HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Oxygen measurements yield greenhouse clues

As levels of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide rise, concentrations of oxygen in our air have fallen.

CSIRO scientists have measured the minuscule decline in oxygen that has occurred during the past 20 years, the longest period over which such an assessment has been made.

"As fossil fuels burn, they generate carbon dioxide, using up oxygen in the process," explains Mr Ray Langenfelds from CSIRO Atmospheric Research. "About half of the carbon dioxide from fossil fuels remains in the atmosphere."

"The changes we are measuring represent just a tiny fraction of the total amount of oxygen in our air (20.95 per cent by volume). The oxygen reduction is just 0.03 per cent in the past 20 years and has no impact on our breathing," says Mr Langenfelds.

"Typical oxygen fluctuations indoors or in city air would be far greater than this," says Mr Langenfelds.

However the oxygen measurements shed new light on the extent to which the world's forests and oceans share the task of absorbing half the carbon dioxide generated by burning of fossil fuels.

"While the oceans emerge as the slightly larger long-term sink, plants are clearly soaking up more carbon dioxde with time. If they weren't, levels of carbon dioxide would be far higher," says Mr Langenfelds.

Although deforestation during the past 20 years has released vast quantities of carbon dioxide, remaining plants are taking up much of this gas. As plants photosynthesise, they produce oxygen, explaining why the oxygen decline in air has been less than expected.

Researchers speculate that plants today could be growing more rapidly due to warmer conditions, higher carbon dioxide concentrations or increased nitrogen fertilisation. Alternatively, previously cleared land may be returning to forest.

Mr Langenfelds has analysed air dating back to 1978 from CSIRO's unique 'archive' of pristine air collected at the remote Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station operated by the CSIRO an
'"/>

Contact: Mr Ray Langenfelds
ray.langenfelds@dar.csiro.au
61-3-9239-4598
CSIRO Australia
19-Jul-1999


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Oxygen sensing in worms may hold key to healthy blood pressure in humans
2. Oxygen triggered the evolution of complex life forms
3. Oxygen deficiency is an endocrine disruptor in fish
4. Oxygen key switch in transforming adult stem cells from fat into cartilage
5. Evolution upset: Oxygen-making microbes came last, not first
6. Oxygen is toxic to stem cells
7. Tumor Oxygen Level And Blood Flow Fluctuate, Duke Scientists Discover
8. Fake Photosynthesis? Test-Tube System In Science Paper Sheds Light On The Oxygen We Breathe, UD Prof Says
9. Oxygen-Carrying Myoglobin Not Necessary For Survival
10. Stroke Risk Increased In Patients With High Oxygen Use In Brain
11. Improved Oxygen Bath To Heal Wounds, Lessen Number Of Amputations: Sandia To Sign Agreement With Numotech To Help Create Home-Use Healing Facility

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Oxygen measurements yield greenhouse clues

(Date:7/22/2014)... feature natural habitats and trees and not just asphalt ... to a University of Colorado Boulder study. , Working ... provide stress-reducing benefits for youth, according to a paper ... The study is one of the first of its ... to green settings and stress. , "Many schools already ...
(Date:7/22/2014)... Conn. , July 22, 2014 ... the growing m-commerce market, announces its next generation smart ... 30-minute consumer oriented television show that airs on ... NewsWatch regularly features top technology ... July 31st on the History Channel (6:00-6:30am ET/PT) ...
(Date:7/21/2014)... researchers have detected genetic fragments of Middle East Respiratory ... holding a camel infected with the virus. The work, ... open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology, indicates ... disease can be transmitted through the air. , MERS, ... has been identified in 699 people as of June ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Natural-terrain schoolyards reduce children's stress, says Colorado University-Boulder study 2Natural-terrain schoolyards reduce children's stress, says Colorado University-Boulder study 3NXT-ID's Next Generation Wocket Smart Wallet to be Featured on NewsWatch, Airing on History Channel, FYI Network and ION Network 2NXT-ID's Next Generation Wocket Smart Wallet to be Featured on NewsWatch, Airing on History Channel, FYI Network and ION Network 3Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus detected in the air of a Saudi Arabian camel barn 2
(Date:7/22/2014)... PLAINS, New Jersey , 22. Juli 2014 ... für die Life-Sciences-Industrie, hat die Ernennung von Marcus ... bekanntgegeben. Herr Bergler hat die europäischen kommerziellen ... Lösungen unterstützt. Bevor er sich Qforma anschloss, war ... bei Cegedim Customer Information, als Vertriebsteam-Leiter Deutschland bei ...
(Date:7/22/2014)... 22, 2014 The next session of ... 2014 and will comprise of the increasingly popular ‘Base ... TechTrainings is a series of technical hands-on classes for ... them reach the next step in their professional careers. ... taught by Jennifer Kang, Senior Statistician at Genentech and ...
(Date:7/21/2014)... 21, 2014 Lawrence Livermore ... Board (WIB) and Las Positas College (LPC) recently ... education and hands-on training for veterans, officials recently ... at Las Positas is designed to help ... engineering technician careers, and establishes a pipeline of ...
(Date:7/21/2014)... to a chain of carbon atoms can turn it ... Rice University scientists. , Stretching the material known as ... -- by just 3 percent can begin to change ... for mechanically activated nanoscale electronics and optics. , The ... colleagues appears in the American Chemical Society journal ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Qforma gibt Schaffung des neuen Postens als General Manager in Europa bekannt 2Clinovo TechTrainings: Next Session of SAS and CDISC Classes Start 9th September, 2014 2Clinovo TechTrainings: Next Session of SAS and CDISC Classes Start 9th September, 2014 3Engineering Program Established for Veterans 2Engineering Program Established for Veterans 3Carbyne morphs when stretched 2Carbyne morphs when stretched 3
Cached News: