Category Archives: Energy

the posts in this category used to be in “Energy in A Nutshell” at my former web site.

Large agribusiness gets corporate welfare via illegal ethanol subsidies

What more proof is needed that the Energy Returned on Energy Invested of ethanol is negative?  They’re losing money and getting corporate welfare to keep the scam going, meanwhile destroying prime topsoil, poisoning the land with pesticides, and eutrophying the … Continue reading

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Biggest solar power plant ever – $2.2 billion for only 100 MW

The $2.2 billion dollar Ivanpah Solar power plant generates 100 MW of power when you take the 25% capacity into account (not 400 MW).  That’s enough power for 25,000 to 50,000 homes.  There are 116,700,000 households (2010 census).  So we’d … Continue reading

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Renewable incentives destabilize, harm electric grid

Wald, Matthew L.   7 Oct 2014. How Grid Efficiency Went South. New York times. Summary: 1) society would be better off if homeowners faced their rooftop solar panels westward, the peak time more energy is needed, but they won’t because … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Photovoltaic Solar | Leave a comment

LNG overview

Liquefied natural gas is natural gas chilled down to -260 F which reduces its volume by about 600 times. Back in 2004 the USA was about to import LNG because we appeared to be running low on natural gas here.  … Continue reading

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Almost half of Rail Freight is Energy, increasingly Crude Oil

Source: American Association of Railroads. 46% of all tonnage hauled by freight trains is Energy: In 2014, crude oil will likely be 650,000 carloads — 2% of all carloads, 2.2% of tonnage.  In addition 2.6% of rail tonnage was refined … Continue reading

Posted in Oil & Gas, Pipeline, Railroads, Refining, Trucks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Conservation? Maybe not: Jevon’s Paradox & the Rebound Effect

Conservation? Maybe not: Jevon’s Paradox & the Rebound Effect by Alice Friedemann, October 7, 2014 The rebound effect makes it much more difficult to solve our energy problems, because the full energy savings aren’t realized, and the energy savings can … Continue reading

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Moving oil by ship or barge to refineries

Frittelli, J., et al. May 5, 2014. U.S. Rail Transportation of Crude Oil: Background and Issues for Congress. Congressional Research Service. Barge One river barge can hold 10,000 to 30,000 barrels of oil. Two to three river barges are typically … Continue reading

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When trucks stop running, Civilization stops running.

If Trucks Stopped Running by Alice Friedemann, October 1, 2014 In “Why You Should Love Trucks” I showed that essential supply chains depend on trucks partly or completely in the movement of goods (NAS). Because of little inventory and dependence … Continue reading

Posted in Cascading Failure, Dependence on Oil, Infrastructure, Oil Shocks, Transportation, Transportation, Trucks | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

The Nitrogen Bomb – fossil-fueled fertilizers keep 5.5 billion people alive

Fisher, D. 4 April 2001. Discover magazine Vol. 22 No. 4  The Nitrogen Bomb. By learning to draw fertilizer from a clear blue sky, chemists have fed the multitudes. They’ve also unleashed a fury as threatening as atomic energy. In … Continue reading

Posted in Fertilizer, Food, Natural Gas | Leave a comment

Out of time: 50 years to make a transition, 210 years at the current rate

If transportation is to be electrified, then electric generation and the electric grid must be doubled, or even tripled. So by Cobb’s calculation, that would push back the transition time to renewables 420 to 630 years.  Alice Friedemann. By Kurt … Continue reading

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