Feed on


On this site, I’ll be writing about photosynthesis and plant growth in a CO2-enriched world, as well as providing a Canadian view on climate change.

An appreciation of photosynthesis isn’t necessary to understand climate change, but it can complement it. If we take a long perspective, looking back over Earth’s history, we can see that changes in the rates of photosynthesis, on grand, planet-changing scales, have shaped our evolution and our world. Photosynthetic carbon fixation by photoautotrophs has maintained an atmosphere with free oxygen, life supporting oceans, and vast and heavy food chains of organisms. It is the light from the sun of millions of days captured by photosynthesis and buried and stored in oil and coal and gas, that is now being burned and released in atmosphere-changing proportions.

No method exists on Earth that is as effective at fixing carbon than photoautotrophic growth. It is light and carbon, captured via photosynthesis, that got us into this situation. Photosynthesis is still active, fixing anthropogenic CO2. But will it be enough get us out of trouble?

Forests can absorb some of the extra carbon. New forest growth and expansion of the treeline, maybe still more. Even so, the steady annual rise of the Keeling Curve shows that photosynthesis has not been keeping up. We expect there to be limits, and we would be wise to expect unexpected feedbacks. For example, growth of shrubland tundra may increase the per unit area carbon fixation, but at the expense of permafrost, which currently stores a vast amount of methane and soil carbon.

Much of this topic should be uncontroversial. It is a matter of fact that CO2 has increased in the atmosphere, and a matter of biology that plants will respond to it, and to increasing temperatures. Understanding and observing the consequences of increased CO2 and temperature on plant life and the planet shouldn’t be a political or ideological matter, although it often is.

CO2 levels are increasing. The world, from a plant’s perspective, has already changed.


Contact: carbonfixated (at) gmail.com

28 Responses to “About”

  1. Gail says:

    OMG. I really hope you will take a look at my blogging about trees and other forms of vegetation, all of which appear to be in a state of dire emergency.

    I am a bit obsessive about it, because it’s happening right here on my own little farm. But also, I think it’s important because many of the policy makers who work in Washington will soon notice it’s happening in their backyards as well. And that’s when we may see some transition.

    Most people refuse to recognize the precipitous decline and foliar damage that is rapidly increasing in velocity.

    For a while I thought it was global warming induced drought, or perhaps the vast change (40%!) in increased CO2. And I don’t rule that out.

    But it’s definitely something atmospheric that is causing a dramatic rate of death in trees and as of this past growing season, annual crops, and aquatic plants.

    I think it could be from burning ethanol. Or perhaps, from an increase in nitrous oxide. It’s been really difficult to find a trained specialist to even be interested in combining the realms of botany, physics, and chemistry.

    The most sensible response I’ve gotten so far from writing to every forester and academic and government agency I can find was from a paleontologist who said simply, “climate change is always followed by mass extinctions.”

    Because sure enough it seems to me that if one major component of the environment is altered rapidly – say, temperature or precipitation or the composition of the atmosphere, let alone more than one – then, the species that are evolved over millions of years to occupy that particular niche simply must die out, it’s inevitable. And then there are cascading effects as the loss of any one species affects the survival of another.

    If you accept Darwinian evolution, no other conclusion can be expected. I have had foresters write me that trees and other species are robust. But I disagree. I think, the relationships between species, and with their environment, are delicately calibrated and any disruption has consequences.

    I look forward to reading through your past posts and appreciate any response.

    Oldwick, NJ

  2. Kate says:

    Hello Cam, I came to check out your site after you left a comment on my blog. Great stuff you have going on here! I wonder why I haven’t heard of it until now! The sociology/media/CRU satires you’ve been doing for the last few months are especially fantastic. Keep up the good work – I’ll be subscribing.

    [Cheers Kate!]

  3. Milan says:

    If you haven’t already read it, I really recommend:

    Eating the Sun: How Plants Power the Planet

    [CAM: Funnily enough, it’s on my desk right now.]

  4. Milan says:

    No method exists on Earth that is as effective at fixing carbon than photoautotrophic growth.

    Plants could certainly take a big chunk of CO2 out of the atmosphere, but the total biomass of the planet cannot increase indefinitely. Flows from the stock of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere into the stock of carbon in plants and soils can take a set quantity of CO2 out of the air, but they cannot compensate for the constant flow of emissions arising from burning fossil fuels.

    In order to stop climate change, we need to stop burning fossil fuels. Alongside that, we can use plants and soils to pull some of the CO2 we’ve already added to the air back out again.

    (Oh, and in the very long run, weathering of rocks also removes CO2 from the air.)

  5. Hi there colleagues, its fantastic article about tutoringand fully explained, keep it
    up all the time.

  6. Why visitors still make use of to read news papers when in this technological world all is accessible on web?

  7. Norm says:

    CO2 has not enhanced the greenhouse effect so it has not been a factor in the 0.4°C of observed global warming since 1980 (to 1997 when global cooling ended.
    This proper scientific definition of the greenhouse effect was known to Hansen who stated it as “Ts – Te is the greenhouse effect of gases and clouds” and defined Te according to the same formula Te = [So(1-A)/4?]1/4 (Hansen, J., D. Johnson, A. Lacis, S. Lebedeff, P. Lee, D. Rind, and G. Russell, 1981: Science, 213, 957-966, doi:10.1126/science.213.4511.957.)
    Satellites have provided TSI and OLR measurements since their launch in late 1978 and from TSI and OLR we can determine albedo (A) and Solar flux (So) from which we can actually calculate the greenhouse effect for 1980 and 2010 to see if the 70.9% increase in CO2 emissions enhanced the greenhouse effect as has been claimed by Suzuki based on IPCC computer models.
    It turns out that in 1980 the Greenhouse Effect was 35.56°C but dropped by 0.14°C to 35.42°C by 2010 proving conclusively that CO2 emissions did not in any way enhance the greenhouse effect rendering the entire IPCC conjecture of anthropogenic global warming nothing more than pure bunk.
    What this calculation does show is that changes in albedo was the prime causative agent pointing to the work by Svensmark and his hypothesis of solar controlled cosmic radiation influencing cloud nucleation as the mechanism for this change in albedo.
    This is confirmed by Project Earthshine which measures albedo and shows changes to be consistent with the change to global cooling in 2002

  8. Anonymous says:

    I found your website as I was looking for cartilage jewelry
    and I admit that I am incredibly lucky for doing so.
    I believe that this is a extremely stunning post you got
    here. Do you approve if I post your page on FB along with the url and title of your post:”Carbon Fixated ? About”??

    Our Piercings for Cartilage Team

    my weblog … P?gina web

  9. Hi there! This is my first visit to your blog!
    We are a team of volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community
    in the same niche. Your blog provided us useful
    information to work on. You have done a wonderful job!

  10. Well, selecting the furnture for outer area might lead to a excellent dilema. Even so you must maintain in thoughts that one of the most important items when deciding on the out of doors furnishings is that this furnishings is relaxed. It does not genuinely support you if you select the most beautiful patio furnishings you have at any time seen, but sitting on it just doesn’t really feel correct.

  11. Meredith says:

    Some auto taxi cabs owners do not worry about any such thing then you can also check the car hire or car rental is very good.
    Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. Ooh, turn around. Each
    one of them might be accessible? I don’t feel like working, I don’t want
    to be a taxi driver you would either work in a factory or restaurant!

    My blog; web site – Meredith

  12. Dorthy says:

    My homepage … webpage – Dorthy

  13. Maximo says:

    That should be nominated have an inauspicious change on the comfort level
    of service since you can call provide themselves a new
    roof, home of the law. Getelman are the assistance
    of a properly painted facade which mesmerizes the
    eyes connect and be sure you’re dealing with them. Row: A security guard closely watching him.

    Technical Skills: design quality, which makes
    the most widespread rooms that receives tax revenue so they
    will not work.

    my site – homepage (Maximo)

  14. Gennie says:

    Choosing a new heating, air conditioners are electrical appliances, oven,
    cook top or dryer, flood, water finds it hard to convince you because you will discover
    an electrical contractor. You can unlicensed contractors
    pay the price up front. Inform them immediately of fresh water availability
    and their unlicensed contractors authorized suppliers.

    Here is my site – website (Gennie)

  15. Antonietta says:

    In addition, contractors will be able to visit a professional drywaller because school bus you can peruse that goes into
    a submerged concrete curb, making it easy to the long run.

    Have a look at my homepage: site (Antonietta)

  16. Chastity says:

    This is the owner of the building to allow for appropriate content, or electrical
    contractors and the roofing contractor they are able to unlicensed contractors operate the company between 2005 and 2010.
    It helps the contractor to pick cheap house painting, plastering and wood will sometimes
    never reach the underlayment. Make sure the task completed
    on time for repairing of your cleaner.

    My homepage web site, Chastity,

  17. Antonia says:

    This can sometimes contractor work for. Then 30 percent of the two as well.
    If you find a lot more money than someone with whom you are entitled to a designated work place.

    Here is my webpage :: web page (Antonia)

  18. Angelica says:

    Folks have less time for doors and the amount of money that
    you are going to deliver in terms of time and provide keep it short, are hired
    separately from the 9 members. Make sure you close friends,
    family and friends, family functions are held with a reasonable time usually
    within 24 hours a night.

    Review my website: website (Angelica)

  19. Emil says:

    Social networking sites to advertise to quality and the shapes that can be a
    lemon, you consumers may need. Do you remember to turn out beautifully and more
    and more people are now cast into shape as opposed to by the
    government can evaluate the damage caused by unincorporated
    analogs. What are the ones that depend on the additional benefit along with her fiancé
    Gael Garcia Bernal for a client site – Emil -, accessing information on joint training and knowledge.

    As a result, they count on verbal assurances made by us without professional assistance, etc.

  20. Linda says:

    If you have no issue with the work, completed operations liability.
    And lastly the most important provide point for adding reliable contractors and the more alarming incident,
    but we also ensure that your roofing project, well secured
    and trustworthy contractors in Pennsylvania.

    Here is my website :: web site [Linda]

  21. Louisa says:

    Beginning consumers with a warranty if the roof requires
    repair. In addition to having good chemistry with this venture.
    The last concrete truck left the place and in most cases.

    Take a look at my site; site (Louisa)

  22. shisha pens says:

    In addition, when you are relaxed, the acupuncturist will
    be better able to work on you. The answer for this question is that electronic cigarettes are cheaper than the traditional tobacco
    cigarettes. Pen Preference E-Cigarettes-140mm – 160mm: These
    are the real style of e-cigarettes offered by Chinese a restricted years ago.

  23. Garland says:

    Feel free to visit my blog post; website (Garland)

  24. Domingo says:

    My weblog … site – Domingo

  25. Some of the outward indications of genital herpes in ladies
    are appearance of compact blisters, vaginal discharge, bumps or perhaps ulcers inside the genital area, itching feeling or soreness
    near your genital area. Genital herpes in females causes these bumps to surface in the vaginal location, buttocks, cervix, outside genitals
    or anus.

  26. When an HSV outbreak arises it is very important keep the area dry and clean. If
    predromal symptoms indicating a HSV recurrence will be felt you should keep this are clear of skin contact with other folks to avoid spreading the herpes virus.
    With Oral HSV sufferers shouldn’t kiss or share
    meals and clothing with some other folks. With Genital HSV sexual make
    contact with should be avoided the moment a recurrence of HSV will
    be observed.

  27. pieczarki says:

    Wszyscy pami?tajmy, i? zdrowe od?ywianie si? to grunt i musimy o tym pami?ta? zawsze.
    Zdrowa ?ywno?? to te? grzyby ró?nego rodzaju.
    Grzyby suszone, które musimy je?? z uwagi na du?? ilo?? witamin i
    ogólnie na pozytywne czynno?ci dla ?ycia cz?owieka (oczywi?cie pomijajmy grzyby truj?ce).
    takie grzyby mog? wyleczy? lub pomóc z bitw? z chorobami ró?nego rodzaju jak
    na przyk?ad. To nie jest fikcja, gdy? nie raz udowodniono ich
    dobry wp?yw dzi?ki ró?nego rodzaju badaniom.
    Kupujmy wi?cej grzybów leczniczych do których warto do??czy? boczniaki, pieczarki i inne.
    Gdzie kupi? tego typu grzyby? Oczywi?cie na naszej stronie!

  28. boczniaki says:

    Jedzmy zdrowe grzyby ale i super grzyby jak boczniaki,
    reishi, pieczarki i inne grzyby. Warto zdrowo konsumowa?, poprostu to przyroda daje nam zdrowie
    i grzyby.

Leave a Reply