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Postby starkca3 » Thu Jul 17, 2008 3:35 pm

So LEED is a waste of time? O_O
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Postby csintexas » Thu Jul 17, 2008 3:44 pm

No, LEED is not a waste of time it is just a poor solution to the problem of reducing Co2 emissions.
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Postby csintexas » Thu Jul 17, 2008 4:46 pm

For all you Al Gore fans :wink:

The new Apollo project:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/al-gore/a ... 13359.html
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Postby Kevin » Thu Jul 17, 2008 5:39 pm

"No, LEED is not a waste of time it is just a poor solution to the problem of reducing Co2 emissions."

Yes! LEED is vitally important, but broad-spectrum compared to the climate issue.

And with a nod toward Solidred, there are other environmental issues to address at the same time as GHG emissions.

Hence - just for instance ;-) - the ArchitectureWeek Four Leaf Green(tm) standard... in short, LEED, energy, site, and size. Get them all right and its four leaf green.

See the Climate Action Now article link for the basic details on that one.
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Postby Antisthenes » Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:08 pm

beyond LEED what is that country in South America that just passed Ecological rights into their new constitution? I wonder what the new building codes there will look like.
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Postby Kevin » Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:41 pm

Regarding the Al Gore call for the US to convert to zero carbon clean and renewable sources for our electric supply over the next 10 years... radical, doable, important... It took a couple of hours to dawn on me that some are there already - going back a couple of years or more:

From the end notes of our weekly Notes email newsletter to about 100,000 opt-in readers...

** ArchitectureWeek is a low-carbon-footprint publication.
By publishing this professional design and building magazine
online-only, we save about 48 tons of paper monthly, 50 large
trees every week, or 2500 trees (a dozen or more acres of
mature conifer forest) each year, compared to reaching a
similar readership on paper - not counting these newsletters!
We provide ongoing pro-bono services to local non-profit
sustainability organizations. And our company offices are
powered by a green mix of 98% wind energy and 2% solar power
through our local electric utilities.
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Postby starkca3 » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:08 pm

Four Leaf Green? Kevin can you post the link for more info? I can't seem to find it.

Gore Calling for renewable electricity is radical to say the least. I personally dont think it is going to happen but maybe I'm just pessimistic. Is it possible? I think so but likely it isnt.

Great idea though... :wink:
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Postby solidred » Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:22 am

"There's a broad, scientifically understood, consensus that Global Warming is" ... in fact ... "chiefly caused by CO2 [and] chiefly caused by CO2 by-products of human activity."

Kevin: Documented, intentional misinformation campaigns aside, that is not an open scientific question. The answer is clear and well-understood.

Well, what’s the well-understood answer? Is there something special about the CO2 produced artificially that’s different from that produced by, erm, cow farts?

then Chris said or quoted: The major greenhouse gases emitted by human activities remain in the atmosphere for periods ranging from decades to centuries. It is therefore virtually certain that atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases will continue to rise over the next few decades.

Greenhouse gases are the same gases however they’re produced… either they work to form the greenhouse effect or they don’t. I buy the greenhouse gas theory. I understand the principle. But I know from this that there are gases that are far more significantly active in this process than CO2. What I also get is that a great many artificial processes produce atmospheric pollutants otherwise rare in nature. There are also few, if any, natural processes around to allow them to be broken down/absorbed into the ecosystem again. Although not a gas, the complex hydrocarbon structure of plastics represent a similar situation in solid form…
Is it that artificial CO2 is tipping the balance? From the information I’ve seen so far, artificially produced CO2 is a tiny fraction of atmospheric CO2 and CO2 itself is a minor Greenhouse Gas. That said, ‘fraction’ on global terms still adds up to a vast amount of the stuff… and the ‘proportions’ argument with hich I’ve been presented may appeal to common sense whilst also being nonsense in terms of how this current Global Warming hypothesis itself has been derived. I’ve noticed that advocates for Global Warming and their detractors share a fondness for manipulating complex data handling… lies, damned lies and statistics… you know what I mean.

Kevin again: There are many problems, of course. Few have the truly worldwide scope magnitude and shared base of global warming. There are even fewer environmental and human problems around the world that are not likely to be worsened by global warming over time.

Well again that depends upon how much the temperature is likely to rise, over what period and what will happen because of it. Again, to speak of the arguments I’ve been presented with, there has been a mean temperature rise but only a tiny, tiny one… just enough to be ‘statistically significant’. I’ve also heard that it takes literally hundreds of years for such a temperature rise to raise overall sea temperature, because of its depth and volume. Add to this the complex interdynamics of sea temperature, current flow, marine ecosystems etc. etc. one can see how infernally complex the thing is. Common sense simplifications like ‘temperature rise = sea volume rise = flooded cities’ only works if you know that whilst not in itself an accurate model it functions as a representation connecting up a series of observed phenomena.

See, what bothers me is I need to understand how this whole situation really works. I’m just not the sort of person who subscribes to stuff because of popular opinion or because the person’s wearing a white lab coat… As you can see, I have only a tiny amount of general knowledge specifically relating to this matter and, in any case, it’s difficult to progress an argument of this sort in this format without either making pithy, loaded statements which won’t convince the opposition or going into reams of quoted scientific argument which might be considered rather indigestible in an online forum. What I’ve attempted in this post is to briefly plunge into my initial reactions to and thinking on ideas that I’ve interpreted in a certain way. I’m not interested in winning some argument. My mind really (honest!) isn’t made up. It probably never will be...

What this thread has encouraged me to do further is to return to my reading of this little volume…
An Appeal to Reason: A Cool Look at Global Warming, by Nigel Lawson
you’ll find it on amazon, etc.

The other thing I'm wondering is: are people generally supportive of Carbon Emission reductions because they're persuaded over the scientific specifics of the Global Warming hypothesis, uniquely, or are people going along with it because the Global Warming idea acts as a convenient banner or vanguard for a wide range of practices related to sustainability, energy efficiency, non-polluting processes etc. etc.?
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Postby csintexas » Fri Jul 18, 2008 9:46 am

The other thing I'm wondering is: are people generally supportive of Carbon Emission reductions because they're persuaded over the scientific specifics of the Global Warming hypothesis, uniquely, or are people going along with it because the Global Warming idea acts as a convenient banner or vanguard for a wide range of practices related to sustainability, energy efficiency, non-polluting processes etc. etc.?


For me it is the latter, although I do tend to believe those people in lab coats because they are smart and we paid them to find the answer one way or the other. At the same time no one can deny the potential for bias in science.

I would put cow farts under human activity. But my point is that we don't need to be fully convinced. The risk and probability of significant danger is great enough and the danger from acting on it is non existent.

I don't know how the UK stands on trade balance and deficit but for the US this is the biggest immediate problem we face. We absolutely have got to stop hemorrhaging money because it already has started to decrease our standard of living.

Also I think it is reasonable to look at anecdotal evidence like the arctic ice sheet expecting to be open in summers by around 2012 to see temperatures are rising quickly even though we still don't measure huge differences in the short term and Greenland is not significantly melting.

Finally, hydrocarbons are very useful chemicals. I think it if a fair assumption the we will need them for the entire span of human civilization and not just the next 300-600 years.
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Postby csintexas » Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:22 am

For those who want to see the Gore speech video:

http://www.wecansolveit.org/?source=Google


While being technically possible to entirely end our dependence on fossil fuels within ten years I don't believe Americans will agree to what this will require of them.
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Postby Architorture » Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:15 pm

isn't water vapor actually the worse offender in terms of the green house effect?

so maybe after you are done turning off the internet everyone can hold their breath for a while... actually perhaps you can put the 2 together... maybe the internet can offset its CO2 emissions by hugely reducing the amount of talking people have to do to one another thus eliminating a huge amount of 'hot moist air'
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Postby Kevin » Fri Jul 18, 2008 1:58 pm

I guess that's a joke.
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Postby Kevin » Fri Jul 18, 2008 2:27 pm

Solidred, that's a very thoughtful response, which I for one really appreciate.

It does take a heck of a lot of work to follow through the complexity of human industrial impact on the atmosphere and then on to the rest of the climate system. One can only respect the desire to understand in detail for one's self.

At that point, you've got to be careful about what sources you consume. And the fewer sources, the more carefully and critically they need to be selected.

It is of course highly irrelevant to _your_ own personal understanding... but, in my own case... as part of the confluence of my own professional work and nature-loving avocation... over the years, I've read hundreds of peer-reviewed scientific articles on the whole inter-connecting cluster of issues, in first-rank international scientific journals - especially the UK-based Nature, one of the world's oldest and finest magazines, because I love the pungent UK style in words and info - journals in which research is presented, criticized, and revised over time. I started reading Science and Nature as a nerdy/outdoorsy intellectual/craftsman misfit kid (son of a physicist and a social worker) some decades ago. For many years I personally subscribed to (and read) both of those magazines, until the high degree of overlap got a bit boring. At another stage, I dropped a long-running subscription to the respected but more popular Scientific American because the science was just too watered down, as well as too far behind the real research itself.

As a result, I've had the experience of watching the global warming issue emerge gradually over a period of twenty years or more, from a strange radical hypothesis, through the whole scientific knowledge building process, getting critiqued and tested, and studied and refined, and ultimately confirmed again and again with increasing confidence and precision over many years.

That we are changing the climate and have to stop it is the key, challenging but true transformative new understanding of our times. Just as in other times people learned the Earth was round, and that living species on the Earth form through natural selection rather than supernatural creation, in our times we are faced with something big, new, kinda scary, and... ultimately true.

The writings of Nigel Lawson are not a candle in the wind to the world scientific consensus, nor should they be. For example...
<a href="http://www.operationnoah.org/blog/helenk/rebuttal-nigel-lawson’s-case">http://www.operationnoah.org/blog/helenk/rebuttal-nigel-lawson’s-case</a>
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/ar ... -the-ipcc/

If you really want to understand, as a design professional or as a person. how the many facts and factors in the global climate system interact with building design and use and with industrial culture more generally, you'll probably need to start consuming a more diverse and more helpful grade of information.

The sooner the better. Lawson is no valid authority, just an eloquent but confused apologist for a dangerous status quo.

Also...

We could talk through some of the particular technical questions you raise in a forum here - knowing that many people share the same and similar questions! - but to do that discussion work constructively, we'd probably need to take up questions one by one, and stick to the point on each to get to some kind of clarity.
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Postby Architorture » Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:22 pm

its a joke in so far as we humans do output alot of unnecessary water vapor...

it is not a joke in the case that water vapor truly IS the #1 green house gas...although i have not looked into it so far as to know what that really means to our discussion here... obviously we create CO2 and water vapor by 'artificial means' as a society...logic would seem to indicate the production of water vapor to be less troublesome since it seems as though the vapor would find its way out of the atmosphere more easily than perhaps CO2 can... i'll check it out
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Postby djswan » Fri Jul 18, 2008 5:49 pm

When plants were overabundant, on this planet dragonflies were sized more like dragons than flies. I'm glad, I'm not the only nerd into science. 8)

http://www.coloradotrees.org/benefits.htm

I built houses from this forest before moving to Montucky. You can go through about six nails per blade before replacing.

I got rid of the diesel sawmill but not my beloved Bobcat skidsteer.
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