|Ken Novak's Weblog
Purpose of this blog: to retain annotated bookmarks for my future reference, and to offer others my filter technology and other news. Note that this blog is categorized. Use the category links to find items that match your interests.
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Thursday, July 11, 2002
World Bank Energy Success Stories
: Directory of WorldBank projects in 10 countries since 2000, called "success stories and best practices in Energy selected by Bank energy leaders," mostly renewables. 11:31:58 PM
Solid waste recycling and energy generating facility
: Interstate Waste and Caribe Waste develop "solid waste processing facilities using the Thermoselect high temperature gasification technology." They claim 100% recycling, with no ash and emissions 97% below EPA levels. Re-focus reports "The United States will build one of its first non-incineration waste-to-energy power plants in Puerto Rico. The US$450 million facility will be constructed by Caribe Waste Technologies, a subsidiary of Interstate General Co and will use a gasification process to turn 1.1 million tons of waste a year into electricity." This will be its 5th installation, and will be 4 times as large as its largest yet. 11:25:20 PM
Canadian wind program shows strong early interest
: From Re-focus.net, 10 July 2002: More expressions of interest have been filed in one month for a wind energy subsidy than the Canadian government could support under its five-year program. Details of the Wind Power Production Incentive were announced in May to provide a credit of C$0.012/kWh for the first ten years of generation. The subsidy will decline over time, but the program is designed to encourage 1,000 MW of new wind capacity and is expected to leverage $1.5 billion in capital investments. When fully implemented, it will reduce Canada's GHG emissions by 3 megatonnes annually. Within the first month, 23 letters of intent were filed to install 1,050 MW, with commissioning of some sites by this December. Potential sites are located in Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and Alberta, with no interest shown yet from the other six provinces or three northern territories." 11:12:57 PM
Bangladesh-Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Development: Updated text summary of $298 m project approved by the Bank and GEF June 2002, contact Subramaniam V. Iyer, Telephone: 202-458-4441. Index page available. Re-focus.net reports:
- A key goal is a viable solar energy market in rural areas, with the installation of PV systems in 64,000 homes, with technical assistance.
- The 'free-for-service' solar home system program includes a grant program for capital cost buy-down and the provision of installation grants which are contingent on consumer installation of PV systems.
- Ten million rural homes in Bangladesh lack electricity, and this project will extend the grid to 700,000 remote households and businesses. The money will also be used to install 10,000 km of new power lines and rehabilitate older transmission lines.
- Over its 15-year life, the project will displace 257,664 tons of CO2 by replacing kerosene with electricity, yielding a cost-effectiveness of $33.1 per ton.
Other notes from the Bank summary:
- "In contrast to the main power sector utilities, rural electricity cooperatives (PBS) have been more successful in delivering reliable
services to their consumers at much higher levels of operational
performance. This superior performance encompasses lower system losses, better billing and collection performance, higher tariffs and greater financial discipline. "
- PBSs currently connect 350-400,000 households per year to the grid. While that rate is high, it would take 30 years to cover the 10 m unconnected households -- even with no population growth, and even ignoring the rising cost of grid connection as more remote areas are connected. "Even in areas with grid electrification, a large number of households use less than 30 kWh a month, mainly for lighting purposes. Therefore, the Government of Bangladesh is now looking to supplement the grid-based electrification program with off-grid options, both to increase rates of electrification and reduce the cost of providing access and supply.. The Government is actively promoting off-grid options, both through PBSs and through nongovernment organizations (NGOs) and micro-finance institutions"
Cheney and Anderson and Carlyle:
"From the be careful what you say department comes word that U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney shilled for Arthur Andersen LLP, when he was at the helm of Halliburton. .. Cheney can be seen on the video, produced before the company was damaged by revelations about its role in such corporate scandals as Enron and Worldcom. Cheney was not the only executive seen on the video extolling the virtues of Andersen. Peregrine Systems' former chief executive, Steve Gardner, who left soon after the company fired Andersen as its auditor, said the company might have overstated revenue. David Rubenstein, of The Carlyle Group, a Washington based private equity firm with close ties to former President Bush and a host of other luminaries including former Secretary of State James Baker, former Defense Secretary Frank Carlucci , appeared on the video praising Andersen for not collecting its fees right away when he first started his company, "They carried us for quite a while," Rubenstein said. " 12:34:35 PM
Internet auction works for utility: "The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), reports that it has saved millions of dollars buying high-voltage transmission equipment through an Internet auction. Siemens Power Transmission & Distribution Inc. was recently awarded a contract to provide BPA with shunt reactor banks for $5.26 million, $3 million less than the original estimate. ..Traditionally, when BPA purchased equipment, especially highly engineered equipment such as shunt reactor banks, it would mail out solicitations to a limited number of qualified vendors, wait for proposals and spend weeks negotiating before making a final award. After all that, there would be very little movement in price. .. In the auction, the vendors' proposed products are pre-evaluated. The number of vendors who are online during the actual auction is limited to only those with acceptable high quality products. BPA had narrowed the vendors to five. The bidding process was designed to take 15 minutes. " 12:32:14 PM
Paice introduces its hybrid drive system
: "Hyperdrive produced significantly better fuel economy than current vehicles. Improvements ranged from 70 percent in minicompact cars to 55 percent in large cars, and from 36 percent in small pickup trucks to 57 percent in small SUVs. Paice presented data for a Hyperdrive system in a popular American SUV of 3,860 pounds with towing capacity of 3,500 pounds. .. the Hyperdrive's fuel economy was 40 miles per gallon on the EPA city cycle and 38 miles per gallon on the highway cycle, for a combined rating of 39 miles per gallon. The comparison SUV ratings are 20 city, 31 highway, and 24 combined. Hyperdrive's acceleration from 0 to 60 miles per hour was 7.4 seconds, compared to the SUV's 10.8 seconds. Hyperdrive's 35-to-55 and 55-to-75 miles per hour passing acceleration time was also significantly shorter. " 1:59:57 AM
Wind Power Maps and Interactive Zoom Tool
is available for the Northwest, with "pre-fabricated wind maps for states, counties, utilites and selected areas also available for download in a variety of formats." A similar tool for Pennsylvania
is impressive. Coming in July 2002: A Renewable Energy Atlas of the West
covering wind, solar, biomass and geothermal resources in the 11-state western region. (Its 5.7 Mb PDF sampler
is quite impressive.) All the wind maps should help wind power developers and planners focus their efforts on the most productive areas and land owners. 1:49:14 AM
Atlantic City Water Utility Installs Wireless Meter Reading: The STAR AMR System from Hexagram "provides two reads per day from each of ACMUA's 8,000 meters.. the utility will eliminate call-backs and estimated reads, provide "virtual" disconnects, control leaks and theft, and accelerate billing. " It's a 3-tiered system:
- A Meter Transmission Unit (MTU) is connected to each meter. It's about 6 inches square by 1 inch think, including a 20-year battery. Twice each day, MTUs transmit meter usage information over a licensed, UHF radio channel.
- Data Collection Units (DCUs) receive data from up to 1000s of MTUs and send it into a data center, typically by cell phone. DCUs are solar-powered collectors mounted on rooftops, without connection to telephone or power lines.
- The Network Control Computers (NCC) aggregate and transfer the data to the utility's billing and customer service systems.