15 comments posted · 3 followers · following 2

481 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 0 replies · +1 points

The decision to nominate Tom Vilsack as the head of the Agricultural Dept. was a big mistake.
We need someone who supports organic and permaculture techniques over large agri-business and genetic engineering. You can't throw chemicals at the problem or it will get worse!

481 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 0 replies · +1 points

What about Joseph Lowry? In case you aren't aware he is also going to be giving a blessing at the inauguration. I thought he was an outstanding choice. He is a civil rights champion and very vocal about his support for the LGBT community.

Maybe we can at least appreciate the approach here: providing a forum for people who would normally never associate together. On the road to a compromise, we have to give a podium to every opinion that has a following. After all, if the outcome is not acceptable to everyone, the fight will just be continued next year and take up more time to find a solution. You can't just force someone like Rick Warren to enjoy the idea of expanding the legal definition of marriage. And what he doesn't like, he will mobilize his resources to fight. Laws getting reversed and re-reversed is not fun and wastes way more money and time then just getting the law acceptable to everyone in the beginning..

but please give the guy the benefit of the doubt, I am confident you won't disappointed after all is said and done:

Obama - "I think that it is no secret that I am a fierce advocate for equality for gay and lesbian Americans"

481 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 1 reply · +2 points

you raise a very interesting point here. any other 501 c 3 would lose their status for using their resources to campaign. you inspired me to find this link about just such a story:

allowing state recognized marriage for any two people, and letting religions decide their own criteria. this seems to be a productive way to make everyone happy or at least happier. what do you all think?

481 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 3 replies · +3 points

When I said biofuel, I was not speaking about corn based ethanol. There are plenty of other crops that produce biofuel much more efficiently: jatropha and switchgrass to name 2.

481 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 2 replies · +4 points

In 2004 to ABC news, Rev. Joseph Lowery said "When you talk about the law discriminating, the law granting a privilege here, and a right here and denying it there, that's a civil rights issue. And I can't take that away from anybody."

It's not easy to find a church leader with this type of viewpoint: For every condemnation of the Warren choice, there should be many more praises for the Lowery choice. Having two pastors with such differing views speak at the inaugaration is a great idea. Obama promised inclusion, and that is what we are getting, this is the first step.

For now, lets wait until Obama administration has time to address the issue of same sex civil rights before we get negative. The fastest way to make a voice heard is by getting loud, irrational, and hostile. People on the fence will most likely ignore or resent your message. The best way to get a message across and understood is by speaking respectfully and calmly. As it has been said here, there is plenty of room for disagreement without being disagreeable. I realize its not easy to speak on such emotional topics with a calm and informative tone. However, it's the only way to get support from people who don't have the emotional charge, but are willing to stand up for justice.

484 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 0 replies · +2 points

It definitely make sense and if the number of participating farms is high, it will go quite a ways. I am not familiar enough with the average energy and power requirements per acreage for farms, but for typical residential usage, $100,000 is about 3x what you would need for a small household (2 or 3 people). In my latitude, it would buy enough gear to generate around 8 MWh / year more then I would use. Selling it for $0.14 / kWh that's around $1100.

Yes RAM, I have heard that the utilities companies are being slippery in some places. Maybe we need some federal mandates in the 'net metering' policies. Basically stating that all utilities, regardless of the states they operate, in are required to develop programs to buy and redistribute energy from people who produce more then they consume.

In the Energy and Environment area of this site, the Obama team, has proposed "$150 billion over the next ten years to catalyze private efforts to build a clean energy future". I am hoping that a healthy portion is devoted to help manufacturing facilities create USA product. We shouldn't be importing lightbulbs and solar panels from around the world anymore. Kinda defeats part of the main purpose.. Aside from pure installed energy generating capacity, the capacity to manufacture is where we really fall behind countries like Germany or China.
Besides $150 billion worth of concentrating solar power plants would probably only power around 5% of USA households, not saying anything for businesses or public works.
$700 billion (figure looks familiar?) would power around 25% of households in the USA.

484 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 0 replies · +1 points

some great things are happening with building integrated solar panels like roof shingles. solar paint is being researched at a growing number of institutions.

484 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 0 replies · +1 points

even saving half would be good with me.

484 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 0 replies · +1 points

Hello Bradford, Where did you get your numbers for installing solar? They may need some reworking, unless you use way more than 10 MWh per year.

I have a hybrid solar thermal, solar PV and wind system, just under $32,000 installed. I buy a little electricity in the most overcast winter months and sell a bit in the clearest summer months. With the replacement of a few key appliances : dishwasher and hot water heater in my case, the efficiency puts me at right around 2.5 MWh per year. It will last for 30 years. I know and have witnessed many people with similar systems, happily operating their gadgets in this way. Good luck with your project!

484 weeks ago @ - The Obama-... · 1 reply · +1 points

Interesting idea Ram. Pretty much everyone already gets grants at the state and federal level for renewable energy. What if farmers were to commit to permaculture techniques and organic farming, and then energy farming their fallow lands. They could receive more incentive.
It really is a scale issue. A solar concentrating power plant needs at least $150 million to start, and hopefully $70 million per year thereafter to expannd. As soon as you buy enough equipment to be able to compete with coal or nuclear averaging at $0.10 per kWh. you have a power plant and will make good money for the life of the system - 30 years. You are powering 10's of thousands of homes after a few years of construction. You would need about 1000 acres to start.