Thursday, April 26, 2012

PSU Updates BIM Guides


Penn State University's Computer Integrated Construction Research Program  has published an updated version of its excellent BIM Project Execution Planning Guide - now version 2.0 - along with a BIM Planning Guide for Facility Owners.  These documents, like those published by PSU in the past, will prove invaluable to built industry professionals deploying BIM tools in the real world.

PSU Website


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Chess Pieces Moving on the Energy Board


Last summer this blog featured a series of posts predicting the ability to tap enormous new shale gas reserves through fracking and horizontal drilling would positively impact the geopolitical chess board from the perspective of the US and Western Europe.  The blog post excerpted and linked below demonstrates the reality of those predictions.

Firms interested in positively impacting sustainability would be well served by engaging the energy sector in a substantive conversation regarding the value added through the intelligent and effective use of IPD, BIM and lean processes.  Increasing the efficiency with which energy resources are extracted, transported, refined and consumed will do more to preserve and protect the environment and reduce carbon emissions than a million Solyndra style boondoggles.

Gazprom supplied 27 percent of Europe’s natural gas in 2011. While American gas is trading below $2 per MMBTU (million British thermal units), Gazprom’s prices are tied to crude oil markets, and its long-term contracts charge customers roughly $13 per MMBTU, says the FT. European customers would love to reduce their dependence on Gazprom and start to import American gas.

Shale Gas from North America Crimping Russia's Style

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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Shhhh..... Don't Tell OSHA!


An amazing picture of a crew on a bridge from the early 1900s.

Pretty cool stuff.

My how times have changed.

Brooklyn Bridge

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Alberta Center for Excellence in BIM launched


The Alberta Center for Excellence in BIM has been incorporated as a non-profit corporation in Alberta.  Given the stellar make up of the board and the vision detailed below I anticipate the entity will quickly become a driver behind the intelligent and effective adoption of IPD, BIM and lean processes in western Canada.

Collaborative Construction is currently negotiating with several sponsors relative to an IPD &BIM Solutions Series in Canada that will provide hands on collaborative workshops for supporters of IPD, BIM and lean processes. The IPD / BIM train has left the station in western Canada and any laggards would be well advised to catch up and catch up quickly!

Below is an excerpt from what appears to be the aceBIM group's initial press release.


Alberta understands the happy marriage between productivity and competitiveness – and the new Alberta Centre of Excellence for Building Information Modeling (aceBIM) is all about increasing productivity throughout the province's construction industry.

Klaas Rodenburg, aceBIM Chief Executive Officer as well as Sustainable Design Coordinator for Stantec, says aceBIM will fulfil a pivotal role in increasing productivity and efficiency at all levels of the industry.

The construction industry is one of the largest contributors to the provincial economy, accounting for about 35 per cent of capital investment according to Construction Alberta Magazine. The industry, however, is not operating anywhere near peak efficiency.

And so the task for aceBIM is clear – improve productivity and precision in all stages of construction by developing widespread understanding of the technologies and tools available through BIM and getting the industry to use the available tools.  



Read the whole thing.

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Eating the rich won't solve our debt crisis


Tony Robbins tackles the question of whether eating the rich will solve our deficit problem.




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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Green Buildings = Benjamin Green!


The blog post excerpted and linked below references a new study demonstrating LEED certified bank branches generate more revenue and save the owner significant sums, per employee, on utility / energy costs.  Download / print a copy of the study to share with skeptical owners who ask whether LEED certification really adds value.

Keep in mind, also, that a design / construction team's ability to achieve LEED certification on a facility at a cost effective price is greatly enhanced if the team is BIM enabled and is further enhanced if the team is fully integrated.  I will add arguments based off this study to my ROI to the X power of IPD & BIM Solutions presentation.


In the study, called "The Relationship Between Corporate Sustainability and Firm Financial Performance," Conlon and Glavas found that:
  • PNC’s LEED rated facilities opened 458 more consumer deposit accounts and had over $3 million more in consumer deposit balances per facility per year over noncertified properties.
  • LEED rated facilities also opened 25 more consumer loan accounts and had almost $1 million more in loan balances per facility per year. The data also shows that financial performance at LEED rated facilities increased at a greater rate than at conventional facilities.
  • After controlling for other variables that influence performance (such as consumer net worth, employee demographics, market demographics, branch size and age and advertising spending), the sales at LEED-certified branches topped those at noncertified locations by $461,300 per employee.
  • Utility costs per employee in LEED branches were significantly lower than in the noncertified buildings, to the tune of $675 less per employee.
Also very interesting is what the study didn't find: Business account activity was statistically unaffected by whether the branch was LEED certified or not.


Read the whole thing.

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Monday, April 23, 2012

Revolution comes to the law


The lament that outsourcing drives blue collar jobs over seas has always struck me as short sighted.  Globalization impacts every aspect of the economy, including the delivery of professional services.  Designers, construction managers and similarly situated providers of professional services in the built industry feel the pinch from global competition as well.  The impact of globalization extends far beyond the blue collar manufacturing world.

For example, it is becoming easier and easier to deliver professional services without all the overhead associated with the trappings of a fancy office, staff and infrastructure in New York, LA, London, Hong Kong or Paris.  The article linked below is a reminder that the legal profession, the the law school model that produces young lawyers, is no more immune to the tectonic shifts the global economy is undergoing than other professions.

As an advocate on IPD, BIM and lean processes I would remind readers of the value of retaining the capacity, right and willingness to adjust your own legal relationships within the four corners of the legal agreements you craft, negotiate, execute and implement as an integrated team.  The lawyers, accountants, lenders, insurers, sureties, risk managers, and others will insist every member of the team hire its own cadre of professional advisers, but there is a better option.

Join forces and hire a collaborative consultant to help the entire integrated team craft a path to success for the project as a whole.  Hire consultants, as necessary, to address issues specific to your teams concerns and your project.  Sharing the cost of the foregoing efforts will enable the team to reduce costs and, more importantly, will result in a legal framework that works for the team and for the project as a whole, rather than one that the vested interests of the professionals delivering the services.

The Death Spiral of Big Law and the Law Schools

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A Third Industrial Revolution?


Readers of this blog are more keenly aware of the revolution that is upon than most, but the article linked below really drives the scope, nature and depth of the revolution home.  The Economist article excerpted and linked below, which describes the Information Age as a Third Industrial Revolution is a very interesting read.  An AUGIWorld article I authored, dealing with Wicked Education issues relative to IPD, BIM and lean processes touches on how we define the emerging global economy.  There I used the terms Knowledge Economy and Knowledge-Based Economy.  Regardless of labels, there is a revolution upon us.

Everything in the factories of the future will be run by smarter software. Digitisation in manufacturing will have a disruptive effect every bit as big as in other industries that have gone digital, such as office equipment, telecoms, photography, music, publishing and films. And the effects will not be confined to large manufacturers; indeed, they will need to watch out because much of what is coming will empower small and medium-sized firms and individual entrepreneurs. Launching novel products will become easier and cheaper. Communities offering 3D printing and other production services that are a bit like Facebook are already forming online—a new phenomenon which might be called social manufacturing.


Third Industrial Revolution - Full Article

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Monday, April 16, 2012

Wicked IPD Procurement Programs


The March issue of AUGIWorld Magazine hit the web late last week.  If you don't receive a hard copy of the magazine you can review it now.  The issue features Tips and Tricks for Revit users and the big tip in the BUILT - BIM to FM section outlines a path to adoption of an IPD Procurement Program by institutional owners.  The link below takes you to the online version of the magazine and the Wicked Procurement Programs article begins on page 38.

AUGIWorld March 2012

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Facilities Management & BIM?


Brics-Net and Onuma joined forces to demonstrate two way information exchange between the Onuma Planning System - a valuable BIM software tool - and Brics-Net's FM software tools. The bi-directional exchange demonstrated in the presentation below is pretty cool.

The technology and software tools continue to mature.  The need to form, train, and deploy integrated teams is more important than ever.

Institutional owners are beginning to clue into the value of the "Googlizing" information related to their facilities through tools like these.  It's time.




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Chicago Construction Law Blog


Jim McConnell out of Chicago, who owns Construction Law Services, LLC and blogs at the Chicago Construction Law Blog has an interesting series of posts today dealing with several failed projects in which surety companies and owners are scrambling to replace contractors who have defaulted on bonded projects.  You can follow the link below to read more.

I was intrigued by the failures as each case reinforced in my mind the need to bring the various financial stakeholders together as integrated team members early in the process.  In January, when I presented in Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton, we invited lenders, insurers and sureties to join the conversation.  A number of bankers attended, but no insurers and no sureties were represented.

The failures documented in McConnell's post involve multiple multi-million dollar projects and highlight the need for better communication between project teams and their sureties.

Chicago Construction Law Blog

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Is Cheap Gas the Solution?


Prior to the current shale gas boom taking hold, the price of natural gas climbed dramatically.  It peaked, in 2008, at around $13 per mcf.

An mcf is 1,000 cubic feet of natural gas with a heat value of 1 million Btu.  That's a lot of gas.  You can cook a lot of steaks with 1,000 cubic feet of natural gas!

You know what an mcf of natural gas fetches today on the marker?  Right around $2.30 a unit.  That is cheap.  Really cheap.  I grew up in West Texas in the 1970s were natural gas, which was a by product of oil production, was flared off at the well head.  You could drive for miles and miles and see flares burning all over the landscape. You know why?  Natural gas was only worth a few pennies an mcf and it was cheaper to flare it off than to bring it to market.  Why was that?  There were almost no pipelines available.  You know what's different now?  We have lots and lots of pipelines.  In the US we have a pipeline system that is the envy of the world.  It is literally the best and most comprehensive pipeline system on the planet.  Which means we can transport natural gas just about anywhere we need it.  Easily and cheaply.

As energy companies hone extraction techniques natural gas will get cheaper still.  Below is an excerpt from an article comparing and contrasting coal and nuclear power plants with gas fired power plants.  The differences are shocking.

But there are also extra bonus points.  "Combined-cycle" gas power plants can reach efficiencies of 60% or more, compared to heat efficiencies of nuclear power plants of 35% or coal plants of 40%.  
It gets even better than that.  Gas-fired electricity generation is essentially non-polluting and user-friendly, and it can be placed in close proximity to wherever power is needed, making distributed generation economically feasible.  For example, a large apartment building of 1,000 units could use its own 10-megawatt power plant.  But once installed, it becomes possible to consider co-generation, with the waste heat used for space heating, air-conditioning, hot water, laundry, and other process-heat applications -- and even desalination.  One can imagine energy efficiencies of as much as 80%, more than double what is achieved today.  It would also simplify the problem of waste-heat disposal. 
Cheap gas will encourage the petrochemical industry to invest $30 billion in new U.S. plants over the next five years, according to Chevron-Phillips Chemical Co.  Plastics producers will get a double-boost -- from cheaper feedstock gas, the raw material for their product, and lower electricity costs.  When natural gas becomes really cheap -- say, less than $2 per mcf -- it will become more like nuclear energy, where the main cost is not fuel, but the capital cost of the power plant. 

Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/04/cheap_natural_gas_heralds_an_energy_revolution.html#ixzz1rlrkGNJr

Here in Ohio the Utica shale formation contains enormous untapped reserves of natural gas.  I sometimes wonder if prices drop low enough whether there will be enough incentive to develop those resources.  Then I'm reminded that the natural gas is often mixed with oil and natural gas liquids (NGL) which continue to have significant value in the market.

As I wrote last summer the shale gas boom has completely re-aligned the geopolitical chess board.  Things are going to be very interesting over the next 50 years!

 
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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Energy 2.0 is... Oil & Gas?


No there's an oil boom in Kansas.

The familiar signs of an oil boom are everywhere: restaurants busier than ever, rental prices shooting up, hotels booked solid. Kansas has more undrilled acreage than most states. Each horizontal well costs about $3 million and is expected to deliver a 90 percent return on investment, paying for itself after 18 months of production. High oil prices are an extra impetus to drill, baby, drill — and to keep the new jobs sprouting from the Kansas ground. The boom “is going to change things forever in this part of the world,” says one local prospector.
Any economic boom, especially one involving oil and gas, changes the communities in which the boom occurs.  It would be great if communities impacted by these booms would invest in new generation infrastructure and planning while the boom is underway.  We shall see.

Link to Mead Blog

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Monday, April 9, 2012

A Scanning Epiphany


Gene Roe, who blogs over at Lidar News and covers all kinds of interesting developments on the scanning front, has a blog post up describing a conversation he had with Karl Matthews, VP of Product Management at Geomagic in which Karl explained the difference between object centric scanning an scene centric scanning.  The post clarifies a similar conundrum that has been rattling around in my head undefined.

Thanks Gene and Karl for sharing.  Things are advancing nicely on every front when it comes to IPD, BIM and lean processes.  Scanning tools are critical to assessment efforts as well as documenting existing conditions.  I'd like to see institutional owners including a basic scanning requirement on all projects in the very near future.  Pouring that scanned data into your BIM bucket early, and mandating deliver and hand of of fully functional digital assets from design discipline to design discipline and trade contractor to trade contractor, are critical to the development of a robust and useful BIM deliverable in the contract setting.

Scene vs. Object Based Scanning

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New Emission Restrictions Announced


The EPA has issued new regulations restricting the emission of carbon dioxide in power plants to 1,000 pounds per megawatt hour of electricity produced.  The new regulations make power plants fired with natural gas far more attractive than coal fired power plants.  Natural gas fired power plants produce approximately 850 pounds of carbon dioxide for every megawatt hour of electricity while coal fired power plants average closer to 1,800 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions per megawatt hour of electricity produced.

My understanding is the regulations impact new power plants.  To meet these restrictions coal fired power plants will have to deploy sophisticated and expensive carbon capture technologies to drive their number below 1,000 pounds.  Whether coal fired power plants can do so remains to be seen, but President Obama's promise to bankrupt coal fired power plants seems to another campaign promise he is keeping.

From the perspective of built industry professionals this confirms the supremacy, at least in the short term, of natural gas, the cost of which has been driven dramatically lower by the production of shale gas in the Marcellus, the Bakken and the Ford formations in western PA, eastern OH, WV, North Dakota, and south Texas.  The need for responsible infrastructure development in these areas looms large.  Exploration, extraction, transportation, processing and sales related infrastructure funded by the energy companies in these areas represents an enormous opportunity as does the creation / supplementation of new and existing infrastructure in the communities impacted by the sale gas booms unfolding in those areas.

Separately, the coal industry will not roll over and quit.  Lobbyists, politicians and unions will seek modification of these regulations to ensure coal can compete.  Multiple coal fired power plants have already been forced off-line by EPA regulations related to cross-border pollution rules and restrictions on mercury emissions.  The cost of shutting down, upgrading and bringing coal fired power plants back online - or decommissioning  them if re-starts are not viable - will be tremendous.  The combined effect will fulfill another of President Obama's campaign promises, "electricity prices will necessarily skyrocket."

Higher prices for electricity will enabled new coal fired power plants, with expensive carbon capture technology in place, to compete with natural gas.  Higher electricity prices may also open the door for electricity produced through alternative energy sources - solar, wind, etc. - though it is not clear how long these regulations will survive.  My guess is the regulations remain in place.  Regulations and taxes are much easier to put in place than to repeal.

The bottom line is these regulations will drive energy prices higher which means oil and gas exploration will expand and there will be more infrastructure related work in the pipeline as a result.  Consumers of energy - the American people and American businesses - will shoulder the cost of these increases but the increases are inevitable.  Accordingly, it is imperative that advocates of IPD, BIM and lean processes engage the energy sector vigorously.  Tools that increase the efficiency with which infrastructure in that sector is procured, operated and maintained will have a tremendous impact on the environment.

Opinion Piece on the Topic

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Saturday, April 7, 2012

Biological BIM?


Nanotechnology is advancing at a phenomenal rate.  The article excerpted and linked below describes interesting efforts to develop machines on the molecular level.  A team out of the UK has developed a mechanism for "re-wiring" the DNA in yeast.

Future applications of this work could include tiny yeast-based machines that can be dropped into water supplies to detect contaminants, and yeast that records environmental conditions during the manufacture of biofuels to determine if improvements can be made to the production process.***
Professor Paul Freemont, Co-Director of the Centre for Synthetic Biology and Innovation at the College, concludes: “One of the core aims of the Centre is to provide tools and resources to the wider scientific community by sharing our research. Dr Ellis’s team has now begun to assemble characterised biological parts for yeast that will be available to researchers both in academia and industry.”
I envision a myriad of applications in the built industry.  Releasing, collecting and analyzing yeast based machines in the built environment as markers, trackers, and other tasks would facilitate monitoring of air quality, water quality, material integrity and a number of other things.  These advances my lead to infrastructure that is not only BIM enabled but biologically enabled as well.

Read the whole thing
  
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Thursday, April 5, 2012

SEI Suspends Green Report Card


A few weeks ago we received a new file from a company seeking to enforce a lien against the University of Kentucky for non-payment on an Energy Savings Contract.  Investigation revealed the UK Board of Directors signed an agreement with a company that promised to provide energy saving upgrades / remodeling to 61 buildings on campus and promised at least $25 million in savings on utility costs over the life of the 12 year contract.  Interestingly, the entity agreed to put its money where its mouth was in the sense that it agreed to be paid out of the savings over the 12 year period.

Why the entity that hired us to file the lien has not been paid is not clear, and the entire contract may be completed with flying colors before all is said and done.  I am posting the information here as a cautionary tale.  I have long advocated contractors and designers negotiate for compensation tied to reduced energy consumption and agree to take a portion of such savings in compensation over time.  That compensation model depends, however, on the delivery of a high performance building and the ability to accurately predict and track the performance of the building over time.  In other words, don't agree to such a compensation model unless you are delivering BIM enabled infrastructure that is superior, energy performance wise, to the infrastructure you contracted to replace.

With that information as back ground I'm linking to an article from the Chronicle of Higher Education reporting the demise of the Green Report Card produced by the Sustainable Endowment Institute.  I'm not sure why the Green Report Card will no longer be published but I suspect it has a lot to do with the fact that the report card measures / rewards the use of green / alternative energy which institutions of higher education found to be far more expensive that fuel oil, natural case and coal.  In other words alternative energy solutions were not sustainable.

There is a reason Solyndra failed and other solar companies are failing in droves.  Alternative energy costs too much and cannot compete with energy derived from fossil fuels.  Further, governments around the world have given up on subsidizing those programs.  Spain stopped subsidizing solar energy and the market there  collapsed.  The market for Carbon Credits / Carbon Offsets has collapsed in Europe and Canada withdrew from the Koyoto Protocol.  The US Senate, of course, refused to put the gun to the head of the US economy in the first place.  Universities, like governments, have budgets to meet.  Arithmetic is cruel and unforgiving discipline and it ruthlessly dictates the long term failure of socialist policies; you will, eventually, run out of other peoples money.  The recession and the slow recovery here in the US accelerated that phenomenon and entities like the Sustainable Endowments Institute are coming to grip with that reality.  Frankly, its long past time the environmental movement put adults in charge.

SEI Suspends Green Report Card


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Teaching IPD, BIM and lean processes


I am putting the final touches on the latest article in the Wicked Series for AUGIWorld Magazine.  I wanted to share a sneak peak with readers and provide a link to a very interesting article by an author, Professor Russell Mead, who has done a lot of thinking about the path forward in a post-industrial world. His article, A Crisis of Civilization is excerpted and linked below.

I am convinced variations on the IPD, BIM and lean processes revolution we are experiencing in the built industry are taking place in other sectors of the economy as well.  For example, the classic pyramid scheme that supports professional service firms, e.g. law firms, accounting firms, design firms, engineering firms, etc. etc. is teetering on the brink and is likely to collapse as automation, information, and technological advances continue.  There are similar examples in almost every other sector of the economy.

Professor Russell Meade, at the American Interest Blog has a series of articles detailing the collapse of what he calls the blue economic model in the post-industrial era.  Below is an excerpt from his latest article, A Crisis of Civilization.
Post-industrial society is coming to the whole world — not at the same time and not at the same pace. But machines and IT and robots are going to reduce the number of people who work in old fashioned factories much faster than many people think. And many forms of office and administrative work are going to be transformed and disappear. Many white collar occupations that we take for granted today are going to become as obscure and marginal as once common trades like farriers and tinsmiths.
Professor Mead's predictions are particularly apt in the built industry.  The recession in the US, and the painfully slow recovery has forced entities that provide services in the built industry to cut their work forces to the bone and, in many instances, to completely re-think their business model.  Relying on a combination of advanced software tools, innovative lean business processes and old fashioned ingenuity many firms are poised to deliver services in a much more cost effective manner in the future.  But they will do so with a new generation of employees and consultants who are capable of delivering a new generation of services in new and different ways.  


During the recession and the slow recovery, at lease in the US and Europe, institutional owners have deferred maintenance, expansion and a variety of infrastructure work.  As a consequence, a huge backlog of infrastructure work exists and will fuel a boom when the economy comes back.  Entities that can quickly and effectively win and complete work will have an advantage over firms that cannot.  Firms that understand and adopt IPD, BIM and lean processes will have a tremendous advantage over those that do not. 


The AUGIWorld Magazine article scheduled for publication in May addresses issues related to the development and deployment of an effective IPD, BIM and lean process training program for firms competing in a knowledge-based economy.  My best guess is that the post-industrial economy will be a knowledge-based economy where knowledge, and mastery of institutional knowledge in particular, produces value for individual firms and their clients.  IPD, BIM and lean processes will be critical to the success of any firm operating in the new knowledge-based economy.


A Crisis of Civilization


Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about IPD, BIM and lean process training within your organization.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Words fail me


I understand the burning desire to see alternative energy projects succeed but the government has never been good a picking winners and losers.  The story excerpted and linked below is merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to failed alternative energy projects.  The only way these projects were ever going to work was if a global carbon tax were put in place.  That will never happen - and if it did who would make China, India, Russia et. al. play by the rules?  Green Peace?  They cannot even whip a Japanese whaling ship! - and that loud sucking sound you hear is billions upon billions of taxpayer dollars being flushed down the toilet.  Governments all over the world played Venture Socialist for the last 20 years and are no reaping what they sowed.  Spain, Germany, the UK, the US, Australia and others swan we allowed Al Gore's bait hook, line and sinker.  Now what?  In Australia, I kid you not, they are mothballing a giant failed solar plant with grant money intended to turn it into a World Heritage site.  Arrrrrggggh.

Can we please focus on real world market based solutions to the real and pressing problems we have!

STA was the proud recipient of a $2.1 billion conditional loan from the Department of Energy, incidentally the second largest loan ever handedout by the DOE's Stephen Chu. That amount was supposed to fund the expansion of the company's 1000 MW Blythe Solar Power Project in Riverside, California. From the funding press release, "This project construction is expected to create over 1,000 direct jobs in Southern California, 7,500 indirect jobs in related industries throughout the United States, and more than 200 long-term operational jobs at the facility itself. It will play a key role in stimulating the American economy,” said Uwe T. Schmidt, Chairman and CEO of Solar Trust of America and Executive Chairman of project development subsidiary Solar Millennium, LLC." 
On the bright side it doesn't look like the thieves will get to keep the money like they did in the Solyndra debacle.


Welcome to the Collaborative Revolution!
James L. Salmon, Esq.
Collaborative Construction
300 Pike Street
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

Summary of Services and James L. Salmon's CV

Office 513-721-5672
Fax 513-562-4388
Cell 512-630-4446
JamesLSalmon@gmailcom
Collaborative Construction Website
Sustainable Land Development International

Monday, April 2, 2012

Russian Energy


The Russians, never as coy or recalcitrant as the Americans, are moving with alacrity to develop energy resources there.

The natural gas reserves in Russia's Arctic region, at the current levels of price and consumption, would generate enough fuel to feed Europe for around 75 years, with a total value of almost $17 trillion. 


Read more: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2110165,00.html#ixzz1qtkwZEue



Welcome to the Collaborative Revolution!
James L. Salmon, Esq.
Collaborative Construction
300 Pike Street
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

Summary of Services and James L. Salmon's CV

Office 513-721-5672
Fax 513-562-4388
Cell 512-630-4446
JamesLSalmon@gmailcom
Collaborative Construction Website
Sustainable Land Development International

Energy Independence - Is it real or a Holy Grail?


Energy independence appears to be more and more achievable everyday.  The question is how long with the federal government keep its finger on the scale in favor of "green energy" solutions the market has proven are not ready for prime time?  Readers know I'm all about sustainable solutions in the built environment.  But that doesn't always mean green solutions.  In fact, far too often so-called green solutions cost more and deliver less value.  Such solutions hardly qualify as green.  Someday solar, wind and other alternative energy solutions may be viable.  Today, unfortunately, they are not.  Accordingly, those who are interested in sustainable solutions need to engage the fossil fuel based energy producers in a substantive conversation about how to develop energy in an environmentally and economically responsible manner.  Shrieking, wailing and stomping your feet is not a viable response.  As noted on this blog before the ability to extract oil and gas from tight shale formations is a game changer that has substantially altered the geo-political chessboard.

The article excerpted below, from the Washington Post's Samuelson, is an indication that the main stream media is finally recognizing this reality.  Let's not ignore the value we can add to this processes through the use of IPD, BIM and lean business processes.


The National Petroleum Council -- a group of industry officials, consultants and academics that advises the government -- puts oil resources at 274 billion barrels, including 100 billion in the Arctic and 60 billion in the waters off the lower 48 states. Onshore, applying fracking and horizontal drilling to shale oil already has already stimulated a boom in North Dakota; Texas and California have similar formations. Meanwhile, U.S. oil use -- reflecting high prices, more fuel-efficient cars and a weak economy -- is falling. Finally, oil from Canadian "tar sands" (whose natural market is the United States) is estimated at 300 billion barrels.

Here are the ingredients for greater security. Getting to Nixon's no net imports is not necessary if most imports come from Canada and other friendly countries. The true foolishness of Obama's rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline was to encourage Canada to look elsewhere to sell its surplus oil.

Promoting production also involves jobs. Aside from hiring more geologists and roustabouts, energy investment creates demand for ancillary manufacturers. Low natural gas prices will promote "the re-industrialization of America" by favoring U.S. locations for petrochemical plants (gas is a feedstock) and industries with high-energy costs, says a study by Citigroup. A Wall Street Journal headline about the steel industry affirms the point: "Natural-Gas Boom Begets Low Prices for Fuel, Strong Demand for Piping."


Read the whole thing.

Welcome to the Collaborative Revolution!
James L. Salmon, Esq.
Collaborative Construction
300 Pike Street
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

Summary of Services and James L. Salmon's CV

Office 513-721-5672
Fax 513-562-4388
Cell 512-630-4446
JamesLSalmon@gmailcom
Collaborative Construction Website
Sustainable Land Development International