By Alan Siddons
The US Department of Energy’s Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) says that mankind is responsible for the increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide since the year 1850.
Let’s examine the key quote by the authoritative U.S. government agency:
“Anthropogenic CO₂ comes from fossil fuel combustion, changes in land use (e.g., forest clearing), and cement manufacture. Houghton and Hackler have estimated land-use changes from 1850-2000, so it is convenient to use 1850 as our starting point for the following discussion. Atmospheric CO₂ concentrations had not changed appreciably over the preceding 850 years (IPCC; The Scientific Basis) so it may be safely assumed that they would not have changed appreciably in the 150 years from 1850 to 2000 in the absence of human intervention.”
What the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) is saying here is that mankind is principally or wholly responsible for the increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide since the year 1850. Taken from their data, this is a year by year chart of atmospheric carbon change compared to human carbon emissions between 1850 and 2000.
That puddle at the bottom of the chart is thought to be responsible for the magnitude that looms above it by means of accumulation, i.e., piling up every year due to its prolonged life in the atmosphere. Indeed, if we accumulate each annual human quantity we get a chart that looks like this.
This reverses the proportions to a large extent. In agreement with the CDIAC that “about 40%” has remained in the atmosphere, this chart depicts a 42% remainder (approximately 181/431), meaning that 58% is no longer floating around.
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“Contrary to what you read in the newspaper, the sinks of CO2 are notdecreasing. On the contrary they are increasing as fast as the CO2emissions have increased.” – James Hansen et al