On Sat, Sep 15, 2012 at 3:11 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

>
> I'm giving a talk Monday on why we should be building molten-salt thorium
> reactors to replace the burning of fossil fuels for electrical power.
>
>
Brent,

That sounds awesome.  Where will this talk be, will the presentation be put
online?

I think the move from fossil fuels to Thorium reactors will have
a stabilizing effect on world politics.  The U.S. would have little
interest in the middle east if not for its concern over energy resources.
 There is 10X the energy in the Thorium contained in coal than we get from
burning it, and the release of radioactive Thorium (from burning coal)
leads to the deaths of untold thousands each year.

I think if humanity can survive the next 50 years
without destroying ourselves, or setting ourselves back into a new dark
age, we will be in the clear, having surpassed what Carl Sagan called a
civilizations technological adolescence.  In 50 years from now, it is
likely (given current trends) that the computational power necessary to
emulate a human brain will be very cheap and very efficient (more efficient
than our current brains which require 20 watts of food energy).

Yet, if we can power brains directly with energy (bypassing the
photosynthesis cycle), we move from needing 1 acre of farmland per person,
to a 6 by 6 inch square worth of sunlight to power each human brain.
 Instead of using 40% of the Earth's photosynthetic capacity, we would use
a fraction of a percent, and we would live richer lives than
any billionaire does today: we could experience anything that anyone might
imagine.  Regenerative medicine (the ability to re-grow tissues and organs)
is predicted to become mainstream by 2025, so those that can survive the
next 10 - 15 years could survive for eons.

Jason

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