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|Oil (23/10/18 19:34:48)||Reply|
"Yet, even as drillers extract ever greater volumes of oil from the ground, they still are not turning a profit. “To outward appearances, the U.S. oil and gas industry is in the midst of a decade-long boom,” IEEFA and the Sightline Institute write in their report. However, “America’s fracking boom has been a world-class bust.”"
In sunny areas of the world, photovoltaic electricity now is competitive, Still Saudi-Arabia is burning oil for electricity. They keep their old equipment running instead of scrapping it and investing in new and clean technology. Methinks they may not be able to afford the investment in building PV systems without cutting subsidies to the population and risking social unrest.
Anyway, there is an interesting debate on renewable vs fossil/nuclear energy.
So far it isn't possible to run aluminium smelting on solar or wind electricity because intermittent stops ruin the ovens.
|Re: Oil (24/11/18 19:13:07)||Reply|
one goes "as photovoltaic+wind is that cheap, why bother inventing anything else."
another is energy harvesting... remember those watches that self-wind-while-shaking them? now there are much smaller devices, mechanical, electro-magnetic, whatever, deployable on much larger scale
third is energy storage... usual chemical batteries stuff is not less messy than burning oil.. apart of not being efficient enough. Hence appear all kinds of things, some new, some very old.. compressed air, Supercapacitors, "warm" superconductors, gravity-based stuff (water poweplant pumping water back in reservoir above), new chemical stuff.. https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2016/12/13/vanadium-flow-batteries-the-energy-storage-breakthrough-weve-needed/#25892f65bde8
lets see where this leads...
i guess as/if energy becomes dirt-cheap, we will multiple the wasting-it-for-any-crap.. seems human nature. Same as what happened when information-exchange became zero-cost... each stupid site pumps a gigabyte of bullshit. so knowledge/information just drowned in noise.
|Re: Dirt cheap energy (26/11/18 09:56:07)||Reply|
Historically, coal was mined by slave labourers (like in the UK) and used to run low-efficiency steam engines for transportation and industry.
In Africa, today, solar competes favourably with diesel-powered generators says my source.
The storage problem isn't solved, but there is work on temporary relief.
Between .no and .eu/.uk there are cables, and will be more - so that .no hydro power can buffer the unpredictable wind power on the continent and post-Brexit UK. Backpumping of water in hydro power stations is another option which already is there, but which may be extended. So wind power can be accumulated as hydro power.
Vanadium may be OK in Australia.
I see from other sources there are projects working towards regenerating CO2 electrically into carbon-based fuels. Nothing can match hydrocarbons for energy density combined with such low toxicity. Big passenger or cargo planes can't be run on batteries, I think. I don't think the system can function well without transcontinental air transport.
|Coal (07/12/18 16:34:31)||Reply|
I know from other areas that obsolete technologies are dumped into poor countries. Production is cheap, there is minimal competition, the buyers are corrupt - so the profits for the providers are satisfactory.
There is one remedy for this: A ban on building and running of fossil-fired power stations, and with harsh penalties for the guilty (read: prison sentences for ministers and CEOs). For light and cooking in warm countries there should not be a need for continuously-running system like coal-fired stations. Use of modern technologies should be mandatory.
Quite a few political compromises need to be made. But the people in power are leaders - aren't they?
|Re: Coal (15/12/18 17:18:01)||Reply|
Then one day there was cheaper coal coming from china. Far cheaper - despite the distance. But.. It almost made some power stations go kaput.. as it was totally different, each ship, and each tank in that ship, and of unpredictable quality/parameters. Turned that it was "mined" by thousands of "uncle lao" families, bag by bag, collected, mixed, sent over.
btw, the emissions needed to produce one car are 10x more than the emissions it would produce if running for 10 years. And btw, Neither of the consumption of oil-per-kilometer, or the number-of-cars-per-family has gone down. The former may have some marginal improvements in last 50years, but the latter more than compensates for those..
so i dunno. Producing cleaner energy might be fine, but not needing that energy would be far better, esp. of invented-to-be-wasteful "needs".
|Re: Re: Coal (17/12/18 17:53:38)||Reply|
So it must be kept going by people who do not lose heart from failing.
I think I'm in.
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