Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Two For Alternate Energy

Yeah, gasoline prices are law. So what? They will go up and supply will go down. Not having an energy policy is a sucker's game. With us as the sucker.

Cities, entrepreneurs looking to hydropower:

"Many decades ago, cost-conscious Henry Ford turned to hydroelectric plants to power his car factories like the one by the Great Miami River, near the Cincinnati suburb of Hamilton. That assembly plant is long gone, but the power plant and the technology behind it isn't.

Far from it. The push to get electricity from moving water is only picking up steam.

There is mounting political pressure to get more energy from alternative sources, and developers are pushing ambitious projects to exploit America's biggest rivers for power.

'Some of these applications have been around for decades, but there's renewed interest now,' said Jeff Hawk, spokesman for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Pittsburgh district. 'We've seen a spurt of applications; we're busier now than ever.'

A new generation of low-impact hydroelectric plants is expected to light up the Ohio River Valley. Along the Mississippi River, a city and a small startup firm have separate hopes of harnessing that artery's energy potential either through a few big turbines or thousands of tiny, submerged ones.

Water is already the leading renewable energy source used by utilities to generate electric power."

Coal-gasification project ended for now:
"Plans to build a $1.5 billion plant in southwestern Indiana to turn coal into natural gas have been put on ice.

The developer, Indiana Gasification LLC, yesterday pulled its application to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, according to The Times of Munster and the Evansville Courier & Press.

The project, which was to be built in Spencer County, took a hit earlier this year when Citizens Energy Group in Indianapolis said it wouldn't buy the gas.

Then yesterday, Evansville-based utility Vectren Corp. said uncertainty over potential federal carbon restrictions presented too much risk to commit to a 30-year contract to buy the gas."

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