Anorak News | Global Warming: Holding A Mirror Up To Humanity

Global Warming: Holding A Mirror Up To Humanity

by | 7th, October 2007

GLOBAL warming. And the Guardian has a question: “Can science really save the world?”

We who believe in the power of mankind over nature know that science can conquer all. With science we have a prayer. We can take on the sun and we can beat it!

Says the Guardian: “Today many engineers and researchers – fearful of the rate at which our planet is warming – say geo-engineering projects are now mankind’s only hope of saving itself from the impact of climate change.”

Interesting that researchers and engineers posit the argument that science and engineering can save us all.

We learn: “The only hope, say geo-engineers, is to change the planet, alter its oceans and reshape its cloud cover.”

Indeed. It is not that humanity has meddled with nature that has created global warming, climate change etc. but that we have not meddled enough.

The Guardian senses the irony. It says “distinguished ecologist” James Lovelock notes: “There may be all sorts of ecological consequences. But then the stakes are terribly high.”

So we should try to save the world as we know it, or die trying.

The Guardian duly looks at the options put forward by the G-Team (“It’s a crazy plan but it just might kill us all). And to help scientists decide which one to use, the Guardian gives each plan a score based on the direction of the prevailing wind and the .

As with all statistics, Anorak invites readers to invert the numbers and find the alternative headline. (* Figures provided by Anorak Institute of Climate Research And Finger–In-Wind Studies.)

Ocean pumps – “Vertical pipes could pump deep cold water to the sea surface. Cold ocean water is considered to be more ‘productive’ than warmer water because it contains more lifeforms. And these lifeforms are vital for absorbing CO2.”
Chance of success: 3/5
Chance of bathers catching hypothermia: 2/5

Sulphur blanket
“A ‘blanket’ of sulphur that would block the Sun’s rays from reaching Earth; to do this, he [Professor Paul Crutzen] envisages hundreds of rockets filled with sulphur being blasted into the stratosphere.”
Chance of success: 1/5
Chance of rocket landing in garden: 4/5

“Physicist Lowell Wood, at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, has put forward the idea of using a mesh of aluminium threads, a millionth of an inch in diameter. ‘It would be like a window screen made of exceedingly fine metal wire,’ he explains. The screen wouldn’t completely block sunlight but would filter infra-red radiation.”
Chance of success: 1/5
Chance of mirrors turning Melton Mowbray into the new Costa del Midlands: 4/5

Cloud shield
“John Latham, at the National Centre for Atmospheric Research in Colorado, and Stephen Salter, of Edinburgh University estimate that increasing cloud cover using a seawater spray ‘seeding’ process could increase cloud cover by 4 per cent – enough to counter a doubling of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere by shielding Earth from solar radiation.
Chance of success: 2/5
Chance of China using dense cloud cover to invade America: 3/5

Synthetic trees
Planting trees that absorb carbon dioxide has become a major eco-industry. But now scientists are proposing a surprise technological variant: synthetic trees. These trees would not grow or flower or leaf – but they would absorb carbon dioxide.”
Chance of success: 4/5
Chance of office workers sitting next to fake cheese plant: 5/5

Forests of the seas
“Blooms of plankton and algae are the grasslands and prairies of the oceans. They absorb carbon dioxide, die and then sink to the seabed carrying the carbon dioxide they absorbed during their lifetimes. Increase such blooms and you could take out more and more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.”
Chance of success: 2/5
Chance of massive creatures form the deep rising up and killing us all 4/5

More research grants to follow…

Posted: 7th, October 2007 | In: Broadsheets Comments (8) | TrackBack | Permalink