Friday, June 27, 2008

Here's a thought...

Yesterday I hit a driving range for the first time in probably 5 years.  I didn’t do half bad.


I think, as part of my MBA curriculum, I may take up golf again.



Offshore drilling alone will not solve our energy and emissions problem.  Plug-in electric cars alone will not solve our energy and emissions problem.  What is the problem?  Too much demand on the major sources of fuel for energy (coal, oil, LNG) and not enough 1. Raw materials and 2. Refining facilities to convert the raw materials to finished materials (there is no such thing as a car that runs on oil).

So, address both problems simultaneously.  Add to the supply of finished products in a way that doesn’t increase emissions:  wind, solar, atomic energy.  Reduce the demand of finished products (ie, gas) that doesn’t diminish the productivity (ie, horsepower, KWh) of the end users through either conservation (use less) or increased efficiency (need less).  Once you’re addressing THOSE problems, then start whacking away at the really, really hard problem of increased supply of raw materials.  Otherwise, you’re dumping those raw materials into a wasteful abyss.

So far, I’ve heard exactly one candidate looking at the solution in such a way:  more nuclear power plants, a prize to the designer of a new electric car battery, a $5,000 tax credit for people who buy "zero-emissions" cars, and, finally, overturning the 27-year ban on offshore drilling. 

What do people summarize that as?  Drilling offshore.  No, there’s more.  There’s increased production of finished product using alternative resources (ie, not fossil fuels, but fissile fuels), decreased demand of finished product (more fuel efficiency), and while all that is in the works, work towards increased supply of raw materials.

I would like to know how the other one would like to address these things other than a windfall profits tax or nationalizing Exxon.  Neither of those “solutions” make any sense to someone who thinks.  Punishing a company for doing what a company is supposed to do well is retarded.  Plain, old retarded.


But here’s another thought on the matter.  Beyond the energy issue, what about states’ rights?  Since the Atlantic Coast states aren’t terribly interested in offshore drilling, why not take a stand for states’ rights and put the ultimate decision in the hands of the states.  Here in Texas I don’t care 2 bits if New Jersey decides to drill off their coast or not.  Why should it be a federal decision to limit the options of the states to utilize their resources?  Sure, Florida and Georgia don’t want to drill off the continental shelf, but what about 10 years from now?  Are we just going to kick the decision down the road awhile, or should we simply say “it’s your call, do what you wish with your own resources”?


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