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Scitizen Future Energies

Future Energies : a collaborative news publishing initiative by scientists, for everyone.

Copyright: Copyright 2008, Take part Media, Inc.

“Peak Oil” is Nonsense… Because There’s Enough Gas to Last 250 Years.

2012-12-12 17:46:39

By confusing a reserve and a resource, and ignoring the energy requirements for extracting unconventional gas and oil, e.g. through hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and retorting oil shale, the mistaken view has emerged that peak oil will not happen, or not for many decades. Quite simply,...

Threat of Population Surge to "10 Billion" Espoused in London Theatre.

2012-09-05 13:34:03

In a lecture given at the Royal Court Theatre in London, Professor Stephen Emmott gave a chilling account of what will happen to the Earth and its resources should the population rise to 10 billion by the end of this century, from its present number of 7 billion. It's not a cheerful prognosis,...

Current Commentary: Energy from Nuclear Fusion – Realities, Prospects and Fantasies?

2012-09-05 13:27:10

Recent reports of the Energy Catalyzer or E-cat device raise again the spectre of cold fusion, amid excoriating reactions from mainstream scientists, while developments in Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF) herald the fanfare of "hot" fusion power,...

The Oil Industry's Deceitful Promise of American Energy Independence

2012-05-04 11:09:44

Faced with increasing political obstacles to oil and natural gas exploration in many countries around the world, the oil industry is focusing again on the United States. The industry is using the deceitful promise of energy independence to cajole Americans and their policymakers into relaxing environmental...

Shaky Foundations for Offshore Wind Farms

2012-02-14 10:00:25

Offshore wind farms are far more difficult and expensive than developing on-shore wind power. If the UK is serious about providing 25% of its electricity by this means, as a form of carbon-free home-grown electricity by 2020, it will be necessary to build and install 2-3 turbines every day for the next...

Global Warming is No Threat?

2012-02-14 09:56:02

A group of 16 eminent scientists has written a letter to The Wall Street Journal arguing that climate change is no imminent threat, on the basis that mean global temperatures have not risen for more than a decade.

Transition Town, Reading,

2011-11-18 09:54:42

The Transition Town movement has spread across the United Kingdom and there is one based in Reading, in the south east of England. In the face of peak oil, global economic failure and climate change, TT aims to provide resilient local communities that can weather such assailing forces and provide ultimately...

Time to Worry: World Oil Production Finishes Six Years of No Growth

2011-11-02 12:29:13

As oil prices rose ever higher in the last decade, the optimists kept predicting rising production capacity and plummeting prices. Looks like they got it wrong.

The 10 Commandments – Guidelines to Surviving in a Post Peak Oil World

2011-10-04 14:56:06

The transformation to a lower-energy lifestyle is essential and complex in the face of peak-oil. Here are a few suggestions of some of the more immediate matters.

EU Set to Stockpile Rare Earth Elements (REEs).

2011-09-13 15:23:15

In order to address the shortfall in REEs for vital renewable energy projects caused by China's restriction of them onto the world markets for its own use, the European Union   is set to stockpile mixed rate earth metal carbonates at a rate of 3,000 tonnes per annum.

Dr Richard Pike (1950-2011) and Peak Oil.

2011-09-09 09:33:22

Dr Richard Pike, former CEO of the Royal Society of Chemistry, has died of cancer. He had worked for B.P. and in his opinion there was maybe twice as much crude oil in reserve than is normally considered. However, peak oil is an inevitability and the provision of oil must fail demand for it,...

Natural Limits to World Wind Energy?

2011-07-20 10:39:01

From a thermodynamic analysis, it is estimated that the amount of energy available in the Earth system to be extracted by wind-turbines is limited at 18 - 64 TW, and far less than previous engineering-based estimates. If wind-power technology were expanded to a level of energy extraction comparable to...

Shale Gas: Not a 'Game Changer' After All

2011-06-15 16:51:27

Newly accessible natural gas from deep shale deposits around the world has been touted as a solution to everything from oil dependence to climate change. But our actual experience with shale gas extraction is telling another story.

Fracking Does Contaminate Groundwater With Methane, But Jury Still Out On Process Overall

2011-05-13 00:15:48

A study by Duke University has shown unsafe levels of methane gas in water taken from wells closer than 1000 m to gas-shale hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") operations. Results from ongoing studies by the University of Texas and the US Environmental Protection Agency are awaited with interest,...

"Electric Cars Should be Called Coal Cars": The Heretic.

2011-04-13 10:24:41

Even if we could make enough electric cars fast enough to curb our oil consumption significantly, the provision of green electricity for them remains a probably insurmountable obstacle. If governments are serious about electrifying transportation, a move from personal to mass electric transport, e...

The Road to Fukushima: The Nuclear Industry's Wrong Turn

2011-04-11 10:32:42

Nuclear researchers knew long ago that reactor designs now in wide use had already been bested in safety by another design. Why did the industry turn its back on that design?

Rare Earth Elements and Thorium Power.

2011-03-22 16:08:06

Thorium is present in the ores of rare earth elements rendering the processing-waste radioactive. Rather than burying it underground in concrete thorium could be bred into a nuclear fuel and most simply used in a liquid fluoride reactor (LFR)...

When renewable energy meets quirky culture

2011-03-07 17:12:22

To make an impact, small-scale renewable energy systems must fit social expectations and cultural norms.

Endangered Elements: Threat to Green Energy.

2011-02-08 11:00:09

Demand for rare earth elements (REEs) is projected to exceed current supply, 97% of which comes from China. Since neodymium and dysprosium are needed for wind-turbines and hybrid cars, the future of green energy looks grim. The situation is worsened by the fact that China now aims to restrict its exports...

The Electric Car Fetish

2010-12-29 13:01:31

Many automobile enthusiasts believe that the electric car is the wave of the future that will help save the environment while expanding the availability of private transport to the world's growing middle class. They are likely wrong on both counts.

British Power is all Wind.

2010-11-14 20:37:39

Despite the opening of the new Thanet wind-farm in the English Channel, the present rate of development of wind-power indicates that Britain will struggle to meet its target of providing 15% of its total energy from renewables by 2020.

Is Venezuela the Next Flashpoint for Oil?

2010-10-04 14:01:35

In a world desperate for new oil supplies, Venezuela beckons. But will its fumbling management of oil production lead to foreign intervention, covert or otherwise, in a effort to raise Venezuelan output?

China’s Energy Paradox

2010-09-20 09:47:50

China is both the biggest user of dirty energy and clean energy; home to the world’s first eco-cities and also some of the world’s most polluted; host to the greatest number of new oil-dependent cars but third in terms of producing alternatives to petroleum.

Fossil Fuels vs. The Public Interest

2010-09-01 12:32:09

The fossil fuel industry often pretends to have the public's best interests in mind. The operative word is "pretends."

Australia Plans to be Carbon-Neutral by 2020.

2010-08-25 22:48:06

By means of a huge new installation of concentrating solar thermal (CST) and wind-power and the electrification of its transportation infrastructure, Australia plans to have a zero-carbon economy by 2020, hence zero-use of all fossil fuels (coal, gas and oil).

Global Coal Supplies: It Might Be Worse Than Anyone Thinks

2010-08-10 16:11:25

A new study on global coal supplies suggests a worldwide peak in production from existing fields in 2011.

Beyond Carbon Legislation: Energy Transition

2010-08-02 09:08:46

Never mind carbon emissions. That game cannot be won. What we can do is work towards replacing fossil fuels with renewables, transitioning from liquid fuels to electricity, and making the most of every last BTU.

Oil spill: BP shrinks by Billion

2010-07-28 12:56:38

Only time will tell whether BP's accountants have included a sufficient 'haircut' in the second-quarter results to allow the new boss to begin rebuilding the firm's fortunes.

Nuclear Energy: Threat or Opportunity?

2010-07-27 13:28:10

If nuclear is not to be part of the energy solution of the future, then there will be other costs/risks to bear, some of which could be very dramatic. And here's why.

Battle rages in British Isles over offshore drilling

2010-07-23 14:23:06

Here's a question: in which country do you imagine that a police officer might say to a protestor who is trying to prevent an offshore gas/oil drilling exploration, “I have your last breath in my hands”?