Recently in Research Articles & Links Category
|Tue, Apr 13, 2010 09:07 PM CST|
Syncrude Canada has no interest in developing Saskatchewan's oil sands, at least not yet.
On Tuesday, the C.E.O. of Canadian Oil Sands, Marcel Coutu, was in Regina on a public relations mission explaining the company's side of the environmental debate about oil sands developments.
Right now, Alberta's oil sands are being developed and at this stage there are no plans to tap into Saskatchewan's deposits
Nuclear isn't necessary - The notion that we need nuclear power to address climate change does not reflect the realities of the marketplace or rapid new developments in energy technology.
Climate scientist at centre of leaked email row dismisses conspiracy claims - listen to the interview as well
"The emails do nothing to undermine the very strong scientific consensus ... that tells us the Earth is warming, that warming is largely a result of human activity," said Jane Lubchenco, head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
She said the emails don't address data from her agency or the U.S.
space agency NASA, which both keep independent climate records that
show dramatic global warming.
Scientific Journal -> Nature: Climatologists under pressure
Scientific Journal -> Nature: Battle lines drawn over e-mail leak
A General Motors Chevrolet Equinox fuel cell-electric SUV is shown during a dedication ceremony of California's first hydrogen refueling station in Los Angeles on Thursday, June 26, 2008. (AP / Damian Dovarganes)
Updated Thu. Jun. 4 2009 5:34 PM ET
The Canadian Press
VANCOUVER -- The shine went off hydrogen fuel-cell cars well before the auto industry drove off a cliff last year, but that doesn't mean carmakers have abandoned the zero-emission technology.
In the 1990s, proponents predicted consumers could be driving fuel-cell vehicles as early as next year.
But they underestimated the obstacles in the way of producing a reliable, affordable car with the kind of range and drivability motorists now take for granted.
The U.S. government, facing a trillion-dollar deficit and a costly bailout of ailing domestic automakers, has slashed research funding for automotive fuel cells in favour of alternatives such as battery-electric and biofuel-powered vehicles.
Canadian fuel-cell pioneer Ballard Power Systems Ltd., of Burnaby, B.C., has virtually given up on the automotive side, focusing instead on more prosaic applications such as industrial forklifts and stationary backup power generators.
But the major automakers, including one-time Ballard partners Daimler-Benz and Ford, as well as embattled General Motors, are still sure hydrogen fuel cells represent the best long-term answer for reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
Fuel cells combine hydrogen and air to produce electricity by running them through a chemical catalyst. The only byproducts are heat and water.
Auto industry experts at this week's international conference on fuel cells in Vancouver said even if carbon-based sources such as natural gas or biomass are used to produce the hydrogen, fuel cells are more energy efficient and produce far less CO2 than hybrids or plug-in, battery-powered vehicles.
But for now, fuel-cell vehicles represent part of a multi-faceted solution to reduce greenhouse gases and conserve petroleum resources, they said.
Battery-electric vehicles seem the best choice now for short-distance city use, with plug-in hybrids that use small on-board engines to recharge their batteries better suited to longer distances.
Conventional gasoline- and diesel-powered trucks will continue to be the mainstay in the commercial sector for some time.
Down the road, though, they agreed hybrids should provide the range, power and all-weather durability to replace conventional cars.
The generally accepted goal is to produce a vehicle that can go 500 kilometres without refuelling while surviving northern winters and desert summers.
Automakers are closing in on those goals.
Honda's latest fuel-cell car, the FCX Clarity, has a range of 390 kilometres and can start in temperatures ranging from -30 C to 95 C, Ryan Harty, a Canadian-born engineer with American Honda's fuel-cell research centre in Torrance, Calif., said in an interview.
Automakers have largely settled on 2015 as a target date to get mass-produced fuel-cell cars into dealer showrooms.
Development lately has gone on largely out of the public spotlight as the focus shifted to hybrids and plug-in cars such as the Chevrolet Volt.
The first ungainly prototypes had fuel-cell stacks, which produce the electricity, and drive systems so bulky there was room for little more than the driver.
Development has shrunk the components so they can be packaged in a compact car or mid-sized SUV. The Clarity's fuel-cell is roughly the size of a desk-top computer and sits in the car's centre console between the driver and passenger.
A dozen fuel-cell cars, including the Chevrolet Equinox, the Clarity and Mercedes-Benz's A-Class F-CELL, drove into Vancouver on Wednesday after a 2,700-kilometre trip up the West Coast from San Diego, Calif.
Consumer-ready Clarities are being leased to motorists in California for three years to test their real-world durability. The lessees are a mix of average consumers and celebrities such as actress Jamie Lee Curtis.
"We wanted to make sure people were paying attention," said Steve Ellis, American Honda's manager of fuel-cell marketing.
The cars are being leased through dealerships so they would get an idea of what it takes to sell and service fuel-cell vehicles, he added.
In all, there are about 300 fuel-cell vehicles from different makers in the hands of California drivers, including a version of GM's Equinox crossover SUV. GM is also promising to bring eight to Canada for use at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.
These are not test mules, says Lawrence Burns, GM's vice-president of research and planning.
"These vehicles are real," he says.
Andreas Truckenbroadt, chief executive of the Vancouver-based Automotive Fuel Cell Partnership, said cost reduction remains the biggest challenge for commercializing fuel cell vehicles. The goal is to make them comparable to current engine technology.
"We still have a way to go but we know how to get there," he said.
He supports the idea of co-operating to develop some components the customers don't see, such as hydrogen compressors, valves and humidifiers, that don't effect performance or driving characteristics.
"We're fierce competitors but we should not be worrying about brand specifications," said Truckenbroadt, who comes from Daimler-Benz.
Burns agrees there's room for collaboration among automakers and suppliers.
"It's silly to put our capital and our engineering dollars into those parts if they're not going to be the basis for winning the race," he says.
Bruce Power's Plane - Saskatchewan 2020
Bruce Power's Nuclear Feasibility Study
Bruce Power's Document - Saskatchewan and the Hydrogen Age;
Nuclear Energy Can Drive the Transition
Fighting climate change with carbon taxes needs more support...
The "Related Links" on the bottom right have some excellent articles.
"The progressive development of man is vitally dependent on invention. It's ultimate purpose is the complete mastery of mind over the material world; the harnessing of the forces of nature to human needs."
Nikola Tesla - 1919
74 miners killed, 114 injured in China coal mine blast (About 3,200 people have died in coal mine accidents last year in the country).
Storing the Breeze: New Battery Might Make Wind Power More Reliable
Wind Storage Research and Experiments
Is small the future of nuclear power generation?
Nuclear Fusion-Fission Hybrid Could Destroy Nuclear Waste And Contribute to Carbon-Free Energy Future
All aboard the GO hydrogen express
Ice shelf collapse could shift axis of Earth, study says
Here is the appointment article (and a more detailed one, and yet another)
Here is an article on his work life
Here is an audio clip where he discusses nuclear power's role in solving climate change.
News summary of article (link)
Video summary of article (link)
October 1, 2008 presentation slides (pdf)
October 10, 2008 Briefing to Senator Jeff Bingaman, Chairman Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee (pdf)
The world's only wind map based on data alone at
the height of modern turbines
Any other information you have heard about the amount of wind available worldwide over land is not based on real numbers but based on guesses only. The quantity from data is about 72 TW (delivered) in locations over land where the wind speed > 6.9 m/s (about 13% of the world land) (compared with a world power demand of 12-15 TW (which would decrease significantly if we converted to electricity for everything).
Hydrogen is clean (if it is produced from clean energy), but moving an HFCV 1 km requires almost three times more clean energy than does moving a BEV one km (please see the spreadsheet in the Supplementary Information of the article from either of the two sites below
(e.g., a plug-to-wheel efficiency of a BEV is 75-86% whereas an electrolyzer-to-wheel efficiency (of a HFCV (accounting for electrolyzer efficiency~74%, compressor efficiency ~90%, fuel cell efficiencies ~46-50%, and about 3% leakage) is around 30% (these compare with an internal combustion engine tank to wheel efficiency on average in the US of 17%. Thus, BEVs are by far the most efficient of all energy conversion technologies for vehicles. However, H2 is a great storage medium for intermittent energy.
In the US, most cooling is already from electric air conditioning, so that is addressed in the paper since the results apply to the electricity sector. Also, about 40% of heating is through electrical resistance heating or heat pumps. Most of the rest is from natural gas heating, as is most water heating (although a good portion is electrical water heating). The next step would be to convert home heating and water heating to electricity powered by renewables. We have preliminary calculated that this would increase electricity requirements by on the order of 40-50%. Thus, we would have taken care of nearly all sources of CO2 in the US (vehicles, electric power, home heating/cooling, water heating/cooling), except for some industrial processes that require high temperatures, and ships/airplanes. These could be addressed last.
A few questions about your paper from a high school teacher dabbling in energy. I (well, my grade 11 class and I) have been reading a book entitled Smelling Land: The hydrogen solution to climate catastrophe. In it, the author (David Sanborn Scott - www.smellingland.com) argues for a shift to a hydrogen/electric age. He argues that hydrogen will be necessary to replace fossils. As well, he argues that there is simply not enough wind or solar to replace all fossil sources and that we will need a combination of nuclear, solar, wind, etc to really solve the issue of carbon dioxide output. He, like you, is against carbon sequestration and ethanol but is pro-nuclear. He also feels that fuel cell vehicles are a superior technology to battery vehicles (I agree with your statement that a HFCV/BEV hybrid may be the solution).
I like your article and it appears to address generating enough energy/exergy for transportation alone but I don't see where it addresses total energy/exergy requirements including heating, cooling and other electrical needs. Am I missing something here? How will we rid ourselves of the other technologies that produce this energy and also carbon dioxide?
Also, would you not think that we would be better to generate hydrogen from wind so we can do a bit of storage to compensate from the burstiness of this harvesting technology? That is, rather than an electrical grid, we could have a hydrogen grid (pipelines, etc)?
It would be more efficient to generate the electricity from wind, then transmit it to a filling station and produce the H2 on site in an electrolyzer. This avoids pipelines, which are more expensive than transmission lines, and reduces leakage potential.
Furthermore, do your calculations for nuclear factor in the fact that at some point, the operation and mining itself could be accomplished by hydrogen fuel cell machinery rather than fossil fuel service technologies? Admittedly this would be a ways away however it would reduce the CO2 per unit energy that you calculated to almost zero would it not?
This would be very inefficient and also not necessary. There is no need for nuclear since either wind or solar, alone can power the entire world many times over.
Thanks for your time
Bishop James Mahoney High School
Mark Z. Jacobson
Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Professor, by Courtesy, of Energy Resources Engineering
Director, Atmosphere/Energy Program
Stanford University Phone: 650-723-6836
Yang & Yamazaki Environment & Energy Bldg. Fax: 650-725-9720
473 Via Ortega, Room 397 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Stanford, CA 94305-4020 http://www.stanford.edu/group/efmh/jacobson/
Thanks for the response Mark. First, I am not arguing against your plan or analysis, I am just trying to determine if it will be enough and if we can avoid using nuclear which some (like Scott) say we cannot.
Where does that 40-50% increase come from? Renewables? If so, which ones?
This is the increase in electric power generation from replacing natural gas for home/commercial heating and hot water with electric power (electric resistance heaters or heat pumps and electric hot water heaters) (where the electricity comes from any renewable electric power source)
I have students debating this as well so they are quite keen on your responses.
I agree that BEV efficiency is high but the range limitations are a concern (I have heard of battery swapping to increase range but that seems problematic). Clearly BEV would be awesome in my small city! HFCV efficiency is lower but we get a lot of freedom (long range vehicles).
The Tesla range is now 242 miles. Electric vehicles have the advantage in that they can be charged at home or work, thus no more trips to the gas station. Their only disadvantage is for single-shot trips > 200+ miles. This is a small percent of trips for most people. Thus, an hybrid BEV-HFCV might come in handy for this case (or battery swapping).
One question I have about your analysis is that you deal with industrial processes, ships, trains??? and airplanes last. What portion of the US CO2 production is due to this??? I would think it would be a HUGE amount.
Aircraft are ~3% of carbon worldwide. Ships are on the same order.
I would definitetly try to use hydrogen fuel cells for the ships and planes (or hybrid electricity-hydrogen fuel cells).
My concern is that without addressing this we are ignoring a large amount of carbon dioxide. Also, the CO2 released by an airplane has a high residence time due to its altitude.
CO2 has such a long lifetime in the atmosphere (35-50 year e-folding lifetime), that it doesn't matter where it is emitted so much. However, soot from aircraft is a bigger issue with regard to altitude of emissions.
I really don't see a solution to the plane/ship/long distance private vehicle solution without hydrogen. Based on this, I am unsure where we get the extra hydrogen from to power the planes and trains and the extra energy to power the industrial processes. Nuclear? Solar? other?
There is enough wind or solar, independently, to provide all the world's power for everything (including if we used hydrogen), many times over. Again, there is no need for nuclear. Given that it takes 10-19 years for a new nuclear plant to come online, it is also an opportunity cost loss since we will be emitting coal and gas while we wait.
Thanks for the links to your data. My students will find it to be very thorough and overwhelming! Something they need to see for sure.
I really think we also need hydrogen from renewables in order to do some load balancing but from what you are saying that load balancing could be accomplished with an intelligent network of sorts.
We published the world's only wind map based on data alone at the height of modern turbines
so any other information you have heard about the amount of wind available worldwide over land is not based on real numbers but based on guesses only. The quantify from data is about 72 TW (delivered) in locations over land where the wind speed > 6.9 m/s (about 13% of the world land) (compared with a world power demand of 12-15 TW (which would decrease significantly if we converted to electricity for everything).
Please see Slide 24 of the "presentation slides" located at
to see the area required for solar to power the entire U.S. vehicle fleet on batteries. It is very small, particularly compared with E85 from corn or cellulose. It is larger than the 3 km2 wind land footprint to do the same thing but smaller than the spacing area for wind. It is only twice the area required for nuclear power plants to do the same thing (Figure 6 of http://www.rsc.org/Publishing/Journals/EE/article.asp?doi=b809990c
since nuclear needs a buffer zone and requires land for mining, storage of waste, and its own facilities (discused in text).
You are welcome to post the information I have provided.
Thanks Mark. I understood where the 40-50% was calculated from, just asking where we would get the extra electricity for replacement from.
I have heard people argue both ways on this one (There is enough wind or solar, independently, to provide all the world's power for everything (including if we used hydrogen), many times over. Again, there is no need for nuclear. Given that it takes 10-19 years for a new nuclear plant to come online, it is also an opportunity cost loss since we will be emitting coal and gas while we wait.)
I have never seen a complete analysis explaining either side of supporters or deniers of this statement. That is, there are people arguing that there isn't enough wind to power everything and that we would have to cover far too much land to use solar. Could you point me to further evidence supporting your view that there is enough power for ALL of this without nuclear or fossils?
Thanks again for your time.
Alright. But I am still unsure how you would plan to address the burstiness of the wind/sun harvesting technologies. That is, would you not have to store the electricity somehow or essentially lose it hence leading to losses anyway? I was thinking that 'extra' electricity (that above current demand) would go to generating hydrogen to be piped. I suppose that hydrogen generation could be done at ANY point in the system of electrical transmission. The concept of generating and piping hydrogen would allow for greater load balancing as well as potentially reducing the risk of natural and man made disasters that transmission lines have. It would provide a doubly redundant system albeit with one of them being less efficient than the other.
This quote is from the WWF report entitled: Plugged In: The End of the Oil Age.
The final word on hydrogen goes to Dr. Ulf Bossel of the European Fuel Cell Forum:Here are several articles related to electric cars...
Without the slightest doubt, the technology for a hydrogen economy exists or can be developed in reasonable time. Also, hydrogen is an appropriate energy carrier for particular niche applications, or it may become an important medium for electricity storage with reversible fuel cells. But hydrogen can never establish itself as a dominant energy carrier. It has to be fabricated from high grade energy and it has to compete with high grade energy in the market place. Hydrogen cannot win this fight against its own energy source. Physics is eternal and cannot be changed by man. Therefore, a "Hydrogen Economy" has no past, no present and no future. The road to sustainability leads to an "Electron Economy".
Hawaii Says Aloha to an Electric Car Network
Electric Car Dreams Have Limits
Mini-E Electric Car
Task Force Sees Electric Vehicle Revolution in the Next Decade
Is The Volt GM's Savior
Long Range Electric Car is the Future
Chrysler's Electric Surprise
The message: Conservatives and Liberals should have made a better effort.
Frank Luntz - "If you really care about global warming...take it out of the political sphere...be honest and focus on solutions that will actually make a difference."
A story about politics and climate change:
Reducing Urban Sprawl To Reduce GHG Emissions
Financial Risks Due To Global Warming From Coal Plants
Wind Power Overflows Transmission Lines - Forced To Shut Down (We Need a New Infrastructure - Hydrogen!)
Uranium Cycle Gives Sask "value subtracted" Benefits
Editorial serves as propaganda for nukes sector
Science of Power a Mystery to Me
Nuclear Report Preliminary
Editorial Serves As Propaganda for Nukes Sector & Informed Debate Required on Adopting Nuclear Power
Nuclear Power Hard Target
Sask Nuclear Plant Still Far Ways Off
Don't Invest Resources in Costly Harmful Technology
Articles related to Nuclear Waste
The Pembina Institute: Background Information: Nuclear Power in Canada: Key Environmental Impacts
The Pembina Institute: Clearing The Air About Nuclear Power
Uranium Mining: Nuclear Power's Dirty Secret
Nuclear Power and Climate Change
Nuclear Power in Canada:An Examination of Risks, Impacts and Sustainability
Special Report On Energy Efficient Transportation Alternatives
Page 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47
Why We Fear Nuclear Power, Not Peanut Butter
Sierra Club - Nuclear Waste Disposal Action Alert and Backgrounder
Sierra Club - Towards a Nuclear-Free Canada
Chemistry - from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethanol_fuel
- C6H12O6 → 2C2H6O + 2CO2
- C2H6O + 3O2 → 2CO2 + 3H2O
Start discussing this with your peers here.
Start discussing this with your peers here.
Saskatchewan Curriculum Information on Nuclear Energy
Clean Coal Technology in Saskatchewan, Another link
Sask Energies Take on Clean Coal
Sask Energy Page on Energy Production in Saskatchewan - Advantages and Disadvantages for many sources and technologies.
SaskPower's Vision of our Energy Future
Saskatchewan's Power Issues in the Near Future
Right click and save it to your computer and then play it or transfer it to an mp3 player or Ipod.
Department of Energy shines $14 million on solar energy projects
Information about nuclear energy from Cameco - A Saskatchewan Uranium company. - click on a few of the other links for more information.
Let's have a real Dialogue on our Energy Future in Saskatchewan
01 The Hydrogen Solution - Part One.mp3
Right click and save it to your computer and then play it or transfer it to an mp3 player or Ipod.
World Must Act on Climate Change
Scientist: The Arctic is Screaming
Biofuelled Jet Flight Comes Under Criticism
Push for Moratorium on New Oilsands Development
Carbon Capture Strategy Could Lead to Emission Free Cars