Friday, June 28, 2013
As we most likely learned in school, carbon dioxide or CO2 is the gas we breathe out from the work that our cells accomplish in our body, and the gas that plants need to absorb to thrive and produce the food that we all eat. The more carbon dioxide (up to a point far higher than present) the faster plants grow. There is geological evidence that there was far more carbon dioxide and plant life during certain periods in the past.
This is the most likely reason there is an abundance of carbon based fuel in the ground in the form of oil, gas and coal. This fuel came from carbon dioxide in the air, used by plants, and stored in the ground for us to reuse today. Scientists theorize that without plants there would be no oxygen for us to breathe, food to eat or fuel to produce energy.
When this fuel is burned for heat and energy, the carbon is oxidized forming carbon dioxide. Some of this carbon dioxide is captured, stored as dry ice, used for cooling or blast cleaning and cycled back into the atmosphere where it was previously absorbed by the plants and stored in the ground for our fuel. It is amazing how this carbon dioxide cycle can produce both heat and cooling energy for our use.
Carbon dioxide is also widely used in the beverage industry. We all are familiar with it when we drink a soda – carbon dioxide makes the fizz because it is water soluble. This means the ocean, covering over 70% of the earth’s surface, also absorbs carbon dioxide and will dissolve most of the additional carbon dioxide emitted by man. Carbon dioxide permits the growth of ocean plant food necessary for plankton, fish, whales, and other sea life to live.
ISLA Earth reports a recent Smithsonian study showing an increased amount of carbon dioxide will benefit wetlands all over the world by growing greater biomass necessary for its survival, keeping incoming water from drowning the wetlands.
Therefore we could be celebrating the very small percent increase of carbon dioxide in earth’s atmosphere over the last fifty years, from .0387% to .0400%, because of the benefits it offers us, instead of an alarmist’s attitude of gloom and destruction.