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This man-made fluctuation wasn't a natural occurrence, but it demonstrates the fact that fluctuation is possible and that a period of natural upheaval upon the earth could greatly affect the ratio.
Volcanoes spew out CO which could just as effectively decrease the ratio.
Carbon-14, or radiocarbon, is a naturally occurring radioactive isotope that forms when cosmic rays in the upper atmosphere strike nitrogen molecules, which then oxidize to become carbon dioxide.
After death the amount of carbon-14 in the organic specimen decreases very regularly as the molecules decay.
Carbon-14 has a half-life of 5,730 ± 40 years, meaning that every 5,700 years or so the object loses half its carbon-14.
It is naturally unstable and so it will spontaneously decay back into N-14 after a period of time.
It takes about 5,730 years for half of a sample of radiocarbon to decay back into nitrogen.