Sunday, March 19, 2023

Short Takes – 3-19-23

From bank runs to a credit crunch, the financial future looks bleak. opinion piece. Pull quote: “At the height of the 2008 crisis, policymakers fixed the problem of capital-short banks by forcing them to accept capital injections from the government. But this semi-nationalization was hated by bank shareholders, whose ownership was diluted; and today’s market conditions are not (yet) extreme enough to warrant such radical action. The upshot is that the economy might be hobbled by zombie lenders for the next year or more. Such is the price of an inflationary bubble that the Fed was too slow to pop.”

Plant explosion leaves town with fear of lead exposure and few answers. article. My post on the incident; no mention of lead. Pull quote: “Lead, which occurs naturally in soil at very low levels, is considered hazardous under EPA thresholds when it surpasses 400 parts per million in children’s play areas and at 1,200 ppm in non-play areas. Most of the samples fell below the play-area threshold, though two sites near the plant showed elevated lead levels, including one at 3,144 ppm, more than 2½ times the higher threshold.”

This geothermal startup showed its wells can be used like a giant underground battery. article. Pull quote: “The results from the initial experiments—which MIT Technology Review is reporting exclusively—suggest Fervo can create flexible geothermal power plants, capable of ramping electricity output up or down as needed. Potentially more important, the system can store up energy for hours or even days and deliver it back over similar periods, effectively acting as a giant and very long-lasting battery. That means the plants could shut down production when solar and wind farms are cranking, and provide a rich stream of clean electricity when those sources flag.”

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