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Global Climate Change DigestArchives of the
Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d88nov21

"The Global Carbon Cycle" (discussion of Detwiler and Hall article), Nature, 241(4874), 1736-1739, Sep. 30, 1988.

Item #d88nov22

"Carbon Dioxide Emissions in a Methane Economy," J.H. Ausubel (Nat. Acad. Engin., Washington, D.C.), A. Grübler, N. Nakicenovic, Climatic Change, 12(3), 245-263, June 1988.

Explores two scenarios of global energy demand under the expectation that methane will become a dominant energy source. One, holding per capita consumption at current levels, shows CO2 concentrations peak at 450 ppm. The second raises the global average demand in the year 2100 to the current U.S. level and concentrations peak near 600 ppm. Projected CO2 concentrations in a methane economy are low in relation to other scenarios but still confirm climate warming concerns.

Item #d88nov23

"Field Measurements of Air-Sea CO2 Exchange," M. Frankignoulle (Univ. Liège, Inst. chim. B6, B-4000 Sart Tilman par Liège 1, Belgique), Limnol. Oceanog., 33(3), 313-322, May 1988.

Simultaneous measurements were made at the Bay of Calvi, the Ligurian Sea and the North Sea of the air-sea CO2 exchange and the difference in CO2 partial pressure between water and the air, to study the in situ relations between parameters. The yearly variation of mean fluxes and change in pressure at all three sites under similar meteorological conditions imply a similar gas exchange coefficient K. Measurements in the North Sea under different meteorological conditions show the influence of wind speed and sea state on exchange measured by the in situ methodology used, allowing results to be compared to wind tunnel measurements by others.

Item #d88nov24

"Public Policy and the Airborne Fraction--Guest Editorial," J. Firor (NCAR, POB 3000, Boulder CO 80307), Climatic Change, 12(2), 103-105, Apr. 1988.

The airborne fraction is usually defined as the ratio of the increase in the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere during some period to the amount of CO2 emitted to the air by human activity during the same period. Present values are estimated to be 0.35 to 0.55. The airborne fraction can be quite small while appreciable CO2 emission continues. This suggests that increases in the atmospheric concentration of CO2 can be brought to near zero without cutting the fossil fuel emission to zero, and CO2 concentrations could be nearly stabilized with a 50% reduction in fossil fuel use. Negative fossil fuel growth scenarios should be carefully studied by both modelers and policy makers.

Item #d88nov25

"The Variations of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide at Alert and Sable Island, Canada," Y.S. Chung (Atmos. Environ. Svc., 4905 Dufferin St., Downsview, Ontario M3H 5T4, Can.), Atmos. Environ., 22(2), 383-394, 1988.

Although anthropogenic emissions of CO2 into the Arctic atmosphere are 2-3 orders of magnitude smaller than those at mid-latitudes, a higher concentration and large seasonal variation are observed at Alert than at more southerly Sable Island. The 5-year climatology of air parcel trajectories arriving at Alert showed that low values of atmospheric CO2 concentrations are usually associated with S-SW airflows, while relatively high values of CO2 are generally associated with a long trajectory originating in the Soviet Arctic. High values of CO2 concentrations also occur in the late spring under the meteorological conditions of a pronounced temperature inversion, high solar radiation, and calm or light winds at the surface. These conditions add to high air pollution potential and CO2 episodes which in turn can affect radiation budgets.

Item #d88nov26

"Model Complexity and Data Worth: An Assessment of Changes in the Global Carbon Budget," J. Yearsley (U.S. EPA Region X, 1200 6th Ave., Seattle WA 98101), D.P. Lettenmaier, Ecolog. Modelling, 39(3/4), 201-226, Dec. 1987.

Performs a series of Monte Carlo tests, using as the generating model a nonlinear global carbon cycle model to produce multiple 100-year global carbon scenarios. Evaluates the ability of a likelihood ratio test to discriminate between three alternate linear models. Also evaluates data worth to detect changes in atmospheric CO2. Results show that detection times decreased most rapidly for reductions in error of measurement of the living terrestrial biota and atmospheric compartments.

Item #d88nov27

"A Regional Carbon Storage Simulation For Large-Scale Biomass Plantations," W.P. Cropper Jr. (Sch. Forest Resour., Univ. Florida, Gainesville FL 32611), K.C. Ewel, ibid., 36(3/4), 171-180, May 1987.

A simulation model predicts 30-40% less carbon would be stored in north Florida forests over 24 years by planting 40,000 ha year-1 of slash pine biomass plantations with an 8-year rotation. This practice, along with increased wood consumption at the national level, would greatly increase CO2 release to the atmosphere. The consequences of increased emphasis in forest management toward biomass plantations must be carefully examined.

Item #d88nov28

"Carbon Dioxide and People," N.D. Newell (Amer. Museum of Nat. Hist., New York NY 10024), L. Marcus, Palaios, 2, 101-103, 1987.

Comparison of the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere with growth of human population over the last 26 years shows a correlation of .9985. This suggests that the rate of increase of CO2 is almost wholly dependent on human activities. Author suggests that continuous monitoring of the carbon dioxide trend would yield useful information on both population growth and economic development.

Item #d88nov29

"The Biosphere as a Driving Force in the Global Carbon Cycle," J. Goudriaan (Dep. Theor. Prod. Ecol., Wageningen Agric. Univ., POB 430, 6700 AK Wageningen, Neth.), Neth. J. Agric. Sci., 35(2), 177-187, 1987.

The amount of carbon tied up in biomass is of the same order of magnitude as the amount in atmospheric CO2. Cessation of either terrestrial or marine biosphere carbon fixation would lead to doubling of atmospheric CO2 within a few hundred years. The biosphere has strongly amplified past fluctuations of atmospheric CO2, through interaction with the climatic greenhouse effect of atmospheric CO2.

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