Monday, April 30, 2007

carbon trading is weak medicine

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

trees, not just for firewood anymore

Project looks at trees for biofuel
Forest-product companies have gotten pretty good over the years at squeezing as much lumber, paper pulp and chemicals out of their trees as they can. Now they're hoping to squeeze one more useful product out of the trees and the lands they're grown on -- transportation fuel.
Federal Way-based Weyerhaeuser Co. said Thursday that it has signed an agreement with petroleum giant Chevron Corp. to study commercial production of biofuels from cellulose-based sources, including trees and other crops that might be grown on Weyerhaeuser lands.

I'm getting tired of making this point, but if trees become a feedstock for liquid fuel, it won't be long before our "reserves" are thinned considerably. Look what the jackasses said about corn ethanol. Wouldn't affect the price of food. Now Mexico is running out of corn tortillas - - but that's ok, right? Even funny?

So yeah, take down the trees. This is not a green solution, this is a chainsaw response to OPEC directed at our own forests. (Oh sure, first they come for the managed tree farms...)

Sunday, April 15, 2007

burning turkey feces (reprint)

A while back I covered Changing World Technologies - wherein I idly speculated that claims on their web page may have been overstated a squidge.

Well, the plot has thickened, and now smells.

Innovative turkey-to-oil plant eats money, spits out fowl odor
(A) revolutionary plant is turning 270 tons of poultry waste into 300 barrels of crude oil every day. That would be cause for wild celebration in many circles if not for two not-so-minor problems. First, the plant is losing buckets of money, and second, some residents of the town that once welcomed it now pretty much hate it.
It turns out that process of cooking turkey guts, feathers, feces and other waste gives off a horrible stench.

The stench - well, that kind of punishes the early adopters. What really hurts is when you are losing "buckets of money" you don't have positive EROEI.


Instead, he is considering a deal to build a plant in Ireland, where costs would be considerably less, and where a recent news article predicted a plant should be operating by next year.

Yes - move somewhere far, far away where your fame does not preceed you.

Thanks to Clark Williams-Derry of Cascadia Scorecard for the link.

- - -

(Article originated April 15 2005) RR posting analysis on "what went wrong" here.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

get out while the getting is good

"The bad news is that the Martians have landed in New York City, and are staying at the Waldorf. The good news is that they only eat homeless men, women and children of all colors, and they pee gasoline."

Kurt Vonnegut

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

more is better

The Shock Model: A Review (Part I)
WebHubbleTelescope, a long time TOD poster, has been one of the most active in the blogosphere in the area of oil production modeling. He has advocated a more physically based approach instead of a heuristic curve fitting approach such as the Hubbert Linearization. He proposed an original method, the so called Shock Model, that has a clear physical interpretation and that is making use of both the production profile and the discovery data. I think that a review of the Shock Model is long overdue.

Just noticed this post by TOD contributor Khebab, and I am glad to see more perspectives on production modeling brought into the foreground at a site which for all intents and purposes is the hub of peak oil blogs and discussion forums. Deffeyes linearization has a certain home spun charm but I think we all own a protractor.

The issues around peak oil are interesting and important. I do what I do with the expectation that everyone engaged in this topic do the best they can, in the manner they are accustomed, be they scientist or artist to acknowledge and integrate this crisis in a positive way into our daily lives.

The work is noticed. And the notice of the work gets noticed, as when one A.M. Samsam Bakhtiari presents a paper where he states:

Having seen the results of Prof. Guseo's GBM model, it became clear that the modeling phase of 'Peak Oil' had come to an abrupt close and that henceforward 'Peak Modeling'
should be shelved once and for all. Some experts still seem unconvinced as they continue to compare and weigh results generated by all types of available models --- as, for example, 'The Oil Drum' [3] and 'TrendLines' [4] websites.

I’ll bet Prof. Guseo is a swell guy but just because the globe appears to have edged beyond the production peak doesn’t mean critical analysis stops.

So cheers to work completed, cheers for more to come, and cheers for open and transparent disagreements. The water level in the pool rises and everyone smartens up. Even us so-called doomer types.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

give peace a chance