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Power Supply Options
5

Power Supply Options

Power Supply Options

(OP)
Is there a place on Eng-Tips where power supply options for the Earth are discussed? It looks like nuclear will be out of favour for a few decades and it is hard to take wind and solar seriously as major reliable components of a supply mix. Natural gas seems to be in favour in spite of its generation of CO2.  

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
Maybe we don't need to discuss it. Wind and natural gas working together are the future for North America.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

"Wind and natural gas working together "


So...politicians are the way forward?

RE: Power Supply Options

maybe you don't take wind and solar seriously and they aren't major sources - however renewable energy developers take it very seriously. And there is a large market for planning, environmental and engineering services for these projects which we are trying to serve. Given the fact that at least in the US, it takes perhaps 25 years to site, design, permit and start up a nuke, they can build a lot of wind turbines in the meantime...

RE: Power Supply Options

Hmm. No wonder they love it...  

"Brown also claims "330,000 extra jobs have been created in Germany because of legislation moving to a clean, green energy future". If only.

The figure of 330,000 green energy jobs may well be true if you add up all employees working in industries such as wind energy, biomass and solar power.

But were these extra jobs created as a result of green legislation? And at what cost?

First, it is necessary to count the costs of the alleged green jobs miracle. A study by the respected economic research institute RWI concluded that every single worker in these industries had been supported to the tune of E175,000 ($240,000). Given this enormous subsidy, it is remarkable how few jobs have been created."

and...

"Germany is a good example. ... it has led the world in solar panel subsidies, spending $US75 billion putting inefficient, uncompetitive solar technology on rooftops.

This delivers a trivial 0.1 per cent of Germany's total energy supply and will postpone the effects of global warming by just seven hours in 2100."

Thirdly. Every MW of windpower needs a MW of conventional SPARE generation to cover for lack of wind. Solar isn't quite that bad, as you can pretty much rely on getting 40% of the energy you expected on a given day.



 

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies  http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Power Supply Options

If you forget about CO2 emissions and government intervention in the market, the answer is natural gas in North America at present.  It's cheaper than coal.

If you bring CO2 emissions partially into the mix, it's probably wind with natural gas turbines as back-up.

If you bring CO2 emissions totally into the mix, the only way forward is a total re-think of the way we produce and use energy.  I'm of the opinion that this is needed regardless of AGW fears, simply because fossil fuels are finite and have other, non-fuels uses which are FAR harder to substitute with other sources.

Any traction the nukers got over the past 20 years is gone now after Fukishima.  The only way a new nuker could ever be constructed is if government limits the civil liability of the people who own and operate the plants.  Governments in North America are not anxious to be owner/operators themselves, and I doubt the populace will be too willing to allow their governments to underwrite the liability of private for-profit owner/operators of new nukers after Fukishima.

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
If the gas turbines are just used when the wind is not blowing, then the weakness of gas (not renewable and makes CO2)is minimized. I am always suspicious of the "jobs" argument. With no energy we would all be working.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

Does having your wife chop and split the fire wood count as Renewable? I know it isn't a significant amount of thermal energy, but it does make the beer taste better.

RE: Power Supply Options

Geothermal.

With some of the new cycles using working fluids other than water, the temp difference between the hot & cold 'reservoirs' don't need to be as big as they have been historically, which opens up possibilities in places not previously considered.

Geothermal can also be used for heating without turning it into electricity.

In fact, the earth can be used as a 'sink' for both heating and cooling of buildings as the temperature is generally pretty stable just a few feet below ground - as demonstrated in many cave systems.

Of course, one wonders if extracting all that heat from below ground and effectively dumping it into the atmosphere will have some negative consequence.  Or maybe drilling shafts for geothermal will cause it's own problems if done in the wrong place.

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: Power Supply Options

Quote:

Wind and natural gas working together are the future for North America.

You are either
a. underinformed
b. practicing for a beauty pageant
c. pushing an agenda

RE: Power Supply Options

Tesla was on to something big.  2 poles, iron core, spinning, hmmmmmm?!?!  

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
TheTick - I must be underinformed, but I am working on it.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

Basically, I believe no one is in a position to be that certain.

RE: Power Supply Options

Watching TV commercials, my basis for scientific research, I would say anyone shilling for natural gas can be that certain. I'm also certain the best way to find a solution to the energy crisis and global warming is to put all effort into finding where Gilligan's Island is, settle the question on "Ginger or Mary Ann?" and then have the Professor make another clever invention with coconut shells, salt water and rocks to power the world.

If you watch television long enough, you can be certain to find all the needed solutions, or at least see all the reruns of Beverly Hillbillies.

RE: Power Supply Options

Why is it no one talks about nucular batteries? NASA still uses them for deep space craft, and they haven't had problems.

Also no has pointed out that natural gas generation isen't fast enough to back up wind power. Right now the only thing that is backing up wind power is the inerta of all that coal, nucular, and hydro electric generation.

The joke here is "look at that 30 MW cloud", which seems true that one cloud can reduce electric demand by 30 MW or more.

So maybe the best alternitive is more clouds to reduce electric energy demand.

RE: Power Supply Options

Get rid of all the power-guzzling gadgets.  That's our best alternative is to reduce consumption.  I'm afraid that ain't gonna happen, though.

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
cranky108 states:
"natural gas generation isn't fast enough to back up wind power"
I have no experience in this area but I thought a gas turbine would speed up quite quickly. I do have experience running equipment on the end of a long natural gas pipeline and there is no more reliable source of energy. Almost everything can be down but the pipeline unpacks as required.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

grid monitoring/control systems should bring reserve gensets online as required.  Here in SW Minnesota, we have in the neighborhood of 3000 ~1.6 MW and larger wind units, no blackouts or brownouts unless due to a localized line or equipment failure.

RE: Power Supply Options

I know of one GT plant design that can go from zero to 100MW in 10 minutes.

Is this fast enough? Depends:)

Regards,

Mike

RE: Power Supply Options

pumped storage is essentially hydro-power, except not always built on an active stream. Since it generally requires building a reservoir on a high promentory, it requires a suitable geographic location, generally requiring extensive permitting and hopefully near the grid. In addition, usually requires a dam which brings it's own risk and permitting requirements. See link below for a notable pumped storage project and dam failure...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taum_Sauk_pumped_storage_plant

RE: Power Supply Options

From what I recall the time it takes for wind to go from maximum output to overspeed shutdown is less than a minuite. So when you can pickup over 100 MW in less than a minuite then gas will be fast enough.

I'm not sure pumped Hydro is any faster than gas units. I do know of hydro units than take over two minuites to open the needle valve, and maybe some time to come on line. But pumped hydro is a good idea to store peak wind.

Right now wind is so small it dosen't rock the grid that much. but with more farms it will get to a criticle point, if things continue the way they are.

Only the short term storage technologys can smooth out wind to work with either gas or pumped hydro. but no wind farm I've seen has added those.

RE: Power Supply Options

ahhhh. You guys can all save the brain power and take energy from Canada. Over here we generate much more than we consume on a regular bases then give it away for free to the US.
Come one come all !
upsidedown

peace
Fe

RE: Power Supply Options

If someone could come up with a micro scale for energy generation based on reciprocating motion, self gratification might power the world.

RE: Power Supply Options

I glad I'm not an air traffice controller or a GRID OPERATOR...

Regards,

Mike

(mauricestoker, how 'bout those flashlights you shake, could be adapted, hey?)  

RE: Power Supply Options

I've often thought that geothermal was an understudied source of power - if you drill deep enough, it's hot everywhere.

Perhaps something could be done with the thermocline in the ocean. Stirling engines operate on low temperature deltas - perhaps pumping cold water up from the ocean floor in conjunction with a solar collector would be a viable source of power in tropical regions.

RE: Power Supply Options

I am surprised to see you guys have not yet mentioned traveling wave reactors. They seem to be the new hotness.  If it turns out to be a reality, all of this energy crisis nonsense will be done in about 30-40 years.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TerraPower,_LLC  

RE: Power Supply Options

Lots of things not mentioned. Like wave farms, or wave snakes.  

peace
Fe

RE: Power Supply Options

...or cold fusion.

RE: Power Supply Options

IMHO, i think we're not learning the right lessons ...

1) Japan ... the lesson learnt seems to be "nuclear bad", but i htink the lesson should be "pressurised water reactors are problematic, maybe we should look into new design concepts ... pebble reactors"

2) energy sources ... if petroleum based energy is so bad, shouldn't we be encouraging India and China to develop their economies along electrical lines (which we see more/better future potential) rather than developing our (bad) petroleum based economy ?  Instead, we're encouraging the to burn as much petroleum as they can get their hands on ('cause they're a developing economy and blah, blah, blah).

3) Renewable energy ... sure there are some places where sunlight/wind are reliable sources, but not as widespread as they're being applied.

4) Alternative energy ... biomass maybe, corn (foodstocks) doesn't sound like a great idea (in a world that's hungry), wave/tidal/geothermal ... niche apps (at best) ... SPS ? (Solar Power Satelites).

RE: Power Supply Options

Stop holding out hope for any single technological fix, folks- it ain't gonna happen.

Want to know the future?  It'll be more of the same, plus some new stuff (but only gradually).  And it will cost more.

RE: Power Supply Options

sure we can "encourage" India and China, but when have they ever listened to us (or anybody else for that matter)? Market forces drive development of power just like it drives everything else. When cold fusion solar snakes are economically feasible or required by law, they will get built...

RE: Power Supply Options

From their point of view, why should they listen, we got where we are burning lots of coal & oil, seems a bit unfair to say they can't do the same.

Obviously now we have some reason to believe that burning all that fossil fuel may have had negative consequences that outweigh some of the benefits but that's easy to say now we're at the standard of living etc. that we're at.

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: Power Supply Options

i agree ... so why are they exempt for CO2 emissions, particularly when they're going to be burning more and more.  why are governments distorting the market with incentives for "green power" ?

the market doesn't dictate what happens ... politics does (because politics can adjust the market to suit it own ends).

RE: Power Supply Options

Politics can only infuse so much inefficiency into the markets in the name of the greater good. At a point (300$ a barrel for bio-fuel?) self-interest of the people will shift politics  back to the market solution for their needs.

The overshoot between being too market friendly (self-interested) and too socially conscientious is one way of looking at the never ending swing between Right and Left wing majorities in many political systems.

RE: Power Supply Options

Quote:

why are governments distorting the market with incentives for "green power" ?

politicians are catering to environmental activists that are telling them that the world as we know it will end in a few short years because of globabl warming that is caused by our out of control consumption of fossil fuels which can all be reversed by giving tax credits for producing green energy and LEED certification and penalizing those who dare to burn anything. The ultimate solution is to make laws that artificially raise the price of energy to high levels such that demand is greatly reduced, thus forcing complete change over to alternative energy which will reverse the climate change. All of this globabl warming hysteria based on admittedly sketchy "science", much of which was paid for by the same politicians and environmentalists and with the end result in mind prior to the study, it is not surprising what the results of the studies have been.

soapbox

 

RE: Power Supply Options

A lot of governments are focused on reducing CO2 emissions, but are they really as dangerous as many think they are? I often question the accuracy of the collected data and how that relates to the deviations in the mean temperature of the earth. Often, we're talking about fractions of a degree. Also, the hockey stick curve that everyone is so familiar with is based on proposed feedback loop that multiplies the effect of the increase.

From a practical point of view, making a model that is accurate to the fraction of a degree is dubious. Measuring temperatures to the fraction of a degree is difficult. Can you imagine the difficulty associated with creating a thermal model of the entire planet? Do we really want to hang our hat on these numbers?

The other dubious side of things is money. Currently, there is a lot of money involved in global warming predictions and research. A cynical person might question whether the money involved might influence the direction of the research.

I'm all for innovation. I think that cleaner energy producing technologies are desirable and environmental legislation is required for maintaining a clean environment. However, increasing the cost of energy by limiting things like carbon dioxide emissions based on computer models that have thus far proven inaccurate seems ill-advised. Actually, it hurts people. Especially poor people who spend a larger portion of their disposable income heating their houses and turning on the lights at night.

I know this is a bit off topic for this thread, but CO2 has been mentioned several times, so I wanted to address it.

It's interesting: When I was in elementary school we watched filmstrips about the coming ice age. Now we're concerned about rising temperatures. From my understanding, many of the same people were involved in both sets of predictions.

RE: Power Supply Options

I thought encouraging the Chinese to burn more coal was intentional. That seems to be where the mountain tops in this state are going. They send us bad pet food, we send high sulfur coal in exchange. I think it's called "clean coal".

Unfortunately, the silliness never ends, no matter who the clown is. I remember in the Reagan years the "killer trees" concept, where trees were responsible for lowered air quality and acid rain. When that feel out of vogue, the converstion turned to cattle farts being responsible for the ozone layer going away.

Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right.

RE: Power Supply Options

a few people will get rich at the expense of everyone else.

i think we need new ideas to tackle our energy consumption.

petroleum is limited (ok we won't run out tomorrow, but some time).  ok, we've got loads of coal, NG, shale-oil, tar sands, etc but these'll return less energy (ie will be more expensive and intrusive).  there's the nuke option, but pressurised water reactors are inherently dangerous (ok, fallible).

renewables (solar, wind, wave, geothermal, etc) will only be IMHO niche producers of energy.  there are some places where they'll reliably produce output, and lots of places where they'll be unreliable.

biomass ... maybe, why not ?  it'll be expensive to start with, but that'll reduce as the techniques get improved.  using foodstocks in a hungry world sounds more than a bit daft.

of course the long term hope (dream?) is fusion, but that is for the later 2st century.

SPS, new nuke designs ... why not ?

energy is going to get more expensive.  the demand for energy is only going to increase.  the rational thing for us engineers to consider is how to improve efficiency and how to "exploit" other sources of energy.

RE: Power Supply Options

Just a quick reminder http://www.withouthotair.com/ runs through the options. It looks as though a typical western nation uses about 200 kWh per person per day, in energy.

He works out that if everything renewable was done a European country could generate about 25% of that.

His conculsion is simple:"Let's be realistic. Just like Britain, Europe can't live on its own renewables. So
if the aim is to get off fossil fuels, Europe needs nuclear power, or solar
power in other people's deserts (as discussed on p179), or both."


 

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies  http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
GregLocock - Thanks for posting of the"withouthotair" link. I had not come across it.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

I find these arguments about consistency and lack of base power a bit superfluous as there are ways around it that are already in use and no doubt others that will crop up.

I can remember seeing in PA a pair of dams with a pump between them. Excess power was used to pump the water uphill during the offpeak so it could be used during the peak. I am sure better ways of doing this could be sought.

I also disagree that nuclear power is completely out of the agenda for the next couple of years 40 year old nuclear power has no comparison to modern ones. Back then computers were the size of a room.

RE: Power Supply Options

The trouble with any hydro scheme is that it has to be enormous to make it work (consider the potential energy stored when you pump a ton of water up a 100m hill, enough to keep a toaster running to toast a loaf of bread) and most of the good sites are gone.

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies  http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Power Supply Options

There are plenty of ways to moderate demand and to store energy from renewables.

None of them make any economic sense until there's a price on carbon emisssions to the atmosphere.

This is not a technical problem.  It is an economic one.

RE: Power Supply Options

SnTMan,

I was doing reearch last night, watching an Austin Powers rerun, and I think the Swedish pump makers have the lead, not the flash light shakers.

RE: Power Supply Options

I thought hydropower had been around for a 100-years, what R&D is needed? What we really need is to relax the environmental rules so we can build more dams...

WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. 4/5/11 (PennWell) --
Hydropower is a clean, efficient renewable energy source that is poised to play a larger role in the nation's renewable energy portfolio, U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski told hundreds of hydropower professionals gathered at the 2011 National Hydropower Association Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. The senator's NHA address followed on the heels of her introduction of the bipartisan Hydropower Improvement Act of 2011, which is aimed at boosting U.S. hydropower generation.

WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. 4/5/11 (PennWell) --
U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu and U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar have announced $26.6 million in funding for research and development projects to advance hydropower technology, including pumped-storage hydropower.

RE: Power Supply Options

Cars and Aircraft have been around for 100+ years too but R&D still gets done on them, seems a silly statement.  

For pump stores I'd have thought ways to get them online even quicker might be beneficial.  Perhaps more efficient pumps & turbines etc. could be developed as well.

As to the supposed environmental issues, hydropower may not be as 'green' as some like to think.  If the area flooded has a lot of vegetation then supposedly as it rots it adds considerable green house gases in it's own right.  Plus there are all the little critters that get flooded that may upset other shades of greenies.

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: Power Supply Options

but (lack of) R&D is not really what is stopping us from building hydro projects. And I'm not sure taxpayers need to subsidize the owners R&D efforts so they can install more efficient turbines. Will the taxpayers see any of that money come back? This research would be a drop in the bucket for the hydro companies and they are already doing it as they see the need to upgrade turbines or software and increase efficiency. The fact is that new hydropower dams rarely get permitted in the US due primarily to environmental issues that go far beyond any rotting vegetation. Think spawning salmon, downstream erosion, downstream reduction in flow... We are in fact removing dams as fast as we are building new ones, just so the fish can again spawn like they did a 100 years ago. I'm sure the fish appreciate it.

RE: Power Supply Options

hard to tell, however as with most federal research grant money, it is pretty much up to the researcher what he wants to study. Hopefully it is more productive than estimating the amount of methane gas belched by cows...

RE: Power Supply Options

mauricestoker, you are obviously well versed in the art:)

Regards,

Mike

RE: Power Supply Options

Yes, I'm ambidextrous. Bill Cosby is jealous.

RE: Power Supply Options

is that what they mean when they say "watch out for left handed swordsmen" ?

RE: Power Supply Options

Anybody want to take bets whether this project ever gets completed?

"Alaska senate clears proposed hydroelectric power project"
The Alaska Senate has approved a bill allowing the Alaska Energy Authority to build and operate a hydroelectric project on the Susitna River. The project, estimated to cost from $4 billion to $5 billion, is seen as a way to help meet energy demands in the Railbelt region. The measure goes next to the Alaska House for consideration. AlaskaDispatch.com (4/19)     

http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/alaska-poised-build-largest-us-river-dam-decades-susitna     
 

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
I recommend a recent book called "Carbon Shift". Its a collection of papers, some good and some not so good, edited by Thomas Homer-Dixon. It includes some interesting facts and opinions including the prediction of a bright future for Greenland. Its probably available in your local library. It makes a change from the small screen.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

If the salmon feel their interests are threatened they can do like everybody else and form a non-profit and hire some lobbyists.

Or did they do that already:)

Regards,

Mike

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
Is there a future for CO2 capture and storage from existing coal generating stations? Can natural gas generating stations be built with an option to add CO2 capture and storage when the going gets really tought? With frac gas, North America seems to have a century or two of fossil fuels left.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

It's very popular with politicians, since their sponsors can carry on doing as they will, until the bugs are sorted out.

It adds a very significant energy cost to production, so while helping to reduce atmospheric CO2 levels (maybe) it will increase costs somehwat (but less than most alternative energy sources) and speed the depletion of fossil fuel reserves.

As to whether it is feasible, I don't know.

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies  http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Power Supply Options

Once you've separated it, you need a place to stuff that CO2 into, which unfortunately the power plants aren't usually co-sited with.  CCS is a way to p*ss through our stocks of fossil fuels about 30-50% faster.  Better to leave the coal in the ground.   

RE: Power Supply Options

"..p*ss through our stocks of fossil fuels about 30-50% faster.."

Isn't that the agenda?

Regards,

Mike

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
The Pembina Institute has a fact sheet on the subject at http://pubs.pembina.org/reports/ccs-fact-sheet.pdf
There is lots of coal, and suitable storage basins cover most of Alberta and Saskatchewan, and run east from Sarnia to the St. Lawrence. CCS has got to be a candidate interim solution, until we figure out the low cost, high efficiency solutions. I have experience with capture of CO2, and with storage of product in the salt caverns in Sarnia. That just leaves the pipeline bit  to figure out.

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

The low cost, high efficiency solution is CONSERVATION.  We still have people heating their homes with electric resistance heaters, for heaven's sake!  

The economics have to make a kWh saved worth every bit as much as a kWh of new generation, or NOTHING will get done, because the smart money will avoid the whole mess.  The most the "dumb" money will be able to do is to provide a distraction in the media and some ribbon-cutting opportunities for politicians looking for re-election.

RE: Power Supply Options

I think you nailed that one on the head, Moltenmetal.

RE: Power Supply Options

SÃO PAULO—Brazil's environmental protection agency gave builders the go-ahead to construct the world's third-largest hydroelectric dam in the Amazon rainforest.

The project, called Belo Monte, has been in the planning stages for three decades, and the focus of opposition by environmental and Indian-rights groups for almost as long.

 

RE: Power Supply Options

It looks like nat gas plants will rule the roost for the next few decades. Gas from Frac'cing is now being proposed for use in China and eastern europe, following in teh footsteps of the US.

A lot more wind energy could be incorporated into the grid if they (a) upgrade older radar from the 50's  to filter out the wind turbine image and thus invalidate the current construction prohibition in many areas plus (b) develop an effective means to store excess power from the wind turbines, perhaps underground CAES compressed air energy storage which would feed gas turbines during peaks of high demand/ low wind availability plus (c) smart grid automatic shutdown of high amp consumer appliances ( hot water heater, drier) during short upsets in available wind energy.

Latest low cost PV solar will be more prevalent- see for example UniSolar flexible paanels that easily attach to steel roofing panels- espescailly if newer local building codes mandate such use.

RE: Power Supply Options

Pretty sure "demand management" is in our future.

Regards,

Mike

RE: Power Supply Options

What a waste of beautiful Natural Gas that could power vehicles though where it's ease of use and energy density (when compressed) is so useful.  For stationary power gen solid fossil fuel works nicely enough, but is problematic for all but the largest vehicles and even there fluid fuels are usually more beneficial.

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
Is it really CO2 that is increasing the temperature or is mainly just releasing heat from fossil fuels? I notice recently that climate scientists tend to use terms like "human activity" rather than "CO2 release" to explain "climate change".

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

Quote:

Is it really CO2 that is increasing the temperature or is mainly just releasing heat from fossil fuels? I notice recently that climate scientists tend to use terms like "human activity" rather than "CO2 release" to explain "climate change".

or is it more related to normal ebbs and flows of sunspots and solar flares and eccentricities in the earths orbit around the sun? The known facts are that the earth's temperature has a cyclical fluctuation that has occurred for thousands of years. It is a bit egotistical to think that this is occurring solely because of increase burning of fossil fuels by humans.

Global warming is postulated and has not even reached the level of a theory due to a serious lack of hard evidence to support it. It certainly is not a given fact yet.

RE: Power Supply Options

owg - the hypothesis is that CO2 is the driver.  Unfortunately (for them), the data does not support said hypothesis.  However, rather than letting the hypothesis die and having another one take its place (as is the norm in science), they have resorted to moving the goalposts.

See, if it's not CO2, then you can't control people via their energy usage - burning cheap fossil fuels.  That won't do for the political overlords that have the "climate scientists™" working for them.

Real, truly independent scientists that study the climate acknowledge that humans have an impact: urban heat island effect, local heating of bodies of water near power plants (doesn't need to be fossil-fueled, either), and yes, even CO2.  But the magnitude of the CO2-effect is small - certainly not enough to warrant spending Trillions of dollars.  And the other effects are very localized - not enough to qualify as world-wide climate.

Which brings up another point.  The whole terminology change to "climate change" is another sleight of hand trick.  Of course they mean warming.  But, from a geological perspective, the only constant in the climate is that it changes.  Severely.  And frequently.  So, can we cause climate change?  Possibly, but it has always changed without us, so can any scientist discern the human fingerprint in such a chaotic system?  Unlikely with sufficient certainty to warrant us spending Trillions of dollars.

Oh, and if you wanted to, you could consider the entire human energy needs, assume that it is all eventually returned to heat energy, and compare that to the amount of energy we get from the big yellow ball in the sky.  OK - here's the calc:
In 2008, worldwide energy usage was 474E18 J.
Total solar irradiance is 1361W/m^2.  Divide that value by 4 (ratio of area of a circle vs surface area of a sphere).  Total of 680.5 W/m^2.
Total surface area of the earth is 5.1E8 km^2, or 5.1e14m^2.
A standard year is 3.15569E7 seconds.
Multiply solar power by the surface area by the time, and you get 1.095E25J.

So, our energy needs are 474E18/1.095E25 - 4.378E-5 of what we get from the sun.  So, nope, it's not the heat that we generate by our energy consumption.

RE: Power Supply Options

(OP)
Thanks for the info. TGS4. I guess that second last minus sign was meant to be an = ?

HAZOP at www.curryhydrocarbons.ca

RE: Power Supply Options

TGS4 ... it's people like you what cause unrest ...  how dare you think you can prove your position with math ?  and what's this talk about a "big yellow ball in the sky" ... it's not there 1/2 the time, geeze.

besides, do you know how nice it is to have jollies every so often to nice interesting places at the taxpayers expense ?? ok, you have to put up with some senseless babble from some Really boring "scientists" but then, that's the time to recover from last night's rave ...

RE: Power Supply Options

owg -  yup, that should be an equals sign.

rb1957 - right...math... who would have thought...

What we actually know about the climate could fill a bathtub.  What we know that we don't know could fill a small lake.  What we don't know that we don't know could fill an ocean.

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Quote:

What we don't know that we don't know could fill an ocean.

Whose level is rising of course:)

Regards,

Mike  

RE: Power Supply Options

and the bathtub leaks into the lake, and the lake feeds the ocean.  and there's very little back-flow in the system too.

RE: Power Supply Options

Gotta agree with Moltenmetal, conservation should be the focus and building codes should be updated to reflect this; we expect everything else to constantly increase but for what limited (almost nil) experience I have with building codes we still seem to building garbage houses.

As for the whole CO2/climate change debate my opinion has been that I'm (and for the most part the general population) too ignorant to know what effects are truly human caused.  What I do know though is that heavy metals and other chemical pollution have effects that are easy to see and measure... why don't we work on the low lying fruit and set up proper monitoring and legislation to decrease these?
 

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