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August 05, 2010

Techonomy - Reinventing Fire: How business can lead us beyond fossil fuels

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Reinventing Fire: How business can lead us beyond fossil fuels
Presentation by: Amory Lovins, Rocky Mountain Institute
Joined by: John McDonald, Chevron
Moderator: Peter Petre

Need to look not just as technology and policy but also design and strategy.
Shifting of peak oil from supply to demand

Winning the oil endgame - (2004) elimate oil usage in the US by 2040s.
Triple efficiency cars, trucks and planes would payback in 1 to a few years.

Hypercar SUV. (2000)
Toyota 1/x (2007)
Bright Idea van
One interesting point is that Amory touts the buildout of solar and wind power in China and then disparages the Chinese command economy building a lot of nuclear power.

I have previously written about how Amory Lovins distorts nuclear energy.
Amory pushes "micropower", which is mostly diesel, biomass and natural gas of small and big sizes. Natural gas has 4 deaths per TWH (Externe source). So 2500 Twh (to displace nuclear power) would be 10,000 deaths per year. The diesel (oil) portion is 35 deaths per TWH. The biomass about 10 deaths per TWH (35,000 deaths per year if diesel was the main source). The blended rate of deaths per TWH from micropower is over 12 deaths per TWH. Far higher than the 0.65 deaths per TWH calculated by Externe for nuclear power. Even if the micropower deaths per TWH was cut in half for lower distribution losses the number is still far higher. Diesel and natural gas are not renewable. Over 75% of the power that Lovins is talking about is diesel, natural gas and biomass.


Near Future of Nuclear Power 2010-2014

Projection for nuclear power to 2014

From the table above with a country by country projection
2009 2559 TWhe 
2010 2700 TWhe (scheduled completions, uprates, India fuel supply no longer a problem - 2009 agreements, Japan capacity similar to Dec 2009 when 26 TWhe was generated, France labor and operational issues resolved)
2011 2800 TWhe (Ukraine, Russia, Japan, France have room for operational improvements. They are investing in this effort. Only factored in as offsetting any random production problems)
2012 2885 TWhe
2013 2964 TWhe
2014 3120 TWhe


2010 9 new reactors, 6.2 GWe (shifted the two Canadian Reactors to 2011) 2011 11 new reactors, 9.3 GWe 2012 10 new reactors, 9.92 GWe 2013 12 new reactors, 13.08 GWe 2014 14 new reactors, 13.63 GWe

Other relevant articles: Deaths per terawatt hour for different energy sources.

Energy Source              Death Rate (deaths per TWh)

Coal – world average               161 (26% of world energy, 50% of electricity)
Coal – China                       278
Coal – USA                         15
Oil                                36  (36% of world energy)
Natural Gas                         4  (21% of world energy)
Biofuel/Biomass                    12
Peat                               12
Solar (rooftop)                     0.44 (less than 0.1% of world energy)
Wind                                0.15 (less than 1% of world energy)
Hydro                               0.10 (europe death rate, 2.2% of world energy)
Hydro - world including Banqiao)    1.4 (about 2500 TWh/yr and 171,000 Banqiao dead)
Nuclear                             0.04 (5.9% of world energy)




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