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Comment Re:Still using gasoline? (Score 1) 200

The long answer, nature has stored solar energy over millions of years in this nice carrier called hydrocarbons. I call them nice because they are very energy dense, lack chemical reactivity almost completely.

At 0.00000000001% efficiency. Since you don't understand that the sun hits earth with over 1000 times more energy than a planet of 10 billion Americans, or that my friends drive to work on solar energy hitting 11 foot by 11 foot squares on their roofs, it's not even worth responding to the rest of your derivative, pseudo-intellectual post.

Comment Re:When we look back... (Score 1) 372

The estimate is an inflated estimate from the "Footprint Network". I've researched the estimate in detail, and if you took out their consideration of CO2 emissions, you would not have issues. In fact, if you take out CO2, the footprint is going down. Given trends on green energy development, I see this as trend as reversing within the next 10-20 years. I believe that the 2020's-2030's era will be a boom time of cheap energy.

Comment Re:Coal air Fuel From 1970 - 1980 NO Gasification (Score 1) 125

Are you using the 300 stainless as a container for the electrolyte or the air electrode? What about the 316 stainless? I'd love to make one of these as an experiment. I'd also like to see what you think about the idea of using charcoal instead of coal for this system? Thanks for posting this. I've been reading this old research. Please get an account here so more people can read your posts!

Comment Figures Inflated, Here's Why (Score 1) 1070

Here is an exerpt of an article I was writing called the "Sustainable Status of America" on why the ecological foot print is inflated, and what it really shows.

The way the ecological foot print works is that it calculates how big of an area of the planet each of us needs - in "global hectacres per capita". Here is a graph of the ecological foot print from many nations vs the human development index.

At first blush, this report would seem to refute my point - the USA is one of the least sustainable nations on the planet. However, taking a more complexed and detailed understanding unvails many interesting counterpoints. The first counterpoint I would like to point you to is the graph of footprint over time. What you can see is that the footprint of most nations goes down, while the HDI goes up. What this means is that we are on the right track, which is better than nothing. If we project out the lines, what we see is that we should be for the most part sustainable by 2050.

After looking at the ecological footprint, I quite like the way it measures impact. However, it has one huge, IMHO, design flaw. It considers CO2 to have a physical footprint in global hectacres per capita. For example, in the graph of Switzerland, you can see that most of the footprint is energy, I.E., CO2. If you were to ignore the CO2 requirement, you would find that Swizterland was actually sustainable (but barely). Worldwide, the carbon component of our footprint is over 54% of the foot print. The way CO2's footprint is being calculated is by taking into account the amount of CO2 captured by acres of biomass, such as forests. What this means is that it essentially calculates how big of a fuel farm we would need for the world using first generation biofuels. The results are rediculus for energy instensive countries such as the USA. This is because first generation biofuels are incredibly ineffecient - often less than 0.1% efficient at converting solar energy into useful power. A solar panel is 20% efficient. A recent IEEE report concluded that to power the world with switch-grass ethanol would require essentially the whole planet be converted into one big fuel farm. Meanwhile, solar panels essentially on our roofs could charge up all our electric cars and power our houses. This CO2 calculation pollutes the ecological footprint data with tangential information that depends on technical change.

The ecological footprint makes a good point. Our current mode of operation is unsustainable, but what it also makes clear is what our number one sustainablity priority should be: reducing CO2 emissions. Fortunately, thousands if not millions of my fellow capitalist pigs have responeded to the call. The solution, and this will be clear, is not to reduce our energy use but instead to develop new technologies to solve the problem. We have been told by environmentalists "we must change our behavior instead of wait for technological fantasy", but history has had other ideas. The whales were not saved from the whalers because activists told everyone to turn of the lights. The whales were saved because technologists and capitalsts drilled for oil. JD Rockefeller saved the whales, not Patrick Moore. CO2 will be stopped because higher fossil fuel prices are already pushing renewables - the solution is already happening, but you don't often hear about it. For example, wind power is growing at around 30% annually - a phenominal growth rate in the business world. The consequences of this growth are the colapse of off-peak electricity prices - which I hope will result in the shifting of industrial production and transportation "fuel" production to windy nights. Wind currently makes up 1.8% of our electricity. What that means is that in 15-20 years at the current growth rate, wind will make up all of our electricity production.

Comment Re:Better than public transportation (Score 1) 135

I'm in a town of 60,000 and we do not have traffic problems here. We have basically no public transportation, and our roads are poorly designed and confusing, and yet we rarely have traffic problems. You can get around any where you want with a car in about 20 minutes at maximum. Most driving trips are actually quite relaxing - I like it because it gives me an excuse to be uncontactable.

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