Comparison of 14CO2, CO, and SF6 as tracers for recently added fossil fuel CO2 in the atmosphere and implications for biological CO2 exchange
Article first published online: 14 JAN 2006
Copyright 2006 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 33, Issue 1, 16 January 2006
How to Cite
2006), Comparison of 14CO2, CO, and SF6 as tracers for recently added fossil fuel CO2 in the atmosphere and implications for biological CO2 exchange, Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L01817, doi:10.1029/2005GL024213., , , , , and (
- Issue published online: 14 JAN 2006
- Article first published online: 14 JAN 2006
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 DEC 2005
- Manuscript Revised: 30 NOV 2005
- Manuscript Received: 1 AUG 2005
 We use the nearly ideal tracer 14CO2 to estimate the fossil fuel CO2 enhancement in boundary layer air at two sites in New England and Colorado. Improved Δ14C measurement precision of 1.6–2.6‰ provides fossil fuel CO2 detection capability of 0.8–1.5 ppm. Using the indirect tracers CO and SF6, we obtain two additional independent estimates of the fossil fuel CO2 component, and we assess the biases in these methods with respect to the 14CO2-based estimates. The SF6-based estimates vary considerably from the 14CO2-based estimates, and are at times implausibly large. The CO-based estimates are less variable, but show seasonally coherent biases with respect to the 14CO2 method.