Author Topic: Addressing climate change  (Read 7700 times)

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Offline Omni

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #90 on: May 27, 2019, 04:07:45 pm »
No there are aren't. There are only examples of dishonest accounting done to make renewables look cheaper than they are by omitting necessary costs.

Yes there are but, only if you ignore the honest accounting of how many billions have gone into subsidizing fossil fuel producers.
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Online segnosaur

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #91 on: May 27, 2019, 04:15:31 pm »
Ha ha. Yes I am well aware of that. I was referring to tim's comment that I wouldn't go to sea without my motor. As a matter of fact I did numerous times when it broke down and I was in a place where I couldn't get parts to fix it. My main point is that we can get things down by harnessing things nature gives us.
Just make sure you have plenty of passengers on your boat.

If provisions run out you might have to resort to cannibalism.

Offline Omni

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #92 on: May 27, 2019, 04:20:06 pm »
Just make sure you have plenty of passengers on your boat.

If provisions run out you might have to resort to cannibalism.

Naw, you just look under the boat. You'll find what they call "fish".
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Offline Queefer Sutherland

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #93 on: May 27, 2019, 04:22:26 pm »
Yes there are but, only if you ignore the honest accounting of how many billions have gone into subsidizing fossil fuel producers.

You guys can argue which is cheaper until the cows come home.  It won't be decided on a message board it will be decided by the private sector because they will be usually forced to use the cheapest, most efficient, most reliable energy or else their domestic and/or international competition will bury them.  Neither of your opinions matter on the subject, with all due respect.  If solar is cheaper, we're going to start seeing more and more leading businesses (not bad ones that fail) turn to solar.
I queef, therefore I am.

Online segnosaur

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #94 on: May 27, 2019, 04:24:36 pm »
Yes there are but, only if you ignore the honest accounting of how many billions have gone into subsidizing fossil fuel producers.
There is a lot of things going on that hide the true costs of energy from all sources:

- Subsidies to fossil fuel producers; lack of carbon tax hides the externalities involves with fossil fuel construction

- Renewables are often subsidized directly (e.g. grants) or indirectly (spending on infrastructure to support renewables on grid)

- Nuclear often has large up-front capital costs that require government assistance

All in all, its almost impossible to find the 'true' cost of any sort of energy.

Online segnosaur

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #95 on: May 27, 2019, 04:32:51 pm »
Quote
Just make sure you have plenty of passengers on your boat.

If provisions run out you might have to resort to cannibalism.
Naw, you just look under the boat. You'll find what they call "fish".
You mean a sea kitten? How barbaric!

https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99249669


Offline TimG

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #96 on: May 27, 2019, 04:34:20 pm »
If solar is cheaper, we're going to start seeing more and more leading businesses (not bad ones that fail) turn to solar.
It is not that simple. If the market was left to sort it out then solar and wind would rarely be used where there is a grid because because they are not baseload or disapatchable which makes them implicitly less useful than other power sources. Governments can and have attempted to rig the market by dumping costs on non-renewables or the grid rather than subsidizing renewable power directly (e.g. with renewable mandates). In such a rigged market it could be profitable to run a solar/wind plant but it is important to remember that the market was rigged. Simply taxing fossil fuels more is rarely enough to make up for the costs incurred dealing with the unreliable nature of solar/wind.

Offline Omni

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #97 on: May 27, 2019, 04:40:17 pm »
Naw, you just look under the boat. You'll find what they call "fish".
You mean a sea kitten? How barbaric!

https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99249669

I don't know about "sea kittens" but I do have a hell of a good recipe for bull dolphin.

The fish, not the mammal.


Offline Omni

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #98 on: May 27, 2019, 04:46:37 pm »
There is a lot of things going on that hide the true costs of energy from all sources:

- Subsidies to fossil fuel producers; lack of carbon tax hides the externalities involves with fossil fuel construction

- Renewables are often subsidized directly (e.g. grants) or indirectly (spending on infrastructure to support renewables on grid)

- Nuclear often has large up-front capital costs that require government assistance

All in all, its almost impossible to find the 'true' cost of any sort of energy.

I pretty much concur with your comments. But I am leaning to being convinced that the hidden costs of fossil fuel production clean up will be way more than convering to renewables as much as we can.

Offline ?Impact

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #99 on: May 27, 2019, 05:14:05 pm »
- Not all types of generators can be 'fired up' when needed. Gas and hydro are very flexible, but Coal doesn't work that way. Coal is good for base-line generation, but its not good at ramping up or down depending on demand. So you can't keep coal plants in reserve. If that's all the grid has, you would need to build new gas plants

Agreed that things like legacy coal lack the flexibility for scaling their output, but remember that all plants have an operational lifetime and we are planning for the future and not suggesting immediate replacement. Ontario for example, is always criticized by the "conservatives" for shutting down coal. The facts they gloss over is that the shut down took a dozen years, and was in fact a creation of the Ernie Eves Progressive Conservative government. The "conservatives" love to blame the Liberals for shutting down the coal plants, but the promise to do so was theirs to begin with and it was the Liberals that delivered on their promise.

This phase out of might have been somewhat accelerated, but remember that all generating plants do come to an end of their operating life when maintaining them becomes far more costly than replacing them. Many of the legacy plants have other emission (mercury, lead, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, particulates, etc.) problems that need to be addressed as well. Maybe not all jurisdictions will be as aggressive as Ontario was (12 years to complete 100% replacement), but that doesn't mean they should ignore the target.

Offline ?Impact

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #100 on: May 27, 2019, 05:25:33 pm »
Concerning the whole sail discussion, a couple of important points to consider:

Yes, it might have taken 6 weeks or more to cross the Atlantic by sail a century ago but modern sailboats are not the same as the ones your great-great grandpappy sailed. Most modern monohulls cross in less than 4 weeks, and catamarans in about 2. There have been crossings in less than a week, but those are by racing crews.

It is starting to become more common to have electric motors on sail craft for marina and backup purposes instead of diesel. Yes there might be a diesel generator backup for these, but an ever increasing amount of the energy comes from solar, wind and hydro sources. In fact many of the electric motors double as generators when under sail. A much more recent innovation is having solar cells built into the sails themselves, giving a large collection area. I have only seen this on some experimental craft, but the promise is there.

Talking about electric boats, I am aware of at least one that has circumnavigated the world entirely on solar power. There is another that has traveled a much longer total distance, but so far it has been mostly around Europe, Africa, and the middle east.

Offline TimG

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #101 on: May 27, 2019, 05:36:36 pm »
Talking about electric boats, I am aware of at least one that has circumnavigated the world entirely on solar power. There is another that has traveled a much longer total distance, but so far it has been mostly around Europe, Africa, and the middle east.
Get back to me when a freighter carrying 50,000 tonnes of cargo can cross an ocean without fossil fuels. Lightweight toys created to "prove the concept" are not that useful in the real world.

Offline ?Impact

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #102 on: May 27, 2019, 05:56:04 pm »
Get back to me when a freighter carrying 50,000 tonnes of cargo can cross an ocean without fossil fuels. Lightweight toys created to "prove the concept" are not that useful in the real world.

Yes, cargo transport is extremely high density. That doesn't mean however that we should do nothing, or that in fact nothing is being done. It will probably be supplementing rather than replacing the fossil fuel burning, but with a combination of solar, wind, and slower speed, a significant reduction of fossil fuel consumption can be made. Yes, if we continue to subsidize these transports with cheap fossil fuel that ignores the reality of the situation they are causing for current* and future generations then we are shooting ourselves in the foot.

You are always talking about nuclear power, but somehow ignore the possibility for dense cargo transport.

*current - yes current generation problems. Bunker fuel is one of the worst pollution problem we currently face, not just with green house gases, but the highly toxic sulfur and other emissions from menace sailing the seas.

Offline TimG

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #103 on: May 27, 2019, 06:08:28 pm »
It will probably be supplementing rather than replacing the fossil fuel burning, but with a combination of solar, wind, and slower speed, a significant reduction of fossil fuel consumption can be made. Yes, if we continue to subsidize these transports with cheap fossil fuel that ignores the reality of the situation they are causing for current* and future generations then we are shooting ourselves in the foot.
Any mechanism that works to improve the efficiency of cargo transport is only a benefit to society. My only point is the one you just made: unless some currently unheard of tech appears then we will need to rely on fossil fuels for most of our sea and air transport needs for the foreseeable future. Zero emission for this part of human activity is not achievable.

You are always talking about nuclear power, but somehow ignore the possibility for dense cargo transport.
Nuclear requires a tightly regulated environment to ensure safety. I don't have any that confidence an industry that frequently uses 'flags of convenience' to save costs would be able to provide the assurance we need. 

Offline Omni

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Re: Addressing climate change
« Reply #104 on: May 27, 2019, 06:26:40 pm »
Get back to me when a freighter carrying 50,000 tonnes of cargo can cross an ocean without fossil fuels. Lightweight toys created to "prove the concept" are not that useful in the real world.

You don't think the shipping industry is also getting "on board" to curb pollution?

While it's a form of transport few of us see, shipping packs a punch as a polluter.
According to a recent study, shipping accounts for around 3% of global CO2 emissions. Not surprising when you consider that the engines of the world's estimated 90,000 cargo ships are in use 24 hours a day while traveling.

https://www.cnn.com/2015/01/16/tech/vindskip-wind-powered-container-ship/index.html