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Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

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  • Kevin Conlin
    Interesting historical perspective, Tyra, not many people remember the pioneering work done on heliostat tracking and the Power Tower technology developed at
    Message 1 of 22 , Jun 7, 2009
    • 0 Attachment
      
      Interesting historical perspective, Tyra, not many people remember the pioneering work done on heliostat tracking and the Power Tower technology developed at the U of H.
       
      I'm not sure having aerospace companies build the heliostats was the best path toward economical power production, however.
       
      With regard to Boeing's solar cell development, to date I believe almost all of it has been focused on satellite applications, I've never seen their stuff on the ground. The bad pun was unintentional.
       
      Kevin
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:48 PM
      Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

      Ed:

      To the points in your other message – interesting that Pentex is part of DOE – it would seem better placed with DOD.  I had a friend who worked there after college de-programming nukes.

      To DOE and performance of their mission – the US quickly lost sight of its goal to reduce de penden ce on foreign oil after the 1970s oil crisis, as soon as prices went down and OPEC stopped the heist.  That would have been when DOE was chartered.  There were many, many efforts started then that did not carry forward.  Subsequent administrations who took down the solar panels on the White House also took away the federal funding for DOE’s mission.  A great example impacted Houston .  In the 80s two physics professors at UH, Lorin Vant-Hull and his colleague were commissioned by DOE to design the first solar receiver tower installation in the US – Solar One and Two in Barstow California .  They built the project, with engineering assistance from Rocketdyne and McDonald Douglas.  Subsequent administrations stopped the federal funding and those projects never went any farther.    Spain is building similar plant designs and powering the entire city of Seville with updated versions – but in the US , we stopped.  Some have called the remains of the Solar One/Two demos scrap heaps.  With inconsistent funding and leadership from Washington , it is no wonder that DOE has not made more progress.   We have wasted resources and time.

      You gave figures for annual DOE budgets.  I wonder if those are the amounts DOE requested or the amount actually authorized by Congress for DOE to spend. 

      With respect to OPEC – I have heard that the TRRC structure was used – that must be true – but I don’t recall the story – were there Texan oil people involved in setting it up?

      It is true that US military is doing a lot of research on alternatives – solar among them.  In ACORE presentations, they said they are motivated to protect the vulnerability of fuel supply lines.  Having on-site generation is a great value.  I know a lot of people in alternative energy have come from the military as does much new tech.

      The Boeing article you provided is really interesting.  I had no idea they are doing solar cells – it is exciting and the biofuels is fascinating too.  Airlines and their fuel requirements are unique.  They also take a more long term approach to innovation.  I recall that their design cycles are about 10 years.  That will be helpful when working with renewables.

      Tyra  


      From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
      Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 10:24 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
      Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

      Tyra,

      I agree that energy isn't really a free market.

      OPEC learned from the Texas Rail Road Commission. They controlled oil production in Texas for a long time. There is also a lot of domestic oil still in the ground between existing oil wells - thanks to TRRC  rules. 

      I have heard that a lot of OPEC money goes to environmental organizations over here because they oppose so many energy policies here and that helps OPEC. I do not mean that the environmental groups are working with OPEC so don't throw stones on that. There are a lot of ways to move money so  that the source isn't visible to the recepient. Maybe this is just some wild tale that circulates - I don't know. It effectively helps OPEC if we don't develope solar and wind. According to Wikipedia, OPEC still produces about 33 % of the world oil supply.

      With regard to energy misinformation: Money speaks and the existing big energy interests have the most money to spend so it is easy to see that they can have a significant impact on information available to the public. This group is much more knowledgable on energy issues than the general public and a lot of members of state and national legislatures. ............ ......... ......... . Sometime it only takes one person to block a bill. I'm not saying that that has happened but the potential is there.

      I'm sure that DOE does excelent research but it takes massive amounts of money to compete with existing energy companies. So research alone won't make the difference. There is a ray of hope however - and it may come from an unexpected source - world airlines and the US military. The reason is because the military can't be limited by the availability of fuel and the airlines get tremendously stressed by the price of fuel. The DOE research may be behind some of the studies. The distribution system is much smaller for the military and airlines than for public and private transportation so it will be easier to introduce an alternate fuel in that market. Here is one reference; http://www.boeing. com/aboutus/ environment/ environmental_ report_09/ alternative- energy-solutions .html The promising feature is the emphasis on carbon reduction and sustainable nonfood sources. The potential carbon tax is important to the airlines.

      If the production system is developed by the government or by large airlines then the production can be expanded and used in private transportation. There isn't much difference in jet fuel and diesel.

      The other way that I see for alternate energy sources to become mainstream is through small private or coop systems. That is where significant tax breaks can make a difference. I would rather just have a tax reduction and pay for it myself but I don't expect any tax reductions in the near future.

      Ed

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

      Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 7:42 PM

      Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

      Ed:

      I’m not picking on you and I’m glad you made the argument – it is definitely the predominant Texas argument, shared even by groups like TREIA, who when they propose “non-wind” to the Texas legislature are saying “we do not want to pick technology winners, we want to let the market decide.”  Their idea is to make small policy corrections in hopes that market forces, like nature will do the rest.  We are a “free market” society and we believe that there is wisdom in the market, that we can “do it ourselves.”  In Germany , with the help of policy, however, they have been doing it themselves for the last 15 years – in the same time Texas has implemented basically zero solar.

      In Houston, former Shell Oil President, John Hofmeister speaks often and always says “for energy there is no free-market.”  Oil, he points out has an absolute monopoly on the global transportation sector – planes, trains, autos.  Oil pricing is regulated by a cartel, OPEC.  Gas producing states are creating a similar cartel to OPEC.  John now heads Citizen’s for Affordable Energy and his message is that the greatest hurdle to adoption of alternative energy is public misinformation.

      For your comment about DOE – the question is who will fund R&D?  There was a time in the US when groups like Bell Labs did the heavy lifting of getting technology from basic science to the applied stage.  We no longer have such groups and companies either have to do the applied research in-house or interface with institutions like Universities.  I have worked in the new tech interface for over 25 years.  It is a huge challenge to get innovation to the market.  Especially when there are gigantic market disadvantages!    

      Efficiency is definitely an issue for any group/agency/ corporation – how well the dollar is spent and how much value received.  DOE has tons of internal studies on just that.  Similar studies are done of policies.   Economists measure the cost of a policy and its benefit.  The oil and gas reservoir tax credit for example has been studied and found that for the tax money spent, there is basically zero benefit in reservoir protection and management.

      For any innovation or exploration there are production failures.  I come from a family of petroleum engineers.  I can tell you there are many dry holes drilled – that is a cost of the industry.  Innovation is the same way.  Sometimes innovation dollars don’t pan out, or don’t do it in the time frame. 

      So thanks for the opportunity to have this discussion.  Charlie’s point is so true as well – many costs of energy are not borne by its price – including the police cost (and lives lost.)  Pollution costs, health costs, carbon costs are others.   The questions are how do we do this?  How do we get what we want; what choices do we make; how do we make it work?

      Tyra


      From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
      Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:55 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
      Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans





        

      Maybe this explains some of the differences between Europe and the US :

      If we want alternate energy sources we will have to do it ourselves and not depend on government subsidies and programs.

      Ed

      I just received this from another group - I haven't checked the numbers:

      Let it sink in.
      Quietly we go like sheep to slaughter.
      Does anybody out there have any memory of the reason given  for the establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ..... during the Carter Administration?  

      Bottom line .. we've spent several hundred billion  dollars in support of an agency ... the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember.
      Ready???????  
      It was very simple ... and at the time everybody thought it very appropriate. ..
      The 'Department of Energy' was instituted on 8- 04-1977 

      TO LESSEN  OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL..
       
      Hey, pretty efficient, huh?????


      AND NOW IT'S 2009, 32 YEARS LATER  ... AND THE BUDGET
      FOR THIS NECESSARY DEPARTMENT IS AT $24.2 + BILLION A YEAR 
       
       IT HAS 16,000 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES AND APPROXIMATELY 100,000 CONTRACT EMPLOYEES
       
       AND LOOK AT THE JOB IT HAS DONE!

      THIS IS WHERE YOU SLAP YOUR FOREHEAD AND SAY 'WHAT WAS I THINKING?'  
      Ah, yes, good ole bureaucracy. .

      And NOW we are going to turn the Banking System, health care & the Auto Industry over to them?  
      God Help Us !!!

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

      Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:51 AM

      Subject: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

      .

    • jay.ring@ymail.com
      I am pretty sure the reason Pantex and other nuclear regulators are having problems is what we generally lump into the category of historic curiosity One of
      Message 2 of 22 , Jun 8, 2009
      • 0 Attachment
        I am pretty sure the reason Pantex and other nuclear regulators are having problems is what we generally lump into the category of "historic curiosity"

        One of the main strategies for getting off of foreign oil was going to be nuclear. The DoE was put in charge of this, so they were going to build and regulate the waste disposal network. The military also had need for a similar function, so the question was, "will the civilian energy piggy back on a military program, or will the military piggy back on a civilian program?" Stated this way, I agree that the DoE should handle the function and not the military. But I can understand why some consider it mission creep.

        I do agree with Ed that the DoE has been a spectacular failure. You can argue about why (big government, big oil lobbiests, cheap oil, whatever), and we can disagree on what to to to fix it - but I think we can all agree that it has failed to end our dependence on foreign oil. It has had plenty of time and plenty of money; it should have been enough. The DoE has failed.




        --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Ed Sarlls" <edsarlls@...> wrote:
        >
        > Tyra,
        >
        > Hope that your friend isn't one of the Pantex people having health problems now. I believe that their mission has changed but I haven't had much interest in it. There was an excelent steel supplier in that area. Their name changes every few years and I haven't bought any of their product in over 10 years.
        >
        > Boeing and NASA also made a large windmill in the 80s. Westinghouse also had at least one turbine. http://www.state.hi.us/dbedt/ert/wwg/history.html. Like you said a lot of these programs only go through the study phase. There have been a lot of advances in Europe since then.
        >
        > Concentrating Solar cells. Check Green and Gold Energy http://www.greenandgoldenergy.com.au/
        >
        > I believe that Europe has had a greater necessity to develop alternate energy sources than the US. Norway is no. 11 in petroleum production, the UK is no. 18, Denmark is no. 37.
        >
        > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petroleum
        >
        > Here is my source on the DOE budget numbers http://www.gpoaccess.gov/usbudget/fy10/pdf/budget/energy.pdf
        >
        > I believe that Ahmed Yamani was instrumental in setting a lot of OPEC policy. He was educated here and England
        >
        > - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahmed_Zaki_Yamani
        >
        > Ed
        >
        > ----- Original Message -----
        > From: Tyra Rankin
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:48 PM
        > Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > Ed:
        >
        > To the points in your other message â€" interesting that Pentex is part of DOE â€" it would seem better placed with DOD. I had a friend who worked there after college de-programming nukes.
        >
        >
        >
        > To DOE and performance of their mission â€" the US quickly lost sight of its goal to reduce dependence on foreign oil after the 1970s oil crisis, as soon as prices went down and OPEC stopped the heist. That would have been when DOE was chartered. There were many, many efforts started then that did not carry forward. Subsequent administrations who took down the solar panels on the White House also took away the federal funding for DOE’s mission. A great example impacted Houston. In the 80s two physics professors at UH, Lorin Vant-Hull and his colleague were commissioned by DOE to design the first solar receiver tower installation in the US â€" Solar One and Two in Barstow California. They built the project, with engineering assistance from Rocketdyne and McDonald Douglas. Subsequent administrations stopped the federal funding and those projects never went any farther. Spain is building similar plant designs and powering the entire city of Seville with updated versions â€" but in the US, we stopped. Some have called the remains of the Solar One/Two demos scrap heaps. With inconsistent funding and leadership from Washington, it is no wonder that DOE has not made more progress. We have wasted resources and time.
        >
        >
        >
        > You gave figures for annual DOE budgets. I wonder if those are the amounts DOE requested or the amount actually authorized by Congress for DOE to spend.
        >
        >
        >
        > With respect to OPEC â€" I have heard that the TRRC structure was used â€" that must be true â€" but I don’t recall the story â€" were there Texan oil people involved in setting it up?
        >
        >
        >
        > It is true that US military is doing a lot of research on alternatives â€" solar among them. In ACORE presentations, they said they are motivated to protect the vulnerability of fuel supply lines. Having on-site generation is a great value. I know a lot of people in alternative energy have come from the military as does much new tech.
        >
        >
        >
        > The Boeing article you provided is really interesting. I had no idea they are doing solar cells â€" it is exciting and the biofuels is fascinating too. Airlines and their fuel requirements are unique. They also take a more long term approach to innovation. I recall that their design cycles are about 10 years. That will be helpful when working with renewables.
        >
        >
        >
        > Tyra
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        >
        > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
        > Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 10:24 PM
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
        >
        >
        >
        > Tyra,
        >
        > I agree that energy isn't really a free market.
        >
        >
        >
        > OPEC learned from the Texas Rail Road Commission. They controlled oil production in Texas for a long time. There is also a lot of domestic oil still in the ground between existing oil wells - thanks to TRRC rules.
        >
        >
        >
        > I have heard that a lot of OPEC money goes to environmental organizations over here because they oppose so many energy policies here and that helps OPEC. I do not mean that the environmental groups are working with OPEC so don't throw stones on that. There are a lot of ways to move money so that the source isn't visible to the recepient. Maybe this is just some wild tale that circulates - I don't know. It effectively helps OPEC if we don't develope solar and wind. According to Wikipedia, OPEC still produces about 33 % of the world oil supply.
        >
        >
        >
        > With regard to energy misinformation: Money speaks and the existing big energy interests have the most money to spend so it is easy to see that they can have a significant impact on information available to the public. This group is much more knowledgable on energy issues than the general public and a lot of members of state and national legislatures. ............................... Sometime it only takes one person to block a bill. I'm not saying that that has happened but the potential is there.
        >
        >
        >
        > I'm sure that DOE does excelent research but it takes massive amounts of money to compete with existing energy companies. So research alone won't make the difference. There is a ray of hope however - and it may come from an unexpected source - world airlines and the US military. The reason is because the military can't be limited by the availability of fuel and the airlines get tremendously stressed by the price of fuel. The DOE research may be behind some of the studies. The distribution system is much smaller for the military and airlines than for public and private transportation so it will be easier to introduce an alternate fuel in that market. Here is one reference; http://www.boeing.com/aboutus/environment/environmental_report_09/alternative-energy-solutions.html The promising feature is the emphasis on carbon reduction and sustainable nonfood sources. The potential carbon tax is important to the airlines.
        >
        >
        >
        > If the production system is developed by the government or by large airlines then the production can be expanded and used in private transportation. There isn't much difference in jet fuel and diesel.
        >
        >
        >
        > The other way that I see for alternate energy sources to become mainstream is through small private or coop systems. That is where significant tax breaks can make a difference. I would rather just have a tax reduction and pay for it myself but I don't expect any tax reductions in the near future.
        >
        >
        >
        > Ed
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > ----- Original Message -----
        >
        > From: Tyra Rankin
        >
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        >
        > Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 7:42 PM
        >
        > Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
        >
        >
        >
        > Ed:
        >
        > I’m not picking on you and I’m glad you made the argument â€" it is definitely the predominant Texas argument, shared even by groups like TREIA, who when they propose “non-wind” to the Texas legislature are saying “we do not want to pick technology winners, we want to let the market decide.” Their idea is to make small policy corrections in hopes that market forces, like nature will do the rest. We are a “free market” society and we believe that there is wisdom in the market, that we can “do it ourselves.” In Germany, with the help of policy, however, they have been doing it themselves for the last 15 years â€" in the same time Texas has implemented basically zero solar.
        >
        > In Houston, former Shell Oil President, John Hofmeister speaks often and always says “for energy there is no free-market.” Oil, he points out has an absolute monopoly on the global transportation sector â€" planes, trains, autos. Oil pricing is regulated by a cartel, OPEC. Gas producing states are creating a similar cartel to OPEC. John now heads Citizen’s for Affordable Energy and his message is that the greatest hurdle to adoption of alternative energy is public misinformation.
        >
        > For your comment about DOE â€" the question is who will fund R&D? There was a time in the US when groups like Bell Labs did the heavy lifting of getting technology from basic science to the applied stage. We no longer have such groups and companies either have to do the applied research in-house or interface with institutions like Universities. I have worked in the new tech interface for over 25 years. It is a huge challenge to get innovation to the market. Especially when there are gigantic market disadvantages!
        >
        > Efficiency is definitely an issue for any group/agency/corporation â€" how well the dollar is spent and how much value received. DOE has tons of internal studies on just that. Similar studies are done of policies. Economists measure the cost of a policy and its benefit. The oil and gas reservoir tax credit for example has been studied and found that for the tax money spent, there is basically zero benefit in reservoir protection and management.
        >
        > For any innovation or exploration there are production failures. I come from a family of petroleum engineers. I can tell you there are many dry holes drilled â€" that is a cost of the industry. Innovation is the same way. Sometimes innovation dollars don’t pan out, or don’t do it in the time frame.
        >
        > So thanks for the opportunity to have this discussion. Charlie’s point is so true as well â€" many costs of energy are not borne by its price â€" including the police cost (and lives lost.) Pollution costs, health costs, carbon costs are others. The questions are how do we do this? How do we get what we want; what choices do we make; how do we make it work?
        >
        > Tyra
        >
        >
        > ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
        >
        > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
        > Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:55 PM
        > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > 
        >
        > Maybe this explains some of the differences between Europe and the US:
        >
        > If we want alternate energy sources we will have to do it ourselves and not depend on government subsidies and programs.
        >
        > Ed
        >
        > I just received this from another group - I haven't checked the numbers:
        >
        > Let it sink in.
        > Quietly we go like sheep to slaughter.
        > Does anybody out there have any memory of the reason given for the establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ..... during the Carter Administration?
        >
        > Bottom line .. we've spent several hundred billion dollars in support of an agency ... the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember.
        > Ready???????
        > It was very simple ... and at the time everybody thought it very appropriate...
        > The 'Department of Energy' was instituted on 8- 04-1977
        >
        > TO LESSEN OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL..
        >
        > Hey, pretty efficient, huh?????
        >
        >
        > AND NOW IT'S 2009, 32 YEARS LATER ... AND THE BUDGET
        > FOR THIS NECESSARY DEPARTMENT IS AT $24.2 + BILLION A YEAR
        >
        > IT HAS 16,000 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES AND APPROXIMATELY 100,000 CONTRACT EMPLOYEES
        >
        > AND LOOK AT THE JOB IT HAS DONE!
        >
        > THIS IS WHERE YOU SLAP YOUR FOREHEAD AND SAY 'WHAT WAS I THINKING?'
        > Ah, yes, good ole bureaucracy..
        >
        > And NOW we are going to turn the Banking System, health care & the Auto Industry over to them?
        > God Help Us !!!
        >
        > ----- Original Message -----
        >
        > From: Philip Timmons
        >
        > To: ntreg@yahoogroups.com ; hreg@yahoogroups.com
        >
        > Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:51 AM
        >
        > Subject: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
        >
        > .
        >
      • Tyra Rankin
        Interesting history, Jay. So, if we say that DOE failed, what does everyone think about John Hofmeister’s (former Shell Oil President and founder of
        Message 3 of 22 , Jun 8, 2009
        • 0 Attachment

          Interesting history, Jay.  So, if we say that DOE failed, what does everyone think about John Hofmeister’s (former Shell Oil President and founder of Citizen’s for Affordable Energy,) proposal of creating a new Federal Reserve Board for Energy?  Would it have a worse or better chance than DOE?  Thoughts? 

           

          Tyra

           


          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of jay.ring@...
          Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 9:33 AM
          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [hreg] Re: European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

           




          I am pretty sure the reason Pantex and other nuclear regulators are having problems is what we generally lump into the category of "historic curiosity"

          One of the main strategies for getting off of foreign oil was going to be nuclear. The DoE was put in charge of this, so they were going to build and regulate the waste disposal network. The military also had need for a similar function, so the question was, "will the civilian energy piggy back on a military program, or will the military piggy back on a civilian program?" Stated this way, I agree that the DoE should handle the function and not the military. But I can understand why some consider it mission creep.

          I do agree with Ed that the DoE has been a spectacular failure. You can argue about why (big government, big oil lobbiests, cheap oil, whatever), and we can disagree on what to to to fix it - but I think we can all agree that it has failed to end our de penden ce on foreign oil. It has had plenty of time and plenty of money; it should have been enough. The DoE has failed.

          --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Ed Sarlls" <edsarlls@.. .> wrote:

          >
          > Tyra,
          >
          > Hope that your friend isn't one of the Pantex people having health
          problems now. I believe that their mission has changed but I haven't had much interest in it. There was an excelent steel supplier in that area. Their name changes every few years and I haven't bought any of their product in over 10 years.
          >
          > Boeing and NASA also made a large windmill in the 80s. Westinghouse also
          had at least one turbine. http://www.state. hi.us/dbedt/ ert/wwg/history. html. Like you said a lot of these programs only go through the study phase. There have been a lot of advances in Europe since then.
          >
          > Concentrating Solar cells. Check Green and Gold Energy
          href="http://www.greenandgoldenergy.com.au/">http://www.greenand goldenergy. com.au/
          >
          > I believe that Europe has had a greater necessity to develop alternate
          energy sources than the US . Norway is no. 11 in petroleum production, the UK is no. 18, Denmark is no. 37.
          >
          > http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Petroleum
          >
          > Here is my source on the DOE budget numbers
          href="http://www.gpoaccess.gov/usbudget/fy10/pdf/budget/energy.pdf">http://www.gpoacces s.gov/usbudget/ fy10/pdf/ budget/energy. pdf
          >
          > I believe that Ahmed Yamani was instrumental in setting a lot of OPEC
          policy. He was educated here and England
          >
          > - see http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Ahmed_Zaki_ Yamani
          >
          > Ed
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: Tyra Rankin
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
          > Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:48 PM
          > Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Ed:
          >
          > To the points in your other message â€" interesting that Pentex is
          part of DOE â€" it would seem better placed with DOD. I had a friend who worked there after college de-programming nukes.
          >
          >
          >
          > To DOE and performance of their mission â€" the US quickly lost sight
          of its goal to reduce de penden ce on foreign oil after the 1970s oil crisis, as soon as prices went down and OPEC stopped the heist. That would have been when DOE was chartered. There were many, many efforts started then that did not carry forward. Subsequent administrations who took down the solar panels on the White House also took away the federal funding for DOE’s mission. A great example impacted Houston . In the 80s two physics professors at UH, Lorin Vant-Hull and his colleague were commissioned by DOE to design the first solar receiver tower installation in the US â€" Solar One and Two in Barstow California . They built the project, with engineering assistance from Rocketdyne and McDonald Douglas. Subsequent administrations stopped the federal funding and those projects never went any farther. Spain is building similar plant designs and powering the entire city of Seville with updated versions â€" but in the US , we stopped. Some have called the remains of the Solar One/Two demos scrap heaps. With inconsistent funding and leadership from Washington , it is no wonder that DOE has not made more progress. We have wasted resources and time.
          >
          >
          >
          > You gave figures for annual DOE budgets. I wonder if those are the amounts
          DOE requested or the amount actually authorized by Congress for DOE to spend.
          >
          >
          >
          > With respect to OPEC â€" I have heard that the TRRC structure was
          used â€" that must be true â€" but I don’t recall the story â€" were there Texan oil people involved in setting it up?
          >
          >
          >
          > It is true that US
          military is doing a lot of research on alternatives â€" solar among them. In ACORE presentations, they said they are motivated to protect the vulnerability of fuel supply lines. Having on-site generation is a great value. I know a lot of people in alternative energy have come from the military as does much new tech.
          >
          >
          >
          > The Boeing article you provided is really interesting. I had no idea they
          are doing solar cells â€" it is exciting and the biofuels is fascinating too. Airlines and their fuel requirements are unique. They also take a more long term approach to innovation. I recall that their design cycles are about 10 years. That will be helpful when working with renewables.
          >
          >
          >
          > Tyra
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- -
          >
          > From: hreg@yahoogroups. com
          [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
          > Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 10:24 PM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
          > Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
          >
          >
          >
          > Tyra,
          >
          > I agree that energy isn't really a free market.
          >
          >
          >
          > OPEC learned from the Texas Rail Road Commission. They controlled oil
          production in Texas for a long time. There is also a lot of domestic oil still in the ground between existing oil wells - thanks to TRRC rules.
          >
          >
          >
          > I have heard that a lot of OPEC money goes to environmental organizations
          over here because they oppose so many energy policies here and that helps OPEC. I do not mean that the environmental groups are working with OPEC so don't throw stones on that. There are a lot of ways to move money so that the source isn't visible to the recepient. Maybe this is just some wild tale that circulates - I don't know. It effectively helps OPEC if we don't develope solar and wind. According to Wikipedia, OPEC still produces about 33 % of the world oil supply.
          >
          >
          >
          > With regard to energy misinformation: Money speaks and the existing big
          energy interests have the most money to spend so it is easy to see that they can have a significant impact on information available to the public. This group is much more knowledgable on energy issues than the general public and a lot of members of state and national legislatures. ............ ......... ......... . Sometime it only takes one person to block a bill. I'm not saying that that has happened but the potential is there.
          >
          >
          >
          > I'm sure that DOE does excelent research but it takes massive amounts of
          money to compete with existing energy companies. So research alone won't make the difference. There is a ray of hope however - and it may come from an unexpected source - world airlines and the US military. The reason is because the military can't be limited by the availability of fuel and the airlines get tremendously stressed by the price of fuel. The DOE research may be behind some of the studies. The distribution system is much smaller for the military and airlines than for public and private transportation so it will be easier to introduce an alternate fuel in that market. Here is one reference; http://www.boeing. com/aboutus/ environment/ environmental_ report_09/ alternative- energy-solutions .html The promising feature is the emphasis on carbon reduction and sustainable nonfood sources. The potential carbon tax is important to the airlines.
          >
          >
          >
          > If the production system is developed by the government or by large
          airlines then the production can be expanded and used in private transportation. There isn't much difference in jet fuel and diesel.
          >
          >
          >
          > The other way that I see for alternate energy sources to become mainstream
          is through small private or coop systems. That is where significant tax breaks can make a difference. I would rather just have a tax reduction and pay for it myself but I don't expect any tax reductions in the near future.
          >
          >
          >
          > Ed
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          >
          > From: Tyra Rankin
          >
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
          >
          > Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 7:42 PM
          >
          > Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
          >
          >
          >
          > Ed:
          >
          > I’m not picking on you and I’m glad you made the argument â€" it
          is definitely the predominant Texas argument, shared even by groups like TREIA, who when they propose “non-wind” to the Texas legislature are saying “we do not want to pick technology winners, we want to let the market decide.” Their idea is to make small policy corrections in hopes that market forces, like nature will do the rest. We are a “free market” society and we believe that there is wisdom in the market, that we can “do it ourselves.” In Germany , with the help of policy, however, they have been doing it themselves for the last 15 years â€" in the same time Texas has implemented basically zero solar.
          >
          > In Houston, former Shell Oil President, John Hofmeister speaks often and
          always says “for energy there is no free-market.” Oil, he points out has an absolute monopoly on the global transportation sector â€" planes, trains, autos. Oil pricing is regulated by a cartel, OPEC. Gas producing states are creating a similar cartel to OPEC. John now heads Citizen’s for Affordable Energy and his message is that the greatest hurdle to adoption of alternative energy is public misinformation.
          >
          > For your comment about DOE â€" the question is who will fund R&D?
          There was a time in the US when groups like Bell Labs did the heavy lifting of getting technology from basic science to the applied stage. We no longer have such groups and companies either have to do the applied research in-house or interface with institutions like Universities. I have worked in the new tech interface for over 25 years. It is a huge challenge to get innovation to the market. Especially when there are gigantic market disadvantages!
          >
          > Efficiency is definitely an issue for any group/agency/ corporation
          â€" how well the dollar is spent and how much value received. DOE has tons of internal studies on just that. Similar studies are done of policies. Economists measure the cost of a policy and its benefit. The oil and gas reservoir tax credit for example has been studied and found that for the tax money spent, there is basically zero benefit in reservoir protection and management.
          >
          > For any innovation or exploration there are production failures. I come
          from a family of petroleum engineers. I can tell you there are many dry holes drilled â€" that is a cost of the industry. Innovation is the same way. Sometimes innovation dollars don’t pan out, or don’t do it in the time frame.
          >
          > So thanks for the opportunity to have this discussion. Charlie’s point
          is so true as well â€" many costs of energy are not borne by its price â€" including the police cost (and lives lost.) Pollution costs, health costs, carbon costs are others. The questions are how do we do this? How do we get what we want; what choices do we make; how do we make it work?
          >
          > Tyra
          >
          >
          > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- -
          >
          > From: hreg@yahoogroups. com
          [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
          > Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:55 PM
          > To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
          > Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > 
          >
          > Maybe this explains some of the differences between Europe and the
          w:st="on"> US :
          >
          > If we want alternate energy sources we will have to do it ourselves and
          not depend on government subsidies and programs.
          >
          > Ed
          >
          > I just received this from another group - I haven't checked the numbers:
          >
          > Let it sink in.
          > Quietly we go like sheep to slaughter.
          > Does anybody out there have any memory of the reason given for the
          establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ..... during the Carter Administration?
          >
          > Bottom line .. we've spent several hundred billion dollars in support of
          an agency ... the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember.
          > Ready???????
          > It was very simple ... and at the time everybody thought it very
          appropriate. ..
          > The 'Department of Energy' was instituted on 8- 04-1977
          >
          > TO LESSEN OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL..
          >
          > Hey, pretty efficient, huh?????
          >
          >
          > AND NOW IT'S 2009, 32 YEARS LATER ... AND THE BUDGET
          > FOR THIS NECESSARY DEPARTMENT IS AT $24.2 + BILLION A YEAR
          >
          > IT HAS 16,000 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES AND APPROXIMATELY 100,000 CONTRACT
          EMPLOYEES
          >
          > AND LOOK AT THE JOB IT HAS DONE!
          >
          > THIS IS WHERE YOU SLAP YOUR FOREHEAD AND SAY 'WHAT WAS I THINKING?'
          > Ah, yes, good ole bureaucracy. .
          >
          > And NOW we are going to turn the Banking System, health care & the
          Auto Industry over to them?
          > God Help Us !!!
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          >
          > From: Philip Timmons
          >
          > To: ntreg@yahoogroups. com
          ; hreg@yahoogroups. com
          >
          > Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:51 AM
          >
          > Subject: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans
          >
          > .
          >

        • Ed Sarlls
          Have you seen Greg Watson s Solar cubes? If so you have seen Boeing Spectralab solar cells. They are actually inside so they may be difficult to see.
          Message 4 of 22 , Jun 8, 2009
          • 0 Attachment
            
            Have you seen Greg Watson's Solar cubes? If so you have seen Boeing Spectralab solar cells. They are actually inside so they may be difficult to see.
             
             
            Ed
            ----- Original Message -----
            Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 12:57 AM
            Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

            

            Interesting historical perspective, Tyra, not many people remember the pioneering work done on heliostat tracking and the Power Tower technology developed at the U of H.
             
            I'm not sure having aerospace companies build the heliostats was the best path toward economical power production, however.
             
            With regard to Boeing's solar cell development, to date I believe almost all of it has been focused on satellite applications, I've never seen their stuff on the ground. The bad pun was unintentional.
             
            Kevin
             
            ----- Original Message -----
            Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:48 PM
            Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

            Ed:

            To the points in your other message – interesting that Pentex is part of DOE – it would seem better placed with DOD.  I had a friend who worked there after college de-programming nukes.

            To DOE and performance of their mission – the US quickly lost sight of its goal to reduce de penden ce on foreign oil after the 1970s oil crisis, as soon as prices went down and OPEC stopped the heist.  That would have been when DOE was chartered.  There were many, many efforts started then that did not carry forward.  Subsequent administrations who took down the solar panels on the White House also took away the federal funding for DOE’s mission.  A great example impacted Houston .  In the 80s two physics professors at UH, Lorin Vant-Hull and his colleague were commissioned by DOE to design the first solar receiver tower installation in the US – Solar One and Two in Barstow California .  They built the project, with engineering assistance from Rocketdyne and McDonald Douglas.  Subsequent administrations stopped the federal funding and those projects never went any farther.    Spain is building similar plant designs and powering the entire city of Seville with updated versions – but in the US , we stopped.  Some have called the remains of the Solar One/Two demos scrap heaps.  With inconsistent funding and leadership from Washington , it is no wonder that DOE has not made more progress.   We have wasted resources and time.

            You gave figures for annual DOE budgets.  I wonder if those are the amounts DOE requested or the amount actually authorized by Congress for DOE to spend. 

            With respect to OPEC – I have heard that the TRRC structure was used – that must be true – but I don’t recall the story – were there Texan oil people involved in setting it up?

            It is true that US military is doing a lot of research on alternatives – solar among them.  In ACORE presentations, they said they are motivated to protect the vulnerability of fuel supply lines.  Having on-site generation is a great value.  I know a lot of people in alternative energy have come from the military as does much new tech.

            The Boeing article you provided is really interesting.  I had no idea they are doing solar cells – it is exciting and the biofuels is fascinating too.  Airlines and their fuel requirements are unique.  They also take a more long term approach to innovation.  I recall that their design cycles are about 10 years.  That will be helpful when working with renewables.

            Tyra  


            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
            Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 10:24 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
            Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

            Tyra,

            I agree that energy isn't really a free market.

            OPEC learned from the Texas Rail Road Commission. They controlled oil production in Texas for a long time. There is also a lot of domestic oil still in the ground between existing oil wells - thanks to TRRC  rules. 

            I have heard that a lot of OPEC money goes to environmental organizations over here because they oppose so many energy policies here and that helps OPEC. I do not mean that the environmental groups are working with OPEC so don't throw stones on that. There are a lot of ways to move money so  that the source isn't visible to the recepient. Maybe this is just some wild tale that circulates - I don't know. It effectively helps OPEC if we don't develope solar and wind. According to Wikipedia, OPEC still produces about 33 % of the world oil supply.

            With regard to energy misinformation: Money speaks and the existing big energy interests have the most money to spend so it is easy to see that they can have a significant impact on information available to the public. This group is much more knowledgable on energy issues than the general public and a lot of members of state and national legislatures. ............ ......... ......... . Sometime it only takes one person to block a bill. I'm not saying that that has happened but the potential is there.

            I'm sure that DOE does excelent research but it takes massive amounts of money to compete with existing energy companies. So research alone won't make the difference. There is a ray of hope however - and it may come from an unexpected source - world airlines and the US military. The reason is because the military can't be limited by the availability of fuel and the airlines get tremendously stressed by the price of fuel. The DOE research may be behind some of the studies. The distribution system is much smaller for the military and airlines than for public and private transportation so it will be easier to introduce an alternate fuel in that market. Here is one reference; http://www.boeing. com/aboutus/ environment/ environmental_ report_09/ alternative- energy-solutions .html The promising feature is the emphasis on carbon reduction and sustainable nonfood sources. The potential carbon tax is important to the airlines.

            If the production system is developed by the government or by large airlines then the production can be expanded and used in private transportation. There isn't much difference in jet fuel and diesel.

            The other way that I see for alternate energy sources to become mainstream is through small private or coop systems. That is where significant tax breaks can make a difference. I would rather just have a tax reduction and pay for it myself but I don't expect any tax reductions in the near future.

            Ed

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

            Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 7:42 PM

            Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

            Ed:

            I’m not picking on you and I’m glad you made the argument – it is definitely the predominant Texas argument, shared even by groups like TREIA, who when they propose “non-wind” to the Texas legislature are saying “we do not want to pick technology winners, we want to let the market decide.”  Their idea is to make small policy corrections in hopes that market forces, like nature will do the rest.  We are a “free market” society and we believe that there is wisdom in the market, that we can “do it ourselves.”  In Germany , with the help of policy, however, they have been doing it themselves for the last 15 years – in the same time Texas has implemented basically zero solar.

            In Houston, former Shell Oil President, John Hofmeister speaks often and always says “for energy there is no free-market.”  Oil, he points out has an absolute monopoly on the global transportation sector – planes, trains, autos.  Oil pricing is regulated by a cartel, OPEC.  Gas producing states are creating a similar cartel to OPEC.  John now heads Citizen’s for Affordable Energy and his message is that the greatest hurdle to adoption of alternative energy is public misinformation.

            For your comment about DOE – the question is who will fund R&D?  There was a time in the US when groups like Bell Labs did the heavy lifting of getting technology from basic science to the applied stage.  We no longer have such groups and companies either have to do the applied research in-house or interface with institutions like Universities.  I have worked in the new tech interface for over 25 years.  It is a huge challenge to get innovation to the market.  Especially when there are gigantic market disadvantages!    

            Efficiency is definitely an issue for any group/agency/ corporation – how well the dollar is spent and how much value received.  DOE has tons of internal studies on just that.  Similar studies are done of policies.   Economists measure the cost of a policy and its benefit.  The oil and gas reservoir tax credit for example has been studied and found that for the tax money spent, there is basically zero benefit in reservoir protection and management.

            For any innovation or exploration there are production failures.  I come from a family of petroleum engineers.  I can tell you there are many dry holes drilled – that is a cost of the industry.  Innovation is the same way.  Sometimes innovation dollars don’t pan out, or don’t do it in the time frame. 

            So thanks for the opportunity to have this discussion.  Charlie’s point is so true as well – many costs of energy are not borne by its price – including the police cost (and lives lost.)  Pollution costs, health costs, carbon costs are others.   The questions are how do we do this?  How do we get what we want; what choices do we make; how do we make it work?

            Tyra


            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
            Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:55 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
            Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans





              

            Maybe this explains some of the differences between Europe and the US :

            If we want alternate energy sources we will have to do it ourselves and not depend on government subsidies and programs.

            Ed

            I just received this from another group - I haven't checked the numbers:

            Let it sink in.
            Quietly we go like sheep to slaughter.
            Does anybody out there have any memory of the reason given  for the establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ..... during the Carter Administration?  

            Bottom line .. we've spent several hundred billion  dollars in support of an agency ... the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember.
            Ready???????  
            It was very simple ... and at the time everybody thought it very appropriate. ..
            The 'Department of Energy' was instituted on 8- 04-1977 

            TO LESSEN  OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL..
             
            Hey, pretty efficient, huh?????


            AND NOW IT'S 2009, 32 YEARS LATER  ... AND THE BUDGET
            FOR THIS NECESSARY DEPARTMENT IS AT $24.2 + BILLION A YEAR 
             
             IT HAS 16,000 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES AND APPROXIMATELY 100,000 CONTRACT EMPLOYEES
             
             AND LOOK AT THE JOB IT HAS DONE!

            THIS IS WHERE YOU SLAP YOUR FOREHEAD AND SAY 'WHAT WAS I THINKING?'  
            Ah, yes, good ole bureaucracy. .

            And NOW we are going to turn the Banking System, health care & the Auto Industry over to them?  
            God Help Us !!!

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

            Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:51 AM

            Subject: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

            .

          • Kevin Conlin
            I didn t realize that, Ed, the link was very informative, thanks for sharing. Kevin ... From: Ed Sarlls To: hreg@yahoogroups.com Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009
            Message 5 of 22 , Jun 8, 2009
            • 0 Attachment
              
              I didn't realize that, Ed, the link was very informative, thanks for sharing.
               
               
              Kevin
               
               
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Ed Sarlls
              Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 8:11 PM
              Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

              

              Have you seen Greg Watson's Solar cubes? If so you have seen Boeing Spectralab solar cells. They are actually inside so they may be difficult to see.
               
               
              Ed
              ----- Original Message -----
              Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 12:57 AM
              Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

              

              Interesting historical perspective, Tyra, not many people remember the pioneering work done on heliostat tracking and the Power Tower technology developed at the U of H.
               
              I'm not sure having aerospace companies build the heliostats was the best path toward economical power production, however.
               
              With regard to Boeing's solar cell development, to date I believe almost all of it has been focused on satellite applications, I've never seen their stuff on the ground. The bad pun was unintentional.
               
              Kevin
               
              ----- Original Message -----
              Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:48 PM
              Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

              Ed:

              To the points in your other message – interesting that Pentex is part of DOE – it would seem better placed with DOD.  I had a friend who worked there after college de-programming nukes.

              To DOE and performance of their mission – the US quickly lost sight of its goal to reduce de penden ce on foreign oil after the 1970s oil crisis, as soon as prices went down and OPEC stopped the heist.  That would have been when DOE was chartered.  There were many, many efforts started then that did not carry forward.  Subsequent administrations who took down the solar panels on the White House also took away the federal funding for DOE’s mission.  A great example impacted Houston .  In the 80s two physics professors at UH, Lorin Vant-Hull and his colleague were commissioned by DOE to design the first solar receiver tower installation in the US – Solar One and Two in Barstow California .  They built the project, with engineering assistance from Rocketdyne and McDonald Douglas.  Subsequent administrations stopped the federal funding and those projects never went any farther.    Spain is building similar plant designs and powering the entire city of Seville with updated versions – but in the US , we stopped.  Some have called the remains of the Solar One/Two demos scrap heaps.  With inconsistent funding and leadership from Washington , it is no wonder that DOE has not made more progress.   We have wasted resources and time.

              You gave figures for annual DOE budgets.  I wonder if those are the amounts DOE requested or the amount actually authorized by Congress for DOE to spend. 

              With respect to OPEC – I have heard that the TRRC structure was used – that must be true – but I don’t recall the story – were there Texan oil people involved in setting it up?

              It is true that US military is doing a lot of research on alternatives – solar among them.  In ACORE presentations, they said they are motivated to protect the vulnerability of fuel supply lines.  Having on-site generation is a great value.  I know a lot of people in alternative energy have come from the military as does much new tech.

              The Boeing article you provided is really interesting.  I had no idea they are doing solar cells – it is exciting and the biofuels is fascinating too.  Airlines and their fuel requirements are unique.  They also take a more long term approach to innovation.  I recall that their design cycles are about 10 years.  That will be helpful when working with renewables.

              Tyra  


              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
              Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 10:24 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
              Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

              Tyra,

              I agree that energy isn't really a free market.

              OPEC learned from the Texas Rail Road Commission. They controlled oil production in Texas for a long time. There is also a lot of domestic oil still in the ground between existing oil wells - thanks to TRRC  rules. 

              I have heard that a lot of OPEC money goes to environmental organizations over here because they oppose so many energy policies here and that helps OPEC. I do not mean that the environmental groups are working with OPEC so don't throw stones on that. There are a lot of ways to move money so  that the source isn't visible to the recepient. Maybe this is just some wild tale that circulates - I don't know. It effectively helps OPEC if we don't develope solar and wind. According to Wikipedia, OPEC still produces about 33 % of the world oil supply.

              With regard to energy misinformation: Money speaks and the existing big energy interests have the most money to spend so it is easy to see that they can have a significant impact on information available to the public. This group is much more knowledgable on energy issues than the general public and a lot of members of state and national legislatures. ............ ......... ......... . Sometime it only takes one person to block a bill. I'm not saying that that has happened but the potential is there.

              I'm sure that DOE does excelent research but it takes massive amounts of money to compete with existing energy companies. So research alone won't make the difference. There is a ray of hope however - and it may come from an unexpected source - world airlines and the US military. The reason is because the military can't be limited by the availability of fuel and the airlines get tremendously stressed by the price of fuel. The DOE research may be behind some of the studies. The distribution system is much smaller for the military and airlines than for public and private transportation so it will be easier to introduce an alternate fuel in that market. Here is one reference; http://www.boeing. com/aboutus/ environment/ environmental_ report_09/ alternative- energy-solutions .html The promising feature is the emphasis on carbon reduction and sustainable nonfood sources. The potential carbon tax is important to the airlines.

              If the production system is developed by the government or by large airlines then the production can be expanded and used in private transportation. There isn't much difference in jet fuel and diesel.

              The other way that I see for alternate energy sources to become mainstream is through small private or coop systems. That is where significant tax breaks can make a difference. I would rather just have a tax reduction and pay for it myself but I don't expect any tax reductions in the near future.

              Ed

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

              Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 7:42 PM

              Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

              Ed:

              I’m not picking on you and I’m glad you made the argument – it is definitely the predominant Texas argument, shared even by groups like TREIA, who when they propose “non-wind” to the Texas legislature are saying “we do not want to pick technology winners, we want to let the market decide.”  Their idea is to make small policy corrections in hopes that market forces, like nature will do the rest.  We are a “free market” society and we believe that there is wisdom in the market, that we can “do it ourselves.”  In Germany , with the help of policy, however, they have been doing it themselves for the last 15 years – in the same time Texas has implemented basically zero solar.

              In Houston, former Shell Oil President, John Hofmeister speaks often and always says “for energy there is no free-market.”  Oil, he points out has an absolute monopoly on the global transportation sector – planes, trains, autos.  Oil pricing is regulated by a cartel, OPEC.  Gas producing states are creating a similar cartel to OPEC.  John now heads Citizen’s for Affordable Energy and his message is that the greatest hurdle to adoption of alternative energy is public misinformation.

              For your comment about DOE – the question is who will fund R&D?  There was a time in the US when groups like Bell Labs did the heavy lifting of getting technology from basic science to the applied stage.  We no longer have such groups and companies either have to do the applied research in-house or interface with institutions like Universities.  I have worked in the new tech interface for over 25 years.  It is a huge challenge to get innovation to the market.  Especially when there are gigantic market disadvantages!    

              Efficiency is definitely an issue for any group/agency/ corporation – how well the dollar is spent and how much value received.  DOE has tons of internal studies on just that.  Similar studies are done of policies.   Economists measure the cost of a policy and its benefit.  The oil and gas reservoir tax credit for example has been studied and found that for the tax money spent, there is basically zero benefit in reservoir protection and management.

              For any innovation or exploration there are production failures.  I come from a family of petroleum engineers.  I can tell you there are many dry holes drilled – that is a cost of the industry.  Innovation is the same way.  Sometimes innovation dollars don’t pan out, or don’t do it in the time frame. 

              So thanks for the opportunity to have this discussion.  Charlie’s point is so true as well – many costs of energy are not borne by its price – including the police cost (and lives lost.)  Pollution costs, health costs, carbon costs are others.   The questions are how do we do this?  How do we get what we want; what choices do we make; how do we make it work?

              Tyra


              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
              Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:55 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
              Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans





                

              Maybe this explains some of the differences between Europe and the US :

              If we want alternate energy sources we will have to do it ourselves and not depend on government subsidies and programs.

              Ed

              I just received this from another group - I haven't checked the numbers:

              Let it sink in.
              Quietly we go like sheep to slaughter.
              Does anybody out there have any memory of the reason given  for the establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ..... during the Carter Administration?  

              Bottom line .. we've spent several hundred billion  dollars in support of an agency ... the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember.
              Ready???????  
              It was very simple ... and at the time everybody thought it very appropriate. ..
              The 'Department of Energy' was instituted on 8- 04-1977 

              TO LESSEN  OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL..
               
              Hey, pretty efficient, huh?????


              AND NOW IT'S 2009, 32 YEARS LATER  ... AND THE BUDGET
              FOR THIS NECESSARY DEPARTMENT IS AT $24.2 + BILLION A YEAR 
               
               IT HAS 16,000 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES AND APPROXIMATELY 100,000 CONTRACT EMPLOYEES
               
               AND LOOK AT THE JOB IT HAS DONE!

              THIS IS WHERE YOU SLAP YOUR FOREHEAD AND SAY 'WHAT WAS I THINKING?'  
              Ah, yes, good ole bureaucracy. .

              And NOW we are going to turn the Banking System, health care & the Auto Industry over to them?  
              God Help Us !!!

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

              Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:51 AM

              Subject: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

              .

            • Tyra Rankin
              The Green and Gold solar cubes were really cool looking. Looks like combined PV and concentrated solar thermal. Will check out the Greg Watson cubes. Tyra
              Message 6 of 22 , Jun 8, 2009
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                The Green and Gold solar cubes were really cool looking.  Looks like combined PV and concentrated solar thermal.  Will check out the Greg Watson cubes. 

                Tyra

                 


                From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
                Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 8:11 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

                 

                Have you seen Greg Watson's Solar cubes? If so you have seen Boeing Spectralab solar cells. They are actually inside so they may be difficult to see.

                 

                 

                Ed

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

                Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 12:57 AM

                Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

                 

                

                Interesting historical perspective, Tyra, not many people remember the pioneering work done on heliostat tracking and the Power Tower technology developed at the U of H.

                 

                I'm not sure having aerospace companies build the heliostats was the best path toward economical power production, however.

                 

                With regard to Boeing's solar cell development, to date I believe almost all of it has been focused on satellite applications, I've never seen their stuff on the ground. The bad pun was unintentional.

                 

                Kevin

                 

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

                Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:48 PM

                Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

                 

                Ed:

                To the points in your other message – interesting that Pentex is part of DOE – it would seem better placed with DOD.  I had a friend who worked there after college de-programming nukes.

                To DOE and performance of their mission – the US quickly lost sight of its goal to reduce de penden ce on foreign oil after the 1970s oil crisis, as soon as prices went down and OPEC stopped the heist.  That would have been when DOE was chartered.  There were many, many efforts started then that did not carry forward.  Subsequent administrations who took down the solar panels on the White House also took away the federal funding for DOE’s mission.  A great example impacted Houston .  In the 80s two physics professors at UH, Lorin Vant-Hull and his colleague were commissioned by DOE to design the first solar receiver tower installation in the US – Solar One and Two in Barstow California .  They built the project, with engineering assistance from Rocketdyne and McDonald Douglas.  Subsequent administrations stopped the federal funding and those projects never went any farther.    Spain is building similar plant designs and powering the entire city of Seville with updated versions – but in the US , we stopped.  Some have called the remains of the Solar One/Two demos scrap heaps.  With inconsistent funding and leadership from Washington , it is no wonder that DOE has not made more progress.   We have wasted resources and time.

                You gave figures for annual DOE budgets.  I wonder if those are the amounts DOE requested or the amount actually authorized by Congress for DOE to spend. 

                With respect to OPEC – I have heard that the TRRC structure was used – that must be true – but I don’t recall the story – were there Texan oil people involved in setting it up?

                It is true that US military is doing a lot of research on alternatives – solar among them.  In ACORE presentations, they said they are motivated to protect the vulnerability of fuel supply lines.  Having on-site generation is a great value.  I know a lot of people in alternative energy have come from the military as does much new tech.

                The Boeing article you provided is really interesting.  I had no idea they are doing solar cells – it is exciting and the biofuels is fascinating too.  Airlines and their fuel requirements are unique.  They also take a more long term approach to innovation.  I recall that their design cycles are about 10 years.  That will be helpful when working with renewables.

                Tyra  


                From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
                Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 10:24 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

                Tyra,

                I agree that energy isn't really a free market.

                OPEC learned from the Texas Rail Road Commission. They controlled oil production in Texas for a long time. There is also a lot of domestic oil still in the ground between existing oil wells - thanks to TRRC  rules. 

                I have heard that a lot of OPEC money goes to environmental organizations over here because they oppose so many energy policies here and that helps OPEC. I do not mean that the environmental groups are working with OPEC so don't throw stones on that. There are a lot of ways to move money so  that the source isn't visible to the recepient. Maybe this is just some wild tale that circulates - I don't know. It effectively helps OPEC if we don't develope solar and wind. According to Wikipedia, OPEC still produces about 33 % of the world oil supply.

                With regard to energy misinformation: Money speaks and the existing big energy interests have the most money to spend so it is easy to see that they can have a significant impact on information available to the public. This group is much more knowledgable on energy issues than the general public and a lot of members of state and national legislatures. ............ ......... ......... . Sometime it only takes one person to block a bill. I'm not saying that that has happened but the potential is there.

                I'm sure that DOE does excelent research but it takes massive amounts of money to compete with existing energy companies. So research alone won't make the difference. There is a ray of hope however - and it may come from an unexpected source - world airlines and the US military. The reason is because the military can't be limited by the availability of fuel and the airlines get tremendously stressed by the price of fuel. The DOE research may be behind some of the studies. The distribution system is much smaller for the military and airlines than for public and private transportation so it will be easier to introduce an alternate fuel in that market. Here is one reference; http://www.boeing. com/aboutus/ environment/ environmental_ report_09/ alternative- energy-solutions .html The promising feature is the emphasis on carbon reduction and sustainable nonfood sources. The potential carbon tax is important to the airlines.

                If the production system is developed by the government or by large airlines then the production can be expanded and used in private transportation. There isn't much difference in jet fuel and diesel.

                The other way that I see for alternate energy sources to become mainstream is through small private or coop systems. That is where significant tax breaks can make a difference. I would rather just have a tax reduction and pay for it myself but I don't expect any tax reductions in the near future.

                Ed

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

                Sent: Saturday, June 06, 2009 7:42 PM

                Subject: RE: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

                Ed:

                I’m not picking on you and I’m glad you made the argument – it is definitely the predominant Texas argument, shared even by groups like TREIA, who when they propose “non-wind” to the Texas legislature are saying “we do not want to pick technology winners, we want to let the market decide.”  Their idea is to make small policy corrections in hopes that market forces, like nature will do the rest.  We are a “free market” society and we believe that there is wisdom in the market, that we can “do it ourselves.”  In Germany , with the help of policy, however, they have been doing it themselves for the last 15 years – in the same time Texas has implemented basically zero solar.

                In Houston, former Shell Oil President, John Hofmeister speaks often and always says “for energy there is no free-market.”  Oil, he points out has an absolute monopoly on the global transportation sector – planes, trains, autos.  Oil pricing is regulated by a cartel, OPEC.  Gas producing states are creating a similar cartel to OPEC.  John now heads Citizen’s for Affordable Energy and his message is that the greatest hurdle to adoption of alternative energy is public misinformation.

                For your comment about DOE – the question is who will fund R&D?  There was a time in the US when groups like Bell Labs did the heavy lifting of getting technology from basic science to the applied stage.  We no longer have such groups and companies either have to do the applied research in-house or interface with institutions like Universities.  I have worked in the new tech interface for over 25 years.  It is a huge challenge to get innovation to the market.  Especially when there are gigantic market disadvantages!    

                Efficiency is definitely an issue for any group/agency/ corporation – how well the dollar is spent and how much value received.  DOE has tons of internal studies on just that.  Similar studies are done of policies.   Economists measure the cost of a policy and its benefit.  The oil and gas reservoir tax credit for example has been studied and found that for the tax money spent, there is basically zero benefit in reservoir protection and management.

                For any innovation or exploration there are production failures.  I come from a family of petroleum engineers.  I can tell you there are many dry holes drilled – that is a cost of the industry.  Innovation is the same way.  Sometimes innovation dollars don’t pan out, or don’t do it in the time frame. 

                So thanks for the opportunity to have this discussion.  Charlie’s point is so true as well – many costs of energy are not borne by its price – including the police cost (and lives lost.)  Pollution costs, health costs, carbon costs are others.   The questions are how do we do this?  How do we get what we want; what choices do we make; how do we make it work?

                Tyra


                From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Ed Sarlls
                Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:55 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                Subject: Re: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans






                  

                Maybe this explains some of the differences between Europe and the US :

                If we want alternate energy sources we will have to do it ourselves and not depend on government subsidies and programs.

                Ed

                I just received this from another group - I haven't checked the numbers:

                Let it sink in.
                Quietly we go like sheep to slaughter.
                Does anybody out there have any memory of the reason given  for the establishment of the DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY ..... during the Carter Administration?  

                Bottom line .. we've spent several hundred billion  dollars in support of an agency ... the reason for which not one person who reads this can remember.
                Ready???????  
                It was very simple ... and at the time everybody thought it very appropriate. ..
                The 'Department of Energy' was instituted on 8- 04-1977 

                TO LESSEN  OUR DEPENDENCE ON FOREIGN OIL..
                 
                Hey, pretty efficient, huh?????


                AND NOW IT'S 2009, 32 YEARS LATER  ... AND THE BUDGET
                FOR THIS NECESSARY DEPARTMENT IS AT $24.2 + BILLION A YEAR 
                 
                 IT HAS 16,000 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES AND APPROXIMATELY 100,000 CONTRACT EMPLOYEES
                 
                 AND LOOK AT THE JOB IT HAS DONE!

                THIS IS WHERE YOU SLAP YOUR FOREHEAD AND SAY 'WHAT WAS I THINKING?'  
                Ah, yes, good ole bureaucracy. .

                And NOW we are going to turn the Banking System, health care & the Auto Industry over to them?  
                God Help Us !!!

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

                Sent: Friday, June 05, 2009 9:51 AM

                Subject: [hreg] European energy snobs vs. ugly Americans

                .

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