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No Entropy and Climate ChangeBY: Bob Ticer | Category: Nature | Submitted: 2014-06-02 10:08:17
Article Summary: "The science of climate change is technical. This article provides a little more insight according to the second law of thermodynamics known as entropy. Possible solutions to climate change are also offered as one more individual effort to join the cause..."
Entropy is dormant, latent or inactive energy. Total energy is neither increased nor decreased as it changes from one form to another, but its entropy varies according to particular circumstances. For instance, two bricks of the same temperature, no matter how high it is, are unable to use it to change the state of the other brick since they are in a state of equilibrium. The amount of unusable energy they have for change is the second law of thermodynamics called entropy. According to it, energy is spent for no possibility of a perpetual motion machine. However, the universe at large could very well be a perpetual motion machine.
When we take energy from within Earth and use it in polluting the atmosphere, supposedly the energy spent increases in entropy. However, the spent energy in the atmosphere as in the form of carbon dioxide (CO2) decreases its entropy by the atmosphere then being able to absorb more radiant heat from the sun to convert back to carbon and oxygen. The atmosphere further obtains an increase in temperature by absorbing more water that, in turn, allows the atmosphere to absorb more radiant heat at a lower temperature.
There is a natural cycle. Plants absorb carbon and water (H2O) and release oxygen back into the atmosphere. However, the excessive use of carbon fuels creates a new equilibrium state. Colder water holds more carbon, such that a warmer atmosphere contains less carbon, but the oceans also heat up, become more acidic to hold less carbon and release more of it back into the atmosphere.
The Earth's gravity is also a contributing factor of this loss of entropy. As Earth rotates and revolves around the sun, sates of equilibrium change in allowing the absorption of radiant energy to be released in the form of more powerful hurricanes, tornadoes and so forth.
These results are the carbon footprint in the atmosphere from our excessive use of hydrocarbon fuels. There is more usable energy in the atmosphere, but it is more uncontrollable, as evident of all the increases in natural disasters of climate change. To counter this change, we must build sturdier structures to withstand it, pollute less, clean up the mess we create, and we must find ways to control and use the atmospheric energy in less harmful ways.
The energy in the atmosphere can be tapped. Besides wind and photoelectric cells for mechanical and electrical power, water and carbon can be recycled for commercial use. Carbon dioxide has commercial use, such as for food, as carbon and water are essential elements of the food chain.
If we filled the sky with blimps as unmanned-computerized drones electrically powered by the sun and wind, they could extract water and carbon from the atmosphere. It would take an enormous amount of blimps to reverse global warming, but the effort could be rewarding. If planned correctly, as extracting near from the hotter equator, the water and carbon could be transported to desert areas for growing more plants and food. Decreasing the temperature at the equator would also decrease the magnitude of hurricanes and their cost of destruction. Water reservoirs, such as needed in California, could also be served. Enough giant blimp drones in the sky could also provide a superhighway for the travel above water without causing its level to rise.
Other remedies could entail better use of natural resources. As glaciers continue to melt, rising sea levels could be prevented by building reservoirs to hold more water. The rapid downstream flow of fresh water from the mountains to the oceans could be slowed for less water waste. Reservoirs along with storm forecasts could also regulate the flow of water in preventing flooding from too rapid of change in the weather, as in the early melting of winter snow.
The bottom line is we need to use more energy from the atmosphere to increase its entropy in restoring the equilibrium state of a more favorable environment for longevity.
About Author / Additional Info:
Rice is nice, but Bob Ticer is nicer. I retired as a cannery worker at the end of 1999, became self educated by writing and research, and wrote a book on physics. That was just a personal challenge. I'm now trying to save the world.
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