Saturday, August 28, 2010

Methanol The Best Biofuel

Ajay has been bugging me for months to be positive in at least one blog. He asked me to opine on the thermodynamic merit of producing methanol from wood. Ray a very smart dentist living in New Zealand also asked me to opine on this subject. I have told Ajay on several occasions that methanol holds the promise to wean us off of some fraction of our oil consumption. In fact back in 2005 I presented the merits of methanol as a vehicle fuel at the national meeting of the National Hydrogen Association. The honest academics in the audience applauded my conclusions while the dishonest ones who were selling the hype of hydrogen held their applause for my talk only to give a hearty ovation for one Sam Bodman the then Secretary of Energy. Sam handed out hundreds of millions of dollars to academia and industry that very same day at that very same event for research and development of hydrogen fool cells (fuel cells). Sam the Sham is a disgrace to the chemical engineering profession. He holds a PhD in my discipline and sold out the laws of thermodynamics for political gain.

Back to the point of this blog which is the value of methanol. Methanol can be dissociated very simply on board a vehicle with the heat from the exhaust of an engine and in this process of dissociation an extra 19% of useful fuel energy is gained from the otherwise wasted heat exhausted from the engine. Back in 2005 I theorized that a gasoline engine augmented with a small fraction of dissociated methanol will be very efficient and powerful. Nothing I have read or learned in the past five years has dissuaded me from my belief that this dual fuel engine is a far better solution from an efficiency and cost perspective than the plug in battery cars that billions of dollars are being spent on to bring plugins to market. My theoretical engine will use only 5% methanol to augment gasoline allowing the gasoline engine to approach the efficiency of a diesel engine. 5% of our gasoline means we need to produce 450,000 barrels a day of methanol. This is far less than the 750,000 barrels a day of ethanol we already produce by fermentation of corn.
The preferred method to produce methanol is via the steam reformation of natural gas. However it is quite plausible to use wood from fast growing poplar trees as the fuel source for synthesizing methanol. Wood reacted with steam and a little oxygen in a gasifier will yield a synthesis gas that in turn can be synthesized into methanol. By my calculation 2 acres of poplar forest will yield 500 gallons of methanol a year. Unlike corn ethanol, there is no requirement for supplementary natural gas to perform the synthesis or purification of the methanol. Also unlike corn ethanol, wood derived methanol requires no fertilizer and does not subtract from our food supply. To yield 450,000 barrels a day we need to harvest the yearly output of some 28 million acres of forest or some 44 thousand square miles. This is a forest that is approximately 200 miles by 220 miles that is certainly within the size of the natural forested areas of the US. By my calculation if gasoline cars are methanol assisted in their operation and my disassociation idea is deployed, we would concurrently save over 2 million barrels a day of gasoline due to the improved efficiency of the fleet. A barrel of gasoline emits approximately 800 pounds of carbon dioxide. Reducing gasoline consumption by 2 million barrels a day will reduce carbon dioxide emission by 292 million tons a year.

As an example of the economic value of the reduction of 292 million tons a year of carbon dioxide valued at $20 per ton this yields a yearly value of $6 billion from the saved carbon emissions alone. The savings to consumers of 2 million barrels of gasoline a day at $3 per gallon is worth $92 billion a year. Let’s round these savings to $100 billion a year spent on 450,000 barrels a day of methanol. This equals a value of $14.50 per gallon of methanol. Producing methanol from natural gas yields a cost of about $1 per gallon. There is no doubt we can produce methanol for less than $2 per gallon using wood as the feedstock. The economic value is $14.50 per gallon of methanol so let’s have the US government support this thermodynamically viable idea rather than the junk science $100 billion is now being spent on dead end green ideas. Readers please note I do not have any vested economic interest in methanol or the dual fuel engine idea. I have offered the idea for free to any university or company that is capable of transforming my thought experiment engine into a real engine. My thoughts do obey the laws of thermodynamics and there is not perpetual motion claims in this thought experiment. I am simply theorizing that a gasoline engine can operate at a compression ratio of 16 or 17 to 1 with the assistance of dissociated methanol and achieve a thermal efficiency of 25 or 26% instead of around 15% in the present 10 to 1 compression ratio engines.

Some talented mechanical engineers may be able to convert my thought experiment into a reality. I am about as handy and capable as Woody Allen when it comes to mechanics. Remember Albert Einstein had the thought experiment of E = MC2, he did not have the skills to build an atomic bomb or a nuclear power plant he was just able to conceive the conversion of mass to energy in his mind. I am no Albert Einstein and my thought experiment is no Nobel Prize winning idea, but I promise it does hold water when the laws of thermodynamics are applied and I do believe now as I did in 2005 that methanol should play a role in our energy mix. Talking of Nobel Prizes, a couple of months after my talk at the 2005 National Hydrogen Association meeting a book titled Beyond Oil and Gas The Methanol Economy was published by Prof George Olah of the University of Southern California. Prof Olah is a Nobel Laureate in Chemistry. His book that I had no idea he was writing vindicated my thought experiment and although billions of dollars were being wasted on fool cells and hydrogen by then Secretary of Energy Sam Bodman, I felt reassured that I had presented the best idea at that meeting. Prof Olah has provided me an autographed copy of his book that I cherish. Someday I know some bright mechanical engineers will pick up on the methanol augmented engine and some future day motorist will enjoy the efficiency of the practical adaption of my thought experiment.

Sam the Sham will be remembered together with Hank the Yank as being cabinet members in perhaps the most incompetent administration since James Buchanan. Our Union was fortunate that Lincoln followed Buchanan, unfortunately Obama and his Secretary of Energy Steven Chu have the same thermodynamic sincerity as the incompetent incumbents they replaced. Secretary Chu won a Nobel Prize in low temperature physics yet he too is funding junk science projects based on the pork that permeates politics especially in a reelection year. I have no doubt that Secretary Chu is one very smart person with the knowledge and competence to tell the President that most of the projects being funded will not yield “energy independence”. It is time for him to do this!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Oxy Morons Get More Moronic

Now that I blogged on the dumbness of the project to fire coal with oxygen the truth is leaking out about this porky pig. The DOE did not include the cost of the 175 mile pipeline from Meredosia to Mattoon that is needed to transport the 1.3 million tons a year of carbon dioxide from the power plant to the site that is suited for the geological sequestration of the greenhouse gas. The county (Coles County) that sits atop the sequestration site in Mattoon is miffed with the DOE for not funding the full Futuregen 1 project and has now told the DOE they can park their gas somewhere else. I find it quite funny that Coles County is all about Clean Coal and now they want to be Clean Coles. There is more pork in Illinois than most other states in the union. Yeah Illinois has lots of hog farms and lots of politicians like Blogo the convicted felon Hogo.

I have copied a couple of news articles on Futuregen 2.0

Mattoon rejects FutureGen 2.0
Updated: Wednesday, 11 Aug 2010, 6:27 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 11 Aug 2010, 3:11 PM EDT

COLES COUNTY, Ill. (WTHI) - News 10 has learned that Coles County, Illinois has rejected the FutureGen 2.0 project.

In a statement released by Angela Griffin, the President of Coles Together, she announced that Coles County will reject the FutureGen 2.0 project. Here is the statement that was released:

It is with great disappointment that I must inform you that the citizens, neighbors near the site, business leaders, and community leaders in Coles County are nearly unanimous in the belief that the pursuit of FutureGen 2.0, as proposed, is not in our best interest.

We take this position with deep regret, but after thoughtful consideration.

Unfortunately, the revised $1.2 billion project does not provide for the highest and best use of a Mattoon site that top scientists, researchers and engineers have determined to be the best location in the nation for a clean coal facility and on-site carbon capture and sequestration research.

While I have nothing but the highest level of regard for the time and effort that you and the FutureGen Alliance expended to make this project viable, our challenges with FutureGen 2.0, as proposed by the Department of Energy, are too big to overcome.

I want to emphasize that the concept of carbon capture and sequestration has nothing whatsoever to do with the reasons we have chosen not to pursue what is known as FutureGen 2.0.

As a citizenry, we embraced that technology and believe it to be a safe and practical approach to removing CO2 from the atmosphere.

The simple fact remains that we agreed to host what was presented as the world’s first near-zero emissions research and demonstration facility – the latest in power generation technology paired with underground storage for the facility’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Hosting the original FutureGen was something this community embraced with great pride. Ours would be a distinct and honorable mission in an emerging scientific field.
Mattoon was to be a focal point for smart, forward-looking solutions in a carbon constrained world.

Unfortunately, our role in FutureGen 2.0 does not support that effort. If FutureGen 2.0 moves ahead with the revised structure described today, it must be without Coles County.

Meanwhile, we will explore opportunities that better serve our citizens and make a bigger contribution to the global effort to develop new technologies and sciences.

News 10 will keep you up to date on the latest as this story develops."

Here is the DOE announcement on the Futuregen 2.0 project

August 5, 2010
Secretary Chu Announces FutureGen 2.0
Awards $1 Billion in Recovery Act Funding for Carbon Capture and Storage Network in Illinois
Washington, D.C. - Today, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin announced the awarding of $1 billion in Recovery Act funding to the FutureGen Alliance, Ameren Energy Resources, Babcock & Wilcox, and Air Liquide Process & Costruction, Inc. to build FutureGen 2.0, a clean coal repowering program and carbon dioxide (CO2) storage network. The project partners estimate the program will bring 900 jobs to downstate Illinois and another 1,000 to suppliers across the state.
"Today's announcement will help ensure the US remains competitive in a carbon constrained economy, creating jobs while reducing greenhouse gas pollution," said Secretary Chu. "This investment in the world's first, commercial-scale, oxy-combustion power plant will help to open up the over $300 billion market for coal unit repowering and position the country as a leader in an important part of the global clean energy economy."
"As with the original FutureGen, Mattoon and the state of Illinois are positioned as leaders in innovative technology that can serve as a model for the nation," said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin. "The new project stays true to the original goal of dramatically reducing pollution and providing thousands of good paying jobs in our state."
With the funds announced today, the partner recipients will repower Ameren's 200 megawatt Unit 4 in Meredosia, Illinois with advanced oxy-combustion technology. The plant's new boiler, air separation unit, CO2 purification and compression unit will deliver 90 percent CO2 capture and eliminate most SOx, NOx, mercury, and particulate emissions. Ameren Energy Resources estimates that the retrofitting of the plant is expected to create approximately 500 construction jobs and allow Ameren to recall 50 permanent workers who were laid off last year.
This project will also provide performance and emissions data for future commercial guarantees, and establish operating and maintenance experience for future large-scale commercial projects. The FutureGen Alliance will help design the test program for the new facility to incorporate a broad range of coals and operating conditions to expand the market for this repowering approach.
In addition, the project partners, working with the State of Illinois, will establish a regional CO2 storage site in Mattoon, Illinois and a CO2 pipeline network from Meredosia to Mattoon that will transport and store more than 1 million tons of captured CO2 per year. The project partners estimate the new pipeline network is expected to create 275 contruction jobs and 75 permanent jobs. The pipeline network, along with the repository in Mattoon, helps to lay the foundation for a regional CO2 network. The Mattoon site will be used to conduct research on site characterization, injection and storage, and monitoring and measurement.
Oxy-combustion burns coal with a mixture of oxygen and CO2 instead of air to produce a concentrated CO2 stream for safe, permanent, storage. In addition, oxy-combustion technology creates a near-zero emissions plant by eliminating almost all of the mercury, SOx, NOx, and particulate pollutants from plant emissions. The Department of Energy's National Energy Technology Laboratory studies have identified oxy-combustion as potentially the least cost approach to clean-up existing coal-fired facilities and capture CO2 for geologic storage.
FutureGen 2.0 stays true to the original spirit of the FutureGen project by advancing technology that can make the United States a world leader in carbon capture and storage. Secretary Chu and Senator Durbin intend to visit the Illinois sites for this project in the coming weeks.
Media contact(s):
(202) 586-4940

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Oxy Morons and Oxy Combustion

Another boondoggle is coming our way courtesy of our government and the clean coal business coalition. These clean coal proponents have finally abandoned the four billion dollar boondoggle in Mattoon Illinois to gasify coal and then burn the gas in a combined cycle turbine to generate electricity. Their original idea that is finally kaput was called “Futuregen”. Yes our department of entropy finally killed that dog of a project. But like a worm with its head cut off the clean coal crowd has made a comeback for a one billion dollar even dumber project. This scaled back Futergen 2 clean coal project will build a 200 megawatt power generation station to burn coal with oxygen instead of air.

The sponsors of the project that the DOE will fund are the following companies: Ameren Energy Resources Company LLC; Babcock Wilcox Company; and Air Liquide. I am very familiar with the latter two companies. Babcock and Wilcox designed and built the famous Three Mile Island nuclear power station near Harrisburg Pennsylvania that came as close to making Philadelphia into a fried chicken center as did Chernobyl ruin Kiev. I was the VP of Strategic Planning for Air Liquide in Paris France back in 1987 and my knick name for them is Leaky Air. I do not know anything about Ameren Resources so I will not opine on the company except to say that they are the third musketeer who dreamed up the scheme called “oxy fired coal power with permanent carbon capture and storage”. The proposed "clean coal" project is an oxymoron with us being the morons that are paying for it.

I copied the following from Babcock Wilcox’s web site:

CHARLOTTE, August 5, 2010
Ameren Energy Resources Company, LLC (AER) - the holding company for merchant generation for Ameren Corporation (NYSE: AEE); The Babcock & Wilcox Company (B&W) (NYSE:BWC); and Air Liquide Process & Construction, Inc. (Air Liquide), have been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) clean coal power program to negotiate the installation of the world's first full-scale oxy-coal-fired power plant that includes permanent carbon dioxide (CO2) capture and storage (CCS).
Proposed funding for the project - known as FutureGen 2.0 - would supplement the construction and operating costs of a 200-megawatt, near-zero emissions generating facility to be located at Ameren's Meredosia Plant near Jacksonville, Ill.
The project is designed to produce clean energy from coal by capturing and storing approximately 1.3 million tons of CO2 each year, or 90 percent of the plant's carbon dioxide emissions.
If the project is accepted and regulatory approvals are received, the next steps would be the negotiation of a cooperative agreement with DOE, followed by a six-month initial design process and analysis of costs. Construction is expected to begin in 2012 with a targeted completion date in the third quarter 2015. Construction of this new facility and its related components is expected to bring 900 temporary and permanent jobs to the Central Illinois area.
The AER plant would use an innovative oxy-coal carbon capture technology developed by B&W in collaboration with Air Liquide. The oxy-coal combustion process uses oxygen instead of air during combustion, producing flue gas composed of nearly pure CO2, which is suitable for compression and storage. B&W and Air Liquide have successfully pilot-tested oxy-coal combustion at B&W's research facility in Alliance, Ohio, supported by Air Liquide's technology developments at its R&D facility in Newark, Delaware.
"We've teamed up with B&W and Air Liquide on this important project for a number of reasons," said Charles Naslund, president and chief executive officer of AER. "B&W's oxy-coal combustion system, when coupled with Air Liquide's ASU and CO2purification and compression technologies, can reduce a plant's carbon dioxide and other air emissions to near-zero levels."
"This project is a major step forward for America's clean energy future, and AER is an ideal project partner," said B&W Chief Executive Officer Brandon Bethards. "Their commitment to the implementation of clean energy technologies and the production of low-cost power for their customers utilizing coal generation makes this an excellent opportunity for us."
"Air Liquide is at the forefront of oxy-combustion technology, helping to make clean energy a reality," said Chris Lloyd-Jones, chairman and CEO of Air Liquide Process and Construction, Inc. "We are proud to be working with the DOE, Ameren and B&W on this critical step toward viable clean energy solutions for the United States"
B&W, AER and Air Liquide agree that support from the DOE program is critical to the success of the proposed repowering project."

Ok so we have 90% reduction in the carbon dioxide from the 200 megawatt station. The station will cost one billion dollars. Now let’s calculate how much power the station will generate net of the power consumed by the air separation facility to produce the oxygen. I estimate the station will consume 4,000 tons a day of oxygen. To produce a ton of oxygen gas requires approximately 300 kilowatt hours so each day the oxygen production system will siphon off 1.2 million kilowatt hours. Converting the 200 megawatts of gross generation to kilowatt hours per day we arrive at 4.8 million kilowatt hours generated per day. Therefore one quarter of the power of the generation station is lost to the oxygen production. I estimate the compression energy to store the carbon dioxide at another 5% of the power generated by the station. This results in a total loss of 30% of the energy dropping the capacity of the station from 200 megawatts to 140 megawatts to store 90% of the carbon dioxide with an investment of a billion dollars.

The utility can build a 140 megawatt natural gas fired generation station for about $110 million. This station will emit 717 pounds of carbon dioxide for each megawatt hour generated. In a year operating 350 days at 24 hours a day the 140 megawatt hour natural gas fired station will emit 422 thousand tons of carbon dioxide. The oxymoronic coal fired plant will emit 144 thousand tons a year of carbon dioxide for a net savings of 278,000 tons per year. This cost us the US tax payer an extra 890 million dollars. Let’s pretend the US government is a business and demands a 5 year payout to fund projects. This implies the added investment is amortized at 178 million dollars a year or a rate of 640 dollars per ton of carbon dioxide saved. The proposed market value under Alaric the Second King of the Visigores in his cap and trade (actual crap and tirade) is about $20 a ton of carbon dioxide. Sounds right our government will spend $640 for something that is worth $20 and borrow the extra $620 from the Chinese to fund the shortfall. This idiotic project will prove nothing other than oxygen can combust coal. I knew that in first grade. There will be no learning from the project we already know how to separate air, how to combust coal, and how to compress and store carbon dioxide. For this project to equal the cost of $20 a ton of carbon dioxide, we the tax payers will have to wait 160 years for our payout. That will be forty presidential elections from now. I am old and I am tired of the nonsense out of DC so I will simply vote out the Oxy Morons in our government in the next election.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Fourth Law of Thermodynamics

Some of my readers may feel that I knock the left more than I knock the right when it comes to the promotion of gangrene junk science. Well the right wing is also making hay out of the “soiled greening” of America. Do you all remember a certain Henry Paulson who was GW’s Secretary of the Treasury? Old Henry The Second was the king who presided over the economic bust in 2008 that came about because of his misguided economic policies under George the Second. The question from the green point of view is what is Henry the Second doing in “greentech” that makes him an equal plunderer to Alaric the Second? Old Hank is on the board of advisors of another want to be electric car company. Hank is advising CODA the pretend made in the USA electric car company. The components are essentially Chinese (batteries, drive-train, body etc.) but Hank the Yank has helped CODA secure Obama’s recovery funds by performing the final assembly steps in the Ignited States. Yeah hundred of million of dollars of recovery act money will go to CODA. CODA has a 34 kilowatt hour battery pack that will propel the Yugo like vehicle 100 miles. CODA at least has cost accountants who can keep track of debits and credits and will charge over forty thousand dollars for their Balkan Beauty. Unlike the lefties who are helping Fisker get their hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars, CODA will only loose $10,000 a vehicle while Fisker will loose four times as much per vehicle.

The folks at Tesla who are also royalty living the life of luxury on your tax dollars and are now named Charlatan the Second have to eat some major crow and change their claims of range on their website. The Silicon Valley Business Journal reported today that the EPA will require Tesla to recalculate their range for the Roadster and reduce the claim by at least 30%. I quote from the SV Business Journal

“Tesla said in its quarterly filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday that there is no guarantee that the Model S will not be delayed due to production or engineering issues. Some who have placed pre-orders may cancel, as well, it warned.
Further complicating matters is an expected reduction on what it advertises as the expected mileage of the Roadster. Tesla said that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is expected to cut the Roadster's estimated 220-mile driving range by about 30 percent after new testing.”

The two seater Roadster gets a paltry 154 miles per full charge and it costs Tesla $300,000 to produce but they will soon offer us the S sedan that seats seven, has a larger mass, has a range of 300 miles and they will be able to sell this car for about $50,000 and make a profit to pay the good old US tax payer the half billion dollars they will borrow from us as part of our economic recovery. The word Charlatan is a French word for a snake-oil salesman. If only Tesla had some fossil fuel based snake oil it may have had a roadster with a range of 220 miles. In the seventeenth century the Charlatans of Paris had a stage and music to promote their quackery. Tesla has the internet, television, and an ex Vice President to promote the “convenient untruth” of a technological breakthrough of plug in vehicles. The suckers assembled in Place Dauphin in Paris 500 years ago that were taken in by the pseudoscience of their day did not have the knowledge of the second law of thermodynamics. Carnot published his paper on “the reflections of the motive power of fire” in 1824. We should now know that the laws of thermodynamics are inviolable. The third law of thermodynamics states that “as temperature approaches absolute zero entropy approaches a constant minimum.” I propose a fourth law of thermodynamics that states “there is Gibbs Free Energy but there is no Gore Free Energy and any claims of the existence of an Automotive Free Energy will result in your investment in a company making such a claim approach absolute zero”. One reader told me the British car that runs on human waste should be called the “Mini Pooper”. The CODA has the order of their letters mixed up. It should be the CDOA that stands for Certainly Dead On Arrival.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

A One given the ten count

I predicted that A123 (AONE NASDAQ) was destined to flop. Many of my readers chastised me for being too negative on advanced batteries. Well if you were a shareholder who bought AONE stock soon after their IPO last year at $28 a share you should have followed my advice that AONE was a short circuit and just like a fuse that gets blown your money was certain to get blown investing in their hype. Well last week the belly flop landing of AONE was center stage on Wall Street. Their junk science of lithium ion batteries as an alternate to petroleum is rapidly being exposed by their inability to lower the unit costs of the batteries they sell. In fact if one takes the time as I did to review their unit costs to manufacture a kilowatt hour worth of battery storage one will quickly discover that over the last six quarters AONE has managed to deliver a learning rate that equals 0%. Their unit cost in the second quarter of 2010 is still approximately $1,300 per kilowatt hour of battery storage.
The next set of earning for Tesla Motors (TSLA NASDQ) will prove that they together with AONE are the class dummies that are incapable of any learning. Our moronic government that has a negative learning rate is still pouring money into the tail pipe dream of advanced batteries. We pay taxes and the fools at the department of entropy hand out tens of trillions of pennies to the junk science folks simply because the President and Congressional Leaders never studied thermodynamics and still believe hope is a winning strategy. Hope is not going to overturn the second law of thermodynamics it will simply waste precious time for us to become a nation of energy savers. The economic crisis forced us to become a nation of economic savers. Now the ecological crisis should correspondingly force us to become a nation of ecologic savers. Come on Americans start carpooling and don’t believe in the Leaf or the Tesla they are thermodynamic mirages that will be blown away by the slightest wind. If we carpool twice a week with three people in the carpool we will each save a bunch of gasoline. Let’s calculate this amount of gasoline savings. Three in a car means two cars off the road, and this equals 140 million cars off the road for two days a week. That is 560 million gallon of gasoline saved a week. Now we are talking real and immediate savings that do not require any technical breakthrough. It just requires the willingness on our part to save and not waste and to become just a little more ecological.

AONE started last week with a stock price of$10.50 and ended the week at $7.63. The market has realized that AONE is a Betamax and that their costs are not dropping. The market is waking up to the fact that they have no value proposition. Talking about super hypers, old Raser (RZ NYSE) the wealth eraser that made claims of having invented the 100 mpg Hummer that the Governator and Senator Hatch drove and proclaimed to be the future of motoring hit a nice low of 30 cents a share this week. Had my readers followed my advice that Raser was pure junk they too could have avoided the loss of value of their investment. 100 mpg Hummers and low price lithium batteries are not plausible so let’s wake up and smell the roses. The real sweet smelling ecological rose is cruising in the HOV lane with three in a Jetta TDI while the fools with a negative learning rate are stuck in bumper to bumper traffic in their lone driver SUV.

Friday, August 6, 2010

British Engineers Develop Feces-Powered Car

This new British car blows the opposition away - it's powered by human poo.

This article below is from Fox News. I could not resist to show it to you all. Of course it is p[ossible to get enough methane gas from the sewage of 70 homes to propel a car 10,000 miles a year. Just goes to show how much we eat and excrete. In fact the Bristol England based firm has a better car than the Teslacle by a mile. Perhaps we should convince the local sewage treatment plants in all of our cities to recover methane and compress it into the town gas gas system.

Folks are getting so fat that they now have enough fuel to self sustain cremation after their death. I will blog next week on how this is possible and how if we did some national liposuction we could propel our cars further than our poop for a day will take us. BP has sealed the well and I give my thanks to all the folks who worked long and hard hours to accomplish this difficult task. The estimate of the civil fine due to the US government for the oil blown out into the gulf is $17 billion. It will be interesting to see if the British Government asks the US government to forgo the fine as the Pommies are really scared that the fine could send BP into insolvency. Perhaps the US government should just take a stock ownership position in BP in lieu of the fine and then the name of the company will change to USP for Un Spilled Petroleum.

Here is the article from Fox News

The Bio-Bug has been converted by UK engineers to run on methane gas.

Excrement flushed down the loos (toilets) of just 70 homes is enough to drive it 10,000 miles - a year's average motoring.

The two-litre VW Beetle convertible is said to be the first gas-powered car that does not suffer reduced performance.

Mohammed Saddiq of Bristol-based sustainable energy firm GENeco, which developed the prototype, says it will pave the way for a green motoring revolution.

He boasts that it drives like a conventional car and will "blow away" electric models.

Click here to continue reading at The Sun