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Ginger

Which is better for the country? Drill for more oil or renewable energy sources?

The democrats are blocking off shore drilling and the Republicans air blocking the clean energy bill.
Ant:

Personally, I think investing in more renewable energy sources and research is a smarter long term investment for the US energy policy. I always wonder when and if we'll ever see the day (in my lifetime) that we "run out" of oil... we're using up precious natural resources that are indeed finite and will not be easy to reproduce in a man-made manner once we get to that point. If we spend our time and money now investing in renewable and differentiated energy sources, we'll diversify and lessen our dependence on oil. Ideally, at the same time as investing in renewable energy sources, we'll also have less of an impact on the environment...

Ginger:

Thank you for your answer


I agree that we must move away from such heavy dependence on oil. I never did understand why so many of the old hydroelectric plants were abandoned. Where I grew up we got our electricity from power generated by water. Now the damn is gone and they burn oil.

VitaminC:

Its not a matter of which its a matter of how much of each. Drilling for more oil will reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Which we would not see the benefits of for 2-10 years, as it takes time to get all the pieces in place. Renewable energy would reduce our dependence on oil no matter where it came from. Which we would not see the benefits of for at best estimate 5 years at worst 100 years as it takes time to get all the pieces an technology in place. Both options are long term solutions but doing both could create a energy surplus which we could sell to other countries making us an energy producer rather than a consumer. The only short time solution is to conserve as much as we can now in the hope that we can develop the energy we want.

Dick:

Good answer Albert, you are correct we need both to be championed at the same time. Somehow we need to get from point A to point D , we need to drill now to carry us over until we can get new energy sources developed and in place, and we need to be putting every available scientist to work developing new energy sources. This is the only way I can see to keep from this country going bankrupt.

Ginger:

Yes, I think that we should do both. However, both are being blocked in congress. Drilling is being blocked by the democrats and the clean energy bill is being blocked by the republicans.

Ginger:

veral companies are researching and developing means for renewable energy. It is a very expensive undertaking. In return for investing their resources in this endeavor, they get a tax break. That tax break expires at the end of this year. The extension of that tax break is in the current clean energy bill being considered in congress. However in is being blocked by filibustering by the republicans in the senate.

I have heard that several companies have pulled back on their funding for these projects because of the threat of losing the tax break.

Dick:

Ginger the proposed clean energy act has a rider that would make the average citizen pay about 600 dollars for their yearly license tabs, it is punitive and deceitful in its proposed purpose and use, it is the carbon foot print cap and tax rider and the fact that it will stop all new drilling is why the Republicans. are blocking it.

Ginger:

Dick,
I am referring to H.R. 5352, which has been passed by the house and is waiting action by the senate. The full text may be found at:
http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h110-5351

Would you please tell me where I can find information on a rider that would add $600 to my yearly licenese tab and where it would stop new drilling. I have searched and can find no such information. Thank you

Sunni:

Renewable energy sources. We cannot keep doing things like we have been doing them and expect things to get better. The auto-makers research and development departments have taken the wrong things forward. The tax payers have to pay for their tools ? Off shore drilling is going to be a mess. Plain and simple.

Ginger:

Thank you for your answer.

I do not blame the auto makers. Like any other business, they respond to the demand of the customers. The past few years the big demand has been for SUVs. The manufacturers responded to this demand and now they are stuck with expensive production facilities for a product that the market is no longer buying. GM is actually on the verge of bankruptcy.

Sunni:

I believe the auto industries of this country rule the customer demand. I mean when a feature is how many cup holders a vehicle has then there is not enough going on under the hood.

Ginger:

Yes, they add the little do-dads to try to capture market share. Still things like power and size are ultimately determined by the market. If you want an SUV or a honking 4x4, then you do not care how many cup you can stuff in the little 4 cylinder cracker box that gets 30 miles to the gallon. SUVs and vans are where the market has been for several years now.

Me:

I believe some renewable energy sources are plausible, but we should have gotten started a long time ago, before we arrived at this critical juncture. We've dug ourselves into a pretty deep hole of dependence, and it will be hard to get ourselves up and running, with out considerable pain.

Ginger:

Thank you for your answer.

Yes, we should have done more; but that is past. What do we do now?

Me:

Pursue all other benign sources of energy, with all the american ingenuity we can muster, no matter the cost or pain. That common goal, for the good of the whole, is part of what made, and kept this country, the great nation it is, or soon, was, if we don't put it in high gear. I know that's not helpful in pointing out which sources are best, but not being a scientist, that advice, and my willingness to sacrifice, is all I got.

Ginger:

I, also, do not know which sources are best. I suspect that there is no best. Perhaps a combination of all in their proper place and application.

Brian P. O'Gorman:

BOTH! Do both at once, oil for now, and develop renewables for later.

Ginger:

Thank you for you answer. I agree, but congress is blockeing both at once. Both the democrats and the republicans.

Kita:

If you dont do both, as well as engineering effiencies, then your not utilizing full potential of energy.

Ginger:

Agreed.

Sugarlee:

Renewable Energy and Eco-Friendly Energy are great concepts but both are in their infancy stages and will take many years to create and then fine tune. In the long run, we need both oil and renewable energy sources. Machinery used to produce either requires lubrication and while some can turn to teflon based lubrication, others will still require petroleum based lubricants to function. It is mostly a catch 22.

Ginger:

Wind farms are already producing electricity, with more in process. T. Boone Pickens is the process of construction the country's largest wind farm in Texas. Over 600 new wind machines have been ordered.

More drilling will also takes several years to develop. For starters there just aren't the drilling rigs available. The rig companies already have Billion of dollars in backlog orders.

Letting the tax break expire at the end of this year will do great harm by reducing progress through independent research and production of renewable energy.

(BTW you have misspelled 'independent' in your avatar)

Sugarlee:

And all of those wind turbines were produced in factories with machinery that required petroleum based lubricants, the bearings that the propellers use to turn on are lubricated with petroleum based lubricants and the tractor-trailers that hauled them to their positions run on diesel fuel because diesel engines are the only thing powerful enough to haul such heavy equipment.
(BTW I know it is misspelled, but T.Boone Pickens is IN the process/ drilling will also TAKE, not takes/ and companies already have BILLIONS, not billion of dollars). Thanks for the spelling lesson, now work on your grammer.
P.S. It would take about 6000 wind turbines to produce enough electricity to power roughly 31250 households for a year provided that sustained winds across 6000 wind turbines produce approximately 125 MW of electricity and it takes about 1 MW to power 250 homes. Some newer turbines are producing slightly better but as I said, renewable energy is still in it's infancy.

Sugarlee:

Since I work for an Electric Utility, I will give you some more stats on wind turbines, in addition to the fact that leaking lubricating oil or hydraulic fluid running down turbine blades may be scattered over the surrounding area, in some cases contaminating drinking water supplies. A wind farm large enough to power 3 million homes would cover about 470 sq. miles. It takes about 7 or 8 months for 1 turbine to recover the energy used to produce it. A turbine lasts about 20-25 years. A modern wind turbine produces electricity 70-80% of the time, but it generates different outputs dependent on wind speed. Over the course of a year, it will generate about 30% of the theoretical maximum output. This is known as its load factor. The load factor of conventional power stations is on average of 60%. Turbines begin operating with wind speeds around 10mph, reach max operation at 33mph winds and automatically shut down when wind speeds reach 50mph. Cost for wind generated energy is roughly double

Ginger:

The energy equivalent of the lubricant used by a wind machine would be miniscule compared to its energy output. Our problem is not a shortage of lubricants; it is a shortage of energy. Even electric cars use lubricants.


True, the outputs of wind machines are not constant. Naturally modification to the grids will be required to compensate for the irregularity.


Of course there will be occasional accidents. It's not like every wind machine is going to be spitting lubricants all over creation. But, maybe more wind machines will mean less oil, and less oil means fewer oil spills. I feel quite certain that the overall damage to the environment by wind machines would be less than the damage cause by fossil fuel plants which spew pollution constantly.


Sorry if you were upset about my correcting your spelling. It was meant as a favor.

Porkenstein AKA Pork, Porky, Porkens:

btw: Oil is renewable.

Frog:

Yeah, over a period of hundreds of thousands of years...

Ginger:

Thank you for you your answer, but could you tell me how our oil supply is going to be renewed. What process does nature use to convert what material to oil.

Porkenstein AKA Pork, Porky, Porkens:

It fossilizes (hence the term fossil fuel) sequestering the carbon from living things like plants and animals and turns them into oil over time. Those landfills we keep burying will eventually create more oil.

Ginger:

You could be correct, but will it accumulate into large pools where it can be recovered or will it just become insignificant scattered deposits?

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