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SciAm's Grand Solar Plan

the sun is a mass of incandescent gas

The American southwest: home to some of the world's finest foods, four -- count 'em, four -- corners, and the biggest dreams of solar geeks and levitra buylevitra onlin "well-meaning scientists," according to Scientific American:

The U.S. is lucky to be endowed with a vast resource; at least 250,000 square miles of land in the Southwest alone are suitable for constructing solar power plants, and that land receives more than 4,500 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu) of solar radiation a year. Converting only 2.5 percent of that radiation into electricity would match the nation's total energy consumption in 2006.

SciAm outlines -- in some depth -- a big, geeky plan for providing nearly 70 percent of the U.S.'s electricity by 2050. It costs an awful lot of money, and it's not quite as sexy as, say, something that spews pollution out of its backside at 100 mph -- I've been saying for a long time that an electric car has to win a NASCAR race for renewable energy to be taken seriously -- but it's evidently quite possible quite soon.


The story addresses land needs, environmental concerns, and financial and technological obstacles. It's not even just photovoltaic cells, baby. They get into steam, power storage, molten salt (!), and nationwide distribution. One point they seem to have missed, though, is that nobody's gonna pretend to think there are WMDs on the sun. So there's that advantage, too.

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No political will yet.
written by Enrique, January 23, 2008

As we have seen for the just try! cost of levitra past 5 years, the oil companies have achieved the greatest profits in their history. The coal companies are big players in Washigton. They will spending $35 millions to convinced America that coal is viagra super active canada safe.
We are against great opponents entrenched in our political system. If there is a place where it can be broken is in the Southwest. :)
written by Mark R., January 23, 2008
Whos their backer? Ted Turner? Doesn't he own like a million acres of New Mexico?
I don't know about the food though
written by Denny, January 24, 2008
Lived in the 4 Corners for a few years, it's a beautiful place, there's lots of sun, but to open this article citing 'some of the best food in the world' is, mmm, a bit of buy canada viagra a stretch.

The author probably considers pizza with everything on it right up there with spicy chicken wings.
$420 billion?
written by albert, January 24, 2008
That's a pittance compared to what our current energy system is costing us. How much have we spent in Iraq to date? How much money do we send to the middle east every year? That money props up the price of oil, so even if we are not directly buying oil from Iran, we are boosting their economy. And that is not even touching on the death toll from air and water pollution from our coal power, or the devestation of mountain top removal.
written by CNCMike, January 24, 2008
All the money going for tax breaks and incentives fot the how much does levitra cost oil companies should be allocated to this. If you're curious what the war in Iraq is costing us check this out.
re: pizza and wings
written by Dave, January 24, 2008
@Denny: The author considers southwestern cuisine, Tex-Mex and Mexican food delightful; keep your wings!
The not-so Grand Solar Plan
written by Leonard, January 26, 2008
The SciAm article seems reasonable and admirable on its surface but is highly flawed, naive and levitra online order self-serving. There are many competing solar technologies at present. No one knows today which, if any, will ever have the efficiency, scalability and practicality required to viagra available in india be implemented on a grand scale. There also massive water consumption and chemical toxicities associated with manufacture of theses gigantic solar arrays. DC transmission is cialis online without prescription the proposed way to distribute power over long distances in the article. Tesla demonstrated to Edison and the world at the end of the 19th century that such distribution of power is not practical and extremely dangerous due to the extremely high voltages required. Finally, one of the authors, head of his own commercial Solar Company, is trying to blatantly push his own brand of inefficient solar technology in this article. If you want a model of a grand scale sustainable, profitable, very green government sponsored energy program that has worked since 1973, look at France's nuclear program:

This article also demonstrates the great progress made by world scientists in nuclear power technology reactor efficiency (less fuel to produce more power), safety and re-usability of "spent" fuel rods (recycle spent rods to extract still usable fuel thereby reducing the spent rods storage problem).
Nuclear? Cmon!
written by SolarDave, January 28, 2008
Solar is the future, nuclear is the past. Speaking of highly subsidized industries...

Actually read the buying real viagra without prescription SciAm article, and then take the time to cialis best deal leaf through the 28 pages of comments (about 420 so far). The authors are actively involved in the discussion and have defended all comers regarding the efficiency and cialis pharmacy online feasibility of their system. Let's get this done! I wrote to my congressional representatives referencing and attaching this link; we should all take the same and more action to make sure that we don't waste another 35 years after 1973's oil embargo with nothing to show for it. Thanks for your support - and action. This article can be a game changer if we do something about it.
Opportunity Cost and Geothermal
written by Imagine, January 28, 2008
The government has done large power projects in the past: see BPA, TVA etc. Don't wait for industry to determine there may be profits in this venture. Profits aren't the objective. If the government is going to go deeper into debt do it for renewable infastructure not oil and the war for oil. There is also an opportunity cost so delay is costly on many levels. Better to start with best available technology and refine and update as we move forward. Also there should be great effort put toward geothermal renewable energy as it is viagra legal online 24/7/365 and also widely available in the West.

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