"You merely adopted the dark. I was born in it,..." -Bane
Ohio River Hydro Power
Article from the Louisville Courier-Journal:
The barges, with submerged turbines, would each generate relatively little electricity — enough to power about 260 typical homes.
While dams have long been a source of hydroelectric power, using barges to capture the power of moving water — a technique known as hydrokinetics — has been getting attention recently.
“All of this technology is in demonstration mode,” said Doug Hall, who manages the water energy research program for the U.S. Department of Energy's Idaho National Laboratory. “There's a certain amount of speculation going on.”
Federal regulators have issued 144 preliminary permits for similar projects since 2007, with more than 65 on the Mississippi River.
“”Hydrokinetic turbines are unable to produce much electricity because the river current moves too slowly, he said, adding that he has doubts about the long-term reliability of the equipment.
A lot of wind-power opponents complain about how the turbines "spoil the view" but the ones in NY aren't being put on pristine land. They're being put mostly on farm land, some of which is still actively farmed, but a good amount of it abandoned, either because the farmers have quit farming or just retired. The turbines are no worse than seeing the old Harvestore silos and rotting dairy barns that litter the countryside. At least the turbines are enabling active farmers to keep farming and ex-farmers to keep their land as large parcels rather than selling it off piece-meal for house lots and "farmettes" -- and that's in addition to generating electricity. They're a win-win prospect for rural areas of WNY.
I also like the fact that solar and wind tend to complement each other: if it isn't a beautiful, sunny day, the odds are good that winds are higher than usual.
The same goes with HydroStations. Here in NZ, it's been proposed that we utilize as much wind resource as we can, and when there isn't enough wind to fund regions/cities, THEN we open up the hydrodams alittle bit more - basically utilizing the solar/wind energy as much as we can before relying on anything like Hydro/Coal/etc. About 3-4 years ago, NZ was struck with a power issue as our lakes were drying up and we had to pull together to conserve energy, and you know what? We did. As a country, when the chips are down, people will pull together to bring the rest out of remission. Why cant we be like that all the time I'll never know...
On a different note on power saving...anyone got their hands on the new LED Lightbulbs yet?? (Well, they're not exactly 'new'...but still having a hard time on the market due to their cost)
Vegetable Garden + Home Garden = My Garden
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I'm envious. Here in the US, we don't seem to be making any big strides with renewables and have lost the ability to "pull together". Some seem to consider the push for renewable energy a plot to ruin the economy. I have my doubts that we will have enough in place to buffer our economy against the next round of oil price shocks, keeping us in a state of weak growth.About 3-4 years ago, NZ was struck with a power issue as our lakes were drying up and we had to pull together to conserve energy, and you know what? We did. As a country, when the chips are down, people will pull together to bring the rest out of remission. Why cant we be like that all the time I'll never know...
Wind and solar are good local and small scale solutions. The important point with wind turbines is to find good locations so that it produces energy... I've heard about this tool called UrbaWind to predict the wind energy production: http://www.meteodyn.com/en/software/urbawind.html
Right now the solar solutions are improving alot.
There are BIPV panels that look great on building while creating power.
Thin film solar panels that can conform with alot of differently shaped buildings.
There are many new buildings converting to using solar energy to power itself.
Also, there are mini solar and wind converters which are pretty cute. I think they are going to be in CES this year call Hymini. It's made by one of my favourtie companies. It's a little gadget that can use solar, wind, and hand crank to charge hand held gadgets.
I bought one 2 months ago and it worked great when I was travelling. I could charge my mp3 player and cellphone anywhere.
Anyway, I hope there will be more and more green innovations in the small and large scale.
"Spain was in 2013 the first country where wind energy was the first source of electricity for an entire year," Acociation Empresaria Edica (AEE), 1/15/2014. Snippets:According to the 2013 advance report of the system operator Red Eléctrica de España (REE), the power demand coverage using wind was 20.9%, compared with 20.8% coming from nuclear.
Wind power production during 2013 has been 54,478 GWh, representing a 13.2% increase over 2012. According to calculations by the Spanish Wind Energy Association (AEE), this generation is enough to supply 15.5 million households, a 90% of the total. Nuclear produced 2,337 GWh more than wind last year, but its contribution to the power demand coverage was lower because it consumes more electricity than wind to run its facilities, and this is deducted when calculating power demand coverage.2013 could go down in history as a great year for the Spanish wind sector. But it is not the case. The wind power companies ended the year still without knowing the economic impact of the Government’s energy reform. If it goes ahead as proposed, it will have an unfair and disproportionate effect on the wind sector. Companies start 2014 mired in legal uncertainty - retroactivity of legislation set up by the energy reform means that the facilities in place are not going to have the expected income when the investments were made, and without expectation about the future, it is going to be difficult to encourage investors to invest in wind power in this country.(Commentary) one day after the above publication:Wind energy was regulated for the first time in Spain Special Regime Law 54/1997 Electrical Sector, which has been replaced by Law 24/2013 in the context of the Energy Reform. During these 16 years, imports of fossil fuels to generate electricity, as well as emissions of pollutants and CO2 to the atmosphere, have been reduced by over 20%.
http://www.geek.com/science/spain-be...nergy-1582426/ ,snippets:The [Spain] power generation breaks down as follows:
- Wind power – 20.9%
- Nuclear power – 20.8%
- Coal power – 14.6%
- Hydroelectric power – 14.4%
- Combined-cycle plant power – 9.6%
- Solar power 3.1%In total, Spain gets 42.4 percent of its energy from renewable sources.
Although there is still a reliance on coal and nuclear, the results from 2013 show a 10.5 percent increase in renewable energy use over the previous year...
Which parts of Spain's renewable energy policy/implementation can be effectively applied to the U.S. and Canada?
Last edited by Shellac And Vinyl VelocitY; 30 Jan 2014 at 2:31 AM.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-1...-to-solar.html...solar electricity is on track to be as cheap or cheaper than average electricity-bill prices in 47 U.S. states -- in 2016, according to a Deutsche Bank report published this week. That’s assuming the U.S. maintains its 30 percent tax credit on system costs, which is set to expire that same year.
Even if the tax credit drops to 10 percent, solar will soon reach price parity with conventional electricity in well over half the nation: 36 states.
. . .
The chart below shows how far solar will come out ahead in each state in 2016, assuming a worst-case scenario of lower tax credits. The blue bars show the anticipated cost of solar energy (assuming a conservative 20-year lifespan for the panels) minus average electricity prices. Positive numbers indicate the savings for every kilowatt hour of electricity.
Grid Parity to Reach 36 States in 2016:
Last edited by Shellac And Vinyl VelocitY; 30 Oct 2014 at 9:11 AM.
The problem with both of them are that they take a lot of space to build.
WSJ Article - In the Sunshine State, a Power Struggle Over Solar Plays Out
map in article shows those 5 states.Florida is one of only five states that prohibit so-called third-party sales from non-utility companies to install solar panels on residents’ or businesses’ rooftops and sell them power. Under such arrangements, consumers can avoid the upfront costs of installing solar arrays and lock in potentially cheaper electricity rates, while providers can earn back their investment and a profit over the long haul.
Website for one of the map sources: http://www.dsireusa.org/
DSIRE is the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States.