Gov’t. Moratorium Blocks Solar Power Development! Posted by Former Author on 27 June, 2008 at 12:11 pm. 32 comments already! [DELETED BY AUTHOR] Fit fit says: June 27, 2008 at 12:32 pm What the hell are you talking about? What does this have to do with Obama? Dave Noble says: June 27, 2008 at 12:39 pm Substantiate your claim, in any way you can, that the bureaucrats at the Bureau of Land Management are doing Barrack Obama’s bidding. Or has the Manchurian Candidate secretly replaced all the BLM employees with Obamatons? Get Smart! ELIMN8U says: June 27, 2008 at 12:51 pm One Obamacrat is the same as the next…just because NObama isn’t in the WhiteHouse deosn’t mean that those with his “NO” attitude aren’t already in their beauacratic holes already. If they weren’t we’d be drilling already. Gregory Dittman says: June 27, 2008 at 12:52 pm I mentioned this here that this would be done a couple of days ago, but this is would be on BLM land used for mining, feeding range cattle, hunting, fishing, offroad hiking and driving etc. I’m sure out of the millions of acres that there is some little used areas that would work for solar panels. According to Rolling Stones, it would require 192,000 square acres to power the needs of the whole U.S., of course some could be on rooftops or on power poles. bigpapa says: June 27, 2008 at 1:19 pm ummmmm Rolling Stone???? hahahahahaha…. lets assume for one minute they are correct… the sun doesn’t shine 24/7… so you would need millions/millions of batteries to store energy for over night and the equipmnet to convert the dc to ac etc… Solar is not vialble now,,, I can get you off the grid for about $80,000 last time I checked. But hey,,, you would be clean and GREEN… if you don’t count the lead, electronics production etc. I worked with the local university on their solar house project for a DOE competition… All they’ve learned is that it’s expensive and a pain in the A$$.. Mike's America says: June 27, 2008 at 1:30 pm FitFit and David NOble: See the Dr. No video if you are struggling with the link between Obama and this moratorium…. Fit fit says: June 27, 2008 at 1:41 pm Nope, still doesn’t make sense… over half of those things in the video are incorrect as well. But I guess that’s never stopped you before. Mike's America says: June 27, 2008 at 1:49 pm Oh come on Fit Fit! Obama is such a flip flopper, how do you even now if what he says today is “correct” the next day? Make me laugh and tell me with a straight face that the quotes from Obama’s own mouth are incorrect! DW 5000 says: June 27, 2008 at 1:51 pm I hope you’re kidding. Your contention that “Obama hasn’t even been elected and already the liberal bureaucrats are doing his bidding!” might fly if Obama had said that he didn’t want solar energy. Your instruction to “See the Dr. No video if you are struggling with the link between Obama and this moratorium….” falls flat because solar isn’t mentioned in the video. From the Obama website: Require 25 Percent of Renewable Electricity by 2025: Obama will establish a 25 percent federal Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) to require that 25 percent of electricity consumed in the U.S. is derived from clean, sustainable energy sources, like solar, wind and geothermal by 2025. Develop and Deploy Clean Coal Technology: Obama will significantly increase the resources devoted to the commercialization and deployment of low-carbon coal technologies. Obama will consider whatever policy tools are necessary, including standards that ban new traditional coal facilities, to ensure that we move quickly to commercialize and deploy low carbon coal technology. So when you write that Obama says, “[N]o coal, no wind power, no solar power,” you’re absolutely correct, except for the fact that you are one hundred percent wrong–that is, unless by “no” you mean “yes.” That’s how things work in Wingnutville, right? Also: I’m using my Spidey sense to pick up on the fact that Obama can’t get the bureaucrats to do his bidding because he isn’t the President–it’s The Glorious Codpiece Hisself who runs the Executive Branch, remember? This is a new twist: you guys have been blaming Clinton for everything that has happened since he left office, and now you’re blaming Obama for stuff and we haven’t even held the election yet. Mike, your spin on this is unlike any nuttiness I’ve ever seen before. Congrats! Hmm: a moratorium on solar power development by the Bush Administration. If only there were some other reason on God’s green earth as to why they would do this (aside from doing Obama’s bidding, of course)… Randy Fritz says: June 27, 2008 at 1:52 pm Why would anyone think that just because a technology is “green” would it not need to have the same environmental considerations as if it were a “carbon” generating energy source? You can bet that the BLM would come under considerable criticism if it allowed any activity on BLM lands without the proper studies. These requirements were set up by the left environmental groups. Now, the requirements they enacted to impede big oil and other uses of federal lands have bitten them in the butt! Mike's America says: June 27, 2008 at 1:59 pm Dim Wit said: “Mike, you’re an idiot. Or a huge liar. Or a lying idiot–” Interesting that you would accuse me in such strident terms after being exposed for doing what you accuse me of in this previous post: http://www.floppingaces.net/2008/06/25/have-you-ever-wondered/ But if you want to try and tell us that Obama is all for eco-safe energy development, please do so…. If you can. The bottom line is that Democrats have adopted a conservation-only policy and are trying to force the rest of the country to adapt to getting by with less. That’s a losing proposition in every sense of the word. I’m not surprised you DOC would support it. DW 5000 says: June 27, 2008 at 2:07 pm Dim Wit said: “Mike, you’re an idiot. Or a huge liar. Or a lying idiot–” In the interest of full disclosure, I edited that out before reading your reply in order to tone down the rhetoric a bit. But if you want to try and tell us that Obama is against eco-safe energy development, please do so…. If you can. By all means. Use quotes and links. Just don’t use that video, because it never mentioned solar (or clean coal, or hydro, or tidal, or geothermal, or–well, you get the idea), and you specifically mentioned solar up at the top of the thread. Remember: it was you who directed readers to a video that does not mention the things you say it mentions. Also: please explain how Obama is getting the BLM to do his bidding. You’re aware that George W. Bush runs the Executive Branch, right? Dreadnought says: June 27, 2008 at 2:44 pm Greg, “I’m sure out of the millions of acres that there is some little used areas that would work for solar panels. According to Rolling Stones, it would require 192,000 square acres to power the needs of the whole U.S., of course some could be on rooftops or on power poles.” I don’t think Rolling Stone is a very creditable source. Now, pay attention to teacher… An absolute, top-of-the-line solar panel (space station quality) produces at about 25% efficiency. The sun’s energy at the equator from straight overhead on a cloudless day is about 1 Kilowatt/Hour per square meter. Considering we are well north of the equator (so the sun comes at a slant), let’s say 20%. In other words 1 m2 of solar panels produces 0.20 Kw/h. 1 acre = 4,047 m2 192,000 acres = 776,996,433 m2 multiply by 0.20/kwH = 155.399 Gigawatt/hours The US Electricity consumption in 2005 was 3,816 GigaWatt/Hours. 192,000 acres supplies about 4% of the total. To get 3,816 GWH of power, you need 4,726,916 acres. completely uninterupted. Once you allow for for a little cloudcover (and oh yeah, something called ‘night’), some spare capacity to allow for maintainance, you are dealing with an area approaching the size of Arizona – border-to-border solar panels – all the people would have to leave and the cities flattened out. And don’t forget to fill in the Grand Canyon. And God help you if you get a hailstorm. bigpapa says: June 27, 2008 at 3:45 pm Come on Dreadnought,,, Don’t confuse greenies with facts… It’s how you feel about an issue that’s imortant.. 🙂 Just A Grunt says: June 27, 2008 at 3:56 pm And in a couple of months we will hear Dems chanting about energy companies not using the leased lands to build alternative energy sources, just like they do now to the oil companies with this red herring 68 million acres of unused leases. I bet when Azatalan is restored they won’t be so resistant to drilling or solar energy. Gregory Dittman says: June 27, 2008 at 4:00 pm The latest solar power technology (nano technology which is 40% efficent which is more efficent than the common automobile gas engine) requires 25 acres to power 1,000 homes (contracts this is an existing commercial product). It would require a battery like the one McCain proposes in order for it to work all the way through the night. I believe the writer was using basic math to convert the estimated energy use in the U.S. and then convert the size and absorption of the solar panels at the time into square miles. A Stirling Energy Systems-Southern California Edison venture is going to produce 500 megawatts using 4,600 acres. 36,800 acres to produce 4GWH. stirlingenergy.com/ bigpapa says: June 27, 2008 at 4:32 pm Gregory,, Do you know of any info comparing the cost per Kwh of solar vs. say nuclear or coal? I can’t imagine that even with the higher efficiency systems you linked to that they are more cost effective than a large scale power plant… I could be wrong but,, I couldn’t find the info. MataHarley says: June 27, 2008 at 7:42 pm Staying out of the efficiency battles going on here, Randy Fritz has it correct. The reasons for the delay are no conspiracy theories about Bush and oil, but bureaucratic red tape and acquiescing to enviromentalists and their traditional demands about impact. As for the DNC pols, Harry Reid was caught off guard, making his statement June 18th, with alluding to Bush inefficiency just after he ID’s *the real reason for the hold up*… adhering to regulations, and applications backlog. Obama can’t be involved either. He was utterly clueless to it all, even six days after Reid’s official statement. Obama said Tuesday that he was unfamiliar with the specifics but would have the Energy Department, under his administration, “evaluate any moratorium to make sure it doesn’t impede that kind of development.” Now to the real reasons, sans all the conspiracy theories… plain, ol’ fashioned bureaucratic red tape, environmentalists, and a veritable “land rush” for BLM land. First, from the LV Sun on the 18th. The BLM has received 125 applications — including 23 in Nevada — to use federal land for solar plants. The oldest of the 125 was filed more than three years ago, according to Katherine Gensler, manager of regulatory and legislative affairs with the Solar Energy Industries Association. Gensler and Linda Resseguie of the BLM said delays on some of those applications are due to developers new to the solar industry not meeting BLM deadlines. Gensler said BLM is so backed up with pending applications that the agency couldn’t have begun analyzing new requests before the study is completed anyway. Still, the moratorium has the industry buzzing. snip The BLM in 2006 completed a similar study of the effects of wind farm development in the Midwest. The agency did not, however, halt applications during that process, which began in 2003. Resseguie said that was because wind resources were geographically dispersed and there were no multiple applications for any single location, as there are in California for solar plants. She said the BLM may in the future hold competitive auctions for parcels with multiple solar applications. But in the meantime, the freeze could place a dollar value on applications filed, which may drive partnerships and deal-making in the industry, Resseguie said. And the limited number of active applications moving through the BLM queue could drive up prices, said Tom Fair, renewable energy executive for Sierra Pacific Resources, Nevada Power’s parent company. He called the 125 existing applications “a bit of a land rush.” Do I smell bidding problems for the available land in the future, tinged with affirmative action policies? Ah, what the future may hold when so many dive for so few spots… As to the environmental concerns… this is from the NYTs article Mike’sA linked to above. For those of you who did not RTFA: The manager of the Bureau of Land Management’s environmental impact study, Linda Resseguie, said that many factors must be considered when deciding whether to allow solar projects on the scale being proposed, among them the impact of construction and transmission lines on native vegetation and wildlife. In California, for example, solar developers often hire environmental experts to assess the effects of construction on the desert tortoise and Mojave ground squirrel. Water use can be a factor as well, especially in the parched areas where virtually all of the proposed plants would be built. Concentrating solar plants may require water to condense the steam used to power the turbine. “Reclamation is another big issue,” Ms. Resseguie said. “These plants potentially have a 20- to 30-year life span. How to restore that land is a big question for us.” As usual, it’s Congress and environmentalists to blame, slowing up the works with extensive studies and complex paperwork. How much is justified caution and over caution? Dunno… Gregory Dittman says: June 27, 2008 at 8:54 pm That company has 40 employers and signonsandiego.com says that SDG&E paid $33,333 per SunCatcher. A SunCatcher produces 55,000+ kwh per year. Over 20 years (their contract with Sterling Energy) with at 10 cents a KWH aprox. they charge to the customer, SDG&E will end up with a net gain of $76,667 per SunCatcher after 20 years. SDG&E would start to make a profit after the 7th year. signonsandiego.com/news/business/20080418-9999-1b18solar.html. If it was a 1,000 MWH project, the profit would net the electric company $3.06 billion in 20 years or $11.76 billion in profits over 60 years. The cost for nuclear energy ends up like 5.93 (Wikipedia) cents a KWH over its lifetime and produces about 1,000 mwh at 24/7. Selling the electricity at 10 cents leaves a 4.07 cents profit to the power company at $7.13 billion over 20 years (average from its lifetime). Nuclear plants may last between 40-60 years (60 years by law). Or $21.39 billion profit in 60 years. Of course a nuclear accident really ups the cost. There are other costs too. One can set up 5 or 6 SunCatchers in an African village out in the middle of nowhere and give the villiage power for decades, but nobody is going to give a third world nation a nuclear reactor and if they did, that would require miles of copper wiring to string between villages among other things. One could also put up solar panels to run energy for a farm in the U.S. that is not near the power grid. Solar panels are now cloth like and can be worn as shirts, rolled up like sleeping bags and some can be painted on so we might see black buildings in the future. You aren’t going to go camping with a nuclear power plant. crosspatch says: June 27, 2008 at 11:22 pm It actually does make sense to do an environmental impact survey for solar. The reason is that for every acre of solar panels you put in the desert, that is an acre of desert habitat that is destroyed. When you shade the ground that much, you take away the conditions that the native plants and animals have adapted to. Deprive a spot of ground of sunshine and you kill native plants and create conditions where non-native weeds can grow. It changes the environment. It creates something more like that of a woodland. Overall, oil is less environmentally destructive than solar or wind. And nuclear is less destructive than oil. john ryan says: June 28, 2008 at 4:40 am After Nov we may see the Federal government easing up its restrictions on solar MataHarley says: June 28, 2008 at 10:29 am And why, John Ryan, is it justifiable to fast track only solar and not all energy production… including oil? Oil is multiuse for manufacturing, and products using petroleum base makes up the largest of US exports. It will always be needed. Also, unless capacitance makes extraordinary gains, oil will remain the only stable power source when the wind doesn’t blow, the sun doesn’t shine and the rain doesn’t fall. Aye says: June 28, 2008 at 11:20 am Mata, Don’t expect any responses or answers from john ryan. He loves to engage in swing-through trolling. He’s a one trick pony on several of the sites I visit. Arthurstone says: June 28, 2008 at 11:49 am MaraHarley typed: Oil is multiuse for manufacturing, and products using petroleum base makes up the largest of US exports. Good point. That’s why it makes so little sense to burn up so very much of such a valuable resource. High gasoline prices are here to stay. And about time. Oh and Mike. Still waiting for you to explain to your rapt audience just how Democrat Presidential Barrack Obama was able to order the Bureau of Land Management to start the moratorium on new solar projects. I had no idea he was (already) so powerful. Now if he’d get on the horn and order the troops home from Iraq… MataHarley says: June 28, 2008 at 11:56 am Arthurstone, no one disputes that conservation is a good thing. In fact, if you read my post on a different thread, you will note that the US is doing the greatest decline in consumption compared to the rest of the world, and has done so in the past two years. The beef is that Congressional solutions lie in conservation alone. They can not seem to grasp that all areas need to be included… conservation + alternative R&D and growth + advancing oil reserves and decrease on foreign petroleum. The petroleum use for our exported programs and technology advances will not remain stagnant. We should panic if it does because we aren’t progressing financially. Therefore it’s logical to assume our needs for petroleum should increase, not decline. We do not need to conserve in manufacturing. Arthurstone says: June 28, 2008 at 12:32 pm http://www.eia.doe.gov/basics/quickoil.html According to these folks 69% of the petroleum we use is for transportation. Given that fuel economy for passenger cars has been stuck since 1990 at 27.5 MPG and given that SUVs are notorious gas guzzlers sales of which have grown enormously over the past 15 years it stands to reason the logical place to have immediate effect on he cost of energy is by burning less gasoline. Or expect to pay what it’s worth if one chooses not to. Mike's America says: June 28, 2008 at 12:36 pm “Arthur’s” dangerously naive and simplistic reasoning ignores the reality of the effects of high energy prices on the whole of our economy. Not that he cares. He’ll just blame any downturn on Bush. Too many people have seen through the lies and deceit that Dems like Arthur have been pushing on this issue. MataHarley says: June 28, 2008 at 12:58 pm What did you combine to get that 69%, Arthurstone? If you use the US Imports breakdown by product for Mar 08,: Total import = 389,065 Motor fuel blending components = 17,281 Finished motor fuel = 11,600 Finished aviation = 3 Jet fuel – kerosene = 3,025 This is a total of 31,909 of transport related petroleum uses for the month, or .08% of the total petroleum import uses. Based on that miniscule amount, makes you wonder what the hoo-haaa about fuel consumption is all about. It will make nary a dent in our overall oil needs. john ryan says: June 28, 2008 at 7:48 pm no you can expect a response from me. But I am finishing up a 13 hour day driving a tuck it gets put away at 11:30 All I am saying is that right now we have a divided government, I am not sure why the executive branch is blocking the solar. I do know that it was only a week ago that Bush reversed his stance on off shore drilling. john ryan says: June 28, 2008 at 7:50 pm I generally work either 3 or 4 of these shifts a week Aye says: June 29, 2008 at 3:47 am I do know that it was only a week ago that Bush reversed his stance on off shore drilling. Really? That’s what you know? Then I know you are wrong once again. When you posted that contention the first time here I proved you were incorrect here. Mike added additional information here. There has been no reversal. Thor’s Hall | Dr. No says: June 29, 2008 at 12:51 pm […] Go read the whole post here. […] Gordon says: June 30, 2008 at 7:08 pm People rarely do this simple calculation correctly. Rolling Stones is wrong, if in fact that’s what they said. So are the other commentors. U.S. electric consumption in 2006 (DoE statistic) 4.1 million GWh (average power 468 MW) Typical solar insolation in the U.S. southwest 5 kWh per square meter per day (Google insolation map), yearly average Which is 1825 kWh per square meter per year. Solar panel efficiency typically 20%. Then the area required is 4.1 trillion kWh/yr/(1825 kWh/m2-yr * 20%) = 11.2 billion sq m sq m per acre 4047 (one blogger had that right). Area required 2.78 million acres, 4340 sq mi., an area 66 miles on a side. This calculation leaves out so many things (like storage needed) it’s almost meaningless. But there is plenty of usable area, including rooftops, in the U.S. to generate all our electric power from solar.