View Poll Results: What do you think of these proposals to cool the earth?

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  • I like them. This would save the taxpayers a huge amount of money and also save the earth.

    13 38.24%
  • I don't think these proposals are technologically feasible.

    10 29.41%
  • We shouldn't be messing around with the climate; who knows what might happen?

    12 35.29%
  • We should pass legislation to cap and/or tax carbon dioxide emissions.

    6 17.65%
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Thread: Cheap ways to cool the earth

  1. #1
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    Cheap ways to cool the earth

    I just finished reading Superfreakonomics, the sequel to Freakonomics, and the authors have some very interesting ideas for how to reverse global warming WITHOUT spending a fortune to do so.

    - Spray sulfur dioxide into the stratosphere through a super-tall smokestack. It would essentially be a hose that was miles long, held together with balloons. It could be attached to a factory's normal smokestacks, which would ejects its sulfur dioxide waste into the stratosphere (several miles up) instead of the troposphere (the near-surface air). A single hose on each of a mere two factories - one in the Northern Hemisphere and one in the Southern Hemisphere - would be sufficient. This would mirror the effect of a relatively large volcanic eruption like Mount Pinatubo, and would cool the earth by a couple degrees. TOTAL COST: $20 million in startup, $10 million per year.

    - A fleet of wind-powered boats which sit in the ocean, and have underwater turbines to fling sea water into the atmosphere and create clouds. The white clouds, unlike the black ocean, would reflect sunlight and cool the earth by a couple degrees. TOTAL COST: A few billion dollars total.

    What do you guys think? The technology for these already exists, and it would be much cheaper than the hundreds of billions we'd need to spend EVERY YEAR on climate change legislation. The scientists seem to think that these proposals are perfectly safe and feasible, but if they produced any unintended environmental consequences, the machines could easily be shut off and any damages would be reversed within a couple years.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 10-28-09 at 12:42 AM.
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Another option should be for every man made global warming fairy tale believer to commit mass suicide. Papers would read religious nuts commit mass suicide. A knife out of the kitchen is not really an additional cost so it would cost practically nothing for them to kill themselves and they could write in their will that their body be used as fertilizer, thus helping the environment even more. That fertilizer could help a couple of trees grow thus providing more shade and oxygen.

    Some of these religious nuts may not be as adamant as the above group could just simply sterilize themselves and live in grass huts out in the middle of nowhere and just live of the plants and berries they find to survive. BY not breeding they are not contributing to any future polluters.
    Last edited by jamesrage; 10-28-09 at 12:52 AM.
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Why would we want to cool it? Does someone miss the iceage? We've been warming ever since. Check out this link for real data on the climate and what's happening to it:

    Is there really global warming?
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Hold a national referendum on man caused Global Warming and vote on it.... all those who vote yes can then pay a carbon tax equal to 20% of their gross income to buy carbon credits to be used to mitigate the effects of CO2 released into the atmosphere.

    Those that vote no get to laugh at those that voted yes.

  5. #5
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    I am so tired of these global warming people and these global cooling people. Wasn't the world going to end because of a tidal wave caused by global cooling a few decades ago? What happened with that? This climate change crap is...crap. The earth naturally goes through periods of higher and lower climates. That is how the earth works. These global warming "scientists" have to understanding of this.

  6. #6
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    I just finished reading Superfreakonomics, the sequel to Freakonomics, and the authors have some very interesting ideas for how to reverse global warming WITHOUT spending a fortune to do so.

    - Spray sulfur dioxide into the stratosphere through a super-tall smokestack. It would essentially be a hose that was miles long, held together with balloons. It could be attached to a factory's normal smokestacks, which would ejects its sulfur dioxide waste into the stratosphere (several miles up) instead of the troposphere (the near-surface air). A single hose on each of a mere two factories - one in the Northern Hemisphere and one in the Southern Hemisphere - would be sufficient. This would mirror the effect of a relatively large volcanic eruption like Mount Pinatubo, and would cool the earth by a couple degrees. TOTAL COST: $20 million in startup, $10 million per year.

    - A fleet of wind-powered boats which sit in the ocean, and have underwater turbines to fling sea water into the atmosphere and create clouds. The white clouds, unlike the black ocean, would reflect sunlight and cool the earth by a couple degrees. TOTAL COST: A few billion dollars total.

    What do you guys think? The technology for these already exists, and it would be much cheaper than the hundreds of billions we'd need to spend EVERY YEAR on climate change legislation. The scientists seem to think that these proposals are perfectly safe and feasible, but if they produced any unintended environmental consequences, the machines could easily be shut off and any damages would be reversed within a couple years.
    How's the rest of the book? I've only made it through the first chapter so far.

    They both sound like completely viable ideas to me. I remember reading about something in the same vein a while back, which is why I've never really been too worried about global warming. I have no doubt that by the time any of this actually becomes an imminent danger, we'll be able to address through a method like this or some other as-yet undiscovered technological advance.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    How's the rest of the book? I've only made it through the first chapter so far.
    It's very interesting. Although Ezra Klein makes a fairly compelling argument that they overlooked some important statistical points when they said that drunk driving is safer than drunk walking.

    Ezra Klein - The Shoddy Statistics of Super Freakonomics

    The more I think about it, the more I think Ezra is correct about that particular issue; Superfreakonomics seems to have gotten it wrong. But I disagree with the viciousness of his attacks on the book's global warming stance.

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC
    They both sound like completely viable ideas to me. I remember reading about something in the same vein a while back, which is why I've never really been too worried about global warming. I have no doubt that by the time any of this actually becomes an imminent danger, we'll be able to address through a method like this or some other as-yet undiscovered technological advance.
    I agree. I'm with Bjorn Lomborg on this...spending money to counteract climate change is one of the least efficient ways at our disposal to make the world a better place.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 11-01-09 at 02:49 AM.
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    We can send a space ship to harvest ice from Halley's Comet and then just drop a giant ice cube into the ocean.

  9. #9
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    It's very interesting. Although Ezra Klein makes a fairly compelling argument that they overlooked some important statistical points when they said that drunk driving is safer than drunk walking.

    Ezra Klein - The Shoddy Statistics of Super Freakonomics

    The more I think about it, the more I think Ezra is correct about that particular issue; Superfreakonomics seems to have gotten it wrong. But I disagree with the viciousness of his attacks on the book's global warming stance.
    Yea, I think they do tend to present things with a bit of a slant in order to reach the contrarian conclusion. I also agree with the second part, as I was really put off by the rabid reaction to the global warming section (even before the book came out). People like Krugman latched onto the "global cooling" language as if they were basing their analysis on the claim that the earth was cooling in the 70's, when they were actually referring to the cooling of the globe that we will have to take in the future. I really liked their response.
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  10. #10
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    Re: Cheap ways to cool the earth

    Quote Originally Posted by vvx View Post
    We can send a space ship to harvest ice from Halley's Comet and then just drop a giant ice cube into the ocean.
    That would work just as well as the first two crackpot ideas
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