Posted by Reddy Watt, a resident of the The Greenhouse neighborhood, on Sep 11, 2012 at 2:13 pm
"imaginie what nuclear power could achieve"
I have. A big steaming pile of... radiation.
Last week, CA's solar plants passed a milestone: 1,000 megawatts during a spare the air day. Did not include rooftop solar production.
Germany continues to lead the way; in May they surpassed 22,000 megawatts:
"Norbert Allnoch, director of the Institute of the Renewable Energy Industry (IWR) in Muenster, said the 22 gigawatts of solar power per hour fed into the national grid on Saturday met nearly 50 percent of the nation's midday electricity needs."
Posted by More-From-Stanford--Big-Wind-Or-Hot-Air, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Sep 11, 2012 at 2:59 pm
If the Stanford people believe their own research, then they could put their money where their mouth is--and go open a couple wind farms and how us how it's done. Building mathematical models is a lot different from actually running the businesses that they claim can produce all of this power.
Sadly .. people at places like Stanford can say pretty much anything they want--whether its right, or wrong.
Posted by More-From-Stanford--Big-Wind-Or-Hot-Air, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Sep 11, 2012 at 3:38 pm
> "climate change is a hoax"
Anyone who has ever taken Geology 101 comes to realize that "climate change" is a natural process that goes on continuously--sometimes driven by subtle forces, and other times, by violent ones--such a massive volcanic activity.
The question on the table is: "Is Man causing climate to change in a way that is outside the parameters of natural change?" For the most part, this question is still in the air--with the exception of the claims of Al Gore, who does not seem to have ever taken a science class.
Posted by Donald, a resident of the South of Midtown neighborhood, on Sep 11, 2012 at 3:50 pm
The important question is NOT: "Is Man causing climate to change in a way that is outside the parameters of natural change?" Natural change has produced some very extreme conditions, but we were not here to have to deal with them. I am sure that the earth itself will survive whatever we throw at it, but the human race might not do so.
Posted by Perspective, a resident of the Greater Miranda neighborhood, on Sep 12, 2012 at 5:16 am
Well, if what the Stanford folks say is true, I recommend they put some money into a wind company and make a fortune. If not...it is like Gore et al screaming about 'rising oceans' while buying beach front property. I don't believe it.
Posted by More-From-Stanford--Big-Wind-Or-Hot-Air, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Sep 12, 2012 at 8:32 am
> Natural change has produced some very extreme conditions,
> but we were not here to have to deal with them.
True. Certainly the extreme climate changes doing periods of glaciations were very destructive to certain life forms. Moreover, there were events called: “Mass Extinctions” that have come to the attention of geologists during the last few decades, that seem to have been triggered by “natural” events that are of magnitude that we humans would not likely be able to “control” them, or trigger them—via our activities.
These “extreme events” provide one set of “outside parameters” of climate variables. An “inside” set needs to be determined which are not nearly as extreme, and which might be subject to the forces that man might be able to exert against “the environment”.
Glaciations seem to occur often enough, but we are probably so far away from the next on-set of an “ice time” that it’s not worth talking about. Asteroid “hits” are also not some thing that we all can agree are outside man’s influence to cause. We probably will need to put together some sort of “defense” one of these days. However, it’s very possible that man might not be able to stop asteroids above a given size, leaving us vulnerable to future mass extinction events that would probably be brought on by something akin to “global cooling”.
So.. for the near term, we should be trying to link (or prove a lack of linkage) between man’s activities and “climate change” that can not be considered as “extreme”.
Posted by whole picture, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Sep 12, 2012 at 11:19 am
This is merely (much-needed) hypothetical boundary calculation here, it leaves out the two great challenges of wind power since the wind does not always blow, and is distributed globally without regard to the populace in need of energy: how to move the captured energy to the demand and how to store it for use when the wind dies seasonally or daily.
Posted by dave , a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Sep 12, 2012 at 10:43 pm
A major problem would be moving the energy from, for example, the Gobi Desert to a large, populated area. There is always some transmission line loss e.g. so many percent per X number of miles - maybe the Stanford professors could calculate this. It's a long way from the sites mentioned to here or Europe.
No one has mentioned the number of birds likely to be killed unless the turbines are so designed as to prevent them from running into the blades. I believe there are thousands yearly in the East Bay Hills alone, and that's a small wind farm.
Posted by Anon., a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Sep 13, 2012 at 12:44 am
Wind is a pretty good idea. If AMBRI/LMB Corporation every gets their liquid batteries working at a large scale wind and solar could be much more effective.
The one thing I noticed is that on the drive down to LA there is location where there are a lot of windmills all of them different sizes and turning at different speeds, and late at night when I was tired it was damn hard to drive through that area because it was so distracting. Then there is the bird killing problem.