Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Geo Engineering? You're kidding, right?

I'm listening to Diane Rehm's radio show as I work this morning, and they are discussing various brain storming ideas about "Geoengineering" to try and reduce global warming, sequester CO2, lower ocean temperatures, float large white panels in the Arctic to reflect sunlight, plant 'artificial trees' to capture CO2, tinker with the iron content in the oceans...

um... as an experienced engineer who has designed and built a wide variety of small machines, large machines, and 1000s of square feet of medical clean room (100K rated) facilities, and as somewhat of a curmudgeon, I hear this sort of thing, and I think "Malarkey!" Puny humans think they can reverse the massive damage they've done to the planet? How delusional! It reminds me of George Carlin's "Big Electron" belief. The insightful comedian who is no longer with us, put it best as follows:

"We're so self-important. So arrogant. Everybody's going to save something now. Save the trees, save the bees, save the whales, save the snails. And the supreme arrogance? Save the planet! Are these people kidding? Save the planet? We don't even know how to take care of ourselves; we haven't learned how to care for one another. We're gonna save the f*ckin' planet? . . . And, by the way, there's nothing wrong with the planet in the first place. The planet is fine. The people are f*cked! Compared with the people, the planet is doin' great. It's been here over four billion years . . . The planet isn't goin' anywhere, folks. We are! We're goin' away. Pack your sh*t, we're goin' away. And we won't leave much of a trace. Thank God for that. Nothing left. Maybe a little Styrofoam. The planet will be here, and we'll be gone. Another failed mutation; another closed-end biological mistake."
— George Carlin

Sorry folks, anything we try to do to reverse our chronic abuse will be a tiny little blip on the over-all spectrum, be incredibly expensive, and won't make a hill of beans of difference in the long run. Put your efforts and money into coping with the screwed up environment, moving away from the coasts, digging tunnels underground - where future generations will probably need to live to avoid being fried on the surface. We're not going to be able to "fix" or "save" the planet. It's an exercise in futility.

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