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July 07, 2007



Looks like it's full steam ahead for geothermal power. I'm glad they didn't let outdated stereotypes dampen their enthusiasm.


Ormat thermal turbine generator sets have been used in Alaska for remote locations power sources since the 70s. They are sweet running little guys that require nearly no maintenance. The units have a closed loop gas boiler/turbine/condenser prime mover system that’s hermetically sealed like a refrigerator/compressor piping system. I’m sure the big power units for this project are much different but Ormat seems to be a leader in thermal to electric conversion. It sounds like a great project. It would be fun to work there.

Kit P.

This is not evidence that geothermal can supply significant amounts of power and to Ormat credit they did not make any such claim in there press release.

I would rate geothermal as one of the better ways to make electricity that is classified as renewable energy. There is no reason to believe that environmental impact is significantly different that a coal plant. There is also no reason to believe that will be a significant source of electrical power in the US.


Kit P. wrote: I would rate geothermal as one of the better ways to make electricity that is classified as renewable energy.


Kit P

Nucbuddy, are you suggesting that geothermal may have industrial safety issues? Hydrogen sulfide, mercury, and arsenic are both natural and non-radioactive. Therefore it must be clean. [/sarcasm]


No, I was meaning to suggest that geothermal is not considered "renewable" -- as in the (internally contradictory, but none-the-less widely-accepted in a loose sense) folk definition:

derived from resources that are regenerative or for all practical purposes cannot be depleted.[

Nucbuddy: that's what you get when lurking around on Wikipedia too much ;)

Kit: why'd you use the /sarcasm? That sort of rhetoric would actually be in line with the majority of your posts on this blog.

You nuclear advocates should actually embrace geothermal as part of the future energy mix as it's energy is ultimately derived from radioactive decay deep inside the earth. It's basically a nuclear reactor that can't have a meltdown and has no waste storage problems. No proliferation issues either. What more could you want? [where's that sarcasm tag when you need it?]

Kit P

We need a reliable electricity supply. 99.2% of my electricity comes from coal and nuclear power. It is reliable and cheap and the environmental impact is below the detection threshold.

SCE is a California utility where there are significant air quality issues. I would not advocate building a coal plant there but I would have a problem with generating with coal where the air quality is not impacted.

Geothermal is a better option for SCE than either solar or wind. Biomass is another option for SCE.

However, SCE has a lots of customers who need electricity and a significant portion comes from nuclear power. I have no issues with SCE trying to build a nuclear weapons or dirty bombs. I have no issues with them storing the spent fuel or melting down the reactor.

If Calamity has issues with SCE the NRC should be contacted. We live in a democracy. Just because some dictators someplace might not use nuclear power in a irresponsible manner should not preclude SCE from generating electricity with nukes.

In the US, the public, employees, and environment must be protected when generating electricity no matter what the energy source. While I see lots groups protesting this and that, but generally speaking the they lack prima fascia evidence.

If Calamity has evidence that SCE is building nuke weapons she would have a legitimate issue. The standard approach of anti-nukes is to make up a long list of 'issues' even though they have been addressed in public forum that is the basis of regulations. At the same time they propose no alternative or ignore issues with the alternatives.


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Electricity is classified as renewable energy.And i would rate geothermal as one of the better ways to make electricity that is classified as renewable energy.


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