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.

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).

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....

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...

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,

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 droughts,...

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.

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...

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...

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...

Nuclear Winter

One of the more controversial issues associated with the climatic effects of nuclear fallout is the concept of nuclear winter. Nuclear winter is the prediction of significant climatic temperature declines resulting from an increase of atmospheric particulates following the detonation of many nuclear weapons in the atmosphere. The temperature decline would generate wintry conditions, hence the phrase nuclear winter. In the nuclear winter scenario, the temperature of the atmosphere is expected to decrease because of increased reflection of solar radiation as a result of additional particulates in the atmosphere. The same type of phenomenon is thought to have occurred during extinction events associated with meteors striking the Earth. One example of such an extinction event was the disappearance of the dinosaurs approximately 65 million years ago. Opponents of the nuclear winter scenario argue that the greenhouse effect may tend to increase the surface temperature of the Earth. It is...

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

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.

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...

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.

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...

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.

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...

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.

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.

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...

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...

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...


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...

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.

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

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...

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.

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,...

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...


(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...

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-

What exactly is the problem

Most thoughtful people agree that the world is in serious trouble. A nuclear war could mean a nuclear winter that would destroy all living things fossil fuels will not last forever, and many other critical Although much has changed during the last twenty five years, Skinner's comment on environmental welfare remains pertinent. He points to the problems of overpopulation, nuclear war and resource exhaustion. (He also notes the problem of human apathy arising from repetition of environmental warnings, however, this I will discuss later). Obviously, as noted by Skinner, there are a multitude of environmental problems that are currently faced by humanity. A recent article5 provides a comprehensive summary of the key environmental problem areas. They are pollution, population, climate, fisheries, food, transportation, wildlife, energy, biodiversity, marine systems, energy, water, toxins, urbanization, and forests. As noted by the authors of this article, 15 of the 24 ecosystems examined by...

Its All about Decarbonization

The extreme makeover for nuclear power is perhaps best-illustrated by the prominent environmentalists and environmental scientists who now support substantial expansion of nuclear power as a way to mitigate global warming. According to a New York Times article, Updating Prescriptions for Avoiding Worldwide Catastrophe by Andrew Reffkin, on September 12, 2006, James Lovelock is the latest vociferous convert. Lovelock is associated with the term, Gaia, a conception of the plant's chemistry, climate, and veneer of life as a self-sustaining entity. Lovelock now believes that the threat of global warming is so overwhelming that all-out nuclear war pales in comparison. In the article, Lovelock goes on to call renewable energy sources largely gestures, that make people feel good. If prominent thinkers like Lovelock are onboard, then I think nuclear power may have a real chance this time around.

History of Nuclear Power

The scientific discovery of radioactivity and nuclear fission did not occur in a peaceful society, but in a world threatened by the militaristic ambitions of Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany. In 1939, Hitler's forces plunged the world into war. Many prominent German scientists fled to the United States and joined an Allied effort to develop the first nuclear weapons. Their effort, known as the Manhattan Project, culminated in the successful development of the atomic bomb. The first atomic bomb was exploded in the desert near Alamogordo, New Mexico in 1945. people were killed and 90 of the city was destroyed. When the Japanese government refused to surrender unconditionally, a second atomic bomb was dropped on the Japanese city of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945. The combined shocks of two nuclear attacks and a Soviet invasion of Manchuria on August 9, 1945 prompted the Japanese Emperor to accept the Allies' surrender terms on August 14, 1945 and to formally surrender aboard the USS Missouri...

Attractions of the risk analogy

The essence of wanting to limit trace gas emissions is to avoid a state of the world in which an uncontrollable threat to human life support systems is created. The potential outcomes involved in the case of global climate change have been perceived by the international community to include extremely large damages, such as outlined by the five events above. This is also evidenced by the final statement of the 1988 Toronto conference on the issue which included representatives of 46 countries and 15 international organisations 'Humanity is conducting an unintended, uncontrolled, globally pervasive experiment whose ultimate consequences could be second only to a global nuclear war' (Environment Canada, 1988 1). The military analogy has also been used by Daily et al. (1991) to compare the policies required to reduce the risk of damages due to global climate change to those implemented over the last 40 years to protect the world from a third world war. In the decade of the 1980s, the US...

Contemporary technomillennialism

The point of this essay is not to parse the accuracy or empirical evidence for exponential change or catastrophic risks, but to examine how the millennialism that accompanies their consideration biases assessment of their risks and benefits, and the best courses of action to reduce the former and ensure the latter. There is of course an important difference between fear of a civilization-ending nuclear war, grounded in all-too-real possibility, and fear of the end of history from a prophesied supernatural event. I do not mean to suggest that all discussion of Utopian and catastrophic possibilities are merely millennialist fantasies, but rather that recognizing millennialist dynamics permits more accurate risk benefit assessments and more effective prophylactic action.

US forces were shaped for conflict with a superpower The emerging multilateral world calls for a smaller more flexible

When the Soviet Union imploded in 1991, the U.S. was still spending more than 300 billion a year for a military that included 530 ships, 16 active army divisions, more than 3,000 planes and more than 25,000 nuclear warheads. Such massive forces place an unacceptable burden on the American economy and saddle the nation with a military built around an unrealistic scenario of vast global conflict. American forces therefore require prompt reduction and reform. PHILIP MORRISON, KOSTA TSIPIS and JEROME WIESNER have been long-standing advocates of arms control. Morrison is an emeritus professor of physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has spoken and written on military strategy and nuclear disarmament ever since he completed four wartime years working on the American atomic bomb project. Tsipis is the director of the Program in Science and Technology for International Security at M.I.T. His background lies in experimental particle physics he has also written extensively on...


Process are not recognised as valid by other countries (Bergesen 1989 124).20 The need, for example, for North-South cooperative scientific research is particularly pronounced in the case of global warming as borne out by the existence of the Special Committee on the Participation of Developing Countries, which was created in 1989 to enhance the involvement of scientists from less developed states (Rowlands 1995).21 There have also been attempts to appoint a developing country scientist as one of the lead authors for each chapter of the IPCC reports, as well as to provide financial support to assist their involvement. Transnational representation enables the community to be regarded as authoritative and less coloured by the perspective of any one group of countries, by a greater number of parties to the convention and therefore to extend the breadth of its influence. The alarmist tone of the scientific advice propagated at the Toronto Conference on the Changing Atmosphere in 1985 was...

Pastfuture asymmetry and risk inferences

Consider the simplest case of a single very destructive global catastrophe, for instance, a worse-than-Toba super-volcanic eruption (see Chapter 10, this volume). The evidence we take into account in a Bayesian manner is the fact of our existence at the present epoch this, in turn, implies the existence of a complicated web of evolutionary processes upon which our emergence is contingent we shall neglect this complication in the present binary toy model and shall return to it in the next subsection. The situation is schematically shown in Fig. 6.1. The a priori probability of catastrophe is Pand the probability of human extinction (or a sufficiently strong perturbation leading to divergence of evolutionary pathways from the morphological subspace containing humans) upon the catastrophic event is Q. We shall suppose that the two probabilities are (1) constant, (2) adequately normalized, and (3) applicable to a particular well-defined interval of past time. Event B2 is the occurence of...

Inside the controversy

One also thinks of the debate provoked by the famous article in which Alvarez and his colleagues attributed the mass extinction of the dinosaurs to extraterrestrial causes, like the Earth's collision with asteroids. The generality of Alvarez's hypothesis, its importance for various scientific sectors (statistics, geology, palaeontology and astrophysics) and its resonance in terms of images and metaphors (the combination of two mysteries, one in space one on earth the extinction of the dinosaurs as a metaphor for human extinction, because the statistical models used to explain the extinction were taken from research on nuclear weapons the word 'extraterrestrial' used in the title of the original article, which evoked Martians more than asteroids) have stoked the debate for the past 15 years (Clemens, 1986, 1994). Scientists have different opinions6 on the matter according to their particular perspective - just as they would on other topics of public interest - and from...

Present problems future prospects

Public interest in the global environmental issues described in the preceding chapters has waxed and waned over the past decade (see Figure 8.1). At present, ozone depletion and global warming elicit a high level of concern, whereas drought and desertification, acid rain and atmospheric turbidity have a much lower profile than they once had. With the break-up of the Soviet Union, the re-alignment of eastern Europe and the end of the 'Cold War', nuclear winter is no longer considered a serious threat by most observers. This situation reflects current perceptions of the seriousness of particular problems. Perceptions can change, however. Since few members of the general public are in a position to read the original scientific reports which address the issues, they must depend upon an intermediary to satisfy their interest. In modern society this interpretive role has been filled by the media, and public perception of the issues is formed to a large extent by their rendition of research...

Solving the climate dilemma The budget approach

The R& D project that generated this report was conducted on behalf of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety under grant number 01RI0708AA. Responsibility for the content of this publication rests with the author.

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.

Safety in Response to Geopolitical Events

The nuclear safety stakes are extremely high, with more than half of the nation's 103 nuclear reactors located near population centers, including two near Washington, D.C., and two close to New York City. All of these facilities are required to possess security in depth, including integrated alarms and sensors, physical barriers, special nuclear material detectors, and metal detectors. These facilities also have armed security forces equipped with automatic weapons, night vision equipment, body armor, and chemical protective gear.

Nuclear energy conventions

A number of treaties apply to various aspects of nuclear energy use. However, international regulation in this area has been less stringent than in the case of other environmentally hazardous activities such as oil pollution. There are numerous bilateral agreements and a number of regional agreements relating to nuclear safety. These deal with concerns such as the exchange of information and assistance in an emergency.51 This section will concentrate primarily on

International Institute for Energy Conservation IIEC httpwwwiiecorg

The Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization is a multinational organization established in 1994 from a nuclear disarmament agreement between the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. It works to implement energy-related projects in North Korea and provides support for international nuclear nonproliferation. The KEDO Web site provides updates on recent nuclear events associated with the Korean Peninsula, links to agreements and protocols, and information on nuclear safety.

Initiation the European Commission

The DG most centrally - but not exclusively - involved in EU environmental policy is the Environment DG. Created in 1973 as the Environment and Consumer Protection Service of DGIII (then responsible for industrial affairs), it was raised to the status of a separate directorate-general in 1981 (DGXI). Its internal structure was overhauled in 1989 in response to its increasing workload, and in 1995 consumer protection was made part of a new DGXXIV, and civil protection was transferred to DGXI from DGV (employment, industrial relations and social affairs). As part of the Prodi reforms in 1999, directorates-general ceased to be known by their numbers, so DGXI was renamed the Environment DG (EDG). It has five directorates A deals with general and international affairs, B with integration policy, C with nuclear safety and civil protection, D with environmental quality and natural resources, and E with industry and the environment (see Table 4.2). Nuclear safety and civil protection

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...

The sThe Three Mile Island Decade

While the focus was rightfully on the negative aspects of the Three Mile Island accident, there were positive takeaways.The facility's concrete containment structure did perform as designed, and the incident was the catalyst for considerable amounts of ongoing nuclear safety research from which the industry has benefited.

Phase IV consolidation

The process of adjustment has been anticipated to some extent in cooperative programmes aimed at helping poorer EU member states and CEECs make the transition. For example, the PHARE programme was created in 1989 to provide economic assistance to Poland and Hungary, but has since expanded to almost all CEECs. Its environmental element was initially reactive in the sense that it focused on providing equipment, studying specific problems, and helping establish standards and regulations, but it now supports activities linked to national environmental policy implementation. In its first five years of operation (1990-95) it spent about 430 million ecus on environmental and nuclear safety projects. Meanwhile, the Cohesion Fund - set up in 1994

Major Events That Have Affected The Iraqi Oil Industry

The British established Iraq as a state after World War I from three separate provinces Basra in the south, Baghdad in the middle, and Mosul in the north. In area, Iraq is only slightly larger than California and Maryland put together. But it is historically important as it embraces most of the old Biblical lands, covering the valleys of the Euphrates and the Tigris Rivers. Inside it are such ancient places as the Ur de Chaldees (or birthplace of Abraham), Hit (from where bitumen that built the walls of Babylon came), Nineveh (the tomb of Jonah and former capital of Syria), and even the traditional site of the Garden of Eden. It's a land rich in history as the birthplace of prophets and, as we shall see, oil. The Greeks called it Mesopotamia, meaning middle rivers.6 it until 1918, when they were driven out by the British army at the end of World War I, allowing Britain to take control of the area. In Baghdad, on October 17, 1920, Sir Percy Cox, a British representative, declared his...

The UN as forum for international debate on the environment and development

To understand the role of the UN in international debates on global economic and environmental problems it helps to be reminded of the foundations of the international order following World War II.17 In July 1944, representatives of forty-five countries met at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, to discuss how to build the new world order after World War II and how to avoid the mistakes made after World War I when the League of Nations was founded. As was the case following World War I, financial and economic concerns were an important part of the negotiations. Instead of burdening the defeated nations with war debts and repayments, the Bretton Woods meetings established the organizations that would help rebuild the countries that were devastated by war. The International Monetary Fund, and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), together with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the International Development Association (IDA) known later as the World...

Changing Production Methods

Breeding and farm structure and with the rise of corporate agribusiness. Before World War II, cattle were raised on the open range, eating a grass-based diet. Chickens raised mostly for their eggs, not meat were allowed to forage outdoors for grass and insects. Pigs, while usually enclosed in open air pens, were given sufficient space to nest and root, as well as access to fresh air and sunlight. And the manure these animals produced was used efficiently to fertilize crops.3

The Role of Financing

The extreme focus of the Second World War transformation and the Apollo projects were possible due to the vast amounts of public financing that were made available for these projects. During the last few years of the Second World War there were no other growing and profitable markets for industrial companies to supply to, than the US Government. Similarly, the Apollo project offered an extremely attractive opportunity for the participating companies to build on their existing competencies and resources and to get paid to develop a set of unique competencies that could be exploited in future growth markets. The financial resources that were made available made participation in these projects an offer that companies with the right resources could not refuse. They were paid to enter a learning curve into areas that they could never have entered based entirely on their own financing.

The Twin Cities Assembly Plant

Ford Motor Company's Twin Cities Assembly Plant (TCAP) in St. Paul, Minnesota, is an anchor for the community. It is also slated for closing. The workers there have built Ford Rangers for the last twenty years. Their parents and grandparents built tanks there during World War II. Rich in history, it was also the shop that painted Minnesota senator Paul Wellstone's storied campaign bus green. Fortunately for the workers of the Twin Cities plant, they have a secret weapon in the person of Lynn Hinkle. Hinkle is a second-generation union man who has spent thirty years in the auto industry, starting out on the assembly line, where he worked for ten years as a shop steward fighting for air and water quality inside the plant and defending benefits for the workers. In his words, he bleeds union. While committed to the auto industry, Hinkle is also terrified about what's happening to our climate, calling global warming a climate crisis, not just climate change. I know where the jobs of the...

Concentration Of Decisionmaking Authority

A second basic decision rule is the separation of powers among different branches of government. Authoritarian states do not permit the possibility of separation of powers. Legislatures and courts may serve as sounding boards for opposition movements, occasionally with great political effect, but the influence on formal government decision-making is nil. For democracies in the post-World War II era, two forms of government have drawn most attention from comparativists presidential and parliamentary systems. The democratic presidential system provides two separate agencies of government the executive and legislative separately elected and authorized by the people. The two branches have fixed terms and specified powers they cannot easily unseat one another. The parliamentary system, on the other hand, makes the executive and legislative branches interdependent, with the cabinet emerging from the elected legislature and chaired by a prime minister (or premier) who heads the government...

Firegenerated Tornadoes

Whirlwinds similar to dust devils sometimes result from the intense heat generated by massive fires. During the Allied bombings of German cities in the Second World War, firestorms occurred in which the intense heat caused the air to expand and rise. A nuclear burst of several megatons, or the impact of a small asteroid on a land mass, could be expected to generate tornadoes. Forest fires have been known to produce tornado-like whirlwinds with destructive effects. Artificial fires have been used by scientists to generate mini-tornadoes for research purposes.

Early history of the fishery

The commercial harvest of king crab in the eastern Bering Sea began with a Japanese fishery in 1930 (Otto, 1981). Between then and 1939, when the fishery closed with the start of World War II, nearly eight million crabs were taken. Meanwhile, in 1940 the US Congress appropriated funds for Alaska fish surveys, and Lowell Wakefield began to can crab near Kodiak (Blackford, 1979). But the US fishery, which started as a supplement to salmon and halibut, did not really begin until 1947. Until 1965, only Wakefield's deep sea converted trawler (140 ft - 42.7m), with processing on board, was specialized for the fishery. Most of the fleet was much

Point to Ponder Can we put the nuclear genie back in the bottle

Some historians argue that nuclear weapons were not needed to end World War II and that the world would be better off if nuclear energy had never been developed. Today, a nation with a nuclear weapons arsenal must be concerned about the security of every weapon in its arsenal. Even one nuclear weapon can be a weapon of mass destruction. In addition, many nations are seeking to acquire nuclear technology, which increases the risk of nuclear weapons proliferation. Now that the world knows about nuclear energy, society must learn to govern its use. One forecast discussed in Chapter 10 is based on the premise that nuclear technology can be safely controlled and used as a long-term source of energy.

Nuclear power The early years

During World War II, the United States launched the Manhattan project, which produced the first atomic bombs. With technological advancements based on this fundamental research, in December 1942 the first nuclear reactor was tested in an abandoned handball court at the University of Chicago. This test proved the viability of large scale nuclear power reactors for utility scale use, and the race was on.

Three Examples of Large Scale Transformation Efforts from American Twentieth Century History

The recurring theme of this book regards the opportunity for economic renewal and business development that is represented by the energy transformation challenge that lies ahead of us. In order to drive home the argument that a large-scale effort to transform energy systems is both realistic and could benefit society, we will take a closer look at three, by any standards, amazing successes of large-scale American projects. We can learn many things both from the effort by the United States in the Second World War to become the arsenal of democracy and from the space program, which, among other things, put a man on the Moon in 1969. The Marshall Plan, which was developed by the US Foreign Secretary, George Marshall, after the Second World War, in order to assist the free nations of Europe, in their efforts to recover from the war, will also be discussed.

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...

Cold War Fears and the USArabian Link

By the eve of World War II, oil had assumed a very important role in modern economies as well as in military strategy. Nonetheless, as an energy source it still lagged far behind coal, which supplied 80 percent of the world's primary energy needs. The United States was the center of gravity for crude production, providing 3.6 million barrels per day, or more than 60 percent of the world output of 5.7 mbd. The whole Middle East was still in its infancy producing about 330,000 barrels per day, less than the Soviet Union and Venezuela, then respectively the second and third largest oil producers in the world.1 World War II and the Cold War upset this panorama and paved the way for oil's rise to the status of the most vital resource of contemporary history. And once again, fears of oil security and scarcity played a crucial part in shaping this role. If there should be a World War III it would have to be fought with someone else's petroleum because the United States wouldn't have it.4...

Military Needs As Drivers Of Innovation

Arguably the most important chemical technology in history, the HaberBosch process to synthesize ammonia (more generally, to 'fix' nitrogen), was driven in part by the German desire to break the British monopoly of natural nitrate deposits found in the Atacama desert in northern Chile (Smil 2001). This was strategically important not only because of the importance for agriculture in a Germany whose population and demand for food were rapidly increasing, but also because its leader wanted Germany to be a Great Power which - at the time - meant a strong army and navy, requiring munitions. All chemical explosives still depend in some way upon nitro-compounds, either nitrates or amines. The two main coal gasification processes were also developed in Germany, starting in World War I, to substitute coal for petroleum, and in World War II these processes accounted for half of the gasoline consumption of the country and most of the aviation fuel (Yergin 1991). Meanwhile synthetic rubber...

Unintended Discharges

The discussion so far has been presented on the assumption that the global economy and ecology continues to operate as usual. However, there are several disturbing examples of activities that could suddenly increase the anthropogenic discharge of GHGs to the atmosphere. The greatest risk is from an increase in forest fires on the scale of the 2003 fires in Europe, which took hold from Portugal to Russia. Major fires have also occurred along the North American Pacific coast, Indonesia, and southeastern Australia. In a warmer world, subject to longer periods of drought, these events are to be expected. Unfortunately, they represent the possibility of a feedback that could intensify the rate of global warming by driving additional carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Additional, unintended increases would result from warfare, the sabotage of oil field infrastructure (as is happening in Iraq and in Nigeria), and industrial accidents such as the December 2005 fire at the oil depot at...

Reducing Growth in Vehicle Miles Traveled Can We Really Pull It

Work at the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) suggests that this is not true and that there is strong public support for programs designed to reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT). Moreover, the problem of excessive driving, fuel consumption, and GHG emissions is spreading around the world, particularly in the rapidly developing Asian nations. With 500 million new people moving into developing Asian cities over the next 20 years and rapid growth projected for parts of South America and Africa, it is questionable whether fuel supply and vehicle technology will be enough to reduce GHG emissions. Drawn on real-world experiences in New Jersey, this chapter examines the potential for restraining growth in VMT, and thus GHG emissions, by influencing the land use patterns which have characterized suburban development in the United States since World War II.

Emissions by Countries and Wealth

Table 2.1 provides information on CO2 emissions in select developed and developing countries and wealth as measured by gross domestic product (GDP). Per capita emissions of heat-trapping gas are lowest in developing countries and greatest in developed countries. In general, greater GDP is associated with greater emissions. However, note the variation among developed countries. Japan, for example, produces far fewer emissions per capita than the United States but has higher per capita GDP. History may offer a partial explanation for this phenomenon in that Japan was forced to rebuild its industrial infrastructure after it was devastated in World War II. Reconstruction allowed Japanese industry to profit from technological and managerial innovations that result in greater efficiencies than in many U.S. companies, particularly those with physical plants dating to the first half of the twentieth century. In

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.

Energy And Geopolitics

Quality of life, energy, and the distribution of energy are important components of global politics. Readily available, reasonably priced energy is a critical contributor to the economic well-being of a nation. We have already seen that deforestation in England motivated the search for a new primary fuel. The need for oil encouraged Japanese expansion throughout Asia in the 1930's and was one of the causes of World War II. The 1973 Arab-Israeli war led to the first oil crisis with a short-term, but significant increase in the price of oil. This oil price shock was followed by another in 1979 after the fall of the Shah of Iran. These oil price increases are considered shocks because they were large enough to cause a significant decline in global economic activity Verleger, 2000, page 76 , Our ability to correctly forecast energy demand depends on our understanding of technical and socio-political issues. In this section, we give a brief introduction to global politics and then discuss...

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