What If The Worlds Oxygen Expired?

What If The Worlds Oxygen Expired?


Oxygen. Life giver. Aside from a small number of bacteria and
some single celled species, all life on planet earth needs oxygen. But what if it was under threat? Hello and welcome back to Life’s biggest
questions – the channel that looks to answer all manner of queries from science to science
fiction, from popular culture, horror fiction and history! I am your host Rebecca Felgate and today I
am asking What if The Oxygen Expired. Before we breeze right on into this video
I want to ask you ……wait for it…I want to know what your favourite element of the
periodic table is. What a question. Mine is Neon, obviously! LIKE SHARE SUB So
what if Oxygen Expired. Well…. let’s clear a few things up. Oxygen doesn’t expire. An oxygen particle remains an oxygen particle. Yes, it can change states like other elements….
oxygen can freeze – but it has such a low melting point that it isn’t really relevant
– but for the sake of teaching you a new thing today… I’ll tell you what it is. Oxygen freezes at -215 degrees celcius or
-355 degrees Fahrenheit. Those temperatures are not experienced on
planet earth. If we are talking about oxygen as a breathable
gas, that doesn’t expire either. Breathable Oxygen, 02 is stored for medical
purposes and it does not go off. A tank of oxygen from world war two would
still be just as effective today. Good…. so we don’t have to worry about
the oxygen then? Well no…not exactly. Here is the thing….. Our atmosphere is leaking oxygen. Atmospheric escape is the name given to the
loss of atmospheric gases into out of space. Our atmosphere is leaking at 5 x 10 to the
power of 25 molecules per second. At that rate, it will be billions of years
before it is all gone, but we are also using up more oxygen than ever. It seems that by analysing air bubbles trapped
inside ice in Greenland and Antarctica, Our oxygen levels have dropped by 0.7 percent
in the last 800,000 years. In fact, back when life was really starting
to…well…come to life around 300 million years ago…there was significantly more oxygen
in the air then there is now. Air isn’t just oxygen – it is made up
of a number of things. Oxygen is what allows us to function but air
contains just 20.95 percent of it. There is also 0.04% carbon dixoide, 0.93 percent
Argon and 78.09 percent nitrogen. Back in prehistoric times there was between
30-35 percent oxygen in the air depending on what period you are focusing on. That means animals living today are living
with around 14 percent less oxygen than the first animals. Could we survive with 14% less oxygen. In short no. Humans need a minimum oxygen concentration
of 19 and a half percent to stay healthy. When oxygen concentrations drop from 19.5
to 16 percent, and you engage in physical activity, your cells fail to receive the oxygen
needed to work properly. Mental functions become impaired and respiration
intermittent at oxygen concentrations that drop from 10 to 14 percent; at these levels
with any amount of physical activity, the body becomes exhausted. With oxygen levels much lower than 14 percent,
humans will really struggle to stay alive and healthy. We will officially become oxygen starved and
die with levels at 6 percent or lower. So…. basically, as oxygen seeps away, we
and all other animal life would die out…in fact, we likely would be some of the last
to go because of our efficient lung capacity. The worst thing WORST thing we could do would
be panic – because panicking consumes oxygen at a higher rate! Although… on the grander scale… you know
what…nevermind. Panicing wont change things, anyway…. we
will continue to leak oxygen…but it will take a few million years for us to feel the
effects…and a few million more before I starts to impact our health significantly. In that time it is likely humans would adapt,
or something better suited towards the new environment will evolve. You may remember the video I did about the
big dragonfly that lived in prehistoric time,s the Megeneuropsis…well back then there was
over 30% oxygen in the atmosphere… it couldn’t live today. Humans are pretty persistant, perhaps out
fight to survive would win out and the way we absorb oxygen would gradually change. Could we make breathable air? Well right now…its pretty hard. We could try and mine oxygen from the earth
– afterall, if we look beyond oxygen as a gas, it is one of the most abundant chemical
elements on our our planet. It is plentiful in the ocean obviously – water
is two parts hydrogen and one party oxygen. On top of that, about one-half of the earth’s
crust is made up of chemical compounds containing oxygen…. Right now hydrogen and oxygen can be separated
by passing an electric current through water and collecting the two gases as they bubble
off – but this uses A LOT of electricity and we don’t have the resources. Interestingly, it is theorized that for the
first few billion years of its life, Earth’s atmosphere didn’t have any oxygen in it at
all. Scientists believe tiny algae called cyanobacteria
evolved and triggered a very quick rise in oxygen levels. Perhaps we could encourage the growth of algae….butttt
then too much algae is bad too. Earths loss of atmospheric gas is just another
way the planet is changing, and ultimately planetary forces, cosmic sway is a bigger
force than human intervention. Ebb and flow is a natural order. That being said, we don’t need to worry
about the loss of oxygen right now. Like I said, it will be millions of years
before it becomes and issue and we have no idea what the future of planet earth might
look like. There are other more pressing matters threatening
human survival….like nuclear war. On that jolly note, we’ll leave this one
here! If you havent let me know your favourite element
on the periodic table… do it! I for one am all about a noble gas. Science chat is good chat! Before I go I am going to read some comments
from a recent LBQ. Batmanforever said: Yay, it’s my favorite
host, Rebecca. Yay, Rebecca! Yay, giant instincts. Yay, I’m running to the top of Mt. Everest. lol Wolf Bane said: A spider is my favorite bug
(They’re not bugs, but I think you are saying all of those little guys), I’m terrified of
them and I have heartattack when I see one on me, but they kill wasps and mosquitos so
????. In a actual bug, dragonflys. I know what you mean…. like ….I’m freaked
out by spiders but I try not to kill them because I really like their work! And year… things that fly… like… I get it…I just dont wanna get it near my
face. Taerrific said: What if we met an alien but
didn’t realise. What if alien don’t look like how we think it is?

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

100 Comments

  1. What if the East-Asians: Chinese, Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai and Filipinos have colonized the West Coast of both North and South Americas while the Europeans have colonized the East Coast?

  2. What would happen if we discovered parallel universes were real and we could travel dimensions to any universe at any time?

  3. Well, these are my favorite Elements, because together they build something else i like: #75 Rhenium, #4 Berylium, #6 Carbon, and #20 Calcium. And if you figure out why these Girl, then you are entitled to get a Cookie from me, should we ever met on Conventions or something like that

  4. What if there was an actual King/Queen of the World???? Is that possible? Who would it be? What will happen if it does? How would things be different from how it is today? Would this bring World Peace or a World Civil War/ Wars ?!!??

  5. Scientists don't understand that just because we need oxygen and water doesn't mean aliens do. Humans can be aragont

  6. I'd have to say Californium, because allot of amazing youtubers are from that state, I was also born there, and without California, we wouldn't have computers. Spooky stuff!

  7. "What if that oxygen was under threat" it… it kinda already is if we keep up the rate of removing some of the bigger factors that provide said oxygen.

  8. My favorite element is gold; it's very valuable and its symbol(Au) is the first two letters of my name(which is Austin)

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