Carbon Dioxide


Relatively soon after carbon dioxide is released by man near ground level, it is removed from the atmosphere. Since carbon dioxide is heavier than air, carbon dioxide released by man near ground level sinks in air relatively quickly rather than rising up to the upper atmosphere to become a so-called greenhouse gas in the upper atmosphere. While sinking, this carbon dioxide stratifies from air; after sinking and stratifying, it tends to remain close to the ground. The carbon dioxide then dissolves in soil water or alternatively finds its way down to low-lying water bodies or down to ocean level where it readily mixes and dissolves in water or reacts with water to form weak carbonic acid. Carbon dioxide is also removed immediately from the lower atmosphere by rainfall.


Continuous direct measurements showing the alleged concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere have been performed only since 1958 at Mauna Loa, Hawaii, unlike carbon dioxide concentration measurements before 1958, shown in red in the graph displayed here and in non-green in this chart. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries A.D., many direct concentration measurements of atmospheric carbon dioxide were higher than the measurements showing alleged carbon dioxide concentrations at Mauna Loa since 1958, and there was no runaway greenhouse-gas global warming effect.


Certain extra mechanisms, operating in the atmosphere, and not yet described publicly, act to cause carbon dioxide to be removed from the atmosphere, which eventually results in the so-called “missing carbon sink”.
These certain extra mechanisms need to be adequately explained and understood if the extent of human impact on the global carbon cycle is to be acceptably assessed and reliably predicted. The so-called missing carbon sink can be explained by increased carbon fixation, such as that which occurs during increased plant growth. When plants grow, carbon in carbon dioxide becomes carbon in plant material such as cellulose and starch. After plants die, carbon from decomposed plant material is released into soil and in between layers of sediments.


Compared to carbon dioxide emitted near ground level by man, carbon dioxide, emitted by aircraft just above the tropopause, spends a lot more time sinking in the atmosphere because of higher wind speeds at higher altitudes in addition to the greater distances to sink.
Carbon dioxide emitted by jet aircraft does not sink straight down without any horizontal displacement due to winds and natural diffusion.

 

Carbon dioxide is constantly being added by jet aircraft to the atmosphere just above the tropopause, the boundary region between the troposphere and the stratosphere. Jet aircraft fly above the troposphere to avoid turbulence. The troposphere ranges in height from 7 km at the poles to 16 km at the equator.


In this reply, meteorologist Wendell Bechtold wrote: “120 Kt winds at 12,000 feet are rare, but not unheard of. An unusually strong mid-level pressure system might produce such winds over a small region. But the upper-level jet stream, usually found above 18,000 feet can reach speeds above 100 mph regularly, and at altitudes of 30,000 feet, 200 mph wind velocities occasionally occur. The ‘average’ jet stream windspeed in wintertime over the northern hemisphere is probably 110-140 kts, at altitudes of 20 to 40 thousand feet.”


Carbon dioxide, emitted near ground level by man, is emitted where the winds are either much slower than higher-altitude winds or non-existent. Local ground weather is mostly not windy.


Hawaii is a major destination point for aircraft approaching and a major point source for aircraft leaving. The Mauna Loa data for the Keeling curve, which shows alleged atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations since 1958, is obtained at an altitude of 3.4 km. Aircraft approaching and leaving Hawaii fly at altitudes greater than 3.4 km.


State of Hawaii Department of Transportation air traffic statistics for the calendar years 1994 through 2005 show that Hilo International Airport alone had 108,462 takeoffs and landings in 2005 compared to 86,292 takeoffs and landings in 1994. This is a 25% increase over ten years. Graphs of alleged atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations measured at Mauna Loa Observatory also show an increase over this same time period.


World air travel by distance from 1950 to 2003 is listed in this article by Zoë Chafe, citing data from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). For 1960, the world air travel distance number given is 109 billion passenger-kilometers. For 2003, the world air travel distance number given is 2,992 billion passenger-kilometers.


Replacing most present-day air travel with Earth-surface travel would have a measurable effect on reducing carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere, but may do little to reduce the overall greenhouse effect because water in the atmosphere causes, by far, most of the greenhouse effect.
The IPCC has always overstated the importance of carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas and under-estimated the importance of water vapour, according to Warwick Hughes here.


The mass of water in the atmosphere is about 1.3
× 1016 kg.  The mass of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is about 2.5 × 1015 kg.  The molar mass of water is 18.02 g/mol.  The molar mass of carbon dioxide is 44.01 g/mol.  There are more than 12 times as many water molecules in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide molecules in the atmosphere. Additionally, the water molecule is polar and the carbon dioxide molecule is non-polar, so a water molecule absorbs more radiation than a carbon dioxide molecule.


Warming increases cloud cover. Increasing cloud cover causes cooling. Cooling decreases cloud cover. Decreasing cloud cover causes warming.


Personally, I have not noticed any local long-term climate warming trend. Globally, data shows a lack of ocean warming since 2003.
Ocean temperatures can be measured adequately only by the Argo buoy network. ... The Argo buoys have been operational only since the end of 2003. Before that, ocean temperatures were gathered by various methods - usually collected by ships in popular commercial shipping lanes - that lacked uniformity, sufficient geographical coverage, and the ability to measure temperature much beneath the surface”, according to David Evans here. The Antarctic ice area has increased from 1979 to 2009. The Antarctic ice volume is about 90% of the world’s ice volume, according to Table 6.1 in Chapter 6 of the Earth Observing System (EOS) Science Plan.


“The United States and Global Data Bases are Seriously Contaminated by urbanization for which NO ADJUSTMENTS are made. ... The United States USHCN version 2, the global NOAA GHCN relied on by the CCSP and the Hadley global temperatures are NOT adjusted for UHI contamination”, according to Joseph D'Aleo in Urban Heat Island Contamination. This document states: “It is not out of the realm of possibility that most of the twentieth century warming was urban heat islands”.


It is not out of the realm of possibility that most of the supposed measured twentieth-century-warming can be attributed to the local
UHI effect. The local UHI effect can still apply for a temperature measuring station listed as “rural”. In fact, increases in local UHI effect, over time, are often greater for a temperature measuring station listed as “rural” than for one listed as “non-rural” or “urban”. A graph here “shows that the most rapid rate of warming with population increase is at the lowest population densities. The non-linear relationship is not a new discovery, as it has been noted by previous researchers who found an approximate logarithmic dependence of warming on population. Significantly, this means that monitoring long-term warming at more rural stations could have greater spurious warming than monitoring in the cities.”


Key claimed “data”, used to claim supposed global warming or alleged climate change, has not been, and does not get, personally verified and confirmed by people who are independent of
governments which have a political and financial agenda. For example, the authenticity of Arctic “data”, unlike some data from lower latitudes, is not verified and confirmed by people independent of governments. Snowcover maps or data in the cooler and coldest months, at lower latitudes, can be at least somewhat partially verified and confirmed independently of governments. Snowcover data in the coldest months shows a trend since 1967 of increasing extent of yearly maximum snow cover in the northern hemisphere. Snowcover extent, at lower latitudes, in the months of December, January, and February can be somewhat partially verified and confirmed by people independent of governments. Science involves the need for independent verification and independent confirmation of empirical data, observations, measurements, etc.


No one has yet proven that man-made carbon dioxide emissions cause any supposed global warming or alleged climate change. As such, artificial capture and storage of carbon dioxide
, in an effort to prevent or alleviate any supposed global warming or alleged climate change, is an unnecessary cost and a waste of non-renewable energy resources.


“When CO2 enters the ocean, it participates in a series of reactions which are locally in equilibrium:

Solution: CO2(atmospheric) <=> CO2(dissolved)

Conversion to carbonic acid: CO2(dissolved) + H2O <=> H2CO3

First ionization: H2CO3 <=> H+ + HCO3 - (bicarbonate ion)     

Second ionization: HCO3- <=> H+ + CO3-- (carbonate ion)

... In the oceans, carbonate can combine with calcium to form limestone (calcium carbonate, CaCO3, with silica), which precipitates to the ocean floor”, according to Wikipedia's Carbon cycle article.


“CO2 + H2O <=> H2CO3 <=> H+ + HCO3 - <=> H+ + H+ + CO32-

Add more CO2 at the left and the equilibrium balance is driven to the right – liberating more carbonate, which can combine with the superabundant calcium ions to form calcium carbonate. … By elementary chemistry, adding CO2 to a CO2/carbonate equilibrium will always drive the reaction towards the production of more carbonate, irrespective of any associated reduction in pH arising from the shift in equilibrium itself”, according to this blog.


In this article, Dr J Floor Anthoni wrote: “If the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere rises, then more of it will dissolve in the water, working all the way through the chemical reactions, to an increase in acidity and an increase in carbonate CO3”; and, “... the sea has a vast oversupply of calcium. It is difficult therefore to accept that decalcification could be a problem as CO3 increases. To the contrary, it should be of benefit to calcifying organisms. Thus the more CO2, the more limestone is deposited. This has also been borne out by measurements (Budyko 1977)”.


According to Wikipedia's Carbon cycle article, the “calcium comes from the weathering of calcium-silicate rocks, which causes the silicon in the rocks to combine with oxygen to form sand or quartz (silicon dioxide), leaving calcium ions available to form limestone[6]”.


Shallow ocean water is normally saturated with CO32- carbonate ions. Carbon dioxide entering the ocean causes the local ocean concentrations of CO32- to temporarily increase, resulting in supersaturated CO32- carbonate ions. The supersaturated CO32- carbonate ions need to precipitate to return the water to normal saturated CO32- conditions. A supersaturated CO32- carbonate ion precipitates by combining with a Ca2+ calcium ion liberated from a calcium-silicate rock. When the calcium Ca2+ cation is liberated from the calcium-silicate rock, an oxygen O2- anion is also liberated. The oxygen O2- anion then reacts with the two H+ cations that were dissociated with each CO32- carbonate ion.


So the concentrations, of the three far right ions in the equilibrium equation, return to their concentrations before the carbon dioxide entered the ocean. With the concentrations of the three far right ions in the equilibrium equation returning to their original concentrations, the concentrations of dissolved CO2, H2CO3, H+, and HCO3- also return to their original concentrations. In this manner, the “increase in acidity”, when carbon dioxide enters the ocean, is neutralized.


With carbon dioxide constantly being added to the ocean from the atmosphere, and with carbonate ions constantly precipitating out by combining with calcium or magnesium ions, the above equilibrium reaction actually becomes part of a one-way irreversible reaction for each one individual participating molecule, except for water:

==> CO2(aq) + H2O ==> H2CO3 ==> H+ + HCO3 - ==> H+ + H+ + CO32- ==>

The overall concentrations, however, remain at or near equilibrium concentrations. At equilibrium conditions, for each carbon dioxide molecule that enters in, one carbonate ion precipitates out.


Irreversible reactions, for the calcium-silicate rocks grossularite, andradite, and uvarovite, produce alumina, hematite, and eskolaite, respectively.


Ca3Al2(SiO4)3 + 3 CO2 + 3 H2O ==> Al2O3 + 3 CaCO3 + 3 SiO2 + 3 H2O

Ca3Fe2(SiO4)3 + 3 CO2 + 3 H2O ==> Fe2O3 + 3 CaCO3 + 3 SiO2 + 3 H2O

Ca3Cr2(SiO4)3 + 3 CO2 + 3 H2O ==> Cr2O3 + 3 CaCO3 + 3 SiO2 + 3 H2O  


The irreversible silicate-carbonate reactions, summarized as CaSiO3 + CO2 + H2O ==> CaCO3 + SiO2 + H2O, have no net increase in acidity when limestone and silica precipitate as a result of adding carbon dioxide. Deep in the Earth, calcium carbonate may break down, into carbon dioxide and into calcium oxide, upon heating to above 840°C, but volcanoes only emit about 0.2 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide per year, according to various claims. Therefore, man-made carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere do not, and will not, cause ocean acidification.


Email concerning this web page may be sent to David Wozney at dpwozney@ocii.com.

Copyright © 2007-2012 David P. Wozney