Guest “For peat’s sake!” by David Middleton
Are new carbon sinks appearing in the Arctic?
Global warming can result in the spread of peatland vegetation in the Arctic. An international research group has discovered signs of ‘proto-peat’, which may be the beginning of new peatlands.
In 2018, an international research group bored for soil samples in three sites around the Isfjorden fjord in Svalbard, which is part of Norway. The same phenomenon was seen each boring site: mineral soil covered by a thin layer of organic matter. In other words, this layer contains a lot of carbon extracted from the atmosphere through photosynthesis.
The research group headed by researcher Minna Väliranta from the University of Helsinki has given the name ‘proto-peat’ to such organic soil accumulations, which are composed mostly of moss formed in increasingly warm arctic climate conditions.
“If this process that generates proto-peat occurs extensively, an unexpected carbon reservoir, or a plant community that mitigates climate change, may be in the process of establishing itself in the north. This reservoir has not been included in the modelling of ecosystems and the atmosphere, as it has traditionally been thought that no new peatlands are formed,” Väliranta notes.
Juselius, T., Ravolainen, V., Zhang, H. et al. Newly initiated carbon stock, organic soil accumulation patterns and main driving factors in the High Arctic Svalbard, Norway. Sci Rep 12, 4679 (2022).University of Helsinki
It’s almost as if Earth knows what to do with CO2… Just like plastic in this classic George Carlin sketch:
Dig the coal. Burn the coal for energy, releasing CO2. Re-peat. The peat turns to coal.
The planet will be fine. We will be fine too, if only we can get past this manufactured illusion that emissions of one of the two most recyclable substances on earth will somehow turn out to be harmful in respect to warming. (The other substance is water.)
“if only we can get past this manufactured illusion that emissions of one of the two most recyclable substances on earth “
This has been the substance of “climate change”, “global warming” and most of the climate model predictions- which have all, except a couple Russian models that didn’t go off bonkers warm, unlike ALL of the rest of the models.
The primary purpose of UNEP has been to build up a program around “global warming” in order to increase the cash flow and authority of the UN.
Worldwide, the oceans sink CO2 less when global temperature is higher, and this is the greatest effect of global temperature change causing a change of sinking of CO2 worldwide. The generally gradual rate at which atmospheric CO2 is increasing has an uptick when global temperature is spiked up by an El Nino, and increases less when global temperature gets a dip from a La Lina or a major volcanic eruption.
We all know that the planet is greening. In the original article, there was no mention of the sea as a CO2 sink. As not all-, but certainly some understand the effect of a warming planet-, and in particular warming ocean on the solubility of CO2 in our oceans, even with the CO2 sink a proper, un-authorized algeal bloom or thee makes, a picture showing the ocean as a CO2 sink is somewhat misleading?
El Nino, La Nina are both just weather, as is a major volcanic eruption irrelevant for the CO2 question on the carbon cycle level, it would have sequestered into plants and algea within the same year as the eruption. A major volcanic event could have a potential capacity to spew out gasses and solids to block sunlight, however.
For the big picture, free after Clinton: It’s the sun, stupid.
You have the ENSO-CO2 connection right, but the cause wrong. The change in global sea surface temperature is too small to so greatly affect atmospheric CO2 rates. It has been known for decades that it is the biosphere (both land and marine) response to ENSO what causes the change in CO2 rates.
Betts, R.A., Burton, C.A., Feely, R.A., Collins, M., Jones, C.D. and Wiltshire, A.J., 2020. ENSO and the Carbon Cycle. El Niño Southern Oscillation in a Changing Climate, pp.453-470.
La Niña produces a strong upwelling of cold nutrient-rich waters that constitute a boom for microalgae and plankton that draw a huge amount of atmospheric CO2. An even bigger effect on CO2 is produced by stratospheric volcanic aerosols that scatter incoming sunlight greatly increasing photosynthesis efficiency globally.
Makes one think, if one really cared about the environment, that it would be more productive to use the practically useless tidal turbines to cause a steady upwelling of those precious nutrients – power the tidal turbines (instead of trying to get power from them) with offshore wind turbines. The tidal turbines could be sunk and and anchored to the sea bed and pointed up.
The direct reduction in CO2 caused by the increase in plankton, zooplankton, and everything else up the food chain (people too!) would be a lot larger than any imagined CO2 emissions reductions from trying to use the wind turbines on the grid to replace reliable and efficient gas turbines (or other sources).
It is, as usual, more complex than you suggest. In warm shallow seas, as CO2 out-gasses, calcite/aragonite are precipitated, effectively removing carbonate from the water. Contrary to your simple claim, “… the oceans sink CO2 less when global temperature is higher, …”, two processes are taking place simultaneously. What is important is the net change, which unfortunately, isn’t well quantified.
Ocean temperatures are minimally affected by “global temperatures”.
Alarmists tracking a bogus global anomaly are unable to prove either CO₂ or atmospheric temperatures raising ocean temperatures.
Increase evaporation, yes, but that is a cooling effect.
OCO satellite identified the oceans emitting CO₂ during summer and promptly reabsorb CO₂ when temperatures plummet going into winter.
Occasionally something I rave about = moss growing on cement tile roofs here in the UK.
Many regard it a ‘countrified’ ‘romantic’ and lovely.
Moss growing on your roof is none of those things, it is destroying:
That shyte is gently snowing down constantly, making you and your house grubby both inside and out. Say ‘Hello asthma‘ not very least
But otherwise it is truly lovely gorgeous and epic stuff.
It absorbs insane amounts ot water and is, like on the roof, a rock eating organism. It makes available all sorts of nutrients that are hard to come by by both plants and animals.
This World Needs More Moss
It works as a remedy to my initial & best, al- time pet rave: Soil Erosion
And who would have thunk, it is The Easiest Thing Possible to do:
The moss on my north facing roof is a pain in the…..
I had that issue a couple years ago. After cleaning it off (sprays available for that purpose) I added a strip of copper to the top line of shingles (also made for that purpose). No visible moss yet (been 2-3 years I think). Both available on Amazon.
(Back to your regularly scheduled discussion).
While in Jolly Ol’, I did see one house with a thatched roof that was held in place by chicken wire. I
guess birds & bugs can be a big problem if you don’t maintain the roof very well. In Latin America,
parasites are a big problem in houses using mud, straw, or palm thatch. Two-thirds of all people
have parasites, with most of them from bad water. One thing Bill Gates got right was to work globally
to get people good water, something we take for granted. Having to live with parasites may be one
reason people in this world may be a bit cantankerous!
Hate to be boring, but for many years here in the UK chicken wire was added to a thatched roof to prevent thatch loss through birds nest building in the Spring, & loss through weathering. Much later & learning through experience, local fire-brigades started issuing advice, guidance, & recommendations, that only the ridge section of a thatched roof be chicken wired, for the simple reason that in the unfortunate event of a thatched roof fire, the attending fire brigade officers, could use rakes to drag the thatch from the roof to prevent the spread of fire to the rest of the structure, potentially saving property & life!!! It works, but with the whole roof wired it was almost impossible to drag the unburnt thatch off risking spread of flame to the whole roof including the roof timbers!!!
Please, do not confuse the elements of cement & concrete! Cement is just a constituent part of concrete, without it, one cannot get concrete. The artificial “clay” tiles on roofs are made of cement, sand, possibly other small aggregates, cast into moulds to create “concrete” tiles, to look like more expensive clay tiles. Cement has been around for a long time, first developed in a primitive form by the Romans very effectively. Concrete comprises cement (a binder), fine aggregate, medium aggregate, & large aggregate, a drop of water to get the chemical reactions going, then left to harden & cure!!!
I hate to think what would happen to George Carlin if he said that today. Good catch on natural carbon sequestration, David.
” O, wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here!
… O brave new world ... ”
(Sorry, Bill S., for the pruning of a few words)
It may be wasted here Joao – I posted the whole quote here a few weeks ago and, well, just tumbleweeds I’m afraid. Philistines the lot of ’em!
Three generations of progressive dumbing down and ideological pressure cooking so the neomarxist vote is assured does do its collateral damage. A woman lawyer I met said her first degree was in English lit. I quoted a bit Bill S’s “To be or not to be” soliloquy and she told me she didn’t take W.S. option!! A geology student I hired from Queens University advised me, once we were in the field, that she had taken the remote sensing option instead of mineralogy. This year the Prov Gov advised that there would be no homework given!. Finally, my wife went to the National Archives to see if she could get a foto copy of a portrait of Napoleon. The young historian advised that she didn’t study the second world war and tried to send her to the specialist who handled such requests!!
I fear they aren’t done yet.
Everyone knows napoleon led the French to defeat in Vietnam in 1954
The history knowledge of young people today is abysmal. I recall on a school children’s quiz show some years back, when asked during which war Winston Churchill was Prime Minister, the reply was “The Boar War?”. It’s shameful. There is an old saying that goes, “If you want to study the future, study the past!”. If we don not learn from the past, we are destined to repeat it, good & bad, mostly bad!!!
There may be other Bills worth listening to besides Clinton and Gates…
Boo, climate modelers, because you failed to include proto-peat.
PS: And thanks, David, for including that George Carlin clip in the post.
I often see ‘proto-peat’ on my deck and walkways. It goes away after pressure washing.
B-b-b-but the science is settled!
One list of top standups has “guess who” as number 1?
The 100+ Best Stand-Up Comedians of All Time (ranker.com)
ie. Not in any model
“it has traditionally been thought that no new peatlands are formed,” Väliranta notes.”
This shows that climate modelers don’t have all the variables. The models they have produced are garbage which is clearly shown when compared to observed data.
Anyone that depends on long term climate models is in for a world of hurt. They can’t accurately predict weather let alone climate.
Well for peat’s sake, who could of seen that coming!!!
The Earth is equipped to deal with problems that, even now, we do not know exist.
David, the CSIRO also tell us that the SH is a NET co2 SINK and the NH is a NET co2 SOURCE see quote and link. BTW the population of the NH is now about 7.1 + billion and about 0.8 billion in the SH.
https://capegrim.csiro.au/ Here’s the CSIRO quote.
“Seasonal variation””Carbon dioxide concentrations show seasonal variations (annual cycles) that vary according to global location and altitude. Several processes contribute to carbon dioxide annual cycles: for example, uptake and release of carbon dioxide by terrestrial plants and the oceans, and the transport of carbon dioxide around the globe from source regions (the Northern Hemisphere is a net source of carbon dioxide, the Southern Hemisphere a net sink)”.
The cooling of the SH oceans during the mid-20th century global cooling episode magnified that sink so much, that atmospheric CO2 stopped rising for about 20 years despite increasing emissions.
Earth is pretty resilient. It creates and/or enhances carbon sinks when the climate both warms and cools. This is why I think the Earth’s climate and CO2 regulator is the depth and configuration of its ocean basins… Deeper ocean basins –> Lower atmospheric CO2. However, that’s the subject of a post I haven’t figured out how to write yet… 🍻
Someone has been watching The Expanse
I wish to be a good steward of this planet while I am here. HOWEVER I believe that the inclusion of CO2 as the root of all evil is the opposite of this.
Even if CO2 caused the warming that is being suggested ( as a trigger for everything else ) I would have a hard time accepting the need to stop its release.
From 90% of what I can see the release of additional CO2 is not a bad thing, even if the temperature was to rise an additional 2 – 4 degrees. The reason for this is simple. A warmer climate means MORE LIFE not less. We will adapt to all that it means.
It is interesting that from those that are concerned we have been warned in apocalyptical fashion of floods, death, and disease, and the end of the world! I personally am religious ( which given my skeptical nature of data is an interesting paradigm – if I cannot see the data then I take people’s opinion under advisement and then ask for the data – I have made too many mistakes with data on my own not to want to vet others ) HOWEVER I find many of the negative ‘predictions’ of an increase in CO2 to be more fantastic than the idea that there is a powerful being that can give personal guidance and direction to man-kind.
Just as I would reject a preacher who only spoke of hell-fire and damnation – I reject a scientific community that ONLY lists the negative consequences of CO2. Why is EVERY environmental change only due to CO2 starting in the 1900’s whereas before then we had the SAME changes – sometimes severe and abrupt and at times lasting ( in general ) for centuries.
Take the drought in the west. Multiple civilizations moved/were wiped out due to mega droughts in the Western United States. I studied them before CO2 was the cause of everything. At that time the reason was that the environment changed and so the people left. ( You know adapted )
I do believe that CO2 does in fact capture a narrow band of energy and SHOULD modestly convert this energy band to a form of heat and excite the molecule. I wish we would simply stop freaking out about it. Can this change the environment – of course – so can adding windmills or solar panels. Beware people selling you bad news in a bid to make you change. It is almost always a scam. If a scientist cannot in the same breath tell you all the potential benefits of CO2 along with potential bad things then they are selling you something. Science DESCRIBES things – people make judgement calls based on that.
Based on the data described to date there is NO REASON to fear increased CO2. This may change in the future BUT it is not likely. The science has been pretty clear for the past 40 years there is little reason to fear – which is why nothing has really been done over the last 40 years.