Welcome to the Emerging Technology Corporation - Green Division

Renewable Energy

Any energy resource that is naturally regenerated over a short time scale and derived directly from the sun (such as thermal, photochemical, and photoelectric), indirectly from the sun (such as wind, hydropower, and photosynthetic energy stored in biomass), or from other natural movements and mechanisms of the environment (such as geothermal and tidal energy). Renewable energy does not include energy resources derived from fossil fuels, waste products from fossil sources, or waste products from inorganic sources.

“We should make use of the forces of nature and should obtain all our power in this way.  Sunshine is a form of energy, wind and sea currents are manifestations of this energy.  Do we make use of them?  Oh no!  We burn forests and coal, like tenants burning down our front door for heating.  We live like wild settlers.”

Thomas A. Edison, 1916    

Climate Change

As we talk with our clients we frequently find ourselves in discussions revolving around the cause and effect of Climate Change.

A random blogger entry states, “Science is not a popular poll”.  Science or more specifically for this discussion, the cause and effect in relationship to the accepted “Laws of Nature”, are in fact, what the majority of the well established scientific societies on the planet embrace and publish as science.  Most of the major scientific societies date back hundreds of years and while many have passed through their respected, “politically and religiously influenced periods”, by and large, they do embrace and publish “well researched findings” based on decades of scientific methodology and applied logic.  So, in fact, science is an extremely well honed popular poll.

Most of the “Climate Change” articles we read are actually a series of secondary target arguments to support the general concept that the world is going through a radical climate change.  The main issue in the press being bantered by the political parties is if man’s activities are the cause of this radical climate change and if any behavioral modification can in fact mitigate this climate change.

If you wish to delve into an emerging concept about global warming, ponder how long an oil filled space heater can maintain its temperature with no additional energy.  A large volume of dense fluid is an excellent temperature regulator.  The same general temperature control system is what has evolved in the human body and for all mammals.  The same holds true for much of life in our lakes, rivers and oceans, …, our entire global ecosystem.  Ah, but we have burned an amazing volume of the fluid that historically contributed to the regulation of our planet’s surface temperature – petroleum.  In addition, when petroleum is pumped out, water is typically pumped in.  Yet, the temperature regulation, gas (CO2) containment and the lubrication capacities and characteristics of petroleum are all rated at factors beyond those of water.

Then again, it is hard to argue with the fact that a single erupting volcano can emit more CO2 in a day than all the man made sources on the planet in a month.  Per Volcanologist, Dr. Stanley Williams, there are about 10,000 active volcanoes on earth today (surface and submarine).  Records show a significant increase in volcanic eruptions over the past few thousand years which is also in-line with the well established 640,000 year seismic cycle.  The Emerging Technology Corporation Aerospace Division recently designed a Lab-on-a-Chip sniffer mounted on a specialized UAV to detect higher levels of helium being emitted from seismic fault lines.

We are still pondering how ancient Mayan “science” was able to predict the proverbial end of their calendar cycle to the same 640,000 year cycle for the eruption of the world’s largest caldera (Yellowstone National Park).  It has erupted at least 3 times in our planet’s history on this approximate 640,000 year cycle and we are now past due for the 4th eruption.

One must also consider the solar cycles and our solar system’s planet alignment and of course the galactic alignment and 26,000 year black riff eclipse.  Then there are the various black hole theories and Milky Way galaxy astrophysics arguments that continue to show up in the publications.

It is very difficult to determine what is cause and what is effect and the scale at which the various forces are occurring.

Bottomline… we all need to be more sensitive to our environment for the simple reason it is the only planet we have.  Plant more trees and stop driving gasoline powered vehicles are certainly positive behavioral modifications that will not only help the human condition, but will help all life on this planet.  The ETC Staff planted over 20,000 trees last year and will plant about 100,000,000 more trees over the coming years (provided the Mayan’s were wrong). This effort will offset nearly 10% of the total CO2 emissions of the entire U.S. population each year going forward.  If you still need to drive a private vehicle we recommend you join the U.S. Migration to radically reduce both emissions and petroleum consumption.

Join the Migration – U.S. Migration

Of course coal and natural gas burning power plants need to be replaced with renewable energy technologies.  And the world’s population needs to decrease by an order of magnitude – from 7 billion to about 700 million.  Unless we “invent” our way out of our current “Peak Everything” situation, this population decrease will happen over the coming century one way or another.  In the mean time, we do what we can to mitigate the impact the backside of the Petroleum Era will have on all of our lives.

130 Years of Earth Surface Temperatures (Image Credit: GISS, NASA)

Explanation: How has the surface temperature of Earth been changing? To help find out, Earth scientists collected temperature records from over 1000 weather stations around the globe since 1880, and combined them with modern satellite data. The above movie dramatizes the result showing 130 years of planet-wide temperature changes relative to the local average temperatures in the mid-1900s. In the above global maps, red means warmer and blue means colder. On average, the display demonstrates that the temperature on Earth has increased by nearly one degree Celsius over the past 130 years, and many of the warmest years on record have occurred only recently. Global climate change is of more than passing interest — it is linked to global weather severity and coastal sea water levels.

Vice President Al Gore has released a new video and hosted the program, 24 Hours of Reality on September 14th, 2011.  The simulcast was broadcast across 150 nations in over 100 languages and on thousands of websites.  This program set the record as the single most watched broadcast in human history.

Below are links to a short list of documentary DVD’s which address the history, causes and projections of world climate change.  Readers may wish to pay particular attention to information pertaining to the temperature change of our oceans which has 1,100 times the influence over the earth’s weather events than our atmospheric climate.

If you reside in the southern Nevada area or are planning to visit the area and would like to discuss or debate Climate Change issues, we are happy to host such a debate around our conference table.  You will find our approach uses accepted scientific methodologies and our arguments are based only on peer reviewed data.  We have had the pleasure to host research scientists, engineers, legislators and others who leave the discussions with a more informed perspective.

Climate Change DVD’s:

The Fuel Film – 2008 Documentary – Benefits of Biodiesel

An Inconvenient Truth – 2006 Academy Award: Best Documentary – Climate Change

Crude – The Incredible Journey of Oil – 2007 Documentary

Little Ice Age: Big Chlll – 2005 (Nov.) Documentary – Climate History and Projections

Mega Freeze – 2006 (Nov.) Documentary on Climate Change

A Global Warning – 2007 Documentary – Global Warming

If you are skeptical about Global Warming – possibly about the data generally or whether caused by man, we recommend the above films to establish a base level of perspectives and concepts then view the following videos as well:

Great Climate Warming Swindle then watch Great Climate Warming Swindle Debate

The following document is reprinted with permission from the History Channel website.

What is Global Warming?

The Earth is heating up fast. Since the beginning of time, our planet has experienced warming and cooling cycles that happen naturally over thousands of years. What’s remarkable about the current warming trend is the speed at which it’s occurring. In the last 50 years, the average global temperature has risen at the fastest rate in recorded history, according to the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC). Since 1900, the Earth’s average surface temperature has climbed by over 1 degree Fahrenheit. At first glance, an increase of that size might not seem like a big deal. However, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists, “Even a modest rise of 2-3 degrees F (1.1-1.7 degrees C) could have dramatic effects. In the last 10,000 years, the Earth’s average temperature hasn’t varied by more than 1.8 degrees F (1.0 degree C). Temperatures only 5-9 degrees F cooler than those today prevailed at the end of the last Ice Age, in which the Northeast United States was covered by more than 3,000 feet of ice.”

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Industry News

Why the Peak Oilers are still right

  By Richard Heinberg The piece is excerpted from the new book Snake Oil: How Fracking’s False Promise of Plenty Imperils Our Future. We’re running low on cheap oil. For the past decade I’ve been a participant in a high-stakes energy policy debate — writing books, giving lectures, and appearing on radio and television to point out how downright dumb it is for America to continue relying on fossil fuels. Oil, coal, and natural gas are finite and depleting, and burning them changes Earth’s climate and compromises our future. In the past two or three years this debate has reached a significant turning point. Evidence that climate change is real and caused by human activity has become irrefutable, and serious climate impacts (such as the melting of the Arctic ice cap) have begun appearing sooner, and with greater severity, than had been forecast. Yet at the same time, the notion that fossil fuels are supply-constrained has gone from being generally dismissed, to being partially accepted, to being vociferously dismissed. The increasingly dire climate story has achieved widespread (though still insufficient) coverage, but the puzzling reversals of public perception regarding fossil fuel scarcity or abundance have received little analysis outside the specialist literature. Yet claims of abundance are being used by the fossil fuel industry to change the public conversation about energy and climate, especially in the United States, from one of “How shall we reduce our carbon emissions?” to “How shall we spend our new-found energy wealth?” This is an insidious and misleading tactic. The abundance argument is based not so much on solid data (though oil and gas production figures have indeed surged in the United States) as on exaggerations about future production...

2014 BMW 328d

A new diesel version of BMW’s compact 3-Series will hit U.S. highways this year.  BMW has offered a diesel engine in the 3-Series before with their 335d, but it was a 6-cylinder. The 328d offers a more efficient 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder that BMW says should deliver an estimated 45 mpg highway and in the mid-30’s combined. The new engine puts out 180 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque. It will have the same urea injection exhaust treatment as seen on other BMW diesels in order to meet U.S. emissions standards. The 328d will be offered in both sedan and wagon body styles. Rear-wheel drive will be standard, with all-wheel drive offered as an option. The 328d wagon will be available only with all-wheel drive. BMW’s new 8-speed automatic will be the only transmission offered. It is more efficient than a manual and therefore the best fit for a car focused on maximizing fuel economy. The 328d will have a “premium” over the 328i, which uses a turbocharged 4-cylinder gasoline engine. Production will begin in July 2013, and sales are set to kick off in July or August. The new BMW 328d looks like a win-win, offering better fuel economy, likely twice the longevity, lower maintenance and higher resale value than the gas-powered 328i, without sacrificing performance. The base price will be below $40K...

78 MPPG in a Passat TDI

It’s not an official government rating, but it’s pretty impressive nonetheless: 78 miles per petroleum gallon (MPPG) in a Volkswagen Passat TDI diesel. It was anointed a Guinness World Record, so it’s more than your neighbor bragging about his eco-abilities. The team of auto blogger Wayne Gerdes and electronics engineer Bob Winger ran up 8,122 miles, using 104.94 gallons of fuel, covering the 48 contiguous states in a Passat diesel built at VW’s Chattanooga factory and delivered for the drive as it came off the line, VW says. VW itself set the previous record for a Passat diesel, 67.9 mpg in 2009. The U.S. government’s official highway mileage rating for the Passat diesel is 43 mpg. The Passat TDI drive began June 7 from VW’s U.S. headquarters in Herndon, Va., and ended when the team returned there June 24. “Obviously, we employ some specialized techniques to achieve such figures, but there’s no reason why owners of TDI vehicles shouldn’t be able to achieve great mileage,” Gerdes says. A key tactic: Anticipate conditions. “Look for impediments or topography 15 to 45 seconds ahead, rather than reacting to where you’re currently driving,” he says. Equipment on the mileage run: •Shell ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel. •Continental PureContact with EcoPlus Technology tires, which have low rolling resistance. Those aren’t available as a factory option on Passat TDI, but are available from tire sellers and were approved by Guinness. •Linear Logic ScanGauge II to precisely measure fuel economy ETC has contacted the team of Wayne Gerdes and Bob Winger with the intention of setting a new record for MPPG from our...

Intel ISEF Awards biodiesel… again

For a fifth-grade science fair, Evie Sobczak found that the acid in fruit could power clocks; she connected a cut-up orange to a clock with wire and watched it tick. In seventh grade, she generated power by engineering paddles that could harness wind. And in eighth grade, she started a project that eventually would become her passion: She wanted to grow algae and turn it into biofuel. After four years of tinkering in her garage for about an hour each day, Sobczak (pronounced sob-chek) has finally figured it out. Her algae-to-fuel project won first place and best in category at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Phoenix, beating 1,600 other finalists from 70 countries. The Intel ISEF is one of the largest and most prestigious science fairs in the world. “When I got there, I looked at all the projects and they were amazing, but I trusted that my project has a lot of capabilities to be used in the real world, so I thought I had a good chance of winning,” said Sobczak, a rising senior at Shorecrest Preparatory School in St. Petersburg. The project’s official title: Algae to Oil via Photoautotrophic Cultivation and Osmotic Sonication. In less dizzying terms, Sobczak cultivated, harvested and extracted algae oils and turned them into biofuel. Biofuel is made by taking a mass — such as grass, sugarcane or corn — and converting it to fuel. The process leaves out harmful chemicals, like chloroform and hexane, which are used in making biodiesel and other types of fuel. Also, the use of algae biofuel reduces reliance on fossil fuels. Some research...

400ppm Threshhold

Scientists are warning the planet has now reached a grim climate milestone not seen for two or three million years. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says the amount of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has topped 400 parts per million. The 400 ppm threshold has been an important marker in U.N. climate change negotiations, widely recognized as a dangerous level that could drastically worsen human-caused global warming. The environmentalist group 350.org takes its name after the 350 parts per million threshold that scientists say is the maximum atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide for a safe planet. In a statement on the parts per million number hitting 400, 350.org co-founder Bill McKibben said, quote, “The only question now is whether the relentless rise in carbon can be matched by a relentless rise in the activism necessary to stop it.” To find out more about the impacts of crossing the threshold, study the books of leading climate scientist Michael Mann, distinguished professor of meteorology at Penn State University, author of the recent book, The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines. So, this number, 400 parts per million, what does it mean? It’s the number of molecules of CO2 for every million molecules of air; 400 of them are now CO2. Just two centuries ago, that number was only 280 parts per million. So if we continue to add carbon to the atmosphere at current rates, we’ll reach a doubling of the pre-industrial levels of CO2 within the next few decades. We have to go several million years back in time to find a point...

U.S. Diesel Car Registrations Increase by 24%

April 29, 2013 California, Massachusetts and New York are the fastest growing states for diesel car sales, while Texas, California and Florida have the most diesels on the road. WASHINGTON – Clean diesel car registrations increased by 24.3% in the United States from 2010 through 2012, following similar trends of double-digit diesel car sale increases throughout the country, according to new data compiled for the Diesel Technology Forum. The national registration information was compiled by R.L. Polk and Company and includes data for all types of passenger vehicles — cars, SUVs, pickup trucks and vans — in all 50 states and the District of Columbia from January 1, 2010 through December 31, 2012. “This consistent growth in clean diesel registrations in the last three years is particularly noteworthy since it has occurred during an economic recession, the availability of an extremely large number of fuel efficient vehicles, which was topped off by some of the highest diesel fuel prices in U.S. history. Even in the face of these significant challenges, diesel buyers are seeing the big picture and long-term value by investing in record numbers of clean diesel cars and SUVs,” said Allen Schaeffer, executive director of the Diesel Technology Forum. Diesel car and SUV registrations increased from 640,779 in 2010 to 796,794 at the end of 2012 — a 24.3% increase. During this same period, hybrid car and SUV registrations increased from 1,714,966 to 2,290,903 — a 33.6% increase. In contrast, the total car and SUV registrations in the U.S. increased by just 2.8% during the same period. “When all passenger vehicle registrations are included — cars, SUVs, pickup...

Top Award from Intel Science Research for 2013? Biodiesel from 2nd Gen Feedstock

Sara Volz’s long-term goal, she says, is to understand the universe. But in the shorter term, the 17-year-old is working on developing algae that create biofuels more efficiently. In her home lab — it’s under her loft bed — she’s been artificially selecting algae that produce higher oil content, with the idea that these will produce biofuel more cheaply and efficiently. Not only is that an awesome project to have in your bedroom, it won her the prestigious Intel Science Research Foundation Talent Search contest and the accompanying $100,000 prize. NBC News explains why her super-oily algae have an advantage in the push to make commercially viable algae-based biofuels: Other researchers have approached the problem by tweaking the algae genome or selecting the prime environmental conditions for algae growth. Volz’s approach, she said, is different and lower cost. It relies on an herbicide that kills algae cells with low levels of an enzyme crucial to making oil. “The idea is, if you introduce this chemical, you kill everything with really low oil production,” she explained. “What you are left with is a population of cells with very high oil production.” We salute anyone who decides to live with tubes of algae under their bed in service of the greater good. (And Volz is so hardcore, she’s also decided to sleep on the same light cycle as her little green charges.) But we also salute Volz for being an all-around awesome geek: She’s field captain of her high school’s Science Olympiad Team and captain of the Science Bowl team. Also, she likes improv and musical theater. She’s going to MIT...

President Obama Supports Biodiesel

Earlier this month the Obama Administration showed strong support for the biodiesel industry when it finalized a Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volume increase for biodiesel. The EPA’s decision finalized the 2013 volume requirement under the RFS for biomass-based diesel to 1.28 billion gallons. This represents a modest increase from the industry’s record production in 2011 of nearly 1.1 billion gallons and puts the industry on course for steady, sustainable growth in the coming years. “This was an incredibly important decision, and the Obama Administration got it right,” said Joe Jobe, CEO of the National Biodiesel Board. “It will allow biodiesel plants across the country to invest and expand, creating thousands of jobs. At the same time, it sends a strong signal that the U.S. is standing firm behind its commitment to producing clean, American-made energy to strengthen our energy security and break our dependence on petroleum.” The EPA is responsible for developing and implementing regulations to ensure that transportation fuel sold in the United States contains a minimum volume of renewable fuel. The RFS program regulations were developed in collaboration with refiners, renewable fuel producers, and many other stakeholders. “This decision will continue to diversify our fuel supplies so that we’re not so vulnerable to global petroleum markets and this endless cycle of price spikes,” said Jobe. “The Renewable Fuel Standard is clearly working to do that, and the benefits of doing so are clear: We’ll continue to create good jobs, expand our economy and reduce harmful emissions. It’s just smart energy...

DON’T WORRY, DRIVE ON…

Richard Heinberg continues his series of videos to help educate the American public and to urge people to become more prepared before the shortages and high prices of petroleum severely impacts individuals’...

Auto Giant Honda Joins the Migration

Sharmistha Mukherjee/New Delhi – 2012-09-23 Japanese auto giant Honda Motor Co Ltd is set to introduce its first diesel vehicle in India — an entry-level sedan based on the Brio platform — in the next financial year.  The move comes at a time when Honda is battling slowing sales of its petrol vehicle. The move is significant as its Indian subsidiary, Honda Cars India Ltd, is battling slowing sales as its portfolio of petrol vehicles is becoming less attractive in a market which is increasingly preferring diesel-powered vehicles. The company is likely to invest close to Rs 3,200 crore to commence assemblying diesel engines and introduce diesel variants in a bid to fast ramp up its operations in the country. The new diesel engine will be sequentially adopted to new models the company has scheduled for introduction in the market starting 2013-14. “The new diesel engine will be assembled at our second unit in Rajasthan. It will be fitted on the entry-level sedan slated for launch next year and on new models thereafter. It will not be adopted on to the existing products in our portfolio,” said Jnaneswar Sen, senior vice-president, sales and marketing, Honda Cars India. Outlining the company’s plans till 2017, Takanobu Ito, global chief executive officer of Honda Motor, said in Tokyo today: “In India, an all-new diesel engine will be adopted sequentially to new models, starting in FY2014. In addition to the high fuel efficiency, the cost competitiveness of the all-new diesel engine will be enhanced through local sourcing and local production to make new diesel models more affordable for customers.” Overall, Honda Motor aims...