July 29th 1977 - Moni's day of birth

I was born on July 29 in Gdańsk, Poland, during a time when communism prevailed. This era was characterized by strict regulation and a concept of freedom that was yet to be defined. However, as a child, I was unaware of all these tumults. I spent my childhood in the Wrzeszcz district, in a high-rise building on the second floor. Today, I can only imagine what it must have been like for a small child to come home. We lived in a small apartment, about 50 square meters in size, where I lived with my parents, making a total of three people.

To calculate how many minutes it takes for the CO2 concentration to reach 1000 ppm (parts per million) in a 50 square meter room with the presence of two adults, various factors must be considered. This calculation can be quite complex as it depends on several variables:

1. **Initial CO2 Concentration**: The initial CO2 concentration in the air.

2. **CO2 Production per Person**: On average, a resting adult produces about 0.04 liters of CO2 per minute.

3. **Room Volume**: The volume of the room, not just the area. Assuming a ceiling height of about 2.5 meters, the volume would be 50 m² * 2.5 m = 125 cubic meters.

4. **Air Exchange Rate**: How often the air in the room is exchanged through ventilation or air systems.

The basic formula for calculating CO2 concentration in a room is complex and requires specific knowledge about these factors. Without precise information about the air exchange rate and the initial CO2 concentration, it is difficult to make an accurate time estimate.

As a rough estimate and assuming that no additional ventilation occurs and the initial concentration of CO2 is normal (about 400 ppm), a simplified calculation could be performed. However, this estimate would be very inaccurate and should not be used for precise measurements or health assessments.

For a more accurate assessment, it would be advisable to use a CO2 measuring device or consult experts in the field of indoor air quality.

Based on the assumptions and the simplified calculation, it would take about 937.5 minutes (approximately 15.6 hours) for the CO2 concentration to rise from 400 ppm to 1000 ppm in a closed room of 50 square meters with a ceiling height of 2.5 meters (125 cubic meters volume) with two resting adults.

Please note that this is a rough estimate. Actual conditions such as room ventilation, the activity level of the persons, and other factors can significantly influence the time.

For an estimate under the assumption that two people are moving during the day and the CO2 production thereby averages about four times the resting production, the calculation looks as follows:

1. **CO2 Production per Person in Activity**: approx. 0.16 liters/minute

2.  **Other assumptions (room volume, initial and target CO2 concentration) remain the same**

Let's perform the calculation with these adjusted assumptions:

Assuming that two people are moving during the day and their CO2 production is about four times the resting production, it would take about 234.4 minutes (approximately 3.9 hours) for the CO2 concentration to rise from 400 ppm to 1000 ppm in a closed room of 50 square meters with a ceiling height of 2.5 meters (125 cubic meters volume).

As you can see, the time it takes for the CO2 concentration in a room to rise from 400 ppm to 1000 ppm reduces from about 15 hours at rest to around 4 hours in activity. This means that as a child, I was probably often in an environment with a CO2 concentration of about 1000 ppm. Interestingly, babies cannot yet effectively convert CO2, which could be a reason for their frequent crying. Babies are sensitive to high CO2 concentrations in their environment, which can lead to discomfort and irritability.

M.E.P.

Evidence

There are no specific studies or scholarly articles that explicitly prove that babies cannot convert CO2. In fact, CO2 is a normal byproduct of metabolism and is normally exhaled by people, including babies. The CO2 concentration in the blood is carefully regulated to maintain blood pH levels.

However, there are studies that investigate the safe and optimal concentration of CO2 in the breathing air of newborns

https://www.nature.com

https://www.nature.com - Article 2

https://www.nature.com - Article 3

Babies are sensitive to changes in CO2 concentrations, as these can affect blood circulation in the brain and other vital body functions. Baby crying can have many causes, including discomfort due to environmental factors, but the ability to convert CO2 is a normal physiological function.

The lungs of a newborn play a central role in both oxygen uptake and CO2 elimination. At birth, the lung function shifts from a liquid to an air environment, initiating the gas exchange: oxygen is taken up from the air, and CO2, a metabolic waste product, is released.

Newborns, however, have a peculiarity regarding methemoglobin (MetHb), a form of hemoglobin that cannot effectively transport oxygen. In newborns, the enzyme system for converting methemoglobin back into functional hemoglobin is not yet fully developed, leading to an increased susceptibility to methemoglobinemia. This can impair oxygen transport in the blood and lead to oxygen deficiency.

The ability to effectively process CO2 is crucial for maintaining acid-base balance and normal body functions. Newborns are particularly sensitive to changes in CO2 levels, as these can affect the function of the respiratory center in the brain. Adequate CO2 removal by the lungs is therefore crucial for avoiding respiratory problems.

In summary, lung function in newborns is crucial both for oxygen supply and CO2 elimination, while there is also an increased susceptibility to methemoglobinemia, which can affect the blood's oxygen transport capacity.

A study from the journal "Nature Sustainability" shows that CO2 concentrations below 1,500 ppm can already pose direct health risks to humans. There is evidence that chronic exposure to CO2 concentrations of just 1,000 ppm can cause inflammation, cognitive limitations, bone demineralization, kidney calcification, oxidative stress, and endothelial dysfunction.

https://www.nature.com - Article on the subject

These findings indicate that even relatively low CO2 concentrations in indoor environments, which often occur in densely occupied or poorly ventilated spaces, can raise health concerns.

For a baby staying in such a room as I described, an increased CO2 concentration could potentially lead to discomfort and health problems, increasing the likelihood of crying. However, the exact threshold at which a baby reacts to increased CO2 concentrations varies individually and depends on several factors.

My personal observations in restaurants, supported by measurements with my CO2 measuring device, show that children around the age of 2 to 3 years, that is before they can speak, start crying at a CO2 concentration of 700 ppm. This observation suggests that CO2 concentrations even below the frequently cited threshold of 1,000 ppm can cause discomfort in toddlers. However, there are no in-depth studies on the long-term health effects of this CO2 exposure in children.

In my view, scientific studies on this topic are often not ideally conducted. Typically, subjects are exposed to CO2 in controlled environments to observe the effects. However, this does not consider the individual CO2 exposures of the subjects in their everyday environment – at home, on the way to the study, in public transport, at work, or at school. As a result, the study findings are potentially distorted, as each subject participates in the study with different baseline conditions. An alternative approach could be to remove CO2 from the environment of the subjects to create more uniform baseline conditions. This could lead to more meaningful results. It is important to think about these aspects to get a fuller picture of the effects of CO2 on human health.

M.E.P.