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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!!!!

Corn Ethanol, good news or boondogle?

28 Jun

I started reading what I thought might be an interesting study published by the US Ag Department in 1995, the title of which is Estimating the Net Energy Balance of Corn Ethanol.  Unfortunately, I got stuck on the Summary with the statement “Each gallon of ethanol produced domestically displaces 7 gallons of imported oil.”  I could only find one result on a Google search for “How much oil does it take to make one gallon of gas?” and admittedly I prefer not to use a Wiki response, but what can I say.  According to wiki.answer.com, it takes 2 gallons of oil to produce one gallon of gas. 

So, it appears that one gallon of ethanol replaces 3.5 gallons of gasoline.  This makes ethanol 350% more effecient that gasoline, right?  And yet, the same study concludes (and disagrees with Pimental’s 1991 study) that one gallon of ethanol has 125% of the btu’s that gas has. 

I don’t get it.  Is the study contradicting itself? 

Interestingly, there is a link prominent in the study to Governor’s Ethanol Coalition Homepage that appears 15 times, once after each section of the study.  What is the Governor’s Ethanol Coalistion?  “In September 1991, Nebraska’s governor asked other governors interested in creating a group devoted to the promotion and increased use of ethanol to join him in Lincoln, Nebraska. From that meeting, the Governors’ Ethanol Coalition emerged.”  The 2008 Coalition Chair is Rod Blagojevich, D-Illinios Governer since 2002.  Here is his record on Energy Independence and Security.

So, what are we to make of this?  Another boondogle and the expense of the tax-payer, in my humble opinion.

America’s untapped oil

28 Jun

In a recent article at CNN.com, Steven Hargreaves indicates that congressional democrats want to block additional oil leases in the gulf until oil companies have tapped out the existing leases.  However, and correct me if I am wrong, it is this same congress that does not want to remove the oil drilling embargo that has existed since the early 80’s to allow oil companies the ability to drill existing leases.  If I am wrong on this, I am willing to be corrected.

However, if I am not wrong, this is like saying to a child “No, you may not have ice cream until you have finished your cake.  What?  No you can’t have any cake, it’s not good for you!” 

Besides, and this is just my opinion, the gulf oil drilling issue is just a strawman to direct attention away from the oil shale that would fuel this country for 240 years.  Set up gulf shore oil drilling as a strawman, then knock it down by saying we should drill offshore so we must find alternative fuels, wind and solar power, bugs that poop oil, and corn ethanol that costs 1.29 gallons of gas for every one gallon of ethanol produced. 

I have been saying it for some time now- “Drill and Mine US Oil–Buy and Refine US Oil!”  This is how we will gain energy independence and security.

McCain offers $300 million for a battery

27 Jun

Which is why we are in trouble if McCain gets elected.  I can go to the local hardware store and buy one for $1.50.

No, all kidding aside, I am very conservative, which is why I find McCain’s idea balderdash.  If there is currently the ability to come up with the next great battery, the free market would take care of it. 

I know I sound like a broken record, but I am going to pound my fist until I am heard- Drill and Mine US Oil–Buy and Refine US Oil.  Our future rests in independence and security, which will only come from using our own resources and going back to the fearce, rugged independence on which this great nation was founded.

Now, I am not against alternative fuels to help fill the gap, and even remove some of the waste we currently fill landfills with, but come on, oil is king, and we have lots, and lots, and lots of it.  We should be using it.

Any I am not alone in my thinking.  Stop by Pajamas Media for a piece on McCain’s battery proposition. (http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/the-saving-grace-in-mccains-energy-policy/)