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Posts tagged "alternate energy"

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Discussions Discussion The Energy Fix
Christopher L- USA, Oct. 12, 2013

This summer I read an article I think everyone on Einztein should also read. It was an article about all of the different forms of alternative energy being developed around the world. This article describes different innovative technologies that are being implemented or are soon to be implemented into our energy grid. These technologies range from underwater current catchers, to solar fabric. The article is split into the five sections where innovation is being made to make our energy cleaner, safer, and renewable. In the solar section the article presented two new major technologies that will hopefully change the solar industry forever. The first is a solar tree with circular solar panels. These panels rotate so they do not overheat like traditional solar panels. The article also talked about solar cells being implemented into things like fabric. It stated that there is going to be a New York building with solar cells in its curtains. These cells will power the entire building. In the waste section the article presented an idea of some MIT graduate students who are planning to cool nuclear waste, while creating energy at the same time. The students plan to transfer the heat from the nuclear waste into molten, that will cool the waste, while at the same time it will cool and power another turbine. In the water section there is a write up about TidGen underwater tidal energy catchers. These turbines look like push mower blades and capture and convert energy from the tides. In the wind section the article describes a hole being dug that will create a natural wind tunnel in the desert and power hundreds of giant wind turbines. In the final section about oil and gas, the article suggested that new technology allows for new waterless fracking and also microbes that turn extra methane into gas that can power cars.
I liked this article so much because it shed an enormous amount of light on an industry and innovations I barely knew about. Before reading this article all I knew about the United States’ energy system was that Americans use too much energy and that Solyndra (an american solar company) went bankrupt. I thought that energy companies were just owned by businessmen who were content with using up all of the oil and coal in the world as long as they could make a profit. After reading this article I can see that I was wrong. There is actually a lot of innovation going into this sector and there are a lot of people who are working tirelessly to make the industry cleaner and safer.

http://www.popsci.com/category/tags/-energy-fix
Christopher L- USA
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Discussions Discussion Reuse & repurpose
Sarah T-USA, Nov. 15, 2012

According to the website credited below, recycling just one aluminum can (something that people throw hundreds of away) would save enough energy to power a TV; Not for a second or a few minutes, but up to three hours! Think of all the energy we could save by recycling a little bit each day.

In my family, we have a recycling and trash can, which we later empty in seperate tubs, and put them out on the curb on the corresponding days. My neighborhood has a trash day an recycling day, where truck comes out and the workers load it up with what we put out for them. Many people seem to be throwing tons of trash on trash days, but not nearly as much recycling on recycling days. I think if they knew how much energy they could save by simply recycling all that can be, then they’d feel motivated to practice the method more often.

http://www.goinggreentoday.com/blog/10-green-facts-that-will-make-your-head-spin/
Sarah T-USA
Comments (6)
  • Kirthy K-USA Kirthy K-USA Nov. 15, 2012
    That is very true Colleen. By the end of school I realize that I have basically thrown everything away into a recycling bin without even noticing it.
  • Maggie S-USA Maggie S-USA Nov. 15, 2012
    I can't believe how much energy comes from one can! That is fascinating, yet also disturbing, as this is one thing that is often thrown away without a second thought. This really brings into perspective how important and energy-saving recycling is.
  • Maggie S-USA Maggie S-USA Nov. 15, 2012
    I can't believe how much energy comes from one can! That is fascinating, yet also disturbing, as this is one thing that is often thrown away without a second thought. This really brings into perspective how important and energy-saving recycling is.
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Discussions Discussion alternative energy
Elena S-usa, Nov. 8, 2012

Hi guys! My name’s Elena and I’m from the USA. I’m very interested in the topic of cleaner energy. I saw this article about a man who uses french fry oil as fuel for his car and thought it was a cool idea. What if we spent less money drilling for oil and more on research of greener fuel? Here’s the article what do you guys think?

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11809771/ns/us_news-environment/t/fry-fuel-mcdonalds-franchisee-runs-cars-it/#.UJyDquTAf3Q
Elena S-usa
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Discussions Discussion Is Climate Change Mitigation 100% Beneficial?
Nathan L-US, Oct. 1, 2012

I feel as though there are several misconceptions as to what Climate Change does and how it directly effects us. What are your positions when it comes to the mitigation of Climate Change, and how would follow through with to have a significant international impact?

Nathan L-US
Comments (10)
  • Jose Pelcastre Jose Pelcastre Oct. 2, 2012
    You know, I think you have a point. Recently I’ve been doing research on global warming and found that it's not actually CO2 that's causing global warming, but methane released by, believe it or not, cow farts. As Noam Mohr, a physicist with degrees from Yale and Penn, says, the most prominent reason for global warming is really methane. An excerpt from one of articles says “By far the most important non-CO2 greenhouse gas is methane, and the number one source of methane worldwide is animal agriculture. Methane is responsible for nearly as much global warming as all other non-CO2 greenhouse gases put together. Methane is 21 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than CO2. While atmospheric concentrations of CO2 have risen by about 31% since pre-industrial times, methane concentrations have more than doubled. Whereas human sources of CO2 amount to just 3% of natural emissions, human sources produce one and a half times as much methane as all natural sources. In fact, the effect of our methane emissions may be compounded as methane-induced warming in turn stimulates microbial decay of organic matter in wetlands—the primary natural source of methane. “
    But I think it’s not just that the costs are too high, as your point shows, rather that it’s possibly too late to do anything at all. Prof. Veerabhadran Ramanathan, a Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric and Climate Science at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the University of California at San Diego, and Dr Nithya Ramanathan, a Fellow at the Centre of Embedded Networked Sensing at the University of California at Los Angeles and Presiden Nexleaf Analytics, along with the Carnegie Institution for Science Department of Global Ecology say that because CO2 actually stays in the air for very prolonged periods of time. I quote, “carbon dioxide emissions remain in the atmosphere for many centuries, because the ocean and vegetation on land absorb carbon dioxide only slowly over time. As a result, there is a warming effect long after the initial clearing of land… the relatively large amount of carbon dioxide that we are emitting today will continue to have relatively large impacts on the atmosphere and climate for many centuries into the future. “
  • Jose Pelcastre Jose Pelcastre Oct. 2, 2012
    Also, Indean Salehyan, the Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of North Texas says that it’s really just bad allocation of resources and that it is often used as an end to some unjustifiable mean. Focusing on climate change in general as a violent threat acts as a diversion to catastrophe-relief and technology, according to a 2007 article. “These claims generally boil down to an argument about resource scarcity. Desertification, sea-level rise, more-frequent severe weather events, an increased geographical range of tropical disease, and shortages of freshwater will lead to violence over scarce necessities. Friction between haves and have-nots will increase, and governments will be hard-pressed to provide even the most basic services. In some scenarios, mass migration will ensue, whether due to desertification, natural disasters, and rising sea levels, or as a consequence of resource wars. Environmental refugees will in turn spark political violence in receiving areas, and countries in the global North will erect ever higher barriers to keep culturally unwelcome and hungry foreigners out. The number of failed states, meanwhile, will increase as governments collapse in the face of resource wars and weakened state capabilities, and transnational terrorists and criminal networks will move in. International wars over depleted water and energy supplies will also intensify. The basic need for survival will supplant nationalism, religion, or ideology as the fundamental root of conflict.¶ Dire scenarios like these may sound convincing, but they are misleading. Even worse, they are irresponsible, for they shift liability for wars and human rights abuses away from oppressive, corrupt governments. Additionally, focusing on climate change as a security threat that requires a military response diverts attention away from prudent adaptation mechanisms and new technologies that can prevent the worst catastrophes.”
    I have a a ton of evidence also that talks about how warming is actually good for biodiversity, but I want to hear what others have to say as well.
  • Jose Pelcastre Jose Pelcastre Oct. 2, 2012
    Owais Safaraz, I feel like the majority of the fight against mitigating climae change isn't done at home, because unless everyone switches to electrical cars, there isn't really a viable way for people to contribute to the fight against global warming. But that's okay, as Nathan Leal pointed to earlier, the government cannot possible, within our current limitations, “fix” climate change.
    However, my research, as mentioned earlier, could provide a solution that people at home could live by. As Mohr wrote, “The conclusion is simple: arguably the best way to reduce global warming in our lifetimes is to reduce or eliminate our consumption of animal products. Simply by going vegetarian (or, strictly speaking, vegan), we can eliminate one of the major sources of emissions of methane, the greenhouse gas responsible for almost half of the global warming impacting the planet today.” Of course, that means we have to do something with the cows, so it's almost called upon that we eliminate the cows in order to stop methane emissions at the source. That's not going to happen any time soon.
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Discussions Discussion Energy Self Reliant States
Joseph Curtis, April 4, 2012

Solar Policy Can Advance (Or Delay) Grid Parity By A Decade

In their excellent interactive graphic, Bloomberg Energy Finance calls solar grid parity (when electricity from solar costs less than grid power) the “golden goal.” It’s an excellent illustration of how the right energy policy can help a nation go gold on solar or wallow in metallurgical obscurity. In the case of the U.S., it may mean delaying grid parity by eight years.

http://energyselfreliantstates.org/content/solar-policy-can-advance-or-delay-grid-parity-decade
Joseph Curtis
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Discussions Discussion Clean development
Christiane L-USA, Nov. 25, 2011

Now that some of the poorer countries are becoming more technology-oriented, some of their carbon emmision levels are going up. Richer countries need to cut back on emission to make up for this, because they use more technology than the poorer countries. Both the poorer and richer countries could use alternate energy, such as wind and solar, to run their countries. Building windmills and solar panels is expensive, so this is not a very practical immediate option. However, if countries promoted recycling more than they do, it would greatly reduce the carbon footprint. Instead of having just trash cans on the streets and around malls, recycling bins could be added next to them. Below, I attached a link of the carbon emmisions per country in 2011.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2011/jan/31/world-carbon-dioxide-emissions-country-data-co2
Christiane L-USA
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