Forbes's Gibbs on Cold Fusion Unintended Consequences

A new commentary by Forbes columnist Mark Gibbs looks at possible unintended consequences should cold fusion actually prove to be able to provide cheap and abundant energy.

He considers the consequence of vast amounts of waste heat created by cold fusion generators, and how that would lead to more pronounced urban heat islands which could lead to ecological instablility (e.g. more rats and mosquitos) and contribute to greater global climate change. Along with waste heat, would also come more light pollution, which can have harmful effects on ecosystems and human and animal health.

He also mentions that CF-driven desalination which would allow for potable water in arid places would also lead to the creation of millions of waste salt and mineral sites throughout the globe.

As with any new technology that appears on the scene, there’s no doubt that widespread cold fusion technology would present all kinds of new challenges to deal with. Gibbs mentions a few, and will certainly be others. Once the technology is widely accepted as being capable of changing the world energy picture, there will surely be much more public debate on the topics, and we will see how people in power will try to manage what could be a time of great upheaval.

  • Andrea Di Luccio

    I ‘m not shure that our main concern is about waste of salt and minerals…

    • Andrea Di Luccio

      It is 3.5% of salts including Na-Cl (70-80-%), Magnesium, Calcium and so on. We don’t need them?

      • Protz

        What you do is dump the salt back to the ocean. It’s all a closed cycle, the water that you desalinate will also eventually return to the ocean.

        • buffalo

          gibbs is talking gibberish.waste heat?give me a break

      • theBuckWheat

        I was waiting for how the left was going to find some awful consequence to LENR. Such ravings demonstrate that their “concerns” are far more a cover for their self-loathing of prosperity than it is for a useful concern for the health and well being of humanity and the environment.

        To even propose that CF-driven desalination will “lead to the creation of millions of waste salt and mineral sites throughout the globe” shows hyperbolic ignorance. Almost all such plants are located at the source of saline water and such plants cannot possibly result in any net increase in the saline level of the ocean, particularly when it is acknowledged where the waste water eventually flow.

        Secondly, should such a plant be located inland, any salt and mineral waste can easily be returned to the ocean by rail or truck.

        We must not allow such madmen to hold humanity hostage. If they raise real concerns, let them be honestly addressed. But when their opening shot already starts below the belt, let everyone see their agenda for what it really is.

      • walker

        Yes we need them.

        Since we have virtually unlimited energy we can extract them too.

        The biggest unintended consequence will be the emergence of new industries created by having sufficient energy to make them economically viable. This will cause massive disruption to existing markets and industries of all kinds but it will also result in New markets and industries. Generally it will cause a massive economic boom bigger even than the computer or industrial revolutions.

        • sparky

          Using LENR, transmutate the salt into phosphorus, the next shortage. good luck.

        • 100 trillion worth of new business during the first 10 years, corresponding to about 12% yearly growth rate of world economy. This prediction I wrote in my column in Finnish Space Research Society’s “Spaceprobe” magazine in August 2011.

          • LCD

            its probably underestimating it too Pekka

            Hey have you looked at this paper and though that maybe Piantelli, DGT, and W-L are all somehow correct in a weird combination?


            read page 119 second paragraph (its only 33 pages)

          • are you sure 119 was the correct page? I read it but didn’t see a connection, other than H- ion might be a candidate heavy electron which helps fusion by orbiting close to nucleus (ignoring the fact that tidal force would tear it apart).

          • lcd

            No that when the one electron is far away, the other is much closer than usual to the proton.

          • LCD

            Sorry it was the first paragraph, now at my comp i can copy

            “The function exhibits a radial “in-out” correlation between
            the electrons such that when one electron is “in” close to the nucleus, the other
            is kept “out”. Particularly striking is the feature that α is larger than 1, so that
            the presence of the second, “outer” electron pushes the inner one closer to the
            nucleus than it would be were it alone bound to the proton. Thereby it “sees” an
            effective charge larger than the value unity of the proton’s real charge!”

          • LCD

            So the question is how close. The whole point of W-L is to have an effective mass of an electron that is massive enough to get closer to the proton, but in the case of the H- ion it is the electron that is actually closer.

            The DGT Rydberg H atom’s whole point was that the elliptical orbits put the electron closer to the proton so it would be masked as a neutron.

            The idea here is that if you have an H- ion and a free proton could that proton/H+ ion see a Neutron from one side.

            Obviously if they never get any closer than regular old H2 then it’s a moot point.

          • lcd: did you send me a private email (or was it spam robot)?

          • LCD

            yup, got it from your webpage

          • LCD, thanks, I see. Two problems: 1) outer electron distance is 4-5 a0, larger than Ni atom spacing, 2) Rydberg elliptic orbits: indeed when electron is close it looks neutral, but time is too short since electron moves fast, in that time ions don’t have time to react, ion dynamics reacts to time averaged electron shell charge distribution.

          • LCD

            sent you an email

  • AB

    I’m getting the impression Gibbs wanted to write something about LENR without coming off as enthusiast.

    • LCD

      I’m not sure he’s not as excited as anybody about LENR. No news = a theological piece.

    • clovis

      Hi, Guys.
      Gibbs, is he trying to be a comedian, he makes me belly laugh.
      does this guy know anything about what he’s talking about,
      I think not,— smile.

  • Gerrit

    I don’t see waste from the desalinated ocean water an issue at all. Just give it back to the sea. Most of the desalinated water will also find its way back to the ocean eventually through normal rainfall. The result is that both salts and water rejoin in the ocean.

    Urban heat islands is an interesting topic and Gibbs is probably right to assume that we’ll increase our waste of energy when it has become cheap even and CO2 neutral.

  • kwhilborn

    The gas responsible for the most global warming is carbon dioxide, also called CO2.

    If LENR were to halt the planets production of CO2, which it will as soon as all cars and trucks and factories switch to LENR then we will remove this horrid pollution from our planet

    Plants and people will breath easier and air pollution will vanish.

    This is more of a cause of global warming than heat itself. I thought this would be grade school science, and everyone knew the causes of global warming.

    I would think the benefits of starving cultures people able to grow food and drink clean water would outweigh the accumulation of salt, but maybe that’s just me, and has been pointed out many times in comments already is that water and salt can be returned to the sea, or salt can be used for baking, canning of meat and vegetables, curing meat, soap manufacture, pottery, water softening, and in chlorinating swimming pools.

    I would think canning and food preservation might hopefully come in handy in starving cultures as well.

    Whatever the benefits or tribulations of LENR it must certainly outweigh the costs to our environment of powering 600 million cars and trucks every day on oil.

    • Mike

      You are so wrong it’s sad. The gas most directly related to Earth’s temperature is hydrogen, and specifically the giant ball of mostly hydrogen gas we call the sun. Natural production of CO2 is roughly 20-30x what humans cause directly by burning and indirectly by clearing land. ( You are certainly correct that burning fossil fuels does put nasty stuff into the air, but CO2 is not one of those nasty things. Plants actually need CO2. Without CO2, plants would not be able to “breathe” at all; they would die. Rising CO2 levels are actually quite good for plants. As for the mountains of salt, well, there are already many of them. There are HUGE mines for salt under the state of Ohio in a deposit that stretches through several states in the area. think of all the salt flats in the dry areas of the world not least of all in the American West. There are many such deposits in the world, so this is far from a problem. And, we could not even come close to using for those purposes all the salt that desalinization plants would generate if we were to green a large desert, but who cares, mountains of salt are not the problem that mountains of slag are.

    • Andre Blum

      Waste heat: Not different from what we have now. Vast amounts of 18% efficient internal combustion engines driving by my house at this very moment.
      It is hot here, but they are not a major factor in that.

    • Robert Mockan

      Uh, no. The “greenhouse gas” trapping solar energy the most is water vapor. The Powers-That-Be eventually will focus on this … wait for it… toxic pollutant, because it is causing global warming. And let us not forget methane from cow farts. Does all this sound ridiculous? Yes, but no less so than talk about carbon dioxide. The Club of Rome decided way back in the 60s to use environment issues (that they would have to create with propaganda) as another tool for social engineering to help usher in their New World Order. And no, this was never a “conspiracy theory”, although there are plenty of shills saying it is, even today.

      (Look in terror to the sky, for there will be …clouds!)

      • Dan gitlin

        By far away the biggest impact would be on Russia, Venezuela, Middle East oil producing countries etc. The government and the money that fuels society would be shut off. I can imagine uprisings, turmoil, and wars. These countries have nothing but oil money keeping societies together.

        Coal exporting countries would be hammered first but oil wouldn’t be far behind once CF catches on enough for transport.

    • Robert Mockan


  • georgehants

    Andrea Rossi
    November 21st, 2012 at 10:09 AM
    Dear Clovis Alan Ray:
    You merit this info: yesterday the third party validation of the Hot Cat has been completed.
    Has been good.
    The results have been better that in the July 16th preliminary test.
    We are presently manufacturing 3 1 MW E-Cats:
    1- Low Temperature 1 MW E-Cat
    1- 1 MW Hot Cat
    1- 1 MW Hot Cat gas fueled
    A Report will be published after peer reviewing.
    We are working very hard.
    Warm Regards,

    • clovis

      For posting this.

      • Peter_Roe

        I’d just like to tip my (proverbial) hat to all those showing great common sense in reaction to Gibb’s silly piece and the parroted CO2 alarmism expressed by one commenter. As the reality of LENR becomes undeniable, fearmongering is likely to be the main weapon of the disinformation shills. If the reasoned and informed responses shown here typical of thinking people in general, the propagandists are clearly wasting their time.

        • I think that Gibbs’ article is a carefully planned piece of preparing societal ground for a coming change. He makes some purposefully off the mark pseudotechnical points to raise attention and to get people to think by themselves. Basically his message is: LENR is probably true, be alert. It’s hard to say it so that people listen, and I think he makes a rather good job. At the expense of making a fool of himself in the eyes of some, but that’s part of a journalist’s job.

          • Chris

            I shun the notion of misinformation being part of a journalist’s job.

          • This is the guy who asked the Vortex list for suggested LENR resources because he somehow didn’t have time to look into the biggest story in a thousand years. That’s pathetic. Journalists should be a beacon on the hill shining the light of truth.

      • LCD

        I guess indep ecat news is down again

        • georgehants

          Who are they.

        • Peter_Roe

          Comments have been down since the 16th. The loss is hard to bear.

          • Ivone Martin FitzGerald

            I am crying for the lost souls of Ecatnews.

      • georgehants

        From EurekAlert!
        Public release date: 21-Nov-2012
        University of Tennessee study: Unexpected microbes fighting harmful greenhouse gas
        Nature has a larger army than previously thought combating nitrous oxide — according to a study by Frank Loeffler, University of Tennessee, Knoxville — Oak Ridge National Laboratory Governor’s Chair for Microbiology, and his colleagues.

      • Francesco CH

        “A Report will be published after peer reviewing.”

        A scientific report from a university, to be more precise.

    • Gérard2012

      This is very good news

      If AR could do a press conference with his client in the same idea as NASA (announced on Thursday about March)
      We are entering a new era where all certainties will fall and it will change our world and our philosophy of life!

      In french

      Cette une très bonne nouvelle

      Si AR pouvait faire une conférence de presse avec son client dans la même idée que la Nasa (annoncé pour jeudi prochain concernant Mars)
      Nous entrons dans une nouvelle ère ou toutes les certitudes vont tomber et cela va changer notre monde et notre philosophie de la vie!

    • LCD

      wait for it, wait for it

      • georgehants

        Ha, one day (hopefully) we will all fall off our chairs, when it will not just be Rossi says.
        + a few others of course.

  • I have spent some time in the shower thinking about the ‘Unintended Consequences’ of cold fusion/LENR energy.

    Powering desalination plants will definitely be high on the list of applications for the technology. But we already have some experience with managing the discharge of desalination plants, so I don’t believe this is an insurmountable problem on a larger scale.

    My prediction is that if/when CF power is applied to transportation we will see a huge reduction in the cost of freight and shipping. This will lead to a huge transformation of international and cross border trade.

    I may even be able to offer Free (Energy) Shipping on my t-shirts 🙂

    • f.a.

      A little clarification… Rossi stated clearly that it doesn’t involve any CF here, he calls it “Lenr reactions”….
      Applied on trasportation means implies a “remarkable” reduction of CO2 emission’s impacts towards subnull levels (electric cars). Air travel costs will drop dramatically, if power generated by this reactions will outpass the ones actually used.
      pros: no pollution, national energetic self-sufficiency (no Gazprom, no BP oil spills and oil egemonies), low cost clean CO2 free industrial production and shipping-freight, you can use heat to produce artificial diamonds, you can take advantage of the melting point of elements occuring in wastelands: You begin with lower temperatures and obtain the corresponding element at a specific temperature, until you reach beyond 1000° C, the next element you could gather from wastelands is GOLD, and fully recycle and merge all elements which are chaotically mingled, with gradual meltings. All waste would be disposable to be recycled…
      I can stop thinking how many applications are possible. Unlimited.
      Power desalinization itself will help to spread human activities and civilization among barren and desert lands, create artificial landscapes, rivers…. Just build the machine 500 times larger. You could drag all seawater and create artificial water ways…

  • Bernie Koppenhofer

    Sounds like a big oil, big gas, nuclear industry commercial to me.

  • Socrates

    The worst unintended consequence will be enabling a population explosion. Can the miracle technology also cope will all of the ancillary problems of massive population? Maybe. I for one don’t want to live in a world with 50 billion humans oozing from every pore.

    Secondarily, if the energy density of LENR is as stated, then it undoubtedly will be developed into many kinds of ghoulish weapons. Thechnology is typically a two-edged sword.

    The above said, bring it on anyway!

    • Warthog

      LOL…..increased prosperity DECREASES population growth. Proven worldwide repeatedly.

      • f.a.

        I stick with Warthog, furthermore, ghoulish weapons already exist: nuclear weapons. Why on earth one would abuse this tecnology… There’s already plenty of energy available for consumption. If it comes by for free, doesn’t mean that you can harm a group of people with electriticy. Technology is not a two edged sword, but in this case, no one would ever want to stop the future and the progress of humanity and switch back to horses.
        Further more, we could finally liberate ourselves from stomping tyranny of powerful lobbies. That means 99,9% of humans will take over that 0,1% that is though, actually enslaving us and our poor economic growth will boost….

  • Chris

    Gibbs’ analysis is somewhat naïve.

    He has a point or two but hasn’t done his homework properly. I just had to LOL about the waste heat increasing global warming, he just doesn’t get it straight.

    As for the desalination issue, it can be a great way of cleaning the oceans from all those heavy metals… uhm, seriously? Only if the desal is done right at the places where these pollutants are highly concentrated. Gibbs has no idea of how much water the oceans contain. Much of our table salt is still obtained by evaporation of sea water.

    Well, I just gave it a quick read so that’s enough for now, but he is right that we have yet to know exactly what radionuclides might accumulate from a very large scale use of these technologies. We can only let time tell.

  • Marc Irvin

    I just read MG’s article. I feel that the case he is making has become manifest in the interpretations of his readership. At least as it applies to this audience. I feel his predictions are reasonable, but only in a certain context that I have not seen acknowledged in this commentary. The misunderstanding is natural given he uses the term “waste heat” repeatedly. If he had said “excess heat” I believe you guys would not have been so critical. He envisions a world such as never been imagined, where heat is so inexpensive that it is used to heat even the outdoors. Rather than home heating, think city heating. Rather than highway lighting, think skywide lighting of cities. To the people benefitting from the higher quality of life (i.e. reduced crime) that much heat and light would be welcome. However, MG say waste heat, but in theory its reasonable to imagine world wide “excess heat” becoming something of a problem. Grandma’s having a few cats is OK, but Grandma with dozens of cats is a health risk.

    • Chris

      No, it isn’t his wording that needs improvement. He simply makes a misinformed hash.

  • Robert Mockan

    Unintended consequences?
    Absolutely! Wait for LENR catalyst everywhere, that can not be controlled!
    The insane oligarchs and their agendas are going down!
    The only question is how much longer can the technology be delayed.

    • There is really only one condition under which this would be a serious problem, and that is, if the prosperity generated from the broad use of this technology is not equitably distributed.

      Human populations rapidly diminish in times of prosperity. Most western democracies are only able to sustain their populations with mass immigration. This has been true since the 19th century. Were the prosperity we assume will come from the eCat be shared fairly, our population would fall rapidly, and in a couple of generations, we would live in an empty Eden, with access to infinite power and resources.

      However, below a certain level of prosperity, human birth rates soar. We see this in the third world now. Our current global population explosion is fueled by poverty. Under stress, humans breed like rabbits, with one birth per female per year. Only disease and deprivation, yet more stressers are able to limit it.

      Capitalists see the third world as a vast pool of cheap labor they can draw on to undermine local wages and conditions. Instead of doing the obvious, ameliorating poverty in the third world, Capitalism assiduously avoids this, with the effect that poverty is now the number one export of the under-developed world.

      If the Capitalist system succeeds at maintaining these record high levels of inequality, which it must if it is to suport “growth”, then expect the world’s poulation to continue growing exponentially, till not only will the eCat not save us, it will actually accelerate our demise.

      • liberty90

        You don’t know what you’re talking about.

        COMMUNISM and civil wars destroyed many African countries (for example – )

        • Read, “Planet of the Slums” by Mike Davis.

        • capitalism is not kind, but provided it is not too crony and too monopolistic, with pain (the one that good parents accept), it helps to get out of poverty for the next generation. it is a painful investment… You can help the creative destruction with a smart state, but it is not very common to have state that help transition, protect peoples and promote investment, and not state that protect jobs, monopolies, incumbent, at the price of future investments.
          Read “the next convergence” to have details…
          the best capitalist growth today seems to eb the asian, both capitalist but also state managed.

          about demography it seems you agree both, and me too…

          wealth reduce fecundity. temporarily since death rate is reduced, population can grow; but it have been observed recently that sometime fecundity is reduced before death rate, or not too late.

      • f.a.

        Shilling with nonsense? You assert “Only disease and deprivation, yet more stressers are able to limit it.”…”and Human populations rapidly diminish in times of prosperity.”
        Clearly: prosperity cant be a stresser here, yet is able to limit it: Italy’s population growth is diminishing at a steadfast pace due to prosperity.
        I hope you didnt meant to wish another man’s life diseases and deprivations. This is a mean and vile statement.

        • Work on your English reading comprehension. I never said prosperity is a stresser. Nor did I wish deprivation on anyone – I was refering to the way disease limits population growth in spite of enormous brth rates.

      • Milo

        Interesting talks about population on TED by Hans Rosling:

    • Black market LENR reactors = BlackCats

  • QC-JYM

    I like that MG. Too bad he was’nt there a 100 years ago when M. Otto decide to go the petrol way instead of the water way. Would have save us a lot of trouble! 😉


  • robyn wyrick

    Gibbs’ POV on this is amazingly helpful. I hadn’t considered the unintended downside consequences of wildly abundant, clean, safe energy.

    Now I realize that this point should be applied to any number of things too: such as muggings. If we take actions to reduce the number of muggings in my city, we may have the unintended consequence of driving the mugger population into competition for otherwise available jobs – and so tighten the labor markets, and drive up inflation, destroying the economy and leading to social collapse and ultimately to more muggings.

    It’s the same problem with efforts to prevent Malaria, which will cause a wild growth in the equatorial population – who will in turn need jobs, which will cause waste, which will lead to squalor and ultimately to more Malaria.

    I could go on and on about the unintended consequences of doing the right thing, because there is no end to my ability to pull stuff out of my… hat, when I get paid to do so.

    I know it sounds stupid, but that’s only because it is.

    • Peter_Roe

      🙂 Brilliant! – your post deserves ‘Featured Comment’ status.

      • robyn wyrick

        ( •_•)>⌐■-■

    • Mark, all of us who are advocates for cold fusion are profoundly grateful to you for clearly stating the vast commercial and economic potential of these “New Fire” devices, as they are coming to be known. For myself, thank you!

      I wrote a long post in response that had several typos, and when I used the Back button to correct it, it disappeared. Since it was a lot of work to write, I won’t repeat it. I hope Forbes will permit editing in the future.

      However, I would like to reassert several points I made in the vanished post:

      1) Your calculation did not subtract the heat value of the various current electricity–generation methods, including burning oil, diesel, gasoline, natural gas and the use of nuclear energy.

      2) It will take at least 1,000 years, at the currently anticipated production rate of 1 million devices per year, to create any issues with the presence of 5 billion cold fusion devices. In that time, refinements will likely solve the problems you anticipate.

      3) The ongoing cold fusion work at MIT by Dr. Peter Hagelstein and Dr. Mitchell Swartz, where a working device has been open to public viewing on the 6th floor of Building 36 at MIT in Cambridge, has shown no harmful radiation with a heat efficiency rating of about 6 – i.e., six times as much energy output as excess heat compared to the power input. That is one reason that students at IIS Pirelli High School in Rome can safely build a cold fusion device without radiation fears.

      4) With respect to excess heat, I wish you had noted the Executive Order by President Obama in October that sought to encourage co-generation of electricity and heat – i.e., using heat generated by a power device to create electricity through thermal conversion panels or another means. That Executive Order anticipates your thinking on this issue – it’s as though President Obama read your mind!

      5) While you explored, in a rather fanciful way, the potential consequences of cold fusion, you didn’t explore the issues that readers would say should concern a Forbes Magazine writer.

      Among those are: 1) The redirected focus of energy investment from conventional and alternative (solar, wind, hydrogen, geothermal and biomass) to cold fusion will relocate vast sums of money, and make many people paupers, and many more people billionaires; 2) the employment consequences of hiring people to engineer, assemble, design, market and install cold fusion devices will be enormous, probably surpassing by two or three orders of magnitude all employment in the energy sector today; 3) the economic consequences of improved lifestyles for the 1 billion people without power today will be vast, of course, with heightened employment spending and consumption on a global scale. 4) In addition, money not paid out (that is paid out today) for power needs will reduce the cost of global manufacturing tio a substantial degree.

      I think your Forbes readers would deeply appreciate an analysis of these “unintended” and fruitful consequences.

      Once again, I want to express my personal gratitude to you for taking the time to think about and evaluate cold fusion claims. I am sure that at some distant time in history, your contributions and those of Forbes Magazine in giving you an important platform to encourage a better life for humankind, will be noted in the history books of that future. So, at Thanksgiving, my deepest thanks to you!

      Joe Shea
      The American Reporter

      (also posted on

      • Chris

        My hat off, but these points are far from being the most fundamentally essential ones.

        It would take a humongous effort to compete with the thermal power which is incident with sunlight. What changes significantly by terrestrial causes is the atmosphere, the way it affects EM radiation in it: how much of it goes straight through, gets scattered or absorbed. That’s more to the point, except at the very local scale (such as a city).

    • Iggy Dalrymple

      Lemmings stumbled on the solution to many problems, whether or not the consequences were intended.

      • tim walshaw

        What is the motive of an author from Forbes? Paid to slow things down? Worried about oil and coal investments?

        Those concerns are infinitesimally small compared to the consequences of global warming. It is now predicted by the World Bank that the global temperature will rise 4 degrees by the end of the century. We MUST reduce CO2 in the atmosphere. Or ALL, rich or poor, will suffer, and big time.

        I ask, do the rich readers of Forbes want the lives of their children and grand-children to be put at risk, just because you are concrned about your financial losses?

        • Roger Bird

          Bull excrement. Since when is a bank an expert on climate change? As CO2 goes up, plant growth goes up, which brings CO2 down. Whatever happened to the Little Ice Age and the Medieval Warm Period; how come those inconvenient facts aren’t part of the hockey stick chart. And that graph that goes back 500,000 years showing the close relationship between CO2 and sea temperatures; it is impossible to tell if the rise in CO2 comes before or after the rise in sea temperatures; and warmer waters hold less CO2. So please take your group hysteria that you liberals love to wallow in and shove it.

          And when it has been warmer, the world was a better place. A little warming might do us some good. It is all about sun cycles. The climate never has been steady. It ALWAYS changes.

        • Rockyspoon

          That 4-degree estimate by the World Bank is based on erroneous data from the UN, which is pushing the “Global Warming” meme of control through Agenda 21, which means they tell you where to live, what to do, where to travel, and so forth.

          Tim, the earth’s temperature hasn’t warmed up for 16 years now, and scientists devoid of that disease I call “Global Warming Ideology” predict a cooling trend for the next 30 years or more. CO2 is beneficial to the biosphere (if an “environmentalist” tells you it isn’t he’s not a true environmentalist–he’s someone brainwashed with CAGW ideology).

          You really need to start reading outside of the box the UN and their media acolytes have put you in. You’ll find just about everything they’ve been telling you about global warming is a bunch of malarky (Exaggerated or foolish talk, usually intended to deceive).

          Me? I’m a geologist–one of those guys that studies the earth, including its atmosphere and temperature history. Climate scientists hate most geologists because we don’t buy their alarmism, as nobody should.

    • Fibber McGourlick

      Yes. Also remember what the spread of electricity did to the poor coal-oil lamp industry. That’s another excellent example of the kind of deleterious unintended consequences of invention and progress. So let’s stop working on all this harmful progress with cold fusion and medicine and industrial invention. If we’ll just do that one little thing, then the earth’s population will automatically level off at a more reasonable level—I mean after the hungers wars are over, of course.

      • f.a.

        “So let’s stop working on all this harmful progress?”

        Why u not join the amish community, for the harmful progress’ sake?

        • Peter_Roe

          f.a. please look up the word ‘irony’.

    • Alan DeAngelis

      Holy smokes!!! The lack of CO2 will trigger an ice age. Therefore LENR must be taxed (while simultaneously collecting a carbon tax) and by the powers invested in me by myself, I declare that these taxes will be paid directly to me because I’ll know how to do important things and stuff with all that cash (trust me).

      • Peter_Roe

        Obviously logic dictates that I support your laudable proposal to help save the planet. Logic – and shall we say, a 25% cut? (Just call me Al G.)

        • GreenWin

          “There is no likelihood that man can ever tap the power of the atom. The glib supposition of utilizing atomic energy when our coal has run out is a completely unscientific Utopian dream, a childish bug-a-boo.” Robert Millikan, Nobel Prize physicist, 1928

          “There will never be a mass market for motor cars – about 1,000 in Europe – because that is the limit on the number of chauffeurs available!” Spokesman for Daimler Benz

          “Man will never reach the moon regardless of all future scientific advances.” Dr. Lee De Forest (inventor of the vacuum tube), 1957

          • Rockyspoon

            You could add the estimation about computers: Around 1946 it was estimated that the world would only need about 6 of them. I personally own 6 of them.

            But where Forbes’s Gibbs really falls down is in his evaluation of desalination with cold fusion. Typical desalination requires boiling the water followed by condensation of pure water. The remaining salts wouldn’t be stockpiled–they’d just be dumped back into the ocean where they belong to maintain the original balance as the distilled water eventually reaches the oceans again, typically through runoff.

            However, desalination with cold fusion wouldn’t boil the seawater–instead, it would irradiate the water and transform the salt minerals into other elemental species that would simply bubble off. This is a far more cost effective means of desalination than traditional methods.

            This novel idea was presented in a paper a few years back on the application of cold fusion to desalination.

            The fact that Gibbs doesn’t mention it indicates he hasn’t done much research into the subject.

  • Renzo
  • Preston

    I’ve seen the numbers for what excess heat would look like if we converted to 100% traditional nuclear for all our power and it was insignificant compared to the thermal forcing caused by current CO2 emissions. As people have pointed out, most of our current energy sources generate excess heat. LENR would be the same, and it’s not even close to being a problem at our current power levels.

    You have to assume compound growth of our energy usage, because it is so cheap, for 100 years or so. Someday maybe when we all use 1000 times more energy each running our jetpacks and flying cars, then it can start to be a problem.

    Stopping acidification of the Oceans is also much more important then putting the salt back from desalitation would be.

    Nothing is perfect, it doesn’t hurt to start talking about possible issues, maybe some problems can be avoided. But people shouldn’t get the wrong idea about how these issues compare to our current BAU plan to keep using carbon.

    • I understand that the main source the temperature rise
      atributed to global warming is the trapping of excess
      greenhouse gases in the atmosphere primarily CO2.

      I would say that this is speculation unless the hypothesis
      has been studied by a number of climatologists.

      Cold fusion would mostly replace existing heating and
      themolelectric power generation. A percentage of the
      waste heat from the thermoelectric sources is recaptured
      in co-generation units that reheat the warm air usually
      with natural gas or fuel oil to run though a second set
      of electrical generators.

      Some heat from industrial sources, nuclear plants and
      steam thermal power plants is cooled in cooling towers.

      So this heat is not the significant cause of global
      warming temperature increase.

      • Preston

        Almost all power generated eventually ends up being excess heat and contributes to global warming. The effect is very small compared to CO2. All the power extracted from Oil, for example, ends up turning into heat eventually. Co-generation doesn’t matter, it all ends up as heat. One exception is solar power, and even some of that is excess heat if more light is absorbed then would of been without the solar panel.

        • Omega Z

          Even Solar Power ends with heat. Soon as you use Electricity in any manor it becomes heat in the conversion. Touch a Bulb, Electric Motor, Compressor. You have heat.

          • Preston

            Yes, but with solar some of the heat is not excess – it was going to heat the earth regardless. Hydro power also moves energy and heat around, but doesn’t add any excess.

  • Red_Baron

    All classic steps to discredit LENR already occurred, the first step is ridicule, the second step is to claim scientific impossibility, and finally claim that it is highly dangerous and harmful for people to create fear. I am very happy that we are in the finals for the full truth. Been following this story since the beginning, more than two years have passed … we are reaching the finish line. Happy Thanksgiving and a Christmas full of peace for all.

    greetings to all.

  • Frank Zamburro

    Congratulations Rossi,

    The opposition rabble is scraping the bottom of the barrel,
    I agree it would be a disaster, all the energy available to
    the unwashed, all that fresh water to grow food, the ability
    to live a productive life without having to appease The city
    of London or Wall street, for the privilege of existing.


  • AstralProjectee

    Any possible negative side effects from LENR would be negligible with all the benefits to outweigh the side effects. But nevertheless they need to be effectively dealt with.

    • Robert Mockan

      People who say what you do are sane. But the science and technology adviser to the Manchurian presently soiling the office of the president of this country, is John Holdren.

      So don’t hold your breath. The adviser to the Kenyan is a grade A psychopath. It will NOT be in support of LENR technology.

      • AstralProjectee

        Any form of population control will be out the window with a good super cheap energy device. Which I am confident at least one will come out within the next few years.

        • Omega Z

          With the advent of LENR, All Societies become modern.

          This means we have many new opportunities & things to do with our free time beside Procreate..

          Under this new reality you only have to ask yourself 1 Question.

          Do You Want To Take A Dozen Kids To Disney Land?, Or Do You Think 2 Is More Then Enough???

          • AstralProjectee

            LOL, That will be the day when most people could successfully raise a dozen kids that not only survive but thrive in this world. I think it will happen sometime in the relatively near future.

  • f.a.

    the pollution produced by Nitrogen dioxide typically arises via the oxidation of nitric oxide by oxygen in air:[5] This process is common in cars tailpapies, incinerators and industries. Where the thermal coefficient will bind the O2 to NO.

    O2 + N2 (air + heat) → 2 NO
    2 NO + O2 → 2 NO2 2 is in equilibrium with N2O4

    This NOxious pollution enters your lungs (edema), react with moisture in the lungs:

    3 NO2 + H2O → 2 HNO3 (Ph -1.4 ) + NO
    HNO3 is so powerful, it will corrode your alveola.

    Morale: With electric LENR cars, you get rid of this gas because no heat is involved.

  • Omega Z

    This actually comes across like- Ok It’s real But… All part of the skeptic plan to delay…
    What’s the difference between E-cats & the small Home CHP systems TPTB are already talking about. The 1’s that Use Natural Gas.

    Anyway, If the E-cats are designed to ramp up & down most likely using a small battery storage system to smooth out demand, Most of the excess heat will be alleviated. Ground well heat sinks will do the rest. And a lot of it can be used, Not wasted. Cloths Dryer, Hot Water. These already exist. And Heat in the Winter means no waste heat.

    Also if it’s used in a Local Grid this problem is easy to address by placing the Plant outside the City. And if we use Electric cars powered off a Local grid, you’ll have eliminated a lot of heat produced by Gas Engines Along with C02 & NOX Emissions.

    Desalinization Salt isn’t a problem. Use return pipes for dispersal as some already do. It all mixes back in together. And not to forget, there is a market for a portion of that Sea Salt. This could Eliminate Mining it on land. Hugh Salt Mines in the U.S.

    I see No problems that can’t easily be dealt with. Believe me, I’ve already thought about these Issue’s & I’m a Laymen. It be silly to think others haven’t already thought about it. I mean Come on. Gibbs thought of it.

    • AstralProjectee

      If LENR works then we can probably eventually use LENR to convert salt and abundant minerals into rare earth minerals that will be useful. Instead of having to find a place to store them. Or putting too much salt and minerals back in the ocean as Gibbs suggests.

  • Omega Z

    Here’s a Possible Consequence to think about. C02 levels drop to low.

    We’ll have to pay a Carbon Tax in the Future. That’s to pay for the Drilling for Natural Gas to be burned in Flare Pipes to Raise the C02 Levels so Plants can Grow.

    • Roger Bird

      This could happen.

    • Rockyspoon

      Actually, what you describe happens during any of the 30 or more 100,000-year-long Ice Ages we’ve had in the past 5 million years. The CO2 level drops to about 185 ppmv in the atmostphere, which is baseline for most plants. The flora of the earth takes a big hit at that level of CO2 and pretty much stays there until it warms up and the ice melts, which takes us into an interglacial, the period we now live in.

      CO2 has increased from about 285 ppm to 395 ppm in the last hundred years or so, and plants are growing faster now than ever (trees are growing about 30% faster than they were 50 years ago). Additional CO2 makes it easier for plants to “breathe”, and in doing so their stomata don’t need to be so wide, so they lose less water; plants are doing better with less water everywhere now.

      For example, the Sahil, which is that strip of land just south of the Sahara in Africa, has been greening up over the past 40 years, and satellite photos from the ’70s show the drastic expansion of plants there.

      I suggest that someday as LENR is implemented on a mass scale, because our enlarged biosphere will start to consume the additional CO2 we’ve added through combustion of fossil fuels, governments may sponsor programs to extract more fossil fuels and burn them just to augment the CO2 in the atmosphere. That’s something those stuck on Global Warming dread, but by then it will be understood by everybody that Mann’s Hockey Stick was bogus; that the UN pushed CAGW to control and tax the industrialized West, and science will have refuted the political chains that those who believe in CAGW have imposed on the earth’s population.

      Oh wait–it’s happening already!

      • Roger Bird

        RickyRoo, I was with you exactly right on until we got to the UN conspiracy part. I find science types don’t understand human beings very well. It is most certainly true that those in the UN who wish to control (or even roll back) population growth would jump on AGW. That does not mean that they started the greenie movement or have a significant influence in the AGW movement. The biggest push came from liberals who love to wallow in group hysteria. And us clear thinking people never hold them to it. Please, with December 21st coming up, everyone, let us remind our liberal friends that the end of the world didn’t happen.

        I presume that CAGW means carbon based anthropogenic global warming.

  • RichyRoo

    Greenies will be the biggest enemy of PFE; their high priests want control of energy.
    This is just the beginning.

    • Ben

      This is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. It just doesn’t make any kind of basic sense. As a person who cares about the health of the environment, cold fusion would be a wonderful thing. No green house gases, no polution, so the “greenies” would be against it?

      • Roger Bird

        Ben, RickyRoo is insulting greenies as though they were just like him, wanting nothing but control and power. He can’t imagine that someone actually cares about the environment and has a lot of fun finding ways to save energy.

        • Rockyspoon

          “Greenies” are actually better described as “watermelons”–green on the outside, red on the inside. The “green” movement from the UN is not interested in actual environmental issues the layperson is concerned with; no, the UN with their Agenda 21 is interested in control and taxation.

          Look it up: Agenda 21.

          • Roger Bird

            But there are millions of greenies who are green because they are inspired to be green from the inside. I complained to my mother at the age of 5 that such-n-such was not natural (that was 62 years ago). I remember because she said that I sounded like that French philosopher Rousseau. To say that the green movement came from some jerk-wad in the UN is beyond absurd. I was a greenie 47 years ago; I bet that that UN jerk-wad wasn’t even born then. Just because you can find one guy who said one thing does not a movement make. You just can’t imagine that some people think that the Earth is beautiful and essential and want to preserve it.

          • Ivan Mohorovicic

            I don’t know in the US, but in EU most green parties/movements are clearly of leftist/socialist origin. This association is often quite blatant.

            While there surely are many people who do actually care for the environment among them, a great lot of their voters are people (“converted” from other political parties) who oppose wealth and the rich, and generally have an anti-west sentiment due to some widespread concern (misconception) that the West, or actually consumerism and capitalism, is the root cause of most world problems.

            Trying to lower the standards of living of wealthier others through taxation, disincentives and expensive/impractical, “green” measures is their essence of “being green”.

          • Roger Bird

            I agree 100%. But it is not a conspiracy. It is a way of thinking, what one might call right brain thinking, collective or group oriented, with a big influence from academia.

      • PersonFromPorlock

        There is a certain mindset where if a thing is bad, it needs government to control it; and if a thing is good, it needs government to apply it for the greatest benefit. Oddly enough, this mindset is often found among government workers and those who make money from government contracts.

        You may have noticed that Big Green (wind farms and so on) has its hand firmly stuck in the government pocket: I’m sure that soon it’ll be working to save us from the threat posed by uncontrolled LENR (if LENR is for real).

  • Forbes…. we see from where comes the attack. He doesn’t dare to say the inconvenients for petrol majors… . let first the e-cat become available !

    • Mannstein

      Not to mention the speculators. In 2007-08 oil supply went up demand went down yet the price of a barrel increased to $150. In one remarkable day the price increased $25. It was a repeat of ENRON manipulating the price of electricity for California consumers. We are being ripped of by big bank speculators like Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan.

  • Roger Bird

    I notice that I am much more creative and productive when I am not sweating blood about the mortgage. I see the same thing in other people. All of these problems that Gibbs mentions will be easily handled when we free billions of people from having to scratch for the fulfillment of their needs.