Author Archives: Peter Spitz

Unusual forms of carbon: Growing Commercial Uses

 Richard Smalley’s team’s discovery of Buckyballs( Fullerene) at Rice University in 1985 was a breakthrough in the knowledge of so-called allotropic forms of carbon. Thirty years have now gone by, but commercial applications of these interesting shapes of carbon are still … Continue reading

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NAFTA can work both ways: Mexico starts to privatize energy

The North American Free Trade Agreement, now over twenty years old,  has been very good for Canada and, even more, for Mexico with both countries’ enjoying highly favorable balances of trade with the U.S.  Mexico is increasingly replacing China as a source … Continue reading

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3D Printing comes of age

This blog is about chemical and energy developments of interest to me and, I trust, also to readers following these posts. Since I have wondered for some time about how 3D printing works, I decided to investigate and this is the result. (Full disclosure: … Continue reading

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GW/Climate Change: Why methane is so important

For some time now, it has become obvious that natural gas and crude oil production from shale deposits results in significant emissions of methane, a much more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Efforts by drillers and gas distributors to … Continue reading

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Flue gas carbon removal: Skyonic’s approach

A new EPA ruling, just validated by the U.S. Supreme Court, is aimed at substantially reducing carbon dioxide emission in the flue gas from coal-fired power plants and other large coal-burning plants. In previous posts on this blog I have discussed … Continue reading

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Westlake MLP opens new chapter

Wow! How the U.S. petrochemical world has changed! The shale gas “revolution” has made the production of ethylene from ethane so profitable that a downstream integrated ethylene producer can now “donate”( well, actually sell, but under favorable conditions) some of his profits to investors in … Continue reading

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LPG for Fracking gaining ground

While hydraulic fracturing of shale continues to be a great success in the United States, with tens of thousands of new wells drilled every year for oil and natural gas production, popular resistance to this technology is gaining ground, according … Continue reading

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Wind, Solar, Storage and Electric Cars – Our high tech renewable future!

An article in the current issue of MIT Technology Review presents a picture of how renewable energy for power plants is making a greater impact and how it may look not many decades out as wind and solar power are intelligently integrated into a power grid. … Continue reading

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A plea for maintaining nuclear plants considered at risk

A movement is gaining momentum to stop shutting down nuclear power plants that have little or no competitive advantage over natural gas-fired plants or have high maintenance costs. The reason: The less we rely on nuclear energy, the more carbon will … Continue reading

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Another good thing about shale

When the Yucca Mountain idea for disposing of nuclear waste was torpedoed by Harry Reid, senator from Nevada, the problem of disposing of 70,000 metric tons of spent nuclear fuel remained unsolved – a sort of “sword of Damocles” hanging … Continue reading

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