On the same day that the EPA is set to falsely accuse the atmosphere’s CO2 molecules of being an “endangerment”, I hereby unofficially nominate the humble CO2 molecule for the Nobel Peace Prize. Hey, it makes more sense than calling this beneficial trace gas an “endangerment”. In his own Nobel acceptance/lecture, Al Gore has gone so far as to call CO2 “global warming pollution”, and insisted that man’s emissions of it were akin to treating our atmosphere like an “open sewer”. He couldn’t be more wrong.
When it comes to molecules that are necessary for life to exist on earth, with the possible exception of H20, you’d be hard-pressed to find one more beneficial than good old carbon dioxide.
Literally thousands of laboratory and field experiments have conclusively demonstrated that enriching the air with carbon dioxide stimulates the growth and development of nearly all plants. They have also revealed that higher-than-normal CO2 concentrations dramatically enhance the efficiency with which plants utilize water, sometimes as much as doubling it in response to a doubling of the air’s CO2 content. These CO2-induced improvements typically lead to the development of more extensive and active root systems, enabling plants to more thoroughly explore larger volumes of soil in search of the things they need. Consequently, even in soils lacking sufficient water and nutrients for good growth at today’s CO2 concentrations, plants exposed to the elevated atmospheric CO2 levels expected in the future generally show remarkable increases in vegetative productivity, which should enable them to successfully colonize low-rainfall areas that are presently too dry to support more than isolated patches of desert vegetation.
Elevated levels of atmospheric CO2 also enable plants to better withstand the growth-retarding effects of various environmental stresses, including soil salinity, air pollution, high and low air temperatures, and air-borne and soil-borne plant pathogens. In fact, atmospheric CO2 enrichment can actually mean the difference between life and death for vegetation growing in extremely stressful circumstances. In light of these facts, it is not surprising that Earth’s natural and managed ecosystems have already benefited immensely from the increase in atmospheric CO2 that has accompanied the progression of the Industrial Revolution; and they will further prosper from future CO2 increases.
Join us as we explore these and other important benefits that rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations are bestowing on plants. Carbon dioxide emissions resulting from the burning of fossil fuels should not be feared; they are something to be celebrated!
Far from being a pollutant, rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations will never directly harm human health, but will indirectly benefit humans in a number of ways. Chief among these benefits is global food security. People must have sufficient food, simply to sustain themselves; and the rise in the atmosphere’s CO2 concentration that has occurred since the inception of the Industrial Revolution (an increase of approximately 100 ppm) has done wonders for humanity in this regard. And, it will continue to work wonders in helping us meet the rising food consumption needs of a larger, future population.
In addition to increasing the quantity of food available for human consumption, the rising atmospheric CO2 concentration is also increasing the quality of the foods we eat. It significantly increases the quantity and potency of the many beneficial substances found in their tissues (such as the vitamin C concentration of citrus fruit), which ultimately make their way onto our dinner tables and into many of the medicines we take, improving our health and helping us better contend with the multitude of diseases and other maladies that regularly afflict us. In just one species of spider lily, for example, enriching the air with CO2 has led to the production of higher concentrations of several substances that have been demonstrated to be effective in fighting a number of human maladies, including leukemia, ovary sarcoma, melanoma, and brain, colon, lung and renal cancers, as well as Japanese encephalitis and yellow, dengue, Punta Tora and Rift Valley fevers.
CO2 an “endangerment”? Hardly. Al Gore and the rest of the alarmists need to stop smearing the good name of this beneficial trace gas, and learn to embrace CO2. If they truly wanted a greener planet, they’d learn to love CO2!
CO2 for the Nobel Peace Prize!
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- Al Gore / AIT Index, Vol. 23: Global temperatures have plunged .56°F since An Inconvenient Truth was released
- Let’s all walk, bike, swim, or paddle to Peru since Al Gore has pronounced his admiration for ‘the growing eco-tourism that is flourishing in Peru’
- Global Warming Hoax Weekly Round-Up, July 15 2010
- Global Warming Hoax Weekly Round-Up, July 8 2010