The Kids 4 Hydrogen team had a great time at Earth Day Santa Cruz! It was a very enlightening and educational experience. We talked with a lot of people and helped answer their questions. There were some tough ones, but we all worked together to explain the more difficult concepts. It was an amazing opportunity to practice speaking and understanding the questions that most people have about Metrol. In the future, we will be even more prepared to explain Metrol in a manner that is both informative and clear.
Kids 4 Hydrogen also won $200 in the Class Challenge! The money will be going towards future endeavors and events for promoting Metrol.
If you came out to see us, thank you for your interest. For those who had questions still, we’re here to answer them! Feel free to send us an email and we will get answers for you.
Today’s guest post is by Joe Jordan. Joe worked in the atmospheric and space sciences for decades at NASA’s Ames Research Center (Bay Area), before teaching at Cabrillo College and in the meteorology/climate, mathematics, and environmental sciences departments at San Jose State University. In addition, he has done science media work (especially radio), and leads occasional public outings featuring astronomy/stargazing and “physics in nature”.
The recent Paris climate agreement was significant in that most of the world (almost 200 countries) agreed to something! But, alas, it was insignificant in that what they agreed on is almost nothing compared to what we need now.
Scientific fact is that even if the whole world completely stops emitting carbon right now (i.e., a 100% cut), the average global atmospheric temperature will not be going down anytime soon (we’re talking centuries to millennia). Voluntary promises to limit national emissions and global temperature rise amount to a kind of wishing exercise, absent the kind of economic incentives that would be provided by a steeply increasing price on carbon. See the advocacy work of Citizens’ Climate Lobby for extensive presentation and discussion of this highly valuable concept (CCL’s version is known as “fee and dividend”, which harnesses market forces in a revenue-neutral way with no increase in the size of government).
It’s great to be devoting some new funding to deployment of renewable energy (solar, wind, etc.) in the developing world, but we really need to “up the ante” on this, planet-wide, by an order of magnitude (i.e., factor of ten). We need a quick yet deep “makeover” of energy infrastructure everywhere, but the Paris agreement doesn’t provide real clues on how that’s to happen. Again, governments must squarely face the necessity to make carbon-burning more and more expensive, in order to keep fossil fuels in the ground so renewables at last have a real chance to flourish.
Furthermore, we need to not only halt all or most carbon emissions as soon as is superhumanly possible, but actually start extracting carbon from the atmosphere, in a big way. Nobody has yet shown how to do this in a way that’s anywhere near feasible economically or ecologically — but it’s an extremely important as well as potentially exciting (and even lucrative) project that people need to get on their radar screens. The more we can do now (and soon) to develop a much more advanced, sophisticated energy landscape (befitting a life form that fancies itself as “intelligent”), the less suffering will be experienced by the future generations to whom so much of this blog series is devoted.
On Veterans Day, our team toured various labs around the San Jose area to find the resources we need to manufacture our own smart plugs and Metrol. We started off our tours by visiting Prospect Silicon Valley. We met with KJ, and she led us around their facilities. There were some pretty amazing things there, such as a smart 8-way traffic light and a driving simulator. We hope that we will be able to collaborate with Prospect Silicon Valley in the future to further advance our efforts. After that, we visited A1 Jays Manufacturing Services. There we were given a tour through the facilities, and our tour guide was kind enough to explain all of the machinery and their uses to our team. This was invaluable, especially for certain members of the team who didn’t know as much about their structure and function. This site offers manufacturing services, meaning that they would be crucial in helping us make our prototypes in the Bay Area. Our final stop was the Tech Shop in Downtown San Jose. They have a lot of hobby materials there, and even have a sandblaster. This location didn’t have all of the machinery that we require, but we all agreed that they could be useful to make our parabolic solar reflector. Right across the street from the Tech Shop was Iguanas, a famous burrito place where we all sat down to discuss our future plans while eating lunch. After that, we headed back towards home. It was a day full of laughter and bad driving, but it was also informative and helped us gain direction for our future plans.
The Kids 4 Hydrogen celebrated the addition of a few members at our first meeting of the year at the Merit Academy in Santa Cruz. The meeting started off with personal introductions, to help everyone know each other better. After that, we went down to the media room, where we exchanged information on various ideas and opportunities. During this discussion, we evaluated our existing work and brought up various questions for the future. Through this meeting, we broadened our knowledge and gave our projects a little more direction, and generally got to know each other better.
We are looking forward to a great year of progress with a new team!
Watch this short video to dispel the myth that hydrogen is dangerous!
My good friend David Vasquez just released this timely film on the safety of hydrogen.
Now that climate change is clearly on the table for discussion about alternative energy, learn the truth about hydrogen. When produced by solar or wind, it is the cleanest fuel source available. It has zero carbon emissions and unlike batteries (for electric cars), there are no toxic chemicals and no worry about disposal at the end of the life.
Watch this short 4-minute video so when you think hydrogen, you think clean, sustainable energy, and you stop thinking Hindenburg (explosion was NOT caused by hydrogen) and the hydrogen bomb (energy is a chemical reaction, not nuclear!).
The sooner we move to a hydrogen economy, the better chance we have to slow carbon dioxide’s negative effects.
I realize that everyone – that includes YOU – is busy. And I know you’re REALLY BUSY – making money, maintaining your home, helping your kids and parents. I get it. What I don’t get is that my very intelligent, socially correct, politically active friends and family AREN’T LISTENING to the most important message about our future civilization.
Yep, and that future civilization consists of our children, grandchildren, and everyone else! Sowhy aren’t our politicians, corporations, and friends scrambling to fix our climate change problem?
I honestly don’t get it!
What can be more important than diverting the massive devastation that we are facing in our lifetimes? We aren’t making the dramatic changes to reduce our carbon emissions TODAY so that we will be able to enjoy making money, maintaining our homes, and helping our kids and parents. Here are some facts that should scare the bejeezus out of you:
February didn’t just break climate change records – it obliterated them.
- Regions of the Arctic were more than 16℃ warmer than normal; whatever constitutes normal now.
- February was the third consecutive month to break global temperature records.
- North of the equator was 2℃ warmer than pre-industrial temperatures (we passed the line…)
- In 2015: largest CO2 increase in hundreds of thousands of years
- CO2 level reached 404.02 ppm (up 1% from 2015) in Mauna Loa, HI
WAKE UP! Denial will only ensure that the fossil fuel industry (oil companies, fracking industry, car manufacturers, politicians) will stay on this terminal course until they extract the last drop of oil and squeeze the last dollar out of the earth. Their plan to phase out oil and natural gas (methane) and to offer clean energy will be decades too late. I’ve seen their brilliant marketing campaigns to fool us into thinking that they have a sustainable plan, butit’s all smoke and mirrors.
I always like to offer solutions when I deliver depressing news like this. In the next few weeks, I will share with you a game changer. I’m still researching its viability and statistics before I publicly support this breakthrough in energy production. Can’t wait to tell you… I am so excited about its possibilities that I am up at night laying out plans and wrapping my head around how to implement it worldwide as soon as possible. More real soon![Source]
What’s the fuss about? Logan Conover, the founder of WHEN, NOT IF…, sums it up with his description about the Positive Feedback Loop. If this doesn’t scare the bejeezus out of you, I don’t think you’re listening. Leave it to a 17-year-old student to lay out the facts. Remember, DON’T DRIVE YOUR CAR TOMORROW – SATURDAY, APRIL 23RD! Go to www.WhenNotIf.org to report your stats so Logan can calculate how much CO2 we prevented from entering the atmosphere!
Positive Feedback Loop:
Rising CO2 levels will cause worldwide devastation similar to that of the end of the last Ice Age. To sustain human life on Earth, the ideal level of CO2 is 350 ppm. Scientists hypothesize that at 400 ppm the Earth will begin to spiral into becoming an uninhabitable planet for humans. Here is how:
Due to increased CO2 in the atmosphere, ice (white, which reflects sunlight) will melt, creating a larger ocean surface area (dark blue, which absorbs sunlight). The ocean absorbs more heat than ice does, making the ocean warmer and melting glaciers faster. This would “ultimately warm [the] global climate” because the ice on Earth stabilizes the world’s temperature, and without it the Earth’s surface would become warmer (1). This would continue in an exponentially accelerating loop until the Earth stabilized at an unknown average surface temperature too hot for humans to survive.
In March 2016 the CO2 levels reached 404.83 ppm; in October 2015 when I started research it was at 398.29 ppm. These numbers show that the amount of CO2 being produced is not decreasing, which is scary because scientists have predicted that reaching 400 ppm would be the beginning of the end of the world. Here are a few ways that climate change will affect earth.
You’re probably wondering why I’ve dedicated a whole week to Logan Conover’s WHEN, NOT IF… campaign. He’s a passionate young 17-year-old student who hopes to get the world on board to reduce our CO2 emissions. With over a billion internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles on the road today, something has to give… So if you drive a gas guzzler, consider good alternatives.
Electric motors are far superior to internal combustion engines on several levels:
- Electric motors don’t have any emissions; ICE are the cause of 20% of our CO2 problems
- Electric motors don’t have moving parts: fewer repairs and maintenance!
- Electric motors can be powered by batteries or hydrogen
- Batteries have to be charged by power plants that use fossil fuels… (terrible)
- Batteries have toxic chemicals that cause problems at the end of life (terrible)
- Solar hydrogen is produced through electrolysis using sustainable sun power (great)
- Black hydrogen is produced using steam methane reformation (Oil companies) (terrible)
It’s time to rethink what kind of vehicles we drive and make smart choices. You can also take mass transit, ride your bike, walk, or carpool.
Remember, it’s just 2 days until WHEN, NOT IF’s… big day! Don’t drive your car on Saturday, April 23rd! Then, go to Logan’s website at www.WhenNotIf.org to log in your stats. He’ll show how a grassroots effort started by a teen, can make a difference. Join him in helping to ward off Climate Change!
So you’re a climate change believer but feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the problem. And what’s worse? You feel like driving your little Honda Civic, or NOT driving it, won’t impact climate change, right? WRONG! With one billion internal combustion engine (ICE) cars on the road worldwide, our transportation systems are responsible for about 20% of the CO2 problems we face. Yup! That means that if everyone stopped driving vehicles for ONE SINGLE DAY, we would be preventing 29 billion lbs. of CO2 from entering the atmosphere. Just one gallon of gas produces 20 lbs. of CO2. So yes, YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
So here are 3 easy things you can do:
- Share this blog post with your family, friends, and co-workers.
- Clear your driving calendar for Saturday, April 23rd.
- Log on to WhenNotIf.org and click on the “Enter Your Data” page; enter your stats and you’re done!
Logan will post how many POUNDS of CO2 we collectively prevent from entering the atmosphere each month. So join Logan and When, Not If!
Don’t drive your gas-guzzling cars this Saturday, April 23rd!
Last weekend, Logan Conover debuted his WHEN, NOT IF… project at the Santa Cruz Earth Day festival. He met with hundreds of people to encourage them to join him in not driving their cars on Saturday, April 23rd. While some might think that Santa Cruz is filled with tree huggers and liberals, Logan was surprised to meet people who didn’t understand that driving cars causes a substantial impact on CO2 in our atmosphere. Then, there were others who have actually sold their cars and bike everywhere. The Santa Cruz Sentinel featured Logan’s project on the front page of the Sunday paper.
Logan recruited Nathan Decena, of Willow Glen High School, and Angelique Su, of Merit Academy to join him at the Earth Day event. Nathan brought a life-size Darth Vadar to attract the attention of the hundreds of children – and it worked! Kids came to the WHEN, NOT IF booth to see Darth Vadar, and their parents followed along and engaged in conversation with Logan. Visitors added their names and email addresses to Logan’s mailing list so he could remind them of future non-driving days and get their friends to join the movement.
Make plans to clear your day of all driving responsibilities on Saturday, April 23rd. Take a break from the hustle bustle of everyday life. Dust off your bikes and put air in the tires. Take the family on a bike trip or walk to your favorite beaches. Too far to walk? Take public transportation!
Then, go to www.WhenNotIf.org to enter your stats for Logan. He’ll tally this up and calculate how much CO2 we prevented from entering the atmosphere! Help Logan; help civilization as we know it. Thanks for doing your part!
Claim to be a Climate-Change Believer? Prove it! Don’t drive your car on Saturday, April 23rd!
Back in October 2015 when Logan Conover (my 17-years-old client) learned that there was 398 ppm of CO2 in the atmosphere, he was shocked. Then, when we checked CO2 levels last week and found that we reached 404 ppm in just 4 months, when we thought it would be at least 4 years, he was speechless. After all, we all know that the earth can’t handle more than 350ppm without causing havoc and heading us all into a downward spiral. But Logan actually did something about it. He started an organization called WHEN, NOT IF… to give everyone a relatively simple way to reduce their contribution to the 7.5 billion lbs. of CO2 that we spew into the atmosphere every day. Logan is advocating to get everyone toNOT DRIVE THEIR GAS-GUZZLING CARS on Saturday, April 23rd.
You can do this! Do your shopping and errands on Friday or Sunday. If you need to go somewhere, ride your bike, take a bus or train, or walk! You can even carpool with someone else! Sure, this may be a little inconvenient, but in the long term, it certainly is more convenient than, say, not having shelter because of a natural disaster that was caused by Climate Change (tidal waves, tornadoes, hurricanes, droughts, and more). So be proactive and make your plans to not drive on Saturday.
The next most important thing for you to do is to LOG IN THE MILES YOU DIDN’T DRIVE ON SATURDAY! Yup! Clever Logan created his own website for WHEN, NOT IF… and he even did the math calculations to determine how much CO2 we won’t be spewing into the atmosphere on Saturday. It’s easy to do. Just go to his website at www.WhenNotIf.org and click on the “Enter Your Data” page. Just enter how many miles you normally drive per day (approximate is fine) and how many miles per gallon your car gets. That’s it! He’s created the formula to add up your total and add it to his running tally. Can you believe that one gallon of gasoline equals 20 lbs. of CO2? Yikes!
So put this on your calendar! And please share this blog with your friends, family and co-workers! Get everyone to not drive on Saturday, April 23rd, and remind them to report their participation on Logan’s website: www.WhenNotIf.org! Logan will tally up the April 23rdnumbers to determine how much CO2 we prevented from contributing to further damaging climate change!
Logan plans to expand this drive every month! With one billion cars on the road today (worldwide), the impact will be significant and it will hurt the oil industry using the only language they understand: MONEY!
Every day I hear more evidence about our planet warming up and that it is caused by us – humans. NASA scientists are concerned about a growing crack in the Nansen Ice Shelf that may break off and create a massive iceberg the size of Manhattan. Over the past 2 years, this small crack has spread across the entire width of the shelf, which is about 20 miles wide and 30 miles long. The rate of ice shelf loss has been speeding up according to ScienceAlert. Over the past 20 years, Antarctica’s Larsen ice shelves have lost about 75 percent of its land mass.
Others may argue that the Nansen Ice Shelf is just 0.1% of Antarctica’s ice shelf coverage, NASA researchers want to continue studying why ice shelves collapse and how to prevent it. I’m worried that massive ice shelves are breaking away in Antarctica and Greenland/Arctic regions. We need to drastically – and quickly – reduce our CO2 levels in order to stop inevitable catastrophic disasters in the near future.[Read More]
I love this! Finally, 21 kids may have the opportunity to force the government to stop the devastation that Climate Change has and will continue to wreak on earth.
It’s about time!
Dr. James Hansen, an adjunct professor at Columbia University and former director of NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies is the guardian of “future generations” and his granddaughter is the plaintiff in the case. It’s about time that kids step up to the plate.
Julia Olson, lawyer with Wild Earth Advocates and Our Children’s Trust, says that the government has continued actions to “permit, authorize and subsidize fossil fuel extraction, development, consumption and exportation.”
The government is not just sitting by and doing nothing, they are actually doing everything to cause this problem.[Source]