Friday, December 08, 2006


The world is warming up. That's not a good thing. It's not likely that the executives of Exxon will pay much of a price for it, but others will (already are). The waters on climate change are muddied by a gaggle of "sceptics", many paid by the oil industry.

Their focus is largely on overturning Kyoto. But Kyoto was not enough. We need to go far beyond that.

But we won't. The bottom line is year to year, not decade to decade. No one is changing anything unless it's costing them money not to.


I noted with interest that a technology exists -- although it has not been perfected -- that could turn the desert sun into power. Researchers suggest that the European Union could enter a partnership with nations such as Algeria to build concentrated solar power stations (which use mirrors to focus the sun in the same way small boys do to fry ants) and share the profits. This would allow a new source of income for oil producers, cushioning them from the impact of the loss of oil (which is imminent).

I sighed when I thought about how easily we could develop this technology and others like it if we had the money we're going to piss away on the new Trident to spend on them.


At 11:54 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think large scale solar power has no enviromental impact? the impact would be massive and probably renderthe equipment usless. Wave generation, wind they all have massive enviromental and ecological impact. Carbon reduction is impossible unless you halt indrustreal grow in Asia.

At 11:59 am, Blogger Dr Zen said...

No, I don't, but it has much less impact than alternatives. The impact would not be massive. That's ridiculous. You couldn't begin to make case for saying so. We are talking about building huge arrays of mirror in the middle of the desert, remember, not putting them in the middle of a high street.

Wave generation has almost no environmental impact, although it will have a local ecological impact. That can't be helped and it's true of any power station. Wind power just doesn't look nice.

Carbon reduction is impossible if we do not find ways to power Asian industrial growth without using carbon-based sources, because there is no way of preventing the growth short of coercion.

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At 3:54 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are talking about building huge arrays of mirror in the middle of the desert.

That in its self would have a huge consequences on global climate.

At 10:49 am, Blogger Dr Zen said...

No, you are just entirely wrong. It would have no effect on the climate whatsoever. Nice try though.

At 4:42 pm, Blogger Don said...

I worked in windfarms twenty years ago. It would be cool to wind up my career in something similar.


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