Volcanoes, CO2, and climate change

In a study recently published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters, geologists at the Royal Holloway University report finding a massive lake of molten carbon the size of Mexico located some 217 miles below the earth’s surface across the western United States. The volume of the earth’s upper mantle carbon reservoir is now estimated to be 100 trillion metric tons, which will gradually make its way to the earth’s surface through volcanic eruptions and slowly contribute to global warming, we are told unless there should be a sudden release which could have “dire consequences.”

Have you ever noticed that any discovery relating to the carbon cycle always seems in one way or another to include the potential for dire consequences?  If 100 trillion metric tons of molten carbon will be released into our atmosphere over time through the natural process of volcanism, does that not dwarf the 10 billion metric tons that, according to EPA estimates, was released into the atmosphere in 2011?

I would suggest that this study may provide legitimate questions in regard to the usefulness of draconian government regulation in regard to carbon emissions (see California law regulating cow flatulence)?

With 80% of the earth’s land mass said to be volcanic in origin, volcanism at some past time obviously occurred in much greater volume than at present. At such time atmospheric CO2 would of necessity have been at much higher levels than today. Remarkably, the world seems to have survived these high CO2 levels.

How many volcanoes today are erupting on ocean floors of which we are unaware?  How many fissures in the ocean floor are releasing CO2?  How many known volcanoes are currently erupting?  How many dormant volcanoes presently serve as conduits allowing the escape of CO2 trapped in the upper mantle of the earth?  While estimates are attempted, the fact of the matter is we simply do not know how many metric tons of CO2 are emitted into the atmosphere by these natural means during the course of a year.

In addition, it could be argued that our knowledge of the effects of higher levels of CO2 is not exhaustive.  With elaborate computer modeling, it was theorized that increases in atmospheric CO2 would result in significant global warming (even if falsified data were necessary to achieve the predicted result). A troublingly inexplicable 20-year hiatus in warming resulted in the substitution of the term “Climate Change,” in place of global warming, the obvious advantage being that whether temperatures rise or fall, one can still claim success in one’s predictions.

In determining risk assessment, global warming zealots seem oblivious to possible positive effects of higher levels of CO2.  What of the greening effect on plant life caused by s greater abundance of CO2?  How would a slight increase in world temperatures impact the length of growing seasons or increase land available for agricultural use in more northern latitudes?  What potential does increased CO2 have for increasing food production, etc.?

And while Greenies treat anthropomorphic increases in CO2 as determinative in rising CO2 levels, their understanding remains severely limited in regard to the volume of CO2 produced by natural mechanisms beyond our control.  By the same token, how much CO2 will be absorbed by the expanded plant life thereby caused and how much additional oxygen will be released through photosynthesis?

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Comments (4)

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    Spurwing Plover


    Volcanos produce CO2 every time they errupt and i can still remember when Mt St Helens in the state of Washington Eurpted back in 1980 and i also live with in a 50 mile radius of Mt Shasta and way back in 19115 when Mt Lassen eurpted but wait for these eco-nuts to blame Global Warming for volcanic euption like they have done with everything from hurricanes to toothaches

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    David Lewis


    Going beyond all of the hyp and fraud of the climate change movement, there is the potential for a real disaster. In 1986 Lake Nyos in Africa suddenly released a huge cloud of carbon dioxide. Though in lower concentrations it is harmless in a concentrated form it is deadly. Everything from insects to people dropped dead where they were. The loss was 1,746 human lives.

    With 100 million metric tons trapped beneath the earth, there is the potential for a larger release. It may have already happened but at a time before recorded history.

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    Perhaps NOAA can whip up a little scare story . Lets see … the Russians caused a volcano to erupt . Let’s hope it’s in Berkeley during an ECO -Maniac rally to protest
    fossil fuels . Berkeley free speech silencer capital of the USA .

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    Earth has endured countless catastrophies over billions of years, yet it remains a beautiful blue marble, teaming with life. Termites included, trillions of them producing ten times more CO2 than mankind.
    Apparently the manner in which termites produce carbon dioxide is okay but humans produce an evil type of CO2. Or not.
    I like to mess with environmentalists’ heads by telling them that Canada is cleaning up the world’s oldest environmental disaster. It happened over a
    billion years ago in northern Alberta. It’s expensive and may take a hundred years but the Tar Sands will be cleansed.

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