By examining climate change through the eyes of a chemist, one should gain a greater appreciation of the physical dynamics at play when fossil fuels combust. It is hoped that this perspective will stimulate discussion and debate. So, please leave your feedback pertaining to this subject in general and my documents in particular.
Peoples use planet Earth as a crucible. Matter is being transformed from one state to another – thereby altering a state of equilibrium that has existed for eons. Fundamentally, this process is chemistry. Given that our planet is of limited size and resources, global industrialization is an experiment in chemistry, albeit beyond the lab.
It stands to reason that the thoughts and observations of a chemist would be germane, even central, to the issue of global warming. The topic of climate change is dominated by lawyers, economists, statisticians, climatologists and politicians. When the science of greenhouse gases needs to be referenced, the claim is supported by “the scientists”. The words chemist is rarely mentioned. If there is a chemist whose voice is central to the discussion of global warming or climate change, a Google search could not find him or her. This muted perspective is the impetus of this blog.
The following information is one perspective from a chemist. The purpose of this website is to challenge thinking, to solicit debate and to refine the hypotheses being presented. In the end, it is hope that a superior product is the result.
Several technical papers have been written and are included on this site. The result of this research can be distilled into 3 Laws or Principles which are derived from existing principles in chemistry:
1. Sustainability For our ecosystem to remain sustainable, the time and resources expended to offset anthropogenic climate change will be greater than the time and resources gained in the production of selfsame anthropogenic greenhouse gases. (i.e. refer to Second Law of thermodynamics),
2. Stability Our terrestrial climate is in a dynamic balance with exogenous forces. When this climatic equilibrium cannot be maintained, a new, less-stable (cf. higher state of energy) balance in our ecosystem will be found (i.e. see Le Chatelier’s Principle) and finally,
3. Security All human welfare and wealth is derived from the ecosystem.
Principles 1, 2, and 3 are interdependent. When the integrity of principle 1 breaks down, principle 2 is influenced. Without respecting Principle 1, instability will dominate. When principle 2 is ignored, human welfare and wealth are impacted.
I hope you enjoy my blog and I look forward to your thoughts and challenges.
Geo. Brown, C.Chem