Food for thought



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Posted by: stak
Posted on: 2008-01-03 20:36:36

Today's post inspired by the gust of wind that almost flattened me on the walk back from the grocery store.

Assume, for the sake of argument, that climate change is caused entirely by cars. A quick google search reveals the number of cars in use in the world to be around 600 million (maybe a bit off, but this is just an estimate anyway). This means that each car is responsible for 1.67 x 10-7% of climate change. That's 0.000000167%. Tiny, no? Now let's say that climate change ends up killing 3 billion people (improbable perhaps, but not impossible). That means each car is responsible for killing 5 people. That means each person who drives a car that pollutes an "average" amount is responsible for killing 5 people. Think about it.

Obviously there are other factors to climate change, and my number of 3 billion is pretty random, but the moral of the argument is simple: when calculating responsibility and guilt, you can't just divide it into a billion pieces and then round each piece to zero. Use infinite precision math, people.

Posted by Fai at 2008-01-04 01:04:00
why not go the extra step and divide "car" into "miles driven" and a person's life into life expectancy. Then you can get a day/km rate.
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