File:Mauna Loa Carbon Dioxide.png
From Global Warming Art
This figure shows the history of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations as directly measured at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. This curve is known as the Keeling curve, and is an essential piece of evidence of the man-made increases in greenhouse gases that are believed to be the cause of global warming. The longest such record exists at Mauna Loa, but these measurements have been independently confirmed at many other sites around the world .
The annual fluctuation in carbon dioxide is caused by seasonal variations in carbon dioxide uptake by land plants. Since many more forests are concentrated in the Northern Hemisphere than the Southern Hemisphere, more carbon dioxide is removed from the atmosphere during Northern Hemisphere summer than during Southern Hemisphere summer. This annual cycle is shown in the inset figure by taking the average concentration for each month across all measured years. This cycle is sometimes referred to as the "breathing" of the Earth.
The red curve shows the average monthly concentrations, and blue curve is a moving 12 month average.
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