Articles | Volume 6, issue 1
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 6, 235–263, 2014
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 6, 235–263, 2014

  17 Jun 2014

17 Jun 2014

Global carbon budget 2013

C. Le Quéré1, G. P. Peters2, R. J. Andres3, R. M. Andrew2, T. A. Boden3, P. Ciais4, P. Friedlingstein5, R. A. Houghton6, G. Marland7, R. Moriarty1, S. Sitch8, P. Tans9, A. Arneth10, A. Arvanitis10, D. C. E. Bakker11, L. Bopp4, J. G. Canadell12, L. P. Chini13, S. C. Doney14, A. Harper15, I. Harris16, J. I. House17, A. K. Jain18, S. D. Jones1, E. Kato19, R. F. Keeling20, K. Klein Goldewijk21, A. Körtzinger22, C. Koven23, N. Lefèvre24, F. Maignan4, A. Omar25,26, T. Ono27, G.-H. Park28, B. Pfeil29,26, B. Poulter30, M. R. Raupach*,12, P. Regnier31, C. Rödenbeck32, S. Saito33, J. Schwinger29,26, J. Segschneider34, B. D. Stocker35, T. Takahashi36, B. Tilbrook37, S. van Heuven38, N. Viovy4, R. Wanninkhof40, A. Wiltshire39, and S. Zaehle32 C. Le Quéré et al.
  • 1Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, University of East Anglia, Norwich Research Park, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK
  • 2Center for International Climate and Environmental Research – Oslo (CICERO), Norway
  • 3Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC), Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA
  • 4Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, CEA-CNRS-UVSQ, CE Orme des Merisiers, 91191 Gif sur Yvette CEDEX, France
  • 5College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, University of Exeter, Exeter, EX4 4QF, UK
  • 6Woods Hole Research Centre (WHRC), Falmouth, Massachusetts 02540, USA
  • 7Research Institute for Environment, Energy, and Economics, Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina 28608, USA
  • 8College of Life and Environmental Sciences University of Exeter, Exeter EX4 4RJ, UK
  • 9National Oceanic & Atmosphere Administration, Earth System Research Laboratory (NOAA/ESRL), Boulder, Colorado 80305, USA
  • 10Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research/Atmospheric Environmental Research, 82467 Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
  • 11Centre for Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, UK
  • 12Global Carbon Project, CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, GPO Box 3023, Canberra, ACT 2601, Australia
  • 13Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742, USA
  • 14Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), Woods Hole, Massachusetts 02543, USA
  • 15College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, University of Exeter, UK
  • 16Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, UK
  • 17Cabot Institute, Dept of Geography, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 1TH, UK
  • 18Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois 61821, USA
  • 19Center for Global Environmental Research (CGER), National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES), 16-2 Onogawa, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8506, Japan
  • 20University of California, San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California 92093-0244, USA
  • 21PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague/Bilthoven and Utrecht University, Utrecht, the Netherlands
  • 22GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research, Wischhofstr. 1–3, 24148 Kiel, Germany
  • 23Earth Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, California 94720, USA
  • 24Sorbonne Universités (UPMC, Univ Paris 06)-CNRS-IRD-MNHN, LOCEAN Laboratory, 4 place Jussieu, 75005, Paris, France
  • 25Uni Climate, Uni Research AS, Allégaten 55, 5007 Bergen, Norway
  • 26Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Allégaten 55, 5007 Bergen, Norway
  • 27Fisheries Research Agency, 2-3-3 Minato Mirai, Nishi-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa 220-6115, Japan
  • 28East Sea Research Institute, Korea Institute of Ocean Science & Technology (KIOST), Uljin, 767-813, South Korea
  • 29Geophysical Institute, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway
  • 30Department of Ecology, Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana 59717, USA
  • 31Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, CP160/02, Université Libre de Bruxelles, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
  • 32Max-Planck-Institut für Biogeochemie, P.O. Box 600164, Hans-Knöll-Str. 10, 07745 Jena, Germany
  • 33Marine Division, Global Environment and Marine Department, Japan Meteorological Agency, 1-3-4 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8122, Japan
  • 34Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Bundesstr. 53, 20146 Hamburg, Germany
  • 35Climate and Environmental Physics, and Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research, University of Bern, Switzerland
  • 36Columbia Univ, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Palisades, NY 10964, USA
  • 37CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research and Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Co-operative Research Centre, Hobart, Australia
  • 38Centre for Isotope Research, University of Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands
  • 39NOAA/AOML, Miami, Florida 33149, USA
  • 40Met Office Hadley Centre, FitzRoy Road, Exeter EX1 3PB, UK
  • *now at: Climate Change Institute, Australian National Universtiy, Canberra, ACT, Australia

Abstract. Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe data sets and a methodology to quantify all major components of the global carbon budget, including their uncertainties, based on the combination of a range of data, algorithms, statistics and model estimates and their interpretation by a broad scientific community. We discuss changes compared to previous estimates, consistency within and among components, alongside methodology and data limitations. CO2 emissions from fossil-fuel combustion and cement production (EFF) are based on energy statistics, while emissions from land-use change (ELUC), mainly deforestation, are based on combined evidence from land-cover change data, fire activity associated with deforestation, and models. The global atmospheric CO2 concentration is measured directly and its rate of growth (GATM) is computed from the annual changes in concentration. The mean ocean CO2 sink (SOCEAN) is based on observations from the 1990s, while the annual anomalies and trends are estimated with ocean models. The variability in SOCEAN is evaluated for the first time in this budget with data products based on surveys of ocean CO2 measurements. The global residual terrestrial CO2 sink (SLAND) is estimated by the difference of the other terms of the global carbon budget and compared to results of independent dynamic global vegetation models forced by observed climate, CO2 and land cover change (some including nitrogen–carbon interactions). All uncertainties are reported as ±1σ, reflecting the current capacity to characterise the annual estimates of each component of the global carbon budget. For the last decade available (2003–2012), EFF was 8.6 ± 0.4 GtC yr−1, ELUC 0.9 ± 0.5 GtC yr−1, GATM 4.3 ± 0.1 GtC yr−1, SOCEAN 2.5 ± 0.5 GtC yr−1, and SLAND 2.8 ± 0.8 GtC yr−1. For year 2012 alone, EFF grew to 9.7 ± 0.5 GtC yr−1, 2.2% above 2011, reflecting a continued growing trend in these emissions, GATM was 5.1 ± 0.2 GtC yr−1, SOCEAN was 2.9 ± 0.5 GtC yr−1, and assuming an ELUC of 1.0 ± 0.5 GtC yr−1 (based on the 2001–2010 average), SLAND was 2.7 ± 0.9 GtC yr−1. GATM was high in 2012 compared to the 2003–2012 average, almost entirely reflecting the high EFF. The global atmospheric CO2 concentration reached 392.52 ± 0.10 ppm averaged over 2012. We estimate that EFF will increase by 2.1% (1.1–3.1%) to 9.9 ± 0.5 GtC in 2013, 61% above emissions in 1990, based on projections of world gross domestic product and recent changes in the carbon intensity of the economy. With this projection, cumulative emissions of CO2 will reach about 535 ± 55 GtC for 1870–2013, about 70% from EFF (390 ± 20 GtC) and 30% from ELUC (145 ± 50 GtC).

This paper also documents any changes in the methods and data sets used in this new carbon budget from previous budgets (Le Quéré et al., 2013). All observations presented here can be downloaded from the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (doi:10.3334/CDIAC/GCP_2013_V2.3).