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It's Carbon Dioxide

Recent articles in the Buffalo News and elsewhere refer to “carbon-induced global warming.”

The gas produced by combustion is carbon dioxide (CO2). Carbon is a black solid, e.g., coal or ash, that occurs in the atmosphere only as small amounts of particulate matter.

By analogy, one does not describe a flood of water (H2O) as being caused by hydrogen (H2). We are disheartened by such disrespect for the English language in many publications, including the News. Please avoid the careless and illogical—but widely misused—shorthand of “carbon” for “carbon dioxide.”

> John Maxfield Hague, Buffalo

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