Fossil Fuel Is âGreen Energyâ. Published on December 4, 2016. We have today one of the most astonishing examples of a regression in scientific education.
Fossil Fuel Is “Green Energy” Published on December 4, 2016
We have today one of the most astonishing examples of a regression in scientific education. It used to be common knowledge and taught in schools at all levels that carbon dioxide (CO2) is a vital, airborne plant food, but it is currently being condemned as being a “pollutant” because many people have come to believe, due to a massive disinformation campaign, that higher levels of this plant food would be harmful to the biosphere. So pervasive, so effective is this ongoing disinformation campaign that it is now considered by many to be a moral imperative for humanity to abandon the use of its primary source of energy—burning hydrocarbons—because doing so produces CO2. Let me say that again. So pervasive, so effective has been the campaign that
has demonized CO2—the gas that feeds the biosphere—that it is now generally accepted that humanity has a moral obligation to limit its production of it, even if doing so would cause a profound regression in global economic development! They say that they have “science” on their side but do they? Let’s review what science “knows” and what it doesn’t. Science knows that plants using the energy present in sunlight through a process called photosynthesis combine carbon dioxide (CO2) and water (H2O) to form carbohydrates (CH2O) and expel free oxygen (O2)—the food we eat and the oxygen we breathe. What does the word “carbohydrate” mean? Carbo – refers to carbon Hydrate – refers to water The chemical formula is well known and is often taught in elementary or middle school. CO2 + H2O + photons → [CH2O] + O2
This is a chart of what science knows about historic, optimal and current levels of atmospheric CO2 in parts per million. The dark green line at 4,000 ppm is where the CO2 level have been in the Earth’s distant past when plant growth was much more robust and dense forests covered much of the Earth’s surface. The light green line at 1200 ppm is where the CO2 level
needs to be for optimal plant growth. The bottom yellow line at 400 ppm is the current atmospheric concentration of CO2. True scientific knowledge is based on empirical experimentation and extensive scientific experimentation has demonstrated that ~1200 ppm is the optimal CO2 level for robust plant growth. So well-established is this knowledge that owners of greenhouses spend a lot of money pumping CO2 into their greenhouses to achieve CO2 concentrations in excess of 1000 ppm in order to augment the rate at which they can grow their produce. Never the less for some odd reason many people have come to believe that it is a moral imperative to keep CO2 levels from returning to that level. Not being satisfied with just stopping the return of CO2 levels to that would be optimal for robust global plant growth, these same people even insist that humanity should develop CO2 sequester methods to decrease the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere! Let me repeat that. There are people in this world who, even though CO2 levels are ~300% lower than optimal levels for robust plant growth, insist that humanity should develop methods of artificially reducing the atmospheric concentration of this vital airborne plant food. “Unless we are able to rapidly turn that around and return [CO2 levels] to below 350 ppm this century, we risk triggering tipping points and irreversible impacts that could send climate change spinning truly beyond our control.” 350.org This is in spite of the fact that we have already seen an expansion in global biomass just from the increase in the CO2 levels that occurred during the 20th century.
This image, produced by Boston University/R. Myneni, shows in color the percent change in leaf area over the last 35 years because of the increase in the atmosphere’s CO2 concentration from ~350 ppm to ~400 ppm over that period—the darker the green the higher the percentage of foliage. These people want to reverse this “greening” of the planet because they say that they care about the biosphere!!?? Why, you should rightly ask, do these people, who fashion themselves as being environmentalists, want to inhibit the Earth’s ability to grow plants at an optimal level? What do they have against robust plant growth? They operate on the premise of two beliefs, two unproven (some say disproven) scientific hypotheses: 1) the first belief is in a scientific hypothesis called “climate sensitivity” that postulates that a doubling of atmospheric levels of CO2 will cause a 2-4 °C increase in the average global temperature; 2) the second belief is the strange notion that a 2-4 °C increase in the average global temperature would be a bad thing. Based on these two beliefs they say that in order to save the biosphere we have to prevent CO2 from returning to levels that would be optimal for robust plant growth!!?? Let’s look at the first of these two beliefs—“climate sensitivity”—again keeping in mind that CO2 levels will have to double twice from preindustrial levels (quadruple) in order for atmospheric levels to return to the optimal level for robust plant growth.
It is an axiom in science that a hypothesis cannot be used to prove itself. That is, just because a scientific hypothesis exists does not mean that it is true. The “scientific method” requires that a hypothesis be verified by testing it in the real world. Ergo, the hypothesis that a doubling of CO2 from pre-industrial levels (from 280 ppm to 560 ppm) will cause an increase of 2-4 °C in the “average global temperature” cannot be tested empirically until it actually happens, which at CO2’s current rate of increase will not occur for another 80 years. Scientists living at that time can then retake the “average global temperature” and see what it is. (This, of course, depends upon whether or not you accept the validity of the concept of “average global temperature”, which has been debated.) Since we will then only have one data point—one doubling of CO2 levels— that reading will be meaningless, not only because you cannot draw a valid scientific conclusion based on only one data point, but because there are many natural forces that combine to determine what the surface level air temperature will be over time. To say that changes in surface level air temperature over time are exclusively the doing of changing CO2 levels is scientific malpractice. Beyond that, valid science requires that an experiment be repeated for verification. Thus CO2 levels will have to double again to 1120 ppm, which by the way is the optimal level for robust plant growth, before another temperature reading can be taken in order to test empirically a second time the effect of doubling the concentration of CO2 on the “average global temperature”. CO2’s current rate of increase is ~2 ppm/year. At that rate the concentration of atmospheric CO2 for optimal plant growth will not occur until after the passing of 7 centuries! Let me state the obvious, no one living today can know the actual effect of doubling the atmospheric concentration of CO2 in the real world (as opposed to flawed computer models) because 1) everyone living today will be long dead 700 years from now and 2) there is no way to separate the effect of CO2 levels on the “average global temperature” from all of the other many forces that effect the “average global temperature” over time. Thus the “climate sensitivity” hypothesis will never progress beyond a belief, a mathematical hypothetical. The fact that many people believe that this particular hypothesis is valid is not empirical evidence that it. Since “climate sensitivity” is an untestable hypothesis it is what we call pseudoscience. Know this. If anyone writes or says that they know that increasing the atmospheric concentration of CO2 causes “global warming”, be aware that they are speaking from ignorance—they are “blowing smoke”. That being
said, as mentioned many people believe that CO2 causes “global warming”. The difference between knowing and believing is the difference between science and religion. The IPCC even tacitly admits this because it has classified the various assertions present in its last Assessment Report on a “confidence scale”. Two of the synonyms for “confidence” are “faith” and “belief”. Their “confidence scale” therefore is simply an expression in how firm their “faith” is in their assertions. The degree of “faith” that a scientist has in his own theories has never been considered scientific evidence. In fact, so pervasive is the tendency of scientists to be over confident in the truth of their own assertions that the scientific method requires hypotheses be repeatable and repeated by independent investigators. If these independent investigators do not get the same result as the originator of the hypothesis then the hypothesis is falsified, even if the originator refuses to abandon it. This is the current situation that exists with regard to the assertions made by the IPCC about CO2 causing “global warming”. Independent investigators have tested their assertions and found them to be wanting. Never the Less the IPCC continues to cling desperately to their beliefs. To continue, let’s talk about the mistaken notion that the average global temperature is currently optimal and that a warmer Earth would be “catastrophic”.
This is a chart of the Earth’s historical “average global temperature”. Over
the course of the past 600 million years the “average global temperature” has never been warmer than 22 °C nor cooler than 12 °C even though CO2 oxide levels have been as high as 7,000 ppm during the Cambrian Period within the Paleozoic Age. As you can see the current “average global temperature” at 15 °C is near the bottom of this range, because technically we are still in an Ice Age.
During this same 600-million-year period there have been five major extinction events none of which correlate with the “average global temperature”. Some occurred when the “average global temperature” was down around 12 °C and others occurred when the “average global temperature” was up around 22 °C. The claims therefore that an increase in the “average global temperature” will necessarily result in a sixth mass extinction are completely unfounded. Beyond that, there is a complete lack of historical evidence that a warmer planet will in any way threaten the health of the biosphere seeing as how historically some of the most robust ecosystems have flourished during periods when the “average global temperature” was at its maximum of 22 °C.
In conclusion, CO2 is good for the Earth’s biosphere and so is a warmer Earth. Not only is the optimal level of CO2 for robust plant growth 200300% higher than what it is today, life thrives in the summer and in the lower latitudes because of the extra warmth present then and there, while almost everything goes dormant or dies during the winter and at the poles. Thus if the UN were to succeed in its two misguided goals of 1) lowering CO2 levels and 2) cooling the planet, that would be deadly. JAMES MATKIN December 20, 2016 at 7:22 pm | # Wonderful analysis showing the planet is starved of CO2 at only 400ppm. We need more not less. This article offers a most valuable insight to counter the broad misunderstanding by the public of the alarmists unproven theory about the heat forcing of CO2. The alarmists are driven by politics and a distorted environmental religion with very weak science as they confuse the emissions of fossil fuels thinking they are pollution. . The alarmists are very much in majority because they have misled the public to believe the issue is about fossil fuel pollution. NOT TRUE, WHILE CARBON MONOXIDE in auto exhauts IS A DANGEROUS POLLUTANT, CO2 IS NOT A POLLUTANT and the global warming debate has nothing to do with pollution. It is the staff of life and essentil plant food. The average person is
confused about what the current global warming debate is about – greenhouse gases. None of which has anything to do with air pollution. react-text: 361 http://www.populartechnology.net/…/carbon-dioxide-co2… /react-text The proof is in the pudding where the alarmists preditions are all failing. Temperatures aren’t increasing, storms are down in number and strength, sea levels aren’t chasing folks from beaches, droughts are not increasing, parts of the world are growing greener. Famous scientists from Oxford University explain the reason the preditions fail is the computer models do not “mimic” all of the key variables that cause climate change. They conclude as a result the models if applied to the real world will be “misleading.” react-text: 366 http://meteo.lcd.lu/…/ConfidenceUncertaintyRelevance… /react-text http://principia-scientific.org/fossil-fuel-green-energy/#comment-15143
What Is Photosynthesis? By Aparna Vidyasagar, Live Science Contributor | July 31, 2015 06:42pm ET
Photosynthesis is the process used by plants, algae and certain bacteria to harness energy from sunlight into chemical energy. There are two types of photosynthetic processes: oxygenic photosynthesis and anoxygenic photosynthesis. Oxygenic photosynthesis is the most common and is seen in plants, algae and cyanobacteria. During oxygenic photosynthesis, light energy transfers electrons from water (H2O) to carbon dioxide (CO2), which produces carbohydrates. In this transfer, the CO2 is "reduced," or receives electrons, and the water becomes "oxidized," or loses electrons. Ultimately, oxygen is produced along with carbohydrates.
Oxygenic photosynthesis functions as a counterbalance to respiration; it takes in the carbon dioxide produced by all breathing organisms and reintroduces oxygen into the atmosphere. In his 1998 article, “An Introduction to Photosynthesis and Its Applications,” Wim Vermaas, a professor at Arizona State University surmised, “without [oxygenic] photosynthesis, the oxygen in the atmosphere would be depleted within several thousand years.” On the other hand, anoxygenic photosynthesis uses electron donors other than water. The process typically occurs in bacteria such as purple bacteria and green sulfur bacteria. “Anoxygenic photosynthesis does not produce oxygen — hence the name,” said David Baum, professor of botany at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “What is produced depends on the electron donor. For example, many bacteria use the bad-eggs-smelling gas hydrogen sulfide, producing solid sulfur as a byproduct.” Though both types of photosynthesis are complex, multi-step affairs, the overall process can be neatly summarized as a chemical equation. Oxygenic photosynthesis is written as follows: 6CO2 + 12H2O + Light Energy → C6H12O6 + 6O2 + 6H2O Here, six molecules of carbon dioxide (CO2) combine with 12 molecules of water (H2O) using light energy. The end result is the formation of a single carbohydrate molecule (C6H12O6, or glucose) along with six molecules each of breathable oxygen and water. Similarly, the various anoxygenic photosynthesis reactions can be represented as a single generalized formula: CO2 + 2H2A + Light Energy → [CH2O] + 2A + H2O As explained by Govindjee and John Whitmarsh in "Concepts in Photobiology: Photosynthesis and Photomorphogenesis" (Narosa Publishers and Kluwer
Academic, 1999) the letter ‘A’ in the equation is a variable and ‘H2A’ represents the potential electron donor. For example, ‘A’ may represent sulfur in the electron donor hydrogen sulfide (H2S).
The photosynthetic apparatus The following are cellular components essential to photosynthesis. Pigments Pigments are molecules that bestow color on plants, algae and bacteria, but they are also responsible for effectively trapping sunlight. Pigments of different colors absorb different wavelengths of light. Below are the three main groups. • Chlorophylls: These green-colored pigments are capable of trapping blue and red light. Chlorophylls have three sub-types, dubbed chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b and chlorophyll c. According to Eugene Rabinowitch and Govindjee in their book “Photosynthesis” (Wiley, 1969) chlorophyll a is found in all photosynthesizing plants. There is also a bacterial variant aptly named bacteriochlorophyll, which absorbs infrared light. This pigment is mainly seen in purple and green bacteria, which perform anoxygenic photosynthesis. • Carotenoids: These red, orange, or yellow-colored pigments absorb bluish-green light. Examples of carotenoids are xanthophyll (yellow) and carotene (orange) from which carrots get their color. • Phycobilins: These red or blue pigments absorb wavelengths of light that are not as well absorbed by chlorophylls and carotenoids. They are seen in cyanobacteria and red algae. Plastids Photosynthetic eukaryotic organisms contain organelles
called plastids in their cytoplasm. According to Cheong Xin Chan and Debashish Bhattacharya of Rutgers University (Nature Education, 2010), the double-membraned plastids in plants and algae are referred to as primary plastids, while the multiple-membraned variety found in plankton are called secondary plastids. These organelles generally contain pigments or can store nutrients. In “The Cell: A Molecular Approach 2nd Ed” (Sinauer Associates, 2000), Geoffrey Cooper enumerates the various plastids found in plants. Colorless and non-pigmented leucoplasts store fats and starch, while chromoplasts contain carotenoids and chloroplasts contain chlorophyll. Photosynthesis occurs in the chloroplasts, specifically, in the grana and stroma regions. The grana is the innermost portion of the organelle; a collection of disc-shaped membranes, stacked into columns like plates. The individual discs are called thylakoids. It is here that the transfer of electrons takes place. The empty spaces between columns of grana constitute the stroma (The Cell: A Molecular Approach 2nd Ed, Sinauer Associates, 2000). Chloroplasts are similar to mitochondria in that they have their own genome, or collection of genes, contained within circular DNA. These genes encode proteins essential to the organelle and to photosynthesis. Like mitochondria, chloroplasts are also thought to have originated from primitive bacterial cells through the process of endosymbiosis. “Plastids originated from engulfed photosynthetic bacteria that were acquired by a single-celled eukaryotic cell more than a billion years ago,” Baum told LiveScience. Baum explained that the analysis of chloroplast genes shows that it was once a member of the group cyanobacteria, “the one group of bacteria that can accomplish oxygenic
photosynthesis.” However, Chan and Bhattacharya (Nature Education, 2010) make the point that the formation of secondary plasmids cannot be well explained by endosymbiosis of cyanobacteria, and that the origins of this class of plastids are still a matter of debate. Antennae Pigment molecules are associated with proteins, which allow them the flexibility to move toward light and toward one another. A large collection of 100 to 5,000 pigment molecules constitutes "antennae," according to Vermaas. These structures effectively capture light energy from the sun, in the form of photons. Ultimately, light energy must be transferred to a pigment-protein complex that can convert it to chemical energy, in the form of electrons. In plants, for example, light energy is transferred to chlorophyll pigments. The conversion to chemical energy is accomplished when a chlorophyll pigment expels an electron, which can then move on to an appropriate recipient. Reaction centers The pigments and proteins which convert light energy to chemical energy and begin the process of electron transfer are know as reaction centers, according to Vermaas.
The photosynthetic process Anoxygenic photosynthetic and oxygenic photosynthetic organisms use different electron donors for photosynthesis. Moreover, anoxygenic photosynthesis takes place in only one type of reaction center, while oxygenic photosynthesis takes place in two, each of which absorbs a different wavelength of light, according to Govindjee and Whitmarsh. However, the general principles of the two processes are similar. Below are the steps of photosynthesis, focusing on the process as it occurs in plants.
The reactions of plant photosynthesis are divided into those that require the presence of sunlight and those that do not. Both types of reactions take place in chloroplasts: lightdependent reactions in the thylakoid and light-independent reactions in the stroma. Light-dependent reactions (also called light reactions): When a photon of light hits the reaction center, a pigment molecule such as chlorophyll releases an electron. “The trick to do useful work, is to prevent that electron from finding its way back to its original home,” Baum told LiveScience. “This is not easily avoided because the chlorophyll now has an “electron hole” that tends to pull on nearby electrons.” The released electron manages to escape by traveling through an electron transport chain, which generates the energy needed to produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate, a source of chemical energy for cells) and NADPH. The “electron hole” in the original chlorophyll pigment is filled by taking an electron from water. As a result, oxygen is released into the atmosphere. Light-independent reactions (also called dark reactions): ATP and NADPH are rich energy sources, which drive dark reactions. During this process carbon dioxide and water combine to form carbohydrates like glucose. This is known as carbon fixation. Photosynthesis in the future Photosynthesis generates all the breathable oxygen in the atmosphere, and renders plants rich in nutrients. But researchers have been looking at ways to further harness the power of the process. In his 1998 article, Vermaas mentions the possibility of using photosynthetic organisms to generate clean burning fuels such as hydrogen or even methane. Vermaas notes, “Even though methane upon combustion will form CO2, the overall
atmospheric CO2 balance would not be disturbed as an equal amount of CO2 will have been taken out of the atmosphere upon methane production by the photosynthetic organism.” Advances have also been made in the field of artificial photosynthesis. A group of researchers recently developed an artificial system to capture carbon dioxide using nanotechnology (nanowires). This feeds into a system of microbes that reduce the carbon dioxide into fuels or polymers by using energy from sunlight. COMMENTS
James Grant Matkin r This is an excellent lecture on one of the most important processes for life on our planet. Photosynethesis depends on CO2 as plant food and the plants emit O2 for us. "It used to be common knowledge and taught in schools at all levels that carbon dioxide (CO2) is a vital, airborne plant food, but it is currently being condemned as being a “pollutant” because many people have come to believe, due to a massive disinformation campaign, that higher levels of this plant food would be harmful to the biosphere." NOT TRUE. react-text: 399 http://principia-scientific.org/fossil-fuel-green-energy/... http://www.livescience.com/51720-photosynthesis.html