Author Topic: History repeating itself...  (Read 683 times)

Socrates

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 564
  • Karma: +13/-0
  • literally, I've seen the end in a vision; DEADLY!
    • TEOMCROTE
History repeating itself...
« on: February 02, 2017, 10:54:12 AM »
The Role of Coal...

From Cyprus to Egypt to the Easter Islands, if we're to believe Jared Diamond's book Collapse, people have been bungling about and laying waste to their own environment as long as known history goes back. Mainly, it's about cutting down trees.
Trees were burnt to turn ore into metal, trees were cut down to turn forest into field.

One part coal and one part iron ore will get you iron; how to get coal? You burn wood in an oxygen-deprived environment. Likely, people/economies/political powers on Cyprus demanded that all available trees were cut down to service the production of copper. After all, copper was the source of wealth and what use are trees that grow everywhere? However, cutting down all trees turned Cyprus into a desert. A wealthy desert, at least for the elite in charge of selling copper all over the Mediterranean, but a desert no less.

Later, in England, coal meant that there was enough energy to fuel mines and ore reduction, i.e. iron production. Coal and our modern way of life, as well as our history, go hand-in-hand.
Could things have gone differently? Well, the importance of trees might have been respected and forests might have been replanted as quickly as they were cut down. But none of that happened.

Coal is wonderful but so are trees. Again, the adage applies...

You are defined as much by what you refuse to destroy
as by what you choose to create
survival database
location, civilisation reboot, PERMACULTURE, postcataclysmic soil, Growing Soil 1.01

Yowbarb

  • Administrator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 30413
  • Karma: +25/-0
  • Reaching For Survival
Re: History repeating itself...
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2017, 11:07:52 AM »
Socrates, I certainly agree with your sentiments.

Socrates

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 564
  • Karma: +13/-0
  • literally, I've seen the end in a vision; DEADLY!
    • TEOMCROTE
Re: History repeating itself...
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2017, 12:50:31 PM »
should we doubt that previous generations similarly refused to take the threat to their world seriously? Just look around you; see how people are so caught up in day-to-day survival that actual survival does not seem to register. Culture, politics, peer pressure... whatever the cause for people personally, in the end all that matters is that a generation en masse refuses to take cyclical destruction at face value.

This is the real threat we all face personally: our very world is itself suicidal and threatens to pull us down with it into oblivion. All our personal relationships, our upbringing, our entire life's experience is based on suicidal tendencies that have been plaguing mankind for millennia.
The fifth column is far more menacing than any 'enemy at the gate'.
survival database
location, civilisation reboot, PERMACULTURE, postcataclysmic soil, Growing Soil 1.01

ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1770
  • Karma: +30/-0
Re: History repeating itself...
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2017, 03:15:58 PM »
should we doubt that previous generations similarly refused to take the threat to their world seriously? Just look around you; see how people are so caught up in day-to-day survival that actual survival does not seem to register. Culture, politics, peer pressure... whatever the cause for people personally, in the end all that matters is that a generation en masse refuses to take cyclical destruction at face value.

This is the real threat we all face personally: our very world is itself suicidal and threatens to pull us down with it into oblivion. All our personal relationships, our upbringing, our entire life's experience is based on suicidal tendencies that have been plaguing mankind for millennia.
The fifth column is far more menacing than any 'enemy at the gate'.
Few scientists will/would agree with you, but then they are comfy in their ivory tower existence.  But a few brave souls have ventured outside their enclave, including Tim Garrett and Guy McPherson:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ZXeatceROM
Dr. Guy McPherson Talks About the Most Important Paper on Climate Change


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zv4aIXhxT1k
Most Important Peer Reviewed Paper on Climate Change *Tim Garrett*  Civilization is a Heat Engine

(52 min)

And yes, we are our own worst enemy.

Jimfarmer

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6198
  • Karma: +23/-2
Re: History repeating itself...
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2017, 03:19:04 PM »
Quote
One part coal and one part iron ore will get you iron; how to get coal? You burn wood in an oxygen-deprived environment.

Coal or charcoal?

Socrates

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 564
  • Karma: +13/-0
  • literally, I've seen the end in a vision; DEADLY!
    • TEOMCROTE
coal v charcoal
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2017, 07:50:28 PM »
good point; i actually don't even have an idea of how they relate calorically or in density.
It's about the carbon so i'm not sure if the source matters. 'Biochar', coal, charcoal; i'm not sure it matters or how any differences might effect their role in reduction of metal in ore.
survival database
location, civilisation reboot, PERMACULTURE, postcataclysmic soil, Growing Soil 1.01

ilinda

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1770
  • Karma: +30/-0
Re: History repeating itself...
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2017, 01:23:48 PM »
Quote
One part coal and one part iron ore will get you iron; how to get coal? You burn wood in an oxygen-deprived environment.

Coal or charcoal?
Jim, I interpret your question as thinking perhaps when Socrates asked, "how to get coal?", he meant, "How to get charcoal?", because you do get charcoal when you burn wood in an oxygen-deprived environment.