Posts Tagged ‘terraforming’

One of the scientists at Penn State has come up with a rather amazing new material that soaks up oil spills and turns the oil into a solid that can be scooped up and processed in the same way as crude oil.  I saw a video that the media person in his academic department had posted and asked if I could  write a summary, which I’ve posted  to our website along with two videos:  http://www.mri.psu.edu/.

If it works in practice as described, this invention could have saved a lot of grief for the Gulf Coast environment and people’s livelihoods.  The new report on the Gulf oil spill that came out this week suggests we are not prepared for the next inevitable oil spill disaster, so let’s hope Professor Chung’s invention is as good as claimed.

There are a lot of ways in which we count on modern science to save us from ourselves.  Climate change comes to mind first. Rather than make the hard choices to stabilize  CO2 at some reasonable level, we go on as usual and count on engineers to put mirrors in space or iron in the oceans on some massive scale to rescue us from our own folly.  In science fiction they call this terraforming, only usually it’s some other planet they are trying to make habitable for humans, not Earth itself. Let’s hope there are a lot of savvy engineers and scientists like Mike Chung working on making the future Earth fit for human habitation.



Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: