Carbon Dioxide: Vital Plant Food
Carbon dioxide has been called a poison, yet it is actually the sustainer of all life on Earth. Plants grow from the carbon in carbon dioxide in the air, and animals grow from the carbon in the plants they eat. So carbon dioxide cannot be a poison.
Turn on the television any day of the week, and there is likely to be some discussion or news about some aspect of energy use.
- Everyone needs to buy an electric vehicle.
- End the use of fossil fuels by 2035.
- Every home with a solar panel (California).
- Cancel the Keystone XL Pipeline.
- No more coal.
- Eliminate the use of natural gas.
- No gas stoves.
- No gas furnaces.
- Battery-powered trucks and buses.
All these programs are based on one important foundation: the belief that as carbon dioxide levels rise, the earth will get warmer, and will continue to warm until, with positive feedbacks, it burns up with us on it.
Few have ever taken the time to see if the foundation upon which they are operating is actually true. Few even dare to ask a working scientist for the truth in the matter.
The truth is that carbon dioxide is needed by every plant on the Earth. Trees, bushes, and plants of all kinds are made mainly of carbon and hydrogen, and the carbon comes from the tiny amount of carbon dioxide that is in the air.
At the present time our atmosphere is made up of about 417.06 parts per million (ppm) of carbon dioxide. That isn’t much, but from that tiny portion comes all the plants we can see around us, from vegetables in our gardens to the trees that shade our yards or the ones on the mountains from which we harvest the lumber to build our homes.
There is no question that carbon dioxide is increasing. It has been increasing for about 200 years. The only result has been a greening of the Earth. In fact, with higher levels of carbon dioxide, things grow better. Even the deserts are getting greener.
Most officials have continued to blame man for increased carbon dioxide and rising temperatures. It is far more likely that rising temperatures have been caused by changes in the sun. Those changes have continued to warm the oceans, and as they have warmed, they have given up quantities of carbon dioxide. There is about 50 times more carbon dioxide in the ocean than there is in the atmosphere. The oceans are deep, and they change temperature slowly, so they will continue to give up carbon dioxide for a long time. In fact, there are methane compounds (called clathrates) at the bottom of the ocean that include ice.
They tell us that this year is the warmest the Earth has ever been. Even if that were true (and it is not), it would amount to only a small portion of a degree. When the temperature goes from 100 degrees in summer to minus 30 degrees in winter, a part of a degree would hardly appear to be a problem.
Not only that, but the Earth has been a lot warmer in the past, with a lot more carbon dioxide. Even within recorded history the Earth has been warmer in the past (1936).
Every time there is some kind of a disaster, we are told that it was caused by climate change and that man is the main cause. Even some children have gotten into the act, with one challenging the world with her comments — “how dare you?“
One group of children in Montana sued the state over climate change and actually won the case. This is hard to believe.
The numbers, however, do not support what they have been saying. None of the natural disasters has increased in recent years. There have not been more floods, hurricanes, droughts, or wildfires in recent history. These have all gone down in frequency. Some disasters, like hurricanes, have become more expensive, but that is primarily because many beautiful and expensive homes have been built in the natural paths of these storms. The storms themselves have actually decreased in frequency.
Two thousand five saw one of the worst natural disasters with the Katrina hurricane. The city of New Orleans was mainly flooded. Many people lost their lives. Yet, as far as hurricanes go, this one was only a Category 3, not one of the worst. It seemed so bad that even worse storms were predicted for the next year. But there were actually no more serious hurricanes for the next ten years (Hurricane Harvey, 2017).
It is bad enough that many of these programs have been built on a false foundation. In truth, many of them have not been really beneficial.
Large solar farms are built in the desert, but in just a few years, the projects have failed.
Wind turbines wear out, catch fire, and break down totally. They presently cannot be recycled and must be buried. The only parts that can be recycled are in the generator.
One city bought several electric buses but in just a short time quit using them as impractical.
Electric vehicles may be practical to drive from home to office and back again, but they are not practical on long trips. It is necessary to stop every few hours and charge the batteries, and sometimes it is difficult to find a proper charging station.
Those who have lived near the coast have seen their cars flooded with sea water, then their cars caught fire as their batteries shorted out.
Not only that, but the driving range is radically reduced when driving in summer (air-conditioning) or winter (heater). With an internal combustion engine, the waste heat is removed with the radiator, and that same heat is used to heat the car inside.
Modern civilization has been built on the wise use of energy. The first oil that was refined into kerosene maybe saved the whales, since whale oil was no longer needed for kerosene lamps. (First kerosene made from coal, called “coal oil.”)
Our electricity is primarily produced by hydroelectric, coal, nuclear, and natural gas. Our cars run on gasoline, and we drive across the country without giving it much thought.
Our fertilizer, which is so vital for agriculture, is manufactured using natural gas (methane, CH4). This has allowed our agriculture to soar. If we quit using natural gas in this way, much of the world will simply starve.
They say they want to eliminate fossil fuels. They do not know what they are talking about. Someone has documented over 6,000 things made from fossil fuels. Stand in any isle in the grocery store and imagine no plastic, no plastic containers, no plastic bags, nothing. Even some of the foods we eat are made from fossil fuels.
Our highways are made from fossil fuels, our roofs covered with tar-based roofing. Our fences are made of vinyl, our plumbing of vinyl. Much of our siding is vinyl, a form of plastic.
Those who want to eliminate carbon dioxide need to find out why carbon dioxide is so important before they try to move ahead.
Jim Hollingsworth is a graduate of Pensacola Christian College with a Master’s degree in biblical studies.
He has written five books:
Climate Change: A Convenient Truth
Cortez: A Biography
The Ancient Culture of the Aztec Empire
Exposition of Romans
Available where books are sold.
Image via Raw Pixel.