Friday, March 15, 2013

New Energy Source for Japan?



An Energy Coup for Japan: ‘Flammable Ice’ The New York Times, Hiroko Tabuchi http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/13/business/global/japan-says-it-is-first-to-tap-methane-hydrate-deposit.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20130313

[Excerpted] TOKYO — Japan said Tuesday that it had extracted gas from offshore deposits of methane hydrate — sometimes called “flammable ice” — a breakthrough that officials and experts said could be a step toward tapping a promising but still little-understood energy source.

The gas, whose extraction from the undersea hydrate reservoir was thought to be a world first, could provide an alternative source of energy to known oil and gas reserves. That could be crucial especially for Japan, which is the world’s biggest importer of liquefied natural gas and is engaged in a public debate about whether to resume the country’s heavy reliance on nuclear power... [end]

Majia here: I know nothing of the ramifications and environmental consequences of this technology. I found the article interesting but I have no informed opinion. I do wonder whether there are earthquake risks for drilling for methane gasses?


4 comments:

  1. BP gulf explosion likely caused by "iced" methane expanding to gas methane due to pressure decrease.

    This is a big deal, these "ice like" methane conglomerations, and methane also has serious atmospheric implications!

    Worth some study. Geology is incredibly interesting.

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  2. They had better do it quick. I understand that explosions from meltdowns occur when the melt gets down to the methane hydrate level and sets it off.

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  3. To MAIJA’S Blog 3.16.13 Re; Methane Ice and Japan’s diescovery
    There are other risks, one of which would surface to the top of the list, just like gas in the tub, and that is the proclivity of a nation of scientists who lack, ethical, moral AND spiritual forethought, to go ahead with their pet project so that they can mitigate the effects of their foolishly short lived, financially and physically disastrous attempts at nuclear energy!
    Now is the time to blow the whistle, and stop this 'methane train' from even leaving the station! Think of what the world could have been spared had the leaders AND their scientific pals, who are too much salivating after the next Nobel Prize, stopped the 'A-train' from leaving the station and, after looking at, in the case of Japan, an archipelago sitting on a virtual geological dragon, said “Oh, no you don’t! Are you crazy, thinking to build Nuke sites on these diarrhetic, geologically unstabel plates?”

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  4. Thanks for the comments. It would appear that all carbon based fuel poses significant risks for the planet.

    Solar, wind, tidal, and other low-impact energy sources are the way forward.

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