September 13, 2014

Something to keep in mind

Scientists are getting close to producing hydrogen by splitting water into its constituent elements. H2O, as you know, is the formula for water: two hydrogen molecules bonded to one oxygen molecule. Split that hydrogen off and you can use it as fuel without harming the environment. In other words, we're closing in on on a glorious moment in humanity's existence, when we'll be able to produce hydrogen cheaply, easily and in tremendous volume. And from that moment forward, we will be able to power our modern lives without killing the planet.

Just today, I bumped into yet another science story that indicates we're very close to solving this problem.
Scientists have taken a major step forward in the production of hydrogen from water which could lead to a new era of cheap, clean and renewable energy.

Chemists from the University of Glasgow report in a new paper in Science today on a new form of hydrogen production which is 30 times faster than the current state-of-the-art method. The process also solves common problems associated with generating electricity from renewable sources such as solar, wind or wave energy.
Which brings me to my point. What do you think will happen when Russia, a country that has nothing to export other than oil and gas, suddenly finds itself with a bounty of fuel that no one is willing to use? Ditto for the Saudis and other eastern countries. What will they do when the happenstance underpinning their vast wealth - the fact that they're sitting on a pile of oil - disappears? I suspect it won't be pretty.

BTW, I believe I heard Putin raving about new nukes that he's planning to use if threatened. I'd say the advent of a hydrogen economy will be a hugely threatening event for Russia.

A watershed moment is about to arrive and hardly anyone is thinking about the ramifications. But you can't fault people. After all, they've got celebrity scandals to think about. The coming hydrogen economy and Russia's nukes? F'get about it. We have more important things to occupy our attention.

Oooo, look! A new, shiny thing! I have to go look at it. So...never mind.

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