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Technology Tackling Climate Change

Getting industry innovation behind world needs
11/30/2015 11:28 AM EST
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Bert22306
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Re: I hope 2016 is not as cold as 2015
Bert22306   12/2/2015 7:39:32 PM
And again I say, changing our ways might not do anything, but in case it does, we better do it.

I think you nailed it here, David. All of the proposed actions, be it to exploit renewables or to increase the efficiency of combustion systems, are Good Ideas regardless. Whereas continuing on unrepressed, deforesting and polluting ever more, is simply reckless.

It would be wonderful if the deniers were correct. Meantime, none of the proposed changes will make things worse for the climate or the environment in general. It just might make people a little more self-controlled, which is also not a bad thing.

 

David Ashton
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Re: I hope 2016 is not as cold as 2015
David Ashton   12/2/2015 3:09:25 PM
@Bpenfold...I guess we will have to agree to disagree.  I reiterate that the vast majority of evidence supports the fact that man-made gases (CO2, methane etc) are causing climate change (not just global warming) and that the spike in these levels (see the CO2 graph referred to earlier) is going to cause the climate to CHANGE - we may cause an ice age or a warming.  Mother nature uses positive and negative feedback  to enter and recover from glacial periods (ice ages) and has never had to deal with such a profligate species before now - the worst previously has been huge volcanic eruptions.

And again I say, changing our ways might not do anything, but in case it does, we better do it.  We don't perfectly understand what our actions are doing, but we don't know what a lack of action will do either.  I'd rather not give mother Nature the chance to show us.

 

TonyTib
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Re: I hope 2016 is not as cold as 2015
TonyTib   12/2/2015 1:55:09 PM
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The Guardian is questionable at best; I'd take a climate scientist such as Judith Curry over it any day:

http://judithcurry.com/about/

 

dt_hayden
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Re: asymmetric argument
dt_hayden   12/2/2015 12:19:55 PM
"It will also sunset coal pretty quickly because smart money is not going to invest in coal which needs 30 to 50 year projects to meet its normal economic models when you can see they will be out-competed half way through."

This article does not support your statement.  Developing nations are still planning coal.  It may be true that "smart money" is not investing in coal, but governments are unfortunately.

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-34977265

 

dt_hayden
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Re: What's Your Druthers?
dt_hayden   12/2/2015 11:58:01 AM
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The short term conflict between nations wanting to cut carbon, and wanting to modernize economically may make these cutting edge technologies obsolete before production.

"Attempts to keep global warming to 2 degrees will be wildly off course if all planned coal fire plants are built. ...  2,440 coal fired power stations are planned around the world before 2030. ... Emissions from the world's existing plants will be 150% higher than what is consistent with a 2 degree target."

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-34977265

TanjB
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asymmetric argument
TanjB   12/2/2015 11:35:33 AM
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You can't argue with folks who have no interest in doing their homework.  It is asymmetric.  I spent a lot of time patiently filling in the research for the misinformation, sloppiness, and sometimes outright repeated lies of deniers until I realized that it just plays to their advantage since they waste none of their own personal time doing things like going to read the original paper, or crunching the original data for themselves (most climate papers are based on data you or I can go look at for ourselves, it is the most open sourced of all sciences).  Not that critics would be interested in really doing the legwork.

Now as for what we can do in technology, some of the best stuff is around renewable systems.  Solar is roughly on par (per kWh, not merely per peak kW) with oil today and will probably be cheaper than coal in 10 to 15 years.  That will really change the world economies.  It will also sunset coal pretty quickly because smart money is not going to invest in coal which needs 30 to 50 year projects to meet its normal economic models when you can see they will be out-competed half way through.

That same smart money will figure out that the replacements need not just solar and wind, but also the grid systems, the smart storage and smart consumers, the electric generation of fuel (a renewable cycle unlike fossil fuel), increased efficiency, better weather prediction, and so on.  A golden age for good engineering and a legacy for generations ahead.

Any engineer headed into fossil fuels these days is aiming for a short career.

bpenfold
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Re: I hope 2016 is not as cold as 2015
bpenfold   12/2/2015 10:03:31 AM
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"Which supports my case rather than demolishes it." That just supports sun-spots.

The psdudo climatologists  isn't even close to right. Today's model is terrible at predicting 5 years down the road. Just like 20 years ago they couldn't predict today. Al already stuck his foot in his mouth with his 2014 doomsday prediction. The best model is just looking at sun spots. Scientists are good at predicting the sunspots and low and behold, our climate follows the sun to a tee. No human interference needed.

What I'm seeing is increasing CO2 comes before the ice age. That's how the earth's history works. I'm worried about an ice age and I don't want to go through that again. Remember the 70's?. Already Anartica is building up ice and the sea level is dropping. Some of our light houses are 2 miles inland because of the ocean droppage. And that's why we haven't seen as near as many costly hurricanes as we used to (10 years ago being the worst one).

""If the science is mostly right we're gonna stuff our earth up big time. even if it is not quite right, we will make the earth a better place to live.  Is there a choice??""

Of course. We don't worry about it like we didn't worry about it in the 70's (record cold) or 30's (record heat). Use our skills reducing cost of living and raising our living standards. GWA's would have the opposite.

My tree-hugging appetites love CO2 (I love trees!). So don't touch that. Maybe increase it.

Of course, our efforts will be nill because man cannot control Mother Earth. She and the sun determine our climate. Not man.

David Ashton
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Re: I hope 2016 is not as cold as 2015
David Ashton   12/1/2015 9:48:26 PM
Quite apart from the NASA graph in the article, if you get onto NASA's site and search "Global warming" you get tons of stuff.  If you instead search "Global cooling" you get some articles on how volcanic eruptions and lower-cycle sun activity make the temperature go down temporarily.  

All NASA's evidence points to global warming, including this scary graph of CO2 levels for the past 400 000 years.  @Bpenfold, all the clean coal technology in the world can't get rid of Coal's CO2 emissions.....

"We shouldn't try to control Mother Nature. She always wins."  True.  And if she has to change the climate and make it much more difficult for man to live on this earth to do it, I am sure she will....

BinaryJudy
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Re: I hope 2016 is not as cold as 2015
BinaryJudy   12/1/2015 9:23:28 PM
For anyone else reading these comments, I would just like to point out that the authors of the articles linked, whom advocate climate change denial for the Heartland Institute, is the same organization that denied secondhand smoke health risks and lobbied against smoking bans. I guess they were right about that too, huh? Their motives are not pure and they are just simply wrong in my opinion and I believe anyone with a rationable conscious (shout out to engineers) would agree.

David Ashton
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Re: Too much posturing
David Ashton   12/1/2015 7:45:35 PM
Great points Bert (as always) - good practical suggestions.  

"I see a whole lot of hypocritical posturing in these climate talk shindigs..."

They are almost as bad as the denialists sometimes!  But you are right, everyone is happy to do anything, as long as it's "not in my backyard".  It's gotta be carrots and sticks - but as above, sticks seem to do more.  Cheaper power from green sources, taxes on gas-guzzlers, will all help.  As the recent climate marches showed, there is a good groundswell of will to get it right.

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