NEWS RELEASE                                   JUNE 2010

The Solutions to Environmental and Energy Problems Have to be Coordinated

The Gulf oil spill brings home the message that there is shifting balance between the creature comforts we seek and the cost of obtaining them.  This cost is measured not only in dollars but also in reduction in our life quality.  The McIlvaine Company has undertaken two major efforts to help provide a coordinated basis for energy and environmental decision making.

The first effort is to provide the details on all the different energy options and all the solutions for the resulting environmental problems.  The second effort is to create a common metric to measure the benefits and harm of all initiatives.

Recorded webinars provide the details on the options.  This Friday (June 4) McIlvaine will host a webinar on the Gulf oil spill.  Those people willing to contribute insights on water quality monitoring will be able to participate free of charge.  Webinars on shale gas fracturing and resultant water pollution problems are also being conducted.

McIlvaine conducts webinars on various energy options.  These include wind, solar and other renewables.  McIlvaine also has available more than 100 recorded webinars on air pollution solutions for fossil-fired power plants.  The unrestricted discussion among experts has led to some novel solutions including the manufacture of hydrochloric acid at coal-fired power plants.

The costs of commercial deployment of each energy option have also been provided in a number of market reports published by the McIlvaine Company.  A whole service on CO2 capture and sequestration provides important forecasts on future routes and costs of this option.

The second effort is providing a common metric to evaluate all these options.  The cost is only part of the equation.  The balance is the impact on life quality.  Cost is easily measured in dollars.  But other impacts of decisions are not easily measured.  McIlvaine has developed a common metric which does so.   The oil spill in the Gulf can be compared to CO2 emissions from coal-fired power plants; to the visibility harm of an offshore wind turbine; to the ecological impacts of a new hydropower dam.  The McIlvaine Sustainability Universal Rating System (SURS) is based on life quality impact on each individual multiplied by the number of individuals impacted.

In the case of the Gulf oil spill there are negative impacts on fishermen, consumers of fish, resort owners, vacationers and on aquatic life.  All of these impacts can be measured in terms of Quality Enhanced Life Days (QELD).  There are offsetting QELD for some oil spills.  For example, off the coast of Somalia the avoidance of oil spills through ship warfare has been at the expense of on the average 300 individuals held captive.  This accounts for life quality reduction of 80 percent.  So every day there is a negative 240 QELD attributable to the captives and some additional lost QELD attributable to their families.  This common metric is explained at:

The benefits and risks of all the energy alternatives have to be viewed holistically.  McIlvaine is substantially contributing to the holistic view.  Learn more about these efforts at: or contact: