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March 07, 2007

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Comments

Thomas Pedersen

In the headline it says millions... Shouldn't it be billions?

Yes, your right Thomas, corrected now. - Jim

Kit P.

The primary reason for the trend in 'clean' energy development is the 2005 Energy Bill. Several concurrent events like hurricanes and and coal train derailments, sent a clear massage that even relatively small amounts of alternate energy were important. The 2000/2001 California energy crisis sent the same message but 9/11 events shifted the public awareness to energy independence.

Engineer-Poet

All I can say is, it's about bloody time.

Some of this is looking in the rear-view mirror; wind power is already exploding in just the USA (see the second graph).

amazingdrx

Exponential growth makes markets boom. Boom away and make the internet bubble look like a pimple, oh mighty renewable energy bull market. Chinese companies maybe the Ciscos and Microsofts this time.

What a ride!

Not to mention that another internet tech boom will happen along with it. universal wireless broadband broadcast through, from, and back to the power grid. To facilitate distributed energy storage and production and plugin vehicle charging and all the related financial transactions involved.

Soon this mode of internet could replace all analog broadcasting, cell phones, telephone lines, cable TV, with a huge wave of productivity.

Enoch

My interest in clean or alternative energy has nothing to do with saving the planet. While pollution is harmful, I don't buy into the global warming hysteria.
My reasons for cheering for alternate energy are:
- The political and security implications of relying on foreign oil.
- With competition within the alternative energy sector, both within the same technology and between different technologies, prices will reflect actual production cost, rather than the clearly manipulated prices of the oil monopoly. As a matter of fact, I would be willing to pay more for alternative energy, just so that the oil sheiks and barons won't get my dollar.

mds

Same from renewableenergyaccess.com:

http://www.renewableenergyaccess.com/rea/news/story;jsessionid=237449BD825307F78701889C1EBD99C2?id=47696

NOTICE:

“9.4 percent of total U.S. venture capital investments in 2006”

“solar will jump from 2 GW of production to nearly 20 GW”

Solar is predicted to increase by over 4 times in revenue, for a 10 TIMES INCREASE IN PRODUCTION!

...and plenty of VC dollars to boot!

OH YA!!!

Kit P.

mds, that is a lot of investment but not a lot of electricity. In 2007, one power uprate at one US nuke will 1000 larger in terms of electricity production for all the PV fabrication capacity (0.1% of improvement at one nuke). Furthermore, the PV fabrication will have at least 1,000,000 the environmental impact.

mds

Kit P.
I think you miss my point. Investment in wind is predicted to increase by four times, so number of wind installations will increase by about this much. Investment in solar is predicted to increase by a similar amount, but PRODUCTION, not installations, is predicted to increase by 10 TIMES. These are PV plants that can produce PV panels used to build PV power plants. Most will go on roofs, but it's the same. We may go from building 2 GW PV per year, equivalent of 4 coal plants or 1 nuke, to 20 GW PV per year, equivalent of 40 coal plants or 10 nukes. What if this same growth rate continues? OK, this is just predictions, but it is suggesting that we have started a transition to a large scale use of PV. This is happening, just like for PC and cell phones, and it's a good thing because of our fossel fuel problems. One of the advantages of solar over nuclear is it's a distributed consumer product, sorry. You're money is going to buy more PV for the same dollar each year. Prices have been dropping and this will accelerate.

For the record, I am in favor of using Nuclear power also. NucBuddy stated my reasons in an earlier: large astroiods and super volcanoes. I would add global nuclear war. Any of these can cause severe global cooling and I think blot out much of the sun light. There is good genetic evidence that mt. Toba nearly wiped out the homo sapiens. Yellowstone is due. These eruptions cause several years of winter. An over dependence on solar might not be good, although nuke/coal plant alone won't help all that much. Having said this, I don't think claims like 1 million times less polluting against solar are helping to promote nuclear. Why? Well, Chernobyl! It's polluted and they were lucky. Go clean it up and then come back and we'll take. It's not just public perception. It is also business perception. There was a great quote: "What TMI did was to demonstrate that a 1 million dollar asset could be turned into a 2 million dollar liability in a few hours." I think that's close. Wish I could remember the source. Don't get mad at me. These are the realities for nuclear power.
Here's what I think you and NucBuddy need to do:
1. We need to build a few high-energy nuclear reactors. The low-energy ones may be economical, but they are too fuel inefficient. This leaves more material to be disposed of and more material to protect from terrorist use.
2. These have to been shown to be completely safe for operate. Absolutely on risk of melt down, regardless of human actions, faulty software controls, faulty mechanical systems, or even earthquake. 100% safe or no deal. (Chernobyl and TMI are all about promises of safety being broken. Recovering public trust is costing.)
3. Educate the general public, in a fair and honest (no OVERLY-honest) way, with physical proof, this can be done cleanly AND economically from cradle-to-grave (mining-to-waste disposal).
4. Try nuclear AND solar, instead of Nuclear OR solar. You will lose the later. Solar is here now. We've started to transition over. It will take 20 to 30 years, but we will be using a lot of it by then. The government is only helping a little right now. Private investment is where the big dollars are coming from. This will increasely be true. We could use nuclear for baseload, particularly in the winter, and to save some of our butts if Yellowstone goes off.

Nuclear is really an uphill battle right now. Some bad past history needs to be overcome. It was not done right. Solar, wind, waves, geothermal, clean coal, and bio-fuel are all starting to do the job. "People are not rational animals, they are rationalizing animals." They most likely will not worry about Yellowstone till it happens, tomorrow or 50,000 years from now.

I favor Jim's view of nuclear. Build a few new tech plants and show that you can get it right. This will lead to more later.

Nathan

Dear Sir,

I have heard many things about new technologies in power generation and the nuclear power is sustainable with high degree to risk and investments.

But kike a small spec in the ocean, we at Neo Energy Corporation, have invented the world’s first generator, which is run by bullocks and produces energy to power small villages and communities at very negligible cost, when compared to our conventional ways. This is a novel concept of converting animal power to electricity generated from locally available materials. And this energy is clean and green with no carbon emission.

All you need is a small bullock cart, Steel Rotor, variable gear box, Fly wheel Dynamo – able to produce up to 400Watts. This power is sustainable, as the Bullocks are of local breed and can consume fodders, which are available locally. The unit can be housed in a shed with concrete floorings.

We wish to commercialise this product for the welfare of millions of people in Asia and Africa. And we look forward to technocrats and private equity firms to participate in this revolution to make this project a very successful one.

Thanks for providing this platform.

Nathan

Kit P

Nathan, to be taken seriously you need a cool acronym. How about Draft Animal Propelled Electric Generator (DAPEG). Also let me suggest that relying on animal power is not a very good plan for improving the welfare of millions.

Nathan

Thanks Kit.P. The acronym - DAPEG is apt and I wish use this , with your permission.

As you have mentioned rightly, there is a growing concern over the dependability of animal power for the welfare of millions.

I am basically from India, it is one of the highly populated countries and it is an agrarian economy. I do not know, whether you have visited our beautiful country.

Most of the population lives in villages in the remote rural areas. They have no access to potable water, electricity or any other basic facilities. But they have bullocks to till their farms and bullocks forms the part of their daily life.

In order to improve their life, we can produce electricity, which caters to the needs of each village, thereby improving the lives.

I trust, you will agree to this argument and by this way, we can improve the lives of millions in other poor countries too.

Thanks for your views and join this revolution.

Nathan

Kit P

Nathan, I must plead ignorance to social values that would lead to using animals to produce electricity. Hopefully part of your plan will include collecting the manure for small anaerobic digesters that produce fertilizer and biogas for cooking and lighting.

nathan

Kit, You are absolutely right, there is a tremendous potential for Draft Animal Propelled Electric Generator (DAPEG) in poor countries in Asia and Africa. Besides producing electricity, we can also produce Biogas for cooking and lighting as well as fertilizer for farms. The electricity produced from this source is clean and green.

This generator is very economical, when compared to any other electricity producing equipments and maintenance costs are negligible. The main raw material for this generator is the feed for the bullocks – Grass, which are available locally grown. And you have the choice of using any other animals like camels or donkeys, in place of bullocks, as the choice is area specific.

I trust, this is the only power generating equipment with so much to offer and it is my endeavor to make this available to the poor to prosper.

I need the support and advice of people like you to make this project a successful one.

Barry Bernsten

We can all learn something from what Al Gore had to say the past few weeks. Unless we become self reliant for our energy requirements, we will never again be an independent democratic nation.

We can start with a fundamental change in our driving habits that is now required.

The Automobile Industry is going to be in the same position as the Airline Industry in the next few months. Unless we get away from gas combustion vehicles, including Hybrids, the automobile industry (as we know it) will die.We need to make drastic moves. America needs to move to ELECTRIC. The vehicles are not as fast, not always as fun to drive, but the move will save Americans money (Billions) and help bring change to our automotive companies. Let's "Be Green"!!!!!!!!!!!! BG Automotive Group Ltd. has a car that will travel 80-100 miles per charge for $15,995. Finally a car that most Americans can afford. Did you know that 80% of all drivers, drive less than 50 miles per day? This new car will cost an equivalent of $0.20-0.25 cents/gallon (depending on electricity rates in your area). Why send $700 Billion per year to OPEC (now buying up U.S. companies) when we can use this money for our schools, health care, social security for all Americans, etc, etc, etc. We can make the difference if WE change.


coalportal

The investment into alternative power generating technologies such as nuclear energy may need to be measured against the potential cost when things turn against you as unfortunately happened this year in Japan. Coal prices and coal statistics show developing economies are more likely to increase their investment into & their use of coal mining in coming years because of coal's affordability and ability to quickly meet increasing demands for electricity and steel. www.coalportal.com

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