Carbon Farming: The Tree Solution

“We need two billion hectares of trees to disconnect all present and past CO₂ produced through fossil fuels. The total investment to clean the air from the CO₂ pollution is therefore five trillion USD. This investment is smaller than the costs of saving the bank system since 2008. Both USA and Europe spent over six trillion USD to save their banks.”

Read more: The Treesolution, Pieter Hoff.

Image: A forest in Montenegro. Credit: Snežana Trifunović.

Low-tech Links #1

This is a new series of posts, collecting links to all kinds of low-tech stuff — often sent in by readers. Ideally, I would write a bit more about each link, but unfortunately there’s no time for that.

The Complication of Leisure

During the past two decades there has been a disturbing trend in American sports, a trend in which our “toys” have evolved from the simple to the intricate. No matter whether it’s boating, bicycling, skiing or backpacking, the goal seems to be the same: to improve the performance and efficiency of the equipment. Outdoor equipment today becomes “obsolete” after only a season or two, made so by the constant introduction of newer, more sophisticated models.

Manufacturers of recreational equipment — who have the most to gain from the complication of leisure — spend millions to promote “new, improved” products. And at what cost to our sense of fun and play? We seem so bent on results — on being “successful” — that we often forget why we took up a particular sport in the first place. In other words, play is beginning to look more and more like work. And, at the same time, the price tag on our toys has gone sky-high.

One of the primary benefits of using traditional archery gear — aside from saving lots of money, especially when you make your own gear — is that it promotes a sense of fun and encourages a carefree spirit. Archers who go traditional always seem to agree that once they make the switch, archery is once again exciting.

Quoted from the introduction to “The Traditional Bower’s Bible, Volume One“, Steve Allely, Tim Baker, Paul Comstock, Jim Hamm, Ron Hardcastle, Jay Massey, and John Strunk, 1992. Image by Clay Hayes.

Dreaming of Electric Airplanes

“The ability to fly away to nearly anywhere in the world on holiday or on business within a day is cherished by many who are in the fortunate position to be able to do so. The prospect of electrification making a meaningful reduction in the environmental impact of aviation (which remains a blind spot for many politicians and citizens alike) is therefore a tantalising one.”

“In this report we make an attempt to evaluate the potential for electric aircraft to contribute to reductions in the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions. Reliable global data is difficult to obtain, but the UK keeps particularly high quality records of air traffic movements. Using data covering the UK aviation industry we assess what level of performance electric aircraft would need to attain in order to have a meaningful impact on the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions in the UK.”

Read the report: Electric dreams: the carbon mitigation potential of electric aviation in the UK air travel market, Fellow Travelers, December 2018. Image: NASA’s N3-X concept.

Map of Night Trains in Europe, 2019

Updated map of night trains in Europe for the December 2018 timetable change. Source & XL version: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Map_night_trains_in_europe.png.

Via Back on Track Train Coalition.

No Tech Reader #22