Ireland - Toxic Waste Site to Pumped Storage - Another Win / Win for Renewable Energy

Jan 11, 2016



Ireland saves tens of millions USD needed to remediate an open pit mine (most never are, no matter the law, and contaminate streams and water tables with their toxic run off),  as well as another hundred million in excavation for the pumped storage pool.   Part of a renewable energy plan that could meet 40% of electric demand from wind. 

To become sustainable, we all need to ensure all we build is doing double duty like this.

Update:  In the few days since I posted this, I have, without looking another open pit mine (and one traditional mine) being converted to pumped storage facilities, as well as an US initiative to re-purpose these and hazmat sites for use as PV farms.  Here they are:

Eagle Crest in California (which almost became a huge garbage dump): 

Moriah in NYS - (No environmental impact at all, it's Underground!): 


It is sad though that despite pumped storage being necessary to move to 100% renewables,  the most eco and economic means of storage,  replacing lost marshes used by migrating birds, remediating mines no one else is going to, eliminating toxic wastes leaching out from the mines, that despite all this, most of these projects are delayed for years and sometimes even defeated by well meaning peoples, concerned for a few hundred acres of adjacent park, a tortoise, a view, contaminating water, and water use - forgetting that plants and animals can be relocated, the power ponds lined to prevent leaching, treated municipal waste water can be used for operations.... and forgetting that unless we reach 100% renewables, the world will continue to heat, at 2C, thousands of species die, 5C, tens of thousands and the homes of hundreds of millions lost to rising seas, and if temps go higher yet, life on earth will become unrecognizable.

Russell Higgins AIA RoughDesigns