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article imageIs It Possible for Bill Gates to Stop Hurricanes?

By Carol Forsloff     Jul 17, 2009 in Environment
Among the most recent eyebrow- raising stories, one has to do with Bill Gates. Always the entrepreneur, cutting edge, Gates is said to be working with others to stop hurricanes. But could they do that and what might be other environmental issues?
According to e-week, Bill Gates and with a team of other inventors have put forth a patent that includes the notion of killing hurricanes before they make landfall and cause damage. The idea is to put vessels in the storm’s path so cooler water is pulled from beneath the ocean’s surface, thus stealing strength from the hurricane.
Gates and and his associates have drafted their proposal to state they propose "a method of environmental alteration, [comprising of] a placement of at least one vessel capable of moving water to lower depths in the water via wave-induced downwelling." E-week says folks maintain “That particular solution "has been met with great skepticism and the cost and feasibility are uncertain."Still others say it’s worth a try.
Certainly New Orleans would look forward to something that could reduce hurricane strength. Money Magazine reported Hurricane Katrina caused $125 billion in damages, not just to New Orleans but other areas along the Southeast Coast and somewhat inland.
The group involved in stopping hurricanes is called Intelllectual Ventures. This is a summary statement from their website: “This type of technology is not something humankind would try as a “Plan A” or “Plan B.” These inventions are a “Plan C” where humans decide that we have exhausted all of our behavior changing and alternative energy options and need to rely on mitigation technologies. If our planet is in this severe situation, then our belief is that we should not be starting from scratch at investigating mitigation options.
We’re looking forward to discussing these ideas and will post more about them here later this year.”
It’s likely places like Hawaii, the West Coast of the United States, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and other areas hard-hit by serious storms will welcome any success from Gates and crew, but as the innovators say themselves, the ideas are being discussed and have some distance yet to be brought into reality. Gates traveled to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and has been reported to be particularly interested in saving people from such devastation again.
The City of New Orleans isn’t prepared for a strong hurricane yet, and won’t be for a few years according to experts, so any intervention would certainly be welcomed. Gates, the great Microsoft wizard, is said to have transformed the computer industry and perhaps he can do the same for weather.
More about Hurricane Katrina, Bill gates, New orleans
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