Lecture 24: Potential Exam Questions
- Describe how fossil fuel burning affects the global carbon cycle.
- Carbon accumulated in sedimentary rocks and fossil fuels during the carboniferous period, which drew down atmospheric CO2 - this occurred on geologic time scales
- Fossil fuel burning extracts the carbon that was accumulated in fossil fuels and puts it back into the atmosphere
- What is the missing sink?
- There is an unaccounted for inbalance in the global carbon cycle - it is thought to be residual terrestrial carbon uptake but unknown exactly where this is occurring - it is calculated by the remaining difference between all the other flows
- Describe the utility of models for studying global phenomena like climate change. What are 3 types of models?
- Allows study of longer time scale and larger spatial scale using data from other studies
- 3 types:
- Process-based models - mechanistic understanding of cause and effect
- Individual-based models - build up from smaller scales, e.g. an individual tree to a forest
- Lumped parameter models - e.g. model photosynthesis as "one big leaf" from entire forest canopy
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