Showing posts from July, 2011

(Very) Much Ado About Fracking...

The quest for affordable energy fuels continues as scientists consider the pros and cons of hydraulic fracturing or 'fracking', a process in which natural gas and oil from shales is extracted by high pressure impaction of shales with a sand-chemical-water mixture. Sounds reasonable enough until you consider the fact that recent earthquakes in some parts of the UK as well as groundwater contamination might be linked to the recent increase in fracking activities. You might want to read up on it very briefly here (or watch a very good video about it), and then listen in on what the critics and concerned citizens are saying about it here and here . At any rate, more research on fracking is under-way.

Getting paid to power your home...

...using renewable sources, that is. The power and transport sectors are two of the largest contributors to rising CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions (as shown in the World greenhouse gas emission chart by WRI). A great deal of research has been conducted on ways to reduce these emissions in the transport sector-- automobile companies have improved on spark ignition and diesel engine designs so that they can run on less fuel; some other companies have designed hybrid engines and fuel cell (PEMFC) engines, although there still remains an obvious gap between many governments' targets and what is on ground. The power production sector is also making 'green' progress by looking into solar, wind, tidal and bioenergy (i.e. combined heat and power (CHP), anaerobic digestion) systems to generate cleaner electricity and heat. It is not always easy to incorporate these renewable energy systems (due to problems highlighted in an ea