We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Wednesday, August 18. 2010
Wednesday morning links
Well, let's start off with some good news. Usually when Congress puts bills right out in the open, people bitch and moan and complain and nothing gets done. But when they meet in a closed-door session, as they did last night, often 'miraculous' results ensue (see picture) that finally solve some nagging national problem, once and for all.
Congress passes bill making new low-energy car mandatory by 2016
(you'll have to excuse me — I'm not as good at this links stuff as the other guys and sometimes don't get the headlines exactly correct)
Well, good news for golfers. A new golf school has opened up using a revolutionary new technique that's apparently displaying remarkable results.
Ah-ha! I fixed my time machine and now it looks like it'll snag two headlines from 10 years in the future. Here goes!
More than half of America's wind farms built where there is not enough wind
Global temperatures much higher than 10 years ago, CO2 levels 20 times higher
On the other hand, it's nice to finally get our dirty little secret out in the open. Fry, Russkies!
White House gardener weighs in on world affairs
Posted by Dr. Mercury in Hot News & Misc. Short Subjects at 06:00 | Comments (9) | Trackbacks (0)
Trackback specific URI for this entry
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
The wind-farm article is actually about British wind farms, though similar things are probably happening here.
Hold on a sec.
"...though similar things are probably happening here will probably happen here in 10 years."
There we go. All fixed. :)
Dr M...do.not.understand. Do you not think that some far-from-economically-rational deployments of wind power are happening in the US *right now*?
Dave - Of course. I just wanted to play off the theme in the post, the "10 years in the future" thing. That's actually kind of a fun idea, and the first one today was a perfect example, like the NHS one the other day. Just substitute "America" for the country in the headline and there's our future.
Here's a post I did a couple of years ago on the subject. I don't have it set up to display correctly (banner & sidebar) so it won't look correct, but you'll get the idea.
Very few folks are taking global warming [by which I'm referring to man-made global warming] lightly. It's one the greatest con-games since Piltdown man. And it has made Al Gore, who started the whole bloody con after he lost the election and went down in his basement to pout about it, a lot of money.
Wind power is just another currently unworkable aspect of green solutions. One of the first 'wind farms' was in the Hawaiian Islands, famous for their lovely and almost constant trade winds. If it was going to work anywhere, it should have worked there. Guess what? The wind farm turbines there are mostly non-functional today.
As the old song says, 'Sometimes the wind don't blow, baby, Sometimes the sun don't shine." None of these 'green solutions' are working the way they were promised. If you want dependable power, you are still going to have to find it in fossil fuels [natural gas, coal, petroleum] or nuclear power.
MM - In my opinion, on the global warming front, the most heartbreaking story of the year was that the charges against the Crazed Sex Poodle™ didn't pan out. Most people don't know the names of Henson and the rest of Gore's henchmen, but everyone knows the big guy. To see him fall far from grace would have been the greatest triumph for truth imaginable.
Maybe next time.
From this Wind Energy Resource Map, it is apparent that the Great Plains constitute one of the best wind resources for the country, where it is easy to build- not on a mountain- and where there is a lot of wind. This map could be used to stop bogus projects located in areas with little or no wind, such as onshore Alabama or Louisiana. [granted, one might need more detail.] We certainly do not need wind turbines placed where there is little or no wind.
I pay seven cents per kilowatt hour for electrical energy generated from wind. Contrary to Marianne's assertion, it works. Were Marianne to drive out to the Permian Basin, she would see a lot of turbines operating. The intermittent nature of wind energy will be to a fair degree canceled out by wind turbines over large areas, where the wind doesn't blow in area A but is currently blowing in area B. For the reason of its intermittent nature, wind energy should not be a primary solution, but a supplementary solution. Marianne is correct that any energy solution will also entail fossil fuels and nuclear power, with continued investment in same.
"...though similar things are probably happening here will probably happen here in 10 years.
Installed wind energy: 9 gigawatts Texas; 4 gigawatts, United Kingdom. Well, Dr. M., the wind projects in TX are located in windy areas. Guess the rednecks are a little more savvy than the limeys.
This material is somewhat dated, as we are no longer in 2004:wind energy cost down from 40 cents/kwh in 1979 to 3-5 cents/kwh in 2004. However, it does point to progress in wind turbine design, basically by making them taller.
Big G -
As I see it, three of main counterpoints are covered in your comment. Interesting map, BTW, thanks. I can't remember the name of the pass, but there's a little black circle to the right of S.F. up in the Sierras that's the singular windiest place I've ever been. Don't wear a poncho.
1. "she would see a lot of turbines operating."
A statement that speaks for itself. Welcome to the age where words such as Beauty and Vista and Scenery take a back seat to the ceaseless demands of Technological Need.
2. "a supplementary solution."
What happens when everything's normal and "supplementary" power isn't required?
3. "basically by making them taller."
Just curious, but don't a bunch of ratchets and levers and gears sound just a little bit, oh, gosh, what's the word...
From what I understand, the failure rate is pretty high with these things, with figures like "40%" floating around. And understandably, I might add. Sitting outside in the elements while performing a relatively delicate mechanical task isn't for the squeamish.
And, ya know, upon reflection, I was wrong. 'Archaic' isn't the word. The principle, iteself, is sound. Holland proved you can make windmills that'll last generations. If you were looking to point a finger at the high failure rate, I'd point it at over-engineering. The mind cringes to think what a roomful of EE's would do to such a simple principle.
About being left out of the top 100 conservative bloggers. It's a quality versus quantity situation. Most people can afford Michael Collins single malt, so it is more popular. Maggies is like Glenfiddith. It requires both the knowledge that there is better and the drive to obtain it. We the lucky few.....