Saturday, November 14, 2009

Mission: Impossible

The BBC reports that the IMechE has said that the 80% let's-go-back-to-the-middle-ages CO2 cuts by 2050 that the government has signed into law are unachievable. No, really. Reducing CO2 emissions to barely more than the population produces by respiration is a bit tricky. Shocking.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change - yeah, they're going to be neutral with a name like that - have said that the IMechE should be thinking positively. Specifically, they accused the Institution of having a "can't do, won't do attitude". Because that's all it takes to achieve massive geo-engineering projects: the right attitude. And this government wonders why it's consistently failed to achieve anything beyond passing new (and mostly unenforced) laws and pissing people off...

I think the IMechE are wrong about the environmental side of this, but I'm 100% behind their sound engineering approach. You can't make offshore wind turbines or nuclear reactors appear by fiat: you have to build them, which means moving materials and equipment on a massive scale. That takes time and money and people, and there are finite limits to all of them.

More worrying is the quoted prat from the Tyndall Centre saying we need carbon rationing. That really is one step too far: the ability to eat, travel, stay warm and travel restricted by the government and sacrificied to "the greater good". Never.

- KoW

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