few ppmv. Or the “global” dataset: the average of several near sealevel stations, thus excluding Mauna Loa, the South pole,…

• Bindidon says:

What about choosing e.g. the Easter Island, Chile instead?

https://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/dv/data/index.php?site=EIC&parameter_name=Carbon%2BDioxide&frequency=Monthly%2BAverages

The datasets end there by dec 2015 but that is here not the point I guess. Let us compare the monthly outputs for jan till dec 2015:

Mauna Loa, USA

MLO 2015 1 400.05
MLO 2015 2 400.38
MLO 2015 3 401.58
MLO 2015 4 403.68
MLO 2015 5 404.16
MLO 2015 6 402.93
MLO 2015 7 400.93
MLO 2015 8 398.90
MLO 2015 9 397.66
MLO 2015 10 398.22
MLO 2015 11 399.95
MLO 2015 12 401.56

Easter Island, Chile

EIC 2015 1 397.12
EIC 2015 2 397.12
EIC 2015 3 397.09
EIC 2015 4 397.42
EIC 2015 5 397.02
EIC 2015 6 397.18
EIC 2015 7 398.18
EIC 2015 8 398.23
EIC 2015 9 398.13
EIC 2015 10 398.77
EIC 2015 11 399.22
EIC 2015 12 400.11

Both differ due to the different place: that can be accurately corrected.

You can compare Mauna Loa with the world’s mean: the difference is incredibly tiny.

54. Ferdinand
Clearly, your pertinent ignoring my question implies that you cannot present me with the balance sheet that I asked for. Therefore, your assumption that the increase in CO2 ‘must be causing some warming’ has no fundamental scientific proof. There is sufficient evidence I could provide suggesting that it could in fact be that the extra CO2 is cooling the atmosphere, as my summary of results here in South Africa seem to suggest.

Samuel
I remember we used to measure CO2 in nitrogen [or air?] quantitatively by using IR spectroscopy and a specific wavelength in the 4-5 um range, cannot remember the exact wavelength. I am not sure how it is done lately and I sure do not know how it was done before IR, but it might be someone here knows? That might be interesting to know.

• henryp,

As we are discussing the variability of T and CO2, that is my priority these days, thus a little patience may be warranted on questions outside the topic…
I know the outgoing spectra of CO2 (Modtran), thus I can calculate the outgoing heat retention, but I have never looked at the CO2 influence on incoming spectra, thus I need to look at that first before I can give you an answer…

In the early days, the NDIR measuring equipment was calibrated with CO2 in N2 mixtures, out of fear for internal oxydation of the calibration gas containers. When was discovered in the early sixties that CO2 in N2 did give a difference in results than for CO2 in air, all equipment was recalibrated with CO2 in (dry) air mixtures and all previous results were adjusted accordingly. Since then still all calibrations are with CO2 in air. Most measurements still are with NDIR, as that is very robust and can be automated, unattended for weeks. Other techniques are used too: GC, mass spectroscopy, the latter when also isotopic compositions are desirable.
For the measurements/calibrations at Mauna Loa see:

Accuracy of NDIR, which is frequently (every hour) calibrated, is better than +/- 0.2 ppmv.
The historical measurements were by wet chemicals methods, best accuracy around 3% or +/-10 ppmv. Needed a lot of skill, fresh reagents, frequent manual calibration,…

• Ferdinand
You cannot ‘calculate’ that which has never been measured [yet]…..
Suffice to say that is very unlikely [to me] that the retention of emission 14-15 um [-88C?] will weigh up against the deflections of sunlight by the CO2 in the UV, 1-2um and 4-5 um ranges as the energy involved coming from the sun are multiples of the emissions coming from earth…
You would have to come up with some kind of a real life time experiment, perhaps like a grand scale high walled open box experiment, keeping CO2 on the ground high and at a controlled concentration, and determining the warming effect on the ground [compared to neighboring walled ground without added CO2] in W/m2 per 0.01% CO2 per day.
Good luck with that…..

Thanks for your explanation of methodology. That was interesting. What was the wavelength again that we used to measure the CO2?

Bartemis
Thanks for keeping the discussion here alive and for all your inputs. Like I said before, I think we are discussing non-issues because I could not detect any warming by CO2 in the data, e.g. according to my data, there has been no warming in the SH. So, I am sure you will agree with me that there is NO man made GLOBAL warming….

• Bartemis says:

The lesson of scientific endeavors throughout the Enlightenment era to date is one of the pitfalls of relying on intuition. Intuition gave us leaches and bloodletting, epicycles and absolute time.

Intuition tells us that increasing CO2 should result in warmer surface temperatures. However, given the very poor track record of intuition, it is incumbent upon us to prove to a reasonable standard that it, in fact, does.

We have no such proof. We have no conclusive evidence of it at all. That is the point at which we stand today.

BTW: Intuition also told us our emissions were driving atmospheric CO2. That intuition was clearly wrong, too.

55. Bartemis says:

TWIMC: I have explained numerous times, here and at other venues, the fundamental flaw in the pseudo-mass balance argument. This absurd bit of illogic basically says that any change in the output state of a given system cannot be due to a given input if it is less than the sum total of a different input over all time.

It is innumeracy on stilts. It betrays an egregious lack of understanding of and familiarity with dynamic systems. I explained why here, for any who are interested.

• Bart,

That “explanation” starts with a complete non-argument:

0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U

Basic error: at steady state, En and U are equal. When in the first year Ea is added, that doesn’t give enough extra pressure in the atmosphere to remove 0.5*Ea, as the observed sink rate is*0.02 Et, where Et is the total extra CO2 pressure in the atmosphere above steady state. That is not the extra pressure by human emissions of one year, except for the first year…

There is no reason at all to assume that the net result of all in/out fluxes is always half human emissions. It may be zero if we should halve our emissions today and it will assymptote to zero if we keep emissions constant for a long time, as CO2 levels in the atmosphere still go up, pushing more and more CO2 into the sinks, until the sinks equal the emissions.

Basics of a dynamic system in equilibrium is that any disturbance of the process is met with a response that tries to counter the disturbance. That is called Le Châtelier’s principle.

For the oceans starting with CO2 influxes and outfluxes in equilibrium (“steady state”) that gives that any extra CO2 injected in the atmosphere will be met with a change in the inputs and outputs that counters the disturbance: the pressure increase caused by the extra injection decreases the input from the upwelling waters and increases the output into the polar sinks of the oceans, thus effectively removing (part of) the injected amount.

How much is removed, can be calculated if the amounts injected are known and the resulting increase in the atmosphere is measured. That is the case for CO2 over the past 60 years. The current net sink rate is ~2.15 ppmv at a CO2 pressure above steady state of ~110 ppmv.
That gives an e-fold decay rate of the extra CO2 pressure of 110 / 2.15 ppm/year = ~51 years or a half life time of ~35 years, Quite constant over the past 60 years, thus a surprisingly linear process.

Next step is that you split the formula into:

0.5*Ea := Ea + En – Ua – Un
which says that nature on its own is
En – Un := Ua – 0.5*Ea
But, we don’t know Ua. If the sinks are very responsive, it can be as high as Ea itself, which leaves
En – Un = 0.5*Ea

Where you violate the fact that the sinks react equally to natural and human CO2:
If Ua equals Ea, then Un should equal En (if we assume the formulas are right, which they aren’t) with as result a zero change in the atmosphere, which violates the observed increase…

Another problem is that En and Un are largely temperature controlled processes and Ua is a pressure controlled process, not comparable at all: mostly independent of each other and with an order of magnitude difference in decay rates…

Further:
Human emissions increased a fourfold since 1958. If the sinks are very responsive (which they are not with a 0.02 sink rate), then En (and thus Un) MUST have increased a fourfold in lockstep with human emissions…

• Bartemis says:

“Basic error: at steady state, En and U are equal.”

You have refuted yourself at the very first sentence. If the quantity is in motion, it is not in steady state.

“Where you violate the fact that the sinks react equally to natural and human CO2: If Ua equals Ea, then Un should equal En…”

Again, only in steady state, and we are not in steady state. The symbol “:=” means “approximately equal”. Yes, if Ua := Ea, then Un := En. But, that means that the difference between Ua and Ea is small, and cannot explain the rise we have seen. The difference between Un and En is small, too, but only in relation to Un or En themselves. But Un and En are so much larger than Ua and Ea that the difference between them can explain the rise that is seen.

The rest of your post is just gibberish. You are making up physical laws that hold only in the Fernandian universe. The sinks take up in proportion to the input. That is the entire input, both natural and anthropogenic. The sinks cannot treat inputs of the same substance differently.

• dikranmarsupial says:

“0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U” is not only a non-argument, it also a misrepresentation of the “SS argument”, which doesn’t involve the observation that the airborne fraction is about 0.5. After having had the mass balance argument explained to him so many times, it is disappointing (to say the least) that Bartemis can’t even give an accurate account of the argument.

The argument is actually

C’ = Ea + En – Un

which can be rearranged to give

En – Un = C’ – Ea

The observations tell us the RHS is negative, so algebra tells us the LHS is negative as well, hence we know the natural environment is a net carbon sink, and is opposing the rise, rather than causing it.

https://static.skepticalscience.com/pics/3_mass_balance.png

Note this isn’t a model of the carbon cycle and is not intended to be, it is just a constraint that the carbon cycle must obey in order to satisfy conservation of mass (which I think we can take a read). Sadly until Bartemis stops trying to treat it as a model of the carbon cycle, rather than just as a statement of a constraint on the carbon cycle, he is unlikely to make any progress.

BTW it isn’t a Skeptical Science argument, you can find it in the IPCC reports and plenty of journal papers on the carbon cycle.

• Bartemis says:

This is absolutely idiotic. I have a response, but it is being delayed for reasons I do not know.

• Bartemis says:

Ferdinand –

“Basic error: at steady state, En and U are equal.”

Wrong on the very first step. If a thing is in motion, it is ipso facto not at steady state!

“Where you violate the fact that the sinks react equally to natural and human CO2: If Ua equals Ea, then Un should equal En…”

The symbol “:=” means “approximately equal”. Yes, defintely, if Ua := Ea, then Un:= En. But, if Ua := Ea, it cannot be responsible for the overwhelming majority of the rise, whereas if Un := En, because the quantities are so much larger, they can.

• Bartemis says:

Ferdinand –

“Basic error: at steady state, En and U are equal.”

Wrong on the very first step. If a thing is in motion, it is ipso facto not at steady state!

• Bartemis says:

Mod – I have tried to post responses several times, and it is not coming through. Can you advise?

Thanks,
Bart

• Bart,

Wrong on the very first step. If a thing is in motion, it is ipso facto not at steady state!

My God, don’t you have better arguments than that?
If we MAY start at some point in long gone times that the ocean surface was in steady state with the atmosphere and then we add some extra CO2 into the atmosphere, that will decay with an observed speed of 51 years e-fold rate or 35 years half life time or a fraction of 0.02 as sink rate. Thus in the first year of such an addition, not 50% but 98% of the first injection will remain in the atmosphere.
If we keep the injection constant for many years, the increase in the atmosphere will push more and more CO2 in the sinks, until the yearly injection and the yearly sinks are equal.
That is for an increase in the atmosphere of injection/year / 0.02.

The symbol “:=” means “approximately equal”. Yes, defintely, if Ua := Ea, then Un:= En. But, if Ua := Ea, it cannot be responsible for the overwhelming majority of the rise, whereas if Un := En, because the quantities are so much larger, they can.

Come on Bart, if Ua = Ea, then nothing happens with the atmospheric levels, see my first reaction.
The Un := En which “can” do “something” is just a modern form of handwaving…

BTW, in fact near all U is caused by human emssions, as near all increase in the atmosphere is from that source and thus all extra sinks, see again my first reaction…

• Bart,

You have refuted yourself at the very first sentence. If the quantity is in motion, it is not in steady state.

If you never read beyond the first words, you can say any nonsense you want. I wrote my response with the situation starting at steady state, that is at a fixed temperature and no human additions. From that point on, any additional injection of CO2 – whatever the source – is removed with a ratio of 2% of the total increase in the atmosphere above steady state…

Un and En are so much larger than Ua and Ea that the difference between them can explain the rise that is seen

Just handwaving…

The sinks take up in proportion to the input. That is the entire input, both natural and anthropogenic.

The sinks do NOT take up in proportion to the input of one year. They take up in proportion to the total pressure in the atmosphere above steady state, whatever the cause and mix in the atmosphere. That is elementary physics of any dynamic process.

Still no answer to the fact that human emissions / increase / sinks increased a fourfold over the past decades while natural emissions didn’t? THAT is a real violation of the equality of CO2 whatever the source for the sinks…

• Bartemis says:

“…if Ua = Ea, then nothing happens with the atmospheric levels…”

But, I never said Ua = Ea. I said Ua := Ea. It is a very important distinction.

The very essence of engineering is taking limits, and noting what happens when one approaches a given condition. In this case, Ua := Ea means the sinks take out nearly all of the anthropogenic input, which in turn means that the discrepancy must be made up by natural input/output conditions.

You seem to be very uncomfortable with what is basic engineering practice, which is why I think you really don’t have a lot of experience with dynamic systems, and you really should not be posing as an expert on these issues.

“Just handwaving…”

No. It really is not handwaving. It is very well grounded. The natural flows are very significantly greater than the anthropogenic contributions. Estimates are on the order of 33X as large, and it could easily be much higher. That’s at least one and a half orders of magnitude. It’s huge.

“Still no answer to the fact that human emissions / increase / sinks increased a fourfold over the past decades while natural emissions didn’t? THAT is a real violation of the equality of CO2 whatever the source for the sinks…”

Atmospheric CO2 buildup can come about in two ways: 1) from increasing input 2) from decreasing output. As you well know, my hypothesis is that temperature is modulating the output, with a decrease in the amount that downwells with ocean currents as the temperature rises.

But, there could have been rising natural emissions as well. The fact is, we do not know, and cannot tell with the information currently available. The information we do have simply tells us the rise is temperature dependent, and is therefore not anthropogenically driven. No other observation uniquely establishes attribution, but this does.

• Bart:

The information we do have simply tells us the rise is temperature dependent, and is therefore not anthropogenically driven. No other observation uniquely establishes attribution, but this does.

The information we have from basic physics is that any rise in temperature of the oceans gives not more than 16 ppmv/K per Henry’s law. Proven over 800,000 years of ice core measurements. Proven by over 3 million recent seawater samples. The rest of the 110 ppmv above steady state is not from the temperature rise.

Not only has the slope of T only a small influence on CO2 levels and is the match between T and dCO2/dt entirely spurious, it is not unique, as human emissions show exactly the same curvatory at twice the increase in the atmosphere, without violating any observation…

56. Bartemis says:

Looks like I will have to repost my response. This is very annoying, especially because the subject is so monumentally blinkered. Computer scientists like DM should not be engaging in scientific discussions for which they have no training or aptitude. This is actual physics, not manipulation of 1’s and 0’s.

Ferdinand –

“Basic error: at steady state, En and U are equal.”

Wrong on the very first step. If a thing is in motion, it is ipso facto not at steady state!

“Where you violate the fact that the sinks react equally to natural and human CO2: If Ua equals Ea, then Un should equal En…”

The symbol “:=” means “approximately equal”. Yes, defintely, if Ua := Ea, then Un:= En. But, if Ua := Ea, it cannot be responsible for the overwhelming majority of the rise, whereas if Un := En, because the quantities are so much larger, they can.

DM –

Just stop. Please. It is painful to watch you flail about with such limited understanding.

“En – Un = C’ – Ea”

No.

En – Un = C’ – (Ea – Ua)

A portion of the sinks is necessarily a response to anthropogenic forcing. That is how a dynamic system works. And, if Ea := Ua, then nature, on its own, is a net source.

57. Bartemis says:

Ferdinand –

“Basic error: at steady state, En and U are equal.”

Wrong on the very first step. If a thing is in motion, it is ipso facto not at steady state!

“Where you violate the fact that the sinks react equally to natural and human CO2: If Ua equals Ea, then Un should equal En…”

The symbol “:=” means “approximately equal”. Yes, defintely, if Ua := Ea, then Un:= En. But, if Ua := Ea, it cannot be responsible for the overwhelming majority of the rise, whereas if Un := En, because the quantities are so much larger, they can.

58. Bartemis says:

DM –

“En – Un = C’ – Ea”

No.

En – Un = C’ – (Ea – Ua)

A portion of the sinks is necessarily a response to anthropogenic forcing. That is how a dynamic system works. And, if Ea := Ua, then nature, on its own, is a net source.

• dikranmarsupial says:

I note that Bartemis has not acknowledged his misrepresentation of the “SS argument”.

Ua is essentially zero. Anthropogenic uptake of carbon from the atmosphere is negligible.

“A portion of the sinks is necessarily a response to anthropogenic forcing. ”

As I said:

“Note this isn’t a model of the carbon cycle and is not intended to be, it is just a constraint that the carbon cycle must obey in order to satisfy conservation of mass (which I think we can take a read). Sadly until Bartemis stops trying to treat it as a model of the carbon cycle, rather than just as a statement of a constraint on the carbon cycle, he is unlikely to make any progress. “

You are still trying to treat the mass balance equation as a model instead of merely a constraint.

• Bartemis says:

No! That is your mistake. Ua is not anywhere close to zero.

This is a dynamic system. The system responds to the inputs. Ua is necessarily proportional to the input.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Ua is uptake by anthropogenic sinks, not uptake of anthropogenic emissions.

“Ua would be the uptake of carbon due to anthropogenic activities, but this is essentially zero, so we can safely exclude it from the analysis.”

Perhaps you need to take the time to understand the mass balance argument before dismissing it.

Also you are STILL trying to treat the mass balance equation as a model of the carbon cycle, rather than just a constraint that it obeys. How many times does this need to be pointed out to you?

• Bartemis says:

If you want to arbitrarily define Ua that way, then you are missing still another term which is uptake of anthropogenic emisssions.

You cannot neglect that term. It would not exist without the anthropogenic input. You seem to think nature takes only a fixed amount, and no more. That is incorrect. This is a dynamic system. It responds to all forcing. It expands in response to all additional forcing.

You just have no idea what you are talking about. You have no training in this field. You have no understanding of what a dynamic feedback is. I personally find it offensive. You are a blind man presuming to lead the blind.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis, not only are you showing that you can’t set out the mass balance argument accurately, but that you also fundamentally don’t understand it.

“If you want to arbitrarily define Ua that way, then you are missing still another term which is uptake of anthropogenic emisssions.”

Ua has been defined that way (uptake by anthropogenic sinks – e.g. carbon capture and sequestration), because that is the only definition which is consistent with the definitions of Un (uptake BY natural sinks), En (emissions FROM natural sources) and Ea (emissions FROM anthropogenic sources). Again you are trying to treat the mass balance equation as if it was a model of the carbon cycle, rather than a simple statement of a constraint that it must obey. You will make little progress until you stop making this error.

BTW are you willing to admit that you misrepresented the “SS argument”?

• Bartemis says:

“Ua has been defined that way (uptake by anthropogenic sinks – e.g. carbon capture and sequestration), because that is the only definition which is consistent with the definitions of Un (uptake BY natural sinks), En (emissions FROM natural sources) and Ea (emissions FROM anthropogenic sources).”

Then, in your description, Un is necessarily a function of both En AND Ea. The term

En – Un = C’ – Ea

is actually

En – Un(En,Ea) = C’ – Ea

The part on the left is not independent of Ea, therefore, you cannot say that nature on its own is a net sink. You must show that En – Un(En,0) is negative for nature to independently be a net sink. You can linearize about this point:

En – Un(En,Ea) := En – Un(En,0) – P*Ea

where P is the partial derivative of Un with respect to Ea evaluated at (En,0). That gives you

En – Un(En,Ea) = C’ – (Ea – P*Ea)

If the partial derivative is near unity (and, the evidence indicates it is), then

En – Un(En,Ea) := C’

and nature on its own is a net source.

I do not expect you to understand all this, because you have shown you are an idiot. But, for others, that is why the pseudo-mass balance argument is dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.

• Bartemis says:

Mod – could you please show my response in full? Yes, it is caustic. Deservedly so. This guy is an idiot.

• dikranmarsupial says:

At least I don’t have to repeatedly misrepresent my interlocutors arguments and then avoid admiting it when it is exposed by being insulting. That is no way to discuss science, because as I pointed out, being insulting leaves you in a position where you cannot admit you are wrong without looking a complete fool, and the ability to be able to admit you are wrong is a necessary component of science.

• Bartemis says:

I’ve not misrepresented a thing. You are implicitly making a claim that nature is static, and has no response to anthropogenic forcing.

You have arbitrarily defined “nature”, and set it apart. But, the natural sinks are inextricably intertwined with the anthropogenic input. So, when you write

En – Un = C’ – Ea

you actually mean

En – Un(En+Ea) = C’ – Ea

i.e., Un is a function of both natural and anthropogenic inputs. It is not a constant, it is dynamic. It has a definite sensitivity to the forcing level. As a result, saying En – Un(En+Ea) is less than zero does NOT say nature is a net sink. That would only be the case if you could say En – Un(En) is less than zero.

But, you can linearize, and say that

En – Un(En) – P*Ea := C’ – Ea

where P is the partial derivative of Un with respect to Ea. Then,

En – Un(En) := C’ – (Ea-P*Ea )

If the partial derivative is near unity, then nature is a net source. And, the data indicate that P is, indeed, near unity.

59. dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote “I’ve not misrepresented a thing.”

O.K., give a URL for a Skeptical Science post where I gave an argument including “0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U”, which you assert to be part of the “SS argument”.

“You have arbitrarily defined “nature”, and set it apart”

This is absurd, the definition of “natural” (“existing in or derived from nature; not made or caused by humankind.”) in this context is obvious and straightforward and not in the least arbitrary.

“i.e., Un is a function of both natural and anthropogenic inputs. ”

The mass balance equation is not a model of the carbon cycle, just a statement of a constraint that must apply to it, you will not understand the argument until you stop making this error.

• Bartemis says:

“The mass balance equation is not a model of the carbon cycle, just a statement of a constraint that must apply to it…”

Then, it has nothing to say on the matter of attribution, and is useless.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Yes it does have something to say about attribution because (i) we have observations and (ii) we have a constraint that we know applies to the carbon cycle, and the fact that total uptake by natural sinks is greater than total emissions from natural sources can be derived from those two facts. This means that the natural environment is a net carbon sink and hence is opposing the rise not causing it.

Bartemis wrote “I’ve not misrepresented a thing.”

I replied “O.K., give a URL for a Skeptical Science post where I gave an argument including “0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U”, which you assert to be part of the “SS argument”.

The lack of a URL from Bartemis is a tacit admission that he misrepresented my argument, and he knows perfectly well that he misrepresented it.

• Bartemis says:

” This means that the natural environment is a net carbon sink and hence is opposing the rise not causing it.”

No, nature by itself is a net source. You can only call it a net sink if you illegitimately include the natural response to anthropogenic forcing on the “natural” side of the ledger. But, if you take away the anthropogenic forcing, that response fades away, the sink activity shrinks, and natural source activity exceeds it.

I know you do not understand this. That is because you are an idiot. But, perhaps it will be helpful for non-idiots reading this exchange.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote “No, nature by itself is a net source. ”

This is obviously incorrect, because if both nature and mankind were net sources , then atmospheric CO2 levels would be rising faster than either, as both would be contributing to the rise. However, this is not what we observe, what we observe is that atmospheric CO2 is rising more slowly than the rate of anthropogenic emissions, which means the net result of everything else (i.e. the natural carbon cycle) must be a net carbon sink.

• dikranmarsupial says:

still no URL…

• Bartemis says:

“This is obviously incorrect, because if both nature and mankind were net sources , then atmospheric CO2 levels would be rising faster than either, as both would be contributing to the rise.”

That is incorrect. The rise is only a fraction of total forcing.

Both are contributing to the rise, but in proportion to the feedback factor, each one in the same ratio, as they must. As that ratio is small, anthropogenic forcing cannot account for the lion’s share of the rise.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote: “Both are contributing to the rise, but in proportion to the feedback factor, each one in the same ratio, as they must. ”

No, if both were contributing to the rise in any proportion, then atmospheric CO2 levels would be rising faster than anthropogenic emissions, but that is not what we observe. The fact that the increase is slower than the rate of our emissions means that the natural carbon cycle is opposing the rise, which is just what you would expect from Le Chatellier’s principle (if you perturb a system away from it dynamic equilibrium, the feedback mechanisms will respond to oppose that perturbation).

• Bartemis says:

“O.K., give a URL for a Skeptical Science post where I gave an argument including “0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U”, which you assert to be part of the “SS argument”.”

In your equation, C := 0.5*Ea. That is how you make your conclusion.

“This is absurd, the definition of “natural” (“existing in or derived from nature; not made or caused by humankind.”) in this context is obvious and straightforward and not in the least arbitrary.”

The expansion of the natural sinks in response to anthropogenic forcing is caused by humankind. Therefore, by your definition, they are not natural.

You are twisting yourself in knots with word games. But, the fundamental fact is that sink activity depends intimately on the total amount of forcing, and anthropogenic inputs are a part of that total forcing.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartimus wrote ““O.K., give a URL for a Skeptical Science post where I gave an argument including “0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U”, which you assert to be part of the “SS argument”.”

In your equation, C := 0.5*Ea. That is how you make your conclusion.”

That is not a URL. Neither is it my equation, but a quote from your misrepresentation of it. Show me where *I* said that as part of the mass balance argument, not where you said I said it.

• dikranmarsupial says:

“The expansion of the natural sinks in response to anthropogenic forcing”

The expansion of natural sinks is not in response to anthropogenic forcing, but in response to rising atmospheric CO2 levels. However, this is just another attempt to treat the mass balance equation as a model of the carbon cycle, rather than as a constraint. If you persist in making this error, you will make no progress. I may have mentioned this before.

• Bartemis says:

“The expansion of natural sinks is not in response to anthropogenic forcing, but in response to rising atmospheric CO2 levels.”

Which is itself a response to total forcing. You can’t wriggle out of it this way. A function of a function is just another function.

“However, this is just another attempt to treat the mass balance equation as a model of the carbon cycle, rather than as a constraint.”

A useless constraint on the question of attribution.

• dikranmarsupial says:

““The expansion of natural sinks is not in response to anthropogenic forcing, but in response to rising atmospheric CO2 levels.”

Which is itself a response to total forcing. You can’t wriggle out of it this way. A function of a function is just another function.”

So you would agree that anthropogenic emissions are causing atmospheric CO2 levels to rise?

If not, please explain how the expansion of natural sinks can be in response to anthropogenic forcing (via rising atmospheric CO2 levels) if anthropogenic forcing is not causing atmospheric CO2 levels to rise.

I am still waiting for the URL that demonstrates you did not misrepresent me.

• Bartemis says:

“So you would agree that anthropogenic emissions are causing atmospheric CO2 levels to rise?”

Of course they are. But, only by a small percentage of the total observed rise.

• Bartemis says:

Here is a URL. You stated, exactly

C’ = Ea + En – Un

Substitute C’ := 0.5*Ea and U = -Un to get

0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U

This is elementary algebra. I sense an attempt at misdirection.

• Bartemis says:

I am tired of putting on a show of negotiation here, as if our viewpoints were equally valid. They are not. DM has a totally misbegotten viewpoint of how feedback systems work.

This is the equation:

En – Un(En+Ea) = C – Ea

If we take En0 to the the nominal natural input at the beginning of the 20th century, then using the partial derivative P of Un evaluated at En0, we have

En-En0 – P*(En+Ea-En0) := C-C0 – Ea

The total observed rise is then

C – C0 = (1-P)*(En-En0 + Ea)

The observed rise is approximately C – C0 := 0.5*Ea, which means that if P is greater than 0.5, then Ea necessarily cannot account for the entire rise. As P approaches unity, it can provide less and less of the overall rise.

The rate of change of CO2 to temperature relationship indicates that P is near unity, and most of the rise has to come from the (1-P)*(En – En0) term, i.e., it is almost totally natural.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote “Here is a URL. You stated, exactly

C’ = Ea + En – Un

Substitute C’ := 0.5*Ea and U = -Un to get

0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U

This is elementary algebra. I sense an attempt at misdirection.”

This is deeply dishonest. I did write “C’ = Ea + En – Un”, but the rest is Bartemis’ invention, that he tried to pass off as being mine. The only place in that comment where I mention “0.5” is where I am quoting Bartemis’s misrepresentation of the argument!

““0.5*Ea := Ea + En + U” is not only a non-argument, it also a misrepresentation of the “SS argument”, which doesn’t involve the observation that the airborne fraction is about 0.5. After having had the mass balance argument explained to him so many times, it is disappointing (to say the least) that Bartemis can’t even give an accurate account of the argument.”

How utterly cynical.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote:

““So you would agree that anthropogenic emissions are causing atmospheric CO2 levels to rise?”

Of course they are. But, only by a small percentage of the total observed rise.”

In which case anthropogenic emissions are causing only a small percentage of the expansion of the natural sinks (which respond to changes in atmospheric CO2 levels). So what is causing the majority of the expansion of the natural sinks?

• Bartemis says:

“So what is causing the majority of the expansion of the natural sinks?”

It’s all proportional, and it works out as I have indicated:

C – C0 = (1-P)*(En-En0 + Ea)

If P is near unity, and observations indicate it is, then the overall impact of Ea is small.

This is textbook feedback. Nothing at all unusual or exotic about it.

• dikranmarsupial says:

“It’s all proportional, and it works out as I have indicated:”

saying “its all proportional” is not saying where the “the majority of the expansion of the natural sinks?”, it is just obfusacation. If the natural sinks expand in response to increasing atmospheric CO2 and anthropogenic forcing has only caused a small proportion of the increase in atmospheric CO2, then it has only caused a small proportion of the expansion of the sinks. So what physical process causes the rest of the expansion of the sinks?

• dikranmarsupial says:

I note that Bartemis is ignoring the fact that the URL he gave to show he hadn’t misrepresented me only confirms the fact that he had, as the “In your equation, C := 0.5*Ea. That is how you make your conclusion.” was never part of my argument, but Bartemis claims that it is and just keeps doubling down when his dishonesty is demonstrated.

• Bartemis says:

Not negotiating. It is not my problem that you do not understand even the most rudimentary dynamic systems theory.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote “Not negotiating.”

This isn’t a negotiation. I have (repeatedly) shown that you have dishonestly misrepresented my arguments, and you are given a chance to prove that you didn’t. All you are doing by responding in this way (i.e. bluster) is demonstrate to everybody that you know that you misrepresented me, and doing so doesn’t bother you. Not responding would be a more rational option, at least then you could pretend you were unaware of your misrepresentation, rather than compounding it.

60. Eeeeh
Eish
Eeee
I have never seen so many people saying so much about ……nothing…..really…!@!

More carbon is better and does not cause any warming.

• Bartemis says:

The pseudo-mass balance argument is the fundamental underpinning behind the belief that human activity is driving atmospheric CO2 concentration. It forms the foundation for their faith.

All the talk about isotope ratios, all the other crap, these are just rationalizations piled on top. They believe they are fundamentally right because they accept the premise of this very silly argument.

It isn’t so. The pseudo-mass balance argument has no impact on the question of attribution. It is merely a trivial tautological statement, sprinkled with a wholly-disconnected-from-reality inference of a static sink response.

• Bart,

Again you are a master in mispresenting other’s opinion, conscious or not.

The mass balance is the most important point and you need to have extremely good arguments to prove that humans are not the cause of the increase in the atmosphere while we emit twice the amounts still residing in the atmosphere. Including the fourfold rise in emissions and a similar fourfold rise in increase in the atmosphere and a fourfold increase in the net difference: the net sink rate.

I am still waiting for your explanation for the absence of any indication that the natural carbon cycle also increased a fourfold in the same period, as that violates the equality of all CO2 – whatever the source – for the sinks if human CO2 was not the cause of the atmospheric increase…

There are several other additional arguments, which exclude oceans and vegetation as main sources of the increase:

– the oxygen balance
– the pre-WWII drop in 14C levels
– the 13C/12C ratio decay rate
– the ocean surface pH, pCO2 and DIC measurements

Without the oceans or the biosphere as main sources and human emissions as highly probable source it is just a waste of everybody’s time to insist that humans are NOT the cause of the increase, only based on curve fitting of two straight lines on very shaky grounds…

• Bartemis says:

Well, Ferdinand, I think that if you did not have the crutch of the pseudo-mass balance argument, you would begin looking more closely at those other evidences, and realize that they are merely consistent, but not uniquely so, with the notion that humans are in control of atmospheric CO2.

I am going to kick that crutch out from under you if it kills me. Because it is utterly false. There is no requirement that the rise must be from anthropogenic releases of CO2, merely because the rise is less than the sum total of all human release of CO2. That is like saying that if a lake rises 2 feet, and the sum total of rain 30 years ago would have raised it 4 feet, then the rise is from the 30 year ago rains.

It doesn’t work like that. The water from those rains has long since dissipated. The CO2 from earlier in the past century has long since dissipated. It is not accumulating. The flows are continuous, and they sweep it away.

• Bart,

If the mass balance was the only argument, we could have a discussion about the influence of the carbon cycles on the increase, but the other evidence, based on observations is unambiguously:

– The oceans can’t be the source of the extra CO2, as the 13C/12C ratio is higher than in the atmosphere (including the isotopic shift at the surface), thus substantial emissions, or even increased circulation, from the oceans (deep or surface) would increase the 13C/12C ratio of the atmosphere, while we see a huge drop: 10 times the change measured in ice cores over 800,000 years or coralline sponges between 600 – 170 years ago.
– The oceans can’t be a source as the measured pCO2 difference over all oceans is 7 μatm higher than in the atmosphere, thus the net flux is from the atmosphere into the ocean surface (including the upwelling and sink areas), not reverse.
– The ocean surface in general (excluding the main source/sink places) can’t be the source, as DIC (total inorganic carbon) increased in lockstep with the increase in the atmosphere while the pH (slightly) dropped. If the extra CO2 in the atmosphere was from the ocean surface, DIC would drop and pH would go up.

Three separate lines of evidence that show that the oceans are not the cause of the increase in the atmosphere, to the contrary, they are major sinks.

For the biosphere, that is quite simple: plant growth produces O2, plant decay/digestion uses O2. The O2 balance shows that the biosphere is a growing net sink for CO2, the earth is greening, confirmed by satellite measurements of chlorophyl.

Thus where does the extra CO2 comes from, as neither the oceans or vegetation are the sources?

• Bartemis says:

“Thus where does the extra CO2 comes from, as neither the oceans or vegetation are the sources?”

The oceans are the source. But, it does not require additional input from upwelling transport. It can as easily be from a temperature induced restriction of downwelling transport.

This is a balanced process. Modulation of the flow at either end causes change.

• Bart,

The oceans, including the source and sink places, are measured net sinks for CO2 from the atmosphere. There is simply no restriction in sink capacity near the poles, despite an overall increase in temperature of the ocean surface…

• Bartemis says:

“The oceans, including the source and sink places, are measured net sinks for CO2 from the atmosphere.”

That is circular reasoning.

“There is simply no restriction in sink capacity near the poles, despite an overall increase in temperature of the ocean surface…”

Assertion. Begging the question.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis says: ““The oceans, including the source and sink places, are measured net sinks for CO2 from the atmosphere.”

That is circular reasoning.”

So inferring that the oceans are net sinks from measurements that show the oceans (including the source and sink places) are net sinks is “circular reasoning”? Sorry, that is an absurd objection, the reasoning could hardly be more linear.

• Bartemis says:

“…measurements that show the oceans (including the source and sink places) are net sinks…”

There are no such measurements. When you understand the math, you will understand why.

• Bart,

As usual, you reject any observation that counters your almighty theory.

At every place over the oceans where frequent samples were taken, the carbon content goes up and pCO2 goes up, following, not leading, the change in the atmosphere. Combined over the full ocean surface, that shows that there is a small, but measurable average pCO2 difference between atmosphere and oceans, slightly higher in the atmosphere. That is what is measured. No theory as nice as yours can withstand an observation that proves it wrong. Let it be that your theory not only violates this one, but every single other observation that was taken over the years.

Thus sorry, either accept that your theory is wrong, or come with extremely good arguments that the observations must be wrong.

That is circular reasoning. without a shred of evidence why it would be a circular argument is anyway not a valid argument…

• Bartemis says:

“As usual, you reject any observation that counters your almighty theory.”

No, I reject quack observations like the pseudo-mass balance argument. I have shown in mind-numbing detail why it is stupid beyond measure.

“…following, not leading, the change in the atmosphere.”

Nonsense. You cannot tell what is leading and what is following by taking a few isolated measurements. You are asserting something for which you have no evidence. And, judging by the comments, I am not the only one who has noticed your tendency to do this.

• Bart:

Nonsense. You cannot tell what is leading and what is following by taking a few isolated measurements. You are asserting something for which you have no evidence.

Every place in the oceans where is measured over longer periods shows that DIC (total inorganic CO2) is increasing (and pH slightly decreasing) in lockstep with CO2 in the atmosphere. That can only be the case if CO2 enters from the atmosphere into the oceans, not reverse.

———————————————–

Bart, you only have shown that you are not reasonable at all.
Not one observation backs your theory. All observations – even if they are sparse – refute your theory.
So the observations must be wrong, as your theory is right and above any doubt and not refutable, because then you refute the observations…
Even when there is an alternative “theory” which simply obeys the mass balance and fits all observations, That can’t be right, as your theory is the one and only and there is no place for any alternative…

Sorry Bart, that is not science, that is fanatism.

• Bartemis says:

“That can only be the case if CO2 enters from the atmosphere into the oceans, not reverse.”

Absolute nonsense. It is a symmetric relationship. You cannot determine causality merely by noting that both are doing the same thing.

The only observation that is unique as far as attribution is concerned backs me up: the rate of change of CO2 concentration is proportional to temperature anomaly. None of your wailing can change that.

That observation contradicts the hypothesis that humans are driving concentration.

It’s not a close call. You will see, as events unfold.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis wrote “There are no such measurements”

yes, there are, Ferdinand has already pointed them out to you. Saying they don’t exist won’t make them disappear, no matter how many times you say it.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis writes “No, I reject quack observations like the pseudo-mass balance argument”

In that case Bartemis rejects the principle of conservation of mass and a bit of basic algebra, which is all that the mass balance analysis actually consists of. A theory of the carbon cycle that doesn’t obey conservation of matter (i.e. carbon is spontaneously created or destroyed, rather than merely transferred from one reservoir to another) is absurd, but those would be the only theories where the mass balance analysis does not apply.

• Bart:

Absolute nonsense. It is a symmetric relationship. You cannot determine causality merely by noting that both are doing the same thing.

Bart, you are only digging deeper in the pit you have digged for yourself.

Basic chemistry of the oceans:
If the CO2 flux is from the ocean surface into the atmosphere, then DIC (CO2 + bicarbonates + carbonates) decreases and pH increases.
If the CO2 flux is from the atmosphere into the ocean surface, then DIC (CO2 + bicarbonates + carbonates) increases and pH decreases.
The latter is what is observed.

What is further observed:
– The drop in δ13C in the ocean surface simply follows the one in the atmosphere. There is no low-13C CO2 source in the ocean surface or deep oceans. Biolife even increases the δ13C level in the surface…
– Measurements all over the oceans show an average pCO2 difference of ~7 μatm higher in the atmosphere than in the ocean surface, including the source and sink places. The latter show the lowest pCO2 levels, thus the highest sink rates.
– There is no indication of any reduction in sink rate over time. To the contrary, the pCO2 difference at all places where pCO2 is measured over longer periods show an increasing pCO2 difference, thus more uptake, in ratio to the extra pressure in the atmosphere…

• Bartemis says:

“If the CO2 flux is from the ocean surface into the atmosphere, then DIC (CO2 + bicarbonates + carbonates) decreases and pH increases.”

You are using a straw man argument here. It is not an outgassing of the surface oceans per se that is causing the atmospheric buildup, i.e., not a simple rebalancing between the oceans and atmosphere. It is a buildup within the surface ocean layer due to temperature dependent restriction of outflow.

Increasing content of the oceans necessarily results in increasing content of the atmosphere. The DIC (CO2 + bicarbonates + carbonates) increases and pH decreases, exactly the same as it would for the symmetric case where there is inflow to the atmosphere.

• Bart,

Keep on digging:

It is a buildup within the surface ocean layer due to temperature dependent restriction of outflow.

Warmer oceans are more depleted of CO2 than cooler oceans.
When a parcel water flows from the upwelling place to the sink place, that loses or absorbs CO2 in ratio to the pressure difference with the atmosphere. That changes from overpressure near the equator to underpressure near the poles.

Everywhere the temperature changes, the pCO2 of the ocean surface changes with 16 μatm/K. Thus more CO2 is released into the atmosphere and for equal CO2 upwelling the downwelling waters are depleted of CO2, compared to before the temperature increase.

Thus with warmer ocean surface waters, there is no buildup of CO2 in the water itself, it builds up in the atmosphere and the waters sink with less CO2.

That is until the CO2 buildup in the atmosphere is high enough to compensate for the warmer ocean surface.

That is at ~16 ppmv/K in both directions…

• Bartemis says:

No. There are more CO2 laden waters upwelling every second. If that CO2 is restricted from downwelling at the exact same rate, there will be an accumulation.

You are still stuck in a static world. That is not this world.

• Bart,

Indeed you do keep digging…

No. There are more CO2 laden waters upwelling every second. If that CO2 is restricted from downwelling at the exact same rate, there will be an accumulation.
You are still stuck in a static world. That is not this world.

You really don’t understand what a simple, not so complex dynamic system in the real world is.
I am talking about the full dynamics of the oceans:

At one (warm) side of the world, CO2 is released, depending on quantity of water upwelling, temperature and C concentration in the water and CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. Let’s say 10,000 tons CO2/minute.
At the other (cold) side of the world, CO2 is removed, depending of the concentration in the atmosphere and the quantity of water downwelling, temperature and C concentration in the waters, say again 10,000 tons CO2/minute.

As far as I know that is a prototype of simple straightforward dynamic process.

Now, for any reason (melting ice pack…) the sink places warm up with 1 K in temperature. That gives a static increase per Henry’s law of 16 μatm pCO2 at every m2 of the oceans where the temperature did increase with 1 K.
Because of that, less CO2 is absorbed in the sinking waters, as the sink rate is directly proportional to the pCO2 difference between atmosphere and ocean surface. Let’s say the sink rate drops to 9,500 tons/minute.

The difference between the incoming 10,000 and outgoing 9,500 tons/minute remains in the atmosphere, increasing the CO2 pressure in the atmosphere.

The increase in CO2 pressure in the atmosphere has a twofold effect: it reduces the pCO2 difference and thus the CO2 release at the upwelling sites and increases the pCO2 difference and uptake at the downwelling sites. Until both are at 9,750 tons/minute. That is at an increased pressure in the atmosphere of 16 μatm (ppmv).

That is fully dynamic. Not by coincidence the same value as for a single sample of seawater per Henry’s law…

BTW, for an asymmetric temperature increase at the sink places, the in/out fluxes are ultimately reduced and the difference remains in the ocean surface. The 250 tons CO2/minute difference is simply transported from sources to sinks with the waters, not via the atmosphere…

• Bartemis says:

It doesn’t work that way, Ferdinand. Far from forcing CO2 back down, the release of the gas from the upwelling waters produces less overall partial pressure with which to force downwelling.

That is because every ounce of it that goes into the air is that much less that is flowing via the ocean currents from the upwelling areas to the downwelling ones.

Let me repeat that:

That is because every ounce of it that goes into the air is that much less that is flowing via the ocean currents from the upwelling areas to the downwelling ones.

It’s a zero sum game. What you take out to put in the atmosphere has to come from somewhere. It comes from the oceans itself. You have devised a perpetual motion machine in which atmospheric partial pressure comes from nowhere, and adds to the already existing partial pressure in the oceans.

The atmospheric pressure does not force CO2 into the water. The waters are depleted by the flow into the atmosphere. The net effect of atmospheric pressure is zero. Actually, slightly less than zero, as it acts as a pressure release valve.

What you seem to want not to understand, or to avoid understanding, is that this is not a shallow pond of water. The processes which produce equilibration between the ocean/air interface must be replicated all the way down to the depths. The entire ocean undergoes a top to bottom change via the very slow processes of advection and diffusion. In the near term, the surface oceans gain concentration, and the atmosphere necessarily gains, too, in an accumulation such that the rate of change is proportional to the temperature anomaly.

Now, if you had a shallow pond of water, these processes would work out in short order, and you would reestablish a steady state condition rapidly following a change in temperature. But, this is not a shallow pond of water. This is the oceans, which run deeper than the tallest peak is tall, and have a total mass of 1.4 yotta grams. Nothing that involves that ginormous a mass is going to happen quickly. It is absurd to imagine it so.

• Bartemis says:

Here is a concrete example. I have a sink, i.e., a lavatory, and it has a flow of water coming in such that the balance between inflow and outflow through the drain produces a steady state 5 cm water level.

I now close the drain halfway and, based on the rate of inflow and the size of the sink, I can calculate that it will take 10 minutes for the water to reach the 10 cm mark. It will follow an exponential curve so, for the first minute or so, the rise will be remarkably linear.

Ferdinand is saying that, without changing the rate of inflow or the drain configuration, I can stop the rise if I merely divide the inflow so that some flows through a separate channel (that separate channel is analogous to the atmospheric uptake of CO2, which is just that: a diversion of the flow from the ocean currents). He says that the extra pressure from the separate flow will force more water down the drain. But, that ignores the fact that the other flow will no longer be the full flow.

It would be doing work on the flow, forcing water down the drain, merely by dividing it. That requires free energy. It is perpetual motion of the first kind (work without the input of energy). It is quite impossible.

• Bart:

That is because every ounce of it that goes into the air is that much less that is flowing via the ocean currents from the upwelling areas to the downwelling ones.

Strange, I fully agree on that…

The atmospheric pressure does not force CO2 into the water. The waters are depleted by the flow into the atmosphere. The net effect of atmospheric pressure is zero.

With that statement, you have digged so deep that the walls did collapse and now you are buried under the sand…

Pay for your rescue by repeating Henry’s law 100 times:

the amount of dissolved gas is proportional to its partial pressure in the gas phase

As a consequence, any CO2 flux between ocean surface and atmosphere is proportional to the pCO2 difference between these two, as good as is the case for carbonating Coke before filling the bottles (3-6 bar, depending of temperature), or reverse if you open the bottle at ambient CO2 pressure (0.0004 bar).

For the upwelling places the pCO2 of the warm oceans is ~700 μatm. That currently gives an influx of 40 GtC/year CO2 into the atmosphere which is at 400 μatm.

As a consequence, if the atmosphere should ever reach 700 μatm, then the influx would be zero. Thus the net effect of the atmospheric CO2 pressure is of utmost importance.

In general, warmer oceans at any part of the oceans gives a higher pCO2 of the surface with ~16 μatm/K. For a fixed CO2 pressure in the atmosphere that gives an increased influx or a reduced outflux, depending of the local pCO2 of the waters. If the pCO2 of the atmosphere increases with 16 ppmv/K, the original fluxes get just restored. If the pCO2 of the atmosphere increases with more than 16 ppmv/K, more CO2 will be pushed into the sinking waters and less released at the upwelling sites.

The processes which produce equilibration between the ocean/air interface must be replicated all the way down to the depths

No, the equilibration is very fast between atmosphere and ocean surface (less than a year half life time) and can be considered as quasy-static for the average temperature/pCO2 of the ocean surface. The equilibration with the deep oceans is largely restricted to some small sink and upwelling zones with extreme differences in pCO2, where the full dynamics must be taken into account. That is a much slower process than for the rest of the ocean surface: a decay rate of ~51 years (including vegetation) for any extra CO2 in the atmosphere above or below the long term steady state…

As the overturning of the deep oceans is ~800 years, we will probably not ever see the increase back at all: total human CO2 released until now would increase the deep oceans CO2 mass with 1% or at full equilibrium 3 ppmv extra in the atmosphere…

• Bart:

Ferdinand is saying that, without changing the rate of inflow or the drain configuration, I can stop the rise if I merely divide the inflow so that some flows through a separate channel

That is not what I am saying, what I am saying is that warmer oceans release more CO2 into the atmosphere, thus less is reaching the sinks via the water phase and more is reaching the sinks via the air phase. There is already a natural flux of ~40 GtC/year from upwelling to sinks via the atmosphere. That is influenced by ocean surface temperatures.

If the extra CO2 in the atmosphere pushes more CO2 into the sinking waters is a matter of temperature at the sink places: if that also increased, then less CO2 will be pushed in the sinking waters thus overall less CO2 sinks with the waters than was upwelling. That means no “piling up” of CO2 in the water phase, just the opposite.
The difference between upwelling and sinks remains in the atmosphere and increases the CO2 level/pressure there (until steady state is reached again – if ever).
Conservation of mass is at work every moment of time.

I don’t think that the energy needed to transfer CO2 from liquid to air or reverse is even measurable on local or global scale (it is measurable at laboratory scale), but anyway pressure differences are good workhorses…

• Bartemis says:

Ferdinand – The splitting of the CO2 flow between the ocean currents and atmosphere has no positive impact on the downwelling transport. To claim so is to be claiming perpetual motion.

All you need to know is that there is an upwelling flow coming in that was set in motion many centuries ago, and so is not going to change. There is a downwelling flow whose transport of CO2 is modulated by temperature. As a result, CO2 will accumulate in the surface system when temperature rises, the physical manifestation of which is that the rate of change will be proportional to the temperature anomaly, at least in the near term relative to oceanic turnover time.

That is a physically rigorous description of a physically viable process, and it is what we see in the data.

• All you need to know is that there is an upwelling flow coming in that was set in motion many centuries ago

Is it the “recording” of the co2 present at the surface when that water was downwelling in the arctic long ago?

• Bartemis says:

Something like that, I expect. Along with the sum total of whatever it picked up or lost on its centuries long trek.

• Bartemis says:

The point mainly is that it is a continuous flow that cannot be altered by anything in the short term, and is thereby effectively an exogenous input to the surface system over timelines of interest.

• Bart:

Ferdinand – The splitting of the CO2 flow between the ocean currents and atmosphere has no positive impact on the downwelling transport. To claim so is to be claiming perpetual motion.

The splitting of the CO2 flow has no impact on the downwelling transport, as long as there is no change in surface temperature and no change in CO2 pressure in the atmosphere.
If there is a change in temperature, the fluxes between ocean temperature and atmosphere will change and thus the amount of CO2 remaining in the transported waters.
If there is a change in the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, the fluxes will change, and thus the amount of CO2 remaining in the transported waters.
Temperature has an influence of 16 ppmv/K in both directions.
CO2 in the atmosphere has an influence directly proportional to the average pCO2 difference between ocean surface and the atmosphere,
Nothing to do with perpetual motion: the energy from any (partial) pressure difference is all what you need…

There is a downwelling flow whose transport of CO2 is modulated by temperature. As a result, CO2 will accumulate in the surface system when temperature rises.

Please Bart, you still are digging…
There is zero backward or forward transport within the water flow between upwelling and downwelling. CO2 diffusion within water is very slow, much slower than the speed of the Gulf Stream. You need wind and waves to have some reasonable exchange speed with the atmosphere for only the surface. Thus any CO2 change in the ocean surface is by exchanges with the atmosphere (and some by the biological pump with the deep oceans).
For a warmer ocean surface, that means more CO2 release in the tropics, thus the waters start already more depleted. At the time they reach the sinks, they stiil are depleted and in the sink areas they absorb less CO2 due to the higher temperature of the ocean surface, thus less pCO2 difference with the atmosphere and thus less CO2 flux into the oceans.
There is no extra accumulation of CO2 in the ocean surface anywhere, there is depletion of CO2 everywhere from upwelling to sinks for warmer oceans. The accumulation of CO2 is in the atmosphere, not in the ocean surface…

That is a physically rigorous description of a physically viable process

It is the exact opposite of what physics say: warmer waters hold less CO2…

• Bartemis says:

“There is zero backward or forward transport within the water flow between upwelling and downwelling.”

That is completely counter to everything that is known about transport phenomena.

“…warmer waters hold less CO2…”

Which means that the downwelling waters that have warmed are carrying less CO2 down with them, while the upwelling waters concentration remains unchanged. There is thereby an induced imbalance, and CO2 must accumulate within the surface system.

You are arguing in favor of perpetual motion, Ferdinand. Work performed without an input of energy is a perpetuum mobile of the first kind.

Furthermore, by the way, if what you are claiming were true, it would act equally on the anthropogenic flow. You must always treat the natural flow and the anthropogenic flows equally.

So, in line with your claim, the anthropogenic flow would produce atmospheric pressure, which would drive the downwelling transport, and the anthropogenic contribution would settle out to a constant level.

You could argue that the response might be so long term (long time constant in a simple single box model) that, in the near term, the anthropogenic flow would accumulate. But, the timeline has to be the same for both natural and anthropogenic flows, so you cannot get the natural impact settling while the anthropogenic input continues to accumulate. That is what your model does. That is why it is non-physical.

The only model consistent with the data and the laws of nature is that both flows have the same qualitative impact, but the anthropogenic flows are so much smaller than the natural ones that they have relatively small absolute impact. That is what I have been describing to you all along.

I think we’ve said everything that can be said, and I have work to do. All I can do is show you how this world you have constructed in your mind is a fantasy. I think I have done that. Equal treatment of anthropogenic and natural flows must be obeyed. Work requires input of energy. Any remaining misconception on your part is beyond my capability to address.

Until we meet again…

• Bart:

The point mainly is that it is a continuous flow that cannot be altered by anything in the short term, and is thereby effectively an exogenous input to the surface system over timelines of interest.

The input from the deep oceans can not be altered, but any change in that input can be met on short note by changes in the atmosphere. Even if we had a sudden enormous 10% increase in CO2 upwelling (either water flow or CO2 concentration), that is countered in 1-2 decades by only a 30 ppmv CO2 increase in the atmosphere. Still far from the current 110 ppmv increase (90 ppmv since Mauna Loa).

Moreover, with a ~800 cycle, the upwelling now represent the sink rates of the warm MWP and will drop for ~400 years into the sink rates of the LIA, just the other way out…

• Bartemis says:

“Even if we had a sudden enormous 10% increase in CO2 upwelling (either water flow or CO2 concentration), that is countered in 1-2 decades by only a 30 ppmv CO2 increase in the atmosphere.”

Quite impossible. That is extraction of work to overcome the thermal barrier of the warmer waters without an input of energy. Classical perpetual motion.

You are arguing, e.g. in the lavatory example I gave above, that by putting the spout of the diverted flow closer to the drain, you can make the rise stop, because it gets to the drain faster that way.

No, sorry. There is still no input of energy to do the extra work. There is no different arrangement or time shift that can be exploited to create work from nothing.

• Bart,

Really you have no clue where you are talking about. This is so elementary that I get more sure with the day about your complete lack of knowledge of simple real life processes.

That is completely counter to everything that is known about transport phenomena.

As said a few times below, the diffusion coefficient of CO2 in water is extremely small: 0.00016 mm2/s. That even only counts if you have a pCO2 difference in the liquid, thus can’t pile up CO2, only can level CO2 between water parcels. Even if there would be a CO2 doubling in one parcel, connected to the next, its diffusion would be trivial (a few meters) over the time that the THC needs from the upwelling zones to the sink zones of less than a year (~1.8 m/s, 20,000 km).

There is thereby an induced imbalance, and CO2 must accumulate within the surface system.

Which is completely impossible: if the ocean surface gets warmer, more CO2 is emitted in warm places and less absorbed in cold places. Thus everywhere, at every point of the ocean surface, the warmer oceans are depleted of CO2 compared to a colder surface. Thus indeed, less CO2 sinks into the deep oceans, while the inflow remains the same, but that difference accumulates in the atmosphere, not in the ocean surface.

Work performed without an input of energy is a perpetuum mobile of the first kind.

Bart, the amount of energy necessary to move 0.0001 ppmv CO2 between atmosphere and oceans and back is simply negligible. Moreover, the fact that the movement solely is by pressure differences (temperature induced or not) is enough to do the job. Most energy work in the real world is from pressure differences…

the anthropogenic flow would produce atmospheric pressure, which would drive the downwelling transport, and the anthropogenic contribution would settle out to a constant level

Yes, it does, but because of the long relax rate (~51 years) not all human (or volcanic) CO2 is removed in the same year as emitted…

But, the timeline has to be the same for both natural and anthropogenic flows, so you cannot get the natural impact settling while the anthropogenic input continues to accumulate.

The timeline IS the same for any input, human and natural alike above the steady state.
Where you still go wrong, is that the main in/out fluxes are seasonal, which is a mainly temperature driven phenomenon, hardly influenced by any increased pressure in the atmosphere. The huge in/out fluxes over the seasons didn’t increase over time with sufficient amount (i.e. sufficient difference between ins and outs) to get all extra CO2 out of the atmosphere (human or not).
There is an order of magnitude difference between the seasonal temperature caused residence time (~5 years) and the pressure caused removal rate of any extra CO2 (~51 years).

That is extraction of work to overcome the thermal barrier of the warmer waters without an input of energy. Classical perpetual motion.

Pressure differences have all the potential energy needed to do that work…

• Bart,

My energy necessary to move 0.0001 ppmv CO2 in real life is ~40 GtC/year moved from the ocean surface into the atmosphere where the surface is warm enough, transported by the atmosphere to the sink places and pushed back into the ocean surface, everywhere the ocean surface gets cold enough.

The energy involved comes from the increase/decrease in water temperature: that gives a higher/lower pCO2 in the ocean surface and that delivers the potential energy to move CO2 out of the oceans into the atmosphere or reverse. The potential energy is transformed into kinetic energy at a loss of potential energy of 750 μatm (ocean surface) down to 400 μatm (atmosphere) at the upwelling zones. The same, in reverse order, happens at the sink places: 400 μatm (atmosphere) down to 250 μatm (ocean surface)…

The temperature induced pCO2 difference does all the necessary work…

• Bartemis says:

This is starting to get annoying, Ferdinand. You have descended to the level of “crank”, and are now promoting perpetual motion.

– I have no idea why you are going on about diffusion.

“Thus indeed, less CO2 sinks into the deep oceans, while the inflow remains the same, but that difference accumulates in the atmosphere, not in the ocean surface.”

It accumulates in both, as it must, producing a dynamic in which the rate of change is proportional to temperature anomaly.

“Bart, the amount of energy necessary to move 0.0001 ppmv CO2 between atmosphere and oceans and back is simply negligible.”

The work that is required is that needed to push the CO2 at the same rate as it is upwelling into the downwelling waters when the downwelling waters have warmed.

Atmospheric pressure does nothing to help overcome that barrier. It is merely a splitting of the flow, not an energy source.

“Yes, it does, but because of the long relax rate (~51 years) not all human (or volcanic) CO2 is removed in the same year as emitted…”

Doesn’t work, because you have to apply the same relaxation time to the natural source.

“Pressure differences have all the potential energy needed to do that work…”

You do not produce energy merely by splitting a flow.

“…and pushed back into the ocean surface, everywhere the ocean surface gets cold enough.”

Sorry, no. You are descending into crackpottery.

• Bartemis says:

There is a longer response in the queue, but basically, you have descended to the level of perpetual motion crackpot here. Splitting the flow does not add energy, and energy is necessary to overcome the thermal barrier to downflow transport created by an increase in temperature.

• Bartemis says:

The point is that, the atmosphere has nothing to do with it, and is beside the point. It is just riding upon the ocean’s back.

So, you get a temperature increase. Downwelling at the surface level carries less CO2 down, so the surface level increases. This drives the downwelling faster.

In your world, it stops there, and it takes only a short while to reach an equlibrium condition.

But, the THC extends all the way down to the depths of the oceans and back up again. So, the upper level is induced by the added CO2 to transport more CO2 down. But, it is then resisted by the next layer of ocean, which is tuned to the previous volume of downwelling. That resistance now has to be overcome.

Then, the downwelling encounters the next level, and its resistance also has to be overcome.

You have to keep doing this all the way down, and it takes a very long time before a new equilibrium can be achieved. As long as you have an imbalance between what is upwelling, and what is downwelling, you will get an increase in the level at the surface. And, you will not equilibrate the downwelling to the upwelling until every level of resistance has been overcome.

• Bart,

You simply don’t understand anything of basic physical processes that is the problem.

Take your:
I have no idea why you are going on about diffusion.

If there is no/little diffusion within a water flow, there is no piling up of CO2 within the water flow possible. If the temperature of the waterflow between upwelling and sinks gets up, nothing happens within the waterflow between different parcels, as there are no exchanges between them. If that flux was isolated from the atmosphere (as it is mostly isolated from the deep oceans), then what upwells simply downwells back into the deep, whatever its temperature or CO2 content.

It accumulates in both, as it must, producing a dynamic in which the rate of change is proportional to temperature anomaly.

Bart are you really that dumb, or is it only to rescue your theory? If the ocean warms everywhere, there is less CO2 in every point of the ocean surface than before the increase in temperature. Less CO2 everywhere in every point of the ocean surface.
Thus there is no CO2 accumulation in the ocean surface with increasing temperatures, there is an overall decrease of CO2 in the full ocean surface.

The work that is required is that needed to push the CO2 at the same rate as it is upwelling into the downwelling waters when the downwelling waters have warmed.

That energy is already inherited in the potential energy which is the CO2 pressure in the atmosphere: thanks to the higher temperature in the tropics at 750 μatm to push 40 GtC CO2 into the atmosphere at 400 μatm, a drop of 350 μatm, which gives all the kinetic energy needed.
The same at the sink side: 400 μatm drops to 250 μatm in the cold polar waters, a drop of 150 μatm, that is enough to sink 40 GtC into the deep.

If the downwelling waters warm with 1 K the local pCO2 of the ocean surface increases with 16 μatm, thus gets 166 μatm. as the sink flux is proportional to the pCO2 difference between atmosphere and surface, the 40 GtC/year drops to 35.7 GtC/year. Thus 4.3 GtC (~2 ppmv) remains in the atmosphere in the first year of a warming of 1 K. Until the pCO2 in the atmosphere gets 16 ppmv/K higher. Then the outflux or 40 GtC/year is restored. Thus the accumulation of CO2 due to an ocean surface temperature increase is in the atmosphere, not in the ocean surface

Atmospheric pressure does nothing to help overcome that barrier. It is merely a splitting of the flow, not an energy source.

Please Bart… Pressure IS at least an energy carrier or not much would work in this world. Even a pressure difference of 0.000001 bar CO2 (1 ppmv) higher in the atmosphere will push some extra CO2 into the ocean surface…

Doesn’t work, because you have to apply the same relaxation time to the natural source.

It does apply. If you know of any natural source that increases the CO2 pressure in the atmosphere (volcanoes?), the same 51 years decay rate is applicable.

You do not produce energy merely by splitting a flow.

No, that uses the available energy:
– A drop of 350 μatm potential energy to push CO2 from the ocean surface into the atmosphere.
– A drop of 150 μatm potential energy to push CO2 from the atmosphere back into the ocean surface.

“…and pushed back into the ocean surface, everywhere the ocean surface gets cold enough.”
Sorry, no. You are descending into crackpottery.

Bart if you don’t understand that colder waters do dissolve more of any gas from the atmosphere above it from the moment on that the partial pressure of any of these gases in the water is below the partial pressure of the same gas in the atmosphere, then it I rest my case…

• Bart:

the atmosphere has nothing to do with it, and is beside the point.

Bart, please! The atmosphere has everything to do with it as there is no internal CO2 transport within the waterflow from upwelling to sinks. None at all. ALL changes in CO2 content of the water is via the atmosphere (and a small part by the biopump into the deep oceans).

So, you get a temperature increase. Downwelling at the surface level carries less CO2 down, so the surface level increases.

Bart, can you give in detail how CO2 in the surface water level increases, while less is transported down with the sinking waters. How does that CO2 move from sinking waters against the flow to increase the local CO2 levels nearby/at the sinks?

This drives the downwelling faster. But, it is then resisted by the next layer of ocean, which is tuned to the previous volume of downwelling. That resistance now has to be overcome.

I am completely confused now. Are you talking about the total volume of water or the CO2 content which have nothing to do with each other? Even if there was a tenfold increase in CO2, you would hardly see any difference in water volume.
CO2 has no influence whatever on the downflow water volume, Temperature and wind does have some influence, but that is mostly temporary (seasonal, El Niño), the rest is good for a Holywood disaster film…

• Bartemis says:

“You simply don’t understand anything of basic physical processes that is the problem.”

Quite the contrary, I understand quite well that you have a simplified view that simply does not apply in this world.

“Thus there is no CO2 accumulation in the ocean surface with increasing temperatures, there is an overall decrease of CO2 in the full ocean surface.”

Again, you are living in a static universe. New parcels of CO2 are being released from upwelling waters every second to replenish what is lost, and keep pushing it on upward.

Again, this is a very simple, and legitimate, mass balance argument. If you have a set amount upwelling, and you restrict downwelling, then you must have an accumulation. That accumulation will continue until an equilibrium in the flow is reestablished. As the THC takes many centuries for circulation, that is the order of time that is required to reestablish equilibrium.

• Bart,

Answers are further down, no further discussion here, it gets very messy…

61. Ferdinand
says
With the same reasoning, one can argue that there is no sea level rise possible, as the huge tidal changes show that the ocean mass is not saturated and the rise due to warmer oceans and ice melt is trivial compared to the total mass going up and down every 12 hours or so.

Henry
says
This melting of ice [in the NH] has something to do with this small amount of 90 ppm of CO2 that you think is coming from us, and that you guys keep arguing about, that we all know is like dung in the air?

Then I remind you again that you have still not proven [by any reasonable scientific test] that the net effect of more CO2 in the atmosphere is that of warming rather than cooling.

• Henry,

Nothing to do with rising CO2 levels, only with rising temperatures…
Which still results in rising sea levels at an extreme “speed” of 2-3 mm per year…

But that is impossible, if we follow the reasoning of Richard…

62. The Original Mike M says:

It’s already abundantly clear that temperature drives natural CO2 emission on this planet. More warmth produces more animal life and therefore more respiration, (most from insects and soil microbes). More warmth and more CO2 produces more plant life sucking up the more abundant CO2 which is then more food for yet even more animal life. The only real limitations seem to be temperature and how much carbon is around to cycle.

A quote from this study http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v488/n7409/full/nature11299.html underscores that very fact

Our mass balance analysis shows that net global carbon uptake has increased significantly by about 0.05 billion tonnes of carbon per year and that global carbon uptake doubled, from 2.4 ± 0.8 to 5.0 ± 0.9 billion tonnes per year, between 1960 and 2010.

From reports like this one, https://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/12226 , there’s no question earth is getting greener …
https://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/vis/a010000/a012200/a012226/s2-1024.jpg

.. but from the paper above, the real eye opener is the stated magnitude: DOUBLED CO2 UPTAKE IN 50 YEARS!!

So while it does not appear that the small amount of added human CO2 is doing much of anything to raise global temperature, our CO2 emissions may in fact be giving a VERY SIGNIFICANT boost to life on this planet!

Keep up the good work, drill baby drill!

• The Original Mike M,

I don’t think your bookkeeper would be happy with you if you give him only half the figures: indeed there are more sinks and the earth is greening, but that is because humans have added lots of CO2 first…

Temperature is good for only 290 ppmv, the rest is thanks to our emissions…

• The Original Mike M says:

“but that is because humans have added lots of CO2 first”
The percent of overturned CO2 that was added by humans is going down as we keep adding it! Seeing life respond by doubling its uptake proves that there is not enough carbon in the carbon cycle to begin with – it wants MORE! What is wrong with giving earth’s biosphere more of what it wants? It used to have a LOT more 100 million years ago – it appears that plant genes “remembered” and want it higher.

• The Original Mike M says:

Ferdinand : “If we didn’t add such large quantities of CO2, CO2 levels would go down, back to the steady state by Henry’s law, that is ~290 ppmv for the current average sea surface temperature. ”

This is one of the silliest misinformed things I’ve ever read! Since WHEN has the ocean ever “obeyed” Henry’s Law? Explain why it didn’t “obey” it 150 MYA when CO2 was north of 2000ppm ? Even then the pH remained above 7.5 – why do you think that was?

No Ferdinand! The ocean is NOT some container of distilled water, it is highly buffered and more importantly … full of LIFE.

The big difference is that LIVING organisms like coccolithophores never read about Henry’s Law so they just ignore it – and your pathetically simplistic viewpoint.

Gee, where does all that ocean CO2 go Ferdinand? http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/climate-change-atlantic-plankton-bloom-reflects-soaring-carbon-dioxide-levels-scientists-say-a6750241.html

CO2 uptake by life in the ocean is estimated at 50 PETAGRAMS per year! https://epic.awi.de/37516/1/CC_PrimaryProduction.pdf So much for your silly babble about Henry’s Law.

• The Original Mike M says:

Correction – Per the paper, NPP of ocean is 50 petagrams of CARBON … not CO2.

• Mike
I am with you all the way!!
Problem is how we can change the perception of many people & media in the world who have been brainwashed into believing that a change of 90 ppm of CO2 [0.009%] extra in the atmosphere is responsible for global warming and any ‘climate change’ in general….

• Bartemis says:

“The ocean is NOT some container of distilled water, it is highly buffered and more importantly … full of LIFE.”

Amen! Additionally, they are always flowing and circulating, and they are vast beyond most peoples’ comprehension.

• Mike,

We aren’t talking about 150 million years ago, as much of that CO2/carbonate now rests in the nice white cliffs of Dover and doesn’t buffer the oceans anymore. We are talking about the past few million years with what we see in ice cores: a CO2/T ratio of ~16 ppmv/K, the same as Henry’s law gives (4-17 ppmv/K) for the solubility of CO2 in seawater. Confirmed by over 3 million seawater samples in the past decades.

Human emissions are ~9 GtC/year, nature absorbs ~4.5 GtC/year. Without human emissions, CO2 levels would go down…

• The Original Mike M April 11, 2017 at 5:25 am
Ferdinand : “If we didn’t add such large quantities of CO2, CO2 levels would go down, back to the steady state by Henry’s law, that is ~290 ppmv for the current average sea surface temperature. ”

This is one of the silliest misinformed things I’ve ever read! Since WHEN has the ocean ever “obeyed” Henry’s Law?

Always, it has no choice, basic physical chemistry!

Explain why it didn’t “obey” it 150 MYA when CO2 was north of 2000ppm ? Even then the pH remained above 7.5 – why do you think that was?

That’s about right, pH 7.5 would correspond to about 2000ppm.

No Ferdinand! The ocean is NOT some container of distilled water, it is highly buffered and more importantly … full of LIFE.

The Henry’s Law coefficient of CO2 in seawater is ~29mol/(m^3 bar) at 25ºC. The life in the ocean has no effect on the concentration ratio across the boundary.

• and how much co2 is being released
by thawing permafrost?

• The Original Mike M April 10, 2017 at 12:42 pm:
“It’s already abundantly clear that temperature drives natural CO2 emission on this planet.”

so tell us — where do you think the 40 billion tons of co2 we emit every year goes?

• afonzarelli says:

If nature takes out at least half of all human emissions, then why is it a stretch to think that nature can’t take out the whole shebang?

• The Original Mike M says:

“where do you think the 40 billion tons of co2 we emit every year goes”

Increasingly more and more of it is gladly being sucked up by plants and recycled like the rest. It’s like fertilizing your lawn. If it is very sparse then not very much will be used initially. But as it fills in it will use more and more.

Another analogy is a closed loop fountain. The pump is cavitating because there is not enough water (CO2) in it. We are slowly adding water and the height of the fountain (amount of life) is getting higher (doubled per that study).

• Fonzie and Original Mike,

If we didn’t add such large quantities of CO2, CO2 levels would go down, back to the steady state by Henry’s law, that is ~290 ppmv for the current average sea surface temperature. Thus don’t wish for stopping human emissions…

And Fonzie, for any simple, straight linear process, the sink rate is directly proportional to the extra pressure above the steady state. Thus halving current human emissions would bring the sinks back in equilibrium with the emissions…

• Bartemis says:

“… for any simple, straight linear process, the sink rate is directly proportional to the extra pressure above the steady state. Thus halving current human emissions would bring the sinks back in equilibrium with the emissions…”

No. The sink rate is directly proportional to the pressure. Period. Not the pressure above a fictional steady state, but the entire pressure. Thus, it is a function of total flow rate, of which anthropogenic components are a small part.

If human emissions were halved, they would just be a smaller portion of the overall flow, of which they are already a small portion. It would barely even register.

• Bart,

You may be brilliant in your own profession, but here you show – again – that you have some lack of experience in simple straightforward, linear processes in the real world around you…

No. The sink rate is directly proportional to the pressure. Period. Not the pressure above a fictional steady state, but the entire pressure.

The sink rate is not proportional to the CO2 pressure, it is proportional to the (partial) pressure difference between the atmosphere and the ocean surface (or the water within plant alveoles).

That is what Henry’s law says. When the pCO2 of the ocean surface and the pCO2 in the atmosphere in average are equal, there will be a dynamic equilibrium (“steady state”) between the two: as much CO2 is coming in from warm oceans as is absorbed by cold ocean surfaces. Flux in and flux out ~40 GtC/year. Net flux zero.

Currently the pCO2 difference between the atmosphere and ocean surface is 7 μatm higher in the atmosphere. Thus there is more flux out of the atmosphere into the oceans than reverse, thus your theory of the oceans as source is proven wrong…

• Bartemis says:

If you want to split hairs, replace everywhere I said “pressure” with “partial pressure”. Again, you are just grasping at straws.

To you, the natural equilibrium level is a magical thing that just exists, and you can build your house on top of it. But, your foundation is sand. Anthropogenic flows are subject to the same equilibrium dynamics, and they cannot affect the equilibrium level by anything greater than their proportion to the natural flows.

• Bart,

You only have shown – again – that you don’t know what you are talking about.

It is not about the word “partial”, it is about absolute pressure against pressure difference

The source/sink rate is not proportional to 400 μatm (~ppmv) in the atmosphere. It is proportional to (750 – 400) μatm at the upwelling places near the equator and (400 – 250) μatm at the sink places near the poles.
If it was proportional to the absolute pressure in the atmosphere, no CO2 was left in the atmosphere…

A temperature incease in the ocean surface does increase the pCO2 difference at the upwelling and does decrease the pCO2 difference at the sink zones. That changes the in-out fuxes, leading to an increase of CO2 in the atmosphere. The reaction on that increase is opposite to the increase in temperature and at 16 ppmv/K the original fluxes are restored. The poles were never CO2 sources, at least not as long as there was sea ice.

• Bartemis says:

“The reaction on that increase is opposite to the increase in temperature and at 16 ppmv/K the original fluxes are restored.”

No. Sorry. That is not how it works. By the time the atmosphere has built up enough CO2 to equalize the last batch that upwelled and failed to downwell, more has upwelled and failed to downwell.

It is a dynamic process. It is on a treadmill, and it will not catch up until either temperature reduces, or after centuries, when overturning has resulted in less upwelling transport and a new equilibrium level.

You are stuck in a static world. That is not the world we live in.

• Bartemis April 11, 2017 at 4:39 am
“… for any simple, straight linear process, the sink rate is directly proportional to the extra pressure above the steady state. Thus halving current human emissions would bring the sinks back in equilibrium with the emissions…”

No. The sink rate is directly proportional to the pressure. Period. Not the pressure above a fictional steady state, but the entire pressure. Thus, it is a function of total flow rate, of which anthropogenic components are a small part.

No you’re wrong, Henry’s Law is pCO2=kH⋅[CO2] at equilibrium when the sink rate will be zero. The sink rate will depend on the difference pCO2-kH⋅[CO2].

• “Increasingly more and more of it is gladly being sucked up by plants and recycled like the rest.”

be quantitative; how much more CO2 is being taken up by plants?

• afonzarelli April 10, 2017 at 5:24 pm wrote
“If nature takes out at least half of all human emissions, then why is it a stretch to think that nature can’t take out the whole shebang?”

because that’s not how the physics of gas absorption in a liquid works.

• Bartemis says:

Phil. @ April 11, 2017 at 4:16 pm

You are not following the conversation.

crackers345 @ April 11, 2017 at 4:44 pm

You aren’t, either.

You are both irrelevant.

• Bartemis April 11, 2017 at 5:32 pm
Phil. @ April 11, 2017 at 4:16 pm

You are not following the conversation.

No I’m leading it, why would I follow someone like you who doesn’t have a clue about the relevant science.

• Bartemis says:

If you think so, then OK. I’m not a shrink.

• Bartemis April 11, 2017 at 5:48 pm
If you think so, then OK. I’m not a shrink.

Not a scientist either clearly.

• Michael darby says:

“Phil.” makes the most significant comment on this thread: ” Not a scientist either clearly.” Thanks.

• Bart,

I begin to think that you never, ever have seen a simple, linear dynamic process from nearby.

What you are telling here is pure nonsense:

By the time the atmosphere has built up enough CO2 to equalize the last batch that upwelled and failed to downwell, more has upwelled and failed to downwell.

How much CO2 is entering the atmosphere from the upwelling sites is directly proportional to the local pCO2 difference between the ocean surface and the atmosphere.
How much CO2 is leaving the atmosphere at the sink sites is directly proportional to the local pCO2 difference between the atmosphere and the ocean surface.
At any inbetween place, the flux of CO2 in or out (even in and out over the seasons) is directly proportional to the local pCO2 difference between the atmosphere and the ocean surface.

The local pCO2 difference is what counts, if there is no difference, there is no CO2 flux (or to be strictly scientific: as much CO2 molecules transfer from atmosphere to liquid as reverse).

The only way that CO2 in the downwelling waters may fail to downwell is when the waters themselves fail to downwell. That is the very unlikely scenario of “The Day after Tommorow”.

Otherwise the only CO2 exchange in the ocean flow from equatorial upwelling to polar sinks is between the ocean parcels and the atmosphere and a mainly biological one between ocean parcels and the deep oceans. There is no backward or forward propagation of CO2 between ocean parcels on their voyage between tropics and poles.

The observed exchange rate between ocean surface and atmosphere is less than a year (but limited to 10% of the change in the atmosphere).
The observed exchange rate between the deep oceans (+vegetation) and atmosphere is ~51 years (practically unlimited).
The latter is fast enough to deal with any change in temperature or concentration or flux from the deep oceans, but too slow to remove all human emissions in the same year as emitted.

You are stuck in a static world. That is not the world we live in.

Bart, what part of the dynamic changes in the above dynamic fluxes between (deep) oceans and atmosphere don’t you understand?

Don’t start with fantasy stories that CO2 piles up in the waters before downwelling and therefore the CO2 levels go up in the atmopsphere: the cold waters near the poles have the largest undersaturation (250 μatm) for CO2 on earth, thus sucking their maximum flux of CO2 out of the atmosphere (at 400 μatm). Any temperature change at the downwelling places is fully compensated with a change of 16 ppmv/K in the atmosphere within a decade or so.

• dikranmarsupial says:

“You are stuck in a static world.”

Bartemis keeps saying this, but the mass balance clearly isn’t a static analysis. This is what you get if you apply the mass balance analysis to the osbervations:

https://static.skepticalscience.com/pics/3_mass_balance.png

which has a rather large trend and quite a lot of inter-annual variability for a static analysis!

I suspect this is why Bartemis likes to misrepresent the mass balance argument by using the airborne fraction of 0.5 to make it static:

“In your equation, C := 0.5*Ea. That is how you make your conclusion.”

I don’t make my conclusion that way, and Bartemis knows perfectly well that I don’t because I have pointed out his dishonest misrepresentation on more than on occasion, and he has no substantive response, just bluster and insult.

I wouldn’t connect the constant airborne fraction with the mass balance equation, because (i) it is not necessary and (ii) it would weaken my argument because the mass balance equation holds for any system that obeys conservation of matter (which the carbon cycle obviously does), but the constant airborne fraction is contingent on the (approximately exponential) form of anthropogenic emissions. Which is why Bartemis tries to substitute it as a straw man.

• Bartemis says:

Ferdinand Engelbeen @ April 12, 2017 at 3:28 am

“The only way that CO2 in the downwelling waters may fail to downwell is when the waters themselves fail to downwell.”

That is incorrect. This is a transport problem, Ferdinand. You have reduced an amazingly complex phenomenon into a trivial problem, but the solution exists only in your own head.

It’s ridiculous. You and Phil and the others are living in a fantasy realm in which you have appointed yourselves gods, and asserted away all the complexities. You are like the monks of yore, insisting that the planets must move in perfect circular patterns, with no physical backing whatsoever, and mocking those who insist that the Earth is not at the center of it all.

• Bartemis says:

dikranmarsupial @ April 12, 2017 at 3:54 am

Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.

• Bartemis says:

Phil. @ April 11, 2017 at 6:06 pm

So, being a “scientist” means taking a laboratory result from pure sample in a beaker at steady state under controlled conditions and constant temperature, and extrapolating it with no time lag across an immense active system with enormous time lags and huge temperature swings, and calling it truth.

As my friend Inigo Montoya would say, “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

• Bart:

That is incorrect. This is a transport problem, Ferdinand. You have reduced an amazingly complex phenomenon into a trivial problem, but the solution exists only in your own head.

It is a trivial problem, once you accept the observations, but there you don’t accept what you don’t like.

The observations show a surprisingly linear net sink rate in direct ratio to the extra CO2 above the steady state of the oceans per Henry’s law. That are facts.
Part of that sinks in the biosphere, part in the oceans. The first is measured via the oxygen balance, the second is measured via lots of frequent pCO2 measurements all over the oceans.

That this refutes your hypothesis, together with the opposite δ13C drop, makes not the slightest impression on you. You still come with the hypothesis that CO2 accumulates in the surface waters (which is true, but in reverse order), thus is the cause of the increase in the atmosphere, without a shred of evidence, while the observations show exactly the opposite…

Thus it is only in your head that the problems are…

• Bartemis says:

“It is a trivial problem…”

Yes, and it is trivial that the planets revolve in circles about the Earth. You are hopeless.

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis, every time you respond “Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.” you are just confirming that you know you did misrepresent me, and you are unable to refute the evidence that you did. I don’t need to engage in frequent ad-hominems, I don’t need to misrepresent your arguments in order to show them to be incorrect, and I don’t need to run away from arguments I can’t answer by writing “Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb” (a better approach is to admit you can’t answer them, as that is the rational thing to do). You should ask yourself why you do need to do those things.

You also ought to read what Fred Singer “wrote about this (note his choice of words, not mine). If you want to marginalise yourself, then this argument is about as good as the claims that the greenhouse effect violates the second law of thermodynamics (it very obviously doesn’t) or that climate is driven by Jupiter-Saturn Syzergy (however you spell it). Entirely your choice.

• dikranmarsupial says:

I wrote “I don’t make my conclusion that way, and Bartemis knows perfectly well that I don’t because I have pointed out his dishonest misrepresentation on more than on occasion, and he has no substantive response, just bluster and insult.”

Utterly predictably, Bartemis responded “Dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb.”

Not a great advert for climate skepticism. The Fred Singer article (again, his choice of words not mine) I mentioned is discussed here. Bart is there on that thread:

“I am very tired of those who deny that the greenhouse effect exists based on a misunderstanding of the 2nd law and, usually, a failure to view the system as dynamic with continual influx of energy from the Sun. The GHGs do not heat the surface, per se, they merely impede the outflow so that extra energy, relative to what would be the case without the GHGs, accumulates before equilibrium is established.

There are two particular GHE disbelievers who like to post here on WUWT who always seem to swoop in when I am having a serious discussion with someone with opposing views and embarrass me. I wish they would stop.”

Oh, the irony! ;o)

• Bartemis says:

By all means DM, tell everyone far and wide that you stand with the infamous Doug Cotton against me. He and you make a good pair of cranks.

• Bartemis says:

Look, DM. I gave you the math. I spelled out in lucid detail what is wrong with your argument. You’ve got no leg to stand on, except your bludgeoning insistence on repeating the same flawed argument ad nauseum. I have no further interest in making futile arguments against invincible ignorance.

But, I am curious… Are you now saying Fred Singer is an authority to be trusted on all matters climate related?

• dikranmarsupial says:

Bartemis writes “Look, DM. I gave you the math.”

Bartemis finds a new way of evading the fact that he dishonestly misrepresented my argument…

“I spelled out in lucid detail what is wrong with your argument.”

by bringing up his criticism of the straw man he set up! You would be better of either by not replying, or better still, admitting you misrepresented me, apologising, and addressing the argument I actually did make. By repeatedly replying without actually addressing the charge, you are just making it clear that you are not engaging honestly in truth-seeking scientific discussion. I’m not sure what you seek to gain by that.

“But, I am curious… Are you now saying Fred Singer is an authority to be trusted on all matters climate related?”

No, of course not, but not being driven by petty partisan animosity, I don’t have a problem with agreeing with climate skeptics when I think they have a point, as Singer does in that article. Clinging on to obviously incorrect arguments, such as that the rise in atmospheric CO2 is natural, will just get climate skeptics marginalised. I don’t particularly want that, I want a climate debate based on rational discussion of the science, but its entirely your choice.

• Bartemis April 13, 2017 at 10:36 am:
>> Look, DM. I gave you the math.

what you haven’t given is the physics.

or are you just curve-fitting?

• Bartemis says:

“…or are you just curve-fitting…”

The folly of the pseudo-mass balance argument is completely separate from the issue of modeling the evolution of CO2. It is a very elementary math error, to wit, the part on the side of the ledger that is ascribed to nature is not independent of anthropogenic influence. Hence, it does not tell us what nature on its own is doing.

Nothing to do with curve fitting. Just simple math. The pseudo-mass balance argument is a very stupid argument on a very elementary level.

• The Original Mike M says:

Ferdinand – We aren’t talking about 150 million years ago, as much of that CO2/carbonate now rests in the nice white cliffs of Dover and doesn’t buffer the oceans anymore. We are talking about the past few million years with what we see in ice cores: a CO2/T ratio of ~16 ppmv/K, the same as Henry’s law gives (4-17 ppmv/K) for the solubility of CO2 in seawater. Confirmed by over 3 million seawater samples in the past decades.
Human emissions are ~9 GtC/year, nature absorbs ~4.5 GtC/year. Without human emissions, CO2 levels would go down…

One more time Ferdinand (and Phil) – The very fact that CO2 was over 2000ppm 150MYA annihilates your ridiculous assertion that the ocean is somehow “supposed to obey” Henry’s law, that atm CO2 would magically be at ~290ppm if not for the CO2 added by human’s burning FF. That assertion is junk science pure and simple! (And you won’t weasel out of it Ferdinand, you stated:“If we didn’t add such large quantities of CO2, CO2 levels would go down, back to the steady state by Henry’s law, that is ~290 ppmv for the current average sea surface temperature. ”)

LIFE and geology are the key factors in ocean chemistry. Henry’s Law is not some factor to be used to argue how much CO2 there ought to be in the atmosphere, it is merely a regulating factor in the dynamics of CO2 exchange between the air and the ocean.

The amount of CO2 in the ocean and in the air is controlled by LIFE … not Henry’s Law. (And I additionally submit that humans are alive.)

…a tenfold increase in the abundance of single-cell coccolithophores between 1965 and 2010, and a particularly sharp spike since the late 1990s in the population of these pale-shelled floating phytoplankton.

How is that not a good thing? How is lowering ocean pH not a good thing when it helps recycle calcium to be available for the things like coccolithophores? (The things that built the White Cliffs of Dover per your example back when CO2 was far more plentiful.)

Also, your assertion of natural absorption is WAY off! Total global NPP is over 100 Gt/yr not 4.5 and it is rising more quickly than human emissions as well thus LOWERING the percentage of the human CO2 in the air.

Here you go – https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms13428

we report a recent pause in the growth rate of atmospheric CO2, and a decline in the fraction of anthropogenic emissions that remain in the atmosphere, despite increasing anthropogenic emissions. We attribute the observed decline to increases in the terrestrial sink during the past decade, associated with the effects of rising atmospheric CO2 on vegetation and the slowdown in the rate of warming on global respiration.

Your 4.5 Gt number is not the total natural absorption. It is merely the difference between natural emission (mostly respiration) and natural absorption; just a lame attempt to hide the overall planetary carbon cycle from view to fool people into thinking that human emissions are over an order of magnitude more influential than they actually are in relation to the natural carbon cycle.

• MIKE Good comment.

• The Original Mike,

In short: if you don’t know the most elementary points of what happens in the oceans and between oceans and atmosphere, then it is difficult to have a discussion…

Indeed biolife has an impact on CO2 exchanges between atmosphere and oceans, as good as temperature and (bi)carbonate content (and thus pH).
The net result of all CO2 movements between atmosphere and ocean surface over a full seasonal cycle is about 0.5 GtC increase in the upper ocean layer while the atmosphere increased with 4.5 GtC and humans emitted 9 GtC in the same year.
That is what is measured.

The increase in total carbon in the ocean surface over the past (at least) 30 years is 10% of the change in the atmosphere. No matter how much biolife increased or not, only depending on temperature and the change in the atmosphere. The ocean surface simply follows Henry’s law for free CO2 in seawater (and the Revelle factor for the rest of the carbon species).

Henry’s law still works today, as it worked millions of years ago with much higher (bi)carbonate content in the ocean waters.

• Mike,

Nobody hides the natural cycle (even the IPCC gives it a nice place). The point is that the height of the natural cycle is completely irrelevant for the total amount in the atmosphere. No matter if 100 GtC or 200 GtC or 1,000 GtC cycles in and out within a year. What counts is the difference at the end of the year.

The year by year variability of the natural cycles is not more than +/- 1.5 ppmv around the trend of 90 ppmv in the past near 60 years.

Without human emissions, the natural difference did get up with temperature at a “speed” of 0.02 ppmv/year over a period of 5,000 years of warming in 8 periods over the past 800,000 years.
These days the CO2 increase is 2 ppmv/year. All natural? While humans emit 4 ppmv/year…

63. It is getting quite messy here…

I don’t think that Bart ever will admit that his theory is wrong, while it violates every single observation. Maybe after a cooler period – if that comes sooner or later – when temperatures get negative and CO2 levels still go up, as was the case in 1945-1975 and 1997-2014…

Bye for now, up to the next round…

• afonzarelli says:

“… when temperatures get negative and CO2 levels still go up, as was the case in 1945-1975 and 1997-2014”

What on earth are you talking about here, ferdi?(!) If the temp/growthrate correlation holds true, CO2 levels won’t go negative until temps are where they were circa 1920. The bigger question is this: if we get an extended cooling spell and the carbon growthrate falls lock step along with it, will you admit that YOU are wrong?

• Bartemis says:

Exactly, Fonz.

Hopefully, if the ~60 year cycle is sustained, we will see that soon. So far, it looks to be on track. The AMO is in its down cycle:

http://woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-amo

The PDO is hung up momentarily, but appears in the process of crashing like it did after the blip in 1960:

http://woodfortrees.org/plot/jisao-pdo

That appears to have been buoying temperatures through this El Nino episode. Once it is well and thoroughly gone, throw your hands up in the air and enjoy the ride. And, make sure you have a warm coat for the winter.

• Indeed, in the 1960-1975 period, CO2 rate of change did go up (in lockstep with human emissions), while temperatures did go down with the AMO cycle. Seems not so good for Bart’s theory…

It will be interesting times when temperatures go down…

• Annualized Mauna Loa dCO2/dt has “gone negative” a few times in the past (calculating dCO2/dt from monthly data, by taking CO2MonthX (year n+1) minus CO2MonthX (year n) to minimize the seasonal CO2 “sawtooth”.) This occurred during the global cooling period from ~1940-1975.

These 12-month periods are (Year-Month ending):
1959-8
1963-9
1964-5
1965-1
1965-5
1965-6
1971-4
1974-6
1974-8
1974-9

• Bartemis says:

Short time periods are affected by short term processes which independently affect temperature or CO2 in differing fashion, and my measurement error. They do not provide any guide.

This is a stochastic process. You have to employ a variety of fuzzy logic to grasp what is going on. The general behavior is

dCO2/dt = k*(T – T0)

Mean rate of change does not go negative until T descends below T0.

• Bartemis says:

by measurement error…

Fat fingers.

• Bart,

If over a period of 57 years some 35 years show a negative correlation between T and dCO2/dt, then one need to question the basic assumption that the trend is caused by T. That simply may be spurious, only caused by the fact that the endpoints in both cases are higher than the beginpoints.
On the other side, human emissions and CO2 increase show a similar behaviour both directly and in the derivatives for any period longer than 5 years, including the noise.

The start period 1958-1975 is important (and in extension 1950-1975), as that is exactly the period where the AMO is negative and temperatures drop, thus should show a drop in CO2 rate of change, which is not the case, not even in a period where human emissions still were small.

• Bartemis says:

“On the other side, human emissions and CO2 increase show a similar behaviour both directly and in the derivatives for any period longer than 5 years, including the noise.”

Nonsense. Human emissions do not even begin to match in the variability. The only correlation is spurious, as it is in low frequency, low information, low order polynomial behavior.

“The start period 1958-1975 is important (and in extension 1950-1975), as that is exactly the period where the AMO is negative and temperatures drop, thus should show a drop in CO2 rate of change, which is not the case, not even in a period where human emissions still were small.”

It is a very good match, and you are clutching at straws:

https://i0.wp.com/i1136.photobucket.com/albums/n488/Bartemis/tempco2_zps55644e9e.jpg

• Bart,

You can integrate what you want, that doesn’t prove that the integral of T has any physical meaning, only that it gives a similar curvatory that human emissions already have without integration.

The discussion is on the lower level: despite that temperatures still are above the baseline in the period 1958-1975, the correlation between T and dCO2/dt is negative and you need to apply a negative factor to match the slopes. Thus effectively putting the amplitudes upside down.
That is the case for 35 years of the 57 years graph, but the first period is the most interesting, as that is still with low levels of emissions and a firm drop in AMO/temperatures.

What we can conclude from this:
1. The correlation between the variabilities is real, but hold as good for T and CO2 as for dT/dt and dCO2/dt, with for these two with the physical “normal” lag for CO2 and dCO2/dt.
2. The use of one factor to match both amplitude and slope doesn’t make any sense as that leads to absurd situations in 35 of the 57 years. Moreover, it is proven that variabilities and slope are not caused by the same processes.
3. It gets more and more clear that matching the slopes is completely spurious and only matches because the begin and endpoints are in the same direction…

• Bartemis says:

“…only that it gives a similar curvatory that human emissions already have without integration.”

No, that is all you’ve got. The dCO2/dt relationship holds both in the long term trend and the variability.

The plot above shows you are wrong. The relationship is firm.

• Bart:

No, that is all you’ve got. The dCO2/dt relationship holds both in the long term trend and the variability.

The relationship is true for the variability, it is entirely spurious for the trend. Just matching two straight slopes, that is all. Violating all observations:

– the mass balance.
– 14C drop in the atmosphere before 1940
– 13C/12C drop in the atmosphere.
– the increase in DIC and pCO2 and the decrease in pH of the ocean surface

While “my” solution fits them all…

• Jim Ross says:

– 13C/12C drop in the atmosphere

Ferdinand, you still have to show how your solution is consistent with a constant d13C of -13 per mil for the incremental CO2 ever since 1750 …

• It’s the usual Bart nonsense which he’s been spouting for years.
The species balance equation is:
dCO2/dt = Sources(T,pCO2) – Sinks(T,pCo2)
The sources can be split into Source(ff) + naturalSource(T,pCO2)
Therefore:
dCO2/dt = Source(ff) + naturalSource(T,pCO2) – Sinks(T,pCo2)
Any Chem Engineer or kineticist applies that on a regular basis, if natural sources and sinks are dominated by ocean temperature (i.e. Henry’s Law) then the pCO2 will be modulated by the temperature but the annual growth in SST is not sufficient to account for the steady growth in pCO2.
Note that the WfT graphs always have an offset to disguise the part of the growth that is not accounted for by T.

• Bartemis says:

“… the annual growth in SST is not sufficient to account for the steady growth in pCO2.”

Yes, it is. It is an integral relationship, due to long term equilibration of the oceans to depth.

“Note that the WfT graphs always have an offset to disguise the part of the growth that is not accounted for by T.”

The baseline for T is arbitrary. The dynamic response is with respect to a particular T anomaly.

The relationship is not in doubt. Watch and see what happens when cooler temperatures arrive.

• Bart,

Again, at nauseum, there is no integral relationship between T and dCO2/dt. That is pure theoretical and only based on an arbitrarely match of two slopes.
The releationship is between T and CO2 or between dT/dt and dCO2/dt, not between T and dCO2/dt.

The integral of T is a non-existing non-physical entity.

• Bartemis says:

“Again, at nauseum, there is no integral relationship between T and dCO2/dt.”

There very obviously is.

“The integral of T is a non-existing non-physical entity.”

Incorrect. It is physically the temperature dependent accumulation of CO2 in the surface system due to differential transport of CO2 within the ocean currents.

• Michael darby says:

Ferdinand, you are never going to change Bart’s mind. He clings to his “dynamic systems theory” much like a true religious believer will never relinquish their beliefs. I would love to see Bart apply his “dynamic systems theory” when he has to balance his checking account. What would d\$/dt look like?

• Bartemis is a genius
He knows maths and how it really should be applied in practice. I have found few people on earth who have this ability….

• Bartemis says:

Dynamics systems theory is what gives you planes, trains, and automobiles. It is hardly religion. It is veritably the antithesis of religion.

What you are engaged in, is faith. That is what religion is all about.

• Michael darby says:

Bart, what do you use for d\$/dt when you balance your checkbook?

• Michael darby says:

henryp, you must never have met a “Quant” from Wall Street. Bart’s nothing special. You may think he’s good at math, and he might be in your mind, but he’s not good at logic as Ferdinand has shown.

• If Ferdinand really understood the triviality of his gh theory on CO 2 he really would have stopped talking a long time ago…

• Michael darby says:

“Dynamics systems theory is what gives you planes, trains, and automobiles.” ….oh, yeah, right, The Wright brothers and Henry Ford used dynamics systems theory. Too funny. I will admit, I don’t know if Richard Trevithick knew any kind of theory.

• 1sky1 says:

Again, at nauseum, there is no integral relationship between T and dCO2/dt. That is pure theoretical and only based on an arbitrarely match of two slopes.
The releationship is between T and CO2 or between dT/dt and dCO2/dt, not between T and dCO2/dt.

The integral of T is a non-existing non-physical entity.

This foregoing betrays a stunning ignorance of proven analytic relationships in dynamic systems. Since T and dCO2/dt are strongly correlated, the integral of T will likewise show this correlation with CO2-level anomalies (i.e., with integrated differentials of CO2). There’s just as much physical basis here as there is in accumulated “degree days” used in agriculture to determine plant growth. Slope matching has nothing to do with this!

• Bartemis says:

You feel my pain, 1sky1. Yet, the naysayers assert such silly things with absolute assurance.

• 1sky1,

My math is completely rusty and never had to apply dynamic theories, as half my former job was in implementing new inventions (chemical processes) of brilliant people like Bart in the real world. With all the problems involved. My strength is in problem solving: if something doesn’t work in the real world, then the theory is wrong, or some influence was not known or underestimated.

In Bart’s case, the theory is wrong on every observation. Not one but every single observation…

As I remember well from already many (about 50!) years ago, a correlation may be used in an integration, if there is a lag between cause and result. That is the case for temperature and planth growth. That is NOT the case for temperature and CO2 growth: there is no lag between them. Why?
The same correlation, with a lag, can be found between the variability of T and CO2 and between dT/dt and dCO2/dt again with the same lag. By comparing T with dCO2/dt, the variability still is the same, but shifted back in time for dCO2/dt, thus both are fully synchronized.
The real correlation is between the variability in T and the variability in CO2 around the trend of CO2: +/- 1.5 ppmv around a trend of 90 ppmv. Or between dT/dt and dCO2/dt: zero trend in dT/dt, only a slight offset from zero.
The influence of the slope of T on CO2 levels is maximum 10 ppmv, per Henry’s law for the solubility of CO2 in seawater. Confirmed by over 3 million seawater samples all over the oceans.
The real cause and effect in this case is between human emissions and the increase in the atmosphere: both show a slightly quadratic increase and little variability, with human emissions about twice the increase in the atmosphere.
See further: http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/co2_variability.html#The_real_world

In this case integrating temperature has no physical meaning:
Any one-step warming of the ocean surface indeed starts with an increase in net CO2 flux out of the oceans into the atmosphere. If you integrate the temperature, as Bart does, then the initial CO2 flux goes on forever, increasing the CO2 levels in the atmosphere without any limit, as long as the temperature step is maintained.

What Bart constantly ignores is the feedback from the increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere: when the pCO2 pressure in the atmosphere increases with 16 ppmv/K, the original pressure differences are restored, thus the original in/out fluxes are restored, no matter if that is for a single seawater sample or for the full dynamics of the oceans.
That reduces the original (extra) influx from the temperature step to zero. Thus the integral of temperature ultimately gives 16 ppmv/K extra CO2 for any temperature increase…

• Bartemis says:

“…when the pCO2 pressure in the atmosphere increases with 16 ppmv/K, the original pressure differences are restored…”

It doesn’t. It is a process more or less as this documentary excerpt shows:

• Bart,

Except that the CO2 transport band, the THC, doesn’t show any speed increase, neither a change in CO2 content at the upwelling side…

• Bartemis says:

We don’t actually have much information on what is upwelling, except in your world of circular logic. But, in any case, a reduction in downwelling transport has an equal impact to an identical increase in upwelling transport. And, downwelling transport is temperature dependent.

• Bart:

a reduction in downwelling transport has an equal impact to an identical increase in upwelling transport. And, downwelling transport is temperature dependent.

It hardly matters if the THC as total cycle increased or decreased, indeed as long as inputs and outputs are equal.

If you mean with “transport” the water flow, that can’t have a disequilibrium for longer periods, as water doesn’t pile up that easy.

If you mean total CO2/derivatives in the water phase, that is just transported from sources to sinks as there is no forward or backward propagation, thus no “piling up” of CO2 in the water phase before it sinks.

If you include the atmosphere, CO2 is piling up in the atmosphere if the waters get warmer, in ratio to the average pCO2 difference between ocean surface and atmosphere. With warmer oceans, more is released into the atmosphere and less is sinking in the oceans.
With increasing CO2 pressure in the atmosphere, the net influx is reduced and completely stops at 16 ppmv/K. At that moment as much CO2 is sinking again into the deep oceans as before the temperature increase.
If some source delivers extra CO2 into the atmosphere, higher than the increase in temperature delivers (at 16 ppmv/K), then extra CO2 is pushed into the ocean surface and more CO2 sinks with these waters into the deep oceans.

• Bartemis says:

“If you mean total CO2/derivatives in the water phase, that is just transported from sources to sinks as there is no forward or backward propagation, thus no “piling up” of CO2 in the water phase before it sinks.”

That betrays a total lack of familiarity with transport phenomena.

• Bartemis April 13, 2017 at 10:31 am
We don’t actually have much information on what is upwelling, except in your world of circular logic. But, in any case, a reduction in downwelling transport has an equal impact to an identical increase in upwelling transport. And, downwelling transport is temperature dependent.

Since you can’t have a reduction in downwelling without a corresponding reduction in upwelling this statement doesn’t make much sense. Also downwelling is temperature and salinity dependent.

• Bartemis says:

“Since you can’t have a reduction in downwelling without a corresponding reduction in upwelling this statement doesn’t make much sense.”

Water, yes (more or less). But, transport of CO2 with the flows, no.

• Bart,

The diffusion of CO2 in water is extremely slow (diffusion coefficient 0.0016 mm2/s). many orders of magnitude slower than the speed of the Gulf Stream/THC (~1.8 m/s).
Would need some very fast CO2 molecules swimming upstream just before the waters sink into the deep to give any piling up of CO2…

BTW, once in the atmosphere, CO2’s diffusion coefficient is 16 mm2/s, further aided by wind and convection to spread all over the earth.

• Bartemis says:

“BTW, once in the atmosphere, CO2’s diffusion coefficient is 16 mm2/s, further aided by wind and convection to spread all over the earth.”

It does not matter. This is merely a diversion of the flow. It does not add energy with which to overcome the thermal barrier of the warmer water. It therefore cannot force downwelling. Just like in my lavatory analogy up above.

• Bart,

The energy is in the pressure difference: any pressure difference converts the change in pressure (= difference in potential energy) into kinetic energy that moves CO2 molecules in net from the higher pressure to the lower pressure. That is exactly in ratio to the pCO2 difference, even if that was only 0.00001 bar difference.

• Interestingly, that is also what happens in the vertical column of the atmosphere where pressure decreases with height and is part of the process of convective adjustment which negates the radiative imbalances that would otherwise be introduced by the presence of GHGs in the atmosphere.
Convection always works to negate the potential thermal effect of radiative imbalances so as to maintain hydrostatic equilibrium which involves the entire mass of an atmosphere, not just the radiative component.

• Bartemis says:

But, the atmospheric dynamic is relatively fast. Oceanic turnover is very slow.

The atmospheric diversion adds nothing to the discussion, Ferdinand. The upwelling CO2 must accumulate, and it will accumulate until there is a balance with the downwelling. The time to equilibration is on the order of the time for THC circulation.

• Bart,

The accumulation of CO2 is in the atmosphere, not in the ocean waters, because that is physically impossible. For further discussion, see the end of the long discussion…

• Jim Ross says:

– 13C/12C drop in the atmosphere

Ferdinand, you still have to show how your solution is consistent with a constant d13C of -13 per mil for the incremental CO2 ever since 1750 …

• Jim Ross says:

Sorry, this should have been further up thread in response to your statement “While “my” solution fits them all…”

• Jim,

No problem, will drop it here:

Several lines of evidence:

– Coralline sponges growing in the ocean surface show a natural variability of +/- 0.2 per mil δ13C over hundreds of years and since ~1850 a drop of 1.6 per mil δ13C in exact ratio with human emissions. As the ocean surface – atmosphere exchanges are very fast (less than one year exchange rate), the ratio simply follows the atmospheric conmposition (with a shift in isotopic composition).
– Ice cores show a change of ~0.2 per mil δ13C during a deglaciation, which points to mainly the (deep) ocean CO2 following temperature.
– Ice cores show a variability of +/- 0.2 per mil during the whole Holocene and again start to drop since ~1850, a drop that extents in firn and direct measurements. Again in direct ratio to human emissions.
– Direct measurements in the atmosphere show that the source of low-13C is in the NH where 90% of all human emissions are.

Here the graph for coralline sponges (ocean surface) and atmosphere:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/sponges.jpg

There are only two main sources of low-13C: recent organics and fossil organics. The biosphere is a proven sink for CO2, thus not the cause of the drop of δ13C, just the opposite.
All other CO2 sources or cycles (oceans, volcanoes, rock weathering,…) would increase the δ13C level in the atmosphere. Thus Bart’s solution (the extra CO2 comes from the oceans) violates the observed δ13C trend.

• Jim Ross says:

Ferdinand,

I am not sure you fully understood my point. You refer twice to the drop in d13C being in “exact [or direct] ratio with human emissions”. But this is wrong. The incremental atmospheric CO2 has a d13C of -13 per mil against human emissions of circa -26 per mil. You have argued in the past that this difference is due to “ocean thinning”. Perhaps it is. But my point is this: the d13C content of the incremental CO2 has stayed more or less constant since 1750. You can see this simply by looking at the two scales on the plot you show here. It is linear in d13C and it is linear in the reciprocal of CO2, which will only be aligned if the incremental d13C content is constant. In this case it can be calculated from the axes to be -12.8 per mil and recent measurements show that is now a little below -13 per mil, i.e. hardly changed. I find this to be a rather important relationship and I do not see how your response explains this constancy of content.

I would also question your comment that “– Direct measurements in the atmosphere show that the source of low-13C is in the NH where 90% of all human emissions are.” I do not see any evidence that the offset is linked to a time lag. On the contrary, the changes in trends are essentially time synchronous and indicate differences of less than one year. You can see this on your plot up-thread of annual d13C data for multiple sites. Here is just Mauna Loa and South Pole:

http://i64.tinypic.com/fw0tvt.jpg

• JIm,

That is the same problem as with the “constant” airborne fraction of human CO2 in the atmosphere. Indeed that is rather constant over the past 60 years, but that is just by coincidence:
Human emissions increased a fourfold over the past 60 years. So did the increase in the atmosphere and the net sink rate. That gives a rather constant ratio of 50-55% between increase in the atmosphere and human emissions.

That is in fact the result of the near linear increase of yearly CO2 emissions. That gives a slightly quadratic increase of CO2 in the atmosphere and as the net sink rate is in direct proportion to the extra CO2 in the atmosphere (not the emissions of one year), the ratio between emissions and increase remains more or less constant.
If the emissions would get constant today, the increase in the atmosphere would asymptote to zero as the emissions still are higher than the sinks, but as the sinks grow, at a certain moment the sinks are equal to the emissions and CO2 levels remain constant with a airborne fraction of zero.

That is true for the 13C/12C level too, as that simply follows human emissions. Thus also the 13C/12C rate of change remains more or less constant…

Point two need some better detailed look: indeed it is a matter of time lag, not from parallel change, as there is a small difference in slopes between Mauna Loa and South Pole, which points to an increasing source in the NH.
That is more pronounced in the CO2 changes for the same stations (which have longer trends):

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/acc_co2_1960_cur.jpg

• Jim Ross says:

Hmm … a lot of coincidences there.

On point 2, the d13C data give us a CO2 fingerprint that we can use to check this hypothesis that the offset is due to a time lag.

The CO2 data:

http://i64.tinypic.com/w0s4l2.jpg

This shows the offset to be roughly 2 years. It also shows the slightly faster growth at Mauna Loa than at the South Pole, which you mention. However, despite the highest values being at Point Barrow, this shows slower growth than Mauna Loa, thus somewhat negating your argument that the NH source of anthropogenic CO2 is seen first at Point Barrow and later at Mauna Loa. Now, look at the d13C, where I have added Point Barrow to the plot I showed previously:

http://i66.tinypic.com/2h365b6.jpg

If we take -8 per mil as an example reference point, Point Barrow crosses this in mid-1988. Mauna Loa first reaches this value in early 1998, almost 10 years later! In contrast, this point is reached only 1 year later at the South Pole.

Perhaps the most obvious point, though, is the parallel nature of the trends, as particulalry highlighted by the period between 1987-88 and 1993-94. If anything, Point Barrow lags both Mauna Loa and South Pole.

I think the time lag hypothesis has a slight problem.

• Jim Ross says:

Oops, sorry about the size of the plots.

• Jim,

As it takes time to distribute any change in the atmosphere from the source to the rest of the atmosphere, where the change is visible first is a matter of where the source is and how fast it is distributed over the altitudes and latitudes…

The lags are the first indications: the SH is lagging the NH with years (CO2) to many years (δ13C). There may be some reason for a permanent offset between some latitudes and others, but in the case of CO2, one would expect the reverse of what is observed: permanent higher levels near the upwelling places and lower near the poles. In the case of δ13C the same point: vegetation is a net, growing sink in extra-tropical forests, thus increasing the δ13C level near ground in the higher latitudes in the NH, while we see the firm drop there first.

The difference in slopes is secondary, that is clear between the NH and SH, less clear for CO2 and δ13C within one hemisphere, where the industrial shift between Europe and North America towards S.E. Asia may have played a role…

• richardscourtney says:

Jim Ross;

Upthread you asked Stephen Wilde and me to comment on this discussion you are having with Ferdinand.

I see no need to add anything to the discussion but I make the following observation on it.

Your arguments and evidence have defeated the assertions of Ferdinand; e.g. when you say

If we take -8 per mil as an example reference point, Point Barrow crosses this in mid-1988. Mauna Loa first reaches this value in early 1998, almost 10 years later! In contrast, this point is reached only 1 year later at the South Pole.

Perhaps the most obvious point, though, is the parallel nature of the trends, as particulalry highlighted by the period between 1987-88 and 1993-94. If anything, Point Barrow lags both Mauna Loa and South Pole.

I think the time lag hypothesis has a slight problem.

Ferdinand has replied to that with waffle, as is his usual practice when one of his assertions is refuted.

So, my observation is that it is time for you to walk away while smiling smugly because your arguments have ‘won the day’ and you don’t need to ‘rub his nose in it’.

Richard

• Jim Ross says:

Richard,

Thank you very much for taking the time to comment. It was just me and Ferdinand, so another view point is much appreciated.

Jim

• Jim Ross says:

Of course, I do not plan to try to rub Ferdinand’s nose in anything, because I respect the work that he has done, but I would like to see some recognition that the time lag hypothesis is contradicted by the data.

One more example. Ferdinand’s plot of the offsets upthread shows (on an annualized basis) an apparent time lag of almost one year between American Samoa and the South Pole. Or it shows a small CO2 offset with no time lag, or it shows something in between.

The d13C data show no time lag at all:
http://i67.tinypic.com/rt2ccm.jpg

• Jim Ross.

If, as I suggest, the primary sources of the currently increasing CO2 are the sunlit oceans beneath the subtropical high pressure bands in each hemisphere then there will be some oscillation between the production rates in each hemisphere as the seasons change.
In the NH summer the production rate from the NH oceans may well match or even exceed the production rate from the SH oceans during their winter.
I would say that both regions combined would tip the net global production rate to positive during global warming periods but allow the net global production rate to become negative during global cooling periods.
So, whilst we see upward temperature stepping from one Pacific Multidecadal Oscillation to the next being associated with rising CO2 we would see downward temperature stepping from one PMO to the next being associated with falling CO2.
The upward and downward stepping across multiple PMO cycles being ultimately solar induced as explained by me elsewhere.
If the human emissions are all absorbed by more energised sinks locally and regionally then the conclusion that Ferdinand draws from the mass balance argument is inapplicable.
The ice cores plainly do not adequately retain an accurate record of such short term variability in atmospheric CO2 despite Ferdinand’s insistence that they do.
That only leaves the isotope conundrum and there must be another reason for that phenomenon despite Ferdinands assumption that the isotope ratio is conclusive evidence in support of his hypothesis.I doubt that we know all that there is to know about the isotope variations in the natural carbon cycle despite Ferdinand’s assumption that we do.
So, I would say that all three assumptions that Ferdinand bases his entire position on are fundamentally flawed.

• Jim Ross says:

Stephen,

Thanks for your input as well. I am mainly focussed on just the data at this stage of my scepticism, rather than trying to explain it with models. First, I want to try to understand what the data are telling us, unconstrained (as much as possible) by models.

So, with respect to the d13C data, what the data say is that, on average, the incremental CO2 has a value of -13 per mil. For example:
http://i64.tinypic.com/2qlwg42.jpg
This is called the Keeling plot and is only a straight line where the incremental CO2 has a constant d13C content – the value of which is the intercept. In this case it is -13.02 per mil and the other sites give very similar values. As you will know, this is roughly half way between a biosphere/anthropogenic source and an oceanic source.

This is clearly not conclusive evidence of an anthropogenic source, since it would be -26 per mil, or thereabouts. Ferdinand’s model (and the IPCC, I think) is that the atmospheric d13C is also being diluted by oceanic “turnover” of CO2. Is this possible, yes. Do we know it is the case, no. What we do see, however, is that the gradient of both the d13C trend over time and the Keeling plot (and hence the intercept) show a relationship with ENSO.
http://i65.tinypic.com/15i5c0p.jpg
We see the increase in CO2 growth rate in association with the El Niño, but we also see an increase in the rate of drop of d13C which can be calculated to show the content of the incremental CO2 is changing to a lower value, i.e. tending towards a predominantly biosphere (or anthropogenic) source. In contrast, during La Niña, the d13C is flat or even increases, the latter of which could only occur if the CO2 content of the incremental CO2 was higher than current atmospheric levels, i.e. tending towards a predominantly oceanic source. I will leave it there for now.

• Jim Ross,

It is getting completely messy here…

Interesting plot anyway for the difference between Samoa and the South Pole. Indeed it seems that the trend at Samoa is slightly less steep down than of the South Pole, thus slightly lagging the change at the South Pole now.

– There may be two explanations: the emissions of the oceans near the equator substantialy increased.
– The biosphere increased its uptake.

The latter is observed, the former not, as that would have given an increase in the decay rate of the 14C spike from the atomic bomb tests and an increase in the “thinning” of the human fingerprint.

Indeed the latter:

http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/klim_img/deep_ocean_air_zero.jpg

The current thinning, excluding the biosphere, is around 40 GtC/year deep ocean – atmosphere circulation.
That is independently confirmed by the fast decay rate of the 14C spike, which is also calculated as ~40 GtC/year thinning by the deep ocean waters which are from long before the bomb tests.

In theory, deep oceans could be (partly) additional, but that is difficult to reconcile with the fact that the increase in the atmosphere is only half human emissions.

The average δ13C of the oceans after the isotopic shifts at the surface (both directions) is -6.4 +/- 0.2 per mil as measured in ice cores over the whole Holocene, assuming little average change in vegetation.
The discrepancy in the early years may come from the biosphere: party from human land use changes, partly natural: vegetation was probably a small source before 1990 and a small, but growing sink after 1990, begin 2000’s a net sink of around 1 GtC/year, that is effectively increasing the δ13C level with 1 GtC at +24 per mil by its uptake of preferably 12CO2 (that includes human land use changes since 1990).

At least since 1980 we can say that the δ13C levels follow human emissions at a rather constant ratio (about 1/3).

As any huge ocean emissions or even increase in cycle would increase the δ13C levels in the atmosphere, they can’t be the cause of the CO2 increase in the atmosphere.
Neither is the biosphere, as that is a proven sink for CO2, thus leaving relative more 13CO2 in the atmosphere…

BTW, the hugest changes in δ13C and CO2 are due to El Niño/ENSO and Pinatubo, but that are tempeorary changes which don’t last more than a few years and in average have near zero long-term effect…

• Jim Ross,

The average δ13C of the oceans after the isotopic shifts at the surface (both directions) is -6.4 +/- 0.2 per mil
Can be misinterpreted: the istopic δ13C in the ocean waters is between zero (deep oceans) and +1 to +5 per mil (ocean surface).
The isotopic shift is -10 per mil ocean-atmosphere and -2 per mil atmosphere-ocean (thus +2 per mil in the atmosphere) average -8 per mil in the atmosphere vs. oceans for any back and forth cycle.

The -6.4 +/- 0.2 per mil is for the atmosphere over most of the Holocene…

• Bartemis says:

“If you mean total CO2/derivatives in the water phase, that is just transported from sources to sinks as there is no forward or backward propagation, thus no “piling up” of CO2 in the water phase before it sinks.”

That betrays a total lack of familiarity with transport phenomena.

• Bart,

The diffusion of CO2 in water is extremely slow (diffusion coefficient 0.0016 mm2/s). Much, much, much slower than the speed of the THC (~1.8 m/s).
Would need some very fast CO2 molecules swimming upstream just before the waters sink into the deep to give any piling up of CO2…

BTW, once in the atmosphere, CO2’s diffusion coefficient is 16 mm/s, further aided by wind and convection to spread all over the earth.

• Bartemis says:

Has no relevance. See identical comment response above (accidentally hit wrong reply button).

64. Thank you all for your spirited comments on this thread.

People are talking openly about “the elephant in the room” and that is good.

For decades, climate scientists have been arguing about the magnitude of climate sensitivity to increasing atmospheric CO2 ( aka ECS or similar), when the only clear signal in the data is that CO2 LAGS temperature at all measured time scales.

Yes, there are probably several possible interpretations based on what we know today, but the conclusion one cannot make, given this Temperature-Leads/CO2-Lags observation is that increasing CO2 is a major driver of global temperature. This cannot be true.

Why? Because the future cannot cause the past. I’m reasonably confident about that.

Regards, Allan

65. Bindidon says:

The Original Mike M on April 10, 2017 at 7:24 pm

Increasingly more and more of it is gladly being sucked up by plants and recycled like the rest. It’s like fertilizing your lawn.

Interesting! This means that however many are the CO2 amounts we produce, they are so tiny compared with the natural sources (about 1% of them if I well do remember) that our CO2 emissions easily can be neutralised by natural sinks. Sounds understandible.

But, as I have very few knowledge about the atmospheric carbon cycle, I would be glad if The Original Mike M (or, alternatively, Bartemis or Afonzarelli) could explain me why, though additional, anthropogenic CO2 “more and more [] is gladly being sucked up by plants”, the atmospheric CO2 concentration nevertheless continually increases since 1850.

Why did the plants not neutralise these tiny anthropogenic sources as soon as they came up?

Does that mean that CO2 is able to rest in the atmosphere for inbetween over 150 years, and that the natural sinks didn’t need it yet, for example because they “preferred” for example the CO2 outgassed by the oceans?

Feel free to produce a rather formal, scientific answer! To be a layman does not necessarily mean that you don’t understand even crude equations. I managed to crunch a lot of them until now 🙂

• Mike
I am with you all the way!!
Problem is how we can change the perception of many people & media in the world who have been brainwashed into believing that a change of 90 ppm of CO2 [0.009%] extra in the atmosphere is responsible for global warming and any ‘climate change’ in general….

• Bindidon says:

henryp on April 11, 2017 at 10:24 am

…into believing that a change of 90 ppm of CO2 [0.009%] extra in the atmosphere is responsible for global warming and any ‘climate change’ in general.

This, henryp, is by far more interesting to read than any trial to tell me about Berlin’s temperature… in New Hampshire’s pampa.

Let me reply with some remarks.

1. Firstly, what you wrote is no answer to my central question to The Original Mike M:

Why did the plants not neutralise these tiny anthropogenic sources as soon as they came up?

2. Secondly, I would never agree at 100 % to what I emphasised out of your comment: a vast majority of people (including e.g. Roy Spencer) means warming is due half to natural, half to human sources, and so do I too.

3. Thirdly, the matter we discuss is not a matter of believing: it is a matter of knowledge.

I had a scientific and engineering education and decades of subsequent work based on them, but all that has been far far away from the math and physics needed to understand even basics of atmospheric rules wrt radiation phenomena.

So it took me some longer time to go for example into the work done 40 years ago by Joseph W. Chamberlain:

Elementary, Analytic Models of Climate: The Mean Global Heat Balance
hdl.handle.net/2060/19790010343

where he performed interesting calculations of two matters:
– the atmosphere’s opacity induced by trace gasses in general;
– the effect of even tiny trace gas concentrations due to their ability to increasingly close the atmospheric window (8 to 12 µ).

See especially section 4: Radiative Effects of Minor Constituents.

A far more elaborated paper concerning all this stuff was written by Chamberlain as well; he made later a 2nd edition together with Donald M. Hunten:

Theory of Planetary Atmospheres

A very important and useful book (a nice hint by blogger ‘Okulær’) to understand ‘peu à peu’ what happens above us was written by Michael F. Modest:

Third Ed. 2013
http://tinyurl.com/kqfdgj2

When you try to obtain at least a superficial essence of all that, you begin to understand the real role CO2 luckily plays: if there was only water vapor in the atmosphere, it would precipitate, and our magic planet would soon look like a giant snowball.

But you understand also that too much of this divine elixir called ‘trace gasses’ (CO2 isn’t the only one) can have unexpected consequences we should try to anticipate in due time.

• Bartemis says:

It isn’t plants dictating the long term response. It is the oceans. The atmosphere is a flea on the ocean elephant’s back.

66. Bartemis says:

I hope it is apparent to people how much Ferdinand and the other choir boys rely on assertion to promote their case. They sometimes have a germ of truth, some laboratory result that they illegitimately extrapolate to this immense system. But, more often than not, they simply state something is so with little to no theoretical or empirical backing at all. Sometimes, they state with absolute assurance some trivial tautology that they have imbued with far greater import than it even marginally deserves.

It is cartoon science, and Just So stories all the way down. This is not genuine science. This is pre-Enlightenment hokum. I advise everyone to study how they do it. It provides a stunning window into pseudo-science, and how it gets propagated.

• I hope that it is apparent to people that Bart’s hypothesis is based on one graph where he compares the variability and slope of temperature with the derivative of the CO2 trend. Thus effectively comparing apples with oranges: comparing a trivial trend in temperature with the CO2 derivative where almost all of the trend is removed,

His conclusion is that the trivial variability in temperature causes the [note: trivial (+/- 1.5 ppmv)] variability of CO2 around the trend of 90 ppmv. Which is right.
His conclusion is also that the trivial slope in temperature (0.7°C) causes the huge 90 ppmv CO2 increase, which violates Henry’s law and every other observation. That is only based on the artificial match of two slopes without any shred of other evidence.

It clear to me that Bart is a very brilliant person in his own profession, but he clearly lacks experience in simple process dynamics and only masks that by insulting others and refusing to acknowledge any observation that contradicts his theory…

• Ferdinand, does seem like climate science isn’t looking at the dynamic nature of the system, but rely of averages of averages, with a large helping of thumb on the side.
You know there are clear sky nights, were well before morning, cooling rates slow to if not nearly stopped, stopped. Before the Sun comes up. And year just a few hours earlier it’s dropping 3-5F/hour.
The temperature that it stabilizes to, has nothing to do with co2. That’s why climate science is forever wrong, and why after 30 years, you’re still just chasing snipes. It’s great theater, but junk science.

https://micro6500blog.files.wordpress.com/2016/12/1997-daily-cooling-sample-zoom-with-inset1.png

• Micro6500,

You are addressing that to the wrong person…

I do think that the effect of the extra CO2 is small and mainly beneficial for biolife and humanity.
The discussion here is about the cause of the rise: human or natural.

It is quite tempting to hypothesize that humans are not to blame, because if that is true, it doesn’t matter to look any further and any consequences simply simply not our fault.

Problem is that all observations point in one direction: human emissions. That the rise is from our emissions is as solid as scientifically can be proven.
Thus insisting on a non-human cause without very solid evidence is shooting in your own foot, as it undermines any valid arguments one has for the next step: the lack of dire consequences from that increase, as that is solely seen in failing computer models, not in the real world…

• Sorry about the confusion.

Thus insisting on a non-human cause without very solid evidence is shooting in your own foot

But I do have solid evidence.

• micro6500,

But I do have solid evidence.

Do you really have evidence that the increase in the atmosphere is not caused by human emissions – without violating one observation?

67. Bartemis
I understand most of your reasoning
Bindidon
your case is hopeless in the face of my own results
whether from Berlin or from the other 54 stations’ data that I analyzed
Guys
I looked at dt/dT for minimum temperatures to find [from the Rsquare] there is no man made global warming.
You are just wasting your time going into circles about the odd 90 ppms of CO2 that were added to the atmosphere in the past 50-60 years or so….
https://i0.wp.com/oi62.tinypic.com/33kd6k2.jpg

There is no man made global warming.

• When the underlying water vapor goes away, temps drop like a rock. Conversely, min temps follow dew point temps. There is a big energy wall from water vapor that slows the drop in temperature.

68. Ferdinand
there is no way that you can prove globally that the pH of the oceans is going down.

but even if it were, it is the same as with the extra Co2 in the air: it acts like dung.

Battling against the bugs in the cooling towers, I found the paradox that decreasing pH actually caused more growths of the buggers….

There are giga tons of carbonates in the ocean and obviously more warming causes more CO2 in the atmosphere. This is logical.
HCO3- + heat => CO2 + OH-

50 years of reasonably accurate measurements is still not enough to make the deductions that you want to make. Bartemis is right. You are wrong.

{the Gleissberg solar weather cycle is 87 years}

• henryp,

I don’t think the late Dr. Henry would agree…

0.7°C is all temperature increase we have had in decades (as far as reliable…). That is good for ~10 ppmv. That is all. Higher CO2 pressure in the atmosphere pushes more CO2 back into the oceans, despite the increased temperature. That is what is observed, no matter if Bart likes it or not…

• afonzarelli says:

There’s ferdinand’s dopey cumulative emissions graph again… The above has the accumulation rates during the MLO era (courtesy of dr spencer 2009). You can see where ferdi gets his 53% on average. The average of the airborn fraction goes from 60% down to 45% three times during this period. The two jumps back up to 60% (from 45%) are coincident with the well known step rises in temps circa 1980 & 2000. The parameters of ferdinand’s graph are such that they don’t pick this up, so the correlation looks tighter than it actually is. But there is Dr Spencer’s graph showing the correlation in all its great detail. (and not a very impressive correlation at that)…

• Fonzie,

You are comparing noise with trends:

Temperature has a lot of noise and little trend while human emissions have little noise and a slightly quadratic huge trend. Combine these two and you have:
– A huge, slightly quadratic trend (90 ppmv) mostly caused by human emissions, with a small noise around the trend (+/- 1.5 ppmv), mostly caused by temperature variability.
– Still a slope in dCO2/dt, for both emissions and increase in the atmosphere, due to the quadratic increase of both originals.
– a lot of noise in the derivative.

Of course, you can compare variabilities which show that T variability is the cause of dCO2/dt variability, but you can’t say anything about the slope of T compared to the slope of dCO2/dt, as that is comparing one variable with the derivative of another variable, thus largely detrended for the second one.
Moreover, the slope of human emissions is about twice the average slope of the growth in the atmosphere.

There is no reason to assume that humans are not responsible for the increase in the atmosphere, as that fits all observations. There are lots of reasons to doubt that temperature is the main cause, as that violates every single observation, including Henry’s law for the solubility of CO2 in seawater.

That the increase in the atmosphere is about 50% in the past 60 years is pure coincidence and caused by the linear increase of human emissions: that causes a linear increase in the atmosphere and thus a linear net sink rate. Net effect: 50% average increase, modulated by temperature variability.
If human emissions halved, the average increase in the atmosphere would be zero, zero “airborne fraction”, because the sinks would equal human emissions. Still modulated by temperature variability. That is at 400 +/- 1.5 ppmv in the atmosphere plus any trend in temperature, which is good for maximum 16 ppmv/K…

69. Bindidon says:

Many thanks to Ferdinand Engelbeen for his experience, the accuracy of his thoughts, and… his incredible patience with people who manifestly feel better in insulting than in a sound and polite scientific debate.

• afonzarelli says:

SIT ON IT, BINDI(!)

• afonzarelli says:

(☺)

• Bindidon says:

Jessah Fonzi!

• Bartemis says:

Many thanks to Father Orazio Grassi for his experience, the accuracy of his thoughts, and… his incredible patience with people who manifestly feel better in ins