USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

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USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: NoSmoke On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:55 am

I think we can see that if the Middle East is going to be the hot bed where world affairs turn, then it makes sense that our dependence upon oil is the reason for the worlds attention there. As some have said, America's prominence on the world stage could be reduced in part because we lose our bargaining power if our military machine is thus reduced by its ability to move due to it need for oil...a lot of oil.

The one thing we can do is reduce our need for oil and thus keep ourselves on the world stage and dominant...if only for a few generations. Still we need to agree on a energy policy which the European Union has seem to got a far better handle on...they need oil, but not like we do. Russia has plenty of oil, but desperately wants its posion on the world stage back and since we cannot even adopt children from there anymore, then I do not see them sharing a whole lot of oil with us.

But when it comes to E15...or ethanol in general, people are opposed to that as a solution, so it begs the question...how can we get a comprehensive energy policy unilaterally that decreases our demand for foreign oil?

Myself, I just want a nuclear powered tractor to help feed this nation without needing Middle East Oil to do that, but that was said to just prime the pump of what things could be done.
NoSmoke
 
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: waldo lemieux On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:14 am

Ns

Google the "Pickens Plan" .I like the guy ,he has all the money in the world so I believe everything he says. I think its a damn shame the administration missed the opportunity to rebuild the electric grid as a public works project like Eisenhower did with the interstate system. Would have turned around the economy and replaced what all experts agree is an outdated dysfunctional system. Too, I heard somewhere not long ago that with new technology ,Hydrofracking , we stand a chance of becoming energy independant by 2030. I dont know but if thats true seems like we be hearing a lot more about it. :| We can hope....

:D Waldo
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: samhill On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:30 am

Be careful what you wish for since under our system it can never be with oil anyway. If we would produce all the oil we need & then some it would simply go to the highest bidder, most countries that have low priced oil for their citizens are now producing more than they need but also the country has the largest stake in the profits & production. Where we used to be the innovators of most things we are now the followers of most even if it's our ideas we farm it out to where we get the most profit. Way back when Carter put solar panels on the White House roof he saw the potential & was really one of the few if not the only one that saw the need for an energy plan. Think about it if we would have run with the solar power idea & development then how much farther, better & less expensive would it be by now & that's just one example, we are missing the ball big time to cater to special interests & profit above all.
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: SteveZee On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:40 am

samhill wrote:Be careful what you wish for since under our system it can never be with oil anyway. If we would produce all the oil we need & then some it would simply go to the highest bidder, most countries that have low priced oil for their citizens are now producing more than they need but also the country has the largest stake in the profits & production. Where we used to be the innovators of most things we are now the followers of most even if it's our ideas we farm it out to where we get the most profit. Way back when Carter put solar panels on the White House roof he saw the potential & was really one of the few if not the only one that saw the need for an energy plan. Think about it if we would have run with the solar power idea & development then how much farther, better & less expensive would it be by now & that's just one example, we are missing the ball big time to cater to special interests & profit above all.


That's right Sam, It's a global market and all goes into the same pot so to speak for the highest bidder. That's capitalism. Subsidizing for our citizens would akin to, dare I say it...........socialism. ;)
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: Richard S. On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:44 am

Have the government guarantee that anyone in the coal to liquid fuel business is going to break even. There would be a massive influx of private investment which would do two key things. Firstly you'll have secured a product that can be produced domestically and you'll drive the cost of conventional oil prices down.

http://www.ncpa.org/pub/ba656

Benefit: More Stable Energy Prices. Rentech, a primary U.S. patent-holder of the technology, produces CTL fuel in Colorado at a cost of $45 per barrel. Though this cost is comparable to the current price of crude oil, the price of American coal is less volatile. Price stability makes CTL a valuable option for certain transportation needs. According to a 2001 Energy Department study:


Note that's from 2009 hence the reason for the "Though this cost is comparable to the current price of crude oil" comment.

The primary roadblock to investment in this is a volatile oil market which makes it a very risky venture, if you have situation like you had in 2008 where the bottom of the market fell out these companies would go out of business over night. This wouldn't necessarily be a subsidy but it would certainly be classified as such. In any event if you're guaranteeing them $50 a barrel and actually have to shell some taxpayer money out you've accomplished your goal anyway.
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: jpete On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:30 pm

Richard S. wrote:Have the government guarantee that anyone in the coal to liquid fuel business is going to break even. There would be a massive influx of private investment which would do two key things. Firstly you'll have secured a product that can be produced domestically and you'll drive the cost of conventional oil prices down..


What does that do to our coal prices? Is it a net positive(does it take more than one gallon of fuel to make one gallon of fuel) and what do you do when the coal runs out?

Why is a subsidy for coal liquefaction better than a corn to ethanol subsidy?

I'd much rather see work on fuel cells. All you need is electricity and water. Electricity can be produced in various ways and since 3/4 of the earth is covered in water, I doubt we'll run out any time soon.

But then my Exxon Mobil stock would take a dump and we can't have that now can we?
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: lsayre On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:51 pm

A guy named Richard Heinberg from the Post Carbon Institute has calculated that if coal is liquified into oil in order to replace crude, then the worlds economically retreivable coal supplies will be gone within 25-35 years.

We often hear silly things like: "At current levels of consumption there are 450 years worth of coal left on earth", but the key here is that coal liquifaction to make it into oil will take coal to astronomical consumption levels that are far from "current consumption" levels.
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: waldo lemieux On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:01 pm

Samhill,

I was refering to the natural gas thing, mostly anyhow. Regardless, If we start exporting rather than importing we'd be the ones building an indoor ski resort in the 1000 deg. desert and we could make the middle east irrelevant. :)

Waldo
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: lsayre On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:05 pm

waldo lemieux wrote:Samhill,

I was refering to the natural gas thing, mostly anyhow. Regardless, If we start exporting rather than importing we'd be the ones building an indoor ski resort in the 1000 deg. desert and we could make the middle east irrelevant. :)

Waldo


Heinburgh paints a quite similar picture for Natural Gas. I believe his book most likely to detail this (one of many he has penned) is titled "Peak Everything".
Last edited by lsayre on Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: jpete On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:44 pm

waldo lemieux wrote:Samhill,

I was refering to the natural gas thing, mostly anyhow. Regardless, If we start exporting rather than importing we'd be the ones building an indoor ski resort in the 1000 deg. desert and we could make the middle east irrelevant. :)

Waldo


We're already exporting refined petroleum. Now where did I leave my ski's? :)
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: samhill On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 2:12 pm

Many of the fracking wells are being drilled & capped, held in reserve so to speak until the price can be stabilized (upward I'm sure) & liquidation becomes more common & less expensive then it too will also be an export on the global market. But lets face it oil or NG & everything else that can be made to produce energy can all be improved upon, the old theory of it will never run out has been proven wrong. IMO the country that becomes the most economically diversified first will be way ahead, the more we get out of one source will save on others.
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: SteveZee On: Thu Jan 10, 2013 8:45 pm

jpete wrote:
Richard S. wrote:Have the government guarantee that anyone in the coal to liquid fuel business is going to break even. There would be a massive influx of private investment which would do two key things. Firstly you'll have secured a product that can be produced domestically and you'll drive the cost of conventional oil prices down..


What does that do to our coal prices? Is it a net positive(does it take more than one gallon of fuel to make one gallon of fuel) and what do you do when the coal runs out?

Why is a subsidy for coal liquefaction better than a corn to ethanol subsidy?

I'd much rather see work on fuel cells. All you need is electricity and water. Electricity can be produced in various ways and since 3/4 of the earth is covered in water, I doubt we'll run out any time soon.

But then my Exxon Mobil stock would take a dump and we can't have that now can we?


I agree that fuel cell technology is by far the best bet. The people who might hinder that might be those same stock issuer's ;)
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: NoSmoke On: Fri Jan 11, 2013 7:38 am

I am a huge proponent of Nuclear Power only because my daughter has a Great Aunt that worked for GE as a Nuclear Physicist and as part of a team that developed the Nuclear Capability in our US Naval Vessels. She told me that despite not having nuclear power plants built in the US in the last 3 decades or so, they are continuing to research and design nuclear power plant designs, and they are quite impressive.

IF a new one was to be built today, it would reduce the nuclear waste by 90% compared to those online now, and would produce more power and with longer lifespans.

I think we have seen that despite a few catastrophic issues; 3 mile island, Chernobyl and Japan's Earthquake; the world can survive when things go wrong. While I realize this is a coal board, and I am a HUGE proponent of coal, and use it myself of course, when you tally up the number of deaths from Nuclear Power you get a net return of zero, where as last year coal mining killed 21 people in the US alone. And if you look at photos of Chernobyl 20 years later, the devastation that they predicted did not occur. One of the things they claimed was that the most respectable living things to radiation contamination was trees, and yet they shocked the science world when trees are flourishing over there. I saw video of a soccer arena that was filled with trees 6 inches in diameter and growing 40 feet high...and they were playing soccer on that field in 1986 so it has recovered quite well.

When I watched our last ship get ready for sea trials, I watched a parade of tanker trucks roll in for 3 days straight, 24 hours a day pumping 635,000 gallons of jet fuel on board that old Destroyer design kind of ship as that is what they use for propulsion. Engines, generators, everything is jet-engine powered and the consumption was incredible. The operating machinist noted we were consuming just over 1 gallon per second of jet fuel when we tested #4 generator room at full output and that was a VERY small jet engine compared to what turns the props. Now keep in mind, it takes 15 gallons of fuel to get 1 gallon of fuel to consumption, so in reality, that ONE generator room, burns 16 gallons of fuel per second, and this is just one of 300 ships in the navy. If we went to nuclear power for most of this ships, we would greatly reduce our need for oil! It could be done, we have the technology to do that and according to my daughter's Aunt, one reason American Sailors are protected from radiation is because the "hot side shielding" is 7 inches thick, where as radiation poisoning on Russian Vessels is 1 out of 4 sailors, is because they only provide 1" of shielding.

But I realize no one wants nuclear power plants in their backyard or their sailors to be next to nuclear radiation, but now if Obama would only cram some in every corner of America, using the same techniques that he uses on his health care reform and gun control...well I guess we would have them now wouldn't we?

But what do I know, I am just a dumb sheep farmer.
NoSmoke
 
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: Richard S. On: Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:36 am

jpete wrote:
What does that do to our coal prices? Is it a net positive(does it take more than one gallon of fuel to make one gallon of fuel) and what do you do when the coal runs out?


I'd much rather see work on fuel cells. All you need is electricity and water. Electricity can be produced in various ways and since 3/4 of the earth is covered in water, I doubt we'll run out any time soon.

But then my Exxon Mobil stock would take a dump and we can't have that now can we?[/quote]

Jpete most of your questions can be answered in that paper, the cost of coal is certainly a concern but it's huge supply and as noted in the paper they can use lower quality coal. It can also be done a cogen facility producing fuel and electric.

As I understand it the only real downside to this process and this also applies to shale oil is they need a lot of water. That seems to be the trend for many of these processes whether it's ethanol, algae etc.


Why is a subsidy for coal liquefaction better than a corn to ethanol subsidy?


This wouldn't be your typical subsidy. I would propose the subsidy would only kick in if the cost of crude drops below the threshold of profitability for these companies. Right now they wouldn't get anything and the cost of crude would have to be more than halved before they would. If you're halving the cost of conventional crude does it really matter if they are getting a subsidy? Lower priced fuel is the idea to begin with isn't it?

It's the unstable nature or the oil market that keeps private investment out of these projects. Imagine this scenario, a bunch of companies get up and running and OPEC decides to dump a bunch of oil onto the market or as I already mentioned you have a situation like we did in early 2008.
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Re: USA: How to Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PostBy: Richard S. On: Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:47 am

samhill wrote:Many of the fracking wells are being drilled & capped, held in reserve so to speak until the price can be stabilized (upward I'm sure)......


A lot of that has to do with lease obligations, if they don't drill after X amount of time they lose the lease.
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