Monday, February 21, 2011

Holy Renewable Energy Project, Batman: Norway and Jordan's Deal

I will be the first to admit that this blog focuses largely on the inner workings of America's alternative energy landscape, and a lot of that can be attributed to the fact that I live smack in the middle of the United States. However, this focus should not be mistaken for me being blind to the developments outside of America's scope.

Instead, it is more a nod that there is SO MUCH happening around the world in the realm of environmental energy that it would be impossible to cover it all in the three-post per week nature of this blog. Sure I could cover more if I didn't spend a ton of time researching my Sunday Comic segments, but lets face it, comics are awesome and I'm not going to cut a segment that creates 60% of this blogs traffic.

Putting all of that aside, there is an awesome development in the works between Norway and Jordan involving the Sahara Desert, water/food scarcity, and alternative energy: reports:
The chosen test site is a 200,000 square meter plot in Aqaba, a coastal town in the far south of Jordan, close to the shore of the Red Sea. The agreement also secured an additional 2 million square meters for later expansion. The Sahara Forest Project combines Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) and Seawater Greenhouses to provide a huge amount of renewable energy and sustainable agricultural solutions, essentially turning one of the world’s most inhospitable environments into a flourishing oasis.

Seawater Greenhouses use solar power to convert salt water into fresh water, which is then used to grow fresh vegetables and algae (to absorb CO2). CSP provides the energy to power the whole operation. CSP uses thousands of mirrors to direct sunlight upon a water boiler, heating it to over 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. The boiler produces steam, which moves a turbine to create energy.
If this project is completed, this will be a huge win for the alternative energy movement that can act as an example for the rest of the world. The following image is a conceptual representation of how this project could eventually look.

To read more about the agreement between Norway and Jordan, click here.

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