Uncharted Territory

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Preventing catastrophic global warming is the great challenge of our times. We need to change not just the technology we use, but also the way we organise ourselves. States will have to surrender some of their sovereignty as it becomes clear that actions in one part of the world can affect everyone on the planet. But this is just the start of it.

This blog is part of a project to develop a critique of the current policy response to the threat of global warming, develop an alternative agenda, and explore the ramifications.

OK, it might at times seem like a long whinge about dismal public transport in the South-East of England and the incompetence of the UK government and other institutions, but there is a higher purpose!

3 Comments »

  1. from http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/low/business/7910769.stm

    I found this interesting – I wasn’t aware of any such capital flight….

    Stephen.

    Laura (City Diaries): “The movement of depositor money to nationalised banks is sucking the life out of the rest of us, and so a race to appease the rating agency gods continues in the vague hope that it will bring depositors back. We are being perversely punished for not being bailed out.”

    Comment by Stephen Lawrence — February 28, 2009 @ 11:50 am

  2. Was that your letter in the Guardian yesterday (Friday 20th March, 2009)?

    Comment by Graeme Harker — March 21, 2009 @ 11:24 am

  3. The limited supply and worldwide environmental effects of carbon-based fuels demand that a different source of energy be identified and tapped. This analysis applies to synthetic bio fuels as well as fossil fuels. The obvious candidates to supplant carbon-based fuels are solar conversion, wind generation, hydraulic generation, geothermal extraction, fission, and fusion. When scaled to the size necessary to satisfy the energy demands of the world, all except fusion have severe unmitigated environmental impacts, induce geopolitical instability, or exhibit very limited availability, reliability, and sustainability. Most technologies suffer from more than one of these drawbacks.

    What is not generally known is that a safe practical way to harness the isotope’s of Hydrogen reaction was developed in the 1970’s but abandoned because it was only economically viable at a very large scale. The process is known as High Energy Heavy Ion Fusion. Such a fusion power plant would produce about 100 GW of power rather than the 1 GW desired by the power industry. Three facilities would meet the total needs of California, allowing fission and fossil fuel generation to be cut back significantly. Yes, this would require that we upgrade our electrical grid but that needs doing anyway.

    The fusion of Deuterium and Tritium (“DT”) to form Helium and a neutron is a well-known reaction that yields prodigious amounts of energy. Though sufficient fuel is available in seawater to sustain the global energy demand for millennia, we still need an engine capable of running the reaction. As of 2009, the search for such an engine has been going on for 6 decades and common wisdom says it is still 5 decades away. The problem is that the search has been concentrated on the 1 GW regime (the size of a normal large power plant). But, with HIF, we have that engine capability currently.

    High Energy Heavy Ion Fusion technology is more “ready to go” now than rocket technology was when President Kennedy set the goal to go to the moon and back within the decade. The implementation of HIF within the decade, to produce ample electricity, heat to directly drive the disassociation of H2O to produce H2 leading to synthetic fuel, and energy for the production of potable water can meet many of the nations and worlds pressing problems.

    We have the knowledge. To get HIF going it will take leadership, commitment and money. The new leadership is in office. The monies are in the stimulus package. All we are missing is commitment. Let our leaders commit to a program that will get High Energy Heavy Ion Fusion on track, NOW, before it is to late.

    Yes, WE CAN do this for the good of our nation and the world!

    This is the Silver Bullet that the Administration has been looking for.

    Comment by hal — October 29, 2009 @ 9:30 am


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