An employee walking along a thermal pipe at the Kamojang geothermal
power plant near Garut, West Java, on March 18. State utility provider
 Perusahaan Listrik Negara is targeting an additional 135 megawatts of
electricity from three new geothermal plants. (Reuters Photo/Beawiharta)
 

"Update on Current Events" – Jul 23, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: God, Gaia, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Benevolent Design, Financial Institutes (Recession, System to Change ...), Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Nuclear Power Revealed, Geothermal Power, Hydro Power, Drinking Water from Seawater, No need for Oil as Much, Middle East in Peace, Persia/Iran Uprising, Muhammad, Israel, DNA, Two Dictators to fall soon, Africa, China, (Old) Souls, Species to go, Whales to Humans, Global Unity,.. etc.)
"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) - (Text version)

“.. Nuclear Power Revealed

So let me tell you what else they did. They just showed you what's wrong with nuclear power. "Safe to the maximum," they said. "Our devices are strong and cannot fail." But they did. They are no match for Gaia.

It seems that for more than 20 years, every single time we sit in the chair and speak of electric power, we tell you that hundreds of thousands of tons of push/pull energy on a regular schedule is available to you. It is moon-driven, forever. It can make all of the electricity for all of the cities on your planet, no matter how much you use. There's no environmental impact at all. Use the power of the tides, the oceans, the waves in clever ways. Use them in a bigger way than any designer has ever put together yet, to power your cities. The largest cities on your planet are on the coasts, and that's where the power source is. Hydro is the answer. It's not dangerous. You've ignored it because it seems harder to engineer and it's not in a controlled environment. Yet, you've chosen to build one of the most complex and dangerous steam engines on Earth - nuclear power.

We also have indicated that all you have to do is dig down deep enough and the planet will give you heat. It's right below the surface, not too far away all the time. You'll have a Gaia steam engine that way, too. There's no danger at all and you don't have to dig that far. All you have to do is heat fluid, and there are some fluids that boil far faster than water. So we say it again and again. Maybe this will show you what's wrong with what you've been doing, and this will turn the attitudes of your science to create something so beautiful and so powerful for your grandchildren. Why do you think you were given the moon? Now you know.

This benevolent Universe gave you an astral body that allows the waters in your ocean to push and pull and push on the most regular schedule of anything you know of. Yet there you sit enjoying just looking at it instead of using it. It could be enormous, free energy forever, ready to be converted when you design the methods of capturing it. It's time. …”
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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Massive power failure in Noord-Holland, Flevoland

DutchNews.nl, March 27, 2015

Large parts of Noord-Holland province and Flevoland are without power on Friday morning because of a major failure at a high tension substation in Diemen. 

Power cuts have hit parts of Amsterdam, Schiphol airport, Haarlem, Almere and the Gooi region near Hilversum. 

Train services have also been disrupted in the north of the country. According to the NS website, there are no train services around Schiphol airport or Amsterdam. 

Nu.nl reports all incoming flights to Schiphol have been diverted although there is no mention of this on the Schiphol website. Motorway signage has also failed. 

It is still unclear what caused the power failure or how many households are affected. 

Related Article:

"2013 - What Now ?" – Jan 6, 2013 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) (Text version)

“… New ideas are things you never thought of. These ideas will be given to you so you will have answers to the most profound questions that your societies have had since you were born. Inventions will bring clean water to every Human on the planet, cheaply and everywhere. Inventions will give you power, cheaply and everywhere. These ideas will wipe out all of the reasons you now have for pollution, and when you look back on it, you'll go, "This solution was always there. Why didn't we think of that? Why didn't we do this sooner?" Because it wasn't time and you were not ready. You hadn't planted the seeds and you were still battling the old energy, deciding whether you were going to terminate yourselves before 2012. Now you didn't…. and now you didn't.

it's funny, what you ponder about, and what your sociologists consider the "great current problems of mankind", for your new ideas will simply eliminate the very concepts of the questions just as they did in the past. Do you remember? Two hundred years ago, the predictions of sociologists said that you would run out of food, since there wasn't enough land to sustain a greater population. Then you discovered crop rotation and fertilizer. Suddenly, each plot of land could produce many times what it could before. Do you remember the predictions that you would run out of wood to heat your homes? Probably not. That was before electricity. It goes on and on.

So today's puzzles are just as quaint, as you will see. (1) How do you strengthen the power grids of your great nations so that they are not vulnerable to failure or don't require massive infrastructure improvement expenditures? Because cold is coming, and you are going to need more power. (2) What can you do about pollution? (3) What about world overpopulation? Some experts will tell you that a pandemic will be the answer; nature [Gaia] will kill off about one-third of the earth's population. The best minds of the century ponder these puzzles and tell you that you are headed for real problems. You have heard these things all your life.

Let me ask you this. (1) What if you could eliminate the power grid altogether? You can and will. (2) What if pollution-creating sources simply go away, due to new ideas and invention, and the environment starts to self-correct? (3) Overpopulation? You assume that humanity will continue to have children at an exponential rate since they are stupid and can't help themselves. This, dear ones, is a consciousness and education issue, and that is going to change. Imagine a zero growth attribute of many countries - something that will be common. Did you notice that some of your children today are actually starting to ponder if they should have any children at all? What a concept! ….”

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Court Ruling Dries Up Private Water Provision in Jakarta


City-owned water operator PAM Jaya will now handle water supply to
Jakarta exclusively. (JG Photo/Jurnasyanto Sukarno)

Jakarta. Two private companies have lost their right to supply water to customers in some parts of Jakarta after a court ruled in favor of a coalition seeking to have water privatization struck down.

PAM Lyonnaise Jaya (Palyja) and Aetra Air Jakarta (Aetra) had their contracts with city-owned water operator PAM Jaya severed by the Central Jakarta District Court on Monday, ending an 18-year partnership.

Jakarta City Council will form a transition team to take over their operations, while Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama has said employees of the two companies could possibly find employment with PAM Jaya.

“They are professional workers and we cannot abandon them, we will make preparations so they can work at PAM Jaya,” Basuki was quoted as saying by Tempo.co on Wednesday.

Basuki said he was confident PAM Jaya would be able to manage the capital’s water distribution without Palyja and Aetra.

The court ruling ends a controversial experiment in water privatization in Jakarta, and is a major victory for the Coalition of People Rejecting the Privatization of Water in Jakarta (KMMSAJ), which filed the lawsuit.

The group had argued that the sub-contracted water service was too expensive and many Jakarta residents could not afford it.

The coalition, which includes the Jakarta Legal Aid Fuundation (LBH Jakarta), and are opposed to private ownership of water, also said the service provided by Palyja and Aetra was not up to scratch.

Both Aetra and Palyja have stated that they would file an appeal.

Aetra’s Corporate Secretary Pratama S. Adi said that the company was aware that his company’s contract with PAM Jaya was not favorable to the Jakarta City Council and it was willing to negotiate.

“We have been conducting internal consolidation and next week we will file an appeal,” Pratama said.

Palyja’s spokeswoman Meyritha Maryanie confirmed the company would challenge the ruling.

“During the legal process the contract between Palyja and PAM Jaya is still valid,” Meyritha added.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Indonesia to Build Ten New Cities on Outer Islands

Jakarta Globe, Mar 24, 2015

Development Planning Minister Andrinof Chaniago, left, wants to develop new
urban areas across Indonesia to deal with poverty and unemployment. (Antara
Foto/Vitalis Yogi Trisna)

Jakarta. The government intends to build ten new cities in remote parts of Indonesia, Andrinof Chaniago, head of the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas), announced on Tuesday.

The first new city will be Tanjung Selor in North Kalimantan, the new province founded in 2012 on land that used to be part of East Kalimantan province. Tanjung Selor is the capital of North Kalimantan, but currently only has 42,000 inhabitants. The administration of President Joko Widodo now wants to turn the town into a true city.

“We will start the [development of] ten cities during the term of this administration,” Andrinof said on Tuesday, as quoted by state-owned news agency Antara.

The Bappenas head explained that the purpose of  developing new urban areas throughout Indonesia was to boost equitable economic growth in the regions outside Java to decrease poverty and unemployment.

Andrinof declined to provide additional details about the plan.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Time now to act on looming water crisis, UN warns

Yahoo – AFP, Richard Ingham, 20 March 2015

Residents in Bangalore wait to collect drinking water in plastic pots
for their households on March 18, 2015 (AFP Photo/Manjunath Kiran)

Paris (AFP) - Without reforms, the world will be plunged into a water crisis that could be crippling for hot, dry countries, the United Nations warned Friday.

In an annual report, the UN said abuse of water was now so great that on current trends, the world will face a 40-percent "global water deficit" by 2030 -- the gap between demand for water and replenishment of it.

"The fact is there is enough water to meet the world's needs, but not without dramatically changing the way water is used, managed and shared," it said in its annual World Water Development Report.

"Measurability, monitoring and implementation" are urgently needed to make water use sustainable, said Michel Jarraud, head of the agency UN-Water and the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).

A boy washes himself from a roadside
 water tanker in Faridabad, a suburb of 
New Delhi, on March 18, 2015 (AFP
Photo/Money Sharma)
Surging population growth is one of the biggest drivers behind the coming crisis, the report said.

Earth's current tally of around 7.3 billion humans is growing by about 80 million per year, reaching a likely 9.1 billion by 2050.

To feed these extra mouths, agriculture, which already accounts for around 70 percent of all water withdrawals, will have to increase output by some 60 percent.

Climate change -- which will alter when, where and how much rainfall comes our way -- and urbanisation will add to the coming crunch.

The report pointed to a long list of present abuses, from contamination of water by pesticides, industrial pollution and runoff from untreated sewage, to over-exploitation, especially for irrigation.

More than half of the world's population takes its drinking supplies from groundwater, which also provides 43 percent of all water used for irrigation.

Around 20 percent of these aquifers are suffering from perilous over-extraction, the report said.

So much freshwater has been sucked from the spongy rock that subsidence, or saline intrusion into freshwater in coastal areas, are often the result.

By 2050, global demand for water is likely to rise by 55 percent, mainly in response to urban growth.

"Cities will have to go further or dig deeper to access water, or will have to depend on innovative solutions or advanced technologies to meet their water demands," the report said.

The overview, scheduled for release in New Delhi, draws together data from 31 agencies in the United Nations system and 37 partners in UN-Water.

It placed the spotlight on hot, dry and thirsty regions which are already struggling with relentless demand.

In the North China Plain, intensive irrigation has caused the water table to drop by over 40 metres (130 feet) in some places, it said.

In India, the number of so-called tube wells, pulling out groundwater, rose from less than a million in 1960 to nearly 19 million 40 years later.

"This technological revolution has played an important role in the country’s efforts to combat poverty, but the ensuing development of irrigation has, in turn, resulted in significant water stress in some regions of the country, such as Maharashtra and Rajasthan," the report said.

Empty taps and dry reservoirs

Water expert Richard Connor, the report's lead author, said the outlook was bleak indeed for some areas.

"Parts of China, India and the United States, as well as in the Middle East, have been relying on the unsustainable extraction of groundwater to meet existing water demands," he told AFP.

"In my personal opinion this is, at best, a short-sighted Plan B. As these groundwater resources become depleted, there will no Plan C, and some of these areas may indeed become uninhabitable."

A migrant labourer carries a bottle of water he filled from a water tanker 
in a camp in New Delhi on March 18, 2015 (AFP Photo/Roberto Schmidt)

Last year, the Nobel-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimated that around 80 percent of the world's population "already suffers serious threats to its water security, as measured by indicators including water availability, water demand and pollution."

"Climate change can alter the availability of water and therefore threaten water security," the IPCC said.

Fixing the problems -- and addressing the needs of the 748 million people without "improved" drinking water and the 2.5 billion without mains sewerage -- requires smart and responsive governance, the new UN report said.

In real terms, this means putting together rules and incentives to curb waste, punish pollution, encourage innovation and nurture habitats that provide havens for biodiversity and water for humans.

It also means learning to defuse potential conflicts as various groups jockey for a precious and dwindling resource.

Tough decisions will have to be made on pricing, and on rallying people together.

"Present water tariffs are commonly far too low to actually limit excessive water use by wealthy households or industry," the report observed.

But it added, "responsible use may at times be more effectively fostered through awareness-raising and appealing to the common good."


Related Articles:



"Recalibration of Free Choice"–  Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) - (Subjects: (Old) SoulsMidpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth,  4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical)  8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) (Text version)

“…  4 - Energy (again)

The natural resources of the planet are finite and will not support the continuation of what you've been doing. We've been saying this for a decade. Watch for increased science and increased funding for alternate ways of creating electricity (finally). Watch for the very companies who have the most to lose being the ones who fund it. It is the beginning of a full realization that a change of thinking is at hand. You can take things from Gaia that are energy, instead of physical resources. We speak yet again about geothermal, about tidal, about wind. Again, we plead with you not to over-engineer this. For one of the things that Human Beings do in a technological age is to over-engineer simple things. Look at nuclear - the most over-engineered and expensive steam engine in existence!

Your current ideas of capturing energy from tidal and wave motion don't have to be technical marvels. Think paddle wheel on a pier with waves, which will create energy in both directions [waves coming and going] tied to a generator that can power dozens of neighborhoods, not full cities. Think simple and decentralize the idea of utilities. The same goes for wind and geothermal. Think of utilities for groups of homes in a cluster. You won't have a grid failure if there is no grid. This is the way of the future, and you'll be more inclined to have it sooner than later if you do this, and it won't cost as much.

Water

We've told you that one of the greatest natural resources of the planet, which is going to shift and change and be mysterious to you, is fresh water. It's going to be the next gold, dear ones. So, we have also given you some hints and examples and again we plead: Even before the potentials of running out of it, learn how to desalinate water in real time without heat. It's there, it's doable, and some already have it in the lab. This will create inexpensive fresh water for the planet. 

There is a change of attitude that is starting to occur. Slowly you're starting to see it and the only thing getting in the way of it are those companies with the big money who currently have the old system. That's starting to change as well. For the big money always wants to invest in what it knows is coming next, but it wants to create what is coming next within the framework of what it has "on the shelf." What is on the shelf is oil, coal, dams, and non-renewable resource usage. It hasn't changed much in the last 100 years, has it? Now you will see a change of free choice. You're going to see decisions made in the boardrooms that would have curled the toes of those two generations ago. Now "the worst thing they could do" might become "the best thing they could do." That, dear ones, is a change of free choice concept. When the thinkers of tomorrow see options that were never options before, that is a shift. That was number four. ….”




“… New ideas are things you never thought of. These ideas will be given to you so you will have answers to the most profound questions that your societies have had since you were born. Inventions will bring clean water to every Human on the planet, cheaply and everywhere. Inventions will give you power, cheaply and everywhere. These ideas will wipe out all of the reasons you now have for pollution, and when you look back on it, you'll go, "This solution was always there. Why didn't we think of that? Why didn't we do this sooner?" Because it wasn't time and you were not ready. You hadn't planted the seeds and you were still battling the old energy, deciding whether you were going to terminate yourselves before 2012. Now you didn't…. and now you didn't.

It's funny, what you ponder about, and what your sociologists consider the "great current problems of mankind", for your new ideas will simply eliminate the very concepts of the questions just as they did in the past. Do you remember? Two hundred years ago, the predictions of sociologists said that you would run out of food, since there wasn't enough land to sustain a greater population. Then you discovered crop rotation and fertilizer. Suddenly, each plot of land could produce many times what it could before. Do you remember the predictions that you would run out of wood to heat your homes? Probably not. That was before electricity. It goes on and on.

So today's puzzles are just as quaint, as you will see. (1)How do you strengthen the power grids of your great nations so that they are not vulnerable to failure or don't require massive infrastructure improvement expenditures? Because cold is coming, and you are going to need more power. (2) What can you do about pollution? (3) What about world overpopulation? Some experts will tell you that a pandemic will be the answer; nature [Gaia] will kill off about one-third of the earth's population. The best minds of the century ponder these puzzles and tell you that you are headed for real problems. You have heard these things all your life.

Let me ask you this. (1) What if you could eliminate the power grid altogether? You can and will. (2) What if pollution-creating sources simply go away, due to new ideas and invention, and the environment starts to self-correct? (3) Overpopulation? You assume that humanity will continue to have children at an exponential rate since they are stupid and can't help themselves. This, dear ones, is a consciousness and education issue, and that is going to change. Imagine a zero growth attribute of many countries - something that will be common. Did you notice that some of your children today are actually starting to ponder if they should have any children at all? What a concept! ….”

Friday, March 20, 2015

New rooftops in France to go green

Yahoo – AFP, 19 March 2015

Rooftops on new buildings built in commercial zones in France, a view of Paris
seen here, must either be partially covered in plants or solar panels, under a law
approved on Thursday (AFP Photo/Stephane de Sakutin)

Paris (AFP) - Rooftops on new buildings built in commercial zones in France must either be partially covered in plants or solar panels, under a law approved on Thursday.

Green roofs have an isolating effect, helping reduce the amount of energy needed to heat a building in winter and cool it in summer.

They also retain rainwater, thus helping reduce problems with runoff, while favouring biodiversity and giving birds a place to nest in the urban jungle, ecologists say.

The law approved by parliament was more limited in scope than initial calls by French environmental activists to make green roofs that cover the entire surface mandatory on all new buildings.

The Socialist government convinced activists to limit the scope of the law to commercial buildings.

The law was also made less onerous for businesses by requiring only part of the roof to be covered with plants, and giving them the choice of installing solar panels to generate electricity instead.

Green roofs are popular in Germany and Australia, and Canada's city of Toronto adopted a by-law in 2009 mandating them in industrial and residential buildings.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Jakarta Fire Sparks Call by Basuki for Permit Review

Jakarta Globe, Mar 12, 2015

Firefighters try to extinguish a fire at Wisma Kosgoro in Central
Jakarta, on Monday night. (Antara Photo/Wahyu Putro A)

Jakarta. Buildings that do not meet safety standards should have their operating permits revoked, Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama said on Thursday, after a massive fire hit a high-rise building in the city center earlier in the week.

The governor said rules and regulations, especially with regard to fire prevention, would have to be reviewed, Kompas reported on its website.

An electrical short-circuit likely triggered the fire that destroyed five floors of the Wisma Kosgoro office tower on Jalan Thamrin, Central Jakarta, on Monday evening. A total of 38 fire trucks and about 250 firefighters were sent in to extinguish the fire, which started at about 8:30 p.m. on the building’s 16th floor.

There were no reports of personal injuries at Wisma Kosgoro.

Friday, March 6, 2015

University installs prototype 'pee power' toilet

Urinal at University of the West of England can generate electricity to power indoor lighting, which Oxfam says show potential for use in refugee camps

The Guardian, Rebecca Smithers, Thursday 5 March 2015

A toilet at the University of the West of England is proving urine can
generate electricity. Photograph: UWE Bristol

A prototype toilet has been launched on a UK university campus to prove that urine can generate electricity, and show its potential for helping to light cubicles in international refugee camps.

Students and staff at the Bristol-based University of the West of England are being asked to use the working urinal to feed microbial fuel cell (MFC) stacks that generate electricity to power indoor lighting.

The project is the result of a partnership between researchers at the university and Oxfam, who hope the technology can be developed by aid agencies on a larger scale to bring light to refugee camp toilets in disaster zones.

“We have already proved that this way of generating electricity works,” said research lead Professor Ioannis Ieropoulos, director of the Bristol BioEnergy Centre, which in 2013 demonstrated MCF stacks generating enough electricity to power a phone. “The project with Oxfam could have a huge impact in refugee camps.”

The technology uses microbes which feed on urine for their own growth and maintenance. “The MFC is in effect a system which taps a portion of that biochemical energy used for microbial growth, and converts that directly into electricity - what we are calling urine-tricity or pee power. This technology is about as green as it gets, as we do not need to utilise fossil fuels and we are effectively using a waste product that will be in plentiful supply,” said Ieropoulos.

The urinal - conveniently located near the Student Union bar - resembles toilets used in refugee camps to make the trial as realistic as possible. The equipment that converts the urine into power sits underneath the urinal and can be viewed through a clear screen.

Andy Bastable, Head of Water and Sanitation at Oxfam, commented: “Oxfam is an expert at providing sanitation in disaster zones, and it is always a challenge to light inaccessible areas far from a power supply. This technology is a huge step forward. Living in a refugee camp is hard enough without the added threat of being assaulted in dark places at night. The potential of this invention is huge.”

An estimated 6.4tn litres of urine is produced by humans across the globe every year, so researchers believe it has great potential as a cheap and readily available source of energy. Ieropoulos said the unit installed at the university would cost around £600 to set up.

A solar powered toilet designed by the California Institute of Technology for
 the Reinvent the Toilet challenge. Photograph: Michael Hanson/Gates Foundation
 

Related Articles:



Monday, March 2, 2015

Toilets to be upgraded at tourist sites in China

Want China Times, Xinhua 2015-03-01

A renovated bathroom at Guilin Central Square, Guangxi,
Feb. 26. (File photo/Xinhua)

China will build 13,000 new toilets and renovate another 9,000 in 2015 at tourist sites to upgrade the notorious facilities, tourism authorities announced on Thursday.

The campaign is part of China's three-year "toilet revolution" aimed at building a total of 33,000 restrooms and renovating 24,000 by 2017, said Li Jinzao, head of the China National Tourism Administration.

Li released the target at a national kick-off meeting, adding that insufficient and unhygienic toilets have damaged China's national image and left tourists unhappy.

The official urged local tourism authorities to consider the special needs of the elderly, women, children and disabled when building and renovating toilets.

Over 3.7 billion trips were made to China's tourist sites last year, and some 128 million were from overseas visitors.

A cleaner at work at a toilet in Xujiahui Park in Shanghai, Oct. 21, 2014.
(File photo/Xinhua)

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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Alstom to Build 61m-Euro Geothermal Plant in Indonesia

Jakarta Globe – AFP, Feb 11, 2015

A file photo shows a power plant supported by geothermal energy belonging to
Pertamina Geothermal Energy in Kamojang on April 22, 2010. (AFP Photo/Adek Berry)

Paris. Alstom will build a geothermal power plant in Indonesia under a 61 million euro ($69 million) deal with a subsidiary of Pertamina, the French industrial giant said on Wednesday.

The turnkey plant, to generate 30 megawatts, will be set up in Karaha, western Java.

Alstom will provide engineering, materials and construction in the project to be completed by the end of next year for Pertamina Geothermal Energy, Alstom said in a statement.

Indonesia, made up of thousands of islands stretching from the Indian to Pacific Oceans, is home to some 130 volcanoes and is estimated to hold around 40 percent of the world’s geothermal potential.

However, it produces only a tiny fraction of its energy by converting underground heat into electricity, lagging far behind others such as the United States and neighboring Philippines.

“We are delighted to play a key role in helping Indonesia achieve its energy goals,” said Steven Moss, Alstom’s vice president in charge of renewable steam plants.

“This installation reinforces Alstom’s continued commitment to the geothermal markets and the importance of this renewable fuel source,” he said.

Agence France-Presse

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Green power takes on fossil fuels

Renewable energies are becoming globally more competitive. And an increasing number of studies are showing they have an economical edge, especially if environmental and health costs are taken into account.

Deutsche Welle, 30 Jan 2015


In Germany there is much discussion around renewable energies and cost. Fans of conventional energy sources hope to slow the rapid expansion of wind and solar power since, they say, the cost of renewable energies is too high.

The forum Green Budget Germany (FÖS) has now put forward a comprehensive study that compared all power technologies in Germany, including all known costs. Germany's energy cooperative Greenpeace Energy had commissioned the study.

Things considered were overall expenses, as well as "other effects from using conventional energies including costly consequences - for example, environmental and climate damage," said study leader Swantje Küchler from FÖS.

In the case of nuclear power, the damages after a possible nuclear accident were also taken into account. So far, the risks for large accidents worldwide have been carried by the general public, as power plant operators usually don't have the appropriate liability insurance.


Most bang for your buck

In the overall assessment, wind and solar power gave the most bang for your buck, according to calculations by FÖS. In 2014 electricity from wind and large solar power plants cost Germany between five and 10 euro cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). In contrast, the cost of electricity from natural gas, coal or lignite power plants was distinctly higher - between 11 to 17 cents per kWh.

Particularly expensive in comparison was nuclear power. Even though no new nuclear power plants will be built in Germany, with the last reactors expected to shut down in 2022, scientists contemplated the cost of nuclear energy from fictitious new power plants. That, plus the potential harms to the environment and human health arising from accidents, raised the total cost of nuclear power to between 19 to 50 cents per kWh.

A need for transparency

Energy scientists from other institutions felt vindicated by the study.

"The results are basically consistent with our studies, which show that conventional energies are significantly more expensive than renewables," said Claudia Kemfert of the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW).

Swantje Küchler introduces
the FÖS studie in Berlin.
Consequently, experts are calling for honesty and transparency in the debate, in which all costs should be taken into account.

"The problem is the high costs of coal and nuclear power are hidden from customers, who pay for them indirectly. We wanted to fix this grievance," said Marcel Keiffenheim of Greenpeace Energy.

Also, the study provided good evidence to "promote the development of renewable energies as soon as possible for economic reasons."

Tackling global climate change with renewables

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in Abu Dhabi arrived at similar results in its most recent study Renewable Power Generation Costs in 2014. They found the generation of electricity from fossil fuels took a toll on human health and climate and added up to 11 cents per kWh.

IRENA is headquartered in
oil-rich Abu Dhabi.
Since the cost of renewables in recent years has plunged worldwide, there is now "a historic opportunity to build a clean and sustainable energy supply and, therefore, prevent catastrophic climate change in an affordable way," according to Adnan Z. Amin, Director-General of IRENA.

At the same time, the march to renewables created "new jobs and reduced the import bills for fuels."

Above all, wind energy in many places in the world is economically competitive, often being cheaper than fossil fuels. According to an IRENA study, some windy places can already produce a kWh of power for four cents.

But the average production cost for wind power varies across regions. In China and Asia, it would cost around five or six; in North America, around six; and in Africa, around seven cents per kWh.

IRENA also saw much potential in the falling prices of solar power - particularly cheap in sunny countries. In the Middle East, operators of solar parks, or photovoltaic power stations, said they already generated electricity for five cents per kWh.

Renewables should also be helpful for the approximately 1.3 billion people who have up to now lived without electricity. According to IRENA's report, renewables in this case were the cheapest energy source, especially in comparison to diesel.

With a new online platform, the international agency hopes to strengthen the push for renewable energies, for which worldwide data are now available.

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One of the wealthiest men in the U.S., Warren Buffett said Monday
that he would double his renewable energy investments. Video
screenshot: Georgetown University/YouTube

"Recalibration of Free Choice"–  Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) - (Subjects: (Old) SoulsMidpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth,  4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical)  8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) (Text version)

“…  4 - Energy (again)

The natural resources of the planet are finite and will not support the continuation of what you've been doing. We've been saying this for a decade. Watch for increased science and increased funding for alternate ways of creating electricity (finally). Watch for the very companies who have the most to lose being the ones who fund it. It is the beginning of a full realization that a change of thinking is at hand. You can take things from Gaia that are energy, instead of physical resources. We speak yet again about geothermal, about tidal, about wind. Again, we plead with you not to over-engineer this. For one of the things that Human Beings do in a technological age is to over-engineer simple things. Look at nuclear - the most over-engineered and expensive steam engine in existence!

Your current ideas of capturing energy from tidal and wave motion don't have to be technical marvels. Think paddle wheel on a pier with waves, which will create energy in both directions [waves coming and going] tied to a generator that can power dozens of neighborhoods, not full cities. Think simple and decentralize the idea of utilities. The same goes for wind and geothermal. Think of utilities for groups of homes in a cluster. You won't have a grid failure if there is no grid. This is the way of the future, and you'll be more inclined to have it sooner than later if you do this, and it won't cost as much.

Water

We've told you that one of the greatest natural resources of the planet, which is going to shift and change and be mysterious to you, is fresh water. It's going to be the next gold, dear ones. So, we have also given you some hints and examples and again we plead: Even before the potentials of running out of it, learn how to desalinate water in real time without heat. It's there, it's doable, and some already have it in the lab. This will create inexpensive fresh water for the planet. 

There is a change of attitude that is starting to occur. Slowly you're starting to see it and the only thing getting in the way of it are those companies with the big money who currently have the old system. That's starting to change as well. For the big money always wants to invest in what it knows is coming next, but it wants to create what is coming next within the framework of what it has "on the shelf." What is on the shelf is oil, coal, dams, and non-renewable resource usage. It hasn't changed much in the last 100 years, has it? Now you will see a change of free choice. You're going to see decisions made in the boardrooms that would have curled the toes of those two generations ago. Now "the worst thing they could do" might become "the best thing they could do." That, dear ones, is a change of free choice concept. When the thinkers of tomorrow see options that were never options before, that is a shift. That was number four. ….”

Monday, January 26, 2015

Home cheap home: Vietnam architect's quest for low-cost housing

Yahoo – AFP, Cat Barton, 25 Jan 2015

Farmer Vo Van Duong rests inside a S-House 2 built in his garden in Vietnam's
 southern Mekong delta province of Long An on December 11, 2014 (AFP Photo/
Hoang Dinh Nam)

Long An (Vietnam) (AFP) - Vo Van Duong's bamboo and coconut leaf house looks much like others deep in Vietnam's Mekong Delta. But unlike them, his seemingly simple abode is designed to withstand typhoons, flooding and earthquakes -- and at a cost of less than $4,000 could herald a new wave of cheap, sustainable housing.

The natural materials on its surface belie the hi-tech internal structure of the farmer's new home, which uses steel struts and wall panels as a defence against the elements in this natural disaster-prone region.

Architect Vo Trong Nghia speaks during 
an interview with AFP in Ho Chi Minh City
on December 13, 2014 (AFP Photo/Hoang
Dinh Nam)
"The new house is safer, I'm not afraid that it will collapse," the 48-year-old papaya farmer told AFP inside the house he moved into nine months ago.

Duong is testing a prototype by an award-winning Vietnamese architecture firm looking for low-cost housing solutions for communities vulnerable to climate change.

His S-House 2 was free, but if rolled-out on a wider scale could be sold for less than $4,000.

"There was water coming down from the roof in my old house. Sometimes, when there was a strong wind, I was so afraid the house wouldn't survive," Duong said, adding his new home was the envy of his neighbours.

The eco-home is the brainchild of Vo Trong Nghia, who joins other architects around the world in trying to fill a demand for cheap and easy to assemble housing -- from flat-pack refugee shelters to shipping-container homes for tsunami victims.

He says all architects have a duty to help the poor.

"What about those with low income, billions of them, how can they live?" Nghia told AFP. "They have the right to live in comfortable, functional places."

But he wants to go further, creating a home residents can take pride in.

"I don't want people to be looking at it as 'cheap houses' but as resort-quality accommodation close to nature, so (residents) can live a life of the highest quality."

Farmer Vo Van Duong in the garden of a S-House 2 in Vietnam's southern Mekong
delta province of Long An on December 11, 2014 (AFP Photo/Hoang Dinh Nam)

Flat-pack homes

The design is still being refined by his team, who are eventually aiming to create a flat-pack home. The newest version, S-House 3, can be built by five people in three hours.

"Our goal for S-house is for the owner to construct it by themselves," said Kosuke Nishijima, a partner at the firm.

The latest design also allows for multiple houses to be tacked together, a function that could allow, for example, the construction of a storm-proof school easily transportable to remote areas or a larger family home.

Nghia has already been approached by NGOs in disaster-prone Bangladesh and the Philippines, but is not yet ready to supply the house commercially.

From saline-intrusion and flooding in the Mekong Delta to typhoons along the central coast, Vietnam is also home to communities living in high risk areas.

For decades, Vietnamese families have adapted their houses themselves, many building ad hoc mezzanines to avoid flooding.

In more recent years organisations including the Red Cross and Women's Unions, as well as local authorities, have been trying to help people develop more resilient housing.

A bedroom inside an ecologically conscious traditional Vietnamese tube house
 designed by architect Vo Trong Nghia's company, in Ho Chi Minh City on 
December 12, 2014 (AFP Photo/Hoang Dinh Nam)

But in order to ensure such projects are successful, "private architects' support is critical", according to Boram Kim, an urban specialist with UN-Habitat in Vietnam.

"State and local government authorities are well aware that such houses are needed for the poor, but have little technical knowledge for realising their ideas," she told AFP.

"Architects have technical knowledge for reducing the housing construction cost while making it storm proof," she said, cautioning that it was important for designers to listen to the needs of local communities.

Architect for the poor

Nghia's firm found that one of the problems facing rural Vietnamese living in traditional bamboo shacks or stilted river-bank dwellings is the costly upkeep they require to withstand increasingly extreme weather.

Although the S-House 2's outer casing of coconut leaf may need replacing every four years, the structure itself should require no expensive maintenance, said engineer Lien Phuoc Huy Phuong.

A series of concrete slabs and gaps filled
 with plants in the facade of an ecologically
 conscious traditional Vietnamese tube house
 designed by architect Vo Trong Nghia's 
company, in Ho Chi Minh City, on December
12, 2014 (AFP Photo/Hoang Ding Nam)
"It can last a long time, the structure is sound," he told AFP during a tour of the small building. 

Despite its solid exterior, the house is spacious and airy inside, with large windows and doors to bring residents closer to nature.

"We tried to design this house with the best ventilation system, with spaces by the roof and windows for better air flow," Phuong said, pointing out strategic gaps that should reduce the need for electric fans.

Architect Nghia, who used bamboo as a key element in Vietnam's country pavilion for the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, has long sought to incorporate natural and local materials into his work.

One of his first projects in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City was an ecologically-conscious take on a traditional Vietnamese tube home, known as Stacking Green house.

Built in 2011 for around $150,000, the building is made of a series of concrete slabs and gaps filled with plants to provide privacy while still allowing plenty of air and light.

Nghia is in strong demand for high-end projects from hotels to private houses, but said the low-cost S-House is his personal obsession.

"I want to live in S-House. If my family will agree," he said.

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