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Re: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

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  • Roxanne Boyer
    Gary, I kind of agree with you that renewable energy can not economically provide our energy needs now. I also think it is realistic that renewable energy can
    Message 1 of 18 , Jan 3, 2005
      Gary,
      I kind of agree with you that renewable energy can not economically provide our energy needs now.  I also think it is realistic that renewable energy can become a larger fraction of our energy supply as time goes on.  I have reviewed Smalley's presentations and I think he agrees.  It is quite realistic that renewable energy could dominate the electric market by 2050.  Current trends - technical and economical - point that direction.  Transportation and industrial energy remain a big question; but a question that must be answered by 2050.  The search for a solution starts today.  A nation that controls the solution will be the next world superpower.  Professionals that are part of the solution will be in the wealthy class.  I also think the answer will have multiple solutions.
       
      I have summarized my finding on the Renewable Energy Potential in the US in a paper.  It is too large to attach as e-mail here, so I'll hand it out at the next HREG meeting. 
      Regards,
      Chris
       
       
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Gary Beck
      Sent: Sunday, January 02, 2005 11:19 PM
      Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

      Thanks Mike,

      Vacation is over so I am refreshed enough to contemplate some of these
      ‘higher’ renewable energy thoughts.

      Sorry, but we differ here. Saying "A majority of the energy consumed in the
      US can be provided through biomass, wind and solar sources" is just not
      realistic. This is due to the shear scale of our energy thirst, the limits
      of all available renewable technologies, the limits on transmission
      technologies, and the limits of any economy and to pay for dramatic energy
      system changes. Plus all renewables, even solar and wind, are not always
      environmentally cleaner or environmentally better solutions.

      I'll stick to the energy outlook and arguments by the guy with the Nobel
      Prize. See a clear energy presentation at
      (http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1) and other
      similar discussions at their link at
      http://smalley.rice.edu/smalley.cfm?doc_id=4862). I accept the basic energy
      resources and energy timing predictions his group researched and quoted as
      better than most. (I don't agree with the idea that nano-energy technology
      will save us, any more than I thought fuel cells and hydrogen will save us.)
      Mechanical energy efficiency has been my area of work for half of my career,
      and most recently I have pushed and supported energy system optimization in
      different forms (check out www.wasteheat.com). And while I support different
      renewables for different reasons, I feel it is important to have a realistic
      view of their time, technology, and economic limitations. All good
      ideas/discussions, but economics unfortunately has proven repeatedly it will
      rule over all but the 'no brainer' energy arguments.

      Only conservation is immediate. All it takes is individual behavior change
      like a green product buying decision or a green design decision for a system
      that better supports energy conservation.

      Gary Beck. P.E. 

      Eco-Holdings LLC
      Design Consulting
      USGBC-LEED(Accredited), BSE(Civil), TDI(Wind Storm - Structural)
      Texas P.E.(Mechanical), Authorized Service (Capstone Microturbines)     

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Mike Ewert [mailto:mewert@...]
      Sent: Friday, December 31, 2004 10:10 AM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
      alternative energy and conservation

      Gary,
       
      You wrote:
      "PS:  I disagree with the statement that 'A majority of the energy consumed
      in the US can by provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'.  The
      numbers just don't support this (unless a back-to-the Future 'Mr. Fusion'
      starts getting sold at Kmart).  Conservation would have the biggest impact,
      but since that is out of vogue see a more comprehensive review of the real
      now and future energy numbers in a presentation done by Rice’s noble prize
      winner Richard Smalley - try this link:"
       
      I totally agree with you on the importance and value of conservation, which
      is of course changing behavior to use less energy.  But to that I would add
      "energy efficiency", which can allow us to do the same things while using
      less energy (throught better designed houses, machines, etc.).
       
      Also, I want to show that the statement "'A majority of the energy consumed
      in the US can be provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'" is true!
       
      US energy use is about 100 quads (quadrillion BTU's) per year.
      Source: http://www.coltoncompany.com/shipbldg/statistics/energy.htm
       
      I have not yet found a very good source for the US as a whole, but a nice
      study was done for Texas several years ago and here is some data from it:
      Source: http://www.infinitepower.org/resoverview.htm
      Renewable energy potential in Texas alone is
      12 quads/yr from wind
      13 quads/yr from biomass
      4300 quads/yr from solar
      Granted, we can only convert 10 - 70% of the sunlight into energy we can use
      (depending on application and technology) and we can't use all our land area
      for energy production, but do the math.  There is enough out there!
       
      Put another way, 700,000 acres would be needed to produce all the
      electricity that Texas needs - 1/3 the land area needed to produce it with
      gas (granted the gas is underground).
      source: http://www.infinitepower.org/pdf/FactSheet-08.pdf 
       
      For information on the global level, check out this recent report by the
      International Solar Energy Society.
      http://www.ises.org/shortcut.nsf/to/wp 
      -----Original Message-----
      From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
      Sent: Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:11 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative
      energy and conservation
      Oh Politics!
       
      I think Roxanne is on the money with this advice to contact our officials
      and to try to influence them. Anyone know a website that lists all the best
      government "green", "renewable", "sustainable" energy buttons to push?
      (i.e. a list of names with fax machine #s and emails).
       
      Use this to take some action rather than simply "writing-off" renewable
      energy efforts for the next 4 years just because my guy W is president. That
      would be negligence on our part.  The oil PACs, related cronies, and general
      fossil side energy policy influencers are funded, positioned, very well
      organized and will always strongly influence whoever sits in that #1
      seat.   
       
      For ‘renewable energy’ or ‘sustainable energy’ proponents to have any impact
      without a PAC budget, a guerilla style campaign may be one way to go.  Take
      the website link and send it with Roxanne’s message to every university,
      news link, and like minded group that HREG (inter)net-works with. 
       
      To make such a message harder to ignore, use it to create an “event”
      by telling everyone to send it at one time and on one date.  My suggestion
      is to pick a notable time like 10:56 pm EDT (the time of Armstrong’s 1st
      moon message) and a date like December 11th (Day of the last manned moon
      landing).  Besides getting the receivers attention, if everyone pushed their
      "SEND" button at that minute the network might sag and it would
      become international news.
       
      Gary Beck , P.E.  
      Eco-Holdings LLC 
       
      PS:  I disagree with the statement that 'A majority of the energy consumed
      in the US can by provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'.  The
      numbers just don't support this (unless a back-to-the Future 'Mr. Fusion'
      starts getting sold at Kmart).  Conservation would have the biggest impact,
      but since that is out of vogue see a more comprehensive review of the real
      now and future energy numbers in a presentation done by Rice’s noble prize
      winner Richard Smalley - try this link:
      (http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1)  or see all his
      group’s discussions at http://smalley.rice.edu/smalley.cfm?doc_id=4862
       
       -----Original Message-----
      From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
      Sent: Sunday, December 05, 2004 9:54 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and
      conservation
      I think there is a lot of pressure on our Government from both sides of the
      energy spectrum - the fossil fuel side and the renewable/sustainability
      side.  Sustainability support is growing and fossil fuel support is
      shrinking.  We must not give up pushing for sustainability because the other
      side is winning at the moment.  Sustainability will win eventually - the
      goal is to prevent a major catastophe from being the final push.  The
      concerned citizens of this nation must, and I believe will, require our
      government to make the initiative for sustainable energy and
      energy independence.  How do you contribute?  Here is an example of a letter
      you can send to the governor, your representatives, the president, members
      of DOE, members of DOD, and anyone else who might have an influence on our
      nation's energy direction. 
       
      To the Honorable [Name]:
       
      Please pass legislation that will transition the United States to a
      sustainable energy economy over the next ten years. 
       
      The consumption of fossil fuels is passing the sustainable limit as seen
      by:  1)   The investment cost for exploration and production of fossil
      fuels, particularly oil and gas, is rapidly increasing per unit produced,
      causing higher energy costs and realizing unsecured debt for industries
      relying on cheap energy.  2)     Emissions from burning fossil fuels have
      reached ecological limitations, threatening health and the standard of
      living.  3)      The atomic energy option is negative due to the high
      cost/risk of security and hazardous waste storage. 4)      The large
      fraction of energy imported contributes significantly to a trade deficit in
      the US, and in turn suppresses the economy.  5)      The lopsided dependence
      on resources from the Middle East is resulting in violent conflicts.
       
      The US needs to transition to a sustainable energy economy in order to
      relieve the problems listed above before they cause a major crisis.  A
      majority of the energy consumed in the US can by provided through biomass,
      wind and solar sources.  National investment in these areas will have a
      greater long-term return than any investment in fossil fuels.  Thank you for
      your efforts and I look forward to reading your reply.
       
      Sincerely,
       
      [Your Name]
       




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    • Robert Johnston
      Gary, I agree that there is no short term renewable energy solution that can meet this nation s needs economically. However, one thing I had driven into me in
      Message 2 of 18 , Jan 3, 2005
        Gary,

        I agree that there is no short term renewable energy solution that can
        meet this nation's needs economically. However, one thing I had driven
        into me in a previous e-mail debate with Charles Mauch was the extent to
        which we are subsidizing our hydrocarbon economy today. I hadn't
        thought about the full extent of it before that discussion, but I must
        confess that my scientific prejudices against the hype of the hydrogen
        economy etc. had blinded me to the full range of subsidies that
        undergird the low cost of fossil fuels today, and Charlie taught me a
        thing or two that round! :-)

        I think if we were to take Smalley's "nickel and dime" proposal and
        perhaps even expand it, i.e., to recover from consumers the full cost of
        subsidies such as war expenses, then we could put fossil fuels and
        renewables on a more even footing to "let the best technology win" from
        an economics standpoint. The "fuel tax" money could be plowed into R&D,
        conservation, etc. The R&D should be on both fossil fuels/nuclear as
        well as renewables--to hedge our bets and to keep the subsidization
        somewhat neutral, but heavily weighted towards renewables (and fusion?).
        I think that between increased R&D and higher fossil fuel costs we'd see
        a faster rate of conversion to renewables. That would drive further R&D
        and lower costs through economies of scale. We'd get there faster than
        we will at our present rate of expenditure and fossil fuel cost.

        That is my conjecture, at least. It would be interesting to see a
        careful analysis of this and see how various fossil fuel/renewable cost
        ratios affect the rate of conversion. Maybe someone has done this and
        one of you have a link you could post?

        As a polymer chemist, I'm all for preserving oil and natural gas for
        plastics! :-)

        Robert Johnston




        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
        > Sent: Sunday, January 02, 2005 11:20 PM
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
        > alternative energy and conservation
        >
        >
        > Thanks Mike,
        >
        > Vacation is over so I am refreshed enough to contemplate some of these
        > ‘higher’ renewable energy thoughts.
        >
        > Sorry, but we differ here. Saying "A majority of the energy consumed
        in
        > the
        > US can be provided through biomass, wind and solar sources" is just
        not
        > realistic. This is due to the shear scale of our energy thirst, the
        limits
        > of all available renewable technologies, the limits on transmission
        > technologies, and the limits of any economy and to pay for dramatic
        energy
        > system changes. Plus all renewables, even solar and wind, are not
        always
        > environmentally cleaner or environmentally better solutions.
        >
        > I'll stick to the energy outlook and arguments by the guy with the
        Nobel
        > Prize. See a clear energy presentation at
        > (http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1) and other
        > similar discussions at their link at
        > http://smalley.rice.edu/smalley.cfm?doc_id=4862). I accept the basic
        > energy
        > resources and energy timing predictions his group researched and
        quoted as
        > better than most. (I don't agree with the idea that nano-energy
        technology
        > will save us, any more than I thought fuel cells and hydrogen will
        save
        > us.)
        > Mechanical energy efficiency has been my area of work for half of my
        > career,
        > and most recently I have pushed and supported energy system
        optimization
        > in
        > different forms (check out www.wasteheat.com). And while I support
        > different
        > renewables for different reasons, I feel it is important to have a
        > realistic
        > view of their time, technology, and economic limitations. All good
        > ideas/discussions, but economics unfortunately has proven repeatedly
        it
        > will
        > rule over all but the 'no brainer' energy arguments.
        >
        > Only conservation is immediate. All it takes is individual behavior
        change
        > like a green product buying decision or a green design decision for a
        > system
        > that better supports energy conservation.
        >
        > Gary Beck. P.E.
        >
        > Eco-Holdings LLC
        > Design Consulting
        > USGBC-LEED(Accredited), BSE(Civil), TDI(Wind Storm - Structural)
        > Texas P.E.(Mechanical), Authorized Service (Capstone Microturbines)
        >
        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: Mike Ewert [mailto:mewert@...]
        > Sent: Friday, December 31, 2004 10:10 AM
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
        > alternative energy and conservation
        >
        > Gary,
        >
        > You wrote:
        > "PS:  I disagree with the statement that 'A majority of
        > the energy consumed
        > in the US can by provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'. 
        The
        > numbers just don't support this (unless a back-to-the Future 'Mr.
        Fusion'
        > starts getting sold at Kmart).  Conservation would have the biggest
        > impact,
        > but since that is out of vogue see a more comprehensive review of the
        real
        > now and future energy numbers in a presentation done by Rice’s noble
        prize
        > winner Richard Smalley - try this link:"
        >
        > I totally agree with you on the importance and value of conservation,
        > which
        > is of course changing behavior to use less energy.  But to that I
        would
        > add
        > "energy efficiency", which can allow us to do the same things while
        using
        > less energy (throught better designed houses, machines, etc.).
        >
        > Also, I want to show that the statement "'A majority of
        > the energy consumed
        > in the US can be provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'" is
        > true!
        >
        > US energy use is about 100 quads (quadrillion BTU's) per year.
        > Source: http://www.coltoncompany.com/shipbldg/statistics/energy.htm
        >
        > I have not yet found a very good source for the US as a whole, but a
        nice
        > study was done for Texas several years ago and here is some data from
        it:
        > Source: http://www.infinitepower.org/resoverview.htm
        > Renewable energy potential in Texas alone is
        > 12 quads/yr from wind
        > 13 quads/yr from biomass
        > 4300 quads/yr from solar
        > Granted, we can only convert 10 - 70% of the sunlight into energy we
        can
        > use
        > (depending on application and technology) and we can't use all our
        land
        > area
        > for energy production, but do the math.  There is enough out there!
        >
        > Put another way, 700,000 acres would be needed to produce all the
        > electricity that Texas needs - 1/3 the land area needed to produce it
        with
        > gas (granted the gas is underground).
        > source: http://www.infinitepower.org/pdf/FactSheet-08.pdf
        >
        > For information on the global level, check out this recent report by
        the
        > International Solar Energy Society.
        > http://www.ises.org/shortcut.nsf/to/wp
        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
        > Sent: Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:11 PM
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
        alternative
        > energy and conservation
        > Oh Politics!
        >
        > I think Roxanne is on the money with this advice to contact our
        officials
        > and to try to influence them. Anyone know a website that lists all the
        > best
        > government "green", "renewable", "sustainable" energy buttons to push?
        > (i.e. a list of names with fax machine #s and emails).
        >
        > Use this to take some action rather than simply "writing-off"
        renewable
        > energy efforts for the next 4 years just because my guy W is
        president.
        > That
        > would be negligence on our part.  The oil PACs, related cronies, and
        > general
        > fossil side energy policy influencers are funded, positioned, very
        well
        > organized and will always strongly influence whoever sits in that #1
        > seat.
        >
        > For ‘renewable energy’ or ‘sustainable energy’ proponents to have any
        > impact
        > without a PAC budget, a guerilla style campaign may be one way to go.
        >  Take
        > the website link and send it with Roxanne’s message to every
        university,
        > news link, and like minded group that HREG (inter)net-works with.
        >
        > To make such a message harder to ignore, use it to create an “event”
        > by telling everyone to send it at one time and on one date.  My
        suggestion
        > is to pick a notable time like 10:56 pm EDT (the time of Armstrong’s
        1st
        > moon message) and a date like December 11th (Day of the last manned
        moon
        > landing).  Besides getting the receivers attention, if everyone pushed
        > their
        > "SEND" button at that minute the network might sag and it would
        > become international news.
        >
        > Gary Beck , P.E.
        > Eco-Holdings LLC
        >
        > PS:  I disagree with the statement that 'A majority of
        the energy consumed
        > in the US can by provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'. 
        The
        > numbers just don't support this (unless a back-to-the Future 'Mr.
        Fusion'
        > starts getting sold at Kmart).  Conservation would have the biggest
        > impact,
        > but since that is out of vogue see a more comprehensive review of the
        real
        > now and future energy numbers in a presentation done by Rice’s noble
        prize
        > winner Richard Smalley - try this link:
        > (http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1)  or see
        all
        > his
        > group’s discussions at http://smalley.rice.edu/smalley.cfm?doc_id=4862
        >
        >  -----Original Message-----
        > From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
        > Sent: Sunday, December 05, 2004 9:54 PM
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: Re: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy
        and
        > conservation
        > I think there is a lot of pressure on our Government from both sides
        of
        > the
        > energy spectrum - the fossil fuel side and the
        renewable/sustainability
        > side.  Sustainability support is growing and fossil fuel support is
        > shrinking.  We must not give up pushing for sustainability because the
        > other
        > side is winning at the moment.  Sustainability will win eventually -
        the
        > goal is to prevent a major catastophe from being the final push.  The
        > concerned citizens of this nation must, and I believe will, require
        our
        > government to make the initiative for sustainable energy and
        > energy independence.  How do you contribute?  Here is an example of a
        > letter
        > you can send to the governor, your representatives, the president,
        members
        > of DOE, members of DOD, and anyone else who might have an influence on
        our
        > nation's energy direction.
        >
        > To the Honorable [Name]:
        >
        > Please pass legislation that will transition the United States to a
        > sustainable energy economy over the next ten years.
        >
        > The consumption of fossil fuels is passing the sustainable limit as
        seen
        > by:  1)   The investment cost for exploration and production of fossil
        > fuels, particularly oil and gas, is rapidly increasing per unit
        produced,
        > causing higher energy costs and realizing unsecured debt for
        industries
        > relying on cheap energy.  2)     Emissions from burning fossil fuels
        have
        > reached ecological limitations, threatening health and the standard of
        > living.  3)      The atomic energy option is negative due to the high
        > cost/risk of security and hazardous waste storage. 4)      The large
        > fraction of energy imported contributes significantly to a trade
        deficit
        > in
        > the US, and in turn suppresses the economy.  5)      The lopsided
        > dependence
        > on resources from the Middle East is resulting in violent conflicts.
        >
        > The US needs to transition to a sustainable energy economy in order to
        > relieve the problems listed above before they cause a major crisis.  A
        > majority of the energy consumed in the US can by provided through
        biomass,
        > wind and solar sources.  National investment in these areas will have
        a
        > greater long-term return than any investment in fossil fuels.  Thank
        you
        > for
        > your efforts and I look forward to reading your reply.
        >
        > Sincerely,
        >
        > [Your Name]
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
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      • J. P. Malone
        All this discussion is interesting and heart felt. The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective. Our government, both
        Message 3 of 18 , Jan 3, 2005

           

          All this discussion is interesting and heart felt.  The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.

           

          Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, anyone who really believes anything will change it our lifetimes is living in la-la land.

          It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey.  So the size of the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.

           

          A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely the only hope in the US.  Outside the US there may be some help because of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.

           

          China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US graduates all college students of all degree fields.  China has a massive energy problem.  They also have a growing economy that it partly controlled & partly free market.  As they inevitably pass the US number of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this) and the controlling government forces capital & research in to alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of resources they may turn this thing around.

           

          I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

          In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I’m wrong.

           

           

          J. Patrick Malone

           

          -----Original Message-----
          From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
          Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

           

          Gary,

          I agree that there is no short term renewable energy solution that can
          meet this nation's needs economically.  However, one thing I had driven
          into me in a previous e-mail debate with Charles Mauch was the extent to
          which we are subsidizing our hydrocarbon economy today.  I hadn't
          thought about the full extent of it before that discussion, but I must
          confess that my scientific prejudices against the hype of the hydrogen
          economy etc. had blinded me to the full range of subsidies that
          undergird the low cost of fossil fuels today, and Charlie taught me a
          thing or two that round!  :-)

          I think if we were to take Smalley's "nickel and dime" proposal and
          perhaps even expand it, i.e., to recover from consumers the full cost of
          subsidies such as war expenses, then we could put fossil fuels and
          renewables on a more even footing to "let the best technology win" from
          an economics standpoint.  The "fuel tax" money could be plowed into R&D,
          conservation, etc.  The R&D should be on both fossil fuels/nuclear as
          well as renewables--to hedge our bets and to keep the subsidization
          somewhat neutral, but heavily weighted towards renewables (and fusion?).
          I think that between increased R&D and higher fossil fuel costs we'd see
          a faster rate of conversion to renewables.  That would drive further R&D
          and lower costs through economies of scale.  We'd get there faster than
          we will at our present rate of expenditure and fossil fuel cost.

          That is my conjecture, at least.  It would be interesting to see a
          careful analysis of this and see how various fossil fuel/renewable cost
          ratios affect the rate of conversion.  Maybe someone has done this and
          one of you have a link you could post?

          As a polymer chemist, I'm all for preserving oil and natural gas for
          plastics!  :-)

          Robert Johnston




          > -----Original Message-----
          > From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
          > Sent: Sunday, January 02, 2005 11:20 PM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
          > alternative energy and conservation
          >
          >
          > Thanks Mike,
          >
          > Vacation is over so I am refreshed enough to contemplate some of these
          > ‘higher’ renewable energy thoughts.
          >
          > Sorry, but we differ here. Saying "A majority of the energy consumed
          in
          > the
          > US can be provided through biomass, wind and solar sources" is just
          not
          > realistic. This is due to the shear scale of our energy thirst, the
          limits
          > of all available renewable technologies, the limits on transmission
          > technologies, and the limits of any economy and to pay for dramatic
          energy
          > system changes. Plus all renewables, even solar and wind, are not
          always
          > environmentally cleaner or environmentally better solutions.
          >
          > I'll stick to the energy outlook and arguments by the guy with the
          Nobel
          > Prize. See a clear energy presentation at
          > (http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1) and other
          > similar discussions at their link at
          > http://smalley.rice.edu/smalley.cfm?doc_id=4862). I accept the basic
          > energy
          > resources and energy timing predictions his group researched and
          quoted as
          > better than most. (I don't agree with the idea that nano-energy
          technology
          > will save us, any more than I thought fuel cells and hydrogen will
          save
          > us.)
          > Mechanical energy efficiency has been my area of work for half of my
          > career,
          > and most recently I have pushed and supported energy system
          optimization
          > in
          > different forms (check out www.wasteheat.com). And while I support
          > different
          > renewables for different reasons, I feel it is important to have a
          > realistic
          > view of their time, technology, and economic limitations. All good
          > ideas/discussions, but economics unfortunately has proven repeatedly
          it
          > will
          > rule over all but the 'no brainer' energy arguments.
          >
          > Only conservation is immediate. All it takes is individual behavior
          change
          > like a green product buying decision or a green design decision for a
          > system
          > that better supports energy conservation.
          >
          > Gary Beck. P.E.
          >
          > Eco-Holdings LLC
          > Design Consulting
          > USGBC-LEED(Accredited), BSE(Civil), TDI(Wind Storm - Structural)
          > Texas P.E.(Mechanical), Authorized Service (Capstone Microturbines)
          >
          > -----Original Message-----
          > From: Mike Ewert [mailto:mewert@...]
          > Sent: Friday, December 31, 2004 10:10 AM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
          > alternative energy and conservation
          >
          > Gary,
          >
          > You wrote:
          > "PS:  I disagree with the statement that 'A majority of
          > the energy consumed
          > in the US can by provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'. 
          The
          > numbers just don't support this (unless a back-to-the Future 'Mr.
          Fusion'
          > starts getting sold at Kmart).  Conservation would have the biggest
          > impact,
          > but since that is out of vogue see a more comprehensive review of the
          real
          > now and future energy numbers in a presentation done by Rice’s noble
          prize
          > winner Richard Smalley - try this link:"
          >
          > I totally agree with you on the importance and value of conservation,
          > which
          > is of course changing behavior to use less energy.  But to that I
          would
          > add
          > "energy efficiency", which can allow us to do the same things while
          using
          > less energy (throught better designed houses, machines, etc.).
          >
          > Also, I want to show that the statement "'A majority of
          > the energy consumed
          > in the US can be provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'" is
          > true!
          >
          > US energy use is about 100 quads (quadrillion BTU's) per year.
          > Source: http://www.coltoncompany.com/shipbldg/statistics/energy.htm
          >
          > I have not yet found a very good source for the US as a whole, but a
          nice
          > study was done for Texas several years ago and here is some data from
          it:
          > Source: http://www.infinitepower.org/resoverview.htm
          > Renewable energy potential in Texas alone is
          > 12 quads/yr from wind
          > 13 quads/yr from biomass
          > 4300 quads/yr from solar
          > Granted, we can only convert 10 - 70% of the sunlight into energy we
          can
          > use
          > (depending on application and technology) and we can't use all our
          land
          > area
          > for energy production, but do the math.  There is enough out there!
          >
          > Put another way, 700,000 acres would be needed to produce all the
          > electricity that Texas needs - 1/3 the land area needed to produce it
          with
          > gas (granted the gas is underground).
          > source: http://www.infinitepower.org/pdf/FactSheet-08.pdf
          >
          > For information on the global level, check out this recent report by
          the
          > International Solar Energy Society.
          > http://www.ises.org/shortcut.nsf/to/wp
          > -----Original Message-----
          > From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
          > Sent: Tuesday, December 07, 2004 5:11 PM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
          alternative
          > energy and conservation
          > Oh Politics!
          >
          > I think Roxanne is on the money with this advice to contact our
          officials
          > and to try to influence them. Anyone know a website that lists all the
          > best
          > government "green", "renewable", "sustainable" energy buttons to push?
          > (i.e. a list of names with fax machine #s and emails).
          >
          > Use this to take some action rather than simply "writing-off"
          renewable
          > energy efforts for the next 4 years just because my guy W is
          president.
          > That
          > would be negligence on our part.  The oil PACs, related cronies, and
          > general
          > fossil side energy policy influencers are funded, positioned, very
          well
          > organized and will always strongly influence whoever sits in that #1
          > seat.
          >
          > For ‘renewable energy’ or ‘sustainable energy’ proponents to have any
          > impact
          > without a PAC budget, a guerilla style campaign may be one way to go.
          >  Take
          > the website link and send it with Roxanne’s message to every
          university,
          > news link, and like minded group that HREG (inter)net-works with.
          >
          > To make such a message harder to ignore, use it to create an “event”
          > by telling everyone to send it at one time and on one date.  My
          suggestion
          > is to pick a notable time like 10:56 pm EDT (the time of Armstrong’s
          1st
          > moon message) and a date like December 11th (Day of the last manned
          moon
          > landing).  Besides getting the receivers attention, if everyone pushed
          > their
          > "SEND" button at that minute the network might sag and it would
          > become international news.
          >
          > Gary Beck , P.E.
          > Eco-Holdings LLC
          >
          > PS:  I disagree with the statement that 'A majority of
          the energy consumed
          > in the US can by provided through biomass, wind and solar sources'. 
          The
          > numbers just don't support this (unless a back-to-the Future 'Mr.
          Fusion'
          > starts getting sold at Kmart).  Conservation would have the biggest
          > impact,
          > but since that is out of vogue see a more comprehensive review of the
          real
          > now and future energy numbers in a presentation done by Rice’s noble
          prize
          > winner Richard Smalley - try this link:
          > (http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1)  or see
          all
          > his
          > group’s discussions at http://smalley.rice.edu/smalley.cfm?doc_id=4862
          >
          >  -----Original Message-----
          > From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
          > Sent: Sunday, December 05, 2004 9:54 PM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: Re: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy
          and
          > conservation
          > I think there is a lot of pressure on our Government from both sides
          of
          > the
          > energy spectrum - the fossil fuel side and the
          renewable/sustainability
          > side.  Sustainability support is growing and fossil fuel support is
          > shrinking.  We must not give up pushing for sustainability because the
          > other
          > side is winning at the moment.  Sustainability will win eventually -
          the
          > goal is to prevent a major catastophe from being the final push.  The
          > concerned citizens of this nation must, and I believe will, require
          our
          > government to make the initiative for sustainable energy and
          > energy independence.  How do you contribute?  Here is an example of a
          > letter
          > you can send to the governor, your representatives, the president,
          members
          > of DOE, members of DOD, and anyone else who might have an influence on
          our
          > nation's energy direction.
          >
          > To the Honorable [Name]:
          >
          > Please pass legislation that will transition the United States to a
          > sustainable energy economy over the next ten years.
          >
          > The consumption of fossil fuels is passing the sustainable limit as
          seen
          > by:  1)   The investment cost for exploration and production of fossil
          > fuels, particularly oil and gas, is rapidly increasing per unit
          produced,
          > causing higher energy costs and realizing unsecured debt for
          industries
          > relying on cheap energy.  2)     Emissions from burning fossil fuels
          have
          > reached ecological limitations, threatening health and the standard of
          > living.  3)      The atomic energy option is negative due to the high
          > cost/risk of security and hazardous waste storage. 4)      The large
          > fraction of energy imported contributes significantly to a trade
          deficit
          > in
          > the US, and in turn suppresses the economy.  5)      The lopsided
          > dependence
          > on resources from the Middle East is resulting in violent conflicts.
          >
          > The US needs to transition to a sustainable energy economy in order to
          > relieve the problems listed above before they cause a major crisis.  A
          > majority of the energy consumed in the US can by provided through
          biomass,
          > wind and solar sources.  National investment in these areas will have
          a
          > greater long-term return than any investment in fossil fuels.  Thank
          you
          > for
          > your efforts and I look forward to reading your reply.
          >
          > Sincerely,
          >
          > [Your Name]
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
          > ADVERTISEMENT
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          > • To visit your group on the web, go to:
          > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/hreg/
          >
          > • To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
          > hreg-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          >
          > • Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >




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        • Roxanne Boyer
          Mr. Malone, I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most scientists. Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific American,
          Message 4 of 18 , Jan 4, 2005
            Mr. Malone,
            I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most scientists.  Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific American, Physics Today, Discovery, Science, .... and you will find that our current oil consumption trends can only be sustained to about 2050, plus or minus 20 years.  Renewable energy is growing exponencially.  Europe is aiming for 20% renewables by 2020.  I believe many of the US States already have similar goals and many more will join in as time goes on.  There will be a change within the next lifespan.
             
            Even the "Oil" companies realize this and have published reports that say so.  They are starting to call themselves "Energy" companies and investing quite heavily in renewable energy.  See Shell Solar, Shell Wind, Shell Renewables, BP Solar, GE Solar, GE Wind, for example.  And if the oil companies don't lead, the electronics companies will.  Sharp is already the leading manufacturer of solar cells.
             
            I don't know how you did your math about not enough solar energy in New Jersey (is that the state with the highest energy to land ratio and the least sunny state?).  But the math I have done shows that I can supply all of my Houston household electrical needs (averaged) by covering half of my roof with solar panels.  No breakthrough technology needed; it already exists.  If you trend retail electric prices and solar PV prices, you will see the cost cross in the year 2025 - then it will be more economical to buy PV than grid electricity!
             
            If you read up on the technical progress of photoelectrics, you will see incredible breakthroughs in the last 10 years.  Right now, solar cells are expensive because production can not keep up with demand.  And new record breaking production facillities are being opened each year.
             
            If you want a "heart felt" change, read the July-August issue of Renewable Energy World each year and see the growth of RE for yourself.  It is amazing.  Maybe we can discuss some of the facts at the next HREG meeting, Sunday, 2:00pm, Jan 30th at TSU.
            Sincerely,
            Chris
             
             
            ----- Original Message -----
            Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 8:43 PM
            Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

             

            All this discussion is interesting and heart felt.  The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.

             

            Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, .

            It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey.  So the size of the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.

             

            A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely the only hope in the US.  Outside the US there may be some help because of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.

             

            China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US graduates all college students of all degree fields.  China has a massive energy problem.  They also have a growing economy that it partly controlled & partly free market.  As they inevitably pass the US number of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this) and the controlling government forces capital & research in to alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of resources they may turn this thing around.

             

            I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

            In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I’m wrong.

             

             

            J. Patrick Malone

             

            -----Original Message-----
            From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
            Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

             

             

          • burner_22
            hi i wanted to attend this Sunday s meeting at TSU School of Technology and was wondering what room number do you have your meetings? thanks, David A.
            Message 5 of 18 , Jan 4, 2005
              hi

              i wanted to attend this Sunday's meeting at TSU School of Technology
              and was wondering what room number do you have your meetings?


              thanks,
              David A.



              __________________________________
              Do you Yahoo!?
              Yahoo! Mail - Helps protect you from nasty viruses.
              http://promotions.yahoo.com/new_mail
            • Mike Ewert
              The next HREG meeting will be Sunday January 30 from 2-4pm at TSU School of Technology room 225. We will send an agenda closer to the date. ... From:
              Message 6 of 18 , Jan 5, 2005
                The next HREG meeting will be Sunday January 30 from 2-4pm at TSU School of
                Technology room 225. We will send an agenda closer to the date.

                -----Original Message-----
                From: burner_22 [mailto:burner_22@...]
                Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 11:00 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: [hreg] (unknown)



                hi

                i wanted to attend this Sunday's meeting at TSU School of Technology
                and was wondering what room number do you have your meetings?


                thanks,
                David A.



                __________________________________
                Do you Yahoo!?
                Yahoo! Mail - Helps protect you from nasty viruses.
                http://promotions.yahoo.com/new_mail



                Yahoo! Groups Links
              • Mike Ewert
                2 points: Note the land area required for solar energy in Richard Smalley s presentation. http://smalley.rice.edu/emplibrary/columbia09232003.ppt#1 I like PV
                Message 7 of 18 , Jan 6, 2005
                  2 points:
                  Note the land area required for solar energy in Richard Smalley's presentation.
                   
                  I like PV too, but solar thermal is even farther along in terms of cost competitiveness (large scale).   It is one of the most cost-effective renewable power technologies, with present power generation costs of US¢12-20/kWh and long-term costs of US¢5-10/kWh. Source: Renewable Energy World
                  -----Original Message-----
                  From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
                  Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:20 PM
                  To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: Re: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                  Mr. Malone,
                  I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most scientists.  Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific American, Physics Today, Discovery, Science, .... and you will find that our current oil consumption trends can only be sustained to about 2050, plus or minus 20 years.  Renewable energy is growing exponencially.  Europe is aiming for 20% renewables by 2020.  I believe many of the US States already have similar goals and many more will join in as time goes on.  There will be a change within the next lifespan.
                   
                  Even the "Oil" companies realize this and have published reports that say so.  They are starting to call themselves "Energy" companies and investing quite heavily in renewable energy.  See Shell Solar, Shell Wind, Shell Renewables, BP Solar, GE Solar, GE Wind, for example.  And if the oil companies don't lead, the electronics companies will.  Sharp is already the leading manufacturer of solar cells.
                   
                  I don't know how you did your math about not enough solar energy in New Jersey (is that the state with the highest energy to land ratio and the least sunny state?).  But the math I have done shows that I can supply all of my Houston household electrical needs (averaged) by covering half of my roof with solar panels.  No breakthrough technology needed; it already exists.  If you trend retail electric prices and solar PV prices, you will see the cost cross in the year 2025 - then it will be more economical to buy PV than grid electricity!
                   
                  If you read up on the technical progress of photoelectrics, you will see incredible breakthroughs in the last 10 years.  Right now, solar cells are expensive because production can not keep up with demand.  And new record breaking production facillities are being opened each year.
                   
                  If you want a "heart felt" change, read the July-August issue of Renewable Energy World each year and see the growth of RE for yourself.  It is amazing.  Maybe we can discuss some of the facts at the next HREG meeting, Sunday, 2:00pm, Jan 30th at TSU.
                  Sincerely,
                  Chris
                   
                   
                  ----- Original Message -----
                  Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 8:43 PM
                  Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                   

                  All this discussion is interesting and heart felt.  The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.

                   

                  Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, .

                  It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey.  So the size of the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.

                   

                  A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely the only hope in the US.  Outside the US there may be some help because of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.

                   

                  China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US graduates all college students of all degree fields.  China has a massive energy problem.  They also have a growing economy that it partly controlled & partly free market.  As they inevitably pass the US number of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this) and the controlling government forces capital & research in to alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of resources they may turn this thing around.

                   

                  I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

                  In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I’m wrong.

                   

                   

                  J. Patrick Malone

                   

                  -----Original Message-----
                  From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
                  Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
                  To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                   

                   

                • Gary Beck
                  Incredible breakthoughs or not, one thing I have to point out is that solar cells should not be thought of as free or even renewable. The energy they capture
                  Message 8 of 18 , Jan 6, 2005
                    Message
                    Incredible breakthoughs or not, one thing I have to point out is that solar cells should not be thought of as free or even renewable. The energy they capture is not free. They make electricity by capturing energy that is otherwise reflected back into space. All this captured energy will be released as sensable heat. 
                     
                    The other point is that every solar cell I have ever seen is very dark color and that on a sunny day I assume you can fry and egg on them during operation.  And they would remain warm for a few extra hours each night.  Sounds like a hot city that has 1/2 of the area of every roof covered in in solar cells. 
                     
                    This vision of a 'solar roof on every house' is the opposite of significant eco design efforts to try to cool cities by adopting building specifications changing commercial roof colors to white and residential roofs to very light shingles (plus a cooler roof means cooler living working space). Or better yet like USGBC-LEED and other efforts that support 'green' garden roof on new commerical buildings. 
                     
                    What is the best approach to satisfy both concerns? Is there a light colored solar cell? Any one have a design for a solar cell garden roof?
                     
                    Gary Beck
                    Eco-Holdings LLC
                     
                    I read ocasionally Scientific American, Discovery, Science etc. - they are great for 'what if' and 'think about this' , but not very good predictors at all. What were they saying about fuel cells 10 or 20 years ago? My son get Popular Science - a recent article is called "Hydrogen's Bomb - Decoding the Hype".  My favorite recent new science release? The spinach plant that is designed to generate electricity (no joke) (here's a joke: It is a good thing since will require more candle lit dinners - cause after you finish your salad it's light out!) 
                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
                    Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:20 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: Re: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                    Mr. Malone,
                    I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most scientists.  Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific American, Physics Today, Discovery, Science, .... and you will find that our current oil consumption trends can only be sustained to about 2050, plus or minus 20 years.  Renewable energy is growing exponencially.  Europe is aiming for 20% renewables by 2020.  I believe many of the US States already have similar goals and many more will join in as time goes on.  There will be a change within the next lifespan.
                     
                    Even the "Oil" companies realize this and have published reports that say so.  They are starting to call themselves "Energy" companies and investing quite heavily in renewable energy.  See Shell Solar, Shell Wind, Shell Renewables, BP Solar, GE Solar, GE Wind, for example.  And if the oil companies don't lead, the electronics companies will.  Sharp is already the leading manufacturer of solar cells.
                     
                    I don't know how you did your math about not enough solar energy in New Jersey (is that the state with the highest energy to land ratio and the least sunny state?).  But the math I have done shows that I can supply all of my Houston household electrical needs (averaged) by covering half of my roof with solar panels.  No breakthrough technology needed; it already exists.  If you trend retail electric prices and solar PV prices, you will see the cost cross in the year 2025 - then it will be more economical to buy PV than grid electricity!
                     
                    If you read up on the technical progress of photoelectrics, you will see incredible breakthroughs in the last 10 years.  Right now, solar cells are expensive because production can not keep up with demand.  And new record breaking production facillities are being opened each year.
                     
                    If you want a "heart felt" change, read the July-August issue of Renewable Energy World each year and see the growth of RE for yourself.  It is amazing.  Maybe we can discuss some of the facts at the next HREG meeting, Sunday, 2:00pm, Jan 30th at TSU.
                    Sincerely,
                    Chris
                     
                     
                    ----- Original Message -----
                    Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 8:43 PM
                    Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                     

                    All this discussion is interesting and heart felt.  The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.

                     

                    Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, .

                    It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey.  So the size of the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.

                     

                    A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely the only hope in the US.  Outside the US there may be some help because of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.

                     

                    China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US graduates all college students of all degree fields.  China has a massive energy problem.  They also have a growing economy that it partly controlled & partly free market.  As they inevitably pass the US number of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this) and the controlling government forces capital & research in to alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of resources they may turn this thing around.

                     

                    I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

                    In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I’m wrong.

                     

                     

                    J. Patrick Malone

                     

                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
                    Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                     

                     

                  • Ooi, Han
                    Well, In my solar engineering textbook, it states that a solar cell will get hot IF the electricity generated by it is not used. This makes sense since energy
                    Message 9 of 18 , Jan 6, 2005
                      Message
                      Well,
                          In my solar engineering textbook, it states that a solar cell will get hot IF the electricity generated by it is not used.  This makes sense since energy can neither be created nor destroyed.  If the power doesn't take the form of electrical energy, then it will take to form of thermal energy.  So as solar cells get more and more efficient, they will run cooler and cooler.
                       
                      Han Ooi
                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
                      Sent: Thursday, January 06, 2005 9:55 AM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                      Incredible breakthoughs or not, one thing I have to point out is that solar cells should not be thought of as free or even renewable. The energy they capture is not free. They make electricity by capturing energy that is otherwise reflected back into space. All this captured energy will be released as sensable heat. 
                       
                      The other point is that every solar cell I have ever seen is very dark color and that on a sunny day I assume you can fry and egg on them during operation.  And they would remain warm for a few extra hours each night.  Sounds like a hot city that has 1/2 of the area of every roof covered in in solar cells. 
                       
                      This vision of a 'solar roof on every house' is the opposite of significant eco design efforts to try to cool cities by adopting building specifications changing commercial roof colors to white and residential roofs to very light shingles (plus a cooler roof means cooler living working space). Or better yet like USGBC-LEED and other efforts that support 'green' garden roof on new commerical buildings. 
                       
                      What is the best approach to satisfy both concerns? Is there a light colored solar cell? Any one have a design for a solar cell garden roof?
                       
                      Gary Beck
                      Eco-Holdings LLC
                       
                      I read ocasionally Scientific American, Discovery, Science etc. - they are great for 'what if' and 'think about this' , but not very good predictors at all. What were they saying about fuel cells 10 or 20 years ago? My son get Popular Science - a recent article is called "Hydrogen's Bomb - Decoding the Hype".  My favorite recent new science release? The spinach plant that is designed to generate electricity (no joke) (here's a joke: It is a good thing since will require more candle lit dinners - cause after you finish your salad it's light out!) 
                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
                      Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:20 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                      Mr. Malone,
                      I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most scientists.  Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific American, Physics Today, Discovery, Science, .... and you will find that our current oil consumption trends can only be sustained to about 2050, plus or minus 20 years.  Renewable energy is growing exponencially.  Europe is aiming for 20% renewables by 2020.  I believe many of the US States already have similar goals and many more will join in as time goes on.  There will be a change within the next lifespan.
                       
                      Even the "Oil" companies realize this and have published reports that say so.  They are starting to call themselves "Energy" companies and investing quite heavily in renewable energy.  See Shell Solar, Shell Wind, Shell Renewables, BP Solar, GE Solar, GE Wind, for example.  And if the oil companies don't lead, the electronics companies will.  Sharp is already the leading manufacturer of solar cells.
                       
                      I don't know how you did your math about not enough solar energy in New Jersey (is that the state with the highest energy to land ratio and the least sunny state?).  But the math I have done shows that I can supply all of my Houston household electrical needs (averaged) by covering half of my roof with solar panels.  No breakthrough technology needed; it already exists.  If you trend retail electric prices and solar PV prices, you will see the cost cross in the year 2025 - then it will be more economical to buy PV than grid electricity!
                       
                      If you read up on the technical progress of photoelectrics, you will see incredible breakthroughs in the last 10 years.  Right now, solar cells are expensive because production can not keep up with demand.  And new record breaking production facillities are being opened each year.
                       
                      If you want a "heart felt" change, read the July-August issue of Renewable Energy World each year and see the growth of RE for yourself.  It is amazing.  Maybe we can discuss some of the facts at the next HREG meeting, Sunday, 2:00pm, Jan 30th at TSU.
                      Sincerely,
                      Chris
                       
                       
                      ----- Original Message -----
                      Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 8:43 PM
                      Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                       

                      All this discussion is interesting and heart felt.  The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.

                       

                      Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, .

                      It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey.  So the size of the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.

                       

                      A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely the only hope in the US.  Outside the US there may be some help because of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.

                       

                      China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US graduates all college students of all degree fields.  China has a massive energy problem.  They also have a growing economy that it partly controlled & partly free market.  As they inevitably pass the US number of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this) and the controlling government forces capital & research in to alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of resources they may turn this thing around.

                       

                      I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

                      In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I’m wrong.

                       

                       

                      J. Patrick Malone

                       

                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
                      Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                       

                       

                    • Jim & Janet
                      Message Gary Beck Eco-Holdings LLC Wrote: Is there a light colored solar cell? Well, the reason the cells surface is dark is to help it absorb as much light
                      Message 10 of 18 , Jan 6, 2005
                        Message
                         
                        Gary Beck
                        Eco-Holdings LLC
                         
                        Wrote:    Is there a light colored solar cell?
                         
                        Well, the reason the cells surface is dark is to help it absorb as much light energy as possible. A light colored cell would reflect more photons reducing the cells output significantly. If you looked at the cell surface under magnification, you would see the surface is jagged and rough to increase the surface receiving sunlight. The heat is just an unwanted byproduct.
                        Possibly the quickest way to improve module efficiency by 1 to 2 % is to figure how to eliminate resistance at the interconnections between individual cells. No one has yet figured how to effectively 'solder' wires to silicon. This is why most PV manufacturers advertise the individual cell efficiency as slightly higher than the overall module efficiency. That's driving the industry away from silicon and toward other methods of electrical production; spinach for example.
                        Jim Duncan
                      • Robert Johnston
                        Am I missing something, or is this much to do about nothing? Sure, any radiant energy captured by a solar cell is not reflected back into space immediately.
                        Message 11 of 18 , Jan 7, 2005
                          Message

                          Am I missing something, or is this much to do about nothing?

                           

                          Sure, any radiant energy captured by a solar cell is not reflected back into space immediately.  But:  (a) even if you had a perfect mirror there instead, not all reflected light would make it back to space [light scattering, greenhouse effect, etc.]; (b) surely one can coat the cell with a reflective surface that transmits UV (or whatever wavelengths the solar cell optimally uses) and reflects others; (c) if the solar cell weren’t there, it is unlikely that the surface that would be there instead would reflect light back perfectly either.  It would absorb at least a portion of it and the radiant energy would be converted to heat.  Even biomass merely stores it as potential energy that is later released as heat by burning, digestion, etc.  And, (d) some of the absorbed radiation that is converted into heat will eventually be emitted back to space.  Ever notice how much the earth cools on a clear night with no cloud cover?  That is heat loss by a relatively cool substrate, e.g., the earth at 15-30°C.

                           

                          I don’t think we are talking about a big deal here.  Even if 1% of the U.S. land mass were covered with solar cells, that would not absorb as much radiant energy as our forests do today.

                           

                          Why not just do a radiant energy balance on the planet?  Smalley’s presentation says in 2003 we used 14 terawatts (TW) of energy per day.  This compares to 165,000 TW of sunlight striking the planet per day.  Even at the 50 TW he projects we’ll need in 2050, that is only 0.03% of the sun’s radiant energy being needed.  If we have perfectly absorbent solar cells that absorb all the solar spectrum, and if they operate at only 10% solar efficiency, that means that the solar cells necessary to supply our energy needs in 2050 (assuming we go 100% solar cells for energy needs) would absorb just 0.3% of the sun’s radiant flux on earth.  Do you think we’d even notice that?  Remember, a significant fraction of that 0.3% is already absorbed by whatever substrate is there today.  We’re talking about an extremely small effect here!

                           

                          There remains a debate about whether global warming is real or not.  But if we assume it is, I think most scientists would argue that the cause of global warming is not the heat we are emitting but rather the greenhouse effect, e.g., the heat we are trapping.  If we quit using fossil fuels and drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, any additional heat absorbed by solar cells would be more than compensated for by the increased emission to space.  In other words, we can afford to convert more energy into sensable heat so long as we have less greenhouse effect.

                           

                          If you are concerned about localized effects, such as in cities, there would be ways to mitigate it.  For instance, you could make covered parking lots, with the cells on the roof; this would merely absorb what would have otherwise been absorbed by the asphalt.  There are indeed efforts to convert roofing membranes from black rubber sheeting or asphalt to white TPO roofing membranes.  However, as happened at MinuteMaid Park, mold and mildew can quickly stain a white roof to a dark color, so it is not a very robust approach today, and I’m not sure what the long term contribution to urban micro-climates is.  Personally, I’d prefer a dark roof since it is more UV stable and should last longer.  That makes sense from an economic and sustainability standpoint.  If I were a roofing membrane installer, though, I’d sure rather work on a white roof!  (At least in Houston in the summer)!

                           

                          Robert Johnston

                           

                           

                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
                          Sent: Thursday, January 06, 2005 9:55 AM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                           

                          Incredible breakthoughs or not, one thing I have to point out is that solar cells should not be thought of as free or even renewable. The energy they capture is not free. They make electricity by capturing energy that is otherwise reflected back into space. All this captured energy will be released as sensable heat. 

                           

                          The other point is that every solar cell I have ever seen is very dark color and that on a sunny day I assume you can fry and egg on them during operation.  And they would remain warm for a few extra hours each night.  Sounds like a hot city that has 1/2 of the area of every roof covered in in solar cells. 

                           

                          This vision of a 'solar roof on every house' is the opposite of significant eco design efforts to try to cool cities by adopting building specifications changing commercial roof colors to white and residential roofs to very light shingles (plus a cooler roof means cooler living working space). Or better yet like USGBC-LEED and other efforts that support 'green' garden roof on new commerical buildings. 

                           

                          What is the best approach to satisfy both concerns? Is there a light colored solar cell? Any one have a design for a solar cell garden roof?

                           

                          Gary Beck

                          Eco-Holdings LLC

                           

                          I read ocasionally Scientific American, Discovery, Science etc. - they are great for 'what if' and 'think about this' , but not very good predictors at all. What were they saying about fuel cells 10 or 20 years ago? My son get Popular Science - a recent article is called "Hydrogen's Bomb - Decoding the Hype".  My favorite recent new science release? The spinach plant that is designed to generate electricity (no joke) (here's a joke: It is a good thing since will require more candle lit dinners - cause after you finish your salad it's light out!) 

                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
                          Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:20 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: Re: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                          Mr. Malone,

                          I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most scientists.  Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific American, Physics Today, Discovery, Science, .... and you will find that our current oil consumption trends can only be sustained to about 2050, plus or minus 20 years.  Renewable energy is growing exponencially.  Europe is aiming for 20% renewables by 2020.  I believe many of the US States already have similar goals and many more will join in as time goes on.  There will be a change within the next lifespan.

                           

                          Even the "Oil" companies realize this and have published reports that say so.  They are starting to call themselves "Energy" companies and investing quite heavily in renewable energy.  See Shell Solar, Shell Wind, Shell Renewables, BP Solar, GE Solar, GE Wind, for example.  And if the oil companies don't lead, the electronics companies will.  Sharp is already the leading manufacturer of solar cells.

                           

                          I don't know how you did your math about not enough solar energy in New Jersey (is that the state with the highest energy to land ratio and the least sunny state?).  But the math I have done shows that I can supply all of my Houston household electrical needs (averaged) by covering half of my roof with solar panels.  No breakthrough technology needed; it already exists.  If you trend retail electric prices and solar PV prices, you will see the cost cross in the year 2025 - then it will be more economical to buy PV than grid electricity!

                           

                          If you read up on the technical progress of photoelectrics, you will see incredible breakthroughs in the last 10 years.  Right now, solar cells are expensive because production can not keep up with demand.  And new record breaking production facillities are being opened each year.

                           

                          If you want a "heart felt" change, read the July-August issue of Renewable Energy World each year and see the growth of RE for yourself.  It is amazing.  Maybe we can discuss some of the facts at the next HREG meeting, Sunday, 2:00pm, Jan 30th at TSU.

                          Sincerely,

                          Chris

                           

                           

                          ----- Original Message -----

                          Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 8:43 PM

                          Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                           

                           

                          All this discussion is interesting and heart felt.  The following is not intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.

                           

                          Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, .

                          It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey.  So the size of the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.

                           

                          A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely the only hope in the US.  Outside the US there may be some help because of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.

                           

                          China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US graduates all college students of all degree fields.  China has a massive energy problem.  They also have a growing economy that it partly controlled & partly free market.  As they inevitably pass the US number of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this) and the controlling government forces capital & research in to alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of resources they may turn this thing around.

                           

                          I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

                          In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I’m wrong.

                           

                           

                          J. Patrick Malone

                           

                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
                          Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                           

                           

                        • Richard D. Kelley
                          Mountains out a molehill? Buy some panels a put that Texas cooker to work. ... From: Robert Johnston [SMTP:junk1@plastability.com] Sent: Friday, January 07,
                          Message 12 of 18 , Jan 7, 2005
                            Mountains out a molehill? Buy some panels a put that Texas cooker to work.


                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: Robert Johnston [SMTP:junk1@...]
                            Sent: Friday, January 07, 2005 4:57 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for alternative energy and conservation

                            << File: ATT00029.htm >> Am I missing something, or is this much to do about nothing?



                            Sure, any radiant energy captured by a solar cell is not reflected back
                            into space immediately. But: (a) even if you had a perfect mirror
                            there instead, not all reflected light would make it back to space
                            [light scattering, greenhouse effect, etc.]; (b) surely one can coat the
                            cell with a reflective surface that transmits UV (or whatever
                            wavelengths the solar cell optimally uses) and reflects others; (c) if
                            the solar cell weren't there, it is unlikely that the surface that would
                            be there instead would reflect light back perfectly either. It would
                            absorb at least a portion of it and the radiant energy would be
                            converted to heat. Even biomass merely stores it as potential energy
                            that is later released as heat by burning, digestion, etc. And, (d)
                            some of the absorbed radiation that is converted into heat will
                            eventually be emitted back to space. Ever notice how much the earth
                            cools on a clear night with no cloud cover? That is heat loss by a
                            relatively cool substrate, e.g., the earth at 15-30°C.



                            I don't think we are talking about a big deal here. Even if 1% of the
                            U.S. land mass were covered with solar cells, that would not absorb as
                            much radiant energy as our forests do today.



                            Why not just do a radiant energy balance on the planet? Smalley's
                            presentation says in 2003 we used 14 terawatts (TW) of energy per day.
                            This compares to 165,000 TW of sunlight striking the planet per day.
                            Even at the 50 TW he projects we'll need in 2050, that is only 0.03% of
                            the sun's radiant energy being needed. If we have perfectly absorbent
                            solar cells that absorb all the solar spectrum, and if they operate at
                            only 10% solar efficiency, that means that the solar cells necessary to
                            supply our energy needs in 2050 (assuming we go 100% solar cells for
                            energy needs) would absorb just 0.3% of the sun's radiant flux on earth.
                            Do you think we'd even notice that? Remember, a significant fraction of
                            that 0.3% is already absorbed by whatever substrate is there today.
                            We're talking about an extremely small effect here!



                            There remains a debate about whether global warming is real or not. But
                            if we assume it is, I think most scientists would argue that the cause
                            of global warming is not the heat we are emitting but rather the
                            greenhouse effect, e.g., the heat we are trapping. If we quit using
                            fossil fuels and drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, any
                            additional heat absorbed by solar cells would be more than compensated
                            for by the increased emission to space. In other words, we can afford
                            to convert more energy into sensable heat so long as we have less
                            greenhouse effect.



                            If you are concerned about localized effects, such as in cities, there
                            would be ways to mitigate it. For instance, you could make covered
                            parking lots, with the cells on the roof; this would merely absorb what
                            would have otherwise been absorbed by the asphalt. There are indeed
                            efforts to convert roofing membranes from black rubber sheeting or
                            asphalt to white TPO roofing membranes. However, as happened at
                            MinuteMaid Park, mold and mildew can quickly stain a white roof to a
                            dark color, so it is not a very robust approach today, and I'm not sure
                            what the long term contribution to urban micro-climates is. Personally,
                            I'd prefer a dark roof since it is more UV stable and should last
                            longer. That makes sense from an economic and sustainability
                            standpoint. If I were a roofing membrane installer, though, I'd sure
                            rather work on a white roof! (At least in Houston in the summer)!



                            Robert Johnston





                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: Gary Beck [mailto:eco@...]
                            Sent: Thursday, January 06, 2005 9:55 AM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
                            alternative energy and conservation



                            Incredible breakthoughs or not, one thing I have to point out is that
                            solar cells should not be thought of as free or even renewable. The
                            energy they capture is not free. They make electricity by capturing
                            energy that is otherwise reflected back into space. All this captured
                            energy will be released as sensable heat.



                            The other point is that every solar cell I have ever seen is very dark
                            color and that on a sunny day I assume you can fry and egg on them
                            during operation. And they would remain warm for a few extra hours each
                            night. Sounds like a hot city that has 1/2 of the area of every roof
                            covered in in solar cells.



                            This vision of a 'solar roof on every house' is the opposite of
                            significant eco design efforts to try to cool cities by adopting
                            building specifications changing commercial roof colors to white and
                            residential roofs to very light shingles (plus a cooler roof means
                            cooler living working space). Or better yet like USGBC-LEED and other
                            efforts that support 'green' garden roof on new commerical buildings.



                            What is the best approach to satisfy both concerns? Is there a light
                            colored solar cell? Any one have a design for a solar cell garden roof?



                            Gary Beck

                            Eco-Holdings LLC



                            I read ocasionally Scientific American, Discovery, Science etc. - they
                            are great for 'what if' and 'think about this' , but not very good
                            predictors at all. What were they saying about fuel cells 10 or 20 years
                            ago? My son get Popular Science - a recent article is called "Hydrogen's
                            Bomb - Decoding the Hype". My favorite recent new science release? The
                            spinach plant that is designed to generate electricity (no joke) (here's
                            a joke: It is a good thing since will require more candle lit dinners -
                            cause after you finish your salad it's light out!)

                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: Roxanne Boyer [mailto:rox1@...]
                            Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2005 10:20 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: Re: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
                            alternative energy and conservation

                            Mr. Malone,

                            I quite dissagree with you on many of these issues, and so do most
                            scientists. Read any of the articles today on energy in Scientific
                            American, Physics Today, Discovery, Science, .... and you will find that
                            our current oil consumption trends can only be sustained to about 2050,
                            plus or minus 20 years. Renewable energy is growing exponencially.
                            Europe is aiming for 20% renewables by 2020. I believe many of the US
                            States already have similar goals and many more will join in as time
                            goes on. There will be a change within the next lifespan.



                            Even the "Oil" companies realize this and have published reports that
                            say so. They are starting to call themselves "Energy" companies and
                            investing quite heavily in renewable energy. See Shell Solar, Shell
                            Wind, Shell Renewables, BP Solar, GE Solar, GE Wind, for example. And
                            if the oil companies don't lead, the electronics companies will. Sharp
                            is already the leading manufacturer of solar cells.



                            I don't know how you did your math about not enough solar energy in New
                            Jersey (is that the state with the highest energy to land ratio and the
                            least sunny state?). But the math I have done shows that I can supply
                            all of my Houston household electrical needs (averaged) by covering half
                            of my roof with solar panels. No breakthrough technology needed; it
                            already exists. If you trend retail electric prices and solar PV
                            prices, you will see the cost cross in the year 2025 - then it will be
                            more economical to buy PV than grid electricity!



                            If you read up on the technical progress of photoelectrics, you will see
                            incredible breakthroughs in the last 10 years. Right now, solar cells
                            are expensive because production can not keep up with demand. And new
                            record breaking production facillities are being opened each year.



                            If you want a "heart felt" change, read the July-August issue of
                            Renewable Energy World each year and see the growth of RE for yourself.
                            It is amazing. Maybe we can discuss some of the facts at the next HREG
                            meeting, Sunday, 2:00pm, Jan 30th at TSU.

                            Sincerely,

                            Chris





                            ----- Original Message -----

                            From: J. <mailto:JPMALONE@...> P. Malone

                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com

                            Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 8:43 PM

                            Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
                            alternative energy and conservation





                            All this discussion is interesting and heart felt. The following is not
                            intended as a rant, but to put our problem in perspective.



                            Our government, both parties, is so tied to big oil money, .

                            It would take solar panels covering every square inch of the state of
                            New Jersey just to equal the energy used in New Jersey. So the size of
                            the oil dependency is almost beyond our reason.



                            A breakthrough, one not foreseeable by current science is most likely
                            the only hope in the US. Outside the US there may be some help because
                            of the different mind set of the non US-Oil cartel.



                            China is graduating more engineers & scientists each year than the US
                            graduates all college students of all degree fields. China has a
                            massive energy problem. They also have a growing economy that it partly
                            controlled & partly free market. As they inevitably pass the US number
                            of educated citizens (check out our schools systems if you doubt this)
                            and the controlling government forces capital & research in to
                            alternative energy research because of their vast needs and lack of
                            resources they may turn this thing around.



                            I hope I live long enough to see the beginning.

                            In the interim, conservation, voting, getting activity in politics may
                            be the only drop in the bucket we have. I hope I'm wrong.





                            J. Patrick Malone



                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: Robert Johnston [mailto:junk1@...]
                            Sent: Monday, January 03, 2005 7:36 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: Oh Politics! RE: [hreg] crash science initiative for
                            alternative energy and conservation








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