Lampang wrote:Poto: Your thinking seems to be "It's bad to think that this is a problem and I'm not going to allow myself to think this is a problem so let's think up reasons why this isn't a problem." Case in point: "Gas was at $5/gallon not too long ago. $20/gallon would be a quadrupling in price from that level. If we survived a quadrupling once, we can again." That's a wildly illogical claim. There are a ton of reasons to think that the American economy would be crucified at $20/gallon (not least that a peak in prices at 25% of that helped to trigger an extremely severe recession) and none to think that the economy would survive it, let alone be in a position to invest in the capital requirements necessary to replace one its primary energy sources. I agree that dwelling excessively on problems tends to obscure solutions but your Panglossian approach to ecological problems is considerably worse because it obscures the problems themselves and for a great many people in the world - not, it's true, the people who post on this board or anyone they're likely to have contact with - these problems have the very real potential to kill them. For example, as Blackbird says, rises in oil prices on the scale you talk about guarantee huge increases in the cost of food and that means mass starvation. Of course, this won't happen in Idaho but it will, nevertheless, happen and the fact that it will happen in far-off lands doesn't make it any less real or any less terrible. As is probably clear, I find it shocking - really shocking - to hear people propose the type of actions you propose seemingly without any concern or consideration of the consequences. Instead, perhaps consider why 30,000 children a day die of poverty and how resource allocation and use fits into that fact. If you're upset by that daily holocaust, it's worth considering how proposing the continuation of the wildly skewed allocation of resources which is implicit in your posts might affect those deaths. You say, "I don't want to see others suffer the same way I did." The truth is, we - none of us who are likely to read this board - suffer in the same way the world's poor do.
...I give up. You win. We're all doomed.
Kim O'Hara wrote:poto wrote:Lampang:
...I give up. You win. We're all doomed.
We're not concerned about winning or losing the argument here, just with discovering and sharing the truth.
Realistically, any extreme position is likely to be wrong.
In this particular debate, Panglossian optimism leads to inertia and eventual disaster, but so does the other extreme: if we really believe we're all doomed, why bother making futile attempts to avert it? The skillful response is to learn the truth of the situation and apply ourselves to avoiding the worst outcomes.
BlackBird wrote:I don't think it's personal Poto.
I think it comes back to the way we look at things. Indeed I think that it's very easy to see Dhammawheel through a prism of self-view, where we come to see our posts, avatar and signature as a manafestation of ourself. Thus we can slip into the habitual pattern of posting through a desire for praise and validation of the writing we assume as 'mine' or 'myself'.
Indeed the worldly winds of praise and blame blow here too. When the winds of praise blow through from the South, that's nice and we become attached. When the winds of praise stop blowing, we can feel as though we're being ignored, and that tenuous self worth starts to erode. When the winds of blame blow through from the North then we feel distraught, even angry.
The winds will always arise, endure for a period and then collapse, no matter what direction they blow from. To get caught up in them is a vicious cycle of pain, but without a lot of effort and mindfulness, not all that easy to avoid.
That's not to say it doesn't affect me also, when I am praised now I tend to shy away from it, it may even come across as ingratitude or arrogance (which it is not) but if so - To those who have given me praise and recieved no response - I apologise. When I am blamed, I am still liable feel bad and spiteful, and when I am ignored I still feel worthless. The point is to catch it all before it manafests itself in our thoughts, speech and body, and to see it for what it is - Just another passing cloud in the sky.
Generation IV nuclear-energy technologies that may become
operational after about 2030 employ advanced closed-fuel
cycle systems with more efficient use of uranium and thorium
focus on the development of reactors and fuel cycles that
provide economically competitive, safe and environmentally
sound energy services based on technology designs that exclude
severe accidents, involve proliferation-resistant fuel cycles
decoupled from any fuel-resource constraints, and minimize
HLW. Much additional technology development would be
needed to meet these long-term goals so strategic public RD&D
funding is required, since there is limited industrial/commercial
interest at this early stage.
Thorium-based fast-spectrum reactors appear capable of at least
doubling the effective resource base, but the technology remains
to be developed to ascertain its commercial feasibility (IAEA,
Kim O'Hara wrote:Here's what the IPCC had to say
Overseas, the nuclear power establishment is getting the message. In France, which already generates more than 75 percent of its electricity from nuclear power, the Laboratoire de Physique Subatomique et de Cosmologie has been building models of variations of Weinberg’s design for molten salt reactors to see if they can be made to work efficiently. The real action, though, is in India and China, both of which need to satisfy an immense and growing demand for electricity. The world’s largest source of thorium, India, doesn’t have any commercial thorium reactors yet. But it has announced plans to increase its nuclear power capacity: Nuclear energy now accounts for 9 percent of India’s total energy; the government expects that by 2050 it will be 25 percent, with thorium generating a large part of that. China plans to build dozens of nuclear reactors in the coming decade, and it hosted a major thorium conference last October. The People’s Republic recently ordered mineral refiners to reserve the thorium they produce so it can be used to generate nuclear power.
poto wrote:As I've stated before, the IPCC is a political organization, not a science organization. Having found many biased opinions and wrong information produced by them I take anything they put out with less than a grain of salt.
Also, the funding and national interest is starting to roll in for Thorium, thus the point of my posting. Without national funding or support it would likely be a dead duck or might take decades more to develop Thorium reactors, but things are rapidly changing.Overseas, ...
Kim O'Hara wrote:So you are still choosing to ignore the largest peer-reviewed scientific study ever undertaken, i.e. the largest single source of expert advice available to you.
I seem to remember that you objected strenuously last time I said something similar about you. Never mind.
Kim O'Hara wrote:So you repeat your assertion, quote from the Wired article you directed us to in your previous post, add a graph of 'possible' nuclear energy production on a time scale which makes it completely useless in the present context, and don't respond at all to my argument about timing?
Kim O'Hara wrote:Have you added anything to the discussion?
Kim O'Hara wrote:To be really really obvious about my position: I am sure new nuclear technologies will arrive on the scene too late to be useful.
Kim O'Hara wrote:The latest (as I write, anyway) xkcd is relevant here:
http://xkcd.com/678/ (Make sure you read the tool tip, too.)
Kim O'Hara wrote:I will happily change my position if, but only if, you can direct us to good solid evidence that a pilot commercial-scale reactor is already operational. To get from one pilot plant to a useful number of commercial plants must take at least ten years for planning and construction and ten years is all we've got.
India's Kakrapar-1 was the first reactor in the world to use thorium rather than depleted uranium to achieve power flattening across the reactor core. Both Kakrapar-1 and -2 units are loaded with 500kg of thorium fuel to improve their operation at start-up.
In 1995, Kakrapar-1 achieved about 300 days of full power operation and Kakrapar-2 about 100 days using thorium fuel. A 30kW mini-reactor has successfully operated at India's Kamini reactor at Kalpakkam. And the use of thorium-based fuel is planned in Kaiga-1 and -2 and Rajasthan-3 and -4 (Rawatbhata) reactors.
BlackBird wrote:2. As soon as you have more demand than supply there will be a shortage, prices will sky rocket, and everyone will rush to the pump to fill up on gas while they still can.
BlackBird wrote:The issue with the looming Oil crisis is that it's not going to be a gradual process, let me reiterate:
1. The global economy is completely dependent upon fossil fuels
2. As soon as you have more demand than supply there will be a shortage, prices will sky rocket, and everyone will rush to the pump to fill up on gas while they still can.
3. Gas stations can't take bank holidays!
4. As soon as there are long lines, then the trucks won't be able to go where they need to go, there will be traffic jams and infrastructure will not be able to cope.
5. When the trucks can't get to where they need to go on time, there will be food shortages, further petrol shortages and people will panic because in the end, you can't eat money.
6. Goodbye economy.
So we need to act now. It's no good to start thinking about Thorium and Fusion reactors 20 years from now, because the problem might start next year. You can't start building new power plants when the people who build them are more concerned about where they're going to get their next meal from.
The tragedy is that international politics is a bureaucracy gone mad, incapable of effecting any meaningful change, even when their lives depend upon it.
BlackBird wrote:Case in point is Climate change, which scientists have been warning us about for over 30 years now, and which international Governments have left to the very last minute (Copenhagen) to start taking serious action on.
Now I'm sure you're well aware of what's gone down at Copenhagen, not exactly encouraging news.
BlackBird wrote:Before you get started on this point Poto, I've spent a few years studying economics at both high school and just this year at University, and of course one of the main things we we're always talking about was oil, and how changes in demand/supply for oil work. To cut a long story short, the oil market doesn't respond in the typical fashion of shortage -> rise in price - > fall in demand -> new equilibrium. One of the main reasons for this is that demand for oil is only elastic to a point, after that it becomes almost perfectly inelastic, meaning that no matter what the change in price, the demand will remain the same.
BlackBird wrote:Do you seriously think that it's just my opinion that the global economy is completely dependent upon oil?
poto wrote:With all due respect, this is just your opinion of what you think will happen.