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Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 1:20 PM

Ever since the Kyoto protocol, there seems to be an increased (but hyped up!) awareness about Global warming. Virtually every one of the celebrities, corporate heads, (retired) heads of state/ statesmen ... most of whom had been at the helm of affairs in actually creating and "programming" some or the other activities that created conditions for increased CO2 (and hence Global warming conditions), have vaingloriously begun campaigning for CO2 and GHG reductions. Though belated, it definitely is a good thing for the world.

What do these mean for an engineer? Are we ready for such themes and concepts, which "ask" us to virtually turn the wheels backward?

The following are some of the concepts that need to be "defined" form an engineer's point of view, so that there is universal acceptance and standard yardsticks for us to take into account when designing and constructing all future contrivances, appliances, systems. processes and engineered solutions:

CARBON CREDITS, CERTIFIED EMISSION REDUCTIONS, CLEAN DEVELOPMENT MECHANISM, GREEN HOUSE GASES (GHG's), GREEN PRODUCTS ...

Huge amounts of money are involved in what is now known as CARBON TRADING, and the standard "Market Forces" have been allowed to direct the progress of these, toward reducing CO2 and GHG's in the Global Atmosphere. Are we engineers supposed to be mere by-standers in all these, and accept the POLITICS AND ECONOMICS of carbon Trading , as it comes?

Perhaps we also NEED to express seriously our presence too.

pvhramani

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#1

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 1:58 PM

It's all just politics. It does not mean much for the engineer.

However, I must say that you seem to believe that the engineers should be driving the game. Once in a while engineers do get to wear a marketing hat, but marketing is really outside of the scope of our discipline.

A company will be the most successful when it listens closely to what the people want and delivers a product that meets or exceeds those expectations.

The job of the engineer is to enable the company to build what the company wants built. In other words, we deal with the hows and not the whats.

I really don't know if all of those "belated" efforts are really a good thing for the world. Some maybe good, but probably not all. If the consumer ends up paying a higher price for a product or service just to be "green" when it does not need to be, well, that's a bad thing. It is also stupid.

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 6:28 PM

"If the consumer ends up paying a higher price for a product or service just to be 'green' when it does not need to be, well, that's a bad thing. It is also stupid."

I agree. But when even the Scientific World is divided of the issue of Global Warming, who determines "when it does not need to be"? This Warning Bell has been interpreted by the Politicians, the Economists, the Moralists - Why have the Engineers kept their mouth shut? Are they so busy with their Minds and Hands - and leaving up the issue of Global Warmnig for Others to decide upon?

Far from the Politics, Economics, Ethics of Global Warming, fortunately somehow, the Internet has brought together a multi-national multi-discipline group of scientific-minded well-meaning do-gooders to address the complicated concerns of Man-of-Today with the simple solutions of Man-of-Yesterday. The evolving APIX Network is indeed a living example of Man-helping-Man however and wherever one is situated.

To know more about the APIX Network read the many Discussion Threads in this Sustainable Engineering Forum.

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#12
In reply to #4

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 8:51 AM

"I agree. But when even the Scientific World is divided of the issue of Global Warming, who determines "when it does not need to be"? This Warning Bell has been interpreted by the Politicians, the Economists, the Moralists - Why have the Engineers kept their mouth shut? Are they so busy with their Minds and Hands - and leaving up the issue of Global Warmnig for Others to decide upon?"

Well, I'll try to answer those questions as I see them.

First, who determines when it does not need to be? That's easy for those of us who live in a democracy to answer. It is the people that make that determination. In a free society no group has the authority to rise up and tell everyone else what to do (unless empowered by the people) or impose their will on the population.

As far as the warning bell goes, I feel that there is no way to really tell what is really happening. Once politics got its foot in the door, truth went out the back door.

Why have the engineers been silent? Well, what is the role of the engineer here? The original poster eluded that the engineer should tell the people what they want to buy and what is good for them.

Well, the free market does not work that way and the vast number of companies don't work that way either. My point in my earlier post I spoke to was that a company having various experts must work together as a team. This includes marketing, administrative, executive, engineering, technicians, etc. All have their areas of expertise and a good company will function as a team under the direction of their leadership. Think of a company as a group of rowers in a boat. If any one rower fails to work with the others, the result will be a boat that does not perform well or worse, sails into chaos.

If, as an engineer, you feel that the leadership in your workplace is not sailing in the right direction, it is good to respectively speak your mind. If the leadership rejects your ideas and you feel strongly about them, quit and get a new job working for someone that shares your vision. Or, quit and start your own company.

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#13
In reply to #12

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 9:28 AM

"I agree. But when even the Scientific World is divided of the issue of Global Warming, who determines "when it does not need to be"? This Warning Bell has been interpreted by the Politicians, the Economists, the Moralists - Why have the Engineers kept their mouth shut? Are they so busy with their Minds and Hands - and leaving up the issue of Global Warmnig for Others to decide upon?"

Engineering requires a basis of tangibility which is of grave lack in the global warming argument.

First, who determines when it does not need to be? In a free society no group has the authority to rise up and tell everyone else what to do (unless empowered by the people) or impose their will on the population.

No one is actually telling us what to do they are basically rocking the boat in a very abrupt and determined manner designed to create a feeling of insecurity in the global populace.

What caused the abrupt about face of the scientific community from warning of a coming ice age during the '70's to global warming???

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#2

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 5:44 PM

pvhramani,

I'm not an engineer but I've been around it all my life and as a mechanic have had to deal with it whether good or bad. That said I'll put in my two cents worth.

Necessity truly is the mother of invention. The engineer is called on when the necessity arises. If it isn't truly broke don't fix it. The science of global warming is not proven. Climatic changes happen on such a broad scale and take so many years to see that there just isn't the data to support the claims. Right now on the 20th of April I am writing this while looking outside at a snowstorm that is probably going to deposit 6 inches tonight and the forecast is for up to a week of the same. Using thier methodology I might be looking at the beginning of an ice age.

The amazing thing to me is that if it all proves out to be a hoax these same politicians will just smoothly change thier position, put the blame on the scientists and get elected to another term. Why would any sane engineer want to get in the middle of that?

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#6
In reply to #2

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 11:05 PM

I couldnt agree with you more. Right on. No one has ever bothered to listen to engineers in the past until they are up to their arse in problems, so why make major efforts to solve a phantom problem that may not (and probably doesnt) even exist and then get beaten up over why we as engineers caused a major dilemma.

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#3

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 6:21 PM

Before anyone jumps in with the northern ice is melting too fast as proof, please not that volcanic activity on the eastern Asian/Russian basin is at a very high rate and the ash drift is north. Ask yourself what happens to snow and ice when a liberal amount of black sot is sprinkled on it? Well it melts faster! So what do we do next stop plate tectonics?

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#5

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 10:19 PM

As Global citizens, we should research the issue and act as we see fit.

As engineers, we should continue to solve the engineering problems given to us to improve efficency reduce waste, minimze required energy an material reuired for the application and improve the safety of our projects.

The celebrities can pose and have their photos taken next to our works, or emerging from them. (Some of my materials and My clients products are on the boeing and airbus aircraft... as well as some really fine cars and motorcycles.

But don't listen to celebrities for "education sake"

Only for mindless entertainment.

You may continue to assert that CO2 and GHG reductions "definitely is a good thing."

But it is not an engineering axiom.

It is amatter of politico/sociofaith supported by a newly emerging and imperfect science being practiced by a small number of people who have jealously prevented any outside their immediate cabal from evaluating their data or models in any detail.

It may be popular opinion. but it is not settled science.

Refutations of the commonly held symptoms (cause discovered for Frog mutations, increased solar activity, ice build up in southern hemisphere ) of global warming continue to arise.

Engineers should engineer, and remain open to evidence rather than search for validation of what the popular celebrities would like the answer to be.

I remember when I wanted Pi to be an even number...

milo

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#7
In reply to #5

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/20/2008 11:34 PM

As engineers, we should continue to solve the engineering problems given to us to improve efficency reduce waste, minimze required energy an material reuired for the application and improve the safety of our projects.

In my mind, one does not get any "greener" than this. Increased efficiency, reduced waste, minimize consumption. This is the role of the engineer (I like to use the phrase, "optimize the cost of ownership or the return on investment" to express the same things). Engineers are inherently green, if they are doing their best for their customers...

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#8

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 1:35 AM

Most celeb's can't spell engineer...

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#9

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 6:06 AM

good evening pvhramani

you picked so very clrear targets to home in on when you used the term heads of state but i would like to ask if you intened to include some of the persons attached to or speaking as representaives of NGO's?

if you can obtain a transcript of the interview between the late Barbra Frum of CBC and one paul watson the then spokesperson for Greepeace and now apparently in the same capacity for the Sea Shepherd Society i think you may ask yourself if persons such as him may be eligible for inclusion in the list of persons who may be indirectly contributing to global warming.

that short interview presents to me a image that there is no truth to the claims of seals being a endangered marine mammal but what the heck i as a member / spokeman of greenpeace will use whatever methods i can or will create situations scenes to support my claims that they are.

check it out, maybe my view is off base.

'da ber

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#10

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 7:22 AM

Any new concept would take years to arrive at appropriately defined and codified formats. However, even before the "science" of such concepts is clearly understood, human experiences suggest that the "effects" due to such phenomena would be evident well in advance. The effects of so-called "Global Warming" is, thus no different. It is true that there could be as many explanations and hypothesis as the number of proponents. But one thing is certain: from the days of the first steam engine development by James Watt and Joseph Stephenson et.all, the effects of Industrial revolution in Europe made the greatest impact on human civilization, and after World War II these impacts have had still greater effects. While the first "revolution" gave fillip to the great explorations (hauling great adventurers and men and women across seas using steam engines), followed by colonialism and invasions of the East by the West (England, France, Spain, Portugal, Denmark, Belgium ...) the war created the conditions for a "cold war" between the "blocks". To-day the combined effects of all these have developed into catastrophic human problems, resulting in poverty, disease, illiteracy on the one side vs extraordinarily heavy consumption on the other.

In sum, we need to understand that the so-called "global Warming" is but an effect of this indiscriminate consumption, resulting in wastage, pollution, conflicts, environmental degradation and unprecedented human sufferings. That there are more than 3 billion people who do not earn even US $1 per day is the net result.

Now comes the after-thought: The UN Millennium Development Goals, Clean development Mechanism, Carbon Emissions Reduction, etc.

This brings in automatic conflicts between the so-called Developed world and the Developing world, for the world's TECHNOLOGY is what the Western world (usually the Developed nations) had developed, and the East want to follow suit, as though their following in the footsteps of the west is the best economic answer. To-day, countries such as India and China are becoming hubs of so-called Industrial activities (read it as destroying and polluting the environment), while the West wishes to Off-set their Pollution through partly subsidizing such industrialization, that suits the NEW definitions. This is not to the liking of the developing world, who also wish to have their own brands of DuPonts, GE's, Monsanto's, and others who developed the original west. (Note: GE has totally sold out it's Plastics interest to SABIC Industries of Saudi Arabia, and there appears to be a news that Polycarbonate developed by GE may be detrimental to children???)

That being so, what is the way out? There is no point in blames, points, counter points etc. We NEED to move forward. The UN and other institutions, though very weak in any real implementation and practical poverty alleviation, are currently trying to bring certain defined and codified systems that would be a beginning in our attempts to reduce the "catastrophic" forebodings. This discussion is being initiated in the light of these dramatic new beginnings, and it is felt that we engineers CANNOT be mere spectators and submissive bye-standers, but it would be necessary that we too understand the reality and come forward with our own pragmatic, engineered solutions. Let us not be cynical or merely critical; but let us show our constructive creativity through what we could offer, in a system that would soon have trading potentials of tens of Billions of dollars

That, then, is the reality

pvhramani

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#14
In reply to #10

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 9:35 AM

"In sum, we need to understand that the so-called "global Warming" is but an effect of this indiscriminate consumption, resulting in wastage, pollution, conflicts, environmental degradation and unprecedented human sufferings. That there are more than 3 billion people who do not earn even US $1 per day is the net result."

On the contrary, The fact that everyone on the world isn't earning less than US $1 per day is the result of man's material progress, as a result of the efficiencies created by our science and engineering created technologies, And our ability to widely disseminate knowledge, rather than huddle together in caves ignorant and starving.

The fact that the "measure" is not against starvation, but against success of the western technology proves this point.

"Global warming" MAY BE an effect of population and our current state of technology and consumption, or it MAY be the result of fluctuations in SOLAR FLUX or it may be just the thermal cycling (oscillation) of our non steady state planet. To claim to know the slope of a line when we have only one point is stupidity, to claim that our 10 years of "crappy and imprecise data" is somehow a suitable measure over thousands and millions of years is intellectual fraud on its face and malfeasance at best. (Ask for the assumptions and error factors in the climate models, and the size of the areas (discrimination) in their calculations. The pronouncements are on the order of BLunt instrument, not even up to flint edged tools for sharpness.) 10 years/25 years in hundreds of thousands of years is barely a single point... worthless as a basis for understanding the overall trend.

Especially when the "experts" won't allow their "algorithms" to be subject to scrutiny by the broad scientific community.

To "do something" without truly understanding the real root cause leads to suboptimization of resource use thus exacerbating the poverty and misery in the world. We can grow all the food we need, but diverting food to make fuel is the idiotic result of "doing something to remediate Global Warming" with out understanding the energy balance and susatiainability cycle.

In 1970 the first earth day, Everyone was championiong MALTHUS as our short term fate. Our problem isn't food production, its distribution and local availability, and these are politico social problems not technology. We have engineered how we can get the mass from A to B . We have the technology.

You may be a true believer, but I would urge you to work as an engineer to optimizing efficiencies and minimizing inputs in your work, as the most responsible way to solve whatever it is in your mind when you use the words "global warming."

Peace.

milo

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#15
In reply to #14

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 9:44 AM

Think I'll watch the movie documentary "Expelled" with Ben Stein and see if there is a balancing act to follow...

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#16
In reply to #14

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 11:20 AM

Milo;

It might be, key word here is might, true that all this noise about global warming is an error of scientific thinking and that we are not harming our environment at all, however, to say:

"Especially when the "experts" won't allow their "algorithms" to be subject to scrutiny by the broad scientific community."

is as far from the truth as one can make it. It is clear to me, at any rate, that you do not follow the mainstream of science at all. I suggest you subscribe to some of the important scientific journals and keep up with the mainstream. A good journal to begin with would be Nature. If you want to keep abreast with today, you might also consider online journals such as ScienceDaily or even NASA's science reports. Also, a very good collection of all the studies are summarized by the USA's EPA and DOE.

"To "do something" without truly understanding the real root cause leads to suboptimization of resource use thus exacerbating the poverty and misery in the world. We can grow all the food we need, but diverting food to make fuel is the idiotic result of "doing something to remediate Global Warming" with out understanding the energy balance and susatiainability cycle."

As far is this statement is concerned is waaaaay beyond reason. If you have looked at the mainstream proposals, I am sure you would see that all of the responsible science and engineering has been toward not disrupting our food chains, and in fact, has been geared toward enhancing the food chain to reach out to the poor and undernourished.

You are respected on this forum, please do not tell us that our science is flawed, we are working hard to understand and correct the problems that face our earth. Please do nat tell us that we do not submit our findings and conclusions to full "scrutiny by the broad scientific community" where you, like all the rest of us have the right to dispute all of the data.

respectfully,

chtank

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#18
In reply to #16

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 12:15 PM

Hi chtank. Thanks for your thoughtful comments.

I agree with your "might" it seems we are at the same place, just facing the opposite directions.

AS for the mainstream science, I thought that this was mainstream when I read it in December:

ScienceDaily (Dec. 12, 2007) — A new study comparing the composite output of 22 leading global climate models with actual climate data finds that the models do an unsatisfactory job of mimicking climate change in key portions of the atmosphere.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071211101623.htm

I have similar toned articles out of, all places, the NY times science section, which alas, I'm not finding right this second.

Here is a link to a number of scientists who have stated disagreement with one or more of the principal conclusions of the mainstream scientific opinion on global warming: http://tinyurl.com/2jw4b4

(Disagreement with conclusions- not skeptics!)

Finally, Freeman Dyson makes some cogent comments . Please Note I'm including his agreement on CO2 's role, and am not hiding it under a rug.

Dyson agrees with the general theory of anthropogenic global warming, and has written

"One of the main causes of warming is the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere resulting from our burning of fossil fuels such as oil and coal and natural gas.

[16]

"

However, he has argued that existing simulation models of climate fail to account for some important factors, and hence the results will contain too much error to reliably predict future trends.

"The models solve the equations of fluid dynamics, and they do a very good job of describing the fluid motions of the atmosphere and the oceans. They do a very poor job of describing the clouds, the dust, the chemistry and the biology of fields and farms and forests...

[16]

"
"As a scientist I do not have much faith in predictions. Science is organized unpredictability. The best scientists like to arrange things in an experiment to be as unpredictable as possible, and then they do the experiment to see what will happen. You might say that if something is predictable then it is not science. When I make predictions, I am not speaking as a scientist. I am speaking as a story-teller, and my predictions are science-fiction rather than science.

[16]

"

He has also argued against the ostracisation of scientists who oppose the consensus, stating that heretics have historically been an important force in driving scientific progress.

"heretics who question the dogmas are needed... I am proud to be a heretic. The world always needs heretics to challenge the prevailing orthodoxies.

[16]

You can find these by looking up Freeman Dyson on Wikipedia.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTSxubKfTBU

The point that I tried to make, better stated by dyson, was : existing simulation models of climate fail to account for some important factors, and hence the results will contain too much error to reliably predict future trends.

In the interest of honoring the scientific method, we should continue to evaluate , without prejudice, all data and all possible explanations, not merely those that serve the politicians and the media.

Thanks for the professionalism in your comments.

This is a great forum, and the give and take of these open discussions force us all to be better critical thinkers.

milo

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#19
In reply to #18

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 1:11 PM

Actually, the United Nations report is available on line, and the report itself is very clear on some of the limitations of the models used, and the variations between models. I personally am concerned about the fact that the sections on paleoclimate do not carry the weight they should, especially the longer term issues.

Reasonable conclusions:

1. The climate is warming.

2. It is likely that human activities contribute to this phenomenon, although the scale of this contribution is perhaps questionable, when put into a long-term perspective. Furthermore, there is evidence suggesting that human activity has had an impact on climate significantly predating the use of fossil fuels (specifically, the deforestation associated with large-scale agriculture in Eurasia 5,000 to 8,000 years ago).

3. Climate is a chaotic phenomenon. Predicting the trajectory, assuming one knows exactly the starting conditions, is impossible beyond a very limited time scale.

4. Do you trust politicians to tweak the system without a full understanding of the impact on the system? Any engineer can tell you, don't tweak the system if you don't understand the underlying drivers- you can do more damage than good.

5. A warmer world is far more desirable than a new ice age (OK, that is a personal opinion, not a conclusion). The climate WILL change, no matter what we do. Which means it will either get colder or it will get warmer. Most likely, it will stay within certain limits due to the interaction with the extraterrestrial environment.

This is not to say that we should not be planting trees and using more efficient light bulbs. There are far more significant reasons to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels than the spectre of global warming- such as we are running out of petroleum, and we are making cities very unhealthy places to live with the air polution.

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#36
In reply to #19

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 10:15 AM

It is likely that human activities contribute to this phenomenon, although the scale of this contribution is perhaps questionable, when put into a long-term perspective. Furthermore, there is evidence suggesting that human activity has had an impact on climate significantly predating the use of fossil fuels (specifically, the deforestation associated with large-scale agriculture in Eurasia 5,000 to 8

Any engineer can tell you, don't tweak the system if you don't understand the underlying drivers- you can do more damage than good.,000 years ago).

The only clear evidence I'm aware of which indicates a man made influence upon climatic changes occurring due atmospheric disruption following and a point of attrition of continuing (atom splitting) nuclear testing; air and or surface bursts. These noted effects which I have delineated but are readily available bear upon our planets upper atmosphere and of conditions within the uppers layers having been permanently altered with respect to functionality. Yes this is fairly vague and for good reason as some will well note; however these culminate the total of measurable effects of man kind upon his environment as a whole.

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#38
In reply to #36

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 11:26 AM

You are ABSOLUTELY correct in the use of the term "clear". If one reads the UN climate report, one finds that the models, and thus the conclusions drawn, are based on limited historical data, potentially biased interpretations, and models that do not fully map the appropriated cause and effect relationships at all scales. Furthermore, the models appear valid only when one limits the time scale, ignoring significant paleoclimatic "evidence". We have incomplete knowledge. Something can be learned from the exercise conducted by the UN, but it must be put into perspective. The most important conclusion to be drawn from the study is that we know far too little about the drivers to start tweaking the system...

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#21
In reply to #18

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 2:22 PM

"ScienceDaily (Dec. 12, 2007) — A new study comparing the composite output of 22 leading global climate models with actual climate data finds that the models do an unsatisfactory job of mimicking climate change in key portions of the atmosphere.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071211101623.htm

I have similar toned articles out of, all places, the NY times science section, which alas, I'm not finding right this second."

It seems to me that this study is in disagreement with the modeling method, not the data nor the overall scientific conclusions. And, taken from ScienceDaily ignore the many other arguments to the contrary that have been presented in that publication. I recommend that our reader go to the whole of both the earth and climate and the Matter and energy sections before making up their minds as to which arguments to accept. Note that this is in agreement with your argument, too. My argument is that it is clear that our climate, be it at the surface or the upper atmosphere is changing for the warmer as an unprecedented rate and the change, for now, can be traced directly to a more than historic rapid increase in carbon dioxide.

Also, please observe that the level of methane in the atmosphere has been ignore by the models, however, as the oceans warm, the danger of the release of Methane hydrate is eminent, a gas which is 20 times more of a greenhouse gas than either water or carbon dioxide. If you recall, the release of sub-sea methane was the cause of some ship disappearances that resulted in the "Bermuda Triangle" scare of a few years back.

I might add, there is some discussion of harvesting the methane hydrate as our land based fossil fuel supplies dwindle. Also, keep in mind that an estimated 9 trillion barrels of oil is still trapped in the shale oil and oil sands of the US and Canada. It is simply more costly to extract than that we now get from teh ground. Also, coal can be converted into liquids and refined just as crude oil. It costs more and does present pollution problems which are also costly to solve. I would venture to say that we will need, in due time, all of the energy sources and we will need, in due time, to provide for all of earth's ever increasing human population. Likely we will need to be serious about the colonization of space - in due time.

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#23
In reply to #10

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/22/2008 10:08 PM

Good answer. I am not sure of the spelling but, Namasta my friend.
Dragon

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#24
In reply to #23

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/22/2008 10:57 PM

Hello Friend "Dragonsfarm"

Thank you for your sentiment, and my NAMSTE' to you too

"Namaste' .." is spelt commonly as is done here, but pronounced as in reading "namasthey" ... the "th" to be pronounced as you pronounce THICK.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Namaste

The expression is combined with the gesture:

This has been taken from the "wikipedia" link above

Thank you again

pvhramani

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#27
In reply to #24

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/23/2008 10:15 AM

A key to a critical aspect of overcoming both Global Warming and the economic issues we face can be found in the teachings of Buddha- specifically in the first step of overcoming craving...

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#29
In reply to #24

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/23/2008 7:07 PM

Pvhramani, thank you for the correction. I had known of the gesture, having seen and performed it before but was ignorant of the spelling.

I will add it to my list.

Your brother in the Buddha, Dragon

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#31
In reply to #10

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/23/2008 11:50 PM

A bit of history. The great explorations and colonial empires were created using wind power, sailing ships, not steamships. Without the colonial empires much of the world would still be as it was before the empires forced Western science and ideas onto the native populations. If not for the British, India would not be a united country and Tata would not exist to buy Jaguar. The invasion of the East by the West during the period of 1400 to the 1800's had nothing to do with the "cold war" between the Soviets and the rest of the world.

Are you saying that India has catastrophic human problems, resulting in poverty, disease, illiteracy now that it did not have before the Europeans came or that it would not have them if they had not come? India has benefited from European influence, even though it was forced on them and there were injustices done. Why shouldn't Western countries consume what they can make and pay for? I doubt that you are poor, sick or illiterate, and you probably want to live as well as an American or European.

The present change in climate is a continuation of the natural warming which began in the 1600's and has nothing to do with "indiscriminate consumption" [which is Left-speak for "I am jealous of what you have because I don't and I want to take it away from you.] "Wastage, pollution, conflicts, environmental degradation and unprecedented human sufferings" have very little influence considering the massive natural causes of warming. Toxic gases and particulates are bad and need to be reduced. CO2 is not toxic and is good for plants. You emit CO2 when you breathe, so if you consider CO2 as pollution, stop breathing.

In 1850 in America $1 per day was considered fair pay for unskilled work and you could get breakfast & lunch for a dime and steak for 50 cents. In those countries can those people buy food grown in that country and eat for that $1 a day? Probably, if their corrupt governments and politicians didn't tax everything to death to enrich themselves. Do not blame the West for local failings. Remember that before Mugabe the nation of Zimbabwe exported food, now they are starving and Mugabe is rich. We do not set the wages and taxes in other countries, nor do we prevent people from developing their own economies.

The U. N. is so totally ineffective that it is meaningless other than as a place for grand speeches and no action. The Carbon Credit trading system is simply a way for polluters to continue while others spend millions and raise their costs and prices and the Algores get rich. An engineer has a duty to make the cleanest, most efficient, reliable product at the lowest cost so that his company can sell more at a lower price and make more profit. An engineer should have integrity, but remember that he is working for an employer and he must do as the employer wishes or resign.

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#32
In reply to #31

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/24/2008 1:32 AM

Hello

Being arrogant, assertive and overpowering is NORMAL human behavior; but diluting our very serious discussion on World Development and Technological Innovations to solve Current problems through such vituperative "mumbo-jumbo" may not be the correct method, through which the greatest human achievement: LANDING THE MAN ON THE MOON BY AMERICAN SCIENTIST AND ENGINEERS THROUGH INITIAL VISION OF THE LATE PRESIDENT KENNEDY: was successfully completed ON TIME, ON DOT. It is that spirit and IMAGINATION, MISSION ,VISION that we need to solve a Definite crisis, brought about by Indiscriminate Consumerism, resulting in OVER CONSUMPTION, DISPARITIES and RIFT BETWEEN THE RICH AND THE POOR (in the language of THERMODYNAMICS, the Increase of ENTROPY, leading to the Heat Death of the universe) .

Your onslaught, if not arrogance, tending toward even "racial level" thought lingering somewhere within is NOT appropriate here: "Without the colonial empires much of the world would still be as it was before the empires forced Western science and ideas onto the native populations. If not for the British, India would not be a united country and Tata would not exist to buy Jaguar. The invasion of the East by the West during the period of 1400 to the 1800's had nothing to do with the "cold war" between the Soviets and the rest of the world." (Note: Do not drag great personalities such as TATA here. They are too great and preoccupied with greatest of human developments, unlike ordinary mortals such as all of us...more so such arrogant personalities)

This is indeed highly DEMEANING and terribly out of proportion for one who has SACRIFICED EVERYTHING IN LIFE TO APPLY SCIENCE, ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY FOR THE UPLIFT OF OVER 750 MILLION PEOPLE OF DOWNTRODDEN LEVELS. For, if an Indian (here in Delhi, Mumbai Kolkatta, Bangalore as well as the so-called "red" Indians in US) and other non-Western cultures are populated by NATIVES ( a highly DEMEANING arrogated word) , what are the "fair colored" Western Culture men and women? Could you please clarify? In India we could have moved the court and taken you into custody by Law to be put behind bars for a few years for this DISCRIMINATIVE and RACIAL PRACTISE. You are lucky to get away by being a non Indian, far away.

For your study, I recommend:

EVERYTHING YOU WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT OFFSETTING BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK: By Ron Dembo and Clive Davidson

Read pages 9 through 10:

"The Industrial Revolution created an economic and social transformation that continued with the introduction of steam-powered trains and ships, electrical power generation and the internal combustion engine. The new technologies and energy sources revolutionized how people worked and lived, generated unprecedented prosperity and created a new culture based on consumerism. The exploration and colonization of the world that took place at around the same time revealed an unprecedented abundance to be exploited. Everywhere there were discoveries of iron, coal, cotton and other raw materials. These were shipped to the factories of Western Europe and North America to be turned into an endless supply of new goods. And then there was oil, a whole new energy source that accelerated the pace of development. Meanwhile, the Earth was forgiving—or so it
seemed. Factories and coal-fired power plants pumped carbon dioxide and other gases into the atmosphere. Chemicals and waste spewed into rivers. Forests were clear-cut for their timber.
Cars and trucks belched exhaust fumes across the land. While this caused localized pollution or environmental degradation, there was little visible evidence of wider or longer-term effects.
Besides, the new prosperity was too beguiling to stop and question. Once sampled, few chose to return to a life of agricultural subsistence or manual labour. Many, of course, did not have the choice. Eventually, city smog and toxic rivers forced
local authorities to start introducing pollution regulations, and civic engineering works such as sewers and water supplies improved urban environments. Meanwhile, some insightful thinkers started to ponder more deeply the consequences of the new way of life."

Now we have One advise to many of our Western brethren fraternity of the quality and characters such as Taganan: Please do not arrogate yourself to be the "brain and brawn" of the universe. Every one of such category would have to learn who Gandhi was and What he meant?

In the meanwhile may we ask: With your higher level of Know-how and Standard of brain, would it not be very easy to answer some of the sophisticated problems on which many amongst us here are working on? Do you have anything constructive to offer in solving those please? We would be very happy to have you in our midst. This discussion was in fact instituted for that CONSTRUCTIVE and CREATIVE purpose

pvhramani

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#61
In reply to #32

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 1:07 AM

As a NATIVE of my country I have great respect for the NATIVES of other countries and for their contributions to civilization. Native simply means someone born in a place, nothing more or less, except to some of extreme political views. A person born in England is a NATIVE of England. Every society has given something to another, even when the other society resented it, which has brought that society to a higher level of civilization and technology. I resent having my Western civilization blamed for all that is wrong in the world. "In India we could have moved the court and taken you into custody by Law to be put behind bars for a few years" You would put people behind bars just for saying words you don't like, that does not fit any kind of open-minded freedom of speech, which I am sure you would demand for yourself even if I were offended by your choice of words. You are so open-minded!!

It is a fact that Western civilization was first spread by use of wooden ships with sails, not steam. If not for European colonization, the indigenous people of the Americas would still be living in a stone age. I am not saying that what happened in history was all right or all wrong, but without that history many people in many non-Western countries would not live as well as they do.

I seems that over consumption can happen in any society, those who have power, own businesses and can tax the people for their own enrichment live in mansions, drive the best cars, ride the best horses, have lots of clothes and jewels and eat plenty of good food. It happens in my country and I am certain it happens in India. There will always be some people who are rich and some who are poor. The trick is to keep the society free enough to allow the poor to get a chance to get rich and allow the foolish rich to spend themselves poor.

Having read some of the ancient Vedic texts in translation with respect for the wisdom there, knowing that somewhere in the distant past it is likely that we may have had common relatives who spoke the same Indo-European language, I did not harbor a single "racial" thought. My intention was to stress the fact that India did benefit from the British, despite the injustices and humiliation of the Empire. Bad things can have good results.

The reference to Tata Autos buying Jaguar was to make the point that the good results for India was that an Indian company could buy a British company. Good for India!

I'm sure I could find a book to quote too and it would mean just as little, depending on the political point of view being pushed by the authors. So sorry I replied to you in a way you found offensive too. My thoughts are on ways to be constructive and creative, but I do not accept the notion that the West is at fault for all the problems of the non-Western world

"Please do not arrogate yourself to be the "brain and brawn" of the universe." No, but my opinions are just as good as anyone's here. "With your higher level of Know-how and Standard of brain, would it not be very easy to answer some of the sophisticated problems on which many amongst us here are working on?" So glad you realize that, and I will try to occasionally get in a good idea or two.

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#52
In reply to #31

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 5:38 PM

It would I believe suffice to clean up the result of incomplete Roman engineering:

www.nfb.ca/collection/films/fiche?id=51166 is a good example of the result.

I don't however believe we as a species will have any affirmative effect upon the deliverance of our planet. I believe we have neither the combined intelligence nor the will to fulfill such endeavors. It is foolish to think we are in any type of control of our planet.

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#53
In reply to #52

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 6:19 PM

bwire, consider this, we are on earth to learn and our reward after life it based on how and what we learn. God gave us the intelligence to learn, so why not use it for learning, WHat better way to KNow God than to study his works, i.e., science.

http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~chtank/education.html

http://www.chtank.org/

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#65
In reply to #53

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 2:25 AM

WHat better way to KNow God than to study his works, i.e., science.

God gave the intelligence to follow His instructions, read His word and you will gain understanding wisdom and knowledge.

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#11

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 8:09 AM

1. Every living species of which I am aware, from microbe to primate, extracts resources from the environment and excretes waste into the environment. This is a basic feature of this thing we call life.

2. Any population of any species left unmolested by predation, disease or other external forcing is going to expand to the limit of the environment to support it. Either the population will strip the available environment of the required resources, or will poison the environment with waste.

There is nothing whatsoever unnatural about the human condition. We are either going to starve to death due to overpopulation, or poison our environment to the point where it is uninhabitable. One would hope that human intelligence would be sufficient to avert this natural fate, but that assumes that one's leaders are also intelligent...

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#22
In reply to #11

Economics/Politics/Warming--Reversing progress for the sake of Progress

04/21/2008 4:55 PM

There is a third fate, somewhere in between. But (and especially in those regions where folks think of themselves as least vulnerable), it's going to require a significant bit of regression...in effect, turning back the clock; this even while "innovation" plods along, attempting not to turn back the clock. The upside is that history, our own histories and that of our forebears, is replete with examples of (with ready-made lessons from) times when Earth's peoples faced "society shaking" population and resource based crises—we can and must be open to learning from these and, yes, willing to accept the possibility, nay the likelihood, that innovation (without major societal changes) will be inadequate to keep us going along the present course of what we have too long mistakenly thought of of as "progress." The world has already reached the tipping point at which there will be no going back...without some going back.

UG

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#62
In reply to #11

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 1:10 AM

Intelligent politicians! An oxymoron.

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#17

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 12:10 PM

Friends

This discussions has been initiated in the light of a few other related Energy based Techno-commercial interactions:

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/20153/Aternative-Energy-AE-Solutions-for-Philippine-Factories-Which-is-ideal

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/19792/What-makes-an-Ideal-Design-for-a-rural-based-Philippine-Industrial-Plant

http://cr4.globalspec.com/blogentry/5572/APIX-SEP-for-Agro-Biogenic-Energy-system

We are, infact taking up the challenge of Optimum Energy solution to the problems posed by manilaman.

It is suggested that personalities such as Milo and others who have expressed strongly on various matters here, do help US to come up with appropriate PRACTICAL ENGINEERING answers to the various related concepts: CARBON CREDITS, CLEAN DEVELOPMENT MECHANISMS, CERTIFIED EMISSION REDUCTIONS etc in the Projects that we have proposed. Chtank, garthh and a few others are working hard on the project. It may also be of interest to the different members who have strongly commented here that APIX-SEP is an OPEN SOURCE Design project for Sustainability Engineering in Energy and Materials Engineering.

We call upon members to freely join the Group toward arriving at Creative solutions to Engineered solutions to Sustainable Development, which we term as SUSTAINABILITY ENGINEERING. And finally, may we request that we be helped in arriving at defined systems that help us optimize for ZERO-WASTE-ZERO-CARBON Business Model?

pvhramani

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#20
In reply to #17

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/21/2008 1:53 PM

Hi pvhramani.

I just looked at your profile.

I think that your approach is right on target.

"Lift yourself up by your own bootstraps" is a phrase that conveys this.

One of the tragedies of modern life is that societies that had achieved a "local equilibrium" for their local conditions- tropical africa, regions in India, etc traded in their Local optimum (often at the point of a gun) for an imported alien lifestyle.

WHat works in the west isn't necessarily optimum for everywhere else. And that goes for institutions, as well as flora, fauna, crops, and trade...

But the high quality of life perceptions make it seem a "more desireable" system and so peeople move to cities, which are then incubators for disease outbreaks due to population concentration and exceeding local carrying capacity (to use a term i was taught in my ecology classes back in 1974). (See Jared Diamonds Guns Germs and Steel for a wonderful discussion of the perception of "Cargo" from the west in local non western cultures)

Using native (optimum) plants and animals is a great first step toward sustainability, but markets do not value those crops as highly as the aliens.

Ghandi actually pioneered this approach with his Kahdi and swadeshi policies.- the use of homespun and the boycott of foreign goods. So you are treading on a familiar and once successful path.

However, in todays internetworked world, it is difficult for people to be satisfied with local produce- when all of the choices that the world has to offer is viewable just a mouse click away. Until we can engineer "aspiration" out of people, (which I do NOT suggest we do!) they will always aspire towards more and more material well being and better goods. Where the people themselves define what better is.

The compromises necessary may be possible climbing UP the continuum of material welfare, but I donot believe that any one alive would voluntarily choose a drop in their personal material welfare. The tragedy of the commons comes to mind here as an important and illuminating point.

So local solutions as you propose will work for the short term. For the long term, everyone wants more, and feels that they are entitled to it.

I am sorry that I did not catch your request for sustainable systems assistance beneath all of the global warming stuff.

I will contact you directly as i have a question on your biomass calculation for the banana crop. It seems that your calculation of annual biomass would have you sacrifice all of the trees each year, rather than live off the biomass "interest" given by the cash crop of fruit. Watch your email.

milo

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#25

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/22/2008 11:01 PM

Engineers should design the best product they can, that will enable their company to make a profit and meet the needs of the customers. If what is designed is complex, expensive, not dependable, just to be "environmentally correct", then it will be poor engineering. Designing the best should also be designing the most energy efficient at the lowest cost. A compromise is not a sin.

Carbon credits are a way for Algore [and cronies] to get rich. Certified emission reductions can drive up the cost of production, prices and reduce the market, hurting the profit and the company. Greenhouse gases should not include CO2 and should be present only if absolutely needed to perform properly. Green products is a catchword allowing a product to sell for a higher price. Something like carbohydrate-free water, which is the same as pure water, but costs more.

The whole thing is driven by Leftist politics. To me, being labeled "green" means I don't want to buy it, because it is inferior and more expensive.

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#28
In reply to #25

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/23/2008 5:55 PM

Dear Taganan, Score one for a good answer. The question as I see it is not "Is it Green?" But is it efficient? By efficient, I mean least destructive, produces the most for the least energy, cost and effort. Most of the "Green" products are old, repackaged bad ones that did not sell at the level that their producers wanted. By putting the green label one them it makes the product look more appealing.

It is politics and money. As usual.

Dragon

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#30
In reply to #28

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/23/2008 9:41 PM

Actually it's the ever-abiding ease with which American people (oh, I meant consumers) can be led to mislead themselves. The consumption economy counts very much on people, Americans in particular, to be inept judges of value for money spent. (And doesn't everyone support more and more spending on education to create and turn out ever more, inept consumers?) That's why almost most everything is targeted at what euphemistically (in place of stupid) is called the younger demographics. One must realize it's not only products which are commodities; it's the buying public as well.

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#26

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/23/2008 2:43 AM

On studying the various "threads" in this discussion, it appears that emotions, cynicism, sarcasm, and negative orientation do play a large part in molding the overall thinking patterns of many engineers. The saddest observation is that hitherto almost all "creative developments" have been taken advantage of only by the smartest people, leaving behind the most creative and down-to-earth performers as mere spectators! The reason is not difficult to fathom, at least to this writer: an attitude of nonchalance, cynicism and negative orientation.

Look at this site:

http://www.devicelink.com/expo/gmx08/ - sorry, link no longer available

It is, therefore, very much in our interest to work toward what we call SUSTAINABILITY ENGINEERING (please see this link: http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/19305#newcomments

... wherein the Definition of SUSTAINABILITY ENGINEERING is:

"... the art, science, and technology of utilizing available resources and converting those into the material demands of the society, taking into cognizance the effects of Time-Entropy on the results and their implications to the environment, and thereby optimizing the use of renewable resources leading to the reduction of "competitive conflicts".

Discussions on the practical significance and the operational plausibilities of this definition is called for.

Thus, it is submitted here that we are not attempting to simply follow the band wagon of GREEN, REDUCTION OF GHG EMISSIONS ... etc, in the usual "also ran" category. We wish to be DIFFERENT: proactive, positive and creative countering the "bandwagon also-ran" smartees!

And, it is once again "prayed" that Engineer Members here and other interested personnel (interested in Sustainability Engineering) do come forward to help us create a better engineered world for all of mankind. We are attempting to do our bit in the best way we feel we could. Do please, therefore, study the different aspects on which we are working, by visiting the links presented, and YOUR VALUABLE COMMENTS on the possible improvements there on will be a great help. Let this forum be the channel for constructive interactions and Internationally Useful systems that the world would look for. WE HAVE THE POWER. Let's use that!

pvhramani

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#33

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 5:04 AM

It is five days since the APPEAL to the honorable engineer members of this forum was made:

"... it is once again "prayed" that Engineer Members here and other interested personnel (interested in Sustainability Engineering) do come forward to help us create a better engineered world for all of mankind. We are attempting to do our bit in the best way we feel we could. Do please, therefore, study the different aspects on which we are working, by visiting the links presented, and YOUR VALUABLE COMMENTS on the possible improvements there on will be a great help. Let this forum be the channel for constructive interactions and Internationally Useful systems that the world would look for."

It appears that there probably is little "spirit" (so to speak) amongst most here to come forward. As to what causes this nonchalant outlook is difficult to understand or fathom, especially when it is observed that there is no dearth of rhetorics that border on scorn and ridicule, if not outright rejection, of the concept of Global warming and the related subjects.

Politics and rhetorics apart, may we try to analyze the possible "fundamentals" of CARBON EMISSIONS, CARBON OFF-SETTING and their actual relation to CO2?

The following are the approximate "chemical" formulas and resultant Mol weights of a few fuels (only the basics):

METHANE = CH4 (Mol. weight = 18)

PROPANE IS C3H8 (Mol. Weight = 44)

GASOLINE/ PETROL IS C8H18 (Mol. Weight = 114)

DIESEL OIL IS C16H34 (Mol. Weight = 226)

It is logical to observe that the comparative CO2 productions would be based on the "theoretical" complete combustions of these fuels.

The following are the plausible CO2 productions per Kg of each fuel:

METHANE ............................................. 2.7 Kg/ Kg of fuel

PROPANE ............................................. 3 Kg/ Kg of fuel

GASOLINE ............................................ 3.08772 Kg/ Kg of fuel

DIESEL OIL .......................................... 3.1150 Kg/ Kg of fuel

CARBON OFFSETTING:

This would need that any CO2 producing Fossil Fuels would have to be replaced by Natural/ Renewable Fuels. For example, we could do this by burning Methane gas generated through Anaerobic fermentation of Agrowastes/ Organic wastes.

If we conservatively consider the sp.wt of liquid fuels to be 0.8, every Ton of Fossil fuel Burnt would produce not less than 3 tons of CO2, which would be totally offset if we used renewable fuel such as Methane (generated through anaerobic reaction of organic wastes) for equivalent energy needs.

Any thoughts and discussions analyses please?

pvhramani

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#34
In reply to #33

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 8:12 AM

pvhramami

We sense the sincerity and urgency of your request.

We lack many details to be of specific service, and as I found out, trying to think about the Mass balance of the banana crop was pointless since I had no true undertstanding that "banana trees" are an annual crop.

For us "Engineer Members here and other interested personnel (interested in Sustainability Engineering) do come forward to help us create a better engineered world" perhaps you could ask more focussed, questions and provide us with more specifics that would help us understand the engineering nature of the specific problem to be solved, rather than the broad description of the need for help.

As an example,

What means of converting 100 tons of cellulosic biomass (X% water content) (banana tree post harvest agro waste ) would yield the most useable methane /ethanol biofuel?

Which fuel, methane or ethanol would give the most KWH of output per 100 tons of input, or per day of digesting?

What companies specialize in providing microbes for digestion of cellulosic wastes at the X% of water content level? How are microbial strains maintained to prevent deleterious mutations after Y generations...

IS their an optimum "particle size" for the agro waste to assure a steady rate of digestion and biofuel production? Has anyone seen a two stage digester that firs converts the plant sugars to ethanol, and then the cellulose to methane, with out the first reaction poisoningthe second?

What innovative means of reuse have others seen for the remaining post digestion residue?

What chemicals or other harmeful substances may be concentrated by such a scheme? What means to capture, contain and repurpose this new "bulk commodity by product?"

These are ENGINEERING QUESTIONS< and as such, may have a chance of being acted upon. They show that there has been some thought into describing a solution, scaling it, and considering it costs and it's end state consequences.

WIthout these, your appeals read as political environmentalism, something even the most thoughful of engineers try to avoid as it is usually associated with dimwit politicians and "celebritiies" rather than thoughtful people who can do the math. political opinion is not a solvable engineering problem.

Thes are:

WHat is budget for a demonstration project? For your foreseen implemented village size process? That tells us size of digester. What is water content, sugar content cellulosic content, ash content of the feed stock biomass? What other constraints exist.

You frame the questions to be solvable, and we will be more likely able to help solve them.

Give us project engineering questions we will step up.

Give us urgent shouts containing 99% political opinion, and you will misunderstand our responses as racial / nationalist/ imperialist motivated, just as we misunderstand your "engineering appeal" to be little more than political greenmail.

How you intend to use the produced biolfuel, which will be available in abatch process, will also be important to know.

I hope my demonstration of how to reframe your question helps you to get assistance that you need.

peace.

milo

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#35
In reply to #34

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 8:48 AM

Hello Milo

As such we are well advanced in the basic "design theme" of appropriate energy system for a commercially needed Industrial plant. Please see the thread:

http://cr4.globalspec.com/comment/214893/Re-Economics-and-Politics-of-Global-Warming

Also, you would note that the last discussion thread has attempted to analyze the CO2 emissions per Kg of a variety of fuel system (though only on the basis of fundamental chemical formulas): http://cr4.globalspec.com/comment/217716/Re-Economics-and-Politics-of-Global-Warming

The exercise now is to compute the potential CO2 Offsetting in the Project:

http://cr4.globalspec.com/comment/208204/Re-What-makes-an-Ideal-Design-for-a-rural-based-Philippine-Industrial-Plant

I hope you do have the time to go through all the different discussions in the various threads, which would answer your "questionnaire" ...Please let me know if you need further data, after that

The Project of manilaman is discussed in the threads:

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/19792/What-makes-an-Ideal-Design-for-a-rural-based-Philippine-Industrial-Plant

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/20153/Aternative-Energy-AE-Solutions-for-Philippine-Factories-Which-is-ideal

Please let me know if any thing more I need to offer as inputs

Today, THE PROJECT THAT SCORES OVER THE NEAREST RIVAL ON CO2 OFFSETTING HAS THE GREATER COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE. It is visualized that our APIX-SEP project does stand to gain; but we need ACCURATE computations of the CO2 offset potentials, so that the entrepreneur benefits by way of Carbon Credits

pvhramani

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#37
In reply to #33

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 11:15 AM

You are ignoring the specific heats of the various fuels you analyze. You should look at how much ENERGY is produced per ton of specific fuel you burn. You will find that many of your options do not evidence a net gain in the carbon cycle, when viewed from the perspective of energy consumed. There is more involved here than just the carbon emissions...

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#39
In reply to #37

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 12:31 PM

Hello cwarner7_11

While it is true that "There is more involved here than just the carbon emissions...", it is also to be noted that Methane does produce more heat than almost all other generally used liquid and gaseous fuels, on a per unit weight basis.

Calorific Values of the "previously analyzed" fuels:

Diesel ................... 44, 800 Kj/ Kg

Gasoline/ Petrol ..... 47, 300 Kj/ Kg

Methane ................ 55, 530 Kj/ Kg

Propane ................ 50, 350 Kj/ Kg

Please see:

http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/fuels-higher-calorific-values-d_169.html

Thus, the computations of CO2 emissions, purely based on the "basic" chemical formulas would not be very far off from the reality that CO2 emissions are some what related to the calorific values of the fuels in a manner of reverse proportions (the higher CO2 emission shows lesser Calorific value). Minor variations need not be considered as serious. It is, therefore, to be appreciated that Methane would definitely have better CO2 "Offsetting" edge over all other common fuels.

(Note: Hydrogen, which has a Cal value of 141, 790 Kj/ Kg DOES NOT produce any CO2)

pvhramani

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#40
In reply to #39

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 1:31 PM

Since the economic and politics of global warming is the subject matter if this discussion, I guess it is proper to bring the cost of energy into this discussion. With the rising cost of available fossil fuel, more and more of the disadvantaged users are being squeezed out of the market. Not withstanding the carbon credits or the heat value of fuels, at least 50% of the earth's population is having to do without. At the same time, the people most adversely affected by global warming are the squeezed out 50%. Their meager crops are failing, their water supplies are being polluted, and those along the sea coasts are being flooded by storms and sea level rise. We can talk global warming to death and have done so, but please keep in mind that pvhramani is backing his talk with action. Until we can share our good fortune with the disadvantaged, we will continue to face wars and starvation. We cannot stop using fossil fuels over night and the carbon dioxide emissions will continue for the foreseeable future. However, we can reduce the emissions while at the same time share our energy with the less fortunate. One way that most of our governments are working toward is the increased efficiency of energy uses. Another way is to supplement our use of fossil fuels with renewable fuels. Pvhramani has a project working to do all of the above. Why not help him in this effort rather than trying to shoot him down. Pvhramani is the managing CEO of Agro Biogenic and has subsidiary groups active in developing alternate energy projects in South Africa, Ethiopia, India, and the Philippines. Also, it was from his first posting of APIX SEP in CR4 that lead to the adding of the Sustainable Engineering section to this forum. I suggest we all join him in his project, the talking is done, it is now time for action.

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#42
In reply to #40

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 2:10 PM

There are far better reasons for pursuing the projects being pursued by Mr. Pvhramani than to use Global Warming as a justification- specifically, providing access to low-cost energy to the disadvantaged and opening local opportunities for sustainable lives for these people. Furthermore, a reduced reliance on fossil fuels will improve the lifestyles of all of us through reduced air pollution. While using Global Warming as a justification for this type of project may help raise money in certain circles, it is not going to enhance one's reputation within the engineering community. I have pointed out one issue that none of the biofuel proponents wants to address, regarding stealing nutrients from the soil; there is also the issue of the impact on food costs (experienced more profoundly by the economically challenged) as more resources are being directed toward pipe dreams...Please, Mr. Pvhramani, do not think that I consider your projects "pipe dreams" or that I do not consider them worthwhile. What I object to is creating a false impression that these are universal solutions to the environmental issues.

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#45
In reply to #40

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 2:49 PM

Hi chtank

Thank you for "talk" and appropriate presentation. It is hoped that more engineers in this would supplement our efforts

best wishes

pvhramani

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#55
In reply to #39

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 7:05 PM

I apologize for not reading all of the thread. I thought perhaps you had forgotten hydrogen.

Dragon

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#41
In reply to #33

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 1:56 PM

The following are the plausible CO2 productions per Kg of each fuel:

METHANE ............................................. 2.7 Kg/ Kg of fuel

PROPANE ............................................. 3 Kg/ Kg of fuel

GASOLINE ............................................ 3.08772 Kg/ Kg of fuel

DIESEL OIL .......................................... 3.1150 Kg/ Kg of fuel

Using these values and the energy density of various fuels, we find that:

Average for Coal- 5.1 kW-hour per kgCharcoal- 6.1 kW-hour per kgMethane- 10.8 kW-hour per kg equivalent to .25 kg of CO2 per kW-hourDiesel Fuel- 12.7 kW-hour per kg equivalent to .24 kg of CO2 per kW-hourGasoline- 13 kW-hour per kg equivalent to .24 kg of CO2 per kW-hourWood- 3.2 kW-hour per kgEthanol- 8.3 kW-hour per kg

In other words, there does not seem to be a significant carbon offset for using methane over gasoline or diesel. Ethanol, were I to spend sufficient time to explore this, would most likely yield a very similar result.


There is another aspect of utilizing biomass for fuel generation that is totally ignored by the industry. That is, almost every plant that grows extracts nutrients from the soil. The natural cycle results in the return of a significant portion of these nutrients to the soil if the biomass is allowed to die and decompose in place. Removing the biomass for other uses essentially robs the soil of these nutrients, and with time, one must replace the nutrients with artificial fertilizers or the soil becomes non-productive. What is the overall environmental impact of artificial fertilizers?

One is better off planting trees...

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#43
In reply to #41

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 2:11 PM

bio-digestion makes the nutrients readily available for the soil, the "slug" is an excellent fertilizer and also adds more to the soil.

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#44
In reply to #43

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 2:19 PM

IF the "slug" is actually being used as a fertilizer...Some schemes call for burning it as an additional source of energy...

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#47
In reply to #44

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 3:56 PM

not usually, check with your farmers and sewer plants.

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#49
In reply to #43

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 4:10 PM

I may be wrong, but the reason we, here in Texas, ware boots is so our fertilizer does not run between our toes. Most USA farmers used to fill their Honey-wagon loaded with well composted manure and spread the bull shit all over the fields. But they have learned, mainly via their county extension leaders that there is black gold in them thar manure piles and are trapping the methane gas as it composts. Some farms are run solely on the collected gases. After the digestion is when they spread a lot of bull shit. That is why Texans ware boot. If you would bother to look at the links to the USA DOE, EPA and Dept. of Agriculture, you see that our government is big into alternate energy, but it is up to us to do something with it. The government can't run the business on their own, that takes an act of Congress and the President's signature, and the anti-alternate energy lobby is rich and powerful.

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#50
In reply to #49

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 4:30 PM

It is not just the lobbies that are to be blamed. In most of the world, there is significant subsidies available to power generation organizations, to keep the apparent cost of energy down to an acceptable level. As a result, here in Panama, a typical solar system designed to power a residential facility, has a payback (as measured against diesel-generated grid power) of 50 years, on a system that can only be expected to last 20 years...Of course, the solar generation system may still be running long after we run out of diesel...

PS. I once lived in Texas, and I also remember buying fake firewood for my fireplace- fake firewood made from plant waste. I know that there are systems utilizing pellets of such materials to fire furnaces, etc. Unfortunately, not all waste gets sent back to the Mother in a useful form. Properly managed, even sludge from sewerage treatment plants should be used for fertilizer- but note the caveat of "properly managed". Improperly implemented, one winds up with e. coli in one's spinich (or Montezuma's revenge, south of the border).

Please do not assume that I am not in favor of working towards a better environment. I am only opposed to the current "Economics and Politics of Global Warming". It is politically driven, not science driven, and the buzz words are being bandied about to the point where they no longer have any meaning. I personally feel I live pretty "green"- no car, no AC (in the tropics), flourescent bulbs in every fixture (my monthly electrical bill is 1/10th that paid by my immediate neighbors in the same apartment building, in spite of the fact that I have three computers on line almost continuously). I did not know I was living green until Al Gore popularized the concept. I did not consciously seek a green life style. I just made lifestyle tradeoffs with which I was comfortable. My work involves squeezing more efficiency out of conventional technologies- not because I am motivated by some Green philosophy, but because it is, I believe, the right thing to do (and my customers pay handsomely when I can show them energy savings of up to 30% with minimal capital investment).

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#51
In reply to #50

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 4:48 PM

Hey, I am a scientist and we have been fighting this battle since WWII. Yes, the CO2 level is going up at an unprecedented rate, the average temperature of the earth is keeping pace with the CO2, The ocean temperature is rising and risking releasing the sub-sea Methane hydrate, the ice caps are melting, glaciers are melting, sea levels are rising, all in direct correlation to man's use of fossil fuels. Yes, natural cycles may play a part in this, too, but the key work is "too", not instead of. It will take several centuries for the current level of CO2 to be brought back to the levels known in the 19th century. If the Methane hydrate escapes, it is 25 times more a greenhouse gas than is CO2, so watch out, we could make earth like Vinous for our children. If that is not enough, Hari's projects and more like them, could easily make our energy cheap again, this time for all of humanity, not just the privileged few.

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#46
In reply to #41

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 3:49 PM

hello cwarner7_11

Your computation of the KWH equivalent of the Calorific values of these fuels appear to be incorrect. They have to be corrected as follows:

Diesel ....... 44, 800 Kj/ Kg = 12.44189 KWH

Gasoline ... 47, 300 Kj/ Kg = 13.1362 KWH

Methane ... 55, 530 Kj/ Kg = 15.42184 KWH

Propane ... 50, 350 Kj/ Kg = 13.98324 KWH

Please note that the following multiplication factors are to be used:

1 Kj/ Kg is to be multiplied by 0.23884 to get K-cal/ Kg

KWH is obtained by dividing K-cal by 860

Your computations do not seem to be correct.

pvhramani

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#48
In reply to #46

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 4:09 PM

I will grant that there may be some issues with my calculations- there is significant disagreement also in the values being used for various fuels in a number of references. My point was that there does not seem to be a significant difference in the carbon foot-print with respect to the source of carbon which is being oxidized for harvesting energy. I am wanting to do a comparison as well between, say, walking a mile and driving a car the same mile (it works out, in my life, anyway, to take about the same amount of time, if one starts the clock when one leaves the front door. Going more than a mile, and the timing equation changes significantly...).

Your program has a lot of merit for a variety of reasons. I just do not accept the concept that it reduces carbon emissions significantly. It DOES potentially reduce other emissions that are much more disagreeable than carbon dioxide (i.e., unburned fuels, nitrous oxides, etc.) I also live in a region with significant banana production, and it would be nice to find something useful to do with all that excess biomass, but in the end, the material must be returned to the soil, or you won't be growing bananas for too many years into the future...

One should read the United Nations reports before one uses this as a basis for any endeavor (I admit, I haven't gotten through the entire library myself- it is pretty extensive and quite informative). The only conclusion I have been able to glean from it is that the science is, in the final analysis, inconclusive, and that we don't really know what to do about the fact that the world recently seems to be getting a bit warmer.

I also think (emphasis- this is opinion, not based on an in-depth study) raising bananas is a lot more environmentally friendly than raising cows, rice or wheat. Banana plants seem to gain mass rapidly, which suggests that they remove more CO2 from the atmosphere than alternatives...

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#63
In reply to #48

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 1:34 AM

I agree with "I just do not accept the concept that it reduces carbon emissions significantly. It DOES potentially reduce other emissions that are much more disagreeable than carbon dioxide (i.e., unburned fuels, nitrous oxides, etc.)" CO2 is not a big problem like other emissions. Does the banana alternative result in monocultures replacing the natural variety of plants? What do you say to people in areas where bananas do not grow? I am in favor of biofuels, but there seems to be much opposition to them. Is it not feasible to try some genetic modifications to breed plants specifically for fuel production? I know that DNA from one plant can be put into another using the gene gun developed by 2 Cornell professors and a local machine shop owner in the early '80s.

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#64
In reply to #63

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 2:04 AM

Taganan,

Keep up the good logical thought. It seems that some here have a narrower focus than we were first led to believe. It almost makes me wonder what thier real motives are. I think sometimes altruism gets knocked off the road by other things on the way to the goal. I picked at you in another post but it was not meant as a slam.

It's a shame when one who eschews the teachings of a gentle master comes out railing against a percieved insult.

There are poor people all over the globe. What works to help those in India will not necessarily help those in the rest of the world.

It's hard to have an open forum when some are clambering to make sure thier voice and project stays at the focal point to the exclusion of others by spouting slogans from global warming hysteria (a 'science' with more questions than answers).

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#54
In reply to #33

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 7:00 PM

Dear Pvhramani, Excellent presentation. My only question is: what about Hydrogen? It is a viable and quite renewable fuel (if provided by electrolysis, not through natural gas). Water has six times the energy density of most hydro-carbon fuels. And its product when recombined is water.

I am not saying it is the only possible replacement for petroleum, but it is a very efficient fuel.

And for those who will say that hydrogen by electrolysis is inefficient and impossible to mass produce, please do the research that I have done. I would ask that those who decry this research then come up with something constructive to add to this debate.

In other words put up or shut up.

Dragon

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#56
In reply to #54

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 7:30 PM

Dragonsfarm,

I will answer for Hari:

Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the Universe. It would be impossible for mankind to deplete any of it. Yes, we will use Hydrogen. Hydrogen does mix very well with Methane and other fuels quite well. However, the cost of the solar cells and the hydrolysis is prohibitive at this time unless one receives some government assistance. Solar cells are currently running at about $2.50 per watt, installed and one must add to that the cost of the hydrolysis equipment. I have given a full report on this method with MESS-SEP, as well as several alternative methods of producing hydrogen gas. Please to to http://www.chtank.org. FYI, I have assigned my copyrights to MESS-SEP to Hari and the Agro-Biogenics.

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#58
In reply to #56

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 10:08 PM

Looks like a lot of content on your web site, CHtank.

I'll be giving it a read.

milo

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#59
In reply to #58

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 10:45 PM

Milo, you might try this, too: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~chtank/

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#60
In reply to #59

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 10:57 PM

Thanks. milo

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#57
In reply to #54

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/27/2008 10:03 PM

Hi Dragonsfarm.

There is much to commend Hydrogen in place of hydrocarbons.

We can ignore the fact that water vapor is the ultimate green house gas,(not to mention ultimate heat transporter in the ecosystem) because the electrolysis/combustion of hydrogen, reelectrolysis cycle of existing water does not change its balance or concentration in the biosphere and thus affect 'climate." Its use would certainly decrease the production of the lower order greenhouse gases of CO2 and Methane if substituted for hydrocarbon fuels currently in use. Hopefully the combustion immediately following electrolysis will prevent a slowly noticeable Oxygen climb, but thats another thread.

Would you kindly tell me how many Tankers of hydrogen it would take to get the equivalent mileage as a single tanker of Gasoline?

I did the calculation once upon a time and I think it came out to over twenty truckloads of Hydrogen to do the same work as one truckload of gasoline, in terms of automobile mileage.

But it has been a while, I am out of town and the calculations are not on this computer, and I would value your fresh look.

If it is in fact anywhere close to the 20:1 that I think I recall, It seems to me that 20: 1 is a pretty steep hill to climb; North Amercan Manufacturing wages are approximately 20 times those in China. We know how that story has been going.

i propose that photovoltaic, and an electron economy, (as opposed to a fuel economy) to absorb incident solar radiation is the best alternative, as the transport of "fuel" (electrons) is done via wire, not by additional waste of transport. The sun provides a lot of energy each day that direct conversion into electricity would allow us to repurpose.

Thanks.

milo

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#66
In reply to #57

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 2:30 AM

I butinski refer you to the concept of on demand hydrogen is far more cost effective.

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#68
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Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 6:58 AM

Thats a great opinion.

Would you kindly tell me how many Tankers of hydrogen it would take to get the equivalent mileage as a single tanker of Gasoline?

All I ask is for a wee bit of calculation to be shown to back up that great opinion.

Can you show me the math?

milo

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#70
In reply to #68

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 12:06 PM

zero, none, or not applicable.

On demand by principle doesn't require nor accommodate storage, need of fuel precipitates its production and immediately it is consumed.

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#72
In reply to #57

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 8:01 PM

Dear Milo, Thank you for taking the time to refresh my memory. If you assume that the hydrogen is "trucked in" then the actual figures are not a good balance. However if the hydrogen is produced on demand on site then the figures are nearly reversed.

I know there are those who will say that there is no way that the hydrogen fuel, or hydroxyl, can possibly be produced in sufficient quantities on demand to be viable: to them I say, "Do the research I have done and then tell me you can not understand the process."

If you truly wish to know how hydroxyl fuel can be a viable stopgap, until HE3 fusion and quantum flux generators are available, research Stanley Meyer and Daniel Dingle's work on the process of running any ICE on hydroxyl fuel.

I apologize for the brevity of my comment but I had to undergo some treatments for my condition and as a result I am exhausted.

Cordially Dragon

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#73
In reply to #72

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 9:22 PM

Dragonsfarm,

Sorry to hear about your condition. My prayers go out to you. I have some empathy for you. My wife has MS and I have some sort of neurological condition that has not been properly diagnosed yet. Here's to your health.

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#75
In reply to #73

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/29/2008 6:29 PM

Shadetree, My condition is called "Neuromyolitis" a condition that causes inflammation of the myolin nerve sheath, usually restricted to the optic nerve, however mine is throughout my entire nervous system. The last "flareup" of it caused intermittent seizures and convulsions that lasted several days, nearly killing me.

The theory of my doctors is that my exposure to half of a binary nerve agent has aggravated mine and allowed it to spread. There is no known cure and I was inadvertently told that I am the oldest person still alive with a disease that is 50% fatal.

The only two other living victims are in their 20's. (I am over twice that age.) So each day is a gift to me.

Thank you for your kindness.


I have reached my self pity quota for the day.

Respectfully Dragon

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#74
In reply to #72

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/29/2008 12:12 AM

Dragonsfarm, Not a problem.

I did not give such a close readingthat "on demand' meant "as is ,where is" That doesn't seem to fit my definition of a fuel, which I presume has an attribute of portability to it.

Similarly, My reading of the word "fuel" is something that one takes along as a source of energy.

Its a habit of current usage, so i did not 'Grok" the concept of "its ideal but only under this one limited condition."

As on demand might include at night, I would ask that the claim of "ideal fuel' might somehow rely less on "as is where is" and show more of the properties of todays current fuels, portability, available whenever wherever, and similar density of energy per unit of delivered volume, which is how it will need to be used.

Best regards, and enjoy your rest.

Goodnite.

milo

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#76
In reply to #74

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/29/2008 6:40 PM

Milo, My apologies for my lack of clarity. By on demand I meant as needed. The system is entirely portable and may be installed in most vehicles as a booster. The full unit however is not overly large (approx. 2'x3') but still requires a bit more space.

I know, it sounds to good too be true, however, my son and I are in the final development stage for the booster and everything is going according to design. I will, if you wish, keep you informed as all four stages are developed.

Cordially Dragon

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#77
In reply to #76

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/29/2008 7:30 PM

Dragonsfarm,

For you hydrogen generator:

http://pontotriplo.org/quickpicks/2007/05/generating_hydrogen_with_a_liquid_aluminum-gallium_alloy.html

and

http://www.fuelcellsworks.com/Supppage5724.html

"The two methods mentioned in the paragraphs above are most suitable for use in automobiles and can be the fuels of the future to the Hydrogen Fuel Cell. The one fly in the ointment for the AlGa scheme is the availability of the Gallium. Like Silicon, Gallium is used in the computer chip industry and is in a somewhat limited supply. The demand for Gallium for producing Hydrogen for the automobile industry would be astronomical. Boron, on the other hand, is quite plentiful and would be rather inexpensive, even at the demand rates that the automobile industry would place on it. There are other metals and chemicals which can produce hydrogen but these two would been to be in the forefront at this time."

All if the above is quoted from MESS-SEProject found on http://www.chtank.org/

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#78
In reply to #77

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/29/2008 8:29 PM

Dear Chtank, Thank you for the information, I will look into it. Just a thought: an Aluminum, Boron, Carbon alloy would be very effective in place of the AlGa. With Carbon as the "binder" so to speak. Of course the Carbon would have to be in the form of nano-tubes as a matrix in the alloy.

Again, thank you, Dragon

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#79
In reply to #74

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

05/10/2008 2:04 AM

available whenever wherever,

How is it that on demand does not fit this scenario? When you need it, it is available day, night or in between.

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#80
In reply to #79

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

05/10/2008 9:16 AM

Saying something is available "on demand" is not the same as making it so.

The energy density of Hydrogen is much less than that of current fuels.

As my earlier posts attempted to communicate, one would need over twenty times the amount of Hydrogen as gasoline to get equivqalent output.

I dont find fuel grade hydrogen available anywhere in my particular zip code.

And to create it is less efficient than merely harvesting cheap readily available electrons off the grid.

Hydrogen in the future will be like batteries are today: expensive supplementary energy for applicatins where cheaper sources are not available.

ELectrons are easily distributed, readily available, and zero emmissin at point of use, allowing cost effective BAT controls at point of generation.

Thats my point.

please excuse typos I'm losing the "o" key on this laptop.

milo

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#81
In reply to #80

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

05/10/2008 9:35 AM

Raw hydrogen, as a fuel for automobiles, is not very viable nor really practical. I is very difficult to contain and/or store in sufficient quantities (by weight) to drive a vehicle any appreciable distance between refiles. There is the ability to produce hydrogen on demand through chemical reaction aluminum/gallium alloy with water or with a boron water reaction and there is always electrolysis, however, to date, these methods are still in the "proposal" state. The best best for fueling vehicles is ether with alcohols and with storage batteries. It seems that research is marching forward at a rapid pace on both the alcohol and battery fronts. In the near term, look for hybrid highly efficient vehicles and all battery powered vehicles, possibly using safe Lithium Ion batteries. As for fuel cells, hydrogen or otherwise, stationary power plants seem to be the most practical and the power produced this way can be used to "charge" batteries.

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#83
In reply to #81

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

05/11/2008 1:10 AM

Whom said anything about storage? I didn't you assumed it. You are correct in your description of the impracticality of storage and refills but that is not the method I am suggesting to employ.

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#82
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Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

05/11/2008 1:07 AM

It's obvious you have completely missed the point.

It is to produce the hydrogen fuel upon demand at the point of use as in on board the vehicle and produced at the quantity demanded for the level of performance required.

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#67

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 3:15 AM

Hello Friends

The idea of initiating a serious discussion on the "Economics and Politics" of global warming was NOT to create our own internal politics here, nor was it aimed at any "lobbying" for some personal aggrandizement. But the main aim has been to create a ground work for Engineers to ATTACK this problem, which is seen by this writer as the BEST opportunity for all engineers to come together toward "countering" the general perception that the world could be made to move forward ONLY BY POLITICIANS, ECONOMISTS, CELEBRITIES ... and many others who are perceived (by the common people) as the real torch bearers of Progress.

Incidentally, the very themes which these so-called torch bearers portray as the "be all and end all" of every thing, thereby aggrandizing themselves through special Prizes and Encomiums showered on them by "interested groups" for whom they lobby by subterfuge, has been the central concepts on which APIX-SEP stands. And, in this, as the experiences of this writer is ONLY in India, any practical implementation HAS to begin here, and then could be modified and transcended to various other climatic and ethnic regions. And, we have a TRUE DEMOCRATIC system, although the definite organizational structure and systems are yet in the initial stages. chtank, garthh, manilaman, rick7 and chandu, gwen (among others) are the main think tank. In fact, it all began through a discussions initiated on WASTAGE REDUCTION AND CONVERSIONS.

It may be noted that many of the points about the various "pros and cons" raised through the TECHNICAL interactions in these threads ARE answered in some details, though NOT fully presented, in the different discussion threads germinated through those subject forums here. And, if at all any further modifications, changes, improvements and rectifications are mandatory, is it not right that we come to these through effective, scientific and technically operative discussions? It is through such excellent interactions that we did arrive at APIX-SEP

The original THRUST of the discussions still need to be addressed:

"The following are some of the concepts that need to be "defined" form an engineer's point of view, so that there is universal acceptance and standard yardsticks for us to take into account when designing and constructing all future contrivances, appliances, systems. processes and engineered solutions:

CARBON CREDITS, CERTIFIED EMISSION REDUCTIONS, CLEAN DEVELOPMENT MECHANISM, GREEN HOUSE GASES (GHG's), GREEN PRODUCTS ...

Huge amounts of money are involved in what is now known as CARBON TRADING, and the standard "Market Forces" have been allowed to direct the progress of these..."

Let us not pooh-pooh these. These have come to stay, and the "lobbyists" and interested groups are working overtime to corner everything within their "stocks" and exclusive stakeholders. But here, then, is the opportunity for all engineers; for the very same "themes/ concepts" (however politicized or twisted) could be our GOD SENT opportunity to MAKE OUR MARKS felt all over. Let us not simply be FOLLOWERS, but LET US ALSO LEAD.

pvhramani

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#69
In reply to #67

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 11:58 AM

"CARBON CREDITS, CERTIFIED EMISSION REDUCTIONS, CLEAN DEVELOPMENT MECHANISM, GREEN HOUSE GASES (GHG's), GREEN PRODUCTS ."

Carbon credits are a way for the rich to get richer and do nothing else. A way for politicians to exercise in their favorite sport, control.

Certified Emission Reductions - part of that political control when imposed by government, part of a free economy when used as a selling point for lower emission equipment.

Clean development mechanism - did you learn Newspeak from George Orwell's "1984"? Of course no one wants to develop a dirty mechanism or develop one in the dirt. It sounds so "Newthink" as to make no sense.

Green house gases - have already been defined, so we try not to make more of them than is absolutely necessary to make a sellable product.

Green products- a synonym for products that are normally of lower quality yet cost more. Add "Green' to the label of anything and the price goes up. A hand made wooden spoon is priced higher when labeled as "Green" and if you also call it "organic" then the price is higher, but it is still just a handmade wooden spoon. It may not be sanded or oiled, but being "Green and organic" the rough spoon will sell for more. That is not to say there are not truly 'green' products, but they should not use that just to raise the price as so many do.

There are many calls to action, "Let us not simply be FOLLOWERS, but LET US ALSO LEAD.", but where and how? Get off the soap-box and get definite.

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#71
In reply to #67

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

04/28/2008 12:15 PM

Let us not simply be FOLLOWERS, but LET US ALSO LEAD.

Is it not consumer complacency or stupidity that fuels this flash flood of incongruity?

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#84

Re: Economics and Politics of Global Warming

06/16/2008 6:45 PM

Engineers and scientists do have a unique position regarding real problems and real solutions. Politics are a part of life for all. Reinvention of the United Nations as a political act is called for in the case of this global problem of energy, and how it affects civilization. I do not think it is necessary to even mention climate, since obviously civilization is at risk across the board as a consequence of energy demands and the political policies applied. A stereotypical engineer does meet challenges when it comes to Politics, which are often corrupted and irrational. I myself would like my government to employ first rate Technocrats, along with an uncorruptable Bureaucratic Corp. The career of Mr. Carter, President Carter, who was a nuclear submarine physicist? engineer? is possibly a study. It is damning that Reagan took the Solar Panels on the White House down. There is a saying that goes, "If you want what they've got, do what they do." I am aware that since I have not raised and army, and started a war, I have only a little "model" country, similar to a "model train set". Politically we are very challenged when it comes to the environment in light of Machiavelli's statement: "A struggle with the environment is not enough to create a nation." Regardless of whether or not climate change is a fact, which it is, Civilization is dependent on abundant energy and engineered machines and systems serve the greatest ethical aspirations of mankind. The problems to be solved, and the challenges are very well laid out by Jared Diamond in Collapse, and his political concerns are dramatic. There are "good" autocrats, kings, and strongmen, as it turns out, and some leadership is exclusive of dogma or philosophy. I have long made a number of suggestions from the standpoint of Political Science regarding ways to advance our goals, in ways typical of the way things are. A successful strategy is dependent on tactics which in the Political Realm are to put out papers, go on the radio and tv, and otherwise advertise your product and your positions. A little humor does go a long way, and I do prefer a war of the minds, over actually stabbing people. I would be delighted to see Hari demonstrate his stuff, with a funny pretty Indian Girl as part of the Show. (on youtube or CBS,)bbc? Certainly Obama did the route of putting out a book, and making speeches, as was done by Huey Long. The history of the atomic bomb, would recommend that an engineer of status sent a letter similar to Einstein's was to Roosevelt, to all in such a position of power. The Carbon Trading racket is recommended since it is the game going. It is sensible from my view to recommend playing whatever game is around best you can for your goals. I consider this anarchist. I am greatly influenced by Godwin Anarchy which puts defense and education first. The politics of Global Warming are energy issue founded and Grid and Off Grid are in conflict. This conflict is to be seen in light of who is poor, and who isn't. "God Bless the Child that's got its own." Is a simple truth. So my point overall is that of course Engineers ought not be as a group by-standers, but do recognize that not every engineer is suited to be a politician, and that it follows that a Party be allied to, or founded as a component of the overall goal. Russell

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