What if there was a way to cut out OPEC and still reduce our costs of energy, while keeping the energy profits here at home and fund our own national energy needs, making jobs for our people. Would we do it? Do we have the national nerve to bring it off?
The situation today leaves our fate at the whim of OPEC members with their never ending greed and the major oil companies with their never ending record profits and their need to find oil deeper in the ocean and inside shale or the National Wildlife Preserve. We have a once in a lifetime chance to take back control of our Energy Destiny.
I have come to realize that there are three things that we need to do as a nation:
- Build ocean-powered electrical generators to supply the whole country’s electrical grid with power and cover peak load, replacing all natural gas, coal and eventually nuclear power stations. Our country is surrounded on three sides by water which has ocean currents that can turn the largest turbines that can be built and run them 24/7.
- Off peak-load make hydrogen with electrolysis of water by building Hydrogen ‘Factories” at strategic spots all over the country.
- Establish a program to refit every internal combustion engine in the country to run on hydrogen as an alternative, i.e. a switch to turn from fossil fuel to hydrogen where it is available. Later, when it is available everywhere, then one fuel tank.
If we only succeed with building ocean generators then we will be way ahead, but if we can change our whole energy fuel over to hydrogen then we could have it all. I want it all:
- Freedom from OPEC’s ever increasing greed.
- The Russians will go broke and there can be no new Cold War. 3. The Arab countries will go broke without oil, all of them: Saudi Arabia with all their charities to fund 9-11, Dubai will never finish their excesses which our hard-working people are funding, Iran will not have money for nuclear weapons.
- If global warming is caused by CO2 then there will be no more CO2. Either way we will have clean air and the sky will turn back to the deep color of blue that has been lost.
- The money stays on-shore in our balance of payments.
- We employ our people in our energy production.
- Cheaper energy and everything we buy or use or eat becomes cheaper-deflation for years.
- No US soldier will ever have to die for oil again, ever.
- The price of oil will plummet.
Another Way To Look At It:
Oil companies are vertically integrated into:
- Exploration and production –crude
These oil companies mark their price up at each level as the lower number segments sell it to the higher level ones.
Crude oil production is the equivalent of the Ocean Electrical Generators. Our government organizes the oil compaies and power companies into a partnership to make Ocean generators happen.
We would post our goal on the Internet everyday:
Cost of West Texas Crude vs. Cost the equivalent Kilowatts of Electricity.
The goal would be to beat down the cost of Kilowatts to ½ that of crude, energy equivalent.
Government would organize the first Exploration and Production efforts.
The hydrogen factories must produce hydrogen cheaper than the equivalent of a gallon of gasoline.
The Cost of a gallon of gasoline vs. the Cost of the equivalent pounds of hydrogen.
Once the cost of hydrogen starts to drop below that of gasoline in a pilot project then government would withdraw and let free markets work. No government has solved a major problem in this country. It has taken private enterprise and new technology that has solved oru problems. Example, the horse manure pollution in our large cities in the last quarter of the 19th century was only solved with the invention of the automobile.
Electrical power can be distributed through the existing grid. Give the electrical companies a lower price than they can produce themselves and price all other alternatives out of the market. They can keep their old plants for backup from hurricanes, ice storms, etc.
Hydrogen has a problem, it does not compress readily which makes distribution by truck problematic, meaning only local. We will need to build pipelines to distribute the hydrogen. The smaller molecule leads to losses if pumped through existing natural gas pipelines, as much as 3%. This amount may be acceptable for the beginning of the program. Perhaps the valves are the source of the loss and may be replaced over time.
How to proceed?
First establish a Department of Research and Development, which is another set of ideas. The R&D department would work with all other departments of government when testing out new programs, particularly national program such as Medicare or Universal Health Care which should be tested in one or two states to wring out the bugs. The President would set the priorities and Congress would vote the funding for each program, but not how it is implemented. The teams would solve one problem while working with each department then move on to the next, without each department having its own permanently funded R&D and diluting the effort and inflating the costs. (Another idea to work on would be a secure method of voting from home using a PC-covered elsewhere).
The Key Master would head up the R&D program. He should have a wide range of experience and a deep mental capacity, a genius, and he must command the total respect of the Team Masters. The TM’s will teleconference with the KM almost daily.
The Team Masters will take up clearly defined goals and are expected to deliver and on time. These TM’s are over-educated persons with engineering and scientific backgrounds, probably in their 30’s. They are be marked by the fact that they have never failed at anything major, overachievers, and they require a strong code of ethics, with infinite energy.
The Team Masters will be given the power to ask anyone or agency in the country for their help to achieve this national goal. If that fails then he/she has the power to command that help. Each time that the TM uses the power to command a person or agency or corporation, then he must immediately copy the Key Master. The only exception would be the Defense Department where all such need to command will have to be approved by the Head of the Dept. of Defense. In extreme cases, the President would be the arbiter, but asking the President’s help would mean failure for all involved. Surely, he/she has enough problems without our generating more. Don’t trouble the Boss.
The Energy Independence Initiative would have one Key Master and four Team Masters or TM’*s:
- TM to head up development of Ocean Electrical Generators.
- TM to head up development of Hydrogen ‘Factories”.
- TM to develop distribution of electricity and hydrogen.
- TM to head up the conversion of all internal combustible engines over to hydrogen, initially as an alternative vehicle, with two tanks, one for hydrogen and one for gas or diesel with a switch from one to another, depending upon availability.
*All Key Masters and Team Masters will be highly paid per private industry. We want the best then we need to pay the best. The payoff in investment will be immense.
If this succeeds, every child in America will know their names and everyone of them would like to grow up to be a Team Master. If they fail to meet their goals then they will be pulled, no apologies. If they succeed on a large visible goal such as Energy Independence then they can name their own ticket afterwards.
Part 3 Timeline for Ten Years:
- Use the first year to sponsor a contest for designs for the ocean generators. Anyone can submit a design; it can be a CAD/CAM entry or a sketch. There would be a lucrative prize.
- 2nd and 3rd years to build models and test them.
- 4th and 5th year to build and test 4-8 prototypes in North and South coasts of Atlantic and Pacific and in the Gulf.
- Years 6 through 10, forge a partnership with industry to build the equivalent of 100 Hoover Dams. Work with GE, Westinghouse, whoever to build rigs with generators, but the U.S. government will own the patents and world distribution rights. The American people will invest billions in this product the first ten years, but after that this system will save the American people billions and make them billions in profits.
- Will work with all available talent, and engineers worldwide to develop the most efficient electrolysis factory. Year one, accept all designs submitted in a contest. There should be a lucrative prize.
- Year 2 and 3 will build computer models and small-scale models.
- Year 4 and 5 will build and test several prototypes, as deemed necessary. For example, two perhaps three designs are seen as promising and are worthy of testing. If one design blows the others away, then so be it.
- Years 6 through 10 build full-scale production units as needed to supply the nation with enough hydrogen to replace all gasoline, diesel, coal, and natural gas needs in the United States.
- Meet with all of the power companies in the country. Decide upon the most affordable method to plug into the grid. Apparently, power lines are more efficient in moving electricity around the country than piping or trucking hydrogen, i.e. less loss of energy.
- Lead development of a pipeline product that is cost-effective and made for hydrogen transmission. Work with oil and gas companies to make this happen.
- TM3 must come up with a plan to feed power to areas with plentiful water and then site the hydrogen factories and build pipelines out from these. The most likely scenario would be to build these factories all around the coastlines toward the center of each state and the country. Alaska and Hawaii have lots of water to supply their generation. Also, electricity would be transmitted into the center of the country to the Mississippi/Ohio System and the Great Lakes where factories will be set up along side the plentiful water then hydrogen pipelines would branch out from this river system both East and West to complete the coverage of the country.
- Terminals would be set up all along the pipeline to load trucks to disperse hydrogen locally to each MSA.
- Planning must be completed by the end of year 4 and beginning of year 5, once the full-scale models are judged successful, then start laying pipe as quickly as possible, beginning with the areas that will have hydrogen factories operational the soonest.
- TM3 would set the price of electricity. Every power company would pay the same price per Kilowatt. Every customer in the country would pay the same amount. The costs of electrical power should be pushed down appreciably to give all the citizens a break and yet yield the power companies a reasonable and stable profit. An extra break would be given to companies who bury their ugly overhead lines in urban areas (not transmission lines but the ones on the city streets).
- 1. Years 1 through 5, work with all engine manufacturers to certify every engine and vehicle for refit with hydrogen for fuel. All must work together and all will share any improvements. Each manufacturer will be responsible for developing a certification curriculum for their engines or vehicles and also responsible for stating clearly such models which are not safe for modification to run on hydrogen. No one will make any company participate but it will be a public forum. Those who do not participate will not be privileged to the most update data.Those who do contribute will be permitted in writing by TM4 to claim their helpfulness in their advertising. He or She might even do ads for them for free, just about the rightful claims. Ex. A grateful country would like to thank GM today (or substitute Toyota, CAT, Cummins, Harley, etc.) for their improvement in compressing hydrogen into a smaller tank using this unique process…..For this, as a Team Master and a citizen of the great country would like to offer my thanks. The emphasis early on would be for vehicles with dual tanks, hydrogen and gas/diesel with a dial to switch from one to the other. Imagine a tractor trailer truck with a diesel tank on one side and hydrogen on the other, with the ability to switch back to diesel when not in an area where hydrogen has been provided. Families might dedicate one vehicle to hydrogen for around town and a gasoline powered vehicle for trips, in the first ten years. The changeovers would be market driven not by tax incentives. Price hydrogen fuel so cheaply that the math is simple. Google BMW Hydrogen for example of same engine with gasolien and hydrogen tanks.
- Parallel to the development of hydrogen fueled vehicles, TM4 must develop hydrogen stations and tanks and pumps for dispensing the product safely. Ideally, it should be self-serve, but if not then training should be established for certifying attendants.
- TM4 would oversee the modifying or building of Green stations. Every station in the country will pay the same rack price, only the state equivalent of road taxes and the freight from the terminal would be different. TM4 would set the price.
This program would cost billions and more billions, especially in the ramping up years five through10. I would not even put it in the Budget. Let the Fed loan the money to the National Power Corp. After years 8, 9, and 10, significant revenue would begin to reverse the trend. Once completed, over the next 30 years, the money would be repaid and with interest back to the Fed and the American people who will benefit as will their children. This is a once in a lifetime chance to take back control of our energy fate as a country and keep the rewards and profits from our endeavors and return it back to the people to do the most good. . Now is a new time. And if global warming is caused in anyway by man’s endeavors then this should help to right the balance. The sky will be true blue again.
My own design would start from an anemometer, which would catch the current regardless of what direction from which it came. The cups might be a 100 feet high or have a stack of anemometers a 100 feet high. I also have another idea based on an ice cream freezer. A cornucopia might work to utilize the Ventura Effect to increase the speed of the current over the turbine. There might be a way to stack the turbines around the shaft.
Looking at countries in the world, which have a long coastline. Obviously, Great Britain, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand, and Indonesia, India is all but surrounded by ocean as is Africa and South America. Europe all a long coastline, particularly if one includes the Mediterranean. There is a lot of ocean in this world. With cheap energy then we will have to make the choice of ever increasing traffic or mass transit (covered elsewhere).
It is true; these ideas might never work out. But what if they do?
This changes everything.