Saturday, November 19, 2005

Greenhouse Gases

Here is a great web tool from BP to help you figure how large your "carbon footprint" is. Can you reduce your energy waste in your household? Interesting and educational. This came from my brother-in-law who works as an engineer for BP.
Now: My take on Global Warming. Yes it is happening. No, there is no conclusive evidence that the energy sources of the past century have had the defining effect. Why do I say that? I believe there are some much larger geological and solar events that have affected the nature of earth's climate as they have over geologic time. Age of Ice ... Age of Warming .. all without any fossil fuel involvement have driven the historic migration of mankind. If there is a 2 degree change in average earth temperature over the last century, I am more likely to believe that less than 10% of the total effect is driven by fossil fuel consumption and probaby less than 10% is driven by deforestation. These issues should be addresed for the betterment of the future quality of life for mankind, but they cannot compete with natural astronomical and geological cycles that affect climate(my opinion). I suggest two books that help put the history of mankind in perspective ... both by noted anthropologist and biologist Jared Diamond. "Guns Germs and Steel: The Fate of Human Societies" and "Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed". Diamond is a clear voice to take better care of our planet. In "Collapse" his studies suggest strongly that geologic and asronomical events affect our planet hugely, yet his conclusion lays nearly all the problems of current climate change at the feet of we humans. So, on that point, I take issue, but these readings are very instructive.

1 comment:

John Platt said...

It is a safe assumption that some portion of global warming is due to the increased consumption of energy associated with modern human activity. However, global warming, irregardless of its orgins and effect, is, at worst, only one of many manifestations of the underlying threat to our world ... rampant and uncontrolled human population growth.