We should not rely on estimates of human CO2 from fossil fuels to calculate atmospheric CO2. These data can only be used for the very broadest estimate of trend direction. This is not meant as a critique of the long and diligent curation of these fossil fuel numbers by the U.S. Oak Ridge National Laboratory, nor critique of the works of Friedlingstein et al. These curators must work with the data they are given. Over the years many of the countries submitting fossil fuel data have been unreliable for many different reasons, for example Nigeria, Soviet Union, Iran, Venezuela, OPEC just to mention of a few of the largest suppliers. As I write this, Israel is supplying natural gas to Egypt, which uses some and supplies it to Syria, which supplies it to Lebanon which is now supplying a large percentage of natural gas to the EU. Then there is the 4 to 6 quarts of oil that has been in every car and truck and many industrial machines on the planet for the last 100 years, most of which is never burned. At least, Friedlingstein et al attempt to estimate bunker fuels which can be stored for long periods.
If we look at the graphical data from the link thankfully supplied by A. Huijser and Nullschool.net,
this surface CO2 information is based in a very elaborate GEOS-5 model by NASA Goddard center. This model is not from a right wing think tank or climate skeptics. These are some of the strongest proponents of AGW. Yet, what we see in these data is that in most cases the highest concentrations of CO2 at the surface are found where population is low and fossil fuel use is lowest. And these areas of higher concentration make up more than 80% of the Earth’s surface area. Most of that area is over water and ice. This strongly suggests that humans and fossil fuels are not increasing CO2 concentration.
Secondly, we should not rely on estimates and assumptions that pre-industrial atmospheric CO2 concentration was stable around 290 ppm. Measurements of CO2 in ice have been shown to have unacceptably high error rates (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304420318300574be ) and for years now Professor Murry Salby has pointed out the error in ice core proxy data. Mr. G.S. Callendar, who calculated the early assumptions of CO2 trend, has been shown to have “cherry-picked” his data points to fit his AGW theory.
And the compilation by Ernst George Beck of the thousands of honest, independent measurements of CO2 concentrations does not support the theory of a stable CO2 trend. Beck’s work is apparently ignored by IPCC et al.
In other words, statements such as the currently in vogue “50% increase in CO2 due to human emissions” are not based on reliable data and should be discarded.
Is it a coincidence that the highest surface CO2 concentration in Europe follows the Rhine river, the highest volume of river water flow in Europe, north to the lowlands, wetlands, rivers and marshes of Netherlands and Belgium and then across the English Channel there are 100 meter high white cliffs of Dover, the white cliff Seven Sisters of Sussex (photo at the top of this post), and down the coast of English Channel on the continent side are the chalk cliffs of Normandy, France? Not likely to be a coincidence. The Rhine is loaded with decaying biological runoff, saturated with CO2. CO2 is highly soluble in cold water and calcium carbonate (calcite) is more soluble in cold water. The cold Rhine and its estuary system has been carrying high concentrations of dissolved organic and inorganic carbonates for millions of years. It reaches the large surface area of insolated, relatively warmer English Channel and calcite precipitates. It should be needless to say that those carbonate rocks did not come from human produced CO2. However, most of that rock was CO2 that was once in the atmosphere. In fact, humans have been burning carbonate rock for about 12,000 years to make cement, and in that process releasing CO2 back into the air; yet we still have white carbonate cliffs, mines, and caves around the planet.
The oceanic and atmospheric chemistry and physics that produced these huge carbonate deposits around the earth have not stopped. The graphic data at the link provided by A. Huijser and Nullschool illustrates part of that chemistry and physics in operation today. An easy-to-understand review of the carbonate chemistry is provided here by the University of Houston. https://uh.edu/~jbutler/kunming/carbonates.html
It is beyond absurd and irresponsible for people to be penalized by governments for emitting CO2 when the ocean, the arctic and the Antarctic which comprise over 80% of earth’s surface are emitting higher concentration of CO2 than heavily populated areas. The conclusion must be that the penalty is not about the environment, nor about CO2. The penalty is about politics, money and ideology. The historical track record of humans following ideologies is millions of dead humans.
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