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Frank Hovis

Acid Rain - a success story

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This was one of the big threats in the 80s and 90s but through sensible measures and treaties targets for reduction of SO2 and NOx were met; emissions are 60 - 70% down on the starting position and the problem largely solved.  I was moved to look it up because somebody mentioned it the other day as it was such a big threat that I wondered why it wasn't any longer.

The overall cost to businesses and consumers is $1 - $2bn per year.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acid_rain

This was IMHO handled in a mature and sensible way and success was achieved.

It''s such a contrast with the carbon hysteria.

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There have been a lot of environmental successes. When I were a lad if you fell in the Thames you would be off to hospital, and have your stomach pumped out. Now there are swans.

Lead was (rather belatedly) removed from petrol.

I'm with you on the "carbon hysteria" however.

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1 minute ago, MrPin said:

There have been a lot of environmental successes. When I were a lad if you fell in the Thames you would be off to hospital, and have your stomach pumped out. Now there are swans.

Lead was (rather belatedly) removed from petrol.

I'm with you on the "carbon hysteria" however.

Very good points; we forget what has improved.

I will add ceasing to pump raw sewage into the sea around most of the coast (though I think this still happens in isolated bits of Scotland because the cost is prohibitive and nobody swims anyway).

Otters are back in number, peregrine falcons thrive, buzzards used to be rare in Cornwall and I now see them frequently.

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1 minute ago, Frank Hovis said:

Very good points; we forget what has improved.

I will add ceasing to pump raw sewage into the sea around most of the coast (though I think this still happens in isolated bits of Scotland because the cost is prohibitive and nobody swims anyway).

Otters are back in number, peregrine falcons thrive, buzzards used to be rare in Cornwall and I now see them frequently.

I've done my bit for the environment then, from my time in the poo industry.O.o

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6 minutes ago, MrPin said:

Lead was (rather belatedly) removed from petrol.

 

You don't want to know what Big Oil are doing with all the surplus lead that they are obliged to remove from petrol these days.

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Just now, eight said:

You don't want to know what Big Oil are doing with all the surplus lead that they are obliged to remove from petrol these days.

It probably makes batteries, but I still think you are joking.xD

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2 minutes ago, Frank Hovis said:

Which you were denying last week - you should stand up and take pride in your fatbergs.

Big tanks of your poo (and somebody else's) are fermented to make gas, and then the dried powder becomes fertiliser. I think this is good, and much more sensible than printing a black footprint on my breakfast cereal packet, or a cartoon advert about drowning rabbits.

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4 minutes ago, snaga said:

banning CFCs is another huge success, hate to think how bad that could of been if not picked up when it was.

True.

I trust we've all heard of Thomas Midgley Jr. who put the lead in the petrol and the CFCs in the fridge.

CFCs to be fair looked like an improvement and he wouldn't have know then ozone effects but he damn well knew about the harmful effects of lead in petrol as he several times suffered from lead poisoning from his work.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Midgley,_Jr.

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I'll add banning DDT to the list (rather late in the day compared to the US) which is the main reason for Perigrine Falcons having recovered (it caused egg shell thinning which made the eggs crush under the birds).

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There are more things to ban, not that I'm keen on banning stuff, like these nicotinoid insecticides. I don't think they are allowed in some places, as we want some insects left, like bees and stuff.

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There are genuine successes where it's a good job a change in behaviour was forced but have to say I think the threat from acid rain was grossly overstated to start with. Although I do think there's probably a genuine benefit from flue gas desulpherisation for the economic cost.

I always like going past Ratcliffe power station (which I think has FGDS) at night. Not only does is look like the set of Blade Runner you can look around 360 degrees at all the lights in streets and houses for miles around and all of it is powered by the what seems relatively small amounts of emissions from its chimney. Not finding some way to recover the heat energy from the water rather than cooling towers seems wasteful still though.

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Just now, SNACR said:

There are genuine successes where it's a good job a change in behaviour was forced but have to say I think the threat from acid rain was grossly overstated to start with. Although I do think there's probably a genuine benefit from flue gas desulpherisation for the economic cost.

I always like going past Ratcliffe power station (which I think has FGDS) at night. Not only does is look like the set of Blade Runner you can look around 360 degrees at all the lights in streets and houses for miles around and all of it is powered by the what seems relatively small amounts of emissions from its chimney. Not finding some way to recover the heat energy from the water rather than cooling towers seems wasteful still though.

Ratcliffe is one of mine from the past. I did some of the control/monitoring stuff there.

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2 hours ago, Frank Hovis said:

This was one of the big threats in the 80s and 90s but through sensible measures and treaties targets for reduction of SO2 and NOx were met; emissions are 60 - 70% down on the starting position and the problem largely solved.  I was moved to look it up because somebody mentioned it the other day as it was such a big threat that I wondered why it wasn't any longer.

 

It''s such a contrast with the carbon hysteria.


but we're being told the car emissions is now due to NOx. And if we got that massively reduced how high are levels now?

 

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1 hour ago, MrPin said:

R12 (dichlorodiflouro methane) was THE refrigerant gas when I worked in that industry. It was banned.

Think on this...........

http://www.imcool.com/articles/aircondition/refrigerant_history.htm

To be replaced with 125 and 234a. The new refrigerant of choice is 1234yf, but big companies are bastards and are keeping it to themselves.

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12 minutes ago, sarahbell said:


but we're being told the car emissions is now due to NOx. And if we got that massively reduced how high are levels now?

 

That's a slightly different effect though as it's localised concentrations being breathed in rather than great clouds going up into the air.

You do hear lost of terrible things about the long term effects of air pollution upon general health so I am surprised at how often huge residential blocks, and in particular retirement blocks like McCarthy and Stone and student blocks, go up right by very busy roundabouts or junctions.

Though I am sure that the planning authorities know exactly what they're doing 9_9

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1 hour ago, sarahbell said:


but we're being told the car emissions is now due to NOx. And if we got that massively reduced how high are levels now?

 

I think power stations use adblue the same as truck exhaust systems to reduce NOx also these days.

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6 hours ago, Frank Hovis said:

This was one of the big threats in the 80s and 90s but through sensible measures and treaties targets for reduction of SO2 and NOx were met; emissions are 60 - 70% down on the starting position and the problem largely solved.  I was moved to look it up because somebody mentioned it the other day as it was such a big threat that I wondered why it wasn't any longer.

The overall cost to businesses and consumers is $1 - $2bn per year.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acid_rain

This was IMHO handled in a mature and sensible way and success was achieved.

It''s such a contrast with the carbon hysteria.

So, what would you do about carbon emissions?

Something or nothing.

Issue or not an issue ?

Don't want a debate, won't debate, just curious.

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7 minutes ago, Hopeful said:

So, what would you do about carbon emissions?

Something or nothing.

Issue or not an issue ?

Don't want a debate, won't debate, just curious.

I think oil has a very short time frame remaining of its being cheaply available; I suggest 2030 when Saudi oil starts to splutter and the price shoots up.

I also think that whilst it is cheap it will be burned so slowing it seems pointless as it doesn't matter if we burn the bulk of it over twenty years, forty years or sixty years.  In a hundred years the position with regard to the level of CO2 in the atmosphere will be no different whatever we do.

Once it has gone, or effectively gone through being rare and expensive, then we start hitting crises, economic growth goes into reverse, and population declines through lack of food.

In short I think that what will happen will happen and all of these urgent actions and legislation will only serve to delay the inevitable.

Readily avaible fossil fuels will run out and economic growth will go into reverse; if it happens sooner rather than later then there will be less damage to the planetary ecosystem IMO as populations will peak at a lower level.  So drive a V8, eat steak every night, and view both as good things that save the planet because I think that they will as the current model of population and economic growth, however much you tinker with it, is unquestionably unsustainable.

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10 minutes ago, Frank Hovis said:

I think oil has a very short time frame remaining of its being cheaply available; I suggest 2030 when Saudi oil starts to splutter and the price shoots up.

I also think that whilst it is cheap it will be burned so slowing it seems pointless as it doesn't matter if we burn the bulk of it over twenty years, forty years or sixty years.  In a hundred years the position with regard to the level of CO2 in the atmosphere will be no different whatever we do.

Once it has gone, or effectively gone through being rare and expensive, then we start hitting crises, economic growth goes into reverse, and population declines through lack of food.

In short I think that what will happen will happen and all of these urgent actions and legislation will only serve to delay the inevitable.

Readily avaible fossil fuels will run out and economic growth will go into reverse; if it happens sooner rather than later then there will be less damage to the planetary ecosystem IMO as populations will peak at a lower level.  So drive a V8, eat steak every night, and view both as good things that save the planet because I think that they will as the current model of population and economic growth, however much you tinker with it, is unquestionably unsustainable.

I subscibe to that catastrophic scenario. It is how it will play out.

Although the time frames may be out

Edited by Hopeful

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