veritas wrote:I was under the impression you need petroleum to lubricate the ball bearings of wind mills, and that petrochemical products are necessary to create photovoltaic cells... is that not accurate?
Wind mills can be lubricated with organically derived oils. That’s an easy fix.
I do not know about the viability of photovoltaic production without petroleum. To produce photovoltaics, is petroleum needed for some reason other than energy input?
Pstarr wrote: There are no batteries that do not contain dangerous rare materials.
Not all batteries contain both dangerous and rare materials. The sulfuric acid in a lead acid battery is fairly dangerous, but no more dangerous than gasoline. Lead is not a rare element and is not dangerous unless ingested or disposed of improperly. Currently, all lead acid batteries are either recycled or incinerated. I don’t know that I would call incineration “proper” disposal though. Certainly, all lead acid batteries should be recycled.
The nickel in a nickel metal hydride battery is not rare. However, I do not know about the dangerous or rare nature of the other chemicals involved in this type of battery.
Lithium ion batteries can be a little scary in a lap top. A large bank of these batteries in a car poses an engineering challenge. We shall see how the Tesla Roadster works out. Lithium is not an abundant metal as far as I know. That may be an incurable problem for lithium ion batteries.
In general, I don’t think that the dangerous or rare nature of the materials in batteries is the core problem with batteries.
veritas wrote: we aren't running out of electricity, but we can convert electricity into portable fuel (batteries and hyrogen being the obvious ways). So when gas and oil give out - we will turn to electricity or nothing (horses? sailboats? bikes?). That makes peak oil at least in part an electricity problem. There are certainly a host of technical problems with hydrogen - flammability, density, platinum needed for fuel cells, EROEI, to name a few. But let's assume we could develop ways around enough of the problems and develop a half-decent hydrogen vehicle. The problem then is the energy to convert water to hydrogen, aka an electricity issue. Cutting your demand for electricity elsewhere would liberate it to be used for transportation.
Exactly. This does not mean that hydrogen can never be used for energy storage, but as you state, the problems are many. As such, the likelihood of hydrogen becoming America’s next primary energy carrier are slim to none.
Veritas wrote: You mentioned storage a couple times, how do we store excess energy at the moment? I really don't know how the grid works.
The grid does not really store electricity that has already been produced. Power generation stations shut down or reduce production when demand is low, and resume or increase production when demand is higher. In this way, excess energy is stored in the coal that is not being burned, or in the water that is not flowing through turbines, etc. If or when we switch to a power generation system that relies heavily on solar, wind, or even tidal, then we will have to come up with storage methods. Perhaps there is no single storage method that will work for all of them though.
What? No torque number? That’s the best part of any high performance electric car since electric motors make the same torque at zero rpm as they do at 10,000 rpm. Can you imagine driving a car with 500ft lbs of torque from zero rpm? *Shudder* Man, that would be fun!
mkwin wrote: MonteQuest wrote:
mkwin wrote: While the optimists believe we are in for economic depressions but will get though the other side the doomers believe we are in for a break down of society and the mass die-off of 4 billion people.
No, the optimists deny and are ignorant of biology/ecology and overshoot, and the doomers are not.
We've had this conversation before. You take an extremely reductionism view of the human race and compare our current condition to other species. However, we are fundamentally different from other species and predicting trends or absolute natural laws like overshoot from these comparisons is unreliable.
Yes we need to stabilize and reduce populations in the third world, but we have the opposite problem in the industrialized world!! Just look at Japan, much of Europe and Russia - here the problem is the birth-rate that is too little to sustain the population at current levels.
Die-off in the third world…sadly yes. In the developed world…no.
Monty, optimism isn’t the same as ignorance.
montequest wrote: And here we have a classic example of that denial and ignorance of biology/ecology.
I love how Monty thinks people who disagree with him are ignorant. Again, Monty evidently thinks that he is always right, and that anyone who disagrees with him is ignorant.
By the way, quoting yourself does not make you a more credible source, Monty.