I realise I’ve gotten onto it late, but this is the question I’ve posted at The Age’s ‘Our Say’ segment. It seems that most of the questions are from skeptics.
As any high school science student know, carbon is the basis of life on earth as we know it. It is exchanged between the atmosphere and the biosphere in the form of carbon dioxide as organisms respire and plants photosynthesise. Without the role carbon dioxide plays in this process, life could not exist. Given this, and the fact that plants thrive when it is at high levels, why do politicians and the media constantly demonise it as a pollutant?
The answer is probably obvious, I guess. They can’t acknowledge its life-giving properties it they want to tax it and reduce emissions of it. Calling CO2 a pollutant is the only way for them to claim renewable energy is “clean” energy. The way carbon dioxide is being demonised now is reminiscent of a joke that went around a few years back, calling for the banning of dihydrogen monoxide.
"Dihydrogen monoxide is colorless, odorless, tasteless, and kills uncounted thousands of people every year. Most of these deaths are caused by accidental inhalation of DHMO, but the dangers of dihydrogen monoxide do not end there.
Prolonged exposure to its solid form causes severe tissue damage. Symptoms of DHMO ingestion can include excessive sweating and urination, and possibly a bloated feeling, nausea, vomiting and body electrolyte imbalance. For those who have become dependent, DHMO withdrawal means certain death.
· is also known as hydroxl acid, and is the major component of acid rain.
· contributes to the "greenhouse effect."
· may cause severe burns.
· contributes to the erosion of our natural landscape.
· accelerates corrosion and rusting of many metals.
· may cause electrical failures and decreased effectiveness of automobile brakes.
· has been found in excised tumors of terminal cancer patients."
Just like dihydrogen monoxide, carbon dioxide is a colourless, odourless substance which forms an acid when dissolved in water, is a minor greenhouse gas and can cause frost bite in its solid form.
You can make even water seem toxic with the right propaganda campaign. Carbon dioxide is getting the same treatment right now, only this campaign is not a joke.