Browse Definitions :
Definition

carbon dioxide

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is an odorless, non-flammable gas composed of one atom of carbon and two atoms of oxygen.

Carbon dioxide is the bi-product of the combustion of fossil fuels and also of almost all living cellular respiration. (The only known exception is deep sea volcanic vent chemosynthesizing bacteria.) The cellular respiration of plants occurs in night cycle, when they burn off the energy produced in photosynthesis.

Among greenhouse gasses, carbon dioxide is the main driving force of the greenhouse effect, due not only to its abundance in the environment but also to its interaction with methane. When methane comes in contact with carbon dioxide, it strips one of CO2’s oxygen molecules, leaving a single molecule of carbon monoxide, which then reacts with ozone to destroy it. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere also has the effect of acidifying the ocean as it dissolves in water to form carbonic acid.

CO2’s environmental impact is behind the increasing drive for countries, businesses and even individuals to reduce their carbon footprints, sometimes with a goal of becoming carbon-neutral or even carbon-negative. To achieve these aims, strive to balance and offset the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere by their activities.

This was last updated in December 2013

Continue Reading About carbon dioxide

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard)

    The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a widely accepted set of policies and procedures intended to ...

  • risk management

    Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling threats to an organization's capital and earnings.

  • compliance framework

    A compliance framework is a structured set of guidelines that details an organization's processes for maintaining accordance with...

SearchSecurity

  • Trojan horse (computing)

    In computing, a Trojan horse is a program downloaded and installed on a computer that appears harmless, but is, in fact, ...

  • identity theft

    Identity theft, also known as identity fraud, is a crime in which an imposter obtains key pieces of personally identifiable ...

  • DNS over HTTPS (DoH)

    DNS over HTTPS (DoH) is a relatively new protocol that encrypts domain name system traffic by passing DNS queries through a ...

SearchHealthIT

  • telemedicine (telehealth)

    Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services, such as health assessments or consultations, over the ...

  • Project Nightingale

    Project Nightingale is a controversial partnership between Google and Ascension, the second largest health system in the United ...

  • medical practice management (MPM) software

    Medical practice management (MPM) software is a collection of computerized services used by healthcare professionals and ...

SearchDisasterRecovery

SearchStorage

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive (SSD) that conforms to a computer industry specification and is used in internally mounted ...

  • kilobyte (KB or Kbyte)

    A kilobyte (KB or Kbyte) is a unit of measurement for computer memory or data storage used by mathematics and computer science ...

  • virtual memory

    Virtual memory is a memory management capability of an operating system (OS) that uses hardware and software to allow a computer ...

Close