IPCC Report

Should you squeeze the toothpaste tube in the middle or from the end?
Campitor
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by Campitor » Wed Nov 14, 2018 6:51 pm

@7WB

Thanks for pointing that out. In my morning addled brain, I totally overlooked that I was supposed to be calculating GHG reduction numbers. Instead I was calculating the phase out for GHG emitting energy production. I award myself an F. :oops:

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BRUTE
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by BRUTE » Thu Nov 15, 2018 1:27 am

Riggerjack wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:09 pm
Oh, I'm sorry. I communicate poorly. My point was that most of our non carbon energy sources were built from the 50-70's. And shut down by the same faction that now wants carbon neutral energy. Just different, more feel good energy. Until they realize how much clean water gets used to make solar cells.
so much this.

dumb superstitions about nuclear?

no deal.

let it burn.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by Jean » Thu Nov 15, 2018 3:53 am

Asking more fromage pour bodies instead of looking for energy sources would be beneficial.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by Jean » Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:01 am

How are nuclear waste and a more than 1percent chance of uninsured catastrophic faillure not a serious concernant?

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7Wannabe5
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Thu Nov 15, 2018 6:24 am

@Campitor:

I am not such a harsh grader, so I will give myself a D- for not following the advice I give to third-graders which is "Read a story problem 4X before you pull out the numbers." :lol:

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7Wannabe5
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Thu Nov 15, 2018 6:26 am

Riggerjack wrote:by the same faction
I thought we were trying to NOT make discussion political?

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by ZAFCorrection » Thu Nov 15, 2018 2:35 pm

@Riggerjack:

How much water is used to produce solar cells? I see three possible components: raw material production, device fabrication, and deployment. Deployment is no more water intensive than any other hardware delivery and installation. I've personally performed all the processes related to Si and CdTe-based device fabrication, and the most water you might actually consume during the process is in the HF solution for Si processing* (which isn't much). CdTe-based devices don't use any at all unless you count the reusable chiller water.

I'll admit I can't speak much about the raw material prep, but my understanding is Cd and Te are produced as byproducts of Zn and Cu production, so it's not like either of those materials are getting a lot of dedicated attention for the moment. In my cursory study I'm also not seeing a huge amount of unrecoverable water usage in the refining of any of these materials.

*One potential issue is the conflation of water usage for manufacturing an integrated circuit vs. a solar cell. At least when comparing to Si PV, the materials and processes are the same, but an IC can have a huge number of layers requiring washing between the preparation of each layer while a PV cell only has a pn junction and metallic contacts on each side. At most you would need three washes starting from a factory p-type Si wafer (once before doping, probably once before Al contact deposition, and once for photoresist liftoff if you are too cool to use a shadow mask). The amount of processing is nowhere in the same ballpark.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by Campitor » Fri Nov 16, 2018 1:15 am

That math problem was tickling my mind all day. And this is what I came up with in regards to numbers. 60 nuclear plants represent 20% of the energy production and renewable energy output 17% for a combined total of 37%. To preserve the mix of Nuclear to renewable we need to find the ratio of nuclear energy to the combined total: .2/.37=.54. 60 nuclear plants is 20 percent of ? 60/.2=300. But we know nuclear power plants needs to stay within the allotted ratio of 54%: 300*.54 = 162.

We have 162 nuclear power plants (54%) and 46% renewable sources producing 100% of the electricity which reduces 28% of GHG emissions created by the now defunct fossil fuel electrical plants. 162 is 28% of ? 162/.28=579. But we need to half this amount because we're trying to calculate how many plants we need to reduce GHG emissions by 50% and not 100%. 579/2=289. But we started out with 60 nuclear power plants so we only need to build 229 additional (289-60=229). We need to build these 229 nuclear power plants in 11 years so we need to build 21 plants a year (229/11=20.80).

Do those number make sense? I don't care if I get a math slap down - I just want to know if I'm following the logical sequence to solve this.

And I was trying to look up the numbers for uranium to get a weight quantity and I stumbled across this: https://phys.org/news/2011-05-nuclear-p ... nergy.html. Any hope of nuclear energy filling the gap has been flushed out of my system.

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7Wannabe5
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Nov 16, 2018 6:20 am

@Campitor:

I think you are making the same mistake I made when I approximated the answer as 240 or 24/year. You have to account for the fact that the original 60 nuclear plants and the original 17% alternative "plants" did not contribute to the original 28% of emissions produced through energy production. IOW, each fossil-fuel burning plant producing electrical energy was responsible for a somewhat greater proportion of emissions, so proportionally fewer nuclear/renewable units are required to replace them.

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7Wannabe5
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Nov 16, 2018 4:38 pm

Anyways, beyond exercise for rusty brains, pretending to any degree of accuracy or precision with such a calculation is actually kind of ridiculous since mitigation of any of the sources of GHG emissions besides the 28% due to electrical power generation would also require some very significant usage of energy for conversion factor. For example:

8.8 kilograms CO2/gallon gas ->33 miles car
11.3 kilowatt-hours (.85 kilograms CO2/kilowatt-hour produced with coal/natural gas mix) = 9.6 kilograms CO2 ->33 miles electric car

So, give or take for efficiency of vehicle itself, fairly negligible difference, EXCEPT for production costs related to turnover of fleet.

250 million gas-only cars in the US X $30,000(cost electric car) = $7.5 trillion not even including trucks.

So, even more expensive to convert all vehicles to electric than to build all those nuclear plants, and still we aren't accounting for the full expansion of the 17% alternative source production. So, you can see it is going to pretty easily add up to at least 50% of total federal budget (if imagined as publicly funded program) for the next 10 years to achieve 50% reduction of emissions by 2030 under any such program.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by tonyedgecombe » Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:36 am

11.3 kilowatt-hours (.85 kilograms CO2/kilowatt-hour produced with coal/natural gas mix) = 9.6 kilograms CO2 ->906 miles e-bike

It seems obvious what the solution is to me but the developed world isn't ready for it.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:43 am

@tonyedgecombe:

I like e-bikes, but they do require a well-developed economy for their manufacture.

It's kind of funny, given that we are a group devoted to the pursuit of personal freedom, how we are all suggesting solutions from the perspective of "If I were the ruler of a command economy!" Human nature, I guess.

Obvious note would be that ERE is a solution since reducing per capita spending in half would almost assuredly do the trick of reducing CO2 emissions in half at the individual level. Reducing earnings in half, given no increase in tax rates, would almost assuredly do the trick of reducing government infrastructure spending towards emissions in half.

IOW, for example, given that I only work part-time at a marginal rate of $15/hour, it is highly likely that I am already in alignment with 2030 goal for reduction of emissions,unless I am considered to be a member of the household where I am currently couch-surfing with two old,highly affluent, very frugal men and a morbidly obese pug. When you get down below the 1 Jacob level, the direct $1 spent to CO2 emitted ratio starts to fray apart in many interesting ways, because the second major problem with modern/neoclassical economics (first being problems with accounting for externalities) is its inability to easily price/track informal exchange and household production.

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BRUTE
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by BRUTE » Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:41 pm

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:43 am
It's kind of funny, given that we are a group devoted to the pursuit of personal freedom, how we are all suggesting solutions from the perspective of "If I were the ruler of a command economy!" Human nature, I guess.
statist nature. this is exactly the problem with all the armchair sciencing here - command economies don't work.

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7Wannabe5
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Nov 18, 2018 7:43 am

BRUTE wrote:statist nature. this is exactly the problem with all the armchair sciencing here - command economies don't work.
Well, since I suggested that economics might be best conceived as a subset of ecology, and it is certainly the case that "command ecology does not work", I tend towards core agreement with the statement that "command economies" do not work.

I don't think the members of this forum, or human beings in general, are inherently "statist." However, since the scale or boundaries of the problem under discussion is the indivisible atmosphere of the only planet human beings currently inhabit, and the largest functional social power structures at this point in history are nation-states, it is somewhat logical to jump to nation-state player-level solution with first attempt.

One of the reasons I suggested "more trees" as a solution at the national level is that it is my perception that most people like doing something more than not doing something to solve a problem and most people like trees. IOW, it is a solution that would be reasonably easy to market.

Also, it can be observed in many ecosystems that there are limited scope situations under which human beings ( and other social mammals) will choose to suffer the ill-effects of a command economy with only minor rebellion. Generally, these are situations that occur after one of the females of the tribe or troop issues a high-pitched scream because her offspring is in extreme danger of being snatched by tiger, or a loud siren goes off in an urban setting without remission, or a voice over the radio says "This is KTU in Honolulu, Hawaii...It is no joke. It is real war."

So, when The Union of Concerned Scientists suggests that, perhaps given current exigencies, nuclear power generation would be preferable to fossil fuel generation, it is not unlike the day you pay a visit to your doctor, who has been advising you to quit smoking for 20 years, but now, given current exigencies, he suggests that radiation might not be the worst option. Then after you get dressed again in your suit, take the elevator down to the first floor and walk outside, before you can form your next complete rational thought, your hand naturally reaches for the pack of smokes and the lighter in your jacket pocket, and once again, you choose to let it burn. Me too :(

David Fleming who thought very hard and creatively about these kind of problems, suggested that one of the biggest problems or fallacies humans might have or hold in trying to come up with a solution or even argue rationally is the lack of desire to discuss or value death. In a healthy ecosystem, and subset healthy economy, life and death must be in equilibrium. So, if/when we argue from the perspective of being the ruler of a command economy, it is kind of like being a gardener, because a gardener is the ruler of a rare, energy-intensive instance of a command ecology. From such a perspective, you can't rationally declare where the peonies will come to live without also simultaneously indicating where the crabgrass will be made to die.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by tonyedgecombe » Sun Nov 18, 2018 9:49 am

BRUTE wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:41 pm
command economies don't work.
It's always extremes with libertarians, no room for nuance or balance.

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BRUTE
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by BRUTE » Sun Nov 18, 2018 1:25 pm

when the paper literally suggests genocide as the preferred option, extremes are in order.

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by tonyedgecombe » Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:11 pm

BRUTE wrote:
Sun Nov 18, 2018 1:25 pm
when the paper literally suggests genocide as the preferred option, extremes are in order.
No it doesn't, the Marshall Islands’ representative suggested the effect is equivalent to genocide which is not what you are inferring.

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7Wannabe5
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:12 pm

@BRUTE:

MENTAL EXERCISE ONLY! I don't think the report precludes the highly unlikely option of applying 50% carbon reduction to most affluent 1.5 billion humans while simultaneously allowing energy use of least affluent 50% humans to rise by amount equivalent to 10% current usage of affluent contingent. IOW, it could be constructed in the form of world's greatest wealth transfer ever, which would likely be highly inefficient, but not necessarily tantamount to genocide. MENTAL EXERCISE ONLY!

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Re: IPCC Report

Post by Riggerjack » Wed Nov 21, 2018 11:38 am

How are nuclear waste and a more than 1percent chance of uninsured catastrophic faillure not a serious concernant?
I'm sorry. Your wording just struck my funny bone. Living here in Ecotopia, I sometimes forget that there ARE serious Environmentalists. I seem to be surrounded by the other kind. If there are any Environmentalists giving serious thought to nuke power, they have been drown out by their compatriots.

Though this is probably more of a me problem than an Ecotopia problem. If I lived in Mississippi, I am sure I would be complaining about rednecks.

As to your concerns, waste and uninsured catastrophic failure, well, let's look at them.

Waste. Yeah, this sucks. No question. But mainly because we are pretty stupid in how we deal with it. It's been a never ending circle jerk of temporary impractical solutions, and political hackery. There's nothing promising in the future, so long as we keep going down this path.

But it's not the only path. For instance, most plants store all of their waste on site, waiting for that regulated solution. It has worked for decades, imagine how much better it would work if that was the design, to permanently house the waste with the plant. No moving waste across the country, no NIMBYS, and the frankly shocking idea that the beneficiaries of power plants should shoulder some of the burden of their pollution.

Vitrification solves the solubility issue. Casting waste in glass makes it pretty chemically and physically inert. Just leave it in a safe place, and let time do what it does.

Radioactive waste still generates heat. Enough heat to require cooling. Or, thought of another way, even the waste keeps generating energy. If only it were possible to transfer heat, somehow, this might be thought of as a benefit. :roll:

We are building a coal plant each week. And coal produces more radioactive waste than nukes. It's not a choice between ideal solar thermal and nukes, it's a choice between coal, natural gas, and nukes. It sure looks like nukes win on the environmental front.

As to the catastrophe of a core melt down, it's scary, but not very scary. Let's look at examples.

Three mile island. Running at 97%of capacity, the system had a glitch, and went into auto shut down. Operators couldn't get a good grip on what was going on, so they dumped the coolant. The core overheated, and melted down. 0 casualties.

Chernobyl, this was the colossal Fup, all the way around. It's not surprising that it happened, it's surprising that it only happened once. Operators that didn't understand that there was a unstable lower limit to production from that style of plant. Test designers who also didn't. This wasn't an accident, it was clusters of incompetence.

But it was also a worst case. Explosion of fuel and graphite from the containment chamber. Other sites had a bit of radioactive steam, but Chernobyl was a whole other level. 30+ casualties.

Fukashima was a 9.0 quake on the coast and tsunami, with a 7.1, another 7.1, and a 6.8 follow up quakes. Over a thousand deaths and 4 reactors down. But those are separate numbers. There was an earthquake and tsunami, that killed a thousand people. The reactors withstood them. But despite evidence of high tsunami potential, nobody moved the generators up the hill. Running a nuke plant without power turns out to be disastrous. It seems that making a nuke power plant should incorporate a self powered shutdown, and enough back up energy to pull it off. Maybe finding sites off the coast would be a good idea. 0 casalties from radiation exposure, but many from the overall events. Hundreds of people exposed to elevated radiation levels.

Go to:http://www.world-nuclear.org/informatio ... dent.aspx and scroll down to the map showing radiation levels, both at the time, and 5 years letter. Then realize that the orange red color, is roughly equivalent to the background radiation level of the Colorado Plateau.

Fukashima generated a lot of hype, but really, it seems less desastrous than the Exxon Valdez, environmentally.

So that's a total of 40 or so deaths and a few hundred cases of radiation exposure, over the course of 5 or 6 decades, worldwide. It seems that nuke power is far, far safer than lawn mowers. Or laundry detergent. Or every single chemical under your sink. The CDC has a database of this stuff, if you want to check.

These horribly technical, complex systems that are so uncontrollable, are plumbing systems. And the fuel handlers in the reactor chamber? They have nothing on any robotic arm on a modern assembly line. We can back up power for server farms, I'm sure we can get backup power for a nuke shutdown. I am certain that a secondary, fully redundant cooling system can be incorporated. I have a hard time swallowing the "too complicated, therefore it must fail" reasoning. It's just not that much more complicated than any other power station.

Waste is complicated. But it doesn't have to be. Currently, every American nuke plant has temporary onsite storage. But the whole plan is sketchy. Every bureaucrat everywhere has an objection to radioactive waste moving through every jurisdiction. So storing radioactive waste in steel drums below the water level next to a major river (Hanford style) seems out. But moving waste to a central storage facility also seems out.

But why not just store waste on site? The reactor core only lasts sixty years or so. It's set up for containment. Waste still produces heat, but it's a power plant, it can use waste energy. Just build the next reactor right next to it. Seal up the old one and monitor it from the new plant. Use vitrification when it makes sense to avoid risk with waste reactivity. Keeping all radioactive materials on the same site has other benefits. It's easier to simply secure materials on the same site that has nuke power security, anyway. No need to transfer waste, with incumbent risk of accidents. All the instrumentation to remotely monitor has already been installed. And build the cost of permanent waste storage into the cost to construct a nuke site. Eventually, it will be worth changing reactor types to reuse the waste stored onsite.

On the surface, there doesn't seem to be any problem with nukes that doesn't originate from fearmongering or regulations. It's hardly ideal, but certainly better than a new coal plant each week.
Last edited by Riggerjack on Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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vexed87
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Re: IPCC Report

Post by vexed87 » Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:01 pm

I'm no nuclear expert, but here are my thoughts. My my concerns with nuclear have always been long term, short term problems in a stable society are less of a worry, though sabotage, terrorism and nation state warfare pose unique risks that do make me nervy.

I don't know about in the USA, but most reactors here are built by the coasts, I hear because by design they require vast volumes of water for cooling. The reactors were a legacy of the design to power nuclear submarines which naturally were submerged. Usually situated only just above sea level. That in itself poses a major problem for long term on-site storage, unless of course, you are a climate denier. Leaving waste by a rising ocean just above sea level sounds like a bad idea because it is. Whilst spent fuel might cool sufficiently in 60 years so they can be stored without fear of fires, they are still harmful to living beings. There's not much guarantee that storage tanks and soon to be decommissioned plants (a lengthy process) won't end up being engulfed by sea. Consequences include contaminating the ocean and surrounding settlements and well beyond.

Nuclear makes a lot of sense in a stable technological society with abundant fossil fuel reserves, but will be a significant burden on the health and wellbeing of future generations that don't have the resources, or ability to play with high stakes nuclear waste. These sites have the potential to be massive no go areas for centuries, I'm on the side of the NIMBYs with this. Lets focus our efforts on living with less energy and doing it well.

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