Carbon dioxide

Face Masks Lead to Breathing Dangerous Levels of Carbon Dioxide Even When Sitting Still, Study Finds

Wearing a face mask results in exposure to dangerous concentrations of carbon dioxide in inhaled air, even when the mask is worn for just five minutes when sitting still, a study has found.

With surgical masks, the CO2 concentration of inhaled air exceeded the danger zone of 5,000 ppm in 40% of cases. With FFP2 respirators it exceeded it in 99% of cases. The CO2 concentrations were higher for children and for those who breathed more frequently.

The study, a pre-print (not yet peer-reviewed) from a team in Italy, used a technique called capnography to take the measurements of CO2 in inhaled air over the course of five minutes, following a ten minute period of rest, with participants seated, silent and breathing only through the nose. A medic took measurements at minutes three, four and five, with an average of the three measurements being used in the analysis.

The study found the mean CO2 concentration of inhaled air without masks was 458 ppm. While wearing a surgical mask, the mean CO2 was over 10 times higher at 4,965 ppm, exceeding 5,000 ppm in 40.2% of the measurements. While wearing an FFP2 respirator, the average CO2 was nearly double again at 9,396 ppm, with 99.0% of participants showing values higher than 5,000 ppm. Among children under 18, the mean CO2 concentration while wearing a surgical mask was well above the safe limit at 6,439 ppm; for an FFP2 respirator it was nearly double again at 12,847 ppm. The researchers found that breaths per minute only had to increase by three, to 18, for the mean concentration to reach 5,271 ppm in a surgical mask and breach the safe limit.

Climate Change Saves Over Half a Million Lives in England and Wales, Says ONS – Not a Word From the Press

Over half a million fewer people died in England and Wales over the last 20 years due to a small rise in temperatures, according to recent work by the Office for National Statistics. According to the ONS, reduced climate-related mortality rates were 90% attributable to milder winters and 10% to warmer summers. Over three times the number of lives were extended due to climate change than are said to have been lost in the Covid pandemic.

In the mainstream media, the news was greeted with a deafening silence. There were few reports highlighting the lives saved. The BBC didn’t even mention the half million figure, but noted: “Hot days saw more injuries, violence and suicide but the relatively small rise in deaths was offset by warmer winter temperatures.” The third paragraph of the story claimed: “Climate change is a substantial threat to human health globally.” Resident green activist Justin Rowlatt then supplied an “analysis”, noting immediately that “statistics can be slippery, as these new climate-death figures show”.

For some inexplicable reason, there was no 5pm Downing Street press conference announcing that nearly 30,000 lives a year had been saved by climate change. There was no Professor Ferguson-inspired model suggesting that if current trends were followed, everyone in the world would be saved by teatime next Tuesday.

The ‘Settled Science’ Lie at the Heart of the Net Zero Agenda

Nearly 140 science papers have been identified that cast doubt on the dominant role that carbon dioxide is said to play in the global atmospheric temperature. According to the climate site No Tricks Zone, the list has grown significantly from 50 in 2016.

Much of the ongoing science debate, ignored by almost all media, concerns equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS) – the increase in the global temperature that will follow a doubling of atmospheric CO2. When green activists talk of ‘settled’ science, they refer to their certainty that humans drive all or most of the changes in the climate. But this political certitude is far from settled among scientists, notably those who study physics and chemistry. Nobody actually knows what the ECS figure is, so estimates are made all the way up to 6°C. These are then used in climate models, which have spent the last 40 years producing inaccurate forecasts. In addition, a worst case prediction or ‘pathway’ called RCP8.5 assumes that temperatures will rise by 5°C in less than 80 years. This ‘pathway’ was quoted in 57% of the disaster scenarios in the recent doomsday IPCC report.

No Tricks Zone highlighted a recent paper from the German physics Professor Dieter Schildknecht from Bielefeld University. This work suggested that a further atmospheric increase of CO2 beyond 300 parts per million (it currently stands at around 418 ppm) “cannot lead to an appreciably stronger absorption of radiation, and consequently cannot affect the Earth’s climate”. This finding is one of many that suggest the ability of CO2 to radiate heat back to the Earth’s surface declines rapidly after a certain point. Professor Schildknecht finds that doubling CO2 leads to 0.5°C warming as ”absorption reaches close to 100%”. He concludes that the effect of an anthropogenic CO2 increase on the Earth’s climate is “fairly negligible”.

When is a Scientist Not Really a Scientist? When He’s a ‘Post-Normal’ Scientist

Some people will do anything to save the Earth… except take a science course.

P.J. O’Rourke

Last Saturday, the Daily Sceptic drew attention to the lack of traditional science qualifications among many of the authors of the latest IPCC climate report. But we missed the point. In the post-normal scientific world, everyone is a scientist, whatever their qualifications and expertise. Everyone has a view on the climate. The hard stuff that hardly anyone liked at school – physics and chemistry – can be safely declared ‘settled’, and any irritating debate likened to Holocaust denial. What is it with this CO2 gas anyway? Temperatures went up a bit in the 1980s and 90s, so did emissions. Quod Erat Demonstrandum. Climate emergency, end of. Send the press release to the BBC.

The arrogance of this view is vividly on show in a recent article written by past IPCC lead author Bruce Glavovic. He is a professor at the School of People, Environment and Planning at Massey University, and his article called for a climate research strike. Governments are said to have agreed since 1972 that the “science is settled” – an interesting take, since that date was actually the start of the once fashionable global cooling scare. He added: “For climate change, the science-society contract is broken. The failure to arrest global warming is an indictment on successive governments and political leaders of all persuasions.”

Global warming has in fact ‘been arrested’, with the trend running out of steam for about two decades and a current 88-month standstill in progress. And, of course, temperatures have risen by just over 1°C since 1800, seemingly without any catastrophic consequences. In fact, many scientists point to numerous beneficial effects. Far fewer people die of heat than cold, and slightly warmer growing conditions, not to mention extra CO2, which helps crops grow, has helped alleviate famine in many parts of the world.

Commonsense For Now as New North Sea Oil and Gas Goes Ahead – But National Grid Begins Experiment in Rationing Household Power

As the energy crisis and price inflation continue to bite – driven to a large extent by Net Zero carbon dioxide policies – the Government is set to give the green light to six new North Sea oil and gas fields, in a sign that some ministers at least have their heads screwed on. The Telegraph has the story.

Six North Sea oil and gas fields are set to be given the green light this year, The Telegraph has learnt, as Cabinet figures push back against “insane” demands to go further on net zero.

Rishi Sunak has asked Kwasi Kwarteng, the Business Secretary, to fast-track the licences amid Treasury fears over the economic impact of making the UK a net zero carbon emitter by 2050. …

The six oil and gas areas, which have already been given a preliminary licence by ministers, are expected to be given approval by Britain’s oil and gas regulator to begin construction of rigs in the North Sea.

Despite calls for all domestic fossil fuel extraction to be halted, ministers have pledged to continue to support oil and gas production while renewable energy sources are developed.

Drilling of oil and gas could begin in the Rosebank field, to the west of Shetland, and at the Jackdaw, Marigold, Brodick and Catcher sites in the central North Sea. A sixth site, Tolmount East, had been intended to be approved by the Oil and Gas Authority last year but is now expected in 2022.

The combined reserves of all six sites are thought to be enough to power the whole U.K. for six months, with 62 million tonnes of oil equivalent fuel in the ground.

A Whitehall source told The Telegraph: “The Business Secretary is pushing for more investment into the North Sea while we transition – not just for jobs and tax revenue, but for domestic energy security.

“Kwasi is actively resisting insane calls from Labour and the eco-lobby to turn off U.K. production. Doing so would trash energy security, kill off 200,000 jobs, and we would only end up importing more from foreign countries with dubious records.

“Over the long term, we need to generate more secure, affordable, low carbon power in the U.K. to achieve greater energy independence. The more clean power we generate in the U.K., the less exposed consumers will be to gas prices set by international markets.”

Jordan Peterson Compares Climate Model Errors to Compounding Interest

It’s been all Canada on Joe Rogan’s popular Spotify podcast of late. First, crinkly rockers Neil and Joni threw their guitars out of the pram when Rogan dared to broadcast a number of different opinions on Covid and vaccines. Then fellow Canadian Dr. Jordan Peterson said climate models compounded their errors, just like interest. Green activists and zealots (often known in the climate change business as ‘scientists’) clutched their responsibly sourced pearls and whined, “Lawks a-mercy, it’s outrageous!” and “Banning’s too good for them!”. The septuagenarian songsters briefly found themselves out of the headlines as the mainstream media rushed to quell a growing sceptical climate debate and rubbish a troublesome competitor.

Dr. Peterson suggested that the climate was too complex to be modelled. Such notions were said to be a “word salad of nonsense“, reported a distraught Guardian. Dr. Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick of the University of Canberra added Peterson had “no frickin’ idea”. Professor Michal Mann of Penn State University said Peterson’s comments – and Rogan’s “facilitation” of them – was an “almost comedic type of nihilism” that would be funny if it wasn’t so dangerous.

This of course is the same Michael Mann who produced the infamous temperature hockey stick that was at the centre of the 2010 Climategate scandal. The graph was used for a time in IPCC reports and showed a 1,000 year straight temperature line followed by a recent dramatic rise. This startling image was helped by the mysterious disappearance of the medieval warming period and subsequent little ice age. Discussion about the graph led to Mann pursuing a U.S. libel suit against the broadcaster and journalist Mark Steyn. In court filings, Mann argued that it was one thing to engage in discussion about debatable topics, but it was quite another to “attempt to discredit consistently validated scientific research through the professional and personal defamation of a Nobel Prize recipient”. He is not himself a Nobel Prize recipient, but perhaps he was referring to someone else.

Independent minded communicators like Joe Rogan and take-no-prisoner intellectuals such as Dr. Peterson command a worldwide audience and they are difficult to cancel. The battle between Neil Young and Joni Mitchell and Joe Rogan, sitting on a $100m Spotify contract, had only one free speech winner – at least for the moment. Meanwhile, the Guardian’s default position when faced with something unsettling like the ‘settled’ science of anthropogenic climate change is to declare it will not “lend” its credibility to its critics by engaging in debate. That was obviously not possible with Peterson’s remarks being plastered all over social media, although it could be argued that the Guardian reporting the vulgar abuse users posted in response is not much of a substitute for the usual lofty disdain.

The Rich Get Richer as the Great Green Rush Gets Rolling

Earlier this week, Aviva Investors boss Mark Versey sent his annual letter to company ‘chairpersons’ claiming that the planet faces the “Sixth Great Extinction” and there has been an “alarming” 68% decrease in species in the 46 years to 2016. Extinctions on this scale would be truly alarming, except that the claim is untrue. Meanwhile, the so-called Sixth Great Extinction is a WWF green activist hobbyhorse, with little support among scientists – Versey linked his comments to a WWF report that in fact noted a “68% decrease in population” of various mammals, birds and fish between 1970-2016.

Easily done, mixing up population numbers and actual extinction, although warning bells should have sounded about a ridiculous suggestion that nearly seven in ten Earth species had disappeared in just over four decades. Needless to say, the BBC faithfully repeated the error. Even the alarmist UN 2019 report on biodiversity could only suggest that one million animal and plant species were “threated” with extinction at some undefined date in the future. Given that 99.9% of all species that have ever lived on Earth are extinct, this looks a more reasonable bet. On the actual extinction front, the report did find that 680 vertebrates had disappeared since the 16th century. One must hope that Mr. Versey’s due diligence is more sound when he comes to investing some of the £250 billion of investment funds under his company’s control.

It seemingly doesn’t matter what green inaccuracies are pumped into the public space since an enormous ‘green rush’ gathers pace by the day. A recent book by Dr. Susan Crockford called “Fallen Idol” revisits the notorious 2019 WWF/Netflix collaboration featuring the falling walruses episode of “Our Planet”. Filmed falling off a cliff, in slow motion for maximum effect, Sir David Attenborough attributed the horrific scenes to “climate change”, despite a pack of nearby polar bears providing a more obvious explanation.

Introducing his film, which Crockford describes as “animal tragedy porn”, to the rich and influential elites gathered at the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos, Sir David commented: “If people can truly understand what is at stake, I believe they will give permission to businesses and governments to get on with practical solutions”.

In the U.K., the true Net Zero cost of such “practical solutions” are starting to be understood, with energy prices set to soar and general inflation starting to rise alarmingly. Green levies on electricity alone are set to rise from £11 billion this year to around £15 billion by 2026. Renewable subsidies support the 25% of energy provided by unreliable renewables, solar and wind. Since such electricity provides only 3% of total UK energy needs, phasing out fossil fuels and replacing them largely from these sources will, at current rates of subsidy, require a majority of the tax that is currently levied on the entire British economy.

Two New Science Papers Cast Further Doubt on Human Contribution to Climate Change

Two important papers have recently been published that question the extent to which humans are causing global warming by burning fossil fuel and releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The works will of course be ignored by mainstream media outlets, but they represent further evidence that a more nuanced view of human-caused or anthropogenic warming is gaining traction among scientists, tired of working within the political constraints of ‘settled’ science.

In a paper to be published next month in the journal Health Physics, three physics professors led by Kenneth Skrable from the University of Massachusetts examine the atmospheric trail left by CO2 isotopes and conclude that the amount of CO2 released by fossil fuel burning between 1750 and 2018 was “much too low to be the cause of global warming”.

Three carbon isotopes are found in the atmosphere, 12C, 13C and 14C. The latter is produced by cosmic rays and is in a constant state of activity but the other two are contained in the gas entering the atmosphere. The carbon in living matter has a slightly higher proportion of 12C. Although only about 4% of CO2  entering the atmosphere every year is produced by human activity, it is said very slightly to alter the balance of the other atmospheric isotopes. As a result it is often used as ‘proof’ that rising CO2  levels are primarily the result of fossil fuel burning.

But the Massachusetts team found that claims of the dominance of anthropogenic fossil fuel in the isotope record have involved the ‘misuse’ of 12C and 13C statistics to validate such suggestions. They conclude that the assumption that the increase in atmospheric CO2 is dominated by or equal to the anthropogenic component is “not settled science”.

Furthermore, they go on to state: “Unsupported conclusions of the dominance of the anthropogenic fossil component of CO2  and concerns of its effect on climate change and global warming have severe potential societal implications that press the need for very costly remedial actions that may be misdirected, presently unnecessary, and ineffective in curbing global warming.”

The Follies of ‘Net Zero’ Carbon Risk Consigning Millions to Energy Poverty

There follows a guest post by Ian Hore-Lacy, Senior Adviser to the World Nuclear Association, who is based in Melbourne, Australia, and is concerned about the direction of travel in his home country as it begins to take seriously cutting CO₂ emissions following COP26. Ian was recently interviewed on the Titans of Nuclear podcast (also available on iTunes and Spotify).

In Australia, media reporting of COP26 in Glasgow has been doubling down on reporting every anomalous weather event or sea-level concern as due to climate change, despite some fairly clear scientific findings in the AR6 science report showing such attribution as nonsense. Having spent the best part of two days looking at the AR6 science it is quite clear that we can live with the likely scenarios. The report itself notes that the very high emission and warming scenario SSP5-8.5 “has been debated in light of recent developments in the energy sector” and discounted but cannot be entirely ruled out. It projects a very great increase in coal use and has been carried forward from earlier modelling without real modification. Including this highly improbable, obsolete and extreme scenario, however, has fed a lot of extreme rhetoric by people who should know better, including the head of IPCC, António Guterres.

The language of crisis and catastrophe is used uncritically and without justification. It’s becoming evident that no panic measures will emerge from the Glasgow theatrics, but perhaps a steady focus on improvement, to minimise human contribution to CO₂ levels. In Europe the media focus has been on the current energy crisis, especially in the U.K. Australian PM Scott Morrison did well in Glasgow; he now needs to flesh out the ’technology’ that will save us. He needs to avoid a fight with the opposition Labor party, but somehow prevail in his fight with the renewables rent-seekers who are adding $7 billion per year to Australia’s electricity bills for little effect.

Face Masks Cause Children to Inhale Dangerous Levels of Carbon Dioxide at SIX TIMES the Safe Limit, Study Finds

New research published in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) has found that wearing a face mask causes children to inhale dangerous levels of carbon dioxide that becomes trapped behind the mask.

The peer-reviewed research letter from Dr Harald Walach and colleagues found that the air masked children inhaled contained more than six times the legal safe limit for closed rooms as set down by the German Federal Environmental Office. The safe limit is 0.2%, whereas the air the masked children inhaled contained over 1.3% carbon dioxide.

The effect was worse for younger children, with one seven year-old child inhaling air with 2.5% carbon dioxide, over 12 times the safe limit.

The study looked at two types of mask, FFP2 masks and surgical masks, and found no significant difference between the two.

The authors explained that this alarming result likely explains the complaints from children who wear face masks for long periods.

Most of the complaints reported by children can be understood as consequences of elevated carbon dioxide levels in inhaled air. This is because of the dead-space volume of the masks, which collects exhaled carbon dioxide quickly after a short time. This carbon dioxide mixes with fresh air and elevates the carbon dioxide content of inhaled air under the mask, and this was more pronounced in this study for younger children.

This leads in turn to impairments attributable to hypercapnia. A recent review concluded that there was ample evidence for adverse effects of wearing such masks. We suggest that decision-makers weigh the hard evidence produced by these experimental measurements accordingly, which suggest that children should not be forced to wear face masks.

With face masks shown to have little to no impact in reducing infection or transmission, this suggests the policy is all pain and no gain and should be abandoned without delay.

Read the study in full here.