Notices
Results 1 to 15 of 15

Thread: Energy and Climate – Abu Dhabi and Europe.

  1. #1 Energy and Climate – Abu Dhabi and Europe. 
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    17
    I’ve argued elsewhere that in order to address the extinction threats now bearing down upon us, humankind must form a global government constitutionally bound to honor a scientific understanding of reality, and employ science and technology on merit to balance human welfare and environmental sustainability.

    In the last few days Abu Dhabi has announced $15bn for hydrogen research and Europe has announced a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. These may seem like hopeful signs, and I don’t want to seem ungrateful, but don’t be fooled.

    Such signs tempt one to hope that other regions will match or even surpass the EU effort – and that hydrogen research in Abu Dhabi makes links with, and encourages like-minded efforts around the world. Despite our best and most reasonable hopes however, Abu Dhabi will seek to protect oil revenues and the commercial value of any research. Similarly, and by the same logic, Europe’s reduction of greenhouse gas emissions will provide a competitive advantage, and therefore an incentive to other regions to continue to pollute.

    Science doesn’t merely provide the tools, but provides us with the rules for their use – the right thing for the right reasons. A sustainable energy basis for human civilization cannot be provided by nation states acting in their capitalist interest – for it is too large an undertaking to be written off, but can be provided by a global government constitutionally bound to honor a scientific understanding of reality, employing science and technology on merit.

    Renewable energy is perfect for the production of hydrogen. Liquefied hydrogen has 2.5 times the calorific value of petroleum – and when burnt (oxidized) turns back into (H2O) water. Using renewable energy to produce hydrogen, and then burning hydrogen in a conventional power plant the necessary base load can be generated. Just providing mains electricity from this source will massively reduce greenhouse gas emissions – thereby addressing climate change, leaving further scope to replace mains gas and transportation fuel as capacity comes on-line, as necessary, and/or as fossil fuels are depleted.

    In short then, but for the system of nation states and capitalism, humankind might live well into the foreseeable future, rather than, quite predictably nuking each other into non-existence in 40 or 50 years when the lights go out. These false, divisive and unjust ideas must be put aside and humankind cooperate in discovering and applying the answers provided by science, but I see no hopeful signs of ideological revision.

    Rather than being cheered by these laudable efforts therefore, I am disheartened, for they obscure the real problem – mans backward approach to scientific truth. It’s time to accept an evolutionary conception of ourselves, and that we are a single species occupying a single planetary environment – and on that basis do what’s necessary to survive, for very soon it will be too late.


    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2  
    Forum Isotope Bunbury's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    2,590
    I disagree with much of this.

    “Ideological revision” implies that there is one correct ideology that we should all acknowledge and strive to establish as the world’s guiding philosophy. This is not a new idea. Others have thought so too – Karl Marx for example. Forget about global government – it isn’t going to happen.

    “Science doesn’t merely provide the tools, but provides us with the rules for their use – the right thing for the right reasons.”
    No, science doesn’t provide the rules for their use. The rules are made by the politicians and not often for the right reasons.

    “Renewable energy is perfect for the production of hydrogen.”
    Perhaps so, but what Abu Dhabi seems to be proposing is to produce hydrogen from their huge reserves of methane, and possibly oil as well. Production of hydrogen this way (by reforming) is established technology, decades old, and a major by-product of the process is carbon dioxide. The encouraging part is the discussion of sequestration of the CO2 in oil reservoirs. Methane reforming combined with CO2 sequestration is green, but it is not renewable.

    “the real problem – mans backward approach to scientific truth.”
    Are you arguing that ideology should guide scientific research? If so, I couldn’t disagree more strongly.


    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #3 Re: Energy and Climate – Abu Dhabi and Europe. 
    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Cardiff, Wales
    Posts
    5,810
    Quote Originally Posted by humanhuman
    ... and Europe has announced a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020.
    you know what this means for the steel industry ? all the steelmaking facilities will go to places like china, india and brazil
    we'll be left with a few rolling mills and processing plants, but for the majority of us who still work in the steel industry it's curtains

    i fail to see how the conversion from ore + coal to cast steel slabs can be made substantially more efficient, so if the edict comes from on high 'thou shalt reduce thy carbon output' the only way it's going to happen is by shutting us down

    obviously this won't reduce the overall emissions, but hey we're OK in europe, so why worry ?
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  5. #4  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    17
    Where i have argued that humankind must form a global government, i've shown this is because, otherwise it's very likely nations in ideological, political economic and military competition will be drawn into an all out war for access to fossil fuel reserves as they dwindle, and using science as a tool will nuke eachother into non-existence.

    I'm sure you do disagree with this. In your opinion it's unlikely. No shit!, but you cannot simply dismiss it because you don't like it - that's not how philosophy works. In face of the extinction threats now bearing down upon us it's time to start thinking outside the box, wouldn't you say?

    There is an ideology we should all be following - science. Science is valid knowledge of reality - not some fantastical assertion forced upon people with threat and use of violence, but objective truth that favours no one man above another.

    Thanks for the info on 'reforming' - i'll have a look at it.

    on your last question, no, i have argued in many ways for a global government constitutionally bound to honour a scientific understanding of reality, employing science and technology to balance human welfare and environmental sustaibaility. it's that or the big bye-bye. bye, iconoclast.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  6. #5  
    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Cardiff, Wales
    Posts
    5,810
    Quote Originally Posted by humanhuman
    There is an ideology we should all be following - science.
    the last few times science and ideology came together it produced eugenics and nuclear bombs
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  7. #6  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    17
    MarnixR, Ihave encountered this objection a great deal-the idea that science produces nuclear weapons andothernightmares. there'ssomething wrong with this keyborad- sorry. it's not a valid arguemnt because- as i have shown,science is being used as a tool and ignored as a rule. Take your own circumstances as an example. If they move steel production to Brazil it won't really make any difference tocliamte change- but itwillmake a difference to Britain'sclimatechangefigures. It's insane, it'slike they think moving it beyond the border willmake it diappear.
    that's where science comes in - the right thing for the right reason, it's our only hope. iconoclast.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  8. #7  
    Forum Isotope Bunbury's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    2,590
    No shit!, but you cannot simply dismiss it because you don't like it - that's not how philosophy works.
    Thank you for enlightening me about how philosophy doesn't work. Another guiding principle ought to be not putting words in the other person's mouth. I didn't write that I don't like world government. I actually don't have an opinion on liking or not liking it because it is such an unrealistic idea that it's not worth thinking about what it might be like.

    In face of the extinction threats now bearing down upon us it's time to start thinking outside the box, wouldn't you say?
    I think it's time for far greater cooperation on sustainability issues. Thinking outside the box is a nice cliche. Another one is keep an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  9. #8  
    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Cardiff, Wales
    Posts
    5,810
    i just have my worries about scientists trying to save the world - the last time someone with a science degree became prime minister, her name was Margaret Thatcher

    when in power, her presumed expertise in at least one field of science did not seem to matter in the type of decisions she made
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  10. #9  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    17
    Bunbury, there's just no need for that kind of attitude. you should be ashamed of yourself. iconoclast.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  11. #10  
    Forum Isotope Bunbury's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    2,590
    I'm running for the job of Site Curmudgeon, but the competition is tough.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  12. #11  
    Forum Professor
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    In the circuitous haze of my mind
    Posts
    1,028
    Humanhuman, why didn't you defend yourself (as in, the more optimistic point I perceived you to make)? I believe you guys have his main point wrong....re-read it with a logically more optimistic attitude.

    Thats why I believe science and philosophy need to be used together. Science provides the means, and philosophy provides the reasoning to shape those means. I don't think most scientists are philosophers...perhaps they even become scientists because of their lack of understanding of philosophy...so they can use science as the objective means to say certain things that they can't deduce by themselves-apriori. These are the people I think marnixR are talking about. I don't like those people either; thats why we need people like me! to run the government; even so, I don't think that I am objective enough yet to make "perfect" decisions....but they would be a hell of a lot better than what the rulers are doing with the world right now.
    Of all the wonders in the universe, none is likely more fascinating and complicated than human nature.

    "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe."

    "Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence"

    -Einstein

    http://boinc.berkeley.edu/download.php

    Use your computing strength for science!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  13. #12  
    Forum Isotope Bunbury's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    2,590
    I believe you guys have his main point wrong....re-read it with a logically more optimistic attitude.
    Well, I found Hh's post a bit muddled, mixing science, politics and opinion as if they are all equivalent and I'm not exactly sure what his main point is. I think, but I'm not sure, that Hh's main point was his belief that science provides rules for deciding right and wrong. He doesn't justify this extraordinary claim, as far as I can tell. Then he would design a world government on the basis of this belief; a faith-based government in other words.

    That's how I read Hh's post.

    But I could be wrong.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  14. #13  
    Forum Professor
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    In the circuitous haze of my mind
    Posts
    1,028
    Its hard to explain what I got from it; its more of a inner feeling based on those ideas, than something that can be explained.

    A lot of what he said is meant to re-shape the world itself, not coexist with certain ideas. Its an idealized way, an ultimate finish to resolve all issues; it does not go over the practicality of attempting to go for his ideas, but rather just states a perfect goal to achieve in order for us to survive...but I think he also intended to specifically state the chances of certain things happening. Personally, I think we are all doomed because of religion and its naive intolerance for change and understanding. But if we were able to reasonably do certain things, then those would be the things that we would do. I think it was also meant to be an exercise in thinking, like posts I have done in the past that may seem irrelevant and can't have actions based on them, it is still a good way to explore certain feelings and discuss them for the bettering of ourselves.
    Of all the wonders in the universe, none is likely more fascinating and complicated than human nature.

    "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe."

    "Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence"

    -Einstein

    http://boinc.berkeley.edu/download.php

    Use your computing strength for science!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  15. #14 Energy and Climate – Abu Dhabi and Europe 2. 
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    17
    Having told another contributor he should be ashamed of himself for launching an attack upon my ideas, I’ve had to question my own motivations – for there can be no doubt that my ideas constitute a challenge to religion, nationhood and capitalism – ideas that many find sense and comfort in.

    His initial comment was ‘global government is so unlikely it’s not worth talking about’ – a comment I found profoundly unintelligent. Afterall, Moore’s ‘Utopia’ (1516) was always unlikely – but illustrates questions around political legitimacy and the balance of rights and responsibilities between citizen and state. That so, I attempted to reply on the level of the comment, saying something like ‘No shit man, but you can’t just dismiss ideas because they’re unlikely – that’s not how philosophy works.’

    He replied ‘Thank you for informing me how philosophy doesn’t work.’ A comment so venomous and sarcastic I was offended. I told him there was no need for his attitude, that he should be ashamed of himself and resolved not to communicate with him further – but point a finger, there’s four pointing back, such that I’ve been forced to consider my own motivations.

    Some of these deliberations are quite personal in nature and it’s not appropriate to air them here – but while I’ve made arguments that may be offensive to the faithful, patriotic and/or wealthy – and I’ve made my arguments forcefully, passionately and with conviction, they are nonetheless conscientious to truth and reason – where religion, nation and capitalism are not.

    I cannot deny that I experience satisfaction in being able to see past these opiates of the masses, but in the way some people find perverse pleasure in not owning a TV. If people are offended, similarly, it’s not that I hold these opinions, but that philosophically, they fear they’ve spent half their lives staring into the screen of life barely conscious of what they’re watching.

    I cannot help but think this contributor would love to be able to make powerful and interesting arguments about issues that really matter – but doesn’t have the intellectual muscle, and so trawls the philosophy sites in a haze of post-masturbatory depression, intent upon handing out the philosophical equivalent of a happy-slap – while kidding himself that this constitutes intelligent argument.

    This would be to use insight to wound. It’s not at all the same satisfaction I feel in discussing some of the more contentious issues in philosophy. It has a bitter aftertaste I just don’t experience if I argue that religion is ‘a distorting and divisive fiction we are indoctrinated with as children – before the age at which we can make reasoned judgments’ or argue capitalism is ‘a false ideology that fails to acknowledge anything but the factors of production.’

    These arguments may be offensive – but are thought provoking and define a valid philosophical point of view – a perspective I believe will become increasingly significant as we approach upon extinction. However ridiculous it might be it remains that the problem and solution are summed by a single theory. Our approach to knowledge is the common denominator, the root cause of the problem and the answer to our prayers. Science is valid knowledge, knowledge is light, life strives toward the light – and flourishes.

    This is what I hope for. Like Moore’s Utopia, it might not be important that the solution suggested is the one that’s implemented, but important it be demonstrated that solution is possible. On a pragmatic basis it would be ludicrous to suppose we could wake up tomorrow in any of the utopias constructed by philosophers. Certainly I write as if this possibility were achievable – and it should be an achievable utopia I think, at least theoretically, for it to be worth writing about. If it’s therefore a bit close to the bone in places it’s as a consequence of accounting for some difficult aspects of reality.

    That so, I don’t expect everyone will accept my arguments verbatim – anymore than I think they should be dismissed out of hand. I don’t think that I’m entirely right – but I’m pretty damn sure I’ve got some valid points, an interesting perspective, something to say and pretty good reasons underlying what I’m saying. I think there are a lot of interesting arguments to be had in this area that might do some good, but this isn’t one of them. I’m now done with self-justification.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  16. #15 thanks. 
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    London
    Posts
    17
    cold fusion, thanks for the support. i can't tell you how much it helps when dealing with such difficult issues to know that people don't think i'm (also) contesting for the role of site curmudgeon. i really am not out to hurt anyone - not even the religious nutters, greedy capitalist pigs, or racist nationalists pretending to patriotism. thanks again, iconoclast.
    Reply With Quote  
     

Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •