- This is an esaay that I gave to Ann Arbor City council during citizen comment. In posting this I hope that energyresources would do something positive about sustainability rather than just yack. The truth is that we can easily create a sustainable culture that would last 10.000 years. Geometry is all important
Energy Farm Utilities
In achieving sustainability we have the problem of creating food, shelter, clothing, and energy at lowest cost. One important goal is to furnish all utilities for an apartment building without using fossil fuel or electric inputs. Start out with geometry. Bigger buildings have a better volume to surface area ratio, thus using about half the heat that houses would. Close groups of apartments also cut transportation energy use by shortening travel distances. New construction will permit conservation because of better insulation and windows. Solar energy can be made to partially furnish winter heat, hot water heating, electricity, and air conditioning in summer. Windmills can furnish electricity, and pump heat to do many of the things that solar can do. The remainder of the energy must come from soft biomass such as leaves, sewage and `clover in a biodigester and from hard biomass such as wood chips used in a gasifier. The biodigester and the gasifier can fuel engines that pump heat and make electricity. Cisterns will store water and be heat storage reservoirs for summer air conditioning, hot water heating, and winter heat. Earth heat and cool may be able to supply about 50% of the energy needed by the facility. All sewage and all biomass inputs whether imported or grown on associated land will be used as fertilizer. If the facility is also a farm it might take 5 acres of corncobs to power the building. However, leaves, grass clippings, twigs, and other brush would be quite useful. The facility can run with imported waste biomass without farm input. Each pound of imported biomass would create both fertilizer and energy.
The trick in using biomass is to reduce the amount needed as much as possible. Alternate energy can never succeed unless all sources of it are used together in a conserving manner. Many new products are needed to make this happen, thus creating many new industries and jobs. Local governments could be a powerful force in making up for the deficiencies of federal government but they just aren't interested in doing it. Our progeny will pay a horrible price for the inadequacy of our present governments.
Kermit Schlansker kssustain@...
734 971 5283
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- Geometry? I am afraid I do not understand what you are referring to with that term. Must be some new hip lingo that I am not aware of.
As for just yaking about the issues, some of us are trying to do things about it, but we are up against a massive paradigm here. There are 7 billion people in a multinational, multicultural, multireligious world, the lot of who do not speak the same language or agree on much, and many of whom are at war with each other. I believe that you are rather naieve to say that it is easy to convert to some ecotopia overnight and live well for another 10,000 years.
Why? We are at or near peak global resource limits, we are well beyond the carrying capacity with the current human population, and we have started a global climate crisis that we simply cannot stop, even if we tried to with every ounce of man and brainpower available. Never mind running counter to current political and economic global processes, and the basic economics of taking on such a task. You do not convert 7 billion people overnight. Or even in ten years, or 100 years, or even 1000 years. Never mind agreeing on what should be done and how. Even if we were to come up with some perfect template to resolve all the existing known limitations, we would just ballacks it all up in a hurry. Humans are like that, and I merely point to history to show thousands of examples.
--- In email@example.com, "Kermit Schlansker" <kssustain@...> wrote:
> This is an esaay that I gave to Ann Arbor City council during citizen comment. In posting this I hope that energyresources would do something positive about sustainability rather than just yack. The truth is that we can easily create a sustainable culture that would last 10.000 years. Geometry is all important