Letters to the Editor - Tuesday, October 22: A DEX error
THE photo published with my "Corrections and errors" letter (18-10-13) appears to be there as a counterpoint to what I wrote. This is fine as long as it is an appropriate, valid photo/caption combination. It wasn't. It is a photo of smog in a large city with the caption "Human influence? John Ibbotson and other climate change sceptics say the effect of anthropogenic CO2 on the climate is negligible."
Smog is a mixture of smoke, fog and chemical fumes, including carbon monoxide, ozone, nitrogen oxides, sulphur compounds, hydrocarbons, other chemicals and particulate matter (soot, dust etc). CO2 has nothing to do with smog.
Anthropogenic or natural CO2 is a colourless, odourless gas. In old coal-fired power stations the damaging fumes emitted were not CO2 but were many of the ingredients of smog. In modern power stations these are removed so that the only compounds being released into the atmosphere are nitrogen, carbon dioxide and water vapour, none of which are harmful to our environment and the CO2, nature's natural fertiliser, is actually beneficial.
The photo/caption was inappropriate and deceptive, and the end result is probably the opposite to what was intended.