EGU21-13708
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu21-13708
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Quantifying US Fossil Fuel CO2 Emissions Using Precise Measurements of 14C in Atmospheric CO2

Scott Lehman1, Sourish Basu2, John Miller3, Arlyn Andrews4, and Colm Sweeney5
Scott Lehman et al.
  • 1University of Colorado, INSTAAR, Boulder, United States of America (scott.lehman@colorado.edu)
  • 2University of Maryland, CMNS_ESSIC, College Park, United States of America (sourish@umd.edu)
  • 3Global Monitoring Lab, NOAA, Boulder, United States of America (john.b.miller@noaa.gov)
  • 4Global Monitoring Lab, NOAA, Boulder, United States of America (arlyn.andrews@noaa.gov)
  • 5Global Monitoring Lab, NOAA, Boulder, United States of America (colm.sweeney@noaa.gov)

We report the first national scale estimates of CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion and cement production in the US based directly on atmospheric observations, using a dual-tracer inverse modeling framework and CO2 and Δ14CO2measurements obtained primarily from the North American portion of NOAA’s Global Greenhouse Gas Reference Network. The derived US national total for 2010 is 1653±60 TgC/yr, with an uncertainty (2σ) that takes into account random errors associated with atmospheric transport, atmospheric measurements, and specified prior CO2 and 14C fluxes. The atmosphere-derived estimate is significantly (>3σ) larger than US national emissions for 2010 from three global inventories widely-used for CO2 accounting, even after adjustments for emissions that might be sensed by the atmospheric network but which are not included in inventory totals. In contrast, the atmosphere-derived estimate is within 1σ of a similarly adjusted 2010 annual total and 9 of 12 adjusted monthly totals aggregated from the latest release of the high-resolution, US-specific “Vulcan” emissions data product. Here we focus our presentation on determination and reduction of methodological uncertainties and future applications of the method for annual emissions detection and emissions trend detection at scales ranging from the US as a whole to contiguous groups of US states, such as those participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

How to cite: Lehman, S., Basu, S., Miller, J., Andrews, A., and Sweeney, C.: Quantifying US Fossil Fuel CO2 Emissions Using Precise Measurements of 14C in Atmospheric CO2, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-13708, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu21-13708, 2021.

Corresponding presentation materials formerly uploaded have been withdrawn.