Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Great investment ideas

There probably is a fund that invests in large scale geoengineering climate change projects. I think that's where I should put my money.
"If we can generate 100 ideas, and 97 are bad and we land up with 3 good ones, then the whole thing will have been worthwhile; so I applaud Lovelock and Rapley for thinking along these lines."
If you send an email to 10,000 people and ask them to send you $100, and 9700 people fail to, you still get $30,000.

I guess it's pessimistic of me to not believe in technological fixes, but I don't. I don't think we can deploy them quickly enough to stop permanent changes in our geophysical dynamics, and I believe the ones that will come out on top in any bidding process will be provided by politically connected incompetent engineering companies.

And this is a quote from An Inconvenient Truth on this blog:
Temperature tracks CO2 almost exactly, with a several-decade lag. Those large fluctuations? Those were the six ice ages we've had over the past 600,000 years. CO2 in the atmosphere goes up and so does the temperature, the CO2 trapping the sun's radiation inside our planet, where it heats the Earth.

These huge fluctuations are the difference between ice ages and where we are today. Then Gore shows the most recent trajectory of CO2: straight up, more than doubled.
So, we feel the amount of CO2 now decades from now. And, that'll kill most of us. But, if we do deploy carbon-sucking robots or massive silicate bombs hither and yon, they'd better be pretty well-tuned to return us to 1800 levels of CO2, or whatever goal we set. Or, we go to Snowball Earth, which while different from 'Fogball Earth,' or whatever you want to call our future stable globally averaged surface temperature state, is not necessarily better.

That decades-long lag is an important thing to keep in mind. Our glaciers are disappearing and we're seeing a number of other effects from, say, 1960 levels of CO2. But, it's not 1960 anymore. Irrespective of any bobbing pipe deployment, it's going to get a lot, lot worse before it gets better.

Am I counselling despair? No! Perish the thought, along with most of humanity. I just think we should be directing our energies to two things:

(1) Figuring out how a tiny elite can survive and prosper in the inevitable apocalypse, and
(2) Getting me into that elite.

1 comment:

Nephos said...

Ooh, very Dr. Strangelove. But in your post-apocalyptic vision, you missed the part about the women "of a highly stimulating nature". Perhaps they'd be Welsh?