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Old 09-15-2013, 03:44 PM   #931 (permalink)
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The Arctic ice is declining decade after decade after decade. That's what the data show.
For how many decades do we have data on the ice ?

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Old 09-15-2013, 04:48 PM   #932 (permalink)
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Wave your magic wand so that the undeveloped world becomes developed right now. Do you think that any of the environmental and resource problems we are facing, at the current (much lower) level of consumption, will have been solved? With three or four times the emissions and three or four times the resource demands? Development alone won't work.
Well...yes, it will. provided the 'magic wand' you invoked is RBFuller's Design Science Revolution. How about 1/3 to 1/4 the emissions and 1/3 to 1/4 the resource demands?

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Re. biochar. That may be needed as a re-sequestration process (for CO2) but it makes no sense to dig up ancient Carbon in one place, burn it and then spend more money and effort to try to bury the Carbon again elsewhere. Far better not to release the ancient Carbon in the first place.
What—you want to make biochar out of coal? Let us know what you think of this: Cool Planet | The only company producing carbon negative fuels based on plant photosynthesis to remove CO2 from our atmosphere

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Well developing GM means CO2, and also quite a few people here don't like GM in any way shape or form - Personally I'm neutral. Whilst we have a choice to go organic or not in the rich first world if you offer a farmer in Africa a crop than can withstand drought better, needs fewer fertilizers, yields more, and extracts less nutrients from the soil I doubt he or she would say no.
What they get instead is pesticide resistance and non-viable seeds. That shifts me away from neutral.
 
Old 09-15-2013, 06:00 PM   #933 (permalink)
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What they get instead is pesticide resistance and non-viable seeds. That shifts me away from neutral.
As I tapped I am neutral on this - I can see both sides.

On one side the farmers get to grow food which they would otherwise not be able to grow (or be less able to grow in as much volume), and on the other side they then have to buy seeds exclusively from the multinational seed producers.

Without those producers investing in the research the resistant crops would not exist and people would starve. And them to exist they need a return, but not an unfair one.

The same problem exists in the Pharmaceutical industry - it costs millions to make and test a new treatment but once made how do you decide who gets a return on the investment vs who gets treated.

It is a balance but if we decide that development is no longer needed then we accept the state we are at now, so that farmer doesn't get access to that crop, can't grow as much (if anything) and people maybe die or develop less well so they are always vulnerable.

Again who decides who dies ?

And by what right ?
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Old 09-15-2013, 10:23 PM   #934 (permalink)
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We have satellite data since 1979, and we have maps drawn by the Danes(?) for a long time before that.

The decadal average has been going down ever since 1979. The climate has been warming and the ice is melting more on average. What is so difficult to understand about this concept?

Climate is the long term trend; not the year to year changes.
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Old 09-15-2013, 11:10 PM   #935 (permalink)
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But directly you can estimate the cost. Via "addressing" CC, nope.
You can play out any scenario based on the emissions profile (over time), where you end up and how you get there, use time value discounting and get various answers. The most recent (2007, so far) IPCC reports use some simplified and specific examples; Stern, likewise; Garnault, likewise.

When none of the scenarios that avoid the effects of climate change cost more (where extra cost exists - it often has no cost) than the extra cost of not avoiding them, it's obvious what course to take.

You have it in your head that a comfortable standard of living cannot be provided without burning fossil fuels, or in any other way than it is currently achieved. Not so. The technology exists and the direct economic cost of doing so is reasonable and affordable. The problem is the political will to do it.

If you are invested in businesses that will not exist if climate change is addressed, then maybe you will see addressing climate change as "high cost".

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But not using them reduces yield, oh hang on...
The point is, long term, so does using them. You can add all the fertilizer or use all the pesticides you like but it's no benefit if you've moved the rainfall elsewhere in so doing.

I am saying take the long term view. If you like, the total yield over time will be greater by using fertilizers and pesticides/herbicides more cleverly (less).

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Well developing GM means CO2,
Why? GM is a tool, nothing more. It's not inherently linked to greenhouse gas emissions. It may be used in ways that rely on methods that do cause emissions now, but it doesn't have to be used in those ways.

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and also quite a few people here don't like GM in any way shape or form - Personally I'm neutral. Whilst we have a choice to go organic or not in the rich first world if you offer a farmer in Africa a crop than can withstand drought better, needs fewer fertilizers, yields more, and extracts less nutrients from the soil I doubt he or she would say no.
True, organic, as it is commonly held to be done (no GM, no fertilizer or pesticide/herbicide inputs) is a luxury the world can't afford. I've written it before; every tool - GM included - is going to be needed.

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And Lord Stern was wrong in so many areas. The guy he quoted the most in his report says his report is pish.
Stern is a few years ago now and Stern's is not the only analysis around. The problem with economics is you cannot (accurately) predict the future. You can get somewhere close making some "what if" assumptions. In the particular case of climate change "somewhere close" shows very clearly which direction to take.

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I'm talking incremental growth, without Greenpeace imposing only renewable power and WWF taking land (sometimes by force) for Palm Oil, if we could do it in one go that would be superb but we can't.
The rate at which it is done is irrelevant if it doesn't solve any problems when you get there.

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Without this how do you propose to solve population growth ? People getting richer have fewer kids because they all survive. Did you notice world population growth is slowing as the world is getting richer ? If not using this way then how - bottom line, who dies and who decides who dies ? If it is based on emissions and consumption then surely our kids should die first - so is going to go with that idea ? Not me.
Population alone isn't the only factor. It is impact times population. True, birth rates are lower in the developed world and true, population cannot increase without limit.

Reducing the environmental impact of a person in the developed world has far greater effect than preventing an increase in the population of the undeveloped parts of the world. From a base of ~20 to 30 times greater (the current relative difference) there is much more scope to reduce the developed world person's environmental impact than the person living at a subsistence level.

It also - assuming that that the same measures are eventually taken by everyone - reduces the environmental impact of those new people when they do reach the same stage of development.

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]How do you propose to solve environmental pollution ? Wealthier countries impose emissions standards (clean air act, anti smog, restrictions on fertilizer use and run off as good examples, there are more) and can afford the costs required to abide by them. They can also provide clean water.
It's not either/or. But they can't begin to fix those things if they are going to be pushed backwards again due to the extra costs imposed by the effects of climate change.

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Poor people use more and more land or hunt more and more wildlife to survive, wealthier people living in cities don't. Wealthier countries also protect wildlife areas, wildernesses and impose standards on anyone doing anything in them.
People with wealth (us, by definition if we can type and read this) do have environmental impacts that extend beyond their immediate surroundings. You just don't see it because it gets outsourced.

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Unless you have a magic herd of unicorns we will be digging up the ancient carbon and turning it into CO2. Personally I would rather we did that in the most efficient way possible, not by burning it in a field full of Diesel generators acting as backup for useless and bl00dy expensive renewables.
We won't use all the fossil fuels because it is uneconomic to do so. The entire economy is going to be reconfigured. It is that which is required to avoid using Diesel generators as back up to renewables.
 
Old 09-15-2013, 11:17 PM   #936 (permalink)
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What—you want to make biochar out of coal?
Just the opposite. If the coal is being dug up and burnt in one place and the biochar buried somewhere else (at a much lower rate), then biochar is indeed being made (indirectly) out of coal and no problem has been solved.

The digging up part has to be stopped before the biochar can be effective.
 
Old 09-16-2013, 01:50 AM   #937 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Arragonis
Again who decides who dies ? And by what right ?
Perhaps your familair with the American television series Mystry Science Theater 3000?
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Originally Posted by MST3K
Joel: What do you want for Christmas, Crow?

Crow T. Robot: I wanna decide who lives and who dies!
Occasionally6 -- Reminds me of someone recently who asserted if you put an efficient engine in an old car, suddenly your responsible for the emissions of the original drivetrain. It wasn't you was it?

Why is Biochar carrying Coal's baggage? Isn't it more a situation where as soon as the production of biochar exceeds the rate of coal burning, a corner has been turned?

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The digging up part has to be stopped before the biochar can be effective.
Agreed, there.

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You have it in your head that a comfortable standard of living cannot be provided without burning fossil fuels, or in any other way than it is currently achieved. Not so. The technology exists and the direct economic cost of doing so is reasonable and affordable. The problem is the political will to do it.
There too.
 
Old 09-16-2013, 04:22 AM   #938 (permalink)
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Again who decides who dies ?
You F#@$ing decide for your self, and the mere act of choosing to have kids means they will also die someday, and the conditions under which you bring them and provide for them, and so on, sets the stage for the next generation.

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Originally Posted by Arragonis View Post
And by what right ?
freedom of choice and dumb luck.

I'm a humanitarian, but also a realist. Other peoples kids have to be primarily the parents responsibility, or things get really weird at the logical extremes. The top down approach involves being very judgmental and presumptuous (life, you're doing it wrong, here let me help).

Last edited by P-hack; 09-16-2013 at 04:35 AM..
 
Old 09-16-2013, 05:06 AM   #939 (permalink)
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Why is Biochar carrying Coal's baggage? Isn't it more a situation where as soon as the production of biochar exceeds the rate of coal burning, a corner has been turned?
OK, yes.

Until that point is reached, it would be better to forget the biochar and completely burn the biomass it is made from in lieu of the coal.
 
Old 09-16-2013, 05:14 AM   #940 (permalink)
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You F#@$ing decide for your self, and the mere act of choosing to have kids means they will also die someday, and the conditions under which you bring them and provide for them, and so on, sets the stage for the next generation.
I have had the discussion with friends over how many children we should have. Given that you will raise them with the values of conservation, but they will have significant environmental impact just by being born into the developed world, can you justify having them at all?

Probably the answer is yes.

Now, how many? If you use constraint and have one or two, you risk them being outbred by those who have different values.

How fast can/will conservationist memes "breed"?

 
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