I get link requests from time to time and I post them here…don’t really have space for them in our blog roll…
More when I get them..
Sat 31 Jul 2010
I get link requests from time to time and I post them here…don’t really have space for them in our blog roll…
More when I get them..
Fri 30 Jul 2010
It’s jam band friday – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjFaenf1T-Y
I wrote a letter to the editor to the State Journal Register about a scam here in the states Mira-Cool which I have panned here and last years version of it called CoolSurge..They are just outright frauds. These guys are a fraud of a higher order. I first ran into them here:
Here is their website but you can see it is “under construction”. I’ll bet.
|Please note – as of 25 June 2010, this Website is undergoing reconstruction. We thank you for your patience.
Worlds leading Independent experts report confirms witnessing many times more electricity being generated than consumed by Lutec prototypes. Report available for download here.
I show the alleged report but it is a PDF file and I don’t have the version that lets me copy stuff. You should read it. It’s a stitch.
As one critic put it:
Lutec – all the energy that you can eat (13/4/2002)
One of the great nonsenses of pseudoscience that never seems to go away is the perpetual motion machine. They aren’t called that these days, of course, because everyone knows that such things are impossible. The new name is “free energy device”, but the principle is the same. A recent example of this genre is the Lutec 100, a generator which, according to the inventors, is 3000% efficient. The Lutec people once said that they were going to accept the $100,000 challenge from the Australian Skeptics, but for some reason they eventually lost interest. They were awarded the 2001 Bent Spoon Award for their efforts at overthrowing physics. I thought I would see where they were up to in their attempt to solve all the world’s energy problems, so I sent them the following email. I have not yet received a reply, but if I could predict the future I would say that the reply will either be a set of answers to some other questions or some abuse and patronising suggestions that I don’t understand what they are doing.
More next week
Thu 29 Jul 2010
What you may not know, if you buy baked goods from Gail Record at either of Springfield’s two farmers markets, is that she goes to a lot of trouble to make sure the ingredients she uses are locally sourced and grown either organically or in a sustainable manner.
Although she lives in Springfield, some of her ingredients are grown at Clarewood Farm — her family’s 80-acre farm near Loami. Other ingredients, including eggs, come from area farmers.
“When I started working at the farm, I wanted an apple orchard and nut trees and vegetables and fruit and I wanted to bake. I had big ideas. But you have to have time to do it,” said Record, a grandmother who sells under the name Clarewood Farm & Bakery.
The first-year farmers market vendor and former food writer hasn’t given up on her dream of running a thriving sustainable farm, but she’s starting small.
Take flour, for example.
She wanted to grow an acre of wheat, which she planned to make into flour for her whole-wheat baked goods. But when she realized how labor-intensive and difficult growing wheat would be, she decided to buy wheat berries from an organic farm in Chenoa and grind them herself.
Her stand — Saturdays only at the Old Capitol Farmers Market and Thursdays at the Illinois Products Farmers Market — sells cookies, muffins, zucchini bread, granola, scones, whole-wheat tortillas and other goodies. Fruit pies will be offered in the fall.
Hey Springfield Area Locavores,
1) The Illinois Specialty Growers Association sponsors the Farmers Market Tent at the State Fair. They are looking for any volunteers to help out with sales. The hours are 11:00-7:00 with breaks as needed to walk around the fair, eat, etc. Products sold include apple cider slushies, peaches, cantaloupe, watermelon, peaches, ice cream, salads and egg-on-a-stick! Past volunteers almost always return as they enjoy working this tent. You will be serving the produce and collecting money. No rocket science involved, just good ole’ fun! Thanks for considering.
Please contact Diane Handley by email or phone if you are interested. Diane Handley , Illinois Specialty Growers Association 309-557-2107, firstname.lastname@example.org
2) If you have not heard yet, tomorrow night, August 29th, Augie’s Front Burner is hosting a bonus “Local Flavors Dinner” in addition to the regularly scheduled “Local Flavors” lunches and dinners. The menu for the dinner at Augie’s is attached. For reservations call, 217-544-6979.
3) In celebration of National Farmers’ Market Week Illinois Stewardship Alliance will be distributing free bags of wheat flour at Springfield’s farmers’ markets. Illinois Stewardship Alliance is partnering with the Industrial Harvest project to distribute wheat flour that was purchased through the Chicago Board of Trade as part of a project to learn more about how commodities travel through the system and ultimately give the flour a story. Illinois Stewardship Alliance will distribute the flour at the Old Capitol Farmers Market on Wednesday, August 4 and Saturday, August 7 and at the Illinois Products Farmers Market on Thursday, August 5. Both white and whole wheat flour will be given away in bags with 3 – 4 cups of flour each. Stop by and get some free wheat flour!
Illinois Stewardship Alliance
Wed 28 Jul 2010
It is both true and disgusting. When you think nothing could get more cruel or stupid, these things happen…:
By Heidi Blake
Published: 9:20AM BST 28 Jul 2010
A crew was scrambled from the Deepwater Horizon clean-up operation after the collision sent a plume of oil and gas 100ft into the air.
The spill in Barataria Bay, which is surrounded by wildlife-rich wetlands, is at least the third leak since in the area since the BP oil catastrophe began on April 10.
The area of ocean 65 miles south of New Orleans would normally be occupied by fishermen, shrimpers and oystermen, but it has been deserted since the BP spill began.
The abandoned wellhead burst in the early hours of Tuesday morning after being hit by a tug boat that was pushing a dredge barge.
About 6,000 feet of boom was placed around the spill, and the Coast Guard was surveying the scene from a helicopter.
Admiral Thad Allen, the US Coast Guard chief, said the oil platform was surrounded by a sheen and a vapour that was probably a combination of oil and gas spewing from the well.
From one end of the country to the other:
By Ed Brayton 7/27/10 3:28 PM
It’s looking like the oil spill from a pipeline into the Talmadge Creek in Calhoun County is going to be a replay of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in at least one respect — the companies, aided by the government, do not want the media to have access to take pictures and video of what is going on. The Michigan Messenger’s Todd Heywood is on the scene and was turned away from one of the primary sites by employees of Enbridge, the company that owns and operates the pipeline.
Heywood was at 12 Mile Rd. and C Avenue at a bridge over the Ceresco Dam when employees from Enbridge turned him away. The employee would only give his name as Mike, and when he noticed Heywood writing down the information he said, “I’m not telling you anything else” and walked away.
A sheriff’s deputy on the scene confirmed that he was not allowed to take pictures there of the oil spill or the wildlife. He then went to the Enbridge command center and was told by Enbridge spokesperson Lorraine Grymala that he would have to go to the Calhoun County Sheriff to talk to them about it.
(I mean at this rate I really hope there isn’t…but I am sure there will be>)
Tue 27 Jul 2010
As has been reported the Energy Star Program has some fraud going on.
Mon 26 Jul 2010
If this country paid the real price for coal instead of socializing the costs (ie. transferring the cost to the general public) it would be too expensive to burn. If the Coal Industry had to pay the real cost of drilling the holes (tax free zones), making the holes safe (complying with regulations instead of being lightly fined), freeing the coal of its nasty properties (passed onto the consumers of coal), safely disposing of those associated wastes (see articles below) and pay part of the costs of the effects of their uses on the environment (passed on to the end users and consumers) then we would never even think about using that stuff. But they get passes on all of that and they put the public at risk. Oh and they want to put in the levies too.
What the activists say:
Coal production is a major part of the Illinois economy. In 2004, the state produced over 31 million short tons of coal worth an estimated $819 million dollars, which ranked it 9th in the nation in coal production. Coal deposits underly 37,000 square miles of Illinois, about two thirds the entire state. Recoverable coal reserves are estimated to total 30 billion tons, accounting for almost one-eighth of the nation’s total coal reserves and one-fourth of bituminous coal reserves. In comparison to western coal, Illinois coal is high in sulfur, and even when cleaned the sulfur content averages 2 to 3 percent by weight.
The state consumed over 54 million short tons of coal for electrical power in 2004, producing approximately 48 percent of the electricity generated in Illinois. The state’s average retail price of electricity is 7.07 cents per kilowatt hour, the 20th lowest rate in the nation In 2003, Illinois emitted 230 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, ranking it 7th in the nation overall.
In a major survey article for the Illinois Times on the coal fight in the state, Peter Downs wrote:
What the Newspaper reports:
Coal mining companies are supposed to clean up after themselves, and the government is supposed to ensure groundwater is pure.
But environmental activists fear that mining companies in central and southern Illinois may poison aquifers by injecting potentially dangerous pollutants into the ground with inadequate review by regulators and no notice to the public.
The state has already allowed the practice at the Crown Mine No. 3 near Girard, and the owner of the Shay No. 1 Mine near Carlinville, which closed in 2007 but reopened last year, has applied for permission. Activists fear this is just the beginning as coal companies develop new mines and restart old ones.
The waste is a byproduct of washing coal. The slurry that results can contain arsenic, heavy metals and other pollutants. The website of the state Office of Mines and Minerals says the material “can be potentially acid-forming and/or toxic.”
The danger is serious enough that the practice of injecting coal slurry into the ground has been curtailed in West Virginia, where more than 100 lawsuits are pending by residents who blame coal companies for poisoning wells.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A federal plan to use ash waste from coal-fired power plants to shore up some Mississippi River levees drew objections Thursday from environmentalists who are worried that toxins in the ash might seep into the river and public water systems it serves.
The Sierra Club and other nature groups lined up against the Army Corps of Engineers’ plan, worrying during a public hearing that the use of coal or fly ash questionably could extend later to levees along other inland rivers and perpetuate coal burning, widely believed to contribute to global warming.
“If this should turn out to be toxic (after it’s been injected into a levee’s weak spots), how do we get it back out?” Tom Ball, a member of the Sierra Club and Missouri Stream Team, pressed during the 90-minute hearing that drew about 50 people, including electric utility representatives
“This fly ash is hazardous waste, regardless of what you call it,” added Catherine Edmiston, an environmentalist heading an Illinois group opposing longwall mining. “I am against putting it against a major river. I think we need to think about this.”
Corps officials called the injection of a slurry of water, coal ash and lime into 25 miles of slide-prone levees in 200-mile stretch of the river from Alton, Ill., near St. Louis to southern Illinois’ tip the cheapest, longest-lasting fix among several options it weighed.
Yet the corps pledged not to move hastily, calling any decision months away and pressing that the search for the cheapest fix for taxpayers won’t trump public safety. For now, the corps says, the ash-slurry plan appears be
ST. LOUIS (AP) – The Army Corps of Engineers wants to use ash cast off from coal-fired electrical generation to shore up dozens of miles of Mississippi River levees, drawing fire from environmentalists worried that heavy metals from the filler might make their way into the river.
The corps announced the plan last month, touting the injection of a slurry of water, coal ash and lime into 25 miles of slide-prone levees in 200-mile stretch of the river from Alton, Ill., near St. Louis to tiny Gale on southern Illinois’ tip as the cheapest, longest-lasting fix among several options it weighed.
A public hearing on the matter, scheduled Thursday in St. Louis, is certain to elicit questions from environmentalists who consider the use of coal ash – also known as fly ash – a bad idea despite corps assurances that it has been used trouble-free on levees near Memphis for more than a decade.
Fri 23 Jul 2010
It’s Jam Band Friday – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RupUECcyVow
What ever happend to a great innovative idea. In Early 2008 everyone was a twitter about this story. Why? Because half to one third of the energy we generate is wasted. Then:
Scientists are developing a new device that could have a profound impact on global energy supplies by converting wasted heat into electricity. It could potentially have an impact on everything from power plants to cell phones, and it came about because of a serendipitous discovery that had eluded scientists for half a century.
Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley, have found a way to use ordinary silicon to convert heat to electricity. The technique could mean that some day you will be able to recharge your cell phone with electricity produced by your own body heat, and enormous amounts of energy that is now wasted could be recycled.
“We feel that this is a breakthrough,” said Arun Majumdar, a mechanical engineer and materials scientist with joint appointments at the Berkeley lab and UC Berkeley. “I’m very excited about this.”
Astonishingly, Majumdar and his colleagues didn’t set out to achieve what they have done.
“It was serendipitous,” he said. “We never planned for it.”
And perhaps even more surprising, they did it with a material that most scientists thought would never work for this purpose — ordinary silicon, a cheap, abundant material that is the foundation for the multibillion-dollar semiconductor industry.
Majumdar and his fellow researchers, including chemist Peidong Yang, a noted leader in the rapidly growing field of technology at the incredibly small “nano” scale, reported on their work in the Jan. 10 issue of the journal Nature. It’s not clear yet why the device they have created works.
“We don’t have all the answers at this point,” Majumdar said. But laboratory experiments show that it does, indeed, work. At least on a small scale. The device, placed between a hot plate and a cold plate, produced enough electricity to power a light bulb, although they didn’t do that demonstration. Instead, they measured the current flowing from the hot plate toward the cold plate, and it was sufficient to claim success, he said.
Waste heat — which is one of our favorites sources of energy here — essentially revolves around capturing heat from engines and machinery and using it to run things like water heaters or converting it into electricity. The U.S. consumes around 100 quads (100 quadrillion BTUs) of energy a year, and 55 to 60 quads get dissipated as waste heat, according to Arun Majumdar, the UC Berkeley professor who came up with a lot of the technology behind Alphabet (he now runs ARPA-E, the advanced projects group inside the Department of Energy). Thus, there is a lot of waste heat out there and it could be cheaper than solar. Alphabet estimates it could be a $200 billion market.
Heat-to-electricity can be accomplished in two ways. Companies such as Recycled Energy Development (RED) and Ormat have successfully retrofitted factories to capture waste heat, but these systems largely rely on mechanical engineering. Heat is captured and then channeled into productive uses. One of RED’s showcase projects — coming next year — is a system at West Virginia Alloys, a silicon manufacturer, that will generate 45 megawatts of electrical power from the waste heat generated by factory operations. The company uses 120 megawatts at the current time, but the waste heat system will effectively allow Alloys to recover about one-third of the power it now buys but wastes. Fuel cells can also be used to harvest waste heat.
Semiconductors could potentially be the next wave for the industry, and this is where Alphabet comes in. Traditional waste heat chips — heat goes in one side, electricity comes out the other — cost around $20 a watt and are made out of bismuth telluride. Alphabet won’t say what its semiconductor is made from, but sources say the chief material is silicon nanowires.
More next week.
Thu 22 Jul 2010
Paris — If you’re looking for a comprehensive resource for renewable energy installation figures, look no further: The Renewables Global Status report was released last week, and it provides a great snapshot of where and how renewables are being developed around the world.
The report was released by the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century, also known as REN21, and it provides an upbeat picture for renewables, despite the murky outlook for the global economy.
The report was originally released in 2005. Since then, solar PV has grown by 60 percent annually, wind by 27 percent, solar hot water by 19 percent, according to the authors. In 2009, renewables made up more than half of investment in global power generation. And that’s with depressed oil and gas prices, lenders being very choosy about projects and individual consumers facing their own financial problems. Total investment in the industry was about $150 billion last year.
Other than the stellar investment figures during a slow year for most other industries, there’s not much surprising in the 2009 report. The industry continues to move along – increasingly in developing countries – driven largely by robust public policy. Where policy lacks, investment does too.
Perhaps the most important trend is the role of China in the global renewable energy market. According to the report, the country produces about 40 precent of solar PV panels, 30 percent of wind turbines and 77 percent of solar hot water systems globally. The Chinese presence will impact investment decisions of companies as they work to compete with “The China Price,” and decide where to locate manufacturing facilities.
Many organizations like the International Energy Agency and the Energy Information Administration put together yearly figures on renewables. But none do it quite as comprehensively and clearly as the REN21 folks do. It’s worth keeping around as a go-to resource for figures on the industry.
Here are some other highlights taken straight from the report about the various renewables sectors:
Wed 21 Jul 2010
I think tossing oil into the environment is contagious.
BEIJING – China’s largest reported oil spill had more than doubled by Wednesday, closing beaches on the Yellow Sea and prompting an environmental official to warn the sticky black crude posed a “severe threat” to sea life and water quality.
Some workers trying to clean up the inky beaches wore little more than rubber gloves, complicating efforts, one official said. But 40 oil-control boats and hundreds of fishing boats were also deployed in the area.
“I’ve been to a few bays today and discovered they were almost entirely covered with dark oil,” said Zhong Yu, a worker with the environmental group Greenpeace China, who spent Wednesday on a boat inspecting the spill.
Tribune Washington Bureau
It took Republicans in the state House of Representatives here less than an hour Tuesday to deep-six an effort by Gov. Charlie Crist, a Republican turned independent, to push a constitutional amendment banning offshore drilling.
The outcome was not a surprise, but it was dramatic evidence that the massive oil spill is washing over gulf state politics as well as beaches.
Crist, a popular governor who is running for the U.S. Senate as an independent after being flanked by conservatives in his own party, is hoping that anger over the oil spill will propel him to office.
And the actions of the state GOP, while stopping Crist in the Legislature, appear likely to foment that anger further.
Fallout from the Deepwater Horizon rig disaster is seeping through congressional races nationwide. While the spill has emerged as a central issue in the Senate race here, it’s also pitted Gulf Coast Democrats on Capitol Hill against the Obama administration, made conservative folk heroes out of a pair of Republican governors, and handed Democrats something every campaign season needs: a black-hat villain in BP.
Tue 20 Jul 2010
July 20, 2010, 9:15 a.m. EDT · Recommend · Post:
BURTONSVILLE, Md., Jul 20, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) — New Energy Technologies, Inc. /quotes/comstock/11k!nene (NENE 0.53, +0.03, +6.00%) is pleased to announce that researchers developing its proprietary SolarWindow(TM) technology have achieved major scientific and technical breakthroughs, allowing the Company to unveil a working prototype of the world’s first-ever glass window capable of generating electricity in the upcoming weeks.
Until now, solar panels have remained opaque, with the prospect of creating a see-thru glass window capable of generating electricity limited by the use of metals and various expensive processes which block visibility and prevent light from passing through glass surfaces.
New Energy’s ability to generate electricity on see-thru glass is made possible by making use of the world’s smallest working organic solar cells, developed by Dr. Xiaomei Jiang at the University of South Florida. Unlike conventional solar systems, New Energy’s solar cells generate electricity from both natural and artificial light sources, outperforming today’s commercial solar and thin-film technologies by as much as 10-fold.
Click here to view press release, announcing test results which show New Energy’s see-thru SolarWindow(TM) cells surpass thin-film and solar in artificial light: http://www.newenergytechnologiesinc.com/NENE20090624.html
New Energy’s SolarWindow(TM) technology is under development for potential application in the estimated 5 million commercial buildings in America (Energy Information Administration) and more than 80 million single detached homes.
“We’re always keen to see innovations in our laboratories turn into meaningful commercial products,” stated Valerie McDevitt, Assistant Vice President for Research, Division of Patents and Licensing, University of South Florida. “We very much look forward to the commercial development of New Energy’s SolarWindow(TM) technology, which, if successful, could literally transform the way in which we view the use of solar energy for our homes, offices, and commercial buildings.”