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Old 12-18-2009, 11:03 PM
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Default Re: The Next Rare Earth Crisis

Originally Posted by AemJeff View Post
This was really informative and just plain cool. I wonder about simply using gravity to for energy storage. Something like 10,000 or 100,000 gallon water tanks on stilts in a closed loop with a second tank on the ground. Use pumps to lift the water, and drive a turbine or something on the way down. Too inefficient?
Are you not kind of describing what is already being done tapping into hydro and tidal...yet they don't need the pumps?

Personally, I have always felt that a full embrace to telecommuting by companies would have a huge impact. My company about 5 years ago moved in and took over 5 stories of a 7 story building for 400 employees or so. Probably 90% of those employees could do everything they do now from home. I am one of a small number who works about 60% from home...most drive in every day. I would say the average commute for most is at least 15 miles one way and that 15 miles on average probably takes people 25 minutes of driving. So just saying they work at least 200 days that equates to over 2 million miles traveled by people in this one company. There would be power distribution also as people would be supplying some of their own and it would be tapping multiple sources. What is currently being housed by 5 stories could be reduced to at most one thus also reducing lighting, heating, and air conditioning needs.

We have the technology. Of course some manufacturing and retailing could not tap into this but many many could.
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