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Stewart Brand: Rethinking Green

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Previous FORAtv comments:
AbsoluteLunacy Avatar
Posted: 10.11.10, 09:08 PM
Did he say that he agreed with gene patenting? I do not think he did. Gene patenting is a case of legislators not understanding the implications of the technology and yes, bio engineering has its problems. However, unless we begin to develop that technology now, there will be no hope in feeding the future generations. Every organism finds a carrying capacity with in its environment based on the amount of available resource, and the limiting resource to population growth is, typically, food. We are expecting to see considerable decreases in crops yields due to warmer temperatures and the same time we are expected to see a massive increases in demand. So who would you have starve? I know that sounds dramatic but in some parts of the world that question is already being asked.
TheKnobknows Avatar
Posted: 07.21.10, 08:40 PM
Yes and no, coal needs mining as well. The construction of a coal burner, or a nuclear power plant requires lots of ghg producing technology, same as solar and wind. The waste that occurs in nuclear technology is that the fuels are generally not recycled. This means that more mining has to occur than is necessary. Future reactors that breed and recycle fuels would minimise the amount of mining. There are about 6 different reactor designs for the Gen IV project. Note that a reactor is far cleaner than a coal burner. Disseminating reactors that are essentially sealed units to developing countries eradicates the radiotoxity and proliferation issues of waste. Developing countries can then recycle the waste to breeding programs. In the short term, thorium reactors look the most effective as they produce little or no discernible waste (transuranics). In the long term, breeding reactors based on a recycling U-Pu system can be disseminated world wide as there would be no proliferation issue with newer designs. Not using Pu as a fuel is a very dumb thing. Geothermal would be nice but I doubt that is will be a major component of the many terawatts the world will need for the future. You have to be in the right place. Of course, you could pray for a break in the second law of thermodynamics, apparently alternative medicine relies on such a defiance of nature. Guys, natural is natural! Uranium is natural and so is coal.
TheKnobknows Avatar
Posted: 07.21.10, 06:47 AM
Firstly geothermal. There are a lot of ifs involved in geothermal. You have to get the right conditions deep down. Other geothermal units may work. Nuclear vs Coal, Its pretty obvious that coal is dumb. Nuclear is waste free power in comparison to coal. The presenter didnt emphasize newer technologies where transuranics are not formed and can be used to burn and recycle previous wastes. This hasnt been done except at france. GM foods and technologies. Frankly guys, if you add up the terrible land management practices that dominate farming and the disgraceful land management practices in the guise of the brand "organic", G.M. looks great. Look at your everyday prducts (health food store or otherwise. G.M. is already there. If you have to have a good argument about GM, you have to do the work not the sloganeering. Lets face it, there are naturally bread, totally organic, products that would have you wondering about what you did to get that food on your plate. GM isnt any different. I really wish you guys picked up on the point, nature shares its genes.
Sarenth Avatar
Posted: 04.14.10, 10:06 AM
I find it hard to take that nuclear power is 'greener' than solar and wind, given the resources required for construction of nuclear power centers, maintenance of the facilities, disposal of the waste and all the adjoining costs from beginning to end of a nuclear plant's life comparative to solar panels or wind turbines. However, anything that gets us off of a coal to a far cleaner alternative, which nuclear does seem to be, is welcome from me at this juncture.
Posted: 04.14.10, 07:22 AM
Same game just another decade. still destroying peoples.
Nathan Arov Avatar
Nathan Arov
Posted: 04.12.10, 09:10 PM
This guy is the most reasonable environmentalist I've ever seen!
Fora2 Avatar
Posted: 04.11.10, 10:32 PM
WHAT COOLING? A lot of deniers claim the earth has been cooling the last ten years. One of their own is helping to debunk that myth. UAH (The University of Alabama, Huntsville)climate center is run by Dr. John Christy, a well known AGW denier. March was the HOTTEST March in the UAH 32 year satellite record. Global temperatures for February = 2nd WARMEST February in 32 years. Global Temperatures for JANUARY = the HOTTEST January for UAH in 32 years.
Nick Avatar
Posted: 11.17.09, 05:04 PM
Reading a lot of the comments here, I get the sense many of you guys are pitting nature against tech, i.e., nature = good while technology = bad. But I don't think it has to be that way. Brand, here as always, is thinking in the very long term - old technologies don't scale to modern life, so let's discuss smart ways to use new technologies to better all our lives while minimizing our impact on the environment. That's a very worthwhile conversation to have.
Soylent Avatar
Posted: 11.17.09, 06:12 AM
Quote: Originally Posted by whitebearpaws Moral imperative?!!! Any time man interferes with nature it becomes a "less than." It's unfortunate that mainstream environmentalism has been taken over by this crazy, religious death cult. Look, all those beautiful crops, wheat, corn, strawberries, bananas, carrots, cabbages, you name it; they were CREATED BY MAN over the last 10 000 years. The wild ancestors to these plants still exist in most cases; you have access to the internet, you can go look them up. We did the most amazing job on corn; just look up teosinte to see what it looked like before we got started mucking about with its genome. We've entered a contract with these plants; they provide such a veritable mountain of food suited specifically to sustaining humans that they cannot possibly survive and compete against weeds on their own, the food they provide is in return for our protection. This anti-humanist, anti-gm crap is a spit in the face of all those humans who designed the food you now eat.
mszlazak Avatar
Posted: 10.26.09, 09:39 AM
I believe that Brand is 100% correct when he says nuclear is greener than solar in terms of GHG emissions. This includes mining and refining uranium ore. A more in depth analysis of nuclear, wind, solar, geothermal, wave, etc, is done at this excellent site: Wind and solar are not the solution and the more you study them the more they look like swindles that will actually causes bigger problems in dealing with green house gases. Mostly, nuclear electric power generation (if not entirely) is really the only viable answer to our energy needs and solving the GHG emission problems. This realization is happening to more and more people as they study the options.
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