A few months back Japan along with the US Department of Energy’s Office of Policy and International Affairs took part of a workshop, as they discussed how less common elements from the earth may play a part in eliminating additional outputs of carbon, for energy efficiency’s sake. For these out of the ordinary type elements of scandium, lanthanum and promethium may soon become household names.
These “rare earth” substances are produced and included in products that we typically use such as fiber optics, Light Emitting Diodes (LED’s) for illumination, batteries used to generating electric hybrid vehicles and photovoltaic (PV) solar panels to name a few.
How interesting that this specialized futuristic technology has become a strategic target in the name of human existence. Certainly Japan has had their fair share of challenges within the past 60 years or so. Considering the WW2 situation, the business tactics that American companies followed in the monitoring and controlling of project management, and their contributions in engineering plus innovation in the sustainability movement.
My family and friends held our own roundtable discussion, as various aspects of the Japanese catastrophe unfolded. The emphasis was not about comparing gas prices with ethanol or biodiesel. Or our pseudo-geological or seismic prowess in comparing news reports of earth’s plates moving centimeters within a fixed period of time. Or the strength of tidal wave that developed in a rate of speed of 500 MPH. It was more along how corporations are constantly digging for gold in a matter of speaking. How we seep down to the cores of the earth’s surface, wondering of its impacts and our need to generate billions of barrels of oil a day. Along with our recent gas prices is our ambition and man-made equipment to seek glory and profit. Just a means of thought as we, along with the Japanese try to make sense out of things.
The recent natural calamities in Japan further serves as a reminder of what is truly essential and important, that human life superimposes things. Sadly for that country they have been quite innovative with energy consumption, as this too serves as a catalyst of how safety would be implemented within our power plants as a whole. The need to rebuild becomes an element of time, as humanitarian efforts to save lives race against the hands of a clock. May God bless us and everything in it, as we know that earth is an energy that makes this our happy home.