Electricity Shortages could threaten Supplies of Natural Resources LENR could Solve Them
The use of low energy nuclear reaction to generate electricity could help prevent shortages of natural resources in the future. Recent news reports indicate that electricity shortages in some parts of the world could threaten our supplies of natural resources. This could lead to higher prices for many items. It could also hobble industry and threaten economic development. Long term it could greatly increase poverty and human misery.
The nation of Chile which produces most of the world’s copper is now facing a serious shortage of electricity. Chile will need to increase its electric generation capacity by 47% or 8,000 megawatts in order to meet the needs of its people and all the new copper mines planned there.
Yet political opposition there could halt the construction of planned coal and hydroelectric power plants. Without those plants Chile would have to stop expanding its copper production which is vital to the nation’s future. Joaquin Villarino a lobbyist for the nation’s copper industry told the American magazine Bloomberg Business Week that most of the new investment in the nation’s copper mines could halt without electricity.
If that happens the price of copper and all the items made from it could be driven up. This would lower the standard of living of average people over the world including Americans because they would have to pay more for all manner of manufactured goods.
It could also hobble Chile’s plans to become a developed nation. Even Chile’s President has acknowledged as much. On February 28 Sebastian Pinera said in a speech: “if we don’t win this battle to have cheap, clean and safe energy, we won’t become a developed country.”
In other words millions of people in Chile and around the world could be doomed to poverty without electricity. There would be no jobs and possibly no food. Poverty would lead to political unrest, war, dictatorship and violence.
LENR or cold fusion could supply that need because it is cheap, clean and safe. It puts out no pollution and burns no fossil fuel. Robert Godes of Brillouin estimates that his LENR boiler technology could generate a kilowatt of electricity for as little as one cent.
It’s not just the copper supply that is threatened big mining companies like BHP Billiton and Freeport McMoran are canceling projects and scaling back production because of high energy costs. It is now already too expensive to mine for gold in some parts of the world because of high energy costs. Billiton is reportedly thinking about spending $30 billion on an expansion of its Olympic Dam copper mine in Australia. Much of that spending is for energy costs or infrastructure to produce energy which is now threatening to make mining uneconomical.
LENR processes like Andrea Rossi’s ecat could solve this problem. Rossi is working on a 45 megawatt ecat power plant that would be perfect for uses such as mining. That would make mining cheaper and easier than ever before because nobody would need to build a huge power plant to power a mine. Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista is planning to spend $5 billion for a coal fired power plant in Chile. Someone like Batista would definitely be interested in a source of electricity that required no coal.
Right now it costs several billion dollars to bring a new mine online because of all the infrastructure needed. Something like LENR could greatly reduce those costs by making low cost electricity available. Long term LENR could be used to power steam engines running many of the big machines used in mining which would further reduce the costs. This would lower the cost of natural resources which would benefit the world’s entire economy.
That would reduce the cost of manufactured goods and the cost of living for everybody on the planet including ordinary Americans and Europeans. It would also provide more good high-paying mining jobs to people in developing nations so they could pull themselves out of poverty. That would benefit Americans and Europeans because less foreign aid and military expenditures would be necessary.
Finally, some people such as our friend Sterling Allan over at Pure Energy Systems have speculated that one day cold fusion could be used to power asteroid mining. Asteroid mining is no fantasy a group of investors that includes Google boss Larry Page, Ross Perot junior (son of the electronics tycoon turned presidential candidate) and movie director James Cameron of Terminator, Titanic and Aviator fame think they can make it a reality. They’ve even founded a company to so called Planetary Resources. To do so they would need a low cost power source. One of Planetary Resources goals is to greatly cut the cost of space exploration and robotic space craft.
LENR which Dr. George Miley thinks could be one day be used to power spacecraft would be the perfect power source for asteroid mines. It would help Planetary Resources cut costs so Miley should contact them now. Asteroid mining could provide us all the minerals we need without the need to despoil the earth.