The Al Gore Award

Answer to a critic
" ...cover your state" ==>

My fault!

... basics

... use some plywood

... Eviction notices!

... Environmental follies

... Backups for the follies

... Cheap!!

The Al Gore Award!  ==>

A critic of this web site, complains about an example in the  hydropower file:
"It's interesting that though you criticize hydro as not suitable for Connecticut due to lack of energy density, you don't also tabulate on your site a similar calculation for solar.  Cover the state with 10% solar cells and you could generate 200,000 megawatts using your 160 watts per square meter figure."
Mea Culpa!

The land area of Connecticut is 5000 square miles (12950 square km).  At 160 watts per square meter, the land "could generate" about 200,000 megawatts at the 10% efficiency that is typical of solar cells.  So let's get on with it!

If we first cover the land with plywood, which costs approximately one dollar per square foot, the cost for the plywood would only be $140 billion dollars.  By covering the land, we mean, of course, that the land is to be wallpapered, edge-to-edge, with the plywood, leaving no room for crops, people, houses, roads, cities, or wires to carry the electricity.  In other words, no sunlight should be wasted by striking anything other than the plywood.  The $140b price tag does not, of course, cover any structures to hold the plywood, but we can ignore that, because we're on a mission.

We will  first have to evict three million people, including the sheriff's deputies who would serve the warrants, the lawyers who would make a mint defending the people, and the judges who would issue the eviction notices.  We will have to cut down a billion trees.  We will have to remove all existing homes, highways, and even cars with Split Wood Not Atoms bumper stickers.

We will cover over the twenty acres of "wetlands" that have held up the improvement of Route 6 in the eastern part of the state for three decades.  Out goes a 50-MW hydro-electric power plant that was rejuvenated by a group of environmentalists.  We will wallpaper the square mile at Millstone Point that produces 2000 MW of electricity from nuclear fission.  We will build a structure over all the Connecticut River, from Massachusetts to Long Island Sound, to intercept all sunlight.  Ditto for every other stream and lake.  Cover everything!

Then, of course, we will need to provide for a system to store the energy for use for the 85% of the time the sun isn't producing electricity.  We will therefore construct a few hundred dams in Massachusetts to serve as pumped-hydro reservoirs.  Negotiations between the evicted governor of Connecticut and the governor of Massachusetts should begin immediately.

Oh, and did I mention that solar cells cost 100 times as much as plywood? No Problem.

Great Idea!  We therefore nominate the critic for the Al Gore Award in Compassionate Liberalism.

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