Journal article Open Access

Detecting the Aerial Fertilization Effects of Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment in Tree-Ring Chronologies

Graybill, Donald A.; Idso, Sherwood B.

The growth-promoting effects of the historical increase in the air's CO2 content are not yet evident in tree-ring records where yearly biomass additions are apportioned among all plant parts. When almost all new biomass goes into cambial enlargement, however, a growth increase of 60% or more is observed over the past two centuries. As a result, calibration of tree-ring records of this nature with instrumental climate records may not be feasible because of such growth changes. However, climate signals prior to about the mid-19th century may yet be discovered by calibrating such tree-ring series with independently derived proxy climate records for those times.

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