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Newly Discovered Greenhouse Gas Is 7,000 Times More Powerful Than CO2

timothy posted about 9 months ago | from the do-dilute-it-with-water dept.

Earth 216

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Suzanne Goldenberg writes at The Guardian that researchers at the University of Toronto's department of chemistry have identified a newly discovered greenhouse gas, perfluorotributylamine (PFTBA), in use by the electrical industry since the mid-20th century, that is 7,000 times more powerful than carbon dioxide at warming the Earth. 'We claim that PFTBA has the highest radiative efficiency of any molecule detected in the atmosphere to date,' says Angela Hong. Concentrations of PFTBA in the atmosphere are low – 0.18 parts per trillion in the Toronto area – compared to 400 parts per million for carbon dioxide but PFTBA is long-lived. There are no known processes that would destroy or remove PFTBA in the lower atmosphere so it has a very long lifetime, possibly hundreds of years, and is destroyed in the upper atmosphere. 'It is so much less than carbon dioxide, but the important thing is on a per molecule basis, it is very very effective in interacting with heat from the Earth.' PFTBA has been in use since the mid-20th century for various applications in electrical equipment, such as transistors and capacitors. 'PFTBA is just one example of an industrial chemical that is produced but there are no policies that control its production, use or emission,' says Hong. 'It is not being regulated by any type of climate policy.'"

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Meanwhile in russia (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670459)

millions of tons of methane are being dumped into the atmosphere thanks to Gazoprom's leaking pipelines.... Yet no one gives a hoot because Russia is good while America and their SUVs continue to be targeted by the rest of the jealous world....

Re:Meanwhile in russia (3, Interesting)

i kan reed (749298) | about 9 months ago | (#45670517)

Fracking wells here in the U.S. have similar leakage rates. Methane is bad news, and a huge chunk of pre-life fireball era earth's atmosphere was methane.

Re:Meanwhile in russia (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 9 months ago | (#45670593)

Oooooooops, I accidentally implied that methane caused that. That makes me look really dumb. Please be aware that this was just poor communication, not poor understanding.

Billions are larger than millions (4, Informative)

Geoffrey.landis (926948) | about 9 months ago | (#45670791)

millions of tons of methane are being dumped into the atmosphere thanks to Gazoprom's leaking pipelines....

That is undoubtably true. However, billions of tons of carbon dioxide are released into the atmosphere.

Yet no one gives a hoot because Russia is good while America and their SUVs continue to be targeted by the rest of the jealous world....

While methane does have a higher infrared cross-section than carbon dioxide, it is not that much higher; it also has a much shorter atmospheric lifetime. While it's useful to address both, it makes to address more attention on the larger factor, and not the smaller.

Re:Billions are larger than millions (4, Informative)

Bengie (1121981) | about 9 months ago | (#45671023)

While methane does have a higher infrared cross-section than carbon dioxide, it is not that much higher;

http://epa.gov/climatechange/ghgemissions/gases/ch4.html [epa.gov] Methane is about 20x more effective than CO2 at greenhouse warming over the period of 100 years. I personally think a 20x increase is more than "not much higher".

Re:Billions are larger than millions (3, Interesting)

Culture20 (968837) | about 9 months ago | (#45671121)

But the initial comparison was between millions and billions. While methane may be 20x more effective, it's not 1000x more effective.

Re:Billions are larger than millions (5, Informative)

Geoffrey.landis (926948) | about 9 months ago | (#45671521)

I personally think a 20x increase is more than "not much higher".

First, my statement was that it is not that much higher. Eliminating the word "that" changes the meaning of the sentence, since the the topic was the difference between millions and billions.

Second, the infrared absorption of methane is about 21 times higher than that of carbon dioxide. However, the atmospheric lifetime is 12 years, compared to estimates of between 50 and 200 years for carbon dioxide. So it is not true that "methane is about 20x more effective than CO2 at greenhouse warming over the period of 100 years". It is about 20x more effective than CO2 over a period of about 12 years, but drops exponentially to zero after that. (That's expressed per molecule. It's higher if expressed per unit mass emitted, since methane is so much lighter than carbon dioxide.)

Re:Meanwhile in russia (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670853)

That makes me look really dumb.

No, you do that all on your own. Stand next to a nigger if you want the contrast to work the other way and make you look smart! Niggers have little interest in education (unlike Asians that do well for themselves) and if you ever think anything is wrong with that, and notice the problems it causes, you're a racist.

I suspect "kdawson" is a nigger but i do not know. It would explain the terrible job performance as "editor" and his constant failure to proofread, use a spelling checker, or post with any skill in the first place. It would also explain why his incompetence is routinely tolerated by his employer, thanks to affirmative action and race quotas. In any case he is a grown man who writes at about a fourth-grade level, something that is also common among niggers.

Now a racist thinks niggers are inherently this way and could not choose differently. I am not a racist. I expect niggers to make better choices. In short I expect them to stop being niggers and the easiest way to do that is to shun this gangsta-thug bullshit. I call them niggers as long as the majority of them fail to do so. I will stop calling them niggers if that changes. It is not out of hatred and I believe this is fair.

Re:Meanwhile in russia (1)

camperdave (969942) | about 9 months ago | (#45671075)

this was just poor communication, not poor understanding.

Amusing, given your name.

Re:Meanwhile in russia (2)

somersault (912633) | about 9 months ago | (#45671263)

hey the guy said he can reed, not ryt

Re:Meanwhile in russia (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670769)

What's important is: I took a great big shit this morning. It was a large lincoln log about 16 inches long. The end that came out first was a much darker brown and more brittle than the rest of the log, which was a light tan color and much softer in consistency and texture. It bent in half but did not quite break when flushed but it did have to bend owing to its large size. Thankfully there were no associated dingleberries tangled up in my ass hair, for those are nasty and annoying to deal with. The smell was bad but not nearly as bad as other great big shits I have made.

All in all, I give this one a 7 out of 10. Definitely a satisfying experience but nothing special. *plop* ahhhh

Re:Meanwhile in russia (1, Funny)

Bartles (1198017) | about 9 months ago | (#45671505)

Do you know what else has high leakage rates, and are a much higher source of methane emissions? Lakes, ponds, marshes, and swamps. Do you know what higher atmospheric levels of carbon and methane, and rising global temperatures lead to? More lakes, ponds, marshes, and swamps. If we want to get real serious about methane emissions, the best thing we could do is drain all the wetlands.

Re:Meanwhile in russia (2)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | about 9 months ago | (#45671601)

Prior to the oxygen crisis, there was plenty of life, as well.

Re:Meanwhile in russia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671013)

And if temperatures in Russia rise just by an otherwise unimpressive amount, massive amounts of additional methane will evaporate from under the previously frozen tundras. We're so fucked.

Ah, that would be your fault (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671131)

Not the lack of complaints, nor the leaking.

What is your fault is not knowing all the complaints of that environmental disaster that happen. Which is because you ignore all that "eco greenie hippie eco-facist greenpeace shit". Therefore you don't follow it.

Pop along to the .ru version of the greenpeace site, dear, and learn how wrong you are.

Oh, you won't, will you, because your complaint isn't that Russia is bad, it's that you want a "LOOK! SQUIRRELS!" moment to jump to.

Re:Meanwhile in russia (4, Insightful)

daem0n1x (748565) | about 9 months ago | (#45671145)

Yet no one gives a hoot because Russia is good while America and their SUVs continue to be targeted by the rest of the jealous world....

"Russia is good"? Who the fuck said that? Talk about paranoia...

Concentrations (4, Interesting)

i kan reed (749298) | about 9 months ago | (#45670501)

Sure, lots of things have a stronger absorption profile than CO2, CH4 is one, but if it even has a hundred thousandth of the emission levels of carbon dioxide, I'd be pretty surprised.

Still: fix the easy things first.

Re:Concentrations (4, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 9 months ago | (#45670551)

Exactly. The current levels are .18 parts per TRILLION, as compared to 400 parts per MILLION for CO2. Convert the CO2 concentration to the same units and you're comparing 0.18 for the new one to 400,000,000 for carbon dioxide. So, even if it does have an effect of 7000 times, that still only makes it comparable to 1260 vs. 400,000,000.

Re:Concentrations (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671171)

Yeah seems like another of those useless research for the sake of meeting some publishing quota and/or to get grant money.

Sad state of science: http://science.slashdot.org/story/13/12/07/1546212/physicist-peter-higgs-no-university-would-employ-me-today [slashdot.org]

BTW I recently saw some research from UCLA that claimed Subway was as unhealthy as McDonalds based mainly on the calorie and sodium content (not nutrient content!): http://www.uclahealth.org/body.cfm?id=561&action=detail&ref=2172 [uclahealth.org]
I don't know about the subways they tested, but the ones I've been to put a lot more vegetables by default than found on a typical McD burger. Vegetables are healthier than french fries right?

Maybe they'll follow that up with a slightly more accurate paper/research, and so on until near retirement the researchers will finally "figure" out the truth.

Re:Concentrations (-1)

WhiplashII (542766) | about 9 months ago | (#45671333)

Um, just a minute - let's insert some math here:

0.18 trillion = 180 billion equivalent units
400 million *7000 = 2800 billion equivalent units

So, if the article summary is correct over 90% of any anthro warming is not due to CO2, proving the skeptics correct.

I strongly doubt that the article is correct.

Re:Concentrations (1, Informative)

CensorshipDonkey (1108755) | about 9 months ago | (#45671415)

Your math is idiotically incorrect. 0.18 parts per trillion = 0.00018 parts per billion. 0.18 parts per trillion * 7000 = 400 parts per billion, or 0.4 parts per million.

Re:Concentrations (1)

Antipater (2053064) | about 9 months ago | (#45671467)

A part per trillion is not equal to 1000 parts per billion. A part per trillion is 1/1000 parts per billion. You're doing it backwards.

Re:Concentrations (4, Interesting)

strech (167037) | about 9 months ago | (#45671567)

Did you just randomly combine numbers? Your math has nothing to do with anything.

.18 parts per trillion = 0.00000018 parts per million for PFTBA, vs 400 parts per million for CO2.

Even at 7000 times stronger for PFTBA, the PFTBA would be equivalent to
.00000018 * 7000 = 0.00126 parts per million of carbon, which is
.00126 / 400 = 0.00000315, or 0.000315 percent of the effect of the CO2.
 

Re:Concentrations (4, Insightful)

jonnythan (79727) | about 9 months ago | (#45670581)

Well, there are no known processes by which PFTBA is broken down or removed from the atmosphere. So the effect is basically cumulative.

The other thing is that atmospheric concentrations are already in the 0.18 ppt range. CO2 is about 2,000,000 times more concentrated at the moment, at least in the Toronto area. This means that CO2 still has around 300 times the impact [ballpark figure based on numbers in the article], but if we keep up PTFBA production it could potentially start to be significant.

"The easy things first" makes sense, but "easy things" and "hard things" aren't always mutually exclusive. And frankly, PTFBA reduction is probably much closer to "easy thing" than CO2 reduction is.

Re:Concentrations (1)

jonnythan (79727) | about 9 months ago | (#45670611)

Math fail. Should be:

CO2 is 2,000,000,000 more concentrated so it has 300,000 times the impact. Point still stands though, to some degree.

Re:Concentrations (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670737)

However you have to compare not the absolute concentration, but the man-made deviation. Without any CO2, earth would be too cold for life.

Re:Concentrations (1)

jonnythan (79727) | about 9 months ago | (#45670851)

Good point. When you consider that, the proportion of anthropogenic warming accounted for by PFTBA would be higher.

Re:Concentrations (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670665)

Aren't you missing some zero's?
http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=0.18*7000+parts+per+trillion+compared+to+400+parts+per+million

Currently in Toronto area it has about 1/300,000th of the warming effect of the CO2. Unless you're making some deeper point that I've missed...

Re:Concentrations (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670781)

Greenhouse effect contribution levels:

Water vapor and clouds: 36–72%
Carbon dioxide: 9 – 26%
Methane: 4–9%
Ozone 3–7%
   

Re:Concentrations (1)

tie_guy_matt (176397) | about 9 months ago | (#45670919)

Also people take absorption and emissivity measurements of the atmosphere in the long and mid wave IR all of the time. If this molecule really contributed that much I would think someone else would have noticed it by now. Also doesn't sound like this is new. I would have thought someone would have already mapped the vibrational and rotational energy levels of this molecule by now. I guess they are the first ones to just put two and two together and say that if the concentrations got really big then this would be a big deal. But like you said there are a lot of molecules that would be a big deal if their concentrations got big. Water, having an odd mickey mouse shape, has a lot more absorption lines through the IR than co2 does. But the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere is highly variable.

Orders of magnitude (5, Insightful)

thebes (663586) | about 9 months ago | (#45670513)

Obligatory xckd
http://xkcd.com/558/ [xkcd.com]

0.18 PPT vs 400 PPM
0.18 PPT vs 400000000 PPM
0.00000018 PPM vs 400 PPM

One of them is deceptive, the other 2 provide proper context. Even being 7000 times more powerful doesn't make up for 6 orders of magnitude in concentration.

Re:Orders of magnitude (2)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 9 months ago | (#45670579)

This is all that needs to be said about this article.

AGW Movement FAIL (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671129)

Models Fail
Warming Fail
Politics Fail
C02 Correlation Fail

We are not surprised that the Alarmists are desperately searching for a new bogyman.

Re:Orders of magnitude (2)

thebes (663586) | about 9 months ago | (#45670585)

400000000 PPM should have said 400000000 PPT

Re:Orders of magnitude (0, Flamebait)

Pino Grigio (2232472) | about 9 months ago | (#45670631)

For godssake don't give the game away. You need to be kept permanently in anticipation of your imminent doom in order to justify NGO and institutional tax payer funding, and also to ensure that the extremely tedious, dreary and boring wastes of space who populate environmental science departments across the world are taken seriously by politicians.

I'll see you at the next climate science conference in the exclusive luxury resort of Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

Cheerio!

Re:Orders of magnitude (1)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 9 months ago | (#45670779)

Yeah but can you break that down in orders of magnitude, as it relates to my daughter? That was really helpful in the xkcd.com strip.

Re:Orders of magnitude (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671041)

The difference between 0.18 PPT and 400 PPM is the same as your daughter dressing up for Halloween as Honey Boo Boo with her boyfriend as Sugar Bear to collect candy vs your daughter IS Honey Boo Boo and she is begging her boyfriend Sugar Bear to sodomize her?

Re:Orders of magnitude (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671283)

Yeah but can you break that down in orders of magnitude, as it relates to my daughter? That was really helpful in the xkcd.com strip.

It's the difference between being together with your daughter for a minute, or being together with her for all of your life.

Re:Orders of magnitude (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670905)

Agreed. Basically, if all of this new gas was emitted during the past 50 years, it would take more than 300 centuries (!) for it to achieve the same warming effect as CO2 now (in Toronto at least).

Re:Orders of magnitude (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671169)

Yes, Mr Genius, let's wait until the concentrations are equivalent before worrying about it

Nobody ever said it was the biggest problem in the world. But it can and probably will be at some point, so we should start investigating now before it's a real problem.

Re:Orders of magnitude (1)

ImprovOmega (744717) | about 9 months ago | (#45671337)

It's great to see these two comments stacked on top of each other:

Agreed. Basically, if all of this new gas was emitted during the past 50 years, it would take more than 300 centuries (!) for it to achieve the same warming effect as CO2 now (in Toronto at least).

Directly above:

Yes, Mr Genius, let's wait until the concentrations are equivalent before worrying about it

Nobody ever said it was the biggest problem in the world. But it can and probably will be at some point, so we should start investigating now before it's a real problem.

In 300 centuries we'll either be off of this rock or we'll be able to deploy nano-bots that take care of this problem for us. Or we'll all be dead from something else I guess.

Until tomorrow? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670519)

When someone finds a new molecule 7,101 times more powerful and 0.181 parts per trillion in the atmosphere setting a new record?

Re:Until tomorrow? (5, Informative)

Antipater (2053064) | about 9 months ago | (#45670639)

Given that sulfur hexafluoride [wikipedia.org] has almost triple the potency of this, and has a concentration around 7 ppt, I think that record's already been set.

Re:Until tomorrow? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671229)

Kudos Sir. This is the kind of comments I visit /. for.

Shame on the reporters of this story.

Global warming / climate change (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670539)

Glad this has been discovered buthow soon can we get a new tax to reduce this new gas? Is it too late? Otherwise the climate will change even faster

Re:Global warming / climate change (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671081)

Since this is talking about toronto there probably already is a "hidden manufacturing tax" here. Don't worry as the government will soon replace this with a new non-hidden tax allowing manufactures to pass the savings to the consumer (think HST).

Remember Amdahl's Law (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670543)

If you're trying to improve system performance, targeting a component which accounts for 5 percent of response time can yield AT MOST a 5 percent overall improvement.

It's the same here, except we're talking about a percentage that is orders of magnitude smaller.

Bucky quote (4, Insightful)

schneidafunk (795759) | about 9 months ago | (#45670549)

"Pollution is nothing but the resources we are not harvesting. We allow them to disperse because we've been ignorant of their value."

-R. Buckminster Fuller

Re:Bucky quote (1)

fnj (64210) | about 9 months ago | (#45670999)

If that quote is accurate, Mr. Fuller was mistaken.

Pollution is allowed to happen because harvesting the resources represented would cost grossly more than they are worth.

hot air abounds in fairytail neverwas (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670553)

paid hypenosys talknicians from madison ave. strangest gas ever

Can this be weaponized by mad dictator? (1)

abies (607076) | about 9 months ago | (#45670559)

Let's imagine some mad dictator in Northen Cubic Iran starts producing it in huuuge quantities, put into weak containers all accross the country and around his presidential palaces and says 'try to bomb me now'.
Is it feasible for such person to produce enough of this stuff that when released into atmosphere, it would make a significant effect? Not extinction in 1 year effect, but something like 'speed up global warming by 10 years and put it behind the line where Syberia undeground methane starts bubbling a lot more'?

Re:Can this be weaponized by mad dictator? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670739)

Or by some mad government/weapons industry in a big western republic? Secretly of course. All in the nations best interest.

optimist (1)

mangamuscle (706696) | about 9 months ago | (#45670563)

Then this new substance could be used to warm up the martian atmosphere :)

Re:optimist (1)

Tekoneiric (590239) | about 9 months ago | (#45670803)

My thoughts also. I'm still hoping we don't find any life on Mars so it can be terraformed.

Re:optimist (2)

Culture20 (968837) | about 9 months ago | (#45671249)

My thoughts also. I'm still hoping we don't find any life on Mars so it can be terraformed.

Why should that stop us unless it's intelligent? Sorry about your luck, microbes. Multi-celled organisms coming through.

That is what we need to terraform Mars! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670565)

That is exactly what we need to terraform Mars! We need to send few tonnes of this stuff to Mars, heat it up, heating up will cause out-gassing and densification of the atmosphere. In the long term we will need to somehow liberate the CO2 bonded in carbonate minerals, which have soaked up Martian atmosphere, but getting atmospheric pressure on Mars to say 0.1 bar would already make a lot of things easier.

Re:That is what we need to terraform Mars! (4, Informative)

Geoffrey.landis (926948) | about 9 months ago | (#45670955)

That is exactly what we need to terraform Mars! We need to send few tonnes of this stuff to Mars....

A lot more than a "few tonnes", I'm afraid. I'll also point out that the formula for this is C12F27N-- it has a molecular mass of 671-- that's fifteen times more massive than carbon dioxide molecules. So, per unit MASS it's only 460 times more powerful an infrared absorber than carbon dioxide.

SF6 is a better infrared-trapping greenhouse gas for Mars.

Chemical info here, by the way: http://webbook.nist.gov/cgi/cbook.cgi?ID=C311897 [nist.gov]

http://www.sigmaaldrich.com/content/dam/sigma-aldrich/structure1/050/mfcd00000436.eps/_jcr_content/renditions/large.png [sigmaaldrich.com]

numbers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670573)

0.18 parts per trillion in the Toronto area – compared to 400 parts per million for carbon dioxide

So carbon dioxide is 2.2 billion times more prevalent than PFTBA. Given the 7,000 figure, that makes carbon dioxide 317,000 times more problematic than PFTBA. Just providing some numerical clarification.

Hmmmm might be good for Mars terraforming (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670589)

If you could find some fluorine salts on Mars...

Concentrations of PFTBA in the atmosphere are low (4, Informative)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 9 months ago | (#45670597)

Concentrations of PFTBA in the atmosphere are low – 0.18 parts per trillion in the Toronto area – compared to 400 parts per million for carbon dioxide but PFTBA is long-lived.

Yeah, but if it's 7000 times more powerful, than 0.18 parts * 7000 means 1260 parts per trillion compared to 400 parts per... oh wait, million? Who's to blame for this bullshit comparison, the University of Toronto or The Guardian? I guess no answer is needed on that one.

400 ppm in Toronto? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670601)

I know it is reported that it is 400 ppm at 10,000 ft in Hawaii, I'm not sure it is equal all over the world though. A CO2 monitoring satellite will get launched in 2014 to give the real answer.

per-molecule isn't really the issue though (5, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | about 9 months ago | (#45670607)

"It is so much less than carbon dioxide, but the important thing is on a per molecule basis, it is very very effective in interacting with heat from the Earth."

There are a number of gases that are more potent greenhouse gases than carbon dioxide. The issue with carbon dioxide isn't that it has a particularly extreme greenhouse-gas effect, but the combination of two things: 1) it is a somewhat potent greenhouse gas; and 2) we are releasing a huge amount of it at pretty incredible industrial scales. Not a little bit here and there in obscure industrial processes, but through things like coal power plants that literally burn 100 to 200 train cars' worth of coal per day (a typical train car fits ~100 tonnes of coal). The scale is actually pretty impressive, in an old-school, 19th-century industrialism sort of way. The sheer volume of coal these plants burn is such that just keeping it coming regularly is a logistical challenge, and there's a whole industry around technology to unload these 100-car trains in few enough hours that you can get the next one in.

The short of it is that [potency x volume] is the basic issue. Very potent but miniscule releases aren't that important, though it's worth keeping on eye on them.

Re:per-molecule isn't really the issue though (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670865)

So, I guess that explains the normal ice sheets, normal glaciation, and below normal temperatures, along with a slowing trend in severe weather, and 'above normal weather' as well. Also explains why the Co2 is a lagging indicator, even up to today against temperature.

in persepective (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670623)

7000x the effectiveness of CO2, but 10^-9 as present in the atmosphere, with a long shelf life. We should track it, but it shouldn't require a policy yet, I think.

Re:in persepective (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671095)

So an effect of about ~10^-5. And all of this stuff entered the atmosphere in the last ~50 years and accumulates. If we continue to produce that stuff in the same quantity, we may reach a substantial greenhouse effect from that gas in a few million years.

Meanwhile, back on planet Bureaucrat... (1, Insightful)

GT66 (2574287) | about 9 months ago | (#45670655)

the government wastes three decades obsessed with studying the effects of cow farts on global warming.

Methane should be the priority (1)

Andrio (2580551) | about 9 months ago | (#45670661)

Methane is 20x more powerful at trapping heat than CO2, and also it recycles out of the atmosphere in just 12 years.

Maybe we should do something to reduce the billions of methane machines in the world (cows, pigs, etc). Not only would there not exist billions of these animals without human interference, many of these farm animals produce an abnormal amount of methane due to their crappy, corn-fed diet.

Humans gotta eat, but there are healthier options out there than corn fed farm animals (for both us, and the planet).

Re:Methane should be the priority (1)

Grantbridge (1377621) | about 9 months ago | (#45670805)

That's the thing though, Methane is pretty short lived. To me that makes it low priority since we can "fix" it by slaughtering all the cows later when things get really bad from all the CO2 being released from Coal Power stations. Something which stays in the atmosphere for a long time like CO2 is the high priority since the longer we take to lower our emissions the longer we are pumping huge quantities of it into the atmosphere which takes a long long time to go away. Methane is in equilibrium with its sources since the lifetime is so short, so if we lower the emissions we will lower its concentration within a few years. Methane isn't the highest priority.

New? (1)

imatter (2749965) | about 9 months ago | (#45670675)

"The newly discovered gas, perfluorotributylamine (PFTBA), has been in use by the electrical industry since the mid-20th century."

Did we not know we were using this in electronics since the mid 20th Century?

Next up, the Technology Industry! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670713)

The environmentalists have successfully destroyed the power industry with their hyped up myth of global warming (the Earth is cooling, ya know), and now it's the Tech industry's turn.

I can't wait to see the proposals... an environmental tax on electronic gadgets, with of course an "offset" program that allows well-connected and high contributing companies to skirt it.

QUeue the PFTBA TAX! in 3..2..1.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670719)

what's the point. Nobody's arresting oath breakers anymore. Obama isn't even a fucking citizen. Security clearances don't mean shit.

Hey did ya know that 750 million dollar healthfucked.gov site if the money was JUST GIVEN to citizens of the US, it would be 2.3 Million dollars for EACH MAN WOMAN AND CHILD!

Or how about Joeseph Biden and his help the ISRALIE holocause bullshit?
$800 million

with fucking BIDEN and HEALTHFRAUD.GOV alone US Citizens could have 4 million dollars EACH to spend!

Re:QUeue the PFTBA TAX! in 3..2..1.. (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | about 9 months ago | (#45670753)

I think you need to check your division skills there, buddy.

Re:QUeue the PFTBA TAX! in 3..2..1.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670951)

why bother?

Debt to GDP
Initial Claims
monkeyhammer gold

In fairness I might have mixed up the 800 with the 750..

800/320 = 2.5
750/320 = 2.34375

2.5 + 2.34375 = 4.84375

4. 8 million dollars each..

What other clusterfuck should the math be done on?

Re:QUeue the PFTBA TAX! in 3..2..1.. (1)

alzoron (210577) | about 9 months ago | (#45670909)

Yeah, there's a mistake with your numbers. With those figures you're either trying to say that the US only has about 326 people in it or that website costs more money than the entire world has produced in the last 10 years.

Re:QUeue the PFTBA TAX! in 3..2..1.. (2)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 9 months ago | (#45671059)

With those figures you're either trying to say that the US only has about 326 people in it

So I guess he meant to say per person that successfully signed up...

im sure the research conversation was titilating (1)

nimbius (983462) | about 9 months ago | (#45670813)

Dr. Random: well team, have we finished research on the perfluorotributylamine samples yet?
gradstudent slave: yes and its a tremendously important chemical Dr. Random, have you read our summary?
Dr. Random: yes...it says here this is an incredibly powerful greenhouse gas...oh dear lord.....this means..
gradstudent slave: we need to alert the world in a peer reviewed open access journal without a moment to lose?!
Dr. Random: no...tell no one....this is the end of toques and tire chains as we know it!

Well lets hurry up then! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670875)

Its frick'in -2F here in indiana. Lets hurry and produce that stuff more then to warm it up ok? Geez... Its freezing here!

Move house, moron. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671161)

It'll be a damn sight cheaper than the coal you need to buy to up the temps enough for you there.

Magic Smoke (1)

matty619 (630957) | about 9 months ago | (#45670889)

Source of the magic smoke identified?

Why the neo-cons will love this news (1)

XStylus (841577) | about 9 months ago | (#45670915)

"Gotta make some more of this stuff! We'll bring forth the rapture even faster!"

Re:Why the neo-cons will love this news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671207)

Amongst the U.S. Conservative categories, faith/religion/belief-in-God is probably lowest amongst the neo-cons. Lots of nihilists in that group, who tend to annoy the hell (pun intended) out of the classic conservatives, the Christian-right, the social conservatives, and the semi-libertarians.

well known problem (1)

peter303 (12292) | about 9 months ago | (#45670957)

That clorflourocarbons and their halon subsititues are inense greenhouse gases. here [sciencedaily.com]

All Tomorrow's Excuses (1)

eyenot (102141) | about 9 months ago | (#45670983)

Remember how we went through the process of removing CFCs from production and usage (by and large) because of the ozone holes?

It didn't stop the greenhouse effect overall, though, did it? Because sufficient impetus wasn't given to citizens or to governments to avoid expelling greenhouse gases. Especially when it's an issue of what's coming out of your whip cream canister, it gives you little reason to put thought behind that next cut of steak you're going to put that whip cream onto.

Here's just another gas to distract the masses from the greenhouse gases they expel in normal, everyday life. We'll be all focused on this gas and it gives us an excuse to ignore 7,000 other greenhouse effect contributors.

Re:All Tomorrow's Excuses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671135)

Remember how we went through the process of removing CFCs from production and usage (by and large) because of the ozone holes?

It didn't stop the greenhouse effect overall, though, did it? Because sufficient impetus wasn't given to citizens or to governments to avoid expelling greenhouse gases. Especially when it's an issue of what's coming out of your whip cream canister, it gives you little reason to put thought behind that next cut of steak you're going to put that whip cream onto.

Here's just another gas to distract the masses from the greenhouse gases they expel in normal, everyday life. We'll be all focused on this gas and it gives us an excuse to ignore 7,000 other greenhouse effect contributors.

I ate refried beans at a Mexican restaurant last night and I just couldn't help myself. I expelled greenhouse gasses all night!

Claim != Proof (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670985)

"We claim that PFTBA has the highest radiative efficiency of any molecule detected in the atmosphere to date"

Get back to me when you replace the word "claim" with the word "prove."

key ingrediant in new car smell... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45670989)

Yup. your new car will no longer be aloud to smell "like a new car"

Re:key ingrediant in new car smell... (2)

Culture20 (968837) | about 9 months ago | (#45671427)

Yup. your new car will no longer be aloud to smell "like a new car"

That sounds terrible!

Dilution Is The Solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671043)

At 10^-34 parts per billion no body cares.

700000 % sounds more impressive (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671073)

Donchathink?

Various applications in electrical equipment??? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671149)

Ummm, after searching google and filtering out results for "greenhouse", "climate", and "dictionary", the only uses I can find for this chemical are as a mass spectrometer calibration gas and as a component of fluon, which is an artificial blood replacement. Can anyone pin down any other uses of PFTBA? Because the usage of the stuff sure doesn't seem very heavy to me!

Newly Discovered? (2)

edibobb (113989) | about 9 months ago | (#45671203)

It's odd how people have been using this gas for 100 years and it is still "newly discovered."

Obligatory xkcd: http://xkcd.com/1283/ [xkcd.com]

global warming is not the issue (3, Insightful)

csumpi (2258986) | about 9 months ago | (#45671225)

Global warming is not the issue.

The problem is overpopulation. The solution to which is pretty simple: stop shitting out kids.

Global warming is just a symptom, or might be mother nature's way of fixing the problem. Although its long term effects are far less predictable than the weather tomorrow. (Which seems either impossible, or all climate scientists and meteorologists suck.)

Newly Discovered? (1)

edibobb (113989) | about 9 months ago | (#45671237)

It's odd how this gas has been used for 100 years and is still "newly discovered".

Obligatory xkcd: http://xkcd.com/1283/ [xkcd.com]

Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671279)

I'm more worried about all the dihydrogen monoxide in the world.

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671373)

Indeed, it's a very effective greenhouse gas. We should outlaw it immediately.

Literally, my first thought reading the headline (4, Funny)

Alsee (515537) | about 9 months ago | (#45671493)

Newly Discovered Greenhouse Gas Is 7,000 Times More Powerful Than CO2

... emitted whenever a politician speaks.

-

Science by press release? (1)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | about 9 months ago | (#45671507)

Where are the peer reviewed papers and corroborating research?

terraforming (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671515)

That means it's potentially useful for terraforming Mars, or for preventing the next ice age when it comes around.

Transistors and capacitors? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45671535)

The synopsys cites transistors and capacitors as examples.
Those are two totally different electronic components that have very little in common with raw materials, composition, and construction.
I don't understand the connection.

Nothing to fear from PFTBA (1)

Vitriol+Angst (458300) | about 9 months ago | (#45671585)

Until of course, someone renames it. Nobody can possible be afraid of a news story about PFTBA. If you call it "Electrical Insulation Gas of Heat Death" -- well, then, that should do it.

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