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Report: Power giants likely to miss renewable energy goal

Sacramento Business Journal – August 4, 2008

Mr. Al Gore recently challenged the US to a goal of 100% renewable energy in 10 years. His lofty goals cited the need for domestic energy independence and his concern that the world would end due to global warming. Many people have questioned the feasibility of this goal and now it appears that California is going to even miss a much more reasonable goal.

The Public Utilities Commission has reported that California is not likely to hit its goal of 20% renewable sources by 2010. They may be able to get there by 2013 but that seems to depend on enough rainwater coming down to keep the dams working.  There is also a goal that California his 30% by 2020 (just a few more years from now then Mr. Gore’s 10 years) and this goal doesn’t seem to be attainable.

In Science, Ignorance is not Bliss

Launch Magazine – July/August issue

Walter Cunningham is one of the astronauts of Apollo 7.  He writes about global warming in the latest issue of Launch Magazine and his comments bear considering.

Mr. Cunningham is important in this discussion because of his obvious intelligence and past leadership but also in his strong ability in analyzing scientific and political events and drawing conclusions.

What I find to be most compelling are:

  • his ridicule of climate models.
  • his discussions of correlation and causation.
  • the replacement of scientific discussion with emotional arguments.
  • the condemnation of Mr. Hansen – one of the early warning voices of global warming and an employee of NASA.

Follow up to Pelosi’s Energy Stonewall

I don’t have all of the details but it seems that some representatives are trying to force a vote on the US energy policy.  Earlier today I wrote about the delay tactics used by Speaker of the House Pelosi, now it seems that Minority Leader John Boehner has brought some representatives back into the chamber to try to force a vote (or at least get more attention to their cause).  Maybe we should have Mr. Boehner and Ms. Pelosi switch jobs.

I first picked this up on Power Line: “House Republicans Refuse To Go Home” and I hope that they don’t mind if I reproduce the majority of their post because it is quite interesting in the lack of ability to get the job done that resides in our elected representatives.

Pelosi’s Energy Stonewall

Wall Street Journal – August 1, 2008

The Wall Street Journal has a rather cynical look at the state of our elected representatives and their current stance on energy bills.  It appears that the rank and file elected representative is quite in favor of doing something proactive to increase energy supply.  However, Ms. Pelosi, the Speaker of the House, and her partner Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader, have effectively stifled anything good (or bad) from their respective chambers just to prevent more energy production either in the form of drilling, nuclear, or traditional sources. (Follow the feed link to read the rest of the story).

The opinion even goes so far as to charge that the actions of the Legislature have put 93% of the US energy footprint off-limits to expansion.

Should we all set up our own stills?

Popular Mechanics – May 8, 2008

Saw this article on Popular Mechanics.  It really isn’t that hard to set up your own still to create ethanol to burn in your flex fuel vehicle.  This Micro Fueler looks good but your housing association may have something to say about setting up a fueling station in your side yard!

While this isn’t going to make a huge dent in our development of CO2, it is an interesting idea to explore.  Perhaps the best way to reduce foreign oil dependence and cut back on CO2 pollution is to make everything smaller and closer to home.

Al Gore’s Doomsday Clock

Wall Street Journal – July 22, 2008

Sometimes I think that this site exists solely to condemn Al Gore.  He is easily the person that we discuss more than all else when you consider his film, his rock concerts, and his foolish statements it seems that it is all that one can read on the subject of energy. And to think that this man was a heartbeat away from being the President of the United States for 8 years in addition to a few hanging chads from being elected to the office himself.

Gore "borrowed" fake scenes for An Inconvenient Truth

There is a lot of controversy over this.  I really don’t know the right answer.  Is it okay for a film maker to have scenes in a documentary that are not what the narrator is discussing? My gut says that this happens all of the time.  Also, there was no question in my mind when I saw AIT that this portion of the film was CGI.

Of course, I didn’t know that it came from the movie “Day After Tomorrow” at the time but then I didn’t watch the credits and I am sure that he mentions them in the credits.  I have long lost my copy of the movie so I can’t check that fact.  If someone still has their copy of the DVD, please skip through to the end and check to see if the proper credit is given. You can leave a comment below to let us all know the truth.

What is your ecological footprint

The Independent has a calculator that will ask you a series of questions, do some magical math, and tell you your impact on the globe.  The questionnaire is Europe based so for the US based readers answer the Europe questions as if the question was about the US (travel domestic and international).  Also for the monetary ranges, just assume that 1 US dollar is equal to 1 pound.  What’s your planetary impact?

For the record, I was 4 planets.

http://independent.footprint.wwf.org.uk/

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McCain wants $30B for clean-coal research, 45 new nuclear reactors

Phoenix Business Journal – June 25, 2008

John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee for US President, is deriding the Executive branch for their suggestions to curb energy prices as well as the Democratic leadership for its plans. (Follow the feed link to read the rest of the story).

Mr. McCain is proposing more aggressive investment in “clean” coal plants and nuclear energy.  Personally, I am not sure there is such a thing as a clean coal plant but I am all for it if we can make one!  I also think that we need to step up our reliance on nuclear energy and deal with the disposal issue which haunts that technology.

Wind farm to be built off Delaware shore

This is great news!  We need more effort in creating alternative energy sources.  I wonder if they did an environmental impact analysis?  Were their “greenies” protesting or are they too busy blocking other green projects like nuclear plants?

Obviously, Mr. Kennedy doesn’t have a resort in Delaware!

Bluewater spokesman Jim Lanard said the power company will get about 16 percent of its electricity from a field of 150 wind turbines, anchored in the sea floor about a dozen miles off Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.


The offshore site is expected to be operational within four years, but the timing depends on how quickly regulatory agencies can review and approve the construction project.