1/25/2006

Hot enough for ya?

Not long ago I wrote an entry about global warming and energy in the wake of rapidly rising oil prices.

According to NASA, last year was the warmest recorded on Earth's surface, and all five of the hottest years since modern record-keeping began in the 1890s occurred within the last decade. A spokesman indicated that it was "fair to say that it's the warmest in the last several thousand years."

Over the past 30 years, Earth has warmed by 1.08 degrees F, NASA said. Over the past 100 years, it has warmed by 1.44 degrees F. Most scientists attribute the rise to emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, methane and ozone, with the burning of fossil fuels being the primary source.

The 21st century could see global temperature increases of 6 to 10 degrees F, which will bring us up to the warmest temperatures the world has experienced probably in the last million years.

Yet, we continue to consume ever-increasing amounts of oil and coal, the byproducts of which continue to pour into the atmosphere. Hey, folks! This is the only atmosphere we have got! What the fyook are we doing? You worry about terrorists driving planes into big buildings? Don't worry about them--crap, we're committing suicide all by ourselves!

Here's a hopeful link though - the top 25 purchasers of renewable energy.

Meanwhile, the NYT reports that a NASA Climate physicist says he's being censored by the government.

In the meantime, we have the capability to run every car and truck in America on ethanol from corn, husks, whatever - produced riight here in the good old USA. CNN.com has an excellent article about what's happening with ethanol right now. Because cellulosic ethanol comes from cornstalks, grasses, tree bark--fibrous stuff that humans can't digest--it doesn't threaten the food supply at all. Genencor says its enzymes have brought cost of making a gallon of cellulosic ethanol down to 20 cents today. Hell, they could mark up the stuff 500% to $1.00 a gallon and I"d be happy to tell those yahoos over that-a-way to take a long walk off a short oasis.

<Segue>A study by the University of London's Institute of Psychiatry, commissioned by Hewlett-Packard, finds that "an average worker's functioning IQ falls 10 points when distracted by ringing telephones and incoming e-mails ... more than double the four-point drop seen following studies on the impact of smoking marijuana."</Segue>

Go figure.