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 Alternative Energy Sources

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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 5:48 am

There is much talk about alternative energy sources. The fact is that they exist. Some countries are utilizing these sources while others look on. Unless some can come up with their own brand, they seem to turn a blind eye to methods that are working.

Wind, water and sun provide natural energy sources. In Germany, wind towers are seen on high elevations that are creating energy. A huge source of electrical energy is derived from solar panels that cover many roofs. The energy from these panels provides warm water and electricity for the home. What is not used is sold to the electrical company. The cost to install solar panels was initially subsidized to offset the cost of installation. For older homes it could be expensive and take some years to recover the original cost. With new construction, the panels are financed as part of the building costs.

America is one of the largest consumers of fossil fuels, and that equates to one of the largest polluters of our environment. With the housing industry in the slump, and with much unemployment, I can imagine an industry devoted to the installation of solar panels in new home construction. What a great promotion to a new home buyer that causes him little, and in some cases, no energy costs. In addition, selling excess energy to the public utility can provide extra income. That is what is happening in Germany. Meters are installed that measure the amount of energy generated and what is used by the home. The excess is sent back to and paid for by the utility company. There are small businesses that specialize in solar panels and their installation.

I recently visited a mill in France that has re-activated old water wheels that were at one time used to power saws and grind grain. They had been discontinued when energy was cheap and it was simpler to plug into an electrical outlet for energy to power the machinery. High energy costs have re-activated some of the existing mills. In Holland the old wind mills are working again. In areas where it is very windy, wind mills makes sense. In areas where there is much sun, solar power makes sense. In areas with streams and rivers, water power makes sense. All of these are environmentally friendly.

Electric cars reduce carbon monoxide emissions, but still require batteries to be re-charged, and that takes energy. Solar power can provide this energy supply. Using grain to produce bio-fuel, however, may cause a food shortage. The weather may affect our food supply and we will need the grain to eat, not to burn.

The technology exists. Do we have the common sense to use it? We have the advantage of using methods that have been proven effective in other countries. But, the critics say, America is different. It canít work here. Why not? We have the advantage of taking what is working and improving on it. Trial and error learning is not required.

The thing that is different for America is a pessimistic mentality. Why do it, when what we have Ďstill worksí. That is not the mentality that built one of the most productive nations on earth. America was once known as an innovative nation. Is that no longer true?

Using natural resources, jobs can be created, our environment made clean and our economy can prosper. The future is now.
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dmondeo
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:58 am

I think Parliament and Congress would make an excellent alternative energy source if we could harness all that hot air!
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dmondeo
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 7:06 am

Use sunflowers to make fuel. It has been done in south Africa to drive tractors.
Some farmers devoted only 10% of their land to growing sunflowers which produced enough sunflower oil to run their tractors for a year.

It is possible to reuse oil from fast food chains that can be converted to run diesel cars. No one listens Abe unless they can gain $$$$$ they're not interested.
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James
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 7:20 am

There are some wind power plans in the works that should be aborted IMO.


One that I think is ill advised is off-shore generators along the eastern shores of Lake Michigan. Lake Michigan freezes in the Winter - and come Spring blocks of ice weighing tons are driven by the wind and pile up on the shores. Towers would be at risk ...

Maintenance during winter would be an expensive and risky proposition

James
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 11:23 am

I agree with you about off-shore installation of wind generators. Leave the water alone! Lake Michigan has enough of its own pollution issues by upsetting the balance of nature.
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dmondeo
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 11:30 am

Every home should have solar panels and wind power generators.
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James
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Wed Mar 09, 2011 12:51 pm

dkchristi
Quote :
I agree with you about off-shore installation of wind generators. Leave the water alone! Lake Michigan has enough of its own pollution issues by upsetting the balance of nature.


Yes - Lake Michigan is being threatened by Asian carp that are in the rivers around Chicago.

About the wind generators - failure of the towers because of ice could cause oil pollution from lube oils
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Sun Mar 13, 2011 12:37 pm

The Tsunami
in Japan has heightened thoughts about Alternative Energy
Sources.


Iím
wondering if anyone has tried to harness the power of the sea.


The Tides
go in and out every day. Lots of energy
to be tapped, no?
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alice
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Sun Mar 13, 2011 12:39 pm

Great idea!
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alj
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Sun Mar 13, 2011 2:17 pm

I dated a guy from Freeport, Texas while I was in college. The first time I went there to visit him, he had to show me how they got their water supply - a salt water conversion plant. In the early 60's it was the only one in existence, I believe.
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dmondeo
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 3:47 am

Abe F. March wrote:
The Tsunami
in Japan has heightened thoughts about Alternative Energy
Sources.


Iím
wondering if anyone has tried to harness the power of the sea.


The Tides
go in and out every day. Lots of energy
to be tapped, no?
Yes Abe we have the technology as they say.

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dmondeo
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 4:02 am

The thing is we have had all this for years yet no body has wanted to take it on.
These are proven clean methods of generating power here is another:
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:18 am

Thanks Dave.
Can't understand why we're not using this stuff. All we hear is that they are testing it. How many tests does it take to get the message that it works?

How can we get this information into the hands of the public so that they start demanding its use and shut down nuclear power plants?

Are they waiting for another nuclear accident?

I lived about 20 miles from Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania when they had that accident. Shit happens as do accidents. We need not wait for natural disasters, human errors occur.

As long as the sun and moon continue to orbit and the seas continue to exist, we have all the power we need to power our homes, streets and offices.

Spreading the word is needed. Ideas please.
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:20 am

Dave,
Can you give me the web address where I can copy and sent these webe videos?
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:42 am

Dave,
can you post those videos on Facebook? I think that may be a good way to start public awareness.
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dmondeo
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 9:05 am

Abe click on the you tube symbol on each player in my post it will take you to the page where these are posted and allow you to copy the embed code for posting. Very Happy
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 11:05 am

Thanks David.

I encourage everyone to send a message to their congressional representives in congress. I'm thinking that they are unaware of this invention, and while the current events in Japan are still being broadcast, it may help get things rolling. When I think of the Island of Japan, they could surround the country with this invention and have no need for nuclear plants.
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 12:06 pm

Check out Rio. They have some island monstrous power thing using water to generate power for the Olympics. A friend sent me the pictures - amazing. It did not have the source for me to send. I'll google and look for it. Amazing!!!
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James
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 2:32 pm

While creative and long past due - there is no new technology involved with Rio's Solar City Tower for the 2016 Olympics.


The idea behind it is to use solar power to provide electricity - and any excess will be used to pump water that will be directed across turbines to generate electricity at night.

Your home town water tower works much the same way! The difference is the use of solar power and (instead of supplying water to homes) the water is directed across turbines in the same way as any hydroelectric plant works

Thatís not to make less of the idea - it is creative and timely/
/
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:39 pm

Can it be replicated since it is no big new idea? It looks really cool in the pictures - magical. I don't know the cost to build it; but we have lots of islands around the U.S. - and what a tourist attraction! It's beautiful. If it can power the Olympics, it should be able to power coastal cities anyway.
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:42 pm

Here's a blog about the Rio generator with some pictures. Take a look. There are probably better sites. This is the first that came up on Google with some pictures. http://inhabitat.com/solar-city-tower-for-rio-olympics-giant-energy-generating-waterfall/
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James
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Mon Mar 14, 2011 7:41 pm

dkchristi (re., Rio's Solar City Tower)
Quote :
Can it be replicated since it is no big new idea?

James) Yes it can - however to be effective there would have to an awful lot of water held in a reservoir. And that isn't practical unless you could pump it up onto a hill where a lot of water could be stored.


Otherwise it is just a fun thing to do!
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:53 am

It seems to me that it must be generating plenty of power; and that location for Rio is not unique. There are many similar locations to locate. If it is just "fun" and not generating a lot of power without using oil, I don't understand the expense of building it. However, if it is an efficient way to produce power, then I don't yet see why it can't be replicated.
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James
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Tue Mar 15, 2011 6:39 am

dk
Quote :
if it is an efficient way to produce power, then I don't yet see why it can't be replicated.

The point is - it is not an efficient way to produce electricity


Many things are created just for the Olympics. In a way itís like displaying concept cars at an auto show

The practicality of the system is a matter of water storage. You canít store much in the tower without requiring a substantial foundation and support system. As I mentioned in the above post - if you can store the water in a reservoir on a hill somewhere the idea might have some practicality.

But hydroelectric power requires a lot of water - and what would be the point in using solar power to pump water - just to have the water develop electricity that you just wasted in pumping the water?

Itís just a fun thing to do!

James
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RetiredName
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PostSubject: Re: Alternative Energy Sources   Tue Mar 15, 2011 7:21 am

Solar power right now in not great for large scale use. It is not an efficient enough. Advances in solar panels will help this in the years to come.

A much interesting use is a solar steam. This uses solar power to turn water to steam and turn a turbine. It's a closed system and pilot plants are being built in Arizona and California.

The overall problem with large scale wind, solar or tides is it's not on demand, that is, they can't be ramped up or shutdown by the utility like a regular power plant. There is ways around this but the technology is still immature.

This all definately an area the feds could invest in to make things happen.
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