environment,energy,greenhouse,gas,carbon,dioxide,global,nuclear energy,clean energy,emissions,global climate change,environmental impacts, Nuclear Energy Can Save US: "Let Insanity Begin" (LNG is Coming)

Nuclear Energy Can Save US--America�s 100 nukes equal four million barrels of oil per day.

Billions of lives and civilization itself may be at risk from the Global Warming & End of Cheap Oil, Crisis. Rising sea levels and rising oil prices could be the end of civilization as we know it. The problem is so huge that the most powerful answer, many nuclear plants, must be deployed. Currently, America‘s 100 nukes deliver the energy of four million barrels of oil per day. Wind and solar cannot do the job, and may delay the real answer too long. Still, all kinds of clean energy, plus conservation, plus reducing deforestation, will be needed to help the poor half of the world, and for civilization to survive through this century.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

"Let Insanity Begin" (LNG is Coming)

The quote above is the title of an editorial last year in the Baltimore Sun newspaper. It really shows the silliness of antinuclear bias. They were protesting a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) offloading port to be opened near the lower end of Chesapeake Bay. They feared an LNG explosion; not the explosion itself, but the problems it might cause, since there is a nuclear plant a mile or so away. In reality, the nuclear plant, protected by 150 million pounds of concrete, would be the only place for miles around that would be totally unfazed by the worst possible explosion; and an LNG explosion could be very bad indeed. The tankers are quite safe, double-hulled with reinforced tanks, but during days-long, unloading into holding tanks on shore, and into pipelines to distribute the gas, many people worry about accidents. The port is still not fully operational, due to local opposition. Industry experts say that America will need dozens more new ports of the same type in coming decades.
America uses about 25 trillion (T) cubic feet of natural gas a year. By chance one T is equal to one Q, or 500,000 barrels of oil per day (0.5MBPD), and is equal to energy of 12.5, one-gig nukes. We produce about 20T and import the rest. From Canada and Mexico, this product comes by pipeline. The other major import route though, is via LNG tankers into five offloading ports. LNG is liquefied and compressed at the exporting country, and each cubic foot of LNG contains 500 cubic feet of gas. Large LNG tankers carry natural gas with about one full-megaton, TNT equivalent (3 billion cubic feet of gas times 5 times 10 to the twelfth ergs per cubic foot = 1.5 x 10 to the twenty-second ergs) . Still, the tiny chance of an explosion must be tolerated, because America must have energy to survive. It is said that academics must “publish or perish”; our world economy, and with it civilization itself, is the same. We must have more and more energy; and it must be clean energy, or we will perish.
Natural gas is the sweetest, most environmentally-friendly, fossil fuel. For equal amounts of electricity, natural gas discharges only 45% as much CO2 as coal (842 pounds of CO2 per megawatt-hour for gas, versus 1897 pounds CO2 for coal, per NY Times article. See post, “Clean Coal“ and Global Warming).
(Consumption of 25T natural gas equals 25Q, equivalent to 12MBPD oil; or 300 one-gig, nukes. Natural gas is much cleaner than the other fossil fuels, but no where near as good as nuclear.)

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