Thursday, February 28, 2008

Life at 30

I think it is obligatory to write about turning 30. Someone asked me tonight if I feel older. In reality I feel a lot older then I did when I turned 28. But that has a lot to do with the kiddo and the other one on the way. I have nothing wise or profound to say about turning 30. I am not where I thought I would be, or doing what I thought I would be doing. But as Father Brown said, "One can sometimes do good by being the right person in the wrong place."

The New Energy Conference

Last weekend I attended the Ozarks New Energy Conference. The bikes that were supposed to power the conference became bikes that powered demonstration light bulbs. I was greatly disappointed. Some people at the conference focused on solving very real problems we are facing with workable solutions. Others simply seem to believe that all energy production will murder the planet. At one point Senator McCaskill made an offhand comment about Europeans having a $4.00/gallon gas tax, and some in the audience cheered. After that speech "America does not pay enough for energy" became the theme of the conference.

Other highlights included the Hydrogen bus with it's 6,000 lbs. tanks. It had to be brought in on a tractor trailer, because it didn't have the range to drive from Rolla to Springfield and back. Also, the solar powered truck was a big hit. The truck was a one person golf cart with an extension behind it for solar panels. You could raise the solar panels and the compartment wasn't completely taken up with batteries, so I guess that is how it became know as a truck.

This conference made me think we are twenty years away from any solution consumers are going to accept for our dependence on oil. Nuclear was a dirty word.


Chris said...

So, why the change in the bike-powered thing? Did they change their plans or was there just a misunderstanding?

aaronash said...

Well, Chris, the newspaper clearly said that they were going to have volunteers riding in shifts to power the conference. However, the staff, talked like the demonstration was all that was ever planned. My theory is they hooked the bikes up to the theatre in preparation for the event, and found out they couldn't even keep the powerpoint projector going.