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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2890

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GT.............don't spoil it! It's so much more fun to demonize the carbon industry and to talk about ending burning fossil fuels than to look at reality. Well let's look at the facts anyway just for giggles.......

In 2013 this is where the US got it's power:

Petroleum.................36%
Natural Gas...............27%
Coal............'.............19%
Renewables................9%
Nuclear.......................9%

So, 82% from fossil fuels. But what about the much hyped wind and solar yelled the unruly crowd? After more than a quarter of a century of relentless promotion, solar contributed about 0.3% (roughly half of the energy generated by burning waste). Wind generated about 1.5%. In installations of any size, both sources require fossil fuel back-up plants to fill in for the unreliability of the wind and the sun.

By most estimates, the world energy demand will be 30-40% higher in 20 years. With current progress, wind and solar won't even make a dent in the increased requirement let alone the current base. Their contribution will be worth having, but very small. This is the reality. So next time you hear someone talking about eliminating fossil fuels, or the President referring to those pressing for more oil and gas production as "members of the Flat Earth Society" just smile in the knowledge that they are poorly informed.
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pueno



Joined: 03 Mar 2007
Posts: 2763

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mrgybe wrote:
GT.............don't spoil it! It's so much more fun to demonize the carbon industry and to talk about ending burning fossil fuels than to look at reality. Well let's look at the facts anyway just for giggles.......

In 2013 this is where the US got it's power:

Petroleum.................36%
Natural Gas...............27%
Coal............'.............19%
Renewables................9%
Nuclear.......................9%

So, 82% from fossil fuels. But what about the much hyped wind and solar yelled the unruly crowd? After more than a quarter of a century of relentless promotion, solar contributed about 0.3% (roughly half of the energy generated by burning waste). Wind generated about 1.5%. In installations of any size, both sources require fossil fuel back-up plants to fill in for the unreliability of the wind and the sun.

By most estimates, the world energy demand will be 30-40% higher in 20 years. With current progress, wind and solar won't even make a dent in the increased requirement let alone the current base. Their contribution will be worth having, but very small. This is the reality. So next time you hear someone talking about eliminating fossil fuels, or the President referring to those pressing for more oil and gas production as "members of the Flat Earth Society" just smile in the knowledge that they are poorly informed.

Mr. G:

Your data is good. Thank you for presenting valid, good data.

Your interpretation of the situation and assessment of what should be done, however, leaves much to be desired.

Just because renewables are so small today doesn't mean that we should therefore ignore them. It means that we've only started.

Your assessment is akin to looking at a trip from NY to LA -- and after the first mile, saying, "Look, we've only gone a mile, we'll never make it, let's stop right now."

Concerning the power industry, every sensible person knows two things:

1) Carbon-based fuel is limited. At some point, it will cost more money and cause more harm to extract it than it's worth.

2) Burning carbon-based fuel puts carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Those are both undeniable facts. (No, CO2 isn't the only greenhouse gas, and no, burning isn't the only source of CO2, and no, we don't know precisely what portion of the total greenhouse gas is caused by humans. And there are other uncertainties.)

Humans should try to minimize the CO2 contributions to the atmosphere made by humans. Let's not worry about other sources, such as volcanoes, natural forest fires, decomposition, termite farts, etc. We can't control those and they've been around for a zillion years -- nature accommodated those sources.

So, just like the trip from NY to LA, you know approximately how to get there, but your trip may be diverted by unknowns along the way -- but you keep moving in the right direction.

Likewise, the transition from fossil fuels to renewables will be a long, difficult, maybe painful process. And, in truth, we might only achieve 50% completion, reserving the dwindling oil for special needs.

But we really should try. Nobody's making more oil in our lifetimes, the temperature's rising, the permafrost's melting.
.
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slinky



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
Posts: 433
Location: Old Saybrook Ct.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fossil fuels are a finite resource.! They will not last forever! I say conserve them as much as possible.

Just wondering,do you have a financial interest in the fossil fuel industry mrgybe?

This one made me chuckle. "After more than a quarter century of relentless promotion for wind and solar......." Well, for one, we've been burning things for our energy needs for as long as the human race has existed! Wow! what is that? Change happens slowly in these matters.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3538

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a real estate development in which 100% of the power comes from solar and wind.
I live in Maui where about 30% of the power comes from those sources, heading for 50% in less than half the time that was predicted.
The power company is on board but is now holding things back because it is coming at them so much quicker than they imagined. They can't process all the applications for new solar, even though the tax break expired.

It turns out that folks, including businesses, will economize on power, and pay for expensive up front costs willingly.
They do not have faith in Exxon to care about their interests. Many people here think that fossil fuel prices will go up at an accelerated rate if the carbon companies see the slightest opening to do that.
Those companies have recently shown the most profitable years of any Corp. in the history of the world.
They intend to continue set new records for profits with your money as long as you have no choice.
These factors are not in Gybes chart.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5568

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Serious educational efforts rarely start with this kind of snarky comment:

Quote:
It's so much more fun to demonize the carbon industry and to talk about ending burning fossil fuels than to look at reality. Well let's look at the facts anyway


Nobody is talking about ending, in the short term, the burning of fossil fuels.
Visionary people with some concern about the costs of global warming, and the transfer of those costs from the carbon sector to the public sector, are concerned about creating the technology and economic conditions for increasing alternatives to carbon-based energy.

Pricing signals are, to be sure, the most efficient way to affect human behavior. Absent intervention by the government, the energy intensity of growth of GDP has been falling as energy price increases. In the United States, GDP increases, over the long term, were about 3%/year while energy use increases were about 1%/year. There is a rich literature about why this is so, whether it is sustainable, and so forth, but in the simplest terms, and consistent with faith in market systems to allocate resources efficiently, capturing the externalities of under-regulated carbon burning will reduce demand and increase the cost-effectiveness of alternatives and conservation. Conservation is already far more cost effective per giga-watt than new supplies.

The limitations to using the market to reallocate resources and capture the costs of impacts are political, and in the United States, the abundant supply of coal. Coal is cheap per BTU, and readily available. Cheap, of course, because we don't add the cost of climate change, mountain destruction, or carbon capture, to the price. Instead we subsidize it--although it does not require investment in overseas wars to make the supply secure.

Apologists for the carbon economy use a rather dishonest debate technique--arguing that because we cannot eliminate carbon energy in the short term, we should continue to subsidize carbon energy, but not alternatives, and ignore the externalities of their activities. This argument ignores the dramatic success made in increasing the supply, and reliability, of alternatives over the last 6 years when someone that didn't work for the carbon industry was Vice President.

Of course, nobody is talking about wearing sackcloth or strumming guitars in Strawberry Fields. Those are dismissive debate tactics used to signal that the writer is about to ignore all counter arguments and return to talking points. Even energy insiders like the head of Exxon have acknowledged the value of a carbon tax in efficiently starting to move us away from carbon-only as an energy source.

Scorn for the oil and coal companies stems not from their skill at providing us with energy, but from their relentless dishonesty in dealing with the impacts of their business.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14611

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

slinky wrote:
Fossil fuels are a finite resource.! They will not last forever!

Enough of the world's leading natural energy experts, including one of Russia's top energy czars, disagree with that statement that I'm not going to sacrifice much just so someone can ride HIS dirt bike or drive HIS water-fueled car to the Gorge in the year 2514. Our own natural gas and oil longevity and independence outlook improves every year as new fields, extraction technologies, and efficiency techniques emerge. I also find it hard to believe technology can't find a way to extract acceptably clean energy from coal.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2890

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Less than 5% of power in Hawaii comes from wind and solar........not 30%. Hawaii imports over 90% of its energy needs.......all carbon based. Exxon is not an importer into Hawaii, so the residents should not worry about Exxon's sinister price hiking plans.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3538

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another factor not seen in Gybes chart is the likelyhood that none of our Maui pols get money from carbon companies.
If they were sure that their products will dominate the world forever no matter what happens, why do they hand over millions to pols .both Dems and GOP?

And why are the largest investors in new solar ...gasp... Carbon companies?
The rise in alt sources is not uniform. Poor countries are seeing huge increase in solar in remote villages. In a country that is mostly remote villages, that is important.

Maui also has a lot of upper middle class residents. This is another group that embraces solar even if it costs more.

Another factor is the cost of power. It is 44 cents /kW here, highest in the nation. When every area of America rises to that level, you will see solar get more popular fast. My set up cost $3400 and should reduce my power bill by $100 month ,$1200 a year.
I didn't apply for a subsidy because my family does not accept gov. money paid to affluent folks like ourselves We do fine without it.
That is a tax free return on investment of 30%.
How's that sound Boggsy?
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pueno



Joined: 03 Mar 2007
Posts: 2763

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr. Fick-shun wrote:
slinky wrote:
Fossil fuels are a finite resource.! They will not last forever!

Enough of the world's leading natural energy experts, including one of Russia's top energy czars, disagree with that statement...

Our own natural gas and oil longevity and independence outlook improves every year as new fields, extraction technologies, and efficiency techniques emerge.

Stop, Mikey.

Think.

You claim to be an engineer, so think like one.

The reason we need new fields, extraction technologies, and efficiency techniques is because the old fields are depleted, the old, standard, conventional extraction technologies no longer work, and the (poor) efficiencies of the old methods no longer produce enough oil.

We've used the easy-to-take fossil resources, so now we must invent new ways to squeeze out more from the hard-to-take sources.

In X number of years, the hard-to-take resources will likewise be depleted and those new techniques you like will no longer work.

At some point, humankind must shift to alternative energy mindsets, which includes (a) alternative, renewable sources, and (b) much improved efficiencies (e.g., LED bulbs vs. incandescent).


keycocker wrote:

And why are the largest investors in new solar ...gasp... Carbon companies?

For the same reason that alcohol and tobacco companies could see the handwriting on the wall -- and have diversified into other markets, such as food.

.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3538

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On the other side, oil isn't really going to run out.
When you hear such statements, they mean cheap oil and coal is going to run out.
There is ten times more expensive oil, down deep or in tar sands and shale than in the oil supplies we prefer.
And solar cells are expensive mainly because the principal cost to make them is the fossil fuel used to heat the silicone.
Solar power doesn't transport easily either.

Animal dung is widely used to heat and cook in the Third World.
It isn't going to run out either but folks are switching to 18th century fuels like oil, or 20 century solar anyway.

I was told that no one would buy my lots because they would all h
ave to set up solar or wind to get power.. They were mistaken in spite of their perfect logic.

In my experience when people tell you something can't happen, it is often because THEY can't do it or have never tried.
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