environment,energy,greenhouse,gas,carbon,dioxide,global,nuclear energy,clean energy,emissions,global climate change,environmental impacts, Nuclear Energy Can Save US: Rising Seas: Not the Only Danger of CO2.

Nuclear Energy Can Save US--America�s 100 nukes equal four million barrels of oil per day.


Billions of lives and civilization itself may be at risk from the Global Warming & End of Cheap Oil, Crisis. Rising sea levels and rising oil prices could be the end of civilization as we know it. The problem is so huge that the most powerful answer, many nuclear plants, must be deployed. Currently, America‘s 100 nukes deliver the energy of four million barrels of oil per day. Wind and solar cannot do the job, and may delay the real answer too long. Still, all kinds of clean energy, plus conservation, plus reducing deforestation, will be needed to help the poor half of the world, and for civilization to survive through this century.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Rising Seas: Not the Only Danger of CO2.

As discussed in the August, 15, 2008, post, our sun, the star Sol, may be entering a cooling phase, which in turn could be related to sunspot cycles. As a slightly variable star, Sol's cyclic changes in heat output will take centuries to determine. However, a possible few decades of cooling could give Earth some relief from rising seas, i.e., if cooling is not extreme (See also August 15 post). However, other dangers of CO2 can't be muted by a cold spell.

30-50% of the world's CO2 is absorbed in the ocean, about the same also in plant life on land. Another serious danger of CO2, is that the ocean's acidity is increasing. Per LA Times articles, resurgence of ancient conditions, poisonous jellyfish, burning seaweeds, and toxic clouds from algae blooms are already being detected in many oceans. Important lakes, and rivers like the Hudson in New York, can be saved from pollution death by decades of effort, but what could be done for 140 million square miles of ocean if we let it get out of hand.

Luckily, efforts to fight deforestation (20-30% of CO2 emissions), are increasing. Per Project Earth show on the Discover channel, studies of large-scale forest reseeding from aircraft look practical. Also, discussions at Bali, for a treaty to replace Kyoto, seem headed toward financial incentives for indigenous people to save their forests. About time! Last year, the World Bank announced that they had G-8 support for a $250 million forest rescue fund, but they were not certain of investor response unless a new treaty covered the risks. (Even so, $250 million is not much money for the work that is so critical.) If most of this CO2, say 20% of the world's emissions, could be averted, it would be like 900, one-gig nukes, replacing 900, one-gig, coal-burning plants.

PS: Sol is at the low-point in its 11-year sunspot cycle. Sunspots should not be frequent, but last month, August 2008, was the first, full-month in a century, which has passed without a single visible sunspot (Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, SOHO, satellite).
Some experts think this may presage a cooler sun and cooler weather for Earth, but no one knows for certain.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

You mus t be a hack for the nuclear companies. Nukes won't save any water - it uses it! Nukes can't drive your car. Nukes can't be put at desalination plants due to rising oceans. Uranium is toxic and not plentiful. It will take 15 yrs to complete a new nuke plant. Why not advocate for renewables? Please change you post to wind, solar or geothermal - NUKES ARE NOT THE ANSWER. Would you rather take your grand kids to a nuke plant or a wind farm?

shawrich said...

I have no nuclear connection; except a few stocks in the past(would again if I could). You like wind (OK, if you build millions of huge towers, not just a few tens of thousands here and there), and solar ( conc, solar OK, but hundreds of millions of jury-rigged rooftops, will be little value to homeowners, but great for scams),
In google, you can find that 5400 wind turbines in Altamount Pass, CA, give 40 to 400kw each, and total only 580 megawatts (58% of rating for one, one-gig nuke). If pass is windy enough to deliver 33% of time (not typical 25%), they give 33% of 58%, or 19% of the 8000 billion kwh/year of one, one-gig nuke.

shawrich said...

In comment by shawrich, "19% of the 8000 billion kwh..." should say "19% of the 8000 million kwh...". This typo does not change the sense of the statement. Looked at another way; one, one-gig nuke provides same energy as 27,000 wind turbines that have the equivalent mix of turbine sizes as the Altamount array. In my blog, I prefer to compare one, one-gig nuke with 1400, two-meg (2000 kw) turbines. There are probably no turbines of this large size, in operation in America as yet.

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