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Thread for AlternativeEnergy PR

A former member
Post #: 151
As much as I think Al Gore is a pompous gas bag and his movie a smorgasbord of half-truths and deceptions that would make all confidence men and charlatans green with envy it is true he has been effective. He has made people, regardless of the truths, aware that we need alternative energy. Nobel peace prize though? Isn't this an award given to people who promote peace? This is more of an award Jimmy Carter deserves. However since Jimmy Carter would support him for president, see http://origin.denverp...­, maybe that's enough.

Shouldn't there be a separate award for promoting renewable clean energy?

Gore's Nobel win should boost alternative energy
Fri Oct 12, 2007 5:12pm EDT
By Timothy Gardner

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The winning of the Nobel Peace Prize by Al Gore and the U.N. climate panel on Friday should give a push to alternative energy technologies that are already enjoying their best year ever, experts said.

The prize could spur change in the energy industry that coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power dominate.

"It's a quiet revolution," said Sarah Emerson, the managing director of Boston-Based Energy Security Analysis Inc, which has advised clients about fossil fuels for decades. "Gore's winning makes it a little louder."

Gore's Oscar-winning movie "An Inconvenient Truth" and book of the same name, and the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's report this year outlined global warming's threat and blamed it on gases emerging from the smokestacks and tailpipes of the world's hydrocarbon economy.

They also highlighted that the comparatively tiny industries of biofuels, wind and solar power, and energy-sipping compact florescent lightbulbs, could over the coming decades help limit output of heat-trapping gases belched out by fossil fuels.

The technologies have a long road ahead of them before they would help slow and then reverse output of greenhouse gases. The two largest emitters of heat-trapping gases, the United States and China, have plans to build hundreds of power plants that run on coal, the heaviest emitter of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas.

BUILDING THE NEW ENERGY ECONOMY

"Gore has helped a whole lot of people see how critically important it is we address the climate crisis," Ted Nordhaus, an adviser to environmental groups, said in an interview.

"Where we and he need to go next is to define an agenda that is focused on building the new energy economy, not just tearing down the old energy economy," said Nordhaus, the co-author of "Break Through," a book about how the world should fight global warming.

In the United States, the world's top energy consumer, renewables only generated 3 percent of electricity in July, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

But wind and solar power are growing at about 30 percent or more every year. And U.S. capacity to make ethanol has grown 28 percent this year.

Global investment in renewable energies jumped to a record $100 billion in 2006, and will likely rise to about $120 billion in 2007, the U.N. Environment Program said this summer.

Still, many of the technologies may suffer bumps on the road to development. Solar power may be hurt by low supplies of refined silicon and the U.S. ethanol industry has transportation bottlenecks that could lead to a glut in the heart of the country and thin supply on the coasts.

Fortunately for Gore and the IPCC, the peace prize comes during a time of record prices for oil, cheap supplies of which are harder and harder for major oil companies to find. Oil hit a record high above $84 per barrel on Friday amid supply concerns ahead of the Northern Hemisphere winter and tensions between northern Iraq and Turkey.

Adam Bergman, a clean technology investment banker at Jeffries in New York, said the peace prize and record oil prices should push the U.S. public to vote for politicians that would regulate greenhouse gases and provide strong incentives for renewables. He said incentives have helped put renewables on a level playing field with fossil fuels in European countries such as Germany and Spain.

"U.S. investors have put a lot of money in clean technologies ... but we don't have the incentive structures in place to make them competitive with traditional fossil fuels right now," he said.
http://www.reuters.co...­
A former member
Post #: 152
This explains why the peace prize is being given out to Gore. Apparently the committee looked around and saw redefining words is the the latest rage. I wonder if there is a seminar that world leaders go to which discusses the latest in-things to do and redefining words like "peace" and "torture" and everything else political are scrutinized. So now the Nobel Peace Prize means something totally different than what it has meant in the past.

In recent years, the Norwegian committee has broadened its interpretation of peacemaking and disarmament efforts originally outlined by Alfred Nobel, a Swedish industrialist, in his will in 1895.

Today, the prize recognises human rights, democracy, the elimination of poverty, sharing resources and the environment.
http://english.aljaze...­
A former member
Post #: 12
Al Gore receiving the Nobel Peace prize - the deceit of politics still rings on. Our man is a consummate politician who seized on the bandwagon of Green, while not changing one iota of his lifestyle. Listening to NPR interview yesterday to a couple of the scientists also awarded the prize, they gave thanks to the other 2,000 scientists who labored so hard press forward the timeliness of global warming. Food for the lip service people.

An old friend of ours, a radio personality in the Bay area for decades, the "Larry King" of SF, interviewed Al with the coming out of his book. My friend just shook his head, saying how momentous he thought the interview would be, and how Gore was a bumbling idiot. Gore could not put one original phrase next to the last gem. He was totally rehearsed and one of the more difficult interviews because Gore only knew what had been prepared for him. So, who wrote the book?
A former member
Post #: 153
Interesting link. Maybe we should have a game like Where In The World Is Carmen San Diego where you locate polluters...

SimCity adds global warming to the mix
Posted by Cory Doctorow, October 11, 2007 2:40 AM | permalink
SimCity Societies -- the forthcoming installment in the classic urban simulation franchise -- will include a global warming variable. If your SimSocieties aren't carefully balanced, they'll swamp their environments with greenhouse gasses and die off. The module is produced with BP, who, I guess, are trying to figure out what a giant oil company does next.
http://www.boingboing...­
A former member
Post #: 154
Al Gore receiving the Nobel Peace prize - the deceit of politics still rings on. Our man is a consummate politician who seized on the bandwagon of Green, while not changing one iota of his lifestyle. Listening to NPR interview yesterday to a couple of the scientists also awarded the prize, they gave thanks to the other 2,000 scientists who labored so hard press forward the timeliness of global warming. Food for the lip service people.

An old friend of ours, a radio personality in the Bay area for decades, the "Larry King" of SF, interviewed Al with the coming out of his book. My friend just shook his head, saying how momentous he thought the interview would be, and how Gore was a bumbling idiot. Gore could not put one original phrase next to the last gem. He was totally rehearsed and one of the more difficult interviews because Gore only knew what had been prepared for him. So, who wrote the book?

Don't get me wrong when I bad mouth Gore. I think he has done a great deal in making public opinion. However it's like having a snake oil salesman pushing the cause. I feel the foundation may be a bit shaky if people identify it with him. Or with his movie.

And listening to Gore receive his prize I too shook my head hearing his canned phrases. Couldn't he tailor his talk a little more to his audience? So I can certainly believe your friends difficulties in interviewing Gore.


A former member
Post #: 157
Hmmm. I bet Chevron and other monopolies will have solutions requiring monopolies subsidized and protected by our government...

Another Big Energy Company Playing Video Games With Climate Change
from the please-don't-blow-it dept

As posted today on BoingBoing, the upcoming release of SimCity Societies asks game players to consider how their city-building choices affect (virtual) climate change. Upping the ante on Chevron's online game Energyville, Societies was developed in collaboration with BP, nee British Petroleum. By piggybacking on the success of the SimCity franchise, BP will gain access to a much larger audience than Chevron's strategy of hoping users find its standalone game. While their stated goal of raising awareness of climate change issues and energy alternatives is admirable, BP's in-game branding smacks more of marketing than of educating. The real missed opportunity, however, would be if BP just uses the game to talk at players, even if what they have to say is informative. The SimCity community is one of the oldest and biggest "connected" communities around, and the very nature of the game brings together millions of individuals who enjoy solving problems. Rather than creating a glorified brochure, BP should leverage their participation in the game to foster a conversation between the company and individuals. That could mean allowing players to provide feedback on their experiences with in-game climate change or even (at the player's discretion) sending back entire game-play sequences that could be compiled and dissected by the company. BP, which faces changing realities of the energy industry, would do well to consider that they might learn more by listening to their customers than by telling their customers what the company already thinks. No such intent is obvious from what BP is saying about the game, but maybe we'll be pleasantly surprised.
http://techdirt.com/a...­
A former member
Post #: 171
Now this is interesting. I wonder what they are working on. I bet they'll be very successful.

International Herald Tribune
George Clooney to become manager of new Swiss company for clean energy, says Nicolas Hayek

The Associated Press
Saturday, October 20, 2007

BERN, Switzerland: Hollywood star George Clooney will become an executive board member of a new Swiss energy company being set up by Swatch Group chairman Nicolas Hayek, the Swiss billionaire said on Saturday.

The company, which will develop environmentally friendly techniques for car motors, batteries and other devices, is aimed at reducing CO2-emissions in energy consumption, Hayek said in an interview with daily Berner Zeitung.

Clooney will sit on the board alongside Swiss astronaut Claude Nicollier and others, he said.

Clooney's spokesman Stan Rosenfield, in an e-mail to The Associated Press, confirmed the report.

"First I hesitated between Al Gore and Clooney," said Hayek. But he didn't chose Al Gore because it was still unclear whether he was running for presidency of the United States and therefore might have accepted the post as a mere public relations exercise, Hayek told the newspaper.

The new enterprise which will be based in the western Swiss city of Biel, will have different branches doing research and development in the clean production of hydrogen, solar energy and fuel cells, he said.

Hayek, who chairs the executive board of Swatch Group AG, the world's largest watchmaker with a net income of 827 million Swiss francs ($685.5 million) in 2006, said he will also preside over the new company's board.

He did not say when the new company, which has yet to be named, will be launched.

A former member
Post #: 176
So what does this mean? That we should ignore all studies?

Climate change models, no matter how powerful, can never give a precise prediction of how greenhouse gases will warm the Earth, according to a new study.

The result will provide ammunition to those who argue not enough is known about global warming to warrant taking action.

The analysis focuses on the temperature increase that would occur if levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere doubled from pre-Industrial Revolution levels. The current best guess for this number ? which is a useful way to gauge how sensitive the climate is to rising carbon levels ? is that it lies between 2.0 C and 4.5 C. And there is a small chance that the temperature rise could be up to 8C or higher.

To the frustration of policy makers, it is an estimate that has not become much more precise over the last 20 years. During that period, scientists have established that the world is warming and human activity is very likely to blame, but are no closer to putting a figure on exactly much temperatures are likely to rise.
Positive feedback

It now appears that the estimates will never get much better. The reason lies with feedbacks in the climate system. For example, as the temperature increases, less snow will be present at the poles. Less snow means less sunlight reflected back into space, which means more warming.

These positive feedbacks accelerate global warming and also introduce uncertainty into estimates of climate sensitivity, say Gerard Roe and Marcia Baker of the University of Washington in Seattle.

What is more, they found that better computer models or observational data will not do much to reduce that uncertainty. A better estimate of sensitivity is the holy grail of climate research, but it is time to "call off the quest", according to a commentary published alongside the paper.
Deep uncertainties

That is likely to fuel attacks by critics in the oil industry and elsewhere who argue against investing in measures like clean energy until more is known about climate change. Others say that we need to act even if climate sensitivity lies at the low end of the scale, since coastal areas would still be threatened by rising seas, for example.

Ultimately, the papers also illustrate the limits to which models, even those produced by powerful supercomputers, can help politicians make decisions.

"This finding reinforces not only that climate policies will necessarily be made in the face of deep, irreducible uncertainties," says Roger Pielke, a climate policy expert at the University of Colorado at Boulder, US. "But also the uncomfortable reality ? for climate modellers ? that finite research dollars invested in ever more sophisticated climate models offer very little marginal benefit to decision makers."
http://environment.ne...­
A former member
Post #: 180
Too bad politicians careers are not terminated here in America if they don't push Wind, PV, and hydrogen. We only get the ones who push nuclear, biofuel, and anything else that pollutes.

I've got a theory. If the inherent technology is bad and should be stopped there will be lots of lobbyists to push it forward. And the politicians will take it up. However if it is clean and you'd think it should pass with no trouble it will never make it through because there won't be any lobbyists...

China energy-saving law ups pressure on officials
Mon Oct 29, 2007 12:48am EDT


BEIJING (Reuters) - China has stepped up its conservation drive with a law that makes officials' career prospects dependent in part on their energy-saving efforts, the Xinhua news agency said.

The country's top legislature approved on Sunday a series of amendments to its energy-saving law, almost doubling the size of the legislation.

Among the new provisions is one that requires the performance reviews for local government officials' -- vital for advancement in the Communist Party -- to include an assessment of their energy-saving efforts.

Beijing is trying to steer the world's fourth-largest economy away from a model of growth at any cost towards more sustainable development, as the human and economic costs of nearly three decades of dirty expansion mount up.

Officials are also concerned about the increasing reliance on foreign oil, which now accounts for nearly half of the country's needs even though it was a next exporter until the early 1990s.

"The way in which energy-saving goals are accomplished will be made part of the performance rating of local governments and their leaders," Xinhua quoted the revised law as saying.

The revised law also stipulates that energy producers are not allowed to provide free energy to their employees. But it did not tackle an issue which many analysts say is at the root of China's wasteful energy use -- low state-set prices for power.
http://www.reuters.co...­
A former member
Post #: 181


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