By Steven J. Grisafi, PhD.
Research conducted in the School of Engineering & Applied Science at Yale University supports my assertion that we need to be much more cautious when we allege which gases are contributing to the Greenhouse Effect. The research conducted within the proficiency interface between chemical and environmental engineering indicates that the heating of asphalt roadways, either through diurnal radiation from the sun or mechanical dissipation from work done by motor vehicles, causes organic molecules within the asphalt to diffuse to the surface of the road and then evaporate into the atmosphere. Stresses put upon the roadway by the work applied by the motor vehicles to propel themselves causes erosion of the the roadway, as well as of the motor vehicle tires, which the research has shown to produce aerosol particles. The evaporation of organic molecules from the roadways into the atmosphere is of particular concern because these molecules undoubtedly have many rotational and vibrational modes that can become excited by the microwave radiation the surface of the Earth emits at night as it cools after a day of heating from the Sun. That is what we call the Greenhouse Effect. Having numerous excitable vibro-rotational modes makes these organic molecules extremely potent Greenhouse gases. Adding greater concern is that this potential cause of climate change will not be either eliminated, nor reduced, by the substitution of battery powered electric for the internal combustion engine.
We have not yet firmly established which gases contribute what amounts to the Greenhouse Effect that we know operates on Earth. It is quite possible that carbon dioxide contributes a negligent amount to this effect and it is these trace organic gases that cause the lion’s share. I struggle to make people understand this, but I know that I do so in vain, because the issue has long since exited the scientific domain and has become political. So rather than swim against the tide I seek a solution that would satisfy those who have been obstinately convinced that carbon dioxide is the cause of our observed climate change while actually eliminating the true cause. As I see it there is only one true solution. It is the one that I have proposed. We must eliminate all autonomous powered vehicles. We are to replace them with cars having no means of propulsion themselves. Anyone can own one of these propulsion-less vehicles. There is no fuel to be purchased for these vehicles. The vehicles receive their means of propulsion from the roadbed. That roadbed need not be asphalt nor cement. It can be grass so long as we understand that the grass would need to be mowed periodically. Underneath the roadway we will put the electromagnetic solenoids that create the oscillating magnetic fields which propel the vehicles. The technology is all achievable today with current computer technology. Nothing new needs to be developed. There is no need for electric batteries. All that would be required within the propulsion-less vehicles is that there be diamagnetic and ferromagnetic materials within the car to guide the magnetic flux lines emanating from the solenoidal coils within the roadbed. The roadway system will transport the vehicle to its destination. The owner of a registered vehicle will be billed for the energy consumed to propel the vehicle. The energy needed to create the electricity needed to produce the magnetic fields can be acquired in any manner that society chooses. If we should find, as I expect, that carbon dioxide is not a significant cause of the strengthened Greenhouse Effect we believe we have observed in recent times, then we can use combustion turbines to produce our electricity.
Our only impediment is the enormous scale of this undertaking. No automobile manufacturer, not even Tesla, is large enough to transform our system of automobiles to propulsion-less vehicles. This would need to be a national partnership between private manufacturers and the government. It would smell of socialism to most Americans. But Americans didn’t smell the socialism in the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways system back in the 1950s. So there may be hope for this now.