Is heat from human bodies causing global warming?

  • 3 Replies
  • 4895 Views

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

*

Offline Bryan Howser

  • First timers
  • *
  • 2
    • View Profile
Bryan Howser asked the Naked Scientists:

My name is Bryan and I am a nursing student in New Mexico US. i look forward to listening to your podcast weekly on my way to school.

I was wondering with all of the calculations done on the rate of rising temperatures, eg carbon emissions and such, have such figures taken into account the radiant heat given off by human bodies? With rising populations can this be a factor; both locally and globally?

Thanks,
B

What do you think?

*

Offline LeeE

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • 3382
    • View Profile
    • Spatial
Is heat from human bodies causing global warming?
« Reply #1 on: 12/07/2008 10:59:51 »
I think not, on any measurable scale.  The heat that our bodies generate comes from the sun via the plants that we end up eating, one way or another.  If we, or other animals, didn't eat the plants they would give up the energy they absorbed when they die and decay (the bugs and microbes take up the energy instead).  If there were less plants to absorb the light some would be absorbed by the ground and then released at night, when it's cooler, or be reflected back into space.
...And its claws are as big as cups, and for some reason it's got a tremendous fear of stamps! And Mrs Doyle was telling me it's got magnets on its tail, so if you're made out of metal it can attach itself to you! And instead of a mouth it's got four arses!

*

Offline superskunk

  • First timers
  • *
  • 3
  • A concerned enviromentalist
    • View Profile
Is heat from human bodies causing global warming?
« Reply #2 on: 15/07/2008 14:42:16 »
All valid points! I've recently written an article on reducing co2 emissions, it might be worth a view.
here's the link:
http://squidoo.com/cdemissions
<a href="http://squidoo.com/cdemissions">How To Reduce Carbon Dioxide Emissions</a>

*

blakestyger

  • Guest
Is heat from human bodies causing global warming?
« Reply #3 on: 22/07/2008 12:23:05 »
Interesting point  - but probably worth noting that as a proportion of the total biomass on Earth  generating heat through respiration humans probably only represent a very small percentage.

I've seen estimates of between 0.13% and 0.33%.
« Last Edit: 22/07/2008 12:26:13 by blakestyger »