Iran Daily October 9, 2005 8
olar-energy advo- To encourage converts, have reached 34 percent scale made computers
S cates have been
arguing since the
1970s energy crunch that
they will open their homes
Saturday for the eighth
annual Pikes Peak-area
conversion rates, and the
price per watt for the aver-
age photovoltaic setup has
affordable enough for
everyone to have. The
same is happening with
it's time for America to see Solar Homes Tour, which dropped to $4 a watt. solar."
the light: Solar is nonpol- features six structures in One shadow clouding the Plus, for the next two
luting, it's sustainable and configurations including a use of solar is the upfront years, anyone installing a
it has the potential to wean custom-built earth ship cost: The average single- solar system can get a 30
us off those tricky rela- and a retrofitted Victorian. home solar system costs percent federal tax credit
tionships with other oil- They say now is one of about $14,000, several under the new energy bill.
producing nations. the best times to turn to times what energy from Colorado energy compa-
The only light most of sun power. coal or natural gas costs, nies may start offering
the country sees, however, "Efficiency is going up; and it can take more than incentives to individuals
is produced by burning oil, cost is coming down. 10 years to pay for itself. for going solar.
coal and natural gas. Solar Solar is just becoming But the initial price contin- Another incentive: Solar
power accounts for less more and more practical," ues to get cheaper. is getting more stylish. In
than one-tenth of 1 percent said Tom Cannarella, Cannerella said the price many cases, those big,
Solar power accounts for less than one-tenth of 1 percent of America's energy portfolio.
of America's energy port- organizer of the Solar per watt of solar power clunky panels can be
folio. Homes Tour. will continue to fall, even replaced with low profile provide practical advice will find the $5 entry fee down on waste. A solar Taking steps to conserve
But solar's local support- In 1980, photovoltaic as other energy prices rise. solar shingles nailed onto about the best new solar worthwhile because the house adage states that a energy should be especial-
ers look on the sunny side: cells--the electricity-pro- He compares solar power roofs like traditional shin- products on the market homes are filled with effi- dollar spent on efficiency ly attractive this year
Solar makes so much ducing stuff that solar pan- to the home computer: gles. Eventually, new nan- and how to navigate feder- cient lights and appliances saves $10 on creating because natural gas prices
sense, they say--especially els are made of--at best Once it was a prohibitive- otechnologies may allow al and state tax breaks. that can save energy power. In other words, are expected to rise as
with energy prices on the converted 10 percent of ly expensive hobby pur- solar power to be slipped But the tour isn't just for whether it comes from the buying an energy-efficient much as 38 percent this
rise--that it's only a matter the sun's energy to usable sued by a few zealots. into clear, plastic coatings those anxious to get off the sun or the local utility. water heater is a lot cheap- fall for local customers,
of time before more peo- electricity and cost about "But the price slowly that can be painted on any grid. People looking for It's all part of the overall er than buying enough and electricity prices will
ple look to the sun, redno- $20 per watt of power. came down and came surface. more than one way to pare approach to designing a solar panels to power an probably continue to
va.com reported. Newly developed cells down until economy of The local solar tour can their monthly utility bill solar home and cutting inefficient one. climb as well.
Oil Prices Plunge Wind Energy Alluring Canada
Despite Refinery Concerns W
ind power may only be a drop in the bucket of and plentiful in Canada and there are no fossil fuel emis-
electricity production, but in comparison to sions.
nuclear and fossil fuels, it’s clean, efficient and Huron Wind has no staff. The turbines are monitored by
orld oil prices plummeted Tuesday as specula- States approaches winter. pays for itself. Bruce Power and Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and
W tors bailed out on signs the United States might
release more emergency stockpiles of crude,
Apart from two million barrels of heating fuel, the US
strategic reserve consists largely of crude oil.
Analysts said the United States and other oil-consuming
In recent years the public has looked to alternative ener- receive regular visits from three service technicians who
gies like wind power to deliver Canada’s energy-depen- look after many other wind turbines across Ontario.
dent society from non-renewable resources. However, it Technical specifics Each turbine stands 117 metres
But analysts said the price falls were overdone as the nations need refined products more than they need crude. is being shown that wind power can only compliment from the ground to the peak of the blades.
market still faces a serious supply crunch with a sizeable "What Bodman really wants to control is gasoline and existing technologies, it can’t replace them. Unlike traditional windmills, the turbines need electric-
portion of US refining capacity shut down by hurricanes diesel retail prices, and it's difficult to do that with lots of According to Rob Liddle, Bruce Power’s communica- ity to spin. An electro-magnet keeps the blades spinning
Katrina and Rita. crude and too few barrels of heating oil," Hornsell said. tions consultant for Huron Wind, it would take 5,000 at 15 revolutions per minute.
New York's main contract, light sweet crude for deliv- With refineries struggling, concerns are mounting over wind turbines to replace the electricity produced by The magnet uses less than one percent of the energy it
ery in November, fell 1.57 dollars to close at 63.90 dol- heating fuel. Investec analyst Bruce Evers said the arrival Bruce Power’s nuclear reactors. There are currently five produces to spin the blade. It never spins faster or slower
lars a barrel, AFP reported. of the northern hemisphere winter "could be a wake-up large turbines and one smaller turbine at the Huron Wind with the wind speed, but instead switches gears inside the
In London, the price of Brent North Sea crude for call for the market". site, Shoreline Beacon.com reported. massive gearbox to adjust for the increase and decrease
November delivery sank 1.58 dollars to 61.22 dollars a Kleinman added that Wednesday's publication of week- “No one in the nuclear industry should feel threatened of wind conditions, Liddle said.
barrel. ly data for US oil stockpiles would give "a bad surprise" because it’s such a small percentage of (energy) produc- But Liddle said the turbines only reach their maximum
"The worst has occurred, what more can happen?" said to the markets, laying bare the impact of last month's twin tion,” Liddle said. “But wind
Fimat analyst Mike Fitzpatrick, referring to the aftermath hurricanes. power has its place.”
of the powerful hurricanes. US government figures released Tuesday showed 90 Huron Wind can produce
"The effect has been priced in, and speculative interests percent of oil production and 72 percent of natural gas enough electricity to power
are beginning to cash out of positions," he said. production in the Gulf of Mexico remains shut down. around 2,000 homes, or the equiv-
Nevertheless, brokers said the sharp declines were exag- Hurricanes Katrina and Rita destroyed 109 oil platforms alent of nine megawatts. In com-
gerated. and five drilling rigs in the Gulf, but only a small portion parison, Bruce Power reactors
"This is too much of an over-reaction to the bearish of production will be lost for good, US Interior Secretary produce 20 percent of Ontario’s
view that there is going to be demand destruction" due to Gale Norton said. power, or 4,700 megawatt.
high prices, said Paul Hornsell, head of energy research at The storms also caused extensive damage to another 50 The government has had a sig-
Barclays Capital. platforms and 19 rigs. nificant impact on the number of
"We just don't see the evidence for that." But Norton stressed that only one of the damaged plat- wind farms in Ontario since the
US Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said that three forms was built after federal construction standards were site was constructed in 2003.
million barrels a day of refining capacity remains offline tightened in 1988. There are proposals from close
because of the hurricanes, and could take two to four The ones that were destroyed were nearing the end of to a dozen different companies in
weeks to get fully back up. their lives. "As a result, only a very small percentage of Ontaro hoping to set up wind
Bodman said Monday the United States was "prepared production is expected to be permanently lost," she said farms from Sault St. Marie to
to do what is necessary with strategic reserves", after the in a statement. Manitoulin Island.
government tapped its Strategic Petroleum Reserve in Elsewhere, French oil giant Total's Gonfreville plant Regional proposals include ones
early September after Katrina struck. near the northern port of Le Havre--France's biggest for the towns of Ripley and
"The market thinks all will be OK with the SPR, which refinery—remained closed due to a strike. Amberly and studies are still in
is not the case," PFC analyst Seth Kleinman said. But Total said there was no risk of fuel shortages, say- the works for a massive 230
"People don't realize how small the reserves for heating ing the market can be supplied by other refineries in megawatt farm to be built In recent years the public has looked to alternative energies like wind power to deliver
oil are," he said, highlighting a key concern as the United Europe. between Kincardine and Port Canada’s energy-dependent society from non-renewable resources.
Elgin by the Leader Wind Group. output one-quarter to one-third of the time; the equivalent
Fuel Cell Companies “The government is eliminating coal-fired plants, which to about 70 days out of the year.
supply 17 percent of the electricity in Ontario,” Liddle When production is low or ceased, Huron Wind has an
said. “To do this, they have to come up with something agreement with the manufacturer which will compensate
Mark First-Ever Drop in Revenues to replace it.” them for loss of productivity. This plan works along with
The McGuinty government plans to replace the energy Huron Wind’s 10-year contract with the federal govern-
uel cell companies worldwide the past year or two," Webster said. structure. from coal-fired plants with the possible restart of Bruce ment, which pays 1.2 cents per kilowatt hour for the elec-
F saw a slight aggregate drop in
revenues to 234 million US
dollars in 2004, according to a new
"Companies are wrestling with the
dearth of funds and the markets for
their products have been slow to
This year, the annual survey
included four new companies:
Ceres Power Holdings Plc (United
A Units 1 and 2, combined with a variety of natural gas tricity produced for the Ontario power grid.
and biogas technologies, and by pushing for localized
wind farms throughout Ontario.
Environmental Impact Like any major project, Huron
Wind was constructed after an environmental assess-
Canadian study, highlighting the develop." Kingdom), ITM Power Plc (United As an incentive, wind farm companies are negotiating ment.
first ebb in the sector. Their combined market capitaliza- Kingdom), Ceramic Fuel Cells contracts with the government that guarantee earnings in Little said the results showed the wind farm would have
Their total revenues were down tion also fell 11 percent to 3.2 bil- Limited (Australia), and QuestAir exchange for energy. Competition is driving a flood of virtually no impact on the environment, except for dust,
four percent from 244 million US lion US dollars as the sector sig- Technologies Inc. (Canada). bids to build farms, pending government approval and increased traffic during construction.
dollars in 2003, naled further delays in the launch of None of the fuel cell divisions of environmental assessment of the proposed areas, Liddle On the 100-acre property, the majority of the area is
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) oft-touted fuel cell vehicles and the world's largest automobile com- said. available for agriculture or industrial projects.
said in its Fuel Cell Industry Survey focused on new applications such as panies were included in the study, Maintenance Wind turbines, like any other mechanical The closest neighbor is 500 meters away and Little said
Tuesday, while research and devel- powering cell phones and laptop however. device, are susceptible to wear and tear from the envi- there have been no complaints about the facility so far.
opment expenditures climbed two computers, and portable fuel cell Industry leader Ballard Power ronment and the force of their own weight. The structures have warning beacons to alert aviators,
percent to 221 million US dollars. generators. Systems and FuelCell Energy raked Liddle said the life span of a turbine is 20 years. but because of its close proximity to Bruce Power, Little
"It's unique in our experience. The The PwC survey looked at the in the most revenues in 2004: 81 Meaning by 2023, the parts and mechanics of Huron said planes haven’t been a concern.
sector has always shown reasonably world's 20 publicly-traded compa- million US dollars and 31 million Wind’s turbines would be recycled and replaced with Shadow-flicker, caused by the casting of shadow from
healthy increases in revenues," the nies whose primary business is in US dollars respectively. more advanced technology. the blades, would be an issue if the turbines were closer
report's co-author John Webster the areas of fuel cell production, Distributed Energy Systems, the Huron Wind installed the five main turbines in a “pack- to residential areas. The only impact in that area is on
told AFP. system integration, and related parent company of Proton Energy age deal” for $15 million, which included the construc- staff of the Bruce Power Visitors Centre, which have
None of the companies surveyed fuelling infrastructure. and Northern Power Systems, made tion of roads, fences and the infrastructure needed for the reported glare on computer monitors.
are profitable. Net losses grew to Thirteen of the 20 companies are the biggest gains with a 450 percent turbines to go up. Future Currently there are no plans for expansion to
465 million US dollars in 2004 focused on developing proton spike in revenues to 22 million US It took a shipment across the Atlantic from Denmark’s Huron Wind but Liddle said data from their turbines will
from 387 million US dollars in the exchange membrane fuel cell tech- dollars. Vestas, which produced the parts, along with 45 over- be used to help integrate more wind power operations
previous year as each continued to nology, the leading fuel cell tech- Employment in public fuel cell sized shipments of parts, to get the turbines to the site. into the Ontario Power grid, helping to increase the per-
burn money. nology for mobile applications and companies fell slightly to 2,789 With nuclear power, the capital cost is significantly centage of renewable energy from five to 10 percent by
"It's been a tough environment in related hydrogen fuelling infra- people. more, but the output is far higher. Uranium is inexpensive 2012.