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oil crisis


dirtwarrior
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Just use (Bio-) diesel engines and smaller cars, other ingredient to fabricate plastics and medicine. This would solve a mayor problem...

(D*mn I sound like Greenpeace :lol: )

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We have a lot of oil in USA but can't drill for it. Please sign this petition

You make that sound like a bad thing. It's not like drilling for it would bring down the price of gas at all. You guys would still be importing most of it, and whoever would drill for it, would surely sell at the market price. Using up other countries' oil reserves first isn't a bad thing. This way you have some left for when things get really bad.

Just use (Bio-) diesel engines and smaller cars, other ingredient to fabricate plastics and medicine. This would solve a mayor problem...

(D*mn I sound like Greenpeace :lol: )

Would you like an enduro bike to go with that smartcar of yours? J/K But yeah. We got to use other energy sources, and not make everything from plastic seemingly. Gas is at a nice $5.25/gallon here (1.389$/liter), and there's no signs of it going down anytime soon. Seemingly it's over $10/gal in some european countries too.

@gamehead200: oh yeah. They totally PLANNED on that server catching fire!

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  • 2 weeks later...

The issues surrounding recent discussions on US offshore drilling for oil has significant impact for all Americans where Obama and McCain talk about in http://pollclash.com . The soaring oil prices are affecting the costs of everything from food to gas. There are also significant issues on local and global environmental impact. While there are many issues, we need to look at our next leader and determine which will have the best course of action going forward. Here's where your vote and voice can count. Watch the two video clips below submit your vote. Also, leave a comment if there is more you wish to say or an issue you think should be raised within the context of this clash.

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"American Solutions"? Sure we know all about those...

This is really very shallow and not at all joined-up thinking - "I want to use my vehicle, have low-price gasoline and screw everyone else."

Read something that gives more perspective on the crisis we now face; as Matt Savinar says, "Deal with reality or it will deal with you":

http://www.lifeaftertheoilcrash.net/

A point from the site -

Q- What about the oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Preserve (ANWR)? If the environmentalists got out of the way, couldn't we just drill for oil

there?

A- At current rates of oil consumption, the ANWR contains enough oil to power the US for only six months*. The fact that it is being touted as a "huge" source of oil underscores how serious our problem really is.

* http://www.fromthewilderness.com/free/ww3/..._recession.html

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Opening up offshore and protected lands for drilling is a very short term solution with no lasting benefits. All it will do is destroy those areas. The only real solution is an alternate fuel source. Bio fuels produced from farms isn't a good alternative. In a world with people starving and climate changing, taking land out of food production is the wrong decision. Consider what powers the modern farm, fossil fuels. We can't trade topsoil for fuel on a sustainable basis.

The only real solution I can see is a decentralized hydrogen system where anyone can be a producer as well as a consumer, a true cooperative. Think of hydrogen as an energy transfer medium instead of the fuel itself. It can be produced by splitting water with electric, making it produceable by solar, wind, water power, most any energy source, even nuclear. All of the required technology already exists, including the distribution network (natural gas pipelines). If hydrogen was the primary fuel source, it would solve the CO² problem as well. Bio fuels do nothing to reduce CO² emmisions. Hydrogen is the only alternative that takes carbon out of the equation.

Splitting water into hydrogen can also help with another problem, water pollution. Water pollution is hard to clean because of the quantities of water involved. By splitting water from polluted sources, the pollutants are effectively concentrated, making them easier to collect.

The problem with decentralized hydrogen is that it takes the control from the big oil companies so it will be met with severe resistance by them and the governments they control. Fighting big money. There are some problems with hydrogen as a vehicle fuel, primarily refueling difficulties, but this is addressable. An option here is to use that hydrogen to produce electric to charge batteries for electric cars. It is completely viable for heating and industrial uses. It's non-polluting, very abundant and easily produced by any of the methods mentioned above. There's more than enough solar and wind power available that either could supply all our energy. All we have to do is harness it.

Rick

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Indeed. Drilling in the USA won't really change the situation much. It wouldn't lower prices, nor last very long.

The real problem with hydrogen is, it's not an energy source per se. You have to use energy for processes like electrolysis to generate it. So you still need a cheap source of energy (hopefully not coal) to replace it. And if you're using electricity (electrolysis) to create hydrogen, then why not skipping the electricity -> hydrogen part and just using electric cars instead? A single liter of gas contains about 35 MJ of energy, which is about 10 kilowatt*hours if I'm not mistaken. Then you have to look at the losses in the electrolysis process (about 60% efficient last I checked), which despite record-high gas prices here (about $5.25/gal) and cheap hydro power, still doesn't make hydrogen cheaper than gas yet. Transporting massive quantities of hydrogen and electricity would both require substantial investments, and both are dangerous to some extent.

I don't think there's an easy answer to the problem yet, but we're slowly getting there.

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The real problem with hydrogen is, it's not an energy source per se. You have to use energy for processes like electrolysis to generate it.

True, hydrogen is better viewed as an energy storage/transfer medium. Then again, gasoline and heating oil also fit that definition. They're stored solar energy when you get right down to it. When the electricity to produce hydrogen can be obtained from solar, wind, and other almost unlimited energy sources, efficiency isn't all that important. If efficiency is going to be made an issue, it's hard to find something that's less efficient than an internal combustion engine burning gasoline.

Compared to straight electricity, it would be cheaper to send hydrogen through pipelines than electric through wires over long distances. If the distribution lines included storage tanks, that would also solve the problem of storage for periods of heavy usage. With electric, that requires backup generators. I don't see why the existing natural gas pipelines couldn't be used for hydrogen, assuming they're in good shape of course. There are problems that need to be solved for hydrogen to be viable, but that can be said for all the alternatives.

There's a huge amount of solar energy hitting the roofs of residences, waiting to be collected. The same applies to the wind that's blowing over our homes, an incredible amount of power waiting to be harnessed. I live in one of the worst areas in the US for solar heating, northern Michigan. For much of the winter, it's cloudy because of the proximity of the great lakes. The average amount of sunshine for the month of December here is 67 hours total. January averages 86 hours of sunshine for the month. Even with the limited solar energy available here, my small solar greenhouse provides about 25% of my heating needs. By the same token, those 2 months are some of the best for wind power here. When one source isn't available, the other is often in abundant supply. Much of the time, the same weather elements that create the energy demand can supply it. When it's way too hot, solar energy is usually abundant. In winter storms, wind energy is available in large quantities. It doesn't get much more convenient than that. This is why a cooperative approach would be so important. When one source isn't available, another is. The hydrogen would be the energy collection, storage and distribution medium for many different energy sources. For a decentralized hydrogen to be viable, it must not be under the control of big oil. Big oil would not allow a cooperative with multiple energy sources because they wouldn't have total control over the supply, and the resulting prices. IMO, they need to be kept out of the picture. There are so many benefits to such a system, so many problems it helps to solve, that it would be worth whatever it costs to make it a reality. There's benefits I haven't listed, such as the production of pure water from burning hydrogen. How useful could that be in drought areas? If we wait for big oil to solve the energy problem, it'll never get solved and we'll lose the best places left on the planet, plus a large percentage of our food growing capacity.

Rick

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Then again, gasoline and heating oil also fit that definition. They're stored solar energy when you get right down to it

Yes, it's certainly from solar roots (organic stuff that used solar power then turned into petrol). But with gas, the energy is already stored, ready to use. Hydrogen, you'll have to spend the energy first, before you have it. All that and the blub about efficiency was about, is that it costs a fair amount to produce.

As for pipelines vs electricity, it probably depends on the place. There is no natural gas here. So digging everywhere to add those would certainly cost a LOT more than a upgrade to the existing electric network. And at a high enough voltage, line losses are acceptable too. So it probably depends on the location.

There's a huge amount of solar energy hitting the roofs of residences, waiting to be collected.

Absolutely! But solar cells are VERY expensive. I did look at it before. The initial investment is quite high (not counting maintenance costs or "life expectancy" of the said panels), and with the illumination we get, even financed at a very good percentage, it wouldn't be cheaper than the local hydro company... Besides, I have no place for any of that stuff at my condo :( Heating wise, geothermal systems seem very good, but again, I can't exactly install that in my condo.

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