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  3. Fracking is making global warming worse.

User Info: mygoats

mygoats
3 years ago#1
http://www.thenation.com/article/global-warming-terrifying-new-chemistry/

Global warming is, in the end, not about the noisy political battles here on the planet’s surface. It actually happens in constant, silent interactions in the atmosphere, where the molecular structure of certain gases traps heat that would otherwise radiate back out to space. If you get the chemistry wrong, it doesn’t matter how many landmark climate agreements you sign or how many speeches you give. And it appears the United States may have gotten the chemistry wrong. Really wrong.

There’s one greenhouse gas everyone knows about: carbon dioxide, which is what you get when you burn fossil fuels. We talk about a “price on carbon” or argue about a carbon tax; our leaders boast about modest “carbon reductions.” But in the last few weeks, CO2’s nasty little brother has gotten some serious press. Meet methane, otherwise known as CH4.

In February, Harvard researchers published an explosive paper in Geophysical Research Letters. Using satellite data and ground observations, they concluded that the nation as a whole is leaking methane in massive quantities. Between 2002 and 2014, the data showed that US methane emissions increased by more than 30 percent, accounting for 30 to 60 percent of an enormous spike in methane in the entire planet’s atmosphere.

To the extent our leaders have cared about climate change, they’ve fixed on CO2. Partly as a result, coal-fired power plants have begun to close across the country. They’ve been replaced mostly with ones that burn natural gas, which is primarily composed of methane. Because burning natural gas releases significantly less carbon dioxide than burning coal, CO2 emissions have begun to trend slowly downward, allowing politicians to take a bow. But this new Harvard data, which comes on the heels of other aerial surveys showing big methane leakage, suggests that our new natural-gas infrastructure has been bleeding methane into the atmosphere in record quantities. And molecule for molecule, this unburned methane is much, much more efficient at trapping heat than carbon dioxide.

The EPA insisted this wasn’t happening, that methane was on the decline just like CO2. But it turns out, as some scientists have been insisting for years, the EPA was wrong. Really wrong. This error is the rough equivalent of the New York Stock Exchange announcing tomorrow that the Dow Jones isn’t really at 17,000: Its computer program has been making a mistake, and your index fund actually stands at 11,000.

These leaks are big enough to wipe out a large share of the gains from the Obama administration’s work on climate change—all those closed coal mines and fuel-efficient cars. In fact, it’s even possible that America’s contribution to global warming increased during the Obama years. The methane story is utterly at odds with what we’ve been telling ourselves, not to mention what we’ve been telling the rest of the planet. It undercuts the promises we made at the climate talks in Paris. It’s a disaster—and one that seems set to spread.
...
The apparently happy fact was that when you burn natural gas, it releases half as much carbon dioxide as coal. A power plant that burned natural gas would therefore, or so the reasoning went, be half as bad for global warming as a power plant that burned coal. Natural gas was also cheap—so, from a politician’s point of view, fracking was a win-win situation. You could appease the environmentalists with their incessant yammering about climate change without having to run up the cost of electricity. It would be painless environmentalism, the equivalent of losing weight by cutting your hair.
Leap year account

User Info: VRX3000

VRX3000
3 years ago#2
They REALLY need to find a way to make solar panels as efficient as coal. Or wind farms. Oh hey, how are those feeder plants in Europe doing?
~ - ~
On second thought, I want my old signature back

User Info: ozzyman314

ozzyman314
3 years ago#3
And Hillary is willing to pursue it further because her cooperate masters tell her too.
"The left doesn't take anything seriously except bashing the right"
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User Info: Centipede

Centipede
3 years ago#4
You're a total dork if global warming is an issue you spend time worrying about. I mean really, get a life.
Despite its impressive length, it's a NIMBLE NAVIGATOR. The centipede has two CURVED, HOLLOW FANGS, which inject paralyzing venom. This centipede is a PREDATOR.

User Info: Iamcluedout

Iamcluedout
3 years ago#5
Imagine if you got one house to live in until you died, and you could not leave it. Then you started burning the furniture in the house, and then the panelling, and so on in order to maintain comfort. Eventually there would be nothing left to burn, and the skeleton of the house would be in cinders.

Humans are like that. It doesn't even matter if you believe in climate change or not. You wouldn't want to burn your own home, and defecate all over it. That's the way we treat the planet. And when our only home is left in shambles, maybe then we can use all those dollar bills to warm ourselves up.

But then again, we'll all be dead before the more serious effects of climate change start to appear. Doesn't matter though, our children and grandchildren can deal with it.
MY wise words of the day- Wherever you are, there you are...

User Info: CommonGrackle

CommonGrackle
3 years ago#6
the nation as a whole is leaking methane in massive quantities

*toots*
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User Info: Heineken14

Heineken14
3 years ago#7
Centipede posted...
You're a total dork if global warming is an issue you spend time worrying about. I mean really, get a life.


Someone creating alts to troll a message board shouldnt be lecturing on how to spend ones time.
Rage is a hell of an anesthetic.

User Info: Saxon

Saxon
3 years ago#8
Electric cars aren't much better than gas powered because electric is still very dirty with coal being the best way we know how to keep the lights on in the United States.

User Info: Nitro378

Nitro378
3 years ago#9
Electric cars are a silly proof of how individualist even supposedly 'green' people are, we should be investing in public transit.

But as for the op... Did we really need a study to figure that out?
Sanders 2016 - Corbyn 2020 - Varoufakis Forever https://youtu.be/u52Oz-54VYw
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User Info: TaiIs82

TaiIs82
3 years ago#10
Humans can't control this stuff, can't even predict this stuff, and it's hard to claim "climate change getting worse" when there's been no warming and so many models have failed. Why believe any of them now when they've been dead wrong on the science dozens of times?

The methane story is utterly at odds with what we’ve been telling ourselves...A power plant that burned natural gas would therefore, or so the reasoning went, be half as bad for global warming as a power plant that burned coal.

I wish they would just admit that even when they get what they want, which was more natural gas for a long time, the environmentalists will find some excuse to pick on businesses just like how the South Park mob went after Wal-Mart. It's time we moved past their hatred of anything successful and started approving projects like Keystone, which provide jobs and which even administration officials admit has no scientific basis for rejection, but just Obama's spiteful political reasons that obstruct and get in the way of progress.

These leaks are big enough to wipe out a large share of the gains from the Obama administration’s work on climate change

Another Obama administration failure. Turns out the narcissist can't heal the planet and lower the seas after all. This is beyond the power of any one person and Obama was only deluding himself.
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