Sunday, January 21, 2007

Is there technology based solution to global warming?

Last November I wrote about the important research of Nir Shaviv and his co-researchers at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem concerning global warming [see]. According to Shaviv's model, recently (partly) tested at CERN (see, the major source of influence on the earth's temperature is solar activity that causes ionization and cloud formation.

Added evidence was provided by the Danish National Space Center (DNSC) Sky experiment that was published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society. Shaviv reported as follows []:This is the Royal Society's press release on the publication of Svensmark et al.: “Using a box of air in a Copenhagen lab, physicists trace the growth of clusters of molecules of the kind that build cloud condensation nuclei. These are specks of sulphuric acid on which cloud droplets form. High-energy particles driven through the laboratory ceiling by exploded stars far away in the Galaxy - the cosmic rays - liberate electrons in the air, which help the molecular clusters to form much faster than atmospheric scientists have predicted. That may explain the link proposed by members of the Danish team, between cosmic rays, cloudiness and climate change.”

Now the Shaviv team proposes a theoretical model that provides an insight concerning a possible technology that can reduce global warming. If solar activity does not provide the means for cloud formation over the Pacific Ocean, a set of giant lasers firing horizontally high in space can create the required effect.

I am far from capable of judging these ideas. But in the absence of contrary evidence, it makes me skeptical about size of the anthropogenic influence on global warming and hopeful that technology will provide the answer. I would like to hear some cogent discussion of the Shaviv hypotheses.


Dano said...

Shaviv and Veizer can't withstand peer review. Period. Apologies.

Quotes from non-The Google ref:

Even if your scientific analysis were completely correct, your paper would have merely provided one intriguing piece of evidence pitted against many other studies that come to a different conclusion, and it would have been irresponsible to publish such a far-reaching statement in a press release, especially since your paper does not study 20th Century warming...

We wished to point out that the meteorite data on which the cosmic ray flux curve is based are relatively few and uncertain, especially considering that it is an indirect inference based on apparent age clustering of the meteorites that is used to construct this curve. Other specialists on meteorite research working on cosmic-ray effects interpret the clustering of CRE ages as the result of break-up processes on parent asteroids, Mars and Moon, where large numbers of meteorites were ejected. The models of galactic spiral arm dynamics are also rather uncertain and do not directly provide data on cosmic ray flux. For the lay-person newspaper reader, it is important to point out that your data may be sufficient to put forward a speculative new hypothesis about cosmic ray variations (which we welcome), but they are not sufficient to overrule conclusions based on the much more abundant and accurate climate data from the more recent past, let alone to call for policy revisions. We expect you will agree on this point.

Your [Shaviv & Veizer - D] analysis applies to the hundred-million-year time scale and to a climate that for most of the time has far higher CO2 values than at present, or even than twice the present value. The position of continents also differs from the present. As is the case for the Vostok data, processes that operate on such time scales and at such high CO2 values will differ from those of interest for present climate...


Benjy said...

This reminds me of an episode of an old TV show called Seaquest. The show was awful but one thing from the first episode is closely related to this idea you presented. In the future they had these huge things that looked like air filters that took over the role of rainforests etc. to convert CO2 into oxygen. That sort of thing may be feasible in the future, as long as there is a proper incentive for people to invest in such research. Something like that could make all current debates about caps and carbon taxes totally moot.

Dano said...

That sort of thing may be feasible in the future, as long as there is a proper incentive for people to invest in such research.

Or we can continue to use ecosystem services to perform such actions.

Ecosystem services cost nothing to deploy, nor do they require R&D ti utilize. They are free, they are proven, and they are deployed now and have been for ~545 million years, thus needing no testing.



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