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Green energy has overtaken total Nuclear energy productionFollow

#52 Sep 01 2011 at 5:12 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
A solar panel in Phoenix is worth more than one in Seattle.


That's not entirely accurate. On a typical hot summer day, it's not uncommon for a solar cell to reach a temperature of 70 °C (158 °F). A general rule of thumb is that the efficiency of a solar cell decreases with 0.5% for every 1 °C (1.8 °F) above 25 °C (77 °F). This means that on a hot summer day, the efficiency of a solar cell could drop as much as 25%.

Sure, you're going to see a lot more sunlight in Phoenix, but it's also a lot hotter there. Even the diffuse sunlight from a cloudy day can produce a fair amount of energy. The amount of energy produced will obviously vary based on setup, but just because one part of the country sees more sunlight doesn't necessarily mean that solar power is more efficient there.
#53 Sep 01 2011 at 5:44 PM Rating: Excellent
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Fair enough. I was pointing out that not all places are equal. Jigger the geography to get the desired results Smiley: grin
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#54 Sep 01 2011 at 5:49 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:


Also, as I've said before we don't know the full effects of windfarms on the surrounding area because large scale use in less remote areas is relatively new. My point is that because it's labeled as "green" a whole lot of people blithely look the other way and don't ask the same questions they'd ask if these were oil wells for example. Perception becomes reality for many people.


Okay I give up.

I can find how much MW/acre you can get from putting a wind farm there, and how much yield you can get from a good coal mine in WV, and how that changes into MW.

The frustrating thing is that we have to frequently import coal from the midwest to get our coal plants up to temperature as the stuff we have here doesn't burn hot enough. We also don't have oil here either really, or natural gas. There's really not a whole lot of geothermal either. Plus I don't know about transport costs, etc. So I'm left thinking that there isn't really any other way to get power from that land, unless we compared it to the cost of building a dam or something nearby. Which I don't really have numbers for either, and there's not so much water on that side of the hills.

Anyway, numbers... Smiley: banghead

Edited, Sep 1st 2011 5:08pm by someproteinguy
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#55 Sep 01 2011 at 6:48 PM Rating: Excellent
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More to the point, while we can handwave a lot of "We don't know if wind farms will cause flowers to grow crooked and the sunlight to turn spotty!", we do know about the actual, real desolation mining causes, the impact of the operation upon local water supplies (or further), the widespread impact on the local flora & fauna, etc.

But, you know, yeah. That wind turbine looked pretty terrible as well. You can't always have your cows standing directly under it. Totally apples to apples.
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#56 Sep 01 2011 at 7:23 PM Rating: Decent
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someproteinguy wrote:
Edit2: The wind farm in the pictures had 400MW of capacity and resulted in 71.7 hectares of permanent D.I. area apparently, which includes the roads and such.

I can read. Smiley: grin

I'm also learning you can get up to 2MW from one ton of coal, and you can get up to 1,000 tons of coal per acre from a strip mine back east...


So... A handy converter tells me that the total land usage of the wind farm is 177 acres. 1 acre of strip mine produces 1,000 tons of coal, which produces 2,000MW. 177 acres of strip mine would therefore produce 354000MW. Which is 885 times as much as the wind farm produces on the same acreage.

Now, obviously, there's a time component and we're comparing renewable to non-renewable sources. But once the land is used for strip mining, the topsoil is replaced, plants and trees are replanted, and it can be used for something else while we move to some other patch of land for mining. We could look at things like total return on energy investment for coal compared to wind if you want, but coal wins that one hands down as well (by around 4 to 1 IIRC).


Hopefully, the point is made in terms of total power generation compared to total land impact. Wind is not the magic bullet some seem to think it is. It cost us more energy to gain the same amount back, doesn't scale as large, and uses more land to do it. It's cleaner, to be sure, but those other factors need to be considered as well when assessing its viability as an alternative energy source.
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#57 Sep 01 2011 at 8:18 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
someproteinguy wrote:
Edit2: The wind farm in the pictures had 400MW of capacity and resulted in 71.7 hectares of permanent D.I. area apparently, which includes the roads and such.

I can read. Smiley: grin

I'm also learning you can get up to 2MW from one ton of coal, and you can get up to 1,000 tons of coal per acre from a strip mine back east...


So... A handy converter tells me that the total land usage of the wind farm is 177 acres. 1 acre of strip mine produces 1,000 tons of coal, which produces 2,000MW. 177 acres of strip mine would therefore produce 354000MW. Which is 885 times as much as the wind farm produces on the same acreage.

Now, obviously, there's a time component and we're comparing renewable to non-renewable sources. But once the land is used for strip mining, the topsoil is replaced, plants and trees are replanted, and it can be used for something else while we move to some other patch of land for mining. We could look at things like total return on energy investment for coal compared to wind if you want, but coal wins that one hands down as well (by around 4 to 1 IIRC).


Hopefully, the point is made in terms of total power generation compared to total land impact. Wind is not the magic bullet some seem to think it is. It cost us more energy to gain the same amount back, doesn't scale as large, and uses more land to do it. It's cleaner, to be sure, but those other factors need to be considered as well when assessing its viability as an alternative energy source.


4:1 doesn't sound unreasonable. 885 years to break-even doesn't sound inconceivable either. Now we just have to get the coal that can produce 2,000MW/acre out here to the Pacific Northwest. 'Cause ours isn't so hot (literally). Smiley: frown
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#58 Sep 01 2011 at 8:25 PM Rating: Excellent
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I'm tickled that after mountain top removal and valley fill mining, you apparently just throw down some topsoil and acorns and it's good as new.
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#59 Sep 01 2011 at 8:53 PM Rating: Good
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Yeah, it's not like removing or altering major geographical features will affect anything.
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#60 Sep 01 2011 at 8:54 PM Rating: Excellent
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I'm for anything that limits squirrel breeding.
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#61 Sep 01 2011 at 9:12 PM Rating: Excellent
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Debalic wrote:
Yeah, it's not like removing or altering major geographical features will affect anything.

But it's better than wind turbines; who knows what effect they'll have upon the air!
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#62 Sep 01 2011 at 9:44 PM Rating: Decent
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To be fair, the ambient sound could cause livestock to go mad and stampede.

Edited, Sep 1st 2011 11:44pm by Debalic
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#63 Sep 02 2011 at 3:33 AM Rating: Excellent
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Bioreactors provide baseload electricity.
Tidal (not wave) provides baseload electricity.
Solar with heat sink technology that is harvested at night provides baseload electricity.

Farm crop leftovers -> Modern Bioreactor that doesn't spew toxic smoke (via reburning of harvested smoke)-> electricity -> leftover charcoal from Bioreactor (Biochar/Agrichar) put on farmland -> massively increased soil fertility from soil bacteria and fungi that like to live inside the charcoal like a soil reef. -> farm crop.

In cities, food waste pickup from large restaurants can replace crop residues. Supplementation from gas and solar probably necessary.

New efficient algae farms, and fast-growing hardy species can be grown on marginal land unsuitable for farming, to feed bioreactors.

Again, CHPs, (Combined Heat and Power stations) that are made with off the shelf technology, or any power input desired, are more than twice as energy efficient as large, isolate power stations.
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#64 Sep 02 2011 at 3:46 AM Rating: Excellent
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Well before the wider community was concerned with Anthropogenic Climate Change, They were concerned about coal power stations. The towns around coal power stations are the sickest in Victoria. Coal emissions are toxic, they reduce the healthy lifespan of the general population, they highly increase cancer and athsma.

There's still a long span of coal deposits, but Oil has all of the above problems, whilst being a finite source. It's an insidious, invidious killer and poison, riding below people's conscious worry because the effect of Oil produced illness is so invisibly linked to the cause.

Back to the finite source problem. Peak Oil was always coming, and we've known that for a century. Transport has always needed an alternative energy source. With Oil having such an extraordinary array of chemicals within it, it is the most wanton waste to burn it up for energy.

Edited, Sep 2nd 2011 5:48am by Aripyanfar
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#65 Sep 02 2011 at 11:19 AM Rating: Excellent
Jophiel wrote:
I'm tickled that after mountain top removal and valley fill mining, you apparently just throw down some topsoil and acorns and it's good as new.
Magical acorns Smiley: schooled
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#66 Sep 02 2011 at 11:42 AM Rating: Excellent
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Sir Xsarus wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
I'm tickled that after mountain top removal and valley fill mining, you apparently just throw down some topsoil and acorns and it's good as new.
Magical acorns Smiley: schooled


I can only imagine what affect this would have on the previously mentioned squirrel breeding problem.

Smiley: oyvey
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#67 Sep 02 2011 at 3:52 PM Rating: Decent
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Sir Xsarus wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
I'm tickled that after mountain top removal and valley fill mining, you apparently just throw down some topsoil and acorns and it's good as new.
Magical acorns Smiley: schooled

I thought if you used the Magic Forest spell the trees wouldn't reseed?
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publiusvarus wrote:
we all know liberals are well adjusted american citizens who only want what's best for society. While conservatives are evil money grubbing scum who only want to sh*t on the little man and rob the world of its resources.
#68 Sep 03 2011 at 12:20 AM Rating: Excellent
someproteinguy wrote:
Sir Xsarus wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
I'm tickled that after mountain top removal and valley fill mining, you apparently just throw down some topsoil and acorns and it's good as new.
Magical acorns Smiley: schooled


I can only imagine what affect this would have on the previously mentioned squirrel breeding problem.

Smiley: oyvey
Magical Squirrels?
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