Friday, December 28, 2007

Renewable Energy Best Way to Cut Emissions

Ultimately it is the only way.
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wind with sunA report commissioned by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) says that renewable energy is making a difference in the fight against global warming and that we need more of it. In fact, renewable energy is the best way to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

So how to do we keep this momentum going? While renewable energy may have moved from an “alternative” source into mainstream use, Mohamed El Ashry, head of the global policy network REN21 that produced the report with the WorldWatch Institute, said that policymakers can do more:

Unlike the promises of future technologies like “cleaner” coal or mainstream carbon sequestration, renewable energy is the best option to mitigate global warming because it is here, now, and making an impact. The UNEP reports that the costs of renewable energy will continue to decline and that the clean energy sector is an avenue to economic development, energy security, local environmental benefits, and a global warming solution.

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Climate Change Prophets Condemned by the Pope

The Pope condemned climate change prophets of doom but he says that to combat climate change nuclear power must be used?? And he warned them that any solutions to global warming must be based on firm evidence and not on dubious ideology. He is the leader of more than a billion Roman Catholics and he said that fears over man-made emissions melting the ice caps and causing a wave of unprecedented disasters were nothing more than scare-mongering. He thought that some concerns may be valid but that the international community must base its policies on science and not dogma of the environmentalist movement..

The 80-year-old Pope said the world needed to care for the environment but not to the point where the welfare of animals and plants was given a greater priority than that of mankind.

Does the Pope not know or understand that extinction of plants and animals is happening on a massive scale and largely as a result of human activities and increased over many years by the teachings in the bible go forth and populate the world and have dominion over plants and animals? Does he also not understand that it is the very plants and animals-the biosphere right down to the extremely important micro flora, fauna, viruses, bacteria, plankton etc supporting them, and constituting the largest amount of life on this planet, singularly strengthening a synergism are actually more important than all humans and without them we would all be dead no matter what ideology or faith we have. We come last in the scheme of things! We have to look after them totally! And that means looking after the environment totally! The total environment is the currency of our priority. Without it we have none. And to rely on nuclear power as the only future major power source saving the planet shows little or no understanding of the immense power of natural energy sources. It also shows little regard for the fact that the nuclear industry can never be a safe one because of the world’s entrenchment in crazy and dubious ideologies and we are in dire need to branch out on a safe power source devoid of either nuclear or fossil fuel with science as the currency. It is of great concern that a man is such a position leading the world of so many people will by his very pronouncements increase the chances of an apocalypse.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Hot Rock Power for Adelaide

No doubt it could be done by wave or solar thermal power too. But anything that's not powered by fossil fuel is a winner.
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An exploration company has been granted a licence to search for
a source of geothermal power in the Adelaide suburbs.

Torrens Energy Ltd has been granted a licence to establish heat
flows over the Port Adelaide region, in Adelaide's north-west.

If successful the company could tap into a source of clean
energy that could boost Adelaide's electricity supplies and provide
power for a future desalination plant.

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The Tindo Bus

Great to see! I'm sure it wont be long before completely solar powered buses will be seen in most cities of the world. If Adelaide can do it so can any city.
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First solar-powered bus in the world Australia will play host to the first solar-powered electric bus in the world, with Tindo leading the charge in Adelaide, Australia. 100% powered by solar energy thanks to a BP Solar-sourced photovoltaic station, this green ride can ferry up to 42 passengers at once - without forking out a single cent. According to the Adelaide City Council, "The solar electric bus and the recharging system at the Adelaide Central Bus Station represent a significant investment by the Adelaide City Council into a sustainable future for the City of Adelaide, while providing leadership in sustainable public transport options for cities around Australia." When will we see such buses roaming the streets of US?

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Monday, December 10, 2007

Energy Options to Tackle Global Warming

The question as to how we combat global warming on the energy front given that nuclear energy is not an option for several reasons and the Rudd government is relying heavily on “clean coal” and sequestration, which is only on the drawing board as yet and may not be proven for 15 years-we don’t have that sort of time so our transitional time for gas fired power plants will have to be very short. And biofuels are not a good idea due to global warming causing unreliable weather conditions failing the parent crop and biofuels causing food shortages as well. Notions of renewable energy being somewhere in the mix as a niche or damaging the economy has been shown to be very wrong it remains that renewable energy our insurance is going to play a very much more important role than we ever dreamed of. Thoughts of renewable energy always come with wind generators foremost in the public’s mind with lots more spread around the country and in distribution together with flow batteries can level out peaks and provide some medium power. But Australia in particular has abundant other sources of renewable energy. The sun’s energy falling on Australia in one day is equal to half the total annual energy required by the whole world and can be tapped by solar towers [1] or PV cells [8] or concentrated solar thermal stations with storage enabling it alone to provide base power production for all of Australia [2] and in America with Australian know how is now in the commercialization phase [3] and will provide power at equal to or cheaper than fossil fueled power. Pity the Howard government caused those scientists to go off shore. They should be here now doing it and we selling it to the world! Solar thermal stations work well in desert areas [1] [3] [7] and we have plenty of that as has the Middle East and China. Solar thermal power in conjunction with geothermal power [4] using HVDC transmission lines [3] [7] which in themselves tend to stabilize transmission, could provide large amounts of base medium or peak power on demand. Wave energy and tide [5] in the demonstration phase and touted to be able to provide 10 times more than Australia uses and as Australian cities are in the main spread around the coast could easily provide that power and the system inherently producing high pressure sea water for desalination as well. All of the above can provide power to produce hydrogen for motor vehicles with fuel cells but in the lab are new ways to do it directly from sunlight water and ceramics and there are new ways to store it. If given the political will the hydrogen economy would soon be here. And in the commercialization phase slither solar cells [6] at least four times cheaper than conventional cells and much more efficient should be on every roof. The Rudd government has promised it will very greatly increase spending on renewables. They will have to be kept up to it and do even MORE on this front than they have promised.

Monday, December 3, 2007


Now that Kevin Rudd has signed Kyoto Australia will have to abide by the targets set for CO2 which may go up very quickly as time goes by and will be penalized if it doesn’t meet those targets. It’s a pity the previous Australian government under Howard caused many scientists to go overseas as we would now be in a better position to meets those targets. A major energy source e.g. utility scale solar thermal with storage which produces large amounts of power on a reliable bases is being utilized and catching on fast in USA, Spain and Germany. Australia with its vast amount of renewable energy in the form of natural flows will now have to buy back the expertise to realize this asset in order to have something similar here. Clean coal and nuclear are not an option and are only touted by those fossilized in a previous century with vested interests in them and in complete denial of the soon cheaper power by the renewables. "If you want to get a lot of megawatts on the grid, solar thermal is the best, scalable technology available," said Bob Fishman, Ausra's chief executive officer and Ralph Cavanagh, of the Natural Resources Defense Council said he's pleased to see the recent attention on solar thermal plants. "They're a very good idea for California, and they're also a really good idea for the world," said Cavanagh, director of the environmental group's energy program. "This is one of the scalable solutions that can make a big difference."
There’s no getting away with the fact that natural flows of renewable energies are able to proved all the world's power. And another example; tide and wave power. The CETO project in western Australia and wave technology demonstration at Port Kembla show that in just wave alone, wave power can provide all Australia’s power ten times over! There is only one sensible way to tackle the climate crisis-not by fossil fuel or nuclear but by renewable technologies that will provide the new economy and wealth for all Australians.

Monday, November 26, 2007

A New Hope For Renewables

What a great day to see John Howard and the Liberal Party out of office and John Howard loosing his seat!!!

Now at last there is great hope we should see renewable energy going down the path it should have gone at least 30 years ago, being seriously taken as THE major alternative to coal and nuclear power with gas being only a backup-if at all. We all know a liberal government would have secured the nuclear industry and renewables would have only become a niche market at best. We need to put the case to the politicians that renewable energy is the way to go and leave the coal in the ground-and also the uranium. Right now of course they (Labor Party) have no perception of this and the liberals don't even want to know. The first thing to do is to show that renewable energy can provide all power simply because as any renewable energy scientist knows, there is enough free energy there to provide ALL the world with power indefinitely and we are getting better at extracting it and transmitting it to the people. And we need to continue doing this full bore because it's the safest strategically and environmentally, and is economically the best way.

In taking this road all renewable options should be put on the table as opponents will always argue that there is not enough capacity to provide reliable base power 24/7 e.g. wind or solar photo voltaic, solar thermal or even wave power and therefore requiring coal or nuclear to provide base power and that all the eggs should not be put into one basket-just so long as coal and nuclear have the most eggs and baskets! The argument usually centres on one renewable source completely forgetting that renewable energy is wide spread and is available from many sources and combined is continuous. And the public needs to know that in Australia alone there are many companies involved in renewable energy, perhaps several score, and many have their parent companies overseas but that we in Australia should be home to them and our scientists should be brought back.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Renewable Energy-The Safe Way Forward

The planet is not going to wait and it doesn't care about our costs or economies. We have to stop emitting CO2 immediately! This is a war and it means turning off fossil fuel produced power now! This leads governments to increase nuclear power but we can more easily and safely plow money into renewable energy eg wave,tide,wind with storage, concentrated solar thermal with storage, solar photo voltaic with storage, and not forgetting geothermal from the only safe nuclear reactor the sun. Every country can tap into renewable energy. Many countries can tap into a number of them. There's enough power there to supply the whole world with power for ever. Pity we went down the wrong road with fossil fuel and nuclear. Nuclear is not safe because the world is entrenched in crazy ideologies and nuclear reactors have shown not to operate reliably in a warming climate and we all know what fossil fuel is doing to our planet. Had we gone down the renewable energy path 50 years ago we would have been able to produce all our energy this way including power for motor vehicles. It's not too late-yet. It just means we have to have the political will and get stuck into it. It can be done. Scientists know renewable energy (apart from hydro) can supply base power and is doing it in many parts of the world be it in only a minor way yet. But the nuclear and fossil fuel industries don't know and don't want to know. It's time they unfossilized themselves and came into the 21st century!

In a panorama of the evidence, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) declared Saturday that the impact of global warming could be "abrupt or irreversible" and no country would be spared.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon appealed to political leaders to push for "a real breakthrough" at a key conference running on the Indonesian island of Bali from December 3 to 14. "We cannot afford to leave Bali without such a breakthrough," he said, branding climate change as the "defining challenge of our age."

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Thursday, October 25, 2007

There Is No Silver Bullet

There Is no silver bullet but a shotgun approach of renewable energy would have considerable affect. It's not that Kyoto does nothing but we need to make the switch and go full bore into renewable energies from natural flows. It's time to take really seriously that we HAVE TO stop CO2 entering the atmosphere from our activities. I think world renown scientists such as these two should be listened to.
"Time to ditch Kyoto," British social scientist Gwyn Prins of the London School of Economics and leading climate change researcher Steve Rayner of Oxford University, who holds dual US-British citizenship, wrote in the journal Nature.
Governments should view global warming as a strategic challenge, like the US drive to put a man on the moon in 1969 or to help Europe recover after World War Two, and move away from Kyoto-style caps on greenhouse gas emissions, they said.
"Investment in energy research and development should be placed on a wartime footing," the experts wrote of efforts to create clean energy such as wind and solar power.
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Monday, October 22, 2007

Renewable Power is the Only Way!

Renewable energy will in fact be cheaper than any other power source and it will get there first.
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"If you ask me whether we'll ever have nuclear energy in
Australia, I have to say that if clean coal turns out to be a
cheaper alternative then we may never build a nuclear power station
in Australia," Mr Turnbull said.

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Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Case For Renewables

This planet is saying to us we have to produce base power without carbon and do it now!!! There is a way. Use natural flows. We have the know-how and technology to provide all our energy needs using solar and wind with integrated storage of the energy. In the case of solar using photo voltaic cells, storage can done by using flow batteries, and in the case of solar thermal it can be done thermo chemically, and in the case of wind also flow battery storage can be used. Base power for industry can be achieved 24/7 this way. Wind and photo voltaic cells also have the advantage of distribution so distribution of these adds to the capacity factor and or can allow for less storage requirement. In some countries geothermal energy can provide large amounts of power 24/7 and tidal and wave flows are possible in many countries. Combinations of all of these could provide for an extremely reliable power supply. Doing anything else e.g. building nuclear power stations or developing “clean coal” or CO2 geosequestration is wasting time and will in the long run result in more CO2 in the atmosphere and in the case of nuclear, is only continuing what should be wound down as a dangerous technology, not only because of it’s inherent safety requirements but because the world will never have a safe nuclear industry because the world is entrenched in crazy ideologies. And it can’t provide power without carbon because of the progression of the fuel from mining through to refining transport and disposal. The biggest uranium mine in the world Olympic Dam will be expanded to become the deepest and largest hole in the world emitting carbon on a grand scale! And carbon will be produced in construction and decommissioning. There is only one way to go to satisfy zero carbon now; it’s by using natural flows of renewable energy. For any success for renewable energy in the commercial world to happen it has to provide base power for industry 24/7. Storage of the sun’s energy together with competitive prices to the consumer is the key to this. We are at the crossroads of this happening now with employment of cheap construction materials, zero input energy cost and the utilization of already mature technologies and large-scale setups enabling solar power to enter the commercialization stage. See and but no nuclear or fossil fuel power will be able to provide cheap clean and safe power in time to address the impending crisis in global warming caused by the human species. Only renewable energy from natural flows will do that. Lets get on with it!!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Don't Vote For the Howard Government!

More than ever before we need a safe power source to power this world. The latest report by the CSIRO and The Bureau of Meteorology in Australia that we have come to the threshold where global warming is going to go out of control demonstrates clearly that we must move immediately from CO2 polluting power production to non-CO2 power production. The only way to do this is to shut down all the fossil fuel burning industries. That’s a mad thing to do you say. I don’t think so given the fact that within the life of our present generation this may easily happen from disastrous weather changes. No food production will shut down anything!! It probably will not be quite that bad but pretty close to it. And now we have the Vatican, James Lovelock, Hans Blix and Green Peace and many other environmentalists advocating nuclear power to help prevent global warming. They don’t cite however nuclear proliferation and the fact that we will never have a safe nuclear industry because the world is entrenched in crazy ideologies or the huge amounts of CO2 to mine uranium, transport and refine it (Olympic Dam the largest hole in the world and uranium mine will produce millions of tons of CO2) or the CO2 produced in building nuclear power stations and their decommissioning. John Howard our prime minister has announced that elections will be held on November 24th. and nuclear power will not be on the agenda. But the Howard government will if it’s returned with the nuclear issue now tucked presently away bring that up to full bore. Basically the Australian Greens Party has the only published political policy to deal with the CO2 threat. The Labor Party has not said what it will do but has intimated that they have a number of renewable energy strategies. There is only one way to go. Don’t vote for the Howard Government!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

It's the Storage System Too

To all those who think that solar thermal power or in fact any renewable power employing natural flows will still have limited 24/7 base power output- there are a number of storage options already in existence. A star performer in these is the disassociation of ammonia closed loop system. This enables power to be produced 24/7 even in the wintertime from a summer sun without any power loss from storage at ambient temperatures! Correct scaling with input, load and time enables this as with any storage system. And there is an explosion of promising technologies being developed. It’s worth keeping in mind that the mount of the sun’s energy falling on Australia in one day is equal to all the world’s requirements for 6 months 24/7. And wind, tidal and wave are equally of large scale and can be stored actually surprisingly cheaply. An explanation of the ammonia storage system is at,

Renewable Energy Will Get There First

This is the way we will go and it's likely to be sooner than expected because economies of scale and new technologies are already attracting investment such that power prices from renewable energy will be equal to or cheaper than either coal or nuclear without any subsidy. Take a look at

”Don’t let people tell you we can’t keep the lights on without nuclear,” says Shawn-Patrick Stensil of Greenpeace Canada. “We have the know-how and clean energy potential to build a modern energy system founded on renewable energy.”

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Monday, September 24, 2007

Solar Thermal is a Major Alternative Power

If we are going to meet the targets set to reduce global warming safely we must build large solar thermal stations now!.
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The stigma of solar only as one of many solutions needed to satisfy our energy needs may not be true. David Mills, chairman and chief scientific officer of solar company Ausra, presented a paper at the International Solar Energy Society conference saying that solar thermal plants could indeed solve all of our energy problems.

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Friday, September 21, 2007

We Can Have Solar Thermal Now

Peter, I think it’s about time you state that renewable energy is able to supply 24/7 power at base load for industry. Every time you mention solar and renewables you virtually never mention solar thermal power. And when you have mentioned it you certainly have never said that solar thermal power (CSP) is different from solar photovoltaic power in that it is a system incorporating the storage of the sun’s energy enabling 24/7 base power for industry. Many systems of storage are available and turn out to be rather cheap to do. Mills, Khosla and associates are building the first utility scale power plants in the USA supplying power for 10 cents/ KWH now and all America’s power is touted to be able to be supplied by solar power alone! And Europe, Africa, the Middle East and China are on the agenda for this power system using High Voltage DC transmission lines. Australia has abundant renewable energy and solar thermal power is a must for Australia. Why have you not informed the completely unaware Australian public that solar thermal power is able to supply base load, medium and peak power 24/7 and this can and should be done here in Australia now?
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A wide range of renewable energy sources could form part of
Australia's future energy supplies under a Labor government,
opposition environment spokesman Peter Garrett says.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

There is too much reliance on the idea that nuclear power is the only way forward for base load power for industry and it is ridiculous that it should even be considered for a desal plant in South Australia when there are other ways much less expensive to provide the energy needed such as wind generation which could have vanadium redox battery storage for 24/7 power output and wave and solar thermal power. Apart from the obvious safely concerns and its cost nuclear power must be ruled out of the question.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

How can we have an informed debate and vote on the issue when a great deal of information is deliberately hidden? The public knows that there is nuclear power, fossil fuel power, and then there are the renewables. But the thrust about renewables is that they can’t provide base power for industry 24/7. This is entirely incorrect.

Nuclear power stations will not be a reliable power source in a warming global climate Dave Lochbaum of the Union of Concerned Scientists' nuclear safety project director said. "The industry can't use global warming as a justification for building more plants without papering over the fact that they don't do well in extremely hot weather.” We also have to cite the very obvious that we will never have a safe nuclear industry because we live in a world entrenched in crazy ideologies. We are in dire need to have safe cheap power sources and reduce global warming as well and only renewables will in the end do that. We should understand and be aware that renewable power sources can be the alternative to nuclear power despite what the pro nuclear lobby says. We are at the crossroads of that happening now.

Monday, July 23, 2007

The debate as to whether there is global warming due to human influence is over. The hard evidence that warming is taking place in the last few years not correlating to the sun’s activity as it had in the past but correlating to increased fossil fuel burning e.g. as in China and India as an example, is proof enough for any business. That is the reason why business is insuring itself as much as possible and taking onboard all possible actions to ameliorate the problem and keep in business. Risk management is not scare tactics and is normal rational behavior. One of the ways to do it is to embrace renewable energy power production but to date this has not resulted in a concerted effort in that direction simply because government and big business has been fossilized in a previous century and has the belief that coal and nuclear will be and will have to be used as major sources to provide jobs and wealth. And the belief there has not been a breakthrough and probably will not be for quite some time that renewables will displace coal and nuclear as major sources of power is as result of that fossilization. It is not a question of whether there is a breakthrough in technology that will displace fossil fuel and nuclear as major sources. It is because of a lack of awareness that renewables can do it and in fact we are at the crossroads of that happening now.

There has been a breakthrough in renewable energy base power production! I refer to solar thermal power using a cheap flat mirror system and storage by the disassociation of ammonia in an endothermic reactor then stored at ambient temperature and used at any later time even during wintertime the sun's energy is not lost being chemically locked up. Then reapplied to an exothermic reactor heat is produced at about 500 degrees to provide steam for power generation. This closed loop system enables 24/7 base power production for industry and it also is able to provide medium or peak power on demand. Not only that the storage system is easy to do and cheap and is based on mature technology and enables the sun’s energy to be stored any length of time without loss so that the energy can be extracted in the wintertime if necessary or any time in the future! No other storage system can do this and it is a real breakthrough. A gigawatt plant is right now being built in America financed by venture capitalist Vinod Khosla who says that solar thermal power is poised for explosive growth because of it’s low costs together with Australian scientist Dr David Mills who had to leave Australia because of our government’s unfavorable policies. We could have had this happening in Australia if our government had been receptive. There is certainly no need to have nuclear power here! And in Europe a TRANS-CSP report commissioned by the German government calculates that solar thermal power is likely to become one of the cheapest sources of power including the cost of transmission. Not producing any carbon and it does not have safety issues it’s easy to see why. This is the power that needs to be, and can be sent to third world counties and the rest of Europe via High Voltage Direct Current Transmission lines from solar thermal plants in North African deserts or the Middle East with only 3% loss in transmission. In fact the whole world could use this as a major power source as there are many deserts around. The potential for it to power the world cleanly and safely and reduce greenhouse gasses at the same time is a real bonus. And it is being done now. Lets get on with it and continue! A general understanding and awareness of solar thermal power (CSP) can be seen on and and understanding of the storage system in schematic form can be seen at

Sunday, July 1, 2007

There has been an unbelievable lack of action on the renewable energy front from Labor, the Greens and the environmental movement in Australia. It’s action that should be at least as strong as John Howard’s push for nuclear power in Australia. The labor Party although endorsing uranium mining has not shown what they would do as an alternative to nuclear power apparently relying on “clean” coal technology as the major energy source and the Greens voice is snuffed out. Little drive from any of these groups has been shown publicly as to what would be a clear major alternative source of power. And John Howard’s government relies on lack of public knowledge and understanding about renewable power and indeed also hides the real truth about it in bolstering their nuclear and fossil fuel policies. Of course why would they want to do otherwise? And why would they want to announce a breakthrough in renewable energy production that enables base load power with grunt for industry when that announcement would challenge the nuclear and fossil fuel industries? Keep it quiet, throw in confusion and doubt and withdraw funding is their renewable energy policy. Much of this is as a result of fossilized ideas from another century backed up by big business and industry that nuclear and fossil fuel power will be the major sources and will have to be in order for jobs growth and prosperity to occur and that renewables is not capable of it and therefore will have an insignificant effect. Indeed the opposite will be true. There has been a big breakthrough in the renewable energy field that does enable it to provide base load power with grunt for industry and in doing so will provide future growth jobs and prosperity. Using mature proven technology and well understood science and applying it to solar thermal power have brought this about. I refer to the use of cheap simple flat mirrors system in the collection area of concentrated solar thermal power sites and the disassociation of ammonia for the storage of the sun’s energy which turns out to be a simple and cheap thing to do and first demonstrated in May 2002. This closed loop storage system locking up chemically the sun’s energy is efficient and does not loose energy over any period of time either by storage or use and enables 24/7 base power production with grunt for industry or readily medium or peak power on demand in a stand-alone situation not relying on any back up from fossil fuel! This means also that the sun’s energy can be stored for use in the wintertime or for any extended period of time. No other concentrated solar thermal power storage system is able to do this. An explanation of this system is shown on the ANU website and has been developed by Australian scientist Dr David Mills who had to leave Australia due to our government’s unfavorable political policies and join forces in USA with venture capitalist and founder of Sun Microsystems Vinod Khosla in order to build a gigawatt solar thermal power station based on these technologies. And they intend to do this within one year! Renewable energy does not produce CO2 and therefore does not have that burden and the energy is freely delivered. These facts together with the cheap flat mirrors and the ammonia storage system will enable economies of scale plummeting prices to cheaper than nuclear or fossil fuel power. This is when the crunch will come for these industries. Any venture capitalist putting money in the renewable energy industry will be on a sure winner. Based on these technologies a collection area 50kmx50km if it’s in one block but could be in smaller blocks in Australia is enough to provide all of Australia’s energy needs including the production of hydrogen, which is part of the process for motor vehicles. In fact there are plans to provide the whole world’s major power from CSP and using high voltage direct current transmission lines that have only 3% loss.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

I cannot believe that both the Greens, Labor and the Australian environmental movement can not show that there are alternatives to both nuclear and fossil fuel power which will not produce CO2 or send our economy bankrupt and would enable it to function and which can be used in many countries of the world including China. Solar thermal power is the simple but effective technique of concentrating sunlight with mirrors to create heat and then using the heat to raise steam to drive turbines and generators, just like a conventional power station. Solar heat can be stored in melted salts and in the splitting of ammonia and then recombining it and this turns out to be a very easy and cheap way so that generation of electricity will continue at night and on cloudy days and no additional fossil fuel burning is required. This storage method allows for variable output for peak, medium and base power production on demand.
Far from being inefficient, and a negative for the economy solar thermal power (CSP) has huge potential to supply the world with a major way to produce clean electricity, jobs and wealth. It has been calculated that, if it was covered with CSP plants, an area of hot desert measuring 254 km x 254 km—which is less than 1% of the area of deserts around the world—would generate as much electricity as the world currently consumes. If used in Australia alone and area 50KM square in desert areas would supply all of Australia’s energy requirements. And it is feasible and economic to transmit solar electricity over long distances using highly-efficient 'HVDC' transmission lines. 90% of the world's population could be supplied from this source.
US venture capitalist Vinod Khosla of Sun Microsystems says that CSP is poised for explosive growth because of its low costs. In part this has been brought about by the use of simple cheap flat mirrors and the ammonia storage method developed by Australian scientist Dr David Mills. The 'TRANS-CSP' report, commissioned by the German government, calculates that CSP is likely to become one of the cheapest sources of electricity in Europe, including the cost of transmission. Information about CSP can be found at and

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Wind, wave and solar renewable energy options to reducing CO2 emissions actually are more efficient and cheaper than fossil fuel or nuclear power simply because they don’t produce any carbon at all! That the Australian government’s insistence that coal and nuclear are the only ones that will be provide base power grunt is totally flawed. And that to wait for another fifteen or more years to research, develop, build and have resultant proof that geosequestration actually works or to build nuclear reactors that will increase nuclear proliferation and terrorism targets, a legacy for our children, will drive us to our peril with irreversible climate change. Vast amounts of energy from the sun alone in one day falling on Australia is enough to provide half the whole world’s annual energy. And the other renewable sources like wind, wave, tidal, and geothermal are equally large. Using the sun alone, an area 50kmx50km in the desert areas of Australia would supply all of Australia’s power including base power for industry and the free energy will be delivered forever. And this is not counting geothermal power or the new five times cheaper slither solar cells with a pay back of four years are just as affective in cloud as they are in sun and should be on every roof.There are also solar cells being made of new plastic materials which are many times cheaper. Many ways are now possible to store the sun’s energy enabling 24/7 base power production! Even distributed wind generators using vanadium redox batteries along Australia’s grid system from north Queensland to east of Adelaide will provide base power. All systems are based on mature proven technology and are in operation in many parts of the world. And there are many ways to provide renewable base power production in very cold cloud covered and windless climates as well as in hot sunny climates like the solar heat pump electrical generation system, the bi-directional solar tower, to low boiling point fluids for any low level heat source. Politicians and business people fossilized in a past century do not realize the potential, the power and wealth that can be had from clean free renewable energy. Renewable energy our greatest and cleanest resource is where jobs for Australians will be and we must move immediately in this direction. The oceanographer Dr Tony Haymet asks for innovators. Well for innovators, there’s certainly plenty of scope here.