Posted 10 years ago on Oct. 9, 2011, 8:36 p.m. EST by gawdoftruth
from Santa Barbara, CA
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
- There are many different ways to derive energy.
- Each of these methods has different relationships with the environment
- Each of these methods has different costs and different benefits
- Each of the these methods has different pros and cons.
A partial list of methods; oil, coal, shale, wood, gas, Biofuels (a. food crop, b. hemp crop c. algae) Solar, Thermal Solar, Wind, Tidal, Geothermal, Hydrogen, Hydrolic, Zero Point, Nuclear.
Oils relationships with the environment are a. oil is ancient organic material that has undergone geological processes. b. oil is removed from the ground via oil wells. Ie oil is mined from the Earth. c. oil is burned in order to get heat and chemical reaction to create the energy. d. burning it creates smoke. the smoke is toxic. it is multiply toxic to the ecosystem in multiple ways. e. its causing global warming f. it causes cancer g. it causes acid rain h. thus it hurts humans personally and the whole ecosystem as whole in these different ways.
- oil costs a certain amount of money to obtain from the earth, depending on how deep it is and at what pressure it is under.
- oil costs a certain amount of money to refine and process, as well as to transport.
- The pros of oil are that ; a. it is accessible with very primitive levels of technology b. our current energy infrastructure is based on oil c. oil costs less than biofuels or, at least, it used to. d. oils over all cost benefit analysis remains do-able from the perspective of economics alone.
- The cons against oil are a. oil is actually very expensive as technology compared to other forms of energy in which initial costs render yields not limited by physical quantities. Solar power stations, Wind, and Geothermal all provide energy options which are simply cheaper over the long term. b. oil pollutes the ecology as mentioned in its environmental analysis above. c. that pollution will cause the extinction of life on earth as we know it should it continue. d. we have already reached a tipping point where we have raised the global temperature so high that the new larger contributor to greenhouse gasses is the ice that is being melted. e. thus we need solutions to reverse global warming, or, our civilization is doomed.
- Coal. The specifics change, but Coal, like oil, is an ancient organic substance exposed to geological processes, mut be burned, and thus contributes to pollution and global warming.
- oil Shale and coal Shale. Similar to oil and coal or extensions of them, shale is harder to mine and harder to extract oil from. thus it costs more to process.
- Biofuels. The difference between biofuels and oil or coal is that biofuels have not been exposed to geological processes, but rather, similarly effecting technological processes. a.Biofuels still have toxic smoke which pollutes and which contributes to global warming b. Biofuels trade energy shortage and economic stress for food shortage and economic stress, thus creating c +d c. Biofuels create food shortages, hunger, and contribute to global poverty d. Biofuels make food more expensive.
- Solar Power a. solar power is derived from the suns light and chemical processes. b. Solar panels are a permanent fixture which will continue to derive energy whenever the sun shines. c. Solar panels have real but comparatively very tiny environmental costs. d. Solar panel technology is up to date and evolved, no more research is actually required. e. assorted pundits and candidates and politicians and so forth like to tell us that they favor more research for solar power. Thats a secret unsecret way of saying that they don't support employing it as a real world solution, because solar power has worked and has been feasible and economically viable for over 20 years. f. Solar power is derived at a specific rate depending on the size of the panel, the efficiency of the absorption of the sunlight, and the amount of sunlight available. g. Solar power does better at high altitudes because theres less atmospheric interference. h. Solar Power has very low yields per physical system cost. In order to run a car on Solar energy, you have to panel the entire car, and in order to run your house on solar energy, you would have to panel your entire rooftop and buy energy saving appliances. i. Solar power is most attractive and useful in a whole energy strategy because it is uniquely mobile. Geothermal wells or Wind power or tidal power (for obvious reasons) won't run a car directly. j. Solar power could in theory be used to solve the energy crisis almost by itself, by paneling over a very large surface area. This surface area has been calculated variously, with low estimates ranging in 10 by 10 miles, and high estimates ranging upto 200 by 200 miles. h. The problem with this is that the cost/ benefit analysis shows us that this would be very expensive when compared to a holistic energy strategy. i. Solar power has very low yields when compared to geothermal power.