The company I own has a client in South Georgia (USA) involved with planting 30,000 acres of a grass called Miscanthus X Gigantheus. The specific purpose being (after processing ) for the creation of biomass and eventually biofuel. I will admit, I was very skeptical at first but I have seen the data relative to yield and there is a viable market for the product. We will also be taking carbon credits for his investment. One other thing, it does not take away from edible foodstuffs AND can replinish neutrants lost from seasonal planting. Planting the rhizomes is the main difficulty because suitable equipment to automate the process is quite expensive--coming down in cost each year but still very expensive. I find this to be fascinating technology, even for a mechanical engineer. If you go online, look up Mississippi State University, ecology. There is a weath of information realtive to that particular crop and others. Thanks
First about the population thing. It never has been about population. It is about government. The Lord said, "The earth is full and ready for harvest." Oppressive governments (often supported and upheld by the United States) are the cause of famine, hunger, and deprivation. They will not let the people succeed for their own selfish reasons. We engineers have solved many of the world's problems, but third-world countries will not allow these advances in water production and purification, agriculture, electrical production, and free-market economics have a chance. Socialist economic planning fails every time. It isn't people that is the problem at all. We need more people to make the world go round economically, socially, and politically.
About "global warming." Yes, I have read the propaganda and it is just that- propaganda. Nothing they say is true science. It is all about controlling people and getting grants. Solar flares contribute more to climate than all the CO2 mankind can produce. Plus, one volcanic eruption has more effect on our climate than any thing we can do. Yes, man can pollute, and we do. And that is a shame! We were also told to take care of this world, and in many cases we haven't. But this is a big old world, and we are a very, very small part of it.
It is obvious that you haven't read one scientific article about global warming otherwise you'd not have mentioned that solar flare nonsense. Understand this, CO2 is a forcing greenhouse gas and people have been increasing its concetration through the release of CO2 in the burning of fossil fuels. This CO2 was not part of the natural cycles as long since it had been sequestered below the earth's surface.
Global warming is real and our release of CO2 from previously sequestered sources exacerbates the consequences of forcing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
Anyone who considers biofuels to be a replacement for fossil fuels really needs to do the math. The biofuel industry sidetracks food production and increases the devastation on wildlife as habitat is destroyed to grow crops for biofuel production as seen in Indonesia in their destruction of orangutan habitat and the slaughter of orangutans to create ever larger palm oil plantations.
The only solution to our energy problem is to greatly reduce how much energy we use, not deluding ourselves into thinking that technology will allow us to develop new sources. Also, we need to reverse human population growth to drive the global population to about 2 billion people, a sustainable level.
I guess you have to know the people making the demand to be "carbon neutral." They are usually bureaucrats justifying their existence making absurd claims about non-existent problems. Global warming is another unsubstantiated and foolish claim that ignores reality- solar flares.
Yes, the goalpost will be moved in the direction of the highest campaign contributor. As always...
Good question about cost. Also, I wonder how serious they are about this. The story discusses "carbon-neutral growth by 2020," but I do wonder if that's one of those goals that will get "re-visited" in a few years.
A success, but at what cost? It is far more expensive to use these reconstituted fuels, and the American taxpayer and their grandchildren are already carrying a heavy, heavy burden. I am glad there is a way to do these things, but really? As an engineer it is always great to come up with something new, but you have to weigh the costs. Costs are important- even in the government.
So, we fly through the air smelling like a hamburger, subsidized by the government, with airlines that can barely stay afloat. Hummmm...
These are good questions from Nadine and Naperlou, but whatever the answers, it's great to see forward movement on biofuels. An experiment here and an experiment there and pretty soon you have an industry.
One thing many don't talk about is that immedaiely after 9/11, on the east coast, the skies were as blue as in the tropics, by some accounts, because air traffic was grounded. Air quality exponentially increased.
It's good to see a few steps toward keeping the blue skies while keeping people connected. Increased air travel has been a benefited the world in many ways.
naperlou's question is great. The article says that only 10% of the 30% reduction can be attributed to biofuel. How could that be changed to decrease emmissions even more?
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Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
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