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Another greenhouse threat

Posted by Richard on November 30, 2007

Recently, Honda began running a TV commercial for their new hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle, the FCX Clarity. The ad touts the fact that the fuel-cell car is completely pollution-free, emitting "only water vapor." That got me thinking.

See, I remember when CO2 wasn't considered a pollutant. In school, I was taught that our atmosphere is made up of nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and traces of other stuff. I was taught that carbon dioxide is essential to plant life. Nowadays, we're told that carbon dioxide is a horrible pollutant because it's a "greenhouse gas" fueling dangerous global warming, and that we have to reduce CO2 levels to save the planet.

But CO2 isn't the only, or even the most important, greenhouse gas — that's water vapor. And some atmospheric scientists have been warning us that water vapor levels have risen in recent decades. Their computer models (which are so much sexier than boring old empirical data) blame humans for at least some of the increase.

So I wonder how long it will be before NASA, the IPCC, and Algore demand "serious action" to control water vapor emissions and point accusing fingers at the millions of fuel cell vehicles that will soon be eagerly embraced by the environmentally conscious.

Apparently, I'm not the only one to wonder. Some have raised the question seriously. Others took a different approach:

(Washington, DC) The Environmental Protection Agency is seeking to classify water vapor as a pollutant, due to its central role in global warming. Because water vapor is the dominant greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, accounting for at least 90% of the Earth's natural greenhouse effect, its emission during many human activities, such as the burning of fuels, is coming under increasing scrutiny by federal regulators.

You'll have to read the whole thing before it all becomes clear. 🙂 Check out some of the "MOST POPULAR STORIES" in the left sidebar, too.

Anyway, you might as well just give up — it seems that everything is caused by global warming.

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