Sunday, April 20, 2008

Vulcan Project to Measure Carbon CO2 Footprints Across the American Nation

Project Vulcan is a collaboration between Purdue University, The Department of Energy and NASA to map the extent of the United States' carbon emissions North American Carbon Program (NACP) to quantify North American fossil fuel carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions at space and time scales much finer than has been achieved in the past using GIS maps [vid]. The purpose of Project Vulcan is to aid in quantification of the North American carbon budget, to support inverse estimation of carbon sources and sinks, and to support the demands posed by the launch of the Orbital Carbon Observatory (OCO) scheduled for 2008/2009. Linked is a state-by-state profile of CO2 emissions.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Bush Cites Technology to Curb GHGs

Current Time Magazine does 'Cap and Trade' story.
President George W. Bush yesterday weighed-in on the domestic and international debate to curb greehouse gas [GHG] emissions suggesting new target dates for significant reductions but falling short of the goals being debated in the Congress reports TheWashington Post.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Presidential Politics and Wise County

The Wall Street Journal reported today on Democratic presidential primaries in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Indiana where local jobs and politics are driven, in-part, by the mining of coal. The political balance between cap-and-trade for greenhouse emission limitations and other alternative energy sources was illustrated by the proposed $1.8 billion Dominion Resources coal-fired plant proposed in Wise County, Virginia.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Wise County's Solar Power Tax Exemption Spans More Than A Decade

Wise County's administrator Glen "Skip" Skinner located the solar power property tax exemption that dates back to 1994 as adopted by the then-county board of supervisors. It was reported during the Energy Technology Summit that only 20 of Virginia's 134 counties and cities have such a solar power tax exemption. Good thing too - since Wise County is seeking a solar power panel manufacturer to locate in the Technology Park.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

MIT Energy Conference Similar to Wise

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology held a Saturday Energy Conference in Boston centering on innovation in energy - and quite similar to the Energy Technology Summit held at the University of Virginia's College at Wise recently.

The chief executive of Duke Energy, James Rogers, keynoted the MIT conference and noted that coal is very much a part of the energy grid, that Congress should pursue alternative energy technologies, and plug-in hybrid vehicles should go into production, according to a report from C-Net News. Sound familar?

MIT also annouced at the energy conference that it was forming a partnership with German Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft research group to open the MIT-Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy Systems! Did they announce something like this in Wise? Yah.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Rick Boucher's Cap and Trade Remarks at the 2008 Energy Technology Summit

Boucher's remarks continued on videos 2, 3, 4, and 5.
Boucher's remarks continued on videos 2, 3, 4, and 5. The Congressman was introduced by Melanie B. Salyer, a Lead Virginia scholar and Wise County Deputy Clerk of Circuit Court.

Space-Based Solar Power Presentation by Lt. Col. Paul E. Damphousse, USMC

Lt. Col. Damphousse's presentation continues [intro at 7:30 mins. into vid 5 by NASA DEVELOP Scholar Jacob Atkins] to Energy Technology Summit videos 7, 8 9, and 10. Linked HERE is a simulation of an operational space-based power plant infrastructure. Expect tests on the International Space Station in the near-term.

State Senator Chap Petersen Talks Virginia Clean Energy Future Act

State Senator Chapman J. Petersen (D-Fairfax) presents the Virginia Clean Energy Future Act. Chap's introduction is contained about half way into summit video 10 relating to Lt. Col. Damphousse. Petersen's legislation is forward looking and was endorsed by Virginia's environmental concerns. The bill's primary thrust was to advance alternative energy development in Virginia through alt. energy tax credits.

Continued video in Summit Video 12 and 13.

Alpha CEO Provides Outlook for Coal

Mike Quillen, CEO of Alpha Natural Resources, provides his outlook on the future of coal and energy. His presentation begins 4-minutes into Summit Video 13 with an introduction by Esther Bolling. The presentation is continued with Summit Video 14, Video 15 and extending 1-minute more into Video 16.

Karmis Advances Carbon Sequestration Research in Russell County Virginia

Dr. Michael Karmis of Virginia Tech described the research on carbon capture and sequestration in his presentation to the Energy Technology Summit. His remarks begin a little over one-minute into the Summit Video 16 linked below where he discusses a test sequestration project in Russell County.
Dr, Karmis continues with his presentation at Energy Rechnology Summit Videos 17, 18, and 19.

Administrator Skip Skinner Announces Appy America Energy Research Center

Wise County Administrator Glenn 'Skip' Skinner announced a new Appalachia America Research Center and its first potential tenant at the Lonesome Pine Regional Business and Technology Park at the Energy Technology Summit.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

News of the 1st Annual Energy Technology Summit Success

The Bristol Herald Courier's Debra McCown today reported on the new General Motors Chevrolet hydrogen-powered car on display at the Energy Technology Summit. The newspaper also provides an overview of the content of the summit with focus on keynote speaker Tom Farrell, II, CEO of Dominion Resources.

Likewise, The Coalfield Progress [subscription required] today reported on the Energy Technology Summit by noting that coal is vital to the nation's energy future. The Progress reporter Keith Strange also did a story on the business announcement made by Wise County Administrator 'Skip' Skinner at the summit relating to the Appalachia America Energy Research Center and its potential first tenant - NanoChemonics Corp. of Pulaski.

Meanwhile, State Senator Chapman 'Chap' J. Petersen blogged about his experience at the Southwestern Virginia Technology Council's Energy Technology Summit. The Senator spoke of his state legislation at the 2008 General Assembly session involving energy and alternative energy workforce development.

The organizers of the summit deeply appreciate the time, effort, and yes, the energy each presentor, Tech Council member-sponsor, and the news media put into making the event a complete success. Later this week, YouTube video of each presentation along with the Power Points should be displayed on this BLOG.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Can Automakers Build a 100-MPG Car?

What would a 100-mpg car look like? It could look a lot like ... the Aptera, the Cleanova, the Nissan Denki Cube the Electrum Spyder, the Elettrica, the Lumeneo Semera, the Mitsubishi i-MIEV Sport, the Phoenix, the Nissan Pivo2, the Smart, the Tango, the Think, the Zap, or the Zenn. But let us hope, it will look more like the Tesla, the Lightning GT Electric, the Volvo 3CC, the Audi R-Zero, the Chevy Volt or the Ford Airstream.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Wise Exploring NanoTechnologies in New Coal-2-Energy Research Facility

Wise County is thinking small, really small - on the nano-scale. As new energy technologies emerge from the 21st Century, economic development officials are now planning a contemporary energy research facility called the Appalachia America Energy Research Center.

Strategic planners hope to locate the Appalachia America Energy Research Center at the the Lonesome Pine Regional Business and Technology Park near The University of Virginia's College at Wise before the end of the decade. The purpose of the new research facility will be to explore new concepts, ideas, and creations from new energy research using nanotechnologies, according to Carl Snodgrass, the economic development director for Wise County.

"The Center will bring together public and private sector expertise to plan, research, and implement strategies in coal gasification, use of nanotechnology for sulfur reductions in coal, and the use of nanotechnology as a catalyst to make existing forms of energy more efficient," the economic development planner noted. MORE to come at the Energy Technology Summit MONDAY!

ixEnergy Looking for Future in Wise

The Energy Technology Summit has a wonderful opportunity before it with the potential of launching an energy revolution with new business locations ranging from coal-to-solar.

ixEnergy is a renewable energy company focused on solar power project development and integration. A new solar manufacturing industry will require a 21st Century workforce and a new look at housing and commercial structure energy efficiency.

"I believe the opportunity for fabrication of photovoltaic modules would be a positive move for Wise County, and would provide a robust entry to a viable sector of the global economy while providing for continued job growth for this region," said Carl Snodgrass, Wise County's Economic Development Director.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Boucher to Lead Cap and Trade

The chairman of the US House Energy and Air Quality Subcommittee told a Platts Energy Podium event in Washington recently that he supports a greenhouse gases (GHG) cap-and-trade system that would provide nearly all emission credits for free to electric utilities, oil refineries and other industrial operations.

Representative Rick Boucher, (D-Abingdon), said he believes the US should model its GHG control law on the country’s successful acid rain program that is designed to cut national sulfur dioxide emissions from electric utilities through a cap-and-trade system.

The SO2 system gives away 97% of its allowances and auctions off the remaining 3%, Boucher said. "We can look to the very successful sulfur dioxide program," he said, calling the acid rain program "fluid" and "transparent" noting that, "I think the burden of proof rests on those who think we would need to auction most of the allowances," Boucher said.

Boucher is seeking to pass economy-wide legislation that would reduce emissions 60% to 80% below current levels by 2050 and putting odds of getting the bill through Congress and passed by President George W. Bush at more than 50% but estimated a better probability next year. "In the next Congress, I think the prospects of passing cap and trade and having it signed into law will be 80% or better," he said.

The congressman said he would prefer that any GHG cap bill offer modest cuts in carbon emissions to 2025 with steeper reductions thereafter to allow coal-fired power generation to remain in the mix and permit the development of carbon capture and sequestration technologies.

Boucher is optimistic that permanent carbon storage could work. "This isn’t rocket science at all. It isn’t even auto mechanics," he said. "It will work. They’ve been storing CO2 in oil and gas fields for decades."

Roanoke Times: [Sen. John Warner] Changing the GOP on climate change

The Roanoke Times, Friday, April 11 edition carries an editorial entitled: "Changing the GOP on climate change: The Republican Party, as the party of national defense, has good reason to come around" commending the efforts of Virginia Senator John W. Warner on his climate change legislation. VIDEO