Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Oil Hidden Cost

I've been arguing that the oil economy carries a number of hidden costs. Prominent examples include environmental degradation, political instability, costs associated with military interventions, and the necessity of shoveling money at people who wish us ill.

On top of that, we will see (and have seen) the costs associated with generation plants decrease as the technology develops.

My argument is that the "extra" cost is an investment in being able to avoid the hidden costs associated with the oil/coal economy.

IAGS Report
Alternet Summary

Have you read anything about the new generation plants that use mirrors to heat water rather than photovoltaics? They are supposed to be much cheaper and easier to maintain. Do you happen to know which technology was used in the plant near you?

DOE Document on solar mirror-based generation systems
Treehugger summary

(The treehugger link is a quicky summary for people who really aren't that interested. The pdf is for people who like more details.)