Expert: We must act fast on warming

Expert: We must act fast on warming

There are 28308 comments on the Kansas.com story from Sep 24, 2008, titled Expert: We must act fast on warming. In it, Kansas.com reports that:

Droughts, melting ice caps and glaciers, rising sea levels and mass extinctions will all be a reality unless the U.S. and the world cut back on carbon emissions dramatically, said James Hansen, director of ...

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Kansas.com.

SpaceBlues

Houston, TX

#26735 Apr 4, 2013
A December, 2008 coal ash spill in Tennessee - branded America's largest environmental disaster by both activists and politicians - is providing new insights, and renewed investigation, into this unsightly and dangerous byproduct of coal-fired power plants.

In both 1988 and 1999, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) studies largely downplayed the risks of coal ash, and this led to the adoption of the Bevill Amendment, which exempted power plants from having to treat coal ash like toxic waste; that is, providing double-walled liners at disposal sites and monitoring groundwater for leaching at regular intervals.

In 2007, another EPA study on coal combustion byproducts determined that, in terms of both human and ecological risks, coal ash contained significant quantities of heavy metals like arsenic, lead and selenium, which can lead to the development of cancer and neurological problems. The risk, from unprotected coal ash sites leaching into water supplies, is described as being in the 90th percentile (read "very high").

On December 22, 2008, when millions of cubic yards of coal ash breached the Kingston Fossil Plant retaining wall, it had been so long since a major coal ash disaster (the last one occurring in 1972 in Buffalo Creek, Virginia ) that most heads were turned in the direction of the upcoming presidential nomination. Now, a month later, with a new president and Tennessee rivers still running black with ash, administration officials are rethinking the Bevill Amendment, the common name for the reform measures added to the 1976 Resource Conservation and Recovery Act which allow coal burning plants to escape Subtitle C coal ash regulations.

Now that it's too late, residents of Tennessee and regions downstream - not to mention the hundreds living near other U.S. power plants which have similar coal ash dumps - are asking themselves if playing into the greedy hands of energy industry executives was the one act that made the game not worth the candle. Coal was ‘dirty' before Kingston; now it is beyond coming clean.

http://www.celsias.com/article/coal-fly-ash-1...
Bernard Forand

Cape Coral, FL

#26736 Apr 4, 2013
SpaceBlues wrote:
Good job, guys. I've been bringing up the fossil fuel associated pollution.
Coal power plant "ash or fly ash contributes 100 times more radiation to the surrounding environment via its uranium and thorium content than does a nuclear power plant creating the same amount of energy."
"The further observation, that coal ash also contains arsenic, beryllium, boron, cadmium, chromium, chromium VI, cobalt, lead, manganese, mercury, molybdenum, selenium and vanadium, along with dioxins and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), seems like a minor footnote compared with the larger problem of radiation."
http://www.celsias.com/article/coal-fly-ash-1...
I agree to a point on that coal ash radiation dispersal. Keep in mind the coal ash is distributing what it has stored up through the years. As to the Nuclear plant? How many leakage’s and or catastrophic accidents will it take to easily produce more world wide radiation than coal ash. We can keep out what the bomb testing has already contributed. Keep in mind radioactivity is accumulative it does not decay fast enough to keep out of your food supply and your weather as it rains down on you. Thus coal ash contributes to ever increasing of radioactivity that is not beneficial to you and for generations to come.
SpaceBlues

Houston, TX

#26737 Apr 4, 2013
Bernard Forand wrote:
<quoted text>
I agree to a point on that coal ash radiation dispersal. Keep in mind the coal ash is distributing what it has stored up through the years. As to the Nuclear plant? How many leakage’s and or catastrophic accidents will it take to easily produce more world wide radiation than coal ash. We can keep out what the bomb testing has already contributed. Keep in mind radioactivity is accumulative it does not decay fast enough to keep out of your food supply and your weather as it rains down on you. Thus coal ash contributes to ever increasing of radioactivity that is not beneficial to you and for generations to come.
We of course agree in principle and with the history. Qualitative remarks depend on differences in experiences and specialties.

That said, if you were to compose a fairy tale of the modern era, don't you think you would be describing evil characters doing evil deeds?

Instead of one part-time <alas imaginary> superman for some people, everybody being a full-time superman for all!

Since: Mar 09

Wichita, KS

#26738 Apr 4, 2013
Good discussions.

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26739 Apr 4, 2013
I wrote:
“In fact, radiation is pretty much the most unhealthy thing you can imagine " Very true.
Radiation in low continuing doses are not only not BAD for people, they are GOOD, up to a point. And that point is quite high.
Bernard Forand wrote:
That’s false. Even the medical expertise have difficulty in applying the proper doses. Focusing the radiation to the abnormality is a prime objective of theirs. As to the hot springs. Has there ever been a follow up study done on that? Would be interesting. Consider most are volcanic in origin. Hmmm.. Hawaii…
The data show that low dose external radiation up to about 12uSv/hr is beneficial. As you point out (at least I think you were pointing out), even HIGH dose radiation can be used beneficially, but it is wise to minimize that high dose to the "abnormality".
Bernard Forand wrote:
Japan’s plume not tracked or just not reported to the general world population. Similar to when the Russians tested the largest nuclear explosion in the world. Its creator estimated some over 360 thousand people would die from that one fall out. Plume not tracked. Yeah right… From then on he became an anti nuclear activist. Hmmm.
I am not sure what your first sentance in this quote actually means but it sounds like you are partially agreeing with me. If the JapGov did in fact track the plume immediately and saw that it went quickly to the NW, but did not warn the folks in that direction to take Iodine pills, that would be pretty bad. But they didn't seem hesitant to evacuate from a fairly large area so it seems to me that they just didn't realize what was happening.
360,000 people? If he really believed that, why did he not prevent it? I suspect he didn't really believe that. And he was right in not believing that. The Hiroshima data showed quite clearly that folks with less than 100 mSv exposure had no ill effect. Indeed, their long term cancer rate was lower than people in other Japanese cities.

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26740 Apr 4, 2013
Bernard Forand wrote:
<quoted text>
I agree to a point on that coal ash radiation dispersal. Keep in mind the coal ash is distributing what it has stored up through the years. As to the Nuclear plant? How many leakage’s and or catastrophic accidents will it take to easily produce more world wide radiation than coal ash. We can keep out what the bomb testing has already contributed. Keep in mind radioactivity is accumulative it does not decay fast enough to keep out of your food supply and your weather as it rains down on you. Thus coal ash contributes to ever increasing of radioactivity that is not beneficial to you and for generations to come.
It is not the radiation from coal ash that is the issue. It is all the toxic materials in it. Coal ash may be more raioactive than granite, but it is less so than many common phosphate rocks.
http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/1997/fs163-97/FS-163-...
We evolved in a radioactive world and to a point, that radioactivity kicks in repai mechanisms that help repair the VASTLY more common chemical assault on our genetic material. Radioactivity, to a point, is GOOD for you. It is like salt or water. A certain amount is good, too much is bad.

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26741 Apr 4, 2013
Does anyone know how to edit a post?

Since: Mar 09

Wichita, KS

#26742 Apr 5, 2013
KitemanSA wrote:
<quoted text> It is not the radiation from coal ash that is the issue. It is all the toxic materials in it. Coal ash may be more raioactive than granite, but it is less so than many common phosphate rocks.
http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/1997/fs163-97/FS-163-...
We evolved in a radioactive world and to a point, that radioactivity kicks in repai mechanisms that help repair the VASTLY more common chemical assault on our genetic material. Radioactivity, to a point, is GOOD for you. It is like salt or water. A certain amount is good, too much is bad.
I suppose you are referring to the hormetic effect of low doses of radiation. In making a statement that radiation in low doses is good for you, you must consider the type of radiation,ie. Alpha, Beta, Gamma. I would say that this is less well understood than the science of global warming.

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26743 Apr 5, 2013
Patriot AKA Bozo wrote:
<quoted text>
I suppose you are referring to the hormetic effect of low doses of radiation. In making a statement that radiation in low doses is good for you, you must consider the type of radiation,ie. Alpha, Beta, Gamma. I would say that this is less well understood than the science of global warming.
Yes, I do mean the hormetic effect, also known as the "J" curve. That the effect is real is widely accepted. The exact MODEL of the effect (i.e., the exact shape of the curve) is still, and will probably always be, a question in SOMEONE's mind. Some of the factors in the model include the gender, age, extent of other chemical assault (smoker, drinker), tissue assaulted, etc. Young females seem most susceptible.

The differing effects of Alpha, Beta, and Gamma are taken into account (at least in gross effects) by using Seiverts rather than Greys as your unit of measurement.

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26744 Apr 5, 2013
Oh, and by the way, they do seem to be other issues not directly radiation related that some radio-isotopes carry with them, to whit, the fact that they change their CHEMISTRY after they decay. The fact that cesium turns into barium may have a more significant impact than the fact that it emits a beta and gamma when it does so. This factor needs more study SOONEST!
Bernard Forand

Cape Coral, FL

#26745 Apr 5, 2013
SpaceBlues wrote:
<quoted text>We of course agree in principle and with the history. Qualitative remarks depend on differences in experiences and specialties.
That said, if you were to compose a fairy tale of the modern era, don't you think you would be describing evil characters doing evil deeds?
Instead of one part-time <alas imaginary> superman for some people, everybody being a full-time superman for all!
Agree on the qualities of experiences and differences.
Now as to my fairy tale being without oppositional forces would make for a very mundane fairy tale a soon to be discarded.
Now what if we described our modern area with a “PDF” report?

“I Luv Carbon Dioxide”

Since: Dec 08

Home, sweet home.

#26746 Apr 5, 2013
Experiments give quantitative data; there's never been an experimental test of climate change mitigation. That's why the effect of man made greenhouse gases on climate is incalculable and climate change mitigation is a hoax.
Bernard Forand

Cape Coral, FL

#26747 Apr 5, 2013
KitemanSA wrote:
Oh, and by the way, they do seem to be other issues not directly radiation related that some radio-isotopes carry with them, to whit, the fact that they change their CHEMISTRY after they decay. The fact that cesium turns into barium may have a more significant impact than the fact that it emits a beta and gamma when it does so. This factor needs more study SOONEST!
Radioactive materials decay by reducing their atomic structure to a lesser atomic structure.{ie} U-235 to Plutonium as well as some other radioactive elements Cesium, Strontium 90 , etc.
Designating a fissionable or nuclear reaction as Chemistry sit’s a tad weak in what is actually occurring. Guess it could be used.
chem·is·try [kémmistree]
(plural chem·is·tries)
n
1. study of transformation of matter: a branch of science dealing with the structure, composition, properties, and reactive characteristics of substances, especially at the atomic and molecular levels.

Encarta ® World English Dictionary © & (P) 1998-2005 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

fis·sion [físh'n]
n
1. nuclear physics splitting of atomic nucleus releasing energy: the spontaneous or induced splitting of an atomic nucleus into smaller parts, usually accompanied by a significant release of energy
2. breaking up: the act or process of separating into parts

Encarta ® World English Dictionary © & (P) 1998-2005 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

nu·cle·ar fu·sion

n
atomic combination that releases energy: the process in which light atoms such as those of hydrogen and deuterium combine and form heavier atoms, releasing a great amount of energy, which primarily manifests itself in the form of heat

Encarta ® World English Dictionary © & (P) 1998-2005 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Now the energetic transformations of the atomic structure are more pronounced and distinctive, than a chemical process where in as it combines atomic elements into molecules or separates them.
Nuclear Fission and Fusion actually changes the atomic element at its nucleus foundations.
Bernard Forand

Cape Coral, FL

#26748 Apr 5, 2013
KitemanSA wrote:
<quoted text> It is not the radiation from coal ash that is the issue. It is all the toxic materials in it. Coal ash may be more raioactive than granite, but it is less so than many common phosphate rocks.
http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/1997/fs163-97/FS-163-...
We evolved in a radioactive world and to a point, that radioactivity kicks in repai mechanisms that help repair the VASTLY more common chemical assault on our genetic material. Radioactivity, to a point, is GOOD for you. It is like salt or water. A certain amount is good, too much is bad.
Consider atomic decay occurs to produce radiation. That radiation was produced by the nucleus of one atomic structure being SHOT by a neutron from another atomic element source. Not all neutrons hit their targets of course. Some fly off and can hit innocent by-standing molecules of say, DNA or some other Genetic structures and wounding that bio molecule. Low level or not. Yes we have lived with natural radioactive elements. This could be viewed as a contributor to why we have evolutions of genetics and DNA . In that, we could say its beneficial, otherwise we may not have come to be here discussing this issue. I would prefer however, that rather than random mutations we take the initiative to focus evolution in a more intelligent direction. LOL can of worms spilt here…

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26749 Apr 5, 2013
BF:
I'm not sure what you are trying to say.
My point was that some isotopes like Cs137 get taken up into the body, typically by substituting for an element in the same group. In the Cesium case, it typically substitutes for potassium. After a while, Cs137 will beta decay to Barium137 which has a different chemical nature. Having the WRONG element in an important biological compound MAY be more of a detriment than the energy imparted by the decay itself. I think this issue deserves some immediate study, even if the hormesis effect says that irradiation at that level is not a problem.
SoE

Rozet, WY

#26750 Apr 6, 2013
What happened? Did the subject stall..out?
SoE

Rozet, WY

#26751 Apr 6, 2013
PHD wrote:
<quoted text> No one asked you for your liquor review non published work but you keep on keeping on posting it. Why the spacedoutblues, well the spacedoutblues insist it is correct in every post it puts out there so it would be prudent for it to show its peer reviewed published work to save face. To date all it has is cut and paste scientific science fiction useless babble. Let me know if this explanation is some what complicated for you and I will do my best to tone it down.
You may wish to pick up a copy of the book..The Demon Haunted World..
You might find the first chapters clarifying.
I'm sure it would give a more exacting definition to some of the terms you often use...

Since: Mar 09

Wichita, KS

#26752 Apr 6, 2013
KitemanSA wrote:
<quoted text> Yes, I do mean the hormetic effect, also known as the "J" curve. That the effect is real is widely accepted. The exact MODEL of the effect (i.e., the exact shape of the curve) is still, and will probably always be, a question in SOMEONE's mind. Some of the factors in the model include the gender, age, extent of other chemical assault (smoker, drinker), tissue assaulted, etc. Young females seem most susceptible.
The differing effects of Alpha, Beta, and Gamma are taken into account (at least in gross effects) by using Seiverts rather than Greys as your unit of measurement.
"Epidemiological studies, backed by animal experiments, have established beyond doubt that exposure to radiation levels above 100 millisieverts increases the risk of cancer in a predictable, dose-dependent way. But the risk to health at lower exposure levels is harder to pin down. In Germany, for example, the dose limit for occupational exposure is 20 millisieverts per year. But even when this limit is respected, there are more than 70,000 reports of suspected health damage among exposed workers each year, more than double the number in 1960. Some epidemiological studies suggest that low doses of radiation — as few as 10 millisieverts in children — may increase cancer risk in susceptible individuals, and may be associated with other conditions, such as heart disease and stroke. People living close to Fukushima are anticipated to receive around 10 millisieverts of accumulated radiation exposure each over the next decade."
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v482/n73...

While the effects of very low level ionizing radiation may have been over estimated, I doubt that they are "good" for you. There are too many unknowns in the science. This kinda reeks of the same logic used by the DDT proponents. Would this simply be a program to lessen public fear of nuclear reactors? Or an attempt to minimize the possible threat of low level radiation released from coal fired generators? I suppose one could argue that cadmium released from burning coal increases the human immune system and makes them more healthy.

Since: Mar 13

Location hidden

#26753 Apr 6, 2013
The radiation released by an apartment building in Taiwan rendered the inhabitants virtually immune to cancer. The building had been built with steel that had Co-60 mistakenly alloyed into it.

Indeed, look at the survivors oh the Hiroshima bomb. The people who had recieved less than 200mSv (IIRC) had lower cancer rates than folks who had no exposure.

Nuclear shipyard workers have lowercancer rates than they non-nuclear workers from the same shipyards. Study after study after study. Low dose, low dose rate radiation proves beneficial time after time.

Check out the BELLE newsletter.

http://www.belleonline.com/newsletters.htm
litesong

Lynnwood, WA

#26754 Apr 6, 2013
KitemanSA wrote:
look at the survivors oh the Hiroshima bomb. The people who had recieved less than 200mSv (IIRC) had lower cancer rates than folks who had no exposure.
Take George Carlin's medical advice, given out at the local comedy club & watering hole. If you get one cancer, get another cancer & they'll eat each other.

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