Problem with 'global warming' produced by CO2?

Some scientists think that CO2 levels are higher now than they have ever been. If that's true, then were did all the carbon come from? The law of conservation of mass says that it was all on Earth from the beginning. It was CO2 to start with, then was converted by plants into sugars and fats, then animals ate it, died, and became fossil fuels. So, when humans burn fossil fuels, they are not making 'new' CO2, they are just releasing old CO2. If that's the case, then it is impossible to go above the original CO2 levels in the atmosphere.

On a side note, if CO2 levels were very high to begin with, it would have made rain too acidic for plants to grow, and life would never have started (assuming you believe in evolution).So, as I see it, if you believe in the big bang and global warming, you can't believe in evolution. If you believe in evolution, you can't believe in either global warming from CO2 or the big bang.

That only leaves devine creation.



It's not a cop-out if you know it's true. It's delusional to try to explain it away when you can't.

According to the theories of evolution and big bang, the number of Carbon atoms on Earth has not changed significantly since the beginning of the Earth. Since evolutionists believe that there was originally no life on Earth, all of the carbon was originally CO2 (nothing to convert it to anything else). In order for levels to get near what they were (creating a Venus-like atmosphere {regardless of the fact that we are 40% further from the Sun}) when the Earth first formed, everything (including humans) would have to die, be fossilized, convert to oil and burned. And then all of the diamonds will have to somehow magically degrade back into CO2.

Update 2:

Well, gcnp, touche!

Maybe, just maybe, before you call people morons, you should actually think for yourself (I know, it's a tough concept for college students - you're so used to regurgitating the unbiased beliefs of your professors that it's hard to do. By the way - there are textbooks that say everything. They can't all be right).

While the solubility of CO2 is limited, as it converts to H2CO3, more can be dissolved.

The pK1 of H2CO3 is much higher than the pK2, or pKw of water, so we can perform calculations as if it was monoprotic. The pK1 is 6.35 (giving a K1 of 4.47E-7).

Let's first calculate the concentration of CO2 at it's maximum. 10,000 ppmv is the same as 1%vol. Assuming 22.4 L/mol of gasses, then 0.01 L CO2/L atm * 22.4 L / mol CO2 = .224 L/mol, which gives a molarity of 4.46 mol/L CO2.

Assuming the monoproticity of H2CO3, and that [H+] ≈ [HCO3-], then using that volume of CO2, we can get the equation:

[H+]^2 / ([CO2] - [H+]) = K1


Update 3:

[H+]^2 / (4.46 - [H+]) = 4.47E-7

[H+]^2 = 4.46 * 4.47E-7 - 4.47E-7 * [H+]

[H+]^2 + 4.47E-7 * [H+] - 4.46 * 4.47E-7

Using the quadratic equation, [H+] = 0.00141 mol/L

pH = -log([H+]) = -log(0.00141)

pH = 2.85

This is quite a bit lower than your claim of 5. A pH of 2.85 would definately keep life from forming. Who's the moron? The person who believes what he proves for himself or the person who believes whatever he's told under the guise of legitimacy?

Name calling is the typical response of people who are taught to think a certain way, and, when challanged, don't know how to respond. You don't know how to respond because you didn't think for yourself.

15 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    ONCE AGAIN....

    Global Warming MEANS "World Wide Warming!" It is ONLY A Political Term = NOT based in Real Science!

    The EARTH is covered by "Three Quarters WATER!" Basic Science, it takes ONE-Btu to raise One Cubic Centimeter ONE Degree Centigrade!

    HOW many "Gazillion Cubic Centimeters are there ONLY on the Surface of Planet Earth COVERED by 3/4 Water?"




    Oh yes, POLAR temperatures have varied LESS Than one degree in the past 100-Years. Noticed I said VARIED, = NOT RISEN!

    Thanks, RR

    The theory of man-made global warming is false. Anyone who believes otherwise has not investigated the evidence or is purposely remaining ignorant to the legitimate opposition to global warming. I have given up an one and a half hours to watch “An Inconvenient Truth” so I ask you to do the same and watch the movie detailing the opposition.

    Another general resource:

    CO2 is not causing the globe to warm the opposite is true, the warming is increasing the atmospheric CO2. When the world heats it gradually increases the temperature of the oceans which serve as the largest CO2 sink. As the oceans heat up they release CO2 which is stored in them. The information comes from the same data Al Gore uses, the temperature always goes up before the concentration of CO2 goes up.

    CO2 makes up only .03% of our atmosphere. Water vapor, another greenhouse gas, makes up 1-4% of our atmosphere, this gas is acknowledged to be the main greenhouse gas. All human activities combined contribute only 6 Gigatons of CO2 to the atmosphere each year. Animals, through respiration, decomposition, etc contribute 150 Gigatons of CO2 to the atmosphere. So humans contribute only a small amount of CO2 to the atmosphere which is already in very small concentrations in the atmosphere. This is where my data came from, it is an interesting site, it displays the same graphics as Al Gore in his movie but it tells how low the human contribution is. So Al Gore is using the same data but coming to a different conclusion, who do you want to believe a politician with no scientific training or the NASA CO2 laboratory, a group of scientists who spend their entire careers studying CO2.

    We know the greenhouse effect is real it is a necessary effect to keep our planet at a habitable temperature. However if our current warming is due to greenhouse gasses it would cause warming in the troposphere , but the troposphere is actually getting cooler. That points to other explanations to our current warming.

    So what is causing our current warming, it is the sun.

    The fact that only the earth’s surface is warming points to direct heating from the sun rather than heating due to greenhouse gasses. Also other planets in our solar system are warming pointing to a common cause of warming, that common cause being the sun.

    The global warming crowd says our glaciers are melting and animals will suffer this is another false claim.

    The global warming crowd also claims a scientific consensus on the issue, this is wrong in two ways. One, there is no consensus, this is a false claim to make you believe in global warming by suppressing the opposition.

    Second, even if there was a consensus it would mean nothing, science is not politics, you don’t vote on theories to determine their legitimacy.

    Here’s 21 pages of websites that disagree with global warming.

    The thought that the only scientists who disagree with global warming are paid by oil companies is simply a stupid statement with no reality. This is the most illogical argument by people in support of global warming. Aside from being completely false it begs another question: Who pays global warming supporters? The answer is big environmental agencies that make millions off of global warming each year by teaching, publishing books, and selling environmentally clean products.

    The IPCC is the main supporter of global warming, their statements are defended blindly by people who don’t want to admit that global warming is not real. People will claim that they took into account natural sources of CO2, they didn’t. Take a look for yourself: That is the latest IPCC report, read the entire report, do a search of the documents, there is absolutely no mention of natural sources of CO2.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Precisely correct, MS. And releasing all of the carbon would not go above the original CO2 level in the atmosphere, it would equal it. So, you'd have an atmosphere much like that of Venus today, and a climate much like Venus as the laws of physics dictate.

    Yes, of course the rains were acidic at first. They still are for that matter. Once the earth had cooled enough that the rain did not evaporate when it hit the ground, a great deal of interaction occured between the rocks and minerals and the rain. Just as undergound water carves out great caverns in underground limestone over time, many salts were leached from the rock as the water made it's way to the sea, leaving it permanently saline, and no doubt with a changed pH.

    Water that evaporated carried with it no acid, but the process would have repeated many times. At some point life began in the sea, but neither the atmosphere or the oceans would be hospitable to the forms of life inhabiting it today. Bacteria have been found that have adapted quite well to live in the cooling water of nuclear reactors, and in boiling hot springs. There is no reason to think it would have had a problem with the early earth.

    New CO2 is in fact produced by volcanic activity, and this CO2 was not part of the original atmosphere. I don't know how you can exclude it, because your fellow deniers make so much of it.

    Frankly, I'm puzzled. Now I have seen some nonsequitors in my time, many gaffes and whoppers, malapropisms, but I've never seen anything to compare to this statement. I hate to ask, but where in the world do you come up with this? Accepting evolution prohibits accepting the Big Bang? Or Global Warming? On what planet is that so?

    " So, as I see it, if you believe in the big bang and global warming, you can't believe in evolution. If you believe in evolution, you can't believe in either global warming from CO2 or the big bang. That only leaves devine creation. "

    I don't know why some people always want to equate evolution to Darwinism. They must hjave never read about it.

    I also wonder why in the Bush era any discussion of any scientific isse becomes a broadside attack on all science, like this one.

  • gcnp58
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    It is really difficult to get pH much below 5 using just CO2, even using the highest recorded CO2 levels in the atmosphere of 10,000 ppmv. The reason this is true is because CO2 doesn't hydrate very well in water to H2CO3. This makes H2CO3 a relatively weak acid in terms of total CO2 concentration. So it is perfectly allowed to believe in CO2 being a strong feedback for climate and the big bang and non-divinely created life. All that is required is some knowledge of the acid-base chemistry and dissolution thermodynamics of CO2.

    Getting that wrong kind of makes me ignore the rest of the question. Ok, it really makes me ignore the rest of the question. Let's all try to be scientifically correct ok?


    Well, you aren't doing the calculation right. It is difficult to get pH's much below 3.7 with CO2, even at increased pressures. So let's go through this, since you aren't getting it right for yourself.

    The solubility of CO2 in freshwater is around 10^-1.5 moles/(liter-atm) at 20 C. That means, for 10,000 ppm, which is 0.01 atm, the total amount of CO2 dissolved per liter is 10^-1.5 * 10^-2 = 10^-3.5 moles/liter. As you have pointed out, the pKa of H2CO3* is 10^-6.3.

    10^-6.3 = k(H2CO3) = {H+}{HCO3-}/{H2CO3*}

    now we will assume that the activity coefficients are all unity so that we can substitute in concentrations and

    k(H2CO3) = [H+][HCO3-]/[H2CO3]

    In acidic solutions with no other acids or bases, [H+]=[HCO3-] and [H2CO3*]=10^-3.5 m/L (where these are approximations probably good to a few per cent, the first assumes the protons from the autodissociation of water are negligible, the second assumes that very little H2CO3* dissociates into H+ and HCO3-, both of these assumptions are valid, the first because there is so much H2CO3* around and water is a very weak acid and the second because CO2 is a weak acid). The upshot is that:

    [H+]^2 = 10^-6.3 * 10^-3.5 = 10^-9.8

    [H+] = 10^-4.9

    or pH = around 5 like I said earlier.

    Look, you don't understand CO2 chemistry and your acid-base understanding is weak. Read Stumm and Morgan. It will be worth it so you don't get taken apart like this again.

    Remember, I'm here to help.

    edit 2:

    Ok, rereading what you wrote I see what you don't understand is Henry's Law and how to get the equilibrium concentration of CO2 given an atmospheric pressure in ppmv. Your acid-base calculations are fine, it's the getting the [H2CO3*] concentration you hosed completely. That's ok, it's in Stumm and Morgan too. I stand guilty as charged of thinking about this correctly.

    Remember, I'm here to help.

    Source(s): Aquatic Chemistry, Stumm and Morgan, J Wiley Interscience. Chapter 4 (I think) is on CO2 in aqueous solution. Well worth reading if you don't want to look like a moron when talking about CO2.
  • 1 decade ago

    Here is the CO2 levels over the last 400,000 years as measured by the ice core samples at Vostok, Antarctica.

    Ice cores provide a good proxy indicator of the CO2 in the air at the time.

    Look at the chart, clearly CO2 levels were much higher than today without any ill effect.

    CO2 is the cause of rising temperatures, not the cause. CO2 lags temps by some 800 years.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    "So, when humans burn fossil fuels, they are not making 'new' CO2, they are just releasing old CO2. If that's the case, then it is impossible to go above the original CO2 levels in the atmosphere."

    This is basically correct. Atmospheric CO2 concentrations haven't been as high as they are currently in over 650,000 years:

    but millions of years ago they were higher:

    Here's the problem with your logic - humans and other life forms weren't around at the beginning of the Earth. Or if you don't want to go back that far in time, humans weren't around millions of years ago.

    I'm not going to go into your divine creation comment - let's just say that to invoke divine creation when you can't explain something is a bit of a cop-out. Especially when others can explain it.

  • 1 decade ago

    Well since neither Darwinism nor man-made global warming have been ever proven, I guess we can scratch them off the scientific slate.

    Believing in either is such a stretch that they are both in the religious realm now.

    Thus divine creation, Darwinism, and man-made global warming are religious in nature. That leaves intelligent design as the only scientific theory left. How strange...

    Source(s): Note that evolution within species is proven since all creatures have changed within their species. Darwinism is the theory that all living creatures evolved from origin non-living matter and species have evolved into other species. Nice theory, but since there's been no fossils found to support this theory in over 150 years of looking, perhaps they should quit teaching it in schools. Yeah, right ! They still show those silly monkey to man diagrams and other bogus stuff to young impressionable minds. It's a tragic shame to lie to children, but they have their reasons.
  • 1 decade ago

    if you learn science there is a law that quantity of carbon are equal, not quantity of CO2.. when a plant were doing photosyntesis, they release Oxygen from the CO2 bonds and intergrated the amount of carbon to be food stored in the plant. when it dies, it will be given back to earth, and it changed to Coal, Oil(CH combination) and even diamonds. the quantity didnt change.

    CO2 levels are increased when the Carbon in the oil and Coal are used and make CO2 again (by using fire).

    Lots of plants change lots of Co2 . The cycles are interupted if the plants/trees are destroyed and lots of oils and coal are used.

  • Bob
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    Here's the problem with CO2 from fossil fuels.

    The natural carbon cycle removed it from the atmosphere and slowly buried it, over many thousands of years. We dig it up and burn it fast, in several tens of years. That overloads natural processes (the "teeth" on the graph below), and CO2 rises:

    and the world heats up a little (a few degrees C).

    The problem with that is that is that our modern society, with massive coastal development and intensive agriculture, is very sensitive to that change. We're not hunter-gatherers that can just migrate.

    It will cost many hundreds of billions to cope. That will likely drive the world into an economic depression that will make the 1930s look like good times.

    Plants of the early Earth were very different. As nature changed slowly, they evolved to meet different conditions. This change is too rapid for them to cope well.

    By the way everything in science is compatible with divine creation. All science says that, if a Creator exists, they started the process with a Bang 13 billion years ago, and used evolution as a tool. To me that seems far more awesome than someone snapping their fingers 6000 years ago. To this guy, too:

    EDIT - Mr Jello - Current CO2 levels are about 390 ppm, higher than anything on your graph.

    Historically warming started for other reasons, and CO2 followed, being released from warming oceans. This time CO2 and temperature are going up together. It's one of many proofs that this warming is not natural.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Here's a fabulous concept: when you click on this site, Care2 makes a donation that will remove one pound of carbon dioxide emissions from the atmosphere. It doesn't cost you a thing and every click really counts. Check it out:



  • pip
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    you can have CO2 stored in the dirt/rock or stored in the atmosphere.

    the problem with todays world is the Earth spent millions of years locking CO2 away in oil and the likes... and we are releasing it faster than it can readjust.

    So, in other words we (humans) evolved to live in a world with lesser CO2 in the atmosphere...... most of it is trapped in the soil... same with the animals on this planet....

    but we are releasing the trapped CO2.. changing the balance.... how much is here isn't what is important.. . it's how what's here is interacting... and a lot of CO2 simply wasn't interacting with our heat retention because it was locked away.. but has now been released.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.