I have invented a invention!

My invention uses ambient CO2, snaps off the carbons and cobbles them into graphene (mega-glorious carbon membrane 1 atom thick) and releases O2 back into the wilderness. I can even configure it to make O3 because it’s just that great (and I’ve got me a stovepipe to the stratosphere where I vent the stuff). I’m tapped into a nice geothermal vent for my power generation—It’s a totally green operation. Let’s say it’s a really big gadget, too, and everybody loves it and they’re popping up all over the globe. Eventually, atmospheric CO2 levels are actually dropping and O2 levels are rising. The eco people are getting hostile again but I’m rich now so I silence them.

Assuming nobody really knows how the global climate works, what are the effects on critters of our atmosphere becoming depleted of CO2? Of rising O2 levels?

I don’t think the plants and trees would be too happy about there being no more CO2 in the atmosphere. Given that they are at, or near, the bottom of a lot of food chains you could end up doing more damage than good. Best to use it sparingly I think.

But wouldn’t it be worth it, to use diamond as a building material? :slight_smile:

If O[sub]2[/sub] level goes above some figure like 27%, WHOOSH. Everything that can burn, will. Thus recombining the excess oxygen and restoring Nature’s balance.

One of the upper limits to the number of years that the Earth will be able to sustain life is the sequestration of CO2 by the oceans. In something like 500 Million years, there will be too little CO2 in the atmosphere to support plant life, and then we’re doomed. Please don’t hurry it up!

Why?
Are you saying to exclude these effects for the purposes of this thread, or are you disputing that there would be any effects?

Well, the last time we had 32% oxygen in the atmosphere, we had scorpions 3 feet long …

And cockroaches that would bite your head off.

There would be almost no effect on the overall O[sub]2[/sub] level even if you replaced ALL the CO[sub]2[/sub] with O[sub]2[/sub] because there’s so little CO[sub]2[/sub] relative to O[sub]2[/sub].

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atmosphere_of_Earth

Wow, I did not realize that the CO2 was that low. It makes you wonder how the plants manage.

Is there anything we could do about that?

With today’s technology - probably not. Even burning all the available oil probably wouldn’t extend the life of the planet by more than a few centuries.
However, if Humanity ca survive for 500 Million years, we might have the technology to recycle the CO2 that is now trapped in limestone and put it back into the atmosphere. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

With sufficient energy, you can bake CO2 out of limestone. We don’t have the technology now to produce energy on the scale required. :frowning:

Well at least we’ll be able to toast our demise with all the sparkling seawater we can drink…

cite? I’ve never heard anything of the sort.

Anyway, your awfully close to the way they make carbon nanotubes. Generally they use carbon monoxide instead. Converting CO[sub]2[/sub] into CO is pretty easy. With the practically infinite energy you suggest, you can simply release more CO[sub]2[/sub] from lime stone and the like.

Here’s one from the SDMB. I found others, but they seem to refer to the same book.

We do this right now in the production of lime. IIRC, the limestone has to be heated up to about 800 C. The main use of lime is in making cement. Some, but not all the CO[sub]2[/sub] is reabsorbed in the cement as it cures. Basically it’s changing back into limestone, but mainly just the surface layer.

I just want to know if the above scenario has a name I can google. I want to read up on it a bit, but I’m not sure what to search for.

Plants? Marty, where we’re going, we don’t need plants!

CO[sub]2[/sub] dissolves in our atmosphere, but it *is *heavy. :slight_smile:

He’s going to silence the ‘eco people’ with a flamethrower.