Re: Could Other Group-14 Elements Form Long Chains Besides Carbon?
Actually... polysilanes, polygermanes, polystannanes, etc exist, but they're not as stable as the carbon analogs. Also, aromatic ring structures aren't favorable with the larger atoms. So nanotube/buckyball/graphene/etc analogs from silicon/etc aren't going to be very likely to form under practical conditions.
(I do also admit to enjoying some Star Trek episodes as well.)
> "there are more important problems to deal with than this current fad of anthropogenic climate change and the subsequent control of people."
Sure. I still don't see why we can't *discuss* various engineering proposals that could have significant impact on our environment, if we chose to deploy them.
I'm going to assume that you don't like the tone and underlying assumptions that I've implied in this post. And on top of that, you have a pet peeve against climate change "science" and its supporters.
Perhaps your comments would be more constructive if you pointed out some citations behind your views? I know, science oftentimes makes that difficult when a prevailing theory is popular (and well funded) -- that is a weakness in science and human endeavors. Still, I don't think it's a pointless venture as long as those citations are at least somewhat credible and logical.
Seriously? A link to a storefront that helps support this site is despicable/disgusting spam... that's a bit harsh, don't you think?
What's so offensive about this gentle nudge towards buying stuff? Have you seen the rest of the internet? This is pretty tame in comparison.
Sorry if you feel like I "tricked you" into reading an extra couple of sentences. I honestly think some of the crap products on StackCommerce is stuff I would buy myself (and I *have* purchased a couple things in the past).
> "What are your mitigation solutions that will demonstratively show positive results? Not PC but actual efforts."
Exploring alternative energy sources that have no carbon footprint would be a net positive step in the right direction, even if climate change isn't a "real" problem. Fission has its own problems, but fusion could pan out someday. Call me an optimist.
And we can't fight volcanoes or hurricanes or tsunamis at the moment, but does that mean we shouldn't explore possible ways to, even if our current technology seems woefully inadequate?
How does progress even happen with an attitude that we can't change things that seem impossible to change?
I still think we should pursue better sources of energy simply because we should strive to be more efficient and sustainable. And it doesn't hurt anyone to explore the possibilities of geo-engineering -- if only to better understand our world and the biosphere.
I agree global warming *could* be a huge misunderstanding along the lines of 1970s predictions of an upcoming Ice Age. However, I'm leaning towards thinking global climate change is more like ozone-depleting chemicals that irreversibly damage parts of the atmosphere.
I'm fully aware that CO2 is a "natural" molecule that can be harmless at a wide range of concentrations. Yes, we exhale it. Yes, methane is produce by other bodily functions. Those facts don't mean everything "natural" is safe or harmless under all conditions.
And I don't think you're making a "truckload of vegetables" argument, either. You have a point. Life on earth could also be endangered by tampering with things we don't understand fully -- such as CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere.
I have never said that anyone should jump into geo-engineering blindly. But we are, in a sense, doing so by not doing anything at all (and continuing to burn fossil fuels at an increasingly greater rate). And merely *discussing* the options is potentially helpful and not a seemingly huge waste of resources.
I assume you believe climate change is a non-issue that shouldn't even be discussed? If that's the case, you must be disappointed in a lot of people/organizations/governments.
I haven't suggested the government needs to tax carbon dioxide production or provide incentives to capture greenhouse gases. If climate change isn't caused by human activity, should we just let it happen naturally? If an asteroid was headed straight for us, should we just look the other way?
Given that fusion generators that produce net energy don't exist yet -- yes, fusion is irrelevant now.
But are you saying that if fusion energy were practical at some point, it wouldn't significantly change the world economy? Hmm. The petroleum industry wouldn't disappear entirely, but we might not need to ship billions of gallons of oil anywhere -- or strip mine coal or frack anything.
And I think electric cars are already becoming quite practical, more quickly than you might expect.
The question really is... will fusion ever live up to its promise of unlimited, clean, cheap energy? If it does, it *would* be a game changer.
Obviously, if fusion turns out to be similar to fission generators, where the potential for catastrophic accidents are a concern and the total costs are comparable to coal-produced energy, then yes, it'll be no big deal.
Are you saying that we should be putting even more CO2 into the air because it seems to make make some plants grow better?
I don't think anyone is saying that the Earth itself is going to be lifeless due to increasing levels of carbon dioxide. The ecosystem changes all the time in response to climate, but do we want to be the cause of the changes? (Especially when we're not sure what will happen?)
I'm not so sure about your solution to CO2. First, it's not exactly carbon neutral or negative to grow and harvest bamboo (and then dump it all down a hole)? Second, oil wells and coal mines don't exactly sound like great storage places for preventing organic material from rotting? Third, this bamboo scheme doesn't seem financially advantageous for anyone, either, so there's no economic incentive to do it.
If we can get carbon nanofibers in an economical way, we get some desirable building materials AND suck some CO2 out of the air.