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Posted: November 14, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Covington to hold meeting on climate change

Potentials for solar energy to be discussed

The public is invited to attend a Covington City Council work session meeting on Nov. 10 where climate change and solar energy will be discussed by Dr. David Simons, an eminent local scientist.


 The meeting will take place in the council room of City Hall and will begin at 5:30 p.m. Audience seating is limited to the first 50 people. There is standing room available as well.


 Part of Dr. Simons’ talk will focus on the science behind climate change, specifically on positive feedback cycles. Simons says that the planet reached a tipping point of no return in climate change in 1976 when enough green house gases accumulated in the atmosphere to touch off multiple self-sustaining cycles that continue to contribute to the warming of the planet today.


 According to Simons, these positive feedback cycles have received only glancing attention from the scientific community and the media until now. Because of the lack of understanding on how these cycles are resulting in exponential increases rather than linear increases in the rate of glacier melting and sea level rise, Simons says much of American society has underestimated the rate of climate change and continues to think that there is still time to reverse global warming.


 “It is later than you think,” said Simons of the amount of time left to put in place policies to mitigate climate change.


 The second half of Simons’ talk will focus on businesses that manufacture solar energy panels that could be adopted and widely used in local households if the government were to pass laws to level the playing field for solar energy.


 “With government subsidies for going solar, it is already financially advantageous and a very wise money-saving and planet-saving investment,” Simons said.


 Simons will also touch on other new renewable energies such as carbon-neutral algae that can be used as a substitute to gasoline.


 A resident of Covington, Simons first received international attention on Aug. 20, 1957 for his 32-hour balloon flight to a record-breaking altitude of 102,000 feet for the U.S. Air Force. Since then he has pioneered research in the field of myofascial trigger points. While he has been an amateur meteorologist for some time, the recent severe drought propelled him into a more advanced study on the science of climate change.

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