June 2010 News

01 Jun

The May 2010 programs are summarized below:

May 3: Gary Gilmartin, The Community Reuse Organization of East Tennessee (CROET), spoke on “An Update on the East Tennessee Technology Corridor”. The focus of the unique initiative is on “big-idea” projects that use U.S. Department of Energy assets to offer

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solutions to national energy challenges. Local projects could include a regional transportation initiative to demonstrate energy efficiency and conservation, among other things, as well as a large-scale solar project, a modular power reactor, and an educational campaign.

May 10: John Halliwell of the Energy Utilization program of the Power Delivery and Utilization Sector of EPRI (Electric Power Research Institute) Mr. Halliwell recently joined the Electric Transportation Team where his primary focus is the vehicle to grid interface and communications infrastructure.

May 17: Michael Ingram, PE, Senior Manager of Demand Response with TVA in Chattanooga, spoke on the “Smart Grid.” Ingram described “smart grid” as a “power system with a nervous system” resulting from the integration of the electrical grid with “intelligence infrastructure.” He overviewed the areas where TVA is already invested in smart grid to operate the power system. He introduced the new work going between TVA and the local power distributors to install smart meters and reduce peak load. He closed with a discussion of the national challenges remaining, like smart grid standards and privacy concerns.

May 24: William Fulkerson of the Institute for Secure and Stainable Environment gave his perspective on global sustainability issues with emphasis on energy and environmental technologies and policies. Since 1994 he has chaired the DOE Laboratory Energy R&D Working Group.

The first point made was that the atmospheric carbon dioxide is increasing. (From 317ppm to 380ppm in 110 years)

The second point made was that the temperature of the earth is rising (about 0.8 degrees C since 1880).

The third point made is that climate models show that including anthropogenic changes to the atmosphere allows the models to match the observed temperature change. These are convincing!

The remainder of the talk was about what to do about alleviating anthropogenic caused global temperature rising.The choices and the economics were discussed. The conclusion was we are changing the climate and are headed toward a potential planetary emergency. The cost of doing nothing may be very high but delayed. The cost of doing something may

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be high and must be done soon.We may be able to avoid or reduce the risk by actively managing the climate change by intelligent use of three strategies.Mitigation of emissions of GHG and enhanced net removal from the atmosphere.Adaptation to harmful impacts that can’t be avoided by mitigation or offset by geoengineering.Application of geoengineering as a last resort safety valve or insurance against mitigation and adaptation failures.

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