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Heat mining and power production

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

One power-generating solution that is both non-intermittent and nonpolluting involves mining (or extracting) heat from the Earth’s crust to generate electricity. According to “The Future of Geothermal Energy—Impact of Enhanced Geothermal Systems on the United States in the 21st Century,” a 2006 study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)...
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Engineered Geothermal Systems

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Conventional hydrothermal-heat mining relies on three major characteristics. Hydrothermal wells must be hot and their high heat gradients must be within the reach of conventional drilling technology; their rock formations must be porous enough to enable good flow of liquid water through the rock to absorb heat; and they must...
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Baseload Power

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Before we can think about changing the energy paradigm we need to take stock of what it does. Energy companies don’t need to do this, they’re very knowledgeable. But regular consumers may need some background. Let’s start with baseload power. Simply put, baseload power is the minimum demand of a...
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A test case for heat mining

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

There’s a compelling opportunity presenting itself in Arizona for a low-cost test case for EGS or using heat from the Earth’s crust to generate electricity in a conventional electric plant. The Navajo Generating Station, in Page, Arizona is the West’s largest coal-fired power plant and it is also tailor-made for...
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Supply and demand

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

What happens when the supply of any product continues to dwindle is predictable? First prices rise because of simple supply and demand economics. If demand is not that elastic as is the case for energy, consumers will have to find ways to pay the price. Even when supplies dwindle and...
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The carbon cycle

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Every living thing is dependent upon green plants for sustenance. Whether you’re a vegetarian, a herbivore, or a carnivore if you look back far enough in your food chain, what you eat comes from plants. Even fungi that breakdown once living things in the process of decay, earn a living...
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eROeI–energy accounting 101

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

In business there’s a concept called return on investment (ROI), and it’s pretty simple. When ROI is a positive number you can make a profit, when it’s negative, you lose money. If you invest $10, say in marketing, to sell a $1,000 product, your ROI on the marketing program is...
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Economics and Climate Change

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

There are plenty of analyses of the costs associated with a warming planet including those associated with major weather incidents like hurricanes and tornadoes, crop failures, greater demand for electricity to control personal climate, and much more. This piece is not about that because there are other unexplored issues to...
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Another facet of climate, refugee crisis

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Climate refugee is an odd term, one that many people are not familiar with but climate refugee status is something we’re already dealing with. The question is how bad we let the situation become before recognizing it as a major event that’s part of the climate crisis and not some...
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Climate Change at a Crossroads

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Recent storm activity in the Atlantic and Caribbean as well as extreme hot weather and forest fires in the northwest have brought renewed attention to the topic of climate change. We may be at a tipping point where it’s no longer possible to sidestep human responsibility for the growing crisis...
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