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The sky is falling...the sky is falling...

Old 07-02-2007, 05:39 AM
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LOL... nope, it is not... but I think it's undeniable that the human race has not exactly been beneficial for this planet!?

That is, of course unless you believe that the greenhouse effect and rapid deforrestation (to name a couple) are just a political myth....

But then... so was the Holocaust, right?
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Old 07-02-2007, 07:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by wswartzwel
Algae!!! cool, I have a heck of a time keeping that stuff out of my backyard Koi pond....
What methods have you tried? We can back after a two week vacation and ours was green.

RB
Old 07-02-2007, 09:37 AM
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We absolutely NEED the greenhouse effect to live on this planet. Otherwise we would freeze every night. The greenhouse effect is precisely one of the reasons this planet is habitable. Being a science minded person, I often question any hypothesis that is claimed to be absolute prior to the elimination of all others. Science is often more about disproving things than proving them. I won't jump on either side because I don't he enough evidence to make an informed decision, but NASA has said that surface temperatures on Mars have increased at a rate comparable to those of Earth(and Mars has no greenhouse effect). Being that we are planning on making a manned Mars mission sometime this generation, a lot of research has been going into studying Mars and it's similarity to Earth. Don't be quick to jump on any bandwagon without the requirement of concrete proof.
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Old 07-02-2007, 09:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by signit98
LOL... nope, it is not... but I think it's undeniable that the human race has not exactly been beneficial for this planet!?
I've stated numerous times on several forums and in public as well, that the human race is redundant on this planet. We don't contribute in any way but to ourselves, and even then, only to a select few.

Even those that are extremly ecologicaly oriented constantly spatter the same dogma: "save the planet for our children if not for ourselves, think seven generations ahead, etc...". As if animals and plants have no will and desire to live and prosper. As if it's all just objects and I am the only subject in existance.

Well, here's my reply to the human race:
Old 07-02-2007, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by micko77
We absolutely NEED the greenhouse effect to live on this planet.
It's out of control.
Old 07-02-2007, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RBMann
What methods have you tried? We can back after a two week vacation and ours was green.

RB

I have added more shrubbery around the perimeter for shade, and increased the size of the waterfall and am using a larger pump. I am trying a new chemical this week, but am not sure how the fish will respond... I will know in a few weeks.
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Old 07-02-2007, 10:00 AM
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Two different measurements of efficiency - the 30-40% numbers represents mechanical effort extracted vs. the ultimate energy content of the fuel, and the 70-80% numbers represent work extracted vs. what is theoretically possible at a given set of operating conditions. large turbocompounded ship's engines frequently exceed 90% of theoretical, and usually exceed that which is achieved in power plants, allthough at greatly increased complexity.

My concerns with this engine would revolve around sealing and cooling - where the other 60-70% goes! I'd guess at the claimed 3k hp, that core would glow like a light bulb and quickly seize. If they could solve these problems we'd have a compact little engine that achieves pretty normal fuel efficiency.

My favorite car project is this one: http://www.loremo.com/index_en.php

Nothing like light weight, good aero and low power!

Mike
Old 07-02-2007, 10:12 AM
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I find it amazing that people think that electric cars will suddenly and drastically reduce energy consumption. As if the energy you put into a car comes magically. You are burning fuel or splitting atoms to get that energy to begin with, but instead of burning it locally in the engine you are moving it into the battery (which incurs losses), then losses moving it out of the battery (which incurs losses), transmission of power through lines (which incurs losses). There has been some great discussion about engine efficiency in this thread, but reducing our energy consumption isn't going to magically happen by some miracle engine. It's going to come from people not using their home air conditioners as much, switching lighting to LED, and not driving somewhere every time we have the itch because we're bored. We're all guilty to some extent and we will all only sacrifice to a level convenient for ourselves. The answer to solving the energy crisis is lifestyle change...not miracles of science.
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Old 07-02-2007, 10:25 AM
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Micko, youo are absolutely right... just switching to electricity is not the solution, scaling back and maybe not driving the 200 yars to the liquor store would be a good start thoough... or maybe NOT buying that humongouos SUV that is ABSOLUTELY NOT NEEDED...

...the dilemma is that If we build Solar Panels, we will have to deprive the planet of the limited resoources for the raw materials available... if we build Wind Generators, they only last about 10 years and then you have a big pile of hazardous waste... let alone the pollution created when those things where made... there are tidal power plants and even the Atomic energy is being looked at again, as it is (comparatively) a very clean resource of energy, just dangerous... that's where the human element comes in...

Unfortunately I will have to 100% agree with you on your statements... and the also state the reason why mankind will fail... we are not good at scaling back, giving back or being resourceful... especially not here in the US, where the ME ME ME attitude seems to have prevailed... or in the 3rd world countries, where lack of education and exploitation make the desired process virtually unobtainable...

As I said before...
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Old 07-02-2007, 10:59 AM
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Gief Mr. Fusion to every household. I'd like one too.

Moderation may be the key to solving our energy problems, but I don't see it happening in a near future. Only an event of catastrophic proportions would force us to change our ways.
Old 07-02-2007, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by signit98
there are tidal power plants and even the Atomic energy is being looked at again, as it is (comparatively) a very clean resource of energy, just dangerous...
Just a note far off-topic from the OP... there are currently permit applications submitted to regulatory agencies worldwide for more nuclear stations than this planet has steel and concrete to provide construction material for... if you pay any attention at all to the power gen industry, you'll recognize the term "nuclear renaissance." It's going on NOW, and it's the wave of the immediate future... again...
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Old 07-02-2007, 12:51 PM
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The Folly of Mankind...always the same throughout history and right up to the end. Sounds hopeless and yes I will rely on the only One who can fix it. I'm only too aware of my own failures and the failures of others I depended on. Why should I expect any more or less from mere humanity? Doesn't anyone else see the destructive bent of the leaders of mankind throughout history? Why do the worst among us, more often than not, dominate the power centers of the world?...Would I make the same wrong, corrupt choices if I were in power?...probably, I have to admit. Would you, could you solve the worlds problems?...don't kidd yourself for a second...you're just as weak minded as the rest of us.

It's just as well if you can at least influence your own small sphere of the world by showing some kindness to your fellow man in spite of it all. What more can I really impact? We own and drive 4-Cylinder cars (not SUVs), we turn off the A/C at night and let the fresh air in. We let it get cold overnight in the winter...it's a small token for a "westerner" when my 3rd world brethren suffer with none. It's all so meaningless says the "Preacher" in the book of Ecclesiastes. This book gave me the best perspective...take a look for yourself.
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Old 07-02-2007, 07:12 PM
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In the end, it really doesn't matter. When and how this race ends is really the question...not if? If we were to make it 5 billion more years we would see the end of our sun. They say that all growing exponentials eventually plateau. As the shear number of humans increase, we can't consume at the individual level as the generation before us. Like other microorganisms we grow until we consume our environment to the point where we no longer can grow. That exponentially balance finally has an equilibrium point. It's inevitable...


But honestly, the earth has seen four independent ice ages over the past 200 million years. The cyclic nature of this planets climate is sure to eventually wipe us from it and start the slate clean.
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Old 07-03-2007, 04:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by micko77
In the end, it really doesn't matter. When and how this race ends is really the question...not if? If we were to make it 5 billion more years we would see the end of our sun. They say that all growing exponentials eventually plateau. As the shear number of humans increase, we can't consume at the individual level as the generation before us. Like other microorganisms we grow until we consume our environment to the point where we no longer can grow. That exponentially balance finally has an equilibrium point. It's inevitable...
Correct.

But the question is whether their is a dramatic "crash" at that point, or whether we approach it more gracefully. Both types of change play out in history all the time, both with respect to the biology and with respect to human civilizations. The crash, while part of the natural progression of life, can be quite devestating and not something I would look forward to.

I believe we owe it to our children to at least be conscious of the results of our activities and try to conduct ourselves for the overall good of the human race, not resign ourselves to whatever happens as "fate" or "God's will" and then go about our life maximizing our own lot and saying to the hell with the consequences.

There is a natural tendency to look at the relatively stability of our world in the short timeframe we exist and assume that the systems of the earth have great inherent stability. Choas theory shows otherwise - a complex system may trundle along with great apparent stability for a long time, but then spin wildly into a new pattern when something is nudged or reaches a tipping point.

On the global warming issue, the science is not good enough to unequivocally prove that our activities are causing the current warm up, nor is the science good enough to precisely predict the exact consequences. But the science is good enough to say that increasing the level of CO2 in our atmosphere by 50-100% in the geologic blink of an eye is EXTREMELY LIKELY to cause very dramatic climate change. Given this fact, and given that we don't have another planet to go to, I think we should be playing it a little conservative and working on technologies and policies that don't continue "business as usual".

I think we could virtually immediately reduce fossil fuel use by about 50% with almost no reduction in the quality of our lifes. We might be driving 35-hp bikes rather than 150-hp bikes, but sometimes I think I have more fun on my 35-hp DRZ than on any of my more powerful bikes. Bigger isn't necessarily better. All it takes is everyone getting on board and conducting their lifes in a thinking way with regard to the consequences.

- Mark
Old 07-03-2007, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
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I think we could virtually immediately reduce fossil fuel use by about 50% with almost no reduction in the quality of our lifes. Mark
I agree. If everyone drove a hybrid or turbo-diesel that got 40+ mpg instead of 20 (or whatever the current average is) and installed the new low-consumption light bulbs in their homes, we'd probably cut oil consumption by nearly half. That doubles the life of proven crude oil reserves and cuts gas emissions proportionally. Forget about "green" vs. other idealogies -- its just simply smart to minimize waste, wherever you find it.

While we're at it, I also think the amount of consumer packaging that we throw away (particularly plastics) is sickening, like that generated by the "wholesome, healthy" trend of drinking bottled water. Perhaps its been too long since the last Depression; we've largely forgotten about the basis virtue of frugality.
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Old 07-03-2007, 10:54 AM
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Fascinating thread that covers a lot of ground. My comments:

1. Contrary to what is espoused here California has much much tougher diesel emission laws than the EU. A google or wikipedia search will demonstrate that. Like this one:

EU Light Cars and trucks: http://www.dieselnet.com/standards/eu/ld.php

Euro 4 Nox=.25 gm per KILOMETER

CA Emissions light cars and trucks: http://www.dieselnet.com/standards/us/ld_ca.php

Nox=.3 gm per MILE. Of course miles are much longer than Kilometers. The equivalent NOx emissions in KM would be

NOx=.1875 per Kilometer

2. The number of people who think that this is some type of vast conspiracy is suprising and disappointing.

3. MYT is just one of many "miracle" engines which never seem to come to fruition. Therefore, I doubt it is a better mouse trap.

4. Solyent Green is people.
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Old 07-03-2007, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by 1967 R50/2
4. Solyent Green is people.

That movie made me fall in love with classical music... oddly enough!
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Old 07-03-2007, 11:22 AM
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You don't have to look far to find some sobering facts about bottled water.
This is one of the more digestible articles:
http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2007/02/18/EDG56N6OA41.DTL

Also, I read as many comments as I could regarding the engine of the future on many of the links. The most interesting comment I read was something about how much effort it is to find oil, extract oil, ship oil, refine oil, and ship the oil and now gas to put in an SUV that has gone through its own industrial complex, all just to cart our 180lbs around...

...the point is, when you consider all of the time, money and effort just to move 180lbs around in comfort then you realize that its not only about engine efficiency.
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Old 07-03-2007, 11:25 AM
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back to algae:
while working on an R&D project regarding hydrogen fuel cells, there was a great amount of excitement about the "discovery" of....pond scum.

seems that pond scum, or algae, is one of the best, most potent sources for hydrogen fuel cells.

the japanese, being big on koi (and fishing in general), were "very most excited" about this discovery.

last i checked on the project (about 5-7 years ago), there were "scum ponds" being built and tested with "great enthuaism and excitement".

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Old 07-03-2007, 11:48 AM
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