Rumor has it that President Trump was wondering if exploding a nuclear bomb in a hurricane would dissipate it. After all, he has said what good is it to have nuclear weapons if you don’t use them? Experts, however, say this is a really bad idea. For starters, hurricanes thrive off heat, and adding the heat of a nuclear explosion to the hurricane could actually make it stronger. Not to mention the radiation fallout. So apparently nuclear blasting a hurricane is off the table.
Which leads me to another thing: the hubris of thinking there is a technological fix to any problem. I’ve heard some geniuses are working on machines that would suck carbon out of the air. What they are and exactly how they would work, I don’t know. In the meantime, I think we’d better stop burning the Amazon and plant more trees. And while we are at it let us agree that human caused climate change is real and the result is more wild fires, droughts, floods, and yes, intense hurricanes. There is no easy technological fix. What it would require is an unprecedented collaboration among all nations to move quickly to renewable energy and drastically reduce fossil fuel burning. It would certainly help if the current administration would take its head out of the sand and provide some leadership towards that end. Good luck with that. It may already be too late.
In Northern Minnesota there is a raging debate over purposed copper-nickel mining. Giant international interests want to mine there, saying it will create jobs and they can do it without damaging the environment. Environmentalists say the industry has a history of polluting, and mining tailings that leech toxic waste will inevitably wash into the pristine waters of the area. Proponents say we need copper and nickel to build a battery-hungry future to move away from fossil fuels. Opponents say go get the metals from somewhere else and stay out of our back yard. Politicians equivocate.
There may be rare metals on the moon. I’ll bet down the dark halls of some secret government building there are geniuses working on how to extract them, and the technology needed to mine the moon. Other geniuses are working on the cost, certain to be a large number. Maybe it is time to stop fantasizing about technological fixes and start learning to live on our unique planet together.