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  #21  
Old 11.10.2012, 17:47
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8KSFFT20120928

If it means what they are currently doing in America, then "The End is Nigh".

Fracking for underground gas? ......Is that headed to Europe?

If it is, it`s only due in 2050, by which time I`ll be gone to another planet, and the children will have to deal with the poisoned water.

Anyone interested in what "Fracking" is, Google the investigative video titled "Gasland".
Plenty of gas in europa
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  #22  
Old 11.10.2012, 18:01
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

The fluid injection involved in a geothermal operation, very similar to that used in fracking, was deemed to blame for the 2006 earthquakes in Basel, so I imagine (hope) that the idea will be treated with much caution if it's suggested here.
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  #23  
Old 11.10.2012, 19:23
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8KSFFT20120928

If it means what they are currently doing in America, then "The End is Nigh".

Fracking for underground gas? ......Is that headed to Europe?

If it is, it`s only due in 2050, by which time I`ll be gone to another planet, and the children will have to deal with the poisoned water.

Anyone interested in what "Fracking" is, Google the investigative video titled "Gasland".
Switzerland to quite some extent already uses Gas, which arrives here in the form of LNG Liquefied Natural Gas. Lots of Gas is imported from Algeria and some others.
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  #24  
Old 11.10.2012, 20:01
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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You cannot dam that which does not exist. The permafrost in the Alps is thawing as evidenced by the rockslides becoming more frequent and larger along with mudslides. Once the glaciers fully retreat (google for the Rhone valley/river glacier), it's going to be difficult to find water, especially since the weather patterns will not remain the same due to the arctic going completely ice free within 10-15 years, maybe sooner.
The glaciers are annually refreshed at the top end by rain & snow; you wrote yourself about snow melt. If they were not annually refreshed then they would all have disappeared many years ago.

The rain will continue every year & needs to be captured by new dams; the required valleys are already nicely formed by the glacial action.

The rain patterns may well change due to the Arctic changes but nobody has a clue as to whether this means more rain or less & where the rain will fall.

I do not know of one climate model that correctly forecast the last 14 years of NO global warming. I have about as much confidence in the climate models forecast of future rainfall as I do in the tooth fairy; maybe more in the tooth fairy.
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  #25  
Old 11.10.2012, 20:09
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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They'd be better off sticking with nuclear... which is probably what they'll do in the end anyway.

"So... if we can't have clean, safe, modern nuclear power we'll just have to incinerate puppies and kittens instead. It's what you voted for!"
Of course the new nuclear plants are very good and safe, but what I fail to see is why people fail to see what incredible opportunity this is for an innovative country like Switzerland - jump on the green-energy-hype-bandwagon - be the future pioneer in this area!

There will be a HUGE business opportunity behind this and will definitely strengthen the Swiss industry sector!

Of course you can replace nuclear power with wind/solar/geo/gas together with making more efficient devices and system, this not the question at all, there is no doubt about this!

BUT you have to do it step-by-step, and it will take some decades...
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  #26  
Old 11.10.2012, 20:14
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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Of course the new nuclear plants are very good and safe, but what I fail to see is why people fail to see what incredible opportunity this is for an innovative country like Switzerland - jump on the green-energy-hype-bandwagon - be the future pioneer in this area!

There will be a HUGE business opportunity behind this and will definitely strengthen the Swiss industry sector!

Of course you can replace nuclear power with wind/solar/geo/gas together with making more efficient devices and system, this not the question at all, there is no doubt about this!

BUT you have to do it step-by-step, and it will take some decades...
About "Of course you can replace nuclear power with wind/solar/geo/gas"

No! you cannot replace one single AKW or other power station with wind/solar because there is no power produced when it is dark & windless.

Geo & gas are of course alternatives & enable you to close nuclear power stations; but I am not aware of the benefits of gas over nuclear??
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  #27  
Old 11.10.2012, 20:35
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

as prophetic as wars over clean water sound, I highly doubt that will happen. Transforming dirty water into a potable source is relatively trivial and cheap. (Compared to other commodity chemicals which 'wars' are fought over). If/as clean water becomes scarce (and profitable), there will be huge opportunity to upscale the present technology, plus potentially newer, better technology, to fill the demands with ease. Worst case scenario, landlocked countries may fall a bit dependent, but historically landlocked countries haven't had the best chances to be superpowers anyway :P (Schorry Schwiiz)
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  #28  
Old 11.10.2012, 20:36
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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How many of you knew that it's mainly cheap nuclear power that hydro power stations use to pump up the water during the night so that "green energy" can be produced by the water turbines during the day to sell expensive electricity and thereby create a profit?
This is true regarding pumped storage power plants. But these produce only about 4% of the average per year of all hydropower plants in Switzerland (47% run-of-river, 49% storage power plants). link

Storage power plants produce electricity for the peaks. For example nuclear power produces a regular amount of energy but energy consumption varies through the day. Solar and wind produce more irregular amounts. So in both cases it makes sense to use storage capacity. The pumping occurs when demand is low and prices are low and released during peaks when prices are high. So I believe whether more nuclear/regular or more solar/wind/irregular the pumping will continue. I am just starting trying to understand energy markets so I am happy to be corrected.

There is a project to raise the dam at the Grimsel Stausee but it is being delayed over arguments about environment protection (highmoors). The opponents seem to be strongly against nuclear or fossil energy production but are fighting this project. Simiilar to people who like nuclear power but don't want to deal with the waste disposal.

Besides environmental concerns there are also doubts about the rentability of pumped storage plants.

An interesting topic, but unfortunately quiet complicated
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  #29  
Old 11.10.2012, 20:42
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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About "Of course you can replace nuclear power with wind/solar/geo/gas"

No! you cannot replace one single AKW or other power station with wind/solar because there is no power produced when it is dark & windless.

Geo & gas are of course alternatives & enable you to close nuclear power stations; but I am not aware of the benefits of gas over nuclear??
Ok to put it more clearly: with a mix of renewable energy sources, energy storage technologies and increase the overall energy efficiency it WILL be possible to gradually close down the nuclear power plants.

If you don't have this is a strategy there will NO reason for this development, but if you are more or less forced to do it, there WILL be solutions, no doubt about that!
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  #30  
Old 11.10.2012, 21:03
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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The glaciers are annually refreshed at the top end by rain & snow; you wrote yourself about snow melt. If they were not annually refreshed then they would all have disappeared many years ago.
But they are disappearing, and you can't dam all the rivers, e.g. the Rhone effectively. Why do they disappear? Less precipitation and warmer temperatures. Look at Peru and China whose glaciers are melting at a rather fast pace and Peru is in trouble drought-wise as without the glaciers, they don't have enough water.

Also, as glaciers retreat, it tends to speed up the process - http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...ater-supplies/

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The rain will continue every year & needs to be captured by new dams; the required valleys are already nicely formed by the glacial action.
The rich valleys that are the agricultural heart of the country? Those?


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The rain patterns may well change due to the Arctic changes but nobody has a clue as to whether this means more rain or less & where the rain will fall.

I do not know of one climate model that correctly forecast the last 14 years of NO global warming. I have about as much confidence in the climate models forecast of future rainfall as I do in the tooth fairy; maybe more in the tooth fairy.
Models are getting better all the time and, in spite of being highly variable in accuracy, one thing is certain and that is water is going to be an issue in a warming climate and you have to consider which is better; being a source of water and being prepared (and able) to defend it or desperately needing water and having to pay or beg for it.

I highly recommend the book "Six Degrees" as it's very readable and, though it was written in 2009, so much of what the author writes about has already happened that it can be rather depressing in places.
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  #31  
Old 11.10.2012, 21:35
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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The rich valleys that are the agricultural heart of the country? Those?
No, NOT the rich valleys but those many very poor valleys from which the inhabitants emigrate. Poor valleys where children at age 12 have to drop our of school and go working somewhere. Poor valleys where the prospect to become a Zürich tram-driver is perceived as a superb career chance

People in those valleys nevertheless are not really enthusiastic about such prospects, to see their valley flooded as their families for uncountable generations lived there, the graves are there, and the villages with the church, the bar-restaurant and with all the local traditions. So that three things are required, A) diplomacy B) readiness for compromise C) common sense. Those villagers can be spoken with if the approach is free of arrogance and domineering spirits.

I am fairly optimistic as the regional politicians know that those villagers if angry can ruin political careers
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  #32  
Old 11.10.2012, 21:52
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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No, NOT the rich valleys but those many very poor valleys from which the inhabitants emigrate. Poor valleys where children at age 12 have to drop our of school and go working somewhere. Poor valleys where the prospect to become a Zürich tram-driver is perceived as a superb career chance

People in those valleys nevertheless are not really enthusiastic about such prospects, to see their valley flooded as their families for uncountable generations lived there, the graves are there, and the villages with the church, the bar-restaurant and with all the local traditions. So that three things are required, A) diplomacy B) readiness for compromise C) common sense. Those villagers can be spoken with if the approach is free of arrogance and domineering spirits.

I am fairly optimistic as the regional politicians know that those villagers if angry can ruin political careers
But given you can find one or more valleys that are suitable for such a project, it'll take massive amounts of money and years of political maneuvering to get there. An interesting solution, but probably not a realistic one.

As far as wind energy goes....no way, not in Switzerland as the turbines make lots of noise when they're running and we all know how much noise is enjoyed in Switzerland.
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  #33  
Old 11.10.2012, 22:02
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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But given you can find one or more valleys that are suitable for such a project, it'll take massive amounts of money and years of political maneuvering to get there. An interesting solution, but probably not a realistic one.

As far as wind energy goes....no way, not in Switzerland as the turbines make lots of noise when they're running and we all know how much noise is enjoyed in Switzerland.
- wind in Switzerland only is strong enough in either high-up or else rather remote places where the noise is no problem
- more dams WILL be built and more hydropower WILL become available
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  #34  
Old 11.10.2012, 22:38
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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- wind in Switzerland only is strong enough in either high-up or else rather remote places where the noise is no problem
- more dams WILL be built and more hydropower WILL become available
The most recent dam built in Switzerland, if I can rely on the source, was in 1976 in St. Gallen, but most of them were built in the 50s and 60s. That is a pretty big gap in dam building.
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  #35  
Old 12.10.2012, 07:08
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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The most recent dam built in Switzerland, if I can rely on the source, was in 1976 in St. Gallen, but most of them were built in the 50s and 60s. That is a pretty big gap in dam building.
Your source simply is WRONG. Why ?

There for example was a large dam under construction up from the 1970ies. The works were done by a Swiss company, the accountancy under control of the Swiss Constructors Union, the taxes paid on the Swiss side, but the whole thing was just accross the border in Italy. The AHV-Revisor however twice had gone up there from Zürich. That he thanks to two years in an army office in Biasca in WW-II spoke Italian fairly well, made things easier. Switzerland for a while specialized in building dams just a kilometer "behind" the border. Swiss companies also were involved in the big dams in Southeastern Turkey and in China. So that there in reality was NO gap at all. Most of the engineers are back home and wait for new endeavours !
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Old 12.10.2012, 11:28
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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Storage power plants produce electricity for the peaks. For example nuclear power produces a regular amount of energy but energy consumption varies through the day. Solar and wind produce more irregular amounts. So in both cases it makes sense to use storage capacity. The pumping occurs when demand is low and prices are low and released during peaks when prices are high. So I believe whether more nuclear/regular or more solar/wind/irregular the pumping will continue. I am just starting trying to understand energy markets so I am happy to be corrected.
the problem is that for storage to be economically feasible, there has to be a large differential between low and high prices. Not only are there losses in transmission to and from the storage plant, but there are losses in the pumps and water is lost through seepage and evaporation. If you can recover 40 to 60% of the power you put in, you're already pretty good. And then add to that the cost (in both energy and money) of building such a dam. Thus it's only an attractive proposition if you can buy your electricity dirt cheap and sell it at the highest peak price. Nuclear plants can produce that dirt cheap electricity at night. The question is, can renewable sources match that. Right now, renewables people are happy when, they can reach parity at peak or daytime tariffs (and even then, there are lots of susbidies in the background). Solar cannot produce at night, and they're hardly going to sell their daytime production at night prices for storage. Wind power can be produced at night, but if you factor in the costs of transmission from the North Sea coast to the Swiss Alps, they're going to have to provide their electricity at a negative price. Would the renewables industry, otherwise so greedy for subsidies, do that?
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Old 12.10.2012, 11:31
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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Your source simply is WRONG. Why ?

There for example was a large dam under construction up from the 1970ies. The works were done by a Swiss company, the accountancy under control of the Swiss Constructors Union, the taxes paid on the Swiss side, but the whole thing was just accross the border in Italy. The AHV-Revisor however twice had gone up there from Zürich. That he thanks to two years in an army office in Biasca in WW-II spoke Italian fairly well, made things easier. Switzerland for a while specialized in building dams just a kilometer "behind" the border. Swiss companies also were involved in the big dams in Southeastern Turkey and in China. So that there in reality was NO gap at all. Most of the engineers are back home and wait for new endeavours !
Several Swiss companies were also involved in the Three Gorges project.
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Old 12.10.2012, 12:31
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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But they are disappearing, and you can't dam all the rivers, e.g. the Rhone effectively. Why do they disappear? Less precipitation and warmer temperatures. Look at Peru and China whose glaciers are melting at a rather fast pace and Peru is in trouble drought-wise as without the glaciers, they don't have enough water.

Also, as glaciers retreat, it tends to speed up the process - http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...ater-supplies/



The rich valleys that are the agricultural heart of the country? Those?




Models are getting better all the time and, in spite of being highly variable in accuracy, one thing is certain and that is water is going to be an issue in a warming climate and you have to consider which is better; being a source of water and being prepared (and able) to defend it or desperately needing water and having to pay or beg for it.

I highly recommend the book "Six Degrees" as it's very readable and, though it was written in 2009, so much of what the author writes about has already happened that it can be rather depressing in places.
About "The rich valleys that are the agricultural heart of the country? Those? "

No, the valleys that are currently filled with ice.

About "one thing is certain and that is water is going to be an issue in a warming climate"
Actually it is not certain. One theory is that a warming climate will cause more water evaporation meaning more clouds meaning more rain meaning wider water distribution.

About "Models are getting better all the time ...."
You mean the ones that continue to forecast the global warming which is not happening.
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  #39  
Old 12.10.2012, 12:46
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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the problem is that for storage to be economically feasible, there has to be a large differential between low and high prices. Not only are there losses in transmission to and from the storage plant, but there are losses in the pumps and water is lost through seepage and evaporation. If you can recover 40 to 60% of the power you put in, you're already pretty good. And then add to that the cost (in both energy and money) of building such a dam. Thus it's only an attractive proposition if you can buy your electricity dirt cheap and sell it at the highest peak price. Nuclear plants can produce that dirt cheap electricity at night. The question is, can renewable sources match that. Right now, renewables people are happy when, they can reach parity at peak or daytime tariffs (and even then, there are lots of susbidies in the background). Solar cannot produce at night, and they're hardly going to sell their daytime production at night prices for storage. Wind power can be produced at night, but if you factor in the costs of transmission from the North Sea coast to the Swiss Alps, they're going to have to provide their electricity at a negative price. Would the renewables industry, otherwise so greedy for subsidies, do that?
There is also the practical difficulty of finding a geographically suitable place for a new storage pumping site.
You have to find somewhere at a low level suitable to store a large quantity of water plus another nearby place that is much higher up & also able to store a large quantity of water; it has to be nearby or you lose too much electricity just pumping the water around.
As mentioned for my dam proposal you have the same political issues & high costs to overcome when you want to build new storage pumping sites.
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Old 12.10.2012, 12:58
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Re: Doess this news mean what I think it means?!

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But they are disappearing, and you can't dam all the rivers, e.g. the Rhone effectively. Why do they disappear? Less precipitation and warmer temperatures. Look at Peru and China whose glaciers are melting at a rather fast pace and Peru is in trouble drought-wise as without the glaciers, they don't have enough water.
.........................................
I highly recommend the book "Six Degrees" as it's very readable and, though it was written in 2009, so much of what the author writes about has already happened that it can be rather depressing in places.
About "you can't dam all the rivers, e.g. the Rhone effectively."

I am not sure what you mean. The Rhone already has a number of dams that are used to even out the flow over the year, for example, the Serre-Ponçon dam is one of the largest in Europe.
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