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The Problem is so Much Bigger… 350 ppm CO2 to prevent dangerous climate change

By April 15, 2009February 28th, 2013Uncategorized

What James Hansen, the most important climate modeler in the world, has said about CO2 concentrations: that we need to reduce our CO2 levels to 350 ppm. How are we going to do that with CO2 reductions?  With a CO2 tax? With cap and trade?   Taxes, caps and trades, increasing efficiency, using less energy to start with – all of these things reduce the rate at which we are putting CO2 into the air.

We need to be taking CO2 out of the air. This is a true emergency. We need to e defending our country like this was a world war because it is. this is a war for the survival of our world.

Today’s CO2 concentration is 387 ppm and increasing at 3% per year, and this increase has accelerated markedly since the turn of the century. To get to 350 ppm from 387 ppm we have to take CO2 out of the air. We cannot decrease the amount of CO2 that we are putting into the air unless we take more out than we are putting in. It is simple math.

Sure, natural processes take CO2 out of the air, but that takes a long time. CO2 has a half life of 300 years (not 200 years). this means that after 300 years, half of the cCO2 put into the air on a given day is still there.  Half of that CO2 that was left will stay in the air another 20,000 years, and the rest will stay there, basically until the end of time.

The reason that CO2 has a half life of 300 years instead of the 200 years that we understood at the end of the 20th century, among other things is that our oceans are warmer. They absorb less CO2 as they warm.  Our forests have passed the CO2 fertilizer effect and their absorption of CO2 is slowing. Our land masses are drying out under persistent drought conditions, they absorb less CO2 if they are drier.

As our oceans continue to warm, our forest continue to decline and our land masses continue to dry, CO2 become even more difficult to be removed from our atmosphere naturally.

Hansen 350 PPM see here