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1 CuriousLurker  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 1:32:06pm
...this clean-coalish term refers to tar sands bitumen, the dirtiest, filthiest, most environmentally destructive oil on the planet.

The science-y talk makes my brain hurt, but a picture is indeed worth a thousand words. O_o

2 Interesting Times  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 1:54:36pm

re: #1 CuriousLurker

The science-y talk makes my brain hurt, but a picture is indeed worth a thousand words. O_o

Exactly. And it's not just an environmental cost - I edited the page to add a link to this highly readable and informative PDF about the economic consquences: Tar Sands Oil Means High Gas Prices

3 CuriousLurker  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 2:02:28pm

re: #2 publicityStunted

Downloaded & favorited. Thanks!

4 Mad Prophet Ludwig  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 2:07:02pm

Excellent post!

5 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 2:11:01pm

there are two things missing from this post.

Number one, there is NO clean alternative to oil. Like it or not, there is no possible way, on heaven or earth, to change the entire world from oil based energy to something else. Not in any reasonable time frame. EVEN IF the perfect electric car were to be developed tomorrow, it could never replace every vehicle on the planet in any reasonable time frame.

The point is that IN THE MEANWHILE, while we search for the holy grail of energy, it is better to buy oil from countries who are not using it as a gun to your head.

Would you pay for gas at the $70 a barrel price (the number cited as profitable for AOS) so that you are not bankrolling terrorism?


Would you pay for gas at the $70 a barrel price rather bankroll Saudi Arabia’s oppression of women.

6 Alexzander  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 2:13:07pm

I'm really glad that the tar sands have finally been getting mainstream attention.
Many of my friends have been involved in trying to spread greater awareness of this project in Canada over the past three years.

7 Mad Prophet Ludwig  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 2:27:01pm

re: #5 Buck

Buck has never heard of wind or solar or 4th gen nuclear reactors. This is because Buck is ignorant.

8 Obdicut  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 3:35:28pm

re: #5 Buck

Buck, when you buy oil, when you crate demand, you raise the price for it. Oil is fungible. As the article makes clear, and as everyone knows but those who choose to ignore it, this means that sourcing your oil from different places does not in the least bit affect the economic prosperity of those selling the oil.

They make the same no matter where you get it from.

So, by agitating against renewable energy, by claiming it can't be done, you are supporting the Arab oil regimes.

Think about what you're doing.

9 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:08:12pm

re: #7 LudwigVanQuixote

Buck has never heard of wind or solar or 4th gen nuclear reactors. This is because Buck is ignorant.

Those are going to replace gasoline how exactly?

10 Mad Prophet Ludwig  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:18:35pm

re: #9 Buck

Those are going to replace gasoline how exactly?

Well there is this thingy called a battery... Amazing how energy from electrics can be stored by separating charges...

11 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:19:57pm

re: #8 Obdicut

agitating against renewable energy, by claiming it can't be done

You did see the "in the meanwhile" part of my post right. You are not really saying that it can't be done.

First, the technology does not exist (yet). AND even if it did exist, it can't replace gasoline, everywhere in the world in any reasonable time frame.

I know that Ludwig is going to tell me about the Wind driven cars.... or those really cool solar cars.... or even better those 4th generation nuclear cars....

There are, around the world, about 806 million cars and light trucks...

How many GM Volts have been sold? 700?

Get it?

12 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:22:38pm

re: #10 LudwigVanQuixote

Well there is this thingy called a battery... Amazing how energy from electrics can be stored by separating charges...

Ah, the electric car.....any estimate how long it is going to take to replace every car in the world with an electric one?

You're a scientist... can you come up with an estimate?

13 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:36:29pm

re: #8 Obdicut

The goal of changing US imports to ethical oil is NOT to affect the economic prosperity of those selling the oil.

Let me try another way to explain this to you. At one time Tuna fishing was bad for dolphins. People started to demand dolphin friendly tuna. They were even willing to pay extra. Sure the people who were still killing dolphins would have a market somewhere, but not on my kitchen table....

Makeup that isn't tested on animals?

Gasoline that doesn't help fund terrorism...

14 Mad Prophet Ludwig  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:40:38pm

re: #12 Buck

You implied that nothing could replace gasoline. That is simply not true. In terms of timescale... if the US decided it was in the national interest for everyone to have an electric car and made a massive Manhattan project like infrastructure and incentive program to make it happen, perhaps two years.

15 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 5:55:49pm

re: #14 LudwigVanQuixote

You implied that nothing could replace gasoline. That is simply not true. In terms of timescale... if the US decided it was in the national interest for everyone to have an electric car and made a massive Manhattan project like infrastructure and incentive program to make it happen, perhaps two years.

Really? You believe that factories could be designed, built and could manufacture and sell 250 million cars in two years? And at the same time create the Green electric infrastructure to power the cars? I mean currently there isn't enough grid capacity for it. Not even close. If a million electric cars plugged in tonight in LA.... it would bring down the entire grid.

I think you didn't think it all the way through. Try again?

AND that would not even come close to shifting the PLANET away from oil based energy. So Obdicut would not be happy yet...

Seriously... think it out, and try again...

16 Buck  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 6:02:08pm

re: #14 LudwigVanQuixote

You implied that nothing could replace gasoline. That is simply not true. In terms of timescale... if the US decided it was in the national interest for everyone to have an electric car and made a massive Manhattan project like infrastructure and incentive program to make it happen, perhaps two years.

try and stick to what is actually possible. "National interest for everyone to have an electric car and made a massive Manhattan project like infrastructure and incentive program" is a little bit out there.

Try and stay on earth...

17 freetoken  Wed, Sep 21, 2011 6:26:21pm

re: #8 Obdicut

... Oil is fungible. As the article makes clear, and as everyone knows but those who choose to ignore it, this means that sourcing your oil from different places does not in the least bit affect the economic prosperity of those selling the oil....

Let me (pedant that I am) fill in a bit of details and make small corrections.

"Oil" is a small 3 letter, single syllable word that stands for many, many different things. There are many different hydrocarbons (and even non-hydrocarbons, such as alcohol) that in the vernacular goes by "oil", regrettably.

Petroleum engineers have long devised special processes to convert one type of organic compound into another, but refineries are designed to be optimum for certain source products. E.g., refineries in California buy petroleum from in state as well as from Alaska, refineries in TX and LA tend to be designed for oil from the Gulf of Mexico, TX, Mexico, etc. Saudi oil tends to be low quality (but abundant), but petroleum from parts of Indonesia is very high quality. Etc.

The Syncrude from the tar sands will be bought by certain refineries (e.g., owned by the Kochs... cough... ) meant to make the most of the product.

What is more fungible than the raw or pre-processed sources is the end product. Gasoline components, diesel, etc. Indeed, much of Canadian crude goes to the US and the products flow back to Canada, same for Mexico, and this is why the data shows that US exports products like gasoline etc., though the US is a net importer.

All of this is important to understand why sources of petroleum or petroleum-like (e.g., Syncrude) makes only a small difference. The world is now 7 billion people and only a small minority consumes the amount of hydrocarbons per capita as the US. The potential market for hydrocarbons is much larger than the current production capability.

Thus any increase in the flow of products, say by converting more Canadian tar, simply goes onto the market and if the increase of amount lowers the price then more consumers around the world will simply come online and buy it. This is what is keeping "oil" from ever returning to the good old days of the 1950s and 1960's when the US seemed to be swimming in an endless ocean of cheap energy.

For supposedly being "pro-market", the American right wing seems to be void of understanding even the basics of capitalism.

18 Obdicut  Thu, Sep 22, 2011 3:24:58am

re: #17 freetoken

Yes, you're quite right. Oil is fungible is just shorthand, and you're completely correct about the nuance. You said it more elegantly than I; I was attempting to point out that the market for oil is what determines its profitability and the power of those that have it, not which particular area of the market you buy it from.

19 Decatur Deb  Thu, Sep 22, 2011 3:33:51am

To make nonsense of the Drill Here crowd:

CIA World Factbook on US oil export data.

[Link: www.indexmundi.com...]


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