ATMOSPHERE

The book “ATMOSPHERE, CO2 on my mind” is now available on Amazon for Kindle and as a paperback.

https://www.amazon.com/Atmosphere-CO2-mind-Daniel-Lux-ebook/dp/B09JMV6R21

How does our changing atmosphere affect the human body and mind? The direct impact of a changing atmosphere on humans and life, in general, is the central subject of this book.

The main topics of discussion concerning the changing composition of our atmosphere and the resulting climate change are rising temperatures, more violent weather, melting glaciers, and rising levels of the oceans. But there is a somewhat forgotten yet evenly important aspect to the rapid change in the composition of our atmosphere, the impact of rising CO₂ levels on the human body and mind.

To understand how life and our atmosphere are intertwined, we start by looking at our past. The first atmosphere of our Earth was very much like that of Mars and Venus. But life itself terraformed our planet into a habitable place for numerous lifeforms. From time to time, this change in the atmosphere caused extinctions. But the extinction events also drove evolution forward to new heights. Without change, there is no incentive to explore new radically different solutions. The same also holds for the evolution of us, homo sapiens. During our evolutionary development, which resulted in us giving ourselves the title “sapiens”, translated to “wise”, we have experienced a very stable composition of the atmospheric composition. Simplistically speaking, evolution is the process of adaptation to the environment. Can we evolutionarily adapt fast enough to the extremely rapid change in our environment caused by climate change?

To understand the task at hand, we must first understand what a changing composition of the air we breathe does to our bodies. The crews of spaceships and submarines already today experience a different mixture of the air they inhale. Scientists have documented the effects that a spacecraft and a submarine have on the passengers of these vehicles. Medical science has in great detail explained how our pulmonary system (our breathing cycle) works. We are missing the link towards the change in the air we breathe, however. What are the long-term effects of higher CO2 levels and lower O2 levels? What are the effects on infants?

It is easy to avoid catastrophe, and we just need to do the right things right. And herein lies the challenge. What are the right things? We know that we have to stop using fossil fuels. The path forward, however, is not that clear. The currently broken scheme of accounting for our emissions needs fixing. The electricity demand will increase, potentially by a factor as high as ten. Fossil fuels are not only used to produce energy. Fossil fuels are components of numerous daily live objects, such as toys, wrapping materials, detergents, perfumes, and many more. We need replacements for all the things that today require fossil fuels, and maybe mother nature can contribute in the form of microalgae?

Climate change is highly unfair. The nations that caused our calamities are not the ones feeling the most brutal impact. We cannot solve our challenges if we keep working with a “them and us” mindset. Working in collaboration with developing countries might, however, solve multiple challenges in the most efficient way. Large areas in developing countries are turning uninhabitable, and we need to change this development. Coincidentally the same regions have abundant resources in solar energy, heat, and relatively cheap labor. Developing countries are part of the solution, and if we help them, we help everyone on Earth.

Do you live under the CO2 Dome?

Many towns are in the danger zone!

Illustration of a CO2 dome

As depicted in the illustration above, we can sometimes experience conditions with highly increased levels of CO2 in the atmosphere. This occurs in certain weather conditions, where there is little wind combined with the lack of rain. The air is not well circulated, and thus the exchange with cleaner air does not happen. These are the same conditions that also cause what we call smog. Some towns are more in danger of such domes. Towns that are located in a valley have a higher risk of bad air, as their location acts as a bowl where air pollution can be collected. Towns where hills shield from the wind are also at risk.

Read the full article on Medium.

Does CO2 harm your body?

Many adults have experienced the effects of alcohol. But not so many have experienced the effects that CO2 has on the body, right? Wrong! Actually, most of us have been in poorly ventilated meeting rooms. First you become less and less concentrated. Then we start feeling tiredness. Some of us might even doze off. In some rare cases, the room might be so badly ventilated, that we even start getting headaches. All of these effects are related to elevated levels of CO2.

Read the full article on Medium.

Can the CO2 quota system be repaired?

Global trade has grown massively over the last 20 years. This has resulted in a de facto export of CO2 production, especially to the developing countries. This export of CO2 has resulted in constant or even decreasing CO2 production in our part of the world, while we have experienced increasing consumption of goods.

China, which is one of the world’s largest emitters of CO2, consumes only goods that make up approx. 15% of the emitted CO2. The rest is exported, mainly to the US and Europe.

There are mainly 2 problems associated with the current system. The first problem is that local producers are becoming less competitive. The local producers have to pay CO2 taxes and taxes related to the transport of goods. External suppliers can avoid much of these expenses. The other problem is that in our part of the world we are responsible for some CO2 production that we are not accounted for. The goods that are consumed by us do not appear in our CO2 accounts.

Therefore, it would make sense that imports of goods should also require CO2 quotas. This would give a more accurate picture of our CO2 consumption.

Whether you want to buy CO2 quotas when importing goods or simply canceling CO2 quotas on import of goods is an inflamed political theme. If importers were to pay for CO2 quotas, this would be seen as a trade barrier or duty. Goods would be more expensive, but the effect on the reduction of CO2 would be significantly greater and thus give a substantial positive effect on the climate. A one-sided cancellation of allowances is also possible, but would make local production even less competitive.

Whatever is chosen, a unilateral effort gives very little meaning. Co2 emissions and the consequences for our climate are a global challenge and we must work with our trading partners, both for the sake of our companies’ competitiveness and for the sake of the climate. A change could however start in the EU.

Are our politicians ready to start such a process?

Advisory board

As one of the first actions for CO2 brains we would like to assemble an advisory board of scientist, experts and other interested parties.

If you feel a calling to participate in this endeavor, please contact me: daniel[at]co2brains[dot]org .

Welcome to CO2 Brains

On this site we will try to add a new dimension to the discussion about increasing levels of CO2 in our atmosphere. The focus here will be on the effect that increased CO2 levels have on the individual.

Most of us  know the effect of bad air in meeting rooms and class rooms. You get tired and less alert.  Just quickly opening a window will remedy the effect of the bad air. This bad air is directly connected to the level of CO2 in the room, due to insufficient ventilation.

Not only do higher levels CO2 make you drowsier, they also increase the risk of headaches, give people with allergies a harder time and even decrease our capabilities of strategic and innovative thinking.

But how will we solve this problem when the CO2 level of the atmosphere is much higher?

We can already today see this problem in cities which at times have weather conditions that cause bad air. During periods, the CO2 level in some cities can rise to 2 or 3 times the current normal CO2 level. Currently there are no commercially available solutions  which can reduce the CO2 level in buildings to below the atmospheric CO2 level.

On this site we will focus on 3 sides of this problem:

  1. Educate the general population on the effect that increasing CO2 levels have on individuals
  2. Have experts discuss problems and come up with possible solutions, both for the near and long term future
  3. If possible help entrepreneurs that want to work on solutions within this field, to find knowledge, partners and potentially funding