February 25, 2024

Scientists discover that breathing is a source of greenhouse gas emissions!

Fossil fuel-based industries can be a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions.
Lee Bill Lee Bill Meteorite UK 3 minutes

The buildup of greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change is a growing problem. As discussed at the recent COP28 summit. Less is known The relationship between greenhouse gases and human breathing..

Scientists from Great Britain have Discover a new source of greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change, This is not what you expect.

Those of University of Edinburgh The research conducted showed UK residents emit around 1,100 tonnes of methane and nitrous oxide every year Exhaled gases known as greenhouse gases.

Explained in Study published in PLOS ONE, This discovery provides insight into smaller but neglected sources of greenhouse gas emissions..

Emissions make up only a small portion of total production

However, the study found Emissions represent a small proportion of the UK's total greenhouse gas production, By contributing only 0.05% and 0.1% of total human-caused methane and nitrogen oxide emissions, respectively.

The study was led by scientist Ben Dawson, under the supervision of Nicholas Cowan and Matthew Hill. who sought out lesser-known contributors to greenhouse gas emissions.

Although significant sources of emissions, such as burning fossil fuels, are well documented Small sources, such as human breathing, are largely unknown, This leaves gaps in the comprehensive understanding of global emissions patterns.

Beyond carbon dioxide

It should also be noted that the study did not focus on carbon dioxide. Because human exhalation of carbon dioxide is balanced by the carbon absorbed by the plants we eat during photosynthesis.

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Human breathing contributes to the release of emissions into the atmosphere, but not in the form of carbon dioxide.
Human breathing contributes to the release of emissions into the atmosphere, but not in the form of carbon dioxide.

However, it was lost Research has taken a major turn by examining nitrogen oxide and methane. These gases are produced by microbes in our digestive system. Which contributes to a significant increase in atmospheric values, Unlike carbon dioxide, carbon is neutral.

To collect data, The researchers analyzed samples of exhaled air from more than 100 volunteers They found that 31% of the participants exhaled methane, and all of them exhaled varying amounts of nitric oxide. Surprisingly, the study found There is no direct relationship between diet or demographics and levels of these exhaled gases.

Using population data, the researchers estimated total annual respiratory emissions of these gases in the UK. This is equivalent to about 1,040 tons of methane and 70 tons of nitrous oxide. Regarding the effect of greenhouse gases, This is equivalent to 53,900 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, It is a drop in the ocean compared to Britain's annual emissions of 417 million tons.