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Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Controlling Hurricanes

Last month or thereabouts USA Today reported that Bill Gates and climate scientist Ken Caldeira filed an application for a patent on a Hurricane Management System consisting of giant barges and turbines that would interchange warm surface water for cold sub-surface water. The barges, placed strategically in the path of hurricanes, would be used to remove a hurricane's primary source of energy.

Pure, unmitigated, vainglorious gall!

Whenever I read or hear about Man's grandiose plans for controlling the planet I get this feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach and the sense that life as we know it will soon come to an end. Who are we to think we can correct nature? Who are we to think hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, floods, tsunamis, lightening storms, blizzards, etc., are something other than our planet's attempt at self-preservation and self-correction?

Please, someone give me an example, just one, of an environmental, atmospheric or ecological engineering, regulatory or management plan that has worked successfully without consequence. Just one.

So we reduce one hurricane's strength. Maybe two. What happens next? A hurricane so big and powerful we have to come up with a new rating system just to quantify it.

Instead of trying to live in harmony with Earth's natural ways, instead of working and living within the boundaries of common sense, we insist on going head-to head with nature and our planet's tendency to stabilize itself.

When are we going to get it? We are but a pimple on the ass of the universe. We are less than nothing. And yet we continue to think we can buy our way to a Gene Roddenberry future.

That's right. Mine more ore from the Earth. Smelt more steel. Weld more barges and machine more engines and turbines. Build humongous vessels and have giant pumps suck massive amounts of seawater and fish and God knows what from the depths of the ocean to replace warm water on the surface. As if it is something that can be done without consequence. Right.... Good plan. Why not just figure out a way to change the tilt and orientation of the Earth in its orbit? Better yet, why not change the orbit of the Earth itself?

And I thought Bill Gates was trying to destroy the planet with Vista.


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