More noise about climate

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Start here:
<http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100127134721.htm
<http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/28/new-paper-in-nature-on-co2-amplif ication-its-less-than-we-thought/>
<http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/press/proved_no_climate_crisis.html
After that, I'll leave it to you whether you actually want to examine evidence on all sides of the debate or simply swallow what you're being fed.
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Per molecule CO2 is ot a very "good" greenhouse gas. Methane and some others are much better. But if you have a million more mlecules of CO2 than methane, and if it is indeed easier to reduce the number of molecules of CO2, than let's go for imiting CO2.
Many ifs, I know. But the advantages of reducing the use of fossil fuels are many. And if it is done through increased efficiency or switching to non-polluting systems like Morris' solar water pumps, than all the better. Morris is showing that it is a technological thinking leap that is needed, not new sources of (for instance) rare earth metals.
--
Best regards
Han
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I have to proofread better. My kayboard is not always transmitting what I type, here I fill in the missing letters ...
Per molecule CO2 is not a very "good" greenhouse gas. Methane and some others are much better. But if you have a million TIMES more molecules of CO2 than of methane, and if it is indeed easier to reduce the number of molecules of CO2, than let's go for limiting CO2.
Many ifs, I know. But the advantages of reducing the use of fossil fuels are many. And if it is done through increased efficiency or switching to non-polluting systems like Morris' solar water pumps, than all the better. Morris is showing that it is a technological thinking leap that is needed, not new sources of (for instance) rare earth metals.
--
Best regards
Han
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Han wrote:

If we could magically make every energy system in the world 200 percent efficient it would not come close to hitting the IPCC targets. If this is a problem of the magnitude they are claiming, it's not going to be fixed by driving a Prius and using fluorescent light bulbs.
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On 1/31/2010 8:25 AM, J. Clarke wrote:

Fair enough. If this is a problem of /any/ magnitude, and if we have no "magic bullet" solution at hand - then it would seem wise to consider partial solutions that, in aggregate, might produce an acceptable outcome at an acceptable cost.
I would also seem wise to continue the search for "magic bullets" _and_ to find /more/ partial solutions to increase the probability of a favorable outcome.
At present, it appears to me that the magic bullets all require some kind of breakthrough development, and the drawback to breakthroughs is that they don't seem to happen on any kind of predictable schedule - then next could come later today, or it could come five hundred years from now...
The partial solutions appear to be incremental in nature. The first CFL bulbs to hit the market weren't all that reliable, the current crop seem to be better, and over the next (small number of) years we can expect them to improve significantly. I'm seeing the same kind of progression for LED lighting, with luminosity/watt being the improvement factor.
One of the molecular biologists over at Pioneer Hi-Bred told me that they (biologists) know how to do the gene splicing to produce bio-luminescence. Goof ball that I am, I envision street lighting with glowing trees - and can't help wondering just how much light might be coaxed out of a plant. (Might I light my living room with a few well-placed ficus plants? If we produced bio-luminescent grass for safer parks might kids come home with glow-in-the-dark knees and elbows?) :)
I think you're right about driving a Prius and using CFL bulbs. They're /not/ enough - one of the interesting challenges of the 21st century will be finding a whole spectrum of improved technologies so that whether the IPCC is /generally/ right or /generally/ wrong, the people of the 22nd century find more right in their time than we do in ours.
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Morris Dovey
DeSoto Solar
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Morris Dovey wrote:

When you run the numbers vs the IPCC demands, you will find that no combination of "partial solutions" will do the job even if the Third World freezes all increases in CO2 emission. The change they want is not small, it is radical. It means taking per capita CO2 production back to the level in the mid 1800s. This means pretty much replacing all fossil fuel use with something else--that means no gas or oil home heating, no gas stoves, cars and ships and airplanes and other means of transportation run on something other than fossil fuels, base load plants run on something other than fossil fuels and that maybe leaves enough room for leakage from industrial processes.
And when the Third World wants to grow, if the CO2 emission rollback is to be sustained, then they can't be allowed to build _any_ fossil-fueled power plants--they _have_ to build non-carbon-emitting plants or the efforts of the US and the EU and Japan and the rest become pointless. And restricting the Third World to non-carbon-emitting technologies is its own huge can of worms both in what technologies are viable (remember, in the long run they want their MTV) and in how such a restriction would be enforced.
Remember, China is the largest single emitter of CO2 and if they continue growing their emissions at the rate they did in the previous decade, will be out-emitting the entire rest of the world by the end of this decade. Compared to that, choosing to drive an econobox and turn off a few lights is a fart in a windstorm. In fact it's counterproductive--when people delude themselves that economizing in their personal lives is having a meaningful effect on CO2 emissions then they don't lobby for the huge changes that actually have to take place in order for the emissions to be reduced to the IPCC-specified levels.
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Yes, that is relatively simple. However, this luciferase is the protein that catalyzes conversion of ATP to AMP with the production of light (i.e. the glass of the lightbulb plus the socket). You also need a source of ATP (like the electricity for the lightbulb) and the luciferin that does the actual luminescing (the glowing filament in a bulb).
And then you get the kind of light of a firefly - weak and greenish. The gene/protein geeks have made variants of different wavelengths, but it is still not much lighting bang for the buck.
The major advantage is that you can hook this relatively small protein to other proteins by gene splicing, and express the combined protein in cells or animals. Then you can follow the fate of the protein by microscope, and see how and under which conditions it moves between (subcellular) compartments. This is exceedingly useful for research to figure out if, how and why things happen. The movies are fantastic (for a biologist). I don't think this is going to be the savior for generalized lighting.
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Han
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On 1/31/2010 2:01 PM, Han wrote:

Oh great! Now once again I know more than I understand (the story of my life). :)

That I understood. OTOH an entire acre of grass with both sides of each blade emitting at firefly levels would be a /lot/ different from dark. My point is this: If you can produce LEG (light emitting grass) that breeds true, the cost/lumen is _zero_. How closely can that cost level be approached with any other (excepting solar!) technology?
Back in the days before LEDs were bright enough to be more than binary panel indicators (not much better than fireflies), I built an array of 12x960 LEDS (an early LED graphic display device, I still have it stored away) that could make a person squint when they were all lit.
At half that light per pixel, but at perhaps fifty times the pixel density, you'd have a significant amount of light.

I'm not a biologist (IANAB?) but that _does_ sound fantastic. Movies? Can you post (or send) a video? With a voice-over to tell about what's shown? Please...
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Morris Dovey wrote:

It's not free energy. The emission of light has to compete with the production of sugar that the grass needs in order to survive and grow.
Professor Chia Tet Fatt in Singapore did create a bioluminescent transgenic orchid that would glow for about 5 hours. Nothing much seems to have come of it--at least I don't see anybody offering them for sale anywhere.
Cost/lumen is zero if it puts light in a useful place and if the cost of keeping that grass in place and not having it pushed out by some other variety that doesn't have the metabolic burden of bioluminescence doesn't increase the cost of upkeep.

Source intensity and surface illumination are different things. Shine a laser pointer in your eye and it looks insanely bright. But try to put enough light on a book to read by one.

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On 1/31/2010 5:36 PM, J. Clarke wrote:

That makes sense. I'm not sure I'm ready to give up on the idea, though. Perhaps we could start with a grass which does sugar production unusually well, and then trade off the growth speed in favor of light output. Perhaps have it only glow in the /dark/ so as to not waste its energy during the day...
You've probably guessed that I'm one of those people who're easily amused. :)

Yuppers, although the cost/lumen is the same no matter where the light goes and regardless of utility. We already put a lot of plants where they're not /useful/ (other than that someone finds them attractive), so usefulness isn't necessarily part of the equation.
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Morris Dovey
DeSoto Solar
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Here, for your dining and dancing entertainment, is Matsunari-San and the Luminescent Pigs!
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url might be useful
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18729767
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On 2/1/2010 12:29 AM, LDosser wrote:

Confirmed: I _am_ easily amused!
Just remembering a farm neighbor (whose pigs were fixated on becoming free-range porkers) saying: "If you see one of my pigs, kick it - it's either loose, trying to get loose, or thinking about getting loose."
By their fluorescence shall ye know them. :)
More seriously, I can see this as a (possibly) useful research tracking tool.
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Morris Dovey
DeSoto Solar
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Hell, if you develop that pig-luminescense out further, you won't have to start your BBQ.
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Light doesn't start fires, unless it is from a very powerful laser. Luminescence doesn't come close by many factors of 10. AFAIK.
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Han
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On Mon, 1 Feb 2010 09:35:28 -0800 (PST), the infamous Robatoy

Drew Barrymore, move over. "Firestarter III, Piglet Pie!"
-- Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will. -- George Bernard Shaw
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Morris Dovey wrote:

Here's a red fluorescent cat http://www.conncoll.edu/ccacad/zimmer/GFP-ww/cooluses7b.html , and a green one http://blog.syracuse.com/healthfitness/2008/10/flourescent_cat_created_by_gen.html . Note that these and the red pigs and the green pigs and here's a news video which shows fluorescent piglets (note--you have to sit through an ad first). There are also fluorescent rabbits about--the only photo I can find is http://www.viz.tamu.edu/faculty/lurleen/air/kac.htm and since it's an artist's site, even though the guy did own a genetically modified rabbit at one time the photo may still be doctored.
All of these though are using a fluorescent protein that only lights up under UV--it's not a luciferin-luciferase reaction.
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Someone in our division gave a talk of unpublished work showing time-lapse movies like that. Two kinds of cells (tissue culture), identical but for the absence of something fairly essential in one set. Movement of proteins indicating movement of organelles was seen in the "wild-type" cells, but not in the "mutants".
I have seen some more like that, but I don't have the references at hand. I'll keep this in mind for a future posting. The voice-over I can't promise.
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Han
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On 1/31/2010 7:32 PM, Han wrote:

I didn't mean to impose on anyone and then realized that I was, and I'm not sure I wasn't out of line. It /does/ sound fantastic and exciting to be able to see, but I'd like to retract all the pushiness...
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Morris Dovey
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Curiosity is never pushy. The only bad question is the one you don't ask (and should have asked). I am keeping your request in mind and just need the right reference.
The reference LDosser gave above is sort of useful, but doesn't have movies. It does prove the principle, tough, even in pigs, who are much harder and more costly to work with than mice.
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Han
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