A review of some of the physical-chemical properties of CO 2 and of the system CO 2 --H 2 O indicates that under some shallow-earth conditions CO 2 can exist as a separate phase with a density approximately that of water. The effect of dissolved neutral or acid salts on the solubility of CO 2 in H 2 O is not large. Carbonates, oxides, and silicates, through reactions with a CO 2 -saturated water phase, will eventually cause the disappearance of a CO 2 phase. The prevalence of CO 2 in the earth's crust is attested by its abundance in natural gases and fluid inclusions in minerals. Some of the characteristics of uranium ores of the Colorado Plateau are not incompatible with the assumption that deposition was from a fluid CO 2 phase.

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