Japan is re-starting two of its nuclear plants to supply the country’s need for energy. There is not yet a green solution. But that is changing…
While the nation in general frets over power supply shortages this summer, many of the more than 300 “biomass towns” in Japan are offering a glimpse at a range of new energy alternatives.
Among them is the city of Maniwa in Okayama Prefecture. It has been attracting attention for successfully developing comprehensive city planning and industrial tourism based on the promotion of biomass utilization to efficient produce energy.
The biomass comes from byproducts of their lumber industry, sawdust and bark processed into wood pellets that burn clean and hot enough to fuel electric generators.
You can read the rest in tomorrow’s Japan Times
Excerpt from the State of the Union, 2011…
“This is our generation’s Sputnik moment. Two years ago, I said that we needed to reach a level of research and development we haven’t seen since the height of the Space Race. In a few weeks, I will be sending a budget to Congress that helps us meet that goal. We’ll invest in biomedical research, information technology, and especially clean energy technology – an investment that will strengthen our security, protect our planet, and create countless new jobs for our people.”
Getting to the moon took more perspiration than inspiration, but without vision it never would have happened.
What if we hold our President to his word on this? I watched his address in the company of people who assembled for an informal SOTU party, and when Barack Obama talked education the teachers jumped up and cheered.
We still have the vote, and we still have influence when politicians know that people who care about an issue will turn out. Do we have any clout in the nerd community? I read Scientific American for entertainment, and the editors there are very fired up about science and math education.
Can we imagine a future as glorious as our past?
This may be the moment. I’m watching the snow fall though my plastic-covered windows, imagining a future of clean, smart energy.
I think about a fourteen year old girl, looking at a black and white TV, watching Americans walk on the moon. Yes we did. Yes we can.
It’s a long way from shovel-ready, but the US has approved an offshore wind farm off Cape Cod.
There’s no free lunch. Wind power is way better than ‘drill baby drill’. Few Rhode Islanders know that there was once a proposal to build a nuclear reactor in Charlestown. I’ll take a wind turbine any day.
Meanwhile, oil spills into the Gulf of Mexico.