Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Science Technology

Will Climate Engineering Ever Go Prime Time? 281

Posted by samzenpus
from the warm-up-the-hurricane-gun dept.
coondoggie writes "You may or may not be old enough to remember the TV commercial for margarine that had the tag line: 'It's not nice to fool Mother Nature.' But that commercial came to mind as I was reading a report out recently that looked at the viability of large climate engineering projects that would basically alter large parts of the atmosphere to reduce greenhouse gases or basically reverse some of the effects of climate change. The congressional watchdogs at the Government Accountability Office took a look at the current state of climate engineering science and technology (PDF), which generally aims at either carbon dioxide removal or solar radiation management."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Will Climate Engineering Ever Go Prime Time?

Comments Filter:
  • Oh dear (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 0123456 (636235) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @01:27PM (#37267366)

    I really hope I'm a long way from Earth before some idiot decides to try one of these things. Otherwise I'll be getting out the skis because we'll be heading for a new ice age.

    Though I did like the proposal in the 60s to use Apollo lunar modules to carry big mirrors into orbit which would reflect sunlight into the Vietnamese jungles at night. Abosolutely insane, but good fun.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:3, Insightful)

    by piripiri (1476949) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @01:29PM (#37267400) Journal

    We need to GET OFF THIS ROCK. Stop wasting money on climate projects and get a plan together to colonize other planets

    And repeat the whole damn shit again? No thank you.

  • by goldspider (445116) <ardrake79 AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @01:31PM (#37267424) Homepage

    What could possibly go wrong?

  • by RichMan (8097) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @01:34PM (#37267470)

    We are already doing several forms of environmental engineering

    1) sulpher release - who knew it caused acid rain
    2) CFC release - Ozone, whats that, and who needs it anyways
    3) flooded land for resoivoirs leads to mercury release from rocks that contaminates fish - nah couldn't happen.
    4) urban heat islands
    5) plane contrails - planes make clouds, again who could make that connection
    6) CO2 release from long term geological storage - well it's good for the plants .....

    whats a few more.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:4, Insightful)

    by realcoolguy425 (587426) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @01:38PM (#37267534)
    You first.

    This again leads back to my conclusion that people with a liberal mindset believe that resources are running out, and that they need to force change on other people. I'm not saying they're completely wrong, even though I am, but this belief in extreme resource scarcity is at the heart of this sort of logic. Besides, we can do what China is planning, nudge big rocks closer and mine off of them. If you're worried about the climate not staying exactly the same from one year to the next, you have picked the wrong planet to be born on.

    The accusation that climate change alarmists are forming a secular religion I believe is not completely unfounded. Anyone who would follow the Goracle on the topic of climate change may not like it when the computer models are finally generated that finally reflect reality. It will be data gathered from satellites that I believe will finally put an end to playing climate games by sampling data in way that produces the desired results. Recent NASA data that shows more heat escapes into space than we previously thought is part of the point I'm trying to make here. I'm not pretending to be an expert on this topic, but I know more than enough to understand that there are people with a vested interest in perpetuating any narrative that casts CO2 as the enemy of man.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:1, Insightful)

    by 0123456 (636235) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @01:44PM (#37267612)

    YThis again leads back to my conclusion that people with a liberal mindset believe that resources are running out, and that they need to force change on other people.

    No, you have that backwards. They want to force changes on other people and 'resource scarcity' is just a convenient excuse.

    How many times have you seen liberals shouting about some disaster and demanding the adoption of free-market policies to solve it? Creating a problem so you can propose a solution which happens to be what you wanted in the first place has been a standard left-wing tactic since at least the 19th century.

    So, for example, first you ban drilling for oil and then you shout about 'peak oil' and how it's going to kill everyone unless we start using public transport. You could just, you know, drill for more oil instead but that wouldn't achieve the real goal of pushing people onto public transport.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Dunbal (464142) * on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:01PM (#37267826)

    This again leads back to my conclusion that people with a liberal mindset believe that resources are running out

    Resources will never run out, thanks to conservation of matter. What will get tighter all the time, however, is resources per capita. If technology fails to continue its trend of being able to do more with less and if we keep breeding like rabbits then necessarily we will all suffer important changes to our lifestyle as the amount of available resources per individual falls.

    Also you have to bear in mind that resources have a cycle - from discovery and mining, drilling, production or whatever - through being manufactured and distributed into usable products, to belonging to someone and being used in the manner they're supposed to be used and finally after succumbing to entropy, being discarded and/or recycled. That means that with many people you have a huge amount of resources "out of the loop" at any given time, meaning that either you have to make goods that last a lifetime, or highly disposable goods that are cycled quickly. Guess which avenue those who make and sell the resources would prefer...

  • by Uhhhh oh ya! (1000660) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:01PM (#37267834)

    Seriously I can put up with this global warming hype as long as the scientists just use it to get free grants, but they better not start getting carried away and actually screwing stuff up.

    I can totally see it in 100 years when we have caused an ice age after releasing something in to the atmosphere in an attempt to stop global warming.

    Lets just sit back and see what happens, I remember not to long ago when people were afraid of global cooling.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GameboyRMH (1153867) <gameboyrmh@gmail. c o m> on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:08PM (#37267930) Journal

    These are scientists who are saying this.

    You must be new to this, to the AGW denialist, the word "scientist" lends about as much trust as "crackwhore."

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GameboyRMH (1153867) <gameboyrmh@gmail. c o m> on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:14PM (#37268004) Journal

    Resources will never run out, thanks to conservation of matter.

    Even that is a bit misleading in most cases. For example, even if you assume that the energy to do so is readily available, turning the exhaust from a car's tailpipe, the heat from it's radiator, the sound waves from it's stereo, the cold air from it's AC system, and the vehicle's forward momentum back into gasoline is most impractical.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Tsingi (870990) <graham.rick@gOPENBSDmail.com minus bsd> on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:22PM (#37268106)

    Snip: NASA satellite data from the years 2000 through 2011 show the Earth's atmosphere is allowing far more heat to be released into space than alarmist computer models have predicted, reports a new study in the peer-reviewed science journal Remote Sensing.

    The study indicates far less future global warming will occur than United Nations computer models have predicted, and supports prior studies indicating increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide trap far less heat than alarmists have claimed.

    The alarmists being virtually all scientists who know anything about global warming. It's a good thing we have oil companies who pay those few scientists who have the integrity to produce studies like this, and the media to spin it properly, or we would have to pay more for energy.

    But none of it matters, as soon as Washington gets it's act together and starts spending less on social programs, God will provide.

  • by overshoot (39700) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:43PM (#37268318)

    Resources will never run out, thanks to conservation of matter.

    As long as you're content with the elements arranged (or dispersed) however they end up, that works pretty well.

    On the other hand, if you're looking for phosphorus in quantities sufficient for agricultural use, refining it out of the oceans is not going to be profitable. Likewise with helium from atmospheric extraction compared to tapping into geological gas pockets.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @02:47PM (#37268364)

    Well the other side of this is that all of this "anthropogenic global warming" stuff is such nonsense that we should take steps to make sure no more money can be spent on it. I mean, some people in the military are trying to map our our options for economic, political, and humanitarian chaos caused by so-called "climate change." How much sillier and more wasteful can you get, especially when those resources could be better spent by redirecting them toward securing our oil supplies and fighting those twin Wars on Terrorism and Drugs. Planning for some sort of climate change chaos is about as smart as planning for a post-invasion Iraq that didn't spontaneously form into a free-market democracy.

    While we're at it, weather satellites are giving too much information to the alarmists, too. 100 years ago we did just fine without weather satellites, and it would save money too, especially if we got rid of that money-suck called FEMA.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:3, Insightful)

    by interkin3tic (1469267) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @03:50PM (#37269078)
    How would we "forget" something that happened before humans were around? Oh, using science to figure out that the climate has changed in the past? So science is good only when it backs up your political agenda? How convenient for you.

    Anyway, something happening naturally in the past does not mean it MUST happen naturally always. You know, murder is a thing despite people dying naturally too.
  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:4, Insightful)

    by interkin3tic (1469267) on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @04:01PM (#37269178)

    a liberal mindset believe that resources are running out, and that they need to force change on other people

    As opposed to assuming they'll never run out despite every indication they will, and letting other people selfishly use them up? Gee, we're such assholes.

    If you're worried about the climate not staying exactly the same from one year to the next, you have picked the wrong planet to be born on.

    When climate change is avoidable by a little self-restraint, we should take steps to avoid that climate change. In life, pain is inevitable, but that's a pretty piss-poor justification for saying "It's okay for me to hurt you, because if you worry about pain you picked the wrong planet to be born on."

    The accusation that climate change alarmists are forming a secular religion I believe is not completely unfounded. Anyone who would follow the Goracle on the topic of climate change may not like it when the computer models are finally generated that finally reflect reality.

    Some people on this side of the debate are stupid yes, but that doesn't make all of us wrong.

    It will be data gathered from satellites that I believe will finally put an end to playing climate games by sampling data in way that produces the desired results.

    Your accusations that people are skewing the data have not been backed up. Most recently the whole climategate thing showed the skeptics were trying to make something out of nothing.

    If the data is being skewed, where's the smoking gun? If you don't have it, then stop throwing those lies around.

  • Re:Wrong idea (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dunbal (464142) * on Wednesday August 31, 2011 @04:14PM (#37269288)

    Er you're backwards. People have fewer kids out of the fear of not being able to afford them or maintain their previous lifestyle. Understanding that this fear is real and not imagined is a function of education, not income. There's nothing magical about being poor that forces you to have more kids. Condoms and other forms of birth control are not that expensive. Here in the third world, where I live, there are government programs that give them away free. I've had many women from poor families save money to come to me as the village doctor for a shot of medroxyprogesterone which will keep her period free for up to 6 months - it costs about $8. I usually don't charge for this.

    However the poor are usually also poorly educated, so they fall prey to religion (the Pope says condoms are evil), superstition, or other factors that lead them to avoid birth control. Or the men simply don't give a shit about the women getting pregnant and the woman thinks she can "trap" a man with a baby - none of which lead to healthy functional relationships. This dysfunction tends to perpetuate poverty vertically.

The ideal voice for radio may be defined as showing no substance, no sex, no owner, and a message of importance for every housewife. -- Harry V. Wade

Working...