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.