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The Science

Upcoming 2013 Science Debates
Science & Economy and Solar Energy



"The adoption of a holistic worldview globally may represent humanity's greatest chance for a promising future to be shared by all." yasha husain














Energy from the Sun
By Yasha Husain
February 3, 2013

Truth be told, all energy is solar, and countless sustainable forms of solar energy are available to us, which we should be exploiting.

Following is a blueprint of how to do solar energy in America, creating a robust, localized system, that also stretches from coast to coast.

To begin with, build a national grid that is minimalist and a flexible structure, that can take and leave local, sustainable, energy sources, that contribute to one stable energy pool, with capacity for constant and directional power, locally.

Second, local solar, energy sources should include the following:

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An American Reconstruction Department
By Yasha Husain
December 29, 2012

A logical next step for the Obama Administration and its efforts to triumph against the challenges of the 21st century, is, strategically speaking, the creation of an American Reconstruction Department, a Franklin Roosevelt-type initiative.

All wings of the proposed Reconstruction effort, listed below, would be carried out concurrently by diverse teams of experts, the heads of which meet bi-monthly. Expenditures will come chiefly from already distributed, or budgeted, dollars, in exception of R&D and special projects, e.g. pilot projects, including ones that meet the needs of poor, underserved or polluted communities.

For each wing of the department, there will be three "well-schooled" and "well-rounded" experts with a specialty in their field area, be it, for clean energy, wind, solar or geothermal. Each will be a holistic, which also implies, global, thinker, in their own right, but above them will still be a world-class expert, who is firstly a holistic and global thinker, whose job it is to arrive at the most common sense energy solutions for localities, regions and the nation, with the rest of his or her team, or panel, and the nation.

The panel of the Clean Energy wing would, for example, work in coordination with the Department of Energy. It would have a specially appointed person to work with think tanks, and the media, to get the word out of the progress of the Department. The panel member's closest relationships would be to Congress, as selected Congress members would be asked to help write legislation, and all of Congress would act as constant liaison between the nation's people and the Reconstruction Department.

The head of the Reconstruction Department may be a residing Senator or Congressperson.

In light of climate change and the international economy, domestic and world affairs would largely be tackled with the follow-through of an American Reconstruction Department.

The idea for the Department comes not only from Roosevelt's defeat of the Great Depression, but from Japan, which in the wake of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, and in response to its environmental demands, instituted a nationwide, regional and community-based reconstruction effort, according to Habitat for Humanity, which ran a special ad about Japan in Bloomberg Businessweek (Oct. 22-28, 2012).

It's true that after the 2008 financial crisis has wound down, Obama's in earnest planning stage is finally upon us. No better time, then, to start the ambitious goal setting, based on a long range vision, with a centralized department, with outreach capacity to communities across the nation, and world.

The logical next step in the Obama Administration's efforts to promote change is an American Reconstruction Department, that could be replicated internationally, its various wings:

1. Celebrating the Family and Perfect Love

2. Emergent Education, Adapting to 21st Century Needs, Including Job Creation

3. The Role of Faith in Culture

4. Exchanging Nonviolence

5. Guideposts: Sharing the Wisdom of All Time

6. Harnessing the Creative Potential Utilizing “Perfect Knowledge” (Self-realization)

7. On the Nature of Competition: Holistic Competition

8. On the Role of Science: Holistic Science

9. Holistic Farming

10. Helping Hands for the Poor

11. Developing Cognitive and Behavioral Health Advancements, Thinking Out-of-the-Box

12. Integrative, Holistic Medicine

13. Sound Design Materials

14. Graduated Engineering

15. Architecture and Design

16. Rail and Vehicular Design and Transfer

17. Clean Energy Projects

18. Remediation

19. Environmental Monitoring

20. Technology Transfer

21. Realigning Military and Intelligence to Carry Out More Diplomatic Missions

22. Mixing of Economies

23. Cross Cultural Exchange for the Continuation of Cultural Heritage

24. Global Participation

25. Development

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Give Initiative a Chance
by Yasha Melanie Husain
First appeared in The Leader Herald (Gloversville, NY)
September 20th, 2012

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's Cleaner, Greener Communities initiative, an interdisciplinary approach to sustainability now in its planning stages, is an opportunity to push a sustainability agenda for New York state that relies on energy efficiency, renewable energy and other carbon abatement measures.

Building on what's been developed by the 10 Regional Economic Development Councils, the CGC only stands to improve the state's efforts to go green in a way that's truly sustainable.

A bottom-up approach, the CGC is an opportunity for local experts, administrators and the public to draw up sustainability plans that best suit their region before the plans are finally submitted to the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority - the agency that oversees the CGC - in January 2013.

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Blog: Decision '09, The Science Debates

Debate #3:
Elusive Water Vapor: High
Altitude Hydrogen Jets, and the Delicate

Moderator Question:

What do we know about manmade water vapor emissions in the lower stratosphere and the implications of risks involved in their release?


Water vapor remains among the most elusive of greenhouse gases. Perhaps in part because of its innocuous sounding name, its story has seldom been told.  

A 1996 study, however, titled, “Molecular Hydrogen and Water Vapour Emissions in a Global Hydrogen Energy Economy,” by Zittel and Altmann, assumed that about 20 percent of planes at the time flew in the upper troposphere / lower stratosphere. The report, presented at the 11th World Hydrogen Energy Conference, declared a hydrogen fleet of planes emitting water vapor emissions would need to fly well within the troposphere to keep from disrupting the delicate, dry balance in the stratosphere. Starting in 1996, the year the study was published, NASA's modified U2 spy plane, the ER-2, began collecting samples of stratospheric air from which to draw such conclusions. Since then, scientists have continued to elaborate on Zittel and Altmann's findings as well as apply unique methods of analysis in their attempts to understand the potential for stratospheric ozone destruction from commercial hydrogen fleets.

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Why Not Build Your Own
Solar-Powered Lawn Mower?

By Yasha Husain
First appeared in The Sunday Gazette (Schenectady, NY)
August 12, 2007

For anyone looking for a project to keep them busy this summer, how about building a solar-powered lawn mower?

By doing a simple Google search and punching in "solar powered electric lawn mowers," a handful of sites will come up offering step-by-step instructions for how to convert a gas-powered mower to run on solar power.

The sites are replete with information from weathered tinkerers; they include listings of the parts needed, including: a used or old mower (or a new gas or electric mower), an electric motor that runs from a 12-volt battery, and a solar panel.

Benefits from making the conversion: zero emissions (not counting the emissions involved in the manufacture of parts); savings (since there won't be a need anymore to buy gas for the lawn mower); noise reduction (the electric motor has a relaxing sound reminiscent of a large fan); and know-how (look at the mower as a steppingstone toward bigger and better solar home-improvement projects).

Significant polluter

According to the EPA, up to 5 percent of the nation's air pollution results from garden equipment, and in metropolitan areas, the percentage is often much higher. In 2001, a Swedish study showed that running a gas-powered lawn mower for an hour is nearly the same as driving a car for 100 miles, and that analysis, compared with others, is conservative.

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