Category Archives: Energy


Green Blogs of New York writes today – In Ontario, a government task force recently suggested that the provincial government probably overestimated the number of jobs that its aggressive Green Energy Act would create — in large part because it didn’t factor in increases in electricity costs, which would stymie production and business expansion and in turn tend to mute job creation.

Still, the squishiness of job numbers aside, not all projects are alike, and coal power plants are an inarguably dirty business involving all manner of harmful emissions like sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide, mercury and planet-warming carbon dioxide. They are also linked to thousands of deaths annually,according to at least one estimate.

As the Ochs Center report notes, 11 new coal plants representing 6,682 megawatts of generating capacity began operating in 2010 — the largest single uptick in coal power capacity in a generation.

But the economics of adding new coal power capacity in the United States has become increasingly difficult to pencil out, given rising prices, greater scrutiny of the health, climate and other environmental hazards attending coal power, and the emergence of a medley of alternatives working together — chiefly wind and solar, balanced out by newly available natural gas.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.31.11~

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Posted by horiwood on March 31, 2011 in Energy



As electricity prices get set to soar in a land far far away, the question must be asked from Hollywood today, has Meridian Energy been audited of late?

This company belongs to the New Zealand people, after all. Mostly.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.29.11~



New Zealand’s opposition leader of the nation’s Labor Party, Mr Phill Goff not only had to deal with a gay sex scandal of a Jr. politican who had to resign, but he also said his members of Parliament had talked about the sale of state assets by John Key‘s government and the impact it would have on electricity prices, as well as the Christchurch recovery, which he said the Government was using as an excuse to make changes such as cuts to Working for Families.”

Kiwis don’t like selling off national assets at all (because politicians do come and go) when assets go what’s left for future generations? Eroding community programs is also viewed as an erosion of cultural strength too at the grass roots.

There’s a lot going on in New Zealand. Rebuilding is definitely robust opposition terrain to flex some weight behind such issues. For sure. The whole nation’s heart is with Christchurch City though, the people are awesome.

In any event, there’s a royal wedding to attend for the nation’s PM, so Mr Goff needs an introduction about now as the caretaker leader during the upcoming days where the world will celebrate Will and Kate‘s special day in London.

Phil has been one of the nation’s longest serving politicians. Always thoughtful and purposeful. Most of all patient is how I remember him when I was in high school. Just kidding, he’s not that old! Blimey.

The climate these MP’s are in is leading ‘Facebook culture environments of peeps,’ where work gets in the way of Facebooking (darn it!) like this story perhaps shows, More than half see work as a big yawn.

Who are the new neighbors in New Zealand who’ve snapped up the state assets? What asset territories/ companies were sold off and what nations are the buyers from? New neighbors are always fun if we take a chipper view of these harrowing facts of sold assets. All these questions… and so little Facebook time too in a day. What will Kiwis do? :)

The Rugby World Cup is ahead in the upcoming months. Exciting stuff to plan and prepare for in anticipation or a major sporting event on the planet. Go New Zealand! It’s a party in Kiwi-land soon.

What about Sir Peter Blake‘s son, doing extra mural university papers and being on college campus when he can be and standing as an MP (no disrespect meant to the other candidates). Perhaps he could motivate the student pack in Dunedin as a good young leader? And generate some exciting culture in Dunedin that would benefit Canterbury youth as well? Why not! Give this student town something to Facebook about. Or, why doesn’t Dunedin (or Canterbury) create its own Facebook all Kiwis can use.

So many exciting possibilities ahead for Dunedin. Kara whiua!

[Photo caption - Labor Party leader Phil Goff emerges from a meeting with his front bench at Otago University in Dunedin today - NZPA].

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.28.11~



Writes Earth Hour’s website: “At 8:30 PM on Saturday 26th March 2011, lights will switch off around the globe for Earth Hour and people will commit to actions that go beyond the hour.

With Earth Hour almost upon us, our thoughts are with the people of Japan during this incredibly challenging and sad time for their country.


~Posted as a PSA by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.25.11~

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Posted by horiwood on March 25, 2011 in Energy



On a global stage, at this minute writing from Hollywood I have to say, China is…well smoking on some matters.

I must also ask the question Is nuclear power plants good for people? nations? Or a bit risque to even go there developing any more?

[Photo caption - Xu Yuanhui of Chinergy with one of the "pebbles," or fuel elements that power the reactor.]

SHIDAO, China — While engineers at Japan’s stricken nuclear power plant struggle to keep its uranium fuel rods from melting down, engineers in China are building a radically different type of reactor that some experts say offers a safer nuclear alternative.

The technology will be used in two reactors here on a peninsula jutting into the Yellow Sea, where the Chinese government is expected to let construction proceed even as the world debates the wisdom of nuclear power.

Rather than using conventional fuel rod assemblies of the sort leaking radiation in Japan, each packed with nearly 400 pounds of uranium, the Chinese reactors will use hundreds of thousands of billiard-ball-size fuel elements, each cloaked in its own protective layer of graphite.

The coating moderates the pace of nuclear reactions and is meant to ensure that if the plant had to be shut down in an emergency, the reaction would slowly stop on its own and not lead to a meltdown.”

Does China have a point with nuclear energy? Or are they trying to perfect something that’s already been proven not to be smart if anything major goes wrong as Japan proves?

Anyway for the full story of China’s stance on nuclear energy via Keith Bradsher go here.

Alright I’m still getting used to the reality that Confucius is now wearing a white lab scientist’s lab coat and is espousing this ‘wisdom’. I wonder if Confucius can talk to Iran and North Korea and ensure their nuclear energy programs are coated in the same ‘people safe’ ‘planet smart’ (not!) pebbles. It’s like … give us a break! Don’t even go there!

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.24.11~

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Posted by horiwood on March 25, 2011 in China, Energy



From the Washington Post we learn that General Motors has laid of American workers in Buffalo. Workers at a General Motors engine-manufacturing facility in N.Y., learned that they would be laid off temporarily as the shortage of Japanese-made parts roils the U.S. auto industry.

In Rockville, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission opened hearings on the safety of the country’s 104 nuclear reactors, many of them long in the tooth and now undergoing a critical reexamination.

And in Richmond, a family mourned. The U.S. Embassy in Japan informed the parents of Taylor Anderson, a 24-year-old American who had been teaching at a school in Japan, that her body had been identified in tsunami-battered Miyagi prefecture. Anderson reportedly helped parents pick up their children after the earthquake before she rode her bicycle home.

“Fittingly, she was last seen helping parents safely reunite with their children following the earthquake, an act which illustrates her dedication to her students and to the Japanese people she served,” Virginia Gov.Robert F. Mc Don nell (R) said.

Japan’s impacts are hitting America on many levels. The stock market however has surged the last three days. Taylor Anderson obviously was a very school teacher.

This satellite image of the Fukushima Daiichi power plant in Japan shows damage to the reactor building for units 1, 3 and 4. And a Radex scan shows radiation levels are toxic too.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.21.11~



Nathanael Miller, a Petty Officer First Class The United States Navy’s photograph of destroyer Barry fired Tomahawk missiles from the Mediterranean Sea on Saturday. The photograph was taken through night-vision lenses.

Today in Hollywood rain pours day. The super moon we couldn’t even see due to the cloud cover. Last night Operation Ellamy/ Odyssey moved in on Libya. Today in the cafe, married couples descend. They are unusually quiet. Husbands hold the front page of newspapers in their hands while waiting for their coffees. Wives hold onto their arm as they read the news in silence.

Their eyes catch the story ‘Obama enters the war quietly.’ A perplexed look enters their eyes, then acceptance as they read on. It is very sobering to see Americans adjusting to these changing times. Good people.

Here’s one cover we’re looking at today via the New York Times. Japan moves from crises to approaching a familiar crossroads is one story. Hopeful Egypt votes on Shape Of Its Future. And ‘the big one’ Allies Open Air Assault On Quaddafi’s Forces. The latter story goes like this:

TRIPOLI, Libya — American and European forces began a broad campaign of strikes against the government of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi on Saturday, unleashing warplanes and missiles in a military intervention on a scale not seen in the Arab world since the Iraq war.

The mission to impose a United Nations-sanctioned no-fly zone and keep Colonel Qaddafi from using air power against beleaguered rebel forces was portrayed by Pentagon and NATOofficials as under French and British leadership.

But the Pentagon said that American forces were mounting an initial campaign to knock out Libya’s air defense systems, firing volley after volley of Tomahawk missiles from nearby ships against missile, radar and communications centers around Tripoli, the capital, and the western cities of Misurata and Surt.”

This story was worked on by DAVID D. KIRKPATRICKSTEVEN ERLANGER and ELISABETH BUMILLER. Stone jewelry, Ngai Tahu Maori tribe’s pounamau (jade stone), Christchurch, Otautahi – New Zealand.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.20.11~




[Photograph - remembering Heroes of Chernobyl wall - AP]

Stars of the world today are scientists, corporate leaders and people who promote and utilize and harness green energy in place of fossil fuels addiction and the mirage that nuclear energy is actually smart.

CHERNOBYL, Ukraine — Twelve times a month — the maximum number of shifts the doctors will allow — Sergei A. Krasikov takes a train across the no man’s land and reports for work at a structure enclosing Reactor No. 4 known as “the sarcophagus.”

Among his tasks is to pump out radioactive liquid that has collected inside the burned-out reactor. This happens whenever it rains. The sarcophagus was built 25 years ago in a panic, as radiation streamed into populated areas after an explosion at the reactor, and now it is riddled with cracks.

Water cannot be allowed to touch the thing that is deep inside the reactor: about 200 tons of melted nuclear fuel and debris, which burned through the floor and hardened, in one spot, into the shape of an elephant’s foot. This mass remains so highly radioactive that scientists cannot approach it.”

The New York Times, Ellen Barry brings this story today brings this story on the man responsible for tending the nuclear reactor at Chernobyl that’s still dangerous years after the fact.

Clearly, if scientists can whiz together nuclear reactors and yet not have the antidote cure to fix their damage – aren’t they like an untested experiment, too volatile to have backed in the first place as okay? Or am I over-reacting on this issue? 300 years!

Of nuclear energy gone wrong Citizented shares this of Chernobyls shocking stories:

In her book Voices from Chernobyl, writer Svetlana Alexievich interviews people who fought the Battle of Chernobyl. Nearly all of them died soon after giving their interviews.

Read the rest of this entry »




For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption as a son.”–Paul The Apostle General writer.

When Kevin Costner is not fixing oil slick mishaps, he sometimes gets to make a movie. Warner Bros. is eyeing up bringing back The Bodyguard to cinemas in 2012, but now it’s Costner’s turn to play the role of the mentor to a bodyguard kind of film super hero.

Costner has just signed to play Jonathan Kent in Zack Snyder‘s Superman reboot film franchise series. The role sees Costner as the adoptive dad of Henry Cavill‘s Clark Kent, playing opposite Diane Lane as Martha Kent, Cavill’s adopted mom in this film.

[Photo - Sydney Morning Herald]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.18.11~



Arianna The Aggregating Alligator Huffington brings us these news links sourced from media outlets on Japan’s nuclear crises (thanks). Repairs Begin As Survivors Asked To Relocate For A Year..
IAEA: Race Against Time To Control Nuclear Crisis.. Japan Considers Burying Nuclear Plant.. Record Number Of Aftershocks.. 20,000 Foreigners Plan To Flee Country.. NRC To Review All U.S. Nuclear Plants.. How To Help.. LIVE UPDATES.

Known Cost to Life – 6,900 dead, 10,700 missing. This 9.0 quake now cedes the 1995 earthquake tragedy in Kobe. Sad.

Community Living Impacts. 452,000 are homeless. 343,000 have no electricity. 1 million have no water.

‘Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano admitted that Japan was not prepared for what happened. ”The unprecedented scale of the earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan, frankly speaking, were among many things that happened that had not been anticipated under our disaster management contingency plans. In hindsight, we could have moved a little quicker in assessing the situation and coordinating all that information and provided it faster,” he said.

‘In the disaster zone, tsunami survivors, rescue workers and ordinary people observed a minute of silence Friday at 2:46 p.m. – the moment a week ago when the quake struck. Many were bundled up against the cold. As a siren blared, they lowered their heads and clasped their hands in prayer.’

In Libya News, the UN has ordered a cease fire but Kadafi is still killing people.

I like the approach of these people in this picture, when you read such news going on in Japan and Libya.

Nothing much else will work except what they’re doing. Pray for Japan. Lift them up.

[Photographs - New York Times Front Page Friday 18th March and Pic of Japan's people praying courtesy of Reuters]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.18.11~



At the moment the world has been altered to consider the planet. Last year we had the BP oil leak. This year it is Japan’s nuclear crises post tsunami and quakes. How much more can our planet sustain of stuff we make as people that cannot withstand nature’s own voice? Nature should always be worked with and listened to. Especially in regards to marine life, fish supplies for future generations and what world we’ll leave them.

Any other voices who aren’t considering this are very irrelevant in this quickly shifting world. Here’s what some scientists have already noted in regards to being harsher on nuclear energy and not thinking what it does to the environment and marine life, is remotely cute, cool, or acceptable. I like their thoughts.

Scientist Paul Crutzen‘s work has centered on what would happen if a nuclear winter resulted in the world. Global temperatures would plunge 20° C to 40° C for several months, and remain 2-6° C lower for 1-3 years. Up to 70% of the Earth’s protective stratospheric ozone layer would be destroyed, allowing huge doses of ultraviolet light to reach the surface.

Crutzen explained that this UV light would kill much of the marine life that forms the basis of the food chain, resulting in the collapse many fisheries and the starvation of the people and animals that depend it. The UV light would also blind huge numbers of animals, who would then wander sightlessly and starve. The cold and dust would create widespread crop failures and global famine, killing billions of people who did not die in the nuclear explosions.–Wunderground.Com.

Power plants and factories are major contributors to thermal pollution. This type of pollution can have a number of dramatic effects on the local environment. These are listed as being thermal shock; Oxygen depletion; Forced migration; shorter plant life for marine life organisms–EHow.Com.

Discarded submarine and nuclear waste are already having harmful impacts on the planet–GDRC.Org.

Pagoda Forest, China - Photograph by Fritz Hoffmann, National Geographic – This Month in Photo of the Day: National Geographic Magazine Features – “Gained merit in battle” reads the epitaph of two of the 231 eminent Shaolin monks honored with shrines in the Pagoda Forest. The number of layers in a shrine reflects a monk’s virtue; his bones, and often those of disciples, are buried below. See more photographs from the March 2011 feature story “Battle for the Soul of Kung Fu.”

Pounamu Jade or Greenstone of the Ngai Tahu Maori Iwi.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.15.11~



New York – “Having a nuclear reactor is bit like having a trained elephant,” said Ellen Vancko, the nuclear energy and climate change project manager at the Union of Concerned Scientists, an environmental research group. “When the elephant is trained and well-behaved and does all the tricks, there most likely isn’t going to be a problem. But sometimes elephants have a mind of their own, and nuclear power is particularly unique, in that reactors have a life of their own. When it gets out of control, problems occur.”

As stock markets opened Monday morning, companies tied to the nuclear industry took an early hit. General Electric, which has a partnership with the Japanese firm Hitachi to design new reactors, slid 2.1 percent to start the day and has continued to fall. The company also designed one of the reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi plant that suffered an explosion Saturday.

Uranium companies saw the sharpest declines, with Denison Mines Corp. plummeting 27 percent and Uranium Energy Corp. falling 22 percent.

“A review on reactors in earthquake-prone regions is certainly called for,” said Burton Richter, a Nobel Laureate in Physics and professor emeritus at Stanford University. “If I was doing it, I wouldn’t approve any new ones in earthquake-prone regions until this is fully understood.”

CBS is running a timely story on California’s dependence on nuclear energy. Here’s that story: The U.S. gets about 20 percent of its electricity from nuclear power plants. Most are over 30 years old.

CBS News correspondent John Blackstone reports that the disaster in Japan disaster raises new questions about the safety of two plants in California that were built in earthquake zones.

One nuclear plant raising questions is in San Diego County. Farther up the coast, there’s a plant that sits near several fault lines.

Avila Beach is a laid-back resort town on the central California coast that for more than 25 years has lived next door to a giant: the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant.”

Complete Coverage: Disaster in Japan
Meltdown risk rising at Japanese nuclear plant
Nuclear meltdowns explained

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.15.11~

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Posted by horiwood on March 15, 2011 in Energy, Think Green