Thursday, July 10, 2008

Replacing One Cubic Mile of Oil a Year Worldwide

That is how much oil is consumed worldwide yearly--a cubic mile, give or take. How could that much oil be replaced, using other energy sources?
So, what would it take to replace the amount of energy in a cubic mile of oil Roughly 4.2 billion wind turbines, 91.2 solar panels, 2,500 nuclear power plants or 200 Three Gorges Dams, according to Menlo Park, Calif., nonprofit research institute SRI International.

In other words, no single category of renewable energy is growing anywhere near the speed it needs to bear the full brunt of displacing carbon-emitting fossil fuels anytime soon.

...While there is no doubt that wind, solar and geothermal have ample energy to power the planet--the sunlight that hits Earth in a single hour contains enough energy to fuel the human population for a year--they will need years to mature before they reach anything approaching their potential....The U.S. spends roughly $1 trillion each year--approximately 10% of gross domestic product--on the fuel needed to power 114 million households, 82 billion square feet of commercial building space, 130 million cars, 95 million trucks and the countless computers, ovens and alarm clocks that drive the metabolism of the modern economy. If there is a cheap and clean energy source out there, odds are someone--looking in the right place--will find it. __Forbes
Fortunately, the catastrophic global warming theory promoted by Al Gore--and used by the US Congress to hamstring the US energy industry--is turning out to be so much pig excrement. Which means that as soon as US voters understand what Barbara Boxer, Nancy Pelosi, and crew are doing to them, they can vote the miscreants out of office and hopefully replace them with no-nonsense pro-energy people.

The delays of an inept Congress are pushing the US into a corner, energy-wise. Every form of energy requires time and money to develop, and scale up to useful size.

North America is sitting on enough oil-equivalent (trillions of barrels) to last it hundreds of years at current consumption. But within a decade or two, better forms of solar and geothermal energies--to say nothing of better nuclear energy plants--will be available to provide electrical power for the grid. Oil equivalent resources only really need to last about 30 years. By then, algae biodiesel, synthetic biology energy, and biomass energy will be mature enough to replace most liquid fuels now consumed.

Predicting doom is okay for children who have no useful skills. But grownups will dig in and work, to see to it that doom does not actually fall on civilisation.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

Newer Posts Older Posts