Monday, August 27, 2012

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Peak cheap oil is an incontrovertible fact - Telegraph

Peak cheap oil is an incontrovertible fact - Telegraph: "Nothing has really changed since the IEA warned four years ago that the world must invest $20 trillion in energy projects over the next 25 years to feed the industrial revolutions of Asia and head off an almighty crunch. The urgency has merely been disguised by the Long Slump."

...“Oil has become an increasingly scarce commodity. A tight supply picture means that incremental increases in demand lead to an increase in prices, rather than ramping up production. The price of oil is in effect acting as an automatic stabilizer,” they said. If so, it is “stabilizing” the world economy in perma-slump.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

As ice melts, less energy is reflected, and melt accelerates

The Arctic Ice Crisis | Politics News | Rolling Stone: "And then came this summer: Without warning, the line on the albedo chart dropped deep into uncharted territory. At certain altitudes, the ice sheet in Greenland was suddenly four percent less reflective – in a single season. "I confess my heart skipped a beat when I saw how steep the drop was," says Box. "I thought it meant the satellite sensor might have degraded." Instead, weeks of "ground-truthing" – going out on the ice to gather data from imbedded sensors and inspect conditions – verified that it was the ice sheet itself that was darkening."

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

IMF: Shale oil is a sign of desperation

We're still on the slippery slope to peak oil - opinion - 20 August 2012 - New Scientist: "The IMF paper also slays the belief that rising oil prices will liberate vast new supplies and vanquish peak oil. The team found that production growth has halved since 2005, and forecast that even the lower rate of growth will only be sustained if the oil price soars to $180 by 2020. "Our prediction of small further increases in world oil production comes at the expense of a near doubling, permanently, of real oil prices over the coming decade," write the authors. In this context, shale oil is not a "game-changer" but a sign of desperation. "We have to do these really expensive and really environmentally messy things just in order to stand still or grow a little," says Kumhof."

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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Capital crisis coming for oil industry. Economy cannot support low EROEI oil.

Pipelines, glut of cheap crude raise doubts over oil sands expansion - The Globe and Mail: "However, Mr. Potter said the industry will have to raise massive amounts of capital – in debt, new equity and joint venture partnerships with foreign oil companies – to finance the vast expansion."

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Capitalism doesn't work

Libertarians love competition and hate government regulation. But competition leads to cheating. For example, people will put lettuce in a trailer that last carried hazardous waste. So, to make capitalism work, we make rules. But cheaters are creative. The rules made to help capitalism begin to impede.

If a group of people were stranded on a island, would people cooperate and work together for survival? Or would they pick up rocks and fight for dominance? The answer depends on whether the cooperators can achieve critical mass. Because a competitive minority can confuse and terrorize a majority, the default system is capitalism. That does not mean the majority wants it.

We are stranded on earth. To the degree that we move toward socialism and reduce the role of profit-motive, we can release the true productivity of the human race which is more strongly motivated by a desire for cooperation.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Paul Ryan - "avowed climate denier"

What Exactly Does Paul Ryan Bring to the Party?: " Ryan is an avowed climate denier. His proposed budget retains $40 billion in tax breaks for big oil, while slashing spending on clean energy R&D and implementation. According to ThinkProgress, as a Congressman, Ryan “voted: to prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from limiting greenhouse pollution, to eliminate White House climate advisers, to block the U.S. Department of Agriculture from preparing for climate disasters like the drought devastating his home state, and to eliminate the Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA-E).”"

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Thursday, August 16, 2012

More hidden costs of fossil-fuel systems - the water costs

The Drought of 2012 Teaches Us About the Value of Water: "The undisputed champion of the current U.S. energy debate is hydraulic fracturing or fracking. As conventional oil and gas resources become more difficult to come by, energy companies now have to dig deeper than ever to unearth the rich deposits of fossil fuels still available. In order to fracture shale formations that often exist thousands of feet below the surface, drillers use anywhere from 1 to 8 million gallons of water per frack. A well may be fracked up to 18 times. The water, usually drawn from natural resources such as lakes and rivers, is unrecoverable once it’s blasted into the earth, and out of the water cycle for good."

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Sunday, August 12, 2012

Prepare for gasoline rationing

WASHINGTON: The next great oil crisis - Opinion - "One outspoken Energy Department consultant, Robert Hirsch, alleged that the administrations of both Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama have engaged in a cover-up of the likelihood of an oil shortage. Hirsch predicted a shortfall will hit in the next four years and send shockwaves through the world economy, possibly leading to gasoline rationing. Few governments have implemented intensive conservation programs to stretch out supplies during a decades-long transition to more fuel-efficient vehicles."

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

White House bestows honors on Foothill #transit -- soon to be fare-free

Seneca, bus company honored at White House » Anderson Independent Mail: "Foothill Transit was the first to put the all-electric bus to work in its fleet about three years ago. In 2013, Seneca intends to switch its entire gas-powered buses to an electric fleet. Seneca city administrator Greg Dietterick attended the ceremony. He said it offered a chance to publicize the fact that in 2013, Seneca will become the first all electric, fare-free, public transit fleet in the nation. Dietterick said the city will soon be hosting visitors from across the globe, wanting to see an all-electric bus fleet in action."

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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Corporate media throws the poor under the bus, while bankers rip-off #publictransit

The Boston Fare Strike Coalition: "How about instead of throwing the young and the poor under the clattering, underfunded bus, we support our fellow T riders and place the focus and the blame where it belongs: a social economic system and a public transportation system that are both in need of fundamental restructuring?"

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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

What’s important – Guy McPherson's blog

What’s important – Guy McPherson's blog: " In the Arctic Sea, we are seeing even greater changes in methane concentration in a very short period of time. Methane levels diverged from their seemingly constant increase in 2010 and spiked from 1850 ppb to over 2000 (approximately 2100) ppb. Because methane is such a potent greenhouse gas, this could imply that increased methane levels from methane hydrates are having a local warming effect which in turn leads to a further increase in atmospheric methane. If we were to apply this as a linear tendency, it would argue for a concentration of atmospheric methane equivalent to that of the Permian extinction in 2050."

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Monday, August 6, 2012

Carism and Social Injustice – Carbusters

Carism and Social Injustice – Carbusters: "During the past century in the West, the automobile has dominated all other forms of transportation. Despite the fact that the automobile does not serve all citizens equally, authorities protect the automobility system as a way of life. They support auto-oriented land use and transportation design, subsidize automobile and trucking industries, and enforce laws that favor cars over other forms of transportation. In a word, authorities and the institutions they represent engage in ‘carism’."

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