Category Archives: Alternative Energy

The U.S. Military on Peak Oil and Climate Change

Preface. I find that of all the government branches, the military is the most realistic about the implications of Peak Oil and Climate Change.  The Department of Defense is also the largest consumer of energy in the federal government, spending … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Military | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Vaclav Smil: from wood to coal to oil, energy transitions take a long time

Preface.  This post has a shortened, reworded, and heavily commented on article from Scientific American in 2014.  You can also see two much longer articles about energy transitions by Smil from n 2008 and 2010 here: Vaclav Smil: Our transition … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Coal, Dependence on Oil, Energy, Vaclav Smil | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

41 Reasons why wind power can not replace fossil fuels

Preface. Electricity simply doesn’t substitute for all the uses of fossil fuels, so windmills will never be able to reproduce themselves from the energy they generate — they are simply not sustainable.  Consider the life cycle of a wind turbine … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Energy, Wind | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Book review of Vaclav Smil’s “Energy Transitions: History, Requirements, Prospects”

Preface.  In my extract of the 178 pages in the book below, Smil explains why renewables can’t possibly replace fossil fuels, and appears to be exasperated that people believe this can be done when he writes “Common expectations of energy … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Energy, Vaclav Smil | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

The electric grid: fragile, filthy, poorly managed, polluting, inefficient, corrupt

Preface. Most forms of alternative energy depend on the electric grid (nuclear, wind, solar, geothermal, hydropower). But the Grid is falling apart.  Most people who care about climate change believe electrifying everything will solve our problems. This energy section of … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Blackouts, Books, Electricity, Energy | 3 Comments

Challenges & opportunities for alternative transportation fuels and vehicles. U.S. House hearing, 2011

Congress is aware that an energy crisis looms, though they seldom acknowledge or deal with it.  Here are a few excerpts from this hearing: Michael F. Doyle, Pennsylvania.   It seems like we repeat this cycle in this country decade after … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Energy Dependence, Energy Policy, Transportation | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Power density of biomass, wind, & solar take too much land to replace fossil fuels

Preface. Vaclav Smil writes “The fact that wind, solar, and biomass have incredibly low energy density per square meter means that a fully renewable system to replace the 320 GW of fossil fueled electricity generation and 1.8 TW of coal, … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Biomass, Coal, Hydropower, Natural Gas, Oil | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why it is futile to think that Wind could ever make a significant contribution to energy supplies

Matt Ridley. May 15, 2017. Wind turbines are neither clean nor green and they provide zero global energy. Even after 30 years of huge subsidies, it provides about zero energy. The Spectator. The Global Wind Energy Council recently released its … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Wind | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Peak soil: Industrial agriculture destroys ecosystems and civilizations. Biofuels make it worse.

Alice Friedemann. 2017. Peak Soil.  Last update Oct 23, 2017, first 2007 [ Formerly titled: Why Biofuels are Not Sustainable and a Threat to America’s National Security.  Shorter versions appear in the following books: Jacqueline Langwith, ed. 2008.  “Opposing Viewpoints: Renewable … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Energy, Biofuels, Biomass, Energy, Peak Biofuels, Soil, Soil | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Big Fight: 21 top scientists show why Jacobson and Delucchi’s renewable scheme is a delusional fantasy

[ Seldom have I seen such a vitriolic fight among scientists.  As you’ll see below, I think all of them miss the main problems with trying to create a 100% renewable energy system, though I can only summarize and leave … Continue reading

Posted in ! PEAK EVERYTHING, Alternative Energy, Electric Grid, Electricity, Infrastructure | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments