[–]chestertonfan 1 point  

stars_mcdazzler wrote, "...in just ten years oceans will become so acidic that a mass aquadic extinction will occur, leading to desertification."

Stars, on most of your [other] points, I sadly agree with you.

But I have very uplifting news for you on one point: ocean acidification does not threaten any aquatic species with extinction, in ten years, or ten thousand years, or anything between. In fact there's no evidence that any species has been significantly harmed by ocean acidification or rising CO2 levels. You've been conned.

So-called "ocean acidification" is not only a red herring, it is also a misnomer, because the oceans are alkaline (caustic), everywhere. They are not acidic, anywhere, and ocean chemistry ensures that the oceans can never become acidic. Freshwater lakes and rivers are often slightly acidic, and so is rain, but never oceans.

It is estimated that, as a consequence of seventy years of CO2 emissions, average ocean surface water pH has declined a measly and harmless 0.1 pH point. That estimate is from modeling, not measurements, because the actual trend is too slight and too slow to measure with confidence, and because the tiny change is dwarfed by natural seasonal & diurnal pH variation, pH variation with depth, and even pH differences between ocean basins.

What's more, so-called ocean acidification is confined almost entirely to the part of the ocean which is most caustic (alkaline): the surface layer. That means so-called "ocean acidification" really just reduces the extreme high end of ocean pH variation, slightly. (The oceans contain about fifty times as much CO2 as the atmosphere, and less than one-third of CO2 emissions have found their way into the oceans, so manmade CO2 dissolved into the oceans have a negligible effect, except on surface waters.)

What's more, through >98% of the Earth's history, atmospheric CO2 levels were far higher than they are now, and, in fact, far higher than we could ever raise them, by burning recoverable fossil fuels. During the lush Cretaceous, when complex life flourished, including aquatic life, atmospheric CO2 concentrations are believed to have averaged nearly four times the current level. During the equally lush Jurassic, CO2 levels were even higher. Yet the oceans were still alkaline, rather than acidic, and there's no evidence that those much higher atmospheric CO2 levels were harmful to aquatic life.

Rising CO2 levels are not causing "desertification," either. In fact, they're doing just the opposite: they're causing deserts to retreat.

Additional CO2 enables plants to use water more efficiently, and thereby makes them more drought resistant. It does so by improving stomatal conductance relative to transpiration, which is especially helpful in arid regions.

When air passes through plant stomata (pores), two things happen: the plant absorbs CO2, and the plant loses water through transpiration. When CO2 levels are higher, the ratio of CO2 absorbed to water lost improves, which improves both plant growth and drought resistance. Plants also commonly respond to elevated CO2 by reducing the density of the stomata in their leaves, which reduces water loss.

As a result, arid regions, like the Sahel (southern Sahara), are greening dramatically.

“…non-climatic effects of carbon dioxide as a sustainer of wildlife and crop plants are enormously beneficial… possibly harmful climatic effects of carbon dioxide have been greatly exaggerated, and …the benefits clearly outweigh the possible damage.” - Freeman Dyson (who was, at the time, by near universal consensus, America's most distinguished living scientist)

The field of climatology is extremely politicized, and much of what you hear about it (from both sides!) is nonsense. If you want to understand the climate issue, or any other highly politicized issue, you need balanced information. So here is a list of high quality resources, to learn more about climate change & related topics:


That list has:
● accurate introductory climatology information
● in-depth science from both skeptics & alarmists
● links to balanced debates between experts on both sides
● information about climate change impacts, including positive impacts
● links to several of the best blogs on both sides of the issue

I hope this uplifting news makes you happy.