ProSoundWeb Community

Sound Reinforcement - Forums for Live Sound Professionals - Your Displayed Name Must Be Your Real Full Name To Post In The Live Sound Forums => The Basement => Topic started by: Weogo Reed on November 21, 2019, 11:46:03 pm

Title: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Weogo Reed on November 21, 2019, 11:46:03 pm
Hi Y'all, 

Interesting article about Coldplay and the environmental aspects of shows:

 https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-50490700

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Randy Pence on November 22, 2019, 07:48:47 am
Those are UK figures, and the UK actually has some sort of functioning public transportation network at national and local levels. I imagine that the North American pie chart might look different. Decades and decades of car-centric planning eventually catches up. Still, nobody forced these bands to build such elaborate stages
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Riley Casey on November 22, 2019, 11:11:02 am
Who could have guessed  that building an economy around using a four thousand pound metal box  to move one or two people  around  might have negative consequences?  I missed the fact that the pie chart was based on UK numbers but then the last discussion I saw on this post seemed like almost all the posters missed the pie chart entirely.  I suspect that in N America the audience transport portion would approach 50% and the production transport would move up proportionally as well.  Cold Play woke up one morning and realized that hydro-carbon economy was killing us, good for them. Maybe a few more people will pay attention.

Those are UK figures, and the UK actually has some sort of functioning public transportation network at national and local levels. I imagine that the North American pie chart might look different. Decades and decades of car-centric planning eventually catches up. Still, nobody forced these bands to build such elaborate stages
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Mike Caldwell on November 22, 2019, 10:30:53 pm
I didn't know enough people went to Coldplay show's to even be a factor.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Geert Friedhof on November 22, 2019, 10:34:33 pm
Best of both worlds
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 22, 2019, 10:58:47 pm
I didn't know enough people went to Coldplay show's to even be a factor.
Ouch.  That's gonna leave a mark.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Magnus Högkvist on November 23, 2019, 12:06:58 pm
Ouch.  That's gonna leave a mark.
A carbon footprint....
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Craig Hauber on November 23, 2019, 03:31:45 pm
Hi Y'all, 

Interesting article about Coldplay and the environmental aspects of shows:

 https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-50490700

Thanks and good health,  Weogo

Interesting how they are going to concentrate on pressuring the audience to be environmentally conscious.
-We've all seen the backstage trash haul after a large event.  Hopefully they will get cast & crew to go along too.

For corporate productions I've watched semi after semi unloading for an event, then a day later multiple roll-off dumpsters taking it all away straight to a landfill.
-a few plastic drinking straws are nothing compared to that!
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Ron Bolte on November 23, 2019, 09:25:05 pm
I didn't know enough people went to Coldplay show's to even be a factor.

I couldn't name two songs by them, but SOMEONE must be going to their concerts, from the article...

" And by putting their concerts on hold, they're giving up a huge pay day: The Head Full of Dream tour made $523m."
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Weogo Reed on November 23, 2019, 10:16:05 pm
Randy,

Thanks for pointing out that the graph was for the UK.

Riley,
When I got my first car in 1972 it weighed about 1900# and got 40mpg.
My current car weighs 2600#, and being electric, isn't too bad on the overall carbon footprint.

Craig,
There's a local festival that has been going for 35 years.
I can remember years ago walking from one end to the other and not seeing a single bit of trash on the ground.
The audience wanted a clean space and made it happen.
Now you will see a few bits of trash, but still quite clean.
After the festival there are some dumpsters hauling trash off, but much more is recycled.

Another approach:
 https://sustainabletouringarts.org

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on November 24, 2019, 09:28:53 am
Randy,

Thanks for pointing out that the graph was for the UK.

Riley,
When I got my first car in 1972 it weighed about 1900# and got 40mpg.
My current car weighs 2600#, and being electric, isn't too bad on the overall carbon footprint.

Craig,
There's a local festival that has been going for 35 years.
I can remember years ago walking from one end to the other and not seeing a single bit of trash on the ground.
The audience wanted a clean space and made it happen.
Now you will see a few bits of trash, but still quite clean.
After the festival there are some dumpsters hauling trash off, but much more is recycled.

Another approach:
 https://sustainabletouringarts.org

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
When considering the environmental cost of owning an EV it depends on the source of electricity. If charging the batteries from solar or wind power it beats IC engines (ignoring the environmental cost of turbines and solar cells), but if the electricity comes from coal they are worse. NG power plants are better than gasoline and roughly equal to diesel. https://www.digitaltrends.com/cars/hold-smugness-tesla-might-just-worse-environment-know/ (https://www.digitaltrends.com/cars/hold-smugness-tesla-might-just-worse-environment-know/), then don't forget about the batteries.

Of course opinions vary, and if we don't do the math EVs look and feel good.

JR

PS: I am waiting for all the early adopters to deal with recycling their aging solar panels, while that technology has not progressed as quickly as I expected. I was anticipating much higher conversion efficiency by now.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 25, 2019, 01:03:46 pm
Honestly, I'm still scratching my head about wind energy.  As a maintenance manager for a facility, I had a conversation with a local utility about their investment in wind turbines.  I was told that it would take 40 years to pay for the initial investment.  One of the utilities in Iowa is replacing a bunch of blades on turbines (installed no earlier than 2004)-and the old blades are being landfilled because no one has found a way to recycle them yet.  According to the article they expect turbines to generate 1 million Tons of landfill waste.  I wonder how many concerts it would take to generate that much trash?
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Rick Earl on November 25, 2019, 03:59:31 pm
Honestly, I'm still scratching my head about wind energy.  As a maintenance manager for a facility, I had a conversation with a local utility about their investment in wind turbines.  I was told that it would take 40 years to pay for the initial investment.  One of the utilities in Iowa is replacing a bunch of blades on turbines (installed no earlier than 2004)-and the old blades are being landfilled because no one has found a way to recycle them yet.  According to the article they expect turbines to generate 1 million Tons of landfill waste.  I wonder how many concerts it would take to generate that much trash?

For perspective, the coal industry produces  in excess of that annually, just in coal ash. https://www.epa.gov/coalash (https://www.epa.gov/coalash)
No matter what solution we choose, there is going to be some waste and negative impact, the trick is to finding what has the best return for the least amount of impact.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Chris Hindle on November 26, 2019, 01:50:04 am
For perspective, the coal industry produces  in excess of that annually, just in coal ash. https://www.epa.gov/coalash (https://www.epa.gov/coalash)
No matter what solution we choose, there is going to be some waste and negative impact, the trick is to finding what has the best return for the least amount of impact.
Up here, it's Hydro Quebec.
No waste, but quite the severe impact on the environment and "locals" on installation of a site.
They tend to "go big"............
Chris.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Nathan Riddle on November 26, 2019, 07:50:25 am
For perspective, the coal industry produces  in excess of that annually, just in coal ash. https://www.epa.gov/coalash (https://www.epa.gov/coalash)
No matter what solution we choose, there is going to be some waste and negative impact, the trick is to finding what has the best return for the least amount of impact.

Nuclear.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Chris Hindle on November 26, 2019, 08:14:55 am
Nuclear.
Umm. WOW.
Least amount of impact, except for storing the spent fuel rods for the next 10 centuries....
While rare, 3 Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima  were quite impactful, and that impact will last for generations.
Chris.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on November 26, 2019, 09:28:23 am
Umm. WOW.
Yes wow, inexpensive, clean energy improves the quality of life for everybody.
Quote
Least amount of impact, except for storing the spent fuel rods for the next 10 centuries....
My favorite idea is to deposit nuclear waste in a subduction zone where tectonic plates overlap.
Quote
While rare, 3 Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima  were quite impactful, and that impact will last for generations.
Chris.
3 mile was mostly a negative public relations event but scared the poop out of a low information public in the region (Hey, where's my iodine pills?). Chernobyl is a poster boy for corrupt, mismanagement of the technology. Fukushima was also mismanagement but on a much lesser scale. More people were harmed by shutting down the entire network of nuclear reactors across Japan in a knee jerk reaction, then the accident.

Modern nuclear energy cycles are cleaner and safer but the real risk is proliferation of nuclear weapons, so far the world has been pretty lucky in that regard. I am very opposed to rogue regimes getting nuclear weapons.

JR 
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Nathan Riddle on November 26, 2019, 10:13:41 am
Umm. WOW.
Least amount of impact, except for storing the spent fuel rods for the next 10 centuries....
While rare, 3 Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima were quite impactful, and that impact will last for generations.
Chris.

Hopefully, we're not political yet...

I encourage doing some research on nuclear.
Watch the ted talk about it on youtube.

In addition to what JR wrote.

Nuclear energy has the lowest death rate per capita of any other power source besides hydro.
New reactor technologies (I'm talking from the 80's) can actually burn the fissile material down to a non-reactive/dangerous state.
Nuclear waste (non radioactive) is lower than any other power technology besides hydro.
The problem of hydro is we're tapped out, and dams cause fish & wildlife issues. Though newer turbine technologies can help bring local power to small communities.
Read the relevant UN literature on the major nuclear disasters, it's not as bad as the media portrays it.

The final objection to the proliferation of nuclear weapons has typically gone down in countries adopting nuclear power.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Daniel Levi on November 26, 2019, 10:36:49 am
Oh, and learn from the Brits, don't build air-cooled nuclear reactors!
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on November 26, 2019, 11:23:01 am


The final objection to the proliferation of nuclear weapons has typically gone down in countries adopting nuclear power.
Not sure I understand that? I thought most nations and thinking people opposed proliferation of nuclear weapons? Except for the several bad actors who don't have them yet, desiring to impose hegemony over their immediate neighbors (then there is Putin always trying to punch above his weight with aggressive use of military force).

 Coincidentally this handful of rogue nations pursing fissile (bomb making) material, are developing longer range delivery systems too. If that doesn't demonstrate bad intentions I don't know what does.

Joining the "nuclear club" does not always insure a peaceful coexistence, while Pakistan and india seem to be stalemated at least wrt each other for now (Kashmir region is still contested by both).

The pope just gave an anti-nuke speech in Japan, as if they needed reminding.    ::)

JR
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 26, 2019, 01:08:49 pm
For perspective, the coal industry produces  in excess of that annually, just in coal ash. https://www.epa.gov/coalash (https://www.epa.gov/coalash)
No matter what solution we choose, there is going to be some waste and negative impact, the trick is to finding what has the best return for the least amount of impact.

My point was that people tend to view wind energy as impactless.    What can't even be measured is the ecological impact of removing gigawatts of energy from the windstreams.

To bring it back on topic, its the same human psychology as the guys that insist on using (misusing?) line arrays because they're perfect, or point source is the solution for every audio need, or a hundred other audio related topics (high end CAT5 cable anyone?) that people want to believe are THE solution-but refuse (or don't understand how) to honestly look at the whole picture and the physics involved.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: John A Chiara on November 26, 2019, 01:40:37 pm
Umm. WOW.
Least amount of impact, except for storing the spent fuel rods for the next 10 centuries....
While rare, 3 Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima  were quite impactful, and that impact will last for generations.
Chris.
You might want to research your opinion on this. Lots of new stuff coming. New plants...even Gen3 will not suffer these ills.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Nathan Riddle on November 26, 2019, 05:13:05 pm
Not sure I understand that?

I have a poorly written sentence. Apologies.

I had a whole bunch written, but I don't want to derail any further.

Look up Kurzgesagt & Michael Shellenberger on youtube for balanced and well-cited presentations about nuclear power, thank you.

The final objection to the proliferation of nuclear weapons has typically gone down in countries adopting nuclear power.

What I meant to say was:

A major objection to nuclear power is the continued proliferation (increase/creation/reproduction) of nuclear weapons when countries obtain nuclear power technology & fissile material.

But countries that adopt nuclear power typically sign agreements & also follow-through with not creating nuclear weapons with the fissile material and are subject to UN regulations and inspections. There are always bad eggs, but why kill the planet with more fossil and/or "renewable" fuels that are far worse than nuclear's impact.

-------

Back to the subject!
My vote is for small nuclear thorium reactors or gen IV on a truck and boomsauce clean energy!
Heh, kidding (or am I)  :P
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 26, 2019, 07:47:48 pm
It's all fun and games until it's YOUR turn to fuel the reactor in the garage...
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Riley Casey on November 26, 2019, 08:56:23 pm
My favorite climate change related cartoon is some character asking another " What if it's all a hoax and we create a better world for nothing?"

Pretty sure that just about the time we get carbon emissions down to neutral some wise guy is going to come up with kitchen table cold fusion.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Daniel Levi on November 27, 2019, 02:03:08 am
See if Britain had made gas cooled reactors properly economically viable (on load refuelling never worked on the AGR's, and the MAGNOX reactors were not efficient enough due to their dual use) we would now have reactors that can't do a Chernobyl or Fukushima as there is no water to boil and become pressurised and thus no steam explosion.

Note that nuclear reactors can't go up like an atomic bomb, you need a very tightly  controlled explosion, in the correct order, in a correctly shaped vessel to do that, blowing up a nuclear power station again would not have that effect.

As for refueling, the actual fuel before it enters the reactor is quite safe and can be handled with minimum PPE.

As for nukes, the whole point is that they aren't supposed to ever be used, mutually assured destruction and all that.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on November 27, 2019, 09:04:59 am
See if Britain had made gas cooled reactors properly economically viable (on load refuelling never worked on the AGR's, and the MAGNOX reactors were not efficient enough due to their dual use) we would now have reactors that can't do a Chernobyl or Fukushima as there is no water to boil and become pressurised and thus no steam explosion.

Note that nuclear reactors can't go up like an atomic bomb, you need a very tightly  controlled explosion, in the correct order, in a correctly shaped vessel to do that, blowing up a nuclear power station again would not have that effect.
The failure concern is "china syndrome" meltdown, like made popular in that old movie. The heat from a runaway reaction would melt a hole in the ground all the way to china. There are self quenching new designs that do not require forced active cooling to remain stable. 
Quote
As for refueling, the actual fuel before it enters the reactor is quite safe and can be handled with minimum PPE.

As for nukes, the whole point is that they aren't supposed to ever be used, mutually assured destruction and all that.
A review of history suggests that they were originally designed to be used and were. MAD works when two rational countries do not believe they have a winnable advantage over each other and would suffer significant losses from such an engagement. Putin is working on advanced delivery systems to gain some competitive advantage (we believe a nuclear powered missile prototype exploded in Russia, but the news about that accident has been censored).

My concern is what less rational actors might do with such weapons. 

JR
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on November 27, 2019, 03:32:42 pm
Nuclear waste (non radioactive) is lower than any other power technology besides hydro.

The Trojan Nuclear Power Plant near Portland, Oregon, was decommissioned beginning in 1992. All of the spent fuel used during its operation is still stored onsite, currently in "dry cask" storage that is vented to the atmosphere. All of the remaining incidental radioactive material (including the reactor core) was shipped to permanent disposal sites, mostly the Hanford Reservation in eastern Washington state.

The irony of radioactive material is that material with a short half-life is more dangerous initially but quickly degrades to a safe level, while material with a long half-life is only mildly dangerous but for a very, very long time.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Daniel Levi on November 27, 2019, 05:05:25 pm
Yes the fact that the radioactivity takes so long to disperse means it cannot be giving off that much radiation, Thunderf00t did a good video on it.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Jason Glass on November 27, 2019, 09:59:45 pm
The irony of radioactive material is that material with a short half-life is more dangerous initially but quickly degrades to a safe level, while material with a long half-life is only mildly dangerous but for a very, very long time.

Ah yes.  Flux density.

People have lots of irrational fears about radioactivity, most of them based on ignorance.  For example, it obeys the same inverse-square law that acoustical and radio frequency propagations obey.  A difference of inches in one's distance to the source can mean life or death.  But the average person has no idea nor desire to learn "that sciency stuff".  Their own homes are protected by smoke alarms containing enough radioactive material inside to kill them if ingested.  The material is completely harmless while located up on the ceiling.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: dave briar on November 27, 2019, 10:46:23 pm
The one thing the instructor of a bore-hole geophysics class I took many years ago wanted us to remember was “Time, distance, and shielding”. How long are you exposed, how far away is the source, and what’s between you and it.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on November 28, 2019, 07:20:31 am
The Trojan Nuclear Power Plant near Portland, Oregon, was decommissioned beginning in 1992. All of the spent fuel used during its operation is still stored onsite, currently in "dry cask" storage that is vented to the atmosphere. All of the remaining incidental radioactive material (including the reactor core) was shipped to permanent disposal sites, mostly the Hanford Reservation in eastern Washington state.

The irony of radioactive material is that material with a short half-life is more dangerous initially but quickly degrades to a safe level, while material with a long half-life is only mildly dangerous but for a very, very long time.

My wife and I just finished watching the HBO Chernobyl series. It was incredibly well done and did a good job of not overly dumbing down the technological aspects.  I am just old enough to remember the aftermath of the disaster - I remember reading about the cleanup in Reader’s Digest, of all places.  While it is hard to overestimate the cost of the Chernobyl event in terms of human life, ecological damage, and financial impact, as JR said, it was caused by two factors - a poor reactor design that was intended to be cheap, and gross mismanagement, both from the people directly involved and the Soviet system.

The other long-term fallout of Chernobyl and other disasters is people lump all nuclear technology into the same bucket, so we’re stuck continually recertifying 1950’s-era designs (I live 30 miles from a GE Mark 1 reactor - same design that Fukushima is; thankfully without the Tsunami risk where I am) since we need the power, but we’re unable to build anything safer due to the political fallout.

There are very cool nuclear designs being tested. The molten salt reactors are particularly interesting - there’s no steam pressure in the reactor loop to blow things up, there are passive mechanisms to handle out of control situations like freeze plugs and core catchers, and most importantly, some designs can run on low enrichment fuel, meaning they can actually burn up existing “spent” nuclear material, which goes a long way to solving the fuel storage problem.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on November 28, 2019, 07:30:28 am
Honestly, I'm still scratching my head about wind energy.  As a maintenance manager for a facility, I had a conversation with a local utility about their investment in wind turbines.  I was told that it would take 40 years to pay for the initial investment.  One of the utilities in Iowa is replacing a bunch of blades on turbines (installed no earlier than 2004)-and the old blades are being landfilled because no one has found a way to recycle them yet.  According to the article they expect turbines to generate 1 million Tons of landfill waste.  I wonder how many concerts it would take to generate that much trash?
Maybe you can help me with one other factor - every time I drive by wind farms, only a minor fraction of them are actually running, and this is on days with seemingly adequate wind. I realize there is a minimum threshold of wind needed to get them turning and I realize there is some upper limit to the usable wind before the turbine needs to shut down to not blow up, but it sure seems that they’re off a lot more than that? It’s got to be hard to make money when they’re off 50%+ of the time.

You mention in another post the unknown impact of extracting a bunch of wind energy from the environment. This is very interesting to me - certainly cities affect weather patterns with tall things of warmer than ambient temperature sticking up high enough to disrupt wind, and I know that trees have a major impact on wind speed, which is generally seen as a positive factor, but I haven’t heard anyone speculate on impact due to turbines.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on November 28, 2019, 10:08:28 am
Maybe you can help me with one other factor - every time I drive by wind farms, only a minor fraction of them are actually running, and this is on days with seemingly adequate wind. I realize there is a minimum threshold of wind needed to get them turning and I realize there is some upper limit to the usable wind before the turbine needs to shut down to not blow up, but it sure seems that they’re off a lot more than that? It’s got to be hard to make money when they’re off 50%+ of the time.
Just taking a WAG I suspect it is a storage/demand issue. Utility scale storage is not inexpensive, I recall hearing about a massive battery storage project in OZ to save excess power for use later, batterie are not very clean either.
Quote
You mention in another post the unknown impact of extracting a bunch of wind energy from the environment. This is very interesting to me - certainly cities affect weather patterns with tall things of warmer than ambient temperature sticking up high enough to disrupt wind, and I know that trees have a major impact on wind speed, which is generally seen as a positive factor, but I haven’t heard anyone speculate on impact due to turbines.
This seems like a spurious low information argument. The primary hazard from wind turbines seems to be toward birds. Tree huggers don't seem to care that much about birds. Maybe they shut down the turbines during a bird migration but even I don't suspect that.

JR
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Weogo Reed on November 28, 2019, 11:46:29 am
Hi JR,

"Of course opinions vary, and if we don't do the math EVs look and feel good."

I agree that, read different ways, numbers can mean different things.
The article you note from 2013 has several inaccurate assumptions.
Some numbers, from 2017:
 https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/much-ado-embodied-energy-paul-martin

 A friend, Dave Erb, is an automotive engineer who created and taught a three day
professional development short course on "Design of Hybrid Electric Vehicles" for
the Society of Automotive Engineers from 1995 to 2004.
He's very current on EVs, PhotoVoltaics, has crunched the numbers and is an author in this book:
 https://www.amazon.com/Driving-Net-Stories-Carbon-Future/dp/0692143831/
An article from 2017:
  https://mountainx.com/opinion/sparking-a-revolution-with-plug-in-electric-vehicles/

Looking at the whole picture of sourcing raw materials, transporting and building a car,
for both gas and electric cars there is significant environmental damage and pollution.
(Road building and maintenance is an additional significant consideration.)
All the materials and processes that go in to internal combustion engines and oil extraction
have had over a century of production/extraction to refine efficiency.
Electric motors have been around a similar length of time but
are only now being optimized for cars.
Battery technology is slowly maturing, as well as control and charging systems.

My 2014 Mitsubishi I-MiEV(my wife named her Maeve, for the Irish goddess of intoxication)
has the latest and greatest battery technology from when it was developed in 2009.
Current batteries are half the weight/volume, will go 30% farther, charge faster, and last longer.
(This specific battery came with a ten year warranty and
right now still has about 99% of original capacity.)

A British journalist researched the CO2 lifetime production and
running costs of an I-MiEV and a similarly sized Honda Fit.
Over its life, the Fit puts out about 100 grams of carbon per mile and
the I-MiEV about 50 grams, if using electricity from a coal-fired power plant.
The number gets better for batteries made in solar-powered plants and
when charged with solar generated electricity.
The number also goes down for newer car designs.

Some observations:
From 0~30 Maeve will beat my wife's Honda Fit.
After that, her 109HP will roll past my 66HP.
About 90% of the miles we drive are within Maeve's range.
The longer wheelbase Maeve is more comfortable on the interstate than the Fit.

This may be the car that makes EVs common:
 https://www.digitaltrends.com/cars/vw-id3-economical-over-e-golf/

Dusenfeld and other companies are recycling Lithium batteries,
with a current recovery rate over 80% :
 https://www.duesenfeld.com/recycling_en.html


Alternatives? :
I would like to see the USA have the train system we had in 1946,
the highest ever year of passenger ridership.
There are multiple roadblocks, including outdated safety regulations saying
locomotives have to be incredibly heavy.
I see light-rail as the way to go between cities.


What does all this mean for those of us working audio gigs?
Educate ourselves and do what we can.
For a couple decades now I've been pushing the venues
I regularly work in to install good sound systems.
Maeve gets an assistant, me and quite a bit of gear to many gigs.
The big truck runs fewer and fewer miles every year year.
Around here, carpooling to shows is fairly common.

We can all slow down a bit, enjoy the trip, and notably reduce energy use.

I'm happy to see large, international touring groups addressing all of this.

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
 
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Weogo Reed on November 28, 2019, 11:48:32 am
Hi Jr,

"The primary hazard from wind turbines seems to be toward birds."

 https://www.statista.com/chart/15195/wind-turbines-are-not-killing-fields-for-birds/

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Weogo Reed on November 28, 2019, 12:48:20 pm
Steven,

"Honestly, I'm still scratching my head about wind energy."
 
I haven't found lifetime comparison numbers for waste from coal, nuclear and wind power plants.
Here are some numbers on the types and amounts of waste from decommissioning a nuclear plant:
 http://energyskeptic.com/2019/decommissioning-a-nuclear-reactor/

I did a search for recycling wind turbine blades and there are a
few commercial options and quite a bit of research being done.
One good result is the same technologies for recycling fiberglass turbine blades
can be used on airplanes, boats, fuel tanks, etc.

Odd thought: transport would be expensive, but
I wonder about using these blades structurally for building big music sheds?

Wind power has been around a long time, and can be a much lower polluting energy source:
 https://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2019/06/wooden-wind-turbines.html

Nuclear energy:
 “There is only one logical answer: we must stop generating nuclear waste, and
that means we must stop using nuclear power. You would think that it would make sense to
suspend nuclear power projects until we know what to do with the waste they create”.
Gregory Jaczko, former Chairman, Nuclear Regulatory Council 2005~2012,
with a Doctorate in Theoretical Particle Physics

My opinion: 
As long as humans are involved with the design, building, running and maintenance of stuff,
sh!t will happen.
I'll reconsider nuclear energy, after all current waste is safely dealt with for the long run, and
the cost and environmental impacts are shown to be less than other options.

From what I see, with the extraction of fossil fuels, humans went on a 200 year
concentrated energy binge.  The future will see energy use, but not on the 
massive scale we've had.

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Scott Holtzman on November 28, 2019, 07:48:44 pm
Steven,

"Honestly, I'm still scratching my head about wind energy."
 
I haven't found lifetime comparison numbers for waste from coal, nuclear and wind power plants.
Here are some numbers on the types and amounts of waste from decommissioning a nuclear plant:
 http://energyskeptic.com/2019/decommissioning-a-nuclear-reactor/

I did a search for recycling wind turbine blades and there are a
few commercial options and quite a bit of research being done.
One good result is the same technologies for recycling fiberglass turbine blades
can be used on airplanes, boats, fuel tanks, etc.

Odd thought: transport would be expensive, but
I wonder about using these blades structurally for building big music sheds?

Wind power has been around a long time, and can be a much lower polluting energy source:
 https://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2019/06/wooden-wind-turbines.html

Nuclear energy:
 “There is only one logical answer: we must stop generating nuclear waste, and
that means we must stop using nuclear power. You would think that it would make sense to
suspend nuclear power projects until we know what to do with the waste they create”.
Gregory Jaczko, former Chairman, Nuclear Regulatory Council 2005~2012,
with a Doctorate in Theoretical Particle Physics

My opinion: 
As long as humans are involved with the design, building, running and maintenance of stuff,
sh!t will happen.
I'll reconsider nuclear energy, after all current waste is safely dealt with for the long run, and
the cost and environmental impacts are shown to be less than other options.

From what I see, with the extraction of fossil fuels, humans went on a 200 year
concentrated energy binge.  The future will see energy use, but not on the 
massive scale we've had.

Thanks and good health,  Weogo

Certainly we have become addicted to the lifestyle energy provides.  It has powered advances that have helped more 2nd and 3rd world nations decrease mortality and increase literacy.  I don't see a path to rolling back the services the energy provides.  Technology will have to find more efficient and cleaner devices that are as simple to operate as the current tools we use. 

It's really bad in the US where the suburban lifestyle and vehicle is tied to our way of living, so much new infrastructure to consider. 

I do have confidence in technology and finding sustainable solutions.  I think scaring the kids we are going to be at an extinction level event in 10 years is as bad as the nuclear bomb scares of the 60's. 
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Randy Pence on November 29, 2019, 08:20:49 am

Alternatives? :
I would like to see the USA have the train system we had in 1946,
the highest ever year of passenger ridership.
There are multiple roadblocks, including outdated safety regulations saying
locomotives have to be incredibly heavy.
I see light-rail as the way to go between cities.


What does all this mean for those of us working audio gigs?
Educate ourselves and do what we can.
For a couple decades now I've been pushing the venues
I regularly work in to install good sound systems.
Maeve gets an assistant, me and quite a bit of gear to many gigs.
The big truck runs fewer and fewer miles every year year.
Around here, carpooling to shows is fairly common.

A big issue with transportation systems is figuring out how passengers travel the last mile in each direction. I am quite lucky in that Berlin boasts at least a bus stop 500m from any address, but last mile solutions will not be very simply in most of the US, due to suburban (and often urban - the amount of surface area dedicated to parking in american cities is crazy!) densities and street designs. Who would bother taking light rail between neighboring cities if they still need a car to get to and from the tracks?


Something sound providers can do is invest in gear which requires fewer trucks, although what does it really matter when xxx amount of attendees drive a big vehicle on their own to get to the gig?
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Ike Zimbel on November 29, 2019, 11:07:13 am

Something sound providers can do is invest in gear which requires fewer trucks, although what does it really matter when xxx amount of attendees drive a big vehicle on their own to get to the gig?
It all matters. Less is less.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 29, 2019, 11:43:26 am
It all matters. Less is less.

Ike, my observation is that nobody who pays the bills of touring gives a rat's ass about less... until it means an entire truck is struck from the tour.  My further observation is that the space and weight saved by modern loudspeaker systems and IEM rigs, etc, is that any savings of space/weight in trucking are immediately taken by video/lights and artist carpentry "gags" like Carrie Underwood's flying pickup truck, Bon Jovi's video robots or Taylor Swift's flying "B stage".  These days tours have more trucks, not fewer, and the proportion used to transport audio is smaller; we've done our bit now it's up to departments to compact their presence and we both know that's never gonna happen because audiences "hear" with their eyes.

A bigger carbon impact will probably be found in how attendees travel to a show, what they buy/consume while there, etc.

Tis a puzzlement.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Chris Hindle on November 29, 2019, 12:27:10 pm
It all matters. Less is less.

If I tell production I only need 35 feet of truck for audio, they'll likely say "Oh good, we can go with that bigger stage rig" or "Great, we can carry another 10 sticks the lampies wanted."
One way or another, the trucks roll stuffed.
Chris.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on November 30, 2019, 10:10:50 pm
Maybe you can help me with one other factor - every time I drive by wind farms, only a minor fraction of them are actually running, and this is on days with seemingly adequate wind. I realize there is a minimum threshold of wind needed to get them turning and I realize there is some upper limit to the usable wind before the turbine needs to shut down to not blow up, but it sure seems that they’re off a lot more than that? It’s got to be hard to make money when they’re off 50%+ of the time.

You mention in another post the unknown impact of extracting a bunch of wind energy from the environment. This is very interesting to me - certainly cities affect weather patterns with tall things of warmer than ambient temperature sticking up high enough to disrupt wind, and I know that trees have a major impact on wind speed, which is generally seen as a positive factor, but I haven’t heard anyone speculate on impact due to turbines.

My suspicion is capacity-specifically excess capacity.  It would seem the grid could absorb it-but I was told by someone that worked in the industry and claims to know  that it takes 8-10 hours to spin up a steam turbine plant.  He claims, they burn off a significant amount of excess energy simply because people wouldn't be happy if lights go out when the wind dies down.  I'm sure there is a lot of management behind the scenes.  It would be interesting to know what percentage of theoritcal capacity is actually usable.

It's pretty common for the wind to drop significantly at sundown.   These are things the old timers that spent a great deal of time outside farming knew from experience-that knowledge and understanding is not so universal today.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Bill Meeks on December 01, 2019, 09:45:36 pm
My suspicion is capacity-specifically excess capacity.  It would seem the grid could absorb it-but I was told by someone that worked in the industry and claims to know  that it takes 8-10 hours to spin up a steam turbine plant.  He claims, they burn off a significant amount of excess energy simply because people wouldn't be happy if lights go out when the wind dies down.  I'm sure there is a lot of management behind the scenes.  It would be interesting to know what percentage of theoritcal capacity is actually usable.

It's pretty common for the wind to drop significantly at sundown.   These are things the old timers that spent a great deal of time outside farming knew from experience-that knowledge and understanding is not so universal today.

I worked in electric power generation for my entire career - specifically at a nuclear power plant. You are on the right track with your assessment, but one fact is a little off. Fossil fueled plants can rather quickly ramp up or down in generation capacity, but it is still measured in tens of minutes usually for very large swings of 200 MW or more. They can do more modest output swings rather quickly, though. Nuclear plants are always what are called base load generators. They run at 100% 24-hours a day. They cannot make quick power changes. In fact, the type of plant where I worked (a boiling water reactor) took up to three full days to reach 100% output after startup from a refueling outage.

The electrical grid is a very complex animal that must always be precisely balanced such that generation equals load exactly. Too much generation and the frequency (60 Hz in the USA) drifts up and motors can be damaged. Too little generation for the connected load results in voltage sags and a drop in frequency (both also damaging to electrical equipment such as motors). All the electric generators in a region are connected in parallel so they can share serving the load. This is true in the US at the grid level where you have a handful of regional power grids all connected to each other with large tie lines. Each utility in a region is assigned a load control area that it is responsible for (responsible for matching generation to load within their area). The utility will monitor frequency and the direction of power flow (into their system or out of their system) to determine if their generation is matching their load. When there is a disturbance on the grid that results in lost generation, each connected utility is responsible for providing up to a certain amount of "free" electricity to help rebalance the grid. The connected utilities on the grid provide extra capacity to their struggling neighbor while the utility where the disturbance originated recovers and adds generation of their own.

Consider this example. Utility A suddenly has a major coal-fired power plant trip offline and 600 MW of generation disappears instantly from the grid. Now there is more load than generation and the grid frequency begins to sag (a very small amount, but it does decrease). All the connected utilities on the grid see this sag in frequency and know that generation is no longer sufficient for the load. Each utility checks the power flows on its grid inter-ties (its connections to neighboring utilities). Utility A sees a decrease in frequency and it also sees power flowing into its system from its neighbors. Utility A's neighbors also see the decrease in frequency but see power flowing out of their systems into Utility A. Thus the computers controlling Utility A's grid calculate that Utility A needs to add generation. The other utilities' computers know the problem is not theirs, but they are obiligated to contribute their share of the missing 600 MW back onto the grid until Utility A can bring on that much new generation. This "share of free electricity" for each utility is called the ACE (Area Control Error). The amount of ACE a utility is responsible for is determined by the size of the utility. The bigger the utility, the more MW of electricity it must provide to correct an ACE.

Now how does this relate to windmills and solar? In a word, reliability! The wind can, and does, suddenly stop blowing. Clouds can, and do, suddenly shade solar cells. Both conditions result in loss of generating capacity. Now the grid is unbalanced, and the missing generation has to come from somewhere. If everyone is using just wind and solar for generation, the grid could be out of luck. A windmill operator can't just "send a little more wind to the blades" to increase generation at a windmill site. You get whatever wind there is, and that's that. With a fossil-fuel power plant, it's a simple matter to adjust the coal feed rate or open up the natural gas valve a bit to generate more heat and thus more steam and finally more electrical generation. It is a trivial and near instantaneous event for a large coal-fired plant to pick up 25 MW to 50 MW of load. It only takes a few other plants doing this to easily absorb that 600 MW capacity loss in the previous example. Solar and wind really can't do this today until you have reliable large scale storage batteries and inverters. This is why I don't see fossil-fuel plants going away entirely anytime soon. Solar and wind just don't have adequate "spinning reserves" unless you way overbuild both and have complexes of wind and solar generation just sitting there doing nothing until the few times a year they are needed. They are not really dependable enough to provide base load. Only nukes, fossil and hydro can do that (and even hydro has some limitations due to droughts).

My description above was highly simplifed. If this techy stuff is interesting to you, here is a link to a PDF document from NERC explaining all the nitty-gritty details of how the US power grid is balanced and maintained.

https://www.nerc.com/docs/oc/rs/NERC%20Balancing%20and%20Frequency%20Control%20040520111.pdf (https://www.nerc.com/docs/oc/rs/NERC%20Balancing%20and%20Frequency%20Control%20040520111.pdf)

One final parting thought: a typical wind turbine generates 1.5 - 3 MW (megawatts) of electricity. The nuclear plant where I worked generated 1850 MW (megawatts) of electricity 24 hours a day for up to 24 months straight before shutting down for refueling. Come rain, sun, snow or whatever, we just kept on generating. A wind turbine can't do that and neither can solar today. Also, it would take 616 wind turbines (at 3 MW each) to replace just the single nuclear plant where I worked. And to put the amount of MW needed by a typical large utility in perspective, my company routinely needs 24,000 MW or more of electrical generation on a typical August afternoon to supply the customers' needs. That's a heck of a lot of wind turbines ...  ;D.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on December 02, 2019, 12:54:52 pm
One final parting thought: a typical wind turbine generates 1.5 - 3 MW (megawatts) of electricity. The nuclear plant where I worked generated 1850 MW (megawatts) of electricity 24 hours a day for up to 24 months straight before shutting down for refueling. Come rain, sun, snow or whatever, we just kept on generating. A wind turbine can't do that and neither can solar today.

And when the wind stops blowing, it's not just one 3 MW turbine that goes offline.

The wind farms in the Columbia River Gorge and Columbia Basin of eastern Washington and Oregon states are capable of a total of over 4,500 MW (Feb 2017 estimate). When the wind stops blowing in that region, that is an enormous amount of generation capacity that must be made up quickly. Granted, it might not all go offline at once (the region is quite large), but the physical geography means that it pretty much all depends on the same winds.

The Columbia River also provides a hydroelectric generating capacity of over 34,000 MW (July 2017), which is the bulk of the generating capacity on the Pacific Northwest grid. When the wind farms are operating, those dams have to hold equivalent capacity (up to 4,500 MW; ~13% of hydro capacity) in generating reserve, so they can respond to the sudden loss of wind turbine capacity. (Hydrocarbon-fueled facilities also are managed to provide reserve capacity, and there are hydro facilities on other northwest rivers, though I don't know what those capacities are.)

A great advantage of hydroelectric generation is its ability to respond almost instantaneously to changes in demand by opening or closing the wicket gates feeding water to the turbines. Direct combustion facilities (internal combustion; gas turbine) can also respond almost instantaneously, but hydrocarbon-steam facilities have lag time as it takes a little while for the steam head to build or cool. Also, there's the factor of water being a renewable resource as compared to hydrocarbon fuels which may be finite, giving hydroelectric another advantage.
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Stephen Swaffer on December 03, 2019, 01:08:07 pm
I do see some positives to solar in my area-though the ROI is not anywhere near justifying the initial investment for my company (we really looked hard at it)-even when subsidized.

In my area, (Iowa-rural) there is a widely distributed load, plenty of hog confinements, etc with nice big flat roofs made for solar panels.  We also occasionally have "brownouts"-voluntary interruptions in use that are incentivized-and those are usually in the afternoon on bright sunny (hot!) days-when solar is producing at its best. 

So the extra capacity is being generated closer to point of utilization and peaks when needed most-which primarily helps the POCO with its grid management.

I guess my skepticism of wind power was generated by the phone call last spring asking what I thought of a double digit rate increase.  I asked why the increase-their answer was they were investing in wind power to save us all money.  I asked if that meant my rates would eventually go down-anyone wonder about that answer??  Can someone can explain how increasing my electric rates saves me money?
Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Frank Koenig on December 03, 2019, 01:44:12 pm
https://www.nerc.com/docs/oc/rs/NERC%20Balancing%20and%20Frequency%20Control%20040520111.pdf (https://www.nerc.com/docs/oc/rs/NERC%20Balancing%20and%20Frequency%20Control%20040520111.pdf)

Bill, thanks for the explanations and link (I need something to read). A quick skim shows that the water analogy lives on  ;)

--Frank

Title: Re: Coldplay and the environment
Post by: Bill Meeks on December 03, 2019, 09:49:45 pm
Bill, thanks for the explanations and link (I need something to read). A quick skim shows that the water analogy lives on  ;)

--Frank

You're welcome. I was always fascinated by the complexities of electric grid management. It gets really involved when you have to worry about VARs and the impact of capacitance and inductance on long high voltage transmission lines (500 KV and above especially). Also a lot of techie stuff goes into scheduled interchanges of power where one utility finds it cheaper to buy power from another utility versus generating it themselves. This can be an hour-by-hour decision at times as it depends on what the tie lines can handle and what generation sources the buying utility has available versus what the selling utility has available.

It always irritates me somewhat when folks make a lot of noise about how wonderful wind and solar are without fully understanding the negative impacts such widely distributed unreliable generation sources can have on the stability of the electric grid. The folks pushing that agenda frequently omit fairly covering the downsides such setups cause for grid operators.