Friday, October 8, 2010

Energy & Emissions Latest Updates - Justmeans

Getting Real About Depleted Uranium & Sustainable Business - Jim Hickey


For most people, the word 'accessory' brings to mind nice hand bags or belts. However, the word also has legal significance, as in 'accessories' to criminal activity. Many of my posts here have contained, at least as background material, the likely criminal nature of the imperial actions of the United States Government. Other essays have engaged such topicality directly or manifested it as part of the primary story.

Today, folks will need to think about what the meaning is of being accessories to murder. Of course, the nostrum, "all's fair in love and war" provides some comfort for those who don't like to think about such things, but the Geneva Convention and several hangings in the aftermath of WWII would suggest that such protestation only works so long as the demurral follows on the heels of victory.

Thus, if the U.S. government is participating in criminal activity, then citizens could be accessories before the fact or accessories after the fact. The former is a more serious charge, but in the case of murder, any involvement is, by definition, deadly serious.

An accessory before the fact helps to plan and facilitate a murder. Very few of us would be guilty of this charge. Only those who actually developed the homicidal plan and helped to put it into action would be suspects in this regard.

An accessory after the fact is one who helps to hide or otherwise harbor the killer. Or it may be one who has a duty to reveal or apprehend the murderer but who instead merely continues to proceed with business as usual. One might make a very potent indictmentt that, morally if not legally--the technicalities of international law almost never apply to citizens in such cases--most or even all Americans who do not actively resist murderous policies are accessories after the fact.

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The Village of Tocco Makes Big Bucks with Wind Energy - Richard Cooke

With nations like Denmark and Germany declaring that they are aiming for 100% renewable energy, it is easy to think that the renewable energy bug is spreading through Europe like wildfire. Unfortunately, that is hardly the case as some countries take steps forward but still deal primarily in fossil fuels. Italy, despite some advancement on some renewable energy fronts, has been a bit behind compared to some of their European comrades. However, with each small step made could be the next big spark for green energy.

The small Italian village of Tocco da Casauria has been in the news recently as the shining example of how renewable energy has been taking hold in the Italian countryside. Located in the mountains on the eastern side of the Italian boot and situated about in the middle, Tocco is fairly small with a population barely peaking above 2,800 people and a history that stretches all the way back to the Roman Empire. However, where aqueducts may have been the latest technological marvel then, the four windmills powering the entire village are the talk of the town today.

The decision to convert to renewable energy was made by Tocco as a way of adapting to the growing prices of electricity throughout the nation.

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A Renewable Energy Walk in the Woods - Jim Hickey


Narratives rule the work that I do about renewable energy, for obvious reasons. When I find myself in the position of beginning an article, therefore, I can only think in terms of finding the underlying elements of a story thread so as to orient readers to the particulars of a sequence of events. In relation to today's posting, I would encourage readers to reflect on several points that I have developed before:
  • The importance of the South in comprehending key social aspects of many issues;
  • The avoidance of the primary function of class relations in explaining social and technical matters, whether as policy or as phenomena;
  • The unavoidable shadow of color prejudice in events touching on the intersection of Southern, national, and technical situations;
  • The central role of capacity in activating community-led policy;
  • The important but necessarily limited part that media and culture can play in progressive transformation;
  • And other references as they appear below.
Whatever storytelling devices seem apropos in a given context, at times, my own movement through the 'territories' of the text is so odd, or contains so many apparently disparate elements, that I can only rely on serendipity to achieve a sense of coherence. While at times my own skills, or lack thereof, make the difference between a successful effort and one that crashes in flames, at other times the pathway among the events that transpire is as easy and clear as a bright ribbon of river viewed through the crystal firmament of Fall.

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Geothermal Power Could Change Energy and Emissions Landscape in West Virginia - Nick Engelfried

If there's one US state that has come to symbolize dependence on dirty energy, and the emissions and other side effects of fossil fuels, that state would probably be West Virginia. Located in the heart of Appalachia, West Virginia is ground zero in the debate over mountaintop removal coal mining—a practice that involves literally blasting away mountaintops to get at buried coal seams. Almost all West Virginia's electricity comes from coal-fired power plants, of which there are more than forty in the state. Few other regions can claim such a close and destructive relationship to the coal industry as this.

It's therefore both ironic and encouraging that a report funded by Google has revealed West Virginia to be surprisingly rich in an untapped renewable resource: geothermal power. According to the report, West Virginia may have more geothermal potential than any other state in the eastern US. If utilized to their full extent, the state's geothermal energy resources could supply more electricity than West Virginia's current yearly energy demand, completely displacing coal energy and emissions.

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