Kaner Lab researcher Maher El-Kady painted sheets of graphene an atom thick on a plastic surface and bombarded it with controlled laser light (he used a DVD burner.) The result: a stunningly thin supercapacitor which could store up a large amount of electricity in minuscule time frames. A battery made of this material could charge your cell phone for a full day’s use in two seconds, and is much lighter than current metallic batteries.
That is, of course, the average — which means it’s more if you have to use your car a lot, or need a truck or van for work or hauling kids. Explains the huge increase in popularity of motorcycles and scooters in urban environs.
Last time gasoline sucked up this much of the household budget was 1983, when the nation was still recovering from the gas crisis.
But then again, he told you energy prices would “necessarily skyrocket” under his plan.
Yet another example of how the would-be aristocrats view the world… MSNBC talking head Chris Hayes, a man who instantly looks the part of weasel, let us know that energy prices are just too low!
Here’s the transcript of this Hayes creature and Dan Dicker from CNBC playing the court jesters and aping their aristocratic betters:
Chris Hayes: We’re talking about the massive, extractive energy boom happening in America right now and how it’s transforming our politics and how that can be made to work with a sane climate policy, which is really the difficult question. Before the break I left the question on the table about the price of energy being too low right now. Basically we see this massive amount of supply has come onto the grid thanks largely to natural gas. The price has come down, and I think we generally think, “Oh, lower prices are better.” But it seems to me there’s a lot of problematic stuff about the price coming down sharply as it is right now in terms of incentives for efficiency and et cetera.
Dan Dicker: You would want the prices to go up a lot because it would drive the next stage towards renewables, and make that at least cost-effective. Algae fuel, we talk a lot about that…
C.H.: Some people talk about that.
D.D.: Yeah. The cost is about eight and a half to nine dollars a gallon compared to gasoline as it is now. You want the prices to go up to make these a little more cost effective. Drive the technology into them. Unfortunately it’s actually going quite the opposite. You talk about increased supply here in the United States. In fact, overseas demand is dropping. We are still in the midst of an economic problem in Europe. Chinese growth is going down. Indian growth seems to be going down. In this country we’ve done better in terms of efficiencies and our demands are starting to drop, so in terms of what economically you can expect, you will expect the opposite, or at least I do over the next several years, that oil prices will in fact go lower. Natural gas you can – because we have a futures market, we look forward to the future and see what people are betting the price is going to be. That doesn’t go over 5$ an MCF until 2020 according to the futures markets. So although you might want… we have to drive the renewable argument some other way, because price doesn’t look like it’s going to do it.
Frances Beinecke: Look, the only thing that’s going to change that is if we finally put a price on carbon.
F.B.: The externals of all the fossil fuel development are not incorporated in the current price, so the environmental effects, the health effects, the consequences to communities, none of that is factored in. We have to change that, get a price on carbon, drive it up so we can promote renewables and efficiencies first and foremost.
Darn it, low prices mean we can funnel money from the people to our favored industrial cronies in green energy!
But at the heart of this progressive rant, is the notion that people simply won’t behave and consume in the manner proscribed by these wannabe aristocrats. Damn it, don’t we realize how smart they are? Do things our way! After all…if we can’t find ways to tax people and make their energy less affordable, the people would be able to do things like feed their kids, drive to work, light their homes — all things that serfs shouldn’t have! Damn it, that’s for rich folks like us!
After a fashion…
So let’s recap — we’ve blown over a trillion on “green energy” and what has the result been? In addition to Compact Power, the Heritage Foundation has a list of the other boondoggles your tax money when to:
The complete list of faltering or bankrupt green-energy companies:
- Evergreen Solar ($25 million)*
- SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
- Solyndra ($535 million)*
- Beacon Power ($43 million)*
- Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
- SunPower ($1.2 billion)
- First Solar ($1.46 billion)
- Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
- EnerDel’s subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
- Amonix ($5.9 million)
- Fisker Automotive ($529 million)
- Abound Solar ($400 million)*
- A123 Systems ($279 million)*
- Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($700,981)*
- Johnson Controls ($299 million)
- Schneider Electric ($86 million)
- Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
- ECOtality ($126.2 million)
- Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
- Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
- Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
- Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
- Range Fuels ($80 million)*
- Thompson River Power ($6.5 million)*
- Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
- Azure Dynamics ($5.4 million)*
- GreenVolts ($500,000)
- Vestas ($50 million)
- LG Chem’s subsidiary Compact Power ($151 million)
- Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
- Navistar ($39 million)
- Satcon ($3 million)*
- Konarka Technologies Inc. ($20 million)*
- Mascoma Corp. ($100 million)
*Denotes companies that have filed for bankruptcy.
Currently 1900 different investigations are open into the fraud that surrounds the green energy sector, and 600 convictions have already happened. I think, if the investigations are allowed to continue unimpeded we’ll find a substantial portion of these monies were washed through the failing companies for the elected and appointed officials that siphoned to these companies.
Time reports on the “Z Machine” — an X-ray generator powerful enough to make plasma similar to that of white dwarfs and for a fraction of a second “creates an electrical current so strong that it equals more than six times the total amount of energy released by all of the power plants in the entire world.” Courtesy of Sandia LAbs, right here in Albuquerque.
Increasingly, the actions of the political class and the meddlesome Progressive tits they represent are taking a familiar shape. Don’t eat this, don’t drink that, don’t feed your child from a bottle — it’s got to be breast milk or you’re not a real woman (or a responsible parent); you can’t travel without special permission or harassment and now the EU wants to tax international flights to raise the prices and limit your ability to move about the planet; you must conform to increasingly arcane regulation and tax laws that these would-be aristocrats can avoid; you can’t ride in a cheap limo — take the taxi, that’s for plebeians.
Nowhere is this more apparent than the environmental movement, where wealthy and connected folks couple with useful, alarmist idiots to try and “preserve” the planet from the evils of modern civilization. You should live in reasonable sized housing: treehugger.com’s founder tells us 420 square feet is more than enough (if you’re a rich single or couple with no kids, maybe) and we live in far too large domiciles. I have a 1700sf home or so…two adults and a 15 month old tornado barely fit.
Of course, if you don’t have a kitchen full of appliances — like a stove (Why do you need that? You’ll be eating garden fresh home-grown sustainable organic vegetables!) or microwave (radiation!), or a dishwasher…just a small refrigerator should do, right? Bill McKibbben of 350.org would love to see you emulating your 13th Century ancestors, “Forget your computer, your TV, your stereo, your stove, your dishwasher, your water heater, your microwave, your water pump, your clock. Forget your light bulbs, compact fluorescent or not…slash your stock of clothes to a comfortable (or even uncomfortable) minimum.”
Why would you want to have light? To read? You’ll be working in your garden, saving the planet! Computer, TV, stereo…those aren’t for you! Leave that to the important folks running things. You’ll be happy with a slower pace of life and not distractions — like gather ing information to make informed decisions or engage in the political sphere. Clothes!?! Peasants wore a set of clothes, maybe two. They were happy, were they not? (No…they weren’t.) Ride a bike to work, if you must labor outside of your postage-stamp sized croft. Cars are dangerous and dirty (but the politicians will need them to get around quickly — they have much more important work to do!)
Meanwhile, these “experts” and “leaders” spend our hard-earned money on ridiculous programs, projects, in meddling (unsuccessfully) in “investment” of sectors of the economy where their friends and family are ensconced…much like Louis XVI or George III.
But sooner or later, collectivist and statists get the same lesson taught (they never learn from it, mind you): society is made of individuals. And when you piss enough of them off, you’re for the chop.
Dr. Mark J Perry tells us why, “The key driver for the “shockingly good news” that CO2 emissions will probably fall this year to a two-decade low according to John Hanger is “the shale gas revolution, and the low-priced gas that it has made a reality, especially in the last 12 months. As of April, gas tied coal at 32% of the electric power generation market, nearly ending coal’s 100 year reign on top of electricity markets…”
Once again — the free market does it better than the government.
A Government Accounting Office auditor just blew a big aseroid-sized hole in the president’s “2% of the world’s oil reserves” lie: Testifying to the House Science Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, Anu Mittal – the GAO’s director of natural resources and environment had this to say,
The Green River Formation–an assemblage of over 1,000 feet of sedimentary rocks that lie beneath parts of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming–contains the world’s largest deposits of oil shale…USGS estimates that the Green River Formation contains about 3 trillion barrels of oil, and about half of this may be recoverable, depending on available technology and economic conditions…This is an amount about equal to the entire world’s proven oil reserves.
We are sitting on the largest deposits of oil on the planet — more than enough to run civilization at its current level of consumption for centuries, if we presume that we will not see a continued push toward more efficiency in energy usage, and also presume that extraction techniques won’t improve over time.
Because most of the Green River shale oil in under federally administered lands, the government could pull in a tidy sum toward closing that budget deficit and turning around the debt crisis by leasing the lands and approving drilling. It would hire people — who would pay taxes. It would improve Western state’s economies. It would balance the trade between China and the United States. It would lower prices of fuel, improving the economic condition of families and businesses throughout the nation (although this presumes some sanity on the environmental requirements that are making refining so expensive, and hence not profitable, leading to a reduction in our refining capacity.)
Free Market America posted this four and a bit minute clip to the internet and it has gone viral. There’s been a lot of winging from Democrats about it being an attack on Obama, but their specific target was environmentalism…so if you feel it’s an attack on Democrats or Obama, then perhaps you’ve just identified yourself as part of the problem.
I would suggest, however, that the target isn’t just America, but humanity in general. Environmentalist have a sociopathic disconnect from their fellow man, viewing them as a plague against nature. It’s an interesting ideology, fraught with Christian millenarianism and notions of Original Sin (with humanity’s existence replacing forbidden knowledge as the sin.)
It’s a prescient video, nonetheless: