Thursday, May 22, 2008

Recycling Energy -- what an idea



If you've been filling up at the service station you may have noticed rising prices. The reports of energy price increases and the possibility of global warming is getting us to focus on alternative energy sources.
This morning, on my morning walk (during which I saw a guy walking his dog from his SUV) I listened to a piece from NPR about an entrepreneur who has found ways of recycling energy. Inspired by that Nuclear plant cooling tours that release steam into the air on the Simpsons, Tom Kasten (sp?) got an idea -- why not reuse all that steam to create power. Indeed, he says that for every 3 units used by industry, 2 are wasted -- sent up the stacks into the air. All told, if we recycled energy we could produce something like 200,000 megawatts of energy. That sounds very promising! Why waste energy and create greenhouse gases when we can find ways of reusing energy.
What's even more interesting is that current laws make it impossible for most industries to recapture energy for use.
Here's an issue for our politicians to take a look at. Indeed, Al Gore, are you listening?

1 comment:

miggs said...

I'm associated with Tom Casten and Recycled Energy Development, the firm that was featured in this NPR piece. Here's another fascinating statistic you're not likely to hear on the evening news: 69% of our country's greenhouse pollution comes from the production of power and heat. Only 19% comes from cars and light trucks. That means energy efficiency is THE key to curbing global warming. High gas mileage standards are great, but it's sad that's all we hear about, because that will only have an impact on the margins.