Science: Energy: Gravitational
Energy Plan   (+1, -1)  [vote for, against]
Dump the Mountains into the Sea

80 tonnes of rock, one rail hopper’s worth, at the top of a small size mountain, 2000 Meters up, has about 1.57GJoules of potential energy from sea level. Build railway tracks from the mountain to the sea, use electric locomotives as generators on the way down. Collect the electricity. Use part of it to push the empties back up the hill. Cover start-up costs by selling the real estate on the future mesa and on the new island.

Ref: Bacharach, Warwick et. al.
”There are mountains and hillsides enough to climb;
There are oceans and rivers enough to cross,
Enough to last, till the end of time.”
-- Fussass, Sep 15 2003

Conversion of graviational potential energy is, really, what hydroelectric generators do - except we don't have to carve great hunks of water out to begin with, it's already moving.

But the real estate idea is good :)
-- Detly, Sep 15 2003

Using the electricity to push them back up should be not too bad [reensure]. New locomotives run about 92% transmission efficiency, and that would be a combination of the losses in both generator and motors, while these machines would have only one loss. A mechanical cable would not suit the long runs. Yes, moving some ice-fields is a nice variation. Ice does not run down penstocks into turbines but will fit into railcars, and is good for keeping cool once it is down.
Harnessing the gravitation energy of water is good but has been done. There isn’t enough of it especially high up close by where it is needed, but there is plenty of rock.
This can all be done with available equipment, so if there are no technical objections we can get going on it in the morning.
-- Fussass, Sep 16 2003

There is no need for additional electrical generation, to quote:
“What the world needs now,
Is love, sweet love;
It's the only thing that there's just too little of.”

-- Laughs Last, Sep 17 2003

I could have sworn this idea has a doppelganger around here somewhere.
-- bungston, Sep 17 2003

[Laughs Last] - You have a love generator? No, wait...
-- Detly, Sep 17 2003

No. Think about the EPA and Greenpeace. The sea level would rise, flooding Floridaand other arreas of te world.
-- empty89, Aug 27 2004

Only down side of the idea is energy and price of putting the rocks on the train, and get them off. Couple this with mining, and you’r set. And as far as Greenpeace, good luck, but also think about not dumping the rocks into the see, just use the base of the mountain.

Ian Donovan BS Aerospace Engineering
-- smurfdew, Jan 03 2005

Small 2000 meter[sic] tall mountains are hard to come by here in the UK.
-- AbsintheWithoutLeave, Jan 03 2005

Solar or wind turbines to move the trains up the hill then?
-- travbm, Oct 29 2015

random, halfbakery