Surviving World War III

Alive after the Fall Review

Read alive after the fall to learn how to survive any kind of disaster you may face in the future. You will learn how to live off the grid and how to survive the most horrible scenarios your country may face. What medicine you must have for the emergency? How to find food and how to cook it? Many questions will arise in your head when you face the disaster but this guide will leave you prepared for the worse. The author AlexanderCain explains in details what disease spread in the dark times and what is the must have medicine. Alexander Cain also describes how to secure your car engine against EMP attack, and he teaches you about the most crucial electrical devices. How to save those electronic devices from EMP? The book teaches you how to build faraday cage in less than twenty five minutes to protect electronics from the EMP attack. Alexander also explains methods to prolong the shelf life of your food and medicine. When you read the bonus report you will learn how to survive nuclear attack and chemical attack. In last chapter Alexander explains how to get food and how to cock it without using electricity or gas. Read more...

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Prisoners Dilemma And Nuclear Revenge

To give the human race much chance of survival, considerable co-operation may be needed. When dealing with selfish people, one way of encouraging co-operation is to point to the benefits they could expect from it. Another is to use threats. Both ways involve problems in decision theory, perhaps best illustrated by the case of trying to prevent nuclear war. (This will be a very brief chapter, avoiding a host of technicalities.)1 Suppose two nations seem to be moving towards nuclear war. Each might see much reason to strike first, so as to destroy many enemy missiles before they could be launched.

Global Warming Becomes a Concern

Some 50 years ago, scientists began to recognize the dangers of global warming. One of the first published warnings appeared in the journal Tellus in 1957. Roger Revelle and Hans Suess, two oceanographers at the Scripps Institute in California, concluded that human beings are now carrying out a large scale geophysical experiment of a kind that could not have happened in the past nor be reproduced in the future. Within a few centuries we are returning to the atmosphere and oceans the concentrated organic carbon stored in sedimentary rocks over hundreds of millions of years. 8 Al Gore argues that Revelle was years ahead of his time He saw clearly that the global, post-World War II economic expansion, driven by explosive population growth and fueled mainly by coal and oil, was likely to produce an unprecedented and dangerous increase in the amount of CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere. 9 By the 1970s, scientists expressed concern over the possibility that global warming could trigger...

From Warheads to Washing Machines Post World War II Nuclear Development

Post-World War II development of nuclear power in the United States can be classified as a long endurance march.While reactors in the 1950s produced electricity just like their more modern counterparts operating today, it's a misconception that nuclear power technology and the industry haven't changed very much over the years. Actually, six decades of advances in reactor performance and economics have aided in the commercial development of nuclear power in the United States. These advances have not occurred in a vacuum economic ups and downs, politics, and public opinion have both hindered and aided the commercial development of nuclear power.

Nuclear war and the ozone layer

Released, so rapidly, that the normally inert atmospheric nitrogen combines with oxygen to produce quantities of oxides of nitrogen (NOx). The rapid heating of the air also sets up strong convection currents which carry the gases and other debris into the stratosphere, and it is there that most of the NOx is deposited. Since natural NOx is known to destroy ozone, it is only to be expected that the anthropogenically produced variety would have the same effect, and one of the many results of nuclear war might be the large scale destruction of the ozone layer. Most of the studies which originally investigated the effects of nuclear explosions on the atmosphere used data generated during the nuclear bomb tests of the 1950s and 1960s. After 1963, when a moratorium on atmospheric tests of nuclear devices was declared, information from these sources was no longer available, and recent investigations have been based on statistical models. The results of the studies of the effects of...

Adopt complementary clean energy policies to reduce global warming emissions To

Emissions Country

Human activities are causing global warming In February 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a United Nations body charged with assessing the scientific record on global warming, concluded that the evidence of global warming is unequivocal and stated, with certainty, that human activities Incoming radiation from the sun heats the Earth. Heat-trapping gases prevent the heat from escaping back to space. The critical mix of water vapor, carbon dioxide, and other heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere warm the planet enough for life to flourish. Without these gases, the Earth would be too cold for life to survive, and water would be frozen at the surface. In the last 150 years, however, human activities - primarily the burning of fossil fuels - have substantially increased the concentration of these gases in the atmosphere. As a result, more heat is being trapped close to the Earth's surface, causing global average surface temperatures to rise. Since 1750, the...

Framing Global Warming as a Health Issue

These stereotypes are, of course, false. Yet to some degree they flow inexorably, like runoff to the Chesapeake, from the way environmentalists have objectified the environment as things in nature landscape, species other than humans that exist outside of and apart from us to be observed, measured, and protected. When global warming is posed as strictly an environmental problem, it is harder, given such a standpoint, to put people back into the picture. Don't get me wrong. Cactus and vermillion flycatchers, coyotes in the United States, and caribou in the Arctic are all are worth caring about. The permafrost in the Arctic is also quite real, even if it is now slipping out from beneath buildings thanks to global warming that has increased average temperatures at the top of the globe. Another similar example of framing that offers lessons for the new climate movement comes from Cold War history. When President John F. Kennedy announced an end to open-air nuclear testing on June 10,...

Global Warming The Issue Impacts Responses

Humanity is conducting an unintended, uncontrolled, globally pervasive experiment whose ultimate consequences could be second only to nuclear war. The Earth's atmosphere is being changed at an unprecedented rate by pollutants resulting from human activities, inefficient and wasteful fossil fuel use and the effects of rapid population growth in many regions. These changes are already having harmful consequences over many parts of the globe. This analogy between the consequences of nuclear war and atmospheric pollution was made not by idealistic, scientifically innocent environmentalists, but by the more than 300 policymakers and scientists from 46 countries, United Nations organizations, other international bodies, and nongovernmental organizations who attended a major international conference sponsored by the government of Canada. The Toronto Conference statement, included in full in Chapter 3, illustrates that it is now clearly within our power not only to alter the planet beyond...

Chemical And Biological Warfare

In the First World War, above a million soldiers were casualties of chlorine, phosgene and mustard gas, over ninety thousand dying. The nerve gases tabun, sarin and soman, discovered but not used during the Second World War, were deadly in far smaller quantities, while the yet more effective VX the United States had four thousand tons of it in 1967 killed when just a few milligrams reached one's skin. Still, an amount sufficient to destroy all the people in China, supposing that they lined up to receive their doses, could in practice 'neutralize' only a square kilometer of battlefield.44 (A cynic might say that this is why many nations recently proved willing to sign a Convention banning manufacture of chemical Properly protected troops, however, would merely be slowed down by the bulky clothing and respirators needed to counter such agents. And while civilians could suffer heavy casualties, the extermination of the human race would seem to require agents of a self-reproducing kind...

On World Wars I And Ii

The Second World War. New York Houghton Mifflin, 1948. A titanic five-volume history of the war by the greatest of the war leaders. Grossman, Vasily. Life and Fate. Translated by Robert Chandler. New York Harper & Row, 1985. Grossman was a dissident Soviet Jewish physicist, but during World War II he served as a combat correspondent, covering the battle of Stalingrad for the army newspaper Red Star. After the war, he wrote up his experience in the form of this phenomenal Tolstoyan epic novel. There are scenes in this book you will not forget for as long as you live. In the opinion of many, it is the greatest work of twentieth-century Russian literature. The book was banned by the Soviet authorities because, despite its patriotic theme, it presented far too penetrating an analysis of the nature of the totalitarian mind. Keegan, John. The First World War. New York Knopf, 1999. -. The Second World War. New York Penguin, 1989.

Energy Yield of Nuclear Weapons

The energy yield of nuclear weapons is commonly expressed in kilotons (kt) or megatons (Mt) of high explosive (TNT) equivalent, where 1 kt of TNT is assumed to release 1012 cal (4.18 x 1012 J). The complete fission of 235U in a reactor releases 8.2 x 1013 J kg (see Table 9.3). About 86 of the energy is in the kinetic energy of the fission fragments themselves and 6 in prompt neutrons and gamma rays (see Section 6.4.2). Therefore, complete fission of 1 kg of 235U would give a prompt explosive yield of about 7 x 1013 J, or 17 kt.4 The yield for 239Pu is similar. Actual yields in nuclear weapons are less than 17 kt kg of fissile material, because a bomb will disassemble without complete fissioning of the material. For example, the world's first nuclear bomb, used in the Trinity test in New Mexico in July 1945, is reported to have had a mass of 6.1 kg of plutonium 3, p. 127 and a yield of 18.6 kt.5 This corresponds to a yield of 3 kt kg of fissile material, or an efficiency of about 20 .6...

Acid Rain Precedes Global Warming

The issue of global warming was discussed at some length at the 1972 Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment when climate change was accepted as a research issue and a UN institute for planetary survival was proposed by the USA after a considerable domestic debate which brought German and American scientists together (Kellogg and Schware, 1981). However, the political climate, supported by energy policy concerns, was ready only for concerns about acid rain rather than for global warming (Boehmer-Christiansen and Skea, 1993). As the concerns of Bryson (above) indicate, in the mid 1970s some began to worry about global cooling, in response to the observed decline in average global temperatures which had occurred from about 1940 (see Ponte, 1976 Schneider, 1976). All the evidence then pointed towards the fact that we were nearing the end of an interglacial period and scientists were warning us that the onset of the next ice age could be sudden. By the early to mid 1980s a similar...

Critical Mass for Nuclear Weapons Critical Mass With and Without Reflectors

Properties of fissile materials for nuclear weapons fission cross section, neutrons per fission, mean free path at 1 MeV, and critical mass and radius. Table 17.1. Properties of fissile materials for nuclear weapons fission cross section, neutrons per fission, mean free path at 1 MeV, and critical mass and radius.

Plutonium and Nuclear Weapons Explosive Properties of Plutonium Different Grades of Plutonium

Making a nuclear bomb with plutonium requires an expertly arranged implosion and is more difficult than making a gun-type uranium bomb. The techniques to do this were developed during World War II and it can be viewed as a standard method, preferably using plutonium with a high iso-topic concentration of 239Pu. At one time, there was a question as to whether it would be possible to manufacture a workable bomb using plutonium that has a relatively high concentration of 240Pu. It is now known that it is possible to do so, although with some difficulty. In view of the prominence of plutonium issues in the consideration of proliferation of nuclear weapons, it is of interest to examine some of the technical details involved. During the World War II atomic bomb program, the discovery that 240Pu had a high rate of spontaneous fission came as a surprise and appeared briefly to be a major threat to the development of a 2C9Pu bomb.15 Part of the solution to this problem was simple. If the fuel...

Concerns About Links Between Nuclear Power and Nuclear Weapons

Many observers believe that the most profound problem with using nuclear energy for electricity generation is the connection between nuclear power and nuclear weapons. In this view, the threat of nuclear weapons proliferation increases if the world relies on nuclear power, because nuclear power capabilities could be translated into nuclear weapons capabilities. The relative merits of renewable energy and nuclear fission energy (omitting fusion as still speculative) as eventual substitutes for fossil fuels are highly controversial, with unresolved arguments over relative economic costs, environmental impacts, practicality, and safety. However, the weapons connection is unique to nuclear fission energy and constitutes, for some people, a reason to limit or abandon it. Giving up nuclear power would obviously avert the danger that nuclear power facilities might be diverted to weapons purposes. However, it would not avert all dangers of weapons development. It is quite possible to have...

Nuclear Weapons Inventories

Table 18.1 gives estimates of the number of nuclear warheads in the arsenals of the NWSs, as made by the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) 11 . In most cases, the number of weapons remaining in 2002 was well below the past peak number. For the United States and Russia, which had, by far, the largest arsenals and are now committed to reducing them, current totals are less than one-half of past peak totals. A separate listing is given in Table 18.2 for those non-NWSs that are believed to have nuclear weapons, based on estimates from the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS). The NRDC reference (used for Table 18.1) gives estimates for India and Pakistan that agree well with those of Table 18.2, but its estimate for Israel is about twice as great as that of Table 18.2, namely about 200 warheads. In contrast with the trends for the NWSs, where the inventories are in most cases decreasing, there is believed to be a continuing buildup of weapons material in the...

Lag Between Nuclear Weapons and Commercial Nuclear Power

For each of these countries, the development of civilian nuclear power lagged behind weapons development. Table 18.3 compares the year in which each of these countries obtained nuclear weapons and the year in which the country first obtained power from a reactor designed for electricity production for civilian use. Table 18.3. Comparison of years of achieving nuclear weapons and civilian nuclear electric power, for acknowledged nuclear-weapon countries. Table 18.3. Comparison of years of achieving nuclear weapons and civilian nuclear electric power, for acknowledged nuclear-weapon countries.

Countries with Nuclear Weapons Admitted or Suspected

The most obvious nuclear weapons threats come from countries that already possess weapons The NWSs, which admit to nuclear weapons and have no plans to renounce them. India and Pakistan, which carried out surprise nuclear weapons tests in 1998 and have raised the specter of possibly using nuclear weapons if their political and military conflicts escalate. Israel, which almost certainly could quickly deploy a large number of nuclear weapons if it felt sufficiently threatened.

Countries with Neither Nuclear Power nor Nuclear Weapons

Countries that lack both nuclear power and nuclear weapons tend to be countries without a highly advanced technological base. As such, they might not be thought to pose a significant threat. However, a number of countries mentioned above (Iran, Iraq, and Libya, as well as North Korea which may already have built weapons) all could be placed in this category, and they have been viewed as potential threats. Many other countries could mount similar efforts. Those that have abstained often have lacked the desire more than the technical ability. Zimmerman has suggested the concept of a bronze medal technology for weapons development 44 . To win the bronze medal, a country need only achieve the technological level reached by the United States about 60 years earlier. The nuclear weapon thus developed might not win plaudits from sophisticated weapons experts, but it could wreak great actual or threatened damage. South Africa exemplifies a success of this approach, building its six bombs using...

Not Striking Second The Rights And Wrongs Of Nuclear Revenge

When a nation has carried out a nuclear first strike with thousands of bombs, what could be the point of retaliating As a utilitarian I see moral point in actions only when they stand a chance of doing some good. Those who follow Kant might well have little difficulty in viewing nuclear revenge as 'avenging justice'. Kant speaks of the need to execute murderers even though the heavens fall. But I don't admire Kant's approach. How could you have a duty to do something which would harm some people without bringing benefits to others How could it be right to perform acts which made the world worse No doubt these are just rhetorical questions because, as discussed in Chapter 4, there is no way of proving that maximizing benefits is what we ought to strive for. 'It's right to try to maximize benefits' isn't in the least like 'Bachelors are wifeless.' Still, I'll be assuming that the only really interesting issue is whether threatening retaliation could be right on grounds, roughly...

World War II and recovery

With the onset of World War II, the lobster industry began to recover a recovery which has continued to the present. Since 1947, the lobster catch has averaged about 18 million pounds (8.2 million kg) and at no time in this period has it fallen below 15 million pounds (6.8 million kg). By any measure, it is the most important fishery in Maine today. It is no exaggeration to say that it is a mainstay of the coastal economy. In 1978, for example, there were 440 employed males in Bristol (Maine), which is a typical community in many respects. Of those, 161 were fishermen - by far the largest single occupational group. Of these 161 fishermen, no fewer that 108 were lobster fishermen (Acheson et al., 1978,

Policy Modifications Resulting from the Global War on Terror

In the years prior to the attacks at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, an ideologically motivated stateless organization, Al Qaeda, initiated an escalating if unconventional series of attacks. The U.S. responded to the attacks by invading Afghanistan and overthrowing the Taliban government that sponsored Al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden. While Bin Laden has not been captured, his network has been damaged. Attention has therefore shifted to states not signatories to the non-proliferation treaty that have been openly pursuing nuclear weapon capacity, principally Iran and North Korea. Pakistan's nuclear chief was implicated in the sale of nuclear technologies, though the state of Pakistan remains allied with the U.S. interests in the region. In the U.S., nuclear facilities are more closely guarded as a result. Creating a nuclear weapon or a less-sophisticated radiological device requires a quantity of a controlled radiological substance. The IAEA maintains its...

The United States In The Second World

Some authors have compared the effort needed to transform energy systems to the US war effort during the Second World War or to the race, by the United States, to put a man on the Moon. Even if I hesitate to compare the, hopefully, peaceful effort of transforming global energy systems to a war effort, there are several parallels to war, since a war effort involves the whole population of a country. In the case of the space program, this involves mainly scientists, engineers and people In the case of the US war effort during the Second World War, this involved the whole country and all of its people and it was initiated very rapidly. According to John Steele Gordon, in An Empire of Wealth, which is a history of the economic development of the United States, Winston Churchill, as the new prime minister of the United Kingdom in May 1940, sent a very frank demand in a letter to Franklin D. Roosevelt. The most immediate needs of the United Kingdom were the loan of 40-50 of the US navy's...

Conventions relating to nuclear safety standards and State responsibility

The damage caused by the explosion at Chernobyl cast doubts on the adequacy of existing national and international regulation of nuclear facilities. Since then the 'environmental' role of the IAEA has assumed a new dimension. In September 1991 the IAEA convened an International Conference on the Safety of Nuclear Power. As a result of the conference, the Convention on Nuclear Safety was developed and opened for signing in Vienna on 20 September 1994.57 It entered into force on 24 October 1996. 55 Other international institutions concerned with nuclear safety include EURATOM, the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency and the ILO. 57 (1994) 33 ILM 1518. See generally Horbach, Contemporary Developments, at 89-132, and the introductory note by P Szasz, 'International Atomic Energy Agency Convention on Nuclear Safety (1994) 33 ILM 1514. The Convention reaffirms in paragraph (iii) of its Preamble that responsibility for nuclear safety rests in the State having jurisdiction over a nuclear installation....

No Need to Wear a Lead Suit Nuclear Safety Works

To better grasp the nuclear safety issue, one must have a rudimentary knowledge of atomic theory and radioactive isotopes. Uranium, a naturally occurring element 1.7 times denser than lead, consists of 92 positively charged protons and about 140 neutrons. Isotopes of uranium atoms with different numbers of neutrons and the same number of protons can be used as a fuel to generate electricity via a nuclear reactor or, in much more concentrated amounts, used to produce nuclear weapons. U-235, an isotope of uranium with 143 neutrons, is naturally unstable on a subatomic basis and decays by emitting low-level alpha particle radiation (this type of radiation has low penetrating power and a short range and generally fails to penetrate human skin).

Refuting the Arguments Against Global Warming

The Web site of the attorney general of California answers 12 arguments frequently raised by opponents of measures aimed at curbing global warming. The answers quote from the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and other scientific literature. 1. Some places on Earth are getting cooler. Global warming describes the overall trend that scientists have found in average temperatures worldwide. Those temperatures have risen over the past 100 years, and most of the warming has occurred in recent years. 2. Global temperatures fell in the mid-twentieth century. That drop was the result of increased industrialization after World War II, which led to increased amounts of soot and aerosol pollutants that, overall, tend to have a cooling effect. 6. Global warming may be beneficial for humans. It is true that some regions of the Earth would benefit in the short term from warmer temperatures, but the models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change indicate that the...

Nuclear winter

Interest in nuclear winter has also waned from a peak reached between 1983 and 1985. Intensive investigation of the issue from 1983 on produced increasing evidence that the climatic impact of nuclear war had been overestimated in the original study. The downgrading of the estimates in the scientific and academic community was inevitably accompanied by a general decline in the level of public interest in the topic, and despite a new examination of the theory by the original investigators (Turco et al. 1990) which tends to reaffirm the basic findings of the original work there has been no revival of interest. As a result of recent political developments, nuclear conflict does seem less likely, and the issue of nuclear winter is regarded as irrelevant by some. Certainly, large scale nuclear war between the NATO and Warsaw Pact powers is no longer a consideration. The events which reduced the likelihood of superpower nuclear conflict did nothing to reduce local and regional tensions,...

Nuclear Weapon Tests

Extensive aboveground nuclear weapons tests were carried out by the United States, the Soviet Union, and other countries, particularly in the period from 1952 to 1962.27 The resulting worldwide average effective dose peaked at 0.11 mSv yr in 1963 and dropped to 0.0055 mSv yr by 1999 7, pp. 228-230 . The average cumulative dose from 1945 to 1999 (i.e., the sum of the annual average doses over the 55-year period) was 1.1 mSv in the northern hemisphere, 0.3 mSv in the southern hemisphere, and 1.0 mSv for the world population as a whole.

Global Warming

Global Warming A Very Short Introduction FREE WILL Thomas Pink Freud Anthony Storr GaLiLeo Stillman Drake Gandhi Bhikhu Parekh GLOBALIZATION Manfred Steger GLOBAL WARMING Mark Maslin HEGEL Peter Singer HEIDEGGER Michael Inwood HIEROGLYPHS Penelope Wilson HINDUISM Kim Knott HISTORY John H. Arnold HOBBES Richard Tuck HUME A. J. Ayer IDEOLOGY Michael Freeden Indian PhiLosophy Bill McGuire EXISTENTIALISM Thomas Flynn FEMINISM Margaret Walters THE FIRST WORLD WAR

Carters Doomsday Argument

Imagine a scene from the late twenty-first century. Twelve billion humans walk the Earth, but all are about to die. It might be through loss of the ozone layer, or poisoning by pollution, or nuclear war, but let us instead say that it is through germ warfare. The fatal virus had a long latency period in which it produced no symptoms so that it spread everywhere without being detected. The aggressor nation's vaccines to protect itself have failed. While technological advances encourage huge population explosions, they also bring new risks of sudden population collapse through nuclear war, industrial pollution, etc. If the human race came to an end soon after learning a little physics and chemistry, what would be remarkable in that Suppose we were extremely confident that humans will have a long future. You and I would then simply have to accept that we were exceptionally early among all humans who would ever have been born. But mightn't it make more sense to think of ourselves as...

Introduction The risk of extinction

Taken just by itself, the doomsday argument could do little to tell us how long humankind will survive. What it might indicate, though, is that the likelihood of Doom Soon is greater than we would otherwise think. Here, 'otherwise-thinking' involves taking account of well-recognized dangers like those of pollution and nuclear war.

Economic Status and Resources

Along with holding population growth down beyond the levels expected in the 1970s, the world has managed to sustain a higher-than-expected degree of economic growth. Most of the world has seen real increases in all measures of wealth, the most common one being the gross domestic product (GDP). The next two charts (figures 6-8 and 6-9) tell the story. It might not be surprising that the whole world has been experiencing a strong and sustained increase in economic growth since the end of World War II. It is perhaps a bit more surprising that the upward trend is also seen in the developing countries, although the rate of improvement is much lower. This

The Environment in Eastern Europe

Adding to the environmental disaster was the fact that most of Eastern Europe had been using soft brown coal as its major energy resource since the end of World War II. This type of coal is high in sulfur content and has a very low efficiency therefore it requires a great deal of burning in order to produce the same amount of heat energy as better-quality coal or oil. The result was a terrible toll on the air quality of the region. The ancient city of Krakow (site of the Lenin Ironworks) was being destroyed by some of the highest levels of corrosive air pollution ever seen on the planet. Ironically, Poland could have avoided much of this by using its own low-sulfur coal. However, the Communist regime (with the prodding of the Soviets) was selling its low-sulfur coal to the West in order to earn hard currency while subjecting its own citizens to the nightmare of high-sulfur, filthy, soft brown coal pollution.

Comparing The Risks And Trying To Guess The Total Risk

Ozone layer destruction, greenhouse warming, the pollution crisis, the exhaustion of farmlands and the loss of biodiversity all threaten to cause immense misery. Yet they too might well appear unlikely to wipe out the entire human race, particularly since people could take refuge in artificial biospheres. Now, a few surviving thousands would probably be a sufficient base from which new billions could grow. The same can probably be said of global nuclear warfare. Artificial biospheres could maintain the human race if the remainder of the planetary surface became uninhabitable. All the same, the above-discussed dangers can be impressive enough to destroy complacency. And I think the chief risks have yet to be mentioned. Genetic engineering seems to me one of them, particularly because of its possible uses in biological warfare or in the hands of criminals. Another is that intelligent machines will come to replace humans although, at least if the machines exploited quantum effects in...

Disaster Caused By Nanotechnology

Such tales must be counted as speculative futurology, yet Engines of Creation tells them rather plausibly and Drexler's Nanosystems goes on to supply many technical details.67 Operating at a billion cycles per second and therefore able to co-operate in constructing a complex, kilogram-weight object in an hour or less, nanomechanical devices carrying their own computers could be introduced into vats of chemicals, where they would make machines of almost any kind. Acting as miniature surgeons, they could clear fats from our arteries or perform intricate repairs which greatly prolonged our lifetimes, as was suggested in R.C.W.Ettinger's The Prospect of Immortality.68 But, Drexler points out, when devices of this sort are able to make 'almost anything (including more of themselves) from common materials', then they will 'give nuclear war some company as a potential cause of extinction'. Artificial plants using solar cells 'could out-compete real plants, crowding the biosphere with...

Exhaustion of foodproducing land and water

Although wetlands are the spawning grounds for most ocean fisheries, also filtering out pollutants, over half have been destroyed by draining, mangrove felling, chemical pollution, and sediment from construction sites. And almost everywhere the coastal waters, by far the most biologically productive, are heavily attacked by agricultural runoffs of pesticides and fertilizers (which once again cause eutrophication), domestic and industrial sewage, toxic waste, oil. It will, of course, prove far harder to harm living organisms throughout an ocean than to make the fish of Lake Superior dangerous for everyday consumption. Even the deliberate sinking after the Second World War of well over a hundred thousand tons of mustard gas and other gases of twenty elderly merchant ships, for example, loaded with captured German gas shells118 may not have caused disastrous damage. Still, the annual tonnages of pollutants have become fairly impressive six million tons of oil, for instance, a little of...

Fusion Reactor Energy

123 Rose, David J. and Lester Richard K., Nuclear Power, Nuclear Weapons and International Stability , Scientific American, Vol. 238, No. 4, April 1978, Page 45 A scheme has been proposed for using the neutrons from the fusion reaction to convert uranium 238 to plutonium 239 or thorium 232 to uranium 233 for the manufacture of bombs. While in theory this may be possible, it does not appear to offer an easier route to the production of bombs than the current methods of separation of uranium 235, or the production of plutonium in a conventional reactor. As a result of these factors, use of a fusion energy system will in no way add to the potential for further nuclear weapons or provide a source for the unauthorized procurement of materials that might be used to produce weapons.

Pessimism and the Political Environmental World View

I will discuss the issue of nuclear weapons more in the epilogue. To balance the pessimists on the left, we have the optimists on the right. These are folks who dismiss concerns about air quality, global warming, new disease outbreaks, antibiotic resistance, etc. with statements that generally point to previous unconfirmed fears, reassurances that the environment can take care of itself as it has always done, and that technological progress is responsible for more good things than bad things. These people have faith in technology, they believe in the triumph of man over natural obstacles (some would say over nature itself), and have no patience for caution or concern related to the forward march of progress.

Creating Quark Matter

Probably the earliest such heart-searching took place when the first nuclear weapons were being developed. E.Teller 'proposed to the assembled luminaries the possibility that their bombs might ignite the earth's oceans or its atmosphere and burn up the world'.111 J.R.Oppenheimer, the project leader, took the proposal fairly seriously. People were soon persuaded that there was no danger, a post-war technical report declaring that 'the impossibility of igniting the atmosphere was assured by science and by common sense' yet it is hard to see how mere common sense could have had much to say about a matter complicated enough to have worried the likes of Teller and Oppenheimer. Note that when H.A.Bethe stated in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, June 1976,112 that an enormous safety factor would always be present, he felt a need to qualify this by adding 'unless, some time in the future, nuclear weapons of entirely different type are designed which produce much higher temperatures'.

Modelling the weather

An English mathematician, Lewis Fry Richardson, set up the first numerical model of the weather. During his spare moments while working for the Friends' Ambulance Unit (he was a Quaker) in France during the First World War he carried out the first numerical weather forecast. With much painstaking calculation

The goal of environmental stewardship

A point that is frequently made about such stewardship is that many of the actions that must be taken to combat global warming are good to do anyway because they will lead towards the sustainability that is essential if we are to live in a world where happiness and justice thrive - the sort of world that most people long to see. Seeing action on climate change as a catalyst for these other changes provides even more impetusfor immediate andaggres-sive action. 1 List and describe the most important environmental problems in your country. Evaluate how each might be exacerbated under the type of climate change expected with global warming. 4 Al Gore, Vice-President of the United States in 1996-2000, has proposed a plan for saving the world's environment.22 He has called it 'A Global Marshall Plan' paralleled after the Marshall Plan through which the United States assisted Western Europe to recover and rebuild after the Second World War. Resources for the plan would need to come from the...

Determinism Indeterminism And The Doomsday Argument

Although Carter's argument gives grounds for re-evaluating the danger of imminent human extinction, these grounds would (as the Introduction noted) necessarily be weakened in an indeterministic world. Indeterminism would mean that there wasn't yet any suitable 'firm fact of the matter', in theory available to anybody who knew the present situation and the laws of physics in sufficient detail, concerning how many humans remained to be born before humankind became extinct compare the fact that exactly this or that many names remain in an urn after your own name has been drawn from it. Carterian efforts to re-estimate the risk of Doom Soon to attach a probability to the prospect, for instance, that no humans would be alive after the next five hundred years would be hindered by this.

Threats To The Survival Of The Human Race

Estimating the probability that the human race will soon become extinct has become quite a popular activity. Many writers have considered such things as the dangers of nuclear war or of pollution. This book will make few claims to expertise about the details of such highly complex matters. What it will claim instead is that even non-experts can see that the risks aren't negligible. In view of how much is at stake, we have no right to disregard them.2 Besides, even if the 'total risk' (obtained by combining the individual risks) appeared to be fairly small, Carter's doomsday argument could suggest that it should be re-evaluated as large. To get it to look small once more, we should then need to make vigorous risk-reduction efforts. 1 Nuclear war. Knowledge of how to build nuclear bombs cannot be eradicated. Small nations, terrorists and rich criminals wanting to become still richer by holding the world to ransom can already afford very destructive bombs. Production costs are falling...

There is something fundamentally wrong in treating the earth as if it were a business in liquidation

The recovery, handling and combustion of the earth's finite supply of fossil fuels are damaging the environment. This damage may ultimately cause many plant and animal species to become extinct. If we continue to increase our use of fossil fuels for energy production, humanity may ultimately become one of the species that perish. Some may feel that the potential for human extinction several hundred years in the future. They assert that this is an inadequate justification to make profound near term changes in the energy infrastructure. There are, however, two other reasons to stop the use of fossil fuels as our main energy source. In the short term, as globalization improves world economies there will be increased competition for the remaining reserves. This competition has the potential to germinate into open conflict that will be lethal for humanity. In the mid term, justification comes from the need to conserve the unique substances in fossil fuels for future higher value use as...

The Technical Challenge

The Manhattan Project during World War II provides an example of a goal-directed development that achieved amazing success in a relatively short time. In 1939, it was known that neutrons could split uranium atoms. When split each atom produced more neutrons and large amounts of energy. The neutrons produced by the splitting of one uranium atom were thought to be able to split two or three more uranium atoms in a cascading effect. It was postulated this could lead to a nuclear chain reaction and provide a large energy release either as an explosion or, if modulated, for power generation. Based on meager knowledge the atom bomb was developed in three years (1942 - 1945) and a commercial power reactor in about 12 years. The Shipping Port Pennsylvania reactor started delivering power to customers in 1957.

Our climatic inheritance

Only mode of heating and lighting, without writing, radio, television or electricity, without clothing other than what one makes for oneself, without medical care, and entirely ignorant of the world beyond one's field of vision, is a life that only an anthropologist could admire.' The debate about the benefits of the hunter-gatherer lifestyle in the 1970s and 1980s was part of a wider question about whether food production would keep pace with rapidly rising population levels. Many environmentalists assumed that it would not and that this would lead to a global demographic crisis. More recently, this concern has tended to be subsumed in the wider concerns about global warming and the general destruction of the environment. Even more striking was the stark fact that being poor was not good for one's health. By the start of the First World War the recruits to the ranks in the British Army were on average 15 cm shorter than their officers who came from the wealthier classes. When losses...

General Problems Of Risk Analysis

Risk, say, of nuclear war in the next ten years, let alone for the risk of extinction for everyone by the year 2400. To further complicate matters, ethical considerations enter into calling something 'a risk'. Suppose you considered that if humankind were to become extinct then this would be rather a good thing or at least (see Chapter 4) that merely possible lives, lives which would in this case never be lived, couldn't have been in any ethically interesting sense 'lost to the world'. You might then refuse to speak of 'risks' of human extinction. And presumably you wouldn't accept that even a tiny chance of human extinction ought to be avoided at almost any cost. This chapter will simply assume that human extinction would be a disaster and that any chance of it, tiny or great, would be something about which people ought to be warned. I don't buy the argument that talking of the risk of doom spreads despondency, thus increasing the danger. The argument is precisely what some powerful...

Modern Environmental History

The sixty-plus years since the end of World War II is the period of interest in our discussion. This period represents the fruition and the pinnacle of technological progress and its attendant ills. It is also during this period that people began to see for the first time that there was a cost to the progress everyone was enjoying. The idea that technology itself is at best a double-edged sword or at worst an evil monster without any benefits began to take hold of the popular imagination. People began to see the same technology that brought so many improvements in daily life to ordinary people as producing negative side effects on the environment and on other aspects of the quality of human life.

Could Schopenhauers gloom have been right

Could it be right to interfere Certainly. If only a burst from a machine-gun would do the job, then I wouldn't blame whoever fired it. Remember, an inability to prove ethical oughts cannot prove that we ought always to be tolerant. And although I think it almost always bad to kill people, and particularly political leaders who are doing what they see as their duty, I recognize no 'inalienable right not to be killed'. (Insane people are to be pitied, not blamed, but if a madman were reaching out to push a button and thereby start a nuclear war, then I wouldn't classify failure to shoot him as 'keeping one's hands clean'. I'd think of it as getting one's hands very dirty indeed as committing a crime of inaction which the madman himself would be the first to condemn if he could suddenly be cured.) None the less, I might feel considerable respect for the lever-pulling leader. Trying to annihilate the human race could be the act of a thoroughly decent person who not unreasonably thought...

War Pollution Disease

The chapter expands points made in the Introduction about well-known risks. The continued career of the human race is endangered by chemical, biological and nuclear war, by destruction of the ozone layer and greenhouse-effect overheating (conceivably of a runaway kind in which warming releases more and more methane, a powerful greenhouse gas), by desertification and pollution of land and sea, by loss of biodiversity and by diseases. Overpopulation, a main cause of the deterioration of the environment, may also lead to global warfare.

Nuclear Bombs

J.von Neumann (a pioneer of computing, who died in 1957) called it 'absolutely certain (1) that there would be a nuclear war and (2) that everyone would die in it'.1 What force has this today The bomb which destroyed Hiroshima was of roughly ten kilotons that is, with an energy like that of ten thousand tons of the chemical high explosive TNT. Modern 'strategic' bombs are typically between a hundred and a thousand times more powerful. By 1961, however, the Soviet Union had tested a bomb of 58 megatons (58 million tons of TNT), and much larger ones are possible with a fission device to trigger it, a fusion bomb can be of virtually any size. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union each accumulated tens of thousands of warheads, the world's nuclear arsenals becoming the equivalent of a million Hiroshima bombs 'a World War II every second for the length of a lazy afternoon', in the words of C.Sagan.2 In 1982 the World Health Organization estimated that a major nuclear...

Health Worries

Most people alive today, especially the generations born after World War II and before the 1980s, grew up with the idea that we would be living in a And yet, despite constant and continuous improvement in human health since World War II, concerns about health have not lessened. I believe that a good deal of the general perception that things are getting worse and worse is due to health issues. This apparent contradiction might stem partly from the sudden emergence of new and frightening diseases starting in the late 1970s. First there was Legionnaire's disease. A group of people attending a convention of the American Legion got sick and no one knew why. When it turned out that a new form of pathogenic bacteria living in air conditioning cooling tanks could cause illness and death, many people got worried. A new germ How could that be Scientists were also baffled.

Post Communist Trends

What we found was disappointing to us as research scientists but very encouraging for the workers and the society (see the beginning of chapter 4). The plant was modern and well run. Some of the processes and equipment were old (the industrial hygienist with us had worked for American petrochemical companies, and he was able to identify these technological gaps), but there was no evidence of the type of neglect, leakage, poor maintenance, and broken safety equipment that had characterized the occupational-health situation in Eastern European countries for four decades after World War II. Instead there was an active and apparently well-run worker safety and surveillance program, where blood and urine samples were collected and monitored on a regular basis to check for a variety of chemical exposures. All of the engineering controls that should be in place to prevent exposure to toxic chemicals were functioning and in routine operation. We

Energy Generation

Construction of floating reactors in single sites also opens up the potential for constructing the reactors for export. Anyone can purchase one of the power plants and have it towed to a convenient location for use. Since no materials from the fusion reaction cycle can be used for the production of weapons, the export reactors can be sold to any or all without concern for the spread of nuclear weapons.

Tidal Energy

Passamaquoddy Bay is located at the west end of the Bay of Fundy, on the border between the State of Maine in the United States and the Province of New Brunswick in Canada. During World War II, extensive studies were made of the requirements and costs for a tidal power plant at this bay. Passamaquoddy is separated from Fundy by two channels on either side of Deer Island. The total length of the dams for closing is less than 3 kilometers. The tidal rise and fall is not as great at Passamaquoddy Bay as it is at other locations on the Bay of Fundy but it is adequate for power production. This project is close enough to being economically feasible that it is still being discussed. However, uncertainty about long-term success has seriously inhibited implementation. One of the major concerns for these plants stems from the affect they will have on the ocean shoreline ecosystems. Changing the rhythm of the tidal flow in the bay will change the rhythm of all life forms that live within its...

Tobacco

(cigarettes), which had long been a feature of life in the Western frontier. The rate of smoking grew exponentially, with a brief decrease during the Depression. The average per capita consumption of about fifty cigarettes per year in 1900 rose to over 1,000 by the 1930s. But this was only the beginning. The real boom in cigarette sales came with World War II and its aftermath. By 1945 the number of cigarettes smoked per person per year was over 3,500. The peak consumption of cigarettes in the United States reached over 4,300 per person per year in 1964. For over a decade, the connection between smoking and lung cancer was a matter for debate among medical scientists. Finally, in the 1960s, the scientific evidence became compelling, and the medical establishment began to acknowledge the terrible toll that smoking was taking on the health of the populace. As time passed, the picture got worse and worse. Tobacco proved to be the major preventable cause of cancer. In fact, the public...

Summary

Humanity is conducting an unintended, uncontrolled, globally pervasive experiment whose ultimate consequences could be second only to a global nuclear war. The earth's atmosphere is being changed at an unprecedented rate by pollutants resulting from human activities, inefficient and wasteful fossil fuel use, and the effects of rapid population growth in many regions. These changes represent a major threat to international security and are already having harmful consequences over many parts of the globe. Far-reaching impacts will be caused by global warming and sea-level rise, which are becoming increasingly evident as a result of the continued growth in atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Other major impacts are occurring from ozone-layer depletion resulting in increased damage from ultraviolet radiation. The best predictions available indicate potentially severe economic and social dislocation for present and future generations, which will worsen...

Air Pollution

During the first half of the twentieth century, almost everyone on the planet considered air pollution a necessary by-product of successful industrial progress. After the interlude of World War II and the rebuilding of Europe, the degree of air pollution in some areas such as Los Angeles and

Black Hole Computers

THE NOVEMBER 2004 ISSUE included Holes in the Missile Shield, by Richard L. Garwin, a topic that attracted volleys of letters from all sides. David Caccia of Honokaa, Hawaii, found an additional hole in the shield If an enemy nation could produce only a few nuclear weapons, would it risk sending them on rockets, which have a considerable chance of malfunctioning And even if the launch was successful, the country could expect retaliation. Wouldn't it rather transport a weapon to one of our cities in a shipping container, which would have a much better chance of reaching its target and also leave no trace of its sender after detonation But Taras Wolansky of Kerhonkson, N.Y., saw a hole in one ofthe arguments against a defense system The Soviets went to great lengths to prevent the Reagan administration's Strategic Defense Initiative. Perhaps they understood that to make use of those 'easy' countermea-sures, they would have to rebuild their entire ICBM arsenal every time the Americans...

Genetic Engineering

Quite apart from its possible contributions to biological warfare (see Chapter 1), genetic engineering might be considered extremely dangerous. The fact is that the complexity of the field makes its risks very hard to evaluate. At least in public, most experts say they are no great cause for concern, as shown both by calm scientific reasoning and by the absence of any disaster so far see, for example, chapter 3, 'The fear and trembling', of B.K. Zimmerman's Biofuture, with its talk of 'poor Chicken Little', who 'mistook an acorn for a piece of the sky and gathered her friends to rush and tell the king that the sky was falling'.29 Without actually being ill informed or irrational, however, you might think the risks as great as any which humankind now faces. The apparent consensus among the experts might perhaps itself be explicable more by social pressures than by scientific findings instead of just affecting industry, as in the case of regulations applying to nuclear power plants,...

Wasting Away

Since World War II, household waste from the average U.S. and Canadian home has increased greatly. Over the past 45 years, people in the United States have gone from producing 2.7 pounds (1.2 kg) of waste a day to 4.6 pounds (2.1 kg) a day, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Key Note Market Assessments (a primary research group providing strategic analysis reports) predicts that worldwide municipal waste production will grow 37 percent between 2007 and 2011.

The Fires Of Hiroshima

Duced by the firestorms burning forests and cities during a nuclear war. They calculated how must dust would rise into the air and Sagan, Pollack, Ackerman, and Toon, along with Richard Turco of R&D Associates, a private research company in California, decided to apply their atmospheric dust model, gleaned from the Martian study, to estimating the effects smoke from a nuclear war would have upon world climate. Working at Ames Research Laboratories in Moffett Field, California, the group, collectively nicknamed TTAPS (for Turco, Toon, Ackerman, Pollack, and Sagan), developed startling new visions of the aftermath of global ther-

The Goal of Reactor Operational Safety

Historically, governments have been primarily concerned with public and personnel safety hence, nuclear safety research sponsored by government agencies is likely to address these issues. Operating groups utilities and vendors support a broad sponsorship in all four areas. While the two design approaches to safety (passive and redundant) are innovative and different, the question remains which will gain favor with utilities and firms looking to construct nuclear power facilities in the United States.

Is there a place for nuclear energy in Australias future energy mix

Not surprisingly on 7 September 2005, Greenpeace, the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) and the Australian Greens called on the Australian government to rule out nuclear energy. They released a report challenging claims made by various senior Coalition leaders that nuclear power is clean and a potential solution for curbing greenhouse gas emissions. The report is entitled Nuclear Power No Solution to Climate Change.12 The report states that a doubling of the nuclear power industry by 2050 would only reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 5 while there is a significant danger that nuclear power plants could be used as nuclear bomb factories. Alternative approaches, such as a greater uptake of energy efficiency measures and renewable energy technologies, offer a clean energy future without the associated dangers. President of the ACF, Professor Ian Lowe, also claims that the real cost of nuclear energy is far higher than for renewable energy technologies. Meanwhile, the Australian...

Nuclear Energy Policy

Nuclear power was first developed for military purposes. The detonation of atomic bombs in the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 demonstrated the power of nuclear weapons to the world. The two bombs killed over 340,000 people either from the direct blast of the bomb or from radiation exposure (Fehner and Holl 1994, 11). The devastation not only changed the nature of international relations, it also demonstrated the necessity for government control of nuclear power. In order to promote peaceful uses of nuclear energy and to ensure that international control over nuclear energy was maintained, the United Nations Atomic Energy Commission (UNAEC) was created in 1946. In the 1980s, safety and waste issues dominated the nuclear energy agenda. The Nuclear Safety Research, Development, and Demonstration Act was passed in 1980 largely as a response to the TMI accident. This legislation sought to improve the safety of existing nuclear power plants. It mandated that standards be...

Horizontal and Vertical

Critics of New Urbanism and smart growth are fond of accusing anti-sprawl activists of social engineering. But if there was ever a time that government was actively steering the living arrangements of citizens, it was during the one-two punch of the Depression and World War II, with cheap mortgages, an emphasis on building on undeveloped land, and then, a few years later, the unprecedented construction of highways providing access to even more undeveloped land. The Fed- The post-World War II policy of dispersal coincided with a desire for an affordable and comfortable home, to provide for and protect the family. America's affluence and government policies encouraged spreading out. The copy for this General Electric advertisement read, That little house sketched in the sand is a symbol of glorious days to come when victory is won. National Building Museum. The post-World War II policy of dispersal coincided with a desire for an affordable and comfortable home, to provide for and...

Uneven Development and Dependency

Both modernization and development approaches to political and economic change were established in the particular historical circumstances following World War II the United States was the most economically developed and politically secure superpower, facing a rising and competitive power center in the Soviet Union, and an array of states, including the plurality of less well developed countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America (then collectively called the Third World ), presumably in search of the best development strategy to bring them wealth and power.

Nuclear Hydro Wind Geothermal And Solar Power

During World War II, when the fuel supplies of the Axis nations collapsed, so did their war efforts. A modern war cannot be run a modern economy cannot be sustained without liquid fuels. There is no prospect whatsoever of the large-scale economic generation of liquid fuels from nuclear, hydroelectric, wind, geothermal, or solar power sources in the near future. Thus the discussion of these technologies is largely irrelevant to the immediate strategic problem we face. In the long run, however, when combined with the switch to alcohol fuels, they can play a key role in enabling an open human future of worldwide economic development and rising living standards, without the threat of global warming. This will be discussed in chapters 10 and 11.

Planned Programs in the Past

This was the goal of making the United States into the arsenal of democracy and to produce everything necessary in order to win the war on the part of the Allied forces. The Apollo program was run in parallel with normal economic activities and the Marshall Plan was a financial and management effort to help in the rebuilding of Europe after the Second World War. None of these planned economic programs has made the US economy into a planned economy. The characteristics of planned economies in socialist states that include state ownership of production resources and lack of incentives for individual initiatives have never been present in any of these programs, and they will not be part of any planned effort in the future either.

US Domestic Oil Supply

The United States was a major world crude oil producer for much of the twentieth century. Its domestic production was even sufficient to meet most of the Allies' European World War II military requirements. After reaching a peak of 11 million barrels per day, U.S. domestic production has been on the decline.

Democratize Access to Land via Redistributive Land Reform

More countries with extremely unequal land distribution should be encouraged to take such bold action. History shows that the redistribution of land to landless and land-poor rural families is a highly effective way to improve rural welfare. Dozens of successful land reform programs were carried out after World War II. According to a report by the Oakland-based think tank Food First, When a significant portion of quality land was distributed to a majority of the rural poor, with policies favorable to successful family farming, and when the power of rural elites was broken, there have been measurable poverty

Development of Nuclear Power in the United States Immediate Postwar Developments Interest in Commercial Nuclear Power

In the years immediately following World War II, the main activities of the American nuclear authorities continued to be directed toward further military developments, but increased attention was turned to electricity generation. A somewhat guarded assessment of the future was presented in the Smyth report

The Jolt of Japanese Competition

Toyota and Honda emerged in a very different environment from the Detroit Three. They got started in a nation without a trace of crude oil reserves and in a home market devastated by World War II. In reaching out to the U.S. market, they were forced to work around protectionist tariffs and trade rules crafted by the Detroit automakers. Approaching the automotive market from different circumstances, they focused on efficiency and small vehicles, with a different understanding of the public interest and public priorities. Later on, they witnessed their government signing the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 the first international agreement to address global climate change and Japan's continuing efforts to prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system. 54 As the twenty-first century rolled around, with higher fuel prices and increasing energy and environmental concerns, Toyota and Honda were well positioned. Their business models fit better with increasingly aggressive energy and...

Alternative economic options

The downward spiral continued well into the twentieth century. The granite industry, which had come to its peak after the American Civil War, was almost extinct by World War I and the shipping of ice to places such as New York, New Orleans, and Brazil had ended by 1918 (Clifford, 1961, p. 91). The coastal schooner trade was almost dead by World War II. Moreover, after the turn of the century, agriculture declined rapidly. By the 1930s there were very few working farms in coastal Maine. Clifford's (1961) excellent history of Boothbay, which began its chronology in 1906, does not even mention agriculture. In the inter-war years, there were few growth industries. One was tourism, although the tourist industry had changed considerably since its inception in the late 1800s. Before World War I, tourists brought trunks and tended to stay for weeks in the coastal hotels or cottage colonies after World War I, increasing numbers of tourists built their own cottages or were on an auto tour and...

The History Of Upper Air Measurements

Manned balloon flights during the nineteenth century attempted to measure temperatures in the upper air but the equipment was generally inadequate for the purpose. Kite measurements were common in the 1890s. During and after the First World War, balloon, kite and aircraft measurements of temperatures and winds were collected in the lower few kilometres of the atmosphere. Forerunners of the modern radiosonde, which comprises a package of pressure, temperature and humidity sensors suspended beneath a hydrogen-filled balloon and transmitting radio signals of the measurements during its ascent, were developed independently in France, Germany and the USSR and first used in about 1929 to 1930. Soundings began to be made up to about 3 to 4 km, mainly in Europe and North America, in the 1930s and the radiosonde was used widely during and after the Second World War. It was improved in the late 1940s when radar tracking of the balloon enabled the calculation of upper-level wind speed and...

Transformational Wars

With about 20 million fatalities, its human costs were higher than the aggregate losses of combatants and civilians in World War I. World War I (1914-1918) traumatized all European powers, utterly destroyed the post-Napoleonic pattern, ushered in Communism in Russia, and brought the United States into global politics for the first time. And a fact often forgotten it also began the destabilization of the Middle East by dismembering the Ottoman Empire and creating the British and French Mandates whose dissolution led eventually to the formation of the states of Jordan (1923), Saudi Arabia and Iraq (1932), Lebanon (1941), Syria (1946), and Israel (1948) (Fromkin 2001). World War II (1939-1945) is, of course, the quintessential transformational war, not only because of the sweeping changes it brought to the global order but also Arguably, other conflicts might seem to qualify, but closer examination shows that they did not fundamentally alter the past but rather...

Organizing and Planning the Energy Transition

In the case of the Second World War we can see that it was really a tremendous effort in terms of the number of vessels and vehicles built and in terms of the technologies that had to be developed in order to win the war. We can appreciate the similarity of the effort at hand if we ponder the number of cars, trucks and airplanes that need to be replaced with more fuel-efficient ones if we want to maintain our affluent life styles and not simply stop consuming. We can also consider the number of power plants for renewable energy production, production plants for renewable fuels, such as ethanol or synthetic diesel, or biodiesel, and the need to rebuild electricity grids and other installations. In industrial companies existing pneumatic systems and other power sources, in addition to pumps, heating and lighting, may need to be replaced or complemented by more modern and energy-efficient installations. We may also need to rethink distribution networks and the location of production, so...

Oil Heralds A Bright New World At The Turn Of The Twentieth Century

The first oil well anywhere was drilled in Pennsylvania by a former New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad conductor known as Edwin L. Drake in August 1859. The well was 69 feet deep and produced 15 barrels a day. The area quickly boomed and the modern oil industry was born. More than half a century later, in the 1930s, Texas and Oklahoma became the centers of U.S. production, but after World War II the Middle East became a major supplier to the United States.

Geopolitical Complications

Now let's assume that the global economy is able to muddle through with expensive oil. Would the result be peace and prosperity Probably not, because oil is distributed unevenly, and the countries with the most oil are, at the moment, unfriendly to capitalist democratic ideals like private property and free speech. To use the framework that Henry Kissinger made popular in his 1980s best sellers, the world can be divided into status quo powers, which would by and large prefer that things continue along the current path, and revolutionary powers, which would like to tear up the script and replace it with something radically different. Today, the revolutionary powers have the oil. (See Figure 3.3.) And now that nuclear weapons can be built by any engineer with access to the Internet and a few hundred pounds of fissionable material, the revolutionary powers will likely use their growing wealth to build bombs and or to finance the nuclear ambitions of others. In effect, the oil and gas...

Chinas trade performance an overview

The rise of China as a major trading nation was one of the most momentous developments of the post-World War II era, surpassing even the stunning rise of Germany and Japan. Total merchandise exports from China increased from US 8 billion (about 1 per cent of global exports) in 1978-79, when the process of liberalisation reforms started, to US 1,442 billion (13.4 per cent) in 2005-06.2 In 2006, China was the second largest exporting nation in the world after Germany and, assuming the current growth rates continue, it will become the largest in about 10 years. During the reform era, until about the mid 1980s, imports followed exports closely with periodic minor trade surpluses or deficits. From then on, exports have persistently outpaced imports, yielding a mild annual surplus averaging about 2 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), and exceeding 3 per cent only briefly, in 1997-98.

Behavior and Work Life Change

As a society, we already have much experience of this type of development from a number of large-scale change projects, of which a few, such as the Apollo program and the industrial transformation in the United States during the Second World War, have been used as examples in this book. We also have substantial experience of economic growth, created by increased consumption. We lack experience from large-scale projects aimed at the reduction of consumption and changes that reduce the use of resources without harming the economy.

Human Behavior at the Millennium

Gradually man has been accustoming himself to the notion of the spherical earth and a closed sphere of human activity it was not until the Second World War and the development of the air age that the global nature of the planet really entered the popular imagination. Even now we are very far from having made the moral, political, and psychological adjustments which are implied in this transition from the illimitable plane to the closed sphere.

Marine Environmental Protection Advocate

Scuba was a great improvement over the heavy diving suits used at the time. Cousteau used scuba to help the French resistance during World War II and was awarded the L gion d'Honneur for his service. After the war, Cousteau developed scuba diving as part of a French naval research group. He also wanted to challenge age-old superstitions and open the undersea world to scientific exploration.

Sprawl in the United States

Since the end of World War II, most of the growth in U.S. metropolitan areas has taken place in the suburbs.1 In 1940, 48 percent of the U.S. population lived in a metropolitan area, and 68 percent of metropolitan area residents lived in center cities. By 1990 the first figure had grown to 78 percent, and the second had fallen to 40 percent.2 In 1970 the average urbanite lived in a community with 10,452 people per square mile. By 2000 urban population density had fallen over 25 percent, with the average metropolitan area resident living at a density of 7,358 people per square mile.3

Part One Environmental Challenges Go Global

The destruction of the environment as a by-product of human enterprise is not new, but for most of our history it remained a localized and limited problem. The many forms of damage to the earth and its creatures increased in severity and scope during the Industrial Revolution. Yet it was not until just after World War II that the fast-forward button was pushed down and held.

Wetlands contribution to improving water quality and reducing storm water runoff

After the Great Depression of the 1920s and 1930s, programs such as the Works Progress Administration and the Reconstruction Finance Corporation encouraged wetland conversion to form land for urban development. In 1945, at the end of World War II, the total area of drained farmland increased sharply.

The Constraints of Gico

Obviously, GIGO can result from wrong information. Good decision making requires accurate knowledge, but information that appears accurate in the present can later be discovered to be inaccurate. For example, since World War II, the Atomic Energy Commission has continually lowered the maximum permissible radiation doses for both nuclear plant workers and the general public (Gerber, 1992). Early nuclear tests were conducted without adequate protection to workers in part because officials mistakenly believed that small and moderate doses were not harmful. No information is perfect, but a commitment to improving information and revising decisions accordingly is an important principle of all good policy. or toxic contaminants in cooking oil (p. 21). If we cannot see something we are not likely to find it important. This visual dependency makes it difficult to respond to ozone depletion or global warming. Because we cannot directly see chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) or greenhouse gases, it is...

Worldwide Development of Nuclear Power Early History of Nuclear Programs

The above discussion has emphasized the U.S. nuclear program. However, the United States was not alone in having an early interest in nuclear energy. Other countries had similar interests, although their development lagged because they lacked the head start provided by the U.S. World War II atomic bomb program and they had smaller technological and industrial bases. For the countries that wanted nuclear weapons, the priority was the same as that of the United States. The bomb came first and peaceful nuclear energy later. Thus, the construction and testing of nuclear weapons was achieved by the USSR in 1949, Britain in 1952, France in 1960, and China in 1964. Commercial nuclear electricity followed The USSR started with several 100-MWe reactors in 195819, Britain with a 50-MWe reactor at Calder Hall in 1956 (preceding the U.S. reactor at Shippingport), France with a 70-MWe prototype reactor at Chinon in 1964, and China with three reactors that went into commercial operation in 1994 4 ....

Films and Videorecordings

This educational film is about the transformation to renewable energy resources. It examines the emerging markets of wind turbines, solar cells, hybrids, and coal gasification technologies within the context of increasing global energy demand and global warming concerns. This is a good resource for those who want to lean more about renewable technologies and their role in changing the energy infrastructure in society. This film offers a historical overview of the discovery and development of coal resources in Europe at the dawn of the industrial revolution. It examines the social and economic implications of coal and how the industrial revolution changed life in Europe leading up to World War I. This film examines the role of oil and coal in the political, social, and economic developments that occurred in Europe during the twentieth century. It describes the role of oil in World War II and the importance of coal for sustaining daily life in the early twentieth century.

The Scales Of Victory

It would be false to argue that World War II was won by the Allies' superiority in oil. Wars are won not by oil or other resources, but by the courage and self-sacrifice of the people who do the fighting. Yet, without question, it was the control of oil that tipped the scales of victory. To see this, just consider how the war would have gone if, instead of being located in the United States and Soviet Union during the 1940s, the primary developed oil resources of the world had been inside Germany and Japan. In World War II, we controlled the oil. In this war, the enemy does. This is an unacceptable situation, because it places our fate in the hands of people who want to kill us. In World War II, we had no compunction about destroying the Nazi fuel-making facilities at Ploesti and Leuna, or of systematically sinking the Japanese tanker fleet because we didn't need their oil As we have shown, those attacks were incredibly effective in breaking enemy power. On May 12, 1944, the day of...

Acidification the problem

As consumption increased, so pollutive emissions grew and acidification worsened. Accelerated research following the Second World War confirmed the existence of a problem with local, national and international dimensions, with the greatest emissions coming from the industrial centres of Europe and North America, and the most serious damage occurring downwind of those centres. The major chemical elements in the problem are as follows

Modelling The Atmosphere

The earliest weather forecasts depended very much on the interpretation of atmospheric conditions by an experienced observer who used his accumulated knowledge of past events to predict future short-term changes in weather conditions. Particular skills in that field were often attributed to sailors, farmers and others who were regularly exposed to the vagaries of the weather in their work. This subjective approach continued well into modern times, but by the end of World War I the first of the modern predictive models was being developed. This was the mid-latitude frontal model which grew out of the work of the Norwegian school of meteorology. With its combination of air masses, anticyclones and frontal depressions it was the mainstay of weather forecasting in mid-latitudes for half a century. Past experience with such systems coupled with observations of their on-going development allowed local weather conditions to be predicted twelve to twenty-four...

Individual and Social Consequences

Apart from the military sacrifices that are necessary at a time of war, there are substantial civilian sacrifices that are necessary in order to keep the war machine running. For the sake of comparison between the war effort and the transition to energy efficiency, it makes sense to mention some of the civilian sacrifices that had to be made in the United States during the Second World War. Once more we turn to John Steele Gordon, who describes how unemployment was eradicated overnight as a large share of the male population was drafted and women had to take their places in the production and transportation of war materials and in the production of raw materials for this purpose.

The Fourth Scenario The Ecological Dream Achieved Through The Global Embrace

This scenario suggests, for instance, that we will be able to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels at approximately the required rate in order to avoid exorbitant increases in energy prices. It also suggests that we will be able to reduce CO2 emissions and emissions of other greenhouse gases rapidly enough to stop global warming at the present level. This book argues in favor of this scenario. The main argument is that the only tool by which we could hope to achieve this is a planned and managed process that is run in parallel at all levels, and in all areas, of society at once. The process resembles, in its management and planning mechanisms, more the planned development and achievements of the US space program, than the planned economies of the former Eastern Bloc. We do not want to end up in a situation where we have too little time left to avoid disaster and need to run a total and immediate turnaround of the global economy, to form a peacetime equivalent of a war economy, that...

Transforming Production Technologies And Choice Of Materials

In the same way, lighter and more advanced construction solutions have reduced the energy content of products. One example of this is the development of lighter airplane frames during the Second World War, which made it possible to build lighter aircraft that could fly longer distances. The trend toward lighter and stronger constructions has continued product generation after product generation. Developments of new materials has added strength to products, and at the same time reduced weight. The replacement of steel and wood by plastics is an example of this trend, which reduces the energy content of products despite the fact that plastics are made from oil. In case we would be forced to go back to metal, wood and other heavier materials, which require more energy in order to be formed, we would lose energy in more than one way. First, we would need to use more energy in production, and second, we would need to spend more energy in transportation, moving heavier and bulkier goods...

Item on the list of tools for the Steering Committee

The control paradigm of the past existed, we may assume, because knowledge, in those days, was less evenly spread across the organization, than at present. With a small number of managers at the top, who sometimes held university degrees, and who had information about the environment of the organization, it was less likely than today that people at lower levels would make relevant decisions. It was not until after the Second World War that higher education and business experience became more widespread, and decision making could gradually be dispersed more widely in an organization. This process has taken some time and is still under way.

Feasibility of substantial greenhouse gas emission reductions by households

First, this chapter presented an accounting for the total household energy requirement. These accounts demonstrated that a substantial portion of Dutch energy consumption should be allocated to households. The previous section described and discussed some trends that led to a substantial increase in household energy requirements in the decades after the Second World War. Substantial reductions are also required within households to meet the long-term emission targets for greenhouse gases. Based on this notion, several research programmes have been carried out to assess the potential for reduction of energy use and or greenhouse gas emissions through changes in households. We will discuss four of these studies the Perspective project, the GreenHouse programme, the HOMES programme and the Sushouse programme. These studies adopted an integrated approach, addressing the (macro-level) relationships between sectors and the relationship between production and consumption.

Nuclear Power Plant Financing

U.S. interest rates soared to 10 percent and beyond by 1980, from under 6 percent at the start of the 1970s. Inflation popped during the oil embargo to 11 percent, retreated briefly to 6 percent in 1977, but then ratcheted back over 13 percent in 1980, the worst combination of increased finance cost and rising material charges in the post-World War II era.

Energy Policy Issues And International Impacts

Petroleum has influenced not only economic but also political developments over the last 50 years. In fact, many of the conflicts since World War II were directly or indirectly affected by concerns for access to petroleum, its price, supply reliability, and related issues.

Electricity from Biomass

New technologies that are commercially available for converting biomass to electricity include co-firing and gasification. Co-firing power plants use biomass as a supplementary energy source with a conventional fuel, typically coal. Gasification converts solid biomass through partial oxidation at high temperature into a combustible gas, containing mainly carbon monoxide and hydrogen. The gas produced can then by burned in a gas turbine or internal combustion engine to generate electricity. It is worthwhile noting that during the great depression and World War II, small gasifiers were used for cars to convert wood and charcoal

Living marine resources Anglo Icelandic Cod Wars as an analogy

On four occasions since World War II, Iceland unilaterally extended its fishing jurisdiction. These extensions put Iceland in direct conflict with other nations with fleets fishing within these limits, principally those of Great Britain and West Germany (Fig. 12.1). While West Germany opposed these extensions, it took a less militant stand than the British and eventually acquiesced to Icelandic demands. Great Britain, however, opposed any precedent-setting extensions of coastal jurisdictions, especially those that might infringe on its activities on the designated high seas. The ensuing conflicts between Iceland and Great Britain are popularly referred to as the Cod Wars. to changes in the marine environment that might be associated with a global warming of the atmosphere. The second section discusses the history of the Anglo-Icelandic conflicts over unilateral extensions by Iceland of its fishing jurisdiction. A summary of key issues that appear in each of these conflicts is...

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