Global Warming and Energy Policy

Springer Science & Business Media
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The first part of the conference explores two major environmental concerns that arise from fuel use: (1) the prospect that the globe will become warmer as a result of emissions of carbon dioxide, and (2) the effect upon health of the fine particles emitted as combustion products. The conference focused on the fact that there was lack of data direct enough to enable us to predict an entirely satisfactory result, and that makes policy options particularly difficult. With regard to (1) above, in the second half of the 20th century there were major increases in anthropogenic C02 emissions, and it is generally agreed that these were responsible for an increase in C02 concentrations. But the relationship between global temperature and CO2 concentrations remains murky. The principal problem is that water vapor is a more important greenhouse gas than C02 and that the concentrations of water vapor vary widely in time and space. The approach to this problem is probably, but not certainly, a positive feedback effect: as temperature increases so does the water vapor leading to further temperature increases. Scientists associated with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) tend to believe the general features of the models. Other scientists are often less convinced.
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Springer Science & Business Media
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Dec 6, 2012
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Business & Economics / Industries / Energy
Nature / Environmental Conservation & Protection
Science / Earth Sciences / General
Science / Earth Sciences / Meteorology & Climatology
Science / Environmental Science
Science / Global Warming & Climate Change
Technology & Engineering / Environmental / General
Technology & Engineering / Power Resources / General
Technology & Engineering / Power Resources / Nuclear
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The annual conferences on energy, which were begun in 1977, continued to 1992 and resumed again in 1994. The theme of the 1994 conference was "Global Energy Demand in Transition: The New Role ofElectricity. " Global energy production, distribution, and utilization is in astate of transition toward an increased and more diversified use of electricity, which is the safest, most versatile, and cleanest form of secondary energy. Electricity is easy to generate, transmit, and distribute, making its use practically universal. These facts make it urgent to explore the technological prospects and long term availability of environmentally benign energy sources for generating electricity. It is expected that the conference will be useful to the governments in formulating their energy policies and to the public utilities for their long term planning. The conference has: 1) assessed the increase and diversification in the use of electricity; 2) assessed the technological prospects for clean energy sources that still require more research and development, i. e. solar, hydrogen, nuclear (fission and fusion), etc. ; 3) assessed the roles of non-market factors and possible improved decision processes on energy and environmental issues; 4) made concrete recommendations regarding research and development policies and regulations to expedite the transition to a dependable, safer, and benign electricity-based energy complex; 5) studied the cost impact: price, environment, safety, and international security; 6) provided an analysis of an expected transition from the fossil fuel transportation to electrical transportation (e. g.
At the dawn of the twentieth century, a great confidence suffused America. Isaac Cline was one of the era's new men, a scientist who believed he knew all there was to know about the motion of clouds and the behavior of storms. The idea that a hurricane could damage the city of Galveston, Texas, where he was based, was to him preposterous, "an absurd delusion." It was 1900, a year when America felt bigger and stronger than ever before. Nothing in nature could hobble the gleaming city of Galveston, then a magical place that seemed destined to become the New York of the Gulf.

That August, a strange, prolonged heat wave gripped the nation and killed scores of people in New York and Chicago. Odd things seemed to happen everywhere: A plague of crickets engulfed Waco. The Bering Glacier began to shrink. Rain fell on Galveston with greater intensity than anyone could remember. Far away, in Africa, immense thunderstorms blossomed over the city of Dakar, and great currents of wind converged. A wave of atmospheric turbulence slipped from the coast of western Africa. Most such waves faded quickly. This one did not.

In Cuba, America's overconfidence was made all too obvious by the Weather Bureau's obsession with controlling hurricane forecasts, even though Cuba's indigenous weathermen had pioneered hurricane science. As the bureau's forecasters assured the nation that all was calm in the Caribbean, Cuba's own weathermen fretted about ominous signs in the sky. A curious stillness gripped Antigua. Only a few unlucky sea captains discovered that the storm had achieved an intensity no man alive had ever experienced.

In Galveston, reassured by Cline's belief that no hurricane could seriously damage the city, there was celebration. Children played in the rising water. Hundreds of people gathered at the beach to marvel at the fantastically tall waves and gorgeous pink sky, until the surf began ripping the city's beloved beachfront apart. Within the next few hours Galveston would endure a hurricane that to this day remains the nation's deadliest natural disaster. In Galveston alone at least 6,000 people, possibly as many as 10,000, would lose their lives, a number far greater than the combined death toll of the Johnstown Flood and 1906 San Francisco Earthquake.

And Isaac Cline would experience his own unbearable loss.

Meticulously researched and vividly written, Isaac's Storm is based on Cline's own letters, telegrams, and reports, the testimony of scores of survivors, and our latest understanding of the hows and whys of great storms. Ultimately, however, it is the story of what can happen when human arrogance meets nature's last great uncontrollable force. As such, Isaac's Storm carries a warning for our time.

From the Hardcover edition.
th The 29 International Conference was held as the first one of the millennium at its Fort Lauderdale venue. These conferences began, with High Energy Physics being the main topic, by introducing gradually cosmology into its programs. These proceedings of the 2000 conference reflect the variety of topics and ideas discussed. Our future conferences will be designed somewhat akin to the early Coral Gables Conferences where we shall seek some convergence of ideas. For this reason various committees have been formed from among the participating physicists. The committees and their memberships are listed in these proceedings. We further decided for the first time to include some graduate student participants in our future meetings for which also a committee has already been established. The topics will demonstrate a more activist structure of the Coral Gables Conferences, for example the duality of the gravitational forces and expansion of the universe will be discussed from this point of view since it conveys a convergence to the ideas of quintessence versus the ordinary theory, which are considered as the cause of the expansion of the universe. We further wish to announce that the future conferences will assume a collective organization where several committees as listed in these proceedings will have their input into the conference. We have now introduced new topics and ideas, which referred especially to the attractive and repulsive nature of the gravitational force. These proceedings of the conference contain a variety of topics and ideas.
The 25'" Coral Gables Conference was the culmination of the series that was begun in 1964. The conferences evolved under the titles that in~lude: Symmetry Principles at High Energy; Fundamental Interactions; Orbis Scientiae; and, occasionally, Unified Symmetry in the Small and in the Large. There was a pause after the 2()1h meeting in 1983 which was dedicated to P. A. M. Dirac. The conferences were resumed in 1993. Some of the reminiscences involved the absence of great minds who attended these meetings in the past and who were no longer with us. The list includes, just to name a few: Julian Schwinger, Robert Oppenheimer, Lars Onsager, Robert Hofstater, Abdus Salam, Richard Feynman, Stanislov Ulam, P. A. M. Dirac, Lord C. P. Snow, Eugene P. Wigner, Vladimir K. Zworykin, and Dixie Lee Ray. Most of these people were among the architects of modern physics and had participated in many of the early Coral Gables Conferences. We miss them. These conferences have contributed to the progress in high energy physics and cosmology. This year, again, papers were presented on familiar topics, such as neutrino masses, age and total mass of the universe, on the nature of dark matter, and on supersymmetry. The latter has now become a perennial issue. Like the weather, we all talk about it, but, so far cannot do anything to affect it. Another favorite subject was so-called monopoles, which theoretically participate in phenomena like condensation, confinement of electric charge, confinement of monopoles themselves, etc.
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