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  #1  
Old 04-21-2007, 09:12 PM
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Default Renewable Energy

I'm consulting on an ethanol fuels development project in Little Rock, Arkansas. The project would produce about 7 million gallons per year of ethanol from unrecyclable waste materials with a high carbon content. The target market is E85 fuel (85 percent ethanol/15 percent gasoline). What is the forum's vote concerning ethanol fuel to reduce dependence on foreign oil even if you had to pay a little more at the pump? Yay or nay.
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  #2  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:06 AM
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Default Re: Renewable Energy

Renewable is great but... my vote is to drill more on our own soil (Anwar and other places) for the black stuff and build more refineries. That will truly reduce our foreign dependency and lower the cost. The cost needs to come down, not go up. Fact is, our economy still runs on oil and will for the foreseeable future. The far left environmentalists need to be kicked to the curb and we need to start sinking wells.
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Old 04-22-2007, 10:08 AM
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Default Re: Renewable Energy

Well, I agree our economy is dependent on oil and we can extend that premise to the global economy. But only for the present. The "forseeable future" is another matter entirely. Is the crystal ball clear out to 10 years....20 years? There are lots of experts with lots of crystal balls and most are saying the same thing. Drilling for more oil is overly simplistic and in reality, not a solution. Experts are generally in agreement that we are near peak oil production. Google "peak oil" or "Hirsch Report" and you'll be surprised and educated....maybe even a little scared. Or go to Wikipedia http://wikipedia.org/wiki/peak_oil or http://wikipedia.org/wiki/hirsch_report. You can read this stuff for days. But here it is in a nutshell. The earth's oil reserves are finite and fixed (a mathmatical truth). Oil production (and other extractive industries...ore mining for example) follow a Gaussian Distributon curve (bell curve). This is a mathmatical fact. The "peak" is the top of the curve and represents the maxium global production that can ever be achieved. Once the peak passes, demand outstrips supply resulting in sharply increased prices for oil....very sharp increases. There is debate about whether we're past peak or at peak. Some industry experts place peak 10 - 20 years out. Whatever....we're close. The problem is, there is NO "Plan B". Hence, all the buzz about renewable energy. Development of an economy based on renewable energy is going to happen. It must. Our current energy basis is simply not sustainable. Scientists and engineers have long known this....and now the general population must own up to that fact. A paradigm shift is happening NOW. Enough of my blather. Ethanol fuel is 34% less energy efficient than gasoline and will most likely cost more to consumers at the pump initially. It'll take time to engineer-in production efficiencies to lower costs. Our free market economy will drive these improvements. But, my orginal question was: would you pay more at the gas pump for ethanol fuel? Yay or nay. Freedom of choice notwithstanding. And, thanks, BTW, for your response.
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Old 04-22-2007, 11:27 AM
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Default Re: Renewable Energy

The question is difficult to answer. If we don't have non-renewable oil, then I would have to pay for whatever fuel would run my life. I don't see that I have a choice.

I'm not sure ethanol is the answer. Is it electric powered cars? Hybrids?

What we really need is unbiased, non-political scientific study, with emphasis on unbiased. I doubt that can happen, but I do hold out hope that it will, and that we will awaken to that fact sooner or later. Governments' populist pandering will not help us. What we need is research.

I need facts, honest, unfeeling facts to make my decision and to answer you question intelligently.

If ethanol is the only way, then I will have to pay. I hope I can afford it.

I grudgingly pay the price of a gallon now, and I don't see that it would be any different with ethanol.

All this, though, assumes that we will never again have viable public transit. Could that be another answer? Research could help us with that question.

When we get to the point that we don't have enough oil to which to add the ethanol, taking the train might no be so bad.

But I have taken your question too far afield. Sorry.
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Old 04-22-2007, 04:28 PM
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Default Re: Renewable Energy

Thanks for the response Tony. Ooookaaay....where to begin. We already have unbiased studies....lot's of 'em. Some off the studies are based upon sound science and engineering principles...and some are just hyping a political agenda. Interpreting the hype can be daunting for the uninitiated. But, the better studies tell us we've got to prepare now in my opinion. Here's the dilemma. It takes money from private investors and public corporations to bet (yep, a bet in their opinion) on ethanol as a transportation fuel. In the transition, consumers will be offered a choice between gasoline and E85 at the pump. Yes....your car will run on E85....you'll have a choice during the transition... but it'll cost you more. Given the choice, yay or nay to E85?
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Old 04-22-2007, 04:47 PM
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Default Re: Renewable Energy

I for one, feel I need more information. You read 1 article and it says that E85 will save the world, but another says E85 will starve the 3rd world. Its the same with the articles about Hybrid cars, Some says we can save all kinds of fuel, others say we are destroying the world and should all by Hummers. BTW I drive a Toyota Prius and I'm very happy with the mpg, and have no intention of buying a Hummer.

Gary Owens
Deltona Fl.
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