[LMB] OT: energy strategies

Francis Turner francis.turner at gmail.com
Fri Jun 27 10:28:49 BST 2008

On Fri, Jun 27, 2008 at 12:07 AM, Mark Allums <mark at allums.com> wrote:
> Ed Burkhead wrote:
>> Mark wrote:
>>> It might be useful to use synthetic hydrocarbons created that way as an
>>> energy storage method, since the infrastructure for storing and
>>> delivering hydrocarbons already exists.  But there are surely more
>>> efficient energy storage methods available.
>> True.
>> But we can't yet fill the batteries and fly a plane to, hardly, anyware.
>> And we can't yet drive our car 200-300 miles, stop for a battery fill-up and
>> be on the road in 20 minutes.
>> What other energy transfer methods did you have in mind that are more
>> efficient?  Do they also pass the "practical" test?
The cambridge physicist David MacKay has written a book analyzing
various energy strategies at http://www.withouthotair.com/ he also has
a blog http://withouthotair.blogspot.com/

Very good from what I've read so far on the costs of various energy
strategies (short answer and he doesn't see to like it is Nuclear all
the way)

> Well, I'm thinking of the future of course.  I believe electricity will
> work if and when good batteries are developed.  I think it will happen.
> Solar power will never be enough to run the country on (it can't, not
> enough solar energy to go around), but it will be a good supplement to
> nuclear power.
> Methane/methanol fuel cells might be practical.  Hydrogen fuel cells
> conceivably could be, although I think that there are definitely
> roadblocks there.
> --Mark Allums

BTW in regard to biofue etc. it is worth pointing out that there is in
fact quite a lot of land that is now out of production but which used
to be used until fairly recently. E.g. in the former soviet union -
see http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/money/2008/06/20/cnrussia120.xml

Faber's Fourth Law:
 Necessity is the mother of strange bedfellows.

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