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Think We Should be at School? Today’s Climate Strike is the Biggest Lesson of All


US power energy is 16% of US total energy and consumes 38% of primary fuels. Solar power energy is 1.3% of US power energy market. Solar heat is a much larger threat to natural gas markets. The resistance to solar heat is intense. https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/03/16/future-without-fossil-fuels

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Yes, McKibben’s latest. I happened to see it on another news aggregator site last night, and am recommending it for the updated figures, especially the rate of increase in coal in the 19th century, and for its overall theme. I hadn’t heard of active opposition to solar heating, but it doesn’t surprise me as most of the firms selling systems have always ignored it. Partial reliance on solar for hot water is virtually free and foolproof, and has been on the DIY radar for fifty years! Full-time solar hot water requires a little more technology that can sometimes be problematic, but a larger installation can also contribute to space heating. Ultimately solar is the ONLY carbon-free primary energy source except for nuclear (ptui!) if we consider geothermal as only distantly related to the sun (eons) and recognize that hydro and tidal, both of which have their limitations and downsides, are powered by the sun.


Yes, a clothesline or a PV electric clothes dryer. Gas building space heat or passive solar heat. Deep geothermal is powered by continental drift via an earth nuclear core. Tidal is driven by orbiting gravitational inertia.


I have a good friend, 64 years old and single, a freelance scholar who is a little more affluent than I am and lives in his own house in an intentional community in semi-rural NC. He heats a two story house of 2000 square feet with a very little wood in a modern catalytic stove with almost zero emissions, and hangs his laundry outdoors year around except in occasional prolonged sub-freezing weather. The ancient clothesline in my yard was repurposed as a blackberry trellis, but this year or next I will put up a new clothesline. It will drive my wife crazy, but I do the laundry and the idea of burning coal (or neutrons–we have both close by) to cook clothes drives ME crazy.


Well said. We do not own a dryer and live a lot like your friend in a super efficient passive house.


Such home heat systems are called “passive solar” but they don’t address generating electricity for travel, transport, household/office light/heat/air/appliances, various production machinery, etc. I was specific about Household EVs and insist both hybrid and battery EVs are important. Combustible hydrogen stores at lower pressures more practically for plug-in hybrid drivetrain than for use in fuel cell EVs. Plus, if Jeff Bezos is committing fraud knowing that ‘driverless’ tech is bogus, he’s liable for damages in court proceedings, a class action lawsuit, The People vs Jeff Bezos.
Wouldn’t you LOVE to see that happen!


Oh yes. I remember reading about them in the early numbers of Mother Earth News in the mid-70s, and again starting 10-15 years ago. It made sense then and it makes sense now. Until the early 20th century, and until 1950 in many rural areas, most houses were designed if not sited with the climate in mind. My friend’s house is a modern design based closely on a classic southern type, the name of which I can’t remember. As such it also stays reasonably comfortable in the summer through cross-ventilation. Design is everything, except with blue jeans and T-shirts. Those were designed just fine a century and a half ago: Don’t mess with them.


Molten salt charged with solar concentrators can supply power 24 hours per day. Not a home project.

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Adobe? My first experience was at the passive home of Amory Lovins mid-70s.


Cool! The desert and mountain Southwest is almost ideal for fully passive heating and cooling over a wide range of temperatures and other weather and climatic variables.


My passive home is in Seattle climate. Very comfortable, always 72F. No active solar collectors.


Economagic, the logic is thus: Distribution of battery packs and resources/charge components, occurs most broadly in 5kwh packs, the more ideal, smaller/safer garage setup for households. Bigger battery packs Tesla’s 85kwh also need more solar array materials, thus, combining light fuel plug-in hybrid to rooftop solar distributes resources more broadly for many community.

Sorry about not being able to explain my point, and I hope you’re not laughing at me, I hate that. Freight truck all-battery is like 425kwh or 5 Tesla, (don’t quote me on the big rig rate). Remaining big rigs, the fewer there be, do hybrid and need 50kwh that last long haul better and increase 4mpg (maybe) to a hybrid 30mpg on hydrogen, okay fart fuel. Oh so now you laugh eh?

I’ve been into transport/energy fields some 30 years. I was there when cancelling Washington Power Supply Plan to build 4 nuclear power plants! Kiss my ass, nukular jerks! And it’s ‘nuclear’ (pronounced ‘new’ ‘clee’ ‘er’) not nukular, Idiots! Much appreciate your consideration Econo
of what I’m saying, plus jokes!


Thanks. One of those days, as most of them are these days. I will touch base tomorrow.


Yes, I believe it was President Eisenhower who popularized the mispronunciation “nukular.” One of the most brilliant teachers I ever had was a math teacher who spoke of vectors “emanting” from a point. (She meant “emanating,” and it troubled most of her students, but no one ever corrected her.)

I don’t see hydrogen as a practical fuel because it is explosive, and the tiny molecule is prone to leaks which are almost impossible to detect. It is not a primary energy source but effectively a storage medium, because it exists only in compounds (at least in the troposphere) so requires input of energy to liberate it.

I understand your point about efficient distribution of energy storage units, but I’m still not sure how you would handle short, medium, and long haul movement of goods. But it really doesn’t matter: Like a large proportion of the comments in these forums this one has nothing to do with the article that prompted it!


Car makers promote fuel cell and some are ready for market. Hydrogen however stores at lower pressure for the hybrid ICE to complete the compression process, thus more practical and safer. A small hydrogen tank is built to eject fuel in seconds with least flame mostly under control. Larger tanks not so much. Why are huge battery packs a priority, when smaller plug-in packs extend long-haul range and promote emission reduction systems?
For mid-size utility vehicles and buses a new chassis built for EV operation is a question best candidates should answer. The standard 40’ city bus does NOT convert well to hybrid nor EV.
The 1970’s paratransit lift-van is obsolete, yet we buy millions of the lousy engineering
rattletraps for our seniors and disabled.
I’m serious about fart fuel.


“I’m serious about fart fuel” is a joke! Get it?