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Forced responses: Mar 2021

Filed under: — group @ 1 March 2021

A bi-monthly open thread on climate solutions.

358 Responses to “Forced responses: Mar 2021”

  1. 1

    BPL @631:

    Nuclear district heating systems can eliminate the fuel delivery issue altogether

    So can electrification.

    Sure didn’t in Texas.  The fuel delivery problem took the electricity out.

    The nuclear district heating system is completely stand-alone.  An AP1000 generates roughly 2 GW of waste heat at full power.  That’s the equivalent of about 6.6 million cubic feet of natural gas per hour, 158 million cf per day, 4.9 billion cubic feet in a 31-day month.  Residential NG consumption in Jan 2018 was only 981 billion CF, so a couple hundred AP1000’s could potentially replace all of it PLUS another 1237 billion CF/month equivalent (assuming 7732 BTU/kWh typical NG consumption).  Note that the peak NG consumption in the electrical sector in January is less than 1000 billion cf.

  2. 2
    David B. Benson says:

    Another source of greenhouse gasses not usually considered:
    https://eos.org/articles/the-surprising-source-of-greenhouse-gas-emissions
    Oil and gas pipelines.

  3. 3
    David B. Benson says:

    Barton Paul Levenson @631, prior thread — And just where is the primary source of the electricity?

  4. 4
    mike says:

    Nigel from last month: “I read a study where an African country gave away contraception in two of its regions and the fertility rate plumetted dramatically. This was despite the country having very basic health care and very men dominated decision making processes and the influence of tribal religion and only very moderately educated women. It confounded expert expectations.”

    Please look back and share a link to the study. Family planning and access to contraception are fundamental and basic parts of even a basic health care system. I would like to read through the study you mention for several reasons. One is because I can’t figure out why the outcome would have confounded expert expectations.

    As to the “men dominated decision making process and the influence of tribal religion” and modest levels of education, it crossed my mind that description fits for a certain country where I have spent a lot of time. That particular country confounds my expectations on occasion.

    Cheers

    Mike

  5. 5
    Dan Miller says:

    There has been lots of discussion on Twitter recently bashing carbon capture because it will supposedly restrict the deployment of renewables somehow. Mark Jacobson of Stanford seems to be adament about this.

    I disagree but I understand where the sentiment comes from. Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) was originally proposed as a way to have “clean” fossil fuel power generation, mostly electricity generation. Fossil fuel companies (e.g., coal companies) supported this because it made it appear they were addressing the climate issue and, therefore, supported their “social license” to operate.

    But coal powered electricity production is no longer competitive with renewable power generation and adding CCS will only make coal less competitive. NG is not far behind coal’s path.

    So when faced with the option to add CCS to a coal or NG powered electricity plant, you should shut down the plant and replace it with wind and solar and storage (and storage equivalents).

    So what should CCS be used for? About 10 Gt-CO2/year comes from the industrial sector such as cement and steel production. While there are proposals for how to convert many industrial processes to low emissions, these conversions will take many decades. CCS can be scaled up this decade to capture emissions from existing plants, though we will need new CO2 infrastructure to move the CO2 to safe sequestration sites or send it to reuse plants making products such as “renewable fuels”.

    And then there is carbon dioxide removal (CDR) such as Direct Air Capture (DAC) of CO2 from the atmosphere. Some people say that CDR/DAC is a “moral hazard” because it will somehow prolong the use of fossil fuels. It’s a bit like saying cancer treatments promote cigarette smoking. But, in any case, CO2 levels are already too high and are still rising so CDR techniques such as DAC will be required to meet climate targets, such as limiting warming to +2ºC which is probably impossible in a practical sense without CDR. Therefore, I claim that calling CDR a moral hazard is itself a moral hazard because the claim may delay the development and deployment of life/civilization saving CDR technologies.

  6. 6

    K in last month’s thread: Educate them in *what*, exactly? How to destroy the planet? No, we need to shut the fuck up and let them educate *us* in how to live a simpler life.

    BPL: If you talk to actual third-worlders in real life, they don’t WANT to live a simpler life, they HAVE to. Given the opportunity, they inevitably improve their lifestyles and their incomes.

  7. 7
    Killian says:

    “Consumer Price Index data for the month of January found that the cost of food eaten at home rose 3.7 percent from a year ago — more than double the 1.4 percent year-over-year increase in the prices of all goods included in the C.P.I.”

    Surprised? Not if you’ve followed me over the years.

    https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/why-price-food-gas-creeping-221605331.html

  8. 8
    Killian says:

    6 Barton Paul Levenson says:
    2 Mar 2021 at 7:01 AM

    K in last month’s thread: Educate them in *what*, exactly? How to destroy the planet? No, we need to shut the fuck up and let them educate *us* in how to live a simpler life.

    BPL: If you talk to actual third-worlders in real life, they don’t WANT to live a simpler life, they HAVE to. Given the opportunity, they inevitably improve their lifestyles and their incomes.

    I do love a good Straw Man argument… to chew up, spit out and stomp on the ground.

    Be serious, be honest, or be gone.

  9. 9
    Mike says:

    I am pretty connected to a lot of families from South Sudan. My “son” David completed his education here and is now back in Juba teaching at the university there. I am working with another “son” Peter to get traveling papers so his South Sudanese wife and son can come to the US from Kampala, Uganda. That’s just two on my african “sons.” I have six who have lived here with us.

    What I see through them is the simple life that existed in South Sudan when they were born in the 80s is no longer available. So, yeah, what BPL said, from what I can see, a lot of simple life choices in the less developed are simply getting squeezed out by growth of many sorts and by climate change.

    As for education and population issues, it’s just a single anecdote, but my son David and his wife Akwet have one daughter after being married for over 4 years. Both of them are highly educated by standards of South Sudan and their family size is very small when compared to the average for a married couple in South Sudan.

    I believe education works to reduce the fertility rate. I could be wrong.

    Cheers

    Mike

  10. 10
    zebra says:

    Thinking about max and min in population:

    Old Albert E liked to do thought experiments, and in physics/engineering we often establish/consider the boundaries of a function(phenomenon) as a starting point to figure things out.

    I have always used 300 million as a minimum value in the interest of maintaining genetic diversity, and to allow for the continuation of scientific and technological progress. (The latter requiring enough surplus labor over producing ‘the necessities’.)

    Cornucopians seem to not believe in any upper limit, but I’ll just arbitrarily pick 20 billions as large enough to begin evaluation.

    So, in the areas that people seem to be endlessly and repetitiously discussing, what would be the consequences for each extreme?

    For example:

    In my thought experiment for the minimum value, I imagine (say) 20 million living on the East coast USA, and 20 million on the west.

    For the 20 billions, that might end up as 500 millions on both coasts, with a proportionate value in flyover country.

    Sample questions:

    -For each case, would it make sense to have nuclear plants?
    -For each case, what would be the likely socio-economic construct? Simplicity and cooperation, or conflict over resources? Urban v Rural?

    The utility of this kind of exercise, of course, is that we can then better picture the the factors affecting variations within the bounded range.

    So, with respect to the nuclear question, in the low-population scenario, it seems obvious to me that neither nuclear nor fossil fuels would make sense…hydro and renewables, and biofuels if necessary, would be most efficient.

    OK, then, how many people do you need to justify having nuclear plants? And how many would be too many? There’s a range within the range.

    My point here is that discussions about these issues without being able to characterize the ‘boundary value’ values are in effect underdetermined. It’s really nothing but hand-wavy rhetoric.

  11. 11
    nigelj says:

    Mike @4,

    “Please look back and share a link to the study. Family planning and access to contraception are fundamental and basic parts of even a basic health care system. I would like to read through the study you mention for several reasons. One is because I can’t figure out why the outcome would have confounded expert expectations.”

    I’ve looked and googled, but I really just cant find the study Mike. It was years ago. Yes family planning is normally a basic part of basic health care systems, but my recollection is the study was on poor communities in rural Africa and so the schools probably just didn’t get into much detail on family planning, and apparently contraceptives just weren’t easily available in those communities not at any price.

    Instead, government made contraceptives easily available in an experiment in two poor rural regions of the country, and either completely free or very low cost (I cant remember precisely which) but the result was plumeting birth rates. This surprised the designers of the study for several reasons. Firstly because it was believed the womens very limited education and personal rights and dominance of their male partners might have lead to slow uptake of contraception and secondly because it was a moderately poor community and conventional wisdom was that many children would be preferable to help on the farm and thirdly healthcare was basic so had limited ability to deal with high infant mortality. Perhaps it had just enough ability to make contraceptive use and smaller families desirable. I cant recall what the study said.

    But it all suggests to me easy access to free or low cost contraception is the big factor in reducing birth rates. However the whole demographic transition is complex with many factors. And obviously its very desirable that women’s education and rights be improved for all sorts of reasons, including the fertility issue but many others. I did find a related study that generally found a similar thing on contraception and womens rights:

    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/09/200908170532.htm

    “Widespread use of contraceptives and, to a lesser extent, girls’ education through at least age 14 have the greatest impact in bringing down a country’s fertility rate…..”

    And yes I get the point in your final paragraph. Sounds rather true unfortunately.

  12. 12
    Jean-François Fleury says:

    What if we studied the production of hydrocarbons by cyanobacteria? Some are producing hydrogen and there are people who are studying the best way to improve the producton : Battacharia, S. K. et al. Microb Cell Fact 2005, 4, 36 and Lindblad, P . et al. Algal Res 2019, 41, 101510, for example. Other can produce methane : Bizic, M. et al. Science Advances 2020, 6, eaax5343. Finally, some cyanobacteria are producing at a great scale hydrocarbons, for example, Valentine, D. L. et al. Nature Microbiol 2021, DOI : 10.1038/s41564-020-00859-8. That would be useful for the countries who are producing oil and who have heat, sea water and sun. When these countries will not have anymore oil or will not have any customer to sell their oil products, they will become failed states such as Lybia or Syria and I think to Algeria as a future failed state with in addition a galloping demography. So it could be useful for them to produce locally such kind of products and to sell them to everyone who want them.

  13. 13
    Lance Olsen says:

    BPL: If you talk to actual third-worlders in real life, they don’t WANT to live a simpler life, they HAVE to. Given the opportunity, they inevitably improve their lifestyles and their incomes.

    Aye, there’s the rub. It translates to increased spending, consumption and emissions if third-worlders get fair raise. It also translates to today’s inequality of responsibility for emissions, and third-worlders plausibly living in greater austerity than anything resembles fairness. Greta Thunberg has voiced it as the rich stealing the carbon budget from the poor. An analyis by Millard-Hopkins et al in a recent issue of Global Environmental Change finds that all could live decently at 1960s-level, pulling up the poor, but by necessity requiring the well-off of the moment to make sharply reduced demand.

  14. 14

    @632:

    So, what should we be doing? IMO:

    1) Building out RE as fast as we can, and taking every effort (carbon tax, I’m looking at you!) to make sure that FF capacity correspondingly comes off the grid as fast as possible.

    2) Preserving existing nuclear capability wherever possible, and continuing nuclear power R & D. For instance, I think it’s worth seeing if the SMRs under development by Nuscale (and others) pan out in practice. It’s possible that the inherent complexity and consequent resistance to standardization of gigawatt-scale reactors can be mitigated by a modular approach, making nuclear generation affordable in practice.

    These two goals are in conflict.  “Renewables” are subsidized with per-kWh credits of various sorts, and can make money even if wholesale power prices go to zero.  NPPs make almost all their money from energy sales, and go out of business as more and more revenue is shifted from energy sales to PTCs, RECs and capacity payments.  The lost nuclear capacity is replaced by natural gas.

    Absent fast-responding and ample storage we simply don’t have, “renewables” must be backed up by GAS, full stop.  This segues into your next point.

    3) Building out energy storage capability as quickly and as rationally as possible. This includes not only technical challenges, but also financial ones; for example, Li battery storage has capabilities that exceed those of gas peakers in significant ways, and ways to capture that value are needed. Perhaps analogous measures will be needed with regard to longer-term storage modalities, too; as discussed more than once here, flow batteries have promise for this, as does pumped hydro. But I’m not sure the needs and the financial incentives are aligned here at present.

    But we don’t HAVE those flow batteries, and pumped hydro has its own issues of suitable geography and local opposition.  Unless you can list what to build and where and how to build it, you don’t have a plan.

    I DO have a plan, part of which goes back to AC Propulsion’s white papers on V2G (see the top two on that page).  V2G solves the problems of frequency control and synthetic inertia.  That allows the use of slower-acting measures to solve the minutes-to-hours energy surpluses and deficits.

    Stockpiling bulk energy is a knotty problem if you’re starting with electricity.  It’s far easier to stockpile combustible fuels.  If you can use surplus RE to convert refuse into some dry, storable form that will neither release methane nor spontaneously combust, or perhaps more than one form such as dry char and some synthetic liquid fuel that stores well in tanks, that might form a part of the solution to the storage problem.  Per my analyses, the MSW in my state should be good for about 600 MW of electric generation if it was all burned.  That’s not much if used continuously, but if it was held for backup purposes for maybe 30 days a year it would pack a punch.

    4) Increasing interconnections. While folks have spent a lot of time pointing fingers at components of the Texas grid and the ‘predatory capitalist’ business model underlying it, it’s pretty clear that the most fundamental problem they had in the Great Energy Fiasco of 2021 was that they have been trying to essentially go it alone on energy. It worked for decades because during the fossil fuel era Texas was supply-rich, of course. But had ERCOT been able to import power in quantity from either of the two major interconnects, things would presumably have been a lot different last month. And as for RE, well, we know that interconnection is our friend; the wind is always blowing somewhere.

    Interconnection is what turned a local line problem in Ohio into a blackout across most of the PJM area in 2003.  The problems in Texas affected far fewer people than the 2003 blackout (which I remember only too well).  By setting itself apart, ERCOT may well be protecting Texans from far worse problems than they had last month.

    The February problems have relatively simple, cheap solutions.  Methanol injection deals with icing (clathrate formation) problems with wet, pressurized gas, for example.  The thing ERCOT (or the Texas RR Commission) needs to do is REQUIRE that plants, pipelines and well operators take such measures in sufficient quantity to guarantee delivery of adequate fuel under worst-case conditions, and provide COMPENSATION for that work as well as regular testing.  Not having to live by FERC rules means that Texas probably has the option of just demanding that it be done.

    5) Which brings us to climate adaptation: Texas clearly under-engineered for resiliency–despite warnings. Actually, the Texas failure is probably well beyond failing to plan for climate change; it’s failing to prepare for weather conditions within the range of normal variability. (The February 2021 conditions may have exceeded norms, but 2011 and 2014, not so much.) The failure is a pervasive political failure, IMO. But regardless, adaptation planning is clearly critical. We’ve got to think (inter alia) about potential changes in weather variability, hydrological intensity, and of course straight-up warming including implicit changes in extreme event frequencies. It’s good that the Biden administration is reversing the Trump-era prohibition on even thinking about adaptation, but relevant planning goes on at many jurisdictional levels and my perception at least is that there’s a very long way to go to get close to rationality WRT climate planning in the US.

    As I said, the Texas problems only revealed themselves when the weather got extreme, and the TRRC/ERCOT/whoever didn’t mandate reliability measures.  Not being under FERC jurisdiction, Texas has the freedom of action to mandate things like fuel stored on site or anti-icing measures for pipelines, and also the compensation for doing them.  Meredith Angwin lists an RTO which tried that (NJM?) and was overruled by FERC for not being “fuel-neutral”.

    6) Last but definitely not least, we need to be working to change from the paradigm of disposability to a paradigm of sustainability.

    This sort of linguistic pablum pervades the topic, but contributes nothing.

  15. 15

    @5:

    coal powered electricity production is no longer competitive with renewable power generation and adding CCS will only make coal less competitive.

    Nothing that requires significant capital investment can compete with freeloading generators which receive PTC and REC payments out-of-market.  If the unreliables were required to guarantee their own dispatchable output, that would change in a hurry.

    The Wabash River repowering project showed that it’s at least possible to build a coal-fired generator that has the option of fairly cheap CCS (the CO2 generated in the gasifier is removed along with the H2S in the amine scrubber).  It appears to have had a pretty good operating record once the teething problems were solved.  Coal is a much more difficult fuel to use than natural gas, yet Germany is still relying on lignite to balance the ups and downs of its “renewables”.

    The Allam cycle turbine may be a game-changer, producing a sequestration-ready stream of CO2 as well as fresh water.

    NG is not far behind coal’s path.

    NG is cheaper than any kind of storage, so that’s what will be used unless and until we start imposing penalties on non-dispatchable generation for failing the civilizational need for reliability.  When they can provide their OWN backup, and ONLY then, those penalties should be removed.

    So when faced with the option to add CCS to a coal or NG powered electricity plant, you should shut down the plant and replace it with wind and solar and storage (and storage equivalents).

    Show me this “storage (and storage equivalents)”.  Exactly what are you talking about?  How much, at what price, sited where, what’s the construction schedule?  Has it even been done outside the laboratory yet?

  16. 16

    #14, E-P–

    1) The ‘conflict’ between my goals 1) & 2) can be addressed readily by policy changes, as E-P’s discussion of ‘subsidies’–a policy measure–already implies.

    2) We *do* have “those flow batteries,” though not yet at scale. F’r’instance:

    https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/groundbreaking-flow-battery-project-helping-to-advance-clean-energy-microgrids-301213340.html

    https://arena.gov.au/blog/south-australia-goes-with-the-flow-battery/

    https://www.eenewspower.com/news/flow-battery-project-power-ships

    3) Yes, V2G could be helpful, and I could well have mentioned it.

    4) Ingenious to flip the script on interconnection, but I don’t buy it. Yes, 2003 is an historic example of blackout ‘contagion,’ but had Texas been able to import power in bulk, things would have been very different, as I said. The blade can cut both ways–though there is the fundamental asymmetry that interconnects are built to be cut quickly if necessary, whereas you can’t conjure one where it doesn’t exist.

    And the focus on the fixes for the February fiasco is misplaced; Texas was an example of the disadvantage of islanding, not the whole argument.

    5) Ditto, but WRT climate resilience rather than interconnection per se. It wasn’t just about Texas. And if we’re talking about making national or global change–i.e., “what IMO we should do”–then the Texas model’s upsides are neither helpful nor relevant unless they can be upscaled. So, changing FERC policy, not opting out.

    6) Rather ironic to call my comments on the need for, and possible nature of, a paradigm shift “pablum,” when apparently E-P has utterly failed to digest them.

  17. 17
    Killian says:

    13 Lance Olsen says:
    2 Mar 2021 at 6:13 PM

    BPL: If you talk to actual third-worlders in real life, they don’t WANT to live a simpler life, they HAVE to. Given the opportunity, they inevitably improve their lifestyles and their incomes.

    You haven’t talked to any. Shush. For the record, “third worlders” are not living regenerative lives. You are using a Straw Man. There are two separate groups here: Intact indigenous (sustainable) and displaced indigenous, aka spme of your “third worlders.”

    Intact indigenous want nothing to do with your plans for them, and it is they we, people like myself, have learned from and you need to learn from rahter than spout straw man ignorance.

    The second group are stuck in a, to use your terminology, “third” or “second world” zone of impoverishment caused by the wealthy and Capitalism. They certainly do aspire to live more comfortable lives because misery is what many of them now live in. It is not surprising they want “first world” amenities. However, the issue is not what ANYONE wants, but what they *need* and what is *possible* within ecosystem funtions. So, to regurgitate over and over, “But they don’t wanna!” is ignorant, if not flatly stupid. Keep it to yourself. I’ve explained this to you too many times already, Bart.

    Aye, there’s the rub. It translates to increased spending, consumption and emissions if third-worlders get fair raise. It also translates to today’s inequality of responsibility for emissions, and third-worlders plausibly living in greater austerity than anything resembles fairness.

    Correct. And this was obvious long before Greta stopped going to school. The poor and low middle classes are never going to get what the OECD middle classes have had, at least in terms of material throughput. There is absolutley no chance of it given we must reduce global consumption 80% or so. The very poorest can have significantly better lives, they just won’t be in the style of the American middle class. They will, however, be in a style with a far better quality of life living regeneratively with healthier food, stronger communities, more leisure time, etc.

    Greta Thunberg has voiced it as the rich stealing the carbon budget from the poor.

    Sure. But she did not originate that thought.

    An analyis by Millard-Hopkins et al in a recent issue of Global Environmental Change finds that all could live decently at 1960s-level

    This is incorrect. Such analyses are not based on natural functions but on statistical models that have no relationship with the functions of the natural world. When you analyze from nature to human needs rather than abstract averages and maths to not-even-nature, you get a more realistic view of things. It makes no sense to invoke the 60’s. Sorry, once we achieve a regenerative state, everyone will not have a car, they will not have a 9-5, they will not be eating strawberries in January from 7k miles away.

  18. 18
    Killian says:

    Re 10: We can’t feed 20 billion nor provide them all clean water.

    The food element restricts us to about 12 billion. Water is already in decline.

  19. 19

    EP: Nuclear district heating systems can eliminate the fuel delivery issue altogether

    BPL: So can electrification.

    EP 1: Sure didn’t in Texas. The fuel delivery problem took the electricity out.

    BPL: Yes, E-P, the Texas system was poorly designed. We knew that. It doesn’t mean that a renewable energy grid with backup and electrification of heating couldn’t handle the problem.

  20. 20

    K 8: I do love a good Straw Man argument… to chew up, spit out and stomp on the ground. . . . Be serious, be honest, or be gone.

    BPL: Great answer, K. Just completely ignore the point, but act like you’ve answered it irrefutably. Works every time!

  21. 21

    E-P 14: “renewables” must be backed up by GAS, full stop.

    BPL: Not true, full stop. They can be backed by pumped hydro, batteries, compressed air, flywheels, wide-area smart grids, etc., etc., etc.

  22. 22

    E-P 14: pumped hydro has its own issues of suitable geography and local opposition.

    BPL: https://www.anu.edu.au/news/all-news/anu-finds-530000-potential-pumped-hydro-sites-worldwide

    How many times do I have to post this?

  23. 23
    zebra says:

    Lance Olsen #13,

    One problem. When you say “fair raise” for third-worlders, the question is for what??

    In order to buy stuff and consume energy, you have to have something to exchange for it. But what most third-world countries have that China and others want is resources. But the resources have value only if they are going to be consumed.

    The other thing those countries have is cheaper labor. But the point of having cheaper labor is to accumulate more wealth in order to be able to control/consume more resources.

    The thinking I suggest at #10 applies very much here.

    As you move towards a condition where there is a small population with ample resources, the value of labor rises relative to the value of controlling resources.

    As you move in the other direction, the value of resources rises, and I have yet to hear from Greta or anyone else how the third world is going to get elevated, even putting aside the CO2 issue. Rather, there is more concentration of wealth (control of resources) and little benefit to the masses.

    Jean-François Fleury at #12 raises the question of what happens when petro-states can’t sell their oil. I’ve raised the question here several times but it is a scary question; much easier to go round and round with the same old ‘debate’ talking points than think about that.

    There are these fundamental forces operating, and very clearly manifesting themselves in geopolitics at this time, which people just seem to ignore.

  24. 24
    Piotr says:

    Jean-François Fleury (12) “ What if we studied the production of hydrocarbons by cyanobacteria?
    Probably not much different than if we studied the production of oils or carbohydrates by algae – just a different medium to store energy from photosynthesis – but probably the same technical problems that have hindered so far the mass-scale production of biofuels from cultivated microalgae.

  25. 25
    mike says:

    Killian mentioned “Intact indigenous (sustainable)” groups at 17 and I went out looking for an example of such a group. I think the Kogi might be an example of what Killian is thinking about. He is welcome to correct me politely or impolitely if the Kogi are not the kind of group he is thinking about.

    Here are a couple of links about that group:

    https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/colombia-kogi-environment-destruction

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kogi_people

    http://www.alunathemovie.com/

    I think we might watch the movie tonight.

    Cheers

    Mike

  26. 26
    Killian says:

    20 Barton Paul Levenson says:
    3 Mar 2021 at 8:27 AM

    K 8: I do love a good Straw Man argument… to chew up, spit out and stomp on the ground. . . . Be serious, be honest, or be gone.

    BPL: Great answer, K. Just completely ignore the point, but act like you’ve answered it irrefutably. Works every time!

    A straw man fallacy is not a point, it’s a fallacy, and dishonest. You have yet to figure out you are the student when it comes to solutions, not the teacher. Shush.

  27. 27

    BPL: If you talk to actual third-worlders in real life, they don’t WANT to live a simpler life, they HAVE to. Given the opportunity, they inevitably improve their lifestyles and their incomes.

    K 17: You haven’t talked to any.

    BPL: You don’t know who I have or haven’t talked to. I do. You’re wrong, as usual.

    K 17: However, the issue is not what ANYONE wants, but what they *need*

    BPL: With YOU defining what they *need,* I suppose. No, thanks.

  28. 28
    Johann G. K. Gizurarson says:

    Due to recent swathes of compelling research on the AMOC weakening, I would like to throw out some question that are contradicting some of the effects. With that I am not trying to say that the results of the recent papers is flawed in anyway, I’m just raising question on why this might occur in world of slowing AMOC:

    1) Iceland (my home country) had over all warmed up 0.85 °C [in 2017] since 1880. Since 2000, most of the warming has been in the Western, South Western part of the country. It is also the part of the country that is getting greener every-year (NDV index; satellite data). South-western part is also where our part of the AMOC system hits us. However, we haven’t noticed any cooling, quite the opposite since all years and >95 % af all months since 2000 have been warmer than the 1961-1990 average. Hence if the AMOC has been slowing down for 1000 year and particularly since the 1950’s we would assume that global warming wouldnt be an issue for an island in the middle of the Northern Atlantic? However our melting glacier are reducing like never-before. This is counterintuitive to the slowdown research, I would assume, since the ocean SST are extremely highly correlated to our island land temperatures.
    2) There is substantial, but limited (due to few years of direct measurements) that the AMOC has been stable or increased a bit over at least 30 years. How can these findings be reconciled with that of the ,,AMOC is weakening” narrative?

    ,,Recent AMOC stable or slightly increasing-literture”
    https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/48/eabc7836.full
    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41558-020-00941-3
    https://os.copernicus.org/articles/17/285/2021/

  29. 29

    E-P, #15–

    NG is cheaper than any kind of storage…

    Truthy, but pretty spectacularly misleading.

    Yes, *combined cycle* is cheaper than storage. But gas *peaker plants*, which I think are a bit more relevant in this context, are already losing out to storage on economic grounds.

    https://www.nuvationenergy.com/resources/article/solar-plus-storage-displacing-natural-gas-peaker-plants

    Today it is more economical to build new renewables generation sources than to run existing coal or to build new natural gas plants. By 2032 it is predicted that the cost of building new solar + storage plants will be lower than the cost of running existing natural gas plants. This means that 90% of the currently proposed natural gas plants which would come online by 2032 will become uneconomic to operate by the time they are brought online. There is no need to wait until 2032 to see this begin to play out, however. In 2019, General Electric announced plans to close a 750 MW natural gas peaker that had 20 years remaining in its planned lifespan. One of the main reasons cited for that closure was a problematic 1-hour ramp up time, as opposed the immediate availability of solar + storage.

  30. 30
    zebra says:

    The Noble Kogi People,

    I clicked on the link to wiki that Mike gave. Doing a little math, I conclude that these are essentially wealthy landowners in (what used to be more of) a gated community.

    There are about 20,000 of them living on a mountain range. So they have a lot of land…using the concepts in my previous two comments, they are at that lower boundary condition of high resource/population ratio.

    Why would they not want to preserve their privilege?

  31. 31

    @19:

    Yes, E-P, the Texas system was poorly designed. We knew that.

    It was designed for a different role.  Tacking 30 GW(nameplate) of wind that cuts in and out as it will forced the rest of the system away from its design parameters.  This can be laid at the feet of the policy-makers in Austin and Washington.

    It doesn’t mean that a renewable energy grid with backup and electrification of heating couldn’t handle the problem.

    “With backup”, you say?  What KIND of backup?  How much, burning what fuel(s), at what cost in capital and O&M?

    Why aren’t the “renewables” tasked with providing their OWN backup, so the all-in costs of firming are included?

    I saw a graph the other day showing the cost of carbon abatement by various means.  Nuclear only cost €10/tonne.

    @21:

    Not true, full stop. They can be backed by pumped hydro, batteries, compressed air, flywheels, wide-area smart grids, etc., etc., etc.

    Nice Gish gallop.  Get winded much?

    Of all of those so-called options, PHS is the only one we have in significant quantity.  Storm King PHS was ultimately cancelled, and Ludington was repeatedly fined for fish kills.  As “backup”, Ludington is completely inadequate.  Its maximum output of 2172 MW doesn’t even come to 2/3 of the output of the coal-fired Monroe plant across the state, and it can only maintain it for 20 hours or so; the Monroe plant keeps MONTHS of stored energy on-site, and Fermi 2 just north of it starts each cycle with over a YEAR of energy.

    Do you know of any plans to build another PHS plant ANYWHERE in the USA?  The cost of the proposal in Australia keeps going up and it looks like it’s DOA.

    Flywheels in particular are absurd to propose as “backup”, as they have very high losses.  Batteries are only slightly less so, and nobody has made a business case for CAES nor shown how “smart grids” can do anything except bring rolling blackouts down to the scale of individual appliances.

    How many times do I have to post this?

    Repeating the lies won’t make them true.

  32. 32
    Killian says:

    30 zebra says:
    4 Mar 2021 at 9:26 AM

    The Noble Kogi People,

    I clicked on the link to wiki that Mike gave. Doing a little math, I conclude that these are essentially wealthy landowners in (what used to be more of) a gated community.

    There are about 20,000 of them living on a mountain range. So they have a lot of land…using the concepts in my previous two comments, they are at that lower boundary condition of high resource/population ratio.

    Why would they not want to preserve their privilege?

    Their people were decimated and subjugated by the Spanish. The few that could retreated to an area the Spanish were not interested in. Gated, wealthy community?

    Racists always out themselves in the end.

  33. 33
    Killian says:

    27 Barton Paul Levenson says:
    4 Mar 2021 at 6:57 AM

    BPL: If you talk to actual third-worlders in real life, they don’t WANT to live a simpler life, they HAVE to. Given the opportunity, they inevitably improve their lifestyles and their incomes.

    K 17: You haven’t talked to any.

    BPL: You don’t know who I have or haven’t talked to. I do. You’re wrong, as usual.

    No, I’m not. You can type whatever you want. Your ignorant takes on this make it clear you have zero sense of what the dynamics are for the “third world.”

    K 17: However, the issue is not what ANYONE wants, but what they *need*

    BPL: With YOU defining what they *need,* I suppose. No, thanks.

    Bore Hole-worthy trolling. You know this is a huge lie.

    I’m curious to see if anyone else will call out the lie and remind you humanity and all of Nature are at stake and such trolling is inappropriate as it can only serve to increase the danger to all.

    What is his lie, Ladies, Gentlemen, and Non-Binaries?

  34. 34
    mike says:

    at Zebra 30: I don’t think it makes sense to talk about the Kogi as landowners because I don’t think they subscribe to your sense that land can be owned. To own something for you and me suggests we are free and entitled to use the owned item as we see fit. I don’t think the Kogi view the land that you think they own as theirs to use and change as they see fit.

    I am not sure I have a reasonable grasp of the Kogi culture based on a couple of articles and one documentary, but it appears that historically, the Kogi have retreated to the mountains to avoid conflict and subjugation. It is also suggested that they don’t experience a lot of interpersonal violence within their own community. It appears that they have a subtle and deep philosophy about ecology and environmental protection that is fascinating, impressive and remarkable.

    I think it is a real shame that they are no longer safe and secure in the high elevation mountain retreat that offered them protection in the past. Humans who have a very different relationship to the earth no longer have to exist in close proximity to the Kogi to cause the Kogi people distress and damage because environmental degradation in the lowlands has impact on the highlands where the Kogi live.

    It’s a different subject, but I wondered about gender roles and authority within the Kogi people. The Aluna movie featured a lot of Kogi spokespersons and it seemed like they were almost exclusively men.

    I am grateful that Killian prompted me to look at this topic. It’s too bad that Killian’s communication habits are so nasty because I think he does some ideas to share that are helpful, but it’s hard to do much with him because he is so intemperate.

    To Killian: if you want to increase your influence and impact, I suggest that you refrain from attacking folks and calling them racists when they have questions and don’t fully understand the point(s) you are trying to get across.

    Cheers

    Mike

  35. 35
    mike says:

    More thoughts on the Kogi and simplicity:

    Let’s say that I wanted to fully embrace the simple lifestyle and reduce my eco-impact to the level of a person of a Kogi-type culture. How would that work? How could I make that happen?

    If I just traveled to Colombia and walked up the mountain to become Kogi, I don’t think I would be welcomed. They seem rather exclusive and I don’t blame them. This is typical of the “low impact” cultures that I can think of based on my experience. Even if they chose to welcome me, I would have great difficulty fitting in to the culture because it is the product of birth in the culture, immersion in the culture and quite dissimilar from the culture of the developed world. I have a sense that intact indigenous cultures really want don’t want much to do with the developed world culture. We do receive cultural messages from these groups from time to time that are compelling. The Aluna movie fits as an example of that, as does a book like “Black Elk Speaks.” These messages are powerful, but I am not sure that any message can alter the trajectory of homo industrialus. Our industrial and extractive and ecocidal culture seems unstoppable to me in many ways. That is a shame and it produces a situation where any intact indigenous group with a stable relationship with their ecosystem is forced to engage with homo industrialus because the HI relationship with the planetary ecosystem knows no boundaries and respects no ideas of “ownership” based primarily on a right to a healthy planet as a commons.

    Cheers

    Mike

  36. 36
    zebra says:

    Mike #35, 36,

    Mike, I have a perspective on concepts like “ownership” that derives from trying to think scientifically. Your description

    “To own something for you and me suggests we are free and entitled to use the owned item as we see fit.”

    is incorrect.

    For me, “ownership” requires that you have demonstrated the ability to deny use of the resource to others. It’s a very simple exercise to arrive at that definition as the only testable one.

    So, while I am obviously being metaphorical about the “gated community” part, the effect is congruent with my observation about the resource/population ratio.

    Affluent communities are not completely free from internal conflict, but they are likely to be “good stewards of (their) land”. Of course, it may be that their affluence is the result of despoiling other neighborhoods, and exploiting those who live in them, but you could almost certainly find analogs with the (internal) practices of groups like the Kogi.

    As I keep pointing out, if you had a stable world population of 300 millions, most of the problems discussed here would be moot. You say:

    These messages are powerful, but I am not sure that any message can alter the trajectory of homo industrialus. Our industrial and extractive and ecocidal culture seems unstoppable to me in many ways.

    Yes, we aren’t going to respond to Kumbaya messages, but we (the human species) would respond to different circumstances. We see it demonstrated all the time, without needing romanticized indigenous groups living in the mountains as exemplars. But it can’t happen when there is value in the option of “ownership”, as I define it, of resources.

  37. 37

    K 26: You have yet to figure out you are the student when it comes to solutions, not the teacher. Shush.

    BPL: Arrogant much?

  38. 38

    BPL: Not true, full stop. They can be backed by pumped hydro, batteries, compressed air, flywheels, wide-area smart grids, etc., etc., etc.

    E-P: Nice Gish gallop. Get winded much?

    BPL: You apparently don’t understand what a “Gish Gallop” is. It’s not “any list.” It’s “a list of separate issues fired off at once to render an opponent speechless in an on-stage debate.” This wasn’t a Gish Gallop because it wasn’t a list of separate issues, it was a list of possibilities centered around a single issue, that of backing up renewable energy. Get confused and ignorant much?

  39. 39

    BPL: How many times do I have to post this?

    E-P 31: Repeating the lies won’t make them true.

    BPL: It’s not a lie. Look again:

    https://www.anu.edu.au/news/all-news/anu-finds-530000-potential-pumped-hydro-sites-worldwide

  40. 40

    K 17: You haven’t talked to any.

    BPL: You don’t know who I have or haven’t talked to. I do. You’re wrong, as usual.

    K 33: No, I’m not. You can type whatever you want. Your ignorant takes on this make it clear you have zero sense of what the dynamics are for the “third world.”

    BPL: Sorry, Killian, you’re still wrong for saying you know who I have or haven’t talked to. I have had third world citizens in my church prayer group, and I have been asked to be a representative for an NGO working in Sierra Leone. You are wrong, and your doubling down on this point is both arrogant and stupid.

  41. 41
    Nemesis says:

    @mike, #35

    It’s interesting that you brought up the Kogi people. I stumbled over some rare BBC documentary titled “From the heart of he world: The elder brothers warning – Kogi message to humanity” on youtube several years ago:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRgTtrQOiR0

    That BBC documentary from 1992 is a real gem, it’s almost surreal to see these people’s lifestyle and hear about their connection to Mother Nature and their view of climate change and eco destruction of wich they are very well aware of, so they spoke out a warning towards the younger brothers (the younger brothers is us, modern civilization) 30 years ago as they see themselves as the elder brothers and as the protectors of Mother Earth.

    The Kogi people don’t know of any funny “land ownership” at all as they see Nature resp earth as the Mother of all life, “land ownership” is absolutely unimaginable for them as entire Nature is sacred in their eyes. The Columbian government gave them permission to dwell in a certain area, so it’s a reserve, not a property at all.

    When we look back 30 years ago, when that documentary has been made, it seems like ecological and climatical projections have just become worse and worse since then, the 2nd documentary “Aluna” shows the frustration of the Kogi, their warning back in 1992 changed shit, exactly as it was to be expected. ALL warnings changed shit so far:

    Look at the machine, the system, look at ANY modern, industrial realm and you will find corruption, destruction, exploitation, it’s a simple dog eat dog game, a sure-fire success. Where should we even begin with ?! The fossil fool industry, still subsidized by billions of $$ ?! Or the car industry? The meat industry? The arms industry? Pharmaceuticals industry? Banking and stock industry? The agricultural industry? … enumerate ad lib…

    Do you believe in Samsara? I don’t believe in Samsara, I know it’s real and there is only one way to escape from it:

    Letting go.

    … “escaping back to my couch”

    Best wishes.

  42. 42

    @38:

    You apparently don’t understand what a “Gish Gallop” is. It’s not “any list.” It’s “a list of separate issues fired off at once to render an opponent speechless in an on-stage debate.” This wasn’t a Gish Gallop because it wasn’t a list of separate issues, it was a list of possibilities centered around a single issue, that of backing up renewable energy.

    If your list doesn’t add up to a solution (and it does not, and never has) then you are doing EXACTLY what Gish did.

    Get confused and ignorant much?

    Not when dealing with you.  You don’t have the brainpower.  You never have.

  43. 43
    Killian says:

    40 Barton Paul Levenson says:
    5 Mar 2021 at 8:31 AM

    K 17: You haven’t talked to any.

    BPL: You don’t know who I have or haven’t talked to. I do. You’re wrong, as usual.

    K 33: No, I’m not. You can type whatever you want. Your ignorant takes on this make it clear you have zero sense of what the dynamics are for the “third world.”

    BPL: Sorry, Killian, you’re still wrong for saying you know who I have or haven’t talked to. I have had third world citizens in my church prayer group, and I have been asked to be a representative for an NGO working in Sierra Leone. You are wrong, and your doubling down on this point is both arrogant and stupid.

    Hmmm… NGO’s are always effective, always understand the people and environments they purport to be helping and never end up doing more harm than good.

    A representative. How in the name of god would you represent those people? What lived experience do you have when you 1. spend your time here attacking people simply for the sport of it, 2. do not have any lived experience in their shoes (have you at least lived in a foreign nation? And I don’t mean on a military base or as a highly-paid executive. There’s no better way to discover your own preudices and biases both toward the rest of the world and your own nation.), and, 3. to whom?

    You’re making the “I have a friend,” defense. I will accept your claim when your behavior begins to show some awareness. You do not at this time do so. This tells me your knowledge, experience and perspectives of the people you “represent” is shallow, likely distorted by your religious views, and inappropriate. If you want to serve them, try to understand them, not just share a church pew. And, the few you know in your church are not a people or nation and may not represent the place they are from completely. In fact, almost certainly don’t, just as knowing me would not inform any Korean neighbor or friend as to what an “American” is. Sadly, that they are Christian and in the U.S. would *seem* to indicate they do not come from an intact indigenous culture. That is, they are likely fully acculturated as opposed to bein almost entirely unacculturated like the Kogi.

    Since you claim this contact, I hope you will consider it more seriously and more deeply and more from their perspective and less yours.

  44. 44
    Killian says:

    37 Barton Paul Levenson says:
    5 Mar 2021 at 8:24 AM

    K 26: You have yet to figure out you are the student when it comes to solutions, not the teacher. Shush.

    BPL: Arrogant much?

    No. Look up the word. Nevermind…

    Merriam-Webster:

    arrogant
    1 : exaggerating or disposed to exaggerate one’s own worth or importance often by an overbearing manner an arrogant official

    To state a fact is not arrogance. You do not understand the solutions pathways that address all aspects of the issues we face. This is demonstrable. I understand them better than you do, this is demonstrable. One simple example suffices: I can speak intelligently on any aspect of what I sometimes call “The Perfect Storm”: Energy, Climate, risk, agroecology, resource limits, population, sustainability, efficiency, natural principles, etc.

    You cannot speak intelligently on those many facets and often demostrate that. You not only cannot, but you also are resistant, aggressively.

    There is no arrogance in stating the obvious.

    2 : showing an offensive attitude of superiority : proceeding from or characterized by arrogance

    Further, I do not claim expertise nor attempt to correct you, or others, in areas I do not know: The maths behind climate science, the physics beyond the obvious thermodynamics, chaos, bifurcations, etc.

    I do not only not attempt to correct you, I admit freely the areas I do not have skill in. You, on the other hand, refuse to accept that I am stronger than you WRT to certain facets of the issues we face and call the statement that I *do* have knowledge, understanding, and awareness you do not “arrogant.”

    It is, in fact, you who are arrogant, not me. I am just as aware of what I don’t know as what I do know. You are not.

  45. 45
    nigelj says:

    The main problems look like climate change, biosphere destruction and mineral scarcity. As materials become scarce and expensive our cities could collapse, and so people might start drifting back to the country and living simply in small farms. Right now most people want affluence and drift towards the big cities, including Africans so I doubt that this will change much until circumstances in cities deteriorate badly.

    Maybe there are things about the Kobi we could emulate. But living literally like the Kobi isnt really a practical solution right now given their slash and burn agriculture cant be scaled to 7.8 billion people, and small tribal communities tend to have a lot of conflicts so Im not sure why would emulate that. The main things that seem promising and scaleable to me are zero emissions energy, the circular economy, some elements of regenerative farming and smaller population as a longer term strategy.

  46. 46
    nigelj says:

    Sorry I meant Kogi people.

  47. 47
    Killian says:

    34 mike says:
    5 Mar 2021 at 5:05 AM

    at Zebra 30: I don’t think it makes sense to talk about the Kogi as landowners because I don’t think they subscribe to your sense that land can be owned. To own something for you and me suggests we are free and entitled to use the owned item as we see fit. I don’t think the Kogi view the land that you think they own as theirs to use and change as they see fit.

    Of course they do, mike. They don’t have individual ownership, but they definitely have family control of sections of their land and group management, via an egalitarian elite (much like the landed men-only Greek and early American systems less the private ownership.)

    So, while a single person has no actual ownership of a parcel of land, as a group, they have full control of their space.

    The difference is their management of it, like all intact indigenous, is bound up in a vast knowedge of how their environment functions. Certainly there is some mysticism bound up in it so that they have trouble articulating clear mechanisms, but as you watch and read more of what they have to say those become clearer. Their knowledge is incredible. They get things right that science has only in this very late modern era begun to relearn. This is why all over the planet we see more and more scientists recognizing they need to incorporate this deeper knowledge of the land and leart to be… younger brothers/sisters.

    It reminds me of the discovery of the dangers of the Juan de Fuca plate and related issues along the northwest US and southwest Canadian coasts where indigenous oral traditions talked of things the scientists thought were just stories but were found to be absolutely accurate histories that revealed the potential and past incidences of massive quakes and tsunamis in that area.

    I am not sure I have a reasonable grasp of the Kogi culture based on a couple of articles and one documentary, but it appears that historically, the Kogi have retreated to the mountains to avoid conflict and subjugation.

    Yes. To call that privilege and equal in any way to a rich gatd community is extremely offensive. And, yes, racist. Zebra is welcome to explain and walk that back, but until then, it is what it is. As Maya Angelou advised: “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”

    It is also suggested that they don’t experience a lot of interpersonal violence within their own community. It appears that they have a subtle and deep philosophy about ecology and environmental protection that is fascinating, impressive and remarkable.

    Yes, and the (relative) lack of violence is rooted in this, particularly WRT men towards women. I say relative because you don’t have a rule against something that doesn’t or never has existed; there must be a reason for the rule. Women are considered inherently connected with The Mother, so any violence against them would, I assume, be seen as violence against the Mother.

    I think it is a real shame that they are no longer safe and secure in the high elevation mountain retreat that offered them protection in the past. Humans who have a very different relationship to the earth no longer have to exist in close proximity to the Kogi to cause the Kogi people distress and damage because environmental degradation in the lowlands has impact on the highlands where the Kogi live.

    How impressive is it that their Pattern Language – their awareness of the patterns and flows of energies through their environment and their teleconnections allowed them to know of climate change all the way back in the 90’s when it took hundreds of years and man hours and studies and models to figure out the same thing for the oh, so brilliant Modern Man?

    I keep saying to people here and elsewhere, there are other ways of knowing and this is exactly what I am talking about.

    It’s a different subject, but I wondered about gender roles and authority within the Kogi people. The Aluna movie featured a lot of Kogi spokespersons and it seemed like they were almost exclusively men.

    Yes. They are unusually hierarchical for an intact indigenous group… until one remembers they have not always been isolated. They were co-existant with the Aztecs as the Tairona, of which two other similar and related bands exist in the same area as the Kogi. The were monumental builders, though to a far less extent than the Aztec. Still, they had they knowledge and created sophisticated architecture in the form of platforms for dwellings and extensive stone pathways that appear to function perfectly to this day with apparently no upkeep. That takes excellent engineering and ecological knowledge and skill. Would the Kogi still be the Kogi if the Spanish had not arrived or if they had not isolated themselves to stay alive? Hard to know.

    I am grateful that Killian prompted me to look at this topic.

    And I am glad the worth of this type of knowledge is being taken more seriously here and elsewhere. I consider it fundamentally necessary to our survival as a society, if not as a species.

    It’s too bad that Killian’s communication habits are so nasty

    The violence of this cannot be overstated, nor the hypocrisy. This issue is blowing up again because you keep mentioning it. You watch multiple other people on this forum be rude, insulting, etc., and never say a word. What is it, mike, that makes me special so that only my behavior affects you? And how is it you don’t understand the violence of needlessly, in a fully decontextualized way, like this post I am referring to, calling my habits nasty? I will say it again: This is hypocrisy.

    because I think he does some ideas to share that are helpful, but it’s hard to do much with him because he is so intemperate.

    And it is hard to do much with a milquetoast who champions Politically Correct speech, but do I ever mention it, mike? No. It is who you are. You bring what you bring. So long as you do not lie about what I say or say something offensive about me, others or important concepts that need discussing, what does your manner or style matter? It does not. I do not hold you against you. Same with everyone else. Lie, say something offensive, one will hear from me. Otherwise, they will not.

    E.g., what Zebra said was racist. There is no denying that. Should Zebra walk it back and demonstrate some awareness, I will be happy to acknowledge that, but how am I wrong for calling it out? Because I didn’t use your style? Because I am not giving the benefit of the doubt to clear racist tropes? You have your way, I have mine, but only one of the two of us is judgmental about it.

    I have repeatedly pointed out the fallacy – the utter stupidity – of saying, “Well, he might have answers we need, but I don’t like him, so let’s all just curl up and die, instead.”

    You have a rather low tolerance for individual differences. Read this (again?): https://www.autostraddle.com/kin-aesthetics-excommunicate-me-from-the-church-of-social-justice-386640/

    To Killian: if you want to increase your influence and impact

    Not in the slightest. That is not my job. Schmidt does climate science. He does not do regenerative systems nor whole systems solutions for climate.

    BPL does physics and bile. It’s what he does.

    Mal does climate science gatekeeping, trying to keep the discussions bound by the known and cautioning against the more speculative and/or long-tail aspects of the science. Scientific Reticence is his thing.

    In another universe I might be considered a futurist or “thought leader.” I have developed concepts no other person has that demonstrably harmonize the solution set to solve all facets of our problems within the bounds of Nature itself. There is a bridge between the world of the Kogi, et al., and the modern world available. It is comprehensive, it is unique and only one person brought the various elements together to create a universally applicable model to solve our crises. That’s what I do. Concepts. Ideas. Analysis. Insight. Patterns. Solutions.

    I do not do outreach. I do not do ego-stroking. I do not suffer fools, unlike you. We each have our roles and our preferences.

    Quite simply , it is not my job to take the concept to the world. I’ve done my part. I have provided a viable model. It is up to those who have voices to be heard to do the work to understand the model then spread it.

    So, no, I don’t give the slightest damn about being the face of a movement, I am merely looking for those who could be. But those people are not people who can be dissuaded by such a petty, small thing as a personality. If my style is more important to them than the solutions, then they are not people who are strong enough to carry the weight of the message.

    I suggest that you refrain from attacking folks and calling them racists

    See something, say something.

    when they have questions and don’t fully understand the point(s) you are trying to get across.

    Zebra understood exactly what they were saying. You giving the benefit of the doubt is about what is in your head, not what is in their words.

    Should I be judging you and calling you out for *not* stating the obvious? From my perspective, yes. But I didn’t. It’s up to you to do you. That’s ethics.

  48. 48
    Killian says:

    36 zebra says:
    5 Mar 2021 at 8:20 AM

    Mike #35, 36,

    Mike, I have a perspective on concepts like “ownership” that derives from trying to think scientifically. Your description

    “To own something for you and me suggests we are free and entitled to use the owned item as we see fit.”

    is incorrect.

    For me, “ownership” requires that you have demonstrated the ability to deny use of the resource to others.

    I do not disagree with this. The problem is your characterization of the Kogi as privileged when they are refugees cut off from at least half of their lands which causes great stress, pain and difficulty for them in functioning as a society and in their perception of themselves as stewards of the Mother.

    So, while I am obviously being metaphorical about the “gated community” part

    It’s a racist metaphor that you will hopefully walk back after recognizing this.

    the effect is congruent with my observation about the resource/population ratio.

    But it is utterly unnecessary and inappropriate to use the “metaphor” you did, and continue to use below. And is the issue of a smaller population something we really need to discuss? It’s a bit like saying the sky looks blue during the day. Well, duh, eh?

    Affluent communities are not completely free from internal conflict, but they are likely to be “good stewards of (their) land”.

    This is absurd. Their very affluence means they have not only destroyed the functioning of their “community”, but must despoil many times the size of their own community outside their gates for their ommunity to exist at all. They produce nothing from within. They are vampiric.

    Of course, it may be that their affluence is the result of despoiling other neighborhoods, and exploiting those who live in them, but you could almost certainly find analogs with the (internal) practices of groups like the Kogi.

    Not at all. What internal analogs? Everything the Kogi do is deeply embedded in their commitment as stewards of their space. They take nothing from outside it by coercion or force and only take into it that which helps them enhance their roles as stewards.

    As I keep pointing out, if you had a stable world population of 300 millions, most of the problems discussed here would be moot.

    That is not true. Many would simply not be critical *yet.* But you may as well say if no European or Asian had ever stumbled upon the Americas they would be different.

    You say:

    These messages are powerful, but I am not sure that any message can alter the trajectory of homo industrialus. Our industrial and extractive and ecocidal culture seems unstoppable to me in many ways.

    Yes, we aren’t going to respond to Kumbaya messages

    Again with the racist assumptions. The Kogi are not suggesting anything close to empty visions of perfectly harmonious people. They are making science-based, insightful, aware, accurate observations about the functioning of ecosystems and why we have to stop disrupting them. At no point in either movie do they implore people to live like them, adopt their culture or anything remotely approaching that. They quite clearly say this is our way, and our job is to take care of our space and help you understand how to take care of yours because you have clearly forgotten how to do so. They speak only of function, never asking Little Brother to live in huts, chew coaca leaves and bury gold statuettes in the ground to protect the special areas of various species.

    but we (the human species) would respond to different circumstances.

    Yet, you do not. You speak from ignorance, not even bothering to understand the Kogi in any way or to any degree. Quite the opposite, you belittle them and their message, distort it into utter nonsense based on your own racist stereotypes of what an intact aboriginal culture is (kumbaya, not extensive, grounded knowledge)- then hypocritically say we will respond to different circumstances…. which is exactly what the Kogi are doing! Showing you a different way of thinking, a deeper knowledge and awareness.

    We see it demonstrated all the time, without needing romanticized indigenous groups living in the mountains as exemplars.

    More racist bullshit. Romanticized? Who has said they want to go live with the Kogi and chew coaca leaves? Who has said they want to live on a mountain in the jungle or become a Mamo? The Kogi figured out Climate Change without a single instrument, without a single scientist (as you think of them), without any formal education (but a far more germane one), etc. What is amazing about the Kogi is they are 100% correct in their ecological knowledge. They are absolutely correct about the teleconnections within ecosystems and the teleconnections between ecosystems. They understand the water cycle perfectly. There was nothing they said in those documentaries that was incorrect. Time and again the scientists confirmed their studies mirrored the Kogi – and the Kogi figured it out hundreds of years ago, if not thousands.

    THAT is what has been discussed on these pages and in the two documentaries.

    Your characterization and dismissal is insulting and racist and should be Bore Holed, or, better, deleted entirely.

    But it can’t happen when there is value in the option of “ownership”, as I define it, of resources.

    How bizarre you spout outdated, racist tropes while advocating Commons.

    There is something wrong in your thinking that you will hopefully figure out. Right now you’re like a broken clock, right twice a day and wrong the other 1,438 minutes of the day.

  49. 49
    Killian says:

    35 mike says:
    5 Mar 2021 at 5:21 AM

    More thoughts on the Kogi and simplicity:

    Let’s say that I wanted to fully embrace the simple lifestyle and reduce my eco-impact to the level of a person of a Kogi-type culture. How would that work? How could I make that happen?

    https://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2017/08/unforced-variations-august-2017/comment-page-12/#comment-682480

    The Cliff’s Notes version:
    4. How to start? Food, water, temps: Grow a garden, capture water, secure shelter. Start with the water and the garden. No person is an island, so start working with neighbors/family. Start learning egalitarian ways and Commonses. Create a community group. Assume you will be your own governance eventually, make it so when you can/must.

    5. Learn Pc and the other sub-forms of regenerative systems: Agroforestry, food forests, silviculture, regenerative farming, holistic grazing, natural building, etc.

    But this discussion belongs on Forced Responses.

    If I just traveled to Colombia and walked up the mountain to become Kogi, I don’t think I would be welcomed. They seem rather exclusive and I don’t blame them.

    They are not exclusive, they are protective, which are very different. They do not think they can fulfill their role as keepers of the environment if Little Brother is allowed in to do little brother things.

    This is typical of the “low impact” cultures that I can think of based on my experience. Even if they chose to welcome me, I would have great difficulty fitting in to the culture because it is the product of birth in the culture, immersion in the culture and quite dissimilar from the culture of the developed world.

    Why is this a question? Principles: Use what you’ve got. Adapt in place. Fix where you are.

    I have a sense that intact indigenous cultures really want don’t want much to do with the developed world culture.

    No. They tend to resist it consistently. They are not fools.

    We do receive cultural messages from these groups from time to time that are compelling. The Aluna movie fits as an example of that, as does a book like “Black Elk Speaks.” These messages are powerful, but I am not sure that any message can alter the trajectory of homo industrialus.

    No, messages can’t. Knowledge can. The Kogi, e.g., have created a bunch of food forests. Each family manages two. They do no monocropping. Etc.

    Permaculture.

    So, if you want to know what the Kogi know in a context an industrialized White man can understand – sans kumbaya – learn permaculture. It is deeply dependent on TEK (Traditional Indigenous Knowledge) and completely built upon natural First Principles.

    Our industrial and extractive and ecocidal culture seems unstoppable to me in many ways. That is a shame and it produces a situation where any intact indigenous group with a stable relationship with their ecosystem is forced to engage with homo industrialus because the HI relationship with the planetary ecosystem knows no boundaries and respects no ideas of “ownership” based primarily on a right to a healthy planet as a commons.

    So, create your Commons where you are. Sustainability is ultimately local.

    I have stated this here for years.

  50. 50
    Killian says:

    Mike, if you want to understand the Kogi and the regenerative approach and how to apply it where you are, David Holmgren, one of the two originators of Permaculture, has made his book, “Retrosuburbia” available pay-what-you-can.

    https://online.retrosuburbia.com/?utm_campaign=buy-the-online-book-2020-july&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_term=unprecedented-times&utm_content=link-preview

    Mind you, the Holmgrenian versions of the principles are not as practical and pragmatic as the Mollisonian versions, though very closely aligned. Sadly, it is the Holgrenian that are now dominant which is a major misstep for the design process as they lean more towards the “kumbaya” zebra is so dismissive of and this is not a small part of the reason the exceedingly practical design process has a reputation as a hippy lifestyle – which could not be more incorrect.

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