Nov 6 2012

Will Texas be a climate/podcar leader?

Kal @ 17:54

From The Alcalde

13. Create a futuristic transit system.

Texas’ capital city ranks among the country’s most gridlocked, 2012 could be the costliest year ever at the pump, and our carbon footprint grows ever larger.

The chairman of UT’s Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering Department, Tad Patzek, proposes a solution: podcars.

Podcars are driverless vehicles that run on electricity-powered guideways suspended over existing highways. The concept may seem futuristic, but such cars have already been launched in countries like Sweden and England.

“Podcars cost 10 times less to operate and are 11 times more energy-efficient than today’s vehicles,” Patzek points out. “Also, photovoltaic panels can be installed on the guideways to augment power supply.”

Patzek is moving the concept forward in the U.S. by collaborating with Ron Swenson, one of the scientists leading the charge on podcar development. They both serve on the board of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil, which examines the issues around fossil fuel production.

Podcars are already transporting people at one of the world’s busiest airports, Heathrow in London. Given that, Patzek says, “there is no reason why they couldn’t move people between the main UT campus in Austin and the Pickle campus 10 miles north. This would be a convincing demonstration project for the city.” Katharine Grieve

Tags:

Category: Climate Change | PRT | Peak Oil | Sustainability

Jun 30 2010

Beyond Petroleum – The disaster continues!

Kal @ 18:17

From Population Growth Must Stop by Gary Peters

As Kenneth Boulding noted decades ago, "Anyone who believes that exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist."

Tags:

Category: Beyond Petroleum | Economics | Peak Oil | Population | Sustainability

Jun 5 2010

Beyond Petroleum – We need a plan

Kal @ 11:31

Mark makes the point that “just saying no” is not really an option, petroleum is too deeply ingrained into our lives. But we need a plan now to be done with this horror on an emergency basis as soon as possible.

Mark Morford at SFGate yesterday: Behold our dark, magnificent horror

Oil slick SFGate More photos in the article.

Like Satan's own finger painting.


There is, you have to admit, a sort of savage grace, a tragic and terrible beauty, to the BP oil spill.

Like any good apocalyptic vision of self-wrought hell, the greatest environmental disaster in U.S. history has its inherent poetry. You see that creeping ooze of black, that ungodly wall of unstoppable darkness as it slowly, inexorably invades the relatively healthy, pristine waters adjacent, and you can't help but appreciate the brutal majesty, the fantastic, reeking horror of this new manifestation of black death we have brought upon ourselves, as it spreads like a fast cancer into the liquid womb of Mother Nature herself.

More...

Tags:

Category: Beyond Petroleum | Peak Oil | Resource Depletion

Jun 4 2010

Beyond Petroleum – Can anyone still think more petroleum is good?

Kal @ 09:07

Petroleum related disasters everywhere. The Gulf is burning. The climate is deteriorating. Europe is broke. The US has nearly 20% unemployment. Other regions have even more. People are hungry and homeless.

Isn’t it about time to think about alternative ways to organize the distribution of goods and services? What we are doing is clearly not working.

But all I hear from officialdom is “more of the same”, possibly better, but more of the same basically.

No discussion of whether it is a jungle we live in, or a community? There is a lot of discussion of The Market, and how efficient it is. The Market looks a lot like a very complex jungle to me, where the strong win and the weak get eaten.

Tags:

Category: Beyond Petroleum | Climate Change | Peak Oil | Politics | Population | Solar | Sustainability | Steady-State Economics

Jun 2 2010

Beyond Petroleum – The diamond saw blade is stuck

Kal @ 09:33

Meanwhile, the oil approaches Florida.

Of course, no one could have predicted.

Tags:

Category: Beyond Petroleum | Peak Oil | Sustainability

May 31 2010

Beyond Petroleum – Obama starting to get it?

Kal @ 11:59

“I said to the Republicans, join with me,” Obama said. “There’s been some good work done by John Kerry and Joe Lieberman and Lindsey Graham. Let’s go. Let’s not wait. Let’s show the American people that in the midst of this crisis, all of us are opening our eyes to what’s necessary to fulfill the promise to our children and our grandchildren.”

Tags:

Category: Beyond Petroleum | Peak Oil | Politics | Sustainability

May 30 2010

Beyond Petroleum – Beyond BP

Kal @ 12:17

Top Kill Fails!

Tags:

Category: Climate Change | Peak Oil | Sustainability | Beyond Petroleum

May 28 2010

Beyond Petroleum – Wind and Solar are better deals

Kal @ 09:30

Offshore oil vs. offshore wind ... who wins?

How many offshore wind turbines could have been bought for the cost of 1 Deepwater Horizon? The answer is enlightening.

More...

Tags:

Category: Climate Change | Peak Oil | Politics | Solar | Sustainability

May 27 2010

Beyond Petroleum Now

Kal @ 08:59

the problem, ultimately, with driving headlong at a brick wall; you can stop by standing on the brake pedal, or you can stop by hitting the wall, but either way, you’re going to stop.

Tags:

Category: Climate Change | Economics | Peak Oil | Politics | Sustainability

May 26 2010

Beyond Petroleum

Kal @ 12:38

It is time to go Beyond Petroleum.  Way beyond petroleum, all the way to solar.

Start the drums rolling.

Tags:

Category: Climate Change | Peak Oil | Resource Depletion | Solar | Steady-State Economics | Sustainability