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  1. #1
    Guest Member S Landreth's Avatar
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    Fossil Fuel Alternatives

    The more fossil fuel you use, the more expensive it gets. The more renewable energy you use, the cheaper it gets.

    It’s simple, fossil fuels are being depleted and we need to change our sources for energy.

    I am (others are welcome) going to update this thread with news/technology highlighting any advances in reducing our use of fossil fuels. I’ll try to cover everything from green homes, wind/solar/hydro power, energy efficient/electric vehicles and anything else I find while perusing the net.

    I’ll start off with something I am sure most of us would enjoy owning (if it was not priced so high).

    Telsa Model S




    Or maybe if you have a little more to spend, a Rimac Concept One (305 kph) with a starting price of 980,000 (US).


    I was motivated to start this thread because of some recent news events related to fossil fuels and Climate Change.

    Exxon Mobil gave a cease-and-desist order to Comcast, forcing the cable provider to pull an ad about climate change from Fox News' coverage of the State of the Union address in some areas, according to a press release from one of the groups responsible for the ad.

    Last week, the Kansas House Education Committee introduced a bill that mandates teachers question the scientific basis of global warming, becoming the latest state to take up one of American Legislative Exchange Council’s “model bills” aiming to misrepresent climate change in schools.

    And one local story,…. The move followed the Cabinet’s resolution on February 19 to have all government units cut down their electricity consumption, ahead of a possible electricity shortage in April.: http://teakdoor.com/living-in-thaila...re-raised.html (Thailand : Govt House's temperature raised)

    The choice is easy. Do you want to see more of this


    or this

    Last edited by S Landreth; 21-02-2013 at 08:05 AM.
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  2. #2
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    Frankly this is all bullshit.
    How long do the batteries last and how much does it cost to replace them.
    Still have to burn fossil fuels to recharge them.
    The planet is a finite resource, when it's fucked it's fucked.. end of.
    Even solar power is not completely sustainable.
    Let's all drive V8s and be done with it.
    Falling asleep and waking up is not the same as passing out and coming to.

  3. #3
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    Is that another one of Obama's boondogles?

    The car American taxpayers funded to be manufactured in Europe?

    'Green Energy' is still a long way off in any event. Wind farms slaughtering birds and so forth...
    Last edited by Boon Mee; 21-02-2013 at 10:29 AM.

  4. #4
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the dogcatcher
    The planet is a finite resource, when it's fucked it's fucked.. end of.
    Can be no argument it is finite. How finite is debatable.

    Alternative energy sources are for the moment impracticable financially or as you say in the case of batteries require fossil fuels to charge and manufacture.

    For the near term reduction of fossil fuel use by way of improved gas mileage, cleaner more efficient application of fuels used to generate electricity and conservation of energy use need to continue. None of these measures will change the fact fossil fuels are finite.

    Hence makes sense to invest in alternate sources. Advances in alternative fuel technology will in future make for viable alternatives to fossil fuels. Might take 100 years but people then will look back at how primitive our current methods of energy generation.

    Weaning ourselves off fossil fuels has another big value. Countries will no longer be at the mercy of those who supply fossil fuels.
    Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat Jesus Jones's Avatar
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    I don't believe in the man made theory at all, yet I believe I'm more greener than many preachers. LPG, LED lighting around the home, collect rainwater to wash the cars, recycle used stuff, I don't buy into the 6 month updating, atmospheric water generator (Standard Filtration too) and partial solar power.

    Go on SL, what do you do?
    You bullied, you laughed, you lied, you lost!

  6. #6
    I am in Jail
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    There's no future for sports cars without fossil fuels.

    It's pure fantasy to think anything approaching the current social/cultural/economic set up is going to continue with just a few solar cells and wind turbines substituted for coal-fired power stations. It's not even clear that without fossil fuels, renewables make any sense. Could you bootstrap a society up on renewables alone? It seems highly problematic.

    Aside from the problems with base-load, one of the real killers with renewables is their generally low energy return on energy invested (EROEI). If you're spending a gallon of oil to get a gallon out of the ground, obviously you're not going anywhere. If the same gallon gets three gallons out of the ground, then you have a little surplus which you can use to process the oil and maybe there'll be enough left over to start to use a primitive tractor to help plough. If you're getting 10 gallons out of the ground by using that one gallon, you can get some kind of semi-advanced civilization with a little social specialization going, etc. Hydro has a high EROEI but most renewables have pretty low EROEI - corn ethanol is close to 1 so it's just shifting energy around (and creating problems in the process) rather than making any more actually available. PV is about 6 or 7, wind has a return of 15-20. Coal on the other hand, is around 80, an oil from the big Saudi fields is around 100. (That's from memory - I can't remember the exact figures now.)

    Without the kind of surplus energy we get from fossil fuels, complex social systems, wide-ranging distribution networks and mass consumerism are extremely unlikely to survive in their current forms. The extent to which this is happening now is hard to discern but new oil fields have dramatically lower EROEI than the huge fields we've been relying on; Canadian tar sends have an EROEI of only 3 or 4 and a lot of tight oil and ultra deep fields which fantasists think are going to save America's bacon aren't a lot better.

    That's not to say we shouldn't develop these technologies. That's all there is so we haven't got much choice but don't make the mistake of thinking a society can change its primary energy source without at the same time undergoing revolutionary changes itself.

  7. #7
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    I have been following the Tesla (you have Telsa in your link) car for a few years now. The first picture that you post is the sedan version, they originally came out with a sports car version (see on youtube for a video of Jay Leno driving it) the body of which I think was built by Lotus.



    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." - Abe Lincoln.

  8. #8
    Guest Member S Landreth's Avatar
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    Estonia launches national car-charging network


    165 charging points around the country will use direct current to charge cars in less than 30 minutes

    Estonia’s reputation as one of the most wired-up countries in Europe has been boosted further with the opening of what is being billed as the world’s first nationwide electric car charging network.

    The sparsely populated Baltic state with a population of just 1.3 million hopes the 165 “fast chargers” will overcome the “chicken and egg” problem facing the take-up of electric cars worldwide.

    The network of charging points, which was opened officially on Wednesday but has been running for several months, uses direct current (DC) to charge cars in less than 30 minutes, rather than the alternating current (AC) technology used by most of the UK’s more than 3,000 points which can take up eight hours to recharge a car’s battery.

    There are believed to be around 650 electric cars in Estonia, more than 500 of which were Mitsubishi i-MiEVs given to social workers by the government in 2011. Motorists can get grants of up to €18,000 (£15,700) off electric cars, compared to the £5,000 cap for the UK’s electric car grant. The average full price for a new electric car is around £30,000.

    Quote Originally Posted by palexxxx View Post
    I have been following the Tesla (you have Telsa in your link) car for a few years now. The first picture that you post is the sedan version, they originally came out with a sports car version (see on youtube for a video of Jay Leno driving it) the body of which I think was built by Lotus.



    When starting the thread I thought about opening it up with the Tesla Model S and the Tesla Roadster.

    Tesla Roadster


    But I thought the Rimac looked so much nicer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus Jones View Post
    Go on SL, what do you do?
    Believe it or not, this thread is not about me. But if you must know I try to do my part, personally and with the few different companies I still help manage.

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat Jesus Jones's Avatar
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    ^Fair enough, didn't mean to sound like a smart arse.

    What started out as an innocent test drive and review of the 2013 Motor Trend “Car Of The Year,” the Tesla Model S has suddenly become the center of controversy after the test vehicle ran out of fuel on its drive from Washington to Boston.


    (Photo: teslamotors.com)
    Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the New York Times reviewer did not follow the instructions and, thus, ran out of gas before his road trip ended.
    RELATED



    The New York Times’ reviewer John M. Broder said he had “creeping range anxiety” during his entire drive, and believes the cold weather is what ultimately doomed his trip before he could arrive at his final destination. Tesla Motors and its CEO Elon Musk have vocally refuted the New York Times’ claims, calling them “bogus” and “ridiculous,” citing the vehicle’s own data logs that show excessive speeding and an unplanned detour through “downtown” Manhattan, which was not agreed on for the initial test drive.

    Tesla Model S Review Controversy: Can Elon Musk Vanquish The Electric Car Stigma?

  10. #10
    Ocean Transient
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    Just last week I connected up my wind generator on my sail boat. 10Knots of wind and 15.5 volts pushing about 10amps into my 440AMP HOUR BATTERY BANK. Now I also have 2x 100watt solar panels, plus a towed generstor which can give me another 15 amps.

    With my new little 100quart (american measure) small fridge with its very effienct german cooling I an self sufficient off the grid! Burt will have cold beers until we run out!!!! We will a fuel capacity of 40 gallons and a 4000 mile first leg coming up I am reckoning with 100 to 400 miles per gallon. O ya I have a water maker as well so I can stay out their for a long time. Well unless we sink. Which is not beyond the realms of possibility as I have done all the work.

    Please send money for a life-raft to.............

  11. #11
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    Estonia’s reputation as one of the most wired-up countries in Europe has been boosted further with the opening of what is being billed as the world’s first nationwide electric car charging network.
    And where does that electricity come from? It's not delivered by fairies - the vast majority comes from burning fossil fuels. There are advantages to using electric cars but you're not really solving many problems by buying a fancy new car. And in fact, by giving people the illusion of this being green, it can make matters worse by sanctioning environmentally-damaging behaviour (people think 'I've bought an electric car so it's OK if I take a holiday in the Seychelles).

  12. #12
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    Hi S Landeth

    Nice thread. I will green you as soon as I can.

    About electric cars. I don't see them as the solution to our transport problems. They are OK for the City but not for sparsely populated areas with longer distances. So we will need some alternative fuel for combustion engines too.

    BTW Elon Musk is aware of the problem sourcing of power for charging his cars. This is why he founded Solar City too for producing solar power.

    Ethanol from fossil fuel is indeed very inefficient. From sugarcane like in Brazil is somewhat better but still not good enough.

    Return on energy for photovoltaic. You cannot easily give figures on that. It depends on many variables. Putting solar panels on roofs in Germany is very inefficient with our climate and other restrictions. Putting them into deserts is much better witht their light intensity and sunshine hours. That's the way to go. Also more modern cells are much more efficient and need less energy to produce so the numbers are much better. They are one way to go.

    One major problem with renewables in general and solar in particular is availability when needed. We need a global grid that gets energy from where it is produced to where it is needed. Or we need efficient storage. Batteries are not efficient enough. Or best both a grid and storage. These problems are solvable but not yet solved.

    BTW the maniac who founded Tesla is the same man who also founded and now runs my favorite space venture SpaceX. His stated goal is to make humanity a space faring and multi planet species. His particular goal is make colonization of Mars happen. When asked he said, he wants to die on Mars, just not on impact.
    "don't attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by incompetence"

  13. #13
    Ocean Transient
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    At the moment many of the "new cars" are not environmentally friendly. That will come latter. It is a new technology. Think about it like the new hybrids are Ford T's. major breakthrough, but bloody crude machines compared to 100 years later.

    Face the reality of the Northern Icecaps melting and releasing the methane that has been frozen into the earth since the last ice age. We change or our childrens chlldren will die. It is happening now. We have to change.

    Now the mega powerful, the oil barons will not want this but even they will face the same extinction as us. The climate is changing rapidly, we have to move now today, or else there will be no tomorrow

  14. #14
    Lord of Swine
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    I will happily stand corrected by someone who knows, but batteries are made from rare earth metals. I doubt there exists enough of these metals to provide batteries for all the cars currently in use?
    Electric may have niche uses but its a dead end.
    Hydrogen cells are the future of personal transport.

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    read an article that said there were more co2 s produced making an electric car if you add the co2 s for the recharging it uses more than a normal car would over its life .

    hope that makes sense

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    Quote Originally Posted by Necron99
    Hydrogen cells are the future of personal transport.
    The problem there is storing the Hydrogen. No lightweight method available. Suggestion is storing Methane and get the hydrogen out of it. But you could then burn the Methane directly.

    Quote Originally Posted by woolyback
    hope that makes sense
    No, it doesn't. Modern batteries have many load cycles. Their materials can be recycled efficiently too. No waste of energy in that setup.

    Quote Originally Posted by Necron99
    batteries are made from rare earth metals
    Rare earth metals are not as rare as their name suggests. The present shortage is artificial as the Chinese have pushed everybody else out of the market with low prices and then produced that shortage.

    All of the above do not mean I am a great fan of electric cars. They have their uses but cannot replace combustion engines completely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Takeovers View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Necron99
    Hydrogen cells are the future of personal transport.
    The problem there is storing the Hydrogen. No lightweight method available. Suggestion is storing Methane and get the hydrogen out of it. But you could then burn the Methane directly.

    Quote Originally Posted by woolyback
    hope that makes sense
    No, it doesn't. Modern batteries have many load cycles. Their materials can be recycled efficiently too. No waste of energy in that setup.

    Quote Originally Posted by Necron99
    batteries are made from rare earth metals
    Rare earth metals are not as rare as their name suggests. The present shortage is artificial as the Chinese have pushed everybody else out of the market with low prices and then produced that shortage.

    All of the above do not mean I am a great fan of electric cars. They have their uses but cannot replace combustion engines completely.
    except making them were s the all the stuff come from . all over world add that to the co2s

  18. #18
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    Calleja has developed a lighting system that requires no electricity for power. Instead it draws CO2 from the atmosphere and uses it to produce light as well as oxygen as a byproduct. The key ingredient to this eco-friendly light? Algae.


    Biochemist creates CO2-eating light that runs on algae | Geek-Cetera | Geek.com

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sailing into trouble View Post
    At the moment many of the "new cars" are not environmentally friendly. That will come latter. It is a new technology. Think about it like the new hybrids are Ford T's. major breakthrough, but bloody crude machines compared to 100 years later.
    Electric engines predate combustion engines, and propelled more cars in the early years of the automobile than gas or Diesel motors. What if there were no oil? We might have roads with electricity supply installed in them, cables and contacts, much like for trams or trains, but underneath. No batteries. An electric engine producing 1,000hp and 1,000 Nm of torque is a lot simpler, smaller, lighter, durable, and cheaper than a combustion engine of the same power. We could go at 300 mph routinely, if we had not taken the wrong turn with oil.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall
    We could go at 300 mph routinely, if we had not taken the wrong turn with oil.
    What do you propose as the source of power then? Coal?

  21. #21
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    Wind, water, solar, geothermal. Enough to replace coal many times over. The planet get's more energy from the sun in a couple of hours, than is produced by burning fossils in a year.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall
    Wind, water, solar, geothermal. Enough to replace coal many times over. The planet get's more energy from the sun in a couple of hours, than is produced by burning fossils in a year.
    That's right. But you know that the investment to do it would be astronomical. There are also technical and political obstacles. The produced energy would not be there at the time and place where it is needed. To effectively use it you would need a worldwide grid to get the energy to the place where it is needed at the moment. That would include production and transit in politically instable regions.

  23. #23
    I am in Jail
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    Wind, water, solar, geothermal. Enough to replace coal many times over. The planet get's more energy from the sun in a couple of hours, than is produced by burning fossils in a year.
    Yes but it's diffuse and therefore to a large degree unusable, at least if you're trying to support the massively energy-intense social and economic systems we've been stupid enough to saddle ourselves with. And as Takeovers says, the capital required for these kinds of infrastructure transformations is enormous and capital formation has been having something of a rough time in the last 5 years.

  24. #24
    Lord of Swine
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    We don't have energy production problems.
    We have storage and transport problems, and oil, at present is the most efficient and practical storage medium we have.
    If you want to be green, you would do less damage by buying a second hand v8 than causing, by your market influence, a new electric car to be built.

    This car, why is it called a Tesla?, should really be an Edison shouldn't it? DC powered motors aren't they?
    Last edited by Necron99; 23-02-2013 at 10:39 AM.

  25. #25
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    Electricity travels at almost the speed of light. It's there when there is a grid, and you turn the switch. The transport of oil and coal is somewhat laborious, though. Oil comes for the most part from politically unstable regions. The costs of the railway, road, channel, and pipeline networks were astronomical as well, and far more expensive mile for mile than electricity lines. There is no technical obstacle, and the political ones are the oil and coal industries. And the consumer who needs a grotesquely overpowered and overweight car for his ego.

    Most people pay more for gas than for electricity, and the price increases for gas and diesel have been greater than for electricity for what, forever? Think what you could save if you were not forced to use gas.

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