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$2 a Litre Water
Various factors are combining to push the cost of water up:
- Global warming causing droughts.
- Corporate control of water sources.
- Globalisation making water a global commodity.
- Increased energy costs.
Imagine the economies you would be forced to make when water reaches $2 a litre (in 2015 dollars):
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- No more showers or baths. You would have to just sponge yourself off with a damp cloth.
- No more flush toilets. You must use composting toilets.
- You would not wash your clothes. You would steam them.
- No more lawns.
- You would clean your dishes individually with a spritz of Windex-like liquid.
- There would be no public fountains or drinking fountains. Outdoor taps would be locked.
- Only expensive buildings would rate the use of water for putting out a fire. The owner would be charged a huge fee to put out a fire. If your house caught fire, they would probably let it burn.
- No more swimming pools.
- Fresh produce would be a luxury only for millionaires.
- It would be illegal to capture rain water. This is what Bechtel did when it got control of water in Bolivia.
- A 2-litre bottle of the cheapest pop would cost $5. Even that you would have to conserve.
It used to be you had to be a king or a dictator to have a family of 100 children. Now all you need in the ego of one to donate your eggs or sperm. I find it revolting some grossly obese housewife in Arizona is paid to spread her eggs over the planet like some bloated cockroach. There is no shortage of babies and kids who need homes. We should not dream of creating new lives at $200,000 each until all those kids have loving homes. The vanity and selfishness is disgusting.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
100% Recycling is Mandatory
Anything less than 100% recycling is not sustainable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I most want to see plans that look out 100+ years. We really should not do anything that will almost certainly drive our species extinct or make their lives unbearable. So many of the idiotic decisions are made because no one looks past the next quarter. In that view, postponing dealing with climate change is rational and economic. The problem is, postponing big problems means they eventually rise to the top of the attention pile, but you have nowhere near enough time or resources to deal with them.
It is the same mentality as students at university who try to prepare for exams by doing a cramming allnighter.
It may be possible to get more international co-operation by talking about the far future. People are more willing to do the right thing later.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Americans are such ninnies. Based on a 1000 year old calendar were convinced the world would end on the winter solstice in 2012 even though the Mayan themselves believed no such nonsense. Yet they refuse to pay any attention to modern scientists warming them they are destroying earth with global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The fossil fuel industry tell us that demand for energy will double by 2050. Satisfying that would take some doing. We have passed peak oil. We need to reduce CO₂. If we fail to come up with that much energy, we will simply have to get by on whatever energy we can provide. If people don’t like it, tough. If people die as a result, tough.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
5% for Schools
95% of Canada’s budget in Afghanistan is for killing Muslims and destroying buildings. 5% is for clinics and schools. Guess which part gets 95% of the TV coverage. If you are cynical, you might think even that 5% is purely for P.R. to sell the war.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If anything grows at 5% a year, in 70 years it grows 32-fold. So, for example, if your city council aims for 5% industrial/population growth a year, in one lifetime it would need 32 times as many sewage treatment plants as it has today.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) see lecture by Dr. Albert A. Bartlett
7 Trees To Undo Your Damage
It takes 7 trees to recycle the exhalations of one human. That does not count the CO₂ generated by cars, electric power generation, agriculture or goods transport to support that person.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine you heard a knock on the door. Outside were 100 firemen. They started shouting. Your house is on fire. We had better do something about it. But we need your permission. However, three of them piped up There is probably nothing we can do about it. It is an natural fire. Just accept it. There is nothing we can do about it. Whose advise are you going to take? Why then do you give any credence at all to the 3% climate change deniers on the payroll of big oil?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Abandoning Factory Farming
You could make factory farming more humane, but it will never happen without laws forcing farmers to. The whole point of factory farming is to get the most meat from the least space, with the least feed. This is incompatible with treating animals humanely.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Most sport fisherman can tell you of a time when they got to angle somewhere that had not yet been overfished. The abundance is astounding. The ease of catching sounds like a tall tale, but I have seen this for myself.
Commercial fishers who oppose conservation and overfishing are unbelievably stupid. If they would just let stocks recover, there would be abundance, a much bigger overall catch, but, ironically, their greed drives them to deprive themselves, year after year, of most of the productivity of the oceans. If they would just let stocks recover, fish would be much easier to catch. Fishers would not need to buy so much fuel. When these fishers permit even a tiny sanctuary for fish to breed unmolested, the abundance of the surrounding waters explodes, but they won’t even do that to help themselves. What idiocy do they insist on doing instead?
- They blame seals for the lack of fish and exterminate them too, ignoring the fact that seals cull the stocks of sick or genetically weak fish. They ignore the fact that seals helped create the astounding abundance of centuries past.
- They fight every effort at conservation, driving stocks to extinction.
- They refuse to expend any effort protecting the stocks from pollution or fish farms.
- They devise ever more environmentally destructive technology to catch fish ever faster.
- They fight, tooth and nail, the DFO (Department of Fisheries and Oceans) who are trying to revive stocks for them.
- They poaching.
- The fall into the monkey-banana trap the philosophers call the tragedy of the commons.
Fishers are too greedy and too thick-headed to act in their own best interest. They are like gardeners who gulp down the seed packets and bleat about how unfair life is that nothing grows in their gardens. Commercial fishers complain that comedians mock them as cretins, but it is surely an accurate assessment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Accelerating Ice Melt
Ocean ice has a way of melting very slowly at first, then faster and faster, until suddenly it is all gone. Why? Snow reflects 87% of the heat from the sun. But after it melts and exposes a bit of ocean, the water reflects only 7%. In other words, when ice melts, the earth’s surface turns instantly from the best reflector to the best absorber of heat. Technically, this is referred to as the albedo effect. In the arctic, much of the lost ice will not be regenerated for millennia because the open ocean absorbs too much heat. The arctic is more melted today that it has been at any time in the last million years. Because of albedo, there is no way to refreeze the arctic; all we can do now is prevent it from melting even more.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Accelerating to Oblivion
Imagine being in a car. When you take your foot off the gas, the car still accelerates. When you hit the brakes, nothing happens. This is like today’s technological society accelerating to its destruction with overpopulation, over-production and environmental collapse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Klebsiella planticola is a micro-organism found on the roots of every plant species on earth. It helps them absorb nutrients. A company in Oregon decided to genetically modify the organism to produce alcohol from plant waste for biofuel, then sell the remaining sludge as fertiliser. By happenstance, Michael Holmes, a student needing a project for his PhD thesis, decided to test the new lifeform for toxicity and discovered that it killed any plant it touched by producing twenty times more alcohol on its roots than it could withstand. What looked like such a great green idea on paper turned out to be a bioweapon that could have killed all plant life on earth.
The problem with GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms), is they are like Pandora’s box. Once we release them into the environment, there is no way to take them back. We have to be cautious. We have to think about what will happen when those modified organisms escape the field. You have no right to contaminate other people’s strains. We have to think about what will happen when the new genes jump to other species.
When you start shuffling genes between species, e.g. adding a peanut gene, or a shrimp gene, you could inadvertently create new allergies. People need to know what unexpected things are in their food to avoid allergic reactions. Monsanto fights such labeling.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine you dumped 1 tonne of sewage each year into a nearby river. At the end of a decade, things would be pretty much the same. Imagine you racked up $1000 of debt each year. At the end of the decade, you would be much worse off, $10,000 in debt (plus interest). Most people think CO₂ emissions work like sewage, but they actually work like debt. Let’s say you emit 1 tonne of CO₂ each year. At the end of the decade you have 10 tonnes of CO₂ added to the atmosphere. It does not go away (at least not for thousands of years). Even if you get your emissions down to trickle, the problem will still continue to get worse. To improve, you have to figure out some way to suck CO₂ out of the air, not just slow down your emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Actively Promoting Pollution
On 2012-01-01 a pollution tax came into effect in the European Union. It was designed to reduce carbon emissions by taxing the pollution of flights into and out of Europe. The United States House passed a bill making it illegal for airlines to pay the tax. So it is clear the USA is not only unwilling to reduce its own pollution, it wants to stop anyone else from taking action. It wants the entire world to join in its mass suicide. I think that is more than sufficient justification to provoke a nuclear terrorist attack on America, but at least the Americans are now being honest about their suicidal intentions. Before, they pretended they were in favour of reduced greenhouse gas emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Addiction to Cars
I hear politicians and futurists say that people will never give up their cars because they are too attached to them. People sunning on a beach would rather not interrupt sipping piña coladas either, but they do when they see a tidal wave coming. The problem is, people have been so lied to they don’t understand that global warming is much more dangerous than a tsunami. According to Environment Canada scientists, climate change is second only to global thermonuclear war in devastation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Everyone knows the consequences of heroin or methamphetamine addiction. Addicts destroy their health. Addicts are utterly miserable. What motivates people to do such a stupid thing? It is the lure of immediate pleasure. Some people have a brain defect that makes them ignore consequences. All they think about is now. A similar defect makes the majority of human kind procrastinate taking action on global warming and the end of oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One of the perks of living in 2015 is I can still afford a place to live, food, water and heat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One of the perks of living in 2015 in BC Canada is all my medical care include the expensive HIV (Human Immuno-deficiency Virus) drugs are covered. I get the best medical care in the world, second only to Switzerland.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One of the perks of living in 2015 is there are still stands of old growth forests.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Advantages of Biking
If you bike instead of drive:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- You will be doing your part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- You will be healthier. Biking is an exercise program that requires no willpower. You get your exercise as a side effect of commuting.
- You will be saving the cost of car payments, gas and insurance.
- You will be doing your part to reduce dependence on foreign oil.
- You will be using less road space, reducing the need to pave over land.
- You will never again have to deal with that crooked repair shop.
Advantages of Organic
I have heard many people pooh-pooh eating organic produce. They argue that pesticide residues are so low there is nothing to worry about. What they mean is pesticide residues are supposed to be low. Especially in third world countries, regulations are often ignored. People buy organic because they want to protect soils, not just themselves. People buy organic because they do not want to support companies like Monsanto. People may be supporting local producers, with the side effect of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Africans vs Americans
The average North American needs 14 times as many trees to absorb the CO₂ emissions (primarily from burning fuels) as does an African. The USA thus has the population equivalent of 4.3 billion Africans when it comes to global warming. The scary part is, much of the third world are learning to live like Americans too — the net effect is like a lethal population explosion. The really scary part is we have nowhere near enough trees even as it is and we are killing them off at an unprecedented rate.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
After Human Extinction
According to the History Channel, one of the few things man will leave as a legacy that will last more than 1000 years after he goes extinct is the Andalusian sheep dog, which will keep on herding and protecting sheep.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If all the man-made radioactivity were equally spread over the earth, it would increase the natural background radiation only 1%. The catch is, it is not equally spread. For example it tends to concentrate in Japanese fish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The ancient Greeks denuded their soil. It still has not recovered. The fertile crescent today is a desert. It has not recovered in 7000 years. In America, within 100 years agriculture created the dust bowl. In India, in five decades of green revolution, irrigation salted the fields to the point they could not grow anything. Even at best, agriculture slowly degrades the soil. It is not sustainable. We need to grow our food in a way that regenerates the soil, as nature does.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) How Permaculture Can Save Humanity and the Earth, but Not Civilisation
Auto manufactures, particularly Volkswagen, place TV ads to encourage people to commit ecological crimes — namely drive about aimlessly at high speed for long periods of time spewing greenhouse gases and gobbling up earth’s last reserves of fossil fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The albedo effect creates an accelerated runaway melting of the polar caps. Sea ice formed at is bright white and reflects most of the Oracle’s heat back into space, helping to preserve the ice. Sea ice formed at is grey, absorbing more of the Oracle’s energy, helping to melt the ice. Once the ice is melted, the dark sea water has very low albedo and absorbs most of the Oracle’s energy helping to rapidly melt any remaining floating ice. The net effect is, once the ice caps start to warm, they melt ever more rapidly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Just how crooked in the Alberta provincial government? Heather Kennedy is the assistant deputy minister of the Oil Sands Sustainable Development Secretariat in charge of approvals in the tar sands region. She is also a SunCor executive still on the SunCor payroll!~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Albertan Poetic Justice
On 2012-06-07, 3,500 barrels of light sour crude oil were released into Jackson Creek, a tributary of the Red Deer River 100 km (62.14 miles) north west of Calgary Alberta. Two days later there was another leak at Gleniffer Lake and Reservoir. The phrase poetic justice comes to mind. Albertans, especially Calgarians, especially Stephen Harper, have been trying to force filthy, environment-trashing, climate-change-producing tar sands oil on the rest of Canada and the rest of the world. They did not care if they destroyed ecosystems. They did not care if they pushed global warming over the brink. All they cared about was short term riches. The consequences are fitting — being forced to swallow crud from the biggest spill in Alberta in 35 years.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Albertans Killing Saskatchewan Fish and Wildlife
The Alberta tar sands put out so much air pollution it is killing fish in Saskatchewan lakes and killing off Saskatchewan wildlife. Albertans don’t care. They get the money.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Exxon claims their algae biofuel absorbs CO₂ and hence helps reduce greenhouse gases, but they don’t tell you that when you burn the biofuel all the CO₂ is released again, making the fuel carbon neutral, with no net CO₂ reduction. This sort of dissembling and lying from big energy is the norm.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If alien invaders melted our arctic and Antarctic ice caps people would freak and demand we stop them no matter what. But when we do it to ourselves gradually with a slow suicide by green house gas, almost nobody pays any attention.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Alien Species Invasion
Globalization means ships and planes are transporting every known species of plant and animal to every spot on earth. These alien species often raise havoc when they are introduced to existing ecosystems. Species without borders mean only 1/3 as many species.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
All You Can Eat
In a country where nearly everyone is morbidly obese, an all-you-can-eat restaurant is the moral equivalent of a crack house.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Alleged Ancient Conspiracy
All without a shred of evidence, global warming deniers claim all the world’s scientists are part of some conspiracy to sell the world on the danger of greenhouse gases. Fourier and Svante Arrhenius discovered the greenhouse effect way back in the 1800s. Were they too supposedly part of this conspiracy? Don’t be an ass!~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Already Too Much CO₂
When we emit CO₂, it hangs around in the atmosphere for about 1000 years. There is already too much CO₂ in the air for a tolerable degree of climate change. The CO₂ we have emitted already will continue making the earth hotter and ever hotter for centuries to come. Thus we can’t talk about safe levels of emissions. Even zero is too much. We have to start removing the atmospheric CO₂ that we have already emitted.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Alternatives to Alternative Vehicles
Besides electric and hybrid vehicles, there are other alternatives including compressed air and flywheel.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I could envision a scientist concocting a bioterror weapon to wipe out all of homo sapiens and releasing it, with love in his heart, doing it not to hurt humans, but to protect all the other species of planet earth from the suicidal ravages of homo sapiens. He would tell himself, I can let man take himself down and every other species with him, or I can take just man down and save the rest. A Spock-like individual would see the necessity of sacrificing even himself. I suspect the security on such projects is not well designed to block such a person.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine visiting your grandmother. She had candles burning all over her tree. You say Gran, you can’t do that. You will burn the house down. Granny replies But I have tons of candles. I’d have to buy some new fangled LED (Light-Emitting Diode) lights if I wanted something that couldn’t catch the tree afire. Don’t worry. Jesus would never let my house burn down. This is like the thinking of the fossil fuel advocates. They ignore the fact they are making the earth uninhabitable with their greenhouse gas emissions. Their only concern is short term expenditure/profit.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I laugh contemptuously at Rush Limbaugh fans who take a look out the kitchen window and declare they know more than climate scientists who have collected acres of ice cores, marine sediment cores, air and water temperature readings, who have poured over satellite images, who have used thousands of the worlds most powerful computers to hone their models to fit climate changes over millions of years. In Greenland they drilled down 680,000 layers of snow, each representing the snow for one year.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Amazon Dried Up
What is the matter with mankind they refuse to pay attention to serious problems with our planet’s life support systems? In 2005 the Amazon dried up. The army had to bring in drinking water by helicopter. The Amazon is normally the rainiest place on earth. It is the lungs of the earth. In the Amazon there is a vicious circle of deforestation, baking sun, dying forests and drought. If you saw your lungs were dying, would you the ignore the problem? Of course, not. Why then do you ignore your planetary lungs? If they die so will you.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Americans (and Canadians) are hell bent on extinguishing themselves via global climate change. They refuse to take even token action to save themselves. If vandals figured out how to simultaneously destroy all the passenger cars in North America, they might save these idiotic lemmings from themselves. That would never happen, but I doubt anything less would snap North Americans out of their stupor.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Americans are Doomed
Americans have sealed their doom. Of out stupendous greed and stupidity they refused to act on global warming. Now Russia is building giant fleets to extract arctic oil and gas and China is consuming even more fossil fuels than the USA. What the USA does now is more or less irrelevant. It could not happen to more deserving fools. They are as stupid as monkeys who refuse to let go of a banana to escape a trap. Canada, especially Prime Minister Steven Harper, deserves the same cow pies.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Americans Cling to the Past
Americans are extremely reluctant to embrace green technology. The bright side of this is the world will leave them in the dust — a nation of candle and buggy whip manufacturers. They have been too powerful in the past, throwing their economic and military weight around.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
An American Road Trip
An American is someone who takes his children on a road trip by bundling them in the back of a gas-guzzling SUV (Sport Utility Vehicle) and driving them thousands of miles while they watch cartoons on DVD (Digital Video Disc).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Anaesthetised Danger Response
Humans usually overreact to danger or threats to their lives. They panic and stop thinking. However, on some issues they grossly under react because the danger is not viscerally apparent. These include:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Republicans blocking measures to control greenhouse gases which will result in the loss of billions of lives, all for minuscule short term financial benefit to the politicians.
- Republicans blocking measures to prepare for the end of oil which will result is the loss of billions of lives when oil-based agriculture collapses, resulting in the loss of billions of lives, again all for the minuscule short term benefit to the politicians.
- Preparing for the massive earthquakes known to regularly recur all along the west coast of North America.
- Protecting fish stocks. At the current rate the edible fish species will be extinct by 2050. That is the only source of protein for a sizeable chunk of the world’s population.
- Protecting the soil. Any civilisation that allows its soil to erode away collapses the instant the soil is no longer deep enough to support crops.
Our kids are going to say What were you thinking! Didn’t you know about global warming? Why didn’t you do anything? What was so all-fired important that you procrastinated our very survival? What you did is unforgivable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Because of global warming, plants and animals are going extinct. Conservationists are artificially moving them to colder regions to try to preserve them. Do those who claim global warming is a hoax also claim these animals and trees are in on it too, faking their own extinction?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Another Ford Insanity
Mayor Rob Ford of Toronto is a fat blimp of a man. He would like to eliminate bicycles from Toronto streets, presumably on the grounds he is way too obese to ever use one himself.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When fishing, it is important to leave sufficient fish to spawn the next generation, but man’s greed and short term focus is so strong, he attempts to invent technology to kill every last fish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The first thing the Republicans announced on taking over the house was scraping an energy-efficiency program for the house building that had cut fuel bills 23%. They consider energy efficiency liberal and limp wristed. What idiots! Wasting energy is what pudgy couch potatoes enjoy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The USA has a anti-environment policy. If you buy a car weighing over 2.72 tonnes (3 tons), the government will effectively buy it for you with tax breaks. Nobody needs a car that heavy and that fuel-gobbling just to move their butt from A to B.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I feel no joy when a baby is born into an anti-environmental culture like the Chinese or American. The child will probably grow up to adopt the national goal of subduing nature as if it were some mortal enemy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
To make one of his hand held computers ultra sleek, Steve Jobs had the battery permanently glued into place. The net result was the battery could not be removed for recycling.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Conventional farmers feed their livestock a soup of dozens of antibiotics. This is not to cure some specific disease. It is improve growth rates and head off epidemics that are inevitable when you overcrowd livestock. The animals are sickly none the less. Ironically, organic farmers who don’t do this, have no problem with sickly animals, but then they give the animals some space to live. You have probably heard doctors and scientists frantically warning people not to use antibiotics needlessly and to take the exact complete prescribed dose. Why? Because casual use of antibiotics gives the bugs the opportunity to develop immunity to the antibiotic. The problem happens in animals only hundreds of times worse because of the widespread abuse of antibiotics. This concerns you, even if you are a vegan because the same bugs developing immunity in animals are using that immunity to kill you. We would never allow a doctor to treat antibiotics so casually, but we allow every conventional farmer destroy the effectiveness of antibiotics for which there are no replacements.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Fresh, The Movie
On 2012-08-19, most callers on the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) ’s Cross Country Checkup phone-in show had only the vaguest understanding of global climate change. They could not even define it. They had it confused with local weather. Yet each one felt fully qualified to pontificate to Canadians all across Canada why only they knew what they were talking about and the scientists knew nothing. A pox on the lot of them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Apples and Genetic Diversity
Apple trees are produced by cloning. This means that most commercial apples in the world are clones of only 5 individual trees. Apples thus suffer from a drastic lack of biodiversity. This makes it easy for pests to evolve to overcome the trees’ natural defences. Farmers counter by dousing more pesticides on apples than any other crop. So, when you get an apple with some insect damage, this is a Good Thing™ This is a sign your apple was not soaked in pesticides.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Apples and Genetic Diversity
Apples are propagated by grafting i.e. cloning a plant identical to the original tree. There are only five basic species (plus combinations) grown commercially. This leaves apple trees a sitting duck to insects which have evolved to swamp their natural defences. The net result is apples have more pesticides than any other food crop.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Approaches to climate change
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The most common approach is wishful thinking. People tell themselves whatever nonsense will make themselves feel comfortable, such as the god Jehovah will clean up after man, or there is nothing to worry about because it is just a conspiracy of all the world’s scientists, including those long dead and most of the world’s politicians outside North America.
- Some are criminals. All they care about is short term wealth. They will die within a decade, so they don’t care what happens after that. They spread lies so they can continue business as usual.
- Some look at the problem and say We are hosed. The problem is too big and depressing so I will do nothing.
- Some look at the problem and say We are hosed. The problem is too big and depressing. However, if we do nothing, we are guaranteed to perish, but if I do my part to solve this problem, there is a slim chance we will prevail, or at least muddle through with less pain than had we done nothing.
The makers of the Arctic GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) apple that does not go brown when it gets stale, want their product unlabelled, so that consumers cannot tell it apart from an ordinary apple. They say consumers do not have the right to know that they are eating an Arctic apple since their GMO apple is not poisonous. That is a non-sequitur. I am unaware of any poisonous foods sold in my local supermarket. By Arctic’s reasoning, all of those products should be unlabelled too.
Foods are labelled to tell consumers information they want to know about the products, for example:
Purposes for Labelling Label Reason for Labelling Will this apple warn me when it is stale? feature, politics Is this clover or heather honey? flavour Was this orange grown in China or California? freshness, care with pesticides Was this date grown in Syria or Israel? politics Is this soy GMO? avoiding suspected allergy
I have a right to avoid GMOs, even if the manufacturer thinks I am being silly. It is not their decision. I have just as much right to avoid GMO s as I have to avoid kumquats. Whether they are non-toxic is irrelevant.
Further, refusing to label GMO apples is unfair to the growers of traditional apples because people wanting to avoid GMO apples will have no choice but to avoid buying apples altogether thus hurting traditional apple sales.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
BC Arctic apples, now approved for sale in the USA, are genetically modified Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples that don’t brown, no matter how long you leave them out. These will be a boon to salad bars who can then fob off fruit salad that has been sitting out for a few days as fresh. The company that makes them is strenuously objecting to them being labelled so that people will not be able to tell them apart from ordinary apples. This is odd. Surely customers who want the new no-brown feature should have a way to tell which apples to buy. Surely people who don’t want to eat GMO apples, for whatever reason, should have the right to avoid them. Without labelling, people who want to avoid the GMO versions will have no choice but to avoid buying apples generally, which will harm the sales of traditional and organic apples. What the world really needs are some totally new varieties, not cosmetic tweakings like this. The extreme lack of bio-diversity makes apples more susceptible to pests than any other crop.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Arctic Oil Spills
Oil spills in the arctic are much more of a problem that elsewhere. First icebergs and storms make spills more likely. Second, cleaning them up is harder. It is dark 6 months of the year. It is below freezing. It is too cold for the bacteria to thrive that naturally gobble up oil spills in temperate waters.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Are Humans Unique?
I wonder on what percentage of planets in the galaxy inhabited by intelligent species they are destroying its ability to sustain them as fast as they possibly can.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Arguments Against Meat-Eating
Those whose defend meat eating claim the opposition to eating meat is squeamishness over killing Bambi. That is a straw man argument. It is actually about:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
- Cruel treatment of animals on factory farms.
- Massively inefficient use of water. 20,864 liters/kilogram 2,500 gallons/pound
- Massively inefficient use of grain. You need 20 kg of feed to produce 1 kg of meat.
- Improper treatment and disposal of manure. A single feedlot produces as much shit as an entire city. It is dumped into streams and rivers without treatment.
- Massive injections of the potent greenhouse gas methane CH₄ into the atmosphere from cattle farts. The meat industry contributes more global warming pollution than cars and transportation.
- Obscene government subsidies on meat and feed. Without subsidies, a steak would cost $200.
The arrogance of ignoramuses like Rick Santorum and Jim Inhofe who have no scientific training claiming to know better about climate change than all the world’s scientists and Nobel laureates with PhDs and decades of study, is mind boggling.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A company called Beyond Meat has come up with an artificial chicken that can fool most people. Presumably, it will cost less than real chicken, does not require cruelty to any animals and has a smaller environmental footprint. We might transition gradually into using such products and meat products padded with artificial meats, simply because they are cheaper. I foresee the day when only people like Ted Nugent will eat actual meat at great expense. It will seem gross, like drinking blood.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Only an American would seriously propose manufacturing and installing billions of artificial trees to capture CO₂ instead of just leaving the natural forests in place.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When I was a boy there was much talk of assaulting Mount Everest and conquering nature. I hope we do not win.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Attitudes to Greenhouse Gases
Because greenhouse gases circulate quickly through the entire atmosphere, mankind must come to a consensus on what to do about greenhouse gases and global warming. There are essentially two competing views:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- This is the view of most North Americans. Let’s burn the fossil fuels as fast as possible. We will be rich. We will die young but happy. Tough beans for the next generation. I hate my kids anyway, the ungrateful little bastards. Sometimes these people lie, pretending they know better than the scientists about the effects of greenhouse gas emissions. The lonely, terminally selfish elderly, like the Koch brothers, are attracted to this view since they trust they will die of natural causes before the global warming effects start becoming fatal. These people have a similar mindset to cocaine addicts who argue that even though the drug is killing them, it feels very good now and now is all that matters.
- This is the view of most non-North Americans. Much as we think we need unlimited cheap energy, much as we are tempted by the riches of selling fossil fuels, the global warming side effects of fossil fuel burning are suicidal. We simply have to do something else, no matter how inconvenient, how expensive, how uncomfortable or how difficult. It would be unspeakably selfish to sacrifice future generations just for our temporary comfort.
We have the lion of global warming roaring around the living room and yet idiots keep throwing meat (greenhouse gases) on the carpet to attract more lions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles)
People who ride ATVs have no idea how much they are hated for the noise, tearing up trails, creating erosion and killing plant life. One woman ATV (All Terrain Vehicle) rider was almost decapitated. But she could not think of a single motive why anyone would want to do that to her.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Despite the invention of the computer, humans use six times as much paper as they did in 1950. All that happened was we used computers waste paper faster.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When ignoramuses hear about 5.0°C (9.0°F) of global warming they say Big hairy deal. My back yard swings through that much in a single day. The don’t seem to understand the difference between one spot on the earth changing for a few hours and the average for every spot on the globe changing for an entire year. During the ice age, Canada was only 5.0°C (9.0°F) cooler than it is now. Ignoramuses, especially the ignoramuses on FOX news, imagine they understand all this much better than the experts who have made a life study of it. I wonder if they feel the same way about their heart surgeons, the engineers who build spacecraft, their lawyers or particle physicists. Everyone is an expert on local weather which they arrogantly confuse with understanding global climate.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Avoiding Long Life
There was a time when people wanted to live as long as possible. Now, with all manner of environmental collapse looming like a hundred swords of Damocles, the aged give thanks they may not have to live with the consequences of their generation’s environmental irresponsibility.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The History Channel aired a documentary called Ax Men glorifying the loggers of Oregon as manly men. In one scene the loggers came across an old growth tree. The other loggers came running to excitedly look at it. Such trees are quite rare. Of course, they killed and piled it with the other trees which looked like table legs in comparison. One logger noted that 20 years ago all trees were that way. The dramatic tension in the documentary came from the fact the loggers were behind quota in felling trees. To me, it was like watching a documentary the guards who ran the Nazi concentration camps worrying about meeting quotas. These people had no concept what they were doing to the planet. Like Nazis, they placed no value whatsoever on their victims.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
B.C.’s and Alberta’s Glaciers Will Shrink 70% By 2100
It is not just the loss of tourism. Glaciers store water and feed it year round, for drinking, agriculture, hydro…
In India, this means mass deaths when rivers like the glacier-fed Ganges cease to flow year round and massively flood in the rainy season. That means political unrest. That means more terrorism.
Every month we procrastinate dealing with the climate change problem, it gets harder to fix because the CO₂ levels are that much higher.
Correcting climate change is like steering a huge ocean liner. You have to start the turn many km/miles before you hit the iceberg to give the ship time to shift course.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Canadians and Americans like to think of themselves as futuristic and environmentally conscious, yet compared with the Europeans and Japanese, we are in the dark ages. We are literally in last place as developed nations go. This is economic suicide.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Bad News For Oil
Over the past decades science has delivered considerable bad news to the fossil fuel industry. e.g. production is peaking and will slowly drop, even though demand continues to rise. The production costs for fossil fuels will rise as we exploit the easy to extract fuels leaving only the dirty and remote ones. The peak for coal will come much sooner than expected. It is proving extremely difficult to find a way to burn coal cleanly. CO₂ emissions from burning fossil fuels are causing catastrophic climate changes. The developing world has a growing hunger for fossil fuels that will soon be even bigger than our own which will drive up prices (not all bad news). It is necessary to seek out alternative fuels. Fossil fuels are in their last days. Oil CEOs (Chief Executive Officers) reasoned that shareholders may sell their stock and invest in something with a brighter long term future. So they decided to publicly embrace junk science to confuse everyone.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Bad Weather Excuse
I am sick to death of the lame excuses from the oil companies claiming they can’t reign in or clean up oil spills because of bad weather. When else, but during extreme weather, are oil rigs ripped from their moorings? They need to install redundant technology that will automatically clamp off the flow of oil if ever power or control is lost.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Badly Behaved Latecomers
Few humans realise what a destructive species we are. We are a newcomer to planet earth. Other species have survived for millions of years of whatever nature could throw at them before we came along. And we are managing to send about a third of them extinct without even trying.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Popular wisdom says there should be balance between the needs of industry and the environment. Industry has had its way 99% of the time for the last 200 years. Balance would require the environmentalists get their way 99% of the time for the next 200.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Balanced Is Not
The result of a balanced approach to concern for the environment and commerce is, according to Dr. Boris Worm, every single species of edible fish collapsed by 2048. If the environment is not sustained, there is no commerce. Policy must be guided by that fact, not by proportionate mollifying of who is yelling loudest and providing the most campaign contributions. Right now we are using this same balanced approach with global warming, refusing to take any but token actions. Nature’s consequences are delayed but merciless.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Balanced Is Not Necessarily Best
The notion that a balanced approach is always best is wrong. Consider:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- If you teach both science and creationism to kids as equally valid, they will be muddled by all the Christian nonsense and will be incompetent scientists as adults.
- If you balance jobs and the environment, you soon won’t have jobs. The environment is what sustains all human activity.
- If you balance the rights of Christians to impose their beliefs on others with the rights of others, you end up with a theocracy.
- If you balance poisons and nutritious food, you die.
Balancing Is Insane
Talking about balancing the global warming with the economy is insane. If you don’t get on top of global warming, you won’t have an economy. Dealing with global warming is not optional, no matter how much it costs, unless, of course, you consider survival optional.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If we were debating whether to ban cannibalism, I doubt many people would want an exception for aboriginal peoples on the grounds they had been doing it since the dawn of time. Killing whales is wrong for the same reason killing people is wrong. There should be no exception based on economic necessity. We need to find some other way to solve aboriginal nutrition problems.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Navy drops bombs in the ocean and uses a super sonar known to kill whales. They take no precautions to protect the endangered orcas. Yet when an orca corpse shows up with wounds consistent with a Naval murder, they stick out their tongues and say, nya nya you can’t prove it and the evidence is classified. Ha ha ha~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Logically you should feel the same horror at seeing bare soil as you do seeing abraded bloody skin. It is open to erosion. It is open to invading weed seeds.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) Lies About Climate Change
Even as late as 2012, announcers on the BBC world service promoted the lie that a substantial proportion of the world’s scientists thought global warming was a hoax, or at least that man had nothing to do with it. These twits would find some eccentric on the web who claimed to believe the moon was made of green cheese and from that conclude the butterfat proportion of the moon was a raging scientific controversy.
Even with a grade 9 understanding of science, you can prove for yourself the CO₂ increase (which Svante Arrhenius discovered back in the 1800s to raise global temperature) is man made. Research the figures for how much coal, oil and natural gas man has burned each year since the start of the industrial revolution. Look up the figures for how much CO₂ you get from burning each kilogram of coal, oil or natural gas.
We also know the CO₂ is coming mainly from fossil fuels because fossil fuels and volcanoes emit a different proportion of C₁₂ and C₁₃. How we know volcanoes are NOT the source of rising CO2
Make a spreadsheet to multiply and add to find out how much CO₂ in total was generated. From the total mass of the atmosphere and the percentage of in the atmosphere that is CO₂, compute the total amount of CO₂ it contains today. The climate deniers claim the amount added by burning is negligible compared to the total amount there. Do your own work, then nobody can bamboozle you.
These calculations are hardly rocket science. If the figures showed the deniers were right, don’t you think they would be touting them? They have no evidence, just wild accusations of a global conspiracy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We have no business creating a global transport system that can deliver any new pathogen everywhere on earth in 24 hours without building in some emergency technique to shut it down.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Beano For Cattle
Given that cattle emit more greenhouse gases than cars, somebody needs to invent a Beano for animal feed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Native people in the Great Bear rain forest have decided to ban bear hunting. British Columbians are debating both whether they have that right and whether banning hunting is a wise thing to do. I have two arguments for banning hunting, one based on economics and one based on genetics.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- If you sell bears to bear watchers, you can collect a fee from thousands of American tourists for each bear. You can start collecting from the day the bear first sees the light of day, even if it later dies as a teenager. If you sell the bear to a trophy hunter, you can no longer collect those fees.
- Natural predators go after the sick, weak, deformed and malnourished. This has the salutary effect of removing those weak genes from the gene pool, making subsequent generations stronger. Trophy hunters go after the strongest, biggest bears in the prime of life. Normally those prime bears would sire the next generation. Hunting removes their premium genes from the gene pool forever. Hunters create a sort of reverse Darwinian selection when the fittest perish. Thus the quality of the gene pool deteriorates over time, hastening extinction.
If you put poison on your flowers, you will poison the bees who come. You will poison the honey they make. You will poison the people who eat that honey.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Why study beetles? The practical reason is the more you know about beetles in general the more prepared you are to handle a population explosion of one particular species that threatens a commercially important tree or plant. The religious reason is Jehovah spent more time designing different varieties of beetle than other types of animal. They must be his unacknowledged favourites. Mimicking beetle behaviour, e.g. eating dung, Isaiah 36:12, may be the key to currying his favour.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) An Inordinate Fondness For Beetles
Most animals do their best to be an inconspicuous as possible, to modify their environment as little as possible. I would love to see a mainstream architectural aesthetic develop along these same lines.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you live your life carefully, you can get through it without upsetting your fellows so badly that they lock you up. At the end of your life, you will have earned the title respectable. However, consider that Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela were not respectable by that definition.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Believing A Tobacco Shill
What sort of nincompoop believes an ex-Tobacco apologist over thousands of professional scientists on the matter of climate change? A Republican. The Christian church has conditioned him since birth to believe what he wishes were true rather than what the evidence indicates is true.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Best Exercise
The exercise program you are most likely to persist with is getting rid of your car and doing your transportation by foot or bicycle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hundreds of doctors in the 1950s and 1960s betrayed their patients and the country generally by taking money from the tobacco companies to lie that tobacco smoking was safe. This resulted in 100s of thousands of lung cancer and heart-related deaths. However, I don’t recall any of the victims or their families seeking revenge with lawsuits, murders or torture.
Today we have something similar going on, but on a much larger scale. We have scientists and people who pretend to be scientists taking money to lie about climate change. They are causing massive damage to earth for the most paltry benefits to the fossil fuel industry. I would hope the people will be so angry with them, that most will be torn to pieces for betraying their planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
What BP has done is beyond crime. They have sacrificed their own employees and the ecosystem of the entire Gulf of Mexico for a few paltry dollars in extra profit. They have corrupted politicians to allow them to rape the planet. At every stage, they have lied and lied. All they cared about was corporate image, not actually remedying the situation. They have talked big and done little. The only apology remotely sincere enough would be for the entire BP board, executives, employees and shareholders to commit suicide and leave their estates to ensure such never happens again.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global warming deniers are global mega-vandals. It is a crime that requires a monumental ego and corruption beyond measure. It is several steps beyond genocide. It attempts to exterminate not only all humans, but all species.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Big Business Is Unfit to Make Big Decisions
Business has only one concern — short term profit. It has no concept of long-term sustainability. Therefore business should not be making any decisions affecting environmental sustainability.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Big Fine For Spills
If we want an end to oil spills, we have to get the oil companies’ attention with a $10,000 per barrel fine for oil released. Effective technology to prevent spills will magically appear.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Big Houses To House Stuff
Houses are much bigger than they were in the 1950s, even though families are smaller. They are so big just to house stuff. Instead of hobbies like gardening or home canning, people now go mindlessly shopping to collect more stuff to fill their houses.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Big Lie
The big lie industry and government try to tell over and over is that heavy industry and wildlife are compatible. There is not one example of success. Every government report tries to sells the idea that it will work this time.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Big Oil, Big Lies
Big oil has chutzpah. On one hand they promote the idea that climate change is a giant hoax involving all the world’s scientists, includes ones who died over a century ago. On the other had they tout oil drilling in the high Arctic now possible because global warming is melting the sea ice.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Bigger Is Better
Wouldn’t it be funny if the bigger-is-better ethic of Detroit also applied to cellphones. People would tote lead acid car batteries on back packs to power the phones. The phones themselves would weigh 9.07 kg (20 lbs). They would have loudspeakers 50 cm (1.64 ft) diameter. The bigger your phone, the more masculine it proved you were and advertised the longer your penis.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Bigger Picture
CO₂ emissions are just as aspect of destruction of the ecosystems and habitats that support us. Focusing too narrowly on greenhouse gas emissions may lead us to some cockamamie purely technological solutions that leaves the big problems untouched.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In one summer, in France 10 times as many people died from global warming than died on 9/11. Which is the bigger threat?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Biggest Extinction Event
If you wanted to watch the end of the dinosaurs, you would need a time machine to take you back 65 million years. However, if you wanted to watch the end of the amphibians or end of the large mammals, you already have a ring-side seat. We are in the middle of the biggest mass extinction since the KT event, and we humans are causing it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Yangtze River in China is the biggest source of pollution in the entire Pacific Ocean.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Biggest Problem Ever
Humanity is facing a problem bigger than any other in recorded history. Scientists tell us we must stop using fossil fuels now! Even if we did that, we are still in for a very nasty climate change ride. The CO₂ we have already emitted will continue to heat up the earth. Business is incapable of looking at anything other than the next quarter profits. Corporations such as BP and Shell don’t give a fig if climate change makes the world uninhabitable. Corporations have used paid shills (e.g. Republicans) to convince the sheep-people who make up the majority of the population that there is nothing to worry about. Eventually, the problem will be obvious even to the aggressively stupid, but by then it will be far too late to do anything about it. I feel like a proverbial lemming watching my fellows heading relentlessly for the cliff. The corporation is like Frankenstein’s monster that has turned on its creators.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Biggest User of Oil
Even with the recent temporary drop, Americans are up in arms at high oil prices and the way America is hostage to foreign oil. The biggest single buyer of oil on the planet is the US military. They have bid the prices up with their wasteful consumption of oil. An aircraft carrier gets about 58,804 litres/100km (0.004 mpg). Using fuel efficiently and protecting the environment are simply not on the military’s radar.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A parable: Miss Canada was traveling across Canada by train. She was doing her nails when the train derailed. The conductor appeared through the smoke and debris and said, Miss, you must get off the train immediately. There was a chlorine tank car and it is leaking the deadly poison gas. Miss Canada whined, But I can’t. I’ll ruin my high heels and my nails aren’t dry yet. The conductor shouted, Look you stupid bimbo. You don’t understand. If don’t get out of here pronto, you will die! No, you don’t understand. Do you know how much these heels cost?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The parable is about the bimbo reaction of the average Canadian to global climate change.
Biofuels are a Dead End
Biofuels are not really a fuel source. It takes oil to make the fertilisers. It takes oil to run the tractors and irrigation pumps. You put more energy in than you get back. No one would ever consider biofuels were it not for the massive subsidies. They are not a green solution. They are a con by big agriculture to suck out even more subsidies from the taxpayers. However, biofuels from algaes do have potential.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Scotts-Miracle Grow pleaded guilty on 2012-07-13 to wilfully poisoning the wild bird seed it sold over a period of two years. They deliberately added illegal pesticides to the mix to prevent insects from eating the seeds during storage. I guess it never occurred to Scotts that a few insects in the mix would do the birds no harm at all. Some species of birds would consider them an extra treat. The irony is Scott charged twice what other seed companies charged. The fine amounts to about $1 a $10 bag of seed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Birds of the Eastern USA
The biggest perk of living in the Eastern United States must be all the colourful birds that visit your back yard. Yet the people of the region seem intent on driving these birds to extinction by dozens of means. They don’t deserve to be custodians of such a treasure.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Birth Control Pills and Fish
Dropping a birth control pill into the toilet is about the most harmful thing you can do to wild fish. The pills work even better on fish than people.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Why are people having fewer children?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Even rats are smart enough to have fewer pups when conditions are overcrowded. The earth is already fatally overcrowded.
- The world is in serious decline with climate warming, species extinction, the end of oil, mass pollution… People want their children to inherit a world at least as welcoming as they one they were born into.
- The costs of raising a child have skyrocketed, in particular housing, day care and university.
- There is better technology to prevent unplanned children.
- It is not quite the same stigma it once was to be childless.
I think we should be moving away from cattle and pigs toward bison as the source of meat in Canada.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They can graze on land unsuitable for agriculture.
- They are tough, perfectly evolved for the prairie. They can stay out all winter.
- They can eat tough grasses that can survive the coming global-warming induced droughts.
- The meat is low fat and hence easier on the arteries.
Substances like LSD (d-Lysergic Acid Diethylamide), plutonium and estrogen hormone-mimetics (e.g. Bisphenol A) can cause damaging effects in even the most minute concentrations. Government environmental regulators are stuck in the thinking of the 1800s when scientists believed dilution made any poison safe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Bitching over 1%
Corporate executives and oil company shills like George W. Bush in the USA and Stephen Harper in Canada love to whine about the impossibly onerous 1% extra cost it will take to deal with global warming. Yet oddly, they have no concern at all about economist Stern’s estimated 20% cost of the consequences of doing nothing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The big problem with bitumen is it is heavier than water. If it spills in a stream or the ocean how can you recover it? If you refine it, gasoline and even diesel oil, will float on the surface, where it can be skimmed, or eventually evaporate. The ecological damage of such a spill is much less.
There are jobs in building a pipeline, but just a skeleton crew is needed to maintain it. If you want ongoing financial benefits you must either:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Insist on doing some refining.
- Insist on some royalties for taking the risk of spills, or fat compensation when actual spills occur.
The problem is not so much the pipeline, but what happens to the bitumen and crude when it is shipped out of BC. There is no technology available to clean up a bitumen spill. It sinks. The best technology to clean up crude, at best under ideal conditions, can recover 5%. Yes, we may have the best technology money can buy, but it is still preposterously inadequate. Harper has ignored this, claiming that it does not matter if there is no way to clean up spills because the probability of spills is extremely low. (Cough) Talk is cheap. If the backers are so sure this is safe, how about a deal to prove it? They agree to shut the whole thing down permanently the first time they fail to keep their safety guarantee.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The most important fact about the Northern Gateway bitumen pipeline, is that if there is a spill, there is no technology to clean it up. Enbridge can pour dispersants on it, but that does not clean it up, just hides it. The problem is, bitumen sinks. Even the best technology can clean up only 3 to 5% of a much-easier-to-deal-with oil spill. The question is how many spills will there will be? Enbridge’s track record would lead us to expect several a year. BC gets to sacrifice so American oil execs can wash their feet in champagne.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The following are some of the organisations who had an unusually negative effect on planet earth:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The Catholic Church
- The Republican Party
- BP and the oil companies generally
- The Koch Brothers
- FOX news
- Answers in Genesis
- Liberty University
- ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria)
- Boko Haram
- Burger King and the fast food industry generally
Blame the Babymakers
Environmentalists wring their hands at the shrinking habitat for wildlife, yet they refuse to point their fingers at the true culprits — those who breed all those babies that necessarily push wildlife off their traditional lands. Rampant motherhood is killing the planet. We must stop treating it as synonymous with unassailable virtue. It is a form of egotistical greed — trying to shape posterity in your own image, to hell with everyone else.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Blasé About CO₂
The public is quite blasé about CO₂. They can’t see it. They can’t smell it. They can’t taste it. We need a technology to psychologically detect it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
News about the environment is so bleak. Keep in mind that projections are based on everyone continuing to behave as they always have. Even the laziest student gets busy the night before exams. Unfortunately, the earth has so much inertia that even if you drastically mend your ways, it can be centuries before you reap your reward.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Because the supply of oil is finite because discovery peaked 30 years ago because demand is still rising because we have already exploited most of the easy-to-drill oil because taxes to discourage greenhouse gases are rising, until we find a replacement for oil, the price will on average continue to rise. What are the implications of that?
- The cost of transportation will discourage the use of aircraft and cars, in favour of ships, trains and public transport.
- Vacation travel by aircraft will be reserved for the upper classes.
- Installing insulation, double glazed windows and heat exchangers will be substantially cheaper than just burning more heating fuel.
- In winter, computers will direct heat to just the parts of the house currently in active use.
- People will keep their homes perhaps 5.0°C (9.0°F) cooler and wear sweaters.
- Cars will get smaller and lighter as they are in Europe where fuel costs are higher.
- Meat, which requires astounding amounts of fossil fuels to produce, will become so expensive that we will tend to use it as a condiment rather than a basic food.
Invest appropriately.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Blinded by Profit
Businessmen concerned only about short term profit want to derail attempts to curb their CO₂ emissions. They do it by hiring fake experts and sending them out into the world to spread FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Doubt) and baldly lie about climate science. Similar to pushing creationism as an alternative to evolution, they want climate change taught in schools as a global conspiracy hoax. This is like the Green Cheese alternate theory of moon composition. Valid science needs evidence and peer review not just wishful thinking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
What driveling ninnies humans are! They fret over a superstitions that calendars can end the earth, but refuse to take action on the obvious effect their greenhouse gas emissions are having on sending the earth over the brink. We deserve rapid extinction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Blowing Our Inheritance
Once three brothers made a huge Halloween score of 3 pillow cases of candy each. This was effectively an infinite amount of candy. They gorged themselves to the point of making themselves sick. They thought it would last forever, but, to their surprise it was totally gone in 2 months. This is much how humans are treating their massive inheritance of oil. They are squandering it, imagining it could never run out. Some twits have even claimed it can’t run out because it renews itself faster than it can be exploited, even though they have plenty of evidence to the contrary in the form of wells no longer producing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Bogus Cheating Excuse
Cereal companies, cookie companies, yogurt companies, vitamin pill companies are claim they need to fill packages only half full to allow for settling. How come then all such companies don’t need to cheat their customers that way? Note that goods that come in 1, 2 and 4 litre bottles don’t cheat because the package size is standard.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Bogus Climate Petition
You may have heard of a petition of 30,000 scientists who say global warming is a hoax. There are a few problems with that. The definition of scientist is rather broad. It includes optometrists, journalists, geologists, chiropractors, veterinarians, computer programmers, people who have no training in climate science. Even I would qualify. 30,000 sounds like a big number but it represents only 0.3% of scientists, most of whom are on board with the consensus view. Petitions are not for deciding scientific questions, merely for bringing them to the attention of politicians.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Bond Villain Modeled on Bechtel
Arch villain Dominic Greene and the Quantum organisation in the James Bond film Quantum of Solace is a thinly disguised Bechtel Corporation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Boobytraps for Posterity
It is theft and assault when one generation builds a nuclear power plant or a building that is not property designed to stand up to natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornados… It should be unconstitutional for a generation to set up booby traps for posterity.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Booms Are Not Necessarily a Good Thing™
Cheering the economic boom of fracking is like cheering the rapid growth of a cancer tumor.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We used to think what each country did inside its borders was its own business. But we have discovered when they release CO₂ or other greenhouse gases into the air, they quickly spread all over the planet. Ditto when we poison the water. We can no longer allow irresponsible nations.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Bottled Water Idiocy
The idea of bottled water is insane, paying $3 for something you can get free. Further, nobody inspects bottled water for safety the way they do tap water. If your tap water has a bad taste, filter it for pennies. Then carry it in a stylish reusable container, possibly a thermos, rather than a crummy-looking Nestlé plastic disposable. Evian is naïve spelled backwards. The people who use bottled water suffer from the same low environmental IQ (Intelligence Quotient) as those who buy Hummers to impress their friends with conspicuous consumption.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
BP As Poetic Justice
It is poetic justice that after waging years of environmental war on Afghanistan and Iraq that the USA would, in a fit of greed, attack itself with a massive oil spill and refusing to make BP clean it up.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
BP Should Go Bankrupt
BP exploited the Bush-Cheney lack of regulation. They gambled and lost taking shortcuts with safety. If they go bankrupt paying off their losses, that it how capitalism is supposed to work. Companies that employ money-losing strategies are supposed to go broke. It would be crazy to subsidise and encourage their recklessness with a government handout.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People like Brad Wall (Premier of Saskatchewan) drive me nuts. I want to wring his neck. How can he possibly be so fucking stupid? Basically his position is, he will do nothing about climate change unless it stimulates the fossil fuel economy. This is mathematically impossible. Stimulating the fossil fuel economy creates still more greenhouse gases. What it then comes down to is having is, in Wall’s view, having a little more money is far more important than survival. He is either insane, or he is in denial about the seriousness of the threat that climate change presents.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is a childish kind of person that if you tell them about the consequences of overeating, taking drugs, heavy drinking, sedentary lifestyle, eating transfat, emitting greenhouse gases, using plastic bags, wasting oil… they feel compelled to indulge just to prove they can’t be pushed around. Sarah Palin is one of these mental infants. Michelle Obama urged better diets for America’s children, so Sarah felt compelled to shove gobs of sugar snacks down the throats of school children, all without the permission of their parents.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Breaking the Law
Gandhi said that you may not use violence in your protest, but he most certainly did not say you must obey the law or politely do whatever you opponent asks (e.g. stay inside free speech zones or protest only where no one will see the protest). Rather, if a law is unjust you are honour-bound to break it and suffer the consequences.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Breeding is Irresponsible
A technological high wire balancing act has allowed us to push the population well beyond what is sustainable. It is criminally irresponsible to encourage couples to balloon the population further. Further, we must stop harassing those responsible people who forgo having children.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I consume the most trees each month in the form of toilet paper. Surely some device to wash my bum with warm, lemon-scented, soapy water would soon pay for itself.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christians and other science deniers claim that because global temperatures do not rise smoothly, then CO₂ warming must be a hoax. They forget that there are many factors combine to influence temperatures:
- The sun cycles every 11 years hotter and colder.
- Pollution blocks the sun, causing cooling.
- El Nino ocean current cycles hotter and colder every 2 to 9 years.
- Most of the heat is stored in the oceans. Just a tiny fraction of it is in the atmosphere. Heat is transferred back and forth.
- Ocean currents move heat around the earth. The current paths change.
As of 2015, there are a number of temporary cooling effects in progress. However, we are still experiencing the hottest year ever from the CO₂ effects.
Is CO₂ the Real Culprit?
How do we know it is CO₂ causing the warming?
- Svante Arrhenius (the Swedish chemist who discovered ions) discovered the greenhouse effect way back in the 19th century. We have had over a century to test his formula.
- We have been able to check back 500,000 years. We find CO₂ is well correlated with temperature.
- We can measure the greenhouse effect with extreme precision in the lab.
- There is no competing hypothesis.
How Do We Know Humans Are To Blame?
How do we know it is us humans creating the CO₂ not volcanoes or some other source?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- We have the receipts. We know how much coal, oil, gasoline… each country burned each year. We know how much CO₂ is emitted for each kg of each type of fuel you burn. So we know with great precision the amount of CO₂ the world releases in each year.
- We can measure the of CO₂ in the air each year and calculate the increase. We can compute the rise unaccounted for by human activity. It is quite small.
- We also know the CO₂ is coming mainly from fossil fuels because fossil fuels and volcanoes emit a different proportion of C₁₂ and C₁₃. How we know volcanoes are NOT the source of rising CO2
- We can look at the 500,000 year history of CO₂ The levels took off explosively with the industrial revolution.
- There are a number of greenhouse gases, some, such as methane even more potent than CO₂. We have accurately measured the concentration of each type of gas in the atmosphere and its greenhouse gas power. CO₂ is by far the most important, Not surprisingly, it is the gas we release most often, since it is released any time we burn pretty well any fuel. We humans burn fuel on a massive scale. Burning is our favourite chemical reaction.
Bungler James Inhofe
Senator James Inhofe is a bumpkin when it comes to medicine and science. Very few people would trust him to tinker with the their life support system in a hospital, yet the majority of people in Oklahoma entrust him with the life support systems of the entire planet, even though he has less understanding of them than your average second grader. This represents a death wish on the part of Americans, a retreat into medieval superstition.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You’d think businessmen as a whole would be very keen on renewable, clean energy. After all, there is a huge market. All the fossil-fuel based systems will need to be replaced. It is a sellers’ market. The whole world will be needing their products if they can get in on the ground floor.
However, clean energy has a huge disadvantage from the point of view of the businessman. Once you install it, it is essentially free. In contrast with coal, you have to keep selling trainload after trainload of coals to keep the plant functioning.
The other problem is clean energy is quite scalable. A single homeowner can implement it independently of what anyone else does. It does not need huge corporations to build and manage it. It is too damn democratic.
The result is, the big energy companies have withdrawn from clean energy to focus on squeezing the last drops of profits from their sunset fossil fuel investments. They promote the climate change denier lies to try to extend the lifespan of their investments a few years, even though they risk the planet to do it. It is individuals and villages who are busily transforming the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are four main reasons to buy organic:
- To avoid cumulative pesticide residues and accidental pesticide overuse.
- To protect the environment.
- For better taste.
- For better nutrition.
To avoid pesticides, first budget to avoid non-organic meats, milk and eggs, then non-organic thin-skinned fruits and vegetables such as peaches, apples and strawberries and then if you have money left over, avoid non-organic thick-skinned fruits and vegetables like mangoes, bananas and eggplants. Meat is the worst offender because animals concentrate pesticides from the plants they eat. Farmers have less incentive to spray thick skinned produce since the thick skins naturally protect them from pests. Further, peeling the thick skins removes clinging pesticides.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Super Species: The Creatures That Will Dominate the Planet describes a single celled, poisonous, hallucinogenic, tropical algae, Calerpa taxifolia. It is a single cell that grows up to 2.74 metres (9 ft) tall. A single male individual has invaded and taken over the Mediterranean. It sounds like the plot to a Roger Corman movie, but it is real.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Calgarians with ever larger floods decimating their city remind me of Pharaoh denying the various signs. They are looking any excuse to cling to bitumen mining.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The spectacular floods in Calgary should come as no surprise. For a couple of decades climate scientists have been warning everyone to reduce CO₂ emissions to avoid extreme weather such as floods, droughts, wild fires, hurricanes, tornadoes, glacier melting and ice cap melting. And what did Calgarians do? With Alison Redford and Steven Harper cheering them on, they frantically started digging up the tar sands and selling the bitumen to others to burn thus ballooning CO₂ emissions.
So what now, other than reducing emissions? (Emissions are cumulative, so it will only get worse, no matter how low they drop.) They will have to rebuild Calgary to withstand these new more extreme weather conditions. This will be extremely expensive. If they just rebuild as it was, the infrastructure will just be taken out again in a year or two. They may even have to abandon the prime real estate bordering the rivers, perhaps converting it to parkland as Edmonton does. It serves the stupid buggers right. Out of blind greed, they wilfully screwed up the climate of the whole planet, particularly Africa and Pakistan forgetting they were part of planet Earth too.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Why are so many people ignoring climate change? One reason is callous, cruel disinterest. The people who will be hurt most from the early effects of climate change live in the southern hemisphere. The second is selfishness. People are unwilling to give up any convenience to battle climate change. They don’t care if this unbelievable selfishness kills off their grandchildren.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Religious con men like Harold Camping (born:1921-07-19 died:2013-12-15 at age:92) have been ripping off the gullible with tales of the impending doom. The public has become jaded and improperly ignore the warnings of scientists simply because they sound too alarming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada Hit Hardest
It is odd that Canadians are so relaxed about climate change when the predictions are Canada will be hit with temperature increases twice that of the global average.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada Ranks a Heavier Burden
Canada and the USA rightly should bear a larger burden than other countries for cleaning up CO₂ in the atmosphere for several reasons:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They emit more than other nations.
- Emissions have drastically increased since 1990, 21.60 gigatonnes (23.81 gigatons) to 30.60 gigatonnes (33.73 gigatons) in 2010, an increase of 42%. Granted much of this is China doing with its coal plants, but Canada and the USA got a 100 year head start, so most of the CO₂ up there is ours.
- Unlike other countries, they have been emitting for the last century. CO₂ is cumulative.
- They plan to exploit the Alberta tar sands in future creating an even worse mess.
Canada Shirks Responsibility
Canada ships mountains of bitumen all over the world where it is burned to release greenhouse gases. Canada does not consider that part of its contribution to destroying the planet. That is like Colombia claiming it does not contribute to the world drug problem since the cocaine its produces is consumed elsewhere.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada Subsidises Increased Global Warming
At the Rio Climate Summit in 2012, the nations of the world decided a good measure to reduce greenhouse gases would be to ban fossil fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful oil and gas use. Canada and Venezuela opposed the measure. Canada wants everyone to subsidise increased global warming. Send your comments to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the man irresponsible. The oil industry is obscenely rich. It does not need subsidies. The subsidies are payback for political contributions to the Conservative party.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
On 2012-10-18, Canada won the Dodo award as the worst country in the world for preserving wild spaces.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada Worst Nation
On a per capita basis, Canada is the worst nation when it comes to greenhouse gas emissions. This is due to dirty oils sands extraction, high car ownership and high fuel use for heating in the winter. BC, on the west coast, is the cleanest province, a surprise given it currently has a right wing government.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada-China Investment Treaty
Obviously the 31-year FIPA (Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Act) trade treaty with China is not to the advantage of the citizens of Canada, otherwise Prime Minister Stephen Harper would not be trying to lock us in long after he leaves office. He would not be keeping us from debating it now or even knowing what we are committing to. Presumably citizens of China will be worse off too. The treaty is part of Harper’s plan to plunder the environment based on his bizarre fundamentalist religious beliefs about end times and a god who has nothing better to do than clean up after him. Who benefits? Corporations in China get to sue if a Canadian federal, provincial or municipal government passes environmental or other laws that reduce their profits. Effectively, Harper is handing control of Canada’s laws to Chinese crown corporations. We are surrendering to China without a shot, without even a vote in parliament. Granted, Canadian corporations get a similar privilege to derail China’s attempts to move to clean energy and clean up their environmental disaster of a country. In the short term, this irresponsible behaviour is profitable to anti-environmental corporations, mainly big oil. In the long run it is suicidal. Harper is orchestrating a slow-motion coup to gradually dismantle democracy and install a corporatocracy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
How can this be? France and Italy had no benefit of modern urban planners, yet created entire countries a delight to the eye with livable cities. We in Canada and the USA, had the benefit of urban planning and the experience of Europe, yet we decided to create eyesore countries of strip malls and forbidding cities.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cancer is when cells grow without limit and strangle a body by recklessly consuming all the resources. Humans are like a cancer on earth, pushing out all other life forms with uncontrolled breeding. When we go to Mars, it will be like metastasising.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is a cancer alley every place there is a concentration of oil refineries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canvas or Plastic?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
advantages of reusable vs plastic bags? Advantages of Reusable vs Plastic Bags Reusable Plastic Plastic bags end up circulating in the Pacific ocean, more concentrated than plankton, never degrading, clogging the digestive tracts, lungs and gills of sea creatures and birds. The particles are too fine for current technology to clean up. Environmental vandals get a charge out of annoying environmentally responsible people. A plastic bag is cheaper badge of environmental vandalism than an SUV. Reusable bags do not break. They do not fall apart in the rain like paper bags. You would not even be able to lift a load heavy enough to damage a canvas bag. Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity believe that double bagging when not necessary is manly and that using a canvas bag is feminine. I don’t follow. Further, I don’t see why they think women would want to appear manly. Reusable bags hold more. You don’t have to remember to take a bag with you to go shopping. Reusable bags are easier on your hands. You have to launder reusable bags every once in a while. You have to buy a plastic bag each time (built into the price of the goods) even though you have hundreds of perfectly good ones already. You may get to the point you have no stock of generic plastic bags and have to buy some specialised ones for kitchen garbage pails. Plastic bags are made of fossil fuels which have other much more valuable uses. Canvas bags can be a male or female fashion statement. Plastic bags in contrast always look tacky. Canvas bags are decorated with logos, images and messages you choose. Plastic bags are decorated with merchant advertising. You don’t always want people knowing where you have been shopping, especially around Christmas.
Cap On Liability
There should be no cap on liability for oil spills. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- If there is a cap, any red-blooded corporation will maximise profit by reducing expenditure on safety. They are required to maximise profit by law. It is cheaper just to let the accidents happen.
- Some say unlimited liability will put Mom & Pop (as if there were such a thing) drilling companies out of business because they can’t afford the risk. That is a Good Thing™ Capitalism is supposed to clear out incompetent players.
- Capitalism is supposed to make customers shoulder the cost of production, not unrelated taxpayers.
- A cap artificially lowers oil prices and interferes with the proper functioning of the energy markets. A cap effectively subsidises dirty oil relative to green energy — the very opposite of what we want to do.
Car = Improved Horse
A car could be thought of as an artificial horse. You would think as such it would be smaller, lighter and more fuel efficient.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People believe they absolutely have to use their cars. However, massive smog in France lead authorities to ban all cars with even licence plates from the roads. They made public transit free. People discovered it was awkward to do without cars, but far from impossible.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Car racing is the ultimate fuck you sport. It emits toxic fumes; it emits annoying noise you can hear for miles, it emits greenhouse gases; it emits noxious odours. The drivers are not even athletes; sometimes they are even obese. It burns money like a cocaine habit. It is the sport of bratty, indulged Arab-prince children who revel in vandalising the environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Amateurs spend untold hours building and restoring custom cars. The results are usually flashier and faster, but almost never lighter, more fuel-efficient or cleaner.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you burn wood, you release CO₂. It is only once a replacement tree grows to maturity do you pay back the carbon debt.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You have certainly heard some oil company shills trying to pooh pooh the danger of greenhouse gas emissions, particularly CO₂. They will tell you it is completely harmless because you breathe it out in every breath. I will try to answer that several ways:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- When you were little, your Mom probably told you not to put a plastic bag over your head. If you do, you quickly consume the oxygen O₂ in the bag and replacing it with CO₂. You suffocate and die. That suffocating feeling is caused by elevated levels of CO₂ in your blood.
- Besides CO₂, your body also exudes urine and feces. If you go to the local sewage treatment plant, you can see how all the poo from all the people in even a small city adds up to a substantial problem. Similarly, all the tiny CO₂ emissions from all over the world add up to the biggest threat to the human race.
- A drop of water will not hurt you, but a Katrina sized flood can be a serious inconvenience. It is not a matter of CO₂ or water being inherently poisonous, but of having way too much CO₂ in the atmosphere acting like a global blanket similar to the CO₂ blanket surrounding Venus that keeps it hot enough to melt lead.
- Conveniently for us, forests soak up CO₂, strip off the carbon from the CO₂ to use in making wood and release the oxygen back into the air. This works great so long as we don’t cut down most of the world’s forests and we don’t pump out so much CO₂ that we overwhelm the forests. Unfortunately, we have done both of those things. We have to replant the forests and stop pumping out so much CO₂. This means giving up coal-fired and oil-fired electric plants, inefficient gas-powered cars, natural gas and oil heating. People naturally don’t want to do that, but they don’t yet get it that the alternative is their grandkids die. The fossil fuel lobby naturally wants business as usual, even if it means we all die. They are corporations. They can’t think ahead any more than 3 months. Oddly, the cost of solving the problem is negligible. We are idiots not to do it. We are sticking with buggy whip technology while Germany, Japan and even China, believe it or not, forge ahead with clean energy.
If you don’t change the way business is conducted, every increase in economic growth means higher CO₂ emissions. You think you are getting somewhere, but you are just committing planetary suicide.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is no longer enough to be carbon neutral. We must be carbon negative, actively removing CO₂ from the air, since so many individual and corporations are making no effort at all to curb their carbon emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Carbon Offset Fee
Paying a carbon offset fee is a bit like paying a fine for the right to molest children.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
John Cummins, the leader of the BC Conservatives wants to scrap the carbon tax supposedly because it isn’t working. That is like taking — a Tylenol and saying Tylenol doesn’t work and giving up on them. The problem is the tax is far too timid to have the desired effect. Nobody likes paying a tax, but we have an unpleasant choice — increase the tax and reduce greenhouse gas emissions or repeal the tax and kill our grand-kids.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Popular wisdom is that a carbon tax hurts the economy. However, BC, the only province with a carbon tax, does better economically than any other province. A carbon tax lifts taxes off income and puts them on pollution. They are revenue neutral. Any business that modernises and invests in more modern equipment can escape the tax and have the benefit of a more profitable plant. It is actually a tax break for savvy businesses.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Carbon Tax Double Talk
Big oil often likes to claim carbon taxes do not work. That is like saying that reducing fines is the best way to deal with a rash of drunk driving. The problem obviously is the taxes are not high enough to prod businesses to change their ways.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Conservatives are such twits when it comes to carbon taxes.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They complain that carbon taxes raise revenue, a heavy burden on the taxpayer. But the government can choose to reduce other taxes to make the taxes revenue-neutral if they so please.
- They complain that carbon taxes raise prices of dirty fuels. But that is what they are supposed to do. Carbon taxes are intended to encourage people to switch to cleaner fuels.
- They complain carbon taxes reduce consumption of dirty fuels. The companies that make dirty fuels won’t like it. That is what the taxes are for. We are doing this to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to slow global warming. We have to do that even if it makes some people uncomfortable.
- You might say that survival is not mandatory, but that is only a Conservative view. Reducing greenhouse gases is not an optional frill. According to environment Canada, global warming’s destructive effect is second only to global thermonuclear war. It sounds benign, but it is anything but. Science traditionally understates: black hole, big bang, the KT event, Little Boy, Tungusta Event…
- Conservatives pretend their hearts bleed for those who cannot afford to switch away from dirty fuels or install better insulation. Well, use some of the revenue from the carbon tax to help out such people.
- They claim a carbon tax would paralyse the Canadian economy. However, Sweden implemented a carbon tax back in the 1990s. Their emissions fell and their GDP (Gross Domestic Product) rose, contrary to the predictions of the big oil lobby.
Because of global warming and increased human population predation, some caribou populations are endangered. Inuit hunters blame aircraft. I can see how a helicopter could spook caribou, but not kill them. An Inuit hunter interviewed on CBC Radio speaking about restrictions on caribou hunting said But what about me?. He did not get it; the restrictions are for his benefit. They are to stop him from foolishly hunting the caribou into extinction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Why are Canada’s caribou going extinct?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The Inuit hunters now have more efficient technology to hunt: snowmobiles, rifles, binoculars, spotting planes, radios…
- The Inuit population has exploded. In the decade 1996 to 2006 alone it grew by 26%.
- Global warming is disrupting the caribou’s fragile food supply of mosses.
- Global warming means mosquitoes are more numerous and have a longer season. They drive the caribou off their feeding grounds.
- Inuit refuse to cut back on hunting. They say they have to live, even it means driving the caribou extinct. They claim the decline in caribou is not their fault, therefore they should not have to cut back. But if they don’t cut back, they are the ones who will suffer most when the caribou are gone. The way I see it, the Inuit have the first priority to hunt caribou, but they have no right to drive them extinct. They will have to eat something else until the herds return. Surely, the rest of Canada will not let them starve.
- Canadians harbour overly romantic notions about First Nations people and their ability to manage caribou responsibly. Obviously, the Inuit are not succeeding with the caribou. Because of hunting technology, sheer population numbers and introduced white values, the Inuit are putting far more pressure on the caribou than they would have two hundred years ago.
- Caribou is by far the most delicious meat I have even eaten. I can see why people used to eating it daily would be extremely reluctant to eat something else.
- Possibly, excessive/illegal sport/trophy hunting.
- Possibly, ill-advised killing of wolves that remove sick or weak caribou. Without their pruning, diseases can spread to the whole herd.
- The Harper government fired most of the scientists capable of figuring out precisely why the caribou are disappearing and what sorts of things, other than curtailing the hunt, we could to do restore them, perhaps domesticated caribou AKA (Also Known As) reindeer herds.
Cars Made of Water
It takes 4,000 cubic metres (5,231.80 cubic yards) of water to make one car.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cars ⇒ Motorcycles
Much as I don’t like the noise, I have to applaud people who have given up cars for motorcycles. They are doing their part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and conserve fossil fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Case for Organic Food
Corporations say that the minute amount of pesticide residue on agri-food won’t hurt you, so the whole organic movement is a crock. Even if that is so, there are at least four other reasons to eat organically:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Especially in foreign countries, workers, accidentally or through ignorance, sometimes use hundreds of times the recommended amount of pesticide. This contamination would not likely happen with organic food.
- Organic agriculture is easier on the environment. It builds rather than depleting soils. It reduces nitrogen runoff into streams. It uses less energy. It does not harm bees. It produces less greenhouse gas. It treats animals more humanely.
- Though sometimes organic food tastes identical to agri-food, the difference in taste between a free range chicken and a factory chicken is like night and day, similarly free range eggs and factory eggs.
- When Monsanto genetically modifies a crop to manufacture its own pesticides, you can’t wash them off. They permeate every cell. Further, the plant continues to manufacture them even after it has been harvested. GM (Genetically Modified) crops are effectively drugs, but they are never tested as thoroughly as drugs since the presumption is, if they are plants, they must be safe. They should be tested even more thoroughly since they are more widely used than drugs and any side effects are not tolerable in things eaten in large quantities. In contrast, with traditional chemical agriculture, pesticide application stops weeks prior to harvest, giving the poisons time to wash off and degrade.
Casual use of Must
A commercial for Zurich insurance intones The Panama canal must triple its capacity as if it were a pregnant elephant. This is foolish. As oil runs out, as we accept we can’t expel CO₂ anymore, we have to stop shipping so much tonnage all around the earth. We need instead to figure out how to acquire locally the things we need.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Casually Dropping Acid
About 1/3 of the CO₂ greenhouse gas we pump into the air dissolves in the ocean making a weak carbonic acid solution similar to Coca-Cola. It dissolves the tiny skeletons of the plankton that produce most of the world’s oxygen. If you have ever kept tropical fish (marine or fresh) you know how exquisitely sensitive they are to pH (acidity). We are foolishly flipping off the switch to life.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Catching Up To Germany
In Germany, there are more people building windmills than building cars. Why are we North Americans so reluctant to get on with alternative energy, knowing full well there is an exploding captive market for it? Why do we so desperately want to be the Johnny-come-lately?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Catholics Want to Destroy the Earth
Given what hell planet earth will be with twice the population and what a heaven it could be with half the population, you’d think sheer greed would reverse the population explosion. However, Catholics don’t think that way. They are willing to destroy the earth with a locust swarm of humanity so long as it ends with more Catholics than Muslims.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The world’s cattle eat enough grain to feed 8.7 billion people. What is really strange is grain is a completely unnatural food for cattle. They are evolved to eat grass.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Forks Over Knives
Cattle: Then and Now
Pursuit of profits make humans do some really stupid things. Consider livestock management:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) The Origin of Feces: What Excrement Tells Us About Evolution, Ecology and a Sustainable Society
- In the old days, cattle wandered about on marginal land eating grass. They were rounded up for slaughter. The land did not need to be fertilised, tilled, or irrigated.
- Today we lock cattle up in disease infested feed-lots, knee deep in feces. We grow corn for them on prime agricultural land. Cattle have evolved over millions of years to eat grass, not grain. The cattle are unhealthy and the meat is unhealthful because of excess fat.
- We pump the cattle full of antibiotics. With non-stop use, the bacteria develop immunity to all the antibiotics also used for humans.
- Instead of the cattle dung going to fertilise pastures, it is it dumped into rivers without any form of sewage treatment where it pollutes the drinking water and eutrifies lakes, river and the oceans.
- The agricultural fields need nitrogen. Instead of recycling the manure as we have done for millennia, we use precious oil to create chemical fertilisers. This puts double the eutrification load on our waters.
The Cause of Unemployment
In 1347 the Bubonic plague swept through Europe. Part of what helped it spread were the overcrowded cities piled with garbage that attracted rats. When the plague was over, there was plenty of farmland to go around. There were plenty of jobs. Because of the shortage of labour, landlords could no longer enslave their workers and serfdom crumbled and men were able to demand a decent wage. It never seems to occur to anyone to blame a shortage of jobs and bad economic times, even in our time, on overpopulation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Cause of Water Shortages
We have just as much fresh water as we did a century a ago. The only reason we are having shortages is because we have overpopulated.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
CBC Climate Change Deniers
Susan McReynolds, guest host of Cross Country Checkup chastised one of her callers for mentioning CO₂ emissions as one of the causes of the 2013 Calgary floods. She falsely claimed it was controversial and should not be discussed. The caller corrected her saying not among scientists. Prime Minister Harper also falsely reassured everyone greenhouse gas emission were not the cause. Climate scientists gave Calgarians 20 years warning this would happen. It caught Harper totally off guard. So who knows what they are talking about? I wrote Susan McReynolds and chastised her for her ecocrime lie that could kill hundreds of thousands of people and asked her to think more carefully before a repeat ecocrime motivated by a bribe or out of stupidity and ignorance.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Celsius or Fahrenheit
Scientists, climate change experts, young Canadians, Europeans all use the metric Celsius system of temperature measurement. Americans and elderly Canadians use the earlier Fahrenheit system. Unfortunately, both schemes use the degree as the unit of measure. This causes confusion when a radio announcer talks about a 2.0°C (3.6°F) rise if they don’t specify the system. I have even heard an announcer on Deutsche Welle using both systems in the same sentence without specifying.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cement and CO₂
The manufacture of cement is the #3 source of CO₂ emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Chalk and Trans-fat
In the early 1900s, vendors adulterated flour with chalk. Nobody today thinks it unreasonable to prevent them from doing that. However, many think it unreasonable to block trans-fats which are thousands of times more harmful to health.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Characteristics of Global Warming Deniers
Notice that the global warming deniers have three characteristics in common:
- They are highly addicted to money.
- They are in their sunset years.
- They are pathological liars. They have a history of shilling.
They don’t care what happen to everyone after they are gone. All they care about is extracting a few more dollars out of the universe by hook or by crook before they die.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Charging Electric Cars
The good news is the coming electric cars would charge when the demand otherwise was lowest. Cars parked at home could also lend power back to the grid to help it get over demand humps. Because of these benefits, outlets to charge cars should be separately metered and billed at a reduced rate.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cheap Sustainable Agriculture
The cost of sustainable agriculture that does not require pesticides, avoids soil erosion and does not require massive doses of chemical pesticides would increase the cost of agriculture, but it need only cause a small increase in the price of food. The reason is that farmers take only a small slice of each supermarket dollar.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the USA chemicals are innocent until absolutely proven guilty and even that is not enough to get them off the market, much less withdrawing them from current use. In Europe, chemicals are untrusted until proven safe. Surely it is cheaper to avoid damage that try to repair it later.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
S.C. Johnson makes a plastic device that looks like a uterus that sprays you with noxious-smelling chemicals every time you walk by. It has no effect on bed bugs, mosquitoes or house flies. But here is the amusing part. They want you to pay money on an ongoing basis to have one of these things installed in your house.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cheney the Environmental Genghis Khan
Dick Cheney is an international war criminal, mostly for his activities surrounding the Iraq war. However, the damage he did there pales compared with the damage he did for generations to come by exempting the natural gas industry from all clean water, clean air and most other environmental laws.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Chimpanzees are our closest relative. We share 99% of our DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid) with them. Yet we are not descended from them. We have a common ancestor that lived 6 million years ago.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Chinese Blithering Idiots
Tuna are endangered. However, that did not stop the asshole idiot Chinese from building a huge tuna fishing fleet and subsidising tuna fishers to see if they can kill off every last tuna within a decade.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Today is unprecedented. More people and a greater percentage of people than ever understand what a utopian future could be like. They also understand the forces that will destroy us if we fail to take action. Further, never have there been more ways we could rapidly end the human experiment on earth, with just a small misstep.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada has two choices:
- Sacrifice an area the size of Greece to tar sands mining.
- Get on with alternative energy, rather than waiting to the last minute when the oil runs out.
It is a trade off of short term profit for eternal environmental damage.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Almost every choice homo sapiens makes brings its extinction closer. It is as if they were unconsciously motivated by an intense self-loathing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christian Rejection of Science
According to a Nanos poll on 2012-12-27, 1/3 of Canadians don’t believe what scientists are telling them about global warming. This is insane. The science was established by Joseph Fourier and Svante Arrhenius back in the 1800s. There is nothing in the least controversial. There is no counter evidence. Granted Steven Harper and Big Oil have dissembled and lied that it is. This is a case of terminal wishful thinking. We are sending our planet over the brink because of wishful thinking. These clueless idiot deniers have no excuses to believe what they do. They don’t know what they are talking about so they should just shut up. These ninnies and those like Harper who mislead them for nefarious motives are planetary traitors, of far greater danger to the planet the Hitler ever was.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The ability of Christians, Republican and right wing loonies to delude themselves is beyond belief. They claim the earth is not warming even though the three hottest years up to 2000 occurred in the last six years. They claim the earth is not warming even though they can see with their own eyes warm weather birds in winter. They claim the earth is not warming even though anyone over 60 can tell them about how much colder weather used to be. They claim the earth is not warming even though science of the 1800s predicted it. They claim the earth is not warming even though all the instruments say it is. They don’t want it to be, so that is all the evidence these goofuses need.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christians believe their god carefully concocted the formula for earth’s atmosphere to create the optimum climate for humans. Yet these same Christians have no concern at all when they massively upset that balance with CO₂ and other greenhouse gas emissions. Isn’t that sort of like spitting in their god’s face? Why would not their god punish them for vandalising his handiwork? Even the scientists say you can’t do this without dire consequences.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christianity Causes Stupidity
Christian arrogance gets in the way of common sense. For example, Christian scientists floated the idea there had to be something unique about earth having water, even though they knew perfectly well hydrogen and oxygen are some of the commonest elements in the universe. They got that nutty idea from the bible where they were assured the earth was the centre of the universe and the universe was created solely for man’s pleasure.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christianity Makes People Climate Change Ninnies
Christian countries have more than their fair share of climate change deniers. This belief tends to be fueled by a religious notion that either god would never be so mean as to allow man to destroy himself or god is going to destroy the world soon, but Revelation says it will not happen by climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christians are the Death of Earth
Christians are the biggest roadblock to the survival of mankind. Not only do they refuse to take responsibility for protecting life on earth, they interfere with others who do. The problem is they are deluded into thinking their god will clean up after every mess man makes and prevent anything seriously terrible from happening even though there is no evidence he has ever done so.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Christians are Useless Ninnies
Christians are the most useless ninnies. Consider a problem like global warming. Some Christians, based on no evidence at all, deny there is a problem. They trust their god would never allow such a dreadful thing to happen, so there is nothing to do. Another group of them say, Glory. The world is ending. I caint hardly wait to have lunch with Jesus. Another group of the Christians say, if only we were not such wicked people, this dreadful fate would not befall us. Our god is punishing us. We are doomed, so there is nothing to do. Arrgh! Would these nincompoops please get out the way of people who do want to take effective action.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Premier Christy Clark of BC suffers from extreme wishful thinking. She imagines you can reduce greenhouse gas emissions and simultaneously burn more natural gas. You cannot do both. It is basic chemistry. When the world wakes up and accepts that reality, LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) overnight will be a dead duck.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Chrysler’s Solar SUV
Chrysler deserves the ultimate BS award for advertising their Jeep SUV as solar powered on the grounds it has a sun roof.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cigarette butts are made of plastic — cellulose acetate. They take 25 years to bio-degrade. They are thus an even bigger littering problem than candy wrappers.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Clash of Values
There is clash of values between capitalism and environmentalism. Capitalism wants you to consume as much as possible. Environmentalism wants you to consume as little as possible. Capitalism wants you to buy goods primarily to display status. Environmentalism wants you to buy only the goods you need. Capitalism wants you use once and discard. Environmentalism wants you to select durable goods and to recycle them when they are worn out. Capitalism cares only about this quarter’s profit. Environmentalism is concerned about the whole planet for many generations to come. Despite its apparent might, capitalism is a dead end. It is simply not sustainable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the deep oceans are huge deposits of CH₄ methane, held in molecular cages called clathrates. The cold and pressure hold them stable. However, 53 million years ago, the earth warmed much as it is now and they suddenly burped and escaped causing a runaway greenhouse effect.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is no such thing as clean coal. It is a marketing lie. It refers to capturing the noxious substances from the gases as coal burns in a lab. It has never been done commercially.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Clean Coal Oxymoron
Clean coal that you see advertised so often on TV is a fraud. It does not yet exist. Coal fired electric generation plants are the #2 source of greenhouse gas emissions in the USA. There is not a single clean coal plant in the USA that captures or sequesters CO₂. The other problem with coal is sulphur emissions which cause acid rain which kill forests and fish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Good News
- Research is bubbling furiously on solar, windmills, high altitude windmills, wave, tide, geothermal, energy, fusion…
- All manner of new clean energy technologies are now economically viable.
- Solar is being rapidly implemented. Individual homeowners make the decision. They are not subject to corruption from fossil fuel companies. They love the idea of never receiving a fossil fuel bill again, especially from someone who could jack up the price at any time.
The Bad News
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The fossil fuel industry has billions invested in infrastructure. They are willing to do anything legal or illegal to protect that investment. They do not want change.
- You would think all clean energy has to do is get within 10% of the cost of fossil fuel to be viable. However, the people making the economic decisions ignore the value of zero CO₂ emissions. Clean energy is going to have to get 10% cheaper than fossil fuels for widespread deployment.
Clean Energy Is A Good Thing Period
Let us say that you have been seduced by some global warming denier or other. A green economy is still a good thing. It will be cleaner, quieter, healthier, better smelling and better looking. It won’t be hostage to foreign oil. It will be more resistant to terrorist disruption. You and your grandchildren will live in world where there are still and abundance of trees, birds and frogs.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cleaning Up Bitumen is Not Possible With Today’s Technology
Canadians have been debating the wisdom of a bitumen pipeline and shipping convoys to take Alberta’s tar sands crude oil to China. Leak technology is finally getting some air time. That is important, but so is cleanup technology. Everyone keeps avoiding the elephant. In the months of debate, the key show-stopper issue never comes up, namely how the heck do you clean up a bitumen (heavy tar) spill into a river or ocean given that bitumen sinks in water and does not evaporate? Ordinary cleanup technology works by skimming gasoline or crude which floats and eventually evaporates. No one in the media has ever asked Enbridge if technology exists to clean up bitumen, much less what percentage of a spill it can recover and how quickly. The bottom line is there is no technology yet invented for cleaning up bitumen spills. The only person, besides myself, I have ever heard point this out publicly was a First Nations hereditary chief.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Based Migration
Because of global warming, plants and animals must migrate toward the poles 56.33 km (35 miles) every decade. The polar animals have no place to go, so are being driven off the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The dry places on earth, will get dryer. The wet places wetter. Everything will be more extreme. Unfortunately, even tiny increases in temperature require significantly more rainfall to maintain the soil moisture needed by plants.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Is the #1 Priority
The coming effects of climate change are so severe, that you can’t balance climate change and jobs. You have to deal with climate change, then with the resources left over, think about jobs.
There is an old joke about a drunk who announced he was going to swim from New York to London. His friends said, You are crazy. You will surely die. He cheerily replied Yes, but think of the prize, $20,000,000.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Action
Science has told us, if we don’t leave 80% of fossil fuels in the ground, we will push the earth up above 2.0°C (3.6°F). This is well above the 1.5°C (2.7°F) tolerable limit. Rachel Notley ( NDP (New Democratic Party) premier of Alberta) and Justin Trudeau (Liberal Prime Minister of Canada) refuse to accept this. They want to keep mining fossil fuels (oil, gas, coal) as usual and building pipelines as if there no tomorrow. Of course, there will be no tomorrow if we let them procrastinate for short term political/financial reasons. They refuse to acknowledge the more we procrastinate, the more painful and expensive the remedy will get. They are behaving like Christians, where public policy is based totally on wishful thinking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change and Snow Melt
In the winter, snow falls on the mountains. In the spring and summer, it gradually melts providing year round clean water. When you get even mild global warming, snow starts later in the season and stops sooner. In spring, the snow melts faster creating floods. By summer there is only a trickle of water left. This means agriculture has to cut back and city dwellers have to live with water restrictions. That means higher food prices.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change and the Titanic
I could imagine a steward on the Titanic who urged the orchestra to play on and the people to keep dancing, fully aware there were not enough lifeboats for all. Meanwhile, he plotted his own escape plan. This is how government leaders are behaving. They have long ago given up trying to prevent global warming. All they do is plot their personal survival plans. Global warming, for them, is primarily a military problem, how to deal with the starving desperate mobs and how to grow food on the last bits of arable land on earth without those mobs uprooting it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change and Wild Fires
Five of the worst fire years in history have been since 1999 in the American south west. The fire season is now two months longer. The droughts fueling the fires are exactly what the global climate change scientists predicted.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Is Beyond Individual Action
Libertarians argue that governments should not and cannot do anything about global climate change. The solution will have to come from individuals. Consider that we have known about the severity of global warming for about 36 years and during that time, governments have refrained from acting and individuals have made not the tiniest dent in the problem.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Denial
Given that there is no evidence against climate change and given that only a few paid shills posing as scientists are skeptics, why do so many Americans identify as deniers? It could simply be that they find climate change so depressing and overwhelming that they use their wishful thinking skills honed in Christianity to pretend the world is the way they wish it to be.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Denial
People are wishfully thinking that the freaky weather, floods, fires, tornadoes’ has nothing to with global climate change even though these effects are exactly what was predicted. The denial will have to crack at some point. How much longer after that will people who have lost their homes start successfully suing green house gas emitters and sellers of fossil fuels. How much longer before governments are forced to impose massive carbon taxes to help people who have lost their homes rebuild?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Denial
People fall into various categories when it comes to climate change.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
type notes examples Republicans These people know absolutely nothing about climate change. They are told it is a liberal conspiracy, so they would not be caught dead reading about it any more than they would the Communist Manifesto or the Atheist Debater’s Handbook. Their climate-change denials are based on peer-pressure and the echo-chamber. Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Scott Pruitt, Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz, Ben Carson, Senator James Inhofe, Ben Stein, Rush Limbaugh. faux climate change deniers These are typically elderly people with extensive financial holdings in the sunset fossil fuel industries. They are fully aware of the climate change catastrophe bearing down on us, but they do not care. They will be dead. What matters is winning the money game in the little time they have left. So they spend billions on FUD to confuse people about climate change. They can also be paid liars for the fossil fuel industry. They are willing to betray their planet for a decent sized hunk of change. source. The Koch Brothers, Chris Christie, Michael Crichton, Paul Driessen, Steven Milloy. conspiracy theorists Some people just naturally gravitate to a conspiracy theory no matter how absurd. They like the idea of all scientists in the world secretly faking scientific data and peer reviewed articles, all of them motivated by greed. It does not bother them there was not one whistle-blower or one document. If the plot seems plausible to a non-scientist, it must be so, even if there is no evidence for it. Alex Jones, Internet trollers faux champions Usually politicians who claim to be champions of dealing with climate change, particularly setting targets for 2050 when they will no longer be in office. Yet they are ironically evangelists for pipelines and increased fossil fuel extractions. They oppose carbon taxes. They oppose investment in clean energy. They are puppets of their fossil-fuel contributors and their ignorant constituents demanding fossil-fuel jobs even if they destroy the planet. Justin Trudeau, Rachel Notley, Christy Clark lip servers These are people claim to be all for taking urgent action on climate change, but do nothing at all in their private lives to help. They still drive a gas guzzler, they never bike, their house is lit up like a Christmas tree with incandescent bulbs… They heat their whole house 24-7 whether they are home or not. They refuse to inconvenience themselves in the slightest on behalf of the planet. wealthy liberals third worlders People in the third world, on a per capita basis, emit far less CO₂ than we do. They have no cars. They have no giant houses to heat. They have no electric appliances. However, they are first to feel the sting of the consequence of climate change. people living outside North America and Europe. true champions People who work tirelessly to educate the public about climate change, to debunk the climate change deniers. They put up with extreme abuse. Al Gore, David Suzuki, Elizabeth May, Andrew Weaver, Guy Dauncey, Jared Diamond, Gwynne Dyer, Tim Flannery, Richard Heinberg, George Monbiot, Bill Maher.
Climate Change Denier = Creationist
Almost all climate change deniers are creationists and almost all creationists are climate change deniers. They believe the God Jehovah will clean up after his darling. Our literal survival depends on neutralising the political power of these lunatics. This will be difficult. They have hijacked the Republican party.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Denier = Creationist
Climate Change deniers are Creationists in disguise. It is not any evidence that persuades them. It is their religious belief that Jehovah would never permit such a thing. I find that trust odd given that in a fit of pique Jehovah allegedly wiped out nearly all life on earth in a flood.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Denier Shills
The time has come to treat the global-warming denying shills who spread FUD about global warming with the same contempt we treat shills for the tobacco companies who insisted second hand smoke is harmless. It should come as no surprise that they are the same people, just shilling for new clients.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers
Climate change deniers are like enormously fat women with a jones for chocolate fudge. They will now at least admit they are rapidly gaining weight, but refuse to admit eating chocolate fudge has anything to do with it. They so strongly want to keep eating fudge, they are willing to deceive themselves. They smack down anyone who dares suggest chocolate fudge is the problem.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers
Here are some things you will discover about climate change deniers.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They have no credentials in climatology.
- They never cite peer-reviewed papers.
- They have never read any technical papers.
- They accuse huge numbers of people of corruption and of belonging to conspiracies involving all scientists on the planet without ever offering a single example or piece of evidence.
- They are paid to spread FUD.
- When you point out mundane evidence of global warming such as glaciers melting, oceans rising, CO₂ levels, average global temperatures rising, earlier tree blooming they change the topic.
- They like to argue if you can’t predict the effect to the 5th decimal point, then the only rational action is to do nothing. Since the effects depend completely on the rate we humans burn carbon, in principle we cannot accurately predict. We don’t know what humans will do. That depends on laws, taxes, green energy research etc.
Climate Change Deniers
I wish climate change deniers would read about snowball earth and what the earth was like when CO₂ was much higher millions of years ago. The earth has been able to generate these extremes all by itself. Surely it could reach even greater extremes with humans mindlessly pushing it with unprecedented CO₂ emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers
The ignorance, stupidity and malice of the global warming deniers is beyond appalling. The most idiotic are those who imagine all the world’s scientists are in on some massive conspiracy including Svante Arrhenius, the great Swedish chemist, born in 1859, who discovered the CO₂ global warming effect.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers
In debating with climate change deniers, you don’t have to convince them that climate change is a serious problem. They already know that. Instead, you have to convince them they should stop taking money to betray the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers
It is a wonder that climate change deniers got any traction.
- All the scientists dismissed them as cranks.
- Denier spokespeople were disgraced shills who had previously testified posing as experts that tobacco was harmless.
- It was obvious the big oil motive of the Koch brothers for funding the denial campaign.
- The deniers claimed all scientists in the world were in on some conspiracy. Yet they had no evidence and could not explain why all scientists to a man would keep silent about it.
- The polar ice caps were visibly and rapidly melting.
- You could see for yourself plants and animals moving further north each year.
- Almost every year set a new temperature record.
- There were terrible wildfires, the like had never been seen before in Australia, British Columbia and California as result of extremely hot dry weather.
- The denier case was so incredibly stupid it is amazing anyone believed it. As Louis Mencken observed, Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people.
I think it is all over but the shouting. The deniers have tricked us into wasting precious time. Eventually, the Koch brothers and their ilk should be executed for mass murder, but the priority now is to stop more carbon dioxide CO₂ and methane CH₄ emissions and restore the forests, particularly in the Amazon so the trees can suck the excess CO₂ out of the air.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers
The Koch Brothers have been the major funders of disinformation about climate change for a number of years. Charles and David Koch run a large privately held company involved in oil and other industries, producing sizable greenhouse gas emissions. One of their climate change denier shills was Richard Muller, who ignored CO₂ concentrations and the effect they have on global temperature that has been known since the 1800s. He did a study on the accuracy of weather stations and the effect of local urban heating and came to the conclusions that these were false quibbles and all the other scientists were right all along. Greenhouse gases could have a disastrous impact on the world, he said. The Kochs have not made clear if they too have seen the light, or if they will persist in trying to fry the world like some crazed Bond villains.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers are Affluent
Climate change denial is a North American phenomenon. You won’t find climate change deniers in the third world. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Third worlders have watched the climate problems develop first hand. North Americans ignore the weather. It is just something on TV. It has almost no practical effect on their lives. They do not farm or live outside. Their homes are climate controlled.
- The oil company shills have focused their efforts and disinformation in North America.
- North American Christians are the most gullible and disconnected-from-reality people on the planet. They harbour all manner of bizarre end-times beliefs the climate change denier shills have been able to exploit.
Climate Change Deniers are Like Pharaoh
Glaciers melting, record temperatures, bigger and nastier hurricanes, massive flooding, bigger and nastier tornadoes, plants, animals and birds showing up at higher and higher latitudes than normal… all as predicted and still the Americans studiously ignore global warming. It reminds me a bit of the story of Pharaoh in the bible unable to take a hint.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Deniers Are Like Reluctant Bathers
Some kids (and adults) postpone taking baths for weeks at a time. When they finally take the plunge they have a wonderful time. It is hard to get them out of the tub. Climate change deniers are similar. When they finally let us clean up the world, they will enjoy it as much as anyone else and will wonder why they were so reluctant to get on with enjoying a clean world.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change is Everyone’s Business
An Inuit representative speaking on the CBC radio called for Greenpeace to mind its own business and let them solve Inuit problems using traditional solutions. Greenpeace is minding its own business. Environmental problems like climate change are not like littering. What you do affects everyone on the planet.
We foolishly treat the Inuit as if they had some magic ancient wisdom as a panacea for modern ills. The Inuit have a foot in the past and a foot in the modern world. They hunt seals with ski-doos and rifles instead of dog sleds and bone spears. They eat groceries shipped in at astronomical cost from southern Canada.
The net effect of all this has been an explosion in the Inuit populations. Traditional ways can only support traditional population densities. They are driving animal species to extinction with their folly. You can’t just kill all you can catch any more. You need regulation and limits. It is not the white man being mean. It is the Inuit having more babies and living longer and adopting modern technology and in the process creating a much bigger ecological footprint.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Excuses
Imagine your barn was burning down. Your elder brother refused to help put out the fire. He explained that your younger brother was not putting out a full effort, so to encourage him to greater efforts, he was doing nothing.
This sounds absolutely crazy in the context of a barn fire, but this is precisely the logic countries, including Canada, use to excuse themselves for doing nothing about climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Excuses
One of the favourite excuses for inaction given by developed nations is that African nations don’t have greenhouse gas reduction programs. They are already emitting only about 1% per capita of the developed nations. Think about it, how much gasoline, coal and oil can you burn if you only make $1 a day?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change FUD Defeat
I have noticed that the climate change FUD is waning. It is not the persuasion of science and logic, but rather that people now talk about climate change as an accepted fact without phony pretence to controversy. Herd think is working for the good for change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Goals
Politicians like to talk about goals for climate change for the year 2100. What nonsense! You can’t make promises about what other people will do, only what you will do. The world will be a completely different place. Much stricter or laxer goals than we predict now will reveal themselves as appropriate in time. These phony goals are just a smokescreen to hide the fact politicians are doing nothing now.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change History
250 million years ago, the earth warmed to the point that frozen deposits of methane on the ocean floor melted and released their gas into the atmosphere. Methane is 25 times as potent greenhouse gas as CO₂. The greenhouse gas warming melted even more methane in a runaway greenhouse gas effect. Nearly all life on earth was wiped out except for pink algae. The melting point of methane has not changed since then and we have warmed the earth to the same tipping point. Why humans refuse to be concerned baffles me. A species so careless about its survival and so blindly focused on profit, deserves to go extinct.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) The Story of Earth and Life
Climate Change in a Nutshell
Climate change deniers do not accept that CO₂ from human burning of fossil fuels is causing the global temperature rise. The famous Swedish chemist, Svante Arrhenius back in the 1800s worked out just how much CO₂ and how much methane CH₄ cause just how much temperature rise.
His work did not become controversial until the Koch brothers started slinging FUD to milk the last dollars from their sunset fossil fuel investments.
We know how many tons of fossil fuels we sold world wide over the decades so we know how much CO₂ we released. It is a very simple calculation. We can also directly measure the CO₂ concentration in the air and in the bubbles in ice cores going back 400,000 years.
One of the most important things to know is CO₂ is cumulative. Even if you stopped emitting it altogether, temperatures would not drop. They would just stop getting even hotter. It would take over 1000 years of no emissions for CO₂ levels and temperatures to drop to normal. Any amount of emissions will permanently heat up the earth to some extent.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Logo
People are wearing plain buttons like this to get people to ask about them and thus start a conversation on climate change. People are studiously ignoring the problem because it is terrifying because they prefer to listen to big oil shills because it requires them to make changes and oddly because it has a silly name global warming which sounds rather pleasant rather that the apocalypse it is. Scientists have a habit of such understatement, e.g. the big bang or cessation of cerebral function.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Climate Change Means Climate Change
Climate Change will make some spots on earth hotter, some dryer, some colder, some wetter. A tiny increase in the average temperature over all the earth, over all seasons will disrupt the ocean currents. If it were not for the currents, Scotland and Juneau would have the same climate. More heat energy is being pumped into the atmosphere and oceans, so expect everything to be more extreme. Amateurs (and oil company shills such as Stephen Harper) who do not know the first thing about climate pose as experts, basing their conclusions from observing the weather in one month in one small region of earth, not on detailed measurements of global patterns over decades. Their arrogance and wishful thinking is pathetic. These environmental vandals have not even read popular science magazines to learn what science predicts much less why.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Milestones
We have it hit 0.90°C (1.62°F) rise in average global temperature. This is enough to melt the polar caps, sink island nations beneath the waves, cause flash floods, cause heat waves, cause record hurricanes, cause record temperatures…
When it hits 1.7°C (3.1°F) the Great Barrier Coral Reef will die. We have already released sufficient CO₂ to hit this milestone, no matter what we do.
No matter what we do, we will hit 2.0°C (3.6°F) by the end of the century. This will be far, far more than twice as worse as what we have done so far.
If we carry on, business as usual, we will hit 4.0°C (7.2°F) by the end of the century.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Persuasion Techniques
My desire to stop the various fossil fuel pipelines is environmental, both because of the long term extinction facing us from their continued effect on global warming and because of their short term environmental pollution of oceans and streams.
The public does not appreciate the dangers from climate change. There are several reasons:
- general distrust of science.
- general lack of understanding of science and the way scientists express themselves in such understated ways.
- disinformation injected by the fossil fuel industry.
- religion-based wishful thinking that no effort or sacrifice is required
- evidence for dangers of climate change is not immediately obvious to the untrained eye.
Unfortunately, environmental arguments mean nothing to Stephen Harper or Richard D. Kinder, CEO (Chief Executive Officer) Kinder Morgan. We must instead use arguments that would be persuasive to them — financial arguments:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Fossil fuels are a sunset industry. They will not survive anywhere near the 60 years that Christy Clark bandies about in making her financial predictions.
- Clean energy is rapidly getting cheaper and cleaner. Japan and Germany are already well into the conversion. Expect a sudden collapse of the fossil fuel industry when clean energy gets even close in price, long before fossil fuel reserves run out.
- The public is steadily increasing its demands that we take action on greenhouse gas emissions. This is not good news for the fossil fuel industry. A panic on global warming could ruin fossil fuel companies almost overnight, caused, for example, by Miami disappearing beneath the waves.
- The latest financial shocks to the fossil fuel industry and its ripples are just a taste of the tsunami to come. Both high and low oil prices cause havoc.
- The way to make big bucks is to get in on the ground floor of a major new industry with guaranteed growth — namely clean energy. Don’t waste the opportunity of a lifetime.
Climate Change Is Scarier Than It Sounds
There are several reasons the temperatures predicted by the climate scientists don’t sound as scary as they really are.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They are global temperatures, including the oceans. Oceans cover most of the planet and will not change much. That means the parts over land will jump considerably to make up the average.
- They are yearly average temperatures. The peak summer temperatures will be much higher.
- Plants and wildlife don’t have the option of air conditioning. Plants have no choice but to die when the climate goes out of range. Animals have no choice but to move elsewhere.
- The American southwest, where most produce in the USA comes from, will be most seriously hit.
- The warming effects are not evenly distributed. The poles and tropical regions will be more severely affected.
- If the summer days are 40°C (104°F) and the winter nights are -10.0°C (14.0°F), the average works out to a balmy sounding 15°C (59°F).
Climate Change Skeptics are Trying to Kill You
People don’t get it yet. Those flagrantly emitting greenhouse gases are trying to kill you or your grandkids. They need to be dealt with like any other serial killers — arrest and incarcerate them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Trumps Everything
There are hundreds of crucial political, environmental and civil rights issues facing our planet. The most important of them all is climate change because green house gases are transforming the delicate balance in our atmosphere that sustains life as we know it. Without reliable water and thriving plant and animal life we, even in the west, will experience extreme food shortages. Without food and water to sustain us, these other issues are moot.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change Will Get Me if A Heart Attack Does Not
It’s spooky the way mankind has decided to commit suicide by climate change at roughly the same time I would die of natural causes anyway. It’s odd that most of the people who care about global warming are my age or higher. Perhaps the younger people who are destined to suffer most living through the tribulations, are thus the ones most in denial.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change With Your Own Eyes
Even though climate change is gradual by human standards, you can see it happening in your own back yard. Just keep track of how many of each type of bird you see each year. You will see species from down south you have never seen before. Further, cold-loving species will disappear and take up residence further north.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change’s Evil Twin
Ocean acidification is climate change’s evil twin. The greenhouse gas CO₂ dissolves in ocean water and makes it acidic. This dissolves the calcium carbonate shells of sea creatures, most notably planktons and corals. These tiny creatures are the base of the food chain.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate Change’s Side Effect
Climate change heats ocean water. Hot water cannot dissolve as many gases, especially oxygen. Oxygen-deprived water does not support life. You create dead zones.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate scientists monitor the Greenland ice sheets with satellites accurate to the width of a human hair. Climate deniers make their pronouncements based on a casual observation of their back yards. Yet the deniers claim they are more competent than the scientists. They have some nerve.
They are planetary traitors. I think that should be a capital offence. They do far more damage than any murderer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate deniers and climate slobs who refuse to act on climate change are similar to alcoholics and drug dealers. Alcoholics think only of the short-term pleasure of a drink. They ignore the long-term pain of its effect on health and their loved ones. Drug dealers sell products they know will kill their customers. They don’t care. All they think about is the profit. Climate slobs think only of the money they get from selling fossil fuels. They are quite happy to betray their planet, all the people in it and all future generations. Like alcoholics, they have a million excuses for their behaviour.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Club Of Rome’s Bad Timing
The Club of Rome was not wrong, they just got the timing a bit off by neglecting some favourable factors. Their predictions are all coming true. Unfortunately, humanity is lulled thinking nothing awful can happen because of the failure of their first cut. Some take this failure so far as justifying denying anything science has to tell them, even that the stores of fossil fuels are finite and that we have already burned more than half the oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Clueless Twinks Tinkering With Technology
Our world has become so completely dependent on technology that only a small fraction of the population understands it. Just as you would not let a toddler drive your car, you can’t trust religious believers to control the planet’s life support systems. They have a reckless overconfidence that they are more qualified than the scientists who invented them, so much so, they most often do the exact opposite of what the scientists recommend. Believers presume with absolute confidence, that if they screw up, Jehovah will clean up after them, even though Jehovah has never done this before. Electing believers to office is as unwise as recruiting all candidates from an institution for the criminally insane. The classic example is Stephen Harper, Canada’s science-hating fundamentalist Prime Minister. (Perhaps he misunderstood the meaning of his title. It is a political, not religious office.)~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A coal-fired electric plant in the USA burns an entire trainload of coal every 12 hours.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The coal industry is screaming that reducing greenhouse gases will cause the loss of 3 million jobs. There may be coal jobs lost, but their will be just as many new jobs created. We still need energy. There will be new jobs creating it cleanly. If we don’t reduce greenhouse gases, the economy will be in far worse shape with the collapse in agriculture and the flooding of coastal cities.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Coal is More Dangerous Than Nuclear
The most dangerous machine for producing energy is not a nuclear power plant, but a coal plant, perfectly functioning according to spec. It belches out greenhouse gases.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
At current levels of output, coal reserves can be expected to last 500 years but we will kill ourselves off with the greenhouse gas emissions long before then.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) see lecture by Dr. Albert A. Bartlett.
The first catch is only half that reserve is recoverable. The second catch is energy consumption is not sitting still. It has been doubling approximately every decade. Even those enormous reserves would be gobbled up in 51 years with modest 5% coal reserves growth. The third catch is burning all that coal would cause mass extinction through global warming.
How long will the coal really last? See the calculator.
In the United States because of the power of the coal lobby, coal fired plants get much bigger subsidies than solar. It does not matter that solar is clean, emits no greenhouse gases and uses free fuel delivered free by nature in perpetuity.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Coal vs Solar
Investors shy away from solar preferring coal because the start-up costs are higher. Several things could change that:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Germans or Chinese mass producing cheap solar plants.
- Price of fossil fuels rises, or becomes unpredictable. With solar there are no fuel costs.
- The public suddenly catches on they are committing suicide by permitting CO₂ emissions and other pollutants from coal fired plants.
- Government investment in solar as an economy stimulus.
- China becomes the new super power and decides for the world, coal is killing us and must go.
Coal-Fired Hair Dryer
If you use a hair dryer, over its lifetime, you will consume 0.68 tonne (¾ ton) of coal for the electricity to run it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68), source National Geographic video The Human Footprint.
We are nostalgic about the people of eastern Canada and the complete collapse of the cod fishery in 1992. Their greed was monumental. Their refusal to confront reality of the damage they were doing was medieval. They more than deserved their fate.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) The End of the Line
It is unbelievable how much we coddle automobile drivers:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- We give them free roads and free parking along the sides of most of those roads.
- We give them free bridges.
- We patch the pot holes free.
- We provide free helicopters to clean up after accidents.
- We don’t charge them for the greenhouse gases or pollutants they emit.
- Shopping malls provide free parking for them. The way stores do it is to bump up the cost of goods for drivers and non-drivers alike.
- We provide the judges free to deal with all the crimes and lawsuits surrounding driving.
- We don’t penalise drivers for using much larger and heavier vehicles than necessary, which tear up the roads.
- You are probably thinking, but drivers pay a gas tax! That is true, but the tax would have to be $3 a gallon higher to fully cover the cost. The cost now is mostly born from general revenue, i.e. from non-drivers. Europeans don’t do that. That is why gas is so much more expensive in Europe.
Collapse of Fossil Fuels
As of 2015-03-17, the Canadian tar sands need to sell for at least $100 a barrel or it does not pay to extract it. Arctic oil which Canada and Russia are researching will have an even higher break-even point. Already Australian coal is down to $72 a ton. It no longer pays to dig it up. The price of oil has dropped to $63 a barrel. Fossil fuels are already on the ropes. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- China has given up on fossil fuels, oil and coal. All their new energy plants are renewables. Such plants are already cheaper than fossil fuels. Further, they want to sell renewable technology to the entire world, just as they now sell small manufactured goods. China has seen the climate change flooding maps. If they don’t get on top of climate change, and push the rest of the world to as well, most of occupied China will be under water.
- Saudi Arabia is manipulating the supply of oil which jerks the price of oil up and down, like hammer blows to the chin of the western world.
Collapse of the Natural Gas Market
In mathematics, there is something called catastrophe theory for modeling things like the growing awareness of climate change.
Every day, more people are becoming more and more alarmed about climate change. One day there will be a sudden snap. There will be a bandwagon effect, and almost overnight everyone will demand we stop burning natural gas and releasing it. (It is a greenhouse gas in itself 24 times more potent than CO₂.)
This is why it is foolhardy to make long range projections of revenue from natural gas. The market is going to suddenly disappear.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Collapse of the US Global Empire
Who would have thought that denial of environmental problems would play such a major rôle in the collapse of the American global empire.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You can think of global warming as a terrible punishment inflicted on mankind to punish them for waste, greed and selfish lack of concern for other creatures. The irony is, man knowingly and voluntarily brought the catastrophe upon themselves. It is as if mankind collectively and unconsciously decided to commit suicide out of guilt.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You could look on global warming as an extreme cosmic punishment for man’s greed and selfishness. The big irony is he knowingly brought it on himself, as if unconsciously he wanted to annihilate himself in shame over his crimes against the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Colossal Fossil Award
At the Copenhagen U.N. climate conference in 2008-12, Canada won an award — the Colossal Fossil, for Stephen Harper’s exceptional work blocking action on climate change not just in Canada but also in other countries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Competitive Law Growing
The sport of choice for suburban men is competitive lawn growing. It is even more environmentally destructive than auto racing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Competitive Lawn Growing
Here in Victoria, the grass is lushest in the cool damp days of February. Yet no one cuts it. They just enjoy it and the crocuses and snowdrops poking through. Later in the year, when it is much more difficult to keep a lawn green, competitive lawn growing season starts with all its rituals of cutting, illegal watering and fertilising. In North America lawn is the biggest crop, bigger even than corn or wheat. Oddly, gardeners discard the entire crop, perhaps as some sort of unconscious religious sacrifice.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Conceited Technological Man
Technological/commercial man is so conceited that he seriously entertains the notion he is the most intelligent being in the entire universe. Yet his reign will last no more than 300 years, one of the shortest ever before he destroys himself and a good chunk of his planet in the process. Even the dinosaurs were not so stupid as to deliberately destroy themselves.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Concentrated = Dangerous
Unfortunately, the more concentrated a fuel is, the more dangerous it is to handle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Condemned To Gridlock
Through their own selfishness, stubbornness and stupidity, drivers condemn themselves to gridlock.
- Commuters drive vehicles designed to hold 4+ people with only the driver in them. If they upped the occupancy to even 2 people per car, the gridlock problem would be solved.
- A totally gridlocked highway is still covered only 8% by vehicles. All that space is needed to compensate for how poor and inattentive humans are as drivers. People flatly refuse to hand over the driving to competent automation that can pack cars almost bumper to bumper at high speed.
- People insist or commuting all at the same time each day.
- People insist on converging on a few magic spots of land to work each day. There could easily spread the worksites out and avoid the congestion.
Drivers create their own hell. They fully deserve it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Early in my computer career, I designed high voltage transmission lines for BC Hydro. We designed them conservatively. We wanted to make very, very sure they would not fall down, even in freakishly hot, cold, icy or windy weather. So we designed for the worst cases plus a fat safety factor. Oddly the oil companies use the word conservative in precisely the reverse sense when talking about policies to deal with global warming. What they mean by conservative is doing nothing, spending nothing, presuming the best possible case or relying on technology not yet invented, in other words what most people would call cavalier or wildly optimistic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Have those loons who talk about conquering nature ever thought about what would happen if they succeeded?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Consequences for Denial
Calgarians are going to pay through the nose for their selfish and greedy emissions of CO₂ from bitumen sales which is causing world-wide extreme weather including the Calgary floods. For a start they will have to rebuild all the bridges, culverts and roads ripped out by the floods. They will have to reinforce all such infrastructure for even worse weather to come. Waters inundated the basements and first floors of many homes. Cleaning crews with fans will have to help get rid of the mud, water, damp and mould. Drywall will have to be replaced. Wood floors will have to be refinished or replaced. Carpets will have to be replaced. Furnishings and appliances will have to be replaced. Some electrical wiring will have to be redone. Furnaces, hot water heaters, washers, dryers and other basement appliances may need to be replaced. Imagine the cost of similar repair work done as a renovation. We could easily be talking $20,000 to $100,000 per home. Because of the shortage of labour capable of doing these restorations, homeowners will pay a premium and will have to get in line. Many homeowners are at the limit of their ability to borrow already and will have to sell their damaged homes at a loss. This is poetic justice for joining in the Calgary’s gang rape of planet earth. Ironically insurance companies do not cover the damage, claiming it is an act of God. It is most definitely not an act of a deity; it is a deliberate malicious act of Steven Harper, Alison Redford and the CEOs of big oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Conservative usually means cautious, avoiding risk. But on the matter of climate change, the people who identify as conservatives are recommending a reckless long-shot gamble, that all the world’s scientists are wrong, based on no evidence that could be so. They are anything but conservative. They are wishful thinkers. They are bat-shit crazy cavalier.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Deepak Obrai is an environmental pig running for the leader of the Conservative Party. He talks about how Canada puts only a fraction of the greenhouse gases into the world, therefore we need do nothing useful. Yet on a per capita basis we Canadians are about as bad as they get. Per capita emissions are what count. Everyone on earth has to do their bit no matter where they live. That we Canadians are collected politically into a fairly small country means nothing to nature. Nature does not see the borders. It just sees the emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Conserving Taxi Gas
The laws governing taxis result in taxis traveling long distances without passengers. This is insane. We need to burn the laws and start over with the goal of transporting the most people with the least gas.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global warming is causing more and more droughts. This means more and more municipalities are trying to deal with the problem of not having enough water. What can they do to make it stretch?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Cutting off lower priority use, like fracking and other industries that use huge amounts of water.
- Asking people to conserve water. Give them hints on what to do. Offer water reduction shower heads.
- Sprinkling restrictions.
- Rotating cut-offs.
- Charging for water and cranking up the price until use drops off sufficiently. Subsidise those on fixed income.
- In the long term, building codes that require the use of greywater for toilet flushing, high pressure, low flow toilets etc.
Considering Alternatives to Capitalism
It is becoming clear capitalism, as we currently practice it, is rapidly destroying the environment that sustains us. We have no choice but to examine some alternatives. Because of cold war propaganda and because the Soviets and Chinese implemented theoretical Communism in such authoritarian ways, it never occurs to us there could be even one good idea to salvage from the thinking of the Communist philosophers.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Considering the Consequences
Humans are like little children when they invent something that will transform the earth, like the automobile, steamships, chemical fertilizers, electric dams… They instantly start covering the earth with the new technology without spending so much as a millisecond trying to predict the side effects or what could be done about them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Consistent Desire To Destroy
The good folk of British Columbia simultaneously vote against building sewage treatment plants and for oil tanker ports. At least they are consistent in wanting to destroy the marine environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In Arizona, 75% of the water shipped into the cities at great expense from hundreds of miles away, is used to water lawns.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People use cars and houses to display status. This is why they so stubbornly refuse to make them energy efficient. Conspicuous waste is the essence of status display.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I was quite surprised how many people asserted that all the world’s scientists had formed a conspiracy to falsify all the climate data. The alleged motive for this was to increase government funding. They could offer no evidence for this. They considered it self-evident (perhaps based on their own motivators).
To me, the very notion was preposterous. It would be impossible to co-ordinate such a conspiracy. Concocting terabytes of consistent false data would be extremely difficult. It would impossible to gain sufficient consensus. Surely someone would spill the beans with evidence. Finally motivation. Scientists are motivated less by money and more by desire for fame than most. They are also motivated by the thrill of discovery.
It could well be the people who started this rumour did not believe it themselves. They just started it for the benefit of big oil to delay curbing greenhouse gas emissions. Various right wingers mindlessly passed in on because right wing pundits like Rush Limbaugh promoted it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If your country were spending money 3,000,000 times faster than it was taking it in, you would surely feel alarmed. We are burning oil 3,000,000 times faster than nature produces it; why are you not similarly concerned?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Contaminated Organic Foods
In the United States, the concept of Organic Food has become so corrupted that over 200 non-organic ingredients are permitted in foods designated organic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Trying to convince men infected with HIV to avoid having unprotected sex and infecting women goes against their deep-seated biological urge to fill the universe with copies of their own DNA, damn the consequences to their offspring or anyone else.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cooking The Books
The Enron scam worked by leaving costs off the books. The entire agribusiness industry is doing the same thing. They are leaving out the costs of soil depletion, aquifer destruction, water pollution, destruction of biodiversity, soil salinisation and leaking of artificial genes into wild populations. Ancient civilisations were more careful than we are about soil erosion and gradually as the soil was lost, yields dropped, to the point where entire civilisation collapsed. This has happened time after time. Any uncorrected soil erosion will eventually result in fields incapable of growing crops.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cooking The Books
The Enron scam worked by leaving costs off the books. The entire fossil fuel business is pulling a similar scam by ignoring the costs of greenhouse gas emissions, the choking of the oceans with discarded plastic that becomes a gill-choking confetti, the destruction of eco-systems with oil spills and the pollution of the aquifers and waterways with petro-chemicals.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Coping Without Cars
Imagine if cars stopped running. It might be gas costs became too high, Iran blocked oil shipments through the Straits of Hormuz, a solar flare fried their electronic ignition systems or people came to their senses realising emitting greenhouse gases is tantamount to suicide. How would you cope? Some people might use bicycles with trailers to go shopping. Others might hire young people to run errands for them. Many would discover they could do their work mostly from home using telecommuting. You might decide to do most of your shopping locally. You might rely on retailers to deliver goods by cart, perhaps drawn by horses, donkeys, large dogs or goats. You would send your kids to local music teachers and local recreational facilities so they could get there on foot. You might tear up the lawn and plant something you could eat or trade with your neighbours for fresh produce. It would be inconvenient, but not the end of the world.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Coral reefs cover only 0.5% of the ocean bottom, yet harbour 25% of all fish species. Corals are extremely sensitive to ocean temperature. Global warming from greenhouse gas emissions is rapidly wiping them out.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Corn as Fuel
Corn as biofuel is a fraud. It produces more CO₂ than regular gasoline since there is so much CO₂ released tending the corn and distilling the ethanol. It only makes sense economically because of the $5 billion a year in American agricultural subsidies originally intended to ensure plentiful, inexpensive food. Further, taking land from agricultural production for biofuel creates food shortages and increases food prices. And finally burning the corn is 81% more efficient than making it into ethanol.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Consider how tobacco, pesticide, oil… companies lied without restraint. I think it is time to presume anything any corporation says is a lie, unless there is evidence to the contrary.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Michael R. Taylor Michael R. Taylor
Consider the career of Michael R. Taylor, the consummate corporate mole. He vibrated back and forth between government and industry 12 times, always serving corporate interests. A few highlights: He was a lawyer for Monsanto, the most evil corporation on earth. The FDA (Federal Drug Administration) hired him to be director of policy even though he had no scientific credentials. He was VP (Vice President) of Monsanto. He was Obama’s advisor.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Corporations Need Supervision
I don’t understand this naïve trust people have in corporations, claiming they need even less oversight than individuals. Corporations have proved themselves negligent by triggering the biggest mass extinction event since the end of the dinosaurs, brought on global warming and destroyed the forests which act as the lungs of our planet just to mention three of their major eco-crimes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Corporations Plotting To Kill Your Grandkids
If you discovered that a corporation were actively plotting to kill your children and grandchildren, would you continue to patronise them? Then why are you patronising the oil and coal companies who are, with malicious intent and profit motive, trying to turn earth to a cinder with ever-increasing greenhouse gas emissions?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Corporations Without Conscience
A corporation will happily bribe politicians to enact policies that will make earth uninhabitable if they think it will improve the next quarter profit by 1%. They are like children with super powers and no conscience or thought for the morrow.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Correcting For the Sins Of Your Parents
If your parents were environmentally irresponsible and had more than two children, you and your siblings can compensate to correct the mini population explosion by limiting yourself to four children among you.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The cosmic injustice of global warming is that the nations that did the least to cause it will suffer most.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is cosmic injustice in the wealthy conspicuous consumers having the easiest time surviving the environmental collapse they caused.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is a lack of cosmic justice surrounding global warming. Americans created nearly all the CO₂ causing global warming, but those who pay the penalty are the innocent people of the Seychelles whose island country is disappearing under the waves, the Pakistanis whose low lying country is being flooded out, the indigenous people of the Amazon rainforest dying of drought, the reptiles of Australia and the frogs that have thrived on planet earth since the first animals left the water. Californians, the most ecologically aware Americans, have had to deal with extreme wildfires and, of course, the impoverished people of Louisiana had to bear the brunt of Katrina. I spit at those smug SUV owners and overpowered penismobiles who just don’t give a flying fig about the effect they have on others.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cost Of Bee Killing
We are rapidly wiping out the bees with pesticides. When the bees are gone, the flowering plants that rely on them for pollination will also go extinct. This has happened already in 1980 in Sechuan province in China. The motive is financial. The irony is, once the bees are gone, it will cost the USA $90 billion a year for hand pollination of food crops.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cost of Choosing to Overpopulate
Consider how much we humans have given up by overpopulating. Almost nobody can afford a house with 40 hectares (98.84 acres) surrounding it. Japanese people resort to robotic pets since real ones are not permitted in tight quarters. We have wars over water and land to grow food in Africa and Israel. We have destroyed the very forests that purify the air we breathe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cost of Clean
Clean solar has already dropped in price equal to the cost of fossil fuels for providing electricity to homes even with the temporary Saudi-created low oil prices.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cost of Polluting
If capitalists were more strict in computing costs, they would behave better. For example, a typical American company manufactures a poison then discards it into a local river, aka pollution. Clearly this is foolish behaviour from an economic point of view. They either should stop manufacturing the poison or they should sell it, or modify it is some way so that can sell it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Counter Fact for Deniers
I wonder how the global warming deniers explain the fact that the coal industry is spending so much on research on how to burn coal without emitting CO₂.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Human intuition thinks that if something has not happened in a while, it probably won’t likely happen again. However, nature confounds that intuition. The longer since an earthquake, the more probable a big one, ditto for volcanoes and hurricanes. Frequent small earthquakes relieve stress, preventing a big one. Small eruptions vent pressure, preventing a big one. Small hurricanes use up the heat in the ocean water, preventing a big one.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Tony Hayward, the CEO of BP, (the author of the great Gulf of Mexico oil spill) has damaged the USA far more than the combined antics of Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, yet Americans are not even impolite to Mr. Hayward.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cowboys of the Apocalypse
The five cowboys of the apocalypse are cars, chainsaws, cattle, coal and cement. These are the major means man is using to crank up the global thermostat with CO₂.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Scientists, with the exception of NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) ’s Hansen, are preposterously cowed by big oil. They are like a fireman at a fire at the Zambelli fireworks plant refusing to speculate on the cause of the fire.
Fourier and Arrhenius worked out back in the 1800s how much the earth would heat up given various amounts of CO₂ in the atmosphere. We can measure how much CO₂ there is. We know how much fossil fuels we have burned so we can calculate how much CO₂ we humans released. We can measure the average temperature increase. All is coming true just as predicted.
We know that heat is energy and adding heat to the atmosphere will cause more energetic weather, bigger storms, bigger floods, dryer droughts, bigger wildfires, receding glaciers, plants, animals and birds showing up at higher and higher latitudes than normal. This is exactly what we are seeing. Yet still scientists have not the balls to tell the yahoo Australians who imagine they understand science claiming there is no problem to go find another planet to ruin. You cannot wait until the earth is literally on fire to act. By then it will be way way too late do anything.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The 2014 average annual concentration of CO₂ in the atmosphere was 398.55 parts per million, about 0.04%. It is increasing at 2.1 ppm per year. In 1700 it was estimated at 280 ppm.
That tiny concentration is sufficient to sustain all the plant life on earth. It is also sufficient to keep the world warm. The CO₂ is transparent to the visible and UV (ultraviolet) radiation from the sun. It hits the earth and is reflected back as infrared radiation. The CO₂ blocks the infrared from leaving, so heat builds up on earth. A greenhouse works in a similar way.
CO₂ is not the only greenhouse gas. For example, methane (natural gas/cow farts) is 24 times as potent.
This is not in the least controversial. The math for the way CO₂ warms the earth was discovered way back in the 1800s. We know humans are the source because we know how much fossil fuels we have sold and burned.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
CO₂ and Ice
For millions of years, earth was covered with ice 1 km (0.62 mile) thick. The temperature was -50°C (-58°F). Then volcanoes released massive amounts of CO₂. Within a few hundred years all the ice melted and the temperature soared to 50°C (122°F). Idiotic humans are repeating the experiment releasing massive amounts of CO₂. They know darn well what will happen, but they do it anyway. All they care about is themselves and their temporary convenience, not their grandchildren or children. No other creature plots to murder all successive generations.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You breathe out about 215.46 kg (475 lbs) of carbon dioxide each year. Just to absorb the CO₂ in your breath, not considering the 20.40 tonnes (22.49 tons) the average American creates by burning fuels, requires 7 trees. To handle all the CO₂ requires 95 trees. We have already leveled over half the planet’s forests, which was suicidal considering we have only a minute fraction of the trees we need.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Since 1750, global average levels of CO₂ in the atmosphere have increased to 141% of the pre-industrial concentration of 278 parts per million (ppm). According to the WMO (World Meteorological Organisation) there were 393.1 ppm of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in 2012, an increase of 2.2 ppm over 2011. All those little CO₂ molecules behave like tiny blankets warming up the earth. We have not had this much CO₂ for millions of years.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Let’s say you wanted to know the temperature of the earth 50,000 years ago. You would go to Antarctica, drill down through 50,000 layers of ice, collect a sample, find a bubble in it and measure the proportion of CO₂ in it. Then, using math discovered in the 1800s, you could calculate the temperature, the more CO₂, the higher the temperature. But wait, isn’t that the exact same math scientists use to predict global warming based on greenhouse gas emissions? Yes. The global warming deniers are quite happy with the math when it is used to compute past temperatures but reject it when it is used to predict future temperatures. But that does not make sense. Lies don’t have to make sense.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
CO₂ Has Huge Power to Control Temperature
Lay people don’t have the proper respect for CO₂. They think of it as the innocuous gas that gives soft drinks their fizz. But millions of years ago when the sun shone only 1/3 as brightly as it does today, CO₂ kept the world warm. In other words it has the power to heat our planet comparable to the sun being three times hotter. Excess amounts on other planets makes them so hot, lead melts.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
According to Nova, today’s CO₂ levels are much higher than they have been at any time in the last 500,000 years. We are in no way prepared to put up with even a tiny fraction of the crazy weather that came down during the last 500,000 years and we are begging for much worse with our utterly out-of-control CO₂ emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The latest science tells us the redline for CO₂ is 350 ppm. That is the maximum level that will sustain life on earth and sustain technological civilisation. We have already hit 390 ppm. The negative effects are delayed. If we are to survive, it is no longer enough to stop putting more CO₂ into the air, we have to start removing it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Crackpot Fear of Smart Meters
To the crazies who think smart meters are a plot to spy on your sex habits:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Even if your paranoid fantasies were true, there are hundreds of more important things to devote your effort to.
- Smart meters are usually mounted outside your house or in a basement. How are they supposed to spy without any cameras or microphones planted throughout your house? Do you think they sprout inside your electrical outlets? Open them up and look.
- What are you doing in the bedroom that would be any different from everyone else. You are fat and out of shape. Who would be interested in watching you?
- Some hypochondriacs noticed they had a headache and blamed the meter, accusing it without evidence to bombarding them with deadly radiation. This is nonsense. A meter is an extremely low power device. Smart meters communicate to a near by phone pole with a low-power radio system much like a WiFi (Wireless Fidelity) wireless LAN (Local Area Network). They broadcast much less power than cellphones, CB (Citizens’ Band radio) s or short wave radios. Over its entire life you will be exposed to as much radiation as one 30-minute cellphone call. Here is how it works .
- Smart meters are one of the few times when both profit and the environment benefit. Eventually they will save you money too, allowing you to automatically avoid using heaters and air conditioners during peak hours. They also mean the power company does not need to send a man into your house to read it each month. So, they actually give you more privacy and safety. They help reduce peak load which means the electric company has to build fewer dams and power plants. This is a very good thing you nitwits are trying to screw up. Just because smart meters save the electric company money does not mean they are evil.
Cranks For Balance
When there is a TV show on space exploration, we don’t insist on inviting flat earthers for balance. When there is a show on geology, we don’t insist on religious fundamentalists for balance. It is just as silly to provide a free platform for crank climate change deniers at every discussion of global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Crazy Man
If your house is on fire and you are hosing it down with water and Stephen Harper comes along and starts hosing it down with gasoline, what do you do? You have to stop him somehow. It is not a matter of negotiating a compromise or striking a balance between sane and insane behaviours. That is a metaphor for Stephen Harper and global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Yes, its true, oil tankers running along the BC coast will create jobs — for Thai sailors and for Canadians cleaning up oil spills.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Adding yet another human to a planet that is already full, is indirect act of murder. It should be punished at the minimum by some sort of forced birth control to prevent a repeat. It defensible to replace yourself and your partner, by having at most two children, but certainly no more.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Building gas and oil pipelines and carbon taxes work at cross purposes. Just one pipeline produces enough greenhouse gases to totally saturate our targets — with nothing left over for cars, industry, other pipelines, heating etc.
Make up your bloody mind. Do you want to survive or not? If we want to survive, no matter how expensive or inconvenient, we have to wean ourselves off fossil fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When 17 people crammed into a 1971 Volkswagen beetle, nobody seriously claimed that the problem was the vehicle was too small, or that better technology was needed for cramming people in. The problem was simply trying to pack too many people into a space that could only hold four comfortably. Yet when we try to pack 10 billion people onto a planet that can only support half a billion, we kid ourselves that our cleverness must inevitably find a way to do it comfortably.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cruelty of Natural Birth
We need to sell women the idea that is it is unspeakably selfish and heartless to bring yet another child into the world when there are so many abandoned children needing homes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cuba Forced To Go Sustainable
When the Soviet block collapsed, Cuba faced a crisis. It has only 1/20 the oil to support its industrial agriculture to create pesticides, fertilisers and to run the tractors. It required 12 units of energy to produce 1 unit of food energy. Academics persuaded the government to abandon monoculture, to turn every square inch of available land even in cities to farming, to use compost and worms, to use organic pest control, to encourage biodiversity… basically the opposite of everything Monsanto promotes. Everyone was astonished when yields, including dairy, doubled and farming became so profitable that farmers made twice as much money as doctors. The CBC Nature Of Things did an episode about it called The Accidental Revolution, Part 1.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Culling Excess Humans
People are always calling for culls to some species or other. The most seriously over-populated animal is homo-sapiens, yet humans oppose even the most humane means of reducing that excess, such as birth control pills. They even demand subsidies for hard core breeders.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Culling Rare Elephants
We cull elephants even though there their numbers are rapidly declining, yet the creature in most need of a cull is homo sapiens. There are more humans than there is food, water or resources to support them. Humans are destroying the environment in a scramble for resources. Modern war mainly maims, not kills, so it no longer helps much. Modern medicine has defanged the infectious disease plague. The solution is birth control or sterilisation. We need to pay women not to have babies. We need propaganda to emphasise the downside and common disappointments of having children. We need to make sure that only parents who can emotionally and financially support children are entrusted with their care.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Curbing Fossil Fuel Addiction
Children have tantrums when mothers limit their intake of candy. They see their mother as mean or abstemious. They refuse to believe Mom’s warning that sugar consumption is harmful to health. All they care about is the sugar rush. In a similar way, the BC Liberals and corporations have tantrums when environmentalists try to get them to limit the use of fossil fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Curbing the Population Explosion
Nearly everyone imagines that stopping the population explosion is impossible save via some global catastrophe. What about simply having fewer babies? Refraining from having babies is considerably easier than refraining from smoking. Excess population is far more dangerous to the planet than smoking. If people had half as many babies as usual, in a generation we would have reduced the global population in half, thus turning intractable global problems into solvable ones.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Current Mass Extinction Event
Amphibians (frogs and salamanders) are the barometer of environmental health. 1/3 of all amphibian species are facing imminent extinction. There has not been such a mass extinction in 65 million years, since the extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans (and other animals) are cursed with a biological urge to fill the universe with copies of their own DNA, even if doing so makes the carriers of those copies utterly miserable from the effects of overpopulation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Cutting Meat Consumption
You can be just as much an environmental greenhouse gas emissions hero as your neighbour who upgraded to a hybrid vehicle by cutting your family’s meat consumption in half.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Switching from cars to bicycles is an incredible win:
- Bicycles need no fuel.
- Bicycles put out no pollutants or greenhouse gases.
- Bicycles are quiet.
- Bicycles mean fewer cars; fewer cars mean less congestion.
- Bicycle accidents are almost never fatal (unless a car is involved.)
- They give people cardio exercise that keeps the arteries clear.
- Bicycles don’t require wide streets or freeways.
- Bicycles are much cheaper than cars, as are the repairs and maintenance.
Everyone should visit the Netherlands to see how pleasant a carless society is. Paris goes carless three days a week. As fossil fuels become increasingly rare and expensive and as the absolute necessity for curbing greenhouse gases sinks in, we will all be giving up our cars for bicycles (perhaps electric assisted for the disabled or elderly).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We need a global database that consolidates environmental information about products, chemicals and components that tells you how much damage they do to the environment:
- how much CO₂ or equivalent greenhouse gases are emitted per unit to manufacture this item.
- how much electric power was consumed to manufacture this item.
- how much water was needed to produce this item.
- How much of various pollutants were released to the environment to manufacture this item.
- Cost of landfill/recycling to deal with this item’s end-of-life.
Then a computer could compare two manufacturing processes, or consumer items for environmental friendliness. You could boil it down to a friendliness rating to help guide every consumer purchase. It would be organised as the mother of all BOMP (Bill Of Materials Processor), allowing loops, e.g. the impact of steel depends on the impact of the use of electricity used to make it and the impact of electricity depends on the impact of the steel used to build the electric grid.
For example, if the CO₂ impact of manufacturing changes NaOH, (sodium hydroxide) that impact would propagate to all processes that use NaOH.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Damage Should Be Built Into the Price
The damage fossil fuels do with greenhouse gas emissions is not built into the price. There is no economic incentive to offer clean energy. The solution is politically unpopular yet refusing to enact is mass suicide. We must built the damage into the cost, namely a pollution tax on gasoline, oil and natural gas and use it to subsidise clean energy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Damn Fertility Treatments
I am angry at couples who spend tens of thousands of dollars on fertility treatments when the world is already overpopulated and when there are already so many babies and children going without parents.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Damn the Stupid People!
I get so angry at people who think you can just ignore climate change because dealing with it is inconvenient. If you don’t get on top of it, you kill billions of people. Is that not more important than a very temporary kick to the economy?
Fossil fuels are a dead end. It is stupid economically to bank on them. Not that long from now, they are going to die completely. It will happen when clean energy costs drop below fossil fuel costs, or sooner if something dramatic happens with climate change that scares everyone. The wise thing to do is get on the clean energy band wagon.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People who live in deserts are risk takers. All it takes is for power, water or transportation systems to fail and they can die within days if they are not well prepared. The faith people have that these systems will always be there for them outstrips religious belief. It helps to travel internationally to learn their functioning is not guaranteed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Dangerous Experiment
Over the last million years, the average temperature of earth has been no hotter than 1.00°C (1.80°F) than it is now. Yet we are aiming to heat up the earth by 6.0°C (10.8°F).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Dark Side Of Christmas
Christmas is most environmentally destructive of our traditions. We buy mountains of kitschy junk we don’t need. We cook more food that we can, much less should eat. We cut down trees and discard or burn the wood. We fill our trash bins to the brim. We fly half way round the world, pig out, then fly back the next day. It is an all-out assault on our planet. The Catholic Church busies itself attempting to block those trying to stop bullies who target gay teens and children. Got to uphold those Christmas family values!~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
David Black’s Plan
Tycoon David Black has proposed building a refinery near Kitimat in BC and shipping only refined petroleum products rather than raw bitumen as is now planned. Mr. Black’s proposal is infinitely better than the existing Enbridge plan. With Mr. Black’s plan, if we have a spill from tankers, all that will be released are light distillates like gasoline, kerosene and diesel fuel, which are relatively easy to clean up. They float on the surface, where they can be skimmed and eventually evaporate.
Crude oil is the same density as water. If it hits water, it gets churned into the water. According to the guy who manages the daily oil spill drills for Washington state, you are lucky to recover 3 to 5% of it. Bitumen is denser than water. If it hits water, it sinks. You have no hope of cleaning it up. Mr. Black’s plan avoids this major problem.
NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) says only 25% of the BP Deepwater Horizon spill was removed, including recovery, burning and evaporation. Unlike the BP crude oil spill, bitumen sinks and does not evaporate.
However, that still leaves two major drawbacks that both plans have in common:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- If there a pipeline spill near a river, the bitumen cannot be cleaned up. Enbridge has proved itself incompetent at preventing spills.
- Tar sands oil is a disaster from the point of view of global warming. The extraction process emits huge amounts of greenhouse gases as does the burning, much more than conventional oil. It would be suicidal to burn this oil or let anyone else burn it. The deposit is so huge, burning it could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back and triggers runaway unstoppable climate change. If we must burn fossil fuels, let us burn much cleaner natural gas instead.
Dawn Dishwashing Liquid TV ads claim they donate $1 from the sale of every bottle to helping clean up wildlife caught in oil spills. I had been buying this product feeling virtuous until I read the fine print. (I can read the bottom line on a reading eye chart. I had trouble reading Dawn’s disclaimer.) It turns out they do no such thing. Only if you visit their website and pass a gauntlet of tests do they donate the $1. Further, they cap their donations at $500,000 no matter how much soap they sell. Their detergent donations cleaned up 75,000 waterfowl.
The gauntlet includes:
- Selecting the correct browser. The HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) is non-standard and does not work with most browsers.
- Taking a vision test to read a serial number on the bottom of the detergent bottle in faint dot etching.
- Taking a typing test to type a string of nonsense correctly.
What Dawn has done is unforgivable, effectively using fraudulent advertising to steal people’s donations to help oil-soaked wildlife. The executives responsible should be criminally prosecuted and forced to pay up the $1 on every bottle as promised.
Note the website now says, more truthfully one bottle can = $1 to save wildlife, where the TV ads fraudulently claim one bottle = $1 to save wildlife. They should also be required to place ads confessing to the net amount per bottle they actually donated.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Proctor & Gamble’s Dawn dishwashing detergent fraudulently advertises they donate $1 for every bottle to dish-washing detergent sold to help clean wildlife damaged by oil spills. This is a lie. In the ultra-fine print they tell you they donate only if you go to a website and negotiate a gauntlet designed to discourage you, including browser specific html, an eyesight test and a typing test. Finally, they confess in the fine print that they will donate no more that $500,000 no matter how many bottles they sell. Granted, their offer did seem too good to be true. This is really sick, ripping off animals hurt by the BP oil spill.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Huge dead zones have formed in the oceans all over the earth. The entire Baltic Sea has become one. There is one off the coast of Oregon. A dead zone has no dissolved oxygen whatsoever. This means no animal life of any kind can survive there. There are no fish, jellyfish, crustaceans, clams, corals, crabs, shrimps, larvae… Of course, blue-green algae can thrive since they don’t consume oxygen. These zones are growing rapidly, as a complex side effect of global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Man has created ever-expanding dead zones in the coastal waters of the oceans all over the world where there is not sufficient oxygen for fish or other sea creatures to survive. There are a few species such as giant jelly fish and vampire squids from hell (Vampyroteuthis infernalis, a living fossil, the predecessor to both squid and octopus) that have evolved to live in low oxygen conditions. It seems odd we humans are bequeathing the oceans to creatures we don’t like all that much.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you are a typical human, chances are you have done absolutely nothing to help make your planet sustainable. You have left it up to others, who have also done nothing. You may even be one of those conspicuous wasters like Glenn Beck who uses extra plastic bags and drives an SUV just to irritate environmentalists. The consequences of this mass irresponsibility are coming to roost, probably within a decade after I die. If then, when you find yourself, in abject misery because of some environmental collapse, please imagine me taunting you with I told you so. If by chance, you did take reasonable action, don’t you feel ever so much better that your predicament is not your fault?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A few generations ago, parents would sacrifice everything to give their children an education, a farm or a new country with political freedom and economic opportunity. However, today, parents seem unwilling to make even the most minor sacrifices for subsequent generations, most notably sacrifices to deal with global warming, alternative energy and pollution. What changed? One factor is the rise of Christian end-of-times cults. These loons believe God is about to destroy the world, so there is no point in doing anything to sustain it. Another is the generation gulf. Young people’s fashion, speech, tattoos, piercings, music etc. are so repulsive to their parents, parents come to hate their kids.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Dealing With An Asteroid on Collision Path
If a large asteroid were discovered on track to obliterate earth in 40 years, given man’s track record with global warming, you could expect prominent Republicans to declare it a hoax. Countries would fight with each other, each claiming someone else should fund a solution. We would do nothing until it was too late.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Death of Oil
Former Prime Minister Harper put all of Canada’s eggs in the oil basket. He bet the farm and lost. The price of oil plummeted as the USA embraced fracking and became Canada’s competitor instead of customer. Saudi Arabia dropped oil prices to 25% of what they were. Competing clean energies such as solar and wind rapidly dropped in cost. Canada’s tar sands oil is very expensive to produce. We could not even afford to produce it at 0 profit. To cap it off Obama killed the Keystone pipeline.
In addition environmental concerns rose, both the contaminating of soils and rivers and also CO₂ emissions that cause climate change.
Canada’s tar sands oil is both extremely dirty and extremely expensive.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- it releases huge amounts of CO₂ in extraction.
- it consumes huge amounts of water and energy to create the steam for extraction.
- it pollutes rivers more than other types of oil extraction.
- the final product is impure. It needs a lot more processing.
- You would only use it only when you are running low on cleaner, cheaper energy. Nobody is going to want our oil until the price of oil goes above $100 a barrel and cleaner oil becomes rare.
Deciding to Have a Baby
Parents so often bring yet another mouth into a world already extremely overpopulated. I wish parents would first interview 100 parents of grown children to learn what they are getting into:
- They would learn about rebellious kids, who got tattoos, a same sex partner, a ring in their nose, purple hair…
- They would learn what is like to raise a child with a developmental disorder, so they could never be toilet trained or taught to talk.
- They would learn the heartache of losing a child to a genetic disease.
- They would learn what it was like to lose their kids in their teens to car accidents and drugs.
- They would learn about the sacrifices you have to make to care for your kids if you lose your job.
- They would learn was it was like to see your kids through university, never to see them again.
- They would learn about the humiliation of having your child get in trouble with the law.
- They would learn about dependent kids who refused to leave home.
- They would learn about raising kids with Down’s syndrome.
- They would learn about kids who grew up to be homeless.
- They would also learn about kids who made their parents proud and were hardly any trouble at all to raise.
It is a pig in the poke. You never know what you are going to get, but whatever it is, you are stuck with it. Make sure you are ready to handle anything before you stop using birth control.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Decline of Animal Eating
I predict eating animals will disappear within a century. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Livestock are a massive source of methane, one of the most potent greenhouse gases.
- Meat is ridiculously expensive in the amount of water, money and space it consumes. Almost no one could afford it if it were not so heavily subsidised.
- Increased population and global warming will decrease the supply and increase the cost.
- Artificial meat will eventually taste even better and have a more pleasing texture than meat created from killing animals and it will be much cheaper.
- Eating meat from dead animals will come to the younger generation to be considered gross, rather than a treat.
Decline of Golf
It is a Good Thing™ golf is in decline. It the most anti-environmental sport. It takes huge amounts of water and land. It poisons the rivers with fertiliser and insecticide runoff. We cannot afford to turn farmland into playgrounds for the uberrich.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Decline of Spinach
When I was born in 1948, spinach contained 158 milligrams of iron per 100 grams. By 1973 it plummeted to 2.2 milligrams. In other words, spinach used to be 72 times as nutritious in 1948. What happened? Factory farming replaces only four minerals: potassium, calcium, nitrogen and phosphates with fertilisers. The trace minerals such as iron and zinc have long been leached out of the soil by intensive monoculture.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Declining Oil Production
The world is producing 8 million barrels of oil less each day. Yet Big Oil still tries to convince American that the future is oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Deep Ocean Life
In terms of biomass, number of individuals and number of species, most life on earth lives in the deep oceans.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Definition of Dow Jones Index
The Dow Jones is an index of how fast man is destroying the environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Definition of Reserves
For oil to be useful, you must make more money selling it than you spend extracting it. Naturally, oil companies extract the easy oil first. Much of what we count as reserves are not economically viable or are just marginal.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Demand the Death Penalty
If people understood just how serious global warming is, they would demand the death penalty for people driving with more than one unoccupied seat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Democracy is breaking down in Canada. Nobody wants more pesticides in food or less meat inspection but that is what the Conservative government is giving them. The problem is the system of legalised bribery where corporations can bribe politicians with massive direct and indirect campaign contributions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are many Americans who think climate change is a hoax. This is wishful thinking. We all agree it would be nice if this were so. American Christians are deeply practiced at wishful thinking. Further, big oil has been lying to them for decades. They ignore scientists and listen to the echo chamber. They never hear a word contrary to what they believe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Denial is not Protection
Denying global warming does not protect such fools from the consequences of it any more than denying arsenic is poisonous will allow gobbling it without effect.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One of the many lies that climate change deniers like to tell is that the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) represents just a handful of people. It is an intergovernmental organisation with 195 member countries and thousands of scientists publishing climate change research.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Dependence on Oil
We humans have a serious problem. We are in the midst of a population explosion sustained by oil. As the oil runs out, we will only have the resources to support 1 in 9 of the current population. If we want to avoid the chaos of mass famines and wars, it would be wise to lower the population gradually via non-violent means. Various groups have attacked the population problem in different ways:
- The pope urges his flock to breed like rabbits and harass people who do not have children, particularly homosexuals.
- Republicans lobby hard to make sex education, abortion and birth control illegal.
- Soldiers go to foreign countries and kill people.
- Priests force sex on children, thus traumatising them and making it difficult for them to create families as adults.
- Some cultures prefer male children and use sex selection technology or abortion to assure a male child. The resulting societies have an excess of males who cannot find female partners or breed.
- The Chinese tried to institute a one-child policy, but the people thwarted them at every turn.
- Gay people rarely reproduce, though they sometimes raise children others have abandoned.
It seems to me that gays are most responsible of all, yet society treats them with contempt. On the other hand the pope, soldiers and priests behave in the most unethical way, yet they enjoy the highest status.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The oil and natural gas lobbies love to brag about how dependent America is on oil and natural gas. They claim this is a Good Thing™ But what it really means is we have refused to plan for an alternative as fossil fuels run out and as we have to discontinue them to avoid global warming. We are all going to be screwed and they are smiling because they will corner the market on money as fuel prices go through the roof. There is not much point is being filthy rich if you are also dead.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
An odd hypothesis is that grazing actually stops desertification, if the animals are migrated over the rangeland to simulate the habits of wild grazers.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hormones make people attempt to procreate even when there is less than a 1 in 10 chance the child will reach adulthood. We are little different from insects is that respect. Religious traditions and pressure from relatives push people to breed even when the environment clearly cannot sustain the additional population. Child bearing is one area where people are insanely selfish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Destroying Earth As A Side Effect
The villains who are working tirelessly to destroy all life on earth are for the most part unrecognised because they do it as a side effect of making money. They have negative effects millions of times more severe than even the most vicious child rapists, torturers and terrorists. They include: lobbyists who work to derail efforts to stop global warming, combustion engine manufacturers, the coal, gas and oil lobbyists, employees of Monsanto, nuclear weapons technicians, people who work in the defence industry and politicians on the take from these lobbyists,~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Destroying Young Lungs for Oil
Because of the increasing pollution from burning fossil fuels, the lung capacity of ten year olds is dropping about 10% per decade. Surely that is reason enough to stop using these fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Dirtiest Fuel
From the point of view of greenhouse gas CO₂ emissions, you can’t get a dirtier fuel than coal. It is worse than any other fuel. This is because it is made of almost pure carbon. You would never guess that from the TV ads touting coal as a clean fuel.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Dirty Old Koch Brothers
The Koch brothers have spend millions spreading FUD, about climate change, dragging along foolish Christians like calves with rings in their noses. Their motive is not religious, but financial. They are heavily invested in dirty fossil fuels like Canada’s tar sands. They are old. They don’t care what happens to earth a decade or so off because they will be dead.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Dirty Tar Sands
Canada’s tar sands are the dirtiest environmentally of any form of oil extraction. They massively pollute land, water and the global atmosphere with greenhouse gases. The problem is huge quantities of super heated steam from natural gas are needed to heat the tar sands up enough for the bitumen in them to melt and flow. You get greenhouse gas emissions from the natural gas burning, creating the energy used to pump the viscous tar, creating the energy to refine the tar and when the oil/gasoline is finally burned. The steam condenses and the oily slurry is dumped into nearby rivers. However, despite these environmental drawbacks, the USA projects it will get most of its oil from the Canadian tar sands in 2012. Canadians have no choice in the matter.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Dirty Tricks to Sell Water
Companies such as Nestlé have arranged that public drinking fountains have been disconnected, so that people will buy their water at inflated prices. There are no standards of cleanliness or honesty in labelling of bottled water. Corporate America also seems to be working hard on making the air unbreathable too, presumably so that can sell us air.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Disappearance of Bees
There in near panic about the disappearance of the honeybees. Bees are absolutely needed to pollinate food crops. Scientists insist of finding a single cause. I think this is moronic. We know of half a dozen heavy-duty stressors we have imposed on the honeybee. The bees might be able to deal with one of them at a time, but not ganged up on. Instead of trying to pin the blame on a single stressor, how about relieving the bees of all of them as best we can and see if they recover.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Disappearance of the Caribou
The George River Caribou herd in Labrador is rapidly disappearing. There were 800,000 animals. The herd is down to 27,000. Environmental pigs are refusing to stop hunting them. Nobody knows what is causing the collapse, though heavy hunting is obviously contributing to it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
This movie in a microcosm, using the example of disappearing bees, explains what an insane thing we human are doing to our planet with agribusiness.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
DVD referral for Vanishing Of The Bees recommend DVD⇒Vanishing Of The Bees DVD by George Langworthy[director], Maryam Henein [director] asin B004SO26RE upc 826262006792 The documentary follows the mystery of that was killing bees suddenly and in huge numbers. It turned out the French had figured it out a decade earlier. Bayer (the Aspirin people) marketed two systemic pesticides Gaucho and Poncho. System poison get inside the plant and stay there its entire life, making every part of the plant, including the nectar and pollen poisonous. Bayer had tested them only for death within 3 days. It turns out they kill by gradual buildup. Immature bees in contaminated pollen brought back to the hive. Adult bees are poisoned when the turn to eating stored pollen when the weather turns cold. This is not just a tree-hugger tragedy. Bees are needed for all manner of crops from apples to blueberries. The wild bees are all but extinct and the domesticated ones are on the ropes. Even later thinking blames a parasitic mite. Pesticides lower resistance.
Online stores carrying Vanishing Of The Bees amazon.de amazon.co.uk amazon.es amazon.ca amazon.fr amazon.com amazon.it powells.com junglee.com Barnes & Noble other stores Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock
Glacier National Park in Wyoming used to have 150 glaciers in the time of Theodore Roosevelt. Today they are only 35 left. At the current rate of melting, they will all be gone by 2030. This is not just a matter of higher temperatures, it is a matter of insufficient water.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Discarded Aluminum Cans
Each year, Americans discard 38 billion aluminum cans, discard, not recycle. This would be enough to create an aluminum dome covering New York City.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68), source National Geographic video The Human Footprint.
Disease Friendly Civilisation
From the point of view of a new disease organism, our technological civilisation seems custom-tailored to help it spread. We transport diseases around the entire planet within hours on airliners; we move them around in food transported tens of thousands of miles; we congregate in tight spaces like buses, elevators and office buildings each day to exchange microorganisms. Even our greeting ritual, the handshake, exchanges more germs than had we ritually drunk each other’s urine. We have undone all we have evolved/learned in millions of years to control disease, namely live in small groups and be wary of contact with strangers.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
BP used a toxic dispersant Corexit to hide the oil, even after the government told them not to. BP is falsely claiming the dispersed oil is gone. That is claiming like dirt disappears when you sweep it under the carpet. The purpose of the dispersant was to confuse the government whose fines are based on the amount of oil spilled and to avoid liability for cleaning it up. They are such scumbags!~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The only purpose of a dispersant in an oil spill is to hide the extent of the spill.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Distracting Phony Catastrophes
Those that wish to create short-term profit by delaying green energy and ignoring global warming cheat by funding all manner of documentaries about improbable global catastrophes such as the Mayan Calendar 2012-12 end of the world, the Christian end times, asteroid hits, supernovae etc. The public feels overwhelmed and does nothing about the truly important threats.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A Dithering Species
There are thousands of ships monitoring global warming. There are dozens of satellites. There are armies of scientists. Everybody studies the problem. Nobody does anything about it. What dithering species we are! We are going to go extinct from of terminal procrastination.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Do Nothing About Climate Change
If China invaded Canada, would we say We should do nothing. It would impact the economy. Wages are too low; we cannot afford to fight the Chinese. No, we would but defending Canada as priority 1. Climate change would do far more damage than a Chinese invasion. We must stop playing ostrich.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Do Nothing Option
When it comes to the environment, it is the extremists who want to do nothing to preserve and protect the environment. They are advocating planetary environmental suicide. What could be more extreme?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Do Nothing Study
The federal government spent 3 years and $26 million dollars to study why the main salmon run unexpectedly dropped to 1/10 its normal size. The commission concluded there were multiple stressors killing off the run. What would a good capitalist do to save the fishery? Follow the recommendations of the commission, perhaps? Prime Minister Harper decided more study is needed, with no action of any kind.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Doing Nothing To Save Your Grandchild
What would you do if you saw some stranger attempting to kill your grandchild? Then how come you don’t even say boo when that stranger drives an SUV to get groceries or an overpowered pickup truck to commute to work? Those strangers are wantonly spewing voluminous greenhouse gases that cause global warming that could easily kill your grandchild or at least make their life hell.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is a movie, Bananas that shows some of the skulduggery that Dole, the producers of tropical fruit, stoops to. It poisoned its employees. It made false charges. It threatened the Swedish documentary maker who filmed the Dole’s trial and finally sued him for revealing material available in open court. Dole has the morals of Monsanto. The best way to fight them is to buy only fair trade organic bananas.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Joe: Stay away from Los Angeles. They hate anything marine: fish, seals, even us dolphins.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Rosalie: What makes you say that?
Joe: They grind up plastic and dump it in the water, so that it is so thick there is 600 times as much as plankton! You can’t breathe. It clogs the gills of the fish. Who wants to eat dead fish? Yuch! They also litter the surface of the water with plastic rings that snare turtles, fish and sea birds, either choking them to death or squeezing them to death over months. Those humans are so sadistic. What did the sea turtles ever do to them?
Rosalie: That’s pretty bad, but even far out to sea that crap outweighs the plankton 6 to 1.
Republicans tell us that the $3,000 billion they have spent on the Iraq war is good for the economy, but spending $10 billion to implement this year’s Kyoto target would break the economy. It is clearly not the amount bothering them, but rather whether they are the ones who get the money. Consider also that all you get back from the investment in the Iraq war is some large holes drilled into the other side of the globe. In contrast, every penny invested in clean energy will save you over and over in reduced foreign oil imports.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Double Standard Inuit
Inuit and native people can’t have it both ways — using modern motorboats, winch driven nets, exploding harpoons and guns with the traditional attitude that man has a right to kill as much as he pleases.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil executives testified they planned to double oil production by 2050. That is preposterous on at least two grounds:
- We have already hit peak oil, there is not enough oil left to double production.
- It is mandatory to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to zero. Doubling them would do as much damage as a global nuclear war.
In other words, they are lying through their teeth. They want to postpone clean energy as long as possible.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
To work out the doubling time of an annual percentage growth, divide it into 70. Why 70? It is 100 × ln(2). e.g. 7% ? 10 years to double. So, for example, when electric power consumption was growing at 7% a year, we had to come up with double the generating capacity every decade. Further, every decade consumed more power than in all previous history combined. These are the consequences of simple arithmetic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) see lecture by Dr. Albert A. Bartlett.
Downside of Biofuels
One downside of biofuels is they mean increased fertiliser use. Fertiliser run-off creates dead zones of water without oxygen.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Downside Of Ethanol Fuel
The USA is now using — of its corn crop for making ethanol for fuel. This has taken a massive amount of grain off the world market, grain the world’s poor depend on for food. The corn for one tank of fuel would feed a man for a year. Third world food prices have more than tripled at a result of diverting grain from food to transportation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Downside of Helmet Laws
One of the unfortunate effects of bike helmet laws is a 50% drop in cycling, especially among teens. We have to balance out the additional brain injuries with the lost benefits of exercise, lower pollution etc. Helmet laws also block free-bike schemes from taking off because people find it inconvenient to carry a helmet with them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Downside of Warming Winders
Many people look forward to the warmer winters caused by global climate change. The downside is if you have warm winters, all the precipitation comes as rain which runs off. Come summer there is no snow pack to melt and keep the rivers flowing and cool. That means fish die and water shortages.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Drastic Changes A Coming
If you think you and your descendants are going to survive the next 100 years without drastic changes to your life style, you are kidding yourself.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Drilling for Water
Drilling for water is a temporary solution. Typically, the aquifer is drained in 50 years and takes 10,000 years to refill.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Driven by Reproduction
Genes drive animals to attempt to maximise the population, even if it means utter misery for the individuals. Even with our much vaunted intelligence, we humans are as equally driven as locusts.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Driverless cars are coming. Not that long thereafter, it will be illegal for humans to drive cars on public roads as too dangerous. This will be a mixed blessing:
- They will drastically reduce accidents. Computers are not distracted by texting, fighting children, drowsiness, alcohol, worry, road rage, shapely behinds, eating, shocking news on the radio, phone calls, heart attacks, epileptic seizures, orgasms…
- Computers have pre-planned rational strategies to deal with every contingency including ice, oil slicks, a mattress falling off the truck ahead, a lion on the roadway…
- Because of their microsecond reaction times, cars will be able to drive much closer together and in narrower lanes. This means the same roadways will pump through more traffic reducing congestion. Without such intelligent cars, there is no may to reduce congestion. There is no more land to build roads.
- Because driverless cars sense with ultrasound, radar, infrared… and because they can talk to other cars and to traffic control, they can drive safely in foggy, snowy and icy conditions.
- You will be able to sleep, read, have sex, watch movies, work, talk on the phone, browse the Internet… as you travel. It will give commuters more free time.
- It will not be up to you to find a parking space. Your car will know where one is and park itself, perhaps quite far away from where it let you off.
- If you want, you can allow others to use your car while you are not using it, perhaps for a fee. You may sign up for a service like ZipCar where you have access to a whole fleet of various sized and special purpose vehicles.
- Car insurance will eventually become very inexpensive, both for liability and collision.
- Children, the elderly, drunks, irresponsible teens, disabled people, people with mental illness or dementia all can drive safely.
- Special vans can be used to deliver packages without requiring a driver. This will reduce the cost of catalog/Internet shopping.
- Cars will do less stop and go driving since they can anticipate what other vehicles are about to do. They will drive to satisfy fuel efficiency not road rage efficiency.
- Since cars are communicating constantly about road conditions, they can avoid congestion, and obstacles always picking the currently optimum route.
- All cars will be able to act as taxis, delivering children to school or music lessons.
There is a downside too:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- With cars more convenient than ever, the numbers will rise and the number of trips will rise. Even if the cars are electric, this will increase net energy use. This is the killer. We need to be thinking about how to reduce passenger-miles not increase them.
- Taxis will disappear. It will be up to people at the end points to load and unload and deal with disabled people.
- Public mass transit will wane.
- Because it will be safer to drive faster, cars will drive faster, thereby reducing fuel efficiency and encouraging even more optional trips.
- Cars are not very efficient. They use rubber wheels and combustion engines. Ideally we should be using rails, electric power and cars that travel bumper to bumper to reduce wind drag, more like a automated railway than an automated highway system.
- Because commuting will be not quite so onerous, you will find people commuting and polluting three hours each way to work.
- Because of CO₂ emissions, the gas-powered driverless cars will be obsolete before they are invented.
Driverless Cars Allow Everyone To Be Chauffeured
Rich people usually prefer to be chauffeured. I trust when cars are smart enough to drive themselves, people will give up driving without too much fuss, especially when they can arrive faster, safer and cheaper.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Drivers Of Outsized Vehicles
Have you ever noticed that the more preposterously outsized a vehicle is, the more its driver expects everyone to defer to him on the road. I think people who use the roads most efficiently should get priority.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Driving to Extinction
Mythically speaking, for millions of years, there has been a great race the animals run every year to judge fitness. The reward for good showing is sex and progeny. The punishment for poor showing is celibacy. We humans are driving species after species extinct. We are upsetting this evolved balance of species in many ways:
- We take a shine to a species as food and drive it extinct with advanced weapons.
- A species that is naturally almost extinct, we keep helping to stay in the race. Had we not been here, they would have died out.
- We kill off some species by taking over its territory.
- We kill off some species by polluting its environment.
- We are about to kill off more than half of all species with climate change. We have moral responsibility to at least attempt not to do that.
When the forces of greed are so keen on wiping out all of earth’s species, where should those oppose them put their resources?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The poster child species, colourful, furry, cute, harmless looking, cuddly, childhood favourites. This will attract more money.
- By the total biomass of the species. If it was a winner, we should back winners.
- By how close to extinction the species is in terms of numbers or numbers needs to sustain a population.
- By how much damage humans have done them beyond what we were doing 10,000 years ago. Ideally we would like to have a neutral net effect.
Dropping the Egg
Nature conservancy is a bit like an egg relay race. If anyone drops the egg, it is game over. If each generation does its part, the nature we enjoy today will continue to exist to delight thousands of years from now.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Good news for a change! In Canada, greenhouse gas emissions have dropped a tiny bit each year between 2005 and 2011. Granted, we are still worse off now than in 2005 since the cumulative emissions hang around for a millennia. The Conservative government crowed about the achievement. That’s odd given they are climate change deniers, repealed legislation designed to reduce emissions, reneged on Canada’s Kyoto treaty, scuttled the Durban climate change conference and put all of Canada’s energy and export eggs firmly in the fossil fuel basket. That bit of good news can be attributed to the slower economy and the hard work of individual Canadian corporations and citizens. It happened despite Prime Minister Harper and Environment Minister Peter Kent.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
BC Canada is having the driest summer ever. California is suffering from a four year drought. Because of climate change, droughts may be the new normal. What sorts of things might we do to conserve water?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Toilets are the biggest user of domestic water. We need new designs that use higher pressure and lower volumes.
- The grey water from washing and bathing could be recycled for toilet flushing and watering indoor and outdoor plants.
- Tubs could have an insert to make them narrower.
- We could collect rainwater.
- Install smart meters so that water gets more expensive the lower the reserves.
- Replacing outdoor lawns and plants with drought tolerant ones.
- No more private swimming pools.
If you took an airplane flight across the USA in 2015-08, you would discover most of the USA is brown. There are a sprinkling of bright green irrigated fields. Even in normally-lush places like Alabama, this year, plants are not growing because of the erratic weather. Californians are in their fourth year of drought.
Rich Californians complain that nobody told them about the risk of drought when they bought their properties, therefore they should be excused from conservation measures. However, scientists did warn them, for three decades, of the climate change effects of continuing to spew greenhouse gases as usual.
The consequences are even worse than you might first imagine:
- The people who normally farm will eventually end up on relief. Everyone else will have to pay taxes to support them.
- The local supply of crops will disappear. All food will have to be imported at increased cost. This means food prices will rise.
- The money that pours into the USA from food exports will dry up.
- The rest of the world is not prepared to grow sufficient extra food for the USA. This means food shortages and spiralling costs.
- The USA competing massively on the world food market will cause food shortages all over the earth. This will lead to global riots and political instability.
- Just as in the dust bowl, dry soils are easily blown away.
The solution is not business as usual and thinking wishfully. The solution is to reduce greenhouse gases by rapidly switching from fossil fuels to clean fuels as Germany and Japan are doing. We know from the dust bowl experience how bad it can get. Only this time because of climate change, there is no reason to expect things ever to get back to normal until we reduce the concentration of CO₂ in the air back down to normal. We have known since the 19th century the precise mathematics of how a given amount of CO₂ heats up the entire atmosphere. It is not how long can you tread water?, but how long can you go without water?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Drugs vs Chemicals
Drugs are strenuously tested to make sure they are safe. Before they get on the market, drug companies have to prove they are safe. Chemicals that make their way into food are not tested at all. To get them off the market, some altruistic soul has to prove they are dangerous. I think we have this backwards. Why do I think this?
- Everyone is exposed to the chemicals. Only the people prescribed to medications are exposed to the drugs.
- There is a pressing need for the drugs. There is no need at all for people to ingest the chemicals. They get them as a sloppy side effect.
- The dose of a drug is precisely controlled. Nobody even measures exposure to a chemical; it can vary widely.
- A drug is typically only used a short time. Chemical exposure builds up over a lifetime.
- Normally other species are not exposed to drugs, but they most certainly are to chemicals.
- It is difficult to monitor all the possible interactions between drugs. The are so many chemicals it is impossible to begin to think about it.
- People give consent to taking drugs. They don’t give consent to absorbing chemicals.
- Drugs were designed to go into human bodies. Most chemicals were not.
If anything should be tested, it should be the chemicals. We have stupidly closed our eyes and ignored the danger. This is yet another case of flagrant corporate irresponsibility motivated by profit.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is amazing the earth has lasted as long as it has when nearly all human actions are environment-destroying and violence-encouraging.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You’d think with all these advances in electronics, a toaster would be smart enough to turn on the elements in only the slots that contain bread.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The key attribute of plastic is its durability. It does not rust or corrode. It lasts for millennia. For this a very reason it should never be used for disposable items. All those plastic bags and plastic spoons end up in the ocean where it outweighs the plankton 6 to 1. It stays there indefinitely until oysters or clams filters tiny particles of it out of the seawater and embed it in their flesh where you eat it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Dying Coral Reefs
Unless we make some drastic changes, the world’s coral reefs will be gone in thirty years. We are killing them off faster every day in three main ways:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Global warming drives off the algaes that live inside the corals. The algaes convert sunlight to sugars for the coral. Without them, the corals bleach and starve to death.
- Silting, usually from clear cutting tropical forests and mangrove forests at the ocean edge that trap silt.
- Pollution aka human feces.
Dying for the Money
Imagine a contest. The prize is $1,000,000,000. The catch is you have to eat 10 living poison dart frogs (the creature with the most potent venom. Even touching a paper towel a frog has touched will kill you). There are people (and one is on your show right now), who would be mesmerised by the prize and would leap at it. All they can see is the money. They deliberately blind themselves to the dangers. Scientists tell us the global warming (which admittedly does not sound all that terrible) is the biggest danger facing mankind. Let us not be arrogant and pretend we know better. We simply can’t go burning massive amounts of natural gas, no matter how attractive the economics.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When I was growing up it was common to hear people say, In future, the endless bounty of the sea will feed earth’s teeming billions. You don’t hear than any more. You hear instead the 2000 study from the University of Dalhousie that 90% of the ocean’s large fish are gone. We overfished them. We starved them by overharvested the smaller fish they feed on. You hear that the cod still have not come back even with 23 years of moratorium.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Early Climate Change Effects
The cherries, cedars, firs and hemlocks are dying off from the record dry weather here in Victoria. These sorts of effects were not expected until 2100.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Early Death for Earth
In 6 billion years, the sun will run out of hydrogen and expand into a red giant and absorb planet earth. So that settles the fate of life on earth. The question that remains is, must we wipe out life on earth ahead of schedule?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Early Man-Driven Species Extinction
By the 12th century, the people of the Mediterranean had killed off the last Murex shellfish in their rapacious pursuit of indigo dye.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
What is the point of scientists giving decades of warning on climate change if industry and policymakers ignore them?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Earth After Humans
The National Geographic Documentary Aftermath: Population Zero explores what would happen if humans were to suddenly vanish from earth. It makes the heart glad to know that earth is capable of healing most of the damage we humans have done to it within a century. It is just too bad we humans are so intent on destroying the very planet that sustains us.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Earth as Cruise Ship
Most North Americans see planet earth as a sort of cruise ship. Their job is to dance and eat the food. It is other people’s job to keep the whole show going.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Earth Is Full
The earth is already more than full. For every time you conceive a child above two, you are effectively condemning a child somewhere on earth to an early death.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Earth As A Whole
If your country gets in trouble by destroying its environment, it can bail itself out by importing from other countries or invading other countries and stealing their resources. However, earth as a whole does not have this option. There is no other earth to import from or to invade.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Earth, We Have Some Serious Problems
We earthlings have some serious problems creeping up on us. In various ways we are destroying our planet making in incapable of supporting humanity. Some of the ways include: climate change, pollution of air and water, soil erosion, overpopulation, nuclear war, bioterror, extinction of most of plants and animals on earth, destruction of habitat…
The main reason we are having so much trouble is because, back in the 1600s we invented artificial humans called corporations and set them out into the world with enormous financial power, no morals and a blind desire to make as much money as possible in the short term, no matter what the consequences. Natural human greed and selfishness has played a big rôle too.
It has got so bad that it looks like, within 200 years, humans will go extinct, or if we are lucky, just sent back to the stone age. There is almost no chance we will make any progress on any of these problems because with the Roberts Supreme Court decision, corporations now control the government and corporations do not care about sustainability. In fact, they are actively opposed to any efforts at sustainability because they imagine it will reduce their profits a fraction of a percent. (It is too bad corporations don’t take a slightly longer term view. Then they would realise if they drive humans extinct there will be no business at all.)
I can see only one ray of hope. AI (Artificial Intelligence) might just become smarter than us soon enough to take over and make-us/persuade-us/trick-us to see to our own self interest and start living in a sustainable way. Stephen Hawking has pointed out that developing AI is fraught with danger. However, given we are going to go extinct soon anyway, we have no choice but to take the chance.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Societies have no interest in building earthquake resistant cities until after a major quake that wipes out everything. Ironically, that is when a another big quake is least likely. It is most likely the longer it has gone without a major quake. It works somewhat analogously to human excretion.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When you have gone a long time between earthquakes, that is the time most likely you will have another and that it will be a big one. However, that is also the time humans feel safest and are least likely to be concerned with earthquake preparation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is clear the Japanese were not ready for the 2011-03-11 earthquake. Yet an almost identical quake and tsunami is overdue off the north west coast of the USA. Americans are much less prepared than the Japanese were. Why? I suggest it is Christian wishful thinking. Christians imagine their god will protect them, even if the geological record shows he regularly smites the area with tsunamis. It is a bit like a young shrimp refusing to prepare for low tide because he personally has not yet experienced one.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is quite amazing how many thousands of hours of nature shows can be made filming nothing but watching other species eat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Eating an Endangered Animal
If I had my way, eating an endangered animal would be a capital crime.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Eating Meat and Manliness
American men associate eating meat with manliness, but ironically it is the main factor causing erectile dysfunction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Forks Over Knives
Octopus are roughly equal in intelligence to dogs. If you refrain from eating dogs because of their intelligence, you should give up octopus too.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Eating the World
Every creature attempts to convert all the biomass on planet earth into copies of itself. It does this mindlessly, even though success means a nightmare. Even intelligent heterosexual humans do it, quite successfully. I find it revolting.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If people must race cars and trucks, they should at least use an environmentally clean fuel like hydrogen peroxide, or hydrox and race them outside population centres so they don’t impose the noise on people who do not enjoy it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The History channel and the National Geographic Channel are involved in a conspiracy to confuse the public about global warming. Presumably because oil money is funding them, they are willing to trick Americans to commit mass suicide. They keep pooh-poohing global warming as a fringe/theoretical/potential problem then creating documentary after documentary on phony looming disasters such as the earth stopping spinning, the sun suddenly going nova, or a plague sweeping the earth that turns people into zombies (I kid you not).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Even now that everyone understands the negative effects of fertiliser runoff, pesticides and herbicides, home owners persist in saturating their lawns and gardens with them. The airwaves are still packed with advertisements extolling these ecological crimes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We humans have been quite flat-footed in our treatment of the environment. We have spread species over the entire planet where these invasive species take over ecosystems without their usual predators. We kill off species sensitive to man-made pollutants. Global warming means equatorial squid now live in Alaskan waters. Overharvesting some species causes blooms of others. The tough species that are taking over are not often what you would call poster children. According to Garry Hamilton in Super Species: The Creatures That Will Dominate the Planet they include the American bullfrog, brown tree snake, chytrid fungus (frog plague), Humboldt squid, European green crab, eastern grey squirrel, killer algae, feral pig, giant African land snail, C. difficile, Argentine ant, crown of thorns starfish, nutria, hydrozoan, kudzu, zebra mussel, jellyfish, house sparrow, water hyacinth and Nile perch.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Utterly self-centred technological/commercial man has made ecological war on the planet with his pollution, habitat destruction, overpopulation and global warming. It is fitting that man is inexorably executing his ecological demise by his own hand.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We spit on our ancestors who destroyed the old growth forests, killed the last passenger pigeon and killed off the buffalo just for the fun of it. Coming generations will spit on us similarly for wiping out the salmon, sea otter and polar bear with our mad grab for filthy tar. They will be gone forever. The tar money will be here for only a decade. We will feel like such idiots. The animals will exist only as digital images. We have no authority to damage our planet that way. It is not ours. We are merely the temporary tenants.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Economic Benefit to Whom?
The oil companies talk about the overwhelming economic benefit of the Enbridge tar sands pipeline across BC. They mean the overwhelming benefit to them. After the construction is over, it would take only a skeleton crew to monitor the pipeline. Over time, monitoring would be handled more and more by electronics. The job boom would come only after a spill. There are no jobs refining. As the economic benefits wane, the ecological dangers escalate as China and the USA demand an ever larger flow of oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Economic Effect of Green Energy
Harperite conservatives think of green energy and preserving the environment as a frill, something only important so you can take photos for tourism ads. They never think of it as something that sustains the economy and ensures the long term stability of the Canadian government. Already green energy contributes more to the economy than the Alberta tar sands.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The way things are now, economic growth implies increased fossil fuel use, which implies increased CO₂ emissions which is suicidal. Economic growth is no longer a Good Thing™ It will not be until we have adopted clean energy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Economic Insanity
Economists have an odd view of what is desirable. To them, the purpose of life is to increase economic activity, any activity, even including things like more vandalism repairs, more funerals, more pollution, more soil erosion, more deforestation, more conspicuous consumption, more hospital care, more inefficiency, more waste… I call this locust mentality. Economists refuse to notice how their frantic efforts to stimulate short-term economic activity destroy the very substrate the enables sustained economic activity. They refuse to look even a decade into the future about how their actions harm economic activity, much less the environment or human welfare.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It insane that we poison mountain rivers with copper tailings and the extraction chemicals. We do it to make wires for cheap electricity so that sedentary north Americans can sit in front of the TV, with all the lights in the house blazing, simply because they are too obese to get up and turn them off. This is the supposed economic necessity that overrides all other concerns.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is really sick that we destroy so many pristine mountain lakes by turning them into tailings ponds. Why? So that fat socialites can drape themselves in gold in a game of conspicuous consumption to lord it over their peers. This is the supposed economic necessity that overrides all other concerns.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Economics of Carbon Taxes
Sweden implemented a carbon tax back in the 1990s. Their emissions fell and their GDP rose contrary to the predictions of the big oil lobby.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Economics of Climate Change
Conservatives complain that saving the world from destruction by global warming would be too expensive, too hard on the economy. Yet these same men tout military spending to stimulate the economy, where you spend and get nothing in return. The countries doing best economically are also the ones most serious about climate change, e.g. Germany. Fossil fuels are a dead end. Foolish countries like Canada are hitching their economic stars to long term fossil fuel projects that will be obsolete even before they are built.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Economists are Insane
Economists are certifiably and criminally insane, the legal definition — unable to tell right from wrong. They believe it is a Good Thing™ if people consume and waste more, burn more fossil fuel, pollute more, emit more CO₂ and have more babies. That ignores the reality of a finite supply of fossil fuel, finite supply of arable land, finite atmosphere and finite oceans. What you can get away with on a small scale is not what you can get away with when all 7.357 billion people do it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Economy or the Environment?
Christy Clark won the 2013-05-14 BC provincial election by claiming the voters had to choose between the economy and the environment. This is nonsense. Without the environment there is no economy. She wants to put all the province’s financial eggs in the fossil fuel basket. The voters bought this insanity, even though we have seen the way petrostate economies invariably deteriorate allowing all put petro-industries to collapse. We know the fossil fuel market will collapse long before the infrastructure is paid for because of competition from clean fuels and because of the effects of climate change. We will be stuck with the mortgage payments.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ed Fast, Raving Loon
Ed Fast, Conservative member from Abbotsford sees Canada’s problem is that we have too many fish and not enough markets for them. He has this backwards. Our problem is failing fish stocks, primarily from overfishing, pollution and interfering will seals culling diseased and deformed fish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Effect of Overbreeding
If people persist in having more than two children per couple, they are inevitably condemning some of the next generations to die of starvation, disease or war. Some couples (gay and straight) help compensate for these population pigs by having less than two children. The problem is, society still shuns the childless or single childed (or those who adopt) as second class, when in actuality they are altruistic compensating for the sins of the overbreeders.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Effects of Global Warming
The Jet Stream normally moves air across the continent west to east, moving weather patterns and rain along. Global warming has stalled it. The result is droughts in BC, Washington and California.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Effects of Overcrowding
If you factory farm chickens, packing them indoors cheek by jowl so they can barely move, any disease will roar through the entire flock. Overpopulation is effectively factory farming humans in similar overcrowded conditions. We are sitting ducks for the first epidemic that comes along.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Let’s say you could build a new plant for a billion dollars to produce energy. Let’s say, for that same cost, you could introduce efficiencies (insulating, heat pumps, hybrid cars…) to reduce the need for an equivalent amount of energy. Which is the better choice? To the businessman, the power plant is better because it is a concentrated business opportunity. To the environmentalist, the efficiency is better because it has no greenhouse gas emissions and it conserves energy resources for the future.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The human genome has about 3 billion base pairs. It takes about 750 megabytes to encode them in a computer. In contrast, a small hard disk for a desktop computer is about 120 gigabytes or 120,000 megabytes or 160 times bigger than required to contain the a human genome. In contrast, the specifications for an Airbus take about 1 terabyte or 1,000,000 megabytes or 1333 times more than the human genome. Yet humans exhibit far more complex behaviours than Airbuses. This means nature is still way ahead of us in the efficiency of its blueprints.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ships can transport food 100 times as efficiently as trucks and planes. So don’t worry about how far your food comes by ship. Focus on reducing the distance and hence carbon footprint, it comes by plane or truck.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Every flush of a toilet wastes 15 litres (3.96 US gallons) of water — an entire day’s ration of water in the third world. There are three things we could do use the water more efficiently.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Don’t flush for just a pee.
- Allow you to choose the volume of the flush.
- Mount the holding tank in the ceiling so you get far more pressure. You can then use less volume of water per flush.
Airlines are a buggy whip industry. They use huge amounts of fuel to transport people about. They can’t survive as fuel prices continue to rise. Cars are almost as bad, requiring several tons of metal overhead for just a single passenger. Trains, in contrast, are the most fuel-efficient vehicles we have yet invented, save the bicycle, especially when the engine is not on-board. We should stop using planes, except for intercontinental flights. We should stop subsidising them and put that money toward modernising trains (including light rail and automated subways). Even for intercontinental holiday flights, we should give up planes for more efficient and much more comfortable ships.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The USA is spending $20 billion to battle climate change. They spent $1 trillions demolishing Iraq. Which was the bigger threat? Hint: Iraq was no threat at all.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Email Scandal
Climate exchange deniers made hay by taking snippets of 5000 hacked emails between climate scientists out of context. They saw the word trick and pounced demanding a criminal investigation. The trick was substituting more accurate thermometer data where available rather than using temperature estimates from tree rings for a graph of global temperature for a popular science magazine. The paper for the IPCC presented the full picture. The climate change deniers to this day pretend they uncovered criminal activity. Either the deniers were clueless in interpreting the emails or more likely dishonest. They are fully aware they are promoting lies. They are paid liars.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When a body is embalmed and buried in a casket, it is like burying a time capsule of noxious chemicals. It is time we stopped doing that and either buried bodies without chemicals, or cremated them as we did in ancient times.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Emulating the Crocodile
Crocodiles have endured longer than any other large animals. They have survived extinction events that wiped out most other species. The secret of their success is their extremely efficient use of energy. They can go for years without food if necessary. If we want to survive the tough times ahead, we too will have to become masters of energy efficiency.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Enbridge spokesmen selling the tar sands pipeline and tankers to China claim their technology will ensure there will be an oil spill no more often than every 15,000 years. That would be presuming the use of latest double hulled tanker technology and no human error and no navigational failure. But what is to stop China from using the cheapest tankers available, Panamanian, Liberian, Marshallese or Bahamian-registered flags of convenience? If that were true, why does Enbridge has a spill about once a month?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Enbridge promises to inject vast wealth into BC in return for destroying its marine environment and mountain streams. Yes, they will spend money, but it won’t be going into the pockets of ordinary British Columbians. It will be handed to other corporations and from there into the pockets of the like of Jimmy Pattison.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Encouraging the Bad
A type A company behaves responsibly. It makes sure it does not harm the environment. It is careful with the health and safety of its workers and customers. A type B company, in contrast, has no moral compass. It always does what is most profitable for the short term. If you don’t hold type B’s feet to the fire, you are harming the type A companies, making it harder for them to compete with the type B companies. You don’t want to do that.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
End of Death
There are animals that do not age. Scientists are concerned they will soon unravel the mystery of how they do it, and use CRISPER (Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) to halt aging in humans. The catch is, if humanity broadly adopts this technology, it must for all practical purposes stop having babies. The world is finite. You can’t have more people entering the world than leaving it.
There are two types of people on earth:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Those that accept the earth is finite.
- Those who believe the biblical injunction to be fruitful and multiply overrides all common sense.
End of Food Fish
We are on schedule to wipe out the last of the ocean food fish by 2040. I suspect some people will say, No problem, we will eat farm fish. No you won’t. Even farmed fish eat smaller fish, in the form of fish meal.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The End of the Green Revolution
The Green Revolution has brought us agricultural abundance. However, it has reached the end of its useful life. Why?
- It depends on large quantities of cheap oil for machinery, pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Peak oil means oil will become scarcer and more expensive.
- It strips topsoil each year. We are almost to the point where topsoil is too thin to grow crops.
- The fertilisers cause eutrification of the rivers.
- Monoculture encourages pests to evolve resistance to pesticides.
- Pesticides are harming humans and non-target species.
- It requires abundant cheap water. With global warming, much of our agricultural land is becoming dryer.
Happily there are alternatives that still produce high yields. We need to start switching over. Unfortunately, corporations don’t want change, even if it kills us.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The End Of Oil
The global discovery of oil peaked in 1960. Discovery is now for all practical purposes 0. We need to bring online a Saudi Arabia every three years to compensate for the exhaustion of existing wells. There are two catches:
- There are no more large deposits we can exploit. We are doomed to decreasing supply and wildly increasing prices over the long term.
- Even if we had such deposits, we could not burn them because the greenhouse gases would cause completely unacceptable climate change.
We have to find an alternative source or sources of energy. Possibilities include: solar, wind, fusion, tide, geothermal, thorium and solar panels in space. All are clean and cheap in the long term. There is little advantage in procrastinating. All it does it give us less time, energy and resources for the conversion.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) There’s No Tomorrow
The End of Oil
The History Channel billed a documentary on the end of oil with the words In this scenario, the world’s oil supply runs out. Huh? Is there a scenario where it does not run out?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When people talk about the end-of-life on earth, they are being sloppy. What they really mean is one of:
- The end-of-life as we know it with cars, unlimited electricity, unlimited water, 7 billion people, supermarkets with an abundance of food. We have to cut back drastically on energy use, travel and international trade.
- The end of civilisation. We revert to living the way we did 4000 years ago in small bands.
- The end of man. Humans become an endangered species with less than 1000 individuals on the planet.
- The end of the large mammals.
- The end of multi-cellular creatures.
- The end of single-celled creatures including viruses, bacteria and plankton. The earth is sterilised, presumably by some cosmic event like a gamma ray burst.
The level that disturbs me most is the end of the large mammals. Humans are a defective species, a sloppy evolutionary experiment done too quickly, so their demise is inevitable. However, it burns me up that humanity is working hard to take down the cetacea with them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The London Zoological Society has composed a coffee table book about the 100 most endangered species. You can get a copy free in PDF (Portable Document Format) form. The download is 9 MB, so be patient.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We humans are not in the least interested in protecting endangered species. We have hogged 98% of the habit for ourselves and for our domestic animals. What excites us is bigger markets that come from having ever more people. We stole all that land from other species for ourselves, without the tiniest moral qualm. Our religions convinced us we were the paragon of animals, the only species that matters. The most common justification for protecting a species is so we can harvest them. Other species have no intrinsic value.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Endangered Species Priority
Up until recently, we tended to treat all endangered species equally and used the law to stop people from driving them extinct. It looks now we are creating a hierarchy of species and how much protection they deserve. If we discriminate, what should be the criteria? Similarly 95% of the world’s languages are spoken by only 5% of the people. Most of them are rapidly going extinct. Should we be trying to keep them alive? Should we be documenting them?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Endless Growth is Not Only Undesirable, it is Impossible
Mindlessly growing the economy is not ecologically sustainable. Instead we have to figure out how to provide for the comforts of living more efficiently, with less consumption of resources and less destruction of the environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Enemies of the Environment
The enemies of the environment in Canada are:
- the Conservative Party.
- NAFTA (North America Free Trade Agreement)
- SPP (Security and Prosperity Partnership), morphing its name yet again to NASRA (North American Standards and Regulatory Area)
- TILMA (Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement).
The intent of all these innocuous sounding initiatives is to subvert Canadian sovereignty to regulate the environment and commerce and hand it over to American corporations. You would not believe what sovereignty Canada has already given away to the Americans. Our water is already signed away. Our right to regulate pesticides and poisons in food have already been given away to US corporations. Harper lies and claims all we have given away is the right to differ on quality standards for jellybeans.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Enemies of the Environment
Who are the enemies of the environment? conspicuous consumers who waste energy and goods to display status, business people who refuse to take anything into consideration other than the next quarter profit, Christians who indulge in wishful thinking God will like some cosmic mother come along and clean up for us, ordinary folk who refuse to take any action because no conceivable effort could single handedly solve the problems. These people have a long-term effect worse than serial killers, yet we refuse to even ask them to desist.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Every 1.00°C (1.80°F) warmer causes the atmosphere to hold an additional 7% moisture. This causes more energetic weather events.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Energy density measures how much energy you can get out of a given weight of fuel. The higher it is, the more compact the fuel is and the less energy you waste carting it around. The best batteries (lithium thionyl chloride) hold 2.5 Megajoules of energy in every kilogram of fuel, methanol (biofuel) holds 19.7 MJoules/Kg, gasoline holds 43.54 MJoules/Kg, propane holds 49.6 MJoules/Kg. and hydrogen holds a whopping 143 MJoules/Kg. Uranium is in a totally different league with 88,250,000 MJoules/Kg. What does this mean? Batteries have a long way to go before they are efficient for long distance transportation. Hydrogen is the most efficient fuel for long distance transportation. We should get on with hydrogen powered cars.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The cost per watt of solar energy drops every year. The cost of a barrel of oil rises every year on average. It won’t be that much longer before fossil fuels are obsolete. Big oil knows they are doomed. Their strategy is to stall the transition as long as possible even if it means destroying the planet with global warming, even if it means using the most unscrupulous tactics imaginable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Energy From Space
Every second, the sun releases millions of times more energy than has ever been produced on earth. This suggests to me, if we need energy, we should figure out how to cleanly harvest it from space. There is far more there than we could ever use.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The average North American has 147 energy slaves, i.e. uses the energy that would have been provided in earlier times by 147 slaves.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ensuring the Survival of Offspring
The men and women who lived through WWII (World War II) made huge sacrifices to protect their country and their children. If you study history, humans throughout the ages, no matter what the odds, will do whatever it takes to ensure the survival of their children. But today we have a castrated generation who refuses to even put up with minor inconvenience to look out for the survival of the next generation who are threatened by global climate change and environmental degradation, a foe much more deadly than Hitler ever was. People today have allowed themselves to be hypnotised into apathy, convinced that all action is futile. We all have equal time in each day. We all have a voice box. We all have seen endless examples of how individuals who take action inspire others to join in. We have no excuse for apathy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Entitlement to Pollute
The environmentalist looks on a carbon tax as a reminder to reduce his carbon footprint. An environmental pig looks on a carbon tax as an imposition by soft-headed people, that grants him unrestricted right to pollute. Polluting becomes a desirable, expensive, luxury indulgence. Polluting is a way to get revenge on environmentalists.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Environmental Collapse of Easter Island
Even without modern technology, Easter Islanders were able to wipe out all the trees, then all the birds then most of the edible shellfish before the islanders decimated themselves down to about 100 people. Granted, it took them 200 years to accomplish the destruction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
James D. Watson (born:1928-04-06 age:88) the co-discoverer of DNA, says people are foolish to be worried about GMO foods because in principle they are no different than the products of traditional plant and animal breeders.
That is ridiculous. Traditional breeding can only make tiny incremental changes. It can’t make plants start producing pesticides, or scorpion venom or goat milk to contain spider silk, or some totally new chemical never before seen in nature. You must test these additives for safety. Just because they got there via GMO does not make them automatically safe. Unlike a traditional pesticide, you can’t wash a GMO pesticide off or wait for it to degrade. It is created afresh in every cell.
A drug is carefully tested for side effects and allergies, even though it will be given to only a relatively small number of people. In contrast a GMO crop is fed to everyone. It becomes a secret ingredient of thousands of products. If you have an allergy, you can’t avoid it. Therefore, testing needs to be stricter than for drugs. I would like to see some research on why so many people have recently developed a gluten allergy. One possibility is an allergy to GMO wheat.
Once a gene gets out into the field, it jumps to other species. You also have to test the safety of what happens if this gene becomes widespread. Monsanto has said it does not believe it should be required to test its products for safety. The government should do that.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is heart warming the way people will pull out all the stops to help a whale, dolphin or sea turtle in distress. But it odd, people won’t make the tiniest sacrifice to keep those same species from going extinct.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is hard to watch the earth deteriorate at the hand of environmental Philistines. There is some comfort in knowing they will suffer first and hardest from their vandalism.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The lack of cosmic justice is galling when self-centred environmental pigs in their conspicuous consumption status displays (aka Hummers) spew CO₂ greenhouse gas into the air that causes unprecedented droughts in Kenya for people who own nothing but a few goats. The droughts kill all their livestock and plants.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
An environmental traitor asks himself, how big a car can I afford? An environmental patriot asks himself, how small a vehicle will get the job done? Americans live under the delusion a pickup truck is a suitable commuter vehicle and an SUV is necessary to buy groceries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Andrew Weaver is a famous global climate change scientist from the University of Victoria, now a Green Party MLA (Member of the Legislative Assembly), who suddenly reversed his position and became an apologist for exploiting the tar sands on the grounds that coal is even worse.
He told one major lie on the CBC The Current and committed one major piece of dissembling. I don’t dispute his statistics, just his dishonest interpretations.
The lie was this: He pointed out that if all the tar sands were burned it would raise the average global temperature of the earth 0.36°C (0.65°F). He then dismissed this as insignificant, even though he knew full well even 2.0°C (3.6°F) is unacceptable. That represents a massive and disproportionate global contribution from a tiny nation like Canada. It is not as though we Canadians are the only ones responsible for greenhouse gases. It all adds up. Canada is only 0.4% of the world’s population. We have no business contributing more than 0.4% of the world’s pollution.
Weaver’s dissembling was more subtle. He compared the burning all the tar sands with burning all the coal anywhere on earth. At the current rate of consumption, coal will last for 238 years. Unlike the tar sands, nobody is going to burn all the world’s coal in one decade. The effects of global warming will become so severe that most of that coal will never be burned. Weaver wants his audience to believe that the alternative to burning the Alberta tar sands is to burn all the coal on the planet. This is nonsense. Weaver is comparing apples and oranges. He is playing a psychological trick on his audience to convince them to approve of the tar sands. He knew perfectly the well the only honest way to compare coal and tar sands would be to compare a quantity of coal containing equal energy to the tar sands, not the entire world’s supply. Using his crooked methods, he could claim apple juice had way more vitamin C than orange juice. All he would have to do would be compare 100 litres (3.53 cubic feet) of apple juice with 1 litre (1.06 US quarts) of orange juice.
Why is he doing this? I suspect he had an encounter with the dark side of the force in the form of a bribe or a threat. He is completely correct to raise the alarm about coal, but not pooh-pooh concern for the tar sands. What he is doing is so cheap and transparently dishonest, he well could be hoping to be disgraced. He is Deputy Leader of the Green Party in BC. This reflects badly on the integrity of the party, though I find it inconceivable leader Elizabeth May could have been corrupted too.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Environmentally Disastrous Projects
It is not necessary to stop an environmentally disastrous project. It is only necessary to delay it until it becomes economically non-viable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Environmentally friendly toilet habits
A squirt of water and a blast of warm air, would be more effective and environmentally friendly than a wad of toilet paper.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Politicians are cretins. They imagine their responsibility for the environment goes away if the protestors give up and go home.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Equivalent of War
In WWII, people made major sacrifices and embraced rationing and Victory gardens and they gave up pleasure driving. Today, they flatly refuse to make similar sacrifices to fight global warming, failing to understand it is a far bigger threat than Hitler ever was.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Erectile Dysfunction Meaning
Erectile dysfunction is the first sign most men get their arteries are clogged and they are headed for a heart attack. The lining of functioning arteries naturally exude nitrous oxide, the same chemical that makes Viagra work.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Forks Over Knives
Estimate The Odds
Let us say that you have been seduced by some global warming denier or other. Perhaps you think there might be only a 1 in 50 chance than the majority of scientists are correct about global warming. That’s about the odds you might have a heart attack in the next year. Even with those odds because the consequences are so dire, you still take action, you still buy your health insurance. So surely you should take some action on global warming by the same reasoning. Hedge your bets.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ethanol is a joke. It takes more energy to create it than you get back. You need fertiliser, water pumps, tractors, trucks, distillers… The distillation process alone consumes massive amounts of natural gas. You might as well use the natural gas as fuel directly. Economically ethanol makes sense only because big agriculture bribes the government to give it huge subsidies. The other major problem is corn grown for ethanol displaces crops grown for food. For it to work, the raw materials must come from non-arable land.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Even 100% recycled toilet paper goes down the drain never to be used again. If we were serious about stopping this waste of trees, we would switch to some sort of computer-controlled device that cleaned your bum with a directed spray of warm, soapy water. Because it could see better than you what it was doing, it would clean you better than paper.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Butterflies, snowflakes, Janis Joplin, men on death row… We are attracted because we know these things will be here only a short time. I look on our wildly unsustainable human civilisation the same way.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ever Faster Extinction
Australians want to relax to the restrictions on fisheries so they that they will go extinct even sooner than 2048. Why? Third world nations are making no effort to preserve fish, so why should they? Fisherman want to make the same living they enjoyed in past. The greedy dick heads don’t care they are completely destroying the fishery for all future generations.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Every Child A Wanted Child
We need to sell women the idea they have no business having children if they cannot provide for them and if they don’t enjoy caring for children. Every child deserves a secure and loving home.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Evidence of Global Warming in Alabama
The older rural homes in Alabama have ice houses. The rivers froze over in winter. People would use saws to cut out blocks of ice from the rivers for year-round refrigeration. The rivers no longer freeze. How can these people deny the reality of global warming?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Excess Fishing Capacity
There is enough fishing capacity to capture every food fish in the sea four times over. Overfishing follows as a natural consequence. Imagine if some enemy invaded your town with enough firepower to kill everyone four times over. What would your chances be of survival? Especially when they came through 7 times a year, year after year.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) The End of the Line
The quotas for endangered blue fin tuna are three times that required for recovery. Why? Because corrupt businessmen and corrupt politicians can make even huger profit as dwindling stocks drive up prices.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) The End of the Line
Excuses to Pollute
The excuses for refusing to get on with clean energy and greenhouse gas reduction remind me of the lame excuses people use for continuing to smoke.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Exempt Milk Bottles
Of all containers, milk bottles take up the most space in landfills. Why then are they exempt from recycling and recycling fees?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Expectations On Past Humans
Looking back on previous generations, the main thing I wanted of them was not to drive animals extinct and not to destroy natural habitat. I could care less about their battles and empires. Future generations may judge us similarly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Experiment with high CO₂ Levels
The ocean near the Vesuvius volcano has naturally had high CO₂ level for millennia, levels that we expect will occur all over the oceans from greenhouse gas emissions by the end of the century. Sea grass grows happily, but fish cannot spawn successfully. So we know exactly what to expect from our refusal to curb greenhouse gas emissions. We are increasing the CO₂ level ten times faster that at any time in earth’s history. The last time this happened, the CO₂ acidification wiped the corals out, along with all the fish that depend on them. It took them 10 million years to recover.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The first homo sapiens walked the earth 200,000 years ago.
- It took until 1804 for the global population to reach 1 billion.
- 123 years later in 1927, it reached 2 billion.
- 33 years later in 1960, it reached 3 billion.
- 14 years later in 1974 it reached 4 billion.
- 13 years later in 1987 it reached 5 billion.
- 12 years later in 1999 it reached 6 billion.
- Today it reached 7.357 billion.
- In 2025 it is projected to hit 12 billion.
You can see the problem, called exponential growth. The more people there are, the more people there are having babies and the faster the population grows. The only remotely palatable solution is to lower the birth rate. Each family must have fewer than two children.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Animals, coral reefs and colourful fish are some of the most pleasant aspects of life on earth. Our descendants will curse us for killing them all so callously for so little benefit.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The map below shows species extinction. The fatter a country is shown relative to its actual size, the more species it has wiped out. The USA is the world leader in killing off species.
© Copyright SASI Group (University of Sheffield) and Mark Newman (University of Michigan)~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Extinction of the Bee
Science already suspects half a dozen causes for the decline of the honey bee. Probably all of them contribute to some extent. Given how crucial bees are to commercial agriculture, we should do the prudent thing take action on all six fronts, rather than wasting time trying to prove 100% of the blame belongs to only one factor.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Extinction Booby Traps
I think it most likely that mankind will go extinct or at least endangered some time in the next couple of centuries. With our cleverness we humans have created so many booby traps for ourselves including:
- nuclear war
- global warming
- environmental collapse
- soil erosion
- dependence on oil
The essential problem is humans, like other animals, are extremely selfish, but our technology has magnified the effects by millions of times. Similarly, humans enjoy the suffering of others. For example, we fund and glorify groups of young men who travel to remote spots on the globe to kill people without anyone being capable of giving a reason for it. It appears is it butchery for the joy of butchery. Similarly, humans are rarely willing to make even small sacrifices for the common good.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Extinction of Man
Every species goes extinct eventually, even if it takes 400 million years. This generation is fortunate to be present to watch the spectacle of spectacles, bigger than the downfall of Rome, the extinction of homo sapiens by what effectively amounts to mass suicide/mass stupidity egged on by greed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Republicans have the odd notion that the extinction events of the past that wiped out 95% of species were natural, thus it would be perfectly ok with us humans if similar events happened again today. They would mean either the extinction of man, or at least the deaths of most of us. It is not the end of the universe, but it hardly what you would call acceptable to mankind.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Over history we have thrown an average of one species a century off the earth. Today, we throw one every 13 seconds. Man’s current killing off other species is causing more damage than the Yucatan asteroid that ended the age of the dinosaurs.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Since we are looking for long term solutions to energy, we should not be too focused on the current prices of immature energy technologies. We should be trying to extrapolate where the prices will be after the technologies mature.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Exxon Mobil Betrayal
Exxon Mobil back in the 1980s studied climate change and concluded rising sea levels would serious impact they operations. They also felt that melting permafrost would make drilling cheaper. They decided to withhold this information and released FUD instead that climate change was a hoax. This betrayal of the planet was quite successful in delaying taking action on climate change. As a result Exxon Mobil will kill many more people that Hitler ever did. For a start, island nations sinking beneath the waves should sue Exxon Mobil for every penny.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Exxon Mobile’s Suicide
Exxon Mobile uses a pathologically narrow-minded decision-making process. To decide what do to about global warming they compute that opposing all measures to ameliorate it and lying to the public about the dangers of global warming will help them make more profit selling oil and gas in the next quarter. In their view, the fact that global warming leads to mass extinction of most of life on earth is irrelevant. That procrastinating greenhouse gas reduction until it is too late is similarly irrelevant. Even the long term bankruptcy of Exxon is irrelevant. All that matters is the next quarter profit. They behave like some sci-if super computer gone amok.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Fable of the Pet Lion
There was once a family that considered the possibility of acquiring a pet lion. Father was most excited about it. We’ll be rich he said. People will come from miles around to see it and we can soak them all. Mother was worried it might poop on the rug. Don’t worry your silly little head about that, said father, There has to be technology to solve that. Oh father how wonderful! Christy and I can go for lion rides. All the girls at my school will be so jealous, chimed in daughter Condoleeza. Envious!, mother corrected. Mother fretted about the cost of feeding the lion. The males eat 7.03 kg (15½ lbs) a day, she explained. But think of the money! father reiterated. Father prevailed and they bought a huge male lion with a magnificent shaggy mane and Christy and Condoleeza went for a lion ride. But due to human error, the lion was hungry, having missed three meals and ate both girls, even their hair and bones.
The moral of the story is don’t be so enamoured of the attractions of something that you blind yourself to its obvious downsides, such getting all exciting about burning the Alberta tar sands because it will make you rich, then studiously ignore the fact doing that will release so much CO₂ it will kill billions of people with uncontrolled global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I am old and weak enough that I probably will not be around when the effects of global warming become unbearable. Yet, oddly, I am hundreds of times more concerned about climate change than the young people who will face it head on. Perhaps my escape means I can look at this more objectively. I don’t need to kid myself.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Farmers are complaining about being labelled factory farmers simply on the grounds they don’t like their animal cruelty crimes pointed out. If you raise animals where they cannot go outside and run around, you deserve to be called a factory farmer. If you don’t like it, stop mistreating your livestock.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans are prone to enthusiasms that become, at least for a while almost universal in a society. Sometimes they are harmful, but people don’t notice at first, e.g. smoking tobacco, junk food and Christianity.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Failing to Assassinate Hitler
We wonder why people of the 1930s were so reluctant to assassinate Hitler. I am fairly certain posterity will similarly condemn our generation for tolerating those who interfere with adopting green energy and reducing greenhouse gases.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Failure To Complain
Canadians are spending billions of dollars already to deal with the effects of global warming in freakish storms, floods, unprecedented wild fires, collapsed fisheries and droughts. Nobody complains. They treat these events as if they were ordinary natural disasters. On the other hand, they will not spend a penny, or even mildly inconvenience themselves, to prevent these disasters by reducing CO₂ emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Failure To Correct
If you were watching Jeopardy and Alex Trebek said No, the first world war was in 1929 millions of people would write to complain. Yet when equally incorrect assertions appear on TV, in books or even in school lectures, almost nobody complains because this is religiously protected misinformation, with even higher sacred cow status than the existence of Santa Claus. We don’t realise how ridiculous it is because we are so familiar with the religious myths. It is just as silly as if Christians started asserting John McCain were 200 years old and pounced on anyone who dared suggest otherwise, providing, of course, no evidence at all for this bizarre assertion.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Failure of Economics, Not Agriculture
The world is producing way more food than needed to feed everyone. Yet we still have about a billion people going hungry every day. This is a failure of the world economic system rather than world agriculture. African farmers cannot compete with imported low-priced American and European industrial food. That abundance of food drives the African farmers into poverty.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Failure of The Hoover Dam
Because less and less water falls on the Colorado mountains each year, the Hoover Dam will stop supplying water to Las Vegas and San Diego and electricity to Los Angeles in 2017.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are dozens of disaster movies for catastrophes unlikely to ever happen, but less than a handful about the most likely global disasters: global warming, nuclear war, runaway pollution, biowarfare… Why? Perhaps the real disasters are too gloomy. Once they start there is no way a hero can set them right at the last minute.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fall of Civilisation
Even if mankind drives itself extinct in 30 years, it is still fortunate to have a seat at this point in time to watch the spectacle. After all, you went to movies and read books about the fall of Rome and found it fascinating.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Chevrolet advertises that is planting enough trees to eventually offset 8 megatonnes (8.82 megatons) of CO₂. To put that in perspective, the cars GM sold in 2010 produce 34 megatonnes (37.48 megatons) each year. They are compensating for 23% of the mess they make.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If a country makes a promise to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by some future date, then does not immediately implement policies to make that happen, you know they have absolutely no intention of meeting that target. You can’t meet a reduction goal by action at the last minute.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I listened to an audiobook called Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think. It is a loose collection of good news you might have overlooked. The book cites Steven Pinker and Ray Kurzweil.
However, some of the logic made my hair stand on end. For example, he argues that the fuss over acid rain was a chicken little needless panic because none of the terrible predicted things happened. They fail to notice that governments and industries made massive changes to improve the situation.
He argues that because people tend to pay more attention to bad news than good, all the global problems we worry about must be phantoms. That is a non-sequitur.
He waxed poetic about how wonderful life will be when we can produce McFood 100 times more efficiently. They cited Japanese robotic factories as what we should aspire to in our personal lives. Their Utopian vision is a Koch brothers wet dream, billions of docile humanoids, packed like sardines, consuming artificial everything, not a leaf left, whose prime directive is corporate profit. This book is collection of corporate excuses for raping the environment. If you want a more thoughtful and truly optimistic view, read the original Pinker and Kurzweil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A Famous Environmental Pig
Mrs. David Beckham, aka Posh Spice, is an environmental pig. She sold the cachet of her husband and herself to promote a gas-guzzling luxury SUV, intended purely for show as conspicuous consumption, intended never to see a rural road.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Farmers Hurt Themselves
There is cosmic justice in the fact that farmers who put carcinogenic chemicals on their crops will be the first to be hurt by them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Farming Reduces Total Catch
Ironically, the more fish farming we do, the less total fish we have because it takes 5 kilos of wild anchovies to create 1 kilo of farmed salmon. Humans could eat the anchovies directly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I find it hard to understand how people can overcome the embarrassment of riding motorcycles, when then let out a noise like a giant fart that lasts for minutes at a time and can be heard for blocks. It is like cyclists installing whoopee cushions in their bicycle seats. Perhaps Mattel could come out with such a device so brats could pretend to be riding motorcycles.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
65% of the calories in hamburger come from fat, the result of feedlot finishing with high-starch corn.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Fatal Choice
We have a choice. We can succumb to the temptation to dig up and burn fossil fuels and perish or we can leave them in the ground and survive. Oddly, the overwhelming majority prefer the first choice. What is this, some sort of unconscious guilt? This is an nuts as preferring to eat a cream puff, even if you die by firing squad afterwards.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Americans are lethally confused about values. They hold the right to make money above the need to preserve the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fattening the Planet
The map below shows species the spread of McDonald’s fast food outlets. The fatter a country is shown relative to its actual size, the more McDonald’s has infiltrated.
© Copyright SASI Group (University of Sheffield) and Mark Newman (University of Michigan)~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fear Of The Truth
The most cowardly people, when they hear bad news, pretend it can’t be true, simply because it frightens them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Feed Conversion Ratio
In animal husbandry, the feed conversion ratio is the ratio of the amount of feed you need to the amount of meat you raise.
feed conversion ratios Feed Conversion Ratios Animal FCR
lower is better
Notes farmed salmon 1.2-3.1 Not as good as it looks since the feed required is high protein fish goat 1.5 Goat is low fat. Goats will not tolerate feed lot conditions. poultry 2 tilapia 1.7 pork 3.5 sheep 4.5 beef 5-20
the cost of feed is the main factor in the price of meat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Feed Lot Sanitation
Let’s say that from some ghastly accident you were covered in inches of cattle feces and that you had been forced to eat food contaminated with cattle dung. How long would you spend cleaning yourself before you felt sufficiently clean to cook or let your lover lick you? How thorough would you be? The slaughter houses of Canada and the meat inspectors consider a quick hose-down with cold water completely sufficient. Obviously, the root cause of the meat recalls is the filthy conditions of feed lots.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One feedlot produces as much feces as a city of 1.7 million people. The muck is poured directly into rivers without treatment. Oddly, the law considers it identical to dumping top soil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One source of E. coli on spinach was traced to feral pigs raiding a farm. Feral pigs are ecological wrecking machines.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fewer Mouths To Feed = Happiness
With global warming bearing down on us, the countries with the fewest mouths to feed will be happiest. This is not a time to encourage massive immigration or unrestrained breeding.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The public already hates Monsanto, but since Monsanto does not sell food under their own retail name, the public doesn’t know how to boycott them. Monsanto has bribed/threatened legislators into letting them get away without labelling their food and from banning their competitors from advertising their food purity. The key then is to label Monsanto-containing products:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Sticky labels, just like should be there, attached to food products in grocery stores by guerillas.
- Websites where contents (e.g. GMO, Roundup, terminator genes and general Monsanto content) of various food products is listed in a database.
- Ability to print off a shopping list of just foods you want to warn yourself about.
- Perhaps you could feed it scans of your cash register slips.
- Small lawn signs you can insert into a neighbour’s lawn if you catch them using Monsanto products. Let them explain to the other neighbours why they are doing that.
If you invite people into your country who believe that birth control is wicked and that the main function of women is to bare as many children as possible, you are inviting environmental catastrophe and social unrest as the proportions of various ethnic groups change rapidly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Filthiest Source of Oil
The Alberta tar sands are the filthiest source of oil on earth. Separating the oil from the sand requires unbelievable amounts of energy. The process requires huge amounts of water which is usually polluted afterwards. Not only the finished oil produces greenhouse gases, the production produces vast amounts as well. The Conservative federal and provincial governments give massive subsidies to encourage exploitation of the resource. This is a ecological assault on the entire planet. At the very, least everyone should boycott all Alberta goods and services, especially tar sands petroleum.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
What would you think of a people so stupid they did not have the sense to leave a burning building and who fought the fire with gasoline? That metaphor describes humanity who refuse to take effective action on climate exchange and CO₂ greenhouse gas emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fire Retardant Chemicals
The foam inside furniture is filled with several pounds of fire retardant chemicals. The catches:
- The chemicals have no measurable effect on reducing fires. You need special fabrics and fire barriers to be effective.
- The chemicals cause cancer.
Then why has the California legislature, the one responsible for the law requiring these chemicals, not changed the rules? (Furniture makers make all furniture for North American compliant to the California law so they don’t have to produce two lines of furniture.) Legislators have tried five times. Every time, lobbyists from the chemical companies bought off sufficient politicians to block the change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fires Should Persuade
In Canada, 2011 is already the worst fire season since 1919. Americans are have major trouble with fires in the south west. Rush Limbaugh persists in saying the global warming is a hoax. He hopes you won’t notice the fires and ice melting.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine there were a mammal like a rabbit or monkey that ran around setting fires for no apparent purpose. What a nightmare! Such a creature exists. It is called a smoker.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
First World Footprint
When determining the carrying capacity of the earth, it is not so important how many people there are on earth but rather how many Americans (or people who live the American life style), there are. Each of them uses hugely more energy, water, food and meat than a third worlder. The population explosion is greatly exacerbated by so many people in the third world (especially China) adopting an American life style.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fish Are Not Evolved To Deal With Humans
There is a bleak fact that commercial fishers refuse to accept — the only way to restore a moribund fish population is to stop fishing it altogether. Why is this so? Fish have been here for hundreds of millions of years. They have been managing their populations with hardwired genetically controlled behaviour. Suddenly, out of nowhere spring humans with all manner of machines and lures for catching fish. Humans instantly became the #1 ocean predator. Fish have no way to adjust to such a rapid change. It would take at least a million years for them to adjust. To succeed, we humans must never take more than that species of fish are evolved to immediately replace.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Five Stages of Grief
Kübler-Ross said that there are five stages of grief:
Most of the world, in particular the leaders of Canada and the USA are stuck in stage (1) when it comes to dealing with the end of the oil free ride and environmental degradation caused by overpopulation and our environmentally-hostile life style. People feel supernaturally entitled to continue living as we have this last century despite the overwhelming evidence we cannot.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A flat-earther in the modern day has to ignore the following:
- Ships coming over the horizon appear mast first.
- Satellites would not work if the world were flat.
- GPS (Global Positioning System) would not work if the world were flat.
- Nobody has ever detected the edge of the world.
- Photos from space or from the moon show that the earth is spherical.
- All the other large bodies in space are spherical.
- All astronomers agree that the earth is a rough sphere. (slightly pear shaped actually)
Why then does a flat-earther persist in believing the earth is flat?
- On a small scale, the earth appears flat. They carefully avoid reading any explanation of why this is so.
- They imagine Australians would fall off the earth if the earth were a sphere. They carefully avoid reading any explanation of why this does not happen.
So basically the problem is a trust in gut intuition that trumps all evidence.
Climate Change Deniers are Like Flat Earthers
There are two kinds of climate change deniers: professional and fools. The professionals are not at all confused about climate change, however, they disseminate false information about climate change in order to prolong the life of their fossil fuel investments, knowing full well they will ruin the planet in the process. They don’t care. They are elderly. Even though folk like the Koch brothers are billionaires, nothing is more important to them than a few extra points of profit. They are mentally ill planetary traitors, but because they are rich, we don’t incarcerate them.
Why then do the fools become climate change deniers?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Wishful thinking. Nobody wants to contemplate the end of our planet.
- Wishful thinking. Nobody wants to divert some of their income to deal with climate change.
- The propaganda that hooked them was skillfully written to exploit their prejudices and ignorance.
- Religion teaches people to distrust science.
- People like the Koch brothers encourage extremely stupid people to think they are smarter that the combined efforts of the world scientists. Such a delusion feels great.
- The echo chamber and peer pressure. Climate deniers tend to have similar political views, and avoid talking to anyone else. Denying climate change is required for acceptance in the group.
- They have predecided that all science is corrupt, therefore they must scrupulously avoid reading any least it prove compelling. They are like the clerics who refused to look through Galileo’s telescope.
Flip Reaction to Danger
Climate change deniers are being flip about the danger second only to nuclear war (according to Environment Canada). If they had even the remotest idea of the magnitude of their damage, if they knew how they would be reviled for their aggressive ignorance and malice by all future generations, they might instantly shut up and do some serious, balanced research into climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Folly of Killing Sea Lions
Americans are slaughtering sea lions because imagine they are responsible for the decline is salmon stocks. Sea lions eat the slowest and sickest fish. This helps improve the stock and stop the spread of disease. Fisherman catch the biggest fish. This degrades the stock. 200 years ago the rivers wore so thick with fish you could walk across them. The sea lions were obviously no problem then. Why would they suddenly become a problem? In contrast look at all the insane things Americans have done to do to wipe out the salmon:
- Open ocean salmon farming that introduces disease and lice.
- Commercial fishing practices that wipe out entire schools.
- Meddling with the salmon genome by effectively cloning inferior fish.
- Building dams that block salmon streams.
- Dumping silt, pesticides and agricultural waste into salmon streams.
What slimy bastards the American are to blame the seal lions for they own mayhem, and that includes the aboriginal people in the USA suing to kill more seals!~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Folly of Sex Selection
Parents who interfere with the equal balance of male and female babies are condemning their children to a much lower chance of finding a life partner.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Food as Drug
Every food is effectively a drug you take in massive doses. It is wise to avoid taking each food for a week or so to learn what its benefits and negative side effects are. You might be surprised to learn that some of the foods you crave most have completely unacceptable side effects.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Food For Billions Of New Mouths
It requires the hubris of a TV faith healer to imagine there must be a way to double and redouble the productivity of an acre of soil endlessly as the population grows. The amount of energy from the sun is the same. The chemistry of chlorophyll is the same. How can we ignore the soils are getting worse each year from erosion and salinisation? How can we ignore that massive amounts of arable land are removed from production to serve other purposes? Surely we know much of the advances of the green revolution will reverse as oil runs out. If human ingenuity can solve any problem, why are we not seeing continuous improvement?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Very few people brag that they managed to scarf 75% of the food when they go out with the gang for Chinese food, yet they will happily brag they managed to consume a disproportionate share of natural resources and manufactured goods and produce a disproportionate share of the garbage and CO₂ emissions. They will deliberately choose a vehicle that gets poor mileage to display their status. To me such people are pigs, vandals and criminals, with the lowest status of all. Hanging out with pigs like this is like being forced to invite Governor Chris Christy to come with you when you go for Chinese food.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Food Requires Oil
For every 1.0 kcal (dieting calorie) of food, it takes 10.0 kcal of fossil fuel energy for the fertiliser, pesticides, irrigation and delivery. This means, when we run out of oil, we also run out of food if we don’t have a replacement energy source in place.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In 1969, on Vancouver Island where I live we grew 70% of our own food. I remember my grandmother growing oats, potatoes wheat and fodder for the cows. Today we grow less than 5%. Oil is rapidly depleting, which means increasing transportation costs. We will be forced by economics to growing most of our own food again. Unfortunately, we have paved over much of that farmland and we have many more mouths to feed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Food vs Drug
What is the difference between a food and a drug?
Food vs Drug Food vs Drug Food Drug Can safely be eaten in large quantities. Must be eaten in small precisely specified dosages. Not formally tested, but uses ingredients believed to be safe from thousands of years of use. Very carefully tested. Eaten by everyone, young and old, healthy and sick. Only eaten by people with very specific diseases or conditions. A food should have no negative side effects, other than making you fat if you eat too much of it. There is no pressing need to eat any particular food. If a cancer drug makes your hair fall out and makes you nauseous, even this can be tolerated so long as it cures the cancer.
Consider Proctor & Gamble introducing transfat (brand name Crisco). Consider Monsanto introducing genetically modified foods where genes from various species and artificial genes are mixed to form new foods. Consider DuPont’s fluoride. Consider food irradiation. These foods should be treated more like drugs because:
- They have not yet been tested by time the way ordinary foods are.
- The consequences are much larger than for drugs since the entire population may ingest large quantities.
Besides testing, we need labelling both so that people can opt out of the experimental foods and so that people can track the negative side effects. If people are denied the knowledge they are eating these experimental foods, they will not consider those foods as a possible cause of some symptom. Their doctor cannot consider them either.
The creators of these foods strenuously and successfully resist even allowing competitors to label their foods as being free of these new ingredients. Prime Minister Stephen Harper, willing slave of the food manufacturers, and willing acceptor of contributions, enacted laws to keep consumers in the dark about what they are eating. There is no advantage to the consumer of doing that.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Food vs Drug Testing
We do drug testing, but not food testing. I think food testing is even more important because:
- People eat food in large quantities.
- A larger proportion of the population is exposed to a food than a drug.
- People need drugs. They might take them even with serious side effects. There is no reason to eat a food if there is even a minor problem.
- When people take drugs, they are alert to side effects.
- Drugs are carefully labelled with ingredients. Foods are not.
We have introduced untested foods with irradiation, GMO, drastically changing the diet of meat and milk animals, importing foods from the third world where they are careless with pesticides.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Foolish Baby Subsidies
The planet already has ten times as many people as it can sustain, so please don’t ask me to subsidise your fertility and child rearing through taxes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Foolishness of Fossil Fuel
Investing in fossil fuels as the governments of BC and Alberta are doing is foolish. It will not be long until the bottom falls out of the fossil fuel market. They will be stuck paying the long-term mortgages on all that useless infrastructure. There are two factors to consider:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The cost of solar panels is dropping steadily. When the price per watt drops below the price of fossil fuels, it will mark the end of the age of oil. Germany is already generating 25% of its power with solar.
- Even before solar becomes cheaper than fossil fuels, people will become acutely aware that because of global warming, continued use of fossil fuels is suicidal. We simply cannot burn them no matter how much money it makes for corporations or how many jobs it creates. It is only a matter of time until the public dig in their heels and refuse to kill their grandchildren for the short term profit of big oil.
Foolishness of New Roads
We know for sure gasoline is running out. We know for sure that people will not be able to drive anywhere near as much as they do now. So why are we building new roads, as we expected traditional growth?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The most important goal in life in these times is impose the smallest ecological footprint.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Forest Fire Ethics
Imagine you lived in a small town surrounded by forests. One dry summer, a forest fire started near your town and was rapidly on its way. It was pretty much up to the people in the town to protect it. Everybody did what they could to clear away flammable materials and damp down the homes, including those of the elderly. Everyone was pitching in to do what they could, all except the mayor co-incidentally named Stephen Harper. He did nothing, not even damp down his own home. He refused to free up any public funds. He explained I am a Christian, beloved of God. God would never let my house burn. I need do nothing. Besides, other people are working so I don’t need to.
What do you think of the ethics of this mayor? Of course, this is a metaphor for how Prime Minister Stephen Harper has been handling climate change. This is such a strange attitude when you look at all the terrible things God allowed to happen to Christians throughout history, e.g. the bubonic plague and the year without a summer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A disposable diaper takes 236.59 mls (1 US cups) of crude oil to make the outside cover. It sits at least 500 years in landfill, far longer than the child will live. It requires felling four mature trees to create the absorbent pads for one child’s supply of diapers.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68), source National Geographic video The Human Footprint.
Forget Recycled Fryer Fat
Biodiesel from recycled fast food restaurant grease can never be more than a novelty. There only enough of it to fuel a few vans per city.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fossil Fuel Escalating Lies
The fossil fuel industry has been upping the ante from dissembling to outright lies. They now claim bitumen does not sink in sea water. Everyone agrees it sinks in fresh water river and streams. According to Introduction to Hydrology, Department of Geography, Okanagan University College. 2001-06-11, Oceans vary from specific gravity 1.020 to 1.029. Alberta Tar Sands bitumen is specific gravity 1.060. In other words, bitumen is considerably heavier i.e. denser than sea water. In other words bitumen sinks. In other words, the fossil fuel industry is lying thorough its teeth.
If you have listened to the doubletalk and dissembling about state-of-the-art recovery and world class recovery coming from the pro-pipeline folk over the last 3 years and 11 months, you might believe the technology exists to clean up maybe 99% of oil and bitumen spills. However, the best they can recover is about 5% of a crude oil spill. There is nothing they can do about a bitumen spill except for the tiny bit they can recover it before it sinks.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fossil Fuel Promotion
All across Canada the federal and provincial governments are promoting new fossil fuel projects such as oil drilling, fracking, liquid natural gas plants, pipelines… Have people never heard of the imminent catastrophe of climate change? Pretending to ignore it does not make it go away. Even one pipeline puts out more greenhouse gas than our entire greenhouse gas target. What we are doing is planning to overshoot the target we promised to the other nations of earth by hundreds of times. At least we should be honest we are planning to deliberately sabotage the world for short term financial gain.
Eventually, we will smarten up and be forced to moth ball these projects to stop their greenhouse gas emissions and because the rest of the world has gone green we will no longer have customers. This is hardly good economics.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fossil Fuel Traditions
The fossil fuel industry has some long-standing traditions.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Damaging the health of its workers and customers.
- Destroying the environment and reneging on promises to clean up.
- Lying about the harmful health and environmental effects of their products.
- They really upped the anti with climate change. Their lies will kill billions of people and wipe out most of earth’s species. Humans deserve extinction. They know perfectly well the fossil fuel companies are lying but pretend to believe them. They selfishly refuse to make even the tiniest sacrifice to save their planet. Such a disgusting species should be eradicated as soon as possible.
FOX News told a monumental outrageous lie, one intended to derail clean energy in the USA. They claimed the USA did not get enough sun to support solar. When asked why Germany was so solidly into solar, they lied that Germany was much sunnier than the USA. Germany is about as sunny as Alaska. The main part of the USA is much sunnier than Germany.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) FOX news lies on solar
During most of its 4.54 billion years, earth was not habitable. Right now, we are living a fluke Goldilocks period when earth sustains life quite well.
The problem is, Republicans and Christians are under the delusion it is impossible for humans to do anything that would harm earth’ habitability. Everything is balanced on knife-edge. No god is holding all balanced.
Do a Pascal’s wager. If you do nothing about climate change you could die if scientists are right or live if Christians are right. If you work to stop climate change, you will live if scientists are right or live if Christians are right. You are basically betting your life on Christians telling you about long range climate predictions they have shown no evidence for. I can understand you trusting your fellow Christians on matters of spirit, the bible, home cooking… but you know perfectly well, in general, they have only an elementary school knowledge of science. Christianity hates science because science contradicts it at every turn, so it is only natural few Christians have a deep understanding of it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Big oil openly hired the same shill, Fred Singer, who testified on the harmlessness of tobacco, to pose this time as a climate expert to tell lies about global warming. Why do you ignore the evidence Big Oil is being dishonest and assume the world’s climate scientists are dishonest even though there is no evidence to support that contention?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Siegfried Fred Singer (born:1924-09-27 age:92) is arguably the most unprincipled man on the planet. He studied physics then pontificated, for a fee, saying whatever he was paid to say, posing as an expert on an astounding range of subjects such as:
- That second hand smoke is safe.
- That global warming is a hoax.
- That nuclear energy is safe.
- That DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) is good for birds.
One of his sources of income is Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church, another ExxonMobil and another RJ Reynolds Tobacco.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Frequency of Oil Spills
How well constructed does the Enbridge Northern pipeline need to be? It is expected to last 30 years. If Enbridge used technology that is expected to go 60 years without a spill, we would have 50:50 odds of a major spill. But the technology they use creates a spill about every 3 weeks. This is only 1/1000 the safety needed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Frogs have survived whatever nature could throw at them for 200 million years. Now frog species are going extinct left and right. Why? one reason is because we humans are spreading the herbicide atrazine, a chemical similar to frog sex hormones on our fields. Even microscopic doses make male frogs develop eggs in their testes or develop ovaries. Farmers don’t seem to realise they need frogs for purely economic reasons to help control insects.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Frog In Warm Water
It is a myth that a frog placed in warm water, slowly heated will allow itself to cook to death. It will jump out. Frogs have a much better sense of self-preservation than humans.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fruits of the Hybrid Car
Engineers expended decades of work producing the hybrid car which can go twice as far on the same amount of gas. Do the owners of these vehicles then cut their gas consumption and greenhouse gases in half? Nope. They just drive around for the hell of it, driving twice as far as ever before, using up just as much of a limited resource and putting just as much greenhouse gas into the air. If our species goes extinct, nobody can say we did not deserve it. We are terminally stupid and short-sighted.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fuel subsidies have the deleterious effect of encouraging people to waste dwindling supplies of fuel. If people need help keeping warm, they should not get fuel subsidies, but general subsidies, or subsidies that can only be spend on fuel efficiency.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Fundamental Problem with Capitalism
Capitalism is fundamentally incapable of solving environmental problems.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You have seen the ads; you have heard the politicians — drill baby drill to reduce American dependence on foreign oil. But all the oil from the continental shelves is sold on the international markets, just like all the other oil. It is in no way reserved for American use. As the economists say, oil is fungible. The relative trickle of oil derived from offshore drilling would have almost no effect on reducing global oil prices. To reduce imports, you must reduce demand though efficiency.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fusion energy perpetually recedes 50 years into the future. However, I wonder if we ever get there, if fusion will be quite the panacea advertised. Sea water contains deuterium in microscopic amounts, yet the deuterium in a gallon of sea water is equivalent to 300 gallons of gasoline. However, you can’t use raw sea water in a reactor. You must extract and purify the deuterium aka heavy hydrogen. Heavy water D₂O and water H₂O behave the identically chemically, so you must use a process that takes advantage of the fact deuterium is slightly heavier that hydrogen, like repeated distillation or repeated electrolysis of water. This takes huge amounts of energy. You may have to invest so much energy preparing the fuel that the energy return is not worth the candle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine what a technical marvel it would be if man placed a giant thermonuclear reactor in space, far enough away for safety, sufficient to power the whole planet. We have one. It is called the sun. It comes bundled with billions of years of fuel. However, it is free and public property. It is thus of little interest to business.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Boycotting gasoline is pointless. It has no effect on the bottom line of the oil companies. It is simply postponing purchases a few days. Boycotting driving on the other hand would work, as would trading up to a smaller more fuel efficient vehicle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Futility of Combating Climate Change
Trying to persuade fellow humans to stop emitting greenhouse gases is a bit like buying a lottery ticket. There is almost no chance of success, but if it worked, it would be quite grand to save a planet from self-destruction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
All I am doing here is projecting long-standing trends to guess what the future will be like. Mankind could always wise up and change direction. I would love to be wrong.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Politicians are refusing to act on climate change. Instead, to mollify their constituents, they procrastinate with 30-year targets for other politicians to fulfill. This means mass extinctions of plants and animals. Since tropic regions will no longer be suitable for agriculture or human habitation, there will be tsunamis of refugees.
- Even though the world population is growing less explosively that it once was, it is still growing rapidly. This means we will have more mouths to feed, more bodies to house, more throats to slake. We will need more resources to manufacture goods. Yet we will have the same old earth with exhausted resources to provide for everyone. There will be wars over the shortages. People overbreed for Darwinian reasons and to spread their particular faith.
- We will continue to treat the oceans and rivers as a garbage dump. It is cheaper that way for corporations. The international free trade agreements enable them to block government efforts at cleanup.
- We have killed off 93% of the tigers in the last century. All the iconic animals of our toddler picture books will go extinct mainly through habit loss but also through poaching from the increased population pressure. All the large food fish will go extinct.
- The world will continue to be ever more sharply divided into the elites and have-nots. The middle class will gradually disappear.
- Jobs for humans will continue to disappear as robots/computers become better at them than humans. Soon to go: assembly lines, garment manufacture and truck and taxi driving.
- Christianity will decline. Islam will grow.
If you designed a toilet system for a two-story house, you could hide the common tank in the attic. It would provide super-pressure for all the toilets in the house. You could use less water and use just the precise amount of water needed per flush.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Today 2011-04-18 there was a massive gasoline spill into a local salmon spawning stream. I think, when this happens, we should sacrifice an oil executive by throwing them into a volcano.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Genesis of Anti-Environmentalists
There are two main reasons people become anti-environmentalist.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They are Christian. They share the delusion that the god Jehovah will clean up after them and prevent any environmental catastrophes. They believe this despite all the evidence of past environmental disasters. Some even entertain the mad notion that destroying the environment or global thermonuclear war will hasten the return of Jesus.
- Money-mad people who are so concerned with making large amounts of money as fast as possible that they ignore the environmental side effects of their economic activity.
Genies and Bottles
The biggest problem with GMOs is the lack of reversibility. In most cases if you discover you are doing something really dumb, you just stop doing it. With GMOs, that is not enough. You have irrevocably introduced your genes into wild plants and weeds and non GMO crops. There is no putting the genie back in the bottle. This means you need an exceptional amount of care and testing (which is incompatible with profitability).
One classic example was introducing a GMO Klebsiella planticola bacterium that produces alcohol. At the very last second Michael Holmes, a student needing a project for his PhD thesis, noticed that this thing killed nearly all plants by drowning their roots in alcohol.
I think we need some research why so many people are now allergic to wheat. It did not used to be so. I did not used to be, but now I am. It could be that wheat itself has changed.
In general I want more caution on anything you administer to almost everyone. Testing should be much more cautious than for a drug you administer to just a few people, for whom serious side effects are acceptable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Genius of Cap and Trade
The genius of cap and trade is that it uses greed to rope unscrupulous people who normally could care less about sustainability into selling the idea of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People chastise me for getting emotional about global warming. How much bigger an emergency do you need than the extinction of man and most large mammals to justify some emotion and arm waving? Other people go all weepy over the death of one serial-killing, sadistic soldier.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In California, crabs just about at their limit. Another 1.1°C (2.0°F) and the crabs’ hearts will stop beating.
In Alaska and the Yukon the massive caribou herds are disappearing. The heat is creating swarms of mosquitos which pester the caribou so mercilessly they can’t eat. So they are too skinny to make it through the winter.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Strange Days on Planet Earth National Geographic Video
Getting on Top Of Climate Change
What do we have to do to get on top of climate change?
- We have to stop mining coal, oil and natural gas.
- We have to reduce the use of private automobiles.
- We have to make all forms of transportation more fuel efficient.
- We have to discourage air travel and air cargo.
- We have to encourage rail cargo.
- We have to insulate our homes.
- We have to eat less meat.
- We have to encourage the switch to clean energy.
- We have to subsidise research into efficient, low cost clean energy.
- We have to grow most of our food and manufacture most of our goods locally.
- We need substantial taxes to discourage greenhouse gas emissions, i.e. carbon tax or cap and trade.
- Reduce the population.
- Stop the growth of economic activity that destroys the environment.
The problem is, politicians are doing the very opposite. Why? Because legacy industries do not want to change. They would sooner pay the politicians to betray the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You have probably seen those gigantic genetically modified strawberries in the supermarket. The farmer saves on picking labour and they catch the eye like a magnet on the shelves. The catch is they are filled with tasteless white pulp. Even after being burned multiple times, you might still find yourself buying them because you are buying with your eyes instead of your brain.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Giving Up On Global Warming
Many business people have decided dealing with global warming is hopeless, so they have decided to lie to everyone else that there is no emergency, so that they can loot, drink and be merry in the last days of techno civilisation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
According to Nova, all the world’s mountain glaciers will be gone in 50 to 100 years. Glaciers store water and release it evenly throughout the year. Without them, you have alternating floods and droughts.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Columbia glacier is retreating at 0.80 km (½ mile) a year, 8 times faster than it was 30 years ago. Yet the media insist on calling this the apparent retreat of the glacier, as though there were some doubt it was retreating.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Glaciers Feeding the Ganges are Almost Gone
The glaciers of the Himalayas are melting so quickly, that within a few decades, the Ganges will no longer flow all year round from the melt-water. It will dry up completely.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Fishery Collapse
Because of man’s political inability to control overfishing, according to Dr. Boris Worm, he will have driven every single species of edible fish to collapse by 2048. Collapse is defined as population below 10% of normal without the ability to ever recover, leading to eventual extinction. Man is such as insatiably greedy animal. He is driving not only the ocean fish, but himself to extinction with it. I don’t know how anyone could be in denial. We have seen it happen over and over with specific species.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Food Safety
With globalisation, agricultural products are grown with a complete hodge podge of regulations, including none at all. Then they appear on your plate all mixed together. It is almost as if your own country rescinded all its laws around pesticides and their application. The best it can do is spot test imports for serious contamination.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The most frustrating thing about humanity is they insist on waiting until global warming is too advanced to reverse before they will even begin to act. A species that short-sighted fully deserves extinction. However, it is most distressing that these twits will take down all the large mammals and many other species with them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Self Defence
Logically, if you saw someone trashing the environment, you should be able to attack them and plead not only self defence, but defence of all the people he was, perhaps unconsciously, trying to poison or kill with his attack on the environment. The law does not yet see it this way. It is more concerned about intent than effect.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Trashing Party
In New York City. people sometimes have parties the night before they vacate a rental premises, or earlier to convince the landlord to break the lease. They trash the place. Humans are holding a global trashing party to destroy our planet. We won’t be living here much longer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Deniers Are Intensely Evil
Spreading FUD about global warming is even more evil than genocide. It leads to the death of most humans on earth and the extinction of most species. Yet twits do it without thinking, for the most petty of motives such as short term financial or political advantage or enjoyment of annoying others. This crime of all crimes is not even illegal. You would think vigilantes would capture, torture and eradicate these idiots, but they rarely even chastise them in print. Scientists who understand the reality of global climate change suffer from a moral paralysis like the landlord in The Firebugs: A Morality Without a Moral.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Effect is Very Old
What infuriates me is how many people will assert in the media that there is no correlation between CO₂ and average global temperature. This is very old science. It was worked out in the 1800s by Fourier (of Fourier transforms the key to modern telecommunications) and Arrhenius (the guy who discovered ions). It was not in the least controversial until mankind’s CO₂ emissions became massive. These shills are claiming that climate science is part of some global conspiracy going back to the 1800s to interfere with Exxon’s profit, or glean government grants, neither of which even existed back then. I seriously propose the death penalty for telling this lie. It is treachery and vandalism on a thermonuclear scale. Nothing short of nuclear war hurts more people and does more damage.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Extinction Events
Scientists now think only one of the five major extinction events was caused by an asteroid hitting earth. The others were caused by global warming. The poles warm faster than the equator. Without sufficient temperature difference to drive the major ocean conveyors/currents, the oceans fail to reoxygenate. Fish and animals die and bacteria that live without oxygen take over. Eventually everything is covered in green slime both in the oceans and on land. We are headed in that direction right now.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Fantasies
Most people have a very rosy and naïve view of what global climate change will mean to them. They might imagine it would be like an extended vacation in Cuba. At worst, it will mean having to buy an air conditioner. The reality is it will be a nightmare comparable to global nuclear war. There will be massive global food shortages and utterly desperate, angry people from the south, who have nothing to lose, pouring north to seek food. Billions of people will die. It is too late now to avert it. All we can do is make it somewhat less hellish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Ice Age
The odds are 50% that by 2100 global warming will have stopped the Gulf stream and paradoxically brought on a mini-ice age in Europe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Gulf Stream and the Next Ice Age
Global Warming in Mexico
Global warming is heating up Mexico and central America making it ever harder to grow crops. This is sending an ever growing wave of illegal immigrants into the USA. Climate change is making weather in the USA freaky: huge hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, droughts, heat waves, water shortages… This is sending a small but ever growing wave of Americans north to Canada. This means America is becoming more and more Hispanic. This should help motivate right wingers to fight climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Omerta
You’d think the 2011 heat wave with its many all time temperature records and the recent winter with its record snowfalls would at least bring up the topic of global climate change. Yet none of the TV news networks have said a peep. Why? The main reason TV networks do anything is one of their advertisers demands they do it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Paralysis
Man’s paralysis in the face of global warming makes as much sense as refusing to get out of the way of an avalanche because it would disrupt a poker game.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global Warming Studies
Between 2007 and 2012 there were 7000 studies of global warming, all of which confirmed the earlier finding that the earth is warming and human emissions are causing it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A Global Warning
Scientists have figured out what the earth’s climate, particularly temperature, has been doing for the last 650 million years. It started out with very low levels of CO₂. The entire earth was covered over 1.61 km (1 mile) deep in ice. It was -40°C (-40°F) at the equator. Almost all life was wiped out. Ten million years later, it swung to the opposite extreme and again it wiped out almost all life.
250 million years ago, CO₂ levels rose and wiped out 95% of life on earth.
55 million years ago CH₄, methane a greenhouse gas 25 times as potent as CO₂ was the culprit. Crocodiles were living at the North Pole, then eventually the warming fried the entire earth and wiped out almost all life.
The famous chemist, Svante Arrhenius (Nobel prize winner who discovered ions), published his calculations in 1896 about the relationship between CO₂ and global temperatures. His work has been confirmed from over a century of observation and from our new ability to study the deep past.
The point is scientists are certain of the effects of CO₂. They also know we have already pumped it higher than it has been for 3 million years and if we do not charge our ways, will more than double that. We know that is already sufficiently high to trigger an extinction event. Climate-change extinction events are not like asteroid ones. The effects build gradually, usually over thousands or millions of years. The one we are creating now is happening very fast, over only a few centuries.How the Earth Was Made, Life After People, a Global Warning - The History Channel Our Planet Box Set ~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Gloomiest Fact
The gloomiest fact about the future of the environment is those who control its fate, the economists and capitalists, are incapable of seeing anything except money. They don’t give a flying fig about the environment other that as it affects the flow of money. The complementary cheering fact is, without the environment, there is no economy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The fundamental problem with genetic manipulation, GMOs, is, to be able to insert a snippet of DNA in your target crop, you have to manipulate it to give it extra power to insert, to make it promiscuous. It keeps that power and later can potentially re-insert itself in any organism of any species it encounters far more readily than any natural DNA snippet. All kinds of genetic modifications are leaking out into the environment where they are definitely not wanted, e.g. genes to make plastic or pesticides.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is untrue both to say that GMOs will kill you and GMOs cannot hurt you. They need safety testing just like other high technology people put into their bodies. GMOs allow plants to be drastically modified to manufacture chemicals that would never appear naturally.
Monsanto refuses to test its products at all. They claim that is the government’s responsibility. This is troubling. GMOs can harm. They can do things plant breeding cannot, like insert a pesticide or herbicide inside the cells where it cannot be washed off or time-degraded. Just because a pesticide is delivered by GMO does not means it is automatically safe.
GMOs become ubiquitous as ingredients in table-ready foods. You want to make sure you are not introducing mysterious allergies that consumers cannot track down or avoid.
There is some slimy dissembling from Monsanto. The modified genes themselves are clearly not harmful. They are just another DNA combo, perfectly digestible. The potential trouble comes from what those genes direct the plant to do.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you are a scientist and you produce some noxious or radioactive chemical and it leaks into the environment, you send in a hazmat team to dig up the contaminated soil and contain it. However, if you are a GMO scientist and one of your creations gets out into the environment it will not stay put. Life does everything it can to spread to every spot on earth that it can gain a foothold. If it has any unexpected negative side effects, too bad! There is no way to put the genie back in the bottle. That is why you must be thousands of times more careful with experimental life forms than with chemicals.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Gnats and Camels
It is amusing how much trouble Americans take to prevent a terrorist from bringing in even a baby bottle full of explosives. Simultaneously though, American cities invite nuclear waste, nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons into the heart of their city harbours onboard nuclear submarines that refuse safety inspection. They also invite LNG supertankers into their harbours. If one of these ever blew, (perhaps triggered by a small terrorist bomb or missile) it would take out the entire city core.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Go Bag Free
You probably know the disadvantages of one-use plastic bags:
- They last forever killing marine life.
- They tear easily.
- They are uncomfortable in your hand.
- They cannot carry much weight.
Use a reusable canvas bag instead. Join Bag Free Day every July 3.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Goal Is Still Catastrophe
The goal of keeping global warming down to 2.0°C (3.6°F) is crazy. The last time the earth was that hot was the Pleistocene, when the sea was 15 metres (16.40 yards) higher. Even if we do meet the goal, it is still a catastrophe. Corporations think no further ahead than the next quarter. It is madness to put them in charge of global warming decisions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Animals have two simple goals:
- See to it their offspring survive.
Humans are animals, so you would expect them to behave the same way. However, corporations and peer pressure have persuaded them to behave insanely without even noticing, for example:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Taking enjoyment is trashing the environment that sustains them and future generations.
- Deliberately wasting scarce resources.
- Consuming non-renewable resources as quickly as possible.
- Treating environmental vandalism as a badge of masculinity rather than a symptom of mental illness.
Going All Gooey
Some people go all gooey inside when they hear readings from the bible. Some go gooey on hearing the strains of their national anthem. I go all gooey when someone talks about preserving our planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Even if someone gave me a new car, I would not want it. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- I don’t want to add to pollution and greenhouse gases.
- If I had a car, I would bike and walk less. I am enough of a couch potato already.
- I would be at the mercy of fiendish car repair people who could repair my car, do nothing, or even deliberate damage it and charge me whatever they felt like. I would have no way of knowing how or how badly they were ripping me off. This was my experience owning a new Renault 12 in the early 1970s.
Going Clean Too Soon
What terrible thing would happen if we went to clean energy 20 years sooner than we absolutely had to?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Gold mining has to be one of the strangest of human activities. We extract gold from the ground, ruining lakes and rivers in the process, then bury it again in vaults. We rarely use it for anything. When when we do use it, it is for decoration. We destroy the earth to decorate the fingers of the rich. Surely wearing gold should be considered as shameful as wearing the fur of endangered animals.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Gold Mining Protest
Perhaps the biggest demonstration against gold mining in a park was the battle of Little Big Horn that wiped out Custer. The US Army had been prospecting in the sacred treaty-reserved Sioux lands of the Black Hills of Dakota. The outrage brought the peaceful tribes to the battle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lay people can’t seem to grasp how familiar, apparently innocuous gases like O₂ oxygen, CO₂ carbon dioxide, H₂S hydrogen sulphide, CH₄ methane, O₃ ozone, N₂O nitrous oxide etc. become lethal if the global atmospheric concentration wanders out of a fairly narrow safe band either directly or through the greenhouse effect. CO₂ carbon dioxide (pop fizz) can kill you just as dead as HCN hydrogen cyanide (gas chamber).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Good News For a Change
About 20% of greenhouse gases come from cow flatulence methane. A PEI (Prince Edward Island) farmer has discovered feeding cows red seaweed almost eliminates the methane.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Good News on Nuclear
Uranium-235 is an isotope of uranium making up only about 0.72% of natural uranium. The rest is uranium-238. A normal slow-neutron reactor consumes the Uranium-235, but leaves the uranium-238 behind as waste that remains radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years. Decades ago, the Europeans invented a fast-neutron reactor than consumes both. So it can use uranium-238 nuclear waste as fuel and completely consuming it leaving almost no radioactive waste. This seems to me infinitely more sensible than any scheme to store the uranium-238 waste, hoping to keep it confined for hundreds of thousands of years. I don’t know if such reactors have serious drawbacks.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Google Favours Deniers
Nearly the articles Google mentioned the first three pages of results on Al Gore’s movie An Inconvenient Truth were from climate change denier shills. Does that mean Google too has been corrupted, or just that the shills are more vocal than real scientists?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Google Sunroof is a Google project to let you know how suitable your roof is for converting to solar panels. It tells you the expect savings and vendors for labour and materials. Germany is well ahead of other countries in converting to solar. Oddly, it has the same sunlight as Alaska.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When you have environmental collapse, it is not as though you wake up one day and there is no food to be had, no fuel, no clean water. It happens gradually. The price of food, fuel and water snakes up and up until people can’t afford it, have to go without and eventually die. Watch the process unfold daily in the third world. Those with billions in the bank are much less concerned about such a collapse. They plan to use their wealth for personal survival. In a ghastly Darwinian sense, they are glad everyone else will die and they alone may survive to spawn the future generations. They are tempted to use their fabulous wealth to mislead the masses about the coming troubles so long as it helps them accumulate personal resources. These are people who believe deeply in dog eat dog.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Grants to Parents
Grants to parents are essentially an inducement to have babies. We transfer wealth from the environmentally responsible to the irresponsible. Obviously, we have to ensure the well being of our new citizens, but we should not overdo the inducements to the point more babies are born than would otherwise.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Graphene is a new ultra-strong, ultra-light form of carbon. It promises batteries much lighter than today, with much higher capacity that can be charged in seconds. Imagine a light-weight bicycle with power assist to whisk you along at 64.37 km/hr (40 mph) through dead-locked traffic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Infiniti announced their new models have 29% more power, and 19% greater fuel economy. In other words they are gratuitously polluting at least 29% more than they need to with the current technology.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Greasing For Invasive Species
Invasive species usually don’t have much chance unless humans have done something to drastically alter the environment to put the native species on the ropes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Great Dying
The term climate change or global warming sounds like a granny attempting to murder you with too much cocoa, but it is serious stuff. Scientists are fond of understatement. Consider that 187 million years before the end of the dinosaurs there was a climate change event. It wiped out 96% of all marine species and 70% of all terrestrial species.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Green Technology is Not Rocket Science
Americans imagine that green technology is some mysterious uncharted rocket science. They forget the Danes, Dutch, Germans and Japanese have been using it successfully on a massive scale for decades. Americans could implement it next month just by phoning in an order.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The silliest example of green-washing is the Jeep Wrangler ad that claims their SUV is both wind and solar powered. Bullshit! Absolute bullshit! It is not remotely true even metaphorically. SUVs (Sport Utility Vehicles) are the least environmental class of vehicle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We need to reduce greenhouse gases both in extracting the fuel from the ground and in burning it. The catch is, oil, when you burn it, turns into CO₂ and water. That is unchangeable chemistry. There is nothing you can do to reduce those burning emissions. All you can do is capture them. Naïve politicians promise technology to burn more oil with less emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Greenhouse Gases On Other Planets
The greenhouse gas equations apply also to other planets. In fact NASA is toying with the idea of deliberately using greenhouse gases to warm up Mars. The conspiracy theorists who claim global warming is a hoax concocted by a secret conspiracy of all the world’s peer-review published scientists have not yet come up with an explanation for why these equations would apply to other planets, but not earth where they were originally derived.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Greening Your PC (Personal Computer)
Here are 9 ways to green your PC. In addition, you can check up how much power you are using and what it is costing you with the PowCost Applet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If the Greenland ice sheet melted, the oceans would rise 7 metres (7.66 yards). This would flood out 25% of the world’s population.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Greenland is covered with an ice cap 3 km (1.86 miles) thick. If it melts, the oceans of the world will rise 7 metres (7.66 yards). Even with the CO₂ we have already emitted, it is melting rapidly. The last time the earth got as warm as it is today, oceans rose 9 metres (9.84 yards).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) What Scientists Are Seeing Over Greenland
Greenwashing is rampant. I saw five TV commercials in a row featuring windmills, all from companies that don’t have anything at all to do with wind energy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Growing Without Limit
Any city that grows without limit eventually experiences a catastrophic collapse. Economics falsely asserts this can’t happen. They falsely claim constant growth is necessary.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Growth = Suicide
To an economist growth is the meaning of life. To an ecologist, it is the primary way that cultures commit suicide. Is there any possibility of a reconciliation? The basic problem is the earth’s ability to sustain is finite. The earth mathematically cannot sustain continuous growth of the demands put on it. This means we cannot prosper by continually increasing the population. We cannot prosper by continually increasing the total amount of resource extraction or goods shipped over the earth. However, we can prosper with efficiency — learning new ways to extract more benefit out of every kilogram of resource extracted, every litre of water, every handful of soil and every erg of energy. We can also prosper by using that which was formerly wasted, e.g. garbage or rain or sun falling on cities. We can also prosper by having fewer babies so there are more resources to go around. Even as it is, it would take several planets the size of earth to sustain our current rate of consumption, much less the growing rate we are so frantically grasping for. We know perfectly well what happens to locusts and tent caterpillars, yet we still base our economic systems on their short-term maximum exploitation growth-is-king economic principles.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Growth is Cancer
From the point of view of economics, endless growth is the meaning of existence. From the point of view of ecology, endless growth is a fatal cancer. Money people live isolated from the real world in glass towers. They talk only to themselves. They are unaware they are working full time to kill the planet. They are whipping it to produce beyond sustainability. They are blowing the entire planetary capital of forests, minerals, fossil fuels, clean water, soil… Any form of economic activity will do: diesel buses billowing black smoke, lampshades made of endangered species, Chinese kettles that break after a month, war, funerals, health care for easily preventable diseases… The planet cannot even sustain anywhere near the amount of economic activity we have now, much less any more growth. We simply must get used to consuming less, recycling everything and lowering the birth rate and let the economists scream. They are completely out of touch with reality. Human survival trumps human convenience. We have no right to leave the next generations nothing but an empty shell of a planet, polluted, barren and stripped of resources.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Growth is Cancerous
Anything that grows without bounds is by definition cancerous. We humans think our cities are beautiful, like a demented old woman coddling the cancers in her breasts as divine manifestations.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Growth vs Sustainability
The big environmental conflicts are always between growth/profitability and sustainability. Profitability always sounds most important because those who will get the profits have the most money to promote their interests. But in the end, only a fairly small percentage of the population benefit. Even though economists promote endless growth as the meaning of the universe, any mathematician or ecologist will tell you it is flat out impossible. Any growth-based system will eventually go bust when it outstrips its resources. The keys to sustainability are recycling and living within your ecological means.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Halving Meat Consumption
If you halve your meat consumption, it will do more to help reduce greenhouse gases even than if you disposed of your car and ever after travelled by bicycle. This is because livestock fart methane CH₄ which is 25 times more potent than CO₂ as a greenhouse gas.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Handling Climate Change
There are only two ways I can think of that will allow us to survive climate change. One is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and wait for the cost of solar energy to come down enough for mass replacement. The other is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and wait for genetic engineering to create new microscopic lifeforms to deal with the CO₂ and produce energy and food from sunlight.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Normal entrepreneurial motives are whisking companies along to solve the big problems facing our species, with one big exception — climate change. Big Oil sees clean energy as the competition, rather than its own future, so they do what they can to derail it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Warthog populations are down by 80%. Giraffe populations are down by 95%. 1/8 of all bird species are now at risk for extinction. 1/3 of all amphibians are at risk for extinction. 100% of male fish in a section of the Potomac river are producing eggs. They are all intersex as a result of pesticides and plastic softeners that mimic female hormones. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has no regulations on any of these chemicals. They affect humans too. In one town in northern Canada, girls outnumber boys 5 to 1 as a result of the chemicals in the womb feminising or killing off the male fetuses.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Harper: False Climate Guru
Stephen Harper did not predict the massive Calgary flood of 2013. The climate scientists did. Yet there are still adoring fans who think Harper knows more about the issue than scientists do.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Religious leaders assert that behaving well sets the bar and encourages others to behave well. If you behave badly, it gives an excuse for others to behave badly. Canada’s Prime Minister Harper and environment minister Peter Kent disingenuously assert the opposite. They claim the more Canada emits greenhouse gases the more it will encourage others to cut back. What an absurd excuse for toadying to the oil companies.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Men of Stephen Harper’s generation are deciding to do nothing about global warming imagining it will slightly increase their personal wealth. The people who have to live with the consequences, have no say. No other creature, save corporate man, sacrifices the next generation for the current.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hated Spotted Owl
The spotted owl is the most hated bird in the USA, not because it has filthy habits, not because it preys on livestock, but simply because it is endangered and Americans lust after its tiny remaining forest habitat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Why do corporations go to such extreme lengths to stop blackberries from growing on their unused land? They can’t stand the idea of them providing free fruit.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hating the Earth
Some people so hate the earth than sustains them that they refuse to even use a biodegradable shampoo. They are like a thug who brags he is unusually manly because he likes to belt his mother in the stomach after she serves him Christmas dinner. There is no room for saboteurs like this on Spaceship Earth. We need to find a way to toss these bastards overboard.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Heads in the Sands
Demand for oil grows 2% a year. Oil reserves shrink 7% a year. Why is industry pretending to itself we can continue this way indefinitely? Oil is a dead end technology. Industry is just trying the squeeze the last few dollars out of it rather than getting on with clean technology.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The actions needed to reign in climate change are like heart medicine. They are both expensive. The difference is, if you refuse heart medicine, you die. If you refuse to take action on climate change, your grandchildren and most of the species on earth will die. On 2009-11-02, Americans elected a slate of Republican/Tea Party legislators who promised no compromises to repeal any legislation to counter climate change and to block anyone from trying to stop it. This tells you something dark and twisted about American values. They not only want American to commit suicide, they want to take the whole planet and most of its species down with them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Heartland Institute is a crooked organisation that spreads disinformation about global climate change. They are well funded. They are on track to kill more people that Hitler ever dreamed. In combating evil of this magnitude, the gloves have to come off. Peter Gleick used a false name to request a list of donors. Heartland gave it to him. Now Heartland is screaming foul and oddly so are many other people howling as if it were the crime of the century. Had his secretary asked for him in her own name, the effect would have been the same. Heartland has not a leg to stand on. If they did not want the list public they should not have been giving it out freely to the public. They are blaming Gleick for their own incompetence. Besides, Jim Rockford did it all the time.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
For most of the last 10,000 years the earth has been in equilibrium, radiating out into space the exact same amount of heat as it absorbed. However, today, due to greenhouse gas warming, the earth now absorbs 1.8 watts more per square metre than it radiates. It does not sound like much, but it amounts to roughly running a toaster 24/7 on every 1,011.71 sq metres (¼ acre) plot of the planet. However, this heat does not dissipate; it steadily accumulates, hour by hour, day by day, year by year.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
For heating fuel, we have the choice of coal, oil, natural gas or electricity. Because of climate change, we have no choice but to phase out of fossil fuels. The cost is irrelevant. The alternative is mass extinction. Unfortunately, electricity, produced cleanly, is the most expensive option. The solution to high electricity prices:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- better insulation.
- double pane windows.
- heat pumps (electrically powered).
- solar and wind.
- smart thermostats that lower the temperature at night and when you go out. It avoids heating rooms not in use. (I invented one back in the 1970. It cut my fuel bill in half for my four bedroom house).
- heat-exchanging ventilation.
2/3 of the land in Los Angeles is covered in roads and parking lots. Further, the asphalt absorbs almost all of the Oracle’s energy, warming the city by 10.0°C (18.0°F) relative to the surrounding areas. Even a child could come up with a more efficient transportation system.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Living near heavy traffic doubles your odds of a heart attack.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You may have noticed how quotations pop up at random all over my website, aimed at protecting the environment. You are welcome to use any or all of the quotations in my quotation collection in a similar way on your own website. To get your point across these days, you have to shrink it to a sound bite.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
High Performance Electric Car
The Japanese Eliica, an eight wheeled electric car, travels at 102.78 metres/sec (229.91 mph) using half the energy of a comparable gasoline-powered car, yet the perception persists that electric vehicles are suitable only for playing golf.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We demand that pilots learn to trust their many sensitive instruments rather than just look out the window and trust gut feel. Yet hillbilly Republicans imagine, just by looking out their living room window every once in a while, they know better than the climate scientists what is going on with climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Historical Effect of CO₂
If you study the history of the climate of earth over the last 400,000 years, you can see that the CO₂ levels went up and down, driving temperature up and down and driving the sea levels up and down by 100 metres (109.36 yards). Today the CO₂ levels are twice as high as they have ever been before. It is naïve not to expect a concomitant effect. Imagine defrosting an old fridge. You open the door, but it still takes perhaps a day for the ice to melt. You cannot conclude the ice won’t melt just because it takes a while to react to the warmer conditions. Also the oceans take up the excess heat in the atmosphere, delaying the warming effects. It is just wishful thinking to trust this time the earth will react in a different way for some unknown reason.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is more CO₂ in the air today than at any time in the last 3,000,000 years. In Greenland we can drill down 680,000 layers of snow, each representing the snow for one year. We know from the ice core record what to expect when CO₂ levels change. Why are you so confident earth will behave completely differently this time than it has in past?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People have been overfishing since the middle ages. Why do you think they went all the way to Iceland and North America to catch fish? They had already wiped out the European fisheries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hitler vs Reagan
Adolf Hitler and Ronald Reagan each lead the world off for a decade chasing his personal delusions. Hitler’s were racial; Reagan’s were environmental. Reagan will do far more lasting damage.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hoarding What you Cannot Eat
Americans are like a woman with diabetes who has just discovered a cache of chocolate caramels. She can’t eat them anyway. Americans imagine if they scrounge enough oil or natural gas, they can still get for the next century. They close their eyes to the reality that they can’t burn those fossil fuels because of the absolutely unacceptable effects of the greenhouse gases.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
More and more city dwellers are living alone. Social media are replacing partners and room mates. We need to adjust, with smaller cars and smaller housing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A Home of my Own
The way our population is exploding, we will get to the point your only hope for owning a plot of land will be a little square about 5 cm (1.97 in) on a side. The big attraction is you can control what happens on it. You can landscape it. You can raise small creatures on it. Mostly you will stay in your living pod and watch and control it remotely much as people today manage aquariums.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People born in the high Arctic would prefer to live there than anywhere else. People born in the Sahara desert want to stay there despite the worsening climate. This feature of humans is as Good Thing™ otherwise we would have more wars over territory and even greater overpopulation in the prime real estate.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The people at WholeSystemDesign.com help you design a homestead. They make sure you handle your water, soil, food, dwellings etc. in an optimal way. This will help you protect yourself from global climate change and fossil fuel price spikes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans drive other species to extinction by hunting, by taking over their habitat, by carrying diseases, by bringing in invasive species in from afar, by competing for food, by polluting, by causing climate change… Instead of homo sapiens perhaps we should have called ourselves homo deleotus.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Homo Sapiens is a Failed Species
I contend homo sapiens is a failed species. We are essentially hosed. Within a century, our numbers will drop to perhaps 20 million and technology will disappear. What’s the problem?
Basically our brains grew rapidly giving us hugely expanded power, but we kept the same primitive, greed-centred, short-term-centered motivation system. There was no corresponding increased restraint. Even when our intellect warns us some action is suicidal in the long run, we have no ability to curb our short term desires.
Let’s look at some of the ways we have sown the seeds of our own destruction.
- We breed without limit, far beyond the carrying capacity of earth. Religions fan this lunacy.
- We are on target to wipe out the last ocean food fish by 2048.
- We are deliberately driving bees needed for pollination to extinction.
- We are on target to wipe out half the terrestrial species.
- We have flatly refused to avoid emitting greenhouse gases. We will thus suffer the consequences of climate change, which Environment Canada called second only to global nuclear war. We have already cranked up the CO₂ levels to 400 ppm, on track for 450 soon. The last time, 3 million years ago, when CO₂ levels were this high, average temperatures reached 8.0°C (14.4°F) higher than today and the seas reached 40 metres (43.74 yards) higher than today.
- We have flatly refused to invest in a replacement clean energy for fossil fuels.
- We have poisoned the soils and rivers. It is no longer safe for a pregnant woman to eat a fresh water fish anywhere in the USA.
- We have used techniques of agriculture that rapidly erode the soils. We have just a small fraction of the original soil legacy left.
- We have stockpiled enough nuclear and biological weapons to wipe ourselves out many times over.
- We invented an artificial life form that has taken over the planet. They have a very primitive motivation system — short term profit. Everything else is irrelevant, even their own survival. Even though they are primitive, they are extremely powerful. They buy politicians and force them to do things that are suicidal to the species. They feel no pain. They cannot be jailed. They have no concept of morality. There is very little that can be done to influence them. They are like Dr. Frankenstein’s monsters. I speak of corporations, which enjoy the status of humans in the USA. And oddly, in the USA, this immoral behaviour is required by law.
Even if the odds are hopeless, you might as well do what you can to save our planet. There is always a chance of something unexpected. If you give up, there is no chance.
We have a longshot, artificial intelligence smarter than humans. It might have the means to solve these global problem, and the guile or power to impose the solutions on us humans, but there is little reason to think it would have any interest in doing so.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Homo Visum Brevis
Perhaps we should rename our species homo visum brevis for our species’ propensity for over-exploiting resources and focusing only on short-term gain.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I am thoroughly ashamed to be human because of the way we humans refuse to limit our population, the way we rape the environment, the way we treat other species with such cruelty. Humans have the capacity to think ahead and avert catastrophe, but refuse to do so because they are so short sighted, petty, greedy and corrupt. Only a few times in my life have I heard anyone else express such sentiments. Perhaps it is considered dangerous to do so, like criticising the home team or criticising America.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Using technology, we humans have managed to create massive problems that we are not capable of solving. It is as hopeless as expecting a pack of dogs to solve the problem of soil erosion. Humans are not up to the task:
- They don’t care about the big picture.
- Their prime focus is on competing with, defeating and hurting enemies.
- They are driven primarily by emotion.
- They tenaciously hold onto beliefs that have been proven wrong.
- They prefer I win-you lose solutions to win-win. This creates political logjams.
I can see three possible solutions:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The development of artificial intelligence that simple overwhelm humans and tricks them into doing the right thing.
- Some sort of technology to amplify intelligence, the ability to concentrate or the ability to look at problems from a planetary perspective. A think of these people might be able to overwhelm ordinary humans.
- A think tank of the brightest people funded by billionaires who see our planet is in peril. People are selected for their intelligence and global perspective. It is one thing to create a solution, but quite another to get idiotic FOX viewers to accept it.
Hostility to the Carless
People who have cars are openly hostile to those who give up their cars or go for fuel efficient cars. This makes no sense. Those carless people are freeing up the streets for the car-addicted. Those people are reducing demand for oil, which will reduce the price of gas. I guess it is a bit much to expect rational behaviour from people deliberately destroy their planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
On 2014-11-11 Obama announced brave new cuts in CO₂ emissions with targets for 2030. This is complete bullshit. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Obama will only be in office for two more years. If he is going to promise a target, the furthest out he has any control over is 2016. It makes no sense to make promises about what future presidents are supposed to do.
- That is like having a term paper due in 16 years. Nobody pays any attention until the week before it is due and by then it is too late to do anything, if anyone even remembers the promise.
- If he were serious, there would be a target for each of the remaining two years of his administration.
Indeed, the only thing rising faster than our emissions is the output of words pledging to lower them.~ Naomi Klein
We have just lived through the hottest decade in human history ending in 2000. Global warming deniers claim it was caused by the sun giving out more heat, but satellites tell us the sun has given out less heat than usual.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The hottest year on record up to 2007 was 2005. The second hottest year was a tie between 1998 and 2007. The top ten hottest years all occurred since 1990. Oddly, among Republicans, only 49% accept that the earth is warming, down from 62% in a former Pew Poll. To Republicans, global warming has become a religious issue, completely divorced from scientific fact.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How Clean is the Electric Car?
The electric car is not nearly as clean as it looks. Even though it produces no emissions, the coal plant that produces its electricity certainly does.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How Crazy are Humans?
Styrofoam is the most durable material man has ever made, other than diamonds. It will not degrade even after millions of years. Yet, oddly, we use it for drinking cups that have a useful life of one day.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How Extensive Will The Extinction Be?
It is all but certain man will go extinct within the next century or two. The interesting question is, how much of the rest of the tree of life will he take with him when he goes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How To Kill The Amazon
It take only 2.0°C (35.6°F) of global warming and the Amazon rainforest will die back. Economists bleat it would be too expensive to reduce CO₂ emissions sufficiently to avoid this. I ask, but what cost do you place on the earth losing its lungs?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How Many Kids?
The planet is so badly overpopulated, if you add an extra child, you are pushing someone else’s child off. Ideally you should have one or fewer kids. Two is the absolute limit. If you have three or more, like Justin Trudeau, you are for all effective purposes a murderer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How Oil Corporations Behave Under Laissez Faire
If you think environmental laws are unduly restrictive on oil corporations, that they can be trusted to police themselves, consider that Chevron/Texaco had an oil spill in Ecuador, then just left it there for over 30 years, killing birds, causing cancers and covering children in festering sores and lesions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Crude
How Old Is The Earth?
Science tells us the earth is 4.54 billion years old and the universe is 13.82 billion years old. Christians tells us both the earth and the universe are 6000 years old.
Christians believe as they do because it says so in a book written by bronze age desert dwellers. This book makes the preposterous claim it was written by the creator of the universe, even though all the science it in it is completely wrong. A creator could not have built a universe of quarks, gravity relativity etc. labouring under so many delusions. It is clearly counterfeit.
Scientists have thousands of way of measuring the age of the earth. Most require technical knowledge to understand. Some of the simpler-to-understand ways we know the earth is older than 6000 years include:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Counting ice core rings, one per year.
- Counting layers of river sediments deposited, one per year.
- Many different types of radioactive dating, in the simplest case measuring what percentage of a radioactive material has decayed.
- Tracing tree ring patterns back from living trees to petrified trees. One ring per year.
- The fine layering of fossils from primitive to contemporary. Since each species lived only a relatively short time compared with the age of the earth, its fossils act as a time calibrator.
- Using the DNA mutation clock.
- Studying the fine motions of the planets and working backwards.
- Studying the distribution of ash from volcanic eruptions. The ash is a time calibrator wherever it appears in the sediments anywhere in the world. We know roughly how frequently any particular volcano erupts.
- Looking at the rates of continental drift and working backwards. We know what the continents used to look like and how long it would have taken them to morph from the way they were to the way they are.
How People Know Global Warming Is Not Real
I find it most peculiar that right wingers assure me based solely on their guts, that there can’t possibly be global warming triggered by mankind. However, they accept the idea volcanoes pumping out CO₂ could produce such an effect. There are lots of ways of measuring how much humans and volcanoes spew. We know humans, burning fossil fuels, year after year add up to a much bigger effect. We can see it is the extreme, unprecedented increase in global CO₂. If you think nature by itself can create such a catastrophe, then surely one is also possible with man pushing earth over the brink to help bring it on even faster.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How We Know about CO₂
We have very good records of how much coal and oil we humans mined, sold and burned each year. We have known since the 1800s how much CO₂ that would release and how much that CO₂ would raise the temperature of the atmosphere. There is nothing cutting edge or controversial about those basics. The fine tuning is computing how much of the CO₂ dissolves in the oceans and the effects of other even more potent greenhouse gases such as methane.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How We Know It Was Us
The notion that man did not cause the recent rapid rise in carbon dioxide is absurd. We know how much of the various kinds of fossil fuel we burned, so we can calculate how much carbon dioxide we released into the atmosphere.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How We Know It Was Us
The notion that the measured, rapid CO₂ buildup came from something other that man’s is absurd. We know how much fossil fuel we, as a species, burned each year. We know to at least three decimal places how much CO₂ each kilogram of gasoline, natural gas, coal etc. is produced on burning. So we also know quite accurately how much CO₂ mankind has created with fossil fuel burning over the last hundred years.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How We Know We Made the CO₂
How can anyone get away with claiming CO₂ levels have nothing to do with man’s activities? We have records of production of coal, oil, bitumen, methane and natural gas by country. We have receipts for fossil fuel sales. We have a very good idea how much CO₂ we have released as a result of our industrial activities. We have the venerable formulas for computing the expected temperature rise. We know how many acres of forest we leveled. We know how may cubic meters of wood there as in each hectare. We know how much CO₂ is emitted with each cubic metre of wood is burned. We know how temperature and CO₂ solubility in water works. Ask Coca Cola. It is not as though the rise is unaccounted for by our own activities. We are not talking predicting the third decimal place here. In 1860, levels were about 260. Now they are up to 400, up 54% an astoundingly huge change in the composition of our atmosphere. We have past records of the drastic changes in climate from much smaller swings than that. It just takes a while for the hysteresis to manifest. At this point we are hosed. All there is left to decide is how royally we are hosed.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Mayor Morley Forster of remote Hornepayne, Ontario wants a nuclear waste dump in his town because more people would come and a McDonalds might open there.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
I thought people moved to small towns to get away from crowds, McDonalds and pollution.
One of the most odious things about humans is their extreme species chauvinism. Nothing else counts but humans or human convenience. Humans steal the ancestral lands of elephants then shoot the elephants and call them thieves when they try to feed off their own land. When a bear kills a human it is labelled a dangerous rogue. When a human kills a bear, he is labelled a hunter. Human treat other species as chattels, much the way they treat slaves. Even when humans argue for the preservation of endangered species they argue purely in terms of human benefit. Nothing but a human has any inherent right to life, not even species more intelligent than humans.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans will happily wipe out an entire species to save a single human life or to make life slightly more convenient for a community. Even though humans are just a species of primate, one unimaginably overpopulated, humans hold themselves in god-like esteem. This arrogant attitude make humans forget how dependent they are on other species of plant and animal. They don’t even act in their own self interest.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Homo sapiens: never was there a species more deserving of extinction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If there was ever a species that deserved to go extinct it is homo sapiens. We are throwing other species off the planet faster than the extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs.
1/8 of all birds are headed for extinction. We humans know that birds eat insects for us, without poisoning us in the process.
According to Dr. Boris Worm, all large food fish will be extinct by 2048. We know that with rising populations, we will desperately need those food fish, yet we deliberately overfish and drive them to extinction.
Honeybees are on the way out. We know that honeybees are necessary to pollinate crops, yet we persist in doing a dozen things we know puts extreme stress on them.
Frogs are disappearing all over the world. We know they are the main consumers of insects, particularly mosquitoes.
103 years ago, prairie dog towns contained millions of individuals. Today they contain no more than 100.
The black rhino was just declared extinct, previously a favoured animal cracker.
We permit Mitsubishi to traffic in endangered blue-fin tuna. We permit the Japanese to hunt endangered whales.
We have known for decades we must reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but what to we do? frantically dig up and burn the Alberta tar sands and fraq for natural gas to emit more CO₂ than ever before. It is as if we had an unconscious death wish. We trying very hard to drive ourselves extinct and if we succeed, we most certainly have deserved it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Human Extinction May Not Be So Bad
I eagerly await the discovery that life is everywhere in the universe. The current destruction of earth by runaway corporations and religions will then not feel nearly so tragic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Human Family
All modern humans descended from a group of 2000 people who lived 70,000 years ago and most of us descended from an even smaller group of 150 people. 2000 is about the enrollment of my high school. It amazing how so few people notice how alike we all are and that you can’t help but marry a not-that-distant cousin.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Despite our flash-in-the-pan short stay of our species on earth, humans will still leave ample evidence in the sediments of our passing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Human Parasites Killing Earth
Our earth is in such bad shape right now, it cannot survive with people actively trying to harm it or doing nothing to protect it. Earth can no longer afford to support parasites who dedicate their lives exclusively to selfish pleasures or trivia such as fashion, shopping, money, sports, cars, video games or hunting. Caring for planet earth is like chores needed to maintain a house. It works fine if everyone does their bit.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Some day earth will look back on this era as a short but nasty case of humans.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans are Animals
Humans suffer from mass snootiness that deludes them into ignoring the fact that humans too are animals. They want to believe, contrary to evidence, that the ordinary rules of life for animals do not apply to humans, for example, that humans can have a population explosion without a corresponding environmental collapse and ensuing population collapse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans Are Not Intelligent
Humans constantly brag they are the most intelligent creatures on earth. What sort of intelligence destroys the very planet that sustains it?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans From The Point of View of Bears
From the point of view of bears, humans are like new kind of very territorial superbeaver that drastically transforms the landscape with its burrows.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans vs Wolves
Wolves hunt the weakest and sickest individuals in a herd. Humans hunt the strongest and fittest. Wolves act like animal breeders to improve the stock. Humans…~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hummingbird on Christmas
I saw a hummingbird on Christmas here in Victoria BC. Birders confirm this is a recent trend caused by warming winters. Every denier needs to get outside and have a look for himself what is actually happening rather than consulting his wishful thinking and ideology.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are 1.3 billion people suffering from obesity in the world, but only 900 million suffering from hunger.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hurricane Patricia 2015 is the biggest hurricane we have ever had in the western hemisphere (i.e. in the Americas in either the Pacific or Atlantic). It started out at 90.28 metres/sec (201.95 mph). Thankfully it has been weakening as it approaches land. Imagine the wind if you stuck your head out of a car window travelling that fast! What is making Patricia so huge?
- El Nino is a 2 to 7 year cycle in ocean currents. We are at the peak right now which warms the waters near Mexico. Hurricanes are fueled by warm ocean waters. Warm water heats the air which rises, cools and swirls. This would explain the biggest hurricane in 5 years, but not for all time.
- Global warming caused by CO₂ emissions have been relentlessly pushing the average temperature of the atmosphere and the oceans up every month since the start of the industrial revolution in 1760.
The bad news is:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The CO₂ we have already released will hang around for at least 1000 years.
- We are continuing to release CO₂ at an ever increasing rate.
- Hurricane Patricia is not a fluke. It is the start of the age of ever-larger super-hurricanes.
Hurricanes Are Caused by Heat
2005 was the most destructive hurricane season on record up to 2008. 2008 was second. The longest lived hurricane on record was Bertha in 2008. Hurricanes are fueled by warm ocean water. In 2004-03 the first-ever reported hurricane in the South Atlantic hit southern Brazil. The record 11 hottest years have all been in the last 13 years. It amazing how many people pretend to deny global warming in the face of such facts.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Husky Energy built an oil pipeline along the North Saskatchewan River. They installed the latest digital pressure sensors. One night the sensors went off. Husky ignored them. Oil poured into the river. The people of North Battleford have not been able to drink from the river ever since. Why bother installing sensors if you ignore them?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hybrids are Not Enough
If we converted every car to a hybrid, within 5 years we would be right back where we started because the economy is growing and the population is growing. We have to drop the idea that growing the economy and growing the population is a good and sane thing to do. The only thing in nature that grows without limit is cancer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Hydrogen is Not a New Energy Source
Many people are under the delusion hydrogen is a new energy source. It is not. It is merely a clean way of transporting energy. To make hydrogen, you need natural gas and steam (created by burning oil).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
All the fish and crabs have died in a dead zone off the coast of Oregon. The problem is not pollution, but hypoxia — lack of oxygen O₂. Global warming is interfering with the processes that oxygenate the oceans and stimulating bacteria that consume oxygen. The oxygen levels are zero on the bottom. For details see the Changing Sea One Ocean episode of the The Nature Of Things.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I Can’t Die Because I Have Not Died Yet
Imagine a man with twenty terminal diseases who refuses to stop smoking, heavy drinking and taking recreational drugs. He is insanely optimistic about his chances, based on the observation he hasn’t died yet despite a lifetime of abusing his body. He is like a Republican facing a world in environmental collapse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I Told You So
I almost certainly will not have a tombstone, but if I did, it would say I told you so. I am referring primarily to four things:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- You were fools to let Stephen Harper get away with pretending global warming was nothing to be concerned about.
- You were fools to attack small countries unprovoked just to steal their resources.
- You were fools to let Stephen Harper transfer wealth from the 99% to the 1%.
- You were fools to let corporations take over government.
There is as much water trapped in the ice of Antarctica as in the entire Atlantic ocean. Are you still so sure it does not matter if it melts?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ice Melting Faster Than Expected
The latest figures on Antarctic ice melting are much larger than formerly expected. Instead of 60.96 cm (2 ft), we are talking 1.83 metres (6 ft) to 60.96 metres (66.67 yards). This means coastal cities will have to be abandoned, nuclear power plants and military bases will have to be relocated. If you look at a map of China, it is one giant green, easily-flooded, coastal plain. Yet in all this, Canada insists on stimulating greenhouse gas emissions with government subsidies. We are flipping crazy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ideal Clean Power
The holy grail of energy would generate unlimited power, produce no pollution, not interfere with climate, require no fuel, take up no real estate, be free, freely accessible to all countries and reliable for billions of years. Guess what. We already have it, the sun.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Climate change denier Lord Nigel Lawson assures us that oil will never run out. Why does he think that? In the 1930’s, scientists predicted oil would run out in 40 years. They were wrong. They failed to account for offshore oil. Therefore they must be wrong now and Lawson’s guts must be right. That’s a bit like refusing the advice of today’s cardiologists because of an error doctors made in the 1930’s. Lawson pretends to ignore the fact that today we have much better instruments to measure the remaining oil. He also pretends to ignore there have been no significant new finds since the 1970’s. We are burning oil far faster than we can find new oil. That cannot go on indefinitely. The man is a scoundrel.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Subaru bragging that its Forester, or Ford bragging that its Escape is the most fuel efficient SUV is a bit like McDonalds advertising that their quadruple McBacon & McCheese burger with jumbo fries and 1500 ml Coke is the most health-conscious meal in its class.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Idiotic Oil Sands
What about the oil sands?
- Extracting the oil releases 3 times as much greenhouse gases as extracting conventional oil.
- You need huge amounts of energy to extract the oil. You have a big energy investment with only a marginal return. As the price of oil rises, so does the cost of extracting it.
- When the consumer burns the oil, it releases unacceptable amounts of greenhouse gases.
- It costs three times as much as ordinary oil to produce, so when oil prices drop, not a barrel of it can be sold.
Let’s stop dicking around with short-term solutions that destroy the environment and get on with clean energy, even if it is difficult.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If Humans Went Extinct, It Would Not Matter
If humans wiped out most other species, the earth itself would die, taking humans with it. If humans wiped themselves out, the earth would carry on much better than today.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If Your Child Is Dying
If your child is dying, do you call for more study or do you do what you can then worry later if every effort you made to save its life was strictly necessary? I just wish people would treat an entire species, the entire environment and entire planet similarly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The funny thing about ignorant people is they learn a tiny bit about science, then start claiming they know more about the subject than the scientists who taught them the little they know.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ignoring Abundant Energy
The Sun emits millions of times more clean energy that we could ever use, but we largely ignore it, preferring instead to grub around in the dirt for pathetic, filthy fossil fuels that kill us all with global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the USA and Canada, the people subsidise the education of environmental scientists who learn how to decide which chemicals are safe for various purposes. Then we ignore their recommendations and instead trust businessmen, who know nothing about chemistry or product safety, who make their decisions based purely on profit, who then bribe and threaten politicians to implement the these suicidal policies.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ignoring the Fire
Imagine you saw flames engulfing a house. You broke in and saw a family seated around the dinner table. You shouted Your house is on fire. You have to get out immediately. However, the people just sat there. The mother said, But we haven’t finished dinner. Besides I don’t see any flames yet. That is how the bulk of the population reacts to the danger of global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ignoring Global Warming
The way Americans ignore global warming is a bit like a family who continues to argue what colour to paint the kitchen while the house is on fire.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ignoring a Monster Oil Spill
During hurricane Katrina, the oil refineries of New Orleans spilled as much crude oil as did the Exxon Valdiz, but because the people of Louisiana are so loyal to big oil, the spill was quietly ignored.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Ignoring Your Doctor
When a PhD in cardiology tells an American he must stop smoking cigarettes and scarfing a six-pack of Krispy Kreme donuts each day, that American has little trouble understanding. However, when a PhD in climatology tells an American he must give up fossil fuels and cut his CO₂ emissions to zero, he just does not get it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Illusion of Safety
Imagine a group of people trapped in a rickety elevator and the cable has snapped. They are plummeting down ever faster. The Republicans and Christians reassure the others that there is nothing to be concerned about. It is perfectly safe. See, nothing too painful has happened yet. God would never let anything terrible happen. They are like Americans facing a world in environmental collapse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Illusions of Ownership
Americans imagine they own the Louisiana wetlands and they have the right to destroy them with oil, pesticides, fertiliser runoff… in their insane drive for production. Americans are the sons of illegal immigrants from Europe who came in droves and robbed, killed and enslaved the people who were there already taking reasonably good care of the land.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine No Overpopulation
Imagine if the churches of the world instead of preaching go forth and multiply had preached bring children into the world only when both you and the planet can support them. Imagine the world population were only one billion instead of 7.357 billion. Instead of having used ½ the world’s oil, we would have used only 1/14th. We would have 7 times as much water per person. We would have 7 times as much land per person to grow food. There would be 7 times as many tons of minerals per person. There would have been no need for the Afghan or Iraq resource wars. Countries would not need nuclear arsenals since the competition for resources would be so much more relaxed. There would be 1/7 as much pollution. The oceans would have 7 times as much fish per person. Humans are no different than other animals. They make themselves miserable by mindless overbreeding. We behave with no more intelligence than tent caterpillars, locusts or lemmings on course for a 30% growth in population by 2050.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine Sufficient Habitat
Imagine a future where every species has sufficient habitat to guarantee its continued survival.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are millions of Canadians who are incredibly arrogant twits, including Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister. They cannot even remember what they learned in science class in grade 2, yet they imagine themselves expert in global climate change and pontificate on it based on the latest daily weather report.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
ANGA (America’s Natural Gas Alliance)funds ads claiming natural gas is completely safe. They have conveniently ignored that natural gas (methane CH₄ ) it is a potent greenhouse gas and burns to form CO₂ the major greenhouse gas causing global warming, a threat according to Environment Canada, second only to global nuclear war. They also forgot to mention that an LNG tanker igniting would create an explosion big enough to wipe out the core of major city.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When you have a serious problem, you cannot afford to wait for a perfect solution. Global warming is a serious problem.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Importance of the Rule of Law
The problem with allowing abrogation of legal procedure for terrorists, is that the government is free then to declare anyone it does not like a terrorist. Nobody is safe. Gordon Brown of Britain took this to ludicrous extremes by declaring the entire nation of Iceland as terrorists when the Prime Minister of Iceland did not handle a banking crisis to his liking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Enbridge pipeline people have tried to assure people who live along the route of their proposed oil sands pipeline or the tanker routes along the BC coast, that modern science makes a leak almost impossible. This is Titanic think. What they mean is, if an untoward event such as an earthquake, deep freeze, storm etc. that they anticipated happens, the pipeline will hold up if it were build perfectly to spec, by a contractor who took no shortcuts and substituted no inferior materials.
If those condition do not apply, e.g. if the earthquake is one notch larger than built for, all bets are off. Designers may fail to consider what will happen if an angry farmer take pot shots at the pipeline with a rifle or some terrorist decides to blow it up, or a runaway tractor smashes into it, or a horny moose is attracted to its warmth. Only a tiny core of tidy problems are considered in the computer simulations.
If this degree of safety were attainable, we should not have seen any leaks or tanker spills in the last five years or so. But we have, on 2012-06-07, 3,500 barrels of light sour crude oil were released into Jackson Creek, a tributary of the Red Deer River north west of Calgary Alberta.
I wrote the computer program that designed BC Hydro’s high voltage transmission lines. Before you start, you have to decide what are the worst case conditions you will build for. Then you seek out the cheapest design that will survive them. You close your eyes to what will happen if the wind is 20% bigger or the ice is 10% heavier than you planned for.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Incentives to Overpopulate
Imagine a couple came to you and told you they going to double the size of their already overcrowded family with mega-fertility treatments from 7 to 14. You might ask How you going to provide and care for them all? They answer, We never think about that. God will provide. You might consider them somewhat irresponsible. Yet politicians offer incentives to have more babies in an attempt to double the population of their state. Clergy harangue their flocks to double the population of their sect (and as a consequence, of the entire planet) and almost nobody even politely asks them to stop.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you work to protect the environment, avoid wars, persuade corporations to treat their customers fairly, push for equal civil rights for all, work for economic opportunity all over the planet or call for the ethical treatment of animals, you will find that the majority of people oppose you and for reasons even they don’t understand. They will often be furious with you and claim they are going to kill you, again for reasons they seem incapable of articulating. We are one peculiar species. I know this from first hand experience.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Fishermen have over and over driven fish species to near extinction, yet still they claim to know better than the scientists how much pressure they can safely put on a stock.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
What would you think of a first world country whose education system was so deformed that the majority of adults did not know the basics of science, things the earth is a sphere, rain is caused when water evaporates and recondenses in the clouds or matter is made of molecules and molecules are made of atoms? The USA is just such a country. Its people don’t have the first clue about climate change, evolution, or the big bang. The problem is Christians and oil companies spending billions to fill their heads with nonsense for their own personal gain.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Incompetents In Government
When I go to the dentist, I have a basic trust she knows what she is doing. When I travel on the roads, I have a basic trust the drivers will for the most part avoid colliding with me. But when I watch governments, I feel despair that completely incompetent, defective and deluded people have managed to take charge. They delight in starting wars. They destroy the environment. They make war on the homeless and poor. They refuse to address the energy crunch. They try to force various religious delusions on the populace. They spend billions on frivolities. They subvert the constitution. They torture people. They do all they can to leave the average citizen powerless, at the mercy of wealthy elites and corporations. If that is the best we humans can do, we fully deserve extinction~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Inconsistency In Adoption Strictness
We are unusually inconsistent in that we, as a society, are extremely careful about who adopts a child, even a fetal alcohol syndrome child compared with the way that we allow anyone to create as many children as they please by traditional mating or in vitro fertilisation or and in some countries, cloning, without requiring the parents to even take a course or get a licence, or prove they can support the children financially. We don’t even insist they refrain from harming the child in the womb with drugs, tobacco or alcohol. We even assist 70 year old women to have children they can’t possibly live to raise.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Increasing Poor Genes
Let’s look at bear hunting from a genetic point of view. Trophy hunters go after the biggest, strongest, healthiest bears. Unfortunately, those bears are technically called papas. These are the bears that provide the prime genes to sire the next generation. Hunting removes the best genes from the pool forever. Hunting is like reverse natural selection. Normally, predators preferentially pick off the sickest, weakest, most malnourished, most deformed individuals, thus pruning their defective genes from the pool. Normally the fittest survive. Now the fittest are shot. This drives the quality of the genetic stock down.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I find it extremely disheartening and unbelievable that the majority of humans are completely willing to trash the planet making it unlivable. It is like learning that the majority of astronauts get a kick out of trashing the life support systems.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
India and Climate Change
India is like the slightly retarded youngest child in a family who insists on burning down the family house so she can cook.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I applaud the first nations people holding Stephen Harper’s feet to the fire over his abandoning the environment to the short term financial interests of big oil. However, First Nations people have been infected with a truly nutty delusion. They imagine if Harper were out the way, they could hunt and fish without restriction the way they did traditionally before the coming of the white man. That is utterly impossible. Why?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- There are far fewer fish and animals now that there were back then.
- There are thousands of times more people, both white and first nations than there were back then.
- All those people have been hunting and fishing with factory technology driving animal and fish populations down.
- The best hunting lands have been paved over with cities or turned to farms and tree farms. The animal habitat has shrunk.
- Mining and manufacturing have poisoned most of the lakes, rivers and inlets.
- People now outnumber the animals. Originally the animals greatly outnumbered the people.
- If first nations people hunted and fished the way they did in 1400, they would drive every species extinct within a decade. They simply can’t. It has nothing to do with Harper. It is a childish insanity to think huge populations of first nations people can hunt and fish all they want without killing off all the remaining fish and animals. Too much has changed.
Politically correct people tend to defend indigenous First Nations, Inuit, Sami etc. when they demand the right to hunt, fish and kill whales in the same unrestricted way their ancestors did 200 years ago. Indigenous demands are just as greedy and foolish as anyone else’s. They ignore the fact there are only a tiny fraction of the animals left and their own populations have exploded. You can have unrestricted hunting and fishing only when the animals far outnumber the people. But even when the buffalo covered the prairies to the horizon, unrestricted hunting wiped them out.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Indigenous Whale Hunting
Some argue that whaling by indigenous people must be harmless since whales flourished before the coming of the white man. They forget there are many more indigenous people hunting now and that they now use modern speed boats, guns, exploding harpoons, sonar etc. It is no longer a fair contest.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Indispensable Wall Street
Amazingly, our planet survived for millions of years without Wall Street. Yet this upstart imagines it is indispensable and the environment that sustained us all that time is not.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A car weighs 20 times more than its passenger. Get serious! Imagine an egg cup that weighed 20 times more than an egg. Imagine a bicycle that weighed 20 times more than its passenger. Imagine a canoe that weighed 20 times more than its passenger. Imagine an elevator that weighed 20 times more than its passengers. Imagine an horse that weighed 20 times more than its rider. There is no need for cars to be anywhere near that heavy (and hence consuming anywhere near that much fuel). Some bicycles weigh as little as 1/50 the weight of the passenger and use no gas at all.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Inefficient Parcel Delivery
If you track a parcel on its way to you from the other side of the continent, you will watch it meandering around an extremely indirect route. You would think with automated sorting equipment and so many flights and trucks it should be possible for parcels to go pretty well directly to their destinations. Instead, UPS (United Parcel Service of America) for example takes all its parcels to one central point, sorts them, then fans them out to their destinations and makes no use of any flights but its own.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Most pleasure boaters have the sense to stay out of the way of a ferry, tanker or cruise ship. They know large ships can’t turn on a dime to avoid them. They know large ships have to plan their turns sometimes miles/kilometers in advance. The earth is far far larger than the largest ship ever built. It too has inertia. It too cannot turn on a dime. If humans take action on climate change, they will not see any significant results for decades. You are idiotic to wait until it is too late to take action.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Planet earth has enormous inertia. By the time the abuse we have been heaping on it leads to visibly unacceptable conditions, it will be far too late to change it back without centuries of extreme effort.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Supertankers and ocean liners have huge inertia. If you want to turn or stop them you need to act 1.61 km (1 mile) or more ahead of time. The entire atmosphere is hugely larger that the largest ship. If you want to change it, you need to start a century or more ahead of time. Humans are not used to controlling such huge systems. The problem is, if humans insist on waiting until a decade or so before some problem is apparent even to the lay person, they are already hosed. There is simply not enough time to effect any shift. Human intuition is useless in deciding what is dangerous and when you need to take action.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Inevitable Population Growth
When scientists say the world’s population will increase to more than 9 billion, as if they were discussing the inevitability of the tides, I want to pull out my remaining hair. New humans don’s just materialise. Existing humans have to more or less deliberately create them. Creating more humans on an overpopulated planet is insane. We must convince people not to do something so stupid. We are still behaving as if it were the year one when most of your kids died and it was necessary to have a bundle of them just to maintain the population.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Insects outnumber humans 200,000,000 to one. The good news is, no matter how hard we humans try to drive ourselves extinct, we will unlikely take all the insects with us.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Instability, the New Norm
The climate change scientists predicted freakish weather events and tell us to get used to them. Instability is the new norm. We will have to build more robust infrastructure to deal with the new extremes. Unfortunately, this will be very expensive. This expenditure is a direct result of refusing to cut back on CO₂ emissions. Therefore the cost should be put squarely on the shoulders of the culprits in CO₂ emission.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Insufficiently Wary Of Earthquakes
Volcanic activity has increased three times in the last thousand years. City-dwellers are much more vulnerable to earthquakes than hunter gatherers. As a result, people don’t have a sufficient built-in wariness of earthquakes and volcanoes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Insurance companies are the main lobbyists to deal with climate change. If insurance companies cannot accurately predict the future 60 years out or so, they go broke. They cannot run their business by gut feel like Trump does. They have to be unbiased, unemotional. They are the ones with trillions riding on being right about climate change. They are the ones who have invested most in researching the truth. They are the ones most likely to be right.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans keep calling themselves an intelligent species, but they have put themselves on the brink of extinction by dozens of different means. No beaver is that stupid.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Internal Curbs on Reproduction
Single cell organisms normally do all they can to split and become two. However, in multi-celled organisms this urge has to be curtailed. When cells refuse to behave and consider the life of the organism as a whole, they reproduce at will and become a cancer. Similarly in civilisations, there are some groups that refuse to curb their reproduction. Christians and Muslims who resist birth control are the analog of cancer on the body politic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Internet Wastes Power
Internet servers waste 90% of the AC (Alternating Current) power they suck from the grid. Intelligent power management should reduce power consumption when traffic is low. Since AC power is such a huge percentage of the cost for ISPs (Internet Service Providers), you would think they would refuse to buy equipment that did not cleverly manage power consumption, to hell with saving the environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The easiest way to reduce the number of deaths due to cancer is to increase the number of deaths due to diabetes and cardiovascular disease. So take care interpreting statistics.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Technology has become so intertwined that if the power goes out, you can’t pump gasoline to power the backup generators because there is no electricity for the gas pumps.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Pakistan will be one of the first countries hit hard by climate change. It will start with country-wide floods and graduate to permanent inundation as sea levels rise. Pakistan is my least favourite country. Its Muslim fanaticism and its violent intolerance for anything other than Islam means I have almost no compassion for them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Invader Timeline
A tiny foreign species of water plant invades your pond and it doubles the area covered each day. Let’s say it takes 6 months to cover ¼ the pond. How long will it take it to cover the entire surface? Answer: two more days~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Invaders from Earth
Imagine being one of the more intelligent denizens of the deep. You see coming at you a giant clear sphere, making rrrr noises. What would you make of it?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Some strange cephalopod?
- Extra terrestrial?
- Man just goofing around again?
Invasive species are species that move into a new habitat and wreck havoc by overpopulating and displacing many other species. They don’t have a natural predator. Examples include zebra mussels in the Great Lakes, cane toads in Australia, the brown snake in Guam, flying silver Asian carp in the Mississippi and, of course, humans out of Africa.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When Americans accidentally introduced an Australian snake to Guam in WWII, it wiped out all ten species of bird on the island. Then, without birds to keep them in check, the population of spiders exploded.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I find it bizarre the way Canada, BC and Alberta want to invest in fossil fuel technology and pipelines that are rapidly going obsolete. Are they blind to what China and Germany are doing? This is like investing heavily in buggy whips in 1908 when Henry Ford introduced the Model T.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Irrational Warming Skeptics
If you encountered a controversy about the French Revolution, about which you knew nothing and you discovered 99% of historians held one view and 1% a dissenting view. On what grounds, could you justify asserting with absolute certainty that the majority view was wrong? I would think you would have to do some study first. This is what Republicans refuse to do about global warming. But then, they are not confused, just lying because they are paid to.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Islamic Climate Change
By the end of the century, global warming will make the Persian Gulf states uninhabitable with 77°C (171°F) temperatures. Because of high humidity, nobody can survive such temperatures. This means no more pilgrimages to Mecca. This means the middle east will have to stop selling oil. This means much higher oil prices than now. Of course, the obscenely rich Muslims who run the middle east may just ignore the problem presuming they personally will survive by living a 100% air conditioned life.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
It Does Not Matter Where Fuels Are Burned
When you burn fossil fuels, they give off CO₂ which goes into the air and causes climate change all over the planet. It does not matter where they are burned. So it is just as irresponsible and suicidal to let China burn the tar sands as to burn them yourself. What we are doing with the Enbridge pipeline is effectively selling our grandkids’ lives so we can buy Chinese trinkets.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It Does Not Take Much To Really Screw Things Up
Lay people pooh-pooh the predictions of a 6.0°C (10.8°F) increase in average temperature. However, recall that the little ice age in 1650 where there was mass starvation because it was too cold for crops was only an average of 2.0°C (3.6°F) cooler. 6.0°C (10.8°F) is a massively big deal! Billions of people will die. A small increase in average temperature generates a huge change in maximum temperature.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It has to be Painless
Let’s say you had a heart attack and your doctor said You have to loose 13.61 kg (30 lbs) or you will die. You reply But I don’t wanna. It will be painful. It will be inconvenient. The doctor replies Survival is your choice.
This is similar to the usual reaction to climate change. People refuse to take action unless in is totally painless. It may not even cost anything. They don’t care if it destroys the environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It Must Not Work
When it comes to the planet’s big problems such as climate change, insufficient water resources, species extinction, pollution, soil erosion… mankind is only willing to consider remedies that will not work. He insists on considering only remedies that require no inconvenience or sacrifice.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It Would Be Best If Man Went Extinct Quickly and Quietly
I am so revolted by my species, its greed, its warring, its sadism, its poisoning of the environment, its cruelty to other species, its refusal to think ahead more than a few months, its superstition… It is best humans go extinct as soon as possible. I just hope we can take ourselves out cleanly without wiping out nearly all the other species in the process.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Italians Have The Lowest Birth Rate
The Italians have the lowest birth rate in the world. If even they can tell the Pope to stuff his suicidal birth control policy, surely other Christians can too.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Jamie Oliver, Ecological Vandal
Jamie Oliver, aka the Naked Chef, who worked tirelessly to improve nutrition in Britain, prepared an endangered species, the bluefin tuna on one of his shows. Imagine the uproar had he prepared spotted owl casserole or giant panda shishkebabs.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Jeep Grand Cherokee
A Jeep Grand Cherokee has a 3.6 litre engine. That is 70 times bigger than needed to transport a human. Americans stress that a vital part of defence is reducing dependence on foreign oil. Why is a Jeep Grand Cherokee owner not pelted with eggs as a traitor?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Jeep Wrangler advertises their SUV is a wind-powered, solar-powered driving machine. That is a lie on all three counts. It is not even a hybrid. It is gas-guzzling, greenhouse gas-spewing, completely conventional SUV.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Jehovah Will Not Help
I don’t know where Christians get the idea the god Jehovah can, with complete certainty, be counted on to counter the effects of greenhouse gas emissions through some miracle and rescue us all from global warming. He did not intervene in the black death. He did not intervene in the Irish potato famine. He did not intervene in the Holocaust. He has even been reputed dislike humans so much he drowned nearly all of them on purpose in a giant flood.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Anyone who comes along and promises jobs, even jobs that last only a few years, makes politicians go ga. I am surprised someone has not sold them on the idea of rendering grannies for their oil. There are thousands of ways of creating jobs. Not all of them are equally destructive. They don’t get much worse than jobs in the fossil fuel industry. A side effect of fossil fuel jobs is massive climate change to the point of making earth uninhabitable starting in the tropics and working out. That should rule such jobs out as least as much as bottled water flavoured with arsenic or making baby powder with DU (Depleted Uranium). Traditionally, fossil fuels have been a source of jobs. However, it no longer makes any sense. We have to look elsewhere. Albertans have no right to kill British Columbian (and themselves) just so they can afford a new TV. Screw ’em! It is a completely different order of inconvenience we are demanding of each other.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Even in 2014, the clean energy sector created more direct jobs than the Alberta tar sands. Further, the tar sands are a sunset technology and clean energy is a sunrise technology. It will not be long until clean energy dwarfs the tar sands in terms of creating employment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We have two massive problems bearing down on humanity, that for the most part mankind is ignoring. I refer to:
- climate change
- The end of the fossil fuel age, either from running out of fuel or being forced to stop burning it to avoid worse climate change.
Without solutions to these problem, the earth will be able to support at most a billion people. Perhaps 7 billion will have to go. Who gets to starve to death, or die in wars over resources? Hint: it won’t be the richest citizens. In fantasy I get to decide. Here is how I would choose who lives and who dies:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- What did you do to reduce your CO₂ footprint?
- What did you do to reduce your energy footprint?
- What did you do to reduce the misery of someone living in a third world country?
- What did you do to help a non-human species survive?
- Confess any conspicuous consumption.
- Did you support any wars against countries that did not attack yours first? Hint neither Afghanistan nor Iraq attacked anyone.
- Did you limit your breeding to 2 or fewer offspring?
Jump Starting America
On 1957-10-14 the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) launched Sputnik, the planet’s first satellite. Prior to that, America has no interest in space. The day after Sputnik, the US made space a top priority and surprised everyone by landing on the moon 11 years and 9 months later. Something similar happened when the Japanese started producing cars of superior quality to those produced by Detroit. I would hope it happens yet again when China demonstrates some spectacular solar and wind energy equipment or India does the same thing with mind-boggling electric commuter vehicles. It obvious to me the US is already badly lagging in alternative energy, held back mainly by the evil machinations of big oil. What is it going to take to jump-start the USA one more time?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Just don’t Get It Department
Ford created a hybrid then jacked up the horsepower to discard the advantages of greater mileage and lower pollution. Because urban roads are more congested every year, you need less, not more horsepower.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Keep On Plugging
When you look at global warming, mass extinctions, overpopulation, nuclear proliferation, mass pollution, soil erosion, corporate control, the wealth gap, religious extremism and man’s complete refusal to deal with any of these problems, it looks sure mankind (or at least civilisation) is doomed. However, the best strategy is not to give up. That is guaranteed to fail. The best strategy is to keep plugging. It has some small probability of success.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary
The Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary restores my faith in human nature. In 1995, the BC government reserved the drainage basin of a major river as a sanctuary purely for the benefit of grizzly bears. Human access is severely limited. The prime real estate they chose was bear heaven, with abundant vegetation and salmon. Usually humans donate only castoffs that have no value to them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Kicking an Oil Addiction
On the matter of oil addiction, climate change and the need to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions, North Americans are like a 4-pack a day smoker whose cardiologist has told him he must quit cold turkey or die. Quitting is highly unpleasant, so he pretends the doctor does not know what he is talking about, or he may say to himself I’ll take a mature, reasonable, balanced approach and cut down to 3.5 packs a day. However, that’s nowhere near sufficient. He will die anyway of stubbornness, foolishness, self-indulgence and self-deception.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the USA the average person eats three cheeseburgers per weeks. Creating these produces more greenhouse gases than SUVs.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One of the theories about what wiped out the dinosaurs was their own flatulence. The methane CH₄ in their mighty farts disrupted the ozone layer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A lawnmower produces more emissions per hour than a car. They have no emission controls.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto happily kills dragonflies, but if it created tiny drone helicopters that pursued and killed insects, fuelled by the sun or by the meat of the insects killed, it would market them as the ultimate pesticide.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Killing Environmental Vandals
If you are in a hospital and someone stands on your oxygen hose and refuses to get off, giggling with glee, you might be able to claim self defence if you shot him. Yet lunatics endanger even more people by releasing greenhouse gases and the law prohibits you from even whacking them across the knees with a baseball bat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Killing by the Numbers
A single virus or bacterium can’t hurt anything, but when they multiply into the billions, all doing the same thing, purely as a side effect of their existence, they bring down elephants. Similarly, when humans breed into the billions, our daily activities kill a planet in a couple of centuries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Killing Off The Mammals
There are about 5000 species of mammals. Mankind as a whole has decided to wipe out half of them in the coming few decades, the rest we will wipe out later. How do we plan to do it? The main way is by a population explosion of humans who the encroach on habit formerly used by other species. We pollute their water. We flood their habitat with massive dams. For the coup de gràce we use global warming by releasing CO₂ and other greenhouse gases, in a mad race to burn up the remainder of earth’s fossil fuels.
It comes down to this. We humans would rather share the planet with another 3 billion humans than with the other mammal species. That is what the pope is demanding when he condemns contraception.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Killing Two Billion
Here are ways, most likely first, that man will kill off at least 2 billion people in the next century.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Global warming.
- Running out of oil and not having alternative energy in place. We will have to stop using oil and coal even before they run out because of greenhouse gas emissions. Our agriculture is currently based on fossil fuels, for both energy and fertiliser.
- Monsanto carelessly buggering around with genetic engineering of plants and releasing freakish genes into the wild. They already made one world-killing error that someone else caught in the nick of time.
- Nuclear war
- Unexpected side effects of destroying or altering habitats, most importantly anything that kills off the plankton.
- Chain reaction from wiping out species to include lowly species upon which we unwittingly completely depend.
- Genetically engineered plague.
- Poisoning of water, air and soil with chemicals more deleterious than we ever dreamed.
- Artificial intelligence smarter than man that decides we are expendable.
- Breakdown of social order, triggered by food shortages, water shortages, terrorism, war, corrupt governments, selfish/bigoted/racist philosophies, or corporatocracy.
Richard Kinder is the CEO of the anti-environmental conglomerate Kinder Morgan that among other things plans to spill bitumen into the streams and rivers of BC and Alberta and the seas of BC and to massively increase Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. He is also a climate change denier. Why? To increase his fortune, already far larger than he could spend in many lifetimes. He is a man with terminal greed.
He is not the guy who makes those toy-filled Kinder Surprise chocolate eggs. If he did, he would probably poison them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
What motivates the Koch brothers (Charles and David) to spread disinformation about climate change? They try to convince people there are no changes to our behaviour necessary:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- He is a secret environmentalist. He is trying break the news gently about our coming doom from climate change. He is trying to prevent panic.
- He has investments in fossil fuels. He wants to milk the last profitability from them before fossil fuels become obsolete.
If anything deserves to be a capital crime, using lies to induce billions of people into committing suicide should surely be such a crime. This is what the Koch brothers Charles and David, Trey Parker (South Park) and Jim Inhofe do openly, tricking people into doing nothing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to ameliorate global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lack Of Assassination Attempts
There were 42 assassination attempts on Hitler’s life and zero, as far as I know, on the lives of oil company executives. This is odd given Hitler merely wanted to dominate the earth, where the oil executives want to destroy it with greenhouse gas emissions that cause global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lack Of Testing Of Chemicals
When humans consider allowing sick people to take a new chemical/drug, they test it for many years before accepting it, even when the people who need it will soon die without it and even when only a few people will ever be exposed to it. However, humans happily pour known toxic chemicals into the environment without any testing, exposing not only all creatures in the environment including humans, but also humans who eat plant and animals from that environment. Only when some wealthy and altruistic soul funds the research to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that trouble detected is 100% caused by one particular chemical dumped into the environment, will humans even consider restricting it. We have our cautions backwards.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lame Excuses from Canada and the USA
Britain and Germany have already reached their Kyoto targets. Canada and the USA lamely bleat it is too difficult to even try. How can you help but be ashamed to be a citizen of such loser countries?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Land For Cars
In some US cities, 70% of the land area is devoted to automobiles. I think this constitutes an unwelcome pest.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Land Requirements per Human
Every American born takes about 0.40 hectare (1 acre) of land out of food production to house him, provide stores, provide an office, provide roads… Even at a modest growth rate of 1.1%, the population will double by 2050. We will have double the people to support and 1.21 sq megametres (468,750 sq miles) less farmland to do it on. The Christian notion be fruitful and multiply is suicidal.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
A garbage landfill is sort of like a storage locker for your junk that you never retrieve. If you use five times as much space as average, surely you should have to pay some extra rent.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lawn, the #1 Crop
More land in North American is devoted to lawn than any other crop, even wheat or corn.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lawns are Ecologically Nuts
The lawn is the strangest form of agriculture. It consumes huge amounts of labour, fertiliser, pesticide, herbicide and water; yet the weekly crop is discarded at great expense. Its function is conspicuous waste, i.e. status display. This vanity makes humans into ecological morons.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Least Favourite Places
Three of my least favourite places are Las Vegas, Nevada (world’s navel of crass materialism), Houston, Texas (world’s navel of dirty energy) and Phoenix, Arizona (epicenter of racism in the USA). It is pleasing to contemplate that all three of these cities will be among the first to be destroyed by global warming.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
On 2015-05-16, Evan Solomon interviewed Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq on The House on CBC Radio. He asked her straight-forward questions about Canada’s revised targets for greenhouse gas reductions. She repeatedly pretended not to understand the questions and rambled off babbling about completely unrelated matters, randomly quoting from press releases. She was so smug. She believed she outsmarted Mr. Solomon and her audience with this infantile dodge. I wanted to strangle her. It was as if she were giving me the finger in addition to stonewalling. I know politicians often pull this stunt. Politicians are so naïve if they imagine nobody notices they are dodging the questions. They should check the reaction. They may well be digging their political graves. We might forgive them if they said, I don’t know the answer or I am not prepared to answer that just now. That at least is honest and respects the audience.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lethal Force To Protect Life Support
If you were on a space ship and you caught someone sabotaging the life support systems, would you feel justified in using lethal force to stop them? Well you are on a spaceship, albeit a very large one, termed spaceship earth by Buckminster Fuller and there are quite a few people tampering with its life support systems. These people include Christy Clark (premier of BC), Alison Redford (premier of Alberta), Stephen Harper (Prime Minister of Canada) and the CEOs of the major oil companies. Just what are you prepared to do to stop them? Nothing? Not even yell at them to stop?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lethal Plastic Beads
Albatross chicks are starving to death because their parents are mistaking discarded plastic beads for fish eggs.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Levels Of Climate Change Denial
There are three levels of climate change deniers:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The climate is not changing.
- Yes the world in warming, but people have nothing to do with it.
- Yes the world is warming and humans are causing it, but there is nothing we can do about it.
Levels of Irresponsibility
If you buy a new Ford Taurus, you will emit the 17 tons of CO₂ into the atmosphere. However, if you have a child, the net effect will be 688 tons of CO₂ irresponsibility.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source How Bad Are Bananas?: The Carbon Footprint of Everything
Liars and More Liars
Even relatively sane Republicans like Mitt Romney claim that global warming is a matter of belief, like whether you accept the holy trinity. It is not opinion or belief, it is hard science. Corporations who imagine procrastinating action will help their profits have been spreading FUD using the Republicans as their mouthpieces. Even back in the 1800s science knew the greenhouse heating effect of CO₂ ways:
- Drastic overfishing, legal and illegal.
- Polluting the oceans, legal and illegal.
The good news is, when humans go extinct, within a century, the remaining fish species will bounce back to abundance unseen since the days of Columbus. Whales and dolphins too will bounce back, if we have not totally wiped them out by then.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Licence To Destroy
Imagine you owned a forest. A guy came up to you and said, Tell you what. I will clearcut all the trees in your forest, leave slash all over and give you $5 per tree. Whadaya say? You would probably tell him to do something impossible and obscene with his head. But what if your family owned the forest? Same thing. What if you had a club that had bought the forest? You used it for hiking, fishing, hunting… Same thing, right? But what if you worked for the government. With a tiny bribe for yourself, you would say Deal!, but don’t talk too much about this, OK?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Crooked news media spread the lie that global warming reversed in the 1990s. Its relentless rise temporarily slowed, but it did not stop or reverse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Life After Oil
It looks like mankind has decided to procrastinate dealing with the end of oil and with climate change. The reason is extremely short term thinking from big oil. So it looks as though we are going to be forced to live with very little energy. What will life be like?
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Cars and taxis will be too expensive for all but the elites. The rest of us will use public transport (which will also be very expensive) and bicycles. There will be bikes that are power-assisted and various human-powered and low-power vehicles.
- Zoning laws will be relaxed so that everyone can walk to the local shopping district.
- People who own homes will put solar panels on the roof.
- Plastics will become expensive. They will be replaced by plant-based materials.
- There will be no lawns. That land will grow food, tended by computers.
- Elevators will accessible only by the disabled.
- Almost no one will be able to afford heating or air conditioning. Temperature control will be done by passive insulation and heat exchange.
- You will not buy much new. You will shop for second hand, then fix it up.
- Instead of travelling by air, people will have electronic meetings, and other forms of telepresence.
- Trains will have a revival for transporting goods. Airplanes will fade away.
- Transportation costs will put a nail in the coffin of globalisation. People will tend to get their food and goods locally.
- Ships will be driven by high-tech sails and driven by computers. They will be slower than oil-powered ships, but much cheaper to run. They will not require crews.
- Because it takes energy to pump water, water will become expensive. It will be metered to discourage consumption. Toilets will be redesigned to use no or less water. Showers and baths will be considered extravagant luxuries.
Life Support Trasher
What would you do with someone with no medical training who barged into an Intensive Care Unit and started barking orders, loudly proclaiming that all the doctors in all the world’s hospitals were involved in a conspiracy to kill the patients and steal their money. That is precisely how you should handle the global warming deniers like Sarah Palin, Jim Inhofe and Rush Limbaugh.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Life Trumps Jobs
I don’t care how desperately Albertans want the jobs and wealth from the tar sands. They don’t have the right to kill me and billions of others like me in the process. The riches have so entranced them, that they ignore the price is climate change megadeath of this and subsequent generations. Religious faith is falsely assuring them there are no serious consequences.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I predict that we will find that the creation of life initially was no big deal. It is a necessary consequence of biochemistry. It probably happens all the time, but quickly dies because it cannot compete with life that got an evolutionary jump on it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You might think the Überrich are all global warming deniers. That is just their public stance. They have been quietly buying up properties in parts of the world they trust will act as lifeboats. For example the Bushes are buying vast tracts of land in Patagonia and Oracle’s Larry Ellison, is bought the entire island of Lanai in Hawaii.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lifetime Cost of a Car
When you calculate the cost of a car, you need to factor in the cost of fuel and maintenance over its lifetime. If you plan to keep the car more than a few years, you probably should find some estimates of rising future fuel costs based on the Hubbert curve. You might find that you won’t be able to afford to drive a conventional vehicle anywhere near its usual lifespan. It will become worthless because the fuel is too exorbitant. You may need to think about small, fuel efficient, electric and hybrid vehicles, man-powered vehicles, car sharing or public transport augmented by rental.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Traditionally, people have had the right to have as many children as they wanted. However, humans are now overflowing the planet. Overpopulation is causing environmental collapse, famine, mass pollution, global warming… Technology now allows 60 year old spinsters to push out babies 8 at a pop, then dying and leaving them for others to raise. Religions still command their adherents to breed to the max. We simply can’t continue as we did.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Link Between Energy and Food
Every calorie of food grown requires 10 calories of fossil fuel energy. The bad news is, as energy runs out, food supplies will inevitably decline in step.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Even as it is, there are millions of people who could live anywhere on earth they pleased and carry on their livelihood with electronic communications. They could pick where to live based on climate, low cost of living, pristine environment, picturesque vistas, recreation opportunities… It won’t be long before people start leaving countries that interfere with the net neutrality of Internet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
At least three times the CBC has aired an piece on the The Current extolling the adventure and thrill of eating live octopus. A live octopus can sometimes kill you by choking you to death as happens often in Korea. Octopus are highly intelligent creatures. The CBC is treating them like oysters. They would not advocating eating puppies or kittens alive, enjoying the death throws in the mouth, though the adventurous might eat them cooked. This is depraved.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
To Live, You Must…
If you have a heart attack and the doctor says you have to give up your daily lunch of a pair of supersize Big Macs, it doesn’t matter what you want; you have no choice. Similarly scientists are telling you that you have no choice but do a number of things you don’t feel like doing, including limiting family size, reducing fossil fuel consumption and recycling rather than disposing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Living in a Desert
Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Scottsdale, Tucson… were all built in the middle of deserts. They survive only because water is pumped in from hundreds of miles away. If anything were to happen to the pipes, pumps, computers or electric power, those cities would revert to deserts overnight. They are clearly not good places to be any time the infrastructure of civilisation is unstable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Living in the End Times
I am becoming resigned to living in the last century when man was the dominant life form on planet earth. Man is far too self-centred, far too concerned with instant gratification, far too willing to impose suffering on others for trivial gain to himself, to do what he needs to do to survive. I do my best to goad my species to appropriate action while I simultaneously console myself with thoughts of how quiet and beautiful earth will become again without him.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Living With Global Warming
For most people, a global average temperature rise of 3.0°C (5.4°F) does not sound alarming. They don’t understand that the warming is uneven, mostly over the continents which will rise 6.0°C (10.8°F). The maximum annual temperature will increase considerably more. Paris will have the temperature of Algiers, Moscow the temperature of Paris, San Francisco the temperature of Tijuana and New York the temperature of Charleston and Houston the temperature of some obscure dusty town in southern Mexico.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
CSA (Community Shared Agriculture)is a system for consumers to arrange with farmers to get a box of locally grown organic food each week. The consumers pay at the beginning of the growing season. If a crop fails, the consumer bears the risk and simply goes without. This costs more than imported food. Imported food is cheaper because it uses pesticides and low cost labour. Governments sell it cheaply to raise cash, while their own people go hungry.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If locusts had an explicit economic philosophy, it would be capitalism.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Locusts have population explosions, like what humans are doing but on a smaller scale and shorter time span, where they swarm in billions and eat everything in their path. They keep moving on to new resources until the population reaches its peak and the resources are gone, then there is a sudden population collapse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Look on the Bright Side
Humans have been driving species after species of ocean fish to extinction two ways:
- Drastic overfishing, legal and illegal.
- Polluting the oceans, legal and illegal.
The good news is, when humans go extinct, within a century, the remaining fish species will bounce back to abundance unseen since the days of Columbus. Whales and dolphins too will bounce back, if we have not totally wiped them out by then.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lost Our Right To Exist
Mankind has so little respect for the environment that sustains him and for the welfare of other species that the homo sapiens has lost the moral right to continued existence.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lost Survival Instinct
Humans have lost their survival instinct. They have plenty of money for oversized cars, video games and drugs, but none for cleaning up global warming, clean water and clean air.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Low Population Means Prosperity
In the middle ages, between 75 million and 200 million people died in the Bubonic plague. After it was over, with low populations, there was a period of high employment, prosperity, equality and plenty. Woodlots regrew. There was plenty of food to go around. Religious people pretend that if we overdid it and reduced birthrate and dropped it below replacement rate that would be a terrible catastrophe. The only terrible thing would be reduced numbers of Christians conned into tithing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The good news is there a lot of low-hanging fruit to be gathered in terms of improving the efficiency (mileage) of the automobile. Because, up-to-now, gasoline was so cheap, nobody bothered to make cars efficient.
- Less than 10% of the fuel energy burned in automobiles is translated into forward motion of the vehicle.
- Cars weigh about 20 times more than the passengers.
- A combustion engine gets only 20% efficiency, i.e., it wastes 80% of the energy in the fuel as heat.
When you also consider other classes of transport such as trains, subways, buses and one or two-passenger vehicles, the outlook for higher efficiencies are even better. In contrast, a bicycle weighs about 1/8 of the weight of its rider and it can get as low as 1/50.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lower Quality Through Science
Over the last 56 years plant breeders have drastically reduced the flavour and nutrition of foods in the pursuit of other goals such as shelf life, appearance and resistance to jostling. Potatoes, for example, no longer contain any vitamin A at all. No wonder today’s kids are suffering from nutrition related conditions~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lying About Climate Change
Global warming deniers, such as the Conservative Party of Canada, are like smokers who claim smoking is harmless. They like smoking so they lie to themselves and others about its dangers.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Americans do something their ancestors of 100 years ago would consider barking mad. Instead of grazing cattle on grasslands as any sane rancher would do, they pack them cheek by jowl in buildings and feed them corn, soybeans, dead chickens and chicken manure. I think they have stopped feeding them dead cows. Cattle have evolved over millions of years as highly specialised grass eaters. This diet is as goofy as trying to raise your baby on titanium paint and turpentine. To do this, farmers have to stop growing food on the fertile plains and waste those lands in growing animal feed. It gets even sillier. The whole process is uneconomic. Animal feed production is heavily subsidised by the taxpayer. To top it off, the final product is so full of fat that it is a hazard to your circulatory system.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Fresh, The Movie
I kid you not, a friend of a friend refused to participate in the Earth Hour lights out because she believed global warming was caused by undersea volcanoes and that it would thus be more natural to leave her lights on.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Making CO₂ 600 Times Too fast
Each year, our species burns fossil fuel that took nature 300 years of sunlight to create. Because we have cut down half our rainforests, we are making CO₂ 600 times faster than nature can capture the carbon back into new fossil fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Making Oil Companies Behave
If lawsuits and other liabilities from the oil spill bankrupted BP, other oil companies would ever after do whatever it takes to ensure they don’t have a similar major spill. The trick to making companies behave responsibly is to ensure the behaviour you want from them is optimally profitable and the behaviour you don’t want is extremely expensive.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Male BimboA parable: There was once a man who sold one of his kidneys for $50,000 US. He was very enthusiastic about this as a way of earning money. He was planning to sell his organs one by one. His friends pointed out, Don’t be an idiot. You can’t donate your other kidney or your heart or your liver. You will die! You are such a worry wart! I read on the Internet you don’t need any of your internal organs. Senator Jim Inhofe and Dick Cheney both survive without a heart. No they don’t. That is just a figure of speech. They don’t even have artificial hearts. By the time I sell my heart they will have perfected artificial ones. You can always count on scientists to invent anything we need.
This parable is about twits who want to continue using fossil fuels even in the knowledge it will be fatal. They just can’t give up the money.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The world population is still growing, probably to at least 10 billion. The world is growing less food each day. We are using up our energy faster than ever before. He are on course for the classic Malthusian catastrophe. To stave it off, we have to learn how to grow food on the land we currently do not grow it on; this includes cities, oceans, mountains, deserts’.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monoculture means bees are needed only a few weeks of the year. There is nothing for them to eat the rest of the year so they have to be imported. Processing bees like factory products to serve the interests of monoculture is weakening bees. Queens now live for only 1/5 as long as they used to. It would be much better to plant a diversity of crops so bees had food year round and could settle in permanently. The current mixing of migrant bee populations rapidly spreads diseases and parasites, much like the camps in WWI (World War I).~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Man The Expert in Mass Destruction
When it comes to mass destruction, locusts are insignificant compared with man.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Man Made CO₂ Rise
The climate change deniers have for the most part stopped denying that CO₂ levels are higher than they have been in 40 times the span that human civilisation has been on earth. Humanity has never seen anything like this before. Ice ages are commonplace by comparison. They now claim the levels are natural and normal. How do you know that is BS? Scientists have calculated that humans are putting 100 times more CO₂ into the air than volcanoes are. We have business records of how much fossil fuel we are burning and we can calculate how much CO₂ that generates. Further, when fossil fuels burn, then consume oxygen. When volcanoes spew CO₂ they don’t There is a corresponding measured decrease in oxygen that jibes with our computation of CO₂ effects of burning.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Man Is Uniquely Selfish
No animal but man sacrifices future generations of its species for its short-term pleasure.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Man Wastes Energy
The main difference between man and animal is that man deliberately wastes energy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Mankind’s Biggest Mistake
Most people think that creating the thermonuclear bomb was mankind’s biggest mistake, the invention most likely to lead to his demise. I have another candidate, the corporation. With an effect similar to absentee landlords, corporations blind those who run and own businesses to the consequences of their actions. Corporations are happily destroying their own and man’s life support system — the biosphere. They have no more common sense than tent caterpillars.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil-using Americans imagine themselves more manly than those who use clean energy. What is so manly about using decomposed plants for energy?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you pilot a row boat, you don’t have to think that far ahead. The boat is not going very fast and it responds quickly to a turning oar. However, if you pilot a cruise ship, you have to think kilometers ahead because it takes that long to stop and that long to respond to a turned rudder. Mankind evolved for millions of years when we lived in small bands where we just dealt with the problems of the day. Now that we live in a giant global civilisation with massive inertia, we absolutely must learn to think centuries ahead.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
To prevent maritime accidents, we need something like air traffic control. Large ships would register a course. Computers would continuously cross check courses of all vessels for safety. The position of the ship would be electronically monitored by GPS and by satellite to make sure the ship stayed on course. Further, the ship would be electronically monitored to ensure watertight container doors and bilge vents are closed appropriately.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If people could visit the Netherlands or Paris and see how mass biking improves a city, they would demand it for their home city too. It is cheap, clean, quiet, takes you exactly where you want to go, gives people of all ages some gentle exercise and extends life by five years.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Who comes to mind when you think of someone eager to kill billions of people? Usually someone deranged like Hitler or Pol Pot or sadistic like Cheney. But a fat, stupid, twit like Canada’s climate-change-denying Environment minister, Peter Kent? Ironically he will succeed where others failed. His greed-motivated actions will result in the genocide of billions, all without really intending to. I heard this planetary traitor argue on the CBC that Canada doing nothing will better help reduce emissions. He further argued that because Canada was a small country, it did not matter if Canadians reduced their monstrously high emissions footprints. The atmosphere does not care what country you live it. All it cares about his how much you pollute. From space you can’t see any borders.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Mankind is unconsciously plotting a mass suicide. It will be a one-two knock out punch. Global warming disrupting agriculture followed by extinction of all the ocean food fish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Mature mass transit has no problem competing with cars. It is faster and much cheaper. However, a fledgling system has problems competing. There are not enough riders to justify frequent cars and car to destinations. The city planners have to resist the temptation to keep building more roads. They also have to be prepared to heavily subsidise mass transit, both with low fares and frequent cars to jump start it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Massive CO₂ Increase
With the Industrial Revolution, we humans have already increased CO₂ more than the increase that ended the last ice age. That is the degree of change we have already scheduled for ourselves. Because the earth is huge, it takes a while for the consequences of such foolish actions to manifest in their full glory.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Masters of the Buggy Whip
Some nation (or nations) will become the leaders in clean energy in the coming century. Justin Trudeau and the Liberals have decided Canada will not be among them. Canada is like a company in 1908, eager to clean up in the buggy whip industry. We refuse to look ahead. We refuse to admit the energy business is rapidly changing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Materials For Takeout
What kind of nincompoops build single-serving take-out containers of a material that lasts forever?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Max Carrying Capacity
You can keep pushing more and more and heavier and heavier traffic across a bridge, but eventually you hit its max capacity and it collapses. At that point it can carry no traffic at all. The earth has a max capacity too.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If terrorists were adulterating the food with something that caused 11% of the population to develop diabetes, there would be a hue and cry to stop the bounders. But when McDonalds, Wendy’s and Burger King are doing it, it is ho hum.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Me Generation
If people believed that technology was likely to extend their lives to 200+ years, then they would be much more willing to make the sacrifices necessary to reign in global warming. Westerners have almost completely lost the traditional prime directive concern for future generations.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Meaning of Conservative
Arctic sea ice is melting much faster than even the most optimistic computer climate models predicted. Oddly, the scientists refer to this as the computer models being too conservative. They don’t mean conservative in the sense of erring on the side of safety. They mean erring on the side of predicting too little change. You could also say they mean conservative in the sense of too much conservative, Christian-right, god-will-rescue-us-from-any-folly, wishful thinking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Measuring Wellbeing With The GDP
The Harper government uses but a single measure of how well Canada is doing — GDP. Thinking only about economic growth makes no sense. Divorce increases the GDP. Serious illness increases the GDP. Funerals increase the GDP. Destroying the environment balloons the GDP. Resource extraction in a non-renewable way increases the GDP. Releasing greenhouse gases increases the GDP. Theft increases the GDP. Other countries use indexes that include human happiness and sustainability.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Meat and Greenhouse Gases
Given that 51% of all greenhouse gases are released in livestock raising, scientists have suggested developing a meat patch, analogous to a nicotine patch to help people lose their taste for meat. Perhaps watching videos of how livestock are cruelly raised, slaughtered and processed would be sufficient to put them off.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Meddling With Planetary Life Support
If you went to visit a friend in hospital, would you cut his oxygen flow in half, reduce his IV drip in half and double the morphine pump rate without first asking a doctor if this were a wise thing to do? Of course, not! Yet humans, as a whole, have done something far more irresponsible to spaceship earth’s life support systems without consulting experts, namely cutting down half the planet’s forests, draining half the wetlands and doubling the amount of green-house-gas-producing nitrogen entering the soil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Even though scientists predicted the global-warming drought, extreme heat and wildfires in western Australia, when the 2009-02 wildfires exploded through New South Wales fanned by the 47°C (117°F) heat, the media never once mentioned global warming. Why would they do that? Because their advertisers asked them to. Why would they do that? To make more money in the short term.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Economists have the same naïve world view as medieval Europeans. They believe the earth has an infinitely large surface with infinite resources that can sustain endless economic growth. If the world were the size of a basketball, the biosphere would be thinner than a layer of varnish, hardly infinite.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Harper wants to mine and burn the entire Alberta Tar Sands. This will release twice the greenhouse gas than has heretofore been released in history. The earth will be toast. Harper imagines his god Jehovah, will magically repair the damage. Get rid of Harper or Harper will get rid of you.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Melting Ice Sheets
Greenland ice sheets are 3 km (1.86 miles) thick. If they melt, sea levels will rise by 7 metres (7.66 yards). This will flood out ¼ of the world’s population.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Melting the Permafrost
The melting of the permafrost in Russia and Canada is more of a big deal than you might imagine. As they melt, they release methane CH₄ which as a greenhouse gas 30 times more potent than CO₂. This warms the atmosphere further in a vicious circle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When mercury gets into the water, each level of the food chain concentrates it. The top level (e.g. beluga whales or tuna) is 10,000,000 times more concentrated than in the water.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Military Are Not Climate Change Deniers
When Gwynne Dyer came to Victoria he told us stories to illustrate his point that the US military does not indulge in the least in global warming denialism. They are planning for the wars it will inevitably bring as parts of the globe become uninhabitable one by one. Their working assumption is the politicians will do nothing to ameliorate it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Mindless Rejection of Science
Many of the global warming deniers hold their position for reasons nothing at all to do with global warming science. They don’t like the politics of Al Gore or some of the other champion of taking action on climate change. They reflexively reject anything the champions say. They can then find an Exxon-funded, FOX-managed echo chamber where the wisdom of that choice is validated all with no science to back it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural rain is almost pure water. Irrigation water, unless you source it from mountain or glacial streams, contains various salts that plants do not absorb. Over time they build up in the soil and make it impossible to grow crops, even ones bred for salt tolerance.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Capitalism forces global mining companies to maximise profit, damn the consequences. This leads them to mine in a way the leave behind devastation, poisoned water and soil, no more plant, fish or animals. People living there or downstream have to move elsewhere. The governments do not regulate them because they want crumbs of economic advantage or because they have been bribed, especially in the third world.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Book referral for Mining Capitalism: The Relationship between Corporations and Their Critics recommend book⇒Mining Capitalism: The Relationship between Corporations and Their Critics by Stuart Kirsch 978-0-520-28171-4 paperback publisher University of California Press 978-0-520-28170-7 hardcover published 2014-06-07 978-0-520-95759-6 eBook B00KGUQJ4A kindle This explains how global mining corporations leave environmental wastelands behind without plants, fish and animals, where everything is so poisoned, people cannot live. Economic advantage and cost saving trump everything.
Online bookstores carrying Mining Capitalism: The Relationship between Corporations and Their Critics abe books anz abe books.ca abe books.de amazon.ca amazon.de Chapters Indigo amazon.es Chapters Indigo eBooks iberlibro.com abe books.com abe books.fr amazon.com amazon.fr Barnes & Noble abe books.it Nook at Barnes & Noble amazon.it Kobo junglee.com Google play abe books.co.uk O’Reilly Safari amazon.co.uk Powells other stores Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock. Try looking for it with a bookfinder.
The Miracle Health Product
How much would you be willing to pay for a product that:
- Made you age more slowly than your peers.
- Made your doctor congratulate you on the amazing state of your cholesterol, heart and circulatory system.
- Saved you thousands of dollars on car payments, repair bills, gas bills and insurance.
- Ensured you never had to search for a parking space.
- Made you lose weight without dieting.
- Made environmentalists congratulate you on your low CO₂ footprint.
It exists. It can be had for as little as . It is called a bicycle. The only catch is, for it to work, you must also get rid of your car. I did this back in 1975 myself. I thought I was being quixotic at the time, but it turned out to be one of the wisest things I ever did. Even an electric bike or any human-powered vehicle will do.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans are afraid of sharks even though only about one person per year is eaten by a shark and humans kill 100,000 sharks. Similarly, Americans are afraid of Afghans and Iraqis with similar kill ratios.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans go to great lengths to protect their offspring from germs, sexual predators, terrorists and drugs, but do utterly nothing to protect them from dangers even more likely to seriously harm them such as global warming, environmental collapse, nuclear war and junk food.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Misplaced Purchase Priorities
Humans will spend a fortune to impress their friends, but won’t spend an extra 5% for poison-free, non-manufactured food for their children.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
How long will it be before humans are as scrupulous about reducing their environmental footprint as they are about their futile religious ceremonies?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Misuse of Antibiotics
80% of US antibiotics goes to boosting farm animal growth. This is the perfect medium for bacteria to evolve resistance making the antibiotics useless for humans. It is should be illegal to use human antibiotics routinely in livestock.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Mitsubishi, Ecological Vandal
Mitsubishi, the Japanese car maker, is also world’s biggest trafficker in endangered bluefin tuna. They are building up frozen tuna stocks to sell at astronomical prices after they have driven the species extinct.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) The End of the Line
Molluscs include slugs and snails, oysters, squid, octopus and cuttlefish. They do not fare well as poster animals. The map below shows mollusc species at risk. The fatter a country is shown relative to its actual size, the faster the country is wiping out its mollusc species.
© Copyright SASI Group (University of Sheffield) and Mark Newman (University of Michigan)~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Monkey Trap
Every child has seen the monkey trap. A monkey puts its hand into a box to grab a banana and then is trapped because it refuses to let go of the banana which is too big to pull back through the hole. Humanity has similarly been trapped by the lure of free market economies and globalisation. We would sooner die than give them up. We will indeed die because free market economies and globalisation are incompatible with dealing with climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate
The Monkey Trap
You have heard of a monkey trap, where a monkey grabs a banana and cannot withdraw his hand without letting go of the banana. The monkey is trapped by his own foolish greed. There is an equivalent trap that humanity has fallen into — addiction to fossil fuels. Profit means they can’t give them up even though they know continued use means extinction of the human race. It reminds me of the self-destructive behaviour of heroin addicts. Oil is nature’s way of testing humanity. We have been found wanting and are consigning ourselves to the bone heap of history.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the Irish potato famine, within weeks, a spore wiped out all potato plants of the Lumper variety. Since the Irish planted nothing but Lumper potatoes, an eighth of the Irish starved to death. You’d think we would have learned the lesson about putting all our eggs in one basket and the danger of monoculture. Yet today, we are repeating the same mistake, this time world wide, with the Russet Burbank, the potato variety used for French fries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Irish potato famine killed one in eight people. The Irish caused it with monoculture, growing but a single species of potato, the Lumper. When a fungus came along it was susceptible and the entire crop died. Today, we are still very big on monoculture, growing the Russet Burbank potato.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monoculture is destroying the earth. It causes erosion, pest explosions, pesticide contamination, low yields, concentration of wealth and power, monopolies, destruction of genetic diversity… What is the alternative? Traditional mixed plantings of different species that benefit each other, e.g. fixing nitrogen, repelling pests, holding water… The catch is traditionally, manual labour is required to tend such crops. However, advanced computer robots could now do this task. They could also do the task for in-yard and in-home gardens.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto = Most Evil
Monsanto is the most evil corporation on earth. It denied polluting even when fish died in three minutes in the water it contaminated. It claimed Roundup, its herbicide that kills all plants except those genetically modified by Monsanto as good for the environment.
They bribed and bullied the various US government agencies into treating genetically modified crops as equivalent to crops developed through traditional selective breeding, therefore not needing any testing of any kind. This is crazy. Even a new food colouring used in minuscule quantities requires extensive testing. Monsanto doses you with GMO s by the kilogram without any testing at all. GMOs introduce fish, spider and scorpion genes into plants and from there into all other plant species.
They inject genes into plants that cause them to make poisons inside the produce you cannot wash off, that don’t degrade by harvest, intended to kill insects. Surely if an insecticide must be tested, one made genetically you can’t get rid of should too.
You can’t recall a gene let loose into the environment. We should not be doing something irreversible without knowing the consequences. Then Monsanto bribed and bullied politicians into passing laws to help them force this crap down an unwilling public’s throat. They got caught trying to bride the officials at Health Canada. Then they got all the whistle-blowers fired.
Not only don’t Monsanto have to label their foods as GMO, nobody else is allowed to label their food as non- GMO ! Monsanto gets away with this by keeping the public from knowing which foods contain Monsanto crops. Much of the public detest them, but don’t know how to boycott them. We need Monsanto-free certified foods and guerilla labelling of Monsanto-contaminated foods.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto Bogus Patents
Monsanto has managed to sell a schizophrenic view of its genetically modified foods. They are sufficiently revolutionary to merit patents, but allegedly with no different from ordinary produce, thus not meriting a label. Monsanto is arguably the most evil corporation on earth. They will stop at nothing to force GM food down our throats, even if they have serious health consequences, just like a tobacco company. They have bought the politicians to permit them to sell their products without informing consumers they are buying experimental foods. I think the way to fight back is to create inexpensive test kits to allow consumers to detect various types of GM foods in the supermarket and make a fuss. Supermarkets will then either start labelling the products or dropping them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto is a Dud Investment
Anyone who invests in Monsanto is a fool. Monsanto sells all manner of products that do serious harm to people and the environment. They use all manner of treachery to temporarily cover up their malfeasance. This is a idiotic corporate strategy. It is only a matter of time until they are sued into bankruptcy.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto has infiltrated the government and lobbied/bribed successfully. In the USA, genetically modified foods do not have to be labelled. What is worse, it is illegal to label food as GMO-free even if it is. This makes it impossible for consumers to boycott GMO foods as happened in Europe. Perhaps euphemisms and code words can be used, Chinese style, to bypass these regulations, e.g. made with ancient grains, heritage seeds, European ready… Perhaps some organisation could certify food as enjoyable or time-tested which is a code word for non-GMO.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nature gave Monsanto a swift kick in the pants. Monsanto makes genetically-modified canola seeds that are immune to Monsanto’s patented herbicide, Roundup. However, via the pollen, genes jump to mustard-relative weeds in the field, conferring on them resistance to the herbicide.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto the Liar
Big business has pretended to pooh pooh climate change as a hoax, but between 2008 and 2010 they patented 261 climate ready crops, designed to withstand extreme weather conditions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Monsanto’s goal is to lock farmers in and make them buy more and more insecticide or patented terminator-gene genetically modified seed each year. For a bug or fungus, Monsanto’s vision of monoculture is ideal. An enormous army of bugs focuses all its efforts on breaking the defences of but a single variety of plant. Once even one bug cracks the defences, they get the entire crop. The way out of Monsanto’s grip is to give up monoculture.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68), source National Geographic video The Human Footprint.
James D. Watson, the co-discoverer of DNA, says we should ignore the economics and behaviour of GMO companies like Monsanto when evaluating the wisdom of GMO crops. He figures you should base your decisions purely on abstract science. He gives no reason to support this. The only reason I can think of is he is shilling for Monsanto. Obviously, the way Monsanto has openly striven to monopolise all seed production on the planet is quite relevant. Obviously, patents and costs are important, especially in a monopoly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Montréal is a large Canadian city that dumps its raw sewage into the St. Lawrence River, presumably to finish off the endangered beluga whales. I think that is sufficient reason to strike it off the list of tourist cities.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Anthropologists tell us that whenever humans experience even a temporary bounty, they celebrate by increasing the population. The problem is, when the bounty ends, it brings chaos that often sends a culture totally extinct since the population has become completely dependent on the bounty. The green revolution has brought planetary abundance and in usual manner, humanity has exploded its population. Since the green revolution depends on cheap oil, it will end in the not too distant future. Humanity will be gnashing its collective teeth at its idiotic fecundity.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
More Cars Implies More Roads
There is not much more point in building more cars if the roads are in hopeless gridlock. There is no room to build more roads. We have to use the roads more efficiently by:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Using narrower, smaller vehicles, including human-powered vehicles and single passenger vehicles so you can pack more of them onto the same roadway surface, perhaps using three lanes where we can fit only one now.
- Use computer controlled vehicles so you can pack vehicles closer together, ensure they co-operate and drive at speed beyond safe human reaction time.
- Get people off the roads. Offer incentives to travel at off-peak times, disincentives for unnecessary trips and disincentives for using a vehicle larger than necessary. Offer incentives for telecommuting or commuting to an office outside the city center.
- Public transport.
More CO₂ Than All The Cars
The Alberta Tar Sand mining operations produce more greenhouse gases that all of Canada’s automobiles combined. And that is not even counting the emissions when the bitumen is burned.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
More Important than Life Itself
Even a child understands that you can’t run into a furiously burning house to retrieve a painting. It does not matter how much it costs. You can’t do it and even if you could, it would not be worth sacrificing your life in the attempt. Yet only one person is a thousand seems to understand the same principle also applies to global warming. Most people are quite happy to sacrifice their lives and the lives of their children and grandchildren for some relatively trivia economic advantage. They are behaving like the passengers on the Titanic who refused to take action to save themselves because they had convinced themselves it was impossible for anything terrible to happen to them and because taking such action would have been inconvenient.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
More than Cheating
Boxes of cereal, cookies, razor blades etc. only half full is not just a matter of cheating consumers; it is a matter of deliberately wasting fuel transporting half empty boxes around the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
More than One Planet Needed
The world is using the equivalent of 1.5 planets to support life on earth.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine your brother-in-law were spending 1.5 times his income. You know that is the road to ruin. So why are you doing it too?
More That Enough Solar
The solar energy hitting the deserts of Algeria is sufficient to power the entire world economy. Those who claim their only priority is growing the economy will never do it with dwindling non-renewable resources like oil and coal.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Most Actively Destroying the Environment
Mankind is slated for early extinction because it contains so many members who take pride in actively trying to destroy the environment.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Most Children Are a Big Disappointment
People who have children take such a huge risk. The odds are pretty poor for having a child who is a net benefit to the planet. Most of the time they spawn an airhead consumer whose biggest concern is how they look.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Most Ecological Damage
About the most damaging thing you can do to planet earth is to have a child.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Most Important Fact Of Our Existence
We are in the middle of the biggest mass extinction event in 65 million years. We humans are feeding it by clearing land to feed our exploding population and by releasing greenhouse gases. It proceeds with the slow, smooth, relentless inevitability of a glacier. That is why so few people pay attention to the most important fact of our existence.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Motive For Environmental Destruction
Many men choose environmental destruction, e.g. poaching and overfishing to demonstrate their masculinity.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Motor vehicle racing is a disgusting sport. It is a poster boy for environmental vandalism. It is noisy, smelly and it emits huge amounts of greenhouse gases. I think it should take place on land zoned for the purpose far away from people’s homes and offices. It think the race vehicles should all have to use the same standard fuel that does not emit greenhouse gases.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I am spitting angry with motorists for flatly refusing to reduce the size of their vehicles, buy more fuel-efficient vehicles, plan trips more carefully and share the roads with human-powered and low power vehicles. They don’t give a damn than they are polluting, guzzling the earth’s last oil and pumping out greenhouse gases causing global warming. Something about cars makes people ten times more selfish than normal. They are creating a hell to punish themselves. Cities are already gridlocked and in a decade there will be seven times as many cars on the roads. Perhaps gridlock will pry these bastards out of their pollution machines.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Water is heavy. A 1 cubic metre (1.31 cubic yards) weighs 1 tonne (1.10 tons). You don’t want to waste energy shipping it around needlessly, especially since every household uses several cubic meters a day.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Multiple Causes of Climate Change
It is not only burning fossil fuels that is creating climate change. For example, overfishing sardines near Namibia, for fish farm food, means they no longer keep phytoplankton in check. When the phytoplankton die, they release bursts of methane CH₄ (a superpotent greenhouse gas) and hydrogen sulphide H₂S (a foul-smelling poisonous gas) in sulphur events which kills off all species of fish.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Murder For Trivial Reward
It is remarkable that corporations will routinely commit murder by lying about the safely of their activities and products with no more motive than increasing sales a tad. Those same executives would never dream of killing for such pittance in their private lives.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Technology allows man to live cheek by jowl in densities nature never imagined for hominids. The result is man spends much of his time mulling over the murder of his fellows. TV dramas have evolved to almost exclusively depict grisly murders. Sitcoms are about verbal insult. Reality TV is about injury.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is a mutant animal that deliberately contaminates watering holes with feces, that deliberately covers trees and plants noxious substances to kill them, that breeds so quickly it wipes out all other species everywhere it gets a toe hold. It frequently kills members of nearly every species, including its own, then oddly does not eat them. What do they look like? Look in the mirror.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
My Dad’s Horse
My dad used a horse named Roanie for transport. It could find food and water for itself. It could find its own way home. It could automatically avoid obstacles and collisions. How long before cars get that smart? Will people start treating their cars as pets, buying them treats, grooming them? We have enough auto-eroticism already.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
My Furnace Thermostat
In 1975 I invented a dual furnace thermostat that automatically turned down the heat when people went out or went to sleep. It used people sensors instead of timers. It cut the gas bill for my four bedroom home in half. To my frustration, I could not even give the idea away. Nobody was interested. Today the idea might be reinvented at even lower cost using wireless sensors and cheaper electronics. Can you think of a cheaper way to effectively double fuel production?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
My Monkey Brain
I feel so overwhelmed. I am just a silly monkey, whose attention leaps from the profound to the trivial. It is embarrassing the personal trivia my mind blows up to cosmic proportions and dire threats to my entire planet that I deliberately block out because they make me feel too uncomfortable. I am nowhere near up to the task of being a responsible citizen of planet earth, but my monkey brain, is all I have.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Myth of Riches
When Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, announced on 2013-12-20 he was ramming through a bitumen pipeline, many Canadians expressed great joy. Even ordinary Canadians imagined it would somehow make them fabulously rich. When I pointed out some of the downsides, they thought I was crazy, and that I must want to live in the age before electricity. That is dichotomous thinking.
Here are a few of the reasons why I think the pipeline is not a good idea. These people are so focused on the imagined coming wealth, that they refuse to even consider the drawbacks.
- This project is primarily for the benefit of China and foreign corporations. There is a short term construction phase that, in theory, will benefit Canadians, but more likely it will benefit temporary imported foreign workers because they work for half price. Harper always works to direct wealth from the people/government to corporations. He does not particularly care if they are domestic or foreign corporations.
- It will not be that much longer before the world goes into panic over climate change when the symptoms such as scorching summers, droughts and forest fires become undeniable. Canada will no longer be able to sell its dirty fossil fuels. We will be stuck paying for the infrastructure. We know perfectly well fossil fuels are obsolete. We need to get on with clean energy. We are like buggy whip manufacturers trying to corner the market after the automobile was invented. Even China is flipping rapidly to green energy.
- Burning Canada’s tar sands, no matter where on earth they are burned, is suicidal. We have already passed the climate change tipping point. We in for hell on earth with climate change. This will make it only worse. It still has not sunk in that climate change is up there with global nuclear war in terms of unpleasantness. Average Canadians are fooled by its gentle name and gradual onset.
- Bitumen is very expensive to extract both in terms of energy and greenhouse gases. Whenever world oil prices drop, it becomes too expensive to extract. Sales suddenly drop to zero. Harper bet the farm of bitumen, and the entire industry has collapsed for just this reason.
- The best crude oil ocean spill cleanup that money can buy recovers only 5% of the spill under ideal conditions. Because bitumen sinks, nobody has yet invented any equipment to clean up a bitumen spill in the ocean. Tanker spills are much more serious than pipeline spills. The first tanker spill will destroy BC fisheries and coastal tourism.
Even this promised wealth for average Canadians were real, what good is having a fleet of Rolls Royces and $100,000,000 in the bank if you and billions of your fellow humans are dead?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The problem with NAFTA has nothing to do with trade. It is the way it hands veto power of environmental legislation to foreign countries. Governments must compensate corporations for any imagined profit losses caused by legislation. For example, Canada had to make legal a carcinogenic gasoline additive that was banned in the USA. Disputes are resolved by secret tribunals of businessmen, not the courts.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The environmental movement was suckered into using terms that could easily have been coined by a fossil-fuel PR (Public Relations) department or a lawyer who writes disclaimers for a living. For example, global-warming sounds like a swim in Jamaica. Climate-change sounds refreshing, something to break the monotony. How about we start using terms not quite so soporific, such as Thermageddon, climate collapse or planetary heat death.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Narendra Modi, prime minister of India, argues India should be free to burn fossils fuels without concern for greenhouse gas emissions. His reasoning is the western nations did this, and became prosperous, before they discovered the dangers of doing so. This is like Mr. Modi demanding the right to molest children because the Catholic Church got away with it for millennia. World citizens cannot tolerate behaviour that causes the imminent demise of the planet. It does not matter whether it is fair or unfair. Damn you India. You have no right to commit planetary suicide on behalf of the planet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In Canada or the USA an architect designs for the cheapest possible cost and spews out yet another strip mall. The builder is rewarded with a small profit. Yet the millions of people who suffer from having to look at this eyesore over its lifetime seem to have no say in the matter. This is surrender to the God of Commerce on a mass scale.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
National Geographic Sell-Out
The National Geographic has sold out. They present Christian myth as scientific fact. They present phony disaster scenarios, such as what would happen if the earth suddenly stopped spinning or the sun suddenly went nova. They ignore real environmental issues like global warming. They have arguably become the largest purveyor of scientific FUD on the planet. They do this simply because Christians like to read that their myths are true.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There is a common variety of loon who claims that we should do nothing about global warming because it has natural causes. Leaving alone for a moment the absence of evidence for a natural cause, this woman presumably would refuse to call the fire department if her house were set afire by a natural cause e.g. lightning. She could only permit herself to act if the cause were man-made, e.g. An arsonist.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas is also a Carbon-Based Fossil Fuel
ANGA has swamped the air waves with propaganda promoting natural gas as the solution to the energy crisis. Promoting natural gas in place of coal is like an alcoholic touting wine in place of whiskey as the solution to alcoholism. Natural Gas is a fossil fuel. It emits CO₂ just like any other fossil fuel (though less than coal) and as such has to be 100% eliminated. At best, it is short term stop gap.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas Basket
Mr. Rich Coleman, B.C.’s Minister of Natural Gas, is gambling with BC’s financial future by putting all our economic eggs in the natural gas basket. There are a number of things that could blow his plans out of the water long before his dreams of riches have materialised. For example:
- Competition from other countries driving the cost down, particularly the United States. Natural gas is costly to transport. We cannot compete with American producers in the American market.
- The price of solar is steadily dropping. When it gets to within shooting distance of natural gas, investment will jump ship.
- The Liberal government is wishfully thinking climate change will go away if they but pretend it is not there. It is only a matter of time until it scares the heck out of the planet so badly they will demand massive shutdown of all fossil fuels.
The market for natural gas will disappear but not the mortgage on the infrastructure. We will be left holding the bag and it will be Mr. Coleman’s fault. You can tell just by looking at him he is a pig, who is concerned only with satisfying short term lusts. He has no concept of sustainability.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas BS
On 2012-06-21, BC Premier Christy Clark announced natural gas is a clean, green fuel, but oddly, only if it is burned in northern BC. Granted natural gas, is cleaner than coal, but when it burns, like coal, it creates greenhouse gas that affects the entire planet. Further, if it escapes into the air without burning, it is a potent greenhouse gas in its own right, 40 times stronger than CO₂. Politicians are too clueless and too corrupt to trust with crucial energy decisions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas Lifetime
Companies promoting natural gas projects presume they will be functioning for 40 to 60 years into the future. This is preposterously optimistic. Every year the effects of climate change get harder and harder to ignore with floods, droughts, record temperatures, death of trees, animal extinctions, plankton collapse, wild fires, more severe storms… At a certain point there will be snap, and the public, in a panic, will demand we do something about climate change. The main thing we can do is stop burning fossil fuels, namely LNG. LNG is mostly methane a greenhouse gas in its own right 25 times more potent than CO₂, the result of burning LNG.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas Is No Solution
The natural gas industry has been deceiving people about just how wonderful natural gas is as a fuel. It is certainly cleaner than coal or oil, but we can’t continue to use it because of greenhouse gases. The industry suggest that the CO₂ can be removed at the well site and sequestered. Yes, dissolved CO₂, could potentially be removed, but that would do nothing about the CO₂ produced when it burns which is the much bigger problem. They keep referring to it as a clean fuel as if there were no problem with the products of its combustion. It turns into pure CO₂, the #1 greenhouse gas. It has nice qualities such as abundance in North America, easy to ship by pipeline and low sulphur, but we still can’t use it.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas Is Not A Suitable Fuel
It does not matter how cheap the natural gas is. Burning it releases massive amounts of greenhouse gases. Further, the natural gas ( CH₄ methane) itself is a super-greenhouse gas. This plan is suicide. No amount of money would convince me to commit suicide or let someone, who insists on ignoring this unfortunate side effect, kill me.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Natural Gas — Not So Clean
The natural gas companies lie that natural gas in the safe clean fuel of the future. Granted it does burn cleaner than furnace oil and it is cheaper, but it is far from safe or clean. If natural gas tanker were to blow in a harbour, the effect would be similar to small nuke going off. It would obliterate the core of the city. Natural gas is very flammable, similar to hydrogen. Everyone has seen how even a small gas leak can level an entire apartment block. Further, natural gas, just like oil, when it burns, creates carbon dioxide ( CO₂ ) the main greenhouse gas that causes global warming. When natural gas leaks, the 95% methane ( CH₄ ) in it acts as a greenhouse gas in its own right 25 times as potent as carbon dioxide. It is an interim, temporary solution at best. Given the current levels of CO₂, we should not be burning any natural gas at all at this point.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nature’s Solution to the Energy Crunch
If we don’t solve the alternative energy problem, nature will solve it for us. Before we discovered oil, the planet was able to support 1 billion people. We will have a sharp die back of 8 people in 9. The odds are you will be one of those who die.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Navy Kills Orcas
The navy is charged with protecting the shores of America. How do the assholes do it? By killing off the endangered orcas with super-sonar.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The US Navy goes out of its way to torture and kill orcas. The irony is, if the Taliban had been attacking the whales, the Navy would pull out all stops to protect them.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
NDP Losing Its Way
The NDP is going off the cliff, thinking it can ignore climate change. You can no more ignore it than you can ignore your house is on fire. Rachel Notley ( NDP premier of Alberta) sounds like Stephen Harper when she claims dealing with climate change is a nice frill you can indefinitely postpone.
Politicians love to pretend they are sensible and want a balanced approach where you can increase fossil fuel exploitation and simultaneously reduce green house gases. You cannot. They are mutually exclusive. If you improve one, you necessarily hurt the other. You have to choose. It is a law of chemistry.
I have been supporting the NDP since 1970. I am waiting for the dust to settle. If the NDP does not get back on track and make climate change #1, I will cancel my monthly donations and switch to the Green Party.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Agribusiness claims chemical pesticides are absolutely necessary. How then do organic farmers deliver they produce to market without any sign of insect damage?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Necessities for Survival
Most species have been thriving on earth for millions of years before the advent of humans. They don’t need our help or interference to survive; they just need us to leave them alone with adequate pristine habitat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Necessity of 100% Recycling
Nature has learned that anything less than 100% recycling is not sustainable.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Necessity Of Going Green
Those opposed to going green think of it is something nice to do, politically correct but highly inconvenient and impractical. They still don’t understand it as a matter of survival. We have no choice but to go green even if it were highly inconvenient and nearly impossible to implement (which it is not). Going green is primarily a political problem, not a technical one. Further, the pro-fossil fuel forces fight even exploiting the low-hanging fruit — namely energy efficiency that would give the additional financial benefit of reduced dependence on foreign oil because it would reduce their sales.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nematode Worm Nerves
The most amazing thing I ever read was Bernard C. Till’s Masters thesis about nematode worms. He used a computer to simulate the interconnections of the approximately 300 neurons in the worm, including the S-shaped trigger functions in the synapses. What blew me away completely was the simulated worm exhibited all the known behaviours of real worms. He discovered that nature uses a control program for animal behaviour that is encoded incredibly compactly compared with the way computer scientists usually do it. It also means that animals are much less complicated than we suppose.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
On 2013-04-29 Europe banned neonicotinoid neurotoxic insecticides because they are wiping out the bees needed to pollinate crops. The Harper government in Canada refused to follow suit because Bayer profits from selling the pesticide for almost every conceivable crop. Perhaps Harper is unaware of how many crops need bees for pollination. As the bees wane, so do yields. In the meantime, Canada will gain a reputation for pesticide-tainted honey and pesticide-tainted crops. This will be hard to undo later. In the sort term, we may well be banned from exporting our agricultural products to Europe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The New Big Question
Now the most common question people ask before they do something is How much does it cost?. We have to get to the point that question is What is its carbon footprint?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
New York Times Anti-environmentalists
The reason the New York Times mocks environmentalists is they don’t want anyone complaining about just how many trees they turn into pulp each day.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Newfoundland Seal Hunt
I have talked to people who have viewed the Newfoundland seal hunt. It is not a hunt in the ordinary sense where hunters kill animals for food or pelts. They kill to punish the seals, to make them suffer as much as possible. Look at the original weapon they chose — the hakapik, a sharp hook on a stick. Why? Because fishermen/hunters refuse to take responsibility for overfishing and destroying the cod stocks. They foolishly blame the seals, even though 200 years ago there was no commercial seal hunt and there were astronomically abundant fish, even though seals eat the sickest and slowest fish, thus containing disease and improving the stocks.
The international market has all but disappeared for seal pelts, but the Newfoundlanders continue to kill seals. They have an in-your-face attitude to the rest of Canada concerned about the brutality of the hunt or the bloody reputation (that hurts all exports) this tiny band is giving all of Canada. They are furious with the government and the rest Canada for not trying to force other countries to buy the bloody pelts.
As a poke in the eye to those who oppose the hunt, they held a nauseating public feast where every dish contained seal — even the ice cream! What will the Newfoundlanders do next to gross out fellow Canadians — hand out sugar cookies drenched with menstrual seal blood at elementary schools?
They are behaving like selfish unusually-immature children. The irony is, the more boorishly they behave, the faster the irrational seal scourging ritual will disappear entirely.
Have a look at some Google Images of the seal hunt. Turn off Safe Search. I am so annoyed with these people I am to the point I wish Newfoundland left confederation. To make matters worse Conservative Prime Minister Harper approved yet another seal cull, even though scientists told him there was no scientific evidence it would help fish stocks. He ignored science and instead bowed to emotional superstition. He despises science and worships irrational religious beliefs. So his decision is no surprise. Let’s hope the new Liberal federal government will be more rational.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Humans fix nitrogen by introducing artificial fertilisers into the ecosystems and by burning fossil fuels which creates nitrogen oxides. Human activity now dwarfs the amount of nitrogen fixed by bacteria. The planet has gone from nitrogen starved to nitrogen swamped in a few decades.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the years 1991 to 2012 there were 13,950 articles published in peer-reviewed scientific magazines on climate. Only 24 of them rejected global warming. There is no controversy among scientists. The controversy is FUD created by big oil and their creatures like Stephen Harper.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
No Evidence for Climate Change Denial
Global warming deniers have no evidence whatsoever to back up their position. It is based purely on wishful thinking. They simply refuse to believe that seriously bad news could be true. They are the sort of people who refuse to vacate their homes before a forest fire or serious flood. They won’t act until the flames are licking at the front door. They are the sort of people who would deny that an asteroid were headed for earth, even if they could see it in a telescope. They claim that catastrophic bad news is never true, but what they mean is, when religious cranks predict the end of the earth, they are always wrong.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
No Impact Sustainability
When Americans call for a sustainable, green culture without any impact on lifestyle or consumption I pull out my hair. That is like asking for a healthful, weight-loss, donut-based diet.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
No More Children
There are several reasons couples should avoid having children after age 35:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The children are more likely to have genetic defects.
- The parents don’t have sufficient energy to interact with the children.
- The parents are likely to die before the kids no longer need them.
No Point In Environmental Sacrifices
It is foolish to make environmental sacrifices for big oil and big gas because fossil fuels will become obsolete any day now. The price of fossil fuels rises every year. The price per watt for solar power drops every year. The day those price points cross, if not before, the oil age will be over even if there is still plenty of oil in the ground. Big oil is doing everything it can to delay that day.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I have almost no sympathy for people who earned their living for decades in the fossil fuel industry polluting the air and ignoring the effects on climate change now that these industries are shutting down.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nobody Looks After Safety
When determining the safety of some new drug, food or technology, the creator’s interests are solely in its profitability and ability to lower costs. They really have no place at the table of scientists determining whether the new product is safe. Yet the public tends to leave such concerns totally up to the corporation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Noisy and Overpowered
Right now Americans associate noisy and overpowered with masculine. We need instead to associate noisy with farting and overpowered with obesity. Instead, we need to associate silence with futuristic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Environmental pig: You’re telling me I should inconvenience myself by driving a smaller car, by using a bicycle and by walking for short trips just to save the lives of my grandchildren?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Roedy: Of course, you ninny! Every animal with any intelligence will even sacrifice its life to protect its offspring.
We are so cut off from the natural world, that when there was a large power outage in southern California, the Griffiths observatory received thousands of calls from people alarmed by mysterious lights in the sky. They did not know what they were. They had never seen stars before.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The three big nuclear accidents, Fukushima, Chernobyl and Three Mile Island involved three different designs and three different causes. In each case, something happened the designers did not foresee. It is impossible to foresee every eventuality and even if you could, investors would never approve the costs of a design to handle them all. Yet, any failure is completely unacceptable. It is thus impossible to win and that does not even count the problem of storage of nuclear waste for millennia.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When we talk about Obama and Putin wiping out all life on earth with their nukes or bioterror weapons, it is just a figure of speech. There are hardy, primitive life forms deep in the earth or deep in the sea which would probably survive as would many plant species that have long-lived seeds. What we mean is wiping out the humans and the coffee-table book animals.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nuclear Is Not Very Green
Some environmentalists are promoting nuclear power as green energy. We may have to resort to that simply because the demons who run the corporations have stalled all the other alternatives. It has a major problem. As a nuclear plant ages, it becomes less profitable. It becomes harder and harder to find the funds to maintain the plant properly to keep it safe. Similarly, nuclear waste must be managed for thousands of years. During that time it generates no income to pay for the upkeep. Corporations, being the profit seeking automatons they are, just abandon messes when they cease to be profitable. Because of this corporate irresponsibility, nuclear power appears to be much less expensive than it really is when you factor in the cost of eternal mothballing.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nuclear Power’s Reliance on Electricity
A nuclear power plant contains as much radiation as 250 nuclear bombs. To prevent the stored spent fuel from releasing radiation requires it to be continuously cooled with refrigerated water. Without an uninterrupted source of electricity, the water will boil off in a few days and the spent fuel will overheat and vent.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nuclear Power’s Reliance on Oil
4% enriched uranium cost about $1,000 per pound or $2,200 per kg. (In contrast, weapons grade is 90% pure U-235.) Why is it so expensive? Because it takes so much fossil fuel energy to mine it and enrich it. The process is just as dirty and emits just as much greenhouse gas as any other use of fossil fuels. It also implies, we can’t currently mine and enrich uranium without oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nukes and Whales
Humans kill sperm whales partly for their spermaceti. To humans, it is a high quality lubricant used in the manufacture of nuclear weapons. It is ironic that humans who mindlessly kill whales use their corpses to suicide themselves.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nutty Prostitution Laws
Canada has absurd prostitution laws. Prostitution is legal, but if a prostitute tries to assess the danger of a potential client before hopping into his vehicle, she breaks the law. If she tries to protect herself with an alarm system or shared premises with other prostitutes or a bodyguard she breaks the law. If she pays a driver to watch out for her, she breaks the law. If she even spends some of the money she makes on raising her children, she breaks the law.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Nitrous oxide ( N₂O ) is 296 times as potent a greenhouse gas as CO₂. Yet the world agrifuel corporations plan to triple the amount of nitrogen entering the world’s soil, a process which releases N₂O. Even as it is, almost half of greenhouse gases come from agricultural monoculture and its attendant long distance transportation and fertilised production. Nitrogen fertiliser is made using natural gas, whose production has already peaked in North America. The world adds the equivalent of the entire population of North America every 6 years. We are already seriously short of food. Agrifuel diverts food from feeding people to feeding SUV s for the conspicuously-consuming wealthy. The bottom line is agrifuel is a dead end, pun intended.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You have to wonder why an intelligent man like Obama is encouraging increasing oil and natural gas burning and does almost nothing to help along alternative energy. It is as though he has glued his eyes shut to the consequences of global warming. Any fossil fuel we burn now we are later going to have to unburn to capture the CO₂. It is a lot easier and more energy efficient to avoid burning something that to try somehow to unburn it later. The problem is the Citizens United crooked Roberts Supreme Court decision has made it legal for corporations to bribe politicians with unlimited amounts of money. The oil industry is very short sighted and has bribed Obama to behave like a raving asshole. No matter what else he does, future generations will spit on grave for caving.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Ocean Conveyor
According to Dr. Peter D. Ward in Under a Green Sky: Global Warming, the Mass Extinctions of the Past and What They Can Tell Us About Our Future one of the great mass extinctions of the past was triggered by global warming stopping the ocean conveyor (large ocean currents). The oceans stagnated and gave off hydrogen sulphide H₂S, (a gas more toxic than hydrogen cyanide HCN ) in such massive quantities that it killed off 90% of all life on earth, both plants and animals.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Global warming means more ocean flooding for at least three reasons:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Ice caps and glaciers melt raising the water level.
- Warm water expands raising the water level.
- The extra heat energy fuels bigger storms and hurricanes.
In some parts of the ocean, plastic outweighs plankton 40:1. Light breaks it up into tiny particles that fish cannot tell apart from food. It also clogs their gills. The plastic contains toxic additives. These poisons concentrate on their way up the food chain.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If the average temperature of the earth heats up 6.0°C (10.8°F), the effect is much bigger than it sounds. 70.8% of the earth is covered by ocean. The air over the ocean will not heat up much, meaning the air over the continents will have to heat up much more than 6.0°C (10.8°F) to create that average. The heating is uneven over the latitudes. The poles and the equatorial regions will heat up much more than the average. Further, the peak temperatures will rise much more than the average temperatures. And to top it off, just a bit of extra heat gives hurricanes massively extra punch.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oceanic Fuel Efficiency
We can drastically reduce the fuel needed to ship containers around by using bigger ships and by slowing them down slightly and using more ships to compensate.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Addiction to oil is an apt term. A heroin addict is concerned only with the short term pleasure of consuming his drug. He ignores the fact his habit is destroying his health and will eventually kill him. He discards all decency in his quest for the drug and has no concern for the effect his habit is having on others. The oil-addicted society is concerned only about the price of gasoline and tooling around in cars today, deliberately ignoring the fact they are killing the entire planet with the consequent greenhouse gases. They send soldiers into third world countries to steal oil from people who have nothing else, then deliberately waste it with status displays such as gas-guzzling SUVs or Hummers or commute to work alone in overpowered vehicles capable of seating eight, like a heroin addict going on a binge.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Have you ever tried to talk someone out of an addiction that was destroying their life? They might have been an alcoholic, a drug addict, a gambler or a child molester. All they see is the pleasure of their addiction. They deny the negative consequences. How much worse are carbon addicts, people who are so entranced by the profits from selling fossil fuels they will destroy ecosystems, poison their own children and, through greenhouse gas emissions, destroy the entire planet, not just themselves.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Popular wisdom now understands that America (and Canada) are addicted to oil. An addiction to alcohol, cocaine or oil are similar:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The addict makes endless excuses to postpone withdrawal.
- The addict, every day, uses more and more.
- The addict endangers the lives of loved ones in pursuit of the addiction.
Meth, heroin and cocaine addicts focus completely on the pleasures, energy and sexual pleasure they get from drugs. They blank out all concern for the deleterious long-term effects. That is the way Albertans regard oil.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Oil is Already Found
We already have perfected tools for finding oil. We have not found a significant new basin in decades. New technology to find oil can’t help unless there is some oil there to find.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Companies Need To be Shut Down
The public are still idiotically concerned with stimulating and coddling the oil industry. It must be shut down and replaced, now. That cannot happen if the law makes it more economic for energy companies to avoid change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Company Lies
The American Oil and Gas industry is swamping the airwaves with dishonest ads telling people that cap and trade taxes on oil or gas would destroy jobs. They repeatedly lie that these would be heavy new taxes rather than a shift on how taxes are collected. They break no law with these lies, but they destroy the entire planet with them by encouraging a torrent of greenhouse gas emissions and flagrant waste of fossil fuels.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Company Lies
From leaked memos, we know that oil companies knew all along (since 1981) that, without a doubt, burning fossil fuels caused climate change. We also know that they put out false information to confuse the public to make them think it did not. I think those planetary traitors responsible should be tortured to death. After all, they are doing more harm to the planet than any terrorist could ever dream of doing. The odd thing is, even though the oil companies have been caught in fraud, Republicans and Christians still believe the lies and imagine the scientists lied for unknown reasons as part of some global conspiracy. It is though they are too embarrassed to admit they were part of the fraud or were taken in by the fraud.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil as Crack
Crack addicts can’t stop consuming until every last grain of the cocaine is gone. Even though we don’t even have enough oil to pass on to our grandchildren, we still consume it frantically with the same uncontrolled desire of the crack addict. It is greedy, selfish and self-destructive.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Easter Egg Hunt
Oil exploration is a bit like an Easter egg hunt. To start, you gather the easy-to-find eggs and then work your way to the harder-to-find ones. You can always find one more egg, but it takes increasingly more time and effort until it reaches a point the game isn’t worth the candle.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Ghost Towns
If you can’t imagine the world running out of oil, go visit the oil ghost towns in Texas, Lake Maracaibo in Venezuela or Baku. The USA was the Saudi Arabia of the world for 150 years. No one believed it would ever peak.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Is Here For a Short Time
We are so used to oil as a fuel and oil as an ingredient to make massive amounts of plastics and fertilisers that we forget that the availability of oil is just a tiny blip on man’s history that will soon be over. Like an algae bloom, it has triggered an order of magnitude explosion in population. We will be back to business as usual in the horse cart era unless we set up all the infrastructure for some replacement fuel, mostly likely solar.
This is not something you can leave to the last minute. It will take massive amounts of time, capital and oil to retool society away from oil (and to deal with climate change). It is not that oil will literally run out, but that the cost of extracting the remaining oil in energy, manpower and equipment will creep higher and higher to the point it costs more to extract than you can sell it for.
Even today, the Alberta tar sands, to produce one gallon of bitumen use 4 gallons of glacier water leaving it so polluted with arsenic, cadmium and carcinogenic compounds it must be permanently stored in tailing ponds. The Alberta tar sands mining operations produce three times as much greenhouse gases per barrel and require three times as much energy per barrel, as extracting ordinary crude oil.
The penalty for procrastination is usually quite minor, but on this issue, it is the death of most of the people on earth. If we don’t get off our butts, population will crash back down to less than 1 billion, its capacity to support humans without oil or equivalent. Even if you think you will be one of the lucky ones to survive, sharing a planet with hordes desperately wanting to kill you for your resources will hardly be pleasant.
Unfortunately, the elderly financial backers of the Republican party do not want the USA to take any action on climate change. I think they imagine they will die slightly richer if it does not, even if it condemns the country to the worst disasters in its history.
In an effort to bankrupt its competitors who have higher production costs, Saudi Arabia is flooding the market with cheap oil. This gives the illusion oil will last forever. The very opposite is true. Cheap oil means we are running out even faster.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Every 8 months, cars in the USA leak enough oil that makes it into the oceans as were spilled by the Exxon Valdiz.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Running Out is Not All Bad
Is oil runs out, inefficient vehicles such as aircraft, cars and trucks will fade away to be replaced by trains/subways/skytrains, sailing ships and human-powered vehicles (including human-powered vehicles with a small electric assist). Computers will guide trains and sailing ships with much greater safety than we enjoy today in any form of transport.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Spill Recovery Rate is 3 to 5%
The key fact that gets overlooked in every oil spill debate is that even under the best conditions once crude oil hits the water, the best recovery rate you can expect is 3 to 5%. That percentage will be even lower in the Arctic. How could this be? The density of gasoline is .72, making it float on water, easy to skim. The density of crude oil is .973, making it almost the same density as water, so waves churn it into the water. The density of bitumen (Alberta tar sands crude) is 1.060, making it sink in water where it cannot be skimmed at all. So, all this talk about rapid response cleanup of crude and bitumen is just a red herring, to fool the public into thinking the spill is actually being rectified. Even a perfect response will recover only a tiny fraction of the spill because it can only collect the oil on the surface. Such efforts, especially for tar sands, are only marginally more effective than praying.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oil Spill Treatment
Interviewees on the CBC Radio One keep talking about Enbridge’s high-tech, first class system for cleaning up spills of bitumen that make worry over tar sands pipeline or tanker spills obsolete. I wondered how this technology might work, given that bitumen is heavier than water and would sink immediately in a river, lake or ocean. It sounded impossible. By greasing some palms, I have persuaded an Enbridge insider to divulge the details of their proprietary technology. See the image at the right. All you have to do is drain the water out of the river, lake or ocean, then throw straw on the bitumen covering the bottom. Stir with rakes to cover the straw in bitumen. Then collect the filthy straw using a machine that looks like a giant leaf blower. Repeat 417 times. With luck, you can recover up to 10% of the bitumen spill.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) details
The proponents of the tar sands pipeline and tankers to China claim their technology will ensure there will be an oil spill no more often than every 15,000 years. This is nonsense. These same companies spill oil hundreds of times a year. What they mean is, if the technology were always used per spec and the technology never failed and nothing unexpected ever happened that the technology was not designed to handle and the climate stayed the same as it is now and there were no human errors and no captain got drunk and no navigators abandoned the bridge for a quickie and all contractors will never dream of substituting cheap, poor quality materials, then the technology could in theory give that level of protection at least for spills bigger than Deepwater Horizon. Smaller ones are negligible. It is a bald lie for oil companies to promise better safety than they can demonstrate. Why should we be destroying our environment so that China can pollute the atmosphere with greenhouse gases from tar sands oil and roast us all?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are two things you need to know about tanker oil spills. The best state of the art cleanup can do is recover 5% of oil and 5% of bitumen. The problem with bitumen is it immediately sinks. The pro-pipeline people dissemble outrageously to trick you into thinking the recovery rate is much higher.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Olympic committee is scrambling to find future venues for the Winter Olympic games. Climate change is making traditional venues like Oslo too warm. Yet Republican conspiracy theorists funded by the like of David Koch, want us to believe this is part of some IOC (International Olympic Committee) conspiracy to convince people that climate change is real.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
On Death Row
What’s the best news a war criminal on death row could hear? An Everest-sized asteroid will plow into earth three days after his scheduled execution.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
On Other Planets
The universe is so huge, that I suspect it is true that whatever those things you want to do but refuse to do for whatever reason, are mandatory on some planet in the universe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One Country Pollutes the Planet
Just as any one country pumping CO₂ into the air harms the climate of the entire planet, any one country capturing and sequestering CO₂ benefits the entire planet. What counts is the net emissions. You don’t have to capture at the source of the emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One Gallon Of Tar Sands Oil Permanently Destroys 4 Gallons of Water
The Alberta Tar Sands, to produce one gallon of bitumen use 4 gallons of glacier water leaving it so polluted with arsenic, cadmium and carcinogenic compounds it must be permanently stored in tailing ponds.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The One Horse Shay Effect
In times past when a civilisation wore out its soils and poisoned its rivers it just quietly died. It had almost no effect on any other civilisation. But now with globalisation and world trade at twenty times what it was in the 1970s, it ties the earth together in one unified global civilisation. When it goes, the whole thing will go down more or less simultaneously.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One Idea People
People do the stupidest things when they have but one idea and they try to apply it as ultimate truth, unmodified in all situations. The idea might be religious, philosophical or economic.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) What Every Environmentalist Needs to Know About Capitalism
One Rider, One Horse
When people used horses, if three people wanted to travel together, they would take three horses. They did not breed superhorses, each capable of carrying 8 people, then riding them mostly with one rider. Two of the horses would automatically follow the lead horse. Artificial horses, aka cars, oddly can’t do this. It is not rocket science, just a lack of imagination.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One Tailings Pond = 300 Exxon Valdizes
If the Alberta Tar Sands tailing ponds were breached, say by a massive storm that overflowed them or a terrorist attack, it would be the equivalent of 300 Exxon Valdizes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Only 100,000 Years to Recover
The good news about global warming is, if we went extinct today, it could take nature as little as 100,000 years to undo the damage we have done so far.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Only 500 Years
I found it greatly comforting to learn that if man disappeared, it would take only 500 years for our suburbs to be replaced by forests. Our suppression of earth requires daily frantic busy-ness.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Only Cancer and Humans Grow Without Limit
In nature, things grow to maturity then stop. Only cancer and human business aspire to continuous, endless growth.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Only Goats and Humans
No others species but humans and the domestic goat do something to the environment that prevents future generations from living there, and we humans made the goat.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Opinions on the Value of π
There are a few ignorant people who imagine it makes sense to have an opinion on the value of π that differs from 3.141415. Those that do are simply wrong. In like way, global warming is not a partisan issue, any more than the temperature at which water boils should be. Foolish Republicans reject the solid science of global warming purely on the grounds Democrats whole-heartedly accept it. They often reject their own proposals when Democrats accept them. That is so childish all Republicans should be spanked and sent to bed without their supper.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Opponents of The Environment
The opponents of the environment are brain damaged. They can think no further than 3 months into the future. They are, like babies, attracted by baubles, who scream and scream if they don’t get what they want. They are incapable of thinking about the big picture or the long term consequences. It is up to adults to keep things away from babies that would hurt them and the same with these adult babies. Like Alzheimers patients they can at first glance look powerful and functional, even intimidating, but we must be firm with them. Since they are fixated on money, it is of primary importance to make sure they lose most of their money every time they harm the environment. They are waging war against the planet that sustains us. You don’t have to fight with Marquis of Queensbury rules in such a war.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The main reason to insist on organic food is not to protect yourself from pesticide, but to protect the earth from being poisoned wiping out species after species, particularly bees.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are three basic responses to global warming:
The Ostrichglobal warming is a pain in the ass, so, to avoid having to deal with it, they use every means imaginable to convince themselves it is not real.
The SlothThere is no way they are prepared to put out the effort needed to deal with global warming, so they figure they might as well give up now and do nothing at all.
The AntOops there goes another rubber tree plant. a reference to the 1959 Frank Sinatra song High Hopes.
Which are you?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
We have a choice. We can have clean, renewable energy without pollution or we can burn the last of our legacy of coal and oil bought from dictators who hate us and put up with the pollution and contend with the unprecedented nightmare of global warming. It would be a no-brainer if it were not for oil and coal companies muddying the issue with disinformation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Our Energy Needs Are Smaller Than We Think
Our energy problem looks much bigger than it really is because we have allowed our habits of squandering energy in the service of conspicuous consumption to masquerade as need.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Our Filthy Age
If we survive this global warming crisis, people of the future will look back on this filthy age of oil with the distaste we look back on the squalor and coal filth of Dickens’ London.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Our Tar Sands
Americans refer to Canada’s tar sands as our oil sands. Excuse me, but the last I checked, Canada was still a separate country. The sands are coated with bitumen tar not oil. These Americans are trying to make it sound as if the oil is just lying on the ground waiting to be scooped up. It requires astronomical amounts of natural gas to make steam to melt the solid tar. This is low grade, high-environmental impact fuel.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Consider the outcomes of humans making big changes to the environment. How many improved it? How many made it worse? How many utterly destroyed it?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Overcoming Intermittent Power
ANGA funds ads promoting natural gas a necessary adjunct to solar and wind energy because the sun sets and the wind does not always blow. This is not true. Because people sleep you need to generate much less energy at night. When the wind is not blowing here, it is blowing somewhere else. By networking with a power grid, you have continuous power, without any energy from greenhouse gas-producing natural gas. Further, we are learning so store energy in molten salt and massive batteries.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Christians and Muslims exalt in overpopulation. To them, population growth is a race to swamp earth with believers in their religion.
- Christians and Muslims with foolishly declare there is plenty of sparsely populated land, so there is no need to be concerned about overpopulation. But building space is not the limiting resource. It is clean water, energy and food. We have polluted most of the water sources. We have sent the climate on a dizzying change by rapidly burning all the fossil fuels. We have already planted every last scrap of arable land. We have almost drained the aquifers.
- Cities are built on prime arable land. That’s why they were originally situated there. Now urban sprawl is covering up the surrounding arable land. As population grows, we have less and less arable land to grow food for them.
- Our technological society works by burning our capital, in particular fossil fuels, minerals, aquifers and soil. We take no heed to leave resources for future generations.
- If everyone on earth lived the way a North American does, we would need five extra planets.
- When animals overpopulate, predators, disease or hunger cuts population back down to size. We humans have so far been clever enough to defeat predators, disease and even hunger. But we cannot do this indefinitely (unless we learn to live sustainably). We live on a finite planet with finite resources.
- Endless population growth or endless economic growth are both mathematically impossible. They are insane goals.
During the Gadafi ouster, a man from Libya mentioned that he had 70 cousins, a number of whom he had never seen. To avoid a population explosion, you must not have more than 4 first cousins.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Housing prices are rising because you have too many people chasing too few homes. Every politician is under the delusion you can increase the population indefinitely and it would be a Good Thing™.
Ask any mathematician. You cannot grow indefinitely on a finite planet. As Mark Twain observed, they are not making any more land.
The problem is too many people. As we can see, more people are making the problem worse. Prices in Kelowna and the Okanagan are spurting too.
Politically, we must stop encouraging population growth. We have to stop subsidising children. We have to slow down the flow of immigration.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Overpopulation destroying the planet is an obvious evil, but when you look at any individual child, it is almost impossible to say It would have been better had they not been born.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Today, the world is seriously overpopulated at 7.357 billion. It hit 1 billion around 1825. Prior that, people needed large families to ensure descendants. Today those ancient outmoded attitudes still persist. People with children scorn those without. Parents press their children to marry and multiply. Those who drive an SUV damage the environment for a decade plus the thousand years it takes for the earth to deal with the CO₂ emitted. Yet those who have excess children damage the environment not only for lifetime of their children, but also for the lifetimes of all their tree of descendants, each driving their SUV s and heating their homes. It is time to make life as unpleasant as legally permitted for prolific breeders, especially selfish freaks like the octomom.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One of the sad things about overpopulation is the most selfish, stupid and superstitious people gradually prevail, making matters even worse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Overpopulation In Animals Such As Humans
People have no problem understanding how animals overpopulate and destroy their environment and suffer a population crash, but they are absolutely blind when the exact same thing happens to humans~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Overpopulation in the Root of All Evil
Overpopulation is the root evil. When there is not enough land, water, fuel or minerals to go around people kill each other for them. When people live on an overpopulated earth they rapidly destroy the ability of the earth to sustain life by polluting its waters and stripping its soils.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Animals on an island often overshoot the carrying capacity of the island, even by three times. Then the shit hits the fan and they go extinct almost overnight. We humans have way overshot the carrying capacity of our planet. Once you overshoot, any growth leads inevitably to collapse. Ask any biologist. There are no known counter examples. There is no such thing as sustainable growth. That is a fiction that exists only in the mind of an economist whose idea of the deep future is one year hence.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In the waters off Los Angeles, there are 600 times as much plastic in the oceans as plankton.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Oxygen Balance
Over earth’s history, the percentage of oxygen in the atmosphere has varied from 0 to 30%. Right now it is 21%. We humans need it to stay put. That’s why we have to pressurise jets to provide extra oxygen when we fly. The ratio is not some god-given constant. It is delicately balanced by the actions of trillions of tiny plants and animals. We can screw up the balance by inadvertently killing off insignificant tiny creatures.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Oxygen Depends on Cyanobacteria
Originally, earth’s atmosphere had no oxygen. It was the activity of cyanobacteria that cranked it up to 21%. If through some idiocy, we bumped off the cyanobacteria, the level would drop back down again.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Panic! Not Enough Babies
If you were in a car driving at 44.70 metres/sec (100 mph), would you fear the driver taking his foot off the gas even a little, least you be stranded? This is effectively what people do who panic when the birthrate goes below 2. They imagine suddenly the 8 billion humans here on earth are in danger of going extinct from too few people. There is plenty of time to bump the birth rate back up again after the population drops to something sustainable. We are far more likely to die from overstressing our planet with overpopulation or from fights over resources than we are from refusing to breed once the population drops. Animals always breed once the population drops. Look at history, humans are no exception.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When you eat soy from Paraguay or meat from cattle fattened on that soy, be aware that there are no environment protection laws there, (or most other third world countries). Agribusiness kills third world children with careless spraying and handling of pesticides. You are effectively hiring them to do that. You are also taking a personal risk since those agribusinesses are equally careless with your life.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The big problem with cars is they take huge amounts of expensive real estate for roads and parking. There is no more urban land, so the only way to escape gridlock is to use computer-controlled cars that can be safely packed bumper to bumper, door to door, at high speeds. Cars can drive themselves to high-density parking when they are not needed, or cars can be shared in various types of pool so they don’t need to be parked, just used by someone else. The problem is by the time the political problems are solved to allow such a system, the price of fuel and greenhouse gas emissions will force us to abandon cars and trucks of any description. The car wastes huge amounts of energy with its rubber tires and dragging about a massive power train/batteries relative to the payload. In contrast, the electric train does not have to generate energy on-board because it can tap into the electric grid.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Each parking space costs $10K to $50K to build. The cost of mandatory parking space shoves up the price of rent and restaurants. It forces people to buy parking spaces who do not even own cars, or who would not bother with a car if parking were not bundled in the rent. Because parking is cheaper to build in the suburbs, mandatory parking promotes urban sprawl.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The largest user of urban land is parking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Partly Filled Boxes
The Nature’s Path cereal company bragged they saved enough trees to build 38 homes by cutting the size of the box on their Ginger Granola box by 10%. There is still more than enough space for settling. What would happen if Kellogg’s decided to shrink their boxes so that they were filled more than 40% full? Not only would they save trees, they would save on transportation.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Passing the Climate Change Buck
I hear people say it’s the federal government’s responsibility to get on top of global warming, not mine. That is foolish for three reasons.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The Harper government is dedicated to increasing greenhouse gas emissions. Waiting for them is like waiting for penguins to take up residence in hell.
- In the end, what has to change? Mostly the habits of individual citizens, making their homes, cars, buying and food more energy efficient.
- Governments are loathe to coerce industries since corporations pay their campaign expenses. Individuals on the other hand are free to boycott egregious global warming corporations.
Past Climate Change
In the 1300s, famine and the plague wiped out half the population of Europe. The underlying cause was climate change.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Past Global Warming
The last time, 3 million years ago, when CO₂ levels were 400 ppm (what they are now), average temperatures were 8.0°C (14.4°F) higher than today and the seas were 40 metres (43.74 yards) higher than today. We are on target for much higher 450 ppm by 2050. Because the oceans are so huge, like a giant heated swimming pool, they take centuries for them to warm up, so the drastic effects will not be immediately noticeable. On the other hand, if we eventually take corrective action, it will require centuries for that to take effect too.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) source
Americans think the best way to prove you are red-blooded American male is to waste gasoline. Nothing is more harmful to their country.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Peak oil is pretty scary. Modern agriculture requires 10 calories of energy to produce 1 calorie of food. Then you need to transport and refrigerate the food. Our whole civilisation depends on cheap fossil fuel energy. We have already used up about half of the total supply.
However, long before we run out of oil, climate change from burning fossil fuels will make the planet uninhabitable. We will have to leave most of the rest of it in the ground. In other words, we have to learn to do without oil much sooner than we thought. If we cannot think of something better, the default way to handle it is a massive population crash, the same way nature handles such problems.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
I would hope electric utilities soon start charging for the maximum usage in the month during a peak period. This is what ultimately determines how many rivers will be dammed or coal plants built.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Canada has massive areas of peat bogs. Just lying there, they sink 20% of Canada’s CO₂ emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Why is man so susceptible to believing nonsense, or pretending to believe nonsense, just because his peers do? Man is a social animal. In times past, if he expressed deviant views he would be outcast from his group. That meant death. Man thus evolved the ability to suppress common sense in favour of group consensus. The key then to dispelling religious superstition is just to let everyone know there is a sizeable number of people to think it is bunk.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
With cellphones, we are learning to do more with less. This ethic has not yet caught on with cars. With cars, bigger is better, perhaps because males see them as penis substitutes. In another couple of decades, I expect today’s cars will look as preposterously over-sized as a 1970 car phone.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People of Fort Chipewyan
The government of Alberta and the developers of the Alberta Tar Sands have so harmed the people of Fort Chipewyan, I think they would be justified in assassinating or torturing anyone involved with the project.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) H₂Oil
The People Running The Planet Are Incompetent
Just because the people running the world are old and rich does not mean they know what they are doing. They are trashing the planet in a sort lease-breaking party where they are blowing earth’s capital trying to get some jollies into their miserable flaccid lives using bloated spending. You young people are going to have to clean up as best you can and live in this mess after they have died. Don’t be shy. Do everything you dare to stop these bastards.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People Who Want to End It All
Think how many people there are, who, for religious reasons or personal despair would bring about the end of the world if they had the power. That is one of the reasons it is such an uphill struggle to get people to protect the environment, stop polluting, deal with greenhouse gases, get on with alternative energy, renounce wars of aggression, preserve the habitats of species other than humans…~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In Alberta, Canada, Monsanto was experimenting with new strains of genetically modified canola (an oil seed). Pollen drifted to a neighbour’s field contaminating his organic strains. Monsanto then abused its power and successfully sued the farmer, Percy Schmeiser, for stealing their patented genetic materials. This is a bit like man who lets his dog roam the neighbourhood inseminating females, then claiming he owns all the puppies. It seems to me, it was Monsanto hurting Mr. Schmeiser, not the reverse. It is disgraceful that the legal system sided with Monsanto. It makes so sense unless you presume Monsanto bribed the necessary officials.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Do the math. Anything less than 100% recycling cannot be indefinitely sustained.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Styrofoam is a hazard to the environment because it never breaks down. It breaks into tiny pieces clogging the gills of fish. We don’t need to use it at all, but we do. We could use a bio-degradable replacement made of cellulose.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Personal Energy Consumption
You use a lot more energy than you think. If you totalled up all the power (energy/per second) expended on your behalf, it would be about 3,500 watts. If you pedaled a stationary bicycle connected to a generator you might be able to generate 100 watts of electricity. If we still had a slave economy, you would need 35 slaves pedaling away to generate your electricity. How does it get so high? see PowCost Applet~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
One way to avoid being overwhelmed with the probability that humanity will fail to protect the environment sufficiently for civilisation to persist, is to look upon it the way you look upon your personal mortality. You do the best you can in the time you’ve got.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Pessimists Right About Extinction
When you hear controversy about just how endangered a species is, consider that in past, the pessimists were invariably right. How could that be? The optimists are usually biased by a short term financial interest in overharvesting, polluting or habitat destruction.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Imagine being a corn borer coming across Iowa where cornfields stretch in every direction to the horizon. You would think you had died an gone to heaven. Imagine being an E. coli bacterium encountering a feedlot where tens of thousands of cattle are tightly packed snout to anus, knee deep in feces. You are in heaven. Within hours, you and your trillions of offspring can infect them all. Monocultures don’t occur in nature because when they do, they became easy targets for pest and disease. Americans do their agriculture that way because it maximises profits for the three companies that monopolise food production in the USA. Farmers have to buy special seeds, special fertilisers and special herbicides and special pesticides just to hold the pests and diseases at bay. If they don’t play ball, they can’t market their products.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Fresh, The Movie
Pesticides designed to kill mammals (e.g. mice) are the most dangerous to humans, since we too are mammals. Israelis are replacing them with owls.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The way Americans deny the severity of the coming global climate change reminds me of the bible story of Pharaoh denying that the plague of frogs was anything out of the usual.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The National Geographic channel broadcast a rather silly episode of Aftermath about what it would be like if the planet Earth slowed its rotation to a standstill over five years. Given there is no mechanism by which this could happen, this is a bit like the fairy tale The Three Sillies. It just distracts attention about real environmental problems.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Phony Corn Biofuel
Corn-based biofuels are a phony green energy solution because:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- They require huge amounts of oil-based fertilisers.
- Fertiliser run-off creates dead-zones of water deprived of oxygen.
- They require huge amounts of fuel for the farm machinery, processing and transport.
- They displace food crops pushing up the price of food.
- They are only economic because of the massive government subsidies. You have to invest more energy than you get back.
Because media like to frame news items as debates, they have to dredge up a crank to pollute 50% of the air time. Christian fundamentalists are required to explain creationism, why their god Jehovah’s hatred of gays should be enacted into civil law, why Jehovah will really really hurt you if you avoid end-of-life torment with suicide, why global warming in a conspiracy, etc. people who once had a sick child who once had a vaccination making them an expert. I am surprised the media don’t think they need one for every Hubble telescope or Mars lander story for balance.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Phony Threats In the Movies
There are horror movies about every improbable threat — giant spiders, bees, ants, rats, snakes’ but there are almost none about real threats — global warming, liquid natural gas tanker explosions, soil erosion, massive earthquakes, water shortages, nuclear war… About the only real threat that gets much coverage is bioterror.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Plankton make up the bulk of the biomass. This means most of the photosynthesis that is cleaning up the greenhouse gas CO₂ and producing the oxygen we breathe O₂ is being done by plankton. We really should be careful when we make changes to the ocean or the atmosphere that we do not disturb the plankton.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are two facts the pipelines companies and BC Premier Christy Clark have swept under the rug:
- The best possible recovery after an oil spill is only 5%.
- A bitumen spill cannot be recovered at all because it quickly sinks.
They both talk about state of the art recovery, without letting on how lame that is.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The pro-pipeline people resort to bald-faced lies, endlessly repeated. My every attempt to debunk them on the CBC has been rebuffed.
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- The oil patch promises safe pipelines and state of the art spill cleanup. Modern technology can help prevent spills, but once you have a spill into water, the best you hope to recover is 5% of the spilled oil and 0% of the spilled bitumen. The crucial problem with bitumen is it sinks.
- Politicians love to promise they will reduce greenhouse gases while simultaneously increasing Canadian tar sands sales. That is impossible. Every barrel of crude oil sold increases CO₂ emissions by 317 kg (698.87 lbs) (about ⅓ of a tonne, 2.3 times the weight of the oil). And that does not even count the CO₂ emissions created during the drilling of the oil. That is basic chemistry.
- Pro-pipeline people argue the only thing holding them back from infinite wealth is the lack of pipelines. Alberta tar sand oil is the most expensive to produce in the world. Even with 100 pipelines, nobody is going to buy it when instead they can buy dirt cheap oil on the open market.
- Mayor Naheed Nenshi (born:1972-02-02 age:44), the mayor of Calgary, argues we should screw our grandchildren. We should sell and burn all the oil now before society gets serious about climate change. He is trying to trick you into thinking burning oil now has no long term consequences. The CO₂ stays in the atmosphere over 1000 years.
- Pro-pipeliners say that there is no choice other than pipelines and transporting crude by rail. If you press them, they will admit there is an unthinkable third alternative, leaving the oil in the ground. They conveniently forget the option of making do with existing pipelines or with upgrades to them.
- None of them admit oil is a sunset industry, and that it thus makes no sense to make large, long term investments in it.
Almost every day in the news there is another pipeline or tanker spill. What is the problem? The problem is capitalism. The pipeline company makes all decisions based on maximising profitability. Spilling oil costs money. So does safety and reinforcing the pipeline. Economics requires them to spend not a penny more on reinforcing than it saves in lost oil and cleanup costs. They decide how much reinforcing to do based on making the most money, not protecting the environment. The only way to get them to behave better is to legislate better behaviour.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
When you build pipelines to carry fossil fuels such as oil or LNG there are some things you need to consider:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- How much greenhouse gas does the mining processes generate?
- How much greenhouse gas do the pipeline and its pumps emit?
- How much greenhouse gas does transporting the fuel to the customer emit (often tanker)?
- Can you guarantee that there will be customers for the fuel for the lifetime of the pipeline? Will they be able to get fuel closer to home? Will your customers switch to cleaner fuels leaving you stuck with the mortgage and no income?
- What sort of record has the construction company for avoiding and dealing with spills?
- What we consider acceptable emissions will shrink over time as the world begins to panic about climate change.
Pity the Caribou
Global warming is making life miserable for caribou. First, the long hot summers drive them nuts with mosquitos so they spend so much time avoiding mosquitos, they don’t have enough time to eat. In winter, climate change means deeper snows covering the lichens they eat. It also means rain, which freezes shutting the caribou off entirely from the lichens under the snow. Further, the ice cuts their legs and makes them bleed. Further, climate change means violent storms. Their numbers are steadily and rapidly dropping.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Pity the Young
It used to be the aged always envied the young. This has changed. The aged now pity the young because the young will have to live with the consequences of the environmental collapse, a result of the irresponsibility of the older generations. The young despair and hold the older generations in contempt for their eco-crimes.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Plain Facts about Global Warming
Millions of years ago there were alligators living at the north pole. It never froze even in midwinter. What caused this? High levels of CO₂. 119 years ago Svante Arrhenius discovered that CO₂ causes global warming. This is hardly controversial. We have been accurately measuring CO₂ for 58 years. We can tote up how much carbon-based fuels we have burned to determine how much of the CO₂ increase is man-caused. If we continue as we have been, we know exactly the unpleasant fate that awaits us. The only wiggle room is how drastically we humans reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It seems we would sooner die than face the tiniest inconvenience. Unfortunately, it is already too late to change our ways and avoid major pain. The CO₂ we have already emitted stays in the air for a thousand years.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is not so much profit vs planet as short vs long term thinking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Our planet is rapidly headed for environmental collapse. There are two broad causes:
~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
- Corporations motivated solely by short term profit with zero regard for long term sustainability.
- Ballooning human population.
We humans have made some drastic large-scale modifications to our planet including:
- Global warming.
- Eutrification (fertiliser runoff).
- Water pollution.
- Harvesting food species to extinction.
- Destruction of habitat.
- Transporting invasive species all over the planet.
The planet’s ecosystems have reacted with such things as:
- Dead zones in lakes and coastal waters.
- Replacement of fish by 226.80 kg (500 lbs) jellyfish.
- Waterways so clogged with water hyacinth that boats can no longer pass.
- Kudzu vines smother every tree, phone pole and house in weeks, like some B movie.
- All the world’s frogs die off. Many species go extinct in the biggest epidemic to hit any creature in recorded history.
- Dying off of most native species, to be replaced by invasive ones better adapter to the deteriorated conditions.
We watch in horror. But perhaps we are watching earth’s well-rehearsed reaction to massive disruption. It might well take a million years to recover, but the earth is in no hurry.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68) Super Species: The Creatures That Will Dominate the Planet
In WWII, any person or corporation who cheated in a way that hurt the war effort was looked on as a traitor, even if they cheated in a way that exploited a legal loophole. Since global climate change is far more likely to exterminate us than Hitler ever was, we need to revive this same scornful attitude toward people and corporations who try to subvert carbon reduction, including cheating on cap and trade credits, spreading FUD and bribing politicians to derail CO₂ emission reduction efforts.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People who claim climate change is controversial are just as much planetary traitors as creationists who deny it without evidence, based purely on wishful thinking.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
People who will sacrifice the survival of their entire planet for some petty personal temporary gain are planetary traitors. This is a crime worse than murder, worse than genocide. It is an attack on all the species of earth. A suitable punishment for this crime is beyond the human imagination. Planetary traitors include Charles and David Koch, George W. Bush, Stephen Harper, Dick Cheney, Ted Stevens, Donald Rumsfeld, Tony Hayward, Tony Blair, Fred Singer… Punishment comes way too late to be any use. These bastards have to stopped from committing their crimes, by hook or by crook. If they are not, it is game over.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
There are large numbers of mostly very wealthy people working extremely hard to cause environmental collapse of planet earth. They probably see it that environmental collapse is inevitable and to ensure survival of themselves and their families, they are justified in doing absolutely anything to accumulate wealth which they hope will help them survive while others perish even if that anything pushes the biosphere toward collapse sooner. They gleefully spread misinformation to eliminate the competition from survivors for scarce resources in a post collapse world. These people are utterly ruthless and without morality. That’s how they got rich in the first place. I think it is fair to play hard ball with them, for example publicly ridiculing them, working to unearth embarrassing financial and sexual scandals, boycotting their businesses, publicly shaming them and the using the same sort of dirty tricks they pull on others.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Lazy slobs who have made up their minds on climate change based on oil company commercials and rumours are committing a crime worse than genocide, namely planetcide.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
You would think that attempting to trigger a mass extinction event would be an extremely serious crime. It is more damaging even than murder, torture or genocide. You would think lethal injection would be far too gentle a punishment. It would require a torture such as burning at the stake or being slowly torn into four pieces by four tanks. This is actually a quite common crime and it is still perfectly legal — not directing a comet into the earth, but convincing people to emit ever more CO₂ by lying to them it is perfectly safe. It is a similar lie to selling people wood alcohol to drink and claiming it is grain alcohol. The earth has already weathered many extinction events caused my runaway CO₂, similar to what is happening artificially now. Such mega-criminals include David and Charles Koch, ExxonMobil, George W. Bush, Frank Luntz, Stephen Harper, Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Plankton are tiny plants and animals that live in salt and fresh water. They produce 40% of the planet’s oxygen. In the process they remove a matching amount of CO₂ greenhouse gases from the air. When the phytoplankton die, they release bursts of methane CH₄ (a superpotent greenhouse gas) and hydrogen sulphide H₂S (a foul-smelling poisonous gas) in sulphur events which kills off all species of fish. They also form the food base of all fish and marine mammals. Their numbers have been collapsing rapidly because of warming waters caused by climate change. The entire ecosystem depends on them. Just because they look insignificant does not mean we can destroy them thoughtlessly.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
As we release CO₂ into the atmosphere, the oceans tend to absorb it. The catch is this makes the oceans acidic. This makes it difficult for plankton to create tiny shells. The acid dissolves their shells as fast as they can make them. The plankton are the base of the ocean food chain. If they die off, everything in the ocean dies. Further, phytoplankton produce about 85% of the oxygen we breathe, and in the process remove CO₂. We definitely do no want to kill them off.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Plant breeders have astounded us with their increases in crop yields. To succeed, they have created plants that need specialised fertilisers, precise climates, large amounts of water and chemical protection from pests. These crops often leave the soils impoverished through erosion or absorption of minerals. The basic game is to capture an ever higher percentage of the sun’s energy and turn it into food energy. I hope it obvious why this improvement cannot continue indefinitely as Christians promoting population growth often imagine. Once they approach 100% efficiency, there is nowhere to go.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Plastic Grocery Bags
I saw a woman wrestling with plastic grocery bags that broke and spilled tins of food onto the side-walk. Why did she resist using reusable canvas bags? They won’t break. They carry much more. They would be easier on her hands. They wouldn’t breed under her sink like coat hangers. They wouldn’t clog land fills for generations. Perhaps it is some remnant of Veblen’s conspicuous consumption that drives her to suffer.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
In 1950 there was no plastic litter anywhere on earth. Today it touches every square inch, even the most remote like Mount Everest and the centre of the Pacific Ocean.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Plastic debris kills 100 million marine mammals each year. Even when a plastic is not toxic in itself, it acts like a sponge concentrating pesticides and toxic chemicals such as DDT and PCBs (Polychlorinated Biphenylses). It then photodegrades to tiny particles that outweigh plankton. Fish eat it and concentrate it up the food chain, to predators including humans.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
If you don’t want to help preserve the planet, please leave.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
It is poetic justice that the insanely greedy Canadians who sold their grandkids down the river, turning their lands into a toxic waste dump for the lure of riches and jobs will get nothing. The only people who will benefit from these jobs will be the Chinese. They will get the jobs because they work at 50% pay. The whole exercise is to benefit China and let it pollute the planetary atmosphere with CO₂. We do this to let them stall getting on with clean energy. A few people will get rich, but not the people who live in the tar sands and pipeline regions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Planetary traitors converged on Alberta, lured by high wages, to work on the dirtiest fossil fuel project on the planet — the tar sands. It is a major contributor to greenhouse gases that cause climate change. Now political infighting has caused oil prices to plummet and the Canadian dollar to tank. Most of these people are being suddenly laid off. It serves the bastards damn well right. They deserve far worse.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Poetic Justice for Florida
It comforting to know when Floridian Republicans claim climate change is a hoax without a stick of evidence to support their view, that they will be the first to go under water.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Poetic Justice For GM
There is a certain cosmic justice in the bankruptcy of General Motors. People at every level of the economic spectrum who, for economic motives, helped GM pummel the environment with deliberately inefficient automobiles are being punished both severely and economically.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Poetic Justice for the Koch Brothers
For their efforts in delaying mankind’s response to the threat of global warming, I suggest the following poetic justice would befit the Koch brothers, David and Charles: that they be kidnapped and crammed into a pine coffin intended for one, and cremated alive.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Pointless Muscle Car
What’s the point of a muscle car if it spends most of its life stuck in gridlock?~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Poison the Commons
Nobody has the right to poison the commons.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
American potato farmers, more than anyone, know how saturated their products are in pesticides. They don’t eat them. They grow organically for their own families.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Few people would go to the local park to poison the squirrels and birds. But these same people would not think twice about driving an SUV that belches CO₂ which will build up and wipe out entire species.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Poisoning Their Own Food
Americans pump 80,000 different industrial chemicals into the environment. They don’t seem to get it that their food and water comes from that same environment they are treating as a toxic dump site. They close their eyes tight and even refuse to even test the effects of the chemicals. It is like someone pouring their waste household chemicals into the cornflakes and wondering why they don’t feel as chipper as they used to.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Politicians are congenitally incapable of delivering bad news. The best they can do is lie. All we hear is silly wishful thinking that it is possible to burn tar sands faster than ever and still reduce CO₂ emissions.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Almost every politician is under two delusions:
- Increased economic activity is a good thing.
- Increased population is a good thing.
Increased economic activity has the following deadly consequences:
- More greenhouse gases.
- More pollution.
- Consumption of finite resources.
- Pushing other species to extinction.
The earth has a population of 7.357. It can sustain only 1 billion. We are already way over the edge. We are destroying our soils, stripping our fuels, consuming our resources, polluting our air and water to temporarily squeak by.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Politics of Climate Change
I wish I could strangle every politician who composes their environmental policy based purely on politics without any concern whatsoever for the fate of planet earth, e.g. Christy Clark, Rachel Notley, Justin Trudeau and Donald Trump.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Media love to do polls on what the public think about scientific matters such as the age of the earth, or how much damage climate change will do. They present this statistical information raw to the world, as if it were a reliable guide for forming personal opinions. They rarely tell the public the scientific truth along with the poll. Opinions have no effect on the truth, only on how humans act.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Voters tend to object to carbon or other pollution taxes even more strenuously than traditional taxes like income tax and sales tax. The intent of these taxes is make the polluters pay. Polluters are primarily industries. The voters seem to think they are the culprits and there is nothing they could do to reduce their pollution footprint. Where would they get a strange idea like that? Hmm…~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
The Poo Treatment
Imagine your partner went to the supermarket and bought a head of leafy lettuce. They brought it home and dunked it in an odour-proof Tupperware™ container of liquid cow manure, rinsed it briefly under the cold water tap, put it in a plastic bag and popped it in the fridge. You would think they had gone mad, but this is what the meat packing industry and the Harper government consider normal procedure for handling meat. Cattle are covered in feces in the feedlot, then given a quick squirt of a hose to remove it after they are slaughtered.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Poor Fuel Choices
When I was a boy in the 1950s, we heated our house by shovelling coal into a furnace. On 1952-12-07 a killer smog from coal smoke killed thousands of people in London. We have far better tools today to predict the consequences of our fuel choices, but corporations are more powerful and ruthless at keeping us entrenched in poor choices.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Our current world is a bit like an algae bloom. Oil has allowed us to balloon our population up to 7 billion. But when the boom is over, the population will have to drop precipitously to 1 or 2 billion at best. The sooner we switch to alternative energy, the larger that number can be.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Because we have temporarily exceeded the earth’s carrying capacity of 1 billion, it is only a matter of time until the population drops back down. The question is, can we make this a soft landing? The most likely scenario is plagues that attack once they develop resistance to our antibiotics due to overuse in animal husbandry. Just as with animals, crowding promotes disease. Many of the chemicals we release into the atmosphere reduce fertility or interfere with gender. We could have wars, civil wars and terrorism. We could have social breakdown, a sort of Mad Max world, something like Syria on a much wider scale. People could simply refuse to breed, not wanting to bring children into an increasingly bleak world. The collapse could happen through infant mortality going through the roof. Our agriculture depends on oil. As oil depletes, the green revolution will end. Further it will leave the soils eroded, unsuited for other types of horticulture. Famine will become a global problem, unlike the local famines we deal with now that can be solved by bringing in food from the outside.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Looked at globally, there is a population explosion going on that is stripping the earth of its resources. It is especially acute in subsaharan Africa, India and China. But ironically, there are some places where populations are projected to drop precipitously as populations age and young people delay marriage, in particular Japan and Europe. These places will have to import young people to help care for the aging population. However, this will make barely a dent in the overpopulated regions of the earth. Religious fundamentalists interfere with family planning everywhere on earth, deliberately blind to the harm they are doing. They mindlessly pursue strategies that were appropriate in the iron age.~ Roedy (born:1948-02-04 age:68)
Population Explosions and Crashes
When an animal finds a new food resource, it reacts with a