Author Topic: Britain goes coal-free for a whole day, first time since Industrial Revolution  (Read 343 times)

Offline Hydra009 (OP)

list 25 did an interesting sum up of what would happen is humankind just disappeared, one of the more damming parts being there would be nobody around to maintain the cooling systems in nuclear plants, and they'd all eventually blow up.
Wouldn't most of them enter safe mode?

But yeah, the short-term (a couple of years) would be pretty catastrophic to the environment, albeit on a local scale.  Dams would eventually break and fires would no longer be controlled.  Major cities would likely go up in flame.

Long-term, the planet would be just fine.  Water and air pollution would nosedive.  Fish stocks would bounce back.  A lot of endangered species would bounce back.  Large predators would make a comeback.  But most domesticated animals would perish, though I suppose some could successfully transition back to their feral state.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2017, 07:52:07 PM by Hydra009 »

Offline Baruch

I'll step up.

The current albedo of the earth is about 0.3. The earth's diameter is 12,742 km, so it has a cross-sectional area of 1.275e14 m^2. With a solar constant of 1.361 kW/m^2, that gives us 3.745e21 kW over the earth's surface, 30% of which is reflected back out into space. That leaves us with 2.621e21 kW, or 2.621e12 TW, that is absorbed by the earth.

On the other hand, in the year 2013, it is estimated that the world energy consumption of the world was 13,541 Mtoe (568.722 EJ). So, that gives us an average of 18.023 TW (568.722 TJ/yr / 3.154e7 s/yr) energy consumption over that year. Our current energy consumption is maybe an order of mangitude more, so ballpark 180.23 TW. If we were to draw all of this power from solar radiation, then it would increase the absorbed amount of power by one part in 14 million. The decrease in global albedo would be about the same order.

Put another way, the current radiative forcing from the greenhouse effect is 2.9 W/m^2, or 0.2% of the solar constant. The waste heat from our activities is 0.028 W/m^2, or about one one-hundredth of that. But remember that 0.028 W/m^2 would be new heat added to the system (although it is in effect stored sunlight, it was effectively gone until we burned it for energy), instead of heat that would have been absorbed anyway from the sun.

There's also the fact that we can choose to cover low albedo areas with solar panels. You know, the solar radiation from those areas would be mostly absorbed anyway, but at least we'll get some useful work out of it.


Doing someone else homework for them is cheating ;-)
Microclimate of LA changed by all the concrete and asphalt?
The point being solar, wind isn't enough, except in the fevered minds of Champaign liberals like Al Gore.
Just more BS from the free lunch brigade.  Earth First Monkey Wrenches.
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Offline Hydra009 (OP)

Doing someone else homework for them is cheating ;-)
Yeah...spoiler alert, I'm not a scientist.  But I do have a basic understanding of the topic and can point to experts who know their stuff.  They contradicted your claim about waste heat, and you would've known that had you checked out the link.  There's something deeply unsettling about a supposedly honest person who doesn't care about facts.

Well, let's see what Hakurei Reimu's number-crunching bought him:

Quote
The point being solar, wind isn't enough, except in the fevered minds of Champaign [sic] liberals like Al Gore.
A claim literally no one made.  Also, nice character assassination.  That Al Gore guy sounds like a real wacko.

Quote
Just more BS from the free lunch brigade.  Earth First Monkey Wrenches.


Wow, looks like a complete waste of time of Hakurei Reimu's part (and also my part).  I suppose we should have seen it coming.  I've gotta say, I can see why people who come across your unsourced, rectal-harvested nonsense often wisely opt to ignore it rather than waste time disputing it.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2017, 01:44:08 AM by Hydra009 »

Offline Baruch

Get in your solar powered car and go to work then ;-)  I would be happy to cut off your electricity from carbon sources, and nuclear too ... since anything that doesn't smell of granola and Woodstock ... isn't groovy ;-)

And yes, Al Gore is an idiot ... but then most politicians are.
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Offline Hakurei Reimu

Get in your solar powered car and go to work then ;-)
Don't you know? Cars are already solar powered. It's fossilized solar power, but apparently that's good enough for you.
Warning: Don't Tease The Miko!
(she bites!)
Spinny Miko Avatar shamelessly ripped off from Iosys' Neko Miko Reimu

Offline Baruch

list 25 did an interesting sum up of what would happen is humankind just disappeared, one of the more damming parts being there would be nobody around to maintain the cooling systems in nuclear plants, and they'd all eventually blow up. As a species we pretty much fucked up the environment guaranteed, dammed us being here, dammed without us.

That is why, in the Rapture, the good people are beamed up to a galaxy far far away ;-)
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Offline trdsf

list 25 did an interesting sum up of what would happen is humankind just disappeared, one of the more damming parts being there would be nobody around to maintain the cooling systems in nuclear plants, and they'd all eventually blow up. As a species we pretty much fucked up the environment guaranteed, dammed us being here, dammed without us.
There might be an explosion, but it would not be a nuclear one as such, it would be from either the buildup of pressure or a meltdown rupturing the containment vessel, followed by the ignition of hydrogen as atmospheric oxygen got into the mix.  And it is possible to design facilities that are effectively failsafe -- nothing is 100%, of course, but steps can be taken.
"It's hard to be religious when certain people are never incinerated by bolts of lightning." -- Calvin and Hobbes
"Confused? At a loss for what to do? Wow, sounds like you're human. Good luck." -- Welcome to Night Vale

Offline Baruch

There might be an explosion, but it would not be a nuclear one as such, it would be from either the buildup of pressure or a meltdown rupturing the containment vessel, followed by the ignition of hydrogen as atmospheric oxygen got into the mix.  And it is possible to design facilities that are effectively failsafe -- nothing is 100%, of course, but steps can be taken.

Most like Three Mile Island .. not like Chernobyl or like Fukushima.
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