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Climate change

Discussion in 'Serious' started by Risky, 4 Nov 2014.

  1. Anfield

    Anfield Multimodder

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    And thats the real problem with nuclear power, can't find a place to put the waste as everyone kicks up a huge fuss when anyone suggests putting it anywhere near them.
     
  2. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    I maybe being stupid hear, but to get rid of the waste from nuclear couldn't we fire it into the sun ? There are probably many flaws in my thinking as i don't know what it would cost or if it would effect the sun, but isn't the sun a massive nuclear/fusion reactor anyway, and isn't the amount of really harmful waste from nuclear relatively small ?
     
  3. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    Now imagine there is a few tonnes of radioactive waste in the payload capsule instead of a few satellites. I think you'll see the problem. :)
     
  4. Anfield

    Anfield Multimodder

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    Also it costs roughly one truck load of money per kilo of stuff you want to fire into space.
     
  5. rainbowbridge

    rainbowbridge Minimodder

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    why cant we open the coal mines back up again to at least cushion the import or our energy needs for the next 30 years?
     
  6. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    IDK. Although my guess would be for political reasons. Coal is seen as being a dirty fuel, it would also be like admitting past misdemeanors were a mistake.
     
    Last edited: 9 Nov 2014
  7. Quavr

    Quavr Minimodder

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    Exactly. I feel like if people were properly educated about the dangers of radioactive material and the effects then it would be far less of a problem. Deep geological storage would work fine, but obviously no one really wants that near them and so it won't happen, but if people understood the process better then they would be far more prepared to accept them.
     
  8. ccxo

    ccxo On top of a hill

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    Its cheaper to import from Russia etc, then it would be for us to extract it.
     
  9. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    We spend (on average) £2,200 per person per year on energy compared to £10 per person per year on energy research.

    So we spend a HUGE amount of money on using energy, and less than 0.5%/0.7 billion of this is spent on energy research.

    Compare this to these other UK random industry sizes*:

    Fashion: 26 Billion
    Sports 23.8 Billion
    Creative industries combined: 80 Billion

    Even ignoring industries of questionable long term value to the human race, we spend an insane amount of money on public health (Not that I'm saying that's a bad thing) and in comparison a tiny amount on ensuring future generations will have the same opportunities for a habitable planet as we've had.

    Humans live 'in the now' and breaking that way of thinking is difficult for some and yet impossible for most.

    As much as it genuinely saddens me to think this.... We're doomed. We'll never be able to do enough - quick enough.

    Our only hope is that a small team somewhere cracks the fusion issue. Maybe someone like Lockheed Martin. http://www.technologyreview.com/new...in-really-have-a-breakthrough-fusion-machine/

    Without a 'no brainer' of an energy solution we'll never win the fight in time.

    *All numbers could be argued up or down but there's no arguing the disparity between what we spend on 'fluff' and what we spend on insuring our mutual future. We're all guilty of this one.
     
  10. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    It's only when faced with our own deaths that priorities will change.
    Look at the origins and/or the reasons for the Apollo space program to see how much of a motivation death is.
     
  11. Anfield

    Anfield Multimodder

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    With the current efforts? yes.

    But look back in history a bit, specifically:

    A can do attitude and a comically oversized cheque later? Mission accomplished.

    If society managed the same kind of organized drive again we could most likely solve the energy issue.
     
  12. boiled_elephant

    boiled_elephant Merom Celeron 4 lyfe

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    Also, just because I think it's wonderful and want to get it in before the thread drops off:

    [​IMG]
     
  13. BeauchN

    BeauchN Multimodder

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    We have that pinned to the wall at work, it's good for keeping perspective of how trying to fix one thing can have so many co-benefits.
     
  14. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    But as the article Risky originally posted the Panicked, ill-thought-through responses to the threat of climate change could hurt more people than they save.
     
  15. KayinBlack

    KayinBlack Unrepentant Savage

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    And yet our hand is being forced. Stupid Republicans have announced they're gonna gut the EPA and climate change is a myth designed to destabilize our economy. Somebody's gotta do something, or we're all doomed.
     
  16. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    I don't feel the 'Moon shot' model fits the 'Preventing climate change' problem or the 'Dealing with the environmental fallout from climate change' problem either.

    A Kennedyian wish to 'Have fusion power before this decade is out...' isn't really viable as we don't know (all) the scientific principles of creating efficient fusion, where we did know the equivalent about getting to the moon when the Apollo program began. Sure there was a lot to work out, but we understood the science and knew what it was we had to build.

    Even if we could create clean energy quickly we'd need to provide the knowledge to everyone for free. Everyone includes North Korea, China, Iran and whatever land IS is holding by the time we have the problem licked. There's little point if only 50% of the world goes green when the other 50% is shall we say... a bit militaristic.

    Fusion (or an as yet undiscovered clean source of energy) is the planets only real hope. Any other options requires some level (possibly huge) of social agreement and sacrifice. Isn't. Gonna. Happen.

    Do not under-estimate the scale of the social problem.

    I think a 'Stop using fossil fuels before the decade after the decade after this decade is out...' will be viable when we have a prototype working fusion reactor... and not before.

    The nearest we have to a clean energy 'moon shot' is ITER (Look it up, it's pretty cool)

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

    The most optimistic estimate is that ITER could be ready for full deuterium-tritium fusion in 2027, and I heard one figure that it was likely to take another 50 years after that to get to the point we're building fusion reactors rather than gas/coal/biomass/nuclear.

    That's if it's even remotely possible to get the damn thing working! My 'I'm not a physicist' view is that it'll work but it won't last. The forces and bad-ass physics in play will trash the very material the reactor is made from.
     
  17. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    The thing is the Kennedyian 'Moon shot' model and the scientific principles behind it only came about because of what had been done before, the quote standing on the shoulders of giants springs to mind.

    From WWII until the end of the Apollo program massive amounts of money were ploughed into both rocketry and nuclear research, that level of investment wouldn't have happened if it hadn't been for the perceived threat from the USSR.

    Maybe if the world was faced with a similar in your face threat of impending doom something would get done, the problem with climate change is it can easily be shrugged of as just bad weather, a once in a 100 year storm, or natural cycles. Maybe we need a "The Day After Tomorrow" type event before everyday people perceive it as a real threat.
     
  18. Risky

    Risky Modder

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    If only it was that simple. Doing something stupid in a good cause is still stupid. The "Green Jobs" can mean just people with ladders to install inefficient imported photovolaics.

    Carbon/Energy taxes aren't a bad idea - I would rather tax business on consumption of a scare resource that we want to conserve that tax employing staff or making profits which we want to encourage.

    Biofuels sound good, but by the time the politicians get at them, they just become a new form of farm subsidies at home, or raise food prices and destroy rainforest in poor countries.

    Basically there's nothing like a "good cause" for getting bad policies through.
     

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