From the graph and the blog link supplied, the magnitude difference may be obvious but I was unable to determine the distance from the seismograph the train and the hydraulic stimulation events actually occurred. Distance matters in the validity of the blog's conclusion. A conclusion with which I agree, with known relative distances.
Frequent repetitive micro-seismic events and/or train passages can and do cause structural damage to nearby structures. If you visit almost any old railroad town in the coal belt rail shipping routes and examine both wood-frame and masonry structures you can see evidence and effects of years of vibration, enhanced by recent heavy train loads passing with much greater frequency. Modern structures are built better, usually.
My utility, a PUD, has a $7.00/month fee for a residential connection. You pay this fee whether you have any net consumption or not. This fee is justified as a payment towards maintenance and repair of the distribution system. We are in a BPA area with @ 60% hydropower so cost of production is different than coal, gas or nuclear fired plants.
All connected users have a proportional but similar obligation for distribution and production systems. Solar PV is a production system and production systems can mean a reduction in demand on central production systems and therefore have some value to the utility.
Energy efficiency improvements offer a permanent reduction in demand and often a reduction in power factor penalties. These factors and not PV in itself are the real threat to the long term prospects of the current utility service model. Those who are interested in solar PV are often also interested in energy efficiency measures. Companies which promote solar PV oftem promote a variety of energy efficiency products and services. The results of energy efficiency projects are often invisible to everyone except the bean-counters at the utilities. They are afraid of change, very afraid.
As one of those of a certain age who experienced the price shock of that historic oil embargo I remember the pain of $1.10 gasoline a few months after $0.25/gallon was everywhere. I could fill up my VW beetle for $2.50 then it cost more than $10. I was a union electrician and well paid at $7.50/hour, but it still hurt. The ratio from then until today is about the same. .25 to 1.10 or today's 1.10 to 4.10. It lends additional support to the old metaphor about if you put a frog in boiling water it will jump out; if you slowly heat the water you get cooked, fresh frog legs.
In 2003 I would not have dreamed that, ten years later, 35.1 GW of new installations annually might be possible, much less a disappointing industry performance.
All the subsidies from the developed world were intended to create a global PV manufacturing industry although probably not intended for that industry to primarily be in developing countries. This is certainly not a bad thing except for local US & EU PV installers and developers with inflated and unrealistic dreams.
The global environmental impact is far more positive for PV in places with no access to electricity. Up to 2 billion people have no access to electricity. Low cost PV can serve them first. Maybe we will learn how to stop our profligate and energy-wasteful habits in the meantime?
Substitute the correct words.
" Photovoltaics (carbon fired power plants) is (are) a crude parlor trick using a one-time, one-way molecular erosion (decomposition , combustion) process that in (is) UNSUSTAINABLE and never produces a fraction of the required input manufacturing (extraction, clean-up) energy. "
Thanks for the clarity of concept.
BTW: Electric circuits are not one-way processes.
"cradle to cradle" implies a value chain in recycling hazardous components similar to the, very mature, Lead-acid battery industry. You get paid a couple of dollars to recycle an old Lead-acid battery. It is not likely to happen with Cadmium recycling in the non-utility market.
Most Americans know that fluorescent lamps contain Mercury, another elemental toxin like Cadmium or Lead, yet most also toss them in the garbage after breaking to fit in the can.
As a builder of temporarily sited modular instrumentation systems to monitor environmental contamination, we have compared PV to grid connection for more than a decade, using solar sometimes and diesel generators or grid extensions at other times. Ten years ago a grid extension of one mile would be about equal to a PV system with storage and a backup generator. Today it is 400' and one pole. When you consider environmental impact of a grid extension, PV wins easily.
Grid parity is when the power is no more expensive or less reliable using PV instead of a grid connection.
Grid parity based on cost per kW-hr, net metering, FITs and ROI is a deceptive illusion used to sell solar PV and is meaningless in an government incentive and subsidy environment.
Compressed air energy storage may contribute to the impetus for a demonstration. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory recently completed a compressed air energy storage analysis with recommendations.
The place for that demonstration is the Hanford nuclear reservation. Look at Google Earth, all that brown is open space on the nation's most contaminated Superfund site.
Linking PNNL with Energy Northwest's nuclear plant and renewable energy park and then linking the Vitrification plant on a forty mile loop. 10,000 passenger trips per day, mostly in one occupant automobiles, could be displaced by clean, fast transportation. A 200 MPH bus rather than the "Concorde"
The short length would encourage more "air hockey table" technology rather than "rail gun" technology. Linear motors are already proven at this scale.
The entire route is controlled by DOE with no private landowners. A fully operational demonstration could be built at this location which is actually a really important feature of any potential demonstration project.
In the hyperloop-alpha document (57 page PDF) the description puts the windowless vehicle inside a partially air-evacuated tube and specifically mentions pedestrian safety features. There would be no place for Snidley Whiplash to tie the widow to the tracks or for anyone to jump in front of the vehicle. A tube breach would eliminate the differential pressure and the vehicle would stop unless directly upon the linear motor coils which would be instantly de-energized or reversed.
Limiting the G-forces associated with acceleration and deceleration is critically important. Both linear motors and pneumatic devices can be precisely controlled. The Mag-Lev trains have proven linear motor control, however pneumatic transport is not proven at this scale but seems to be scalable.
My previous comments sound like I am a cheerleader for a socially irresponsible and politically impossible pipe dream by an irrelevant rich guy. Fifty years ago I might have carried a sign screaming "Eat the Rich" or some such nonsense. My sign would now say "Eat the Greedy, they are already well marbled"
Private wealth combined with creativity and social awareness is our society's only hope for continued technological progress. The rest of the world will rely on government support of critical industries and we will continue to eat their dust.
Whether the hyperloop concept is a good idea or not is irrelevant. Willingness to pursue wild dreams is to be admired and is the essence of human progress. Why rebuild 19th century trains in the 21st century?
There will not be any consensus for any government support for technological or environmental projects in the US until we suffer an inconceivable disaster in the US.
Other than a demonstration, the Hyperloop system could only be built in China by Chinese workers, few American union workers and US real estate barons will benefit.
If built in the US it would probably be built by some union workers assembling foreign made components and some real estate owners might do well but the rich guys won't use it because it is really just a fast bus ride and the union guys won't use it because the fare would be too high for the lower-middle class income of most unionized workers.
We dream up stuff in the USA then we buy it from someplace else. Solar PV anyone!! Other countries seem better able to actually do things anymore. Just look at the global structure of companies we think of as American icons. GE and Apple quickly come to mind.