Friday, June 13, 2008
A plan, a plan, my kingdom for an Energy Plan
If we do not want to go back to the dark ages, living as manual laborers, eking out of a living from whatever we can, using draft animals, dying at an average age of 33, we need energy. The source is not critical, the form and cost are.
Is oil a renewable source of energy? We do not know. Many call oil a “fossil” fuel, yet no one can duplicate a process and artificially create oil. Is it a natural substance somehow produced in the earth’s core? We do not know that either. Junk science will not tell us.
We need a reliable source of energy, two to be more precise. One for fixed units: houses, offices, factories and the like. Nuclear power producing electricity will do fine for this.
Oh, but the danger!
Danger? What danger? How many people have been killed by nuclear power in the United States? To save time, not one.
The hazardous waste!
What waste? Most of what is currently classified as nuclear waste is in reality not hazardous at all. The totality of nuclear waste with a rational definition will fit in one shipping container for the whole United States for a year’s worth of waste. Less, if you allow recycling!
Nuclear power would also allow for the use of electric cars. Electric cars have a reasonable range of about 120 miles per day. That would take care of about 90 percent of US needs, hybrids could handle the rest.
What about aircraft, boats/ships and trucking?
Synthetic Liquid Fuel (SLF) Liquid combustible fuel is the only source of energy with sufficient energy density for aircraft and vehicles.
We need a Manhattan Project to manufacture SLF. Now.
So, what to do? How do we drop energy costs to a manageable level?
1. Open all the US territory to drilling for oil. ALL of it.
2. Open the ANWR to drilling right now.
3. Federalize power, oil and gas production permitting requirements so that a single permit is all that is needed to build a powerplant, LNG facility, drill for oil or build a refinery.
These three items will drive the cost of energy down to the point that gas will be under $2.50 per gallon immediately in an effort to preclude these steps from being economical. Short range victory for the US.
4. Allow the immediate permitting and construction of nuclear powerplants. Change tax codes to encourage energy production.
5. Dedicate all resources required to develop a SLF, the patents to be United States property.
6. Encourage the production of stand alone solar energy units of the 1-25KW size in areas of appropriate weather. Make them easy to shop for and install.
Simple. Quick. Effective.