16 June 2006

Enviro Law Rant

Why do I think that global warming is either not real, or not caused by Man?

Al Gore believes that both are true. http://www.canadafreepress.com/2006/harris061206.htm

Actually I lean toward the not caused by Man, especially since Mars, Jupiter and Saturn all show signs of warming. Our sun is a variable star, and it is making more output than ever recorded lately.

I am not saying we should return to the days of 8 mpg land yachts, that gives too much power to OPEC. And the pollution caused by that is real.

I am saying that last time(s) we tried to legislate the fixes without understanding the causes we spent a lot of money for no measurable effect.

The AIR pump, mandated on all cars sold in the USA after 1976, injects air into the exhaust stream to make the catalytic converter work better; better catalytic converter design and fuel injected engines made this a teat on a boar.

Catalytic converters themselves! Platinum is used for making jewelry, plating to stop corrosion and as a catalyst in the production of acids. Oh, and in catalytic converters. What they really do is cause a reaction in the exhaust gasses that changes those gasses into something that the EPA doesn't care about. And many of those compounds react with air, water and sunlight to make acids. Acid rain anyone?

R-134; actually developed as a prototype technology demonstration to prove that you could make a refrigerant without CFC. It was not intended to be a direct replacement of R-12 (real freon). Once a non-CFC gas was available at all, the government moved up the no-CFC mandate day by fifteen years and required that R-134 be used instead of R-12 in new cars from that day on. R-134 is not compatible with the older R-12, and it doesn't work as well. DuPont maintains that a non-CFC, direct R-12 replacement gas is possible and could be made cheaply, but the law mandates that only R-12 or R-134 be used in older units and only R-134 in newer units. And if a better refrigerant is developed? Why would it be, the company making it is legislated out of marketing it, so why bother developing it?

And the hole in the ozone layer in Antarctica closed on its own too soon to have been helped by reduced CFC emissions from the US and Europe. And total CFC emissions have not dropped yet because places like Mexico, Pakistan, India and China are still making as much or more as we used. And people wonder why the economy took a hit... Gee, Einstein, we just made it illegal to do some things here until we come up with an enviro-happy way to do it. Things that we still need done. We can still get them done in China. Once we export the expertise to do the job and the people who used to do it here find new jobs while we develop the enviro-happy process, we wont have people locally who can do the job once the new process is ready! DUH!

But, by and large, Congress is populated by lawyers. Congress is not populated by engineers, scientists or economists. And some wonder why they get it wrong so consistently.

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