Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Other Renewable Energy Challenge

There are two technical challenges involved in building a renewable energy economy. The first one is familiar to most people: finding cost effective ways to capture the sun's energy, and there are lots of great designs and devices being developed to make solar and wind energy competitive with current prices for oil and coal.

But the other challenge is energy storage. Renewable energy, in most places, most of the time, is an intermittent energy source. The sun only shines during the day, and the wind doesn't blow all of the time. If you want to power a modern, 24-7 economy with renewable energy, you have to have a cheap way to store the cheap solar energy you generate during the day so that you can use it at night.

This article from Slate is a nice, quick survey of some proposed energy storage solutions. I'm attracted to the train idea. It's simple, and I like simple.

Energy storage technology: Batteries, flywheels, compressed air, rail storage. - Slate Magazine

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Australia’s carbon price: The woman who made it happen

For me the key point is the line: "...Harris' power only derives from how well she and the CCA board can argue their case in public...". And that's what we're missing from the Obama adminstration, someone tasked to make this case in public, all the time, until we get action from Congress.

Australia’s carbon price: The woman who made it happen

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The GOP’s Three Fiscal Lies - The Daily Beast

Lots of people have examined the three specific arguments that Tomasky refutes in this piece. But what really resonated with me is his call for Democrats to refute them in public. The biggest problem I have with Obama is that he will not loudly and consistently attack these arguments. The American people need guidance on fiscal matters, not attempts to pander to the misconceptions that Republicans have drilled into their heads.

The GOP’s Three Fiscal Lies - The Daily Beast