Nice to happen to catch a part of a new green energy episode of the program "California Connected", dealing with our "energy future"(check it out interactively online here and here.
There was the host of the program, talking about renewable energy, standing in front of a field of huge windmills, majestic, quixotic looking to me. "But, oh my god, they're such a scar on the landscape," some people might say. Although they are not our silver bullet, energy answer, they definitely are a beautiful option when comparing aesthetics between those wind machines and coal plants or the tar sands of Canada. Wind and solar need to at least to play as big a part as we can give them. A professor talks about the psychology of "clean" energy with the following example from Japan that would be awesome to see here in the U.S., where so many are looking to impress thy neighbor:
"It’s become such a status symbol in Japan to have solar panels on your roof… that there is a company in Japan that sells fake solar panels so that you can put them on your roof and pretend to your neighbors that you have solar panels on your roof."
This particular episode of cali connected discusses the problem with hydrogen: it takes a lot of energy to produce it! And if we produce it with coal or gas electricity plants, we're just trading in car pollution for electricity plant pollution. Also, consider you, solarDweller, that about 70% of our air pollution/emissions problem comes from electricity use and power plant production, while only 30% comes from cars. So hydrogen cars would only tackle 30% of the problem. We need clean options first for electricity, like using solar and wind to produce hydrogen, as is outlined in the T.V. program noted above.
If you want a chance to see a replay in the next few days, it will be on kqed 9 in San Francisco Sunday, Feb 19th at 4:30p.m; KCSM in San Mateo Sunday, Feb 19th at 7:30am; and KTEH 54 in San Jose on Saturday, Feb 18th at 1:00am (gotta record that one) and at 5:30pm, or check out program listings here
Happy viewing, and keep looking roofward,