December 21, 2010

Happier Holidays From CO2

Filed under: Adaptation, Plants

Our Thanksgiving edition of World Climate Report—in which we searched through our archives and highlighted the articles that illustrated the benefits that elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide levels have on your Thanksgiving feast—turned out to be quite a hit, coming in as one of our more popular issues this year. So for Christmas, we thought we’d reprise the Thanksgiving story with a twist—this time, we’ll review how CO2 helps to make your Christmas holiday just a bit merrier!

As we pointed out in our Thanksgiving article, even if you are not directly involved in growing things used during the holidays, just through being a consumer of energy generated from fossil fuels, you are helping those holiday products grow better, stronger, and healthier. After all, as the pent up CO2 contained in coal, oil, and natural gas is released through the process of combustion to produce energy (used to generate electricity, push the pistons up and down in your internal combustion engine, or heat your home) it slowly builds up in the atmospheric serving as a universally available fertilizer serving to enhance plant growth throughout the world.

Below are links to some of the many examples of CO2’s benefits to holiday-related species that we have featured in these pages through the years. And remember that all of this material is taken directly from the peer-reviewed scientific research. So, if you don’t believe us, as Casey Stengel would say, you can look it up!

Christmas Trees

Fruit Baskets/Fruitcakes

Candy Canes

Red Deer

Holly and Mistletoe
(note: this is a non-WCR article related to the benefits of warming winters and not direct CO2 fertilization)

And if these examples didn’t fill your stocking all the way up, many more examples of how CO2 is a gift to plants of all types can be found at the websites CO2Science.org and PlantsNeedCO2.org—both largely dedicated to highlighting the good things that CO2 does for the earth and its denizens.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays—thanks, in part, to CO2!




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