Tuesday, July 8, 2014
A Real Electric Energy Development Plan for the Pacific Northwest
A Real Electric Energy Development Plan for the Pacific Northwest Environmentalists Do Not Want YOU to Know This! Geothermal Power Potential is Beyond Belief in the Northwest Lex Loeb Contributor Network . Ecotaboo is a word I just invented and you will remember it the next time you encounter environmentalists trying to prevent human progress. An Ecotaboo is just the propaganda machine of the environmentalists drill into your head as something that is taboo to think or talk about. Where ever environmentalists want ecotaboos to apply to a part of the earth's topography they go to a government most of the time and attempt to get a preserve carved out. In the united states there are all sorts of preserves that are designated on pubic and private land. These include National Parks, National Monuments, protected national forests, wilderness areas, State parks, Areas of concern, Scenic Areas , Wetlands, Heritage Sites,Conservation Areas, Recreation areas and other types of designation for conservation purposes. Pretty soon almost all federal and state lands are designated as an ecotaboo zone and as the lingo goes it is to prevent natural resources from being "disturbed." The Lingo and the Jingo of Ecotaboo is everywhere , everything and maybe even your mama too. Some Ecotaboos are so big that really never hear about them because the environmental big wigs are totally opposed your even considering those options as possibilities. Back in the 1930s When Some of the Northwest's major dams were built the voices of ecotaboo were not ignored but accommodated when major dams were built with fish ladders and forests used to be treated with a much more multi-use perspective on public use of public lands. As environmentalism became a religion with self appointed high priests in universities and in political organizations with major funding for propaganda resources a whole new reality was manufactured. It took 50 years for this development to enjoy great success as it is as the new state religion of the US and other countries. It is not surprising that the Greens are a major new political party that knows no national boundaries. Here is what you are not supposed to know: Below your feet is an amazing reliable ultra cheap totally economically feasible power source for generating electric power and a variety of other industrial uses . Unfortunately almost every hot spot is very very conveniently designated as an Ecotaboo zone making it virtually impossible to utilize for any other use other than "conservation" purposes. The poster child example is the Mount Saint Helen's National Monument. After the Catastrophic 1981 Mt Saint Helen's volcanic eruption the area was designated on maps as a big tourist attraction and as a science study area. Trees that were blown down over many square miles were left to rot instead of allowing salvage. The dead trees are still sitting there today over 25 years later wasting away when they could have been salvaged for timber that would have reduced national home prices and prevented logging in other areas to meet many years of market demand for lumber. The management area spent over 1/2 a billion dollar building among other things, a 300 million dollar road to nowhere with multiple tourist lodges, interpretive centers, observation points and parking lots up to an elevation of about the 7000 ft level. Ultimately after 25 years the BLM or forest service managers were shutting down the various observation centers because the tourist trade was not supporting the original grand plan. Part of the reason for this is just about every major cascade volcano happens to be in an ecotaboo zone of one kind or another. From Northern California to Vancouver, BC, there is no Major volcano available for any other use other than tourism. Recently Mt Hood had Senators Ron Wyden and Gordon Smith pushing to put much more of it's substantial land area into a new wilderness zone so it would be protected against skiers and really most any other use by humans of any kind. Why are the high cascade volcano's important for major earth shattering geothermal development in the pacific northwest and the United States as a whole? Well this may be the first article you ever see on this subject or if it gets censored, maybe the last. There are other clues out there such as a pdf file you can find online regarding the testimony of a geothermal expert from Iceland before the US Senate Energy Committee in 2007. There is also the 2006 MIT Study on US geothermal potential and a site you can google called North of the Hot Zone. None of these sites reveal the reason major high cascade volcano's are the perfect places for geothermal development and that is because of the ecotaboos involved. The key to under understanding why is year round snow melt gravity fed streams in the proximity of major hot zone volcanic geological vents. The protectors of nature do not want you to know that all the energy you can possibly ever imagine at a price less than wind generation and nuclear and tidal power and maybe even coal burning is right there ready for the taking if and only if all the laws and regulations in place to prevent it from happening are repealed. Which is very unlikely. There are other sites that are nearly as good for geothermal prospecting that are open for development but the best potential sites are closed off permanently in Ecotaboo zones. Why is it that gravity feed water from year round snow melt high mountain tops is the very best for geothermal energy? Because the deepest access to volcanic vents going though the lithosphere to the open magma are located here and because gravity fed streams do not require energy to pump water underground to feed geothermal steam turbines with steam. The reason water towers are place high up on top of buildings in cities is to give the water added potential energy and thus water pressure. It is possible to tap water with a pipe on a mountain side and to release it far below such that you can have a fountain of water several feet in the air like the fountain in Geneva Switzerland. By having the steep mountain gradient fantastic water pressure is available without any energy waste going to run expensive pumps. Volcano's that are perfectly suited are found all over the world. Having snow cover is not a necessary condition but having water reserves at higher elevations will work just as well. One of the very best volcano's besides mt Saint Helen's area is Yellow Stone National Park Caldera, Vesuvius, Mt Fuji, Kilauea (or killowatta) and others that are almost all sacred tourist sites that do not permit any industrial development. So you wonder why all the hype and persuasion for the development of ugly wind farms as far as the eye can see and on inefficient solar energy collection sites that leave much more of the landscape covered with industrial ugly paraphernalia than a well designed system of the best hot zone geothermal development sites. Environmentalists for years have also worked tirelessly to add surrounding area lands of the best hot zones to ecotaboo zones so as to complete prevent the obvious benefits that would result humanity and our economy. This is proof that they damn well know they are doing it intentionally. With all the talk of a new national energy plan and a northwest energy plan this is the most hidden option you will almost never see. You will learn more about crazy clean coal technology or nuclear power plant nonsense , wind energy and anything with an incentive tax credit attached to it by a special interest group than you are reading here . The potential is enormous. Are there unaesthetic attributes of a geothermal plan like this? The environmentalists think so but no uglier than the 300 million dollar highway to nowhere up the flanks of Mt Saint Helen's and no more ugly than rotting dead trees. From a distance you might see steam emissions coming from plants but not necessarily if they are designed with underground condensation chambers that would simply put spent steam water back on course in their natural stream beds. None of the research and development has ever been allowed. Use of a rock boring machines after test drilling and taking deep core samples is pretty much out of the question in hot zone areas. What about volcanic eruptions? That is no problem either, major eruptions are rare and if plants and equipment are destroyed in eruptions they probably will have served a useful purpose long enough that all the money invested in them was recouped several times over. If geological hazards destroy sources of geothermal heat new wells get drilled. spent wells can be abandoned. Plants can be mobile if necessary. Ugly high tension wires? there are already near by mountains like mt Saint Helen's. underground tunnels can be bored though view point areas or trenches dug and covered. At mt Saint Helen's the scale of the mountain is so great that major high tension power wire towers would appear like tiny toothpicks leading wires out of the area or they could run under the 300 million dollar highway to nowhere. It is hardly an impossible situation to have major electric energy production in spots like Mt Saint Helen's and plenty of other competing uses including tourism. Other industrial potentially might be to have mobile aluminum plants or fertilizer plants where a truck or an electric rail line could haul materials for industrial processes to the cheapest source of energy where little energy is lost in transmission. The rest of the energy produced could just be dumped on an accommodative power grid for regional and national benefit. The industrial development of hot zone volcanic areas also can be studied as a potential means of perhaps some day controlling eruptions by drilling deep enough to release natural hot gases and steam pockets rather than to use gravity fed water sources. One theory is that dangerous eruptions of pryoclastic volcano occur because gases are being trapped in pockets underground. There could be industrial uses for pre pryroclastic hot gases besides running electric turbines. On Shield volcano's that have lava flows it maybe possible to direct the flow of lava though industrial plants where bricks and panels can be cast in hot lava for amazing new building materials and other uses. The lava can be quick cooled in forms like statuary or slow cooled to allow crystals to form in insulated indoor or under ground factory spaces. It might even be possible to vent lava with specially designed drill holing equipment from volcano that might otherwise be more dangerous not having the man made release valves. Yes every thing i am saying is heresy and of course ecotaboo. My critics will say it can't be done and then when they realize it can be done they will say it should not be done. My suspicion is that most of Italy and souther Europe could be supplied with electricity from Vesuvius or Mt Etna. Etna could provide a great trial of industrial lava casting since it does have free flowing lava. Vesuvius might prove to be a safe urban area volcano with venting if a drilling program proves successful. I agree that there are good reasons to be skeptical about the venting proposal because the depth of the hot zone vents can move over time and as they often happen to be hundreds of miles deep. My theory is that if given a path of least resistance by removing obstacles to discharge that man made venting of major volcano might actually prove possible. It would be an incremental process but it is also a mater of giving a simple least resistance pathway and allowing natural forces that may reside in those places the opportunity to break though. I have seen the Europeans tunnel major highways below the alps at near sea level going many miles . I also drove once on a level surface below the tallest peak in Italy--mt sasso and was amazed at the tunneling that is possible. So given the state of engineering know how we humans already have I really have little doubt that a lot of potential exists to develop geothermal resources without having anywhere near as much complexity of a space program mentality. That is your ecotaboo of the day on my menu. Tomorrow I will show you how a few tunnels can be drilled a considerable distance though the mountains, below Jerusalem, from the Mediterranean sea to the edge of cliffs over looking the dead sea to give that region an unlimited hydroelectric supply, fresh water and dry salt crystal production. Death valley also has that potential except that the Ocean is a bit too far away there. Europeans had the idea of damming off the Mediterranean sea at the strait of Gibraltar and allowing the Mediterranean to evaporate for a massive hydro electric plant that would allow Atlantic water to flow down into the evaporating sea and increase below sea level land use for the European and north African coasts of the Med. sea. the one reason that idea is not a very good one is because the seismic hazards are especially unfavorable if not dangerous for a construction project of that scale at the opening of the med sea. I forgot the time it would take for the med sea to evaporate such that sea level would fall there at least 10 below present levels. One good thing about such a project is that Venice would stop sinking under water as fast but eventually they might have to pump water in a lagoon to keep it in the Adriatic sea. Geothermal development of ecotaboo zones is much less destructive to the aesthetic environment than bigger earth engineering projects that are possible. It can be done as i say with no one really having to notice that it is happening. Iceland prides itself on living along side nature and still having plenty of ecotaboo zones where volcano's can cause all the environmental damage they want to where it is considered to be good thing in nature even if they pipe so much sulfur in the atmosphere as to turn whole oceans acid and cause major weather cooling trends that can affect the entire surface of the earth a year or longer. Geothermal is happening right now in Oregon and other parts of the western part of the USA with over 3979 megawatts being put online with various projects according to the US Geothermal Energy Association. Most of those projects, however seek out existing natural heated under ground pools of hot water and need seed electricity to run pumps to bring it to the surface. That is the big difference between opening the high cascade volcano's to development and the alternatives. It is like the difference between a major hydro electric dam on the Columbia river verses several small stream dams put together in terms of potential out put. I am not necessarily suggesting that major government efforts or funding needs to be committed but rather just an opening in a place that is already decimated the far side of mt Saint Helen's for exploration and experimentation or immediate full scale development. This is one reason I will not join the big national energy plan debates because ecotaboos make relevant discussion of real options impossible. .