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These results contrasted with earlier published research that estimated much greater variability—ranging from 150 to 350 ppm. 1957, 34 (9), 424, using data from Fonselius, S., Koroleff, F., and Warme, K., Carbon Dioxide Concentrations in the Atmosphere. The jagged red line shows natural oscillations caused by plant growth cycles, while the increase over time is caused by human activities, especially the burning of fossil-fuels. Weather Bureau (now a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA) and other organizations in the United States and abroad were preparing research programs for the International Geophysical Year, a multinational scientific collaboration organized for the years 19.The concept of the greenhouse effect was first proposed in the 1820s by the French mathematician and physicist Joseph Fourier (1768–1830).Fourier’s calculations showed that the Earth should be much cooler than it is, given the amount of energy it receives from the sun.
One explanation he proposed was that the Earth’s atmosphere might provide an insulating effect, retaining some of the heat that would otherwise be reemitted into space.Fourier’s proposal is considered the earliest hypothesis tied to the greenhouse effect.For the next century and a half, scientists debated the connection between the composition of the atmosphere, greenhouse gas emissions (including CO resulting from fossil fuel combustion tied to industrialization could eventually lead to a small increase in global temperatures (Svante Arrhenius, 1859–1927, first proposed this connection in 1896), others argued that natural physical processes such as the absorption of CO concentrations.At about this time Charles David Keeling (1928–2005), a postdoctoral fellow in the department of geochemistry at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), began a research project that coupled his academic background in chemistry with his interests in geosciences and the outdoors.Keeling began taking air and water samples every few hours throughout the day and night at remote locations in the Western states.
He returned with his samples to Caltech for analysis, using a specially constructed instrument to measure CO concentrations increased at night and decreased during the day, with a nearly constant afternoon concentration of 310 parts per million (ppm), regardless of location. Keeling's methods of measuring atmospheric carbon dioxide revealed clear natural and man-made trends.