Saturday, February 13, 2010

A meeting is set with Congresswoman Woolsey

The Green Machine received some mighty good news this week. I have been granted a meeting with my Congresswoman. The meeting will occur on Friday February 19th. Of course I will blog about the meeting after it happens. I have been thinking of the things I want to discuss with my Congresswoman. Of course I will discuss the wasted funds that are being given to myriad Betamax technologies and their sponsoring companies. Fisker, A One, and Tesla will top this list. Of course I will tell her that photovoltaic cells will remain for all intents and purposes too expensive to really make a dent in our electricity supply. I will tell her that it is plan dumb and stupid that the bridges over the San Francisco Bay are going to charge tolls to carpools during peak rush hours this coming June. I will tell her the Feds should help out the bridge districts with this rather than giving funds to gangrene and fake prophets of sustainability (e.g. fuel cells, cellulosic ethanol, algae biodiesel).

I will tell her why PV cells and Lithium Batteries simply cannot have substantially lower costs based on economies of scale when these technologies have underlying physics that prohibit rapid learning rates. I will tell her that Mother Nature did not intend photosynthesis to propel 245 million vehicles in the USA. Actually 2009 was a good year for Mother Nature even though it sucked for all of us economically. In 2009 5 million more private vehicles were scrapped than were sold. In the USA. For the first time the number of private vehicles out there in the good old USA dropped. Yes the figure dropped from 250 million in 208 to 245 million. My prognostication is that this decline will continue and that by 2015 we might have 230 million vehicles. OK so we have 5 million fewer vehicles parked in garages, driveways, yards, and on the streets. So how come parking spaces in San Francisco are still so difficult to find?

I will tell her how Germany went ape on PV cells with subsidies. PV provides 1% of Germany’s electric needs yet 7% of Germany’s electric costs are associated with these PV electrons. This shows you how government subsidies can cause scarce funds to go into the wrong investments. I will use the last part of the meeting to tell her what alternates do work. Subsidizing buses, carpool, and vanpools. She should steer public policy in the US so that consumers buy more diesel cars and smaller cars. Hybrids with small batteries and smaller engines are a solution. Other dual fuel systems that make small engines perform as well as large engines are also possible. A national recycling law on all plastic, glass and aluminum containers is needed. Abandoning the mandate to reach 20 billion gallons a year of biofuels should also be an adopted policy. She should support wind and geothermal energy projects that are well engineered and appropriately located.

She should help establish an Engineering General for the USA. This position like the Surgeon General (medicine), Attorney General (Law) should have high prestige in matters that relate to energy and science. This officer of the US government must prevent waste on gangrenous project that get promoted by all sorts of greedy green wannebees. I will tell her we are fortunate that nuclear energy can be a source of cleaner energy and that natural gas is preferred option over coal and oil. I will tell her carbon sequestration will always remain expensive and illusive and that conservation is the best way to sequester carbon in fossil fuels we do not use. This should be a great meeting and I am going into it with the expectation that this is the beginning of her metamorphosis to becoming a true green thermodynamically informed butterfly. It is up to her to change from a caterpillar and maybe the Green Machine can perform some magic. If the meeting is a bust I could make her disappear from Congress in November.