Saturday, March 27, 2010

Minister Eamon Ryan's Charge Points


Minister Eamon Ryan
“Charger Points”
for electric cars in Dublin

A few points (on these charger points) to note:

(1) The photo above shows a charging lead with a 13-amp plug on the end. This means the maximum rate of charge will be under 3Kw/h. You might need to set up a tent near the charging point at that rate, or at least book into a nearby guesthouse for the wait.

(2) The new types of battery soon to appear on the market, super-capacitor, nano-lithium or whatever, all boast very fast charging rates. These batteries therefore would require a current input of at least twenty times the capability of these flimsy points being opened in Dublin. Otherwise the fast-charging advantage they offer would not be achievable.

(3) These “charge points” are obsolete already even before the new type batteries become available. What a waste of public money- for what amounts to nothing much more than a window dressing exercise!

(4) High current charge points will require improvements in the grid system. This is what should be planned for, and not go wasting resources on outdated technology. These "charge Points" could be another voting machine type waste of our money.

(5) Has the Minister considered safety and vandalism when commissioning these “charge points” How safe will it be to leave your electric car plugged in for the 8 hours or more these points will take to deliver a charge?


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Nano Lithium Ecolocap Hmmmmm


a previously unheard of player
announce test results of new
Nano Lithium Battery

Testing seems to indicate that Ecolocap's Nano Lithium X batteries have the world’s current highest energy density output v/s weight. They would also appear to have the lowest total cost and fastest recharge time of any commercially-available battery.

"Using a multidisciplinary approach involving electrical, mechanical, scientific, thermal and statistical analysis, the Nano Lithium X battery was extensively tested for its charge and discharge capabilities at 100 amps, 150 amps, 200 amps and 235 amps. Rigorous testing has concluded that the Nano Lithium X Battery performs even better than the company previously estimated, and represents a substantial improvement over existing lithium-ion batteries in terms of energy density, total cost, and recharge time."

When are we likely to see them on the shelves? Who knows, this could be another EEstor. Whatever you do, don't go holding your breath - you hear now!!!!


Earth Hour 2010


It has come around again!
Time to Show you Care!

Switch the lights off
Make a Point.
Saturday 27 March at 8.30pm (local time)

Earth Hour started in 2007 in Sydney, Australia when 2.2 million homes and businesses turned their lights off for one hour to make their stand against climate change. Only a year later and Earth Hour had become a global sustainability movement with more than 50 million people across 35 countries participating. Global landmarks such as the, Sydney Harbour Bridge, The CN Tower in Toronto, The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and Rome’s Colosseum, all stood in darkness, as symbols of hope for a cause that grows more urgent by the hour.

In March 2009, hundreds of millions of people took part in the third Earth Hour. Over 4000 cities in 88 countries officially switched off to pledge their support for the planet, making Earth Hour 2009 the world’s largest global climate change initiative.

Earth Hour 2010 takes place on Saturday 27 March at 8.30pm (local time) and is a global call to action to every individual, every business and every community throughout the world. It is a call to stand up, to take responsibility, to get involved and lead the way towards a sustainable future. Iconic buildings and landmarks from Europe to Asia to the Americas will stand in darkness. People across the world from all walks of life will turn off their lights and join together in celebration and contemplation of the one thing we all have in common – our planet. So sign up now and let’s make 2010 the biggest Earth Hour yet!.


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

SEI to SEAI Comment


Comment on Comment!

I had a comment on my last post in which I was somewhat scathing about SEI. My sarcasm was based on the poor performance of some of their past schemes, not least their abysmally poor handling of the situation evolving from the SEI woodpellet grants scheme, and not so much a comment on the future plan just announced.

My attitude to SEI / SEAI is encapsulated in a statement from the managing director of a large company involved in the
business who put it to me regarding SEI; they have a "terminal lack of joined-up thinking"

energy has left a new comment on your post "New Name for SEI":

I understand that you are generally annoyed with SEAI. I am also of the opinion that their new plan is far fetched. However, before publicly condemning something, I feel that it is important that we read the plan in whole (which is easily available on their website). It is not necessarily a 5 year plan, but something that spans out over 15 years.

Personally I believe that in order to achieve your goals, it is important to reach for something higher - as the saying goes "Shoot for the moon, if you miss, you will land among the stars."
This mentality is used by most companies around the world during their annual goal setting exercises.

Also, I believe that if we have something to say about anything (good or bad), it should be followed up with facts and not a statement like "I sincerely hope that (SEAI) also gets a badly needed BRAIN transplant."

Please don't take my comment the wrong way, I am just simply stating my opinion - as are you.


Friday, March 12, 2010

New Name for SEI


SEI Sustainable Energy Ireland
Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI)

Sustainable Energy Ireland has just had a name transplant and it now becomes Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI).

The trumpet blowing exercise included the announcement of a five year plan that is supposed to add €6bn to the Irish economy along with the creation of some 5,000 and 10,000 new jobs each year. (Maybe another couple of thousand BER Assessors - and how about a few thousand pen pushers too??)

With the name transplant, I sincerely hope that (SEAI) also gets a badly needed BRAIN transplant.


Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Quarter Million Hits Reached


My very first step into the world of blogging was on June 7th 2006 with a rant about woodpellet rip-offs in Ireland. The blog was slow to grow at first or get any sort of respectable hit rate.

This Blog has reached 250,000 Hits

This blog has just topped the quarter million hits, or 250,000 page accesses. For me, it is a bit of a landmark worth noting, and for a regional specialty blog, it is a little bit of a triumph, hence the celebratory firework photo.

My Payoff

I have had a great deal of satisfaction from this blog. My standard of English has improved somewhat over the time, with of course the help of a few of my readers and their sometimes-uncomplimentary remarks. My interest in sustainable energy has grown along with my general zest for that which is current generally. The blog has additionally been a cheapskate form of therapy for me. Having a place to let out the occasional rant has no doubt saved on the Valium.


Sunday, March 07, 2010

A Response from Your Country Your Call


Your Country Your Call
Responds to my Concerns

I recently had some contact from the "Your Country Your Call" publicity agents / organisers. However, given the fundamental nature of my major stated concerns, I think both their letters and the subsequent corrective actions taken have been totally inadequate.

E-mail Letter from "Your Country Your Call":

Thanks for your feed back Tony on our website.

We are aware that some aspects of the website can be improved and we plan to make changes where we can. In the context of all the work which has been undertaken to make Your Country Your Call happen, these are niggles and they don't detract from what Your Country Your Call is trying to achieve.

That said, we are working to continuously improve any aspect of Your Country Your Call that may need it and your comments are therefore appreciated.

Thanks and regards,
Your Country Your Call

Dear Tony,

Thanks very much for all of your comments both on the blog and here. We hope that we have covered quite a lot of ground even though we may not have specifically answered all of your questions.

Your observations have been noted and where we can make improvements we will do our best to implement them during the course of the competition.

With many thanks,

Your Country, Your Call Team



Saturday, March 06, 2010

Your Country Your Call needs a re-think


My Final Post to YCYC

The generating impulse of YCYC (Your Country Your Call) is such a fine and noble effort in these times. The prime sponsors of the initiative, our President and her husband, could not have a higher esteem by my estimation.

However, from that fine genesis, the idea becomes confused and clouded. The web site is looking like a joke with a large percentage of “submissions” which are either spoofs, or have a very poor standard of content and/or presentation. Then there is this blog which does not operate very well and is not moderated properly.

But most of all the idea of having a competition with a large monetary reward for nation saving ideas is like offering to pay Connolly or Pearse for their services. There should be no monetary reward offered for the honour of serving ones country in its time of need.

Finally, the idea of employing an international drinks vendor as a major sponsor is, at least, most distasteful and unbecoming of an initiative born of such high and noble beginnings.

Tony McGinley


I,ve lost interest in "Your Country Your Call"


Regretfully, regarding "Your Country Your Call", I have reached the point with this "Competition" where I have decided to disconnect from it.

My reasons are (a) the ill considered strategies and methodology adopted by the designers both in the general approach, and in the website design, and (b) the most inappropriate inclusion of a drinks vendor as a sponsor.

Both these approaches have, IMHO, placed the effort in an unfortunate and undesirable position, and one which is not at all in keeping with the high ideals of the motivating impulse.

The image I seem to be getting is of a TV game show, and "Survivor" immediately comes to mind, where the only thing that matters is winning, and anything goes when it comes to achieving it.

I hope there may be a decision taken by the organisers to re-structure the concept, and that it doesn't end up as a competitive rat-race of ideas scrambling for the prize money.


Friday, March 05, 2010

Help sought on Opop Biocomfort


The Woodpellet Saga Continues
against a Deafening Silence from
Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI)

Maybe some of my readers can give some advice or help to this man?

Re: Opop Biocomfort 24kw

I must commend you on you're excellent site. It was very informative and useful to me when I was choosing a wood pellet boiler.

I had the above installed by a company in Galway who now appear to have gone out of business and are uncontactable.

I'm afraid I have had quite a few problems with the system. Initially the installer blamed the silo (which I had made from plywood by a local carpenter) and the quality of the pellets. Eventually after some adjustments to the augur feed and changing pellet supplier (am now using pellets from a company called Firestix who import them from Germany) the system started to run OK.

My problem now is that the augur has stopped working. Instead of turning continuously in one direction it makes a half turn in one direction and then a half turn back with the result that it is not feeding pellets. As I cannot contact the company who installed the system I am looking for somebody who may be able to fix this for me.

The only company I can see that provide these are based in Co. Kerry but it would not be feasible for me to contact them as I am based in Co. Roscommon.

I would appreciate any help / advice you can provide.

Thank you,

Contact details:


Monday, March 01, 2010

Dr Martin McAleese' Comedy Site


Your Country Your Call
Lifts the Nation's Spirits

YCYC is lifting the national spirits but, I guess, not exactly in the way intended. I have had feelings of reservation about several aspects of the Presidential initiative, not least about the way the website is designed and the idea of an open "competition" for nation changing ideas, not to mention the sponsorship by a drink vendor.

Already there are some 1800 proposals swamping the site. A trend seems to have now started among contributors to see who can come up with the funniest entry.

For instance:

(Craic-er-Jack) Proposes; a Gay City and a pink Euro note.

(Seanachie) Proposes; Iodine tablet for tsunamis.

(Uniseann 1954) Has a proposal on "Dog Poo".

(Draks) Proposes we build the biggest ever Zeppelin.

For a good laugh see: