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Old 10-06-2012, 03:10 PM
 
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Aside from whose oil pipeline this might be, the point of the reference as indication of what the true priorities in America are today.

The use of eminent domain over the rights of individuals is necessary at times. But as with the use of any power, the misuse without forethought and wisdom can have decidedly negative consequences in any number of ways, both anticipated and ancillary.

As for Keystone XL, the powers that be felt it entirely proper to ramrod that new pipeline (carrying highly corrosive and toxic crude oil) directly through a sensitive area of western Nebraska vital to its groundwater. Fortunately enough political clout and will there to persuade the perpetrators of this that without much trouble they could use the route of an existing pipeline to the east, avoiding this more environmentally sensitive region. In the end they will surely be pumping this high cost crude—all the more so as very environmentally destructive to Canada—across the United States. And would have in an area better left alone, save enough somebodies with power said something.

If but a single individual in question, one can guess the outcome of that. Nor should the rights and preferences of one perhaps supersede the greater will and desire of the many. Save perhaps when the one is right, and all else wrong, as sometimes the case. But when even one is unduly harmed when they might not be, then by extension all are. This precept comes into play all the more when the decisions, and rewards gained, of such major projects are decided by a relatively few wealthy and connected—with the ultimate costs quite likely born in the end by society.

Colorado and her citizens will discover this if they have not already; and would have if paying attention to history (or some of its present legacies perhaps in their backyard). In Germany and elsewhere in Europe they are taking a more cautious approach to invasive techniques such as fracking, in thinking the facts and possible consequences should be understood before making such permanent decisions. Meanwhile they are going gangbusters with this in Colorado and elsewhere in the US, with as yet little government understanding or intervention. One might be fairly sure that little to none of the money made will be going into your pocket, and just about absolutely positive that most negative consequences, environmental and otherwise, will be born by resident citizens.

It could as well be you or your neighbor, or neighborhood, that suddenly find yourself overnight the subject of heavy truck traffic, air pollution, possible irreparable water degradation, and plummeting real estate valuation. Then possibly feeling very much like that lone woman fighting for the right to her own property, against seemingly the raw power and unconcern of the entire world.

She might be guilty of a number of infractions, realistic or entirely bogus—but in my book trespassing on her own property is not one of them.
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Old 10-06-2012, 03:22 PM
 
20,361 posts, read 37,902,723 times
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We're drowning in natural gas in this country but for some reason we can't get a bill out of Congress to really get the ball rolling on using NG as a motor fuel. The pols running for potus always talk about energy independence and getting off of OPEC, but oddly, nothing happens, no matter who we elect. Hmmmm
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Old 10-06-2012, 04:26 PM
 
Location: N. Ga
3,497 posts, read 3,110,475 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Idunn View Post
As for Keystone XL, the powers that be felt it entirely proper to ramrod that new pipeline (carrying highly corrosive and toxic crude oil) directly through a sensitive area of western Nebraska vital to its groundwater. Fortunately enough political clout and will there to persuade the perpetrators of this that without much trouble they could use the route of an existing pipeline to the east, avoiding this more environmentally sensitive region. In the end they will surely be pumping this high cost crude—all the more so as very environmentally destructive to Canada—across the United States. And would have in an area better left alone, save enough somebodies with power said something.


She might be guilty of a number of infractions, realistic or entirely bogus—but in my book trespassing on her own property is not one of them.
Believe me when I say, those of us even in the pipeline industry thought that the original route needed to be re-done. Our new pipelines are safer than ever before, but accidents do happen so keeping it away from the aquifir really wasn't a big issue. The thing is... most people read articles like the one posted above.. and believe 100% of it. They don't know the intricate details of how this works. Like the fact, that Mr. Obama is taking credit for letting this Southern Expansion go. He had no say in it. As a complete separate plan that went before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission years ago, and because it never crossed a national border, he couldn't have stopped it, nor could he have made it go.

What these people need to realize is that crude will be coming into this country in one way or another. Read the comments by those not-in-the-know on the article and the blatant stupidity about our energy needs and business in this country comes blazing through. Why can't we refine at our refineries in X? They don't have a clue that not every refinery can handle a heavy crude. Some of the places they want to refine don't even have refineries! They can't think of oil and gas as being a global product. They can't think that 50% of all electrical energy in this country today is generated from Natural Gas. All they know is that they "read somewhere" or "their neighbor told them" pipelines are bad. Somehow.. I think this woman falls into this category. Not one time according to my sources did she have a "reasonable" reason for not allowing this to cross her property. And apparently the court agreed.
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Old 10-06-2012, 08:43 PM
 
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You know your stuff. Used to work in the oil patch in Northern Alberta / NWT.
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Old 10-06-2012, 09:24 PM
 
Location: N. Ga
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Thank you.. I'm a third generation oil brat - having a wildcat driller grandfather and a father who worked for several of the largest refineries in the country. Husband is a third generation pipeliner. We both have oil/gas running through our veins.
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Old 10-06-2012, 11:07 PM
 
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As long as people are fixated on oil, their minds will be as limited as this dead-end fuel and resource. Oil is so 20st century. Getting beyond oil is the first step towards moving forward in this century.
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Old 10-07-2012, 07:43 AM
 
Location: N. Ga
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While I agree Sunderpig, tell me just how you propose to do that? Solar? Wind? Geothermal? Personally, I think that natural gas would be the sensible "bridge" between our oil consumption and what will be no less than the 20-year-wait, for those to become viable alternatives. But, we don't have the infrastructure, nor do we have the people willing to let us build that infrastructure. You think the few protester's you see on Keystone as being in great number? It's very small compared to the major undertaking that was building the Rex-west project (natural gas) through the very same areas. You can't have your cake and eat it too, all the while expecting 4.00 gasoline and 2.00 natural gas, while enjoying the fact that you use carbon based products in almost everything you do. In order to get beyond oil are you willing to let us lay a natural gas line through your property? Are you willing to write your congressman and tell him as much? We can all stand by and preach "clean energy" till the cows come home, but until each of us make a sacrifice in order to make it happen, you might as well get used to the fact that at the current time...oil is what makes the world go round.
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Old 10-07-2012, 02:00 PM
 
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Wink An unsustainable paradigm

'Esmael Adibi, a Chapman University economist, told the Times: “If it [high CA oil prices] continues into the holiday shopping season, it will definitely have a negative impact on discretionary spending.” [1]


For those remembering the OPEC oil embargo of the early 1970's it is deja vu. Much the same in California presently with petrol, if nowhere as severe or likely long lasting (in the short term) as during that embargo, but with the same high prices—assuming an open station can be found. That was also the time, not coincidentally, when the United States (as previously predicted by M. King Hubbert) reached its own Peak Oil, with reserves, despite bumps in Alaska and so forth, having declined since.

With the current California state average of $4.63 a gallon, having jumped up by double digits, and projected to go appreciably higher before declining, this current difficulty is in some respects an anomaly with forerunner in the August fire at a Chevron refinery in Richmond, CA, which has reduced capacity, and the brief closure of another due power outage. Not helped at all by California's strict air pollution laws which mandate a special blend of gasoline, making it both more expensive and also not possible to easily import gasoline in from other regions.

But as with 1973, this incident serves as reminder of what may well lie ahead. As a nation we took decisive steps during that first imposed shortfall, with such conservation efforts as a nationally imposed, and widely loathed, 55mph speed limit. Of course in a relatively brief span of time much of this was forgotten; that speed limit was rescinded in time, with 75mph interstate limits presently in Colorado and elsewhere, and the recent introduction of 85mph limits in Texas, to be implemented in November. Unlike on the coasts where somewhat less common, the vehicle of choice in Colorado appears to be either a huge pickup or SUV. Conservation in vehicles or much else is more a talking point than serious reality.

But that may change. Hugo Chavez of Venezuela is likely to be re-elected president today in a national election. As at least some Americans may be aware, he is no friend of the United States government—if also one of the largest oil exporters to this nation. With the capacity to do so: according to BP, Venezuela has overtaken Saudi Arabia in having the world's largest proven reserves of oil, at an estimated 296.5bn barrels, 10% more than Saudi Arabia, and 18% of the global total.[2] Who can or will be a customer for this oil remains an open question.

Our nation has only put up with and in effect sanctioned the reactionary policies of Saudi Arabia for these many decades due its huge oil reserves, formerly largest in the world. Also in being a critical factor and key player in the vital Middle East, with the regions vast oil reserves. Witness coups in Iran, tangentially the war in Afghanistan, but specifically that in Iraq, with its huge untapped potential. What is often overlooked is that the proven reserves of most producing nations have been in appreciable decline for some time. Not only in the North Sea with such as Great Britain, but of the largest in the Middle East as well. Not only that, due OPEC rules unintentionally encouraging the deception, all these members have for some time overestimated their proven reserves, being significantly less than publicly stated.

Enter those such as President Chavez, and China. Due a near glut of oil and domestic politics, a gallon of petrol in Venezuela costs less than a cup of coffee, at 6p (in conversion, roughly $0.18 per gallon, or $0.05 per liter). This despite its limited refining capacity and at times crumbing oil infrastructure. But with independent aims, Mr. Chavez intends to lesson Venezuela's dependence on the US market. In building a pipeline across Columbia, he intends to divert much of this oil to Asian markets, such as China. For those unaware, among others, China is in direct competition with the United States for global resources, such as rare minerals, food, and oil.

Thus it might seem all the wiser for the United States to develop and depend upon domestic energy sources. If true in principle, particularly as those foreign will be increasingly more dearly bought in money and wars, there remain caveats. Natural gas is an obvious option, as is coal, yet both can come at very high environmental costs which in legacy could have future generations cursing this. At minimum such development should be done with forethought towards the least possible negative impact. That goes as well for the importation and use of such things as oil from the tar sands of Alberta, Canada, being said to use more energy in natural gas to extract than that provided in oil derived, as well as being a huge environmental mess.

In the end this world will probably operate on solar energy, being abundant, in conjunction with technologies capturing wind and ocean currents. In solar, the only real limiting factor is a truly good battery; yet strangely if mankind can invent all else, this is considered impossible. The collecting panels have of late increased in efficiency, at less cost. It might also be noted that China is now the global leader in this technology. Although that nation is still building coal-fired electric plants like they are going out of style. When it comes to alternative energy, it is still viewed in most quarters as best used towards quaint "green" marketing campaigns, versus something to pursue avidly—and in fact necessity. For now, fossil fuels are king, being not only a known quantity, but in some respects the easiest and cheapest to exploit.

The problem is this is not sustainable. We are increasing the use of a resource that in oil is already at its peak, and in natural gas and all others that will be in a very brief span of geologic time be as well. Something else must replace them relatively soon, the sooner the better as witnessed also by our rapidly changing climate. Yet as the technology used to extract these last reserves increases, not in similar fashion wisdom. These resources are not widely viewed as transitionary, nor little used as such. Rather the opposite in being exponentially depleted.

The one key component in this equation has unfortunately remained little changed—that of the human mindset. Until that does the paradigm remains the same, and as is unsustainable.


1) 'High California gas prices start to take a toll,' Market Watch
High California gas prices start to take a toll - MarketWatch

2) 'Venezuela election result set to upset global oil politics,' The Guardian
Venezuela election result set to upset global oil politics | World news | The Observer

Last edited by Idunn; 10-07-2012 at 02:19 PM..
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Old 10-09-2012, 05:04 AM
 
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gasoline is ten dollars a gallon here in Germany right now...
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:41 AM
 
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I'm glad someone finally pointed out the combo of our kissing Saudi butt for decades and the wars in the MidEast (not to mention the "oil guys" who ran the country for the Bush years, etc.).
I was under the impression that the Saudis had the world's largest reserves by a factor of four times that of the second, that being Iraq, and then Venezuela behind that.
So the Saudis keep their "monarchy" by allowing the cleric Wahhabis to run roughshod over everything else, fund the madrassas in places like Pakistan that turn out the jihadists that we supposedly need to fight because they hate us, not for being "free," but for propping up the Saudi "royals." (Not that I think the 7th-century clerics are any better, but we wouldn't have to care either way if we didn't drink right from that spigot so much).
Even bin Laden stated that the #1 goal of Al Queda was to get rid of the corrupt monarchy ruling the land of Mecca and Medina.
Now, I personally think all of this is happy horse**** in terms of mattering in any real way, except that we have shaped our whole foreign policy and spent untold blood and treasure and had our people coming back from these oil wars minus important parts and Rumsefeld said that we go to war with the army we have and no fortified Humvees...
It's all about the oil and it goes way beyond any questions of climate change or any such. It forms what we do as a nation in the world and it's not pretty.
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