A number of years ago Ted Turner told me that because dams were so detremental to the enviroment we should be looking more seriously at Nukes for electricity.
This is being brought up more frequently as of late more in line with curbing the Green House emmissions associated with burning hydrocarbons. Personally I have an open mind to many of the options that are available to us from conservation to other alternative methods.
It is widely reported that the world consumption of energy based on "third world" modernization will grow by a minimum of 60% over the next decade this will cause a much larger spike in the green house effect and maybe it is time to at least start a dialouge as to the safety and utilization of Nukes.
I read that in China they have a promising new technology that allows safe and much smaller plants to produce electricity at a fraction of what it cost to subsidise and operate dams and there construction. An open mind is a terrible thing to waste.
In the US we read less than 2% of the printed material we produce. Just look at the Sunday paper. The problem is the economic structure of businesses putting ads into the paper, who cares if we only read the funnies.
I wonder how many megawatt hours we could save by converting all of our incandescent bulbs to flourescent screw-ins, which BTW are more cost-effective because they last so damn long while using only a minute fraction of the energy?
Let's say there are 350 towns in MA each with 1000 homes (conservative avg) with 25 light bulbs (even more conservative).
13 watt CFL is equivalent to a 60 watt incandescent
18 watt CFL is equivalent to a 75 watt incandescent
27 watt CFL is equivalent to a 100 watt incandescent
30 watt CFL is equivalent to a 150 watt incandescent
We could save 498,750,000 watts of electricity by using compact "75w (18w)" flourescents instead of incandescents in Massachusetts alone, actually I believe since these estimates are low the figure would far exceed that.
Now apply this one metric to the continent, and add the 100 or so other things we could do at home, the car and the office that would provide a similar return on simple investment.
Like they say, we throw away more than other countries consume. :(
AND THE WINNER IS.......
Fastest Growing energy Source Worldwide!
Germany now produces 15+% of it's Electricity from Windpower
The wind in North Dakota alone could supply up to 1/3 of the U.S. Electricity needs.
Solar Energy instalations increased 35% in the past 5 years.
Aisa is the only region in the world where Electrical Generating capacity, in particular Nuclear, is growing at a high rate.
Aisa has 100 Power Reactors in 6 countries generating now, with 20 under construction, and another 40 on the books.
Japan leads with 56 in operation, next is S. Korea with 18, India with 14 and China rounds out the top 4.
There was a Nuclear Conference in Washington this past Feb. sponsered by Platts, a subsid of McGraw/ Hill, but I could not get the stats from it, only that it was U.S./Canada "Agressive" movement and renewed intrest in newer more efficent reactors
We switched over to the Pig Tail lights last year, they have made a difference on the light bill and thats a good thing, enviromentaly and economicaly.
I saw a blurb on the Nukes in China they are supposedly smaller and more cost effective to operate.
The big problem coming down the track at the speed of light isn't as much about our ability to conserve (although we should) its about the explosion in the middle class in Asia and India and South America they are all about to launch into the same cycle of consumer driven economic expansion that we have been on for some time.
I heard a report that radio active waste from a nuke in France was encased in Glass and stored under a school building how is that possible ? Are there different kinds of radioactive "debris".
I could have driven the 2 hours to go fishing today and fished some very marginal conditions but with the price of gas as high as it is I elected to work in the yard and watch the Mariner's with my wife (the #1 Fan). This high price of gas is similar to the idea of putting a heavy tax on gasoline to get people to consereve. Painful medicine and I'm sure it will hurt some segment of the economy but will create a boom in some other part where an idea person says hey what if!!!!
Surely you are not suggesting that we in the US and other industrialized countries with large economic middle classes ought to be responsible for what Asian, India, and South American countries do? Who has the duty to pay for pollution control technoligies? I submit that it is the responsibility of those countries to do so, not the taxpayers of the developed countries.
I also submit the hodgepodge of local gasoline formulation requirements is also helping to drive the price of gasoline and diesel up. Why can't we have a single formulation for each octane level of gasoline for summer and a single one for winter instead of the 60 or so for summer and the additonal 60 or so for winter we have now in the US?
Hey FT I wasn't suggesting any such thing just pointing out that the inevitable creation of the new emerging middle classes is going to be running the economic engine of the planet and will be using more than we are in just a few short years. I doubt that you or I will have much to do or say in this endevor but it could make interesting enviro policy to watch develop.
As to the myriad of fuel mixtures I know its pretty complex my advice buy stock in both Tesoro and Valero they will cover your backside, :D
More rain tomorrow it just might be over on this side of the Sound already. (Re, Winter runs)
Nukes . . .
Nuclear has a lot of advantages, but one nasty problem . . . what to do with the waste, which is highly toxic and doesn't leave the environment for centuries. It may be part of the solution, but what we really need to focus on first is how to reduce our use of energy (any by "our" I mean that of all of us around the world . . . we in the US are by far the biggest per-captia consumers of energy and need to show far more leadership in conservation and efficiency - - - but energy consumption is growing very fast all around the world, so this needs to be addressed with global cooperation --- and there too the US needs to show more leadership).
i just want to tell you my "french" opinion.
perhaps you know that France has already choose the nuclear option...no comment.
My country has also choose to treat nuclear **** that are produce by nuclear central all over the world, it's a big businness for a group called Areva ( it has sponsored the french boat at the last Americas cup.
You also certainly know that USA is the country that produce the biggest quantity of green house effect gaz, far from all other countries (excepted China).
You also perhaps know that USA ( George BUSH) has refused to sign the KYOTO Protocol which goal is to decrease the quantity of green house effect gaz produced in the country who has signed the protoco.
For example China has signed this protocol, so USA is the only one industrial country to not have signed this protocol.
At KYOTO, BUSH said that "american way of life is not negociable".
So USA, continu to send **** in the atmospher, that causing "un réchauffement climatique" .
If we consider the atitude of USA facing the problem of global warwing ( that also affect the us: more and more cyclone, warming up in Alaska...) if i were you i won't bother care about the nuclear option in your country, the nuclear **** produced will be send in other country like France.
So keep it up, keep going driving with big 4wd or Humer, keep your american way of life till you will have stolen all the gazoline of Irak, and don't keep in mind the global warming ....keep your president that is so involved with petrol industry...
keep polluing the word...
it is time that amecican people act as ecological responsable person.
**** is for
S like sos
H like ...help
I like intelligence
T like too late???
Simplest answer? Breeder reactors. The breeder reactor is an excellent way to produce electricity by nuclear fission because it has a process that changes the waste into fuels that can be fissionable. This would make energy almost limitless from a fuel standpoint. The problem lies in that they are illegal in the US. The second fissionable byproduct is very concentrated and considered "weapons grade", meaning it could be used in a bomb if it falls into the wrong hands. Now I for one am confident that if we put a little thought into this, that we can figure out how to make this work. BUT, there are too many people on both sides who just complain too much without having the propper education. Fusion is a promising alternative with no waste, but it needs work and research, which needs funding and so far nobody is gung-ho about fitting the bill. There is an experimental reactor that has been mathimatically proven to work scheduled to be done by 2015, but I think we need to move a little faster on this.
I agree that the emerging middle class in Asia, India, and South America is going to increase energy consumption exponentially and that the countries found therein are going to be forced to enact some control on emissions as a result. China is now importing so much crude that it is in large part responsible for the $58.00/barrel price on the world market.
I am also of the opinion that the future of transportation energy is going to be a combination of hydrogen internal combustion engines and fuel cells because both have zero emissions (unless you want to call water vapor a pollutant). I also see the rising gasoline prices in the US helping to push along and accelerate the development of these technologies.
French vehicles cannot be sold in the US unless they are modified to meet the more stringent US emissions standards for vehicles. In fact, the same is true for all other European countries as well. Also, keep in mind that the US is about 4,000 miles from the southwest corner of California to the northeast corner of Maine, and about 3,000 miles from the Pacific to the Atlantic. Then you need to add to this the state of Alaska, which about the size of 7 Frances.
More on consumption (to add to good points being made here).
Let's just take a slice of the automobiles built in North America since January 1st = 4,106,330, and assume they were all hybrids instead of gas engines. Assuming cars burn 20 gals per week on average, and get 20 mph if they are lucky, then that would get them 400 miles in a week. To get the same mileage as a hybrid engine from the same 20 gallons, that car would burn almost 27 more gallons of gas.
Multiply that by 4,106,330 and you get 110.8 million gallons of gas wasted by just the cars built in N.A. to date that could have been preserved via hybrid technology which already exists today, not to mention pollutants on a single fill-up. If we then extrapolated that to all vehicles around the world, week after week...
I can't say that I can point any fingers - I drive a pickup truck, getting only 17 mpg. However I actually use 4x4 and the truck config actively running oversand up to 28 times in a year on Nauset and bayside beaches. I haul a lot of cargo, and pull family members out of snowbanks in blizzards. By no means is it a trophy truck, she is worked very hard. Even still I would like nothing better than to have hybrid capabilities available for highway travel in between those times when I really need a truck.
The other two vehicles in the family are very high-efficiency 4 cylinder cars that are smaller (and easier to pull out of snowbanks). Once we get our kids thru school we plan to move out of the remote burbs and find a place where a hybrid is enough. Hopefully by then there will be a bigger variety of vehicle configs with the technology.
Alot can be heard about Market Forces in between the lines in this thread. In the real world of Wall Street the stock prices of GM, Ford, and Daimler Chrysler compared to Toyota and especially Honda (with there leading position in Hybrids) is incredible and the division is increasing every Quarter. People are choosing to boycott by economic default. Real market forces at work here. Oil Shale in Canada is getting very close to being an economicaly viable alternative with Crude Oil as high as it is.
However the Consumption of Oil Shale will do nothing to curb Green House Emissions, or lower the price to the consumer!
I don't have the time
to weed through all the retoric,,,,pro's & cons about the different technologies for producing energy. So I'll just cut to the chase and throw out a few of my own thoughts.....For what they are worth.
First of all burning fossil fuels to run generators to create electricity seems to me to be absurd in this day and age. Coal, for one, is a bitch to extract. A dirty job that has killed a lot of workers. If not in the mines directly, an early death due to black lung disease. Oil and natural gas we don't hear that much about. I doubt it is the safest occupatiion in the world. Extracting and burning any of these fossil fuels causes pollution. Tranporting it is a problem. And may become more of a problem, due to terrorist activities. So any efferts to lessen our dependancy on fossil fuels should be considered.
Wind power is certainly a viable option in some areas.
Geo Thermal has been kicked around. But the technology doesn;t seem to be developed to the point of giving it serious consideration.
Nukes have been around for quite awhile. The problems, besides the protestors, are what to do with the waste, and the potential for catastrophy, due to either accidental or terrorist activity.
I can't speak for other countries, but here in the U.S. the nukes have a much bettter safety record than do the mines or the refineries. As for the waste problem, my rather simplistic view is just to blast it out into space. And maybe China is onto something with the mini-nukes. Smaller nuclear plant, smaller chance of mega catastrophy. Maybe even too small to atttract the attention of the bad guys,,,,or make it worth their effort.
Now the big question is,,,,,if a simple steelheader like myself can come up with solutions, why can't the greatest minds in the country? I don't think I want to know. :whoa:
"just to blast it out into space..."
Hmmm...imagine a space shuttle full of nuke waist exploding over Florida :whoa:
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