The View From 1776

Blind Paganism

If one’s mind is not clouded by faith in secular paganism, it’s obvious that “green” makes no economic sense.  Some pet “green” projects consume more energy than using coal or petroleum and, when all elements of the process are considered, actually add to pollution.

 

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 05/31 at 09:24 PM
  1. Mr. B:

    The post you cite does not say that green technologies use more energy than using coal or that they add to pollution.

    The post makes the somewhat silly argument that we should give up on alternate energy strategies because they do not currently produce enough power.

    We have, of course, become addicted to the high energy density found in fossil fuels, and are loath to consider getting free of this addiction, even if it would be better for us in the long run.
    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  06/02  at  08:24 AM
  2. You bring up good points J.Jay. We should pursue alternative energy but, probably not some we have been pursuing. For example, they are finding the cost of water for solar panel arrays is high because they tend to place them in areas with lots of sunshine (i.e. not many cloudy days, like in the desert) and thus, the dirt has to constantly be cleaned off the arrays using scarce water.

    The property taxes or other costs with land is also a factor that many don't think about and thus, we need to put the power plants in low tax areas but, that then requires more land for transmission infrastructure.

    The wind generators are nice in that they don't need to be constantly cleaned and they can be farmed around and livestock can graze around them.

    As pointed out, the lack of wind causes backup system to have to be in place and running 24/7 but, at a reduced rate. Still, it means the cost of the plant's construction and property taxes and wages, is just as high when at low capacity as well as high capacity.

    The Chinese are developing a MagLev wind generator that just one of which can power 750,000 homes.

    http://community.marketwatch.com/

    A lot of help for wind could come if we could get a massive nation wide system of transmission lines that could feed power from MagLev generators located in major wind corridors. Of course the lawsuits we already have on trying to expand transmission lines would create roadblocks but, probably could eventually be overcome.

    Another thing that would help back up wind would be geothermal in "hot spots" in the U.S. and that could fill gaps with wind power when winds are absent.

    Finally, letting price dictate alternative sources would help. We have high costs for alternative power in some cases but, placing consumption taxes like Europe does on gasoline would balance the playing field more and encourage alternative research more, even by oil companies.

    The reason we don't is that due to our culture and size and distance people live from work and absence of good mass transit systems, our politicians are not wont to raise taxes too much. If they did, they would crash the economy just the same as high oil prices have from supply/demand or speculation moves in price.

    Thus, the solution would seem to be subsidizing alternatives but that, is a problem for a bankrupt nation that doesn't have the money for subsidizing without borrowing it.

    I do believe that after we have an economic and government collapse, many things we consider impossible now, will be possible. Desperation will lead to innovation and new systems and new ways of meeting needs. Sadly, due to the nation being bankrupt and having used bad policies for 50 years, we can't do it without a collapse.
    Posted by JanPBurr  on  06/02  at  11:21 AM
  3. http://www.inhabitat.com/2007/11/26/super-powered-magnetic-wind-turbine-maglev/

    Correct link for Maglev Generator.
    Posted by JanPBurr  on  06/02  at  11:22 AM
  4. JPB:

    I am on board with much of your analysis. There is, of course, no single silver bullet to replace oil. A distributed energy base is likely to be the best alternative. (The wind is always blowing somewhere.)

    We currently subsidize oil in many respects, so that wind, solar, hydro, etc are not now on a even playing field. Oil depletion allowances, and other tax breaks, as well as the biggest subsidy of all, billions for the military a large chunk of which is spent keeping the oil flowing from our "friends" in the mid east.
    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  06/06  at  12:26 PM
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