Article (Scientific journals)
Atmospheric Lifetime of Fossil Fuel Carbon Dioxide
Archer, David; Eby, Michael; Brovkin, Victor et al.
2009In Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 37, p. 117-134
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Keywords :
Anthropogenic CO2; Airborne fraction; Neutralization
Abstract :
[en] CO2 released from combustion of fossil fuels equilibrates among the various carbon reservoirs of the atmosphere, the ocean, and the terrestrial biosphere on timescales of a few centuries. However, a sizeable fraction of the CO2 remains in the atmosphere, awaiting a return to the solid earth by much slower weathering processes and deposition of CaCO3. Common measures of the atmospheric lifetime of CO2, including the e-folding time scale, disregard the long tail. Its neglect in the calculation of global warming potentials leads many to underestimate the longevity of anthropogenic global warming. Here, we review the past literature on the atmospheric lifetime of fossil fuel CO2 and its impact on climate, and we present initial results from a model intercomparison project on this topic. The models agree that 20–35% of the CO2 remains in the atmosphere after equilibration with the ocean (2–20 centuries). Neutralization by CaCO3 draws the airborne fraction down further on timescales of 3 to 7 kyr.
Disciplines :
Earth sciences & physical geography
Author, co-author :
Archer, David;  University of Chicago > Department of Geophysical Sciences
Eby, Michael;  University of Victoria > School of Earth and Ocean Sciences
Brovkin, Victor;  Max Planck Institute for Meteorology
Ridgwell, Andy;  University of Bristol > School of Geographical Sciences
Cao, Long;  Carnegie Institution > Department of Global Ecology
Mikolajewicz, Uwe;  Max Planck Institute for Meteorology
Caldeira, Ken;  Carnegie Institution > Department of Global Ecology
Matsumoto, Katsumi;  University of Minnesota > Department of Geology and Geophysics
Munhoven, Guy ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > Département d'astrophys., géophysique et océanographie (AGO) > Labo de physique atmosphérique et planétaire (LPAP)
Montenegro, Alvaro;  University of Victoria > School of Earth and Ocean Sciences
Tokos, Kathy;  University of Minnesota > Department of Geology and Geophysics
Language :
English
Title :
Atmospheric Lifetime of Fossil Fuel Carbon Dioxide
Publication date :
2009
Journal title :
Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences
ISSN :
0084-6597
Publisher :
Annual Reviews, Palo Alto, United States - California
Volume :
37
Pages :
117-134
Peer reviewed :
Peer Reviewed verified by ORBi
Funders :
F.R.S.-FNRS - Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique [BE]
Commentary :
I am pleased to provide you complimentary one-time access to my Annual Reviews article as a PDF file (http://arjournals.annualreviews.org/eprint/TXVr5xrStR8vCEuTmECx/full/10.1146/annurev.earth.031208.100206), for your own personal use. Any further/multiple distribution, publication, or commercial usage of this copyrighted material requires submission of a permission request addressed to the Annual Reviews Permissions Department, email permissions@AnnualReviews.org.
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