Until we get a Carbon Tax, we haven't even started - Page 12 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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Pollution, global warming, urbanisation etc.
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#15047728
Rancid wrote:The problem is the excess CO2, not the lack of oxygen. When there is more CO2, you get more carbonic acid in the oceans (the same stuff that's in sparkling water). When you have CO2 in the precense of water, the CO2 dissolves into the water and makes it more acidic. You can notice this if you leave a glass of water open over night. Then try drinking it in the morning, you will notice the water tastes different (people describe it as stale water). This is because of the carbonic acid that has formed.

That acidity kills the organism in the ocean that convert CO2 into O2. If they die off, the acidification process accelerates. It's a run away effect (in science and enigneering, it's called a positive feedback system. Something that accelerates and encourages itself the more it happens).


The logic is good, the reality isn't. CO2 is making the sea more acidic but it is still pH 8 and would take a hell of a lot to make it pH7 or less.
The maths is as follows pH 8 with a hardness of 8-12kH (typical sea water) gives dissolved CO2 between 2 & 4 ppm. To drop the pH to neutral 7pH without reducing hardness requires a tenfold increase in CO2 and we are a very long way from that.

The problem is that many of these small organisms form an exoskeleton of calcium carbonate by absorbing from the sea. The less alkaline the ocean, the harder it becomes to form a shell as it has been used to neutralise the carbonic acid. This kills the life that larger organisms depend on.

The algae that convert CO2 to O2 by photosynthesis do not form shells. They thrive in warm conditions with plenty of CO2. If the seas become oxygen deprived it will change what algae grows and that is a problem as red and blue-green algae give off toxins that kill wildlife, cover the surface and block light to the photosynthesising life below.

I know all about carbonic acid, I use fire extinguishers to dose the plants in my aquariums. I increase the CO2 from 4ppm to 35ppm and none of the plants or animals die. Push it to 50ppm and my fish would be gasping at the surface, while my plants would eat through the other nutrients in the tank at an unsustainable rate. If I did nothing about it then the fish would die and an algal bloom would finish off the plants as they start cannibalise themselves as a means of providing nutrients for further growth and leach ammonia into the water.
#15047730
BeesKnee5 wrote:
The logic is good, the reality isn't. CO2 is making the sea more acidic but it is still pH 8 and would take a hell of a lot to make it pH7 or less.
The maths is as follows pH 8 with a hardness of 8-12kH (typical sea water) gives dissolved CO2 between 2 & 4 ppm. To drop the pH to neutral 7pH without reducing hardness requires a tenfold increase in CO2 and we are a very long way from that.

The problem is that many of these small organisms form an exoskeleton of calcium carbonate by absorbing from the sea. The less alkaline the ocean, the harder it becomes to form a shell as it has been used to neutralise the carbonic acid. This kills the life that larger organisms depend on.

The algae that convert CO2 to O2 by photosynthesis do not form shells. They thrive in warm conditions with plenty of CO2. If the seas become oxygen deprived it will change what algae grows and that is a problem as red and blue-green algae give off toxins that kill wildlife, cover the surface and block light to the photosynthesising life below.

I know all about carbonic acid, I use fire extinguishers to dose the plants in my aquariums. I increase the CO2 from 4ppm to 35ppm and none of the plants or animals die. Push it to 50ppm and my fish would be gasping at the surface, while my plants would eat through the other nutrients in the tank at an unsustainable rate. If I did nothing about it then the fish would die and an algal bloom would finish off the plants as they start cannibalise themselves as a means of providing nutrients for further growth and leach ammonia into the water.


k
#15047773
Rancid wrote:If I remember right, TV watching is lower among more educated Americans.

Anyway, I think nothing will be done about carbon emissions until it starts to affect the markets. I think it will start to impact the insurance (home, shipping, etc) first. That will ripple into mortgages, and then interest rates. Then, finally then, there will actually be will to do something. We just have to hope on this:

Technology or the markets in general address this problem at a point in time that is not too late. In short, we're playing a game of chicken right now.

A carbon tax is silly. We don't have a carbon emission problem at present, so there is no need to get hysterical about it. A carbon tax is just another way for liberal governments to try to justify raising taxes.
#15047879
Rancid wrote:Did I say we need a carbon tax?

I don't know. I certainly hope not, but you seem to be on the side of all those on here that support the Subject line. You do realize that with the so-called carbon emission scare there is 2 oxygen molecules for every carbon molecule. Carbon dioxide was represented in chemistry as CO2 many, many, many years ago when I took chemistry in school. But since you are an engineer is it impossible to separate those oxygen molecules from the carbon molecule? Some seem to think the carbon molecule destroys the oxygen molecules from the way they talk.
#15047905
Pants-of-dog wrote:
A carbon tax that would target polluting companies and would then be used to pay for carbon removal would simply be a capitalist solution to the problem of carbon pollution as an externality.



It's a conservative response to regulating the problem.

I am not generally speaking a fan of conservative approaches. But this one works quite well, and I go with what works.
#15047944
Hindsite wrote:you seem to be on the side of all those on here that support the Subject line.

One thing you need to understand about me is that I speak in very precise terms (at least I try to). When I speak, I try to imply very little. When I don't say something about a particular topic, I'm really not saying anything about that topic. I have yet to say yay or nay on a carbon tax in this thread, so don't assume.

Now, that out of the way, I'll answer the carbon tax question directly. No, I do not believe a carbon tax will work. We are all too self-interested to accept such a thing en masse. I think the only way we will reduce emissions is:

1. Technology. We just innovate to the point where fossil fuels become economically stupid.

2. The effects of climate change start to impact the economy in a way that is undeniable. Like I said, I think it will be insurance and the property mortgage industry that will see the effects of climate change first. When it becomes a big enough economic problem for them, they will be more accepting of helping to make significant changes. Mainly because the opportunity cost to do nothing, versus actually doing something will basically equal out, at which point, why not try and cut emissions if it's an economic wash?

A combination of 1 and 2.

Hindsite wrote:But since you are an engineer is it impossible to separate those oxygen molecules from the carbon molecule?


It's not impossible. I've already stated that there are machines that can do this. It's just energy intense, and thus currently not viable as a real solution. This can change in the future, especially if we switch to renewable energies.
#15047953
Pants-of-dog wrote:Solar powered machines that remove carbon from the atmosphere and produce oxygen as waste?


It's claimed that some of the machines that are working in lab settings are more efficient than plants. They can convert CO2 to O2 faster than a plant can. Something we might need if we're brought to the brink by the climate deniers.

@Hindsite,

The Oxygen machine you pointed out earlier does not convert CO2 in to O2, it simply takes existing O2 in the air and concentrate it.
#15047982
Pants-of-dog wrote:Solar powered machines that remove carbon from the atmosphere and produce oxygen as waste?

We already have self-replicating ones that also provide food and building materials.

They are called "plants".

Then why not plant more trees, like I have already mentioned before?

Rancid wrote:@Hindsite,

The Oxygen machine you pointed out earlier does not convert CO2 in to O2, it simply takes existing O2 in the air and concentrate it.

I never said that particular machine converted CO2 into O2. However, I understand that it produces oxygen by separating the oxygen from the nitrogen in the atmosphere, or something like that. So if it can do that, then I would assume that there could be an economical way to do the same with CO2 if it is really a problem. If not now, at least in the future. So I don't see climate change as a real problem that should call for us to scrap our capitalist economy and become globalist socialist to fight that imaginary enemy of the Left.
#15047983
Hindsite wrote:I never said that particular machine converted CO2 into O2. However, I understand that it produces oxygen by separating the oxygen from the nitrogen in the atmosphere, or something like that. So if it can do that, then I would assume that there could be an economical way to do the same with CO2 if it is really a problem. If not now, at least in the future.


The difference between concentrating oxygen from the air, and converting CO2 to oxygen is not 1 to 1.

Our air is a mixture of Nitrogen, Oxygen, and then a few other gasses. This is simply a mixture. Separating Oxygen from the other gasses in the air is not a chemical process. It's a physical process.

However, getting O2 from CO2 is a chemical process. This requires much more energy. This is because CO2 is a molecule, you have to break the chemical bonds of the CO2 molecule to get the O2. This is not the case when simply separating Nitrogen and Oxygen that is present in the air.

As a result, those O2 concentration are simpler/easier machines to design/build as they don't have to create chemical reactions to extract from molecules O2.

Yea, there will eventually be an economical way to break the chemical bonds of CO2 to get the O2, still it will require a lot of that energy input. For it to be effective, that energy must be generated from renewable sources of energy.

Hindsite wrote:So I don't see climate change as a real problem

You are making the assumption that we will develop these CO2 -> O2 conversions machines based on renewable energy before it's too late.

Hence my earlier comment that we are playing a game of chicken with the planet. Can we develop these technologies before its too late? That's the question I pose. It's not a sure yes, nor a sure no as far as I can tell. Let's hope yes, because I believe any other solution is just not possible. It's impossible to get enough people and corporations to agree to sacrifice their profits and what not.

This is why I'm in the camp of "let's innovate our way through this one". It's a gamble though.

Hindsite wrote:that should call for us to scrap our capitalist economy and become globalist socialist to fight that imaginary enemy of the Left.

I never said this.
#15047998
Rancid wrote:You are making the assumption that we will develop these CO2 -> O2 conversions machines based on renewable energy before it's too late.

Well, I think this 12 year deadline by the Left is bullshit, even if there is a CO2 problem.

Rancid wrote:Hence my earlier comment that we are playing a game of chicken with the planet. Can we develop these technologies before its too late? That's the question I pose. It's not a sure yes, nor a sure no as far as I can tell. Let's hope yes, because I believe any other solution is just not possible. It's impossible to get enough people and corporations to agree to sacrifice their profits and what not.

This is why I'm in the camp of "let's innovate our way through this one". It's a gamble though.

I don't see any gamble at all. I'm not convinced there is a real problem with climate change. I think it is normal and the earth is designed to take care of itself.
Praise the Lord.
#15047999
Hindsite wrote:I don't see any gamble at all. I'm not convinced there is a real problem with climate change. I think it is normal and the earth is designed to take care of itself.
Praise the Lord.


Your response is why I believe our only option is to innovate our way out of this. ASAP.

Basically, to keep people like you from getting us all killed.
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