Tag Archives: Bill Butterworth

Carbon Capture – simply under our noses

Carbon Capture without giving us the Oxygen back would be a disaster.

It is in the nature of humans to look for the latest gismo, preferably with bells and whistles and girls dancing.  Therefore the perceived “holy grail” of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is to take the flue gases from burning oil, coal and lignite, and put it down a deep hole and leave it there.  So far, nobody has done this on a commercial scale successfully.  If people don’t like shale gas exploration and the pressures used in “fracking”, CCS might be worse with the pressures involved and potential for catastrophic leakage.  There is also a problem in that this route locks up the Oxygen and some living creatures might find that a bit difficult.

So, what answer is under our noses?  It is called the green leaf.  Green growth takes Carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and gives us the Oxygen back.  Only farmers and foresters can do this.  So, support them and stop building on land that will support green leaves.  The alternative, according to the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) is likely to be catastrophic.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd, 15 December ‘18

 

 

 

Reversing Global Warming for Profit

The summary of a new, detailed EU study is;

“Substantial health gains can be achieved from taking action to prevent climate change, independent of any future reductions in damages due to climate change. Some countries, such as China and India, could justify stringent mitigation efforts just by including health co-benefits in the analysis. Our results also suggest that the statement in the Paris Agreement to pursue efforts to limit temperature increase to 1·5°C could make economic sense in some scenarios and countries if health co-benefits are taken into account.”

What this means is that we will all be healthier and spend less on health if we sort out global warming – starting right now.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd  9th December 18

And, published in 2009 by MX Publishing;

Compost, Trump and Concrete

A fundamental component of reversing climate change is to recycle a wide range of urban wastes to farm land,

 

Less concrete, more compost, less mineral fertiliser

A serious problem with populist utterances (of which Donald Trump is the best example, maybe ever) is that they tend to over-simplify answers to complex problems.  I refer specifically to climate change. What Trump does is appeal to the masses about protection of jobs and, in the short run, he may have a point, especially if he chooses to ignore the jobs being created in renewable energy. (In the USA, there are now more jobs in solar than in coal production.)  If Mr Trump and others want a quick fix for climate change, recycling waste to farm and forestry land and locking up the Carbon as organic matter would be a good start. If the UK Environment Agency could also revert to previous regulation on composting which would allow a farm to start composting without spending £ hundreds of thousands on concrete, that would help the environment, too. (Concrete takes a lot of energy to manufacture and put in place and with good practice, concrete is not actually necessary for large scale composting.  However, it will allow faster work with heavier equipment and a wider range of input materials.)

For more on “Only farmers can do this”, see “Survival”.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd. 5th December 2018

Rainfall down 46%

Suffolk now. Just wait.

The latest UK government climate change predictions, UKCP18, found British summer temperatures could be 5.4°C higher by 2070 while average rainfall is expected to fall by 47% over the same period. Sea level rise is likely to be around 1.15m in the Thames Estuary by 2100.

Recycling most urban wastes to farm land, reducing the use of manufactured fertilisers, particularly Nitrogen (manufacture has s very high energy cost) can raise yields, reduces irrigation need, reduce crop disease and lock up Carbon.  And the green leaf takes Carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and gives us Oxygen back! Only farming can do this.  Far from being difficult with regulation, our children will not forgive us if we do not actively promote and enable this.  No just nice words, real action to enable is necessary.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd  30 November 2018

P.S.  Also see “Reversing Global Warming for Profit”, published by MX Publishing.

Cities must go up, not outwards

This building land was, a few months before this picture was taken, productive farmland. Instead, we will import a bit more food and have a bit more national debt which our kids will probably fail to pay off.

Compact cities produce fewer emissions than urban sprawl because they tend to offer better access to public transit and cycling and walking paths, have greater energy efficiency, have lower environmental costs for infrastructure, and allow for more green spaces. It is more expensive to construct and operate infrastructure that services sprawling communities than it is to serve compact ones (i.e. built upwards). According to the World Recourse Institute, one estimate suggests that a more compact approach to urban growth could reduce global infrastructure capital requirements by more than $3 trillion between 2015 and 2030.  Building upwards can be socially difficult and unsafe but, with good design, it can also be socially beneficial and safer than urban sprawl/

Also, productive farm land is shrinking.  Common sense inescapably says stop building on farm land, build upwards and limit population growth.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd, 22 November 18

 

Double Whammy from composting urban wastes

If the UK Environment Agency is serious about the environment, then it needs to ensure nearly every UK farm has a compost opertion, not on concrete.

 

The new blockbuster climate report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the United Nations makes two things startlingly clear. First, we must massively accelerate the decarbonisation of the global economy. This will require rapid system-wide transformations in the way we build our cities, generate energy, grow food and manufacture goods. And second, we must capture carbon right out of the air.

What composting of urban wastes does is to reduce and eliminate the use of mineral fertilisers. (One tonne of N made in a modern USA factory typically consumes 21,000 kWh of electricity – which was probably generated using an engine burning fossilised fuel, which produced Carbon dioxide.)  Farming also grows crops with green leaves – which take Carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.  These two activities, composting urban wastes and growing green leaves, lock up organic Carbon and reduce the release of the GHG (Green House Gas) Carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.  What’s more, crops grown on high Carbon soils need less irrigation, less pesticide sprays, lodge less and yield more.  Only farming can do this.

Bill Butterworth,   Land Research Ltd   28 October 18

Drug residues in rivers

Small amounts of drugs in our drinking water, built up through the food chain, may explain many a malaise of our society, including transgender growth, depression and many others. Maybe not? Nevertheless, it can;t be good.

Researchers in Australia have detected 69 medications in small aquatic creatures in rivers. The residues identified included antidepressants, painkillers, antibiotics, and blood pressure-lowering agents. The highest levels were found in insects near wastewater plants, but low levels were also detected in those from more pristine areas.  There is a food-chain effect with river-borne pharmaceuticals most likely to accumulate in flies and beetles while they are underwater larvae, then transfer to spiders that feed on them after they emerge as adults, and, of course, on upwards into their predators like fish, platypuses, birds, bats and frogs.  Eventually, no doubt, into humans.

How to stop this?  Well, firstly to reduce the use of drugs to what is strictly necessary.  Secondly, by increasing aerobic digestion in waste water treatment works.  Carefully controlled composting can crack these molecules.  There are now new digestion processes developing.  On the scale required, only farmers can do this.

 

For more detail, go to https://www.newscientist.com/article/2184420-more-than-60-prescription-drugs-are-getting-into-river-foodchains/

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd. 11 November ‘18