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(Posted as Black Aurora)
Posts: 461/469
(10-Aug-2012 at 15:31)


Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by Gotterdammerung: View Post
Uranium has the most joules per gram, then coal, then down the line a bit comes silicon solar panels.
And here I was thinking we didn't burn solar panels, but used them to collect energy from the sun. What does your little joule-per-gram-o-gram say about the materials invovled in nuclear fusion?


Quote:
The only advantage of solar/wind/thermal/tidal/hydro is that it is reusable and self-sustainable. But so what? The economic test is efficiency. You can just keep shovelling cheap coal and make so much more power for so much cheaper.
But then there's the matter of depletion. The faster we burn through coal, the harder it'll be to get to it, makin it far more expensive over time.

Quote:
And then when the seas rise you move the plant up the hill and still the whole process is more efficient.
Well yeh, if you neglect to calc in the cost of all the shit that has disappeared under water. I'm sure coal powered plants could pay to completely rebuild the east and west coast of the US, and still be more cost-efficient than solar panels. Uhuh. *nods*
#21  
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(11-Aug-2012 at 04:17)
Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by Black Aurora: View Post
And here I was thinking we didn't burn solar panels, but used them to collect energy from the sun. What does your little joule-per-gram-o-gram say about the materials invovled in nuclear fusion?
Fine, let's count mining, transporting and burning coal in continual supply vs. manufacturing stand alone solar panels.

Which is better. Exactly. Solar has clear limitations and lags behind.

Quote:
But then there's the matter of depletion. The faster we burn through coal, the harder it'll be to get to it, makin it far more expensive over time.
Sure, eventually coal will deplete to a certain threshhold which makes it unviable. But until that happens it will remain king.

Quote:
Well yeh, if you neglect to calc in the cost of all the shit that has disappeared under water. I'm sure coal powered plants could pay to completely rebuild the east and west coast of the US, and still be more cost-efficient than solar panels. Uhuh. *nods*
And here you are thinking that solar panels will save us all and that the globe isn't going to heat up anyway, which it will.
#22  
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(11-Aug-2012 at 08:39)


Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by Gotterdammerung: View Post
You guys would have seen Penn & Teller, right? - Very entertaining + informative and supports my point

[Contains strong language]

[ZOMG double Post - merge plox?]
Did you actually watch that episode ? They are mostly having a go at the people selling carbon credits and hero worship of a certain Mr. Gore- nothing about the economic viability of renewable resources.

Quote:
You don't get it do you. You need fossil fuels to make solar panels. You can't use solar panels to make solar panels. Then you have to store the energy in (what's that?) batteries.
This was solved in a number of ways long time ago. One of the simplest is to use the excess energy to pump a lake up a hill, when the energy is needed you let it back down again and collect the kinetic energy as it comes back down.

When comparing renewables (you seem stuck on solar but ok) price per watt is but one item to check. How about deaths per watt ? The coal industry claims a good number each year http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_mining#Safety

Quote:
Sure, eventually coal will deplete to a certain threshhold which makes it unviable. But until that happens it will remain king.
It's never going to be that simple. If we ignore enviromental concerns for the moment I think you are grossly underestimating whats involved. Setting up a wind farm of size, a solar plant of size, hydro electric generators e.t.c. is a huge construction project and the technology involved is still relatively new (compared to burning things for energy anyway). Each time a new plant is built we learn how to do it better, after seeing it in use we learn a little more. Theoretically improvements in harvesting renewable energy is but half of the work, the other half comes from practice of technology.

Look at it this way, not investing in renewables until the price per watt beats coal anywhere in the world (which it ALREADY DOES IN PLACES is like not investing in any military men, arms & equipment until war arrives.

If you are going to bang the drum that price per watt is king, stop talking about coal, gas beats coal considerably.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors

Last edited by Grashnak, 11-Aug-2012 at 08:46.
#23  
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(12-Aug-2012 at 05:24)
Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by Grashnak: View Post
Did you actually watch that episode ? They are mostly having a go at the people selling carbon credits and hero worship of a certain Mr. Gore- nothing about the economic viability of renewable resources.
Firstly, entertaining viewing, wasn't it?

Secondly, there was alot of hot air ( )taken out of the green movement.

Economic viability is something more complex, which we can now discuss.

Quote:
This was solved in a number of ways long time ago. One of the simplest is to use the excess energy to pump a lake up a hill, when the energy is needed you let it back down again and collect the kinetic energy as it comes back down.
I was refering to the seas rising specifically.

[quote]When comparing renewables (you seem stuck on solar but ok) price per watt is but one item to check. How about deaths per watt ? The coal industry claims a good number each year http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_mining#Safety[.quote]

I'm not 'stuck on solar' and I also mentioned others in my past post.

Deaths per watt is apart of capitalism. Sadly, you can put a price on human lives.

Is that right or wrong? Not sure. But if you want to get into a moral debate we can do that. Collectively, people seem to accept the risks if the money is right.

Quote:
It's never going to be that simple. If we ignore enviromental concerns for the moment I think you are grossly underestimating whats involved. Setting up a wind farm of size, a solar plant of size, hydro electric generators e.t.c. is a huge construction project and the technology involved is still relatively new (compared to burning things for energy anyway). Each time a new plant is built we learn how to do it better, after seeing it in use we learn a little more. Theoretically improvements in harvesting renewable energy is but half of the work, the other half comes from practice of technology.
How am I underestimating anything? I am glad for companies to spend money on research that may or may not sink their business.

There are the safe betters and risk takers in every industry, but I fail to see how your optimism changes the current state of things in terms of dominance of coal and other fossil fuels.

Quote:
Look at it this way, not investing in renewables until the price per watt beats coal anywhere in the world (which it ALREADY DOES IN PLACES is like not investing in any military men, arms & equipment until war arrives.
I agree completely. I'm simply making a cost per benefit analysis. In some places in the world it's easy to ignore coal or gas, but in others it's not viable. In general, and this is my argument, coal is better, and until this changes I see no rushed transition to renewable energy.

Quote:
If you are going to bang the drum that price per watt is king, stop talking about coal, gas beats coal considerably.
Sure, and I've also mentioned nuclear, but not everyone wants or has economical access to them like they do with coal. It's just so abundant and it's also very cheap.
#24  
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(13-Aug-2012 at 22:36)


Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by Gotterdammerung: View Post
Uranium has the most joules per gram, then coal, then down the line a bit comes silicon solar panels.

It's fucking chemistry, mate.

The only advantage of solar/wind/thermal/tidal/hydro is that it is reusable and self-sustainable. But so what? The economic test is efficiency. You can just keep shovelling cheap coal and make so much more power for so much cheaper.

And then when the seas rise you move the plant up the hill and still the whole process is more efficient.
Science is constantly evolving. What we see as top today may be mediocre in a few decades

The very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common; they don't alter their views to fit the facts, they alter the facts to fit the views
#25  
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(14-Aug-2012 at 21:17)


Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by Gotterdammerung: View Post

How am I underestimating anything? I am glad for companies to spend money on research that may or may not sink their business.

There are the safe betters and risk takers in every industry, but I fail to see how your optimism changes the current state of things in terms of dominance of coal and other fossil fuels.
My optimisim ? I think you have misunderstood completely or perhaps I didn't explain very well. Let me requote your main argument:

Quote:
Green energy is inferior.

It's a scam because if your competitors convince you to 'downgrade' to green energy then you will be disadvantaged. Also there is the matter of manufacting green products, as they invariable involve materials that are sources from oil, like plastic.


The only advantage of solar/wind/thermal/tidal/hydro is that it is reusable and self-sustainable. But so what? The economic test is efficiency. You can just keep shovelling cheap coal and make so much more power for so much cheaper.

In the overwhelming majority of circumstances fossil fuels win on price per watt and will do so for a very significant time. Let's assume if we stop tax payer funded research & investment into alternative power sources through research grants or subsidy - getting away from the green 'scam', the effect of course is the virtual death of the industry as it is today until generation at scale can meet the price per watt of fossil fuels.

However at that point, fossil fuels have become rare compared to the global demand for power (or at least significantly more expensive to extract) meaning countries will naturally hoard fuel 'wealth' for their own people & industries or go to war for it of course. Nations will then need to replace fossil fuel burners for alternative sources - but creating any new infrastructure at scale is very, very hard to do and when it is something so fundamental to our modern lives as electricity it would be a task of truly mammoth proportions. It's not just a matter of laying the concrete and plonking down panels/wind turbines and so on you have to solve a good number of other concerns from transmission and storage to backups - not to mention building enough factories and developing supply chains to ensure uninterrupted supply and maintenance of the alternative source.

So rather than wait until it is economically efficient we need to practice building them now at large scale and developing the skills, experience and solutions to the practical issues of replacing the current means of generating, storing and supplying energy.

I would like to write more (and the argument better) but my time is so limited these days.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#26  
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Posts: 1633/1637
(15-Aug-2012 at 06:58)
Re: A green future - yeh right

Originally Posted by DHoffryn: View Post
Science is constantly evolving. What we see as top today may be mediocre in a few decades
I'm certain it will. No argument from me on that one.

Originally Posted by Grashnak: View Post
My optimisim ? I think you have misunderstood completely or perhaps I didn't explain very well. Let me requote your main argument:




In the overwhelming majority of circumstances fossil fuels win on price per watt and will do so for a very significant time. Let's assume if we stop tax payer funded research & investment into alternative power sources through research grants or subsidy - getting away from the green 'scam', the effect of course is the virtual death of the industry as it is today until generation at scale can meet the price per watt of fossil fuels.

However at that point, fossil fuels have become rare compared to the global demand for power (or at least significantly more expensive to extract) meaning countries will naturally hoard fuel 'wealth' for their own people & industries or go to war for it of course. Nations will then need to replace fossil fuel burners for alternative sources - but creating any new infrastructure at scale is very, very hard to do and when it is something so fundamental to our modern lives as electricity it would be a task of truly mammoth proportions. It's not just a matter of laying the concrete and plonking down panels/wind turbines and so on you have to solve a good number of other concerns from transmission and storage to backups - not to mention building enough factories and developing supply chains to ensure uninterrupted supply and maintenance of the alternative source.

So rather than wait until it is economically efficient we need to practice building them now at large scale and developing the skills, experience and solutions to the practical issues of replacing the current means of generating, storing and supplying energy.

I would like to write more (and the argument better) but my time is so limited these days.
Thanks for the reply. I agree with you completely on the need to research new fuel sources but, to be fair, I believe that this is a peripheral concern, and as current models become less and less viable then the investment into alternative energies must inevitably increase.

At this point in time I don't think we are, in general, at a stage where investment into alternative energies should outway traditional ones, nor do I believer that the transition is unavoidable.

Yes, yes there are finite natural resources and we have to run out eventually, I know the argument. But in the future there is no reason why we cannot manufacture our own synthetic fuel sources based on our knowledge of chemistry and how best to harness the price per watt model of power (asside from renewables). It is my understanding that 'burning things' not recycling will always be more cost effective.
#27  
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(Posted as Black Aurora)
Posts: 462/469
(15-Aug-2012 at 22:59)


yaknow, optical black holes would totally shatter any current level of efficiency on solar panels. They have em working for microwave frequencies, and when nano-engineering develops further, they'll be able to make em work on visible light as well.


http://www.newscientist.com/article/...-on-earth.html
#28  
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