Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Components of AGW

We hear that one of the foremost components of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming is the CO2 that's a by-product of the combustion of fossil fuels. In order to arrest this global warming it will be necessary to dramatically cut back on this CO2 finding its way into the atmosphere. Unfortunately, just shutting down coal-fired power plants and throwing away the keys to the minivan isn't the answer to the problem.

Three other things, among many, are also major contributors to the greenhouse gas problem but we hear nothing about them. First of all, what about beer? Beer is produced by yeast eating malted barley and producing alcohol and CO2. The CO2 is the stuff inside the little bubbles that make up the head of your glass of beer and also make it necessary to store beer in strong, sealed containers. When a beer is consumed that CO2 doesn't just disappear, it's an invisible gas and goes into the atmosphere. Over 53 billion gallons of beer are swilled world-wide annually. A significant amount of CO2 is released when this sudsy stuff is turned into urine.

Another aspect of civilization that people take for granted is the staff of life, bread. According to industry figures there are over 280 billion loaves of bread eaten each year on the blue planet. That doesn't even take into account pizza and hamburger buns. What's the difference between bread and crackers? Once again, it's yeast. The friendly bacteria that make the holes in bread fill those holes up with CO2. When sister Suzy eats that peanut butter and jelly sandwich after school, green house gas goes right up into the sky.

Similar to beer is the carbonated drink situation. In this case, the fizz in your Diet Coke is caused by an injection of CO2 into a mixture of water and flavored syrup. Thirsty people spend over $350 billion annually on soda and all of the CO2 used in the product goes into the atmosphere.

As you can see, limiting green house gas emissions by cap and trade taxes in the power production business won't entirely save Mother Earth. Destructive homo sapiens will also have to give up beer, bread and Coca-Cola, too. 


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