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2008 Toyota Highlander Hybrid

Ford Edge with HySeries Drive

Chevrolet Volt
Bush calls for a 20% reduction in gasoline usage by 2017

Many of the top auto manufacturers selling vehicles in the United States are at least attempting to reduce consumption of fossil fuels. Big names like General Motors, Ford, Toyota, and Honda have production models or prototypes that rely on hybrid, fuel cell or diesel technology to improve fuel efficiency.

President Bush wants even more progress from automakers and is pushing for even stricter fuel economy standards in the coming years.

"We have laid out a plan that will affect greenhouse gases that come from automobiles by having a mandatory fuel standard that insists on 35 -- using 35 billion gallons of alternative fuels by 2017, which will reduce our gasoline uses by 20 percent and halt the growth in greenhouse gases that emanate from automobiles," said President Bush to reporters. "In other words, there is a remedy available for Congress. And I strongly hope that they pass this remedy quickly."

The Bush administration has calculated that the costs for the auto industry would come in at $114 billion USD between 2010 and 2017 to comply -- GM's share is said to be $40 billion USD.

Outspoken GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz was quick to respond to Bush's request. Lutz figures that in order for GM to reduce overall gasoline consumption 20% by the year 2017, it would need to raise the price of its vehicles by $5,000 to $6,000 USD. Lutz also remarked that the only way to meet Bush's goal would be to make almost every vehicle a hybrid or use other more expensive technologies like ethanol-based E85, all-electric or hydrogen-fuel cell vehicles. "This technology does not come for free," said Lutz.

That being said, GM is adding hybrid technology to existing vehicles to improve fuel efficiency. The Saturn Aura Green Line promises a 30% increase in fuel economy compared to a base Aura XE and is priced at a relatively reasonable $22,695 USD including destination charge. GM has also started early production on dual-mode hybrid versions of its Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon full-size SUVs. Hybrid technology is said to increase the fuel economy of these vehicles by as much as 25%.



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By 2017
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 3:48:53 PM , Rating: 3
I think 10 years from now when gas is $10/gal, a lot more people will be interested in hybrids.




RE: By 2017
By mark2ft on 4/5/2007 3:50:39 PM , Rating: 1
Anyone know when world fossil fuel supplies will become depleted? I think I heard something in the range of 80-100 years. Not sure though.


RE: By 2017
By aurareturn on 4/5/2007 3:52:28 PM , Rating: 2
No one knows but the estimate is around 2040.

If those giant oil companies don't bully off any major research done on alternative fuel, we'd probably have a good source of alternative fuel by now.


RE: By 2017
By arazok on 4/5/2007 4:29:07 PM , Rating: 1
I think you mean the Hubbert peak.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peak_oil

The world is not going to run out of oil in 2040. Nobody even knows when the peak will occur. Some say we are in it now. I think not.


RE: By 2017
By ATC on 4/5/2007 4:44:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I think not.

Out of curiosity, what makes you think we're not?


RE: By 2017
By arazok on 4/5/2007 10:01:22 PM , Rating: 4
Because production is still rising as we speak, and the price of oil hasn't skyrocketed.

Now, someone is going to point to $60 oil and say "Hasn't skyrocketed?", but believe me oil is still cheap in the greater scheme of things.

Peak oil means we will never pump more oil per day then we at that time. No economy will be able to grow without realizing efficiency gains, rather then burning more oil as we do now. Countries will begin fighting over existing supplies, and prices will go $120, $200, $300 a barrel or more.

Peak oil means you actually carpool to work, rather then think it's just a good thing for everyone else to do. You won't have a choice.


RE: By 2017
By psychmike123 on 4/6/2007 12:03:42 AM , Rating: 2
With respect, I disagree. As a whole, oil production in many proven fields has declined. The reason that oil production as a whole has not has been because oil companies are resorting to more and more aggressive means of extracting oil. If we're not at peak oil, we're certainly getting close. Keep in mind that oil use is growing ever faster. That means that we'll likely use up the remaining oil much, much earlier than our history would suggest.


RE: By 2017
By Zeatrix on 4/6/2007 2:53:35 AM , Rating: 2
Whether or not there is more oil is irrelevant. We have to cut the emissions now anyways! The record high carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere will cause serious disruptions to the earths ecosystem and that is why we HAVE to stop using oil.

I recognize that we can't just stop using oil right away. But we have to do as much as we can, otherwise the future will be very grim for generations to come.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 9:49:37 AM , Rating: 2
> "The record high carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere..."

But we're nowhere near "record" levels of carbon dioxide. Current levels are about 380 ppm. In the earth's past, they were well above 3,000 ppm.


RE: By 2017
By Steve Guilliot on 4/6/2007 6:06:30 PM , Rating: 2
True.
We should temper that fact with another. When CO2 levels were that high, the planet was much hotter and mostly tropical.

We can't wait for "record" CO2 levels, so whether 380ppm is or not is academic.

No matter the view on global warming, we should reduce our dependence on the middle east for our economic sustainability. It's as simple as that.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 5:56:51 PM , Rating: 2
> "We should temper that fact with another. When CO2 levels were that high, the planet was much hotter and mostly tropical"

Actually, during one period of extremely high CO2 levels (over 1000ppm, or triple the level they are today) the planet was locked in the coldest ice age of the past 400 past million years. Climatology is a complex business.


RE: By 2017
By Fallen Kell on 4/10/2007 10:56:09 PM , Rating: 2
> "Actually, during one period of extremely high CO2 levels (over 1000ppm, or triple the level they are today) the planet was locked in the coldest ice age of the past 400 past million years. Climatology is a complex business."

Yes, but the reason for the high CO2 at that time was due to the loss of plant life which is what converts the C02 into the oxygen that most animal life depends on.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 9:48:29 AM , Rating: 2
> "As a whole, oil production in many proven fields has declined..."

In some yes. But overall world production of oil is still increasing....and many fields we haven't even begun to taop yet.


RE: By 2017
By rushfan2006 on 4/6/2007 10:01:19 AM , Rating: 2
lol...that's why I like masher...he has an answer all the time for all the scientific stuff. Seriously , I'm not saying that sarcastically....nor am I saying this as a bust/put down in anyway but rather as a sincere question of curiousity -- Masher are you an engineer or something or just a information junkie that reads ALOT.

Even though sometimes I've strongly disagreed with you, I've always admired your thing for posting information and a lot of the times I've doubled checked your info and it has been correct.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 10:09:13 AM , Rating: 2
I'm a researcher for a Fortune 50 company...and I read a lot :)


RE: By 2017
By encryptkeeper on 4/6/2007 5:25:56 PM , Rating: 3
I'm sure google helps alot.


RE: By 2017
By Steve Guilliot on 4/6/2007 5:58:54 PM , Rating: 2
Hey, is there room for my lips on your ass too? Or do I need to get in line?

j/k


RE: By 2017
By Kuroyama on 4/8/2007 5:00:59 PM , Rating: 2
Here's some idle speculation. Based on masher2's earlier posts I believe he lives near Marietta (GA), doesn't drive far to work, has had to (unhappily) pay bribes in his work, purchased a multi-million dollar computer for work, has worked in many countries, works as a researcher for a Fortune 50 company, and believes nuclear power is wonderful. Seems he could work for a certain very large defense company which has huge operations near Marietta, has contracts with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, builds nuclear submarines, and is famous in Japan for its bribe paying (although probably all Fortune 50 companies have had to pay bribes I'd guess defense and oil have to pay the most often). Of course, I may have got some of these statements wrong, people change jobs all the time, a person's opinions need not be aligned with their employers lobbying interests (I certainly don't like the union I'm stuck in), and Cobb county GA certainly has offices from plenty of other huge companies too, so if anyone actually sees this post then don't take it as more than the aimless speculation that it is. (OK, it's only fair, as if anyone cares: I work in a university so although I'm obviously left-wing I may even be to the right of the average political orientation in my line of work)


RE: By 2017
By Kuroyama on 4/8/2007 5:38:09 PM , Rating: 2
Oops. The company I was thinking of is only #52 on the 2006 rankings, so guess I was wrong.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/9/2007 8:44:19 AM , Rating: 2
Not too bad...but I haven't worked for a defense contractor in well over a decade :)


RE: By 2017
By psychmike123 on 4/7/2007 12:50:10 AM , Rating: 2
My point remains: That overall oil production has not peaked because of increasingly aggressive means of extracting oil. This suggests that the era of 'easy oil' is either over or soon will be.

As a professional researcher, I'm sure that you understand statistics and the normal distribution. Once we've passed the middle part of the curve, oil production could fall rather quickly, especially if demand continues to increase. I think the fall will be softened by new technologies such that the distribution will be skewed to the right but my point remains.

Mike



RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 5:30:36 PM , Rating: 3
> "oil production has not peaked because of increasingly aggressive means of extracting oil. This suggests that the era of 'easy oil' is either over or soon will be..."

The fact that oil has not peaked does not support the belief that it will soon do so. Increasingly aggressive oil exploitation has been ongoing for a century; that in itself is no reason to sound the alarm. As a matter of fact, the era of "easy oil" for most of the world ended decades ago...there is nothing easy about deepsea drilling, gas injection techniques, ultra-sophisticated seismic exploration, or any other modern technique in the industry.

And yet, oil production still continues to rise.


RE: By 2017
By joex444 on 4/5/2007 10:08:24 PM , Rating: 2
CANADA.

Believe it or not, Canada is the answer once our Mideast oil runs out (geological or political reasons). Now, in Canada, if you want oil you don't stick a pipe in the ground and just watch oil flow. Instead, you find these shales that are in the soil, and with some refining you can get usable oil from this. Of course, this adds money to the whole process, so if we needed to use this we should be expecting a $150-$300 barrel, in today's dollars.


RE: By 2017
By arazok on 4/5/2007 10:54:58 PM , Rating: 2
Hate to tell you, but you're using it now. Canada is the US's #1 supplier of Oil.

It costs $20-30 a barel to refine, not $300.


RE: By 2017
By arazok on 4/5/2007 10:56:54 PM , Rating: 2
And I should add, there is enough oil in the tar sands to supply the USA for 100 years.


RE: By 2017
By UNCjigga on 4/6/2007 10:40:24 AM , Rating: 3
So when do we invade Canada and accuse them of harboring weapons of mass destruction?? That tank looks dangerous man (and don't get me started on their boat..err..warship!)


RE: By 2017
By Martin Blank on 4/6/2007 12:26:49 PM , Rating: 2
The refining costs are below $20 per barrel now, though the extraction is still a messy affair.

Still, there's estimated to be more than 2 trillion BOE recoverable in Canada alone, which is actually enough for nearly 300 years of US use at current usage (~20 million barrels per day * 365 days per year = 7.3 billion barrels per year, and 2 trillion barrels / 7.3 billion barrels per year = ~274 years).


RE: By 2017
By Manfred on 4/15/2007 6:30:14 AM , Rating: 2
Theres a really good article about it in Popular Mechanics a couple months back. It's expensive to produce but not prohibitively.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 3:58:29 PM , Rating: 4
We have approximately 50 years of proven reserves. However, its important to note that, 50 years ago, we had only 30 years of reserves. Since 1965, we've found 5 new barrels of oil for every 3 we've burnt. It's also interesting to note that president Calvin Coolidge established an emergency oil conservation board in the 1920s...due to widespread claims that the world oil supply would be exhausted in little more than a decade.


RE: By 2017
By Kuroyama on 4/5/2007 4:09:18 PM , Rating: 2
Is that 50 years of proven reserves at today's worldwide consumption rate? If so then it's pretty meaningless as India and China are rapidly using more and more resources, and with their combined 2 billion people discovering the wonders of cars and air conditioners this will lead to a huge surge in consumption in coming years.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 4:12:51 PM , Rating: 4
Oil consumption has steadily increased over the past cenutry; this is nothing new. The 50-year reserve figure is indeed meaningless...primarily because reserves are now so large, than many companies have stopped or slowed down exploration efforts. Its just not economic when you have such a vast supply on tap. And proven reserves are also based on economic factors...oil thats too expensive to extract at todays prices suddenly becomes viable when the price goes up.

Yes, petroleum will eventually run out...natural petroleum, at least. But it won't be in 50 years. I'd lay money it won't be in 150 years either.


RE: By 2017
By caqde on 4/5/2007 4:23:07 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah at least we know how to make it... Go Garbage Fuel!!!!

http://itotd.com/articles/205/oil-from-garbage/

(one of many articles on Garbage based oil :) )


RE: By 2017
By TwistyKat on 4/5/2007 4:27:21 PM , Rating: 1
Running out won't be the problem. You need to read up on the concept of "Peak Oil" and what it means when supply can't meet demand.

That is coming first. When this happens it is not clear, but when it does it will get pretty ugly around here.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 4:34:43 PM , Rating: 3
> "You need to read up on the concept of "Peak Oil""

I first read about Peak Oil in the early 1980s. After its first predictions failed utterly, this peseudotheory fell out of favor for a while. Then it came back in style, with the prediction that world oil would "peak" sometime around the year 1998. When that failed, the new prediction was made for 2006-2012. That one isn't going to arrive either.

Seriously, the entire idea of peak oil is flawed to the core. Yes, oil production will eventually "peak". But not for the reasons it states...and when production does decline, it will be because the arrival of more economic alternatives have reduced demand, not vice versa.


RE: By 2017
By Ringold on 4/5/2007 4:41:51 PM , Rating: 2
'Peak Oil' is accurate in one regard, and thats this: one year, probably within a decade, global production will peak and begin a downward drift. Doomsayers say a violent drop, but thats based on the false idea that engineers wont be able to engineer past some arbitrary date and production will collapse. Mhmm, right.

But all that won't have much effect. Oil will get more expensive as supply gets tighter, and the rational world will build coal and nuclear plants, and the irrational world will strangle themselves trying to make due with more renewable than would be logical before saving themselves from disaster and finally building more coal and nuclear themselves. People that watch markets will notice it, and prosper, but the average man won't be affected in liberal/liquid market-based economies. Life will go on, and Peak Oil will go down in the history books as a theory that made a bunch of investors a small mountain of cash and an academic fact in the study of the history of the oil industry.

But I'm a voice of moderation, and that interpretation of how markets typically work won't make headlines on CNN (unless someone like me agrees to go on opposite a peak oil/green energy fanatic with the promise of lots of cheap insults), so you won't hear it much.


RE: By 2017
By novacthall on 4/6/2007 8:21:32 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Doomsayers say a violent drop, but thats based on the false idea that engineers wont be able to engineer past some arbitrary date and production will collapse. Mhmm, right.

Bingo. Why is it that every prediction, every doomsday scenario, and every "end of the world" alarm fails to take into account advancing technology, better techniques, and new engineering methods? Every single one. I'm not going to lie to you: as an engineer, myself, that hurts.

That's just what engineers do. Problems come up, we fix them. We're forever the kid holding the mallet on the Whack-a-Mole game. And when or if whatever it is everyone's chirping about truly does become a problem, the profession will work to fix it.

After all: engineers built the world, they could likely take it apart, too (though it's worth pointing out that after they put it back together after having taken it apart, there would probably be a few screws left over).


RE: By 2017
By mjcutri on 4/7/2007 11:36:37 AM , Rating: 2
as a fellow engineer: AMEN Brother!
(especially to the few screws left over part)


RE: By 2017
By Ringold on 4/5/2007 4:31:59 PM , Rating: 3
I'd lay money on never running out. Ever.

The entire debate over years left of reserves is off the point. Long before remaining reserves are even close to depletion, the market will price up the cost of oil, and other technologies will slowly, over decades, seamlessly slip in to replace it. We didn't run out of stones in the stone age, after all.

And that is, it could be a smooth transition over decades to alternatives as the market works efficiently, or it could be all at once with massive expense with technology unproven and with mountains of deadweight loss throughout the economy. Not that politicians care. They'd rather say we've got 'x' years of reserves left, and, omg, better switch now! That sounds better, wins votes, and plays on the fact that people (the masses) can't comprehend vast financial and commodity markets.

But yeah. It'll be a worthless commodity eventually, and we'll just stop pumping the stuff before it runs out. Such is the natural progression of things.


RE: By 2017
By Snagor on 4/5/2007 4:58:03 PM , Rating: 2
I have to agree, oil will never run out, but economically affordable oil will. What has saved us in the past, is that technology and efficiency have kept the cost of cheap supply in line with demand. As the price of oil goes up, other methods of extracting oil that were once considered cost-prohibitive become viable alternatives and increase the supply. However this takes many years lead time to occur. The big problem would be if oil prices increase drastically before our infrastructure (ie cars, trucks, refineries) can be changed to use other alternatives, or bring more expensive supplies online. Figure 5 to 10 years for significant changes in extracting or demand use.


RE: By 2017
By Ringold on 4/5/2007 5:19:49 PM , Rating: 2
The only way we would get a shock to the markets that couldn't be compensated for before it caused lasting economic harm would be some sort of attack on lots of key infrastructure.. like multiple key refineries, key ports, etc. That would be a problem no matter how much oil was gushing from beneath the ground. I say "multiple", though, because many states have slack production, and a single disruption (like if Iran was totally taken off the market) could for a short time be covered by a united effort by other states to boost production and reap the profits. But take the whole Middle East off the oil grid? That'd... be bad.

But "economically affordable" oil is too vague. Each individual has a different value to oil based on their wants and would glady pay huge sums, while others already think it's too much and take public transportation. The most likely scenario is the price, in real terms, will rise to some level a bit higher than it is now, and stay more or less pegged right there even as the amount supplied dwindles; that'll be some equilibrium price range where other technologies slowly enter the market and take over demand. Ethanol production is booming. People are finally aware again that nuclear power is good power. Companies are starting to come up with wild ideas like covering the moon in solar panels or some such thing, idea's that eventually make it to market (in possibly no form representing the original). The process I described is already happening, we need only let it continue.


RE: By 2017
By mindless1 on 4/5/2007 8:11:26 PM , Rating: 2
The big problem is we casually assume technology will always asave us, that there will be alternative after alternative. More like burning bridges one at a time.

Does it matter if it takes 50 years or 200 for oil to run out? Not necessarily, the motivation to change will come from the lack of sustainability of our present fuels, but ultimately behaviors only change as required, the world may be too polluted to live on in 800 years or 1000 but does 200 years make a difference in the grand scheme of things?


RE: By 2017
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 9:54:30 PM , Rating: 2
Who cares if we run out of oil? It just means that we'll slowly switch over to other energy sources. Big deal. The only reason we use so much oil for energy is because the infrastructure is in place and it is cheap. Our economies and investments will slowly adapt to other energy sources as oil becomes gradully more scarce and more expensive. And during that time, other alternatives will become relatively less expensive.

I fail to see how "running out of oil" is something we're supposed to be afraid of.


RE: By 2017
By Hoser McMoose on 4/5/2007 5:05:27 PM , Rating: 2
On the other hand, another reason why those 50 years of proven reserves figure is meaningless is because a good chunk of the "proven" reserves are not proven, particularly in the OPEC countries. It's pretty well known that the OPEC figures are inaccurate, but what is not known is just HOW inaccurate they might be. Some figure that they're within only a few percent, others suggest that some could have overestimated by as much as 200%. Considering that OPEC controls about 66% of the proven reserves, even a small discrepancies in their numbers add up to a VERY LARGE amount.

The basic result is the same, nobody really knows how much oil is out there.


RE: By 2017
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 5:20:54 PM , Rating: 2
We also have over 2.6 trillion barrels of shale oil in the world...much of it in Canada. Most of it isn't economical to extract right now, when oil is cheaper than milk from the local cow. But when prices rise, it will be. That's nearly an extra 100 years right there.


RE: By 2017
By Moishe on 4/6/2007 8:25:02 AM , Rating: 2
makes no sense why this is modded down... it's not a troll or even some ridiculous personal opinion.


RE: By 2017
By sieistganzfett on 4/5/07, Rating: -1
RE: By 2017
By Hoser McMoose on 4/5/2007 4:40:08 PM , Rating: 4
We aren't going to flat out "run out" of fossil fuels for a good 300+ years, if ever (especially if you're actually talking about fossil fuels, which includes coal, and not just oil). Of course, by that time our entire oil-based economy will have LONG since collapsed, making "running out" kind of a moot point.

One of the keys is peak production and production cost. Oil is getting harder and harder to find and we're producing less and less of it from easy sources. All sources of oil have a peak production point, a time in the life cycle of that source where production is as high as it can possibly be. From then on the production decreases. Eventually we are going to hit a point where the total production of the entire world has peaked and starts to decrease. This is the point where new oil production coming in is just not able to keep pace with the decrease or flat out stopping of old oil sources.

Given that the rate of oil use is MUCH higher then the rate at which oil is generated, at some point in time we MUST hit that peak, it's just a question of when. Pessimists say we likely peaked in about 2004 or 2005. Optimists say that it's about 80-100 years off. Others feel that we'll never hit a peak because costs will rise so much that it will force use down, indefinitely pushing out the point of peak production.

Regardless of what scenario you follow it seems likely that oil will probably rise faster than inflation into the foreseeable future.


RE: By 2017
By Moishe on 4/6/2007 8:21:36 AM , Rating: 2
maybe... assuming fuels are no longer being made somewhere under the earth beneath us. I've heard people say times shorter and times much longer. The reality is that anything you hear is just a guess (maybe educated guess)


RE: By 2017
By mtnmanak on 4/6/2007 4:21:08 AM , Rating: 2
Google "deep earth oil"


hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By Saist on 4/5/2007 4:32:16 PM , Rating: 1
Number 1 : Liberal democrats in congress have made it illegal to drill for oil inside of Alaska or off the coast of Washington State.

Number 2 : Liberal democrats have successfully implemented unnecessary fees, taxes, and licenses on Gulf Oil Diggers making oil drilling unprofitable and unreasonable for Oil Companies existing in Texas and Louisiana, as well as discouraging oil exploration off of Flordia in US owened waters.

Number 3 : Liberal democrats have successfully implemented taxes, fees, and licenses on Oil Refineries forcing hundreds to close down.

Number 4 : Liberal democrats have successfully implemented legislation making it illegal to sell Oil refined for New York to be sold in Georgia. When these oil restrictions were removed during the after math of Hurricane Katrina, the cost of transporting oil to where it was needed dropped drastically. Basically, if there is a Gas Shortage in, say, California, Gas stations have to wait for Gas refined for California to be delivered, rather than say, just diverting fuel refined for say, Nevada.

Number 5 : A liberal democrat in California blocked an Oil Company from drilling in order for a Multi-year wildlife study to be completed.

Does anybody else see a pattern here? Who exactly is Anti-Energy? Who exactly is causing your dollars to fly out at the pump while being dependent on nations that we are at WAR with to supply our fuel?

Liberal. Democrats.

So, the next time a poll comes up and you have a choice of who goes into office, keep in mind who is directly responsible for the dependency we have on foriegn oil. We have plenty of oil in our own backyard. We have plenty of refineries to get that oil converted to Gasoline. The amount of oil estimated to be left in the areas mentioned above would last us over 300 years if our current Fuel Consumption rate DOUBLED! At our current Consumption rate, there is enough oil to last over 600 years.

So, if you did vote democrat this past election... you might want to look in the mirror than punch yourself in the jaw, as you would be directly responsible for the price of gas.

Oh... and for those promoting Hybrids... you might want to watch a pokey motoring show in Dear Old Britain, on that normal waste of my tax Money, the BBC. It's called Top Gear. Care to guess what Mr. Clarkson found when driving a VW Golf Diesel through London?

Oh... yes... it was a 73 mile to the gallon car.

So, stick that in your tail pipe Toyota. Want fuel efficiency? Get a diesel.




By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 4:45:06 PM , Rating: 2
Don't you want to save our local capacity for after the oil wars begin? Seems like a waste to use it up now.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By Spinne on 4/5/2007 4:58:10 PM , Rating: 2
I won't question the accuracy of your statements, but all that I do want to point out is that MOST of the trucks and SUVs I see being driven around are usually empty. Now you might point out that the beauty of a capitalist democracy is that if I should choose to drive my big truck empty, it's my choice. I agree. However, the sad reality is that we live in the presence of others annd so must come up with mutually agreed up standards of conduct. That is precisely why murdering and looting are considered socially unacceptable behaviours that are punishable by law. So the point is that if enough people like chipmunks to have SUVs and trucks banned from being driven around empty by making it prohibitively expensive, you just have to suck it up. About the best that you can do if you're really fanatical is yell at your daughter when she starts becomming a vegan.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 5:33:58 PM , Rating: 2
> "we...must come up with mutually agreed up standards of conduct. That is precisely why murdering and looting are considered socially unacceptable behaviours that are punishable by law..."

No. The US government is based on majority rule true...but also the principle of minority rights. Murder isn't just "socially unacceptable"; its a violation of personal liberty. Your personal choice of vehicle doesn't fall into that category.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By smitty3268 on 4/5/2007 6:50:54 PM , Rating: 2
However, you have a "right" to live. You don't have a right to drive anything, let alone choose a type of vehicle. So while you make the rather obvious point that murder and choosing a gas hog aren't comparable, the original point that the government could ban them for the "socially unacceptable behavior" reason still stands.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 10:13:53 PM , Rating: 2
I don't know what the heck you're talking about. The government has no right to restrict what I can and cannot drive except if it has a compelling reason do to so. Just because a particular vehicle consumes marginally more resources than another is not a compelling reason. There is nothing inherently bad or harmful in that.

And before you say there is, let me give you this example. Suppose I have an SUV that gets 22mpg, and I live 10 miles from work, and thus put on about 7500 miles/year. Compare that to someone else that gets 35mpg, but lives 40 miles from work, and thus drives about 15,000 miles per year. Who is doing more environmental harm?

I don't personally care for SUVs, however, I do enjoy my right to decide what kind of vehicle is best for my family, based on what I can afford. That's how it should be.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By theapparition on 4/7/2007 11:21:02 AM , Rating: 2
TomZ,
Based on your example, you'd be putting only 5K/year vs. the other guy putting on 20K/year (based on roundtrip/5day/50week). Your inefficient monstrous SUV only used 333 gallons (22mpg is unrealistic for typical big SUV, so I substituted 15mpg). The efficient car consumed 571 gallons. That disgusting SUV used 58% less gas than the eco friendly car. This only goes to further strengthen your post.

No, the psedo-eco-terrorists would then claim that if the government "forced" everyone to drive min 35mpg cars, your 10mile trip to work would now only use 143gal. As for the guy who lives too far, the government should "force" him to move closer. Personal rights should take a back seat towards their agenda, despite the fact that this country was founded on the very premise of personal liberty. Forget about having a boat, or towing a trailer to go camping with the family, that's not efficient enough. Forget about doing any home improvements, since no 35mpg vehicule can fit a 4x8sheet of drywall/plywood. The problem is, your trying to rationalize with the irrational.

Despite everyone's insistance that we must "take action", the market will correct itself. With the recent surge in gas prices (which are incredibly low, adjusted for inflation), fuel economy has jumped to the forefront of many consumers minds, and they are now factoring it on their vehicule purchase decisions. If I chose to pay more, that's up to me, not for the government to mandate.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 5:32:23 PM , Rating: 2
> "Your [SUV] only used 333 gallons...The efficient car consumed 571 gallons..."

Therefore, in this scenario, the driver of the efficient car produced more CO2 and air pollution than the driver of the SUV. TomZ's point is proven.


By theapparition on 4/8/2007 9:04:14 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Therefore, in this scenario, the driver of the efficient car produced more CO2 and air pollution than the driver of the SUV. TomZ's point is proven.

I hope you didn't take it that I disagreed with TomZ's original assertation. I completely agree. My numbers only went to confirm his posting. I was only trying to interject a little satire along with my reply by calling SUV's "monsterous" and "disgusting".


By joex444 on 4/5/2007 10:10:15 PM , Rating: 2
Haha, one time I saw a woman in a Hummer pulling out of her driveway. Think of it, a Hummer occupied by 1 person?

I literally rolled my window down just to give her the finger.


By Scabies on 4/5/2007 5:09:02 PM , Rating: 2
before you get modded into oblivion by those whom you lambast... I appreciate the points you raised. Whether or not there are counterpoints, they do shed interesting light on the subject


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By smitty3268 on 4/5/2007 6:37:58 PM , Rating: 5
I'm not sure this rant is really worth responding to, but I guess I will anyway.

quote:
Number 3 : Liberal democrats have successfully implemented taxes, fees, and licenses on Oil Refineries forcing hundreds to close down.

The oil companies are making billions of dollars a month and a few taxes forced them to close down? The truth is that during the nineties gas was extremely cheap because there were so many refineries, and the oil companies decided to close a lot of them down so they could raise their profit margins. Democrats didn't shut down these refineries, the free market did.

quote:
Number 1 : Liberal democrats in congress have made it illegal to drill for oil inside of Alaska or off the coast of Washington State.

You make it sound like all drilling has stopped. I look at that oil as being part of the Strategic Reserve anyway. Better we still have some in the ground after everyone else has run out.

quote:
as well as discouraging oil exploration off of Flordia in US owened waters.

I could be wrong here, but wasn't it Jeb Bush (Republican, and brother to the President) who made drilling off of Florida's coast illegal? He's not exactly a "liberal democrat."

quote:
Who exactly is causing your dollars to fly out at the pump while being dependent on nations that we are at WAR with to supply our fuel?

It's a common misconception that we get most of our fuel from the middle east. Actually, most comes from the US, Canada, and Mexico. Although Saudi Arabia does send a lot as well.

quote:
So, if you did vote democrat this past election... you might want to look in the mirror than punch yourself in the jaw, as you would be directly responsible for the price of gas.

The free market is responsible for the price of gas, plus all the taxes that are added on top. These are nothing new and have been around forever, and endorsed by both Republicans and Democrats.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 6:47:02 PM , Rating: 2
> "The oil companies are making billions of dollars a month and a few taxes forced them to close down? "

It doesn't matter how much money you make drilling in other areas...when a law legally bars you from drilling in the US, or raises the price to where you lose money on each barrel, then you're shut down.

> "and the oil companies decided to close a lot of refineries down"....

There hasn't been a single new refinery built in the US since the late 1970s. Why? Because between EPA and local regulations, there are over 600 different permits required. Quite often they're simply rejected out of hand, by local politicos who don't want a refinery nearby. Plenty of companies have tried...but so far, none have suceeded.

> "It's a common misconception that we get most of our fuel from the middle east."

OPEC controls the world's oil supply, even though they pump less than a mjority. Why? Because not only are they a unified cartel, but they control nearly all the excess capacity. When demand rises, OPEC must fill it...no one else really can. This is a simple fact.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By smitty3268 on 4/5/2007 6:58:27 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
OPEC controls the world's oil supply, even though they pump less than a mjority. Why? Because not only are they a unified cartel, but they control nearly all the excess capacity. When demand rises, OPEC must fill it...no one else really can. This is a simple fact.

Except they haven't been united for decades, and most people doubt that is even possible any more. There will always be one or two who cheat to get the extra money. Russia has also started supplying a lot more energy (although you could argue that's no better).

quote:
There hasn't been a single new refinery built in the US since the late 1970s. Why? Because between EPA and local regulations, there are over 600 different permits required. Quite often they're simply rejected out of hand, by local politicos who don't want a refinery nearby. Plenty of companies have tried...but so far, none have suceeded.

You're talking about permits, not taxes like the original poster. Anyway, blaming "liberal democrats" for blocking nearby refineries is wrong - nobody wants them next door, liberal or conservative.

My point stands - the main reason gas is expensive today is that so many refineries have been shut down. The reason they were shut down is the oil companies thought they had too much excess capacity, and by running them at higher loads they could be more efficient. Not caring that the lowering of supply and rising demand also raised prices for consumers. A textbook case of the free market.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 7:20:38 PM , Rating: 2
> "You're talking about permits, not taxes like the original poster"

I'm talking about both. The permits are a huge part of the problem, but the other issue is the nonlevel playing field. Existing refineries are, while still heavily regulated, grandfathered in at a higher emissions rate (under the Clean Air Act) than new plants would be required to meet. So, even assuming a new plant ever gets approved, its going to be less profitable than an existing one. That explains why so few refineries were even attempted until the late 1990s...at the price of gasoline before that, it just wouldn't have been economical.

My point still stands. The reason gasoline is expensive is because the regulatory environment in the US prevents capacity from expanding. So prices must rise to force demand down, lest the pumps run dry.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By smitty3268 on 4/5/2007 7:46:45 PM , Rating: 2
OK, I agree with most of that. Your post is quite different than the one I originally replied too, though. I'm almost certain a lot of refineries were closed in the late nineties, which is why supply is so tight right now, but you're correct that some of those might have been reopened if they didn't have to upgrade the environmental protections in them. In the end the oil companies are so obscenely profitable that they could force through some new refineries if they really wanted to. But the current status of the market rewards them for not doing so.


By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 1:09:27 AM , Rating: 2
> "the current status of the market rewards them for not doing so. "

The current state of ANY markets rewards a company who lacks sufficient competition. Prices eventually rise...and that extra profit attracts competitors.

The problem is that, for oil refining, we've broken that system. Since we don't allow new refineries to be built, new competitors aren't showing up...and our production capacity isn't rising with demand. It's a sad situation I agree-- but we did it to ourselves.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By Lord 666 on 4/5/2007 9:25:38 PM , Rating: 2
I will agree with one point about diesel being an immediate increase to fuel efficiency. Perfect examples are the Honda CRV petrol achieves 21mpg while a CRV Diesel gets around 44mpg. UK Accord (US TSX) diesel achieves 52mpg combined while the petrol is around 27mpg.

It will not cost GM 40 billion dollars to achieve these numbers using existing technology. If GM made products people actually wanted to buy (myself included) then they would not be having this problem. Sell an Saturn Aura diesel that gets 40mpg+ and that is reliable and people will be flocking to their dealerships.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By TomZ on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
By Lord 666 on 4/5/2007 9:57:26 PM , Rating: 2
I live in NJ and the regular petrol and diesel prices are the same.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By ApostolicFire on 4/5/2007 10:48:17 PM , Rating: 4
I don't get it. He gives examples of MPG improvements of around 100% and you're whining about a 20% increase in the cost of fuel? Please don't tell me I need to do the math for you...


By TomZ on 4/5/2007 11:29:12 PM , Rating: 2
You're right - my bad.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 11:53:40 PM , Rating: 1
> "Sell an Saturn Aura diesel that gets 40mpg+..."

Diesels aren't a magic bullet. They are more efficient...but that efficiency has a price. Even the most ultraclean diesel pollutes more than a good gas engine. It may win in CO2 emisssions, but it loses in particulates.

And yes, I know modern diesels are far cleaner than the ones of 20 years ago. They still are a step behind gas.


RE: hybird... yeah. right. Diesel is better.
By rtrski on 4/6/2007 2:12:56 PM , Rating: 2
Not to mention I believe you only get a bit under half as much diesel as gas from refining a barrel of crude. So if you go all the way back to the original resource, and your concern is 'supply' (or at least pumping and refining throughput, ignoring the whole "we're running out" debate), increasing diesel usage will have an impact on diesel prices very quickly, narrowing the economic advantage while increasing that particulate count.

Think gas prices fluctuate fast? Just watch how fast diesel prices do if you start increasing demand in the personal-vehicle sector by large percentage points....


By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 5:59:50 PM , Rating: 2
> "I believe you only get a bit under half as much diesel as gas from refining a barrel of crude."

Its not so simple. You can crack diesel into gasoline, or akylate gas into diesel...so, with a little extra effort, you can divide up the fractions how you wish. In fact today, a substantial amount of what would normally be diesel is cracked into gasoline during the refining process.


By Kuroyama on 4/8/2007 10:48:59 AM , Rating: 2
Hope you realize that an Imperial gallon is 1.2 US gallon, so the 73mpg in UK is a still impressive 60mpg in US gallons.


we don't need 300hp
By jmunjr on 4/5/2007 5:37:49 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe someone already made this point but nearly all cars today, even the crappy ones, have more horsepower than an above average car in the 80s, heck even 90s. Your average sedan has over 200hp now, with MANY topping 300hp!

Does it not make sense that the automakers can increase fuel economy by scaling back the power of the engines in favor of fuel economy, and can't some of this currently be done in software(via the ECU)?




RE: we don't need 300hp
By FITCamaro on 4/5/2007 6:47:56 PM , Rating: 2
Lower horsepower does not equal better mileage. Yes less aggressive camshaft profiles can provide some increased mpg. But lowering horsepower will not improve mileage by much if at all. In fact if you look at Chevy's V8s, you'll see that, for the engine size, they get excellent mileage and power. 400 horsepower and 18-20 in the city and 29-30 on the highway? Some people are getting 35 highway. Why? High compression and good tuning. Lowering horsepower will not affect mileage in any meaningful way. If you look at most cars that offer two V6 engines, one lower horsepower than the other, you'll see that the mileage difference between them is 1-2mpg if anything at all. The only thing higher horsepower impacts is cost.

And yes, bio-diesel would be an excellent way to cut fuel usage. However diesel's are more expensive and the sad fact is that the majority of Americans want things as cheap as possible. Look at how shitty cars like Hyundai's and Kia's are doing. Or crappy computers like Emachines.

And the top post of this article couldn't be more wrong. The only reason why imports have better mileage as a company is because they have fewer large vehicles. If you compare most engines per size, mpg, and horsepower, American and imports are pretty much the same. And as the engines go larger, the difference becomes smaller. When you get to the V8s, American V8s get better mileage. Nissan's 5.7L V8 trucks get worse mileage compared to Chevy's.


RE: we don't need 300hp
By joex444 on 4/5/2007 10:05:22 PM , Rating: 2
Screw it, take my car for example. It has a 3.8L V6, and it gets 12mpg (all city). The "fun"? 110hp, there is no fun.


RE: we don't need 300hp
By herm0016 on 4/5/2007 11:38:12 PM , Rating: 2
if your 3.8 is getting 12mpg then you need a tune up!! my 3.8 in a rather large car gets 29 to 32 on the hwy and around 22 in the city.


RE: we don't need 300hp
By ralith on 4/6/2007 9:10:00 AM , Rating: 2
Although I have to agree with you on compression ratio being a good general indicator of engine efficiency it is by no means THE measurement. Gearing, for instance, can make a big difference in mileage. Changing displacement will change fuel consumtion rates for the engine at equivalent rpm so a bored or stoked engine WILL require more fuel per mile unless you change your rear diff or tranny. Generally, it takes a bit of engineering to insure you've hit an acceptable point on the torque and power curves with your new tranny or rear diff, which is why most people don't bother with it.

I second that about the Titan. My old chevy got 16ish in the city. My Titan about 13ish. I will say the Titan has WAY more torque. Darn thing breaks the tires lose if you just look at the accelerator pedal funny.


RE: we don't need 300hp
By theapparition on 4/7/2007 11:37:28 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Changing displacement will change fuel consumtion rates for the engine at equivalent rpm so a bored or stoked engine WILL require more fuel per mile unless you change your rear diff or tranny.

Changing displacement will require more, but most competing low displacement engines require higher RPMs to achieve the same result. Net effect, zero.
Rear end changes don't signifigantly effect fuel economy for all except high speed driving. Most imports, while rather high on economy, have very high final drive ratios.......3.5-4.1, because engines are so underpowered and performance would be so pathetic, that no american consumer would touch them.


RE: we don't need 300hp
By Slaimus on 4/5/2007 6:55:57 PM , Rating: 2
The auto makers do scale back the power, mainly by offering you a choice of engines. Almost all SUVs have 6 cylinder options and almost all crossovers have 4 cylinder options.

You can buy your Chrysler 300 with a 2.7L V6 instead of the 5.7L hemi.


RE: we don't need 300hp
By hobbes7869 on 4/5/2007 7:28:42 PM , Rating: 2
We do need horspower, more is better, in my opinion, and many others like myself. Just like some people like fancy horses, or fancy linens, I like horspower. Who are you to say we dont need it? It really bugs me when folks say, why do you need this? If you don't understand, don't ask. Though I can sum it up in just a few short words..."For FUN!!" Why do you need your expensive vacations,nice clothes..etc? You get the picture


RE: we don't need 300hp
By jmunjr on 4/7/2007 3:42:59 AM , Rating: 2
I never said anything about "need". It really bugs me when reading comprehension skills are worse than the fuel economy of a Hummer H1.

You also completely missed the point of the post. WTF?


RE: we don't need 300hp
By jmunjr on 4/7/2007 3:44:07 AM , Rating: 2
oh yeah except in the title... At least I caught it first..


RE: we don't need 300hp
By jmunjr on 4/7/2007 3:46:32 AM , Rating: 2
Oh and also I love horsepower and have had a few high performance cars and even plan to restore an old 350 Camaro, but we still don't NEED all that power. Sure, many of us WANT it, but we don't need it.


My 4 cents
By psychmike123 on 4/5/2007 4:34:51 PM , Rating: 1
Oil will not run out on a set date. As oil reserves are consumed, it will become increasingly expensive and difficult to extract further supplies. Like most things in the universe, available oil likely follows a bell distribution. Most experts think we've either passed or will soon pass the mean which means that things get harder and harder from here.

Stated reserves mean next to nothing. OPEC companies are allowed to pump a certain percentage of their reserves. One way to make more money is to simply lie about their reserves so that they can produce more in the short term.

Canadians do consume more energy per capita but at least part of it is because of weather. To my shame (I'm Canadian), we seem as obsessed with large and powerful cars and could certainly do better on almost every front.

I agree with the poster that said that efficiency is not the problem. Look at things that we're REALLY efficient with, like food production. What do we do? We waste more. When they developed high efficiency glass, they just made bigger windows.

In my mind, we simply live in too complicated and artificial an environment. We have supernormal stimuli that are healthy in small amounts but unhealthy in large amounts, like sugar and meat. The problem is we can produce whatever we want to satiate these desires. We also have the dilema of the commons. Why should I cut down on water consumption when my neighbour will just use more? How do I consider the common good when I don't believe others will adhere to the same norms?

In my mind, the best way to deal with problems is to tax undesirable behaviour and to create financial incentives for desired behaviour. Put a tax on big SUVs and give rebates on hybrids. Tax energy and water usage above what is required for the average person and it will create incentives to conserve, not just among consumers, but with inventors as well.

My 4 cents.

Mike




RE: My 4 cents
By Zorlac on 4/5/2007 5:06:16 PM , Rating: 2
TOTALLY agree! The only thing that will make most people change is if money is involved.

And I think it is pathetic that these auto makers complain about cost, etc., but yet they are still pumping out SUVs like there is no tomorrow! Stop trying to make a freaking tank (yes, the armored vehicles with a huge ass gun on the front) efficient!!! Its NOT going to happen!

Maybe the government should set weight restrictions for vehicles and that way only commercial use vehicles can weigh as much as a SUV!


RE: My 4 cents
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 5:28:19 PM , Rating: 2
> "Maybe the government should set weight restrictions for vehicles and that way only commercial use vehicles can weigh as much as a SUV! "

I totally agree! They should also set power regulations for computers, so only commercial servers can have a dual-core or better processor, or a power supply larger than 300watts. Then, they can tackle all these idiots who waste gas driving to meet friends and family...haven't they ever heard of a telephone?


RE: My 4 cents
By dluther on 4/6/2007 5:02:48 AM , Rating: 2
Sarcasm, thy name is "masher2"...


RE: My 4 cents
By mikeupnorth on 4/5/2007 5:58:02 PM , Rating: 3
Automakers don't dictate what kind of cars people want...people do. If suddenly everyone in America suddenly wanted to drive tiny gas sipping cars, they would build those instead of SUVs. They just want to make money selling the stuff to you. But since a lot of people still like SUVs, they still build them. Common sense.

And I absolutely do not want the goverment dictating what kind of cars I am allowed to buy. If you really would like to live in a place where the government decides everything for you, maybe you should try living in a place like China for a while and see how you like it.


RE: My 4 cents
By Slaimus on 4/5/2007 6:59:00 PM , Rating: 2
The government already does, with the gas guzzler tax.


Nothing had better get worse...
By hobbes7869 on 4/5/2007 7:21:58 PM , Rating: 2
As long as price does not increase and performance and the "fun to drive" factor are not influenced, this idea is fine. However, it should not be done to help cut down on greenhouse gas emissions or anything else, it should be done because it is better, either cheaper to run and maintain, more performance for you buck or the changes mandated improve the drive of the vehicle. These changes should be brought about because of real, quantifiable benefits. Reducing greenhouse gases is not, no one really knows yet what these gases do to the enviroment. The science has not been settled, nor will it be until politicians and hollywood become bored of global warming and move on. Then real science can begin to investigate into greenhouse gases and their effect on global temperatures.




RE: Nothing had better get worse...
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 7:33:12 PM , Rating: 2
Just wanted to note the second half of that was the dumbest comment in the thread. You got your talking points confused and took if a few steps beyond where the argument is.

It was hard to come up with an analogy, but yours is something like "We don't know yet if carcinogens cause cancer."


RE: Nothing had better get worse...
By joex444 on 4/5/2007 10:25:31 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, don't be so quick to dismiss.

As an undergraduate science major, I have a few basic points to make.

1 - Yes, CO2 causes some warming. We also have much worse things, though, like NOx which (as I recall) is 296x more harmful, gram for gram.
2 - The sun's activity has been increasing over the last 100 years, a warming pattern has been found in Neptune, Mars, and Titan as well as Earth. See also: Medieval Warm Period (I'd like to point out there were no SUVs then) and the Little Ice Age. It's currently estimated that 75% of global warming can be explained from this, though that is quite a new estimate and is being disputed.
3 - Levels of CO2 in the atmosphere are capable of being determined for years previous, and charting the last 200 years or so we see a gradual ~50 year cycle of high and low. Now, when the car was created we were just hitting a natural high. Since then it's reached levels never seen before - about 50% higher than the naturally occuring levels.
4 - Ethanol is the most useless alternative fuel I've heard of.
4a - The increase in gas prices last summer was because of a 10% mix of Ethanol, which was selling for about $4.50/gal. This easily marked up the price of gas by $0.25, the rest can be attribted to a record oil price.
4b - The level of greenhouse gases produced are within 10% of that of gasoline. It also offers slightly lower fuel efficiency, meaning that it pollutes just as much.
4c - We need to grow corn (Brazil uses the more efficient Sugar Beet) to refine into an alcohol. Farming takes a huge amount of irrigation water. Some parts of the country actually have depleted the natural water reservoirs and are importing the water (see: Los Angeles, California) from other regions. If the corn production increases to create alcohol fuel, then the water situation gets worse and pollution hasn't decreased due to vehicles.

Basically, I like the Tesla Roadster - there should be something more mass produced. The Volt would be a better step, mass produced, <$25k. It is supposed to have an electric engine, with a battery capable of 80 miles of travel, and a 1.4L 3 cylinder that recharges the battery, for a total range of 300 miles. With 3 cylinders, you'd expect gas mileage, once the battery runs out, to be on par with the Geo Metro (~50mpg). With regenerative braking, it might actually be better. Also notice that the gas engine wouldn't have to change rotational speed if the car has a CVT. This would also increase fuel efficiency, and the Geo is a 15 year+ old engine, general efficiency has increased somewhat. Using a diesel engine would be even better, as they are suited to running long periods of time at constant rotational speed.

In the IMMEDIATE term, as already pointed out, DIESEL. It has a 50% thermal efficiency versus Gas at 27% (that is, the amount of energy stored in chemical bonds that is released as kinetic energy upon burning). Now, the trouble is partly that diesel fuels release some different chemicals than gas. There are more NOx, which HAVE to be reduced to below gasoline levels, and the general sulfur levels (the distinctive diesel smell) have to come down.


By BMFPitt on 4/6/2007 5:29:46 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe you should have actually read what I was mocking, rather than defend some totally unrelated points.


..... no comment
By chakily on 4/7/2007 10:55:25 AM , Rating: 2
The debate is wide opened.. But The question (and answer) is so easy..

A lot of people speak about huge houses to warm in the US, cold winter in Canada oe Sweden ans so on... Rich countries with a lot of consumption against thirdworld countries... Why do we need to be "against" sustainable develppment and reusable energy ? Why do you want to be "oil" addicts ???

So many people Im speaking with said to me " A solar panel in Belgium to warm the water ? you're stupid". No I'm not.. 70 % effienciency in Belgium... Big supermarket with solar panels, Windmills.. It works. THIS IS THE ANSWER. IT WORKS. Hydrogen Cars ? It works. It cost more energy to produce it, but IT WORKS.

You need oil to produce plastic ? FALSE !!! 20 km far from my house, there is a little company able to produce Borads for cars, Glasses and son on from "bettrave" (vegetable..we make sugar with).. and it WORKS..

The question : Why don't we put money in R&D for this ? We try to decraese fuel consumption.. this is a short term solution.. The way some people think here won't help the planet.. seriously... It is so easy to sor out the dishes, to buy a small car, to have solar panels..to use boats instead of trucks..or train instead of trucks. this is a long list... The only inconvenient : Our confort.. We must be fast..and take care of this cost some money and is time consuming.

The question is not "whic country consummes too many ressources"... this is stupid.. the question is not "which car is not a "green" car".. When we will focus on research allowing us to use something else than oil.. we'll win, but sme governments, rich industrial people won't help us...




RE: ..... no comment
By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 5:35:46 PM , Rating: 2
> "Why do we need to be "against" sustainable develppment and reusable energy ?"

No one is against renewable energy. People are against exorbitantly expensive energy. Especially when that higher price tag comes without a corresponding benefit.


RE: ..... no comment
By MattNis on 4/8/2007 1:08:04 AM , Rating: 2
Oil is a renewable energy source. It's not made from dinosaurs but is created through natural processes within the earth. New big reserves of oil are being found every year and will continue to be found forever. Oil is expensive only because of geo-political reasons. GM is wrong about how much it would cost to comply with Bush's requirement. They should just make much smaller engines for all of their cars. Many ppl want the nice big comfortable and stylish SUV but don't care for the blistering speed. Just put in a 30mpg 1.8l engine in it and they will buy it.


RE: ..... no comment
By masher2 (blog) on 4/8/2007 2:24:10 PM , Rating: 2
> "Oil is a renewable energy source..."

I have to point out that abiotic oil production is a very controversial theory that, even if correct does not neccesarily imply oil is a renewable resource...the rate of production can easily be too low to compensate for demand. I wrote a blog about it here some time back:

http://www.dailytech.com/Petroleum+Why+Well+Never+...

However, given an abundant supply of electricity, artificial petroleum can easily be produced. If that electricity is cheap-- the oil will be too.


GM out of touch?
By JAB on 4/8/2007 2:57:59 AM , Rating: 2
Perhaps I am off base but I find it distressing that GM is so quick to complain about effecency when nearly everyone want better gas milage. There is a reason they were dethrowned from the top car maker seat to Toyota.

They can make there gas guzzeler SUV's trucks and land crusers fule effecent. If GM can make their sports cars get 30MPH you can at least get 15 MPG out of a SUV if you try. Nissan has fule effecent truck why not GM and the other US makers?

Even if there is no law to mandate it GM needs to become more fule effecent or get pushed out of the market by people willing to adapt.




RE: GM out of touch?
By masher2 (blog) on 4/8/2007 2:33:05 PM , Rating: 2
> "nearly everyone want better gas milage..."

Everyone wants it...but they want it for free. They want it to come without a higher price and (most importantly) without having to buy a smaller or less-powerful car.

GM already sells cars far above the MPG requirements of even these new regulations. Few people buy them however.

> "If GM can make their sports cars get 30MPH you can at least get 15 MPG out of a SUV "

Ever hear of Newton's Second Law? Sports cars are very light by design. An SUV is large and massive. Moving that extra weight requires more energy, plain and simple.

While exotic materials can be used to lower the weight, they are extraordinarily expensive. What can be sold in a $500,000 sports car don't fly in the $30-50,000 SUV market.


By isaacmacdonald on 4/6/2007 10:59:54 AM , Rating: 2
I really don't get the point of fuel efficiency standards. Given some price level for gasoline, consumers are going to purchase what they want. If they want high efficiency cars, they'll buy them. From an economic viewpoint, legislating fuel efficiency standards seems backwards.

If there is some compelling reason to reduce gasoline consumption (strategic, environmental, or otherwise) it would be far more efficient to simply raise taxes on gasoline. Then consumers would naturally adjust their behavior to maximize their utility. You could even take that tax income and give it back to the consumer in the form of reduced federal income taxes so that on average the loss of income from gasoline taxes will be offset by the reduction in income taxes.




By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 11:23:55 AM , Rating: 1
> "From an economic viewpoint, legislating fuel efficiency standards seems backwards...it would be far more efficient to simply raise taxes on gasoline..."

Very true. But legislating standards has the benefit of being a hidden tax on consumers. They see a higher tax on gasoline-- they make angry calls to their congressmen. But when they see higher prices on vehicles, they blame Ford and GM...even if the cause was federal legislation.


By Toebot on 4/6/2007 1:05:38 AM , Rating: 2
If he had seen the video he would have noticed Mr Bush's rather obvious Winking. The Bush Administration calling for improved fuel efficiency, Ha ha hahhhahah, oh man I just can't stop laughing, hahhahhahhhahh, sorry, I've got to sit down.




Interesting developement
By bernardl on 4/6/2007 1:05:47 AM , Rating: 2
God knows how much I despise the Bush administration, but they have to be applauded for finally acknowledging that something needs to be done quickly on the environmental front.

Focussing on the nationalist issue of energy indenpendancy months before the campain was obviously just a way so save the face, but the net result remains excellent.

I feel a bit sorry for all the hard core Republicans who have been claiming openly that protecting the environment was such a bad thing to do... they are left being very alone out there.

It won't take much to have the US regain the place where it deserves to be about protecting the environment, and that is at the forefront.

Cheers,
Bernard




By Comdrpopnfresh on 4/6/2007 2:26:41 AM , Rating: 2
The auto companies claim that the costs are too much to make E85 cars? LOL. They save the companies every year on maintenance calls under warranty. They were standard on many SUVs and trucks since the ninety's, but when the whole ethanol boom came over, they advertised it up, stuck on new yellow caps, and an increase on the sticker price!
I don't care why Bush is doing this, lets just take it as a good thing.




cars ?
By chakily on 4/6/2007 7:57:08 AM , Rating: 2
I'm come from Belgium and read some of those comments everyday.

1. You use more because you produce more ??? Oo
2. One of you gave some cars example outside US. like "UK = Rolls Royce V12 6.7Litre, Japan = Nissan 4.5L V8 in the Infiniti also in the rumored 450Z,Germany = Mercedes V12 6Litre in the CL65, BMW has one as well." and so on.. stop to be silly ! Thos cars are the biggest one in each brand, the most expensive... Majors market shares are in what we call "B-C segment". Ford Focus, Nissan Almera, 1.4litre ou 1.9 Diesel engines !!!! 5.9 l/100 km fuel consumption. Please check US car catalogue within the US.
3. Stop saying you do not polutte so much.. China and United Staes are the biggest polluters. That's a fact.
4. Kyoto agreement is NUTS. Because even a country which has signed this agreement is still able to pollute if it pays.
5. Bob Lutz saying that decreasing from 20% the fuel consumption is impossible because too expensive ??? Wouhaaa Just decrease the weight and engine power of you HUMMER and start to buy small cars and it will decrease from 100%.
6. To be honnest I did not read all the answers.. but you should start taking into account what other people overhere say. I don't think Europe is nice... but a lot of citizens try to do their best to help..but it cost a lot... They are so many things to do on our own to decrease greenhouse effect.. Solar hot water maker (I'll have one at home with a year ==> 70% efficiency in Belgium, let's imagine in Florida). Some supermarket are equiped with Windmill or solar equipment.... Portugal, Spain..France and Germany believe in Wind..
Let's start with that... and than come back saying this is not US fault... I agree this is NOT your fault.. but your 10 years technical adavance should help to prepare a better future.

7. Sorry for my english. Have a great day and a nice WE.
8. Next election... Do not repeat a third time your error to vote for a "Bush" candidate.




Lutz is a putz
By EBH on 4/6/2007 11:39:24 AM , Rating: 2
He should have to pay out of his own pocket, not raise the price of the vehicles.
And duhhhhh, of course you would have to make all vehicles hybrid to reach that mark. WTF is he thinking; that its just a novel idea to play with?
This is why US auto makers suck and will get their ***'s handed to them from forign auto makers.
This whole "What!?! we have to not be greedy, and do something right for the americam people?!?" ploy is just plain rediculous.

All american "old" money at its best.




Oil shale and plastics
By elfy6x on 4/6/2007 1:53:48 PM , Rating: 2
Interesting discussions. I just wanted to add that oil is a critical component of making plastics. Medical instruments, bottles, food containers, toys, this list could go on for awhile. It wouldn't necessarily be wise to mine away all our oil. Our society depends heavily on plastics, so it would be nice to have some economically viable oil sources so a gallon of milk doesn't cost $15.00 because the cost of the jug it's in costs $14.00 to make. Just an example. Also, oil shale isn't quite economically viable yet. There are countless articles on the web about it (just search for "oil shale" on Google or Yahoo.) Take it for what you will, but here is a quote from wikipedia.

quote:
A critical measure of the viability of oil shale is the ratio of energy used to produce the oil, compared to the energy returned (Energy Returned on Energy Invested - EROEI). Oil shale typically has a very low EROEI. Generally, the oil shale has to be mined, transported, retorted, and then disposed of, so at least 40% of the energy value is consumed in production. Royal Dutch Shell reported a figure of EROEI about 3:1. That is, energy equivalent to one barrel of oil was used for every three gained, on its recent in-situ development (which uses electric heating of the shale up to 500 degrees fahrenheit (260 °C) while it is still in the ground, while also creating a frost shield around the mining site), Mahogany Research Project. This compares to a figure of typically 5:1 for conventional oil extraction. EROEI may be less important if alternate energy sources are used to fund the process. Coal was the primary power source used by the Shell pilot project.

Water is also needed to add hydrogen to the oil-shale oil before it can be shipped to a conventional oil refinery. The largest deposit of oil shale in the United States is in western Colorado (the Green River Shale deposits), a dry region with no surplus water. The oil shale can be ground into a slurry and transported via pipeline to a more suitable pre-refining location.


So true, it can be done, but it's obviously not as efficient yet. Maybe it will be someday, maybe not. But we should nonetheless, be aware of this fact and not bleed dry the most economically viable source we have at the moment. It never hurts to save some for later you know.




Fucking SUVs
By encryptkeeper on 4/6/2007 5:23:24 PM , Rating: 2
These are the gas guzzlers. Make THESE things 20% MORE efficent and you'll go from 17 miles a gallon to 21 miles a gallon. Or, just stop making these land yachts so the rest of us don't have to pay 4 dollars a gallon when we get 30 miles or more to the gallon. How hard would it be to add that extra mileage? Not friggin hard idiots, build something SMALLER.




mistake
By konekobot on 4/7/2007 12:44:18 PM , Rating: 2
i heard this Bush speech about fuel. he never mentioned "improving fuel efficiency". he only called for alternative sources of fuel.

he and his party also rejected the call for manufacturers to increase fuel efficiency by 4% each year.

who really cares if your car runs on gas, ethanol, or cooking oil? If i still have to pay $3+ a gallon and only get 23mpg, then it's not good enough.




GM still doesnt have a clue
By Dgacioch on 4/15/2007 3:04:36 PM , Rating: 2
As peak oil theory continues to become a more mainstream idea im still amazed the domestic automakers are fighting tooth and nail to keep making gas guzzlers that no one is going to buy.

My car lease is ending in 2 months and i looked hard at all the domestics, wanting to buy american. Other than the ford focus, the big 3 really dont have a very fuel efficient lineup. Their small and compact cars are simply outclassed in build quality and fuel mileage by the asian car makers.

And i really dont get the comment about it costing 5 to 6k more per car to eek out better fuel gains. There was a very good article on msn about how far fuel efficiency has actually fallen in the last 15 years. Granted the vehicles made today have more creature comforts than the ones from the early nineties, but cars like the old honda civic, geo metro, dodge colt, etc. prove it is possible to get over 45 mpg without buying an expensive hybrid. Newsflash to gm, make smaller cars with less powerful engines. Your fuel economy ratings will go up.

However, just like the 70's most of the big 3 are trying to sell bloated overweight gas guzzlers at the exact same time fuel prices are rising. They got killed then, and theyre getting killed now.

I realize all your marketing guys are telling you people want bigger cars. Heck I like a bigger car myself. Ultimately though, when gas hits 3 bucks a gallon and beyond people will buy whats economical, not necessarily whats comfortable. Theres a reason why back in the 80's people bought omni's, escorts, cavaliers, etc. They were reasonably priced, fairly reliable, and economical to own. As the economy continues to weaken demand for those types of vehicles is going to increase. Unfortunately for the domestic automakers, they dont have very many of those types of vehicles left anymore.




what a con
By anthony34 on 4/17/2007 10:07:53 PM , Rating: 2
personaly i beleive the whole concept of hybrid cars is just stupid.....

have you seen how awful the fuel efficency of regular gas cars are? - then compare them to exact same models in europe which acheive much higher figures. i believe the US cars over here are purposely designed to make hybrid cars look good.

Hybrid cars are just another way to make the car companies look good and make more money!




Excess horsepower
By exdeath on 4/5/2007 6:54:04 PM , Rating: 1
For those of you crying about excessive horsepower:

Oh I see how it is, it's ok for some of you to pass me in my 130 HP Camry in your nice shiny 240 HP car.

But if I come back and whoop your ass in my 700 HP Cobra, suddenly its excessive and you want to ban high performance cars and raise gas prices?

Bite me. I'll go back to driving my 130 HP car when you drive a 60 HP car and stop riding my ass.




RE: Excess horsepower
By joex444 on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
Association
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 6:59:57 PM , Rating: 1
While not a perfect rule, I find it very useful to see what else people say who are on one side of an issue or another.

In this case, there is a large overlap between people who say that global warming doesn't exist and those who don't believe in evolution. Seemingly for the same reason (they don't want it to be true.)




j
By chhimp on 4/6/2007 12:47:39 AM , Rating: 1
Change is good. Demand has grown exponentially while supply is diminishing. With global trading of oil, it's a matter of time before our oil reserves will be depleted. It's good to have future dead lines for inovations. And I understand why the price of gasoline will rise. At a certain price it will discourage consumption and motivate inovations as we are seeing today:)




Being Fair!
By Grast on 4/5/07, Rating: -1
RE: Being Fair!
By Motley on 4/5/2007 4:01:27 PM , Rating: 2
Just raise the price of gas by $1.00 per gallon, and give it to GM. Problem solved.


RE: Being Fair!
By Scabies on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 4:18:37 PM , Rating: 5
> "But we're already stinking rich..."

General Motors lost 10.6 BILLION dollars in 2005. Ford lost $12.7 in 2006. A $40B regulatory charge would wipe either of these two manufacturers out.


RE: Being Fair!
By Lord 666 on 4/5/2007 9:55:06 PM , Rating: 2
They are loosing that money because of poor business decisions. They should try selling products people actually want to buy; improve reliability, styling, and fuel-efficiency to increase sales. Sell a Saturn Aura diesel and there will be much more interest.

Masher - as you have posted previously, GM made an incorrect decision focusing on E85 while Toyota/Honda have been successful with hybrids and Honda soon to release diesels. Then why the still push on E85 when other options such as diesel or even B1 - B100 make more sense? Ethanol is a poor energy source, consumes too many natural resources, and is artificially increasing prices of eggs, milk, and meat.

However, the clear benefit of ethanol is to stock holders. Monsanto stock price has increased nicely on the corn production side and ethanol producers have seen double digit increases.


RE: Being Fair!
By marleythedog on 4/5/2007 10:38:29 PM , Rating: 2
GM's major losses can't all be pinpointed to poor business decisions. In case you've been living under a rock lately, GM (as well as the other American automakers to lesser extents) has had issues with their unions and many, many retired employees from their previously self-contained empire, causing them to have to cash out more money at a time when there's stiffer competition from overseas markets.

I don't understand why everyone here tells the American automakers to build something that people want to buy. The argument is foolish; if people don't want SUVs, why are there so damned many of them on the road? Years ago, American families hooked up the camper to the back of the station wagon and went on vacation. With fuel economy regulations, payload on cars had to be decreased. An SUV is like a station wagon on a truck chassis, and families like the idea of having a vehicle big enough to fit all the kids in with room to breathe and tow the camper to the lake for the weekend. And in my own opinion, the well refined curves of GM autos own the styling of Hyundai bubblemobiles or that heinous Toyota Prius. And in case you didn't know, GM indeed learned a lesson in reliability from the Vega, and are much more easily servicable than your average Honda.

As to your argument for diesel - you're from the South, aren't you? While diesel engines will indeed run in the Midwest in winter, they sure don't like that cold, so they have to be plugged in. They aren't necessarily that clean either, or at least they weren't before the government mandated catalytic converters on diesels. Volkswagen sold some diesels in the US for a while, didn't see too many of them, though, if that says anything about demand.

GM did make a mistake putting so much R&D into hydrogen, when it turns out that processing the hydrogen is rather impractical. While we don't have Brazil's luxury of sugarcane to make E100, it's relatively simple to convert from gas-only cars to FlexFuel, and the usage of E85 cuts down on our dependence on a nonrenewable resource. Hybrid is turning out to be a pretty effective technology, too, which slowly the American automakers are picking up on.


RE: Being Fair!
By Lord 666 on 4/5/2007 11:45:25 PM , Rating: 2
1. I live in NJ, but on a recent trip to Montreal (Canada) witnessed many diesels, including many current and previous generations VWs. Dodge purchases VW diesel engines to install for their exported Calibers. In Europe, half of all new cars sold are diesel. Not sure if it gets down to -40 as experienced this winter in the Midwest though.

2. I own a 2006 Jetta TDI with decent reliability so far. However, Honda's diesel when it is finally sold in the US (2009) will receive my money as it has been proven well in the TSX and CRV with almost doubling the fuel economy. http://www.honda.co.uk

3. The MB E320 Bluetec Diesel received the "2007 World Green Car of the Year," second place was the BMW Hydrogen car, third place was a VW Bluemotion diesel. Hybrids did not make even a showing.

http://autos.yahoo.com/articles/new_york_auto_show...

4. Union and benefit negotiations are part of business operations and business decisions. This competition would not be so much competition if product was selling well. Japanese car companies are building new automobile plants in the US, but American car companies have been trying to use the Mexico aspect. This change has blurred the whole definition of an "American car"


RE: Being Fair!
By TomZ on 4/6/2007 12:15:43 AM , Rating: 2
You make the situation with legacy costs with American automotive companies (and suppliers) sound trivial, like it is "business as usual" and somehow selling well.

As has been pointed out by other posters, due to these costs over which they have no control, American car companies start out with a much higher cost compared to their competitors. This is a hard problem that will not be solved "if product was selling well." The point is that these costs were forced upon the automakers by the unions when they had a monopoly on the American car market. That monopoly no longer exists, however, they still incur these liabilities on an ongoing basis. That's the reality of the situation - it's a tough problem to solve.


RE: Being Fair!
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 9:37:17 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I'm thinking GM is already like "New technology? Research? But we're already stinking rich..."

With all due respect, quit talking out of your ass. I work with GM on a daily basis, and the attitude you suggest does not exist there, not that I've ever seen. Most GM folks I've worked with are smart, hard-working, and understand they as an organization are under the gun to turn things around. Their biggest problem that I can see is the typical beaucracy of a large corporation and the negative affect that has on productivity. But a lack of new technology or research? Not even close!


RE: Being Fair!
By dever on 4/5/07, Rating: -1
RE: Being Fair!
By Scorpion on 4/5/2007 8:36:35 PM , Rating: 3
I suppose "leftists" are the only ones who have a sense of humor and can understand sarcasm then, huh?


RE: Being Fair!
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 4:03:32 PM , Rating: 2
How about we end all farm subsidies and corporate bailouts to make up the difference?


RE: Being Fair!
By dever on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 9:38:38 PM , Rating: 2
As long as there are elected politicians, there will be handouts... It's part of the system.


RE: Being Fair!
By Kuroyama on 4/5/2007 4:14:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The cost of these reductions will only be passed down to the end customer.

And so will the benefits of less fuel consumption and lower overall gas prices due to the laws of supply and demand. If you don't believe in man made global warming or that oil consumption contributes to wars and corruption then you could argue that the government has no business regulating fuel economy. But as far as cost goes, I suspect the benefits in terms of fuel savings will more than make up for the costs in the long term.


RE: Being Fair!
By Ringold on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By dever on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By Ringold on 4/5/07, Rating: -1
RE: Being Fair!
By milomnderbnder21 on 4/5/2007 10:20:45 PM , Rating: 3
Yup, that hell-hole known as Europe, god forbid we do anything like them.

Regardless of the fact that they are getting a lot of things right that we aren't. Universal Health care anyone? How well does it reflect on us that, out of 34 countries polled, we placed 33rd on the list of how accepted the theory of evolution is (we beat turkey!)?

What do you have against Europe?


RE: Being Fair!
By rdeegvainl on 4/11/2007 1:10:28 PM , Rating: 2
So you idea of advancement is believing in evolution? get a brain.
yes that last statement was trolling.


RE: Being Fair!
By dever on 4/11/2007 5:57:01 PM , Rating: 2
Universal Healthcare is the biggest threat to what is now the world's best healthcare system. Why do you think dignitaries from so many other countries come to the US for important surgeries. The only problem with US healthcare is it doesn't have enough market pressure. Besides, there's no one in the US that will be refused urgent care if they walk into a hospital no matter what their income or insurance status.


RE: Being Fair!
By Kuroyama on 4/6/2007 9:16:05 AM , Rating: 2
(1) It's not so simple. Don't want to sound too cliched, but many people can't see past the end of their nose and don't consider the long term costs to themselves of buying a less efficient vehicle, less efficient air conditioner, etc.

(2) Wasn't thinking Iraq, other than to the degree that most terrorism is funded with money earned from selling oil. Oil money has also corrupted governments in Venezuela, Russia and plenty of other places.

(3) Is that how it works? And I thought the US auto companies were cutting production and cutting costs simultaneously.

(4) This is about the only point of yours I agree with.

(5) "Almost always". The key word here is "almost", national health insurance and direct student loans are just a few of the cases where government does seem to do things more efficiently than private business, due in part to the same economies of scale you refer to. ( And please don't start a health care debate, I'm only referring to the smaller overhead involved in transferring the money from insurance payer (us and employer) -> insurer (government or private) -> insurance provider (doctor). ) Some regulations can actually improve markets, but you're right that very often that is not the case.


RE: Being Fair!
By TwYsTeD on 4/5/07, Rating: -1
RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 4:30:24 PM , Rating: 1
> "You don't believe in scientific fact?"

Man-made global warming is not a "scientific fact"....and there are dozens of climatologists who don't believe in it. Even the report from the UN IPCC admits to a 10% chance that man-made global warming may not be happening at all (look up their definition of the phrase "very likely" if you don't believe this).


RE: Being Fair!
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 4:38:48 PM , Rating: 2
While the terminology of "scientific fact" may not apply, a 90% probability is something worth noting.

Even if global warming (the fact that it's happening isn't disputed by anyone reputable) is totally 100% natural, we know we're putting stuff in the air that makes the planet trap heat. It doesn't seem like a great idea.


RE: Being Fair!
By Snagor on 4/5/2007 5:06:13 PM , Rating: 2
Yes we can slowly and subtly alter the climate, which will add up over time, and in ways we don't yet fully understand. The next large volcano, however (and I'm not talking little blasts like St. Helens), will demonstrate to us our arrogance in thinking we are the ones truly responsible for climate change. I'm not saying the investments we are making in pollution contols today are wrong. I'm more worried that in our obsession to clean up our own pollution, that we don't seem to be making the investments in being able to clean up after mother nature's "pollution".


RE: Being Fair!
By dever on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By derwin on 4/5/2007 6:21:13 PM , Rating: 2
Please cite where you found this 5% figure, I would be very interested to read this.


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 6:27:38 PM , Rating: 2
> "Please cite where you found this 5% figure..."

It's in the full IPCC report. 95% of all GHG emissions are nonanthropogenic in nature.


RE: Being Fair!
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 6:54:44 PM , Rating: 2
I've never seen the 5% figure, but if it's really that high (which I doubt) then we're pretty screwed.

The Earth has always been in a delicate balance, and 5% is a giant number in the context of things, especially considering we're (at best) not taking any more out of the air than nature is.

Think of compound interest.


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 7:25:48 PM , Rating: 1
> "The Earth has always been in a delicate balance..."

The facts don't support you there. During the Devonian, CO2 levels were 10 to 20 times higher than they are today. That is, not coincidentally, the richest period of plant and animal growth and development the planet has yet seen.


RE: Being Fair!
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/5/2007 9:17:49 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately We have no idea what effects those levels of CO2 levels would do to the human race over a LONG period of time, And the earth has always been in a balance, that balance just occasionally changes like the, Ice age when There wasn't enough green house gases, etc. And I would like to see some proof of the richness of the earth if CO2 levels were 10 to 20 times greater.


RE: Being Fair!
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 9:51:19 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Unfortunately We have no idea what effects those levels of CO2 levels would do to the human race over a LONG period of time

Uh, yes we do - humans would adapt, just like they have for thousands of years. The idea that slow environmental changes could somehow threaten the human race is ludicrous.


RE: Being Fair!
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/5/2007 10:29:03 PM , Rating: 2
If we are injecting thousands of tonns of CO2 into the atmosphere it wouldn't be a slow enough process to adapt, remember it takes a long time for evolution to adapt to its environments, The human race may survive at a great cost, only because of technology, But our food source etc would be greatly threatened.


RE: Being Fair!
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 10:31:22 PM , Rating: 2
Well, the reports I've seen suggest that global warming will increase the length of the growing season in the Northern hemisphere, and thus increase food production. Is that the effect you mean on our food sources? Seems like your example contradicts the point you are trying to make.

Anyway, live in fear if you want.


RE: Being Fair!
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/6/2007 7:01:10 AM , Rating: 2
They are only reports, And are not always accurate unless you gather from several sources that state the same thing.
The growing season may extend, but your forgetting about the increase in natural disasters which would not only get more powerful, But alot more frequent also, And what about the those in the southern hemisphere?


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 10:20:36 AM , Rating: 3
> "The growing season may extend, but your forgetting about the increase in natural disasters which would not only get more powerful, But alot more frequent also"

Sorry, but this isn't correct. Global warming will most probably reduce the frequency of storms and other severe weather. Such events aren't driven directly by temperature, but rather by temperature differentials between areas. Global warming doesn't warm the tropics, it warms the coldest regions the most, and the temperate zone very slightly. This reduces the differential, and thus the mechanism which creates storms.

If you don't believe the research, take a look at Venus, where runaway global warming has produced a planet hot enough to melt lead. But, since the planet has very little temperature variation, there is no storm activity at all. Now contrast that with a planet like Jupiter which, though much colder, has massive temperature variations which drives storms like the Great Red Spot, a storm much larger than our entire planet, lasting hundreds of years.


RE: Being Fair!
By bernardl on 4/6/2007 12:56:54 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The next large volcano, however (and I'm not talking little blasts like St. Helens), will demonstrate to us our arrogance in thinking we are the ones truly responsible for climate change.


I always so amused to read the word "arrogance" used in this context. :-)

cheers,
Bernard


RE: Being Fair!
By fic2 on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 5:31:29 PM , Rating: 3
> " 90% probability is something worth noting"

That's a 90% probability by the authors of the IPCC summary for policymakers, which is a far cry from all the world's climatologists. I can list several dozen researchers who believe there isn't even a 1% chance that global warming is primarily caused by mankind.


RE: Being Fair!
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 5:57:28 PM , Rating: 3
And as I said, you may not have primarily caused a fire, but tossing in a few bottles of lighter fluid is still a bad thing to do.

I find far less than a 1% chance that any one of your researchers is either of 1) not being paid by oil company lobbyists to say so, 2) considered serious by the vast majority of climatologists.

If I had a million dollars, I could find somebody with a PhD to have a study conclude that umbrellas cause hurricanes.


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 6:08:46 PM , Rating: 2
There are far more climatologists funded by environmental groups than there are those by corporate interests.

As for serious researchers who question manmade global warming, I've posted lengthy lists here before. People such as Dr. Richard Lindzen, professor of atmospheric science MIT, the state climatogists of Delaware, Virginia, and Oregon. (actually scratch Oregon's...he was recently fired by the governor for daring to question global warming). Freeman Dyson (yes, THAT Freeman Dyson), Dr. Myles Allen, atmospheric physics at Oxford, Dr. Timothy Ball, U. of Winnipeg, (ret), David Nowell, chairman NATO Meteorological Group, Dr. Roy Spence, head Earth Systems Science Center, etc, etc.

I could name dozens more...all of them extremely well respected in their fields.


RE: Being Fair!
By BMFPitt on 4/5/2007 6:48:35 PM , Rating: 2
Environmental groups don't stand to profit anything from there being global warming. What would be their motivation for making it up?


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 7:24:08 PM , Rating: 2
Is this a joke? They profit directly through higher donations...and indirectly, through the furtherance of their own agenda.

I'll leave you with a quote from Steven Schneider, environmentalist and "global warming expert":
quote:
To capture the public imagination, we have to offer up some scary scenarios, make simplified dramatic statements and little mention of any doubts one might have.
Each of us has to decide the right balance between being effective, and being honest


RE: Being Fair!
By brandonmichael on 4/5/2007 7:47:52 PM , Rating: 3
"There are far more climatologists funded by environmental groups than there are those by corporate interests."

Thats a pretty radical claim. I'm interested in seeing you support that.


RE: Being Fair!
By brandonmichael on 4/5/2007 7:48:56 PM , Rating: 3
Are there also more politicians funded by environmental groups than corporate interests as well?


RE: Being Fair!
By mindless1 on 4/5/2007 8:06:37 PM , Rating: 3
Who cares if it's true? In any case we can rest assured that the environmental groups have an agenda that is more complimentary to continuing life on this planet than the corporate interests.


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 12:21:43 AM , Rating: 2
> "Who cares if it's true?"

Spoken like a true environmentalist!


RE: Being Fair!
By brandonmichael on 4/6/2007 1:10:18 AM , Rating: 2
No seriously masher2, It is said time and time again on this forum that environmental groups are guilty of buying favor, bullying and gross manipulation, but I never notice anyone having any issues when corporate America engages in those practices. Perhaps the methods of environmentalists come under fire more often because they dont have the means to do it more subtly, as their larger corporate counterparts can.
Do you disagree with the restrictions placed on big tobacco as well? I have a feeling that the economic hit we took when big tobacco was hamstrung doesnt nearly offset the cost of health care for everyone who got cancer when the information wasnt readily available to the consumer.

Perhaps we are getting too hung up on this CO2 issue... masher2 likes to remind us that nature makes more of it than man. Alright, but do you really have any doubt that man made industrial pollution is harmful to our health and that the more of it is made the worse the effect? You seem to be such a champion of industry and free trade, would you want to live next to a factory, or over a freeway for that matter?
And I'm not suggesting that we knock them down either...

In the end, conservative or liberal, we all like being comfortable, we all want some enjoyment from our lifestyles, we all want to prosper... Perhaps there is a way to make beneficial changes without sacrificing that prosperity.


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 1:24:37 AM , Rating: 3
> "I never notice anyone having any issues when corporate America engages in those practices"

Then you don't read the papers, or watch the news. Corporate malfeasance is one of their favorite topics. On other stories, however, the media is suspiciously silent.

Let me give you on small example of the double standard. Scientists which dispute human-induced global warming regularly receive death threats..from environmentalists, one can only assume. Some have had their government funding yanked. The Oregon State Climatologist had his position revoked by the Governor, and the Delaware State Climatologist was threatened with loss of his position as well. Ever hear about this on CNN? No?

But one pro global warming NASA administrator (James Hansen) accuses the administration of trying to "silence" him, and it makes headlines across the nation. All because a 24-year old NASA spokesman sent a memo saying it might be "appropriate" if Hansen declined a particular interview. Of course the stories don't mention that Hansen gave over 1400 media interviews while at his position, including 15 the month he was supposedly being "muzzled". It's also not mentioned that Hansen is an advisor to Al Gore, and has made large contributions to his campaign.

Honestly, don't you find this rather curious?


RE: Being Fair!
By brandonmichael on 4/6/2007 11:43:48 AM , Rating: 2
"I never notice anyone having any issues when corporate America engages in those practices"
Of course I meant some people in this forum, not the media...

Your conspiracy theory is interesting masher2 but the questions in the original post were what I was hoping to get a response to.


RE: Being Fair!
By psychmike123 on 4/5/2007 11:52:55 PM , Rating: 2
It is confusing when there is so much noise around the issue. I have read Dr. Lindzen's first hand statements, but none of his peer-reviewed empirical research. Very smart people can disagree about the interpretation of the same data so I often have to rely on experts to weigh in with their opinions.

On Wiki, it is noted that Dr. Lindzen made a very public bet that global temps will decrease over the next 20 years. I assume he is alluding to statistical regression to the mean. It should be noted, however, that according to Wiki, he would not accept a monetary bet unless he was given 50:1 odds. Seems like he's not quite willing to put his money where his mouth is.

Mike


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 11:57:15 PM , Rating: 2
> "according to Wiki, he would not accept a monetary bet unless he was given 50:1 odds"

Actually, the link below contains the real story. Let me quote from part of it:
quote:
Setting aside the bet that global temperatures will be lower in 20 years, Lindzen offered Annan an alternative bet. If the temperature change were less than 0.2C, he would win. If the temperature change were between 0.2C and 0.4C the bet would be off. And if the temperature change were 0.4 or greater, Annan would win. He would take 2 to 1 odds...Annan then countered with a bet pegged to some agreed upon average temperature in 20 years with payouts based on how many hundredths of a degree Celsius the loser was from the agreed upon temperature. Lindzen responded by skeptically asking how one would accurately measure hundredths of a degree Celsius on a global level. Their negotiations apparently ended there...
http://www.reason.com/news/show/34976.html


RE: Being Fair!
By psychmike123 on 4/7/2007 12:42:28 AM , Rating: 2
Thanks for the link. The point remains, however, that Dr. Lindzen would only take 2:1 odds. Perhaps if Daily Tech is around that long, we can see who wins!

Mike


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 5:39:27 PM , Rating: 3
> "The point remains, however, that Dr. Lindzen would only take 2:1 odds."

Which means Dr. Annan wasn't confident enough in global warming to take 1:2 odds. It's also important to realize they weren't betting on anthropogenic global warming, i.e. whether or not the warming is caused by mankind. They were simply betting on whether or not the warming trend will continue.


RE: Being Fair!
By Ringold on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Being Fair!
By dever on 4/5/2007 6:03:50 PM , Rating: 1
I just watched this... it's life-changing to put it mildly. I've made several friends and family watch it. It's really amazing. It's no "conspiracy theory" docu-drama. It's simply interviews with some of the best climatologists in the world.


RE: Being Fair!
By ultimatebob on 4/5/2007 8:00:26 PM , Rating: 1
What a load of crap! China already has a mandatory fuel mileage standard of 38 MPG for cars and 19 MPG for trucks, and that standard is expected to go up again next year. Despite this, China's new auto manufacturing businesses are booming and their cars are cheaper to purchase than the American and Japanese imports.


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 9:12:22 PM , Rating: 3
> "China already has a mandatory fuel mileage standard of 38 MPG for cars and 19 MPG for trucks...their cars are cheaper to purchase than the American and Japanese imports"

Actually, China's highest tier is 38MPG...they have 16 others. 19 MPG is the lowest tier...but pickup trucks are not regulated at all.

And still, I'm not sure of your point. Have you SEEN a Chinese car? Their safety standards are a tiny fraction of US levels, their emissions standards are lower, and the size and weight of the vehicles far less...most have the level of comfort of your average go-kart. Its easy to make a cheap, fuel-efficient vehicle with that in mind....and Ford and GM are in fact selling quite large numbers of vehicles for the Chinese market. Because the buyers there will BUY those sorts of vehicles.


RE: Being Fair!
By bernardl on 4/6/2007 12:46:51 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
And still, I'm not sure of your point. Have you SEEN a Chinese car?


Have you? I go to Shanghai and Pekin regularly on business trip and the truth be told, there is still a gap with the best Western productions, but they are improving real quick.

The Chinese cars produced today have nothing to do with your description below.

Cheers,
Bernard


RE: Being Fair!
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 12:59:27 AM , Rating: 3
> "Have you?"

Well, I haven't been to Shanghai in almost five years, but I've made a couple trips to Canton since then. And if you think a car like a Cherry QQ or a Geelie (?) compares to a US model, then you've never ridden in one.

US automakers could make cars with the average mileage of these Chinese models.. But they wouldn't be legal for sale (due to both EPA and DOT violations) and even if they were, no one in the US would buy them. Its not some vast conspiracy by US automakers...hell, GM is in China right now, manufacturing some of those high-mpg go-karts.


RE: Being Fair!
By Callys on 4/6/2007 1:23:23 AM , Rating: 3
If China regulated work trucks, especially to 19mpg, nothing would ever get done. And by work trucks I don't mean commercial vehicles but anything used for heavy work. Trucks simply could not hit a fuel standard number like that with currently existing, mass market technologies unless the market went 100% diesel. You can put a Toyota 4 cylinder in a 1/2 or 1 ton truck but it wont get anything done. I briefly owned a Chevrolet 3500 with their new 8.0L motor before switching over to a Duramax model, and it was not uncommon to observe 6mpg with the 8.0. It will be very interesting to see how the American auto industry deals with improving the mileage on these vehicles, adding hybrid technology to a 7,000 lb vehicle with no space for batteries may not improve the situation much, and vehicles used for straining work like towing or heavy hauling would quickly consume the "reclaimed energy" stored in the batteries.


Go Japanese
By aurareturn on 4/5/07, Rating: -1
RE: Go Japanese
By Cobra Commander on 4/5/2007 4:03:24 PM , Rating: 2
Although I do not agree that Japanese cars have superior real-world fuel consumption, your side note is, to me, the most valid and realistic variable of this equation.

America needs to suck it up and get off our Super Size Me mentality. We're so stupid about this sort of thing we don't even realize how embarassed we should be.


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 4:10:07 PM , Rating: 3
> "America needs to suck it up and get off our Super Size Me mentality..."

Rarely mentioned in the debate is that nations like Canada have a higher per-capita energy usage than the US...And nearly all the Kyoto signatories are not only failing to meet their targets under the treaty, but many of them are actually increasing greenhouse gas emissions at a rate faster than is the US.

Energy is the lifeblood of a nation. America consumes a lot, because America produces so much.


RE: Go Japanese
By Kuroyama on 4/5/2007 4:17:43 PM , Rating: 3
America consumes a lot because of our lifestyle, primarily our huge houses, huge vehicles and huge amounts of driving. Plenty of other industrialized countries produce a lot without the same level of consumption.

This is not to argue that our level of consumption is good or bad, just that our production level is not the problem.


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 4:23:16 PM , Rating: 2
You're missing the connection. A nation with high per-capita productivity generates wealth for its citizens. Those citizens spend that wealth...and no matter what they buy, its a product or service that uses energy to produce. Make one product more efficient, you save money...and that money is then spent on something else.

Why do you think our houses of 2007 are so much larger than the ones being built in 1977? Because more efficient manufacturing of building materials, more energy-efficient construction, etc, have all made the cost of a large home much cheaper. So people can afford to buy more. The principle applies everywhere.

In a perfect world (perfect to some, at least), the US would simply donate all its excess wealth to the Third World. That would certainly bring our consumption in line with the rest of the world.


RE: Go Japanese
By dever on 4/5/2007 5:31:06 PM , Rating: 2
Not a perfect world, but definitely a world without humans. Conveniently, those who believe that is perfect also believe humans should not be inhabitants anyway.

Any "excess" wealth would soon cease to exist once the wealth (and therefore the incentive to produce the wealth) is taken from those who produce it.


RE: Go Japanese
By CSMR on 4/5/2007 6:43:04 PM , Rating: 2
There isn't a 1-1 relationship between pollution and per capita income. Different sorts of production with the same monetary values generate different amounts of pollution. That is why a tax on pollution would have a real effect on the economy and reduce pollution, as compared with other sorts of taxes.


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 6:48:15 PM , Rating: 1
> "There isn't a 1-1 relationship between pollution and per capita income"

That's not what I said...poor nations have, compared to the US, quite dirty air and water. The correlation is betweeen energy usage and per-capita income...and its a very tight correlation indeed.


RE: Go Japanese
By Kuroyama on 4/5/2007 11:26:14 PM , Rating: 3
If you mean poor vs. rich then I'm sure no one will argue with that. However, within rich countries your claim is false; energy usage and per-capita income or not nearly so tightly correlated. Should we all live in small Japanese apartments? Not really, but Japan and many (though not all) industrialized countries use significantly less energy than we do and that was all I was claiming above.

I highly doubt your claim that somehow houses are big because of more efficient construction methods, just as much as I would doubt anyone claiming that SUVs are big because of more efficient engines. Just admit that we have the money and the space and want to have bigger houses in that space, efficiency be damned. Hey, even Al Gore has a few monster houses with monster energy usage!


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/6/2007 12:03:39 AM , Rating: 2
> "Japan and many (though not all) industrialized countries use significantly less energy than we do "

Japan is one of the 20 richest nations on a per-capita basis. They're also in the top 20 of energy use per-capita as well.

There is indeed a strong correlation between wealth and energy usage. Not perfect of course...no correlation ever is. But very strong.


RE: Go Japanese
By Kuroyama on 4/6/2007 2:19:16 AM , Rating: 3
There's no point in arguing with you because you always come up with some convincing sounding figure which usually involves careful manipulation, whether intentional or not. Sure Japan is in the top 20 per capita and by energy use, because there are not all that many countries that have electricity available 24 hours a day; compare apples with apples and oranges with oranges.

http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/ene_usa_per_per-...

Germany, France, Japan, and Britain use about half as much energy per capita than we do. Sure Canada is a high energy user too, for all the reasons that I stated earlier.

Here's another convincing sounding statistic which I've heard on talk radio (not one of yours): states with larger class sizes have significantly higher average SAT scores than states with smaller class sizes. Anyone know why this correct statement suggests a conclusion which is completely false? Here's a hint: Most students in MA take the SAT but only about the top 25% in AL do. (note: a proper statistical analysis shows that class size has hardly any effect on test scores, but that's another story)


RE: Go Japanese
By Moishe on 4/6/2007 8:19:56 AM , Rating: 1
You're doing the same thing as masher (pulling out info). Don't be a hypocrite. We are all entitled to disagree but it's idiocy to call it manipulation just because someone isn't toeing your line.
You have your opinions backed up by your "facts" and so do others. So before this turns into something personal, just accept that others will not always agree and you may not be right.


RE: Go Japanese
By Kuroyama on 4/6/2007 12:51:46 PM , Rating: 2
Go back to the top of the thread. I disagreed with masher's statement that our level of economic activity was the reason for our polluting so much, beyond the standard "rich country" "poor country" difference. Masher's statistic about the "top 20" sounded like a rebuttal to my statement, but was the same "rich country" "poor country" issue that I already said I don't disagree with.

Beyond that, there are plenty of "facts" manipulated by all sides, and I won't argue with you on that. Masher is clearly one of the more knowledgeable people posting on these issues, on either side of the aisle, but sometimes I get tired of his terse responses and adoring fan club.


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/7/2007 6:03:28 PM , Rating: 2
> "I disagreed with masher's statement that our level of economic activity was the reason for our polluting so much"

Once again, I have to point out this is a statement I never made. My real statement is repeated at least twice above.


RE: Go Japanese
By Kuroyama on 4/8/2007 12:49:16 AM , Rating: 2
Thanks for responding. Looking back at the posts it still seems that you are claiming this, but apparently I am misreading your posts. Guess we're just writing past each other.


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/8/2007 2:26:33 PM , Rating: 2
> "apparently I am misreading your posts..."

This was my statement above:
quote:
That's not what I said...poor nations have, compared to the US, quite dirty air and water. The correlation is betweeen energy usage and per-capita income...and its a very tight correlation indeed.
The correlation isn't between production and pollution. Its between production and energy consumption.


RE: Go Japanese
By Kuroyama on 4/8/2007 4:28:02 PM , Rating: 2
I used the word "pollution" accidentally in only that one post, which was in any case intended as a summary of the earlier posts in which I correctly referred to energy usage, so my point still stands.


RE: Go Japanese
By Lord 666 on 4/5/2007 9:15:55 PM , Rating: 1
The United States foreclosures are also increasingly high on those large houses - just because they are making them bigger doesn't mean people can actually afford them.

Interest only mortgages, ARM mortgages, and high credit card debt are also contributing to the increase of foreclosures.


RE: Go Japanese
By Oregonian2 on 4/5/2007 5:04:19 PM , Rating: 2
Has a lot to do with people density. If everybody in the US all moved to one state leaving the other 49 empty then energy efficiency would be much greater. Should be a coast state so ocean shipping is efficient. Should be southern so there is less heating required. So all move to some single coast state so that we can be more like the lifestyles of China or India where density improves economy of energy consumption. Everybody good for living in Texas (we're turning off the air conditioners too so that we can be more like the masses as well, if one dies of the heat, heck good riddance)? While we're at it, let's all be unemployed too, that cuts down on consumption more than about anything (we're working on this one). Efficiency is what the world is after and that which is most important to the hive.. er.. people.


RE: Go Japanese
By derdon on 4/5/2007 5:22:26 PM , Rating: 2
You're exaggerating and then trying to form a valid point...


RE: Go Japanese
By dever on 4/5/2007 5:33:45 PM , Rating: 2
He's trying to prove a point by exaggerating. A point's validity can rarely be determined without testing the extremes.

[You can then decide if it's an accurate extrapolation.]


RE: Go Japanese
By brandonmichael on 4/5/2007 7:26:58 PM , Rating: 2
nor can its absurdity either... Its arguable that such silliness proves much of anything.


RE: Go Japanese
By Ringold on 4/5/2007 5:32:04 PM , Rating: 2
Heheh.. You said "hive", I thought Zerg from Starcraft, so pulled up the Radio Free Zerg song, and imagined this is what environmentalists/socialist babies must hear upon birth:

Awaken my child and embrace the glory that is your birthright!
Know that I am the Overmind, the eternal will of the Swarm,
And that You have been created to serve me.

Serve the hive.
I control the groove.

Serve the hive.
I control the way you move.

Overmind has got the skills..


RE: Go Japanese
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/5/2007 6:54:43 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
by masher2 on April 5, 2007 at 4:10 PM

> "America needs to suck it up and get off our Super Size Me mentality..."

Rarely mentioned in the debate is that nations like Canada have a higher per-capita energy usage than the US...And nearly all the Kyoto signatories are not only failing to meet their targets under the treaty, but many of them are actually increasing greenhouse gas emissions at a rate faster than is the US.

Energy is the lifeblood of a nation. America consumes a lot, because America produces so much.


Right... So because the rest of the world isn't getting its act together, neither should America, You do realize every little bit helps? You do realize later down the line American cannot get blamed for not doing anything? And actually most of the EU/AU are lowering they're energy consumption, I'm an Australian and because fuel prices are still $1.25 per litre here in South Australia, You cant do alot of travelling etc, Which then people resort to LPG which seems to sit on about 60 cents per litre, Notice the difference? Its also alot cleaner burning, Once I converted my 5.0 Litre VN SS Group A replica commodore from petrol to LPG Gas, Not only was I spending under half the price for petrol, but I was getting almost identical fuel economy (Except for when towing something! Eck!) And Its better for the environment, And yes we can get our cars converted to LPG down here in Australia (Thanks to the governments 2 thousand dollar conversion grant).

The energy per capita rating may be higher in canada, But I think you may find Canada has allot more renewable energy sources, Besides stop pointing fingers >.> Australia, America, Canada, China, UK etc are all bad energy consumers, Just try and do your part, And only worry about your part. (It sorta reminds me of when I was a kid, when I was worried that my brother had more ice cream...)


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 7:10:46 PM , Rating: 2
> "And actually most of the EU/AU are lowering they're energy consumption"

Actually, you're incorrect. Australian energy usage rose every single year for the past five, at least up to 2004 (I don't have 2005/06 data). The same goes for nearly every nation in Europe.

> "You do realize every little bit helps?"

No, this is false logic. Either the environmentalists are wrong...in which case Kyoto is wholly unneccesary. Or they're right, and then Kyoto does nothing to slow the warming. Even if fully implemented, global emissions and warming would continue.

> "Besides stop pointing fingers..."

When people stop pointing them at the US, I'll stop responding in kind.


RE: Go Japanese
By StevoLincolnite on 4/5/2007 8:58:39 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Actually, you're incorrect. Australian energy usage rose every single year for the past five, at least up to 2004 (I don't have 2005/06 data). The same goes for nearly every nation in Europe.

Energy usage may have climbed, But recently a wind farm has been installed around my area (Eyre Peninsula), Which is renewable energy. And I do my part, Last year alone I planted over 70 thousand Tree's at Greening Australia, Did seed collection, sand dune blow-outs, direct seeding, Pest control, Worked in the national park, Helped with bush fire victims.

Energy isn't just electricity, Energy could be the food we eat, The fossil fuels we burn.

Seriously, when people stop pointing them at the US? Do you realize how childish that sounds? I wasnt -just- pointing at the US, I clearly stated everyone is at fault and every little bit DOES help, If everyone did that "little bit" it can make a huge difference.

It may not STOP global warming, but it does help slow it down. And besides what about the micro environments, Environments that most people don't notice, where only certain plants/animals etc live, For instance a lake, Would you like that filled with chemical's, or coke cans, plastic bags and what not? I don't think so. Those micro environments do there part, and without them another chain falls out of the loop. That special micro environment might be a food and shelter for an insect, That goes and so on...

But lets look at it from your point of view, "nothing is going to help, theres no point doing anything, ill just throw my rubbish on the beach, and continue not to worry about what that might do for the environment later down in the line, then I will continue to throw plastic's into my fire place, Sending toxic fumes into the atmosphere, its alright I don't make much of a difference, Its everyone else thats making the difference I still help the environment by turning my lights off every now and then."

Remember EVERYONE has to pitch in.

Australia's energy consumption may have rose, But it is a growing country, both economic and population wise, Besides we are the first country to ban your normal light globes, in favor for energy efficient ones, and allowing cheaper viable fuels to be used in cars. (LPG Gas - We don't have a fluctuating price :) - And all cars can be converted as the government pays it back). Plus we are rolling out renewable energy sources around the country. We are doing our part, Are you?


RE: Go Japanese
By TomZ on 4/5/07, Rating: 0
RE: Go Japanese
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/5/2007 10:31:48 PM , Rating: 2
Then you have the government which will force these new idea's and technology's onto you, Like with the Australian government and the common light bulb.

Your not required to do anything, But is doing nothing really worth the hassle it may give to your children or great grand children living wise? Even health wise?

And everyone has to pitch in otherwise helping the planet would be in vain.


RE: Go Japanese
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 10:42:43 PM , Rating: 1
Uh, you're missing my point. I didn't say that I'm not choosing to "pitch in." My point is that environmentalism, conservation, etc. is a personal decision, and I oppose the attempt by others to control people through their so-called moral reasoning.

I realize there are situations that are compelling to where people need to conform to the needs of society first, however, this is not one of those situations.


RE: Go Japanese
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/6/2007 4:40:44 AM , Rating: 2
If the situation calls for an improvement in economy, Fuel consumption, And pollution reduction, Which will benefit us all, Then this is one of those situations that will help society have a longer, healthier life, It may be a personal decision, But I have an opinion just like you do, And my opinion matters just as much or little as your own.
I think its one of those situations where an improvement needs to be done.
I also think everyone should pitch in to help, Otherwise its pointless in doing so.


RE: Go Japanese
By milomnderbnder21 on 4/5/2007 10:40:40 PM , Rating: 2
Right, but how those taxes are used, and how much they are, is decided by more people than just you. And if people feel like being altruistic a bit, then investing in ideas to try to minimize the damage we do to our living space isn't a bad thought.


RE: Go Japanese
By bernardl on 4/6/2007 12:41:28 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
This thread is so INFURIATING with so many people using ethical arguments to TELL OTHERS HOW THEY MUST LIVE THEIR LIVES.


This is truly hilarious cowboy. The whole concept of society is based on the definition of rules that protect the community against the selfishness of individuals. Many of these rules are the direct result of ethical arguments.

Freedom exists within these rules.

Cheers,
Bernard


RE: Go Japanese
By masher2 (blog) on 4/5/2007 11:50:06 PM , Rating: 1
> "Energy usage may have climbed, But recently a wind farm has been installed around my area (Eyre Peninsula)..."

Right...70 MW wasn't it? Not that, nor all the other wind farms in Australia combined even cover a quarter of the increase in your nations energy usage alone. But hey, it makes you feel good to "do your part", even as your emissions increase.

> "For instance a lake, Would you like that filled with chemical's..."

Now you're just being silly. The hysteria over global warming has nothing to do with clean air and water. CO2 isn't a pollutant. It's airborne plant fertizilizer, essential for life on earth.

> "We are doing our part, Are you? "

There's that finger-pointing again. As for "doing our part", first you have to prove that global warming is indeed anthropogenic which, so far, no one has been able to do. After that hurdle, you have to prove it will be harmful to humanity. The last period of global warming (the Medieval Warm Period) was extremely beneficial to man and civilization. Odds are this one-- natural or not-- will be as well.


RE: Go Japanese
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/5/2007 9:07:31 PM , Rating: 2
Everything DOES help, Stop being incompetent, There are many ways to conserve energy and fuels, and help out, and it is SIGNIFICANT if ALOT of people do it, for instrance: Quotas to protect fishing stock and other wildlife, As thats fuel for our body's and pets, New energy ratings for all white goods, The Light globes, Another good method is switching from electric hot water to solar or instant gas, Just turning off electronics when they are not being used, turn them off even if they are on standby, I bought a Laptop for energy efficiency and portability, I often use public transport, like buses, or taxis if I cant carry everything, Ride a bike, go for a walk etc. Plant a tree, Help out down at the recycling depot, It all HELPS! Stop being so incompetent, It is not just the US that has to get its act together, Its YOU, ME, And the person sitting next to us. Everyone, Seriously nothing will get done if everyone plays the 'I don't have to do it, because that guy isn't doing it' crap. Get it? Seriously?


RE: Go Japanese
By TomZ on 4/5/2007 10:29:16 PM , Rating: 1
To avoid repeating myself, please see my post above.

You decide what you want to do, and I'll decide what I want to do. You don't tell me what to do, and I won't tell you what do to. Get it?


RE: Go Japanese
By SquidianLoveGod on 4/5/2007 10:34:31 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't tell you what to do, My post wasn't directed at one of your comments, Your comment is merely a cling-on to my own thus you can regard it as you wish.
And I really couldn't care less if someone tried telling me what to do, Thats where I tell them where to go. Geddit?


RE: Go Japanese
By Xenoid on 4/6/2007 5:03:36 AM , Rating: 2
That's an abuse