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BBC: Deforestation, Not Aviation, Is The Culprit!  
User currently offlineN62NA From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4406 posts, RR: 6
Posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 2349 times:

From the BBC website:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7201114.stm


But while we're agonising over our aircraft addiction, we're missing the real "elephant in the living room" of climate change: forest destruction.

It is already the largest single source of carbon emissions after energy, contributing up to 10 times as much as aviation.
...
So if we could just persuade people to be as excited about saving forests as they feel guilty about flying, then maybe we'd achieve something.


I think it's always good to find new ways to make aviation use fuel more efficiently and produce less emissions, but the author does make a very good point. We need to urgently address the issue of deforestation!

20 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePC12Fan From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2412 posts, RR: 5
Reply 1, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 2320 times:

You know, that's actually got me scratchin' my chin. Interesting.


Just when I think you've said the stupidest thing ever, you keep talkin'!
User currently offlineElmoTheHobo From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 1536 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 2301 times:

Environmentalist go after the easiest targets, it seems they forgot that the biggest single source of CO2 in 2005 in the United States were the results of Hurricane Katrine - the massive release of CO2 caused by the death of several hundred million trees. As these trees decompose, they will release the amount of CO2 released by all of the United States in over a year.

Stop cutting down trees and encourage planting of trees and a huge chunk of CO2 emissions can be taken care of.

Also, forests are not the biggest absorbers of greenhouse gases, that would be the Ocean (Algae is the biggest absorber of CO2).


User currently offlineThreepoint From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 2129 posts, RR: 9
Reply 3, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 2213 times:

The irony is that Virgin has announced plans to fly one of its 747s using biofuel in an attempt to explore conversion to a 'greener' source of energy. What is often forgotten are the costs of producing that 'bio'fuel itself. The use of massive amounts of corn or whatever crop one chooses to make the fuel requires enormous amounts of land, irrigation and emissions y the machines used to harvest and refine it. The land itself is often cleared from standing rain or temperate forests. It's a classic case of substituting one distasteful option for another.
If Branson and/or the other airline honchos wanted to be serious about a reduction in carbon emissions, they would subsidize employee carpooling & transit to and from the workplace, convert their offices and hangars to become these efficient green buildings and advocate the benefits of larger-capacity airplanes flying less frequently than several smaller ones. I read a few days ago that the energy consumed by the internet and its supporting server farms is far more than the entire aviation industry.



The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.
User currently onlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8368 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 2194 times:



Quoting ElmoTheHobo (Reply 2):
As these trees decompose, they will release the amount of CO2 released by all of the United States in over a year.

But Hurricanes are (typically) not caused by humans.

Therefore, hurricanes do not count in the "excess Co2 over and above Nature" category. The sum total of that Co2 is zero.

Airplanes burning dead dinosaurs do not exist in a non-human biosphere. Therefore, those are pure excess over the planet's ability to cope. Since as it stands, we have deforested a lot.

But the premise remains valid. The #1 most important thing to do (and the #1 thing we would do in a Co2-regulated world) is allow forest regrowth, and protect our existing forests.

Here's an easy question. Does Saudi Arabia guard its oil wells, or does it allow peasants to destroy them? Of course Saudi Arabia heavily guards its oil wells with guns and rockets. By the same token, Brazil would guard its rainforest if that rainforest were generating cash (in the form of permit revenue from overseas). By linking Co2 emitters to Co2 sinkers such as Brazil, we create a market relationship that achieves the desired goal. If we want to slash Co2 by 90%, that is the method. Brazil gets paid. We need to pay them for their Co2 services they are providing. Just like we pay Saudi Arabia for the oil services (i.e., crude oil) they provide to us. It's the same thing on paper. Pay for what you get. Or else you won't get it.

With Co2, we must get it stored by forestry. Or else the planet's climate is whacked around. For 500 million years the planet was covered in forests. Then in 2,000 years we cut half of it down. Yes, it does have an effect, according to the smartest people who study climate.


User currently offlineThreepoint From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 2129 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 2176 times:



Quoting Flighty (Reply 4):
The #1 most important thing to do (and the #1 thing we would do in a Co2-regulated world) is allow forest regrowth, and protect our existing forests.

But carefully. The zealous protection of much of North America's temperate forests and the consequent conversion of grasslands & open forests to thick stands of trees have directly contributed to an increase in larger, more intense wildfires, which release far more CO2 than the frequent natural low-intensity burn of pre-European times.



The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.
User currently offlineKhobar From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2379 posts, RR: 4
Reply 6, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2090 times:



Quoting Flighty (Reply 4):
Therefore, hurricanes do not count in the "excess Co2 over and above Nature" category. The sum total of that Co2 is zero.

Not true! Man causes global warming and global warming causes more intense hurricanes - thus man does indeed cause hurricanes. So says a Time Magazine special GW edition.  Wink

Of course Katrina was only a Cat 3 hurricane when it made landfall - i.e. nothing special, and certainly not the man-made CO2 global warming fueled monster we were told it was. Oops...

Now a new study has come out (from NOAA) that's rather interesting re: fewer hurricanes. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,325334,00.html

"The study focused on observations rather than computer models." What a concept.


User currently offlineThreepoint From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 2129 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2057 times:



Quoting Khobar (Reply 6):
Katrina was only a Cat 3 hurricane when it made landfall - i.e. nothing special

Regardless of the numerical rating assigned to it, few would argue that Katrina and its effects were very special indeed. I wonder how some of our Louisiana-based A.net friends would counter your assessment (I'm thinking of MSYTristar and Tom in NO)



The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.
User currently offlineElmoTheHobo From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 1536 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2047 times:



Quoting Threepoint (Reply 5):
But carefully. The zealous protection of much of North America's temperate forests and the consequent conversion of grasslands & open forests to thick stands of trees have directly contributed to an increase in larger, more intense wildfires, which release far more CO2 than the frequent natural low-intensity burn of pre-European times.

Absolutely. IMO there needs to be significant changes in the way we (humans) build around forests. The New Deal's Civil Conservation Corps can be attributed to these high intensity forest fires burning, because of the fact that they planted trees so densely in areas that couldn't support such high concentrations.

Quoting Khobar (Reply 6):
Of course Katrina was only a Cat 3 hurricane when it made landfall - i.e. nothing special, and certainly not the man-made CO2 global warming fueled monster we were told it was. Oops...

Fact.

That being said, Katrina was still a monster, and it's effects sure did affect greenhouse gas emissions by killing off all those trees.

Quoting Khobar (Reply 6):
Not true! Man causes global warming and global warming causes more intense hurricanes - thus man does indeed cause hurricanes. So says a Time Magazine special GW edition.  

 rotfl 

Quoting Khobar (Reply 6):
"The study focused on observations rather than computer models." What a concept.

People pick and choose their data. It's too bad that today's Global Warming Extremists (people who swear by Global Warming and ignore any facts that go against their ideas, such as the E.L.Fs of the world) can't grasp the concept of using the scientific method in analyzing these issues.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 4):
With Co2, we must get it stored by forestry. Or else the planet's climate is whacked around. For 500 million years the planet was covered in forests. Then in 2,000 years we cut half of it down. Yes, it does have an effect, according to the smartest people who study climate.

We must get it restored by polluting the water less. Water pollution kills off a lot of Algae, which is, as I said earlier, the single largest absorber of greenhouse gases.


User currently offlineCJAContinental From United Kingdom, joined May 2006, 459 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2042 times:



Quoting PC12Fan (Reply 1):
(Algae is the biggest absorber of CO2).

Yeah, though if they absorb too much CO2, then that does not lead to anything positive.



Work Hard/Fly Right.
User currently offlineElmoTheHobo From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 1536 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2031 times:



Quoting CJAContinental (Reply 9):
Yeah, though if they absorb too much CO2, then that does not lead to anything positive.

I'm talking about restoring growth in areas where it has died off because of pollution, not sending numbers through the roof. It would make scavenging fish a lot easier though Big grin


User currently offlineYULWinterSkies From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2176 posts, RR: 5
Reply 11, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2004 times:

You all seem to forget how far behind the UK is about trains compared to their European neighbors, which are getting increasingly more performant and taking over aviation in many countries. This results in the British flying a lot more than the rest of the Europeans, while this could be changed for other means of transportation, if existant. In addition, the UK has the world's capital of LCCs (the LGW / STN / LTN trio) which provide the opportunity for the British to fly for peanuts for a few days off work while they would not leave the Island it if not given the opportunity.
Deforestation-wise, however, the UK is, together with the rest of Europe, a leader in recycling and minimization of use of tree products (at least for the ones coming from old-growth forests)
I think the target chosen by many of the _BRITISH_ media is the right one, because they talk to BRITISH people. The problem would definitely be different in the US or even more Canada. Do we talk about aviation as a main environmental concern here? No. Big commuter SUVs are the eco-unfriendly public enemy #1 here. And so is Northern deforestation. Sure a high-speed train network between ORD-NYC-IAD-BOS-YUL-YYZ would help reducing the aviation need and associated CO2 bill, but please build us decent commuter train networks first!

[Edited 2008-01-27 16:31:42]


When I doubt... go running!
User currently onlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8368 posts, RR: 3
Reply 12, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 1985 times:



Quoting ElmoTheHobo (Reply 8):
We must get it restored by polluting the water less. Water pollution kills off a lot of Algae, which is, as I said earlier, the single largest absorber of greenhouse gases.

That is interesting. I know nothing about that. Sounds very important though.

Quoting Threepoint (Reply 5):
. The zealous protection of much of North America's temperate forests and the consequent conversion of grasslands & open forests to thick stands of trees have directly contributed to an increase in larger, more intense wildfires, which release far more CO2 than the frequent natural low-intensity burn of pre-European times.

Well maybe Canada is over-zealous. We generally allow logging of our forests (kind of sustainable) and private forests are held by paper companies. Otherwise our grasslands are mainly covered today by farms. In my view we need to surrender some of our less productive farmland to something more CO2-friendly.

And the massive sprawl of suburbs in the USA also covers a lot of "green" land. We have paved over a giant piece of North America's natural forest and grasslands, both. Largely for parking lots etc. 1950s-style development. It was useful for our industrial development but today, our industrial development is no longer needed. We are shutting down more factories than we are building (which is good). What was right in 1950 is not necessarily right forever. Re-foresting may be good.

Wildfires... I think the big ones are caused by firefighting. Ironically. Each time we fight fires, we create larger, stronger fires in the future. Agree with you. But forest fires are natural and part of Nature's routing, as long as there is enough chlorophyll to soak up the Co2. Which there isn't, anymore.  Sad


User currently offlineYULWinterSkies From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2176 posts, RR: 5
Reply 13, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 1984 times:



Quoting ElmoTheHobo (Reply 8):
today's Global Warming Extremists

Among them are : politicians and corporations who nowadays surf on a green wave to improve their image towards the public, that they "are green", "think green" or any other bullsh!t while they actually don't have any environmentally sustainable policy, or so little... as well as the ones who explain everything by global warming (eg Katrina hurricane) while lack of maintenance of protective infrastructures, bad urban planning or excessive urban spreading are equally responsible. For that precise disaster, global warming might have been the cause for the hurricane itself, but the cause for the loss of human lives and goods are the factors mentioned above... But when an Administration does not do its job, how convenient it is to accuse "global warming"!

Quoting ElmoTheHobo (Reply 8):
such as the E.L.Fs

Pardon my ignorance, but what are these?



When I doubt... go running!
User currently offlineKhobar From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2379 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1910 times:



Quoting Threepoint (Reply 7):
Regardless of the numerical rating assigned to it, few would argue that Katrina and its effects were very special indeed. I wonder how some of our Louisiana-based A.net friends would counter your assessment (I'm thinking of MSYTristar and Tom in NO)

Regardless of the numerical rating assigned to it???

So, forget that we were lied to, and forget that the disaster was compounded by flawed design, neglect, mismanagement, stupidity, greed, etc. etc. etc., and forget that it is used to this day to tug heartstrings in an attempt to sell GW.

Sorry, but too many people died to ignore the truth - global warming didn't kill those people.

Quoting ElmoTheHobo (Reply 8):
That being said, Katrina was still a monster, and it's effects sure did affect greenhouse gas emissions by killing off all those trees.

I've seen the Chambers estimate. Here's an interesting twist - compare the following:

"Then he (Chambers) zoomed in on each of those pixels, determined their locations and sent his research team to count and measure the dead trees. He added this field data to the information from the satellite images, did a lot of number crunching and came up with a number of dead trees: 320 million."
http://www.climateark.org/shared/reader/welcome.aspx?linkid=91752

"I was amazed at the quantitative impact of the storm," Chambers said. Of the 320 million trees harmed, he said, about two-thirds soon died. "I certainly didn't expect that big an impact."
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...le/2007/11/15/AR2007111501359.html

(the Forest Service estimate is about half what Chambers claims).

To my knowledge, man is pretty much restricted to Earth. The fact that global warming is widespread throughout the solar system should be a clue as to its cause.


User currently offlineElmoTheHobo From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 1536 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1898 times:



Quoting YULWinterSkies (Reply 13):
Pardon my ignorance, but what are these?



Quoting ElmoTheHobo (Reply 8):
E.L.Fs

Earth Liberation Front. Eco Terrorists.

I completely agree with your interpretation of my Global Warming Extremists statements. It's not just the eco-fascists of the world, it's just about anyone who regurgitates blatant lies and scams about the environment. These are the same morons who say that corn based ethanol is the solution to our reliance on foreign oil, hybrid cars are the solution to our oil dependency, that "clean coal" ought to be considered to be a long term alternative to other fossil fuels.

I've said this before, but Corn based ethanol is the biggest scam of the decade, hands down - for the American taxpayer, for farmers growing anything besides corn, for the hungry and to the federal government. I am get so incensed when I hear politicians speak about it as if it's anything good.


User currently offlineRedChili From Norway, joined Jul 2005, 2208 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 1885 times:

In Sweden, where I live today, the politicians and authorities actually encourage people to buy cars running on ethanol, despite the fact that rain forests are being cut down to produce fuel for these so-called "green cars." Talk about stupidity! And sometimes the same politicians talk about the need for raising petrol prices or inroducing an environmental tax on airplane tickets, as if more taxes will mean less pollution!


Top 10 airplanes: B737, T154, B747, IL96, T134, IL62, A320, MD80, B757, DC10
User currently offlineThreepoint From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 2129 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 1849 times:



Quoting Khobar (Reply 14):
Regardless of the numerical rating assigned to it???

My point, which I think you misread, was that who cares if Katrina was a category 1, 3 or 5 hurricane? The point is it caused a great deal of damage. I'm not quite sure if your comment (below) in your first post was sarcastic or not. If it was, then maybe I did the misinterpretation.

Quoting Khobar (Reply 6):
Of course Katrina was only a Cat 3 hurricane when it made landfall - i.e. nothing special, and certainly not the man-made CO2 global warming fueled monster we were told it was. Oops...




The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.
User currently offlineTristarSteve From Sweden, joined Nov 2005, 3970 posts, RR: 34
Reply 18, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 1741 times:



Quoting RedChili (Reply 16):
In Sweden, where I live today, the politicians and authorities actually encourage people to buy cars running on ethanol, despite the fact that rain forests are being cut down to produce fuel for these so-called "green cars."

Yes but Swedish ethanol comes mainly from sawdust. Sweden has a large sustainable wood industry and the offcuts are processed to provide pellets for heating and ethanol. See http://www.sekab.com/

Burning pellets for home heating is growing rapidly, and has been used for a long time in communal heating plants that pipe hot water to heat properties in cities.


User currently offlineRedChili From Norway, joined Jul 2005, 2208 posts, RR: 4
Reply 19, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 1703 times:



Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 18):
Yes but Swedish ethanol comes mainly from sawdust.

Perhaps that is true, I don't know, but every ethanol car sold in Sweden is anyway a part of the increased global demand for ethanol, and it's because of this demand that rainforests are being shoveled to make room for ethanol production.



Top 10 airplanes: B737, T154, B747, IL96, T134, IL62, A320, MD80, B757, DC10
User currently offlineSailorOrion From Germany, joined Feb 2001, 2058 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (6 years 5 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 1680 times:

To anyone who deals with the environmental problem on a professional basis (i.e. not politicians or environmental organizations), this is not really news....

SailorOrion


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