The heft and feel of a well-worn handle,
The sight of shavings that curl from a blade;
The logs in the wood pile, the sentiment of huge beams in an old-fashioned house;
The smell of fresh cut timber and the pungent fragrance of burning leaves;
The crackle of kindling and the hiss of burning logs.
Abundant to all the needs of man, how poor the world would be
Without wood.

Everard Hinrichs, quoted by Eric Sloane in A Reverence for Wood


Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Future of Energy (2)

" of these days, you might buy biofuels for your car. You’re not going to buy them from Biofuels, Inc. You’re going to buy them from Shell and Exxon and Chevron, the usual suspects. They’re already doing that." - Byron King, 
For us to understand the possibilities of wood energy, we really have to keep our eye on developments in emerging energy trends in the other technologies. I ran across this nice little interview today that covers some interesting possibilities, and is worth a couple of minutes to read...

The Future of Energy - The Daily Reckoning

Mr. King is a geologist experienced in energy investing, so his perspective on energy development is a good read on where the big money is likely to go in the next twenty years. Once again, however, we see that the experts in the field really don't take biomass energy, or wood heating in particular, seriously. It doesn't even appear on their radars, and it doesn't even warrant a mention by Mr. King in the interview. His only reference to renewables, in fact, is one of dismissal...
"Well, you can take your renewables, and you can double them, double them again, double them again, maybe even double them again. And in terms of running the world, you might get to 10% of the total world power system. I’m sorry to break the news to you."
The blind spot for these folks seems to be that they think of energy entirely in term of the power grid and transportation, and the fuels that best match those demands. They always seem to overlook the fact that biomass heating has the potential to extend the world's supply of fossil fuels by decades, perhaps even centuries. The video below demonstrates one way this will happen.

When we get heating demand recognized as a separate third leg of the energy stool, perhaps we'll start to get a little more press for wood heating potential in the future of energy.

No comments: