Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Brainwashed eighth-grader: "carbon dioxide have a negative effect on plants. I also learned that in 305 years the trees will die off because of pollutants from cars"

Mount Airy News - Students prove their scientific prowess
In the junior earth division, Emi Cassell, an eighth-grader at Millennium Charter Academy, received first place for her project, What are the Effects of Oil and Carbon Dioxide as Environmental Pollutants on the Photosynthetic Processes of Anacharis Canadensis?

“My results were that oil and carbon dioxide have a negative effect on plants. I also learned that in 305 years the trees will die off because of pollutants from cars,” said Cassell, noting that this was the first year she has done a project like this one. “I’ve been hearing a lot of global warming conspiracy theories so I decided to do this project.”


BenV said...

anacharis canadensis
Canadian Waterweed

"This plant can be weedy or invasive according to the authoritative sources noted below."

Sounds like the girl may have found a way to kill an invasive weed. I want to know whether she tested each separately or combined oil and CO2 to test this one aquatic plant. My daughter tested CO2 on bean plants back in middle school and found they grew better with more CO2 and died without CO2.

Anonymous said...

bet she got an A!

Olov Källgarn said...

Stating "CO2 has a negative effect on plants" isn't any more wrong than the opposite. It all depends on the amounts. Just like oxygen is vital to animals and humans, too little or too much can be fatal.
It's easy ridiculing any argument taken out of context and without further details.

Regarding oil, I think it's pretty safe to say there are few positive effects on plants directly exposed to raw oil.


Brian G Valentine said...

I think the attribution is wrong; I'm pretty sure that was from a memo from Jane Lubchenco to the President

blogagog said...

Bit of a stretch there, Olav. Even if it's true in massive concentrations, if you say that CO2 is bad for plants or oxygen is bad for animals, you won't come across as the brightest bulb in the bunch.

Hugh K said...

Polluting cars for 305 more years? I thought Government Motors had already solved that problem.

Anonymous said...

Olav: guess what? We regularly pump CO2 in great quantities into our greenhouses. Why? Because plants love CO2 in great amounts. and remember that in the time of dinosaurs CO2 in the atmosphere was about 20 times what it is today. The plants were HUGE!!!!!!! read the science!

Olov Källgarn said...

"Read the science"? So that I can learn what I wrote about yesterday?
We are still talking concentration levels. That's what it's all about. My point is, I would think her original statement was preceded by "in concentrations above XX% or XXXX ppm, CO2 has a negative effect on plants"

Like I said, I don't give much for bashing a 8-graders paper taken out of context and with no sources.

This doesn't make me a "fan" or "hater" of CO2, I just think it's silly when people use the argument "but without CO2 our planet would die!!!!! so it can't be dangerous!!!". It's so common with the black or white thinking. Either something is completely insanely megafucking lethal, or it's completely harmless to everything on the planet.

Olov Källgarn said...

But yeah, if your point is that it would be silly to say that any concentrations of CO2 that are ever likely to occur in the atmosphere (especially as a result from AGW) would be negative to plants, of course, that would be silly.

Anonymous said...

If you spray a broadleaf plant (like the Ficus in my professor's office) with CO2 from a fire extinguisher, making sure to hit all the leaves, it makes a nice Christmassy coating of frost on the plant, which then drops all its leaves within a day and dies.