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Turbines to tap into Gulf Stream

Discussion in 'Environmental Discussion' started by GrumpyCabbie, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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  2. spiderman

    spiderman wretched

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    Seems like a great idea to me. And what output and all out of sight. One wonders about the possible collateral damage to marine life though.
    They have been talking for years about harnessing the tidal action up here in Cook Inlet. They get 30+mph tides.
     
  3. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    You can't go crazy with it though. The energy to turn these turbines is removed from the Gulf Stream by slowing it. Reduce it's speed too much and the UK gets colder. The actual amount a turbine reduces the stream, and the total number of turbines that can be put into use, might, more than likely, be of no consequence, but it isn't something to be just waved off without consideration.
     
  4. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    I'm not technical (I'm a cabbie remember) so I might be asking a dumb question here, but the energy required to turn these turbines is removed from the Gulf Stream? Could this slow it or stop it or would it need a massive number of turbines to make any difference?

    Does the same not apply to wind turbines? Forgive my ignorance.
     
  5. hyo silver

    hyo silver Awaaaaay

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    Yes, technically, energy would be 'removed' from the Gulf Stream, but it's like saying the Eiffel Tower gets shorter when you stand on it. You'd need a gazillion turbines to have any measurable effect, and climate change may well divert the stream before we build that many.
     
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  6. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    It would take a massive number to make a measurable difference, but let's be realistic. We're talking about cooling the UK. Who really cares.

    ;)

    :D

    :p

    Tom
     
  7. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    It's easy to go off somebody lol ;)
     
  8. xs650

    xs650 Senior Member

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    Look at the bright side Grumpy, if the Gulf Stream does stop because of global warming, they could run the turbine generators as motors to start the Gulf Stream up again.:cool:
     
  9. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    Or attach them to the UK and drag it south for better weather.

    Tom
     
  10. richard schumacher

    richard schumacher shortbus driver

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    Not a dumb question at all. The power of the Gulf Stream is at least millions of megaWatts; it would take millions of turbines to begin to slow it by a measurable amount. The Gulf Stream will be altered by effects of global warming (changes in surface water salinity, changes in deep water flow, etc.) long before power turbines could affect it.
     
  11. FL_Prius_Driver

    FL_Prius_Driver Senior Member

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    While the numbers don't indicate an effect due to power extraction, that many turbines undoubtedly could have some undesirable ripple effect that would show up, especially if we don't think the effects through. Who knows what spawning ground might be unnecessarily damaged if not explored beforehand. That said, proper design should be possible to provide both needed power and minimal adverse impact.
     
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