Climate Change as a Carbon Cycle Design and Management Challenge

Subject: Science
Type: Expository Essay
Pages: 1
Word count: 330
Topics: Ecology, Climate Change, Environmental Issues, Nature


The implications of abnormal carbon concentrations in the global climate are enormous as Archer (2010) illustrates in his review of the global carbon cycle. Among the fundamental spheres involved in balancing the global carbon concentrations – through the carbon cycle – is the terrestrial ecosystem that absorbs approximately twenty-five to thirty percent of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (Reichstein et al., 2013). Whereas 25% is a significant amount of global carbon, Knutti and Sedlácek (2012) examine the implication of gaps in the carbon cycle designs and management in contributing towards climate change. Despite vast ecosystems contributing towards regulating global carbon dioxide concentrations, challenges and knowledge gaps in the carbon cycle design and management can be used to explain the uncertainties of climate change.

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Design and Management Challenges

Archer (2010) considers knowledge and research inadequacies on carbon cycles critical in influencing climate change. One of the research flaws that affect climate change outcomes is the accuracy of the soil carbon-stock estimates. Variations in the actual and estimated values affect the efficacy of interventions meant for stabilizing the carbon cycle. Additionally, the lack of accurate and real-time data on actual carbon concentrations at any phase of the biogeochemical phases of carbon cycles impede timely reactions and the application of effective additives or boosters to eliminate any excess carbon dioxide. 

Knutti and Sedlácek (2012) blame poor climate modeling – the development of carbon projections and carbon management systems – on unpredictable climate changes. The study emphasizes the importance of accurate carbon mapping data in the effective modeling of projected climatic changes. Schuur et al. (2015) also associate timely and accurate mapping of greenhouse gas emissions – a critical phase of the carbon cycle – essential in enhancing knowledge and informing the appropriate management of carbon, as well as, developing reliable carbon cycle designs to control climate change sustainably. These studies demonstrate the significance of appropriate carbon cycle design and management in controlling climate change.

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  1. Archer, D. (2010). The global carbon cycle. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
  2. Knutti, R., & Sedláček, J. (2013). Robustness and uncertainties in the new CMIP5 climate model projections. Nature Climate Change, 3(4), 369-373.
  3. Reichstein, M., Bahn, M., Ciais, P., Frank, D., Mahecha, M. D., Seneviratne, S. I., … & Papale, D. (2013). Climate extremes and the carbon cycle. Nature, 500(7462), 287-295.
  4. Schuur, E. A. G., McGuire, A. D., Schädel, C., Grosse, G., Harden, J. W., Hayes, D. J., … & Natali, S. M. (2015). Climate change and the permafrost carbon feedback. Nature, 520(7546), 171-179.
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