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Old 18-02-2010, 11:41   #136
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I always find it humorous that in any discussion of how we humans are destroying the planet, people seem to forget how much WORSE things were - environmentally - just 40 years ago. We burned leaded gas at about 12 mpg. We dumped untreated sewage and industrial chemicals into any convenient body of water, all over the world. The skies over L.A. were a brown soup for half the year. The river in Cleveland burned. We had no idea how much unnecessary chemicals we were dumping on our crops (the amounts of active ingredient used today are miniscule, compared to back in the 60s and 70s). Consumer packaging wasted far more natural resources than it does today. Our homes and commercial buildings are far more energy efficient, as are the appliances in them.

It wasn't so long ago that there were vast stretches of our coastline that were off limits to swimming due to pollution. Ask someone what it was like sailing in Boston Harbor in the 1960s.

The list can go on and on.
That's a pretty limited view (and convenient too). This country may have cleanup some problems, but meanwhile over the last 40 years consumerism has been infecting the rest of the planet with the predictable results. As a consequence, the globe as a whole is worse off than it has ever been--by any measure.

The rate of extinctions has increased.

Worldwide measured air and water pollution is worse now that ever before.

Fish populations are crashing.

Forests are disappearing at a wholesale level.

Etc.

The big picture is MUCH worse now than it was 40 years ago.

Remember the EPA is largely a uniquely American invention. (Thank you President Nixon.)
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Old 18-02-2010, 11:52   #137
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Kinda had to chuckle of the thought that oil wells are refilling themselves. From what I understand(very little) oil is the past life that existed on this planet. I was taught to believe that over time the plant and animal matter compresses mixes and is reduced to its most stable and reduced form, oil. if this holds true were burning off the planets accrued mass of stored energy that has been accumulating since life began. There are other sources of energy, but oil is the easiest to store, move and sell so it has become the predominantly utilised source. It took a long time and a lot of life to create a gallon of oil that is gone so quickly. Peak oil will happen, maybe sooner maybe later. Depends on whose propaganda is right.
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Old 18-02-2010, 12:14   #138
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It appears that worldwide oil production has been stuck in neutral for one of the longest periods in history. This failure to increase production started before the world economic slowdown:

According to U.S. D.O.E. numbers:

2009 72,105 (ten month average)
2008 73,709
2007 72,989
2006 73,546
2005 73,791
2004 72,512
2003 69,448
2002 67,168

( x 1,000 barrels per day)

http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/ipsr/t11d.xls

It is significant, I think, to note that the oil price spike of a few years ago was the first world wide oil price spike NOT accompanied by reduction in production. First time in history. Not many people know that.

We are no where near running out of oil, as reserves are still plentiful. But it does appear that much of the low growing fruit has been picked . It may well be next to impossible at this juncture to increase production rates world wide. Of the 98 oil producing countries, 63 are now in declining production.

The last three years have seen the Saudis putting in a plethora of new wells like mosquitos on a sunbather, and all they have been able to do is maintain current production.

Mexico's elephant field, the second largest field in the world, went into declining production two years ago.

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Originally Posted by forsailbyowner View Post
Kinda had to chuckle of the thought that oil wells are refilling themselves. From what I understand(very little) oil is the past life that existed on this planet. I was taught to believe that over time the plant and animal matter compresses mixes and is reduced to its most stable and reduced form, oil. if this holds true were burning off the planets accrued mass of stored energy that has been accumulating since life began. There are other sources of energy, but oil is the easiest to store, move and sell so it has become the predominantly utilised source. It took a long time and a lot of life to create a gallon of oil that is gone so quickly. Peak oil will happen, maybe sooner maybe later. Depends on whose propaganda is right.
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Old 18-02-2010, 12:23   #139
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Many people don't realize that the US is the third largest oil producing country in the world.

In fact, both the Saudis and Russia barely outproduce the US. Other big oil producing countries like Mexico and Venesuela produce only about 1/2 of the US rate.

Yet the US imports over 65% of its consumed oil.

Given that we had a wake up call in the 1970s with the oil embargo and Iran's revolution (resulting in a 400% increase in the price of oil), I cannot think of a clearer example of a US leadership failure. Our energy policies for the past 35 years have been dead wrong, and soon we will pay a heavy burden for them.
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Old 18-02-2010, 13:56   #140
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I agree one should "follow the money".

Right now, that means taking advantage of the biggest technology change since the silicon chip - clean energy. Within a couple of miles of MIT there must be 100 energy related startups - I've invested in two of them. I assume the same is happening at every technology center around the world. All of the "smart money" guys I watch have chips on the energy table. All.

Global warming (if it is happening - and I believe it is) will accelerate this investment but, even if it isn't, it is a safe bet that the days of very low cost carbon based fuels are passing. Government regulation, increased demand from 3rd world countries, and limited supply make for a rising tide.

It's sad to see so many folks on this board wasting time with conspiracy theories and bitter complaining -- because sailors "get it". We use far less energy and have a lifestyle that is the envy of almost everyone. The future is going our way!

I'm just back from the boat show">Miami boat show. The most striking thing was that used big engine powerboats are selling at 50%+ discounts from pre-recession days and the supply of used boats literally goes on for miles of Miami waterfront. On the other hand, used sailboats are selling at 20% or less discount and supply of good boats is slim.

Already invested in your clean energy sailboat? Well, replace all those cabin lights with the new LED's. These are a fantastic dividend from the worldwide clean energy investment. In my case, it has cut out 3 hours of engine charging time a week, my 50 year old eyes can see the book better, and the cabin is cooler. I calculate charging engine time to be $5/hour when fuel, depreciation, and maintenance are included. That $250/year savings. Payback on the bulbs is two years. The "quiet" is extra profit.

My life is getting better not worse from a focus on clean energy. Go world!

Carl
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Old 18-02-2010, 14:40   #141
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I agree one should "follow the money"
Warren Buffett's big investment in rail lines the last few years has baffled many an investor, but from an energy perspective makes perfect sense.

For decades and decades trucking has been on the uptick and rail lines down. That trend will reverse after peak oil and Buffett knows it.

Carl Pickens (an oil guy) has gone into wind or solar power big time (forget which).

The list goes on and on. Yes, follow the money.
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Old 18-02-2010, 15:18   #142
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Maybe nature will be the one to regulate
.
Bingo!
Give the girl a prize.

Now lets start argu.........discussing what the definition of nature is.
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Old 18-02-2010, 15:20   #143
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It's nuts to assume that 7 billion of any large animal on a planet with a diameter of less than 8,000 miles would not have an effect on the planet, and doubly so when the animal is as clever as us.

Look at the earth from space at night, and you can begin to see the effects.

I think that was in the context of global warming, not the completely different discussion of recourses and pollution.
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Old 18-02-2010, 16:22   #144
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Keep patting yourselves on the back, it must feel good to be part of a consensus.

Wind and solar is not a viable market, if it is, why does it need constant government subsidies?

Wind farms fail to deliver value for money, report claims - Telegraph

General Electric manufactures most of the electric generators utilized by these useless wind farms. I'm sure it's just a coincidence that they also have the largest environmental legislative lobby in the country.

CNBC's Parent Station General Electric Is Q2's Top Lobby Spender With $7.2 Million, A 60% Increase From Q1 | zero hedge

"Follow the money"
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Old 18-02-2010, 17:10   #145
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... Wind and solar is not a viable market, if it is, why does it need constant government subsidies ...
... "Follow the money"
I suppose, then, that you’d support Obama’s 2011 FY budget proposal, which calls for eliminating more than $2.7 billion in tax subsidies for oil, coal and gas industries, resulting in more than $38.8 billion dollars in tax revenue being generated for the federal government, over the course of the next ten years.
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Old 18-02-2010, 17:46   #146
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The problem with conspiracy theories is that the claims usually can't withstand the most basic fact checking. The "GE raises our taxes by massive wind lobbying" conspiracy is laughable.

GE is a distant 4th in wind. The #1 is Vestas with twice the wind kilowatts installed. I believe GE is biggest for natural gas and nuclear power generation. My guess is that's where the lion share of their lobbying is going and it seems to be working. Two days ago Obama announced $8B for new nukes (which I think is a good idea).

Today's Wall Street Journal had a piece on a new "small" nuclear reactor (125 megawatts) not from GE but from little (relatively) Babcock and Wilcox. It's a 15ft diameter cylinder. The completed reactor gets delivered on a rail car and the whole thing is dropped in a hole and buried. It even has room to store all of the spent fuel it generates during it's lifetime. Cool! (and the stock is up 5% today).

I also realize I made an error on my previous LED savings calculation (damn arithmetic). It's $750/year savings instead of $250. That covers the single malt scotch for this winter.

Why would you not want to be part of this consensus?

Carl
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Old 18-02-2010, 17:46   #147
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I think the gamble that alt energy investors are making is that the price of oil will not be static.

At all.

What is viable in the future is the stuff of which fortunes are made and lost.

After all there was the day when LED's were not viable.







Change is the rule.
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Old 18-02-2010, 18:38   #148
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Gord,
Yes, I will always support the elimination of subsidies, it's not the government's place to prop up industries that can't make it on their own, sometimes pulling subsidies actually forces said industry to become more efficient, and results in a successful industry that can actually pay dividends. The problem with subsidies, is that they come with strings, many times these very strings and red-tape cause the very industry they're supporting to fail. Don't even try to make the argument that Oil and Gas industries can't make it on their own. If that is what you're inferring, it's very adolescent.

Carl,
There is no such thing as a conspiracy, getting that many people to march in lock step for the sake of "conspiratorial control" in impossible. I do however believe that our Federal Government's regulations are so onerous, that in order to survive, many companies direct massive lobbying budgets to Washington to ensure their own survival. Thomas Jefferson warned against a Government that becomes so powerful, that private industry must get in bed with them to ensure their own survival (paraphrase), this is also known as Fascism.

Hiracer,
You are absolutely correct, it SHOULD BE A GAMBLE! What is wrong with LED's? They were developed decades ago, by private industry, without government subsidies.


I think you all misunderstand my skepticism of the green movement for an outright desire for technological regression. I do not care what individual companies want to peddle to consumers in the name of GW. I also frankly do not care what kind of junk science individuals want to believe in. What I do are about is a movement of do-gooders who seek to make us all responsible for the cleanup of a disaster that is not happening, through government taxation and legislation. If you're so concerned, donate your own damn money to this cause, not mine.

See:
Cap and Trade
Kyoto Treaty
United Nations Law of the Seas Treaty
Endangered Species Act (using the GW melting-glacier/dying Polar Bear as an excuse to outlaw offshore drilling in the Arctic regions)
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Old 18-02-2010, 19:01   #149
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The problem with conspiracy theories is that the claims usually can't withstand the most basic fact checking. The "GE raises our taxes by massive wind lobbying" conspiracy is laughable.

GE is a distant 4th in wind. The #1 is Vestas with twice the wind kilowatts installed. I believe GE is biggest for natural gas and nuclear power generation. My guess is that's where the lion share of their lobbying is going and it seems to be working. Two days ago Obama announced $8B for new nukes (which I think is a good idea).

Today's Wall Street Journal had a piece on a new "small" nuclear reactor (125 megawatts) not from GE but from little (relatively) Babcock and Wilcox. It's a 15ft diameter cylinder. The completed reactor gets delivered on a rail car and the whole thing is dropped in a hole and buried. It even has room to store all of the spent fuel it generates during it's lifetime. Cool! (and the stock is up 5% today).

I also realize I made an error on my previous LED savings calculation (damn arithmetic). It's $750/year savings instead of $250. That covers the single malt scotch for this winter.

Why would you not want to be part of this consensus?

Carl
They are a private company.
Which stock?
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Old 18-02-2010, 19:37   #150
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From the Babcock and Wilcox website:
Quote:
McDermott International

The Babcock & Wilcox Company is a wholly owned subsidiary of McDermott International, Inc. [NYSE: MDR]. McDermott is a leading engineering and construction company, with specialty manufacturing and service capabilities.The Company provides its services to a variety of customers in the energy and power industries, including the U.S. Government. McDermott operates in 23 countries and has over 20,000 employees.
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