I try to make a difference in many ways and this entry is one of those times. It seems perfectly logical and common sense to include sources of energy that are reasonably inexpensive to set up and maintain and that produce energy that is constantly renewable. Fossil fuels have their place and most of the world understands that as presently in the gasoline or diesel tanks of vehicles. However, the energy sources I am talking about could drive the factories, the hospitals, the power plants, the lights of the cities, [an absolutely mind-boggling expenditure for most large cities] –in fact, all uses of energy except perhaps vehicles which need liquid, combustible fuels at present. Even that could change if the suggestions I have could be adapted to vehicles and why not? Fossil fuels are great but they take milleniums to replace as they depend upon thousands of years of compression under the weight of the earth to turn into what is essentially degraded waste from the earth slush=oil which then is broken down into kerosene, gasoline, and diesel.
These suggestions are not new since they remind this nation of what has worked in previous generations and fairly well. For the sake of expediency I will list them with brief pointers about why I think they will provide good if not excellent sources of energy, at reasonable if not cheap prices, and will continue to do that for centuries.
1) Windmills work! The plains of America have thousands or millions of acres of land where windmills could sit and turn their blades with the wind, [almost always present at varying degrees of velocity] that is connected to a drive-train that turns the rotors of the same equipment that power plants now use to generate electricity-turbines. Windmills are fairly inexpensive and entire nations in the EU use them readily, and there is much expertise about them. Every family could have their own sitting in the back yard, producing more than enough electricity for their homes, and outlying buildings including milking machines, [for farms] and maybe even the big John Deere tractor that many farmers have [or the International Harvestor tractor], or garages for ‘city slickers’ as my daddy would have called them.
2) “Cow patties” dried, then burned in a furnace to generate warmth and heat for appliances. This is as old as The Bible’s Old Testament where GOD told the humans to do that to build a fire to cook on. How many cows does the heartland have? Where do the famous Omaha steaks come from? COWS. They are prevalent in many states as the sources of products that Americans consume by the millions: milk, steaks, beef, [in many ways: hamburgers, sausages, shepherd’s pie, etc] and it would not have to be limited to “cow patties” but could include all the animals that GOD said in Leviticus that we could eat the animal itself,[ sheep, oxen, see Leviticus 11:3–>going forward] , so therefore why not the utilize the waste, dried and burned to generate heat for homes, and appliances by burning them in a furnace and transporting the heat from the furnace to the appliances with insulated pipes? To be on the safe side of the health factor [or the disgust factor] use only the waste products from animals GOD considered ‘clean” and not the animals that GOD labled as ‘unclean’ and therefore do not risk any chance of contamination of the energy. The UK recently awarded a grant if I remember correctly to a man there to develop this idea more fully. It is GOD’s original idea but it is an idea whose time has come. Cows and sheep, and mountain goats, all produce waste, and it could all power the cities of the U.S.
3) Creating upside-down ‘funnels” that are permanent structures in places that have flooded or that are likely to flood so they are in place when the rains come, to funnel heavy rains into a reservoir instead of letting them flood the flood-prone areas? And then running water pipe lines the way we run oil pipelines to pipe that excess water to the cities and the counties where water is scarce?
4) Coal, is plenteous in the US from what I have read. It drove trains, heated homes, provided heated stoves and also produced electricity for generations! Why is it not popular now? Messy? Is that a good reason? Is there any endeavour in life that is lots of fun or that produces life-changing events that is not messy? Think of birthing babies, one of the events that absolutely define women as women and yet it is a very messy, with blood and amniotic fluid event. Think of artist’s painting–messy with oils, pigments, turpentine, brush cleaning solvents. Think of cross-country skiiing–snow, with ‘yellow snow’ mixed in, and dirt, and tree branches, etc. Think of water-skiing in the local lake or reservoir–the water itself is not from a Brita filter, and there is the exhaust from the motor engines, into the water, and the fish and the other water life wastes in the water, all messy and disturbing to finicky people.
5) Burning those mountains of waste products that cities generally transport via huge trucks to the suburbs on the edge of town and piping the heat into the city’s buildings. [Practical in winter as back up emergency plan but easy if the city already has an incinerator].
6) Sunlight provides warmth naturally. Why not have solar panels on every new home built and remodeled as the standard building code? I have thought for years it was because those in the US Congress have not figured out a way to tax the sunlight or consumption of it, in order to pad their pockets with the ‘kickbacks’ and “dividends’ of their insider-trading.
7) Harness the power of the rivers, by allowing them to power the boats much as they did for centuries and by replicating what the big dams like the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Colorado river and the Mississippi and the Missouri to turn those turbines and produce and pump energy to every city.
I am thinking on this still since it is much in the news but I am sure that GOD’s word in the Bible is trustworthy and that it is safe to utilize GOD’s methods.
signed gloria poole, RN and artist