January 30, 2006

Two Energy boards

Stumbled onto two excellent online communities dealing with energy. Check out Peak Oil and The Oil Drum. A sample post from The Oil Drum:
Graphs that Blow Your Mind...
...or break your jaw when it hits the floor. I was working on a different piece when I stumbled across these numbers and I couldn't resist posting this graph immediately.

Click for full-size Image

Annual production of cement by country in billions of metric tons.
Source: USGS.

Cement is mainly used to make concrete, and is sort of the "active ingredient" in concrete - it is combined with sand and gravel in roughly fixed proportions. So cement production is a rough proxy for the total amount of construction going on in a country.
If that isn't enough, one of the commenters reminded us that it takes a lot of heat to calcine the limestone. Another commenter worked out the numbers and came up with the equivalent of 1.1 Billion Barrels of Oil. The Chinese use coal for the cement production but this only highlights the intense environmental problems over there as the cement plants are small operations and not equipped with any of the current pollution controls. Needless to say, these two sites will be posted to the Blogroll when I next do updates. Posted by DaveH at January 30, 2006 10:37 AM