Before the media freaked out over her innocuous remark about John Edwards where she invoked the oh so stinging faggot , I watched Ann Coulter on FOX exasperate herself in a mini-tirade in a noble but hopeless attempt to explain to that Hollywood dingbat, Daryl Hannah, why solar energy is not feasible to power our world. Daryl Hannah blathered on something to the effect that More solar power hits the earth every day than is produced blah, blah, blah. And she doesn’t’ fly on planes, and she runs her car on vegetable oil, and let’s not forget she illegally chains herself to trees on private property because she doesn’t think the property owner should be allowed to build a warehouse on his own land when migrants assemble there because they’ve got nowhere else to go. Why didn’t she just invite them all up to her house?
It’s just great that all this solar power hits the earth, but how do we collect it? There is a lot of energy in the ocean just sloshing around in those waves, why aren’t we getting that? Hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and volcanoes are terrific sources of energy. All we have to do is hook in our Hurricane Tornado Earthquake Energy Sucker Upper, plug in our TV’s and our hair dryers, and we’ll be all set. On second thought, I think I need to upgrade Daryl from dingbat to moron.
Ann, using nothing but intellect and common sense, suggested that nuclear power was the answer to our energy needs. The panel she was on barely noticed, and Daryl just recoiled nuclear is a very bad word you know. Ever since Jane Fonda and Michael Douglas convinced the world in The China Syndrome that we were going to destroy ourselves with Nuclear Power, idiot Americans and air-heads like Daryl Hannah have feared for their lives any time that nuclear word pops up, or as President Bush would say, Nucular. Never mind the fact; more people are killed on American roads each day than have been killed in all of America’s nuclear accidents combined. Add in Chernobyl, and all the worlds nuclear accidents of all time haven’t killed as many people as we kill here in a month on American roads. We won’t even get into how many people are killed by doctors who can’t write prescriptions clearly enough.
Here’s a good riddle, How many solar panels does it take to power Daryl Hannah’s dim wit? I’m not sure about that, but I figured out what it would take to power my eight thousand square foot facility in California. Most of the energy it requires is consumed by six plastic injection molding machines. There is metal cutting machinery and plenty of lights. The real butt kicker comes in the summertime when the power company jacks my rate and the air conditioners barely ever shut off. A monthly bill will easily double up to seven grand in the hot months. I’m sure my Hollywood starlet would just tell me to conserve and shut off the air. That would work great if I could only convince my employees to tolerate 110 degree temperatures for weeks on end.
The power usage at that facility is roughly 1000 kilowatt hours per day, but could be significantly more. A three kilowatt solar panel requires 100 square feet of space and will only set you back $17,500.00. Solar panels, generally, put out less than their ratings suggest and only work for about eight hours a day. They need sun.
For arguments sake, let’s say my $17.5K solar panel works a whole ten hours a day and delivers one hundred percent of its rated power (totally unfeasible). That’s 30 kilowatt hours per day. I only need 33 panels for my minimum power requirements. I would have to at least double that if I were to expect to continually power my operations. God forbid my business should grow, and please, no hail storms!
So my 66 panels, which wouldn’t even fit on the roof of the building with air conditioners, water towers, and access requirements, will only set me back 1.1 million and change. That seven thousand dollar electric bill sounds pretty good all of a sudden. But we are not done yet. What about batteries? What about three phase power at 480 volts? Where does all that equipment go? Let’s not even consider those costs, the whole idea is ridiculous.
Ann was right, our Hollywood blonde is an idiot. Actually, Ann didn’t say that. What she said was, industry requires a lot more power than solar panels could possibly provide, and if you expect to get your morning cup of Jo at Starbucks daily, solar power isn’t going to cut it. It’s really nice Daryl Dingbat Hannah wants to save us from terrible nuclear energy and the myth of global warming, but her solution is more destructive than our ailment.
Sake Mike told me a joke the other day, If you are drowning fifty feet away from your boat and there is a forty foot rope on board, a conservative will throw you the line and beg you to swim ten feet. A liberal will throw you the whole rope and run off to do another good deed. Daryl Hannah, like all liberals, think good deeds are worthy with good intention, regardless of the results, in the mean time, your dead at the bottom of the lake, but at least you’ve got forty feet of rope!
Copyright 2007 Jim Pontillo