Natural Gas Trends:
Natural Gas closed Friday at $3.35 per mm Btu and has been on a three month downtrend from the $4 level where it put in a near-term double top in October and November of 2012.
EDEN GARDENS PROJECT OF CORNUCOPIA-ENTERPRISE
Eden Gardens Project, by Cornucopia-enterprise (http://www.cornucopia-enterprise.com) is announcing the new Energy/Food/Water/Composting campus on Earth Day 2012. It is hard to believe that 6 years ago we were thinking of the potential of Wind Power and negotiating with manufacturers in Holland to import their turbines. Today there are thousands of wind turbines producing power for millions of homes. Now, Eden Gardens Project combines not only wind power, but solar PV, solar water heating, in an overall campus that can grow food, create energy, desalinate water, and do all at triple the efficiency of traditional systems.
What is the Efficiency of Coal Fired Electric Production vs Wind Power?
Coal-fired power plants, lose about two thirds of the energy in the coal (meaning only about 1/3 of the energy in the coal ends up as electricity). The electricity then leaves the power plant, and around 12 percent is considered "line loss" due to resistence and innefficient systems(making transmission efficiency around 88 percent). So the end-to-end efficiency if coal-fired power is probably 0.33 x 0.88 = 0.29 or 29 percent efficiency. This does not take into consideration that a coal fired plant, uses millions of gallons of water and also creates long term carbon and coal sludge waste that has a reciepie of toxic or harmful chemicals that impact ground and water supply. The impact of the coal "emissions" is well known as a leading cause of pollution in the world.
By contrast, a typical wind turbine is about 30% efficient in converting the energy from the wind, into electricity, and turbines placed near the "user", typically show a 1%, maximum 2% line loss. Wind uses no water, and has no emissions, or sludge. So we might say that wind energy isas efficient as coal production, which much less financial cost, or negative impacts upon health or the environment.One of the key factors is that wind turbines can be placed locally, or near the location of consumption. Industrial plants, malls, hospitals, and universities are learning that turbines can be sized, so that one can produce the electrical needs for a dormitory, or an assembly line, or kitchen. Therefore, because of the "close proximity" there is very little line "resistance" loss, increasing efficiency. Battery packs, or systems can be installed so that the turbines always keep a one or two day supply of power charged up into the back up battery system in the event of a "no wind" period. Furthermore a master switch, and put a building "back" on the grid, if there is an extended "no wind" situation. But, that is rare and another system we like, is to put in a hybrid system that includes wind power, PV solar panels, and solar water heating. The three together can bring many buildings to a "net zero" status. (Meaning, they produce as much energy as the building needs, therefore eliminating electric bills.)
NATURAL GAS RESERVE ESTIMATES LOWERED 66%
The Energy Information Administration announced that former statements estimating natural gas reserves in the United States were overstated by up to 66%.
Estimates of the life span of natural gas reserves, obtainable through tracking and shale deposits, were dropped, in some cases from a 25 year supply to 12-15 years. "Those who look at the data carefully, also note that as much as 25% of the reported reserves are still in small pockets, too expensive or difficult to extract" said Ben Boothe, of www.environment-solutions.com.
"While we have all been heartened to think that we have a reprieve of energy supplies, this painfully reminds us that supplies of natural gas and oil reserves in the USA, are a depleting resource and eventually will run out." continued Boothe. "It is incumbent upon those gas and oil companies to follow wise and prudent practices, and set aside some of the fantastic profits they now enjoy, into developing renewable energy production. This will in the long term, be a wise and profitable path to follow." Citing history, Boothe recounted the example of the Ancient Egyptians, who in years of bounty, set aside huge reserves of grain, which proved to be a life saver when drought and crop failures occurred.