|Ken Novak's Weblog
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Friday, November 21, 2003
Global Warming Gas Increasing Dramatically
: "Worldwide emissions of carbon dioxide are expected to increase by 3.5 billion tonnes, or 50 percent, annually by the year 2020, an executive for ExxonMobil Corp said on Wednesday. .. Experts say the United States, which has the world's largest economy and 4 percent of its population, is responsible for about 25 percent of so-called "greenhouse" gases now produced, but Broiles said most future growth in output will come from developing countries. "Eighty percent of that number, 80 percent of 3.5 billion tonnes, is going to be driven by those developing countries, those economies that are growing at the 4 to 5 percent range, so that's where it's coming from," he said.
A huge increase in the number of cars will cause part of the pollution growth. Broiles said there are now 15 cars for every 1,000 people in the world, but ExxonMobil expects that number to rise to 50 cars per 1,000 by 2020. He said ExxonMobil foresees a 40 percent increase in energy demand even though humans are boosting their energy efficiency by about 1 percent a year. Despite advances in technology most energy will still come from fossil fuels, and in particular oil and gas, of which there remain very large reserves, he said. " 9:03:16 PM
Power Tube, Inc.
: "The [Power Tube] unit is inserted in the Earth (i.e. downhole) and requires only 220 degrees Fahrenheit of heat to generate electricity. This is accomplished without depleting natural resources or causing pollution. With a virtually inexhaustible source of energy (i.e. the heat of the Earth) to power it, Power Tube has no energy costs customarily associated with traditional electrical power generation methods. The land needed for a Power Tube unit is not permanently scarred and pollution of underground aquifers does not occur. The 10 MW version is 185 feet long, and 42 inches in diameter. It will be inserted into a 46" shaft (which is only at the top 185 feet), which can be drilled with a standard drilling technology. .. The Power Tube is a self contained unit using an iso-pentane/iso-butane mixture to heat into a gas. In this sealed system, the gas is accelerated into a turbine, then cooled back down into a liquid, where the process continues." 8:49:34 PM
Spain to fund Mindanao solar power project
: "THE SPANISH government will invest 3.37 billion pesos in a solar electrification project that will light up 40 remote communities in Mindanao, Agrarian Reform Secretary Roberto Pagdanganan said. The Spanish government's Solar Power Technology Support (Spots) project is expected to benefit directly 20,000 farmers in 15 provinces in Mindanao, he said.
Pagdanganan said BP Solar España, which he described as the world's biggest solar plant manufacturer, had been contracted to provide technical services for the Spots project. " 8:34:30 PM
Text of President Bush's Speech - London
: More of the same. "It's been said that those who live near a police station find it hard to believe in the triumph of violence, in the same way free peoples might be tempted to take for granted the orderly societies we have come to know. Europe's peaceful unity is one of the great achievements of the last half-century. And because European countries now resolve differences through negotiation and consensus, there's sometimes an assumption that the entire world functions in the same way. But let us never forget how Europe's unity was achieved by allied armies of liberation and NATO armies of defense. And let us never forget, beyond Europe's borders, in a world where oppression and violence are very real, liberation is still a moral goal, and freedom and security still need defenders. .. As recent history has shown, we cannot turn a blind eye to oppression just because the oppression is not in our own backyard. No longer should we think tyranny is benign because it is temporarily convenient. Tyranny is never benign to its victims, and our great democracies should oppose tyranny wherever it is found." Video
. Seems Bush is just The Guy Reading Mike Gerson's Speeches. 7:49:12 PM
Sri Lanka: As Peace Falters, Activists Turn to ICT to Build Bridges: "In December 2002, the Sri Lankan government's Peace Secretariat invited the Colombo office of the AED [USAID contractor for Education and Development] -- one of the coordinators of the peace process -- to set up a data-sharing software to network their office staff. While an AED team including Hannes, who is a consultant to them, was working on the project, the hit upon the idea of creating a similar, though infinitely more sophisticated software, for the entire peace process.
In April this year, just as the team was discussing the concept with officials of the Peace Secretariat, local NGOs and media groups involved in the peace process, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels suspended talks. Recalls Hannes, "At that moment we realized we should not wait any longer. Although there were emissaries conveying messages from the government to the LTTE and vice versa even after the suspension, the impact of the communication breakdown between the two parties was apparent." In the aftermath, a clutch of parties - including peace promoters attached to the premier local NGO - Center for Policy Alternatives, Young Asia Television and the Peace Secretariat joined the AED team to conceive and execute the project. ..
The pilot project which was initiated on September 1 this year, is funded by Groove Networks which is co-owned by Information Technology giants Microsoft and Intel, the Appeal for Nobel Peace Laureate Foundation, AED, and USAID. " I believe the software is based on Groove. 4:23:59 PM
Such fragile threads: Stories from Iraq: "The longing of the Iraqi people for a society based on basic human rights sometimes appears strong enough to overcome fragmentation into ethnic groups and religious differences, but at other times seems fragile and tentative.. [from] an interview with Sheikh Abdul Mahdi, the administrator of the Hussein mosque, Sistani's deputy and one of his closest advisers: .. "We are 100 per cent the opposite of Al Qaida. We don't consider them Islamic at all. In Afghanistan and elsewhere, Al Qaida has been fighting against the Shi'ites. For us, the Islamic religion represents peace. Our religious authorities have issued strict orders forbidding us from taking up arms against America. Not that we agree with a permanent American presence in Iraq. ..
"There are Shi'a in Iraq and in Iran. We are related religiously. They believe in our religious scholars and we believe in theirs. But that has nothing to do with politics, or policy. The religious authority in Najaf [where Grand Ayatollah Sistani lives] has an independent policy from Iran. .. As for democracy, yes, of course, Islam and democracy can coexist. We understand democracy in a special way. But even so, Islam does not 1:47:37 PM
clash with the Western idea of democracy, where both the majority and minorities have rights. Yes, it is possible to practice this form of government in Iraq."