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Another Casualty of Typhoon Haiyan: Geothermal Power

Soulskill posted about 10 months ago | from the thanks-bernoulli dept.

Earth 78

necro81 writes "Little known even in environmental circles is a renewable energy success story: five geothermal power plants on Leyte Island in the Philippines — each of which produces enough power for the entire island — that collectively produce more than 10% of the Philippines' total electrical demand. From boreholes deep underground comes pressurized water heated to 280 Celsius. At the surface it flashes into steam, turning one set of turbines, then cools and contracts to spin a second set of turbines. The low-grade steam is then condensed back into water and reinjected into the bedrock. But Typhoon Haiyan destroyed the cooling towers, snapped transmission towers, and scattered the employees."

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Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (4, Insightful)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 10 months ago | (#45496451)

Such a shame, hopefully they plants can be repaired quickly. And hay, apparently they are much safer than the alternatives.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (0)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45496747)

Yes, because we have many examples of nuclear power plants melting down after getting hit by tropical cyclones.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497095)

It's 100% safe, almost. [go.com] But honestly, you'd expect some problems in third world countries like Japan and USA, right?

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45497305)

So now "problems" means "meltdown"? Did you even read your link?

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (3, Informative)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 10 months ago | (#45497181)

It doesn't make much sense to power an island that has a functional alternative in geothermal with nuclear. It's a bit like trying to shoot birds with a machine gun. A massive overkill.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45497261)

I was just commenting on the absurdity of AmiMoJo's statement, not arguing that they should have built nuclear. No matter what plant they built, when the transmission towers went down, the plant would have to shut down.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 10 months ago | (#45499203)

He does have a point in that nuclear would likely not have to shut down, at least not for long. Both far greater security measures and lack of need for coolant towers, as coast nuclear plants usually use sea water as coolant, would indeed be far more likely to survive disaster intact.

You don't have the same choice with geothermal which is very much tied to the location of the source.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45500733)

Look at his subject line - he was implying that if these plants had been nuclear, they would be experiencing a meltdown.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 10 months ago | (#45501489)

After Fukushima, a lot of people seem to have that misconception I guess. They never advertise that another plant that was actually closer to epicenter survived it just fine.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45511455)

After Fukushima, a lot of people seem to have that misconception I guess. They never advertise that another plant that was actually closer to epicenter survived it just fine.

Also many people have been drinking and driving many times.
Just because a few people kill others by driving intoxicated it doesn't mean it's a bad idea to do it!
So much fun!

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 10 months ago | (#45513301)

Judging by the sheer stupidity of that comparison, I'm guessing you're currently practicing what you're preaching AC.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 10 months ago | (#45499635)

It's not absurd. Japan had the same choice, invest trillions of Yen in geothermal or in nuclear. It chose nuclear for a variety of reasons, like wanting to be part of the nuclear club and have the means to build nuclear weapons at short notice.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45500725)

And Japan's nuclear meltdown happened after an earthquake and tsunami that killed 15,000 people - not a hurricane. It might be perfectly reasonable to say that building a nuclear plant in a country that sits within the ring of fire is a bad idea, but implying that this particular storm would have caused a meltdown is pure FUD.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

Todd Palin (1402501) | about 9 months ago | (#45502459)

Fukishima melted down because the earthquake cut off power, and then the tsunami flooded the emergency generators because the designers failed to anticipate the size of the tsunami wave. In a cyclone of this size the loss of electric power is a certainty. If the Fukishima designers failed to adequately protect the generators from an unanticipated tsunami, what is to say the designers of a Filipino nuclear plant would have anticipated the height of the storm surge from such an extraordinary cyclone? I think the assumption that a nuclear plant would have survived is little more than an assumption. A poorly designed nuclear plant could be built anywhere. Failing to protect from unanticipated events is a mistake that engineers make all the time.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 9 months ago | (#45504065)

what is to say the designers of a Filipino nuclear plant would have anticipated the height of the storm surge from such an extraordinary cyclone?

Because it has never happened anywhere in the world, despite nuclear facilities taking hits from hurricanes on a regular basis. I know from memory that a single nuclear plant (St. Lucie) took two direct hurricane hits in a single season, and it sits on a low-lying barrier island in Florida.

A poorly designed nuclear plant could be built anywhere.

LOL, yes, that is certainly true. Some of the early designs were terrifying, and the Russians kept it up until Chernobyl.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 10 months ago | (#45497879)

Well, if you were a door to door nuclear power plant and machine gun salesman, you might disagree.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 10 months ago | (#45499187)

I've never met that mythical creature, so I can't comment.

Re: Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

Travis Repine (2861521) | about 10 months ago | (#45500745)

Exactly! If it was a state you're posing then you could make the argument that nuclear is the way to go, but on an island like this geothermal is the ideal way to go. It cheap and a hell of a lot more cost effective

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497343)

The description of the damages would imply a similar failure for most other types of electrical power generation. No one killed, dont panic.

Re:Shame, but at least they didn't melt down (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45497731)

Exactly my point. Read the subject of the person I was replying to.

Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (5, Insightful)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | about 10 months ago | (#45496491)

For many in the Philippines, the damage here exemplifies a broader paradox: A storm consistent with some scientists’ warnings about climate change has done tremendous damage to an island that is one of the world’s biggest success stories of renewable energy, and to a country that has contributed almost nothing to the global accumulation of greenhouse gases.

Come on NYT! That not paradoxical; it's ironic.

Regardless, this is an odd way to frame the story. Such a storm would (and did) destroy other kinds of power plants. Geothermal power is not a casualty of the typhoon.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (2)

mcmonkey (96054) | about 10 months ago | (#45496709)

Come on NYT! That not paradoxical; it's ironic.

It's not ironic, it's unfortunate.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (4, Funny)

leathered (780018) | about 10 months ago | (#45496753)

It's not ironic, it's unfortunate.

It's like rain on your wedding day.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 10 months ago | (#45500989)

It's not ironic, it's unfortunate.

Coming up with examples of "ironic" which are not unfortunate to the subject is pretty hard.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

mcmonkey (96054) | about 10 months ago | (#45501749)

A wind farm getting blown away by a typhoon is ironic. A geothermal plant getting blown away is not.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | about 10 months ago | (#45504563)

Context in the article is everything here. Yes, I agree that a wind farm getting blown a way would normally be a better example of irony than a geothermal plant suffering such an end. I'd say likewise for a geothermal power plant getting destroyed by a volcano erupting. But in this case the article did not speak of the geothermal power plant as geothermal power plant, but as a response to global warming in a country that had contributed little to the same. It was in this context that they say, 'Look, here's a paradox: a potential solution for global warming gets destroyed by a typhoon which was particularly vicious because of global warming.' But there is nothing paradoxical about this. Yet a potential solution to global warming being destroyed by global warming is ironic and also, as you say, unfortunate.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (2)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45496755)

Such a storm would (and did) destroy other kinds of power plants.

My guess is the author feels those other plants DESERVED getting destroyed, and without the green angle there is really not much of a story here.

I'd rather be asking why they are bothering to have cooling towers, and perhaps even why they are bothering to re-inject the water at all. The Island gets 200 inches of rainfall every month, and twice that in their summer months, and its sitting in the middle of the ocean. If it was still felt that injection was necessary, just inject rainwater and dispense with the cooling towers.

It won't matter how fast you get the plant back on line, because all the transmission facilities are torn down. This is the greater loss, yet it seems mentioned more in passing. I rather suspect those will be put back up on poles and towers rather than taking the opportunity to bury a such of the local grid as possible. The lesson will have to be re-learned.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45496963)

It won't matter how fast you get the plant back on line, because all the transmission facilities are torn down. This is the greater loss, yet it seems mentioned more in passing. I rather suspect those will be put back up on poles and towers rather than taking the opportunity to bury a such of the local grid as possible. The lesson will have to be re-learned.

Transmission lines aren't on towers because it is cheap, it is because AC couples to the ground, and significantly reduces efficiency over a distance. Until we develop an economically viable means of transforming to/from high voltage DC, application will be limited. (ie. underwater, where there isn't another option.)

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

jblues (1703158) | about 10 months ago | (#45497259)

Such a storm would (and did) destroy other kinds of power plants.

I rather suspect those will be put back up on poles and towers rather than taking the opportunity to bury a such of the local grid as possible. The lesson will have to be re-learned.

I believe power pretty much always goes up on poles and over land here, not buried. . . Besides being Typhoon-prone, we're in the pacific ring of fire so are earthquake prone. . . Japan does the same thing. . It can get a little messy, though I'm sure it doesn't have to look like this typical manila example: http://t3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTAIMc75zk7cAb0GAzO1u-uhgfJ1c3_ZqvvLPhURmhtJusKhWXh [gstatic.com]

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45497539)

I believe power pretty much always goes up on poles and over land here, not buried

I have no idea where "over here" is, but walking around where I live I can't see any power poles any where
near my neighborhood. Its all under ground till you get several streets away, and encounter a substation.

You can marshal a bunch of crews to restring high tension lines from the plants, because those aren't
that much line to string. Its all straight line

But when EVERY SINGLE neighborhood's distribution grid is blown down, high-lines really don't matter that much.
This is the part that needs to be underground, and is being steadily put underground in every new
development. (Its been that way for 40 years in the US, and most of Europe. )

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

Velex (120469) | about 10 months ago | (#45499401)

Not in Western/Southwestern Michigan. Good thing we don't typically get hurricance force winds. (Although last Sunday coulda fooled me.)

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (1)

yo303 (558777) | about 10 months ago | (#45498307)

I'd rather be asking why they are bothering to have cooling towers,

That part was explained in TFS. It is because after the expanding pressurized hot water expands into steam past turbines, they cool it and run the condensing steam past turbines a second time to get even more energy out of it. Clever.

Re:Renewable Doesn't Mean Invincible (2)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45498493)

Not particularly clever, its done that way in every steam plant in the world, but you have the steps mixed up. The cooling towers are the last step before re injection, AFTER all passes through the various turbines.

Solar and wind are very fragiles... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497039)

On the contrary, renewables like wind and solar are very fragile. Both on a local scale, and on the extensive grid that they require to deliver some semblance of reliable power. Any typhoon or hurricane will totally destroy wind or solar farms along with the grid, and leave a completely non-functional energy system.

Nuclear plants on the other hand are very robust against natural disaster, and allow for a highly distributed and reliable energy system. Along with small modular reactors there will be an ever decreasing dependance on a nation-wide grid.

Re:Solar and wind are very fragiles... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497153)

On the contrary, renewables like wind and solar are very fragile.

And those oil platforms in the Gulf of Mexico are rock solid, aren't they?

It'll probably be fixed... (3, Insightful)

NicBenjamin (2124018) | about 10 months ago | (#45496499)

The Phillipines is poor enough that a storm like kills a lot of people, but it's getting richer fast. I'm not a geothermal engineer, but I'd assume a very expensive bit of building a geothermal plant is creating the boreholes in the first place, and then keeping them from collapsing. If the hole survived it should be much cheaper to repair then it was to build in the first place. IOf there was enough business to justify it then there's probably enough to justify rebuilding it at a lower price.

Hell, if they had a good insurance policy it won't cost them a dime. Their rates will skyrocket in the future, but at least they'll have their electricity back.

Re:It'll probably be fixed... (2)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45496785)

If the hole survived

When was the last time you saw a windstorm destroy a hole?

These all surface through concrete slabs. The company is now testing all of the components of that power plant in the hope of bringing it back into full service and repowering Leyte Island by Dec. 24.

The issue is more about the power grid than these plants.

Re:It'll probably be fixed... (1)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | about 10 months ago | (#45497047)

I figure a windstorm destroys a hole by filling it in with a lot of debris. As this was a typhoon, there is a good possibility of a lot of runoff filled with sediment and debris, and if the structures around the boreholes were destroyed, then that sediment and debris could convievably end up down the borehole.

of course, as you stated, they hope to be back online in a month, so that was probably not the case.

Re:It'll probably be fixed... (1)

NicBenjamin (2124018) | about 10 months ago | (#45497235)

Rain causes mudslides, and a hurricane has a lot of rain.

High winds can blow things into holes, and hurricanes tend to spawn tornadoes.

I'll admit it's unlikely, but it could happen.

Re:It'll probably be fixed... (2)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45497483)

Blow thing into holes?

These aren't some random Geyser that they shoved a hose down into, you do know that don't you?

These are man drilled bore-holes with steel casings that terminate in a concrete slab inside a big building.
See the picture: http://www.geothermal-energy.org/pliki/Image/gal/10_4.jpg [geothermal-energy.org]

You might get a mud slide flowing through the plant and have to wash that away, but is not like
palm trees and broken houses are going to flow into the hole.

Re:It'll probably be fixed... (1)

NicBenjamin (2124018) | about 10 months ago | (#45497653)

I believe the point of the article was that the various big buildings involved have been severely damaged. And if one of the tornadoes that accompanies any Typhoon/Hurricane hit their building in the wrong spot they could easily lose their boreholes. Regardless I didn't bring up the possibility because I thought that they'd definitely have that problem, I brought it up because they theoretically could have that problem.

Mind you I can't actually check any of this, because I refuse to deal with the Times paywall, but what proportion of slashdot posters actually read the entire article?

Over 9000!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45496503)

Sounds like the Super Haiyan was over 9000!!!!!!!!

Leave it to corporate media (3, Interesting)

rsborg (111459) | about 10 months ago | (#45496617)

To swiftboat almost any anything that Big Industry (in this case, Big Oil) considers a threat/nuisance. WTF do they think would have happened if an aging TEPCO reactor was in the same storm? I wouldn't like to be there and find out. How would a deepwater oil platform have fared?

I'm pretty much sick of what passes for "news" these days. It's all pretty much shameless puff pieces and hit jobs because that's what corporations pay for.

Re:Leave it to corporate media (1)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45496831)

Really, what part of the story had anything to do with that?
You didn't even bother to read the story did you?

The plants are expected to be back on line by Christmas, as soon as the employees can make some
arrangements for their families. Whether or not the power grid will be ready is another issue.

But big oils wasn't even involved here, you just took any story as an excuse to rant.

Re:Leave it to corporate media (1)

khallow (566160) | about 10 months ago | (#45496837)

While the Philippines don't have a nuclear power plant, they do have off shore oil platforms.

Re:Leave it to corporate media (1)

jblues (1703158) | about 10 months ago | (#45497295)

While the Philippines don't have a nuclear power plant, they do have off shore oil platforms.

We *do* have a nuclear power plant. . . It was just decided never to turn it on. . . thank fuck for that! (Because it was later damaged beyond repair in the Mount Pinatubo eruption of the 90s).

Re:Leave it to corporate media (1)

khallow (566160) | about 10 months ago | (#45497395)

"Built on a volcano" is an automatic turn off for me. I advocate using nuclear power, but you have to exercise some sense in where you put them.

Re:Leave it to corporate media (1)

Shakrai (717556) | about 10 months ago | (#45497049)

You mean the "corporate media" like the New York Times, that used this as yet another opportunity to blame climate change?

For many in the Philippines, the damage here exemplifies a broader paradox: A storm consistent with some scientists’ warnings about climate change has done tremendous damage to an island that is one of the world’s biggest success stories of renewable energy, and to a country that has contributed almost nothing to the global accumulation of greenhouse gases.

Yep, they really sound like shrills for Big Oil with that piece.

Re:Leave it to corporate media (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497137)

Fukushima was an exception that proper regulation would have prevented. Other nuclear reactors closer to the epicenter in Japan were hit harder by the tsunami, yet survived without incident. So have reactors survived tornadoes, and they are even built to withstand plane impacts. The plants themselves are virtually indestructible.

Renewables are not, and wind/solar farms will be torn apart in such disasters. Reactors may cost billions, but they survive and produce prodigious amounts of energy. Renewables also cost billions yet they produce a small fraction of the energy and are turned to scrap in such circumstances.

No different if it had been a fossil-fueled plant (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45496707)

And what's the difference between a geo-thermal plant being put out of service by a huge storm and a fossil-fuel plant being put out of service by a huge storm? The fossil-fuel plant would not have come through unscathed either. The story is pointless.

Runaway global warning. (4, Funny)

thegarbz (1787294) | about 10 months ago | (#45496715)

That's it, we've reached the tipping point. The environment is now attacking the environmentally friendly sites first feeding it ever increasing amounts of carbon and making it's stronger.

The scientists did warn us about a runaway chain reaction.

Re:Runaway global warning. (1)

WWJohnBrowningDo (2792397) | about 10 months ago | (#45497327)

That explains why climate change deniers all seem to lack intelligence; they're merely trolling apparitions created by Gaia.

Re:Runaway global warning. (1)

Jesus_666 (702802) | about 10 months ago | (#45499857)

There is only one solution.

We must kill the environment before it kills us.

Re:Runaway global warning. (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | about 10 months ago | (#45500017)

Way ahead of you. I've got a heater and an AC in the room on at the same time. We'll get that damned environment before it gets us.

Geothermal power (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45496731)

Maybe I'm paranoid, but isn't that tapping into a non-renewable resource - the heat of earth's core? Now, one could argue that the quantities used by these plants is utterly insignificant. The same could probably be said about an individual coal plant's contribution to global warming.

Re:Geothermal power (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45496773)

And if we had a single coal plant, no one would be worried.

Re:Geothermal power (4, Insightful)

roc97007 (608802) | about 10 months ago | (#45496973)

I dunno, it occurs to me that this leads us to a dark place, where any creation of energy is condemned because it has some effect on the environment, without any appreciation of scale. (In this case, the (paltry, in comparison) geothermal energy actually in use by the plant vs the several orders of magnitude higher thermal energy contained within the earth's core.)

It reminds me of a conversation I had several years ago with a Green, regarding fusion power, where I described taking sea water, separating out the deuterium for fuel, heating the water to drive turbines for power, and using a portion of that power to continue the process. (This is probably impractical for several reasons, but it was what I knew at the time and served "for sake of argument".) Her reaction was indignation that I would mine sea water for an isotope and dare to heat water to drive turbines, both of which clearly had an impact on the environment. At that point I realized there would be no solution that would be considered acceptable, and avoided the topic in the future. This was also when I came to realize that regular people often have no sense of scale.

Re:Geothermal power (2)

Shakrai (717556) | about 10 months ago | (#45497111)

I hope you pointed out to her the impact she's having on the environment by drawing breath and suggested a few painless ways that she could immediately and permanently reduce her carbon footprint. If suicide is too much to contemplate, people like her are always free to give the hunter-gatherer lifestyle a try. Something tells me that civilization would look pretty good after a few days of persistence hunting [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Geothermal power (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about 10 months ago | (#45497473)

My experience has been that Greens who suggest mass suicide as a solution for environmental impact, never seem to be referring to themselves.

Re:Geothermal power (1)

blue trane (110704) | about 10 months ago | (#45497715)

American Indians were well-fed and left resources in the same abundant state as when they arrived.

Re:Geothermal power (2)

roc97007 (608802) | about 10 months ago | (#45497791)

...and of course, there were fewer of them...

Re:Geothermal power (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#45498923)

Uh, no. You only think that because by the time English and French colonists arrived the population had collapsed as 70 to 90 percent of everyone between Point Barrow and Tierra de Fuego died from introduced European diseases. Many Native American cultures collapsed when they exceeded their environment's carrying capacity, such as the Maya, the Mound Builders and the Anasazi.

Re:Geothermal power (1)

blue trane (110704) | about 10 months ago | (#45504373)

No one really knows what happened to the South American Indians. You tell a story that fits with your ideology. But the North American Indians, when the first white men arrived, were well-fed and lived in a land that had abundant resources, which were as abundant as when they arrived. They didn't need gold, for example.

Re:Geothermal power (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#45505283)

No one really knows what happened to the South American Indians.

What on earth are you talking about? The Spanish barbarians recorded **exactly** what happened, and seemed to glory in the chaos and destruction they left in their wake. They thought that their vengeful god protected them from the diseases that were killing the heathen native peoples by the millions. When the first Spaniards traveled down the Amazon river they found large, prosperous cities lining the banks. A few years later when the Portuguese traveled up the same river they found ruins of abandoned cities already returning to jungle.

Perhaps you're under the misapprehension that the English and Spanish were the first Europeans (or 'white men' if you prefer) in North America. When Cabeza de Vaca and other Spaniards explored the northern Gulf Coast there were thriving cities and large trade associations. Others exploring (or shipwrecked) on the Atlantic coast found the same. By the time the English and French arrived the countryside was largely empty.

They didn't need gold, for example.

No one needs gold, except for chip manufacturers. Are you trying to point out that other civilizations had different economic systems? If so, then I can only say "Duh!" If that's not what you're saying then please clarify.

Re:Geothermal power (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 10 months ago | (#45498805)

Any needless consumption of energy whose results are unknown should be abhorred. The endless cycle of having to buy new crap because the old crap failed (as opposed to the endless cycle of buying new crap because the old crap is outdated, which we could at least debate) is really an insufferable lot of shit. And there's just a lot of energy going to waste when it would cost very little to retain more of it. And then of course there's war, which these days is a horrible consumer of energy and producer of pollution. War's always had significant environmental impact, but it's well off the charts now by ancient standards. To deforestation you can add all kinds of fun goodies like depleted uranium.

You're right about the lack of sense of scale, though.

Re:Geothermal power (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45499403)

> Any needless consumption of energy whose results are unknown should be abhorred.
Philosophically, why? Ban the universe itself, the big bang, earthquakes.

Re:Geothermal power (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 10 months ago | (#45497939)

For one thing, the core is much thicker than the atmosphere. And we haven't even dug through the crust. The core is a little farther away.

Either way. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45496793)

I don't like coal. Global warming? Meh who gives a fuck.

But living where alot of coal plants are in use... There's this fine fine black soot on everything.
They seem to crank the plants to 200% at night. And in the morning there's soot everywhere.

Whatever it is it even makes it thru high quality air filters and sticks to everything. Water won't wash it off either.

I don't give a fuck about the planet and global warming. Because really. I won't be alive long enough for us to even admit its a problem.

But i kinda do wonder how much of that black gunk is ending up in my lungs... And lungs.. I'm kinda using those.

Re:Either way. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497171)

They seem to crank the plants to 200% at night. And in the morning there's soot everywhere.

They do that to meet demand, you know, that 200% peak period of electrical usage from 9pm to 6am?

Better headline (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 10 months ago | (#45496899)

"Massive country is deriving 10% of their electricity from geothermal"
Because if you ask random people, they may have heard of Iceland doing geothermal, and think it only works well there.

for very small values of "massive", but okay (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about 10 months ago | (#45497529)

Where "massive" means half the size of Pakistan or Nigeria. How about "Medium sized country built on volcanoes has 10% geothermal power"? I'm guessing you wouldn't care ffor "Geothermal useless for 90% of volcanic island's energy needs".

Re:for very small values of "massive", but okay (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 10 months ago | (#45497669)

It's the 12th most populated country in the world! Essentially 100M people.
The density is huge because the islands are not, but for power, what matters is the millions who live there!

Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa (7th overall), and Pakistan would feel huge if its neighbors weren't so over-the-top (6th overall). Choose your comparison points a bit better...
This ain't no "Medium size" country for this topic.

Carbon footprints (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45497003)

The carbon footprint of the human race would decrease if we just stopped giving AIDS drugs to all those faggots.

Re:Carbon footprints (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45499237)

Yeah, never let your hatred get in the way of facts like trucking routes", "prostitutes", "sex with a virgin as a 'cure' " - it's all the gays fault...

Electricity reliability in Leyte is rubbish (3, Insightful)

geekpowa (916089) | about 10 months ago | (#45497097)

"renewable energy success story" : ha! Power reliability has always been a significant problem in Leyte. All businesses in Tacloban CBD have backup generators which they fire up at least a couple of times a week, sometimes daily. The city is often accompanied by the hum of diesel generators.

I recall articles in National newspapers talking about constant power shortages across Visaya's region, with rolling blackouts where Northern Luzon region (where Manila is) has plenty of supply.

Maybe it is mostly a transmission problem, not a generation problem, but constant rolling blackouts suggests an enduring generation to me. Hardly a success story

Another potential casualty: headlines (1)

istartedi (132515) | about 10 months ago | (#45497443)

The next typhoon might wipe out sensationalist headlines. Yeah I know, that'd be one heck of a storm. It takes a mighty wind to compete with what passes for journalism online. That storm might not be mighty enough to take out Congress though. Wheeeew, Nelly!

misleading headline confuses story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45500919)

The headline to this story "Another Casualty of Typhoon Haiyan: Geothermal Power" implies that something about geothermal power made it extra vulnerable to damage from the typhoon but the only damage the geothermal plants suffered as the same kinds of damage any other electrical generating plant would suffer -- downed transmission lines, scattered employees and damage to the cooling towers that any steam generating plant requires. It's not a big point but the headline lead me to think there was something more to the story.

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