Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Energy, and alternative energy

Energy, energy needs, oil guzzling, pollution and socially responsible energy consumption are all areas I'm fairly passionate about. And I'm one of "those" who think democracy and respect for people's rights in the Middle East can only come when the region is free from its dependency on oil. But that's digressing from this mini-post, on progress with biofuels (a blog on energy is for sometime later).

In spite of the constantly depressing stories about oil companies, and talk of opening up the Arctic national wildlife refuge for oil drilling in the US, much progress has been made on alternative energy sources from natural, renewable sources. The various "bio-fuels" discussed come from various sources (ethanol, plant oils etc). Here is an excellent recent post from Outlook on alternative fuels. Well over a year ago, the outstanding site Good news India carried an article on some progress in India on biofuels. Last heard, the railways was considering planting Jatropa trees on its unused land by railway tracks (a good way to increase tree cover in India), and increasing its "biofuel" consumption to 15% of its fuel consumption. That amounts to a few thousand gallons of diesel saved. The IOC is also starting its biofuel field trials with jatropa oil. To learn more about this humble tree (which many of us have seen growing in dry areas all across India as we made our trips on trains) you can visit the jatropa website that I found.

For some superb blogs on energy (with an emphasis on India), read The Indic View.


Kiran said...

Ethanol, bio-diesel and other alternate fuels are all fine. But the alternate energy supporters are still waiting for the killer solution that will knock out fossil fuels for ever.

The solution will have to be rather hi-tech considering the amount of interest low-tech solutions have always generated.

Now if we turn away from low-tech forever and look to technology, the obvious solution would be the sun, because it releases enough energy in one day to last the human race a few million years. That of course is a little way off...

Sunil said...

absolutely.....but its a slow start. And its better to start somewhere....
Solar cells are slowly improving.....

Anonymous said...

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