.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Unpopular Ideas

Ramblings and Digressions from out of left field, and beyond....

Location: Piedmont of Virginia, United States

All human history, and just about everything else as well, consists of a never-ending struggle against ignorance.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Burps and Thirsts

While the gurgling and the splatter goes on at full steam when it comes to national and international human affairs, there's a cleansing effect of sorts in noting that meanwhile nature's overriding burps and thirsts haven't disappeared even though they are so roundly ignored by homo sapiens. Instead those situations are steadily growing ever more active and threatening. By this I mean things like the methane escaping from the Arctic deeps and the subsoils to join the carbon dioxide up in the atmosphere, and also the growing shortage of water, with special reference to the western United States.

This means that in these disasters at least, the massed Nasties and the Mean-Spirited of the world can't win -- though on second thought, it might instead mean that they win after all, since catastrophe is their thing, and they do all they can to bring it about, through short-sighted expedience, ignorance, and negligence as much as through any other means.

The following passage from the above-linked article on the dwindling supplies of fresh water illustrates that point.

A recent study by the Nature Conservancy (http://www.nature.org/initiatives/climatechange/features/art29432.html?src=news) predicts that temperatures across the country will increase from 3 to 10 degrees by 2100 due to climate change. Hardest hit will be Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and South Dakota, which depend on the Ogallala Aquifer and make this region the "breadbasket of America." Nevertheless, some senators in those states refuse to sign legislation to address this problem after having supported the "No Climate Tax Pledge" being pushed by the group, Americans for Prosperity (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/08/27/small-midwestern-states-t_n_270540.html).

The article on the methane escape indicates that more and more of it is seeping from the tundra and from under water where it has been safely locked down for eons. Methane is nothing to mess with. It is, after all, by far the major component of natural gas, and that says something about its flammability. But also if enough of it collects in what I am calling its "wild state," with nothing added to it to make it readily smellable, as with kitchen stove gas, it can take lives on on a large scale. Consider what its "little brother," carbon dioxide, which frozen is the familiar and generally harmless dry ice, did in Africa in 1986. A landslide into a lake in Cameroon aroused the carbon dioxide and other gases put there by magma from the Earth's mantle and that till then had been resting quietly under the water, and after bubbling upward and then outward, it suddenly and silently it snuffed out the lives of 1,700 people in the adjoining area.

That tragedy could easily be a forerunner of things that the climate scientists tell us are soon to come.

Iin the process of making large parts of the Earth unbearably hot that has been started by industries and vehicles sending up too much carbon dioxide to thicken the gaseous blanket over the planet, the addition of methane is going to be an ultimate killer, because. as a greenhouse gas, it beats carbon dioxide by a factor of about 20.

Meanwhile, in the article on the increasing shortage of water, its author tells us how artificial arrays of people in places such as Las Vegas are trying to keep up the illusion that they are actually located in the green East instead of in a giant desert out west , by setting afoot plans to pipe more and more water from other places that actually won't themselves have that much extra of it, including from as far east as the Mississippi River!

All I can say is that these people had better be quick to get these schemes going before this can be noticed, because when the temps reach drastic heights, as they surely will with all that methane floating upward, no one elsewhere is going to be happy about sending off any of their precious H2O to places where sensible people were never meant even to set up pup tents, much less build huge, desperate, grasping cities that will declare that their mere existence gives them the divine right to claim water, and enormous amounts of it, too, from the distant territories of others.

If we think we have some strife now.....


Post a Comment

<< Home