No, that's not a weatherman standing in front of a weathermap of Japan, it's a radiation map the news person is standing in front of.

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    Mar 16, 2011 1:16 PM GMT
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    Where have all the Righties gone this week?

    Oh so silent on RJ.

    Where are all the pro Nuclear/ Business threads that GOP loves to post?


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    Mar 16, 2011 3:04 PM GMT
    Here's the spin: The radiation isn't dangerous. It's all media hype. We've been conditioned to believe that the radiation is dangerous. But it is not. icon_eek.gif
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    Mar 16, 2011 3:09 PM GMT
    After this they'll probably start up the "drill baby drill" chant again ! After all, according to one Repub congressman "god has supplied endless energy resources". It would seem they would have us in desperation running toward extracting every last drop of oil, from every corner of our earth rather than perfect the use of know "green" and safe technologies. Energy powered from Hydrogen has enourmous possibilities and water to extract it from is in abundance, but of course oil money is paying for these politicians survival, not Hydrogen. We can always follow the money to the source of the problem holding back progress.
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    Mar 16, 2011 3:56 PM GMT
    realifedad said After this they'll probably start up the "drill baby drill" chant again ! After all, according to one Repub congressman "god has supplied endless energy resources". It would seem they would have us in desperation running toward extracting every last drop of oil, from every corner of our earth rather than perfect the use of know "green" and safe technologies. Energy powered from Hydrogen has enourmous possibilities and water to extract it from is in abundance, but of course oil money is paying for these politicians survival, not Hydrogen. We can always follow the money to the source of the problem holding back progress.


    Not sure if you've followed it, but shale gas is a relatively recent phenomenon which I think is pretty exciting. If you've followed the energy markets it's just crazy. Oil is trading at $100 while natural gas is at $4. The equivalent energy equivalent unit is about 6x gas - which is to say 4x6 = $24 - and natural gas results in less greenhouse gas emissions than oil (about 20% less).

    Imagine being able to fill up your gas tank for about 20-25% of current costs (that's not 20-25% less, that's 75-80% LESS!) - or being able to fill up by tapping into your natural gas line at home. The thing is, the cost of transition is expensive because in part regulation to allow for conversions (which can be streamlined while ensuring that's safe).

    There's a massive shift already happening and massive incentives for it to happen - with large truck/transport fleets already making the transition to natural gas (again the reality that you can save 75-80% of your fuel costs is compelling).

    As for nuclear, uranium and existing plants like the 40 year old General Electric designs that are in a state of emergency in Japan, are a cold war relic. They were chosen for development over thorium at the time because a byproduct material was plutonium for use in nuclear weaponry. Despite these facts, not only did they face a 8.9 richter scale earthquake but they were also directly hit by a tsunami - though containment and safety is far better in the new generation of uranium based plants. I'd pay more attention to pebble bed technologies (being championed by China) or thorium reactors being championed by a Nathan Mhyrvold subsidiary (ex microsoftie) and I believe also with investments from Google - and these plants don't create plutonium as a byproduct AND can't melt down. To dismiss all nuclear based on these events considering the costs of gas/petroleum products which are the only truly economically viable widescale alternatives, seems foolish.
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    Mar 16, 2011 5:08 PM GMT
    How many deaths from a falling windmill?
    Does the ground get contaminate?
    Any byproducts that are hazardous?



    offshore+wind+farm.jpg



    How many deaths when a solar panel falls over?
    Does the ground get contaminated?
    Any byproducts that are hazardous?



    solar-farm1.jpg
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    Mar 16, 2011 5:17 PM GMT
    Solar and wind aren't economical on a widescale basis (yet). I think solar is coming - but the technology isn't quite there yet. In the interim - natural gas seems like a natural transitional source of energy that is economical, plentiful and considerably cleaner than the alternatives (and it's already happening - coal plants are being shut down because of how cheap natural gas is).

    Good point re; deaths as I was just going to post this: "This visualization compares the energy mix and number deaths related to each of the main sources of energy worldwide - coal, oil, natural gas, nuclear, hydro and biomass. details can be found at http://nextbigfuture.com/2011/03/deaths-per-twh-by-energy-source.html":

    http://www-958.ibm.com/software/data/cognos/manyeyes/visualizations/2e5d4dcc4fb511e0ae0c000255111976/comments/2e70ae944fb511e0ae0c000255111976

    According to the Next Big Future:

    Energy Source Death Rate (deaths per TWh)

    Coal – world average 161 (26% of world energy, 50% of electricity)
    Coal – China 278
    Coal – USA 15
    Oil 36 (36% of world energy)
    Natural Gas 4 (21% of world energy)
    Biofuel/Biomass 12
    Peat 12
    Solar (rooftop) 0.44 (less than 0.1% of world energy)
    Wind 0.15 (less than 1% of world energy)
    Hydro 0.10 (europe death rate, 2.2% of world energy)
    Hydro - world including Banqiao) 1.4 (about 2500 TWh/yr and 171,000 Banqiao dead)
    Nuclear 0.04 (5.9% of world energy)

    Rooftop solar is several times more dangerous than nuclear power and wind power. It is still much safer than coal and oil, because those have a lot of air pollution deaths.

    Rooftop solar can be safer [0.44 up to 0.83 death per twh each year). If the rooftop solar is part of the shingle so you do not put the roof up more than once and do not increase maintenance then that is ok too. Or if you had a robotic system of installation.

    World average for coal is about 161 deaths per TWh.
    In the USA about 30,000 deaths/year from coal pollution from 2000 TWh.
    15 deaths per TWh.
    In China about 500,000 deaths/year from coal pollution from 1800 TWh.
    278 deaths per TWh.

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    Mar 16, 2011 5:20 PM GMT
    Actually, there are some environmental costs to the production of PV cells, and windmill farms are as useful as when there is a reliable
    source of wind at the correct speed.

    Windmills could also pose dangers to (potentially affecting endangered species) migration paths, as well as turning birds to burger if the timing is off.

    Methane Clathrates are abundantly available and easily refined for consumption, we have in North America one of the world's largest shale oil deposits, and there is a fair amount of domestic oil we can source.

    Which is nit to say that harnessing wind, solar, and tidal power should not he aggressively pursued - it just that the EROEI for these are not as high as petroleum or NG related sources.
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    Mar 16, 2011 5:29 PM GMT
    Imagine if we took away the billions in tax cuts to the oil companies and gave those dollars to US Solar and Wind Companies.


    IdeaLightbulb.gif
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    Mar 16, 2011 5:37 PM GMT
    LeanathleticDC saidImagine if we took away the billions in tax cuts to the oil companies and gave those dollars to US Solar and Wind Companies.


    IdeaLightbulb.gif


    We sort of do both (and by we, I mean both the Canadian and American governments). I don't think the government should play favorites with technology as for all you and I know, maybe it will end up being something like Bloom Energy (http://www.bloomenergy.com/) or JTEC (http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2010/11/shooting-for-the-sun/8268/1/)

    I'd highly recommend reading the latter article on Lonnie Johnson who is also the inventor of the super soaker and the development of JTEC as an idea/technology. It was difficult for him initially to get funding because it didn't fit in a specific box as defined by government bureaucrats - but it's a highly promising technology.

    Further, while there are a ton of subsidies for oil and gas development (and I would also argue in the US miilitary which is used to ensure energy pricing stability in the middle east), there are also massive taxes on the end product that also decreases usage (and tends not to be spent on roads/infrastructure either). Also by providing incentives for wind - which is unlikely to be truly economical in most places, it redirects the efforts and private dollars into more promising technologies which may also be solar. The subsidies on all should end... not be compounded.
  • CuriousJockAZ

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    Mar 16, 2011 10:44 PM GMT
    realifedad said After this they'll probably start up the "drill baby drill" chant again !








    I wasn't aware that the "Drill Baby Drill" chant ever ended.

    Drill




    Baby




    Drill
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    Mar 16, 2011 11:55 PM GMT
    realifedad said After this they'll probably start up the "drill baby drill" chant again ! After all, according to one Repub congressman "god has supplied endless energy resources". It would seem they would have us in desperation running toward extracting every last drop of oil, from every corner of our earth rather than perfect the use of know "green" and safe technologies. Energy powered from Hydrogen has enourmous possibilities and water to extract it from is in abundance, but of course oil money is paying for these politicians survival, not Hydrogen. We can always follow the money to the source of the problem holding back progress.


    I'm not sure if you ever took chemistry or physics, but producing H2 from H2O requires more energy than what is produced from the combustion of H2. Where will that energy come from?
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    Mar 17, 2011 12:24 AM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ said
    realifedad said After this they'll probably start up the "drill baby drill" chant again !








    I wasn't aware that the "Drill Baby Drill" chant ever ended.

    Drill




    Baby




    Drill



    Please don't tell me you are one of those dopes AZ....that doesn't know that Oil drilled in America is sold on the open market ALL OVER THE WORLD to the highest bidder?...and not ONLY in America