Fossil Fuel Combustion and the Major Sedimentary Cycle

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Science  16 Jul 1971:
Vol. 173, Issue 3993, pp. 233-235
DOI: 10.1126/science.173.3993.233


The combustion of the fossil fuels coal, oil, and lignite potentially can mobilize many elements into the atmosphere at rates, in general, less than but comparable to their rates of flow through natural waters during the weathering cycle. Since the principal sites of fossil fuel combustion are in the mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, changes in the composition of natural waters and air, as a consequence of this activity, will be most evident at these latitudes.