Spread this Meme

September 7, 2022


5 Responses to “Spread this Meme”

  1. J4Zonian Says:

    I’ve always used this argument

    A trace gas is any that’s less than 1% of the atmosphere. CO2 makes up about .1%, 4th most plentiful gas there.

The only gases in Earth’s atmosphere that aren’t trace gases are nitrogen (78%) and oxygen, (21%). Despite being about 75% less plentiful, O2 has far more effect on biological and geologic processes than N. (Next is inert argon, 0.9%).
“Without life there would be virtually no oxygen, slower nitrogen dynamics, almost nothing of the trace gases that are primarily biogenic, and a greatly elevated level of carbon dioxide.” Tyler Volk, Gaia’s Body: Toward a Physiology of Earth p 111

Put some table salt in your hand and dump out all but 2 grains. Keep hold of them while you read the next 2 paragraphs.

Cyanide’s LD50, the dose that kills half those exposed to it, is 13 parts per million. Arsenic’s is 6. Some snake venoms, algal bloom toxin, & ricin, can kill at 1 part per million. The main source of methyl mercury in the world is coal burning. It can kill in quantities smaller than 1ppm; at even smaller doses it doesn’t kill, it just has profound lifelong physical and mental effects—Mad Hatter syndrome, for example, in which the victim speaks in the bizarre tangles called word salad. It takes even less than that in chronic doses.

    Phyllobates terribilis,
    Golden Poison Frog

Dart poison frogs’ batrachotoxin’s LD50 is 1/1000th of that (1mcg/kg or 1 part per billion), so if those 2 grains of salt in your hand were batrachotoxin, it’s a coin flip whether it would be enough to kill you just by holding it, if you had even a tiny cut on your palm. Sorry, there’s no antidote, and you have about 9 minutes left. It would take 6 salt grains worth of VX, while Botulinum toxin kills at 1 thousandth that amount—1 nanogram, or 1 billionth of a gram/kg body weight. One part per trillion of it can kill.

    CO2 is at 419 parts per million in the atmosphere now.
The trolls’ argument is that small things have no appreciable effect on living systems. But lots of small things have enormous effects. Termites have the rare talent of being able to eat wood; they emit methane, despite being tiny they have a dramatic effect on the composition and behavior of the atmosphere. But they don’t do it themselves; they do both because they hold bacteria in their guts—microscopic, of course—who digest it for them.

Saying that CO2 can’t be having any effect on the biosphere because there’s not much of it is ignorant, insane, and given the stakes and the overwhelming science, criminally irresponsible. Saying people can’t have an effect on Earth is ludicrous; either a clumsy and stupid lie or some complex unconscious paradox of a feeling of impotence.

Plus, tens of thousands of peer-reviewed studies say both we and CO2 ARE having an effect. An enormous one.

  2. ubrew12 Says:

    Put 400ppm of black dye in your swimming pool and try to see a quarter at the bottom. If you can’t then there is your answer about whether it matters or not.
    (google: “sanco step 1 black-out pond colorant” to do this for yourself)

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