General discussion


Global Warming Revisited

By TheChas ·
Yes, I know that this topic has been visited before.

I also understand that the majority of peers who have voiced their views on the subject believe that global warming is at best a non-issue.

Still, I have come across new information that lends credence to the claims of environmentalists that global warming is happening, and we all need to take action in our daily lives to reduce our collective and individual impact on the environment.

The first item I came across is the latest issue of "National Geographic".
The cover article on global climate change takes up about 1/2 of the issue.

The stories are available on line at:

Next, while the response is a bit tepid, even the Bush Administration is acknowledging that action needs to be taken to reduce human impact on the global climate.

So, what are you doing on a personal and professional level to reduce environmental impact while saving money at the same time?

Have you shown your managers and clients the cost payback in energy savings for both electricity and cooling costs they would have by switching from CRT to LCD monitors?

With PC component reliability and functional life as high as it is, are you encouraging users to turn off their PCs each night?
Or, at least having them set reasonable energy saving settings?
For that matter, a PC that is off is NOT a security or virus risk!

Outside of the IT realm, one thing that bugs me to no end is the number of buildings with dark colored roofs. It can cost twice as much to cool a building with a dark roof than a light colored roof.
Unless you are far north of the 45th parallel, any heating benefit from a dark roof is more than offset by the increased cooling costs.
For a commercial building, the "optimum" roof for year round energy cost control is a "green" roof planted with either grass or other green vegetation.

From the information in the "National Geographic" article, it is clear to me that the earth's climate is warming up. Left unchecked, this warming could be devastating to all life on earth.

If we all take the time to think about the environment, and do a few little things to reduce our impact on the climate, perhaps, we can prevent the need for any draconian limits on industry.


This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Comments

Collapse -

Interesting points

by GuruOfDos In reply to Global Warming Revisited

You say 'For that matter, a PC that is off is NOT a security or virus risk!'. I would dispute that and so would the US Department of Defence! All US Military computers MUST be left on at all times so the admins can deploy virus updates and security patches. According to DoD IT policy (certainly on every US and NATO base I've ever worked on), a computer switched off and unable to accept such security updates IS considered a security risk!

Corporately, our entire IT infrastructure is being converted over to VIA Eden/Epia systems (from traditional power-hungry Pentium and Athlon processor based systems) as they have such low power consumption. I mentioned in a previous post 'green' computers using these with 12v battery supplies and wind chargers!

Personally, I have converted my car (19** Peugeot 309 1.9 Diesel) to SVO. Fossil fuels when they are burned take carbon (which has been locked in the ground and out of harms way) and add it to the carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, thus adding to greenhouse gasses. Straight Vegetable Oil on the other hand comes from plants. All the carbon in this oil has already been taken out of the atmosphere during the growing and burning it in a diesel engined vehicle only releases the same amount of carbon into the air, thus making zero net contribution to the carbon cycle and hence global warming. It's also about a fifth of the cost of diesel if you buy it fresh from the store, and vitually free if you reprocess (filter to 1 micron and 'dry') used cooking oil (WVO - Waste vegetable Oil) from restaurants (who will gladly give it away rather than pay disposal charges!), contains virtually zero sulphur and the smell of cooking oil is much less noxious than hydrocarbon fumes!!

Collapse -

And some more

by HereInOz In reply to Interesting points

Your point about the carbon dioxide released from the vegetable oil is valid, Guru, and leads to another discussion that our politians love to rave about, and that is the planting of trees to reduce greenhouse gasses, and using those trees as a "credit" to offset the burning of fossil fuels.

Don't get me wrong, I fully support the planting of trees and I acknowledge that it is a really effective way of improving the climate in the area, but as a way to reduce greenhouse gasses on an ongoing basis, it is bunkum.

The tree grows and in the process locks up carbon dioxide that is currently in the air - a good thing - but how long does the tree live? 100 years?? Perhaps. Then it dies and the tree falls over and decay sets in, releasing, you guessed it, carbon dioxide. So we have a typically short term "politician's" solution.

The only way to reduce greenhouse gases is to lock up the carbon dioxide that has been released by the burning of fossil fuels FOREVER, like it originally was. Let us hope we find a way to do this damnably quickly, because there is no other way that we can reduce greenhouse gases.

Please don't get confused with "reducing greenhouse gas emissions" and actually reducing greenhouse gasses. Reducing emissions is one thing, and something we should all work towards, but the root of the problem is that ANY greenhouse gasses emitted will NEVER go away - they will always be there - until we find a way to lock them up safely again. This is where our scientists and administrations need to be looking.

And for all the people who will no doubt say that this is a load of claptrap and that climate change is not happening, just remember that industry around the world used to have the maxim of "The secret to pollution is dilution", and they stuck by that, pouring their tiny amounts of waste into the huge lakes, until many of the lakes and rivers were toxic.

Even if we stop emitting greenhouse gasses now, the climate will inexorably change unless we can take out the CO2 already there.

Cheers, guys.

Collapse -

but how long does the tree live? 100 years?? Perhaps.

by Oz_Media In reply to And some more

Damn, such a theory just makes me al excited! A tree living 100 YEARS!! Man, now THERE's a concept!

On Vancouver Island, US owned Weyerhaeuser clear cuts NASTY hunks from the mountains, on the backside of course so that the general population travelling the highways don't see the destruction though.

While in the BC interior this weekend, I saw what a repsponsible logging company does, SELECTIVE forestry! Neat idea, proven to be efective all over Europe but it doesn't cater to those who just want more and more lumber.

Looking at one area that had been logged you can see all these little white sticks on the hill, upon closer inspection, they are little tubes with seedlings in them, they are like miniature greenhouses for the seedlings, ensuring greater growth rate and success.

The US solution, found all over the Island, is to clear cut and hire a bunch of hippies, stoners and detention center kids to chuck new seedlings all over the hill. With less than a 10% survival rate, this is just playing a game to make it appear as if they are replanting the hills. Then when it proves useless, as it did in the 90's, they use it as a method to open new areas to logging in order to sustain their industry, citing the regowth rate is too slow for the logging process.

Instead of realizing they are simply ruining our country to support their own, they are given more land to log.

I know several loggers and they would ALL rather work for Canadian operated companies as the practice is much more acceptable, even to them as loggers.
Their former Canadian employers were pushed to downsize by the softwood lumber treaties and the Weyer take over of most of North Vancouver Island.

Now I can see many aspects that I agree with behind Capitalism, or the concept of capitalism anyway. I don't think moving your overly gluttonous business into another country and spitting upon their want to protect their land is acceptable though.

Here's an idea, start building PLASTIC homes in the USA. Americans wouldn't mind the plastic world, society is already plastic so the curve isn't too great. It would allow them to smoke out the country and produce noxious gasses that are so fondly protected in the USA. Or just start using resources responsibly and the need for destruction wouldn't flow into other countries and they could all support themselves.

There is a few 100+ year old trees on the island, where thee used to be ONLY 100+ year old trees. It is a SMALL protected forest aea called Cedar Gove, it is a tourist attraction that attracts hoards year round as if they were viewing rare museum artifacts, '100 year old trees, whatever next!? '


In BC, the practice USED to be to remove all trees in an area. It would then be 40-70 years before the forest was ready to be removed again.

Now what they do is they mark all the trees that start to show growth problems, brown canopy or branches growing lower on the trunk. These are removed immediately, other 'healthy' trees are left to grow and will provide greater board feet of prime lumber when felled. This forestry practice has been proven as a way to keep a sustainable forest and logging business in sync.

Weyer still believes in tossing seedlings all ovr a hill and cla cuttign what they now deem is THEIR land.

This is why the Clayquot indias wre blocking th erods and spikig trees, many Canadian loggers working for Weyerhaeuser at the tim, were laid off or fired for also reusing to log the area.

Clayquot sound is a PRISTINE and most beautiful place to visit. The natural forsts, wildlife and utdeveloped land is a testament to Canada's love for it's natural beauty. MOST of the sound is inaccessible by car and has water access only, making it a truly breath taking and privaleged experience to see.

When Weyer loggd out their land, they started to move to Clayquot sound and look at the MILLIONS to be made on the masses of ancient, majestic trees.

Fortunately I was in the sound kayaking about three month ago and it is still stunning, thanks to a few die hard protesters, tree huggers or greenies (whatever you choose to call them) that put their lives on the line to protect what they felt THEIR land was built around.

God I hate gluttony ! Isn't that a sin? Yet it is also the food of America, overconsumption and abuse of resources.

The most God faring nation in the world, promotes sin as it's means to build a better empire. And the people just line up for more.

Collapse -

Plastic Houses

by voldar In reply to but how long does the tre ...

Hi Oz? nice talking to you again

Could be a good idea...but...if you look deeper, you will find that is not so good...My bro is architect, and he can tell you that will be a full box of problems rating, resistance etc. and don?t forget, Plastic is a derivate from oil?so?we?ll just change Scylla for Caribda.

I am agreeing with what you said, and I will add another - the wood is the single 'prime material' for which you don?t need to make many expenses to reach it! So was, it is and will be a big attraction for all the industries related! Single way to keep the ?lung of the earth? (forest) is to learn how to exploit without making major wounds.

About global heating?hum?the pollution is one major problem, at least, until the big guys will not switch for the alternative resources?I don?t see a BIG progress otherwise. Maybe in 20 years we?ll solve this problem?but I am sure this is not a simple ?changing lane?!

My theory is that the human became an intelligent creature when he first time built a tent (he transformed his natural environment) problem is...when he will become also responsible????...Hope sooner that I am thinking

Best regards

Collapse -

While not so common with diesels

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Interesting points

There is a far lower quantile of H2SO2 produced as well. The only down side is that your car smells like a fish shop as you drive along but currently on the up side as you say the used oil is free and while I'm not sure about the UK I'll be betting tax free as well.

That was one of the great mysteries to me when leaded fuel was withdrawn from the pumps over here as the powers that be admitted that there would be a far higher levels of H2SO2 being emitted that would return to earth as H2SO4 "Acid Rain" which has been a common event in Europe for many years now.

Go figure that one out it's way beyond me.


Collapse -

Tax free? I wish!!

by GuruOfDos In reply to While not so common with ...

Nope! Customs and Excise here levy a tax on ANY fuel used in vehicles. If you could run your car on water, they would tax that too!

If you run a car on PVO or SVO (Pure/Straight Vegetable Oil), then you CAN just buy it at the supermarket and throw it in the car...technically.

However if you run a car on reprocessed WVO (Waste Vegetable Oil) then technically by processing the oil and refining it (by separating out the crap and the glycerol) you are a fuel producer and what you produce IS taxable.

Here's the rub...reprocessed vegetable oil is taxed at half the duty of fossil fuels, so it still represents a huge saving over buying real diesel.

To add to the headache, if you buy diesel at the pump, you pay tax at the point of purchase. If you make your own 'bio-diesel', you are taxed on the amount you produce and use (or sell), but the tax is payable monthly in arrears by filling out an appropriate form, then waiting for the bill to arrive!

Messed, or what?!!! You'd think the government would encourage the use of cleaner 'carbon neutral' fuels which promote a cleaner environment (even if the streets will end up smelling like a chip diesel fumes any day!!). Nope.....they want their pound of flesh or their 'tax pound' any way they can screw it!

Collapse -

I suppose that makes sense in some perverted sought of way

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Tax free? I wish!!

But then again who has ever heard of a Government handing money back to the tax payer.

What you described above sounds very much like "Sir Humphrey Appleby" the permanent undersecretary in "YES MINISTER." I don't know about over there GOD but here it was considered as a MUST SEE TV show by Politicians as it gave them ideas on how to run their departments.

Talk about life imitating art but it is a scary thought.

Actually does the same apply if you filter out the gunk in the car with the necessary filters? That way it may be possible to place a fairly large filter under the car to collect the waste and then dispose of it at a latter time. But then again I suppose if there was no tax applied that way they would then create a tax on the waste and charge you on that!


Collapse -

Here's another

by Oz_Media In reply to Global Warming Revisited

Hi Chas, not too much to say on GW really, I think people pretty much know my take.

A really cool Canadian awareness site is I have met and worked with Mr. Suzuki and his daughter a few times and this guy is really fascinating. He used to do a science/ecology show on Canadian TV but since has retired to work on the DS Foundation.

Just thought you'd find him interesting.

Collapse -


by Aldanatech In reply to Here's another

You're right, that is a cool awareness site. It offers plenty of information about the environment (particularly in Canada), and I can see that Mr. Suzuki really knows his stuff.

Collapse -

What President bush has said

by maxwell edison In reply to Global Warming Revisited

"Addressing global climate change will require a sustained effort, over many generations. My approach recognizes that sustained economic growth is the solution, not the problem ? because a nation that grows its economy is a nation that can afford investments in efficiency, new technologies, and a cleaner environment."

- President Bush

Related Discussions

Related Forums