Why Archive

  • Where will we get the water?

    Where will we get the water?

    The Boston Globe recently reported that proposed coal-fired power plants in Texas are facing increasing and widespread opposition because of the drought.  The opposition includes political conservatives who have no issues with the use of fossil fuels, but can’t accept the huge water demands of the plants.  If you think the water shortage problem is [...]

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  • Nuclear fission vs. nuclear fusion

    Nuclear fission vs. nuclear fusion

    Nuclear energy seems to be simultaneously headed in opposite directions.  The nuclear fission energy industry appears intent on committing slow-suicide, while the nuclear fusion energy industry is striving to become one of the dominant energy sources for the future.  What we currently think of as nuclear energy is nuclear fission energy, not nuclear fusion energy.  Since there is [...]

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  • Technology is empowering us

    Technology is empowering us

    To understand just how much technological advancements are giving us choices for our homes we previously couldn’t imagine, it’s probably most effective to contrast the way it is now with the way it used to be.  Most utility services to homes were historically provided by the government (water and sewer) or by utility companies (electricity, [...]

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  • Nuclear energy may not be dead, but it’s on life support

    Nuclear energy may not be dead, but it’s on life support

    The cascade of negative events at the critically damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan has gotten so bad that the Japanese government has cancelled plans for any future nuclear power plants in that country. This is particularly noteworthy for three primary reasons: Japan is effectively devoid of fossil fuels, including coal and natural gas, and will [...]

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  • What’s the worst part of our oil addiction?

    What’s the worst part of our oil addiction?

    The social/political unrest sweeping the Middle East has caused a predictable jump in oil prices, with a corresponding increase in fuel prices and all other oil dependent prices (i.e. just about everything).   The price increases are understandable: the Middle East has the largest proven reserves, the highest oil production and the largest amount of oil [...]

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  • Not blowing in the wind

    Not blowing in the wind

    A recent article in Slate should be read by anyone considering installing a residential size, tower-mounted wind turbine at their home in a suburban or urban location.  For despite the sometimes generous government and utility incentives being offered for the installation of residential wind turbines, you’d still want the turbine to produce a reasonable amount [...]

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  • Environmentalists fighting green energy

    Environmentalists fighting green energy

    From decades of opposing many large-scale fossil fuel-powered electricity generating facilities, environmentalists developed the tactics, knowledge, perseverance and experience to amass a remarkable track record of success.  No doubt all those successful oppositions to fossil fuel-powered generating facilities helped pave the way for the growth of renewable energy.  All well and good. But now, certain individuals [...]

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  • Let’s ignore global warming

    Let’s ignore global warming

    Blogs are occasionally sent to this website questioning the need for energy efficiency and renewable energy since global warming is a hoax.  Seriously?  Is global warming the only reason for energy efficiency and renewable energy? Look, whether or not you personally believe in global warming should be completely irrelevant to the issue of energy efficiency and [...]

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  • Why are we making coal the answer?

    Why are we making coal the answer?

    A well-written and thought provoking article, “Dirty Coal, Clean Future“, was recently published in the Atlantic.  The author of the article, James Fallows, concludes that the massive use of coal to generate electricity worldwide is inevitable, and the U.S. should work with China to refine the technologies to make coal cleaner to use. The rationale for [...]

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  • Electricity doesn’t travel well

    Electricity doesn’t travel well

    As electricity moves through electric lines, it generates heat and some of the electricity is dissipated (lost).  The further electricity travels from where it is generated to where it is used, the more of the electricity is lost in transit. How quickly electricity loss occurs as it travels through lines can be demonstrated  by putting together [...]

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