Iceland the First Country to Try Abandoning Gasoline

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by ieani, Jan 19, 2006.

  1. ieani macrumors 6502a

    ieani

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  2. joepunk macrumors 68030

    joepunk

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    #2
    I hope it works out for the residents of Iceland.
     
  3. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

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    #3
    The obvious advantage that the Icelanders have is that there's something like 350,000 people in the whole country, and the number of gas stations numbers maybe 100. So it's easy for Iceland to install hydrogen pumps at every gas station and a hydrogen-distribution infrastructure.

    I hope it does work. Maybe it'll give folks here proof that it can work.
     
  4. Macaddicttt macrumors 6502a

    Macaddicttt

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    #4
    I think this is great. Iceland has a huge source of energy (volcanos, etc.), but that needs to be converted into something useful first.

    I came across this little theory for converting the US in a similar way. The problem with hydrogen is that you need to make it using electricity. Right now we make our electricity with things like gas, oil, and nuclear power. That doesn't help much. But we have a huge, untapped source of energy: wind.

    The problem with wind energy now is 1) the things that produce it are ugly and take up space, and 2) the wind isn't always blowing when you need it to be. The solution then is to have a whole bunch of wind power generators in the middle of nowhere that just create hydrogen. That way you have plenty of hydrogen created from a clean, renewable source that can power just about anything.

    I think this is a very smart plan, but I'm afraid I don't think it'll ever happen because of the huge changes to the infrastructure that would be necessary.
     
  5. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

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    #5
    Not to mention that the very same environmentalists who complain about how we're wrecking the environment with oil ALSO complain about how the giant windmills (which make electricity from air) kill birds.

    Iceland has a lot more open space, a lot LESS birds, and people with a lot more common sense than we have here.
     
  6. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    #6
    Good, the quicker we move away from petrol, the better off we'll be. Keep all that oil for making plastic so we can still have Macs.

    Solar is the most abundant form of energy we have, it's just a matter of getting the high efficiency that is available now for lower cost. The cheap stuff at the moment isn't efficient enough and the really efficient stuff is waaay too expensive.

    Congrats to Iceland for having the guts to be the first to try and wean us off our gas-guzzling ways. It's now time for the car manufacturers to follow suit with more aerodynamic, less fuel-thirsty, lighter, smaller good looking cars. The sooner we stop buying those huge trucks the better.
     
  7. MacAztec macrumors 68040

    MacAztec

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    #7
    We DO have Wind Farms in teh U.S., I live in Palm Springs, CA, and there is about 10 miles of them down here. They only put them in spots where the wind is ALWAYS blowing, and they did station the ones they have perfectly. They are between a mountain pass, about 20 miles wide, and cooler pacific air blows in to the hot desert, and the wind is ALWAYS blowing out there, no matter what. There are TONS of the wind generators.
     
  8. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #8
    That, plus the US oil companies would never allow it to happen. Your government would also not let that happen so easily, although they'll try to make it appear as though they're trying.

    Maybe in the future when Bush isn't in power.
     
  9. jakochampolska macrumors 6502

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    #9
    yay for iceland, I love that place!
    our science teacher was talking about this today, well not about iceland going all hydro but just about the future and how we should all be learning how to start using different sources instead of gas/oil.
    But I heard in iceland a couple guys use vegetable oil to keep their motors running. haha cool idea.. :)
     
  10. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

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    #10
    I think you overestimate the influence of ANY president. The US oil industry has been around for more than 100 years... you could have Ralph Nader in office and he STILL wouldn't be able to rein in the oil industry.

    What will make hydrogen succeed in this country is a few things:

    1. Installation of hydrogen pumps at gas stations.
    2. Development of an effective hydrogen-generation process that doesn't consume more energy than it produces.
    3. Availability of hydrogen-powered vehicles.

    It's going to be a VERY incremental process... but eventually H will be cheaper than gasoline, and the see-saw will tip over.
     
  11. joepunk macrumors 68030

    joepunk

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    #11
    In the central US they have been using their left over crops of corn to fuel vehicles, make environmental friendly containers, edible packaging peanuts, etc. One of my teachers grew up popping those edible peanuts in his mouth and letting them dissolve. When he moved to teach here in WA he found out the hard way that packaging peanuts are not edible and do not dissolve in the PNW.
     
  12. Macaddicttt macrumors 6502a

    Macaddicttt

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    #12
    I think the trick to converting a country as large as the US to hydrogen would be producing cars that could use both gasoline and hydrogen. That way, whenever the hydrogen infrastructure reaches some place new, the people will be ready for it without restricting the people in those places that don't have hydrogen yet to older cars.
     
  13. MacAztec macrumors 68040

    MacAztec

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    #13
    Haha, you really hate Bush don't you? Whenever something turns political, you always say "With Bush as President, this will NEVER happen...", or something along those lines. You don't even live in the U.S. do you?
     
  14. maya macrumors 68040

    maya

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    #14
    Cost of the vehicle would be too high.
     
  15. ibook30 macrumors 6502a

    ibook30

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    #15
    Don't forget abot Willie's Bio Diesel !
    Willy Nelson has been promoting Bio Diesel for a few years now. They sell it at a couple of places around me. Unfortunately my vehicle does not drink it.

    Iceland is doing a great thing. I hope more follow and show the rest of the world alternatives - after all - having choices is good. And the current energy situation in the US is very bad.
     
  16. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #16
    Since when is that a prerequisite? ;)
     
  17. combatcolin macrumors 68020

    combatcolin

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    #17
    Hating Bush is a global thing.

    One thing the rest of the world can agree on, loathingthe Toxic Texan.

    Now, back to energy, after Russia's little "spat" with Ukriane about gas (NOT the stuff Americans put in there cars!) prices the whole of Europe has gone into panic overdrive as they get a huge % of there gas from them.

    If something bad happens to the pipeline we would all have a bad, and cold, day
     
  18. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #18
    You know, I've never heard that... but I could totally see something like that happening. Just know that not everyone who cares about the environment is that bad. We had windfarms in Tehachapi when I lived there, and except for the whole Enron thing, they are quite nice.

    On topic, my car runs on CNG as well as gas, but this sounds much better. Get with it US!
     
  19. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #19
    Thank God for small mercies....
     
  20. Kernow macrumors 65816

    Kernow

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    #20
    Iceland has always been one of the more environmentally friendly countries (in terms of pollution/fossil fuels at least), and it is good to see they are experimenting with ways to reduce this further.

    As was pointed out above, it is a lot easier to try this with a country of only a few hundred thousand people, but hopefully if this works then it can be adopted by other countries.
     
  21. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

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    #21
    The US generates a plurality (I'd venture a majority but I'm too lazy to look it up) of its energy from coal. Gas (that's natural gas; gasoline isn't used for electricity generation) is used sparingly to fill in during peaks and unexpected spikes.

    Liquid fuels account for a very small fraction of generation. Nearly all the power comes from coal, nuclear and hyrdoelectric stations.

    No, it'll never happen because the amount of energy it would take to build enough windmills to generate power that is transmitted (and lost) to hydrogen separation plants (which lose lots more) which is shipped to fueling stations (still losing more) and put into hydrogen cars (also wasteful) would be more energy than they make.

    Hell, to just build the windmills themselves would be require more natural resources and energy than we have. The amount of materiel in each one of those puppies is mindboggling.

    People have thought of this stuff before. Even oil companies, who have no doubt looked ahead in efforts to outpace their competition in the future. Yet they stick with oil. Is this because they're stupid? No, it's because there is no alternative to oil in the US model.

    Like it or not, we're stuck. Until we are forced to change. By which time it may be too late to change.
     
  22. Lazyhound macrumors regular

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    #22
    Stop spreading this, please.
     
  23. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #23
    Why? Is it wrong?

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2005-01-04-windmills-usat_x.htm
     
  24. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #24
    Altamont was unfortunately sited on a migration route, even more unfortunately, many of the birds in danger are endangered species. What the article fails to mention however, is that:

    Link

    One has to wonder whether articles like the USA Today's are merely propaganda.

    PCBs, commonly used in transmissioin lines are still found in the environment due to their bioaccumulation effect even though they were banned in 1978. Emissions from coal fired power plants put tons of mercury into the environment every year. The harm to birds is much greater form mercury than it is from windmills once again due to its bioaccumulation. There is no bird safe solution, there are ways to minimize the impact on birds. In the US though, I'm convinced that much of the anti wind lobby is backed by property owners and birds are used as the strawman.

    Windpower keeps jobs in the country instead of importing them to corrupt regimes punch drunk with power from their oil receipts. Wind is no panacea but it can provide a clean alternative to fossil based fuels.
     
  25. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #25
    nice post, ugg. i'd also like to add wavefarms to the list of energy technologies we need to invest in.
     

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