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Comment Re:No Carbon Emissions? (Score 4, Insightful) 135

You don't need a geothermal vent. A large number of mirrors and a receiver filled with molten salts is itself already a proven technology. Concentrated solar thermal chimneys are actually part of the basis of this design, and they've been generating megawatts for decades in sunnier parts of the world.

We should have been using this technology already, but skewed money comparisons that ignore pollution and military expenditures make oil *seem* cheaper than these, which it really isn't overall.

http://www.csp-world.com/tags/khi-solar-one

Comment Three cents (Score 1) 135

Three cents for a kilowatt hour, and that's *without* externalized costs like oil spills, oil wars, blown up mountains, and polluted air and water. You could even use concentrated solar thermal heat to drive this thing.

Anyone who says renewables aren't ready isn't paying attention.

Comment Re:There are no Facts (Score 1) 1469

There is no higher order brain function in the embryo until the fifth to sixth month, long after a freely choosing woman would have had an abortion.

What does that matter? Well, what do you suppose is our way of judging the end of life? If brain-death is the end, it follows that getting higher level brain waves would be the beginning of personhood. It doesn't make sense to me to push for it sooner.

Comment Re:What violation of his rights? (Score 1) 923

We're talking about rape in a country which legally defines failure to use a condom as requested as rape, and the accounts indicate failure to keep a condom on during *consensual* sex, something that would be a problem but not what we think of when we think of rape. The women involved are actively refusing to cooperate with the prosecution by now.

So, how much do you want to bet that this isn't a smear tactic and a hook to round up a political dissident?

Comment Re:Yes and? You always have been (Score 2) 172

That's why greywater recycling systems *don't* spray greywater. You pipe it at least twenty-two inches underground and distribute it to deeper root systems. An orchard is the typical endpoint for a three-way valve system diverting water from a laundry machine to the outdoors - and it works very well. The extra contents, provided you don't use salt-producing washing compounds, are actually very good for plants.

This green stuff that works isn't your typical suburban stuff with a few tweaks, it's a deep re-design. Question your assumptions.

Comment I know people want to believe this (Score 1) 267

I would not trust this conclusion. Simple dilution does not mean absence of risk. Despite this being a comment on Slashdot, I read to the end where I'm struck by this conclusion:

"Although the seas in the immediate vicinity of Fukushima probably experienced a very high dose of radioactivity during the months immediately after the disaster, as long as none of the isotopes accumulate in any organisms, the effects are unlikely to be long-lasting."

I strongly suggest looking up scholar.google.com and checking the isotopes: http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2011/03/21/134567288/radiation-by-the-numbers-isotopes-to-watch

Off-handed dismissal of bioaccumulation risks is rather shocking. There are also differences between exposure to radiation and having a radioactive particle lodged within your body for prolonged, embedded exposure.

Would the NOAA lie to us about radiation or oil or anything? You already have your answer just simply by their track record on the Gulf of Mexico disaster. Just the very numbers of the official estimates and how they only changed from ridiculously minimal to realistic shows there are dishonest interests involved.

http://www.reefrelieffounders.com/drilling/2012/01/24/ee-scientist-is-accused-of-lowballing-size-of-gulf-spill/
http://www.floridaoilspilllaw.com/

While some are pointing to the obligatory http://xkcd.com/radiation/ and I respect Randall, the lowballed numbers we are receiving from media with vested interests don't rank this disaster accurately. Even hardened robots can't last more than a few hours at the Fukushima 1 plant where the radiation is 73 sevierts, and that warrants careful examination of what we're told the risks are to broader areas. http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20120329a1.html

Whatever the truth is about Fukushima, it isn't coming from the NOAA.

Comment Re:It's Not as Simple as You Make It Out to Be (Score 4, Interesting) 128

There's a troubling aspect of this thinking, and that's that people expect there to be a single smoking gun and either the pesticides are it, or there aren't.

Living beings don't fit neatly into that. They process a large variety of inputs and can adapt to a number of stressors and heal; in fact, in machine culture we seem to take it for granted that living systems are at 100% because we're used to machines that are either working or very conspicuously broken.

Bees have been shipped about fields, worked harder than even their natures. They're exposed to crops now genetically modified to include pesticides in their pollen. The sprays being used are increasingly pushed into use for profit without review. This leaves them in such a weakened state that if a mite finishes them off, you can't say it was just one factor.

If you want a resilient system, you've got to pay attention to all of these factors.

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