General / Off-Topic Recycle or Die! (the elite environmental thread)

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@Six6VI

Jason taught me that I have to end on a positive note, so here goes "nothing" :)

We have a lot of energy available here on Earth. The sunlight hitting Earth's surface contains 1,368 W/m2. Because Earth has such a large surface, that sums up to a lot of energy. "Each hour 430 quintillion Joules of energy from the sun hits the Earth. That's 430 with 18 zeroes after it!"


What we need to invent is a method to extract that energy, more efficiently than using wind turbines, and more importantly we need to invent a way of storing that energy.

Many years ago, I was part of a project where we turned methanol into gasoline. The energy density for methanol is 22 MJ/kg. Gasoline contains about 47 MJ/kg. We did that by turning methanol into DME, and then turning DME into gasoline. You need to add energy to have that process work (because conservation of energy), but the rationale was that we could get that energy from the Sun. Also we used different tricks like lowering the activation energy of the reaction "using" catalysts.

It turned out that we didn't need that second step, turning DME into gasonline. One of my colleagues tried pouring DME into his lawn mover and it ran! :) It was the top story on CNN. "Global energy crisis solved!". Since then the project was buried, mainly because of a patent, but also because burning gasoline (or DME) creates the dreaded CO2.

All in all it wasn't the best idea in the World, but it's ideas like that, that we need to invent, and when it comes to storing energy from the Sun, the possibilities are almost endless. Not all of them are feasible, but some might be.
 
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I just clicked 'show ignored content' (last time I make that mistake) and saw a post from someone who was previously telling people to 'learn real science' demonstrate that they neither know the definition of scientific theory nor grasp the basics of scientific method.
 
Yeah, i'm sorry the thread became such a mess (which i suspect was intentional). The ignore button is kind of needed :(

Here is some on-topic stuff to digest :)
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Climate crisis: 11,000 scientists warn of ‘untold suffering’:


The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists.

“We declare clearly and unequivocally that planet Earth is facing a climate emergency,” it states. “To secure a sustainable future, we must change how we live. [This] entails major transformations in the ways our global society functions and interacts with natural ecosystems.”

There is no time to lose, the scientists say: “The climate crisis has arrived and is accelerating faster than most scientists expected. It is more severe than anticipated, threatening natural ecosystems and the fate of humanity.”

The statement is published in the journal BioScience on the 40th anniversary of the first world climate conference, which was held in Geneva in 1979. The statement was a collaboration of dozens of scientists and endorsed by further 11,000 from 153 nations. The scientists say the urgent changes needed include ending population growth, leaving fossil fuels in the ground, halting forest destruction and slashing meat eating.
Lots of info and some contentious issues in the article.
 
Yeah, i'm sorry the thread became such a mess (which i suspect was intentional). The ignore button is kind of needed :(

Here is some on-topic stuff to digest :)
-------------------------------------------
Climate crisis: 11,000 scientists warn of ‘untold suffering’:




Lots of info and some contentious issues in the article.
Yep, I linked to that article yesterday, but it "got lost". There's basically not much news in the article, but there was a couple of sentences that caught my attention, probably, because that is what I've been saying all along:

...untold suffering due to the climate crisis

Untold? I agree, but the question is why it has remained untold, when it was common knowledge in the scientific community? Partly because nobody likes to read about it in the news, and partly because there are economical interests in keeping it "secret", but could it also be that it ruins any scientific career saying it like it is?

Ripple said scientists have a moral obligation to issue warnings of catastrophic threats: “It is more important than ever that we speak out, based on evidence. It is time to go beyond just research and publishing, and to go directly to the citizens and policymakers.”

See above...

Today the article isn't on the front page of the Guardian website anymore. Instead the top story is about Jean-Claude Juncker dissing the British brexit process. The article is not among the 10 most read articles. The most commented article is about Emma Watson inventing another word for being single.

Edit: This while Guardian claims: "As the climate crisis escalates the Guardian will not stay quiet. This is our pledge: we will continue to give global heating, wildlife extinction and pollution the urgent attention and prominence they demand. The Guardian recognises the climate emergency as the defining issue of our times."

Yeah right...
 
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a. I know ;) Or maybe grandma is stubborn.
b. I read the posts, and your links.
c. ???
d. You got that one wrong. Electrons is not the same as neutrons.
e. Yes, "everything" is a theory in science. A scientific theory starts as a hypothesis (an idea), and then you try to make experiments trying to verify/reject the hypothesis. If you can prove your hypothesis, then it becomes a theory, meaning that that "model" is the best one we have to describe a certain part of reality. In the case of stars and fusion, that proces has been reproduced here on Earth. Just not for very long, due to the temperature needed. Fusion is real, and it's the process going on inside the Sun. It's the energy created by that process that keeps everything running here on Earth. Fusion inside stars has also been proven in several other ways.
f. Gravity is not what Newton thought it was. It is curvature of spacetime, but that doesn't mean the equations Newton came up with are "wrong". They still work pretty well in most cases. Newtons understanding of gravity was a step in the direction towards relativity theory. We know from physics that relativity theory can't be the complete story, but the apple will still fall to the ground ;)
A. So when are we going to stop the one-up competitive banter and have a rational conversation hmm?
B. Thanks, might be a first? Forums aren't generally places where one actually reads what's been said.
C. Seemed you meant "splitting the atom" in an uncontrolled chain reaction not controlled reactor cores.
D. Radionuclides / nuclear waste can produce many harmful emissions including conversion electrons.

Let me see if I can come up with a better example of what I'm attempting to convey. Ptolemy came up with a reasonable model of the Solar system. It could be used to predict where planets would be with a fair amount of accuracy however, as it was a Geocentric model its founding assumption was incorrect.

So the question would be, what if another founding assumption is eventually obsoleted by better data?
 
@Six6VI

Jason taught me that I have to end on a positive note, so here goes "nothing" :)

We have a lot of energy available here on Earth. The sunlight hitting Earth's surface contains 1,368 W/m2. Because Earth has such a large surface, that sums up to a lot of energy. "Each hour 430 quintillion Joules of energy from the sun hits the Earth. That's 430 with 18 zeroes after it!"


What we need to invent is a method to extract that energy, more efficiently than using wind turbines, and more importantly we need to invent a way of storing that energy.

Many years ago, I was part of a project where we turned methanol into gasoline. The energy density for methanol is 22 MJ/kg. Gasoline contains about 47 MJ/kg. We did that by turning methanol into DME, and then turning DME into gasoline. You need to add energy to have that process work (because conservation of energy), but the rationale was that we could get that energy from the Sun. Also we used different tricks like lowering the activation energy of the reaction "using" catalysts.

It turned out that we didn't need that second step, turning DME into gasonline. One of my colleagues tried pouring DME into his lawn mover and it ran! :) It was the top story on CNN. "Global energy crisis solved!". Since then the project was buried, mainly because of a patent, but also because burning gasoline (or DME) creates the dreaded CO2.

All in all it wasn't the best idea in the World, but it's ideas like that, that we need to invent, and when it comes to storing energy from the Sun, the possibilities are almost endless. Not all of them are feasible, but some might be.
Yay, a +1 I didn't have to retract on reading the next paragraph. Well done, you earned that one! ;)

Now you're thinking, and putting forward possible solutions, which is awesome! Instead of trying to store Solar derived energy, and yes I realise there is currently (pun intended) significant loss during transmission, it's always light on one side of the planet. Why can't power be sent to the dark side?

Yeah I know, may seem like a dumb question but this was a serious consideration in the AC/DC war.
 
Yay, a +1 I didn't have to retract on reading the next paragraph. Well done, you earned that one! ;)

Now you're thinking, and putting forward possible solutions, which is awesome! Instead of trying to store Solar derived energy, and yes I realise there is currently (pun intended) significant loss during transmission, it's always light on one side of the planet. Why can't power be sent to the dark side?

Yeah I know, may seem like a dumb question but this was a serious consideration in the AC/DC war.
As some philosophers say:

The solution is in the problem.

Most of the many civilization-threatening problems we face can be solved if we have exergy. That is another word for available usable energy. When Clausius invented the term "entropy" he deliberately chose a word that was as close to energy as possible. We don't use energy. We use exergy. That creates entropy. Entropy can be understood as dispersion of energy. Von Neumann claimed that you could win any discussion by using the word entropy, because nobody knew (knows) what entropy really is. It's in the understanding of entropy that you'll find "the holy grail" if it's even there. It's not in perpetual motion, but that shouldn't keep anyone from trying, if they want to. They just have to prove that it works, and my personal opinion based on physics, is that looking for it is a waste of precious time.
 
I just clicked 'show ignored content' (last time I make that mistake) and saw a post from someone who was previously telling people to 'learn real science' demonstrate that they neither know the definition of scientific theory nor grasp the basics of scientific method.
I never had you pegged as a poster who couldn't handle diverting opinions.
 
As some philosophers say:

The solution is in the problem.

Most of the many civilization-threatening problems we face can be solved if we have exergy. That is another word for available usable energy. When Clausius invented the term "entropy" he deliberately chose a word that was as close to energy as possible. We don't use energy. We use exergy. That creates entropy. Entropy can be understood as dispersion of energy. Von Neumann claimed that you could win any discussion by using the word entropy, because nobody knew (knows) what entropy really is. It's in the understanding of entropy that you'll find "the holy grail" if it's even there. It's not in perpetual motion, but that shouldn't keep anyone from trying, if they want to. They just have to prove that it works, and my personal opinion based on physics, is that looking for it is a waste of precious time.
And some engineers, and economists might say: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

The species has managed to cooperate to bring about quantum leaps in some areas, but not others, as far as we can see. If we're still using steam turbines to generate 80~90% of our electricity, there seems to be more than a century of lag where little progress has been made other than alternative heat source.

Graphene (Carbon) looks promising in Solar, but not so much for mobile off-grid applications, maybe...
[Edit: Ignore the time machine part, I'm just focusing on the power source: "Mr Fusion".]
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptlhgFaB89Y
 
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The climate movement needs to get out of its morale trap.

Found an interesting interview with Mathew Huber that got me reviewing some of my own positions. Mathew Huber is a member of the DSA (Democratic Socialists of Amerika) which I guess makes him a no go read for some of the posters here. Anyway, some of his positions weren't all too comfortable to me either, but I believe it's high time to start thinking beyond our crusted opinions and political left/right dogmas.

Basically, he's critizising the current ecologic movement (which is very much on topic here) and explains why. It also helped me a little to better understand some of the here posted positions that seem to be rather specific to american social conditions.


Just for reference, here's the German interview that I mentioned above:

 
The climate movement needs to get out of its morale trap.

Found an interesting interview with Mathew Huber that got me reviewing some of my own positions. Mathew Huber is a member of the DSA (Democratic Socialists of Amerika) which I guess makes him a no go read for some of the posters here. Anyway, some of his positions weren't all too comfortable to me either, but I believe it's high time to start thinking beyond our crusted opinions and political left/right dogmas.

Basically, he's critizising the current ecologic movement (which is very much on topic here) and explains why. It also helped me a little to better understand some of the here posted positions that seem to be rather specific to american social conditions.


Just for reference, here's the German interview that I mentioned above:

Thanks for posting, got to this bit and stopped reading:

Quote: Ecological producers are the plants that harness solar power and water [oops, forgot CO2] to produce organic plant matter at the base of any “food web.”

Seems they might have the right general idea: They who hath the gold are calling all the shots, making a mess and blaming it on we peons, but I'm not sure an adversarial approach will end well. The current climate hysteria might help motivate the herd toward action but not until we stop fighting with each other.

Consumption includes more than just food, fuel and electricity. Domestic appliances and luxury items could be designed to be repaired, upgraded and thereby last longer instead of going in a landfill every two years because the ink cartridges cost more than a new printer or a new phone is "free" with a contract.

The solution is unlikely to be polarised to one extreme. Change requires collaboration of capital, and labour.
 
Domestic appliances and luxury items could be designed to be repaired, upgraded and thereby last longer instead of going in a landfill every two years because the ink cartridges cost more than a new printer or a new phone is "free" with a contract.
Regardless of everything else in this topic, this is so true... I find it quite depressing that I had an 18 month of 42inch TV, that developed a fault, after a fight I had it repaired for free. 12 months later the same fault happened....... it was not economically viable to fix it professionally and LG told me to bin it and buy a new one.

the fix................. I took the back off, unplugged a ribbon cable, cleaned with alcohol (didnt have pure so in true bodge it manner used vodka)edit my mistake that was a different repair that i used vodka, this repair involved a............ pencil rubber. I just had to clean the carbon buildup off the ribbon cable , plugged back in and the TV worked for another 3 years.....
Truth is with a better design i bet even then it would have been repairable....

Compare that to my 14 inch colour tv i got in, probably xmas 1984.... That was still going in 1998 as my mums bedroom TV - I know this as i moved back home for a time after uni whilst looking for work.... she eventually got rid but only because she could buy a better screened one which used a fraction of the power and took up far less room.... it was still fully functional (truth be told i wish i still had it, would be great for retrogaming).

back when i was a kid things like tv repair men were par for the course..... now adays it is a dead profession.
 
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Regardless of everything else in this topic, this is so true... I find it quite depressing that I had an 18 month of 42inch TV, that developed a fault, after a fight I had it repaired for free. 12 months later the same fault happened....... it was not economically viable to fix it professionally and LG told me to bin it and buy a new one.

the fix................. I took the back off, unplugged a ribbon cable, cleaned with alcohol (didnt have pure so in true bodge it manner used vodka)edit my mistake that was a different repair that i used vodka, this repair involved a............ pencil rubber. I just had to clean the carbon buildup off the ribbon cable , plugged back in and the TV worked for another 3 years.....
Truth is with a better design i bet even then it would have been repairable....

Compare that to my 14 inch colour tv i got in, probably xmas 1984.... That was still going in 1998 as my mums bedroom TV - I know this as i moved back home for a time after uni whilst looking for work.... she eventually got rid but only because she could buy a better screened one which used a fraction of the power and took up far less room.... it was still fully functional (truth be told i wish i still had it, would be great for retrogaming).

back when i was a kid things like tv repair men were par for the course..... now adays it is a dead profession.
Such things, used to be built. Now they are, just put together.
 
Regardless of everything else in this topic, this is so true... I find it quite depressing that I had an 18 month of 42inch TV, that developed a fault, after a fight I had it repaired for free. 12 months later the same fault happened....... it was not economically viable to fix it professionally and LG told me to bin it and buy a new one.

the fix................. I took the back off, unplugged a ribbon cable, cleaned with alcohol (didnt have pure so in true bodge it manner used vodka)edit my mistake that was a different repair that i used vodka, this repair involved a............ pencil rubber. I just had to clean the carbon buildup off the ribbon cable , plugged back in and the TV worked for another 3 years.....
Truth is with a better design i bet even then it would have been repairable....

Compare that to my 14 inch colour tv i got in, probably xmas 1984.... That was still going in 1998 as my mums bedroom TV - I know this as i moved back home for a time after uni whilst looking for work.... she eventually got rid but only because she could buy a better screened one which used a fraction of the power and took up far less room.... it was still fully functional (truth be told i wish i still had it, would be great for retrogaming).

back when i was a kid things like tv repair men were par for the course..... now adays it is a dead profession.
800 grit wet and dry. I've lost count of the computers I've fixed by lightly freshening up the bare copper. ;)
 
The climate movement needs to get out of its morale trap.

Found an interesting interview with Mathew Huber that got me reviewing some of my own positions. Mathew Huber is a member of the DSA (Democratic Socialists of Amerika) which I guess makes him a no go read for some of the posters here. Anyway, some of his positions weren't all too comfortable to me either, but I believe it's high time to start thinking beyond our crusted opinions and political left/right dogmas.

Basically, he's critizising the current ecologic movement (which is very much on topic here) and explains why. It also helped me a little to better understand some of the here posted positions that seem to be rather specific to american social conditions.


Just for reference, here's the German interview that I mentioned above:

Thanks for the links. Haven't read them yet, aber ich will ;)
 
So we had those Amazon 'worst yet' forrest fires, then the recent ones in California (that looked pretty bad), so now it is Australia's turn :(

Australia bushfires: Record number of emergencies in New South Wales


Australian authorities say an "unprecedented" number of emergency-level bushfires are threatening the state of New South Wales (NSW).

More than 90 blazes were raging across the state on Friday. Gusty winds and up to 35C heat have exacerbated the fires, many of which are in drought-affected areas.

There are reports of people trapped in their homes in several places, with crew unable to reach them due to the strength of the fires.

.....

Authorities in the state warn that many fires will continue to burn unless there is more rain.

"We just cannot overstate the profound impact that the drought is having on fire behaviour," Mr Fitzsimmons said.

.......

Officials have confirmed that 2018 and 2017 were Australia's third and fourth-hottest years on record respectively.

The bureau's State of the Climate 2018 report said climate change had led to an increase in extreme heat events and increased the severity of other natural disasters, such as drought.

Even if global temperatures are contained to a 2C rise above pre-industrial levels - a limit set out in the landmark Paris accord, agreed by 188 nations in 2015 - scientists believe the country is facing a dangerous new normal.

Last year, a UN report said Australia was falling short in efforts to cut its CO2 emissions.
:(
 
I've fixed computers before by just taking them apart, and putting them back together when I couldn't find a fault. Then shrugging my shoulders. Can't be sure, but it was probably either a dirty contact ore on that wasn't properly seated. Or a build up of static on something. Or the opportunity to disconnect some chip from it's power source so it could re-initialise. Who can say?

The thing about repair is that it does have it's own environmental consequences. Firstly you need to ship the broken machinery to a repairer and back. Also the cleaning products may be far-from green, and you need to keep a stock of spare parts that need to be made. Is it better to send someone a new unit, or have someone send back the old one - have it repaired - and then ship it back to the customer? - all to keep older tech going that may be less efficient than it's replacement. Sometimes you only buy a short time, because it's basically worn out, so the environmental cost of resus is actually a significant component of the environmental impact of a product that really ought to be replaced.

It is not always as black-and-white as people seem to think.
 
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