Overtone writes: Rapidly Melting Permafrost Threatens a Little Heralded
By Mark Goldes, Chairman
& CEO, Magnetic Power Inc.
All of us, you and I, our children, and grandchildren, are facing the
biggest challenge that has ever confronted humanity: the possible extinction of
most, if not all, human life on earth by 2050, due to the melting of the Arctic
permafrost. This is an unrecognized global emergency. Crucial global warming
"tipping points", highlighted by the world scientific community, have
already been passed, with possibly irreversible consequences.
No matter what we do, some of Global Warming's worst predicted
likely be avoided. We can anticipate more destructive hurricanes.
The eventual flooding of major cities such as New York, Miami and
London is threatened. Large areas of Florida, and numerous low-lying
countries, are facing permanent
inundation due to increasing sea levels and melting glaciers and ice
Shortfalls and rising prices for oil and gas are a parallel, much more
problem. Terrorism, Iraq and Iran preoccupy the media. But all these
events pale before the looming catastrophe. Melting permafrost is already undermining a railroad under construction in NW
China. Unless we quickly
implement actions suited to the threat posed by runaway methane release
the Arctic permafrost melt, we may be sleepwalking toward the
life on Earth.
More than a year ago, in an article readily available on the web, Geologist
John Atcheson described what he called a "Ticking Time Bomb," an
almost unrecognized dire threat to life on our planet. Huge quantities of
methane, a greenhouse gas over 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide, are
buried in the Arctic tundra. This permafrost contains 3,000 times more methane
than does the atmosphere. Twice before in the history of our planet, 251 million
and 55 million years ago, runaway methane almost eliminated life on earth. In
Atcheson's opinion, based on such prior events, a rise in global temperatures
of a mere 11 degrees Fahrenheit, (6 degrees C), would likely catalyze this unstoppable
catastrophe, releasing these gases into the sky. The ensuing rise in
temperatures would release yet more methane, heating the Earth and seas
further, and so on. The 400 gigatons of methane locked in the arctic tundra is
enough to start a cataclysmic chain reaction.
This would begin an unstoppable release of these greenhouse gases.
The first results from the most comprehensive study of greenhouse warming ever
attempted (a massive effort designed by Oxford University scientists) indicates that average temperatures could
easily rise beyond 6 degrees C in a few decades, unless extremely deep cuts in
greenhouse gas emissions are made very rapidly. The study's chief scientist,
David Stainforth, said: "Our experiment shows that increased levels of
greenhouse gases could have a much greater impact on climate than previously
thought." Another participating scientist said: "Even today's levels
of greenhouse gases could already be dangerously high." Team member Myles
Allen, an Oxford physicist, says, "The danger zone is not something in
the future. We're in it now."
Carbon is the problem. We must rapidly replace technology that produces Carbon
Dioxide with systems that do not. Alternatives include wind, solar, and a
handful of other existing renewable systems, as well as a handful of revolutionary
new, thus far severely underfinanced, technologies. Uranium fueled nuclear plants have numerous problems
including long time delays, and are, therefore, not as desirable as alternative
Fuel burning vehicles and power
plants are the biggest challenge. Almost
every variety of fuel, when burned, contributes dangerous carbon dioxide,
heating our atmosphere.
Ironically, had more scientists
been open to examining the remarkable evidence available to them, the
might never have needed oil. Back in 1874, Wesley Gary, a Pennsylvania
inventor, ignored scientific dogma and created the first
of his fuel-free magnetic motors. Textbook science then, as now, denied
engines are possible. But Harvard and MIT professors visited Gary and
confirmed that he had done precisely what he claimed. Two U.S.
Patents were issued, and one in Canada. In 1879, Harper's Magazine
carried an article about his
work, ending with the comment that it might one day power a locomotive.
wheeled automobile was invented six years later.
Then, in 1925, a German inventor named Hans Coler, demonstrated a small,
magnetic generator without moving parts. In 1927, Nobel Laureate Werner
Heisenberg stated: "I believe it is possible to utilize magnetism as an
energy source." A decade later, Coler produced 6,000 watts of electricity
from a magnetic generator, and Hitler's admiralty supported his efforts. At the
time, there was no comprehension as to the source of the energy. Coler wrote:
"These fundamental researches have made the first real and large breach in
the citadel of present scientific belief." His laboratory was destroyed by
an Allied bomb near the end of WWII. Coler survived, and cooperated with
British Intelligence, which published a Classified Report in 1946 about this
astonishing achievement. The Report was declassified in 1979. It is available on the Internet.
Laboratory progress in such
systems is currently confirming these claims, and new, fuel-free, magnetic
systems are emerging. They appear capable
of providing the necessary power. Given
sufficient support, there is reason to believe they can be manufactured in a
multitude of variations, in huge quantities, rapidly enough to avoid the
A crash program needs to be implemented to speed this, as well as all other,
urgently needed breakthrough technology, to market. Some systems already
promise to replace car engines. Others
may scale to a megawatt, or more. Capable manufacturers must be enlisted in
this effort everywhere on the planet. The massive production of arms achieved
during World War II demonstrated that industry can respond to emergencies in ways
hardly imagined prior to a crisis. The necessary worldwide manufacturing
capability exists. It must be utilized
rapidly, and to the fullest extent practical.
Every hour of every day counts. The time for urgent action is now. Survival
demands that we open our minds to unprecedented possibilities and act,
intelligently, but without delay.
© 2006 Magnetic Power Inc. All rights