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Chemistry Expert: Carbon Dioxide Can’t Cause Global Warming


Published on February 9, 2017

Written by Dr Mark Imisides (Industrial Chemist)

Scarcely a day goes by without us being warned of coastal inundation by rising seas due to global warming.

Why on earth do we attribute any heating of the oceans to carbon dioxide, when there is a far more obvious culprit, and when such a straightforward examination of the thermodynamics render it impossible.

Carbon dioxide, we are told, traps heat that has been irradiated by the oceans, and this warms the oceans and melts the polar ice caps. While this seems a plausible proposition at first glance, when one actually examines it closely a major flaw emerges.

In a nutshell, water takes a lot of energy to heat up, and air doesn’t contain much. In fact, on a volume/volume basis, the ratio of heat capacities is about 3300 to 1. This means that to heat 1 litre of water by 1˚C it would take 3300 litres of air that was 2˚C hotter, or 1 litre of air that was about 3300˚C hotter!

This shouldn’t surprise anyone. If you ran a cold bath and then tried to heat it by putting a dozen heaters in the room, does anyone believe that the water would ever get hot?

The problem gets even stickier when you consider the size of the ocean. Basically, there is too much water and not enough air.

The ocean contains a colossal 1,500,000,000,000,000,000,000 litres of water! To heat it, even by a small amount, takes a staggering amount of energy. To heat it by a mere 1˚C, for example, an astonishing 6,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 joules of energy are required.

Let’s put this amount of energy in perspective. If we all turned off all our appliances and went and lived in caves, and then devoted every coal, nuclear, gas, hydro, wind and solar power plant to just heating the ocean, it would take a breathtaking 32,000 years to heat the ocean by just this 1˚C!

In short, our influence on our climate, even if we really tried, is miniscule!

8 thoughts on “Chemistry Expert: Carbon Dioxide Can’t Cause Global Warming

  1. Principia-Scientific often posts articles that cast doubt on Greenhouse gas and climate change.

    They do not have any peer reviewed work, just term papers from folks with basic science credentials.

    1. its simple chemistry

  2. Dazzle everyone with bullshit.

    1. its called basic science

  3. A basic industrial chemist can write a paper, without any primary research, and refute the research of climate scientists. And you believe it? Because it seems simple to understand?

    No research, no peer review.

    Maybe he should go to a climate conference and defend his high school paper from inquiry from real scientists. He needs to take this to the top.

    1. its called basic science , most of us learn it in 7th grade

  4. This is not a research-based article but that is not relevant. What is relevant is that based on basic principles of physics and chemistry the premise that CO2 is the cause of catastrophic global warming is not possible. CO2 could possibly cause some warming but not enough to result in the catastrophic warming that has been suggested by extremely faulty models that have failed to make accurate predictions ever.

  5. So, eggs were bad a decade ago, now they’re good, red meat was terrible not it turns out it is good, cow milk has always been devil but in reality it is essential, ozone hole was widening 2 decades ago and the world was coming to the end and now it is at its smallest size………………how can a regular guy believe all these “scientists ” who keep throwing theories only to retract those years later ?! I guess we are all guinea pigs.

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