Friday, August 28, 2009

Nitrous oxide is no longer just a laughing matter!

It’s no laughing matter, but scientists are saying that nitrous oxide (N20), commonly called laughing gas, is adding to global warming.

The idea of global warming is a highly controversial theory, and scientists worldwide seem divided over what to call the earth’s warming trend. Now we have something else that is reputed to attack the ozone layer.

Here’s an exerpt from a recent Time magazine:

“But even with that battle all but won, scientists are finding a new man-made threat to the ozone layer: nitrous oxide (N2O), otherwise known as laughing gas. A study published in the Aug. 28 Science found that N2O — a by-product of agricultural fertilizer and a number of other industrial processes — is now the biggest ozone-depleting gas in the air, and could present a real threat to the ozone layer in coming decades. And worse, unlike CFCs, N2O — which also adds to global warming — is not regulated by the Montreal Protocol, meaning there is no global effort to try to reduce emissions.”(Read "Can Steven Chu Win the Fight Over Global Warming?")

Click here to read the whole story at Time.

Photo via Time.

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