Carbon Dioxide: Curse or Blessing?

Is carbon dioxide a curse or a blessing? Let’s examine the facts:

CO2 concentrations graph

More information to take into account:

Nitrogen creates the highest concentration of gas in our atmosphere, and this is terrific because plants love it and need it for fertilizer to promote healthy growth. Comprising almost 80% of the air we breathe, nitrogen is otherwise a fairly innocuous gas. After nitrogen, oxygen weighs in at just 20.95% of our total atmospheric volume. Animals and humans need just the right amount of oxygen to breathe: not too little and not too much. 20.95% is perfect. Argon, an inert gas, comes in at a puny 93 hundredths of a percent.

CO2 is the fourth most common gas in our atmosphere, but just .038% of the total volume. 0.038% is just over three hundredths of a percent.

We currently have fairly accurate measurements of manmade carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions–which have been estimated to be just 3% of the total amount of CO2 in our atmosphere. 3% of 0.038% is 0.0011%. We have less manmade CO2 in our atmosphere than neon! And concentrations of neon in our atmosphere are teeny-tiny.

Where does the rest of the CO2 in our atmosphere come from?

The constant emissions of 500 active and inactive volcanos for thousands of years (only 9% have ever been measured) also contribute enormous quantities of CO2 to our atmosphere yearly.

Why isn’t there SIGNIFICANTLY MORE CO2 in our atmosphere than this?

Our world is in symbiotic equilibrium utilizing CO2. In fact, all life on our planet is carbon-based and in some form or another is totally reliant on the presence of CO2 in order to properly function.

Plants breathe CO2 and exhale oxygen and use carbon to grow. Animals and humans breathe oxygen and exhale CO2–and eat plants or animals, or both. Without carbon dioxide, plants die. Without plants, animal and human life is impossible. More CO2 means happier plants, which make more oxygen (and food) to support more animal life. Dead plants and animals sequester carbon in the earth’s crust during fossilization; volcanism returns carbon to the atmosphere.

And, as JUST 0.038% of our atmosphere, carbon dioxide is INCAPABLE of contributing to global warming.

Now that you know the facts, is carbon dioxide a curse or a blessing? You decide!


Volcanic gases

There was also a great article at Principia Scientific that I can’t link to right now because their website appears to be down. I hope they put it back up again soon.

I’ve created a poster for sale featuring this information. You can purchase it here:

CO2 curse or blessing: Click here to purchase this poster

Or click through on the image to purchase.

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  1. Reply

    if students across the board were required to take chemistry, organic chemistry, and biochemistry (like I had to), there would be more who understood this. I have long wondered why chemists aren’t speaking – shouting! – about the science they know?

    • Reply

      I think they’re afraid to speak out because they’ll be blacklisted–if they’re tenured–so they won’t be able to publish their work or obtain grants (or lucrative positions at the biotech firms), and railroaded out of academia if they aren’t tenured.

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