Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Earth cooling blankets for global warming
  (+1, -2)
(+1, -2)
  [vote for,

The earth is getting to much energy from the sun, imagine that, we have a problem with to much energy. So what can we do with that energy? Lets either reflect it back out in space or use it!

So the idea has a few parts – first, we create reflecting “blankets” to replace the white stuff that is melting. These are simple/cheap reflectors that float on the (now larger) ocean. Lets say they are about 2 square kilometers in size with big “holes” in 50% of their area to let some light and air through so they don’t damage sea life. We either anchor these or put automated sails on them to keep them in position.

We put out about 2 million such blankets, which would be about the size of Greenland – so perhaps this would be sufficient to balance the earth’s temperature. Perhaps someone could figure out how many blankets we would need (since this idea is half baked).

To make this a world event we put out a guaranteed 20 year contract to anyone who will reflect 80% of one square kilometer according to the rules of the game. So then we have a free market in cooling the earth controlled by the amount we put in the pot to support the blankets. This could be paid for by a $1/bbl tax on oil and the equivalent for coal. My guess is that would about pay for blankets the size of Greenland. No big government program – just pay to get rid of the energy.

Now for the extra part – why not also pay a guaranteed price for hydrogen or any other fuel produced by the suns energy on these blankets – so now we can have blankets of photocells or photochemical cells that produce fuel for shipment to the world – thus also reducing the use of carbon fuels. Companies that would take this up are getting “free” land (ok, ocean) to put out their energy producing blankets plus being paid to reflect light plus getting a guarantee on the price for the energy they produce – what a deal! My bet is with the combined incentives we would have reflecting blankets in 5 years and energy producing blankets in 15.

ccvirginia, Nov 09 2007

Ping Pong Albedo Management Ping_20Pong_20Albedo_20Enhancement
same concept, but with pink pong balls. [bungston, Nov 09 2007]

Art global warming Christo_20and_20Jea..._20global_20warming
same concept, but the blankets are pink. [bungston, Nov 09 2007]

Another reflective scheme Reflective_20planetary_20cooling_20system
[bungston, Nov 09 2007]


       Hi [ccvirginia]. This is a popular concept on the HB. If you are into very large things made of plastic and saving the world, I suggest you work through the ideas of [django], the author of the first one linked below.
bungston, Nov 09 2007

       I claim this unmanned earthblanket in the name of King VinceVinceVince of earthblanketland and it shall become an international center for Div-X and MP3 redistribution.
vincevincevince, Nov 09 2007

       Avast King Vincex3! My crew of blanket pirates are seizing your earthblanket and hoisting a Jolly Roger comforter! Now you walk the plankblanket! Arrr!
bungston, Nov 09 2007

       King Vince^3, shirley, not Vincex3. {Casts baleful glance over [bungston]'s letters of marque} OK, carry on.
pertinax, Nov 09 2007

       Turn it into a death ray and you get my vote
Antegrity, Nov 09 2007

       Ah yes, the old letters of marque. Gotta love 'em. Do check the postage, though, and make sure that it's the current cost stamps, otherwise they'll have to be returned to sender.
normzone, Nov 09 2007

       On the bright side if you get caught in a fire you can just put it on and it'll protect you while charging your Ipod
xxobot, Nov 09 2007

       Hi, [ccv] and welcome. A good first idea, but there's problems besides pirates, with blankets on the ocean. The reflective blankets would be better on deserts instead.   

       Oceans are humid, which reduces the effectiveness of reflecting sunlight, as the light has to go through both ways. (Water vapor is a greenhouse gas, by the way.) Oceans are also at lowest altitude, which increases the amount of atmosphere the light travels through.   

       Oceans are the homes of algae that already use the energy of sunlight to absorb CO2 and produce oxygen. They also are the base of many food chains. Deserts, on the other hand, harbor much less life, although some have more than many folks are aware of.
baconbrain, Nov 09 2007

       I thought this was gonna be bed covers made of turf, which would be like being buried alive.   

       And a bit mucky.   

       But I'm daft as a brush.
Murdoch, Nov 09 2007


       [Murdoch] is hogging the blanket again.   

       Veni, vidi, vincey?
BunsenHoneydew, Nov 09 2007


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