News & Commentary
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- Nov 08, 2012 |
Commentary from Industry Pros
Two decades ago one of my books focused on Municipal Waste Combustion Residue or Incinerator (1). Over the last two decades the controversy has shifted from this material to Coal Combustion Residues [CCR]. There are parallels and differences in discussing these two types of residues.
The United States has taken the lead yet again, but this time, we may not be so proud. We have surpassed every nation, including China, in the category of energy waste. Yes, our country wastes the most energy in the world. The US. has an energy efficiency of 42 percent, which means 58 percent of all the energy we produce is wasted! How can this happen?!
Earlier this month, the Director of the Chief of Naval Operations Energy and Environmental Readiness Division, Rear Admiral Kevin Slates, posted a thought provoking piece entitled "Reconsidering Energy Use in 2013". According to his posting, "Increases in petroleum prices created a $500 million increase in fuel costs for the Department of the Navy. That's half a billion dollars that could have gone to maintenance, new equipment or training. That number could have been much smaller if we had an affordable alternative to fossil fuels or were efficient enough to avoid using that fuel in the first place."
The damaging effects that result from burning coal may soon be nonexistent. It took scientists from Ohio State University 15 years and $5 million, but the clean coal technique has finally been developed. They have discovered a way to obtain the energy from coal without actually burning it, eliminating nearly all of the pollution.
According to Mr. Jose Zayas, Director, Wind and Water Power Technologies Office, U.S. Department of Energy, in the January 2013 edition of Sea Technology, "DOE is taking the first steps to develop an integrated National Offshore Resource & Design Data Network."
The UN climate change negotiations in Doha, Qatar last week did not result in any strong international treaties to curb carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions or reform the way the world generates and uses energy, but some minor progress was made that can impact climate change. Most notably, the 25 members of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition agreed to reduce the emissions of three other greenhouse gasses: black carbon, ozone (O3) and methane (CH4). These pollutants are known as short lived climate forcers (SLCF) because they only last in the atmosphere for a short period of time. CO2 has a lifespan in the atmosphere of about 100 years, whereas SLCFs live in the atmosphere anywhere from a few days to a maximum of only a few years. This means that the world could potentially see a decrease in climate change in a shorter period of time by decreasing emissions of SLCFs in addition to CO2.
President Obama has already provided climate change and energy issues a prominent place in his second term rhetoric, giving climate change...
As governments across Europe slash subsidies for small-medium scale renewable energy generators, the industry needs to rethink its approach to communications strategy if solar PV is to continue to shine, says Kate Garratt, head of energy at Aspectus PR.
Massive Blackout in India -- 700 Million with No Power -- One More Example of Why Renewable Energy and Smart Grid's Time has Come?
Recently, there has been an increase in popularity for off-grid solar systems for independence from utilities and grid-interactive systems for flexibility to easily switch from drawing from the grid when it's up or switching to off-grid power from other sources when the grid is down.