Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

This is all good, but the reality is we'll not have enough renewables any time soon: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_energy_consumption

We should seriously consider solar geo-engineering. Not as the ultimate policy but to buy time.






I really hope not. We don't even know all consequences of geo-engineering. Well, we know it will lower yield of crops on which we depend to feed ourselves.

Future is green or none at all.


Why not both - our current "forward" momentum is increasing greenhouse gases and, even if we switch fully to renewables with minimal carbon footprint in a very short time-frame, that momentum will continue to have effects. If we apply the "backward" momentum and start removing carbon while also switcing production to green, it should stop the negative effects more quickly.

Of course, I'm all for thorough planning and extensive, well-funded and organized research first - unfortunately, we can't seem to start doing one of these things seriously, let alone all three...


Removing CO2 is not geoengineering in my book. That is reversing what we did and I'm all for that.

Geoengineering is for example emitting particles to atmosphere to lower amount of sunlight hitting earth. This will cause sky to change color, lower yield of crops and possibly other unknown consequences. That I would rather live without. That is last resort think, not first think to do.

We don't even have carbon tax, plane fuel is not taxed etc. and we already talk about geoengineering. This is crazy.


We already did geoengineering in form of burning fossils. Reversing this is also geoengineering.

If carbon emissions dropped to zero today, there is enough carbon in the atmosphere to permanently raise the temperature and potentially enough to kick off nasty positive feedback loops like permafrost methane.

Assuming we could hit zero today is of course wildly optimistic. Even reaching an equilibrial state of carbon inflow and carbon outflow would mean approximately halving emissions, rather than tinkering around the edges.


> we know it will lower yield of crops

that is true only for one kind of geo-engineering: emulation of volcano eruption, and that's indeed not the kind of geoengineering we need. What we need instead is a much finer control over weather to prevent +35 and -20 in cities, drive more water to deserts, and make arctic warmer without melting all of greenland ice sheets.


The way around that is to use particles that block/reflect EM radiation that is not useful to plants. For example, glass or silicon gel.

You are being misled by the graph. Here is why:

https://physicsworld.com/a/a-gross-miscalculation/


So basically the chart is based on fuel consumption not actual energy output. Most fossil fuel consumption is inefficient to the tune of about two thirds of the input fuel being wasted. So the graph down-plays the contribution of renewable sources and nuclear by a factor of about 3x in terms of substitution for fossil fuel sources.



Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: