Democrats & Liberals Archives

Oil Increases Hit More than Gasoline Prices

Once again, oil prices are “surging,” and once again the primary discussion focuses on the cost of gasoline.

While the price of gasoline is the most direct visible aspect for individuals, it is certainly not the only one. Increasing fuel costs are a concern, but there are other costs and related crises that erode people's ability to survive. These are largely "indirect" costs only because they are media-framed as such.

As oil jumps around the $100 a barrel price and is expected to go higher, gas prices are expected to go up to at least $3.50. While that may or may not affect individual driving habits, it also effects the cost of everything moved by, and produced with oil. At the immediate top of the crisis list are heating oil and diesel. In the United States, awareness of the heating oil issue is in part regional. For example, the Northeast is more impacted that the Southwest. However, many older homes across the country rely on heating oil. The price of heating oil is directly impacted by rising oil costs.

Likewise, in the U.S., most private autos run on gasoline so the assumption is that skyrocketing fuel costs don't impact us. However, diesel makes up 28% of daily consumption. Much of that is in the form of transporting goods (big trucks and rail), public transportation (mass transit systems), construction (earth movers, graders, etc.), and agriculture (tractors, cultivators, etc). Increasing oil costs directly impact those sectors, and those costs pass through to end point consumers.

These end point costs are concentrated most heavily in the cost of food because food needs to be grown (cultivation equipment and fertilizer), harvested (harvesting equipment and transportation to processors or storage), processed and transported to market. At each point along the way, increasing costs of petroleum prices impact final cost. Therefore it is not surprising that we are hearing more and more about rising food costs and an advancing global food crisis.

The USDA predicts at least a 4% increase in food costs in 2008. However, this estimate came before the current spike.

The oil "crisis," which the corporate media refuse to call "peak oil," is having multiple effects. First, there is the direct effects of cost increases of oil as noted above. However, the growing gap between supply and demand, and the high cost of what is available, is driving the bio-fuels "revolution." This has placed the global food supply in direct competition with the global food supply, and the consequences are dire. Aside from the environmental destruction caused by tactics (such trying to increase agriculturally productive land, or the destruction of palm forests for bio-fuel production), cooking oils are equally sources for bio-fuel as noted in this from Reuters:

From Russia to China to the United States, consumers will be feeling the pinch of higher food prices in 2008, with cooking oil now joining corn, wheat, and milk on the growing list of food inflation culprits.

Rising food prices will hurt more in developing nations, where a larger share of incomes are spent on food, and analysts have warned of likely food shortages and political upheaval in impoverished areas.

Consumers were already paying more for cooking oils. But prices of processed and fried foods and those made from edible oils such as salad dressings and condiments will also be rising in the months ahead, economists said.

The rising cost of oil combined with the increasing demand on grain crops and food oil sources for bio-fuels, are further aggravated by global warming impacts. For example, the US gets much of its wheat from Australia which has been hit by an ongoing devastating drought. These increasing costs are only accelerating as noted in the above article:

Sara Lee Corp. has raised prices three times, for a total of 15 percent, since December 2006. The most recent increase, 5 percent, was announced last week but may not show up on grocery goods until next year, said Mark Goldman, spokesman for the company based in Downers Grove, Ill.

"We're talking about prices (for wheat products) that are double, in some cases triple a year and a half ago," Goldman said. Inflation is hitting the whole-grain breads that health-conscious consumers have been favoring.

Meanwhile, the price of oils, especially soybean oil, is expected to climb 5 percent to 6 percent as soybean farmers, seeking ample waves of gain, switch to corn.

So we have rising fuel prices, crops going to bio-fuel rather than food, and global warming, all pressing food prices higher. Two other issues are also driving up the cost of food. One is a U.S. energy policy that is subsidizing farmers for ethanol production, and the other is a dietary switch to meat.

Some analysts estimate that as much as 30 percent of the US grain crop will go toward producing ethanol this year, a doubling from 2006. IFPRI forecasts that if the world sticks to current biofuel expansion plans, the price of corn will go up 26 percent by 2020, and the price of oilseeds (such as soybean, sunflower, rapeseed) by 18 percent. If governments double efforts to produce this alternative fuel source, corn prices are expected to go up 72 percent and oilseeds by 44 percent in 12 years' time. (Why the era of cheap food is over)

As many of the world's poor are already spending a significant amount of their income on food, even a marginal increase in food costs can be devastating. For example:

A family in Bangladesh, for example, living on $5 a day, typically spends $3 of that on food. The 50 percent rise in food prices the world has seen in recent years takes a $1.50 chunk - nearly 30 percent - out of the family budget. (CSM)

Meanwhile, rising incomes among portions of some populations - such as in India and China - are shifting to a diet that includes more meat. This is redirecting grains from direct consumption to meat production (Economist). Since it takes much more grain to produce meat than to get that protein directly from the grain, it increases demand on those crops - crops already being diverted for bio-fuel production. U.S. farmers grew 15 million tons of corn for ethanol in 2000. That tally is expected to total 85 million tons for 2007 (Economist).

Ethanol is the dominant reason for this year's increase in grain prices. It accounts for the rise in the price of maize because the federal government has in practice waded into the market to mop up about one-third of America's corn harvest. A big expansion of the ethanol programme in 2005 explains why maize prices started rising in the first place.

Ethanol accounts for some of the rise in the prices of other crops and foods too. Partly this is because maize is fed to animals, which are now more expensive to rear. Partly it is because America's farmers, eager to take advantage of the biofuels bonanza, went all out to produce maize this year, planting it on land previously devoted to wheat and soyabeans. This year America's maize harvest will be a jaw-dropping 335m tonnes, beating last year's by more than a quarter. The increase has been achieved partly at the expense of other food crops.

This year the overall decline in stockpiles of all cereals will be about 53m tonnes--a very rough indication of by how much demand is outstripping supply. The increase in the amount of American maize going just to ethanol is about 30m tonnes. In other words, the demands of America's ethanol programme alone account for over half the world's unmet need for cereals. Without that programme, food prices would not be rising anything like as quickly as they have been. According to the World Bank, the grain needed to fill up an SUV would feed a person for a year.

America's ethanol programme is a product of government subsidies. There are more than 200 different kinds, as well as a 54 cents-a-gallon tariff on imported ethanol. That keeps out greener Brazilian ethanol, which is made from sugar rather than maize. Federal subsidies alone cost $7 billion a year (equal to around $1.90 a gallon). (Economist)

Since the United States is one of the major global exporters of corn, the shift to ethanol and the subsidies driving it, are driving of food cost in the Untied States, and across the world. Hence we have report after report pointing to a global food crisis, and that food crisis will lead to growing political instability (Vidal). Other countries are taking the same approach as the U.S. from Brazil, to Russia, to China. All of this takes food out of the mouths of billions of people around the globe - perhaps more than half of the population:

Lester Brown, founder of the Washington-based Worldwatch Institute thinktank, said: "The competition for grain between the world's 800 million motorists, who want to maintain their mobility, and its 2 billion poorest people, who are simply trying to survive, is emerging as an epic issue."

Last year, he said, US farmers distorted the world market for cereals by growing 14m tonnes, or 20% of the whole maize crop, for ethanol for vehicles. This took millions of hectares of land out of food production and nearly doubled the price of maize. Mr Bush this year called for steep rises in ethanol production as part of plans to reduce petrol demand by 20% by 2017. (Vidal)

I have been regularly shouting the meme for years of "Don't put the food supply in competition with the fuel supply." Clearly that message is finally being recognized, but it is ignored by both government policy makers and the corporations who influence them. The consequence is increasingly billions of people living at or below starvation level, and growing bloody conflict as desperate circumstance drive desperate action.

In the United States, we are experiencing the confluence of issues which will serve to magnify the impact. The increasing cost of fuel combines with the increasing cost of food, combines with a falling dollar. The falling dollar is critical. While it is directly impacted by the national debt which is directly impacted by U.S. military "adventures" for oil, it is also impacted by oil being bought and sold in U.S. dollars (the petrodollar). The falling value of the dollar decreases its buying power which increases real costs across the board. The creation of a national and global grain shortage drives up those costs and therefore the costs of food.

As the corporate media shows us rising gas prices and issues the mantra that "it is not impacting car driving," think about those grocery prices. First, it has impacted people's private transportation (and car purchasing) choices. People (who can afford to) are reacting to increasing gasoline prices. People (who cannot afford to) are shifting to other forms of transportation or cutting their food budgets or consumption. Since those struggling to put food on the table are a largely "invisible" population, the media can get away with the lies. However, food banks across the country are facing empty shelves and the hungry leave with empty hands.

It is a "quiet" problem; a hidden problem; but it is real. Everyone is impacted by it, though the severity of that impact is moderated by income. We will face the question of who eats and who does not? Who lives and who dies? We will also face the conflict that arises from this. The domino effect is huge and is implicated in everything from internal warfare to recruitment into "extremist" groups to the parents selling their children and themselves into slavery.

The answer is not more oil drilling or more bio-fuels or hydrogen fuel cells. We have to address consumption and life style. In this year of political campaigning will any candidate be brave enough to confront this issue directly? Probably not voluntarily. However, we are important to them at this point and we can (and must) push the questions and the dialogs.

Posted by Rowan Wolf at January 5, 2008 3:17 PM
Comments
Comment #242344

Eowan
More bio-fuels from cellulosic utilization should be of great benefit.
One systemic problem we have in the US is most of out infrastructure was built when energy was cheap. Some was built to actually increase petrolieum use on purpose.LA for example, had a great lite rail service that was systematically taken apart and replaced with freeways by the political clout and bribery of Standard Oil.Most of our frieght is moved by trucks. Trains are more efficient and for a lond time the main haulers. Much of that infrastructure has been lost.
There will be deaths this year because of the high cost of heating oil.Citgo is helping out some by offering deep discounts to some on orders from Chavez’s,that bastard.

Posted by: BillS at January 5, 2008 8:08 PM
Comment #242349

Rowan:

I congradulate you on defining a problem in a nonpartisan way. Your approach to this issue is exemplary!!!! And although I am probably almost diametrically opposed to most of your political philosophy(based on your profile), I could not be more pleased of your theme and tone if I had written it myself. I truely hope that solutions will be offered and debated in this thread in the stead of the fingerpointing and attacks that has been the norm at watchblog. For once I would love to see a thread at this site not mention nazi, facist or socialist, flat earther, or any term with derogatory connotations. We have a major problem that demands major solutions. And IMHO we need to realize that PARTY platforms and liberal/conservative ideologies alone CANNOT solve these problems.

I am curious as to what you think the solution is. You say that we have to address consumption and lifestyle. I agree in principle, but by what methods do you suggest we use to invoke change? I am asking a broad question as to not bog down a debate in minor details.

IMHO the problem must be dealt with in three steps. We must have a plan for short, intermediate and long term answers to both supply and demand issues. Addressing supply or demand issues without addressing the other is both counterproductive and unatainable. Although I am in favor of drilling in ANWAR and builiding more oil refineries, this is at best a stop gap measure only good for the short term supply problem, it neither adresses long term supply issues nor any demand issues. As a matter of fact, it would be counterproductive for medium/long term solutions. However, I believe it to be the first step in addressing the short term supply needs. I have no idea how to address the short term demand issue other than market forces. I am open to all ideas that address this issue.

In the name of political expediency, Congress mandated an increase in ethanol production which directly leads to the problems you correctly identified and defined. Ethanol was a political easy out for both sides, but it causes more problems than it allows for solutions. If every ear of corn grown in the USA were converted to ethanol, it would not make much of a dent in the energy supply problem, but it would lead to the starvation of millions. And still it have not addressed any demand problems. To grow enough fuel for the USA, millions of acres of land would have to be transformed to corporate farms with a lasting impact on the environment but at huge profits. Anyone for that?

I do not have the solutions for the challanges we face in this issue. I do have some ideas that can address the short, medium and long term supply problems. My political ideologies tell me that the solutions lie here, on the supply side. That addressing the demand side, and to a certain extent the supply side through alternate fuels, should be more dictated through market forces than government interdiction. And I feel that anyone that believes that government interdiction on the demand side is more the answer is as much a fool as I.

AS MUCH A FOOL AS I! Addressing one end of the problem only is foolish. And it is as foolish to think that drilling in ANWAR is THE solution as it is to think that increasing ethanol is THE solution. As Rowan has shown, pitting fuel against food has dire consequences, but they are not unlike the scope of consequenses of addressing the supply problem by increasing the oil supply ONLY. Care to guess not only what will happen when the oil not runs out, but when there is not enough production capacity to support world demand? Let me paint a scenario. All of the world’s nuclear powers need oil not to have a thriving economy, but to transport foodstuffs and medical supplies to keep their society from breaking down. There is enough oil production capacity for all but one. We have drilled in ANWAR. Now what?

My belief is that politics has for decades prevented solutions to problems, in fact short term political gains constantly prevent long term solutions. Both sides have gotten to address complex problems from their side only to fail because they offer a one sided solution to a two sided problem. Then we as an electorate shift the political tides due to the failures of one side and address the other side of the problem and undo any gains from the opposing view. IMHO both approaches need to be implemented at the same time to achieve sustainable results.

I do believe that public forums such as this can offer our best hope for solutions such as these. If people will gather in a place and exchange ideas and debate the merits of ideas without the demonization of others with differing views, and be willing to accept the possibility that part of a solution will involve an idea that will supercede their short term political gains, only then will full and complete solutions be realized. Let’s face one fact. The vast majority of the voting electorate in this country are very short sighted and politicians are willing to appease them just for their next term. Therefore we as an electorate must agree, at least in principle to short, intermediate and long term solutions that address both supply and demand and hold our elected representives accountable to following a long term plan.

Then, and only then, can solutions rise above politics. Then, and only then, will we as a country be able to withstand a change in political leadership and able to stay focused on a long term solution to a problem. If we the people are not able to do that, then we have no right to expect our government to.

I detest the idea that leadership must come from the bottom up, but iI see not other way on this issue.

Posted by: submariner at January 5, 2008 10:08 PM
Comment #242350

I don’t see most issues as being partisan issues, and this one certainly goes far beyond that.

Regarding solutions, I think that we need to change our mindset to closing (or completing) consumption cycles rather than starting new ones. For example, the use of used cooking oil for bio-diesel closes a consumption loop; however the reallocation of cooking oils to bio-diesel production opens a competing consumption loop. There are some novel solutions that are being put forward in different areas. For example “waste” heat is energy that might be used for producing more energy (running electric production off of industrial exhaust stacks, or converting the CO2 emissions from industry into baking soda).

However, we face a much larger problem and the one in this article is only one tentacle. We have to address consumption. Maybe I am showing my age, but in my youth I had a brief exposure to the pride of craftsmanship. When building / producing things was something of pride and were meant to be durable and useful. However, the economy shifted to building in planned obsolescence - everything is throwaway. Profit was in getting folks to buy again and again and again.

This may be interpreted as partisan, but I believe we have to shift out of this model to survive. The planet cannot survive continuously increasing consumption. I believe we need to use less, and that what we do create should be durable (and if necessary) upgradable.

We have been sold on “big is beautiful” meaning bigger houses, bigger cars, bigger tv screens. “Small” used to be beautiful. Thrift used to be a virtue. Craftsmanship used to be a point of pride and a statement of self.

How we “transition” out of this mess I have no idea. The interests involved are quite happy with the situation as it is. I do think that it will take the people leading to get us on a survivable path. Why? Because it is in our interest to do so, and those interests collide with the corporate interests who are embedded with the government.

Posted by: Rowan at January 5, 2008 11:25 PM
Comment #242359

You forget the impact that higher oil prices have had on electricity production as well.

Electric rates are soaring across the country. This is because the coal industry has been devastated by extreme environmentalist policies, and threats of lawsuits are blocking the building of coal burning electrical plants, even though new technology is improving their environmental cleanliness all the time.
While environmentalists are destroying the coal industry by shutting down coal burning electrical plants and preventing any more from being built, this is placing an extra burden on Oil/Gas resources to keep up with the new demand which was being handled by the coal industry.

As is pointed out in this posted article, Americans are beginning to get hit hard by those who are demanding that one industry be replaced by another. As oil-based gasoline is replaced by ethanol, the corn prices sky-rocket to keep up with the demand.

In the same manner, as Coal is replaced by Oil/Gas, Oil/Gas prices sky-rocket to keep up with the demand.
We can not completely eliminate an entire resource through extreme environmentalist policies, without affecting the other resources that are required to replace them.

When it is almost impossible for Oil Companies to construct any new oil refineries because of the environmentalist lawsuit liabilities that energy companies are faced with, their hands are completely tied. Thus, demands are not met. Prices sky-rocket, and the people get poorer and poorer energy services as unrealistic regulation wreaks havoc on the entire energy industry.

In the meantime, while the resources are out there, (but they are not being allowed to be produced), “we the people” are being demanded to reduce our consumption. In fact, we are being forced to reduce our consumption because sky-rocketing prices are overwhelming the common citizenry.

As this post suggests, it is not the lack of resources that are creating this crisis, but rather the policies that are attempting to destroy and eliminate entire “strategic energy resource industries”.
Again, you can not attempt to eliminate and replace entire energy resource industries without increasing production that will meet the demands to offset the shortages caused by the elimination of the other industry.

In other words, you can not eliminate Coal, without increasing demand and its required production on Oil/Gas, which significantly increases the cost of Oil/Gas.

You also can not eliminate Oil/Gas, without increasing demand and its required production on Ethanol, which significantly increases the price of corn and other bio-fuel products.

There has to be something in place, (which is just as inexpensive to produce), to replace these fossil fuel industries if you are going to eliminate them or reduce their use.
Otherwise you are simply jacking up their prices based on increased demand, (and the prices of the replacement products), to the point that nobody can afford them. Thus, forcing the government at some point to ration these resources, screwing us all!!!!
Thank you, Rowan, for pointing out what the Conservatives have been warning Americans about all along!!

JD

Posted by: JD at January 6, 2008 2:06 AM
Comment #242360
There has to be something in place, (which is just as inexpensive to produce), to replace these fossil fuel industries if you are going to eliminate them or reduce their use.

And once that happens, the government doesn’t really need to eliminate or reduce their use because people will flock to a cheaper product.

That is the reason that the government is attempting to make incandescent bulbs illegal because they are cheaper than CFL. Once it is illegal, the makers of CFL bulbs can keep their prices up because their competition is gone (monopoly). The ‘government’ would be smarter to incent people to purchase CFL bulbs and work within the free market system instead of removing more and more of our free market system and creating monopolies.

A lesson I doubt that progressives will ever learn…

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 6, 2008 2:12 AM
Comment #242364

Rhinehold
In CA cfls are cheaper already because of incentives. When you calc in the energy savings they are much cheaper and last a good deal longer.There are plenty of companies making them,enough for competition. Biggest forseeable problem is disposal.A mandated program of collection will be needed. There is no money in it so unlikely private interest will step in without subsidies. A better approach would be to have the makers handle it as a cost of doing business. We have precedence for this in deposit bottles etc.Not a lot of government interference beyond the fundemental mandate.

Posted by: BillS at January 6, 2008 3:29 AM
Comment #242365

JD says”Electric rates are soaring across the country. This is because the coal industry has been devastated by extreme environmentalist policies, and threats of lawsuits are blocking the building of coal burning electrical plants, even though new technology is improving their environmental cleanliness all the time.”

JD do you think that the recent wave of privatization and deregulation has any effect on the soaring electricity rates? Im pretty sure those in CA that were subjected to the market manipulation of the electric companies would think so, but thats justa guess.

JD says “This is because the coal industry has been devastated by extreme environmentalist policies, and threats of lawsuits are blocking the building of coal burning electrical plants, even though new technology is improving their environmental cleanliness all the time.”

JD do you think the coal companies would have developed this new technology had it not been for the extreme environmentalist policies you speak of?

JD says “When it is almost impossible for Oil Companies to construct any new oil refineries because of the environmentalist lawsuit liabilities that energy companies are faced with, their hands are completely tied.”

JD do you think the oil companies that met in secret with the VP to set energy policies for the country are really that scared of the environmentalist, or do you think it is more profitable to not build new refineries and drive the price of oil up.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 6, 2008 3:38 AM
Comment #242369

People worry about Big Oil being in collusion with the govt. All big companies have their hand in the govt, one way or another. The car companies seemed to be squeezed constantly for more MPGs. I say, lets all buy hybrids. It seems like a good way to reduce consumption. If we increase the demand for hybrids, Big Auto will respond by making more and better ones. Also, it will produce more products for other companies, such as rental cars, moving vans, and delivery trucks. Hybrid/Diesel truck, anyone?
The reason the price of oil is surging is because of global demand. A lot of countries who were heretofore considered third world, are now booming industrial economies. Good for them, bad for us. We need to continue to stay ahead of the global curve with innovation. Other countries would appreciate hybrid engines.
Are the govt and big companies too powerful for lil’ ol’ me to influence? No way. The most powerful force is my wallet. Were do the big rich companies get their money? From me. Where does the govt get its power? From me. I choose what I want to buy and I choose what candidate I support and give money to.
Dont want to pay high fuel prices? Do something about it. Buy a hybrid. Buy a motorcycle. Take the bus. Own a business? Buy equipment with better fuel efficiency. Govt and Big Oil know how powerful your wallet is so they have a fear and respect for it. Thats why they try to keep you in the dark about all they do.
The govt and Big Oil are too big, boo boo wah wah sniff boo boo. What is your major malfunction, wimp? Do what YOU can do.
How is that for a medium range solution.

Posted by: JoeRWC at January 6, 2008 9:55 AM
Comment #242373

Eating locally, that is, food grown locally and in season, would save a lot of fuel…plus, farms would become more diversified and thus also spend less on contaminants (pesticides & fertilizers) made from petroleum products.

In the long run we’d all be healthier…from the food we’re eating to the lowere contamination of fertilizers & pesticides in our food, our ground water, and in our air, and less fuel exhaust in our air.

We’ve forgotten how to eat seasonally and how to “put by” food…canning & freezing need to be resurrected as healthful practices for all of us.

Posted by: Rachel at January 6, 2008 10:44 AM
Comment #242375

Environmentalism is similar to the civil rights movements. They pushed forward a good cause and were effective in the past but since the cause has been won they pursue unnecessary things in a quest to keep their value.
Nuclear and clean coal used to be the way to cheap power but the above “pursuit of importance” has become a major hinderance to already known solutions.
My father worked building a nuclear plant and was layed off when these people shut it down. It was converted to natural gas years later and now is part of a problem instead of a solution even if it is considered a short term one.
I moved to work another state in an area that has one clean coal power plant and is building another. The economy is fine here.
Don’t forget to add the falling dollar as a big portion of higher prices. On the farm issue, I was raised on one and most guys had to get out of it due to the low prices. We have been hoarding and exporting corn for years. I guess the guys who kept their farms better start planting.

Posted by: Kruser at January 6, 2008 10:49 AM
Comment #242377
Nuclear and clean coal used to be the way to cheap power but the above “pursuit of importance” has become a major hinderance to already known solutions.

There is nothing clean about coal…not how it’s mined and not how it’s burned.

And where, pray tell, do we store spent nuclear fuel? In whose backyard?

Posted by: Rachel at January 6, 2008 11:00 AM
Comment #242378

Yes, Reachel. We all need to go back to owning a family farm and raising our fruits and vegetables organically in the back yard.
This is the major problem with liberals. They have this pristine view of everything. The heck with convenience, modernization, and capitlistic freedom. Let’s go back to the days when we canned everything and stored it in the cellar through the winter.


JD do you think that the recent wave of privatization and deregulation has any effect on the soaring electricity rates? Im pretty sure those in CA that were subjected to the market manipulation of the electric companies would think so, but thats justa guess.

All I know is that states like Kentucky and West Virginia who use nearly 95% coal resources to power their electrical supplies pay about 5 cents per kilowatt hour for their electric rates. Those who are forced by environmentalists to use almost no coal in their electricity production such as most of the Northeast and California, pay 12 to 15 cents per kilowatt hour for their electrical rates.

Here in Illinois the Illinois Governor is pushing more Global Warming legislation through the Illinois legislature on a regular basis and our electric rates are going through the roof as more and more Illinois coal plants and coal mines are being closed down by the environmentalists. It has gotten so bad that the Sierra Club would not allow a new coal plant to be built in Springfield Illinois (by threat of lawsuit), unless the State agreed that all federal buildings in Springfield, Illinois’ Capitol be hooked up to another power source besides the coal plant. So, while the rest of Springfield is being powered by coal, the people had to foot the bill for hooking up all government buildings in Springfield to a completely different source. This is the ridiculousness of the Global Warming / environmentalist movement. The whole thing is completely nuts, and must be stopped for the sake of our future.
It is all about power and control! And it is wreaking havoc with our energy policies and supplies!

JD

Posted by: JD at January 6, 2008 11:06 AM
Comment #242380

I have said many times, “burning food for fuel is insane”. Land owned or controlled by the U.S. has buried beneath it fossil fuel deposits which, if used, will last us nearly a century. Add in nuclear power and more refining capacity and we can become energy independent in a decade. In the meanwhile, take the pork being spent by congress and use it to sponsor private research into alternate energy sources. No one need starve or go broke paying for energy. Simple common sense and the American can-do attitude can and will solve this problem, not politicians.

Posted by: Jim at January 6, 2008 12:20 PM
Comment #242381

JD did you know your new coal plant in Springfireld will
* Replace the City’s Lakeside coal plant, one of the dirtiest coal plants in the nation, with the cleanest coal-fired power plant in the nation. The new plant will emit 99 percent less sulfur dioxide than the existing power plant

* Cut mercury emissions from its existing and new coal plants by 90 percent by 2009 (the most stringent requirement in the nation).

* Cut overall sulfur dioxide emissions from its existing and new coal plants by 75 percent by 2012 (the lowest SO2 pollution limit in the Midwest).

When you figure in the health cost associated with the old coal fired plants maybe you are paying more than you think. Seems to me you guys in Illinois and surrounding states should be thanking those extremist environmental policies for urging the development of the newer technologies.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 6, 2008 12:28 PM
Comment #242389

Didn’t jd say that environmentalists were trying to stop building it altogether?
The point is; extreme environmentalists actually hinder our ability to adapt. If they had their way Illinois would be still using the old coal and praying for a solution, much like the bind our entire nation is in today.
Clean coal technology was produced by the coal companies. Environwacks produce nothing but hysteria and unnecessary lawsuits.
When I worked in the oilfields the big corps were the cleanest since they could afford it and public perception was more important to them than it was to small companies. “For profit” companies aren’t always bad and environwacks aren’t the solution makers you make them out to be.

I say environmentalists should stick to public perception and leave the energy producers alone. Maybe they could give us a price break with all the money saved by lowering their court costs.

Posted by: Kruser at January 6, 2008 1:26 PM
Comment #242391

Jim

Land owned or controlled by the U.S. has buried beneath it fossil fuel deposits which, if used, will last us nearly a century. Add in nuclear power and more refining capacity and we can become energy independent in a decade. In the meanwhile, take the pork being spent by congress and use it to sponsor private research into alternate energy sources. No one need starve or go broke paying for energy. Simple common sense and the American can-do attitude can and will solve this problem, not politicians.

In October 2006, I attended one of Shell Oil’s Town Halls,and was present for the Q & A period with then Shell Oil President John Hofmeister. Several comments by Hofmeister were quite revealing in relationship to both US oil supplies and global oil supplies. He stated:

… “the U.S. needs 18-20 million barrels per day, and that all sources of domestic supply - if fully tapped - would only provide about 8 - 10 million barrels per day. Something most folks who watch oil issues are well aware of.”

He also predicted the “death of the combustion engine in the near future.

One might argue that the President of Shell had political purposes for saying that the US cannot be oil independent, but it was a stunning admission for a representative of big oil. Some like Jim continue to argue that we should exploit every possible petroleum deposit in the US (including Alaska and the Gulf) and then we would not have an oil problem or an energy dependence problem. Well “from the horses mouth” that just ain’t so. Most of the “reserves” left in the US are old wells which are being “reinvigorated” with new technology. However, they run out fairly quickly.

There is no miracle supply waiting for us beneath our feet.

Posted by: Rowan at January 6, 2008 1:36 PM
Comment #242393

Jim, arent we using only 89% of our refining capacity currently?

Kruser, yes perhaps JD did say that but the facts did not bear him out. Sometimes you have to start with a position outside of what is acceptable in order to neogiate to an acceptable position. Both sides do this.
Do you really believe that without the persistance of the “envirowhacks”, as you call them, the coal companies would have invested in the technology to provide the clean coal plants being built today? Do you believe the gases and chemicals spewed in to air are not a danger to the surrounding communities. Do you actually beleive this is hysteria and not well documented medical facts? Eat some mercury if you do and see what happens.
Kruser if what you say is accurate about the big oil companies being clean in the field we still have to deal with the impact of oil spills and with the by products of the oil that comes from the exhaust pipes of the oil burning, gas using vehicles.
Without the “extreme environmantal policies”, as JD phrases it, we would have not made any progress this past 35 years in developing the cleaner technologies we see today. Yes the big oil and coal companies developed the technology but only because they were lead into the opportunity to do so because of the necessary lawsuits and such provided by the “envirowhacks” you are so ready to insult.
It is a shame you are so ready to name call and insult these people when in fact they were the solution not the problem.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 6, 2008 2:17 PM
Comment #242407

* Replace the City’s Lakeside coal plant, one of the dirtiest coal plants in the nation, with the cleanest coal-fired power plant in the nation. The new plant will emit 99 percent less sulfur dioxide than the existing power plant
Posted by j2t2

Yeah, thanks for reminding me that the environmental extremists forced the State of Illinois to shut down an existing coal plant by threat of lawsuit, before we could build another desperately needed plant to handle the increasing demand for electricity in Illinois.
Maybe you could explain how shutting down existing plants before being allowed to build new ones will solve the problems of relieving the pressure of increasing demands. I’d love to hear that one.

* Cut mercury emissions from its existing and new coal plants by 90 percent by 2009 (the most stringent requirement in the nation).
Posted by j2t2

That’s right, a totally unrealistic requirement much like those of the Kyoto protocols. These are aimed at eliminating coal altogether, not cutting emissions. If the plants do not exceed in making this deadline, who wins? Will the State of Illinois begin fining the companies that run these plants out of existence! Then, where will we be? Or, will the companies bow down and pour millions of dollars into the Democratic coffers who control Illinois in order to keep Governor Rod off their backs?
I know Global Warming extortion when I see it!

* Cut overall sulfur dioxide emissions from its existing and new coal plants by 75 percent by 2012 (the lowest SO2 pollution limit in the Midwest).
Posted by j2t2


(See above on mercury emissions)


JD

Posted by: JD at January 6, 2008 5:14 PM
Comment #242410

Sorry, that should read:

If the plants do not succeed in making these deadlines, who wins?

JD

Posted by: JD at January 6, 2008 5:33 PM
Comment #242421

All about ideology eh JD. I hope your not seriously trying to suggest sulphur dioxide and mercury emmissions are good.

“If the plants do not succeed in making these deadlines, who wins?” JD

What if they do succeed JD what if they do. But just for kicks lets look at the downside through those ” We shouldnt take a chance cause we just might fail colored glasses” of the far right. Why they may acheive only 50 or 75 or 90% of their goals. Wow what a dismal outlook.
Maybe it will be a win-win JD I know that sounds well…socialist or liberal or something equally ideologically nauseating but its not that bad. The people of Illinois get a coal powered plant with considerably less pollution and hopefully some union coal producing jobs to boot. They also get a start on the wind power systems for the state buildings. The bad taste of the extremist environmental policies being the correct approach will go away in a short period and Rush and his ilk can claim a victory for the conservatives as usual and life will go on.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 6, 2008 6:57 PM
Comment #242424

JoeRWC says “People worry about Big Oil being in collusion with the govt.All big companies have their hand in the govt, one way or another. The car companies seemed to be squeezed constantly for more MPGs.”

Joe that statement can only be conservative logic at its finest. Wasnt the first and last squeeze around 30 years ago? The new squeeze doesnt take effect until what 2015?

Posted by: j2t2 at January 6, 2008 7:12 PM
Comment #242431
Yes, Reachel. We all need to go back to owning a family farm and raising our fruits and vegetables organically in the back yard.

You might want to re-read my post…I said nothing about owning one’s own farm nor raising our own food…I said we need to BUY LOCALLY…as in farmers’ markets, local produce in our local grocery store, join a CSA…and not buy foods that are out of season that have travelled thousands of miles.

But organic veggie gardening sure wouldn’t be a bad idea…one doesn’t have to raise everything one eats, but it would certainly help to at least not depend on petroleum for all our food…it’s great excercise and healthful food…that’s a win-win situation.

Posted by: Rachel at January 6, 2008 10:25 PM
Comment #242432

“The people of Illinois get a coal powered plant with considerably less pollution and hopefully some union coal producing jobs to boot.”
Posted by: j2t2


Tell that to the 400 miners that Gov. Rod just put out of a job in Carlinville, IL over Christmas holiday with his extremist environmental policies. Maybe the bad taste of environmentalist extremists forcing these guys out of work will go away in a short period, too. At least the Democrats hope it will dissipate before the 2008 elections. But, hey, they can always blame the Bush economy, right?


“They also get a start on the wind power systems for the state buildings.”
posted by j2t2


Hooray! Maybe the 400 coal miners can be re-trained, (at tax payer expense, of course), to operate the wind machines. But, I guess they may still have to forego Christmas presents until after the training.

Obviously, you have no concern for the number of families being put out of work. But, then again, liberals can raise taxes to take care of them, right!

How long will you guys trash the energy industries of coal and oil/gas?
Until the common citizenry can not afford their heating, electricity, food costs, and other expenses of daily living?

But, making the poor and middle class totally dependent on government is the real purpose of all this.

And, of course, destroying certain industries and allowing environmentalists and their cronies in government to extort, through lawsuit and legislation, huge sums of money for political purposes.

It is estimated that we have as much energy capacity in the coal fields of the midwestern United States than the energy capacity of all the oil fields of Saudi Arabia.
With oil at over $100 per barrel, there is no logical reason that relatively cheap coal is not
booming right now, especially in the area of electrical generation.

The only reason it is not, is that environmentalists will not allow it. I challenge anyone to go to nearly any environmentalist website and look at how these extremists “brag” about their efforts of shutting down energy plants and blocking new production facilities. The first one you may wish to visit is the Sierra Club.

This arrogant bragging is despicable when citizens are at their wits end trying to figure out how they are going to keep up with their rising heating, electrical, food, and fuel costs.

To add insult to injury, these extremists have the audacity to blame the energy industries for the crisis.


JD

Posted by: JD at January 7, 2008 12:03 AM
Comment #242435

First, we have to understand that the term “peak oil” is meaningless w/o defining the parameters of price and technology. We have used ALL the oil available at $10 a barrel. We could not extract much oil using the best technologies of 1950. However, we have too much oil at $150 a barrel and technologies we use today mean that we have ACCESS to more total oil than we did fifty years ago.

Do this simple thought experiment. If the Ottoman Sultan, who controlled most of the Middle East oil in 1800, decided in that year that the most important thing in the world was oil. How big would his reserves have been with the best extraction technologies available at the time. Hint – the answer is almost zero.

Use of oil is an economic and ecological problem. Oil sands in Canada contain about as much oil – extractable with TODAY’S technologies – as Saudi Arabia. We do not get it because we choose not to because of the price.

How do we get out of the “oil crisis”? The same way we got in, through choices. We use oil today because oil was (and still is) cheaper and/or easier to use than alternatives. We have build our society around this fuel source because it made good economic sense. As the price and availability of oil change, so do our incentives.

I have long favored a carbon tax as a means to hasten the transition to alternatives, but prices do it by themselves albeit slower.

IN 2005, the U.S. CO2 emissions dropped for the first time ever when the economy was growing rapidly. What did President Bush or the Republican Congress do to make achieve this? Almost nothing. It was due to the price. People respond to incentives.

Back in 1993, I knew a guy who had an industrial size wood chip burning operation. He went out of business. Lots of alternative energy programs died in the 1990s. What did President Clinton and the Congress do to smash this industry? Almost nothing. It was due to the LOW prices.

Energy use is a systemic problem that much be approached in a systemic way. Get the incentives right and the system responds naturally and w/o even knowing it. Get them wrong, and all the laws do is make people unhappy and angry.

The key is to make carbon based fuels more expensive relative to other forms of energy. Tax carbon and the rest is just commentary. Other more heroic measures are mostly PR and there is no “solution” to the problem. It is just something that needs to be managed.

Posted by: Jack at January 7, 2008 1:14 AM
Comment #242436

JD says “Tell that to the 400 miners that Gov. Rod just put out of a job in Carlinville, IL over Christmas holiday with his extremist environmental policies. Maybe the bad taste of environmentalist extremists forcing these guys out of work will go away in a short period, too. At least the Democrats hope it will dissipate before the 2008 elections. But, hey, they can always blame the Bush economy, right?”

JD according to the local newspaper
“The closure of the mine was a business decision based on market conditions, and the divestment of the Monterey Coal mine completes ExxonMobil’s departure from the coal business”

JD continues on with this rant”Obviously, you have no concern for the number of families being put out of work. But, then again, liberals can raise taxes to take care of them, right!
How long will you guys trash the energy industries of coal and oil/gas?
Until the common citizenry can not afford their heating, electricity, food costs, and other expenses of daily living?
But, making the poor and middle class totally dependent on government is the real purpose of all this.
And, of course, destroying certain industries and allowing environmentalists and their cronies in government to extort, through lawsuit and legislation, huge sums of money for political purposes.”

While at the same time those nefarious extreme environmentalist in of all places Washington DC have other ideas according to a chicago newspaper
“MATTOON, Ill. - Illinois won a battle with Texas on Tuesday for a showcase clean-coal research project, but within hours the Bush administration waved a caution flag about rising costs and said it wasn’t ready to sign off on the $1.8 billion FutureGen power plant.” yet by reading JD’s post one would be leadd to believe it was all the fault of the extremist environmentalist.
Why are the extremist so upset about these plants? maybe because “Electric utilities released more than one billion pounds of toxic pollution in 1998, and more toxic chemical air pollution than the chemical, paper, plastics, and refining industries combined. Coal- and oil-fired power plants released nearly nine million pounds of toxic metals and metal compounds into the air and land in 1998. Many of those materials are known or suspected carcinogens or neurotoxins. These same power plants emitted between twenty-seven and fifty-four times more acid gases than chemical plants that actually manufacture these gases as products, because the power plants are exempt from federal emissions standards regulating acid gas pollution.”
Whats the big deal?
“In addition to causing respiratory problems for children, people with asthma, the elderly, and outdoor workers, smog also reduces crop productivity — annual losses due to ozone for soybeans alone in Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio are estimated at between $198.6 million and $345.6 million. Both sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides also help cause acid rain, which may be carried hundreds of miles by the wind, damaging forests, corroding buildings, and killing fish in lakes and streams along the way. Mercury can cause severe neurological and developmental injuries to humans (particularly infants and children) as well as wildlife.”
Yet we need the energy so why would the extremist complain about these caol generated plants?
“When the U.S. Congress updated the Clean Air Act in 1970 and 1977, it exempted coal-burning power plants that had been built before 1977 from complying with the stricter air pollution emission requirements. Who would have believed that these aging plants would still be going strong twenty-five or more years later? In some cases there has been almost no modernization of the equipment. Who would have thought that we would be seeing a significant increase in power produced from these grandfathered plants in the 1990s (partly as a result of the nationwide move toward electricity deregulation)? In Illinois, twenty-four such dirty coal plants continue to belch filth into the air today, despite numerous studies demonstrating the appalling extent of their pollution and the severe dangers such pollution poses to public health and the environment.”
JD are you really sure its the fault of the extremist that those 365 people in Carlinville lost their job due to extremist?


Posted by: j2t2 at January 7, 2008 1:51 AM
Comment #242448

Rachel
Very wise advice there ma’am. Around here, we have “farmers markets” and even “roadside farmers tents,” which offer a great alternative to store bought produce. And any reduction in petro consumption that could result in more of these would be just an added bonus.

Posted by: kctim at January 7, 2008 10:36 AM
Comment #242462

Based on the National Geographic article a few months ago, using food for fuel is ridiculous. I used to be in favor of it, if it would help get corn sweetener out of everything we eat. Waste products or grasses grown on marginal land make more sense, but how much will it ever produce? We need diesel engines that will run on anything. Whatever we burn is going to create pollution, so why not use the energy sources that will create less of it.

Posted by: ohrealy at January 7, 2008 12:33 PM
Comment #242511

JD according to the local newspaper
“The closure of the mine was a business decision based on market conditions, and the divestment of the Monterey Coal mine completes ExxonMobil’s departure from the coal business”
Posted by j2t2

ExxonMobile can’t stay in the coal business if environmentalist extremists in the Illinois Legislature are passing laws that will shut down the coal industry throughout Illinois. ExxonMobile is simply reacting to the writing on the wall.

Environmentalists are making it futile for anyone to stay in the coal business and face the barage of lawsuits, and hoops that one must jump through to satisfy the extremist Illinois Democratic legislators.
The people of Illinois, therefore, can look forward to 12 to 15 cent per kilowatt hour electricity rates just like California and the Norhteast before it is all over.

As Jack suggested,

“The key is to make carbon based fuels more expensive relative to other forms of energy.”

Hot dang!! At least Jack, somewhat of an environmentalist himself, has the cajones to tell the truth and doesn’t try to hide behind some fearmongering rhetoric about everyone dying from a 20 foot tidal wave on New York City or Miami caused by Global Warming and carbon emissions.

You got it right, Jack.

The key is making energy so expensive that ordinary people who work hard every day can no longer afford the lifestyles that they have enjoyed for so many years because of the exhorbitant bills they have to pay for heating, electrictiy, food, and fuel, (the four things everyone must have to survive).

Why, if the environmentalists can control those things, manipulating their costs through legislation and litigation, they can also control the people and determine who gets what and when. And that is liberalism 101!

Make it so that only the extremely rich can afford Oil/Gas, heating, food, and fuel prices.
Make it so that only the extremely rich like Al Gore can afford their hybrid SUV’s to go along with their personal jets.
Make it so expensive that everyone needs assistance from the Federal Government just to pay for their heating bills, electric bills, and food.

And when we finally make it so expensive that nobody can pay for it, and the people are forced into reducing their consumption the elitist environmental extremists can say, “Gosh darn you, over-consuming, greedy, capitalists! Why can’t you just be satisfied with the lifestyle we allow you live? The bad taste will fade away if you people will just bend over and grab the ankles and trust us because we are so much smarter and care so much more than you do about your familys!!!!”

Perhaps, then, the really expensive alternatives can come in and save the day because they will no longer be more expensive than the cheap stuff of the good old days. You know, the good old days, when people could afford it.

The catch:

Hopefully, someone will have the money left after trying to pay their bills to actually drive the economy with the other non-necessity purchases that helps the U.S. maintain its worldwide economic influence and status without falling into massive recession or even economic depression.

What a great long-term energy policy the environmentalists have come up with. Make cheap energy so expensive that nobody can use it or afford it! Let’s give Al Gore another Nobel Peace Prize shall we?

JD

Posted by: JD at January 7, 2008 10:05 PM
Comment #242514

JD says “ExxonMobile can’t stay in the coal business if environmentalist extremists in the Illinois Legislature are passing laws that will shut down the coal industry throughout Illinois. ExxonMobile is simply reacting to the writing on the wall.”
JD that is a shining example of what can only be called corporate apologist. Do you have any proof at all that this multi national corporation was so dismayed with the “extremist” laws in Illinois that they decided to get out of the coal mining business all together?
Here is what they say “For Irving, Texas-based Exxon, the decision marks an exit from the coal business. The oil giant also has shed other coal and metals assets to focus on finding, producing and refining petroleum. Exxon has owned the mine just south of Carlinville since 1970. Last year, it produced about 2.8 million tons of coal.
The mine closings come as the Illinois coal industry is looking forward to a rebound — a reversal from the 1990s when environmental regulations led utilities to buy coal lower in sulfur content from mines in western states.”

JD also says “What a great long-term energy policy the environmentalists have come up with. Make cheap energy so expensive that nobody can use it or afford it! Let’s give Al Gore another Nobel Peace Prize shall we?”
JD have you ever stopped to think that when you add in the health costs and loss of crops to the cost of burning coal in the old power plants that its not as cheap as you think? Or are you just wanting to rant without any basis in fact because of your anger at what you perceive to be liberalism and evnironmentalist? Here is what the extreme environmentalist have been signing in Illinois lately “Blagojevich appeared at the Crown III mine in Macoupin County earlier this year to sign legislation to help the state attract the $1.5 billion FutureGen project, a plant that would produce electricity from coal with near-zero emissions.”
If it were me I would quit whining and blaming the liberals and help them out by getting my fellow cons in the white house to quit playing politics with the new plant and start building it in Illinois.


Posted by: j2t2 at January 7, 2008 10:54 PM
Comment #242519

It’s wonderful that you are looking up information on the subject. However, knowing someone who worked there personally, I happen to know that ExxonMobile tried to sell the mining operation on at least three seperate occasions and the deals fell through when the fear of environmentalist litigation reared its ugly head.


“The mine closings come as the Illinois coal industry is looking forward to a rebound”
Posted by j2t2

The reason there is an attempt to say coal is “lookingforward to a rebound” is because Oil/Gas prices are so high now that the expensive process used by the plant you spoke of in Illinois:

“MATTOON, Ill. - Illinois won a battle with Texas on Tuesday for a showcase clean-coal research project, but within hours the Bush administration waved a caution flag about rising costs and said it wasn’t ready to sign off on the $1.8 billion FutureGen power plant.” yet by reading JD’s post one would be leadd to believe it was all the fault of the extremist environmentalist.”
Posted by j2t2

is now able to compete. The Future Gen plant takes coal and refines it into a petroleum-like substance. It is one experimental alternative at the moment being considered but does not hold great promise for realistically lowering the cost of energy to consumers since the process is so expensive. It would not have even been considered an alternative if the environmentalists had not manipulated and wreaked havoc on the price of oil to outrageous extremes by eliminating existing energy creating resources.

This manipulated attempt to make Oil/Gas as expensive as the alternatives is exactly what Jack was talking about.

This gives the politicians an excuse to use our tax dollars to fund projects to create energy at two to three times the cost of existing energy resources. When you can manipulate energy costs so high that the people demand alternatives away from oil, and at the same time destroy the “cheaper” use of coal, you then have an excuse to fund your own pet projects which would not have been previously feasible. The Future Gen project is a perfect example of what I have been talking about.
Living in Illinois, I know a bit about the Future Gen project, and Governeor Rod’s environmentalism. But, glad to see you are educating yourself on the subject.


“a reversal from the 1990s when environmental regulations led utilities to buy coal lower in sulfur content from mines in western states.”
Posted by j2t2

Thanks for once again proving my point!

Higher environmentalist regulations = less coal purchasing!


Indeed, Bush is trying to open more avenues for coal, and being fought tooth and nail by Democrats on his energy policies for it. He is finally trying to provide some relief for hurting Americans in the way of cheaper energy costs by approving more use of coal, and being demonized for it by the Democrats.


“MATTOON, Ill. - Illinois won a battle with Texas on Tuesday for a showcase clean-coal research project, but within hours the Bush administration waved a caution flag about rising costs and said it wasn’t ready to sign off on the $1.8 billion FutureGen power plant.” yet by reading JD’s post one would be leadd to believe it was all the fault of the extremist environmentalist.”

I have no doubt that the environmentalist project was probably over-hyped and certain costs were hidden. Most governmental experiments are riddled with such hidden costs. He may have discovered that the actual cost of production on this experimental Future Gen “coal to gas” was more than expected and, therfore, he is holding off on the project because of its lack of feasibility. If so, I say more power to him. It’s about time someone showed some realistic expectations when it comes to energy. If the energy does not provide a feasible cost relief to the citizenry, what good is it?

JD

Posted by: JD at January 8, 2008 12:33 AM
Comment #242521

AMERICANS INSATIABLE THIRST FOR ENERGY MUST BE MODERATED R5.
By Yehuda Draiman, Energy Development Specialist

As you know, many serious problems are associated with our insatiable thirst for energy. The reason is simple: To gain the energy we must burn the fuels. The combustion, by the way quite inefficient, causes huge gaseous emissions polluting the air and forming an invisible screen responsible for the famous “ green house effect ”, i.e., blocking the dissipation of heat and thus causing the feared warming up of our planet, with deadly consequences for nature and man.
There is only a finite amount of oil in the world. Everybody knows this.
Someday, we’ll run out. It will be gone.
Meanwhile, our insatiable thirst for oil — which we burn — has put enormous sums of money into the hands of fanatics who hate us and everything we stand for, and who use that oil money to fund the terrorists who murder Jews and Americans wherever they can.
We can’t burn oil forever.
And it’s bad strategy to base our economy on cheap oil when we have to buy at least some of it from our enemies.
Optimists tell us that the free market will eventually deal with the problem. Their theory is that as oil gets harder to extract cheaply, the price will go up; then other forms of energy will become economically attractive and we’ll switch over to them.
Here’s why their optimism is nothing short of suicidal.
First, there’s no guarantee that without intense government-funded research and financial incentives now, the new energy sources will be available in quantities large enough to replace oil when it does run out.
In other words, if we wait until it’s an emergency, our economy could easily crash and burn for lack of energy sources sufficient to drive it.
It’s easy to supply energy for an economy that’s only a tenth the size of the world’s economy today. The question is how many people will die in the resulting chaos and famine, before new free-market equilibrium is established?
Second, how stupid do we have to be to wait until we run out of oil before acting to prevent its waste as a fuel? Petroleum is a vital source of plastics. We could use it for that purpose for hundreds of generations — if we didn’t burn any more of it. But if we wait till we’ve burned all the cheap petroleum, it won’t be just fuel that we have to replace.
Third, market forces don’t do anything for our national defense, our national security. We had a clear warning back in the 1970s with the first oil embargo. What if terrorism in the Middle East specifically targets all oil exports, from many countries?
And even if they keep the oil flowing, why are we pumping money into the pockets of militant extremists who want to destroy us? Why are we subsidizing our enemies, when instead we could be subsidizing the research that might set us free from our addiction to oil?
You notice that I haven’t said anything about polluting the environment. Because this is not an environmental issue.
In the long run, it’s an issue of whether we wish to provide for our children the same kind of prosperity that we’ve luxuriated in as a nation since World War II.
It is foolish optimism bordering on criminal neglect that we continue to think that our future will be all right as long as we find new ways to extract oil from proven reserves.
Instead of extracting it, we ought to be preserving it.
Congress ought to be giving greater incentives and then creating mandates that require hybrid vehicles to predominate within the next five years.
Within the next fifteen years, we must move beyond hybrids to means of transportation that don’t burn oil at all.
Within thirty years, we must handle our transportation needs without burning anything at all.
Predicting the exact moment when our dependence on petroleum will destroy us is pointless.
What is certain is this: We will run out of oil that is cheap enough to burn. We don’t know when, but we do know it will happen.
And on that day, our children will curse their forebears who burned this precious resource, and therefore their future, just because they didn’t want the government to interfere with the free market, or some other such nonsense.
The government interferes with the free market constantly. By its very existence, government distorts the market. So let’s turn that distortion to our benefit. Let’s enforce a savings program. But instead of putting money in the bank, let’s put oil there.
Oil in the bank … so our children and grandchildren for a hundred generations can slowly draw it out to build with it instead of burn it.
Oil in the bank … so we’ll be free of the threat of fanatics who seek to murder their enemies — including us — with weapons paid for at our gas pumps.
Do you want to know who funded Osama bin Laden? We did. And we continue to do it every time we fill up.
You don’t have to be an environmental fanatic to demand that we control our greed for oil.
In fact, you have to be dumb and a fool not to insist on it.
But … foresight just isn’t the American way. We always seem to wait until our own house is burning before we notice there’s a wildfire.
Oh, it won’t reach us here, we tell ourselves. We’ll be safe.
Talk about foolish optimism.
Fair Threat to World Economy But Oil Boycott Improbable
Energy Efficiency Must Be North America’s Priority but Canada and
U.S. Fail on Energy Efficiency Policies
“The despots of the moderate Middle East are non-players save for
their oil in the ground… My concern is that my grand kids might see parts of the
Middle East turned into a nuclear waste land, and Ali Baba and The Forty
Thieves. The world community needs to see a checkmate within the next 60 -
90 days. Failing that, Iran and Syria will be emboldened.” Reiterating an almost
universal view on the panel, this CEO emphasized that the world’s seemingly
The Chinese contribution to the energy crisis
The quest for resources. The dynamic Chinese economy, which has averaged 9 percent growth per annum over the last two decades, nearly tripled the country’s GDP, has also resulted in the country having an almost insatiable thirst for oil as well as a need for other natural resources to sustain it. The PRC has been a net importer of petroleum since 1993, and has increasingly relied on African countries as suppliers. As of last year, China was importing approximately 2.6 million barrels per day (bbl/d), which accounts for about half of its consumption; more than 765,000 bbl/d – roughly a third of its imports – came from African sources, especially Sudan, Angola, and Congo (Brazzaville).
To get some perspective on these numbers, consider that one respected energy analyst has calculated that while China’s share of the world oil market is about 8 percent, its share of total growth in demand for oil since 2000 has been 30 percent. The much publicized purchase, in January of this year, of a 45 percent stake in an offshore Nigerian oilfield for $2.27 billion by the state-controlled China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) was just the latest in a series of acquisitions dating back to 1993 whereby the three largest Chinese national oil companies – China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation (Sinopec), and CNOOC, respectively – have acquired stakes in established African operations.
Our insatiable thirst for Middle East energy is “the oil [that] feeds the fire.”
This idea that we can live in a homogenous cul-de-sac suburban development in our plastic homes driving 50 to 100 miles to work in a 4700lb SUV to our middle management job at Bed Bath and Beyond and expect this way of life to just continue on indefinitely with no consequences represents mind boggling ignorance and negligence towards our future. The “American Dream” is a relic of the Baby Boomer generation and will die with our parents and grandparents. To quote author James Kunstler: “Suburban development in this country represents the single largest misallocation of wealth and resources in the history of the planet.”

So could a 900 acre photo voltaic array power a major metropolitan grid. No, probably not. But the question isn’t how do we squeeze enough energy out of the technology to accommodate our seemingly insatiable thirst for electricity and fuel but rather how do we cut the fat and waste out of our civilization and our lives and actually live WITHIN our environment with some sort of sustainability. There is no one technology that will provide all our solutions. It will have to be a combination of wind turbines, solar and hydroelectric excluding the remote possibility that some new form of energy production (i.e. cold fusion or something equally fantastical) is unleashed on the world by CERN or ET. These power plants will operate primarily at a local level servicing on a much smaller scale than what we here in North America have been so used to in the last 70 or so years.
IS TECHNOLOGY BEING HELD BACK
New Solar Electric Cells - 80% efficient
Mr. Marks says solar panels made with Lepcon or Lumeloid, the materials he patented, … Most photovoltaic cells are only about 15 percent efficient. …
If the American public’s insatiable appetite for automobiles continues, uncurbed by any sense of responsibility, someone must, like a parent with a selfish child, at least start slapping wrists.
Perhaps we should ration gasoline, and insist that all cars meet a miles-per-gallon minimum — one higher than many sport utility vehicles, for example, achieve now. The rationing would not be a wartime figure, of course, but a reasonable amount allowed for business and pleasure.
Americans consume the largest portion of gas in the world and cry the loudest about the price.
The government should repeatedly increase the price of gasoline in an effort to slow our country’s insatiable thirst for oil. Utilize the excess profits and taxes to fund research and rebates for renewable efficiency and renewable energy.
Yehuda Draiman, Energy Analyst – 1/1/2008 – renewableenergy2@msn.com
PS. but they will keep pumping more in the years ahead to quench our insatiable thirst for energy.
A new source of energy storage is in the works using ULTRACAPCITORS.
THE NEW DAWN OF SOLAR
A California firm “Nanosolar of San Jose” says it is producing solar panels for 30 cents per watt. If true, then a power plant made from these solar panels should produce electricity cheaper

Posted by: Yehuda Draiman at January 8, 2008 1:57 AM
Comment #242522

AMERICANS INSATIABLE THIRST FOR ENERGY MUST BE MODERATED R5.
By Yehuda Draiman, Energy Development Specialist

As you know, many serious problems are associated with our insatiable thirst for energy. The reason is simple: To gain the energy we must burn the fuels. The combustion, by the way quite inefficient, causes huge gaseous emissions polluting the air and forming an invisible screen responsible for the famous “ green house effect ”, i.e., blocking the dissipation of heat and thus causing the feared warming up of our planet, with deadly consequences for nature and man.
There is only a finite amount of oil in the world. Everybody knows this.
Someday, we’ll run out. It will be gone.
Meanwhile, our insatiable thirst for oil — which we burn — has put enormous sums of money into the hands of fanatics who hate us and everything we stand for, and who use that oil money to fund the terrorists who murder Jews and Americans wherever they can.
We can’t burn oil forever.
And it’s bad strategy to base our economy on cheap oil when we have to buy at least some of it from our enemies.
Optimists tell us that the free market will eventually deal with the problem. Their theory is that as oil gets harder to extract cheaply, the price will go up; then other forms of energy will become economically attractive and we’ll switch over to them.
Here’s why their optimism is nothing short of suicidal.
First, there’s no guarantee that without intense government-funded research and financial incentives now, the new energy sources will be available in quantities large enough to replace oil when it does run out.
In other words, if we wait until it’s an emergency, our economy could easily crash and burn for lack of energy sources sufficient to drive it.
It’s easy to supply energy for an economy that’s only a tenth the size of the world’s economy today. The question is how many people will die in the resulting chaos and famine, before new free-market equilibrium is established?
Second, how stupid do we have to be to wait until we run out of oil before acting to prevent its waste as a fuel? Petroleum is a vital source of plastics. We could use it for that purpose for hundreds of generations — if we didn’t burn any more of it. But if we wait till we’ve burned all the cheap petroleum, it won’t be just fuel that we have to replace.
Third, market forces don’t do anything for our national defense, our national security. We had a clear warning back in the 1970s with the first oil embargo. What if terrorism in the Middle East specifically targets all oil exports, from many countries?
And even if they keep the oil flowing, why are we pumping money into the pockets of militant extremists who want to destroy us? Why are we subsidizing our enemies, when instead we could be subsidizing the research that might set us free from our addiction to oil?
You notice that I haven’t said anything about polluting the environment. Because this is not an environmental issue.
In the long run, it’s an issue of whether we wish to provide for our children the same kind of prosperity that we’ve luxuriated in as a nation since World War II.
It is foolish optimism bordering on criminal neglect that we continue to think that our future will be all right as long as we find new ways to extract oil from proven reserves.
Instead of extracting it, we ought to be preserving it.
Congress ought to be giving greater incentives and then creating mandates that require hybrid vehicles to predominate within the next five years.
Within the next fifteen years, we must move beyond hybrids to means of transportation that don’t burn oil at all.
Within thirty years, we must handle our transportation needs without burning anything at all.
Predicting the exact moment when our dependence on petroleum will destroy us is pointless.
What is certain is this: We will run out of oil that is cheap enough to burn. We don’t know when, but we do know it will happen.
And on that day, our children will curse their forebears who burned this precious resource, and therefore their future, just because they didn’t want the government to interfere with the free market, or some other such nonsense.
The government interferes with the free market constantly. By its very existence, government distorts the market. So let’s turn that distortion to our benefit. Let’s enforce a savings program. But instead of putting money in the bank, let’s put oil there.
Oil in the bank … so our children and grandchildren for a hundred generations can slowly draw it out to build with it instead of burn it.
Oil in the bank … so we’ll be free of the threat of fanatics who seek to murder their enemies — including us — with weapons paid for at our gas pumps.
Do you want to know who funded Osama bin Laden? We did. And we continue to do it every time we fill up.
You don’t have to be an environmental fanatic to demand that we control our greed for oil.
In fact, you have to be dumb and a fool not to insist on it.
But … foresight just isn’t the American way. We always seem to wait until our own house is burning before we notice there’s a wildfire.
Oh, it won’t reach us here, we tell ourselves. We’ll be safe.
Talk about foolish optimism.
Fair Threat to World Economy But Oil Boycott Improbable
Energy Efficiency Must Be North America’s Priority but Canada and
U.S. Fail on Energy Efficiency Policies
“The despots of the moderate Middle East are non-players save for
their oil in the ground… My concern is that my grand kids might see parts of the
Middle East turned into a nuclear waste land, and Ali Baba and The Forty
Thieves. The world community needs to see a checkmate within the next 60 -
90 days. Failing that, Iran and Syria will be emboldened.” Reiterating an almost
universal view on the panel, this CEO emphasized that the world’s seemingly
The Chinese contribution to the energy crisis
The quest for resources. The dynamic Chinese economy, which has averaged 9 percent growth per annum over the last two decades, nearly tripled the country’s GDP, has also resulted in the country having an almost insatiable thirst for oil as well as a need for other natural resources to sustain it. The PRC has been a net importer of petroleum since 1993, and has increasingly relied on African countries as suppliers. As of last year, China was importing approximately 2.6 million barrels per day (bbl/d), which accounts for about half of its consumption; more than 765,000 bbl/d – roughly a third of its imports – came from African sources, especially Sudan, Angola, and Congo (Brazzaville).
To get some perspective on these numbers, consider that one respected energy analyst has calculated that while China’s share of the world oil market is about 8 percent, its share of total growth in demand for oil since 2000 has been 30 percent. The much publicized purchase, in January of this year, of a 45 percent stake in an offshore Nigerian oilfield for $2.27 billion by the state-controlled China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) was just the latest in a series of acquisitions dating back to 1993 whereby the three largest Chinese national oil companies – China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation (Sinopec), and CNOOC, respectively – have acquired stakes in established African operations.
Our insatiable thirst for Middle East energy is “the oil [that] feeds the fire.”
This idea that we can live in a homogenous cul-de-sac suburban development in our plastic homes driving 50 to 100 miles to work in a 4700lb SUV to our middle management job at Bed Bath and Beyond and expect this way of life to just continue on indefinitely with no consequences represents mind boggling ignorance and negligence towards our future. The “American Dream” is a relic of the Baby Boomer generation and will die with our parents and grandparents. To quote author James Kunstler: “Suburban development in this country represents the single largest misallocation of wealth and resources in the history of the planet.”

So could a 900 acre photo voltaic array power a major metropolitan grid. No, probably not. But the question isn’t how do we squeeze enough energy out of the technology to accommodate our seemingly insatiable thirst for electricity and fuel but rather how do we cut the fat and waste out of our civilization and our lives and actually live WITHIN our environment with some sort of sustainability. There is no one technology that will provide all our solutions. It will have to be a combination of wind turbines, solar and hydroelectric excluding the remote possibility that some new form of energy production (i.e. cold fusion or something equally fantastical) is unleashed on the world by CERN or ET. These power plants will operate primarily at a local level servicing on a much smaller scale than what we here in North America have been so used to in the last 70 or so years.
IS TECHNOLOGY BEING HELD BACK
New Solar Electric Cells - 80% efficient
Mr. Marks says solar panels made with Lepcon or Lumeloid, the materials he patented, … Most photovoltaic cells are only about 15 percent efficient. …
If the American public’s insatiable appetite for automobiles continues, uncurbed by any sense of responsibility, someone must, like a parent with a selfish child, at least start slapping wrists.
Perhaps we should ration gasoline, and insist that all cars meet a miles-per-gallon minimum — one higher than many sport utility vehicles, for example, achieve now. The rationing would not be a wartime figure, of course, but a reasonable amount allowed for business and pleasure.
Americans consume the largest portion of gas in the world and cry the loudest about the price.
The government should repeatedly increase the price of gasoline in an effort to slow our country’s insatiable thirst for oil. Utilize the excess profits and taxes to fund research and rebates for renewable efficiency and renewable energy.
Yehuda Draiman, Energy Analyst – 1/1/2008 – renewableenergy2@msn.com
PS. but they will keep pumping more in the years ahead to quench our insatiable thirst for energy.
A new source of energy storage is in the works using ULTRACAPCITORS.
THE NEW DAWN OF SOLAR
A California firm “Nanosolar of San Jose” says it is producing solar panels for 30 cents per watt. If true, then a power plant made from these solar panels should produce electricity cheaper

Posted by: Yehuda Draiman at January 8, 2008 2:08 AM
Comment #242524

Wow JD I dont know where to begin. So much conservative logic all in one post.

“However, knowing someone who worked there personally, I happen to know that ExxonMobile tried to sell the mining operation on at least three seperate occasions and the deals fell through when the fear of environmentalist litigation reared its ugly head.”
JD wanna bet that at least one or more of these fell through due to financing?

“It would not have even been considered an alternative if the environmentalists had not manipulated and wreaked havoc on the price of oil to outrageous extremes by eliminating existing energy creating resources.” The environmentalist did this how exactly? Speculating on oil futures, forcing China and India to increase their demand for oil? By forcing W to invade Iraq in order to cause supply issues?

“This gives the politicians an excuse to use our tax dollars to fund projects to create energy at two to three times the cost of existing energy resources. When you can manipulate energy costs so high that the people demand alternatives away from oil, and at the same time destroy the “cheaper” use of coal, you then have an excuse to fund your own pet projects which would not have been previously feasible. The Future Gen project is a perfect example of what I have been talking about.
Living in Illinois, I know a bit about the Future Gen project, and Governeor Rod’s environmentalism. But, glad to see you are educating yourself on the subject.” JD if I didnt know better I would think you were talking about the oil companies, but no this full dose of conservative logic can only be aimed at the liberals and environmentalist. Who is doing this manipulating of energy prices? The Sierra club?
Do you really think the environmentalist consider the $1.5 bil coal powered electric generating plant as their pet project? Do you think that if they truely had their way the would not use solar or wind to generate electricity?


““a reversal from the 1990s when environmental regulations led utilities to buy coal lower in sulfur content from mines in western states.”
Posted by j2t2

Thanks for once again proving my point!

Higher environmentalist regulations = less coal purchasing!”

JD is it your position that coal fired generating plants should not have any regualtions and should be free to pollute the air as much as they want. Do you not believe that the byproducts coming out of those tall stacks are harmful to people , animals and crops? Do you want your kids and grandkids to breathe that stuff? Exactly what are your thoughts on the problem of pollutants being pumped into the air as a direcct result of using coal. Here is what some of your fellow Illini say about it: “Out the window, the Timmermans can see what they believe is the source of all their problems — the cancers, the dry well and ponds, the arsenic that was discovered last year in their new well, the coal dust that has blown across their land for eight years.

Across Hunter Road, exactly 835 feet from the Timmermans’ front door, stands a 50-foot-high berm that encompasses 360 acres of waste that was generated during the 19 years the Monterey Coal Company, a subsidiary of Exxon, mined coal in the area. Since 1991 the state of Illinois and Exxon have known the groundwater beneath the waste pile is contaminated.”
Maybe we should consider health and crop loss costs JD.

“Indeed, Bush is trying to open more avenues for coal, and being fought tooth and nail by Democrats on his energy policies for it. He is finally trying to provide some relief for hurting Americans in the way of cheaper energy costs by approving more use of coal, and being demonized for it by the Democrats.”
Pray tell JD how is W doing this? Where and when have the Dems fought with W on his energy policies? JD he is witholding approval, and what exactly has he done in this recent attempt to provide relief to hurting Americans, other than the oil companies I mean, when has he approved the use of more coal and which dems are demonizing him for these valient acts of kindness? Please be specific and name names of these dems if you would because this sounds just like one of the talk show guys that spout this stuff without any particulars so you cant really tell if its true or not.

“I have no doubt that the environmentalist project was probably over-hyped and certain costs were hidden. Most governmental experiments are riddled with such hidden costs. He may have discovered that the actual cost of production on this experimental Future Gen “coal to gas” was more than expected and, therfore, he is holding off on the project because of its lack of feasibility. If so, I say more power to him. It’s about time someone showed some realistic expectations when it comes to energy. If the energy does not provide a feasible cost relief to the citizenry, what good is it?”

JD I thought the environmentalist were trying to stop this project, now its their project and W may have found out it is overpriced? Are you serious? My money is on the more likely probability that W is trying to get this project to a repub state say Texas in lieu of a more dem state say like Illinois so he can keep it from being built by union contractors and at the same time reward his buddies but thats just me. So JD if its a concervative that puts the kabosh on this new plant because it may not be feasibile then its OK, but if the extremist do it then its a terrible thing?
You know JD this project would be a great thing to have happen not just for the people of Illinois but for the Country in general. There will be problems it will probably cost more and not quite live up to expectations but it is a start. Thde next project could be less expensive and solve more of the pollution problem.
Once again JD I ask you to get active on this, support your Gov Rod on this and hold your fellow conservatives to a higher standard by actually working with the environmentalist and the Dems to get this thing up and running. Call and write the white house to get the deal signed for your state. Your sitting on a lot of coal and with the right technology it could be used to power without polluting. It could be a win win for all concerned.


Posted by: j2t2 at January 8, 2008 2:39 AM
Comment #242601

Extremist Illinois legislators? My ComEd bill for Dec was $23.03, Nov was $16.16. My largest bill last summer was about $46. I think those are reasonable figures for a 2 bedroom apartment, but of course we have nuclear power.

I don’t want any coal and don’t need it. Illinois coal is high in sulfure. Why not burn peat, we have plenty of that too. It would make more sense to burn garbage, but the ash contains all kinds of stuff that nobody wants to put anywhere.

Solar won’t do much here where the skies are cloudy all day. Wind makes more sense in La Ville du Vent.

On Petroleum, nobody seems to believe yet that aviation fuel is the most wasteful part of that problem.

Gov Rod is my least favorite democrat on earth. A while ago, they were making a fuss because he stays at home in Ravenswood instead of living in Springfield. Locally, public transit is threatened by lack of agreement on a funding plan.

The last time I paid any attention, petroleum prices were ten times what they were 20 years ago, but the price of gas at the pump has not gone up that much. Some people claim that the actual price of gas at the pump should be over $11 a gallon based on the full cost, including the military expenditure in the MidEast.

Posted by: ohrealy at January 8, 2008 7:37 PM
Comment #242603

ohrealy, please dont confuse us with facts. We are trying to blame the liberals in general and the extremist environmentalist in particular for Illinois’s energy problems. Facts just get in the way.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 8, 2008 8:41 PM
Comment #242614

“If the American public’s insatiable appetite for automobiles continues, uncurbed by any sense of responsibility, someone must, like a parent with a selfish child, at least start slapping wrists.”
Posted by: Yehuda Draiman

Thank you, Yehuda, for considering Americans selfish children who simply must be slapped by the likes of more intelligent adults like you!

And there folks, is the best definition of an environmentalist liberal straight from the horse’s mouth!!!

JD

Posted by: JD at January 9, 2008 1:01 AM
Comment #242619

JD
Couldnt help but notice that you misquoted yehuda draiman IMHO. I dont want to put words into his mouth but he didnt call “Americans selfish children who simply must be slapped by the likes of more intelligent adults like you!” try reading what he actually said “If the American public’s insatiable appetite for automobiles continues, uncurbed by any sense of responsibility, someone must, like a parent with a selfish child, at least start slapping wrists.”


Before being so quick to judge him and mislead us try a visit to Mr.Draiman’s weblog- yehudadraiman@worldpress.com

Posted by: j2t2 at January 9, 2008 2:39 AM
Comment #242621

“Pray tell JD how is W doing this? Where and when have the Dems fought with W on his energy policies? JD he is witholding approval, and what exactly has he done in this recent attempt to provide relief to hurting Americans, other than the oil companies I mean, when has he approved the use of more coal and which dems are demonizing him for these valient acts of kindness? Please be specific and name names of these dems if you would because this sounds just like one of the talk show guys that spout this stuff without any particulars so you cant really tell if its true or not.”
Posted by j2t2


Are you really so far out of touch with what’s been happening in Washington, D.C. that you are not aware that Democrats held up Bush’s Comprehensive Energy Plan for the last four years, refusing to pass it through the Senate.
I’m sure if you go back and read every State of the Union Address for the last four years Bush can fill you in on it! Obviously, it is something you selectively chose to miss.
I could list every “Democratic Senator’s” name in this post, but that would be a bit redundant wouldn’t it?

“JD I thought the environmentalist were trying to stop this project, now its their project and W may have found out it is overpriced? Are you serious?”
Posted by j2t2

I already explained that Future Gen is an environmental pet project that is in its infancy. Up until the huge spike in Oil it was not even being considered an alternative because of its inflated price. Read just about any article on Future Gen and you find that this is true.
It has only become feasible because of the manipulation of Oil / Gas prices.
This much cleaner burning expensive coal process is more acceptable to environmentalists. But, you also can’t leave out the fact that the Governor’s environmental policies have pissed off quite a few coal miners throughout the state of Illinois.
But, again, the key to all of this environmentalism is increasing the price of existing energy resources so that they will no longer be wanted and alternatives will be demanded. Also, there will be no voluntary, but rather, a forced conservation of resources. That is the goal of environmentalists. Lower energy prices are anathema to environmentalists. It causes way to much Capitalistic consumption for their Socialistic tastes.
You know, that is that bad taste that environmentalists have had in their mouths that just doesn’t seem to go away in America!


“JD if I didnt know better I would think you were talking about the oil companies, but no this full dose of conservative logic can only be aimed at the liberals and environmentalist. Who is doing this manipulating of energy prices? The Sierra club?
Posted by j2t2

Absolutely! By trying to shut down all coal power plants, they are in fact driving up the price of Oil / Gas by placing an added burden on demand. It is the same principle as the Ethanol fuel corn price spike in the original post. Replacing one form of energy with another places an added demand on the substitute energy product without adequate supplies to replace the original product. The result: spiking of prices, usually on both products.

Furthermore, it is you who talk about collusion among the oil companies, not I! But, do you think Oil Companies are going to complain about the environmentalists increasing the costs of Oil / Gas by destroying coal? They are simply going to get out of the Coal industry like ExxonMobile and collect their increased Oil / Gas profits. Why should they complain when it simply increases their profits by creating more demand and higher prices for their product (Oil / Gas which has been their bread and butter)! Sounds to me like ExxonMobile has some pretty smart managers.

The real collusion is among the Global Warming crowd and environmentalists who want energy costs so high that nobody can use it, therefore, forcing the conservation that they say is the only cure!

The losers: the American people!


“You know JD this project would be a great thing to have happen not just for the people of Illinois but for the Country in general. There will be problems it will probably cost more and not quite live up to expectations but it is a start. Thde next project could be less expensive and solve more of the pollution problem.”

And, if it does not diminish in cost, and at some point has to be subsidized by the Government, are you for that? Funny, how libs are all for the government subsidizing industries that they like. Where’s your anti-Corporate Energy Welfare banner the libs like to fly so much? Hmm?
I know you’re not for subsidizing Big Oil, or on second thought, considering the collusion tactics driving up the cost of oil on the part of environmentalists, perhaps, you are?

JD

Posted by: JD at January 9, 2008 2:48 AM
Comment #242623

“Perhaps we should ration gasoline, and insist that all cars meet a miles-per-gallon minimum — one higher than many sport utility vehicles, for example, achieve now. The rationing would not be a wartime figure, of course, but a reasonable amount allowed for business and pleasure.”
Posted by: Yehuda Draiman


Rationing gasoline according to what the “Government” thinks a reasonable family should use. Hmmm?

All you folks who drive more than forty to fifty miles one way to work each day, what do you think about this?

There goes your jobs, if the Government just so happens to think that is “irrational”.

Aren’t liberals wonderful people?

But, hey, guys, say hello to the 400 Coal Miners at the Unemployment Office for me, will you?


“Americans consume the largest portion of gas in the world and cry the loudest about the price.
The government should repeatedly increase the price of gasoline in an effort to slow our country’s insatiable thirst for oil.”


So, the “Government” should increase the price of Oil/Gas. Oh yes, the “Big Government” should determine the price of gas now, and increase its charges just like it does your taxes! Can anyone hear the deafening sucking sounds coming from your wallets, yet?

Do you need anymore instruction in my Liberalism 101 class, or am I just wasting my time?

Next issue, please!


JD

Posted by: JD at January 9, 2008 3:06 AM
Comment #242637

JD “Are you really so far out of touch with what’s been happening in Washington, D.C. that you are not aware that Democrats held up Bush’s Comprehensive Energy Plan for the last four years, refusing to pass it through the Senate.”

JD do you mean these two “Bush energy plans”
On December 18, 2007, President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which will improve vehicle fuel economy and help reduce U.S. dependence on oil. The bill the President signed today responds to the challenge of his bold “Twenty in Ten” initiative, which President Bush announced in January. It represents a major step forward in expanding the production of renewable fuels, reducing our dependence on oil, and confronting global climate change. It will increase our energy security, expand the production of renewable fuels, and make America stronger, safer, and cleaner for future generations.

Of course lets not forget the secret energy plan of Cheneys back in 01.

“Since President Bush announced the formation of Cheney’s task force in January, two major Senate bills have been the focus of congressional action in developing a national policy: the National Energy Security Act (the Republican bill) and the Comprehensive and Balanced Energy Policy Act of 2001 (the Democrat bill). Although numerous hearings have been held, the bills themselves were put on the back burner until the release of the president’s plan.

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Frank Murkowski (R-AK) released his National Energy Security Act of 2001 (S.388 and S. 389) in February. The pair of bills — one focused exclusively on tax policy — aims to decrease the nation’s reliance on foreign oil to 50 percent by 2011 through a suite of policy changes. Provisions include tax incentives for domestic oil and gas production, measures to expedite construction of gas pipelines, measures to promote energy conservation, incentives for research and development into “clean coal” technology, and many others addressing a range of energy sources.

Senators Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and Tom Daschle (D-SD) sponsored the Comprehensive and Balanced Energy Policy Act (S. 597) and its companion tax bill (S. 596) in March. According to Bingaman, his legislation couples increased production with improved efficiency and decreased demand. The legislation “takes into account climate change policy, because the two are inextricably mixed and are linked together.” Provisions in the bills seek to improve fuel efficiency in the transportation sector, decrease industry and domestic consumption through incentives to purchase more efficient products, and increase research and development in both supply and demand sectors.
Overall, the report makes 105 recommendations of which 12 can be accomplished by executive order and another 73 can be accomplished by agency action. The remaining 20 recommendations require congressional action. A majority of the recommendations relate to infrastructure and international relationships.”
Yep, its all the liberals fault with you JD. good thing facts dont get in your way.


“It has only become feasible because of the manipulation of Oil / Gas prices.
Again, how did the environmentalist manipulate the oil/gas prices JD?


This much cleaner burning expensive coal process is more acceptable to environmentalists. But, you also can’t leave out the fact that the Governor’s environmental policies have pissed off quite a few coal miners throughout the state of Illinois.”
JD why do refuse to address the reason the environmentalist have a problem with the coal generating plants, you know the gases and such. Of course the miners are pissed off they are mining high sulfur coal and it is a terrible pollutant, but that doesnt make the miners right just pissed off. You keep forgetting the cost and damage of the polluting gases JD.

“Absolutely! By trying to shut down all coal power plants, they are in fact driving up the price of Oil / Gas by placing an added burden on demand. It is the same principle as the Ethanol fuel corn price spike in the original post. Replacing one form of energy with another places an added demand on the substitute energy product without adequate supplies to replace the original product. The result: spiking of prices, usually on both products.”
JD is this more of that conservative logic you seem to use ? Are you really saying that oil prices world wide have spiked/risen because environmentalist have attempted to shut down coal plants in Illinois? Even though the plants are still operating? Have you included the costs of the health and crop problems caused by the coal by products into your theory yet?

“Furthermore, it is you who talk about collusion among the oil companies, not I! But, do you think Oil Companies are going to complain about the environmentalists increasing the costs of Oil / Gas by destroying coal? They are simply going to get out of the Coal industry like ExxonMobile and collect their increased Oil / Gas profits. Why should they complain when it simply increases their profits by creating more demand and higher prices for their product (Oil / Gas which has been their bread and butter)! Sounds to me like ExxonMobile has some pretty smart managers. The real collusion is among the Global Warming crowd and environmentalists who want energy costs so high that nobody can use it, therefore, forcing the conservation that they say is the only cure!”

Yeah JD it would seem like that to you wouldnt it. Ask those miners you are so worried about if they feel the same way about those smart managers. But I still need to understand why it is your opinion that the environmentalist are manipulating the oil prices by asking for conservation measures? Seems the prices would go down as demand went down as conservation measures took effect but then thats just that crazy liberal thinking isnt it.

“And, if it does not diminish in cost, and at some point has to be subsidized by the Government, are you for that? Funny, how libs are all for the government subsidizing industries that they like. Where’s your anti-Corporate Energy Welfare banner the libs like to fly so much? Hmm?
I know you’re not for subsidizing Big Oil, or on second thought, considering the collusion tactics driving up the cost of oil on the part of environmentalists, perhaps, you are?”

JD Im more for solar and wind power and living in teepees, remember us liberal environmentalist are like that. Generally I would hope that the government wouldnt need to subsidize the operation of the plant. Isnt it a public/private project now? Dont you think that should the technology work and the gases dont leak out its worth some investment dollars. It would make all that coal useful and put those miners back to work as well as keeping your houses warm without polluting the air you breathe. Once again I doubt that most libs like the coal industry so the subsidizing industries we like wisecrack is off base JD although I understand your need to get those insults into the conversation, lot easier than dealing with facts. JD, listen man grow some cajones, take a chance on the new technology it may just pan out. With all the coal under your state it could be a part of the solution. Dont be so afraid of your tax dollars going to creat jobs for your state and a new technology that may provide clean energy for your fellow Americans. Better than giving it to those oil producing countries in the middle east isnt it. And who knows enough subsidizing and we may run out of money for SSSI. It could be a conservative win win, throwing the old folks into the street and throwing money at the private sector coa; companies. Sorta like what W is doing now to Halliburton.

“Do you need anymore instruction in my Liberalism 101 class, or am I just wasting my time? “

Do you mean Liberalism misconceptions and propaganda as discussed on conservative talk radio 101?
Hey its your time JD do as you wish.

“Next issue, please!”

Well lets try this one
“Couldnt help but notice that you misquoted yehuda draiman IMHO. I dont want to put words into his mouth but he didnt call “Americans selfish children who simply must be slapped by the likes of more intelligent adults like you!” try reading what he actually said “If the American public’s insatiable appetite for automobiles continues, uncurbed by any sense of responsibility, someone must, like a parent with a selfish child, at least start slapping wrists.” “!!
I know its not new but I didnt notice a response to it.


Posted by: j2t2 at January 9, 2008 11:20 AM
Comment #242699

JD do you mean these two “Bush energy plans”

Nope! I was thinking more along the lines of these energy plans:


2001

“The US president emphasised the importance of conservation and energy production “at home”.
He said the plan would “expand and diversify our nation’s energy supplies”, by encouraging more oil exploration and greater use of coal and nuclear energy, while offering incentives for conservation and renewable energy sources.
The plans include increased oil exploration in an Arctic wildlife reserve, and an easing of regulations on oil refining, coal extraction and the building of new nuclear power plants.
The new energy policy includes plans to license 1,300 new power stations over the next 20 years, and to streamline the licensing of new nuclear plants to speed their development.
The Democrats have already criticised the failure of the plan to provide a short-term solution.
And environmentalists have attacked the plan for its reliance on inefficient and polluting energy sources.” (BBC News 2001)

“GOP leaders, backed by a potent coalition of organized labor and the oil, gas, coal and nuclear power industries, pushed through the energy bill by 240 to 189 over strong opposition from Democrats and moderate Republicans. A total of 203 Republicans, 36 Democrats and one independent joined to approve the measure.”(Washington Post 2001)

So, you see the House had passed Bush’s Comprehensive Energy Plan way back in 2001. But, no such cooperation from the Senate! No bipartisanship there.
It sounds to me like Senate Democrats and Environmentalists were blocking Bush’s plan in 2001. But, maybe it is just my imagination.


2002

“The Republican president faces tough going in the Democratic-led Senate, where debate resumes this week on energy legislation that does not contain language to allow drilling in the wildlife refuge, believed to hold up to 16 billion barrels of crude. The Republican-controlled House of Representatives included drilling in the refuge in its energy bill last August.
“Any sound, comprehensive energy policy must both increase production and reduce consumption,” Bush said. “Technologies will enable us to preserve our environment as we explore.”
(Reuters 2002)

Still no Senate passage in 2002 to give relief to the citizenry. But, still my imagination must be running wild.


2003

“But the president’s ambitious policy quickly became a casualty of energy politics and, notably, harsh criticism from Democrats enraged by the way the White House had created the plan. Although the policy included recommendations to improve the nation’s electric grid that everyone agreed on, they were lost in the shouting and have been dormant in Congress for the past two years.
Since last week’s blackout, those proposals have again taken on new urgency, and Mr. Bush, like other politicians, has been compelled to speak out. This morning, he told reporters that he was assured on Monday night by Congressional Republicans that a conference committee would begin work within 20 days on a final package of energy legislation.
“Now is the time for the Congress to move and get something done,” the president said.
Mr. Bush first outlined the details of a wide-ranging energy plan during his presidential campaign in September 2000, in Saginaw, Mich., when he called for more domestic fuel production, better relations with foreign oil suppliers and the opening of 19 million acres of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, in northeastern Alaska, for oil exploration. The plan also called for the production of more electricity to meet demand, but that part of it received little notice. Most of the attention was focused on the uproar by environmentalists over Mr. Bush’s proposal to drill in the wildlife refuge, referred to in Washington shorthand as ANWR.
“ANWR is the Holy Grail for Democrats because of the environmental ties to the party… ” Mr. Richardson said.”(New York Times 2003)

By the way, that is Democratic Gov. Bill Richardson!
Is anyone getting the picture, yet, that Environmentalists and Democrats were blocking Bush’s Energy policy, and holding up any relief at all to the Oil / Gas crisis because they refused to allow any new production or exploration. I don’t know maybe it is still just my imagination. Hmmm. That’s three years worth of wandering imagination!


2004

“Democratic presidential hopeful John Kerry said Tuesday that drivers are paying a “Saudi-George Bush gasoline tax” because the president hasn’t pressured oil-producing nations to increase their output. “What about the Saudi-George Bush gasoline tax that we’re now paying because OPEC wasn’t pressured to lower the prices by producing more?” Kerry asked, standing in front of school buses at the Parkrose School District depot. “They could’ve produced more before now. And America’s paying an enormous penalty as a result of that and all of our economy gets hurt as a result of that.”
Schmidt pointed blame back at Kerry.
“Had the president’s energy plan not been obstructed the last three years by Democrats like John Kerry, gasoline prices would be lower today,” he said. “But John Kerry opposes the legislation that would lessen America’s dependence on foreign oil and increase the development of renewable energy sources, and he has a lifetime record of voting for higher gas taxes on American families and consumers.”
(Associated Press 2004)

Did you not pay any attention to Kerry’s Energy policies when he ran against Bush for President, j2t2? Oh, but that’s right! I forgot. He didn’t have any!!!!
Other than forcing Saudi Arabia to produce more. Is that a long-term plan to wean the United States off foreign oil dependence? Forcing Saudi Arabia to produce more while the Senate blocks any attempt to build production facilities, allow exploration, and use other cheaper forms of energy right here in the U.S.?
Smart, real smart!

2005

“America has not ordered a new nuclear power plant since the 1970s. Bush said that France has built 58 plants in the same period and today France gets more than 78 percent of its electricity from nuclear power.
Bush also called on Congress to provide a “risk insurance” plan to insulate the nuclear industry against regulatory delays if it builds new nuclear power plants. And he endorsed giving federal regulators final say over the location of liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminals. LNG terminal projects have been stymied in some regions by local opposition, even though the need for more LNG imports has been widely accepted.”
(CBS News 2005)

“Regulatory delays” and “local opposition”
CBS reporters really go out of their way to refrain from using the terms “Liberal Democratic politicians” and “local Environmentalist wackos” don’t they!

“It’s time for America to start building again,” he said.
Bush urged using closed military bases as sites for new oil refineries. The Energy Department is being ordered to step up discussions with communities near such bases to try to get refineries built. He said the United States has not built a new oil refinery since the 1970s.
Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid called Bush’s initiatives “little more than half measures and wrongheaded policies that will do nothing to address the current energy crisis… Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., who is trying to put together an energy package that can pass the Senate, said he welcomed some of the president’s proposals.”

It sounds like the “Senate” was where the President’s energy policies were getting blocked to me! But, let’s not let facts get in the way shall we, j2t2. It’s much more convenient to blame the Imagination. The Democrats still block and thwart the full proposals of G.W. Bush, and only focus on higher MPG requirements on vehicles, and the funding of pet projects for renewable resources that may, and I repeat may, show potential, but are now way to expensive unless Oil / Gas stays at $100 per barrel. Thus, no relief for Americans. How sad for the American people!

JD

Posted by: JD at January 10, 2008 12:33 AM
Comment #242705

JD “Nope! I was thinking more along the lines of these energy plans:” But JD this is the same plan I mentioned. The secret plan of Cheneys. In case you have forgotten its our elected representatives in the House and Senate that are supposed to write the laws not corporate America. Of course exception was taken to this MO. They did so waited for the Bush/Cheney plan and couldnt reach agreement for good reason.

““Regulatory delays” and “local opposition”
CBS reporters really go out of their way to refrain from using the terms “Liberal Democratic politicians” and “local Environmentalist wackos” don’t they!”
Maybe thats because their intelligence level is higher than the talk show crowds. Maybe they have a little more respect for people with opinions different from theirs. Afterall its CBS not Fox. The name calling really doesnt promote your position it just shows that you have little to work with and need to divert the discussion with cheap talk and insults.

““America has not ordered a new nuclear power plant since the 1970s. Bush said that France has built 58 plants in the same period and today France gets more than 78 percent of its electricity from nuclear power.
Bush also called on Congress to provide a “risk insurance” plan to insulate the nuclear industry against regulatory delays if it builds new nuclear power plants. And he endorsed giving federal regulators final say over the location of liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminals. LNG terminal projects have been stymied in some regions by local opposition, even though the need for more LNG imports has been widely accepted.”
(CBS News 2005) “
So JD because France does it we should to. Does that also apply to the healthcare system? JD do you favor the Federal government overriding local government on all issues or just when W says its OK?

““It’s time for America to start building again,” he said.
Bush urged using closed military bases as sites for new oil refineries. The Energy Department is being ordered to step up discussions with communities near such bases to try to get refineries built. He said the United States has not built a new oil refinery since the 1970s.
Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid called Bush’s initiatives “little more than half measures and wrongheaded policies that will do nothing to address the current energy crisis… Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., who is trying to put together an energy package that can pass the Senate, said he welcomed some of the president’s proposals.””

Well JD thank God this plan was not put into place. See Rowans response to this in post #242391
Seems Harry Reed was right on this.

“It sounds like the “Senate” was where the President’s energy policies were getting blocked to me! But, let’s not let facts get in the way shall we, j2t2. It’s much more convenient to blame the Imagination. The Democrats still block and thwart the full proposals of G.W. Bush, and only focus on higher MPG requirements on vehicles, and the funding of pet projects for renewable resources that may, and I repeat may, show potential, but are now way to expensive unless Oil / Gas stays at $100 per barrel. Thus, no relief for Americans. How sad for the American people!”
JD Bushs proposals dont solve the problem they only add to it. Just think of how many future gen plants we could have built with the $1tril wasted on the oil war in Iraq. JD higher milage requirements are long overdue. And once again coal is not as pet project of the same environmentalist you blame for stopping the project.

JD you have still not addresed the health issue questions from previous posts, nor the logic of rephrasing Mr. Draiman’s quote.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 10, 2008 3:38 AM
Comment #242770

Sometimes you have to start with a position outside of what is acceptable in order to neogiate to an acceptable position.
Posted by: j2t2

Boy, does that sure describe the liberal environmentalist approach to the energy crisis. Destroy the coal industry. Thwart all construction of Hydro-electric dams. Eliminate discussion of nuclear power altogether. And when we finally get to the unacceptably high prices of Oil / Gas we can begin negotiations on the liberal environmentalists terms.

Here are their quoted ideas below:


You might want to re-read my post…I said nothing about owning one’s own farm nor raising our own food…I said we need to BUY LOCALLY…as in farmers’ markets, local produce in our local grocery store, join a CSA…and not buy foods that are out of season that have travelled thousands of miles.
Posted by: Rachel

Hmmm? Eating only locally grown seasonal food. Refusing to buy products that are not grown locally, in an attempt to reduce the use of the transportation industry that consumes way to much energy in bringing various products to market for the consumer.
Are you Teamsters, truck drivers, and other transportation workers out there taking notes?


Tax carbon and the rest is just commentary.
Posted by: Jack

Higher Gas, Oil, and any other energy taxes which can be associated with fossil fuel / carbon-based products. Are all of you Americans who think you are paying way too much in taxes already, taking notes here?


First, there’s no guarantee that without intense government-funded research and financial incentives now, the new energy sources will be available in quantities large enough to replace oil when it does run out.

Much more increased Government spending, on liberal environmentalist projects, of course! Even though there is no guarantee that we will be able toproduce these products economically, or in adequate quantities.


Petroleum is a vital source of plastics. We could use it for that purpose for hundreds of generations — if we didn’t burn any more of it. But if we wait till we’ve burned all the cheap petroleum, it won’t be just fuel that we have to replace.

Stop using Oil / petrol, start producing plastics?
Um, OK!!!?

Third, market forces don’t do anything for our national defense, our national security. We had a clear warning back in the 1970s with the first oil embargo. What if terrorism in the Middle East specifically targets all oil exports, from many countries?
And even if they keep the oil flowing, why are we pumping money into the pockets of militant extremists who want to destroy us?
Posted by: Yehuda Draiman

Wait a minute! I thought according to John Kerry as of only a couple years ago, we were supposed to force more Middle Easterners to produce more Oil for our consumption. Does the rhetoric change every two years or what?


If the American public’s insatiable appetite for automobiles continues, uncurbed by any sense of responsibility, someone must, like a parent with a selfish child, at least start slapping wrists.
Posted by Yehuda Draiman

I think I interpreted that one accurately the first time! But, I will add, I hope all the United Autoworkers out there are taking notes!


Perhaps we should ration gasoline, and insist that all cars meet a miles-per-gallon minimum — one higher than many sport utility vehicles, for example, achieve now. The rationing would not be a wartime figure, of course, but a reasonable amount allowed for business and pleasure.
Posted by: Yehuda Draiman

Hey, honey, cancel those vacation reservations will you? I hope the Service Workers and Hotel Employees Unions are listening and taking notes.


The government should repeatedly increase the price of gasoline in an effort to slow our country’s insatiable thirst for oil.
Posted by: Yehuda Draiman

More Big Government, taking over the Energy Industry, and passing mandated price caps forcing even more folks out of the industry. I hope all you Big Oil employees are listening really, really closely to this!


On Petroleum, nobody seems to believe yet that aviation fuel is the most wasteful part of that problem.
Posted by: ohrealy

Hey, Ace, we need to ground more airplanes. There’s just too many jets carting people around all over the world out there. Why can’t people just stay home and read a good book? Why do they think they have to actually visit new places and experience new cultures when they can simply read about them, (on reprocessed paper of course)? I hope all you pilots and aviation workers are listening and taking notes!

JD

Posted by: JD at January 10, 2008 10:25 PM
Comment #242772

“Boy, does that sure describe the liberal environmentalist approach to the energy crisis.”

JD it describes almost anyone whether they be liberal, conservative or other when they approach each other with differing views. That includes yourself,its called negotiation. The problem is you would rather create partisian gridlock than work together to solve real problems. You will notice Ive asked several times to explain your position on the health and crop loss issues associated with coal fired plants. You have chosen to ignore that aspect of the problem by continually changing sibjects. Thats one reason why we are where we are today in this country, the inability to rationally discuss and negotiate a solution that works for all. Seems your govenor has succeeded in doing that with the future gen plant project.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 10, 2008 11:22 PM
Comment #242837

Perhaps, the reason there is no rational discussion on this issue is that Liberal elitist Environmentalists can not come to grips with the fact that they are thiking irrationally! When you see the folly of your ways, then we’ll have rational discussions. But, if you continue to wreak havoc on every available source of energy in the industry, driving up prices for the sole purpose of controlling other people’s lives, (the transportation industry, the airline industry, the retail food and grocery industry, the recreation industry, government taxation, the automotive industry, the Dept. of Defense, etc.), and forcing them to accept your terms, then forget it, j2t2!!

JD

Posted by: JD at January 11, 2008 11:18 PM
Comment #242876

JD maybe, or perhaps its because those on the far right cannot even address subjects like crop loss and health issues associated with energy production. Hell those on the far right cant even determine why oil prices are higher and get it right. Yet they are the first to blame others by distorting facts to reach the same conclusions they are told to beleive by the talk show hosts that live or die by ratings. After listening to Savage nation last night I can see why you have these misconceptions.
JD I find it hard to believe that you think it is irrational to want to have a clean source of energy and to conserve energy. I really wouldnt mind what you use for energy except that when you choose to pollute with your energy source you effect others as well as your self. I also find it alarming that you think energy costs should not include all the costs associated with the energy source not just partial costs. But then once you accept the full costs of the energy source your assumptions become rather lame dont they.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 12, 2008 7:08 PM
Comment #242881

JD maybe, or perhaps its because those on the far right cannot even address subjects like crop loss and health issues associated with energy production.
Posted by: j2t2

Who is the one who refuses to address crop loss?
Why if it weren’t for liberal environmentalists forcing agricultural producers into growing “organic oil” at higher prices, we wouldn’t have the crop losses in the food resources which this post is completely about, and which I addressed quite responsibly and accurately.

I’ll say it once again because you still don’t seem to get it.

You can not attempt to thwart and completely eliminate all sources of energy, (coal, nuclear, hydr-electric, etc.), in the way the environmentalists have in the U.S. since the 1970’s without effecting drastically the prices of oil / gas, and the alternative sources, unless there are alternative sources that are overly abundant and economically / price feasible. Obviously, Rowan is arguing that the environmentalist plan was ridiculously ill-conceived, and extremely costly now that we are quickly losing food crops in competition with the energy industry, thus, drastically driving up prices.

There you go! Did I address crop loss sufficiently for your tastes now?

Hell those on the far right cant even determine why oil prices are higher and get it right. Yet they are the first to blame others by distorting facts to reach the same conclusions they are told to beleive by the talk show hosts that live or die by ratings. After listening to Savage nation last night I can see why you have these misconceptions.
Posted by: j2t2

That’s really scientific of you! Let’s blame talk radio for other people disagreeing with your extreme environmentalism.
“No, it’s just not possible that intelligent people could disagree with your conclusions.” Kind of arrogant isn’t it? Maybe you think like you do because you get to big a dose of the brainwashing taking place at the NY Times, or CNN, etc.! That is just as scientific as your approach, isn’t it? Just blame it all on talk radio. Liberals are good at that when all else fails!
Furthermore, I haven’t distorted anything. Anyone can go to any environmentalist web site and find for themselves the arrogant bragging that they do about blocking new plants. And I’m not just talking about coal plants. I’m talking about energy production including oil refineries, coal fired plants, nuclear plants, and even hydro-electric dams.

Maybe you didn’t realize it but hydro-electric power is the cheapest of all. The people in the Northwest, (that are ossasionally able to tell the environmentalists to take a flying leap), have built a few dams up there and now pay between 3 and 5 cents per kilowatt hour for their electricity. Unfortunately many hydro-electric projects have been stopped by environmentalists.

After all, we can’t hurt any of those little “snail darters”, or other so-called endangered species out there who just “might” be harmed by the blocking of waters by such immense dams. We need to preserve the pristine trickles of free-flowing streams in order to live as Mother Nature intended.

As Rowan points out, environmentalist energy policies are ridiculously ill-conceived. I agree, as do most conservatives, and I contend that it is extremely dangerous to the people of the United States to have an environmentalist (even half as whacked out as Al Gore) running the country.

JD

Posted by: JD at January 12, 2008 11:15 PM
Comment #242885

Who is the one who refuses to address crop loss?
Why if it weren’t for liberal environmentalists forcing agricultural producers into growing “organic oil” at higher prices, we wouldn’t have the crop losses in the food resources which this post is completely about, and which I addressed quite responsibly and accurately.

JD what I was referring to when I kept asking for your input on health issues (which you havent mentioned yet)and crop losses is from comment 242436
“Why are the extremist so upset about these plants? maybe because “Electric utilities released more than one billion pounds of toxic pollution in 1998, and more toxic chemical air pollution than the chemical, paper, plastics, and refining industries combined. Coal- and oil-fired power plants released nearly nine million pounds of toxic metals and metal compounds into the air and land in 1998. Many of those materials are known or suspected carcinogens or neurotoxins. These same power plants emitted between twenty-seven and fifty-four times more acid gases than chemical plants that actually manufacture these gases as products, because the power plants are exempt from federal emissions standards regulating acid gas pollution.”
Whats the big deal?
“In addition to causing respiratory problems for children, people with asthma, the elderly, and outdoor workers, smog also reduces crop productivity — annual losses due to ozone for soybeans alone in Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio are estimated at between $198.6 million and $345.6 million. Both sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides also help cause acid rain, which may be carried hundreds of miles by the wind, damaging forests, corroding buildings, and killing fish in lakes and streams along the way. Mercury can cause severe neurological and developmental injuries to humans (particularly infants and children) as well as wildlife.””
At that time JD we were talking about the old school coal fired plants in Illinois and the issues the environmentalist have with these plants. I found it strange that you would blame environmentalist yet not address the reasons people took exception to the plants. Actually the same goes for the bio fuels issue, as the repercussions Rowan points out need to be addressed, although as corn prices rise it may be tough to get those capitalist agricultral producers forced into providing the ethanol to give it up for those starving overseas.

“You can not attempt to thwart and completely eliminate all sources of energy, (coal, nuclear, hydr-electric, etc.), in the way the environmentalists have in the U.S. since the 1970’s without effecting drastically the prices of oil / gas, and the alternative sources, unless there are alternative sources that are overly abundant and economically / price feasible. Obviously, Rowan is arguing that the environmentalist plan was ridiculously ill-conceived, and extremely costly now that we are quickly losing food crops in competition with the energy industry, thus, drastically driving up prices.”

JD I dont think anyone is trying to thwart or completely eleiminate all sources of energy. I believe they are trying to thwart the pollution and other negative effects of the energy sources we currently use. It appears they were doing this for true and correct reasons and it further seems you have ignored this and let the talk show ideology get in the way of rational discussion as the conservative policies dont seem to address the hidden costs, waste storage and health problems. I wont attempt to speak for Rowan as it is obvious she does quite well speaking for herself. I do find your comment strange in that the old coal plants caused $198 to $345 mil in crop losses in Illinois. Ohio and Indiana annually. I dont see how this helps to lower the price of crops , in fact I would think it would help to raise the price of crops.

“That’s really scientific of you! Let’s blame talk radio for other people disagreeing with your extreme environmentalism.”
JD its not extreme when facts are included its only extreme when you distort the facts with half facts and name calling. Where does the distoration take place on such a level, why talk radio of course. Who seems to perpetrate it , the very same conservatives that dont really have any answers to the energy problems other than what is dictated to them by the oil companies.

“Maybe you think like you do because you get to big a dose of the brainwashing taking place at the NY Times, or CNN, etc.! That is just as scientific as your approach, isn’t it? Just blame it all on talk radio. Liberals are good at that when all else fails!” JD I dont read the NY Times and if it wasnt for Lou Dobbs I would not see much of CNN. I llook at talk radio as a problem because I listen and hear the obvious distorations from the Hosts and then hear them repeated as factual. And JD its as scientific as your posts.

“As Rowan points out, environmentalist energy policies are ridiculously ill-conceived. I agree, as do most conservatives, and I contend that it is extremely dangerous to the people of the United States to have an environmentalist (even half as whacked out as Al Gore) running the country.”
JD I dont know wher you got this statement from Rowan (certaingly not in this thread) nor do I know what environmentalist policies you are referring to but here is last paragraph of her article and I think it is a very wise statement. “The answer is not more oil drilling or more bio-fuels or hydrogen fuel cells. We have to address consumption and life style. In this year of political campaigning will any candidate be brave enough to confront this issue directly? Probably not voluntarily. However, we are important to them at this point and we can (and must) push the questions and the dialogs.” JD any more dangerous than the war for oil in Iraq?

Posted by: j2t2 at January 13, 2008 1:02 AM
Comment #243409

Hidden beneath the Rockies lies a big oil field! 2 trillion barrels
Let us say it is true. How come everyone is not running to exploit it, like they exploit any other economic and financial benefit?
The other aspect is how much energy, and at what cost – financial and ecological, is it going to take to heat the oil shale up and extract the oil.
I suggest conserving resources; we should use renewable energy, such as Solar and Wind energy etc. to heat up the shale.
Another issue is they are waiting for oil to reach $200 per barrel so the government can reduce the deficit and outstanding loans.
I hope that is the truth and that there are no hidden agendas.

Technological hurdles to extract oil from shale
“Despite all the attempts to develop a shale oil industry in the United States over the past 100 years, the fact remains that no proven method exists for efficiently moving the oil from the rock. There are a number of candidate processes possible, but none has demonstrated a practical capability to produce oil.”
Experts with field experience who are bullish on the prospects for America’s oil shale. But they recognize that, here and now, we are still not there yet technologically.
There are a number of problems yet to be solved before US oil shale can be recovered on any type of meaningful scale, let alone a mass scale. And getting the extraction technology right is only one monkey wrench in the works with US oil shale. There are others.
For example, there are questions of air quality regarding domestic oil shale operations. How badly would these operations pollute the air? Would the levels be acceptable? Shell isn’t sure.
There are questions of water availability. During the extraction process, how much water would be required?
Experts are not sure. An early “guess” is two to three barrels of water per barrel of shale. This could be a conservative estimate. Either way, will the massive amounts of water necessary for heavy-duty shale extraction even be available in the first place, given that the Colorado River Basin is already running low?
You also need to account for the environmental and ecological damage and restoration to pre-drilling condition.
American technology and knowhow will find the answer – all you have to do is wave the dollar bill in front of corporate America and they will find the answer “by hook and by crook”. Then the executives, the shareholders and the politicians will laugh all the way to the bank.
Yehuda Draiman

Posted by: Yehuda Draiman at January 21, 2008 3:13 AM
Comment #252526

Oil will come out of the earth from here or in another country,but it will come out. Why we need to pay other countries for the oil when we have enough oil and natural gas off the coast of Alaska to last over 60,000,000 people for over 100 years. I think the environmentalist that push the US to stop production have all there money in the stock of foreign oil and now they are going after our ethanol. So we can depend on another county to provide us that too. The loop hole for a Monopoly. We need to stop the environmentalist until we get control over the issues. Why don’t the environmentalist come up with a solution before they stop the production of the things we need.

Posted by: LK at May 9, 2008 1:37 PM
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