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Atmospheric CO 2 & Global Warming
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  1. Atmospheric CO2 & Global Warming

  2. The Population Explosion

  3. The increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide is primarily due to world energy consumption and secondarily due to deforestation.

  4. The Carbon Cycle

  5. Fixing Carbon (Carbon Sequestration) • Photosynthesis • 6C02 + 6H2O  C6H12O6 + 6O2 • Atmospheric carbon is fixed in the biosphere. • Stable exchanges of @ 110 billion tons of carbon annually

  6. Carbon Imbalance • Atmospheric carbon levels are at the highest level in 20 million years. • C02 Concentrations today are 300 times higher than in 1776. • Annually between 9 and 10 billion tons MORE carbon is introduced into the atmosphere than is fixed. • Why?

  7. Types of Carbon • Biospheric carbon and Lithospheric carbon (fossil fuels) • General balance of biospheric carbon exchange, EXCEPT for additional atmospheric carbon from deforestation • Between 1 and 2 billion tons per year. • Lithosperic carbon adds @ 8 billion tones of carbon to the atmosphere • 1 gallon of gas releases @ 5 lbs carbon (18-19 lbs CO2).

  8. 400,000 Years of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Data Atmospheric CO2 (ppm) Hundreds of thousands of years ago

  9. Global Change: Population World Population reached: 1 billion in 1804 2 billion in 1927 (123 years later) 3 billion in 1960 (33 years later) 4 billion in 1974 (14 years later) 5 billion in 1987 (13 years later) 6 billion in 1999 (12 years later) It is expected to reach: 7 billion in 2013 (14 years later) 8 billion in 2028 (15 years later)

  10. What we would like to know about Global Change • Causes of Global Change

  11. Causes of Global Change(population, proximate/ultimate effects) • Population growth or resource over consumption? • Impact = Population Number * Per Capita Resource Use • US CO2 emissions = ca. 4 tons C/person/year • Chinese CO2 emissions = ca. 0.2 tonsC/person/year • US Impact = 4 ton C /person x ca. 270,000,000 =ca. 1.1 billion tons C/year • Chinese Impact = . 2 ton C /person x 1.4 billion people =ca. 0.3 billion tons C/year

  12. What is the effect on global temperature of doubling the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide? • The direct effect of heat absorption by the CO2:+ 1 oC • The indirect (feedback) effects:+ 0.5 to 3.5 oC • melting ice and snow increases absorption of sunlight (ice-albedo effect) • warmer air holds more water vapor, another greenhouse gas • warmer air results in different cloud characteristics TOTAL: + 1.5 to 4.5 oC

  13. IMPACTS OF GLOBAL WARMING • Threats to Food Production (Diminished Water Supplies) • Human Health Impacts (Heat Waves, Infectious Disease) • Wildfire • Sealevel Rise • Ecological Effects: • Extinction Episode Comparable to K-T Boundary • Spread of Invasive Species • Coral Bleaching • Biome Shift Northwards • Climate Hot Map

  14. Future energy policy will determine this This warming has already occurred 2100 1000 Year

  15. How Serious Is This? • Warming of more than 10C above today’s level will make the Earth warmer than it has been in a million years. • Business-as-usual, with fossil fuel CO2 emissions continuing to increase will mean an additional warming of 20C to 30C this century and will make the Earth a different planet. • At 20C to 30C the new sea level would be 25 meters (80 feet) higher than today. Dr. James Hansen, NASA GISS

  16. New Haven Montauk New York City Long Beach Atlantic City Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona Wildwood

  17. New Haven Montauk New York City Long Beach Atlantic City Sea Level +1M Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona Wildwood

  18. New Haven Montauk New York City Long Beach Atlantic City Sea Level +6M Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona Wildwood

  19. Dover Ocean City Hampton Virginia Beach Norfolk Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  20. Dover Ocean City Hampton Virginia Beach Sea Level +1M Norfolk Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  21. Dover Ocean City Hampton Virginia Beach Sea Level +6M Norfolk Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  22. Wilmington Myrtle Beach Charleston Mt. Pleasant Hilton Head Savannah Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  23. Wilmington Myrtle Beach Charleston Mt. Pleasant Hilton Head Sea Level +1M Savannah Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  24. Wilmington Myrtle Beach Charleston Mt. Pleasant Hilton Head Sea Level +6M Savannah Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  25. Jacksonville Panama City Daytona Beach St. Petersburg Fort Meyers Ft. Lauderdale Miami Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  26. Jacksonville Panama City Daytona Beach St. Petersburg Fort Meyers Ft. Lauderdale Miami Sea Level + 1M Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  27. Jacksonville Panama City Daytona Beach St. Petersburg Fort Meyers Ft. Lauderdale Miami Sea Level + 6M Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  28. Baton Rouge Lake Charles Beaumont New Orleans Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  29. Baton Rouge Lake Charles Beaumont New Orleans Sea Level +1M Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona

  30. Baton Rouge Lake Charles Beaumont New Orleans Sea Level +6M Weiss and Overpeck, University of Arizona