positive potential future of nuclear power

Is nuclear fission going to make a comeback and plug the gap in our energy needs? Will nuclear fusion ever become energetically viable?

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An Inspector Calls
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Post by An Inspector Calls »

Pepperman wrote:Hence bringing Iceland and Norway into the fold. Iceland has far more geothermal potential than it can ever deal with and Norway has enormous hydro capacity.

Whenever discussions turn to high penetration renewables, the naysayers always seem to assume that wind will be the only renewable source in the mix. It won't.
Well I think you'll find in the Norwegian case that (a) they do indeed have lots of hydro, inc. storage, but they have the greedy habit of using most of it themselves, and (b) what surplus they have they export via their interconnectors to Sweden and Denmark (and thus the rest of Europe) so they're already in the fold.

Iceland's geothermal capacity is piddling at the moment - about 150 MW and very variable depending on how many plants have been written off in the latest eruption. In fact, I think they only have one plant at Myvatn, which is part CHP for a diatomite [sic?] factory. They do have lots of hydro, but they've just decided to build their very own Al smelter. And building an interconnector to Iceland is no walk in the park - there's a deep ocean valley in the way.

Elsewhere:
hydro potential in the UK? Scottish Hydro, in the 50s, had another 1 GW of potential hydro sites earmarked for development. Not all the of the Scottish hydro development in existence (about 1.3 GW) involved the building of dams - often it's descrete tunnels through mountains interconnecting systems via generators. I'll bet a lot of the public doesn't even notice the Scottish hydro plants.

I just do not understand kenneal's attitude that, on the one hand hydro is bad, and on the other it's apparently OK to plaster the wilds of Scotland with wind turbines, many of them built on delicate peat moors such as the Isle of Lewis. (I appreciate that's putting words in K's mouth, but hey, why I should I be the only one not allowed to do that!)
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

The difference between putting hydro on a piece of land and wind is that the land is completely obliterated by hydro but there is still a chance for wildlife, people and farming below wind turbines.
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Post by An Inspector Calls »

kenneal wrote:The difference between putting hydro on a piece of land and wind is that the land is completely obliterated by hydro but there is still a chance for wildlife, people and farming below wind turbines.
Well yes, as long as you're selective about your valuation of the amenity of the people living close to windfarms, ignore environmental impacts of wind farms such as road penetration into remote areas (e.g. Whinash ridge proposal, Isle of lewis), bird slaughter, ignore the fact that wind is far less economical than hydro, and so forth. I don't see that your position is a clear cut case for 'hydro no, wind yes'. Why is the environmental position so lacking in nuance here?

And we seem quite happy to obliterate land for farm use and wildlife habit and put down loss-making forests in their place. Another green mantra: 'forest good, sheep rearing bad'?

But we digress from nuclear.
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Post by RenewableCandy »

"Bird slaughter" is, erm, overstating the case a bit! It dates back to Altemont Pass, which is a migration route and whose turbines have (had?) very fast-rotating blades.

It's now known that very few birds are killed by wind turbines, and that ironically the larger the turbine, the fewer birds killed. Also, problems only arise in certain sites (migration or feeding sites) every proposed WT site has first to have an EIA to rule out these sites.
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Post by emordnilap »

An Inspector Calls wrote:'forest good, sheep rearing bad'?
Totally.
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Post by An Inspector Calls »

RenewableCandy wrote:"Bird slaughter" is, erm, overstating the case a bit! It dates back to Altemont Pass, which is a migration route and whose turbines have (had?) very fast-rotating blades.

It's now known that very few birds are killed by wind turbines, and that ironically the larger the turbine, the fewer birds killed. Also, problems only arise in certain sites (migration or feeding sites) every proposed WT site has first to have an EIA to rule out these sites.
Err, more than a few . . .
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/colu ... agles.html

http://www.wildlifeextra.com/go/news/bn ... ms.html#cr

emordnilap wrote:
An Inspector Calls wrote:'forest good, sheep rearing bad'?
Totally.
Why totally? Don't tell me this is because sheep emit methane?
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Post by emordnilap »

No, it's just the best idea you've had so far.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

Inspector, I used to have a great deal of respect for Christopher Booker over many of his campaigns but he has totally destroyed that respect with his position on wind turbines but especially that on Climate Change. You have to look really carefully at any of his rants now.

Re: "Forest good, sheep bad" it depends on the type of forest. If you are talking about a forest of indigenous species, such as used to cover the Scottish mountains before man's clearance of it, yes, that is good but if you are talking about wall to wall sitka spruce then, no, it is as bad as sheep.

That natural forest can harbour deer for food and can provide vast amounts of fuel when coppiced sustainably. It will also build topsoil cover which will sequester vast amounts of carbon. Working the forest in this way will also provide large numbers of sustainable jobs and would repopulate the Highlands to an extent.
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Post by DominicJ »

Kenneal
Thats why some of us are so furiously against wind turbines and other such nonesense greenery.

For a far smaller cost, we could have forested the bleeping highlands!!!
A Nuclear desalination plant or two and a long network of water pipes could have forested AUSTRALIA.

Instead we get roof mounted solar panels designed to "encourage the spirit of the peoples revolution" or whatever reason Mao gave for allowing people to turn cookwear into scrap.

I dont believe in global warming, but I'd be more than happy to contribute to a scheme to forest australia.
If we assume half of Australia would be avaialble for such a project and a tree needs a 5x5 meter block of land, you have room for 10 BILLION Trees.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

Australia is a desert because nature made it that way. Scotland is a sheep farm because man made it that way. Therefore, man can make Scotland back into a forest by just leaving it alone or by giving it a helping hand but try to make Australia into a forest is wasting energy.
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Post by RenewableCandy »

An Inspector Calls wrote:Err, more than a few . . .
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/colu ... agles.html
obsession ...follies of our age, ...useless, ... derisory... colossal cost... virtually nothing...supposedly environment-friendly... devastating ... disturbing ... outrage...
It's a rant.

There are no quoted sources.

To be fair, I can only get away with saying this because I happen to know how some of those birdkill figures came about, but sadly I shall have to do an RGR at this point and say that I can't quote chapter and verse because, well, it's kind-of embarrassing for some individuals (whom I don't know personally) and I was asked, at the time, not to risk dropping them in it.

Thus, Altemont Pass is, I grant you, a bird disaster. Others are not, as a result of what was learned there.
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Post by biffvernon »

kenneal wrote:Australia is a desert because nature made it that way.
Perhaps, but there is a plausible hypothesis that aboriginal deforestation reached a climatic tipping point without which much of Australia would look like the DODGY TAX AVOIDERS.
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Post by DominicJ »

kenneal wrote:Australia is a desert because nature made it that way. Scotland is a sheep farm because man made it that way. Therefore, man can make Scotland back into a forest by just leaving it alone or by giving it a helping hand but try to make Australia into a forest is wasting energy.
So CO2 in the atmosphere is going to kill us all, but we cant waste energy greening a desert?
A task that would take more Carbon out of the atmosphere than, anything currently under consideration.

How can you not see how your position seems insane?

You could probably do it for less energy if you had 400 years and your own Fremen, but you claim we dont.
Perhaps, but there is a plausible hypothesis that aboriginal deforestation reached a climatic tipping point without which much of Australia would look like the DODGY TAX AVOIDERS.
Depending on how regular an occurance the recent hurricane used to be, very possible.
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Post by An Inspector Calls »

RenewableCandy wrote: [And including Kenneal's response which is similar]
It's a rant.


You mean you don't agree with it. You don't like Booker and what he says - tough. I do, I believe every wod he says, just as I think you lap up the words of Monbiot and Porritt.

And actually, I also have insider information on this, which I can't cite, but colleagues in industry in the Highlands report that the Sea Eagle carnage is very real, and is worse than reported since a lot of it is deliberately concealed.
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Post by RenewableCandy »

I don't think you read my post completely. The sentence "It's a rant" came after a list of pointlessly inflammatory words he used (which are characteristic of the species "Rant"), and before a further explanation ("There are no quoted sources"). Were I to put together a case against wind farms, I think I'd make it rather a lot more informative. A case of sorts could be made, for example, for planting trees instead. Erm, except Offshore, of course :)
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