[DMCForum] Re: the EV1... vs Diesel
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[DMCForum] Re: the EV1... vs Diesel



--- In DMCForum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "timnagin" <timnagin@...> wrote:
> >Well, it's all estimation right now, both in terms of the amount of
> >oil and NG in ANWR, and the environmental impact of drilling there. I
> >don't have any hard numbers, but a quick cost-benefit analysis in mind
> >comes back inconclusive. Sure, it may be feasible, and it may be
> >worthwhile, but is anyone really arguing that it's the answer to
anything?
> 
> You don't have any hard numbers yet a quick analysis comes back
> inconclusive?

Yeah.  It just doesn't "feel" like it's worth much.  But I can't show
you this quantitatively, it's just a feeling.

> I never said it was an answer to solving some "energy crisis"
> but at least we would be putting money in our own people's pockets.
 People
> scream we need to get off foreign oil.  Ok, we drill here.done. 
Then they
> scream we need to get off oil altogether.  When we get off oil
altogether
> then they will be screaming we need to get off of whatever it is that
> replaced it.  Batteries being manufactured destroys the environment
due to
> mining.  Wind farms kill birds.

Who cares whose pockets you're putting money into?  All pockets that
aren't mine are the same to me.

The only compelling reason to get off foreign oil is to raise supply
and lower tariffs and shipping costs to the U.S.  These are good
things, but they are short-sighted goals (assuming oil is not a good
long-term energy source).

> >I personally don't have any interest in investing money or land in this
> goal.
> 
> I understand that.  Who do you think is going to pay for any changes in
> alternative energy sources?  BOB mentioned before that a mere $10k
increase
> per vehicle would increase efficiency.  Don't take my money to do that.

Ha!  Don't buy the more efficient vehicles then!  Problem solved.

If everyone fully understood the implications of the looming energy
problems, I'm confident that you'd be in the minority with that opinion.

> >I say: do what makes economic sense. And right now, importing oil
> >from the OPEC countries makes economic sense. Hailing drilling in
> >ANWR as an answer to high oil prices is short-sighted at best, and
> >environmentally malicious at worst.
> 
> How is drilling ANWR any different than drilling oil anywhere else?  

For the most part, it isn't.  The only difference is that we have the
chance to either do it or not do it right now.  Everywhere else is
already done.

> The environment can be just as harmed in ANWR as anywhere else. 
Economic sense
> - more oil on the world market makes prices go down.  That oil
drilled right
> here at home is even better, plus we wouldn't be risking the lives
of fish
> to ship it across the ocean.  We wouldn't have the added cost of
building
> and maintaining the ships.

Yup, but I doubt it's as significant as you think.  As you know, the
price of a given product is determined by how much consumers will pay
for it.  With increased supply and decreased costs associated with
shipping, the price has room to drop.  Of course, whether or not it
will drop (in accordance with the differences in supply and production
costs) depends on a number of other factors, including how dependent
we are on it (think "inelastic goods") and collusion/price-setting by
the companies responsible for distributing the new supply of domestic oil.

The more I think about this, the less promising it sounds.

Add to that the concerns of environmental types about the effects of
drilling in ANWR, and it seems like a dubious prospect in my mind.  A
decent "last ditch" effort, but not something particularly interesting
to me right now.

> >Significant start to what? Again, I think you and I have different
goals
> here.
> 
> Significant start to reducing dependency on foreign oil, and keeping
more
> money here in the US, creating jobs, which means more people spend money
> which in turn creates incomes and more money to develop anything else we
> wish to develop.  As I stated before, I have no problem with finding
> alternative energy sources.  Those alternative energy sources are
going to
> end up being the same thing we have now - Big Oil will become Big
Battery,
> Big Solar Panel, Big Corn or whatever else you want to call it.

Sorry to say it, but I think this attitude is pure BS.  First of all,
why do we always feel it necessary to make everything into a contest
for jobs, economy, etc. among the nations of the world?  From the dawn
of civilization we've been warring with neighboring clans, and
frankly, it's stupid.  I know it sounds very hippyish and trite, but
if there's any problem that should bring the nations of the world
together in finding a solution, it's this.

Energy is important.  More important than what country gets our jobs
or money.

Secondly, again, this is putting the cart before the horse.  Just
because you're sure that alternate energy sources will turn into
another Big Oil, we should be less interested in pursuing them?

In my opinion, the reason Big Oil is what it is today is because of
the fact that it was really the only thing out there with a high
enough energy content to push us into the future.  It's not the only
thing out there (or even the best thing out there) anymore.

As long as we spread out energy choices out among the available
sources, there's no reason why we can't (at least to some degree)
avoid Big Battery, Big Solar Panel, etc.

> >You know, "The" energy problem... The one where we are almost totally
> >dependent on dwindling, dirty fossil fuels to power our lives...?
> 
> I will have to find that study that seems to show the source is not
> dwindling.  Also, if engine efficiency is increased then oil will not be
> "dirty".  I am pretty sure any energy source you can come up with
can, in
> some way or another, be found to be "dirty".

No, I mean it's inherently physically dirty.  Fossil fuels and their
by-products are toxic, difficult to clean up, messy to mine/drill for,
and damage the environment in a ton of different ways.  Yeah, we've
made great strides with catalytic converters, cleaner drilling
technologies and cleaner-burning engines, but we're looking down at
the path without looking ahead if we think that fossil fuels are the
energy source of the future.

Most alternate energy sources don't have these same inherent dirty
qualities.

> As I stated before, burning gasoline in that same engine would make
it MORE
> efficient.  If you create such an engine it will make more sense to burn
> gasoline as you wouldn't have to completely change he infrastructure.

Sure, in theory, you could probably run 105 octane gasoline in an
engine with combustion chambers designed for pure ethanol, but at what
cost?  I'm betting that 105 octane gas is more expensive per joule
produced than ethanol, i.e. ethanol is more efficient on an
energy/dollar scale.  Plus ethanol is renewable.

We're not talking about major changes to the infrastructure to
distribute E85 (or ethanol) instead of gasoline.  It's a hydrocarbon
liquid at room temperature, can be stored in the same tanks and hoses
as gasoline, same trucks, etc.  It just has to be done.  Right now,
there isn't all that big of a push for it, and also, the kinds of
engines we're talking about aren't part of the picture.

> >Is it really all that uncertain whether or not solar (or wind, or
> >hydro) is cleaner than petroleum? Nuclear, I'll admit, is not
> >perfect, but it's a damn sight better than petroleum on a lot of
fronts.
> 
> Right now it is less efficient and more damaging to the environment.
 You
> still have to make the stuff that makes these things work.  Nuclear
power is
> greatly misunderstood by the public because of some incidents in the
past.

Sure, but you wouldn't argue that a junkie shouldn't bother with rehab
because of the effects of withdrawal, would you?  Solar, wind, water
and nuclear energy are NOT dubious in terms of their promise and
cleanliness.  There is no gamble involved here.

I personally think that nuclear fission is an awesome technology with
a lot of promise that is being shoved into the corner because of
public opinion.  It's a shame the way it's happened, but in the end,
it does have its drawbacks, in that it has toxic by-products and the
fuel is considered non-renewable.

> >Saying that these technologies are prohibitively dirty to implement
> >due only to the dirty technology they are replacing is a huge fallacy
> >of logic... It's a catch-22.
> 
> Implementing these NOW is not making things cleaner.  The technology
needs
> to be created to make these things clean.  The manufacture of all of
these
> things right now requires oil and its byproducts.  One day it very well
> could be and I hope so, but to do so will require more negative
> environmental impact.  Changing to electric power now will
negatively impact
> the environment more.  You may drive around in your electric car
emitting
> zero pollutants, but what did it take to get there and how where
those power
> plants fueled?
> 
> I am not saying it will never happen, all I am saying is that
switching to
> this will damage the environment more before a benefit is seen if at
all.
> Like I stated before, we can study all we want but we will not have
> real-world data until it happens.  All of the people pushing this
need to
> realize that they will be causing more harm in the interim for a
possible
> better future.  Again, I am not against the research.

No offense, but this sounds like a bunch of hogwash to me.  I said it
already, but this is a gaping fallacy of logic.

I'm not talking about developing electric cars and ignoring coal-fired
power plants.  I'm talking about a paradigm shift to cleaner,
renewable energy sources.  There is no great chasm to jump into; the
technology is very solidly proven, and estimates are very reliable.  I
just don't think there is as much doubt as you make it sound like.

> >Also, I don't see any reason why switching to cleaner energy sources
> >will increase pollution at all, even in the short run. "Switching"
> >means that the truck that carried gasoline yesterday will carry E85
> >today. We're not talking about adding a truck, just re-purposing the
> >ones not needed anymore, because of the switch.
> 
> You have to look at what it takes to get to that point.  What other
waste
> will be created to reach the ultimate end goal of clean energy
sources?  It
> still takes energy to manufacture that truck and keep it on the road.

Yes, I agree with you, but if we're using the same truck, it would
have been manufactured and on the road anyway, carrying the old fuel,
so there's no *increased* negative contribution.

> The problem here may be just reading text.  If we were discussing
this in
> person it would probably be different.  I don't take offense and I
hope you
> don't either.  :-)  I enjoy the intellectual pursuit and am always
willing
> to change my mind based on hard facts.

Absolutely not.  I love discussing these things because they are
things that I have been interested in my whole life.

It is rather difficult for me sometimes to put together answers to
some of your points because I've honestly never heard anyone try to
argue that fossil fuels are not dirtier than alternate energy sources,
or that they are renewable.  Still, I enjoy the challenge and thinking
outside of the box.

Regards,
Jon Heese



 
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