[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

SG-W:/ Sustainability plans



         I wish all of you on ROE, and energyresources would stop bickering, stay on subject, and concentrate on work that  will help save my Grandchildren. A book which is very much on subject which I hope some of you will buy is "Renewable Energy" from Island press This book gives a good survey of solar, wind, and biomass.
        As it stands now there are no tactics published on the Internet that will save society. The various energy groups are really not combining to produce a sustainability plan. I have tried but my material needs improvement and no one reads it.
          We need to figure out some tactics which will make a difference. We could possibly write a manifesto and try to get some of our lawmakers to read it. Certainly it is possible to prevent wholesale death in the USA for 200 years if the right things are done.  
           The keys to Sustainability are apartment houses, planned communities, railroads, co manufacturing, cogeneration, everyone farming and manufacturing, no houses, no cars, no planes, technically adroit conservation, massive tree planting, solar, wind, and biomass energy and  short travel distances.
            I am including my latest 4 minute speech to Ann Arbor City Council.
 
               Kermit Schlansker        Ann Arbor, Mi  
        
                                           Biomass
 
        When natural gas and oil are gone there will be insufficient coal, solar, or wind to heat houses. It will take martial law to prevent the wholesale cutting of trees. Solar and wind are regional and intermittent sources and can never replace fossil fuels in the quantity that we are using now. Possible biomass energy sources are wood, crop residues, energy crops, leaves, grasses, seaweed, algae, sewage, and manure. A mass planting of trees would not only store carbon thus slowing Global Warming, but would also make an energy source for future generations. Trees grow food in the form of fruit and nuts. Forests are useful for nature, lumber, fuel, food and topsoil. Leaves and cuttings from trees and shrubs are an excellent source of energy. Ashes from burning biomass will become a prime source of fertilizer in the future. Biomass is the only energy source that is dependable enough to heat buildings in the winter. However unless it is used in the most efficient way there will not be enough.
        The most popular way of using wood to make electricity has been to convert it to steam in a boiler and then use the steam to power steam engines or turbines. Another process is to partially burn wood chips thus producing a combustible gas that can be used to run an engine. During World War 2 the Germans and many others powered cars with wood chips. I myself crouched beside the gasification stove while riding with a German salesman shortly after the war in the back of a wood powered VW bug. There is a design of a small wood gas generator on the Internet that powers a tractor. If the wood gas is ran through a catalyst it is possible to make methanol. This probably will be the prime method of making tractor fuel because it can be done anywhere in the country on a local basis and uses cellulose rather than food as feedstock.
         A way of converting soft biomass to energy is to combine it with sewage in a tank and use the digesting action of bacteria to produce biogas that is a mixture of methane and carbon dioxide. The process is about 50% efficient. The really good thing about this process is that tank residues are excellent fertilizers. This gas can also be converted to methanol. In China there are many small biogas generators made from polyethylene bags. Every scrap of human and animal manure is carefully saved for these bags. Much of this energy is used for cooking.
         Ethanol is a possible tractor fuel and can be made from corn or other sources of starches and sugars. This process has been controversial because food is used as feedstock and because it takes about as much energy to produce the ethanol as there is in it.
          Production of Ethanol and Methanol and other biomass processes can be made more energy effective if they are done only in the winter by heating systems. In that way all of the waste heat from digestion, fermenting, distilling, chemical processes and electrical generation is used to heat the building and the process becomes 100% efficient. Another efficient way of gasifying wood and distilling ethanol would be to do it in summer using solar mirrors and collecting the waste heat to make electricity.
           Local governments must get involved in planting fruit and nut trees for food and energy and do research on how to plant at lowest cost. Future generations can not exist if local governments persist in being so technically inept and morally uncaring in their attitude towards the future.
 
                                                                        Kermit Schlansker