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Nuclear mini-me’s

17 Jul

I remember when I was probably 12 years old, a member of my church congregation was an engineer at a nuclear facility under construction south of my home town of Greeley, Colorado.  He invited my family to come to the plant for a tour.  The plant is not a large plant, like the one near Phoenix, AZ, just a nice small facility.

So on the way to work the other day, my wife and I were talking options in energy and I expressed my thoughts that what we need in the US are a whole bunch of small nuclear plants, perhaps 2 or three in each state.  No only would this employ people in constructing and running the plants, but would be a safety feature.  Take down one huge plant and you have a problem.  Take down one small plant, and there or two or three around it to get the job done.

Anyway, my wife sent me an email yesterday for this very idea as proposed in Popular Mechanics.  Check it out here.

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More on Energy Solutions

15 Jul

In an article of the same name, Dan Scandling comments on the new Manhattan Project for Energy Independence as outlined by two members of congress, Randy Forbes and Frank Wolf.  While I might applaud the desire, and even give a one-handed clap for the seven goals outlined, energy independence, and security, are right around the corner, and can be done with existing resources.  At today’s rate of consumption, we have a 240 year supply of oil from oil shale, and a 250 year supply of liquid fuel from coal.  We don’t have to spend millions and millions of dollars and wait 10 years to achieve independence, we can do it today by tapping these vast resources.

Mind you, I have no problem with alternative forms of energy; my home is not going to be powered by a gas generator anytime soon, unless someone can figure out a muffler system that works better.  Cars are not going to be powered by wind generation or nuclear fusion, and the trucking industry is not going to transport your goods and mine to market by way of solar power.  However, if we can identify those resources that best fit a specific need, and make them specialists to that need, we might make really good progress; Gas for cars, regular and bio-mass diesel for trucks and trains, solar and wind for the home, and bugs that poop oil for the farm.

Drill and Mine US Oil–Buy and Refine US Oil!

12 Jul

US Energy Independence and Security comes from a three-fold mission:

 

The United States of America

 

1.  Has a divine destiny to defend democracy in every nation that currently embraces democracy, and promote democratic principles where tyranny and dictatorship runs supreme.  This cannot be accomplished while the US is beholden to the very tyrants against whom it fights.

 

2.  Has energy, whether from oil, bio-mass, coal, or nuclear power, as the life-blood of the US economy.  The effects of skyrocketing fuel cost have a direct impact on the affordability of food, clothing, and shelter for every citizen, rich or poor.  We must bring down the price of energy without further delay.

 

3.  Energy policy plays a vital role in the creation of thousands and thousands of jobs.  The oil shale fields alone can produce enough oil to replace our current imports and do so for 240 years.  This is a minimum of 5 generations of employment for families in CO, UT, and WY.  We have 250 years of coal supplies that can be converted to liquid fuel, and produce thousands of jobs.

 

It is time for liberal politicians to severe ties with fascist, economy-wrecking, pseudo-environmental groups and begin to do what is in the best interest of the whole of the citizens of the United States.  It is time for conservative politicians to stand and make a very vocal demand for energy independence and security.  And it is time for every citizen to follow in the footsteps of Patrick Henry and declare that “Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offense, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.” (Patrick Henry, 1775, House of Burgesses)

Why start drilling now?

10 Jul

There is a lot of play in the press from the liberal side of the energy debate that even if we started drilling now, we would see no benefits for 10 years.  And?

So, I came up with an analogy that goes like this.  A young person, straight out of high school, leaves home to make it on his/her own.  S/he gets a job working at $8/hour, but is barely getting by and doesn’t know what to do.

The conservative will tell the young person to go to school and get an education.  Finish a bachelor’s degree, and then maybe go on to an advanced degree, like law.  In 8-10 years, you will be doing well, considerably better than you are today.

The liberal will tell the young person “vote for me” and I will give you free health insurance, subsidized housing, food stamps, and a welfare check.  Don’t bother with school, ten years is far too long to have to wait, we’ll take care of you now.

The same is true with drilling and mining for oil.  It may take 7-10 years to produce, and the cost of fuel may not go down immediately, but how long can government pay our way?  What will come of the liberal plan is an entitlement to gas, and a new hand-out to the poor, gas stamps.  What will come of the conservative plan is national energy independence and security.

Your choice, but as for me and my house, we prefer the conservative ideals.

The Cost of Gas as a Percentage of Median Income

6 Jul

I probably had better things to do tonight, but I decided to start pulling statistics from several sources, including the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the Census Bureau, the Senate website, and the House website, and here is what I came up with.

In May 1981, the price of a gallon of gasoline was the equivalent of .0072% of annual median income.  By the end of the Reagan presidency that percentage had dropped to .0036%, with a slight up-tick to .0040 by May of 1989.  From that time until 2003, the percentage hovered around .0036, sometimes up by .001, and sometimes down by a lesser margin.  In 2003, when we “went to war for oil,” the percentage started going up, and today is at .0074% of annual median income.

Two points: If we went to war for oil, one would think that the percentage would drop with the benefit of the US now getting all that oil from Iraq.  Fact is, that wasn’t the reason, it that isn’t the result.  Second, is that really the issue?  We can parse the data to show which party had control of the White House, the Senate, or the House, but in the end, none of that matters either.  What really matters is that we are not keeping fuel prices down by increasing oil supplies, which will best be done right here in the US.  If we pull ourselves off the world market and start producing our own oil from the 1.5 trillion barrels of oil shale in CO, UT, and WY, we gain energy independence, and we put 22 million barrels of oil a day back on the world market for the world to consume.  Prices go down, employment goes up, national security is enhanced, energy independence is realized, and we are a better country for it.

So, for those of you who prefer to sit around whining about the price of a gallon of gas, I ask you to do one of two things:  Shut up, or do something about it.  If you are not going to step up to the plate and make a difference by making your voice heard to the people who can make a difference, your house of representatives, then please stop whining and be content with the high prices.  On the other hand, if you are a person of character, open your mouth and start talking to your representatives.  Write letters, sign petitions, heck, buy a t-shirt so I can afford to keep sending them to your reps for free.  Just do something!!!!

On “The Fallacy of Energy Independence”

3 Jul

I posted this response to a blog written by Mormon Paleo Thought

Energy Independence means that we begin to produce and store enough fuel from the trillions of barrels of oil shale (enough to last 24o years) and put it out on the US market for refining. Thus we remove our 25% drain on the world oil supply, making that oil available for the rest of the world to refine and use. Doing so reduces our dependence, reduces pricing, increases world supply, and strengthens our economy.

As for the constitution, it is not designed to govern every facet of our life. But the constitution does provide for the common defense, and for us to rely on our enemies to provide our oil supplies leaves us vulnerable, and flies in the face of defense. If our enemy decides that they no longer want to provide us with oil, then what? Our economy comes to a screeching halt, and we are left to their mercy.

Finally, the idea that it won’t work comes from a defeatist attitude. It won’t work as long as we believe, or are led to believe, it won’t work. The fact is, we have enough coal to liquify to last 250 years, and South Africa has been using German technology developed in the 40’s for 50+ years. It does work, we just have been badgered by fascists who have usurped the environmental cause to believe it won’t, and to stop trying.

Air Force Promotes Coal to Liquid Fuel!!

3 Jul

I highly recommend this link to everyone that believes in coal to liquid fuel conversion.  The Air Force has approached the state of Montana to be allowed to build a C2L plant on Air Force land at Malmstrom AFB.  The plant will employee 2500 people during construction, and 1,000 on a continuing basis.

As the article points out, this will go a long way toward weaning the US off of foreign oil.  William Anderson, Assistant Secretary of Air Force Installations says

“We can’t afford to be curtailed by governments that don’t like us.”