Friday, July 3, 2009

What is Carbon Pollution?

Carbon Pollution is the term used in the Labor Party's climate change bill., viz "Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme 2009 bill". It is a meaningless term deliberately designed to demonize carbon and its compounds.

No where is provided a definition of these words so that we know what they are talking about.

The element carbon comes in a variety of states, well known as crystalline diamond, which opens the possibility that diamond engagement rings are polluting the world.

Then we have soot, or an amorphous form of particulate carbon formed on incomplete combustion of carbon bearing material; this can rightly be classified as a pollutant.
Then we have the idea that the word carbon is used very loosely to embrace certain carbon compounds, notably CO2 gas (harmless), and CO gas (poisoness).

Geochemists do use the word "carbon" to embrace all carbon compounds, hence the term "Carbon Cycle" which is the study of how the element and its compounds move around with time through the earth's atmosphere, oceans and rocks.

However, the very minor undesirable production of the pollutants, soot and CO gas , during combustion is smeared over to include CO2 which is NOT a pollutant, but a vital component of the biosphere and all living matter.

The prevention of formation, and/or removal of these known pollutants is easily overcome.
A properly tuned engine running on hydrocarbon fuels should not produce black smoke or much CO gas. Catalytic converters are now standard equipment on cars and largely overcome the problem.

CO2 is a colorless, harmless gas, which means that you can't see it , even though TV news reporters may think otherwise. White "smoke" is simply condensed water vapor like the fluffly white cumulous clouds that you see on a fine summer's day. Oh what deception there is on TV news bulletins these days. More on this later.

These topics are pondered over in the Helium article:
"Climate change and global warming: What should we do about it"