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    Mark Mulligan

    Harvey Is A Major Still-Unfolding Disaster

    How many Texans wish they had done more in advance?
    by Chris Martenson

    Monday, August 28, 2017, 6:27 PM

Superstorm Harvey continues to wreak epic damage to Texas, particularly Houston.

But it’s not the wind, it’s the rain. Epic, record-breaking, unbelievable amounts of rain.

It’s entirely possible that the entire region will not get back ‘to normal’ for months, if not years.

Vice President Mike Pence noted that given the “magnitude of the flooding” that “it will be years coming back.” (Source)

Tens of thousands of homes are flood damaged, many of them total losses. Only one-in-six Houston residences is thought to have flood insurance.

FEMA Director Brock Long said 30,000 are in temporary shelters with 450,000 expected to seek assistance. That may well grow if Harvey cycles back for another hit, which is quite likely at this time (see below).

The entire city of Houston is deserted except for rescue vehicles. So a major American city is not at work today. Or tomorrow. Or….???

A significant portion of the nation’s energy infrastructure is directly impacted by Harvey’s biblical rains and current total shutdown. Crude oil will accumulate there as refineries are unable to process it into fuel products. The prices for those same fuel products has been rising and will continue to spike higher. If this goes on for long enough, actual shortages will result.

The only mitigating factors working against the accumulation of crude at storage farms is the shutdown of wells in the Gulf as well as possibly a few wells in Texas' Eagle Ford region, for which no back-up power exists at the well sites. I don’t have any information on how extensive that might be yet. I'm just guessing at this point.

Rivers in Houston are not expected to crest until Tuesday, at some 11 feet (!!) higher than their current “major flood” stage (forecast as of 2:15 a.m. August 28th, 2017).

There’s no historical parallel for this level of flooding, so we’ll just have to wait and see how this all plays out.

The good news is that the past 24 hours have seen relatively little rainfall (just under an inch).

The really bad news is that the latest models show Harvey heading back into the Gulf, picking up more moisture and power, possibly becoming a hurricane again, and then coming back ashore aimed straight for a second savaging of Houston:

That would be thoroughly cruel to those who's lives have already been upended by this storm. But nature can be rather remorseless that way.

As the WSJ put it this morning:

HOUSTON—Tropical Storm Harvey was poised to re-enter the Gulf of Mexico Monday and make another landfall closer to Houston roughly two days later, prolonging the slow-motion flooding disaster that already has crippled one of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas.

The storm, still over coastal Texas, is not expected to regain hurricane strength as its eye moves back over water, according to the National Hurricane Center. But its plodding, easterly track means as much as 20 more inches of rain could fall on the Houston area. The region has seen as much as 30 inches in recent days, turning roads into rivers, inundating homes and requiring rescues for thousands of stranded people.

The historic rains, already more than half of what Houston gets in a typical year, were forcing officials to make painful decisions to evacuate flooded areas—and to release water from reservoirs under strain, knowing that it would flow into nearby neighborhoods

20 more inches might fall. This is really without any precedent. It’s a very serious situation and people are mostly shocked and unable to process the enormity of this at the moment.

The last part in bold above is really concerning. The reservoirs in the region are all completely full, or in never-before-seen record territory. If you live downstream from one of these you really ought to consider evacuation.

Here’s one that has hit a new record:

That’s a brand new record high for the reservoir. Here’s some info on it.

The Addicks Reservoir and Addicks Dam in conjunction with the Barker Reservoir prevent downstream flooding of Buffalo Bayou in the City of Houston.

From 2008-2014, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District implemented $4.4 million in interim risk reduction measures (at Addicks and Barker dams) to address deficiencies until long-term solutions could be identified and executed.

In 2014, staff completed a Dam Safety Modification Study to evaluate long-term repairs and address issues associated with the dams. Staff presented this information during a public meeting Oct. 29 at Bear Creek Community Center in Houston to discuss these plans and gather feedback. Construction is scheduled to begin May 2015 with an estimated completion date of 2019.

(Source)

It’s too bad that the dam remediation efforts were still 2 years away from completion as that dam is now being severely tested. All people the Buffalo Bayou area are strongly advised to consider evacuation.

Here’s the reservoir mapped:

“Controlled” releases are already underway and people have been asked to voluntarily evacuate.

The Harris County Flood Control District announced on Sunday night that they will have to open the Addicks and Barker reservoirs to relievesome of the pressure on Monday morning. Because of these releases, voluntary evacuations are being issued for people who live near the two reservoirs.

(Source)

It remains to be seen if the releases can keep up with the rainfall. I don’t have any good information on that at present, but will keep researching.

Evacuating is a really big deal and not to be undertaken lightly. The main reason is that you aren't evacuating alone, but along with hundreds of thousands if not millions of other people.

Here’s an especially thoughtful post on the topic that I came across on Reddit early this morning:

I lived through several storms on the Gulf through the years and I can shed a bit of light on the topic.

For one thing, evacuating is expensive.

Factor in the weeks without work. Yes, weeks. Because even if you do manage to make it out of the path of the storm (which isn't a guarantee unless you travel hundreds of miles), there's no promise you'll be able to return home in a timely manner. Roads wash out, gas stations run out of gas and lose power, entire towns shut down.

The actual act of transporting yourself somewhere else is a challenge. Cars sit bumper to bumper, filling every highway and every lane. You've got to leave early enough to actually make progress, or else you'll be caught in the road when the storm hits. I was in Johnson Bayou days before Hurricane Gustav hit. I was driving from an EMT outpost to the corner store, a drive which normally took 20 minutes. It took me 8 hours, all because of evacuee traffic.

If you do decide to leave, there's no guarantee you'll still have a job to return to.

Then there's the sudden cost of a hotel room for weeks on end. Everywhere that's out of the direct path of the storm is full, I mean packed to the utter brim, no more rooms in Bethlehem and no more mangers either.

Everyone ELSE who's decided to evacuate is headed to the same spots, and these aren't luxurious destination locals. You go just far enough to get away, which sometimes puts you and your family in the middle of some podunk town that's totally not equipped to handle a massive influx of people.

So if you do find a room, which is tough, it's expensive.

If you go the shelter route, and you evacuate to a designated area, well buckle up. You're in for a few weeks of sharing cramped quarters with lord knows how many folks, all while you're unlikely to have access to things like showers or washing machines.

Then there's the drive itself. Timing an evacuation isn't just expensive, it's really tricky. Yes, for days and days we track the storm as it builds in the Atlantic and closes in on the shore. The people down south are probably more savvy at it than you realize, and for good reason! Their lives could depend on it every single summer.

But these storms are incredibly hard to predict with extreme accuracy.

The margin of land area that these storms could hit in storm projections is laughably huge at first. Then, as the week closes and the storm draws nearer, the land mass gradually narrows as possible outcomes are ruled out.

The last 4 days are where its most critical. You spend those days glued to your TV screen and your radio. Every waking minute you are on red alert, thinking about and prepping for this storm.

You have this small window of time in which you have to weigh the massive costs and stresses of evacuating against the actual level of threat posed to your life.

Actually getting on the road, if you do decide to evacuate, is STILL not a guarantee that you'll be out of danger. Once these storms make land fall, the amount of moisture they drop can cause severe flooding all the way up to Canada in the most extreme cases. So what if you run away, only to get caught in disaster somewhere else?

And then there's the tragic cases — elderly folks too old to go through the arduous process if paving and leaving their homes in the face of a storm, and without a living relative to help them do it, or people who live hand to mouth, pay check to pay check, with not enough money to leave.

It's incredibly risky to stay, and incredibly difficult to run. And sometimes these storms come one year after another, so that if you end up evacuating one summer, you might not be in a position to do it the next, either because of finances or putting your job on the line. And then there's the ever-present worry that you're going through all this hassle for no reason; for a storm that'll just fizzle out in the Gulf and veer off to hit somewhere else at the last second, which makes you less inclined to listen to the next warning, and the next.

(Source)

Lights Out

The biggest problem for the modern lifestyle is just how hard it is to live life without electricity. For starters there’s the loss of utility power. Here’s the latest data:

The former Hurricane Harvey continues to trigger power outages across Texas. As of 7:25 a.m. CDT on Monday, August 28, there are more than 302,000 electricity outages across Texas, according to the Data Fusion Solutions power outage tracker map. That’s down by about 14,000 since Sunday, August 27.

(Source)

So a bit over 300,000 structures are without power. How many people are directly affected by that is probably close to a million, assuming 3-4 people per structure.

But even once the power gets turned back on, that’s not going to help many of the folks who own houses that are in areas like these:

The reason why is contained in another excellent Reddit post by an electrician:

Now, lets talk about the dangers of having power in a flooded house. These people are taking their lives into their own hands here. ANY electrical that's been exposed to water, especially breaker boxes is considered damaged beyond repair and MUST be replaced. Why? Corrosion. All these contacts, especially with active voltage and current in the lines, are corroding as we speak.

ALL wiring and components will have to be replaced, it is part of the restoration process to get your power restored to the house.

(Source)

Now imagine possibly tens of thousands of homes that all need to have their wiring replaced before the lights can go back on and you have a sense of the scale of the problem. It’s huge.

To the extent that any utility substations got water damaged, this same poster had this to say:

Next, we'll talk about what's happening to the grid in these areas. Power comes to your house via a substation, any of these substations that went underwater, whether these cables were buried or not, will have to most likely be ripped out and be replaced.

Oy. It could be a very, very long time before some areas and certain customers will see any power restored.

So the power outage factor is going to make Houston a very unlivable place for any and all affected customers for weeks to months to possibly years depending on circumstances.

Given that Houston is basically a hot, humid swamp with a mosquito problem most people will rightly conclude that it’s just not livable without power for any length of time.

Some Context

The worst storm on record for the area was tropical storm Alison in June of 2001. It was calculated at the time to be a 1-in-500 year event.

Well, that lasted 16 years and 2 months before being shattered.

Here are the rainfall totals from Alison:

Note that the purple and pick areas represent rainfall totals of over 10 (purple) and 13 (pink) inches.

Now, for comparison, here’s the Harvey totals through Sunday. I have helpfully circled in red the areas that had more than ten inches of rain. It’s practically the entire region!

There are a huge number of dots on the Harvey chart that are already over 15” and even 20”. That means that Alison, 1-in-500 year event that it was, is not even remotely comparable to Harvey.

Because Alison caused $9 billion in damage, we’re going to have to scale that up by some factor…let’s start with 10x? And that’s just to date. If Harvey cycles back out-and-around who knows just how much more serious this could all get?

At any rate, now that 1-in-500 year events are happening far more frequently than that, we now have to consider that past weather history is not a useful guide for us anymore.

One Out Of Six

A huge, looming, possibly fiscally-ruinous problem here is that very few Houstonians are actually insured for floods. The following article ran on our Daily Digest a few days ago:

How Hurricane Harvey Could Cause Long-Term Devastation

Aug 26, 2017

Beyond the Category 4 130 mile-an-hour winds, the devastating eye wall, and the storm surge hundreds of miles wide, the most destructive part of Hurricane Harvey as it bears down on the Texan Gulf Coast might be the rain.

The most likely outcome, unless the storm takes an unexpected turn, appears to be tragedy. The region is already inundated. Houston’s already seen abnormally high amounts of rain this August, and parts of Louisiana are still flooded after rain storms earlier this month, a situation that left parts of New Orleans under several feet of water after some of the city’s water pumps failed. For now, the best case scenario is to hope that most people have evacuated, and that the storm and flood’s ravages will come against property and not human lives. After all, houses can be rebuilt.

But this time, even that may not be true. Although Texas and Louisiana—owing to the constant threat of floods—are among some of the places in the United States where flood insurance is most prevalent, there are few places where even a quarter of all homes are covered. In Houston,just over 119,000 places are covered by flood insurance policies backed by the National Flood Insurance Program, which helps fund most flood insurance policies. There are just over 800,000 occupied housing units in the city, which means that somewhere under a sixth of all homes in the city have flood insurance. The situation is the same in Corpus Christi, where 19,183 buildings are insured of around 115,000 occupied housing units.

The dearth of flood insurance policies makes the result obvious: Most people who lose homes or have them damaged in Harvey won’t have money to replace or repair them.

(Source)

Merely one out of six homes being insured is a huge predicament. Said the other way, 5-out-of-6 homes *not* being insured means that a huge number of people will simply abandon their homes and wander away, never to return, exactly as happened after Katrina.

The economic impact to Houston is going to be severe. Few can appreciate just how serious at present.

When A 15% Haircut Can Really Hurt

Energy is a finely-tuned and sensitive business, especially the oil business. Keeping a narrow balance between oil and gasoline and diesel stockpiles is an art form.

Slight disturbances in either oil (the feedstock) or the products (gasoline and diesel) can really impact the prices for both.

In this case, oil is still being produced, the tank farms are already pretty full, and a whopping 15% of the nations refinery output is currently offline due to Harvey:

Energy Firms Brace for Harvey Fallout

Aug 27, 2017

Harvey knocked almost 15% of U.S. refinery capacity out of commission, which threatens to boost fuel prices across the country.

Energy markets could be in for a bumpy ride when they open Monday as investors try to gauge the impact of the disruption. After slamming into Texas on Friday and causing massive flooding in Houston over the weekend, the storm was moving east on Sunday toward a refining hub near the Louisiana border. That could shut down even more of the U.S. energy infrastructure.

(Source)

Already the US oil markets are getting hit pretty hard here early on Monday, down nearly -4%:

Gasoline has increased by a similar amount of +4%. If Harvey continues to create disruption, these price moves are just the beginning. Expect both to continue in their current trajectories, especially if any serious or lasting damage has been done to the electricity infrastructure supplying the refineries. (I don’t have any information on that at present.)

More to come…

Preparation Is Essential!

As always, preparing before a disaster is cheap and honorable. Afterwards it’s expensive (if not impossible) and irresponsible if it becomes a “me vs. them” hoarding operation.

It's a little eerie how quickly our advice from just last week, Better A Year Early Than A Day Too Late, has been validated by Harvey.

The basic preparations that Adam and I outlined in our book Prosper! would have served anyone and everyone well in the affected areas had they followed them before Harvey hit. Certainly, there might be some losses of carefully-manicured gardens and such because, hey flooding, but all the rest would have been net positives.

Being in shape, having stored food, back-up energy sources like solar, rechargeable batteries, and generators, and a supportive community network would each proved to be useful and — in combination — invaluable.

Like with Hurricane Sandy, there will be an enormous number of people interested in preparing for a couple of weeks after this disaster passes. Then the decay function will hit, and barely 2% to 3% will actually take any real concrete steps on their own behalf once the lights come back on.

I’m looking forward to hearing from our affected members. The good the bad and the ugly. What worked, and what didn’t?

Conclusion

This was a relatively hastily-compiled report; such is the nature of fast-moving events. I will be providing additional data, insights and comments in the comment areas below as we work to keep up with developments.

Harvey has dealt a serious blow to the Houston area and, by extension, the entire US. And the situation is still developing, meaning it could get a lot worse before it gets better if Harvey comes back around for another swipe.

The US, as well as the world, really has to begin to grapple with the idea that “once in 500 year” events are actually more like “once in a decade” events now.

How we can really plan and prepare for these events is an enormously tricky task. In many cases the answer is “you can’t.” For example, even if you were a star member of the Peak Prosperity preparers club, if your house is standing in 20 feet of water, you’re SOL like everyone else.

The only proper response to being in flood zones during this era of far-more-frequent mega storms is to not live there.

It’s really that blunt, sorry to say.

More to come.

~ Chris Martenson

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149 Comments

  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 10:47am

    #1

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    More amazing photos and gifs

    These are really hard to even wrap my mind around.

    And this next one is a GIF, so if you click on it you will get to see the action of this water pouring into a basement near the TX medical facility.

     

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 10:53am

    #2

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Refinery Info

    Here’s some more information on the affected refineries:

    REFINERIES

    • Roughly 2.2 million b/d of refining capacity has been shut. Houston-area refineries began shutting Sunday because of flooding. Refiners have not reported any damage so far.
    • ExxonMobil was shuttin its massive Baytown, Texas, refining and chemical complex due to flooding caused by Harvey, the company said Sunday. Baytown, at 560,500 b/d, is the second-largest refinery in the US.
    • Shell was shutting its 340,000 b/d refinery complex in Deer Park, Texas, due to flooding, the company said Sunday in a message on a community hotline.
    • Phillips 66 began shutting its 247,000 b/d refinery in Sweeny, Texas, due to fears of Harvey-related flooding in Brazoria County, the company said Sunday.
    • The Texas Gulf Coast is home to 4.944 million b/d of refining capacity, while the Louisiana Gulf Coast is home to 3.696 million b/d of capacity, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

    (Source

    …and this image has the updated storm tack on it.  Very handy.

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 12:24pm

    #3
    agitating prop

    agitating prop

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 28 2009

    Posts: 282

    Too many Texans hyper

    Too many Texans hyper focussed on being overrun by Mexicans instead of water??

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 12:43pm

    #4

    Chris Martenson

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    Posts: 4505

    Best picture of Houston so far?

    This image seems to capture the spirit of the moment:

     

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 12:49pm

    #5

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Houston’s Chemical Nightmare

    Of course, with so much heavy industry and chemical plants and refineries, the flood waters of Houston are going to be toxic.

    But there’s something being reported in the air too indicating that perhaps tanks have been breached or pipelines have ruptured.

    There’s an “Unbearable” Chemical Smell Hovering Over Parts of Houston, and Experts Are Worried.

    Aug 28, 2017

    As historic rainfall and flooding continue to pound America’s fourth-most populated city, residents of Houston’s industrial fence-line communities are reporting strong gas- and chemical-like smells coming from the many refineries and chemical plants nearby. “I’ve been smelling them all night and off and on this morning,” said Bryan Parras, an activist at the grassroots environmental justice group TEJAS. Parras, who lives and works in Houston’s East End, on Sunday said some residents are experiencing “headaches, sore throat, scratchy throat and itchy eyes.”

    Parras said there are chemical smells in the air all over the East End, but particularly in directly communities adjacent to Houston’s sweeping petrochemical industry. And residents can’t escape the smell, because flood waters have overtaken the city, and could reach over four feet in some spots. “Fenceline communities can’t leave or evacuate so they are literally getting gassed by these chemicals,” Parras said.

    Some Twitter users in Houston also reported concerns about air quality. 

    Might seem like an afterthought but #Harvey is impacting air quality, too. Exxon, others shuttering refineries, releasing lots of pollution.

    — Kiah Collier (@KiahCollier) August 27, 2017

    Rancid chemical smell near Houston @ValeroEnergy refinery. What’s going on? Why all the flaring? Folks Can’t Breathe #HurricaneHarvery

    — Raquel de Anda (@deAndaAnda) August 27, 2017

    @DisasterPIO There is a widespread gas smell in Houston’s East End. Any info?

    — RFH (@rfh02) August 27, 2017

    There is a thick smell of oil in the air downtown #Houston

    — Rhonda Ragsdale (@profragsdale) August 27, 2017

    It’s still unclear exactly where the smells are coming from, but Parras suspects the source is the many oil refineries, chemical plants, and gas facilities nearby. Several of these plants have shut down or are in the process of shutting down due to Harvey’s historic flooding, and shutdowns are a major cause of “abnormal” emission events, according to a 2012 report from the Environmental Integrity Project.

    Short-term impacts of these events can be “substantial,” because “upsets or sudden shutdowns can release large plumes of sulfur dioxide or toxic chemicals in just a few hours, exposing downwind communities to peak levels of pollution that are much more likely to trigger asthma attacks and other respiratory systems.” The communities closest to these sites in Houston are disproportionately low-income and minority.

    +++++++++

    These sorts of reports are troubling in the immediate term for the residents.

    They also indicate some amount of damage to the plants themselves as these chemicals are not usually released so something, somewhere probably broke.

    Gasoline prices are likely to spike from here…that’s one interpretation of these reports. 

    I mean, nationally, not more than they already have, locally, in Texas.

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 12:57pm

    #6

    Chris Martenson

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    Latest rain forecast

    Lots of rain still to come.   Here’s the latest from the Weather Channel (it’s 5:00 pm Monday, 8/28).

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 2:24pm

    #7

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3109

    refineries

    I actually visited a refinery once.  I’m not sure if it was one of the workers there, or my friend (a chemical engineer for Chevron), but I was told that once they build a refinery at a site, they can never permanently shut it down because if they did, it would become one of those EPA superfund sites immediately because of all the toxic crap that has spilled at the site over the years.

    Not sure if that was just hyperbole, but presumably if you were to soak the site in 4 feet of water, the run-off presumably would be not so great for health.

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 2:48pm

    Reply to #5

    SailAway

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 234

    Houston’s Chemical Nightmare

    On Democracy Now, it was said today that in the past some industries have used these types of flooding events to release stocks of chemicals while nobody is looking, avoiding this way the cost of disposal.

    The cynicism of some people is just unbelievable…

     

     

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 3:35pm

    #8

    pinecarr

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2008

    Posts: 1085

    Eye-opening analysis

    Chris, thanks for helping us understand some of the “invisible” but enormous consequences of all this flooding we’re seeing in Houston.  -Like the need to replace all the wiring and electrical components in all the homes where it has gotten wet from the flooding, before their electricity can be restored.  And the fact that only 1 out of 6 homes has flood insurance (so chances are at least 5 of 6 places aren’t getting restored).   It’s very sobering.  It really brings home just how devastating an impact Harvey has had on Houston. 

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 4:51pm

    #9

    GerrySM

    Status Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 16

    Australian newspaper blames Houston for the Hurricane

    … and with good reason too, IMO.

    Houston, you have a problem, and some of it of your own making

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 5:45pm

    Reply to #5
    Edwardelinski

    Edwardelinski

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    Posts: 317

    Intentional Chemical Release?

    Which article are you referring to?Not the Bryan Parras interview?

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 6:29pm

    #10
    NickAdams10

    NickAdams10

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    Posts: 30

    Thank you, Chris. I always

    Thank you, Chris. I always appreciate your observations on current events.

    A lot of the media coverage that I’ve seen (in online versions of print newspapers, that is; I don’t watch television news) has shown everyday people helping their neighbors in a time of great suffering. That’s been a bit of a surprise to me, not because it happens, but because such everyday decency rarely makes headlines.

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  • Mon, Aug 28, 2017 - 9:57pm

    Reply to #5

    SailAway

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 11 2010

    Posts: 234

    Re: intentional Chemical Release?

    I’m referring to this interview with David Helvarg, here is the link and the section of the transcript about the release of toxic chemicals  

     

    https://www.democracynow.org/2017/8/28/this_is_the_new_normal_inside

     

    AMY GOODMAN: David, just before we go, I hate to interrupt, but i wanted to ask you about this. Hurricane Harvey’s arrival came as Bloomberg News reported that the FEMAdirector, Brock Long, who just held a news conference, on Friday was pushing for an overhaul of disaster relief so that states, cities, and homeowners bear more of the cost. And I also wanted to ask you, very briefly, to explain how the petrochemical industry has exploited past natural disasters to its benefit. For example, releasing toxic chemicals that are otherwise too expensive to get rid of.

    DAVID HELVARG: Yeah, unfortunately, there is a history—during storms and other disasters when people aren’t watching, industry has released hazardous waste into the floodwaters, essentially, to save money. This is just like offshore the shipping industry will release oily waste into the ocean to save money. And so you have to have really close monitoring at times like this.

    Luckily, right now, the Coast Guard, along with having its SAR—search and rescue helicopters—in the air and Swift Boat rescue teams on the water, I am sure they also have the strike team out of Mobile, Alabama, that’s looking at the pollution. As we said earlier, the Houston Ship Channel is part of Cancer Alley. It is a huge complex of petrochemical facilities.

    And it is bizarre that they had a voluntary shutdown. That should have been mandated. And there is a good chance that either accidentally or intentionally, you’re going to see a large-scale pollution release, because of where this is located. You’re certainly going to see a claim of disruption of production, and they’re going to jack up gasoline prices. That is just what they do.

    AMY GOODMAN: Well, David Helvarg, we want to thank you for being with us. Executive director of Blue Frontier, an ocean conservation organization. He is speaking to us from San Diego, California. When we come back, we’re going to talk to people in Texas about what happens to undocumented immigrants in times like this. This is Democracy Now!. We’ll be back in a minute.

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 4:43am

    #11

    Rector

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 07 2010

    Posts: 321

    Black Swans Can Hit Us Too

    We live south of Corpus Christi and Harvey just missed our area.  We began the usual fire drill of preparing for the hurricane, but it veered north just in time.  Bizarrely the follow on weather was delightful – sunny, crisp, and breezy – while the rest of the gulf coast became an apocalyptic nightmare.  As I watched the news I was painfully aware of how close we came to being flooded, displaced, and disrupted.

    As a card carrying member of the Peak Prosperity Preparer’s Club – I came to the realization that Chris articulated – nothing can prepare you for this kind of Black Swan event.  No matter what – losses will occur.  My takeaways after being grazed by the Harvey bullet are (so far):

    1.  Be prepared to accept refugees.  Family members are on the way (I think).  At this point they are without resources and fractured.  Dad is a cop and cannot leave Houston.  We are happy to accept them into our home – but it wasn’t exactly planned.  In a wider emergency the same might happen and I will say yes then too.  I need to expand my preparations for the likelihood of more people camping out with us.  Turning everyone away outside of a pandemic scenario is not an option (really).  What’s the point of all this anyway if you can’t help people?

    2.  Being 5% prepared is WAY better than zero.  As I watch people in Houston it has occurred to me that I need a boat.  I live on a body of water which has flooded before and will flood again.  I built my home well above the flood plain – but Harvey just made a joke out of that math.  As I watch people wade in chest deep water while others float by in boats; I’m buying a boat.  Today.

    3.  Being prepared is great!  I needed to do NOTHING to get ready for the hurricane at my home.  Turns out that was really helpful because my time was spent getting other people and places prepared.  All of my employees (save one) asked for the day off (to get their homes ready) leaving me alone in my preparations.  Thankfully I didn’t have to waste time at the gas pump, ATM, or the grocery store.

    4.  Evacuation plans are a real priority for me now.  With four kids my mental default position has been to “hunker down”.  “We don’t evacuate for hurricanes here” has been the attitude because we are prepared and have always done well.  Harvey has demonstrated this is NOT ALWAYS POSSIBLE.  

    I will now focus my considerable prepping energy to developing a viable evacuation strategy.  Not an overland hike in ghilli suits – but a real strategy to get this group of people somewhere else quickly and safely.  Routes in every direction.  A list of destinations.  Checklists for packing, securing, and evacuating.  Documentation, asset relocation, etc.  I am even going to develop a plan to go into Mexico.  I had a day and a half between threat presentation and expected landfall.  Some events may present even less time.  

    5.  I need to be able to execute a plan at less than 100%.  As luck would have it, I pulled a muscle at CrossFit a week before and would have needed to do all the above while limping around in pain.  I represent the lion’s share of muscle power for the family – but can they execute in my absence or incapacity?  Hmm. . . not ready for that.

    6.  It is possible for two bad things to happen at the same time.  The financial crisis could begin, North Korea could strike, or any of the other crap I worry about could commence at any moment.  WHILE LIVING IN A FEMA SHELTER because I hadn’t planned on evacuating.  Am I ready to execute trades, etc. while in that shape?  Hmm. . . not ready for that either.

    I am thankful that we were spared the apocalypse but it has (again) identified holes in my plan that are the result of false premises.  Challenge yours because you just can’t make this stuff up.

    Rector

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 5:01am

    Reply to #11

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    A thousand thumbs up!

    I am requoting your entire, thought-provoking, honest, and detailed comment below because it’s just that good.  

    You’ve exemplified the true value of this site – intelligent and curious people coming together to courageously face what is and what’s to come.  

    So we prepare, and then note where we are still falling short.  We do this because we have the responsibility to others who are not gifted with either/both the capacity or the resources to face an uncertain future.  We do this because we are prudent and because we care.

    Thank you for sharing this.  

    Rector wrote:

    We live south of Corpus Christi and Harvey just missed our area.  We began the usual fire drill of preparing for the hurricane, but it veered north just in time.  Bizarrely the follow on weather was delightful – sunny, crisp, and breezy – while the rest of the gulf coast became an apocalyptic nightmare.  As I watched the news I was painfully aware of how close we came to being flooded, displaced, and disrupted.

    As a card carrying member of the Peak Prosperity Preparer’s Club – I came to the realization that Chris articulated – nothing can prepare you for this kind of Black Swan event.  No matter what – losses will occur.  My takeaways after being grazed by the Harvey bullet are (so far):

    1.  Be prepared to accept refugees.  Family members are on the way (I think).  At this point they are without resources and fractured.  Dad is a cop and cannot leave Houston.  We are happy to accept them into our home – but it wasn’t exactly planned.  In a wider emergency the same might happen and I will say yes then too.  I need to expand my preparations for the likelihood of more people camping out with us.  Turning everyone away outside of a pandemic scenario is not an option (really).  What’s the point of all this anyway if you can’t help people?

    2.  Being 5% prepared is WAY better than zero.  As I watch people in Houston it has occurred to me that I need a boat.  I live on a body of water which has flooded before and will flood again.  I built my home well above the flood plain – but Harvey just made a joke out of that math.  As I watch people wade in chest deep water while others float by in boats; I’m buying a boat.  Today.

    3.  Being prepared is great!  I needed to do NOTHING to get ready for the hurricane at my home.  Turns out that was really helpful because my time was spent getting other people and places prepared.  All of my employees (save one) asked for the day off (to get their homes ready) leaving me alone in my preparations.  Thankfully I didn’t have to waste time at the gas pump, ATM, or the grocery store.

    4.  Evacuation plans are a real priority for me now.  With four kids my mental default position has been to “hunker down”.  “We don’t evacuate for hurricanes here” has been the attitude because we are prepared and have always done well.  Harvey has demonstrated this is NOT ALWAYS POSSIBLE.  

    I will now focus my considerable prepping energy to developing a viable evacuation strategy.  Not an overland hike in ghilli suits – but a real strategy to get this group of people somewhere else quickly and safely.  Routes in every direction.  A list of destinations.  Checklists for packing, securing, and evacuating.  Documentation, asset relocation, etc.  I am even going to develop a plan to go into Mexico.  I had a day and a half between threat presentation and expected landfall.  Some events may present even less time.  

    5.  I need to be able to execute a plan at less than 100%.  As luck would have it, I pulled a muscle at CrossFit a week before and would have needed to do all the above while limping around in pain.  I represent the lion’s share of muscle power for the family – but can they execute in my absence or incapacity?  Hmm. . . not ready for that.

    6.  It is possible for two bad things to happen at the same time.  The financial crisis could begin, North Korea could strike, or any of the other crap I worry about could commence at any moment.  WHILE LIVING IN A FEMA SHELTER because I hadn’t planned on evacuating.  Am I ready to execute trades, etc. while in that shape?  Hmm. . . not ready for that either.

    I am thankful that we were spared the apocalypse but it has (again) identified holes in my plan that are the result of false premises.  Challenge yours because you just can’t make this stuff up.

    Rector

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 5:52am

    #12

    Poet

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 20 2009

    Posts: 976

    Sorry State of Houstonians...

    Whereas Rector is prepared and thinking of how he might better prepare, a Houston Redditor in the /r/preppers subreddit community posted this about the awful lack of intelligence in his fellow Houstonians…

    https://www.reddit.com/r/preppers/comments/6wmgg5/my_takeaway_from_harvey_as_a_houston_native/

    Poet

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 5:53am

    #13

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 481

    Dams overspilling

    One of the dams around Houston has begun to overspill. If I understood Scott Cahill’s various posts correctly, the worst is still yet to come as water falling now won’t hit the reservoir for another day or two.

     

    Rector, excellent post! It’s a great reminder that no matter the preparations we make, we can’t possibly cover everything, yet having zero preparation means you can’t cover anything that happens, so some is better than none. We at Chateau Snydeman need to keep that in mind, because no matter what we do, we constantly feel like we’re not doing as much as others are, or we need to be doing. Such is prepping.

     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 6:17am

    #14

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Addicks dam begins overspill

    Addicks Overspills and this is a dangerous new development.

    While the overspilling was expected, the pace of recent water rises indicates that the situation could get worse, possibly leading to a breach of the aged, earthen dam.

    Houston flood: Addicks dam begins overspill

    Aug 29, 2017 9:28 a.m.

    A major dam outside Houston has begun spilling over as Storm Harvey pushes the reservoir past capacity, a Texas official says.

    Engineers have tried to prevent nearby communities from being inundated by releasing some of the water held by the Addicks dam.

    But flood control official Jeff Lindner says water levels are now over the height of the reservoir edge.

    Harvey has brought huge floods to Texas and is starting to affect Louisiana.

    Unprecedented rainfall has forced thousands of people to flee their homes. At least nine people are reported to have died in the Houston area.

    While spillover would not cause the Addicks dam to fail, it would add more water to the Buffalo Bayou, the main river into the fourth largest city in the US.

     

    This is major news.  Addicks dam is one of the six worst dams in America.  Overspilling most definitely could lead to dam failure, despite the very odd assertion made in that last sentence.

    “While spillover would not cause the Addicks dam to fail…”  Really?  Who said that?  Is this the opinion of the BBC reporter or an expert that they forgot to quote or cite?

    This is a very strange and strong assertion to make.

    For a more nuanced view, let’s turn to a different source.

    The two earthen dams were built some 70 years ago in a then-rural part of Harris and Fort Bend Counties that has since seen explosive growth, allowing water to flow more freely over the paved landscape.

    The dams are now midway through a three-year, $75-million repair and restoration project. Because the reservoirs are typically empty or mostly empty, the dams have experienced a sequence of increasingly frequent on-and-off stresses due to increased development and more-extreme rainfall events in the Houston area. In 2009, the USACE rated the Addicks and Barker dams as being at “extremely high risk of catastrophic failure,” which put them among just six dams in the nation with that designation. It’s important to note that Addicks and Barker have not been considered at imminent risk of failure, according to USACE, who say the designation hinges in large part on the scope of the disaster if failure were to actually occur. 

    As reported in the Houston Chronicle last year, “If the dams failed, half of Houston would be underwater. Under the worst scenario at Addicks, property damages could reach $22.7 billion and 6,928 people could die.” The Houston Press, which published a harrowing in-depth report on the state of the dams in 2012, filed an update on Sunday.

    (Source – Weather Underground)

    So this is definitely a serious situation.  Perhaps the dam is safe, perhaps not.  But being in bad shape to begin with and facing an absolutely unprecedented strain does not give anyone much cause for comfort here….

    If you live downslope from these dams, get out now. 

     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 7:01am

    Reply to #14

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 481

    cmartenson

    cmartenson wrote:

      Overspilling most definitely could lead to dam failure, despite the very odd assertion made in that last sentence.

    “While spillover would not cause the Addicks dam to fail…”  Really?  Who said that?  Is this the opinion of the BBC reporter or an expert that they forgot to quote or cite?

    This is a very strange and strong assertion to make.

     

    Yeah, I noticed that too. So desperately do we modern humans cling to normalcy at the expense of reasonable skepticism and preparation! I can’t tell you how many people on my Facebook feed are literally coming out and denying that these storms represent any kind of sign of climate change.

     

    /facepalm

     

    How many once-in-a-century storms hitting inside a single decade does it take for people to finally start putting the puzzle pieces together?

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 7:20am

    #15

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Columbia Lakes levees breached - emergency evac

    The Brazos levee at Columbia Lakes has been breached.  

    Good luck to the residents there.  That’s a bad situation.

    Perversely, and disgustingly, the central banks are busy manipulating the US stock indexes upwards at the moment.  I know they think they are helping to provide a calming lift to a beleaguered nation, but the optics of having equities cheer on the destruction is truly galling to this observer.  Tone deaf beyond any reason.  

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 7:22am

    #16

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Get Out Now!

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 7:30am

    #17

    charleshughsmith

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 15 2010

    Posts: 683

    bug-out shelter

    After reading Rector’s excellent post, I am wondering anew about the value of a bug-out shelter on much higher ground some distance away, or in the case of those of us in Earthquake Country, far enough away from fault zones to be unaffected by a quake.  I have questioned the notion of bug-out shelters in rural locales being options for permanent relocation, and wrote a 2-parter here on the trade-offs involved in having a true second home (i.e. equipped for long-term occupancy) elsewhere.

    Even a simple shelter (trailer, small cabin, etc.) would be extremely valuable if the alternative was a public shelter or crashing at a relatives–OK for a few days, but problematic for a stay of weeks unless the relatives’ property is expansive.

     Anyone with a bug-out shelter a day’s drive (or less) away could get there and if the storm passed without any major disruption, return home in a day.  But if they needed to stay for weeks or even months, the bug-out shelter would be a welcome option.

    I am also pondering the immense value of having 1.5 day warning that a hurricane will make landfall.  Earthquakes tend to provide some early signaling but it is generally ambiguous. Those of us in EQ Country will be making assessments after the damage has already occurred.  If the roads remain open,  a bug-out shelter would still be extremely valuable, especially if we left more or less immediately, before everyone else figured out a destination outside the devastation.

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 8:09am

    #18
    gkcjrrt

    gkcjrrt

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2016

    Posts: 14

    Broken Window

    I am thankful for all the local volunteers and those donating from afar to help those affected in real time by this disaster. 

    When the dust settles …. Congress will authorize a $100Billion + spending bill to help Houston (read bailout everyone, home, business owners, insurance companies ).   And Why not?  It makes everyone feel good and it’s just printed money (debt sold to central banks) – what some printed money compared to having families lose their homes.  The debt will never be paid back anyway.   

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 8:23am

    #19

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    And now the looters come…

    There are increasing reports of looting happening now all over the Houston area, as well as reports that some looters appear to be arriving from elsewhere to take advantage of the situation.

    The takeaway here is that you had better be prepared for the human threats to closely follow the natural disaster.  I know that’s not news to any of the loyal readers here, but it never hurts to reinforce the message.

    During the mayor’s recent press conference (an hour ago) the Chief of Police spoke to this.

    Reinforcing this idea is this tweet from Houston Office of Emergency Mgmt:

    There were also reports that the Cajun Navy (volunteers with boats) had been fired upon by looters (but also note they are running into increasingly desperate people rushing their boats).

    Cajun Navy rescuer says looters shot at them, tried to steal boats

    Aug 28, 2017
    HOUSTON — A rescuer for the famed Louisiana Cajun Navy says looters tried to steal their boats and fired shots at them while they were trying to save Houston residents from flooded homes.

    Clyde Cain told CNN that a boat broke down, and while the crew sought shelter in a delivery truck, people tried to steal the inoperable boat.

    “They’re making it difficult for us to rescue them,” he said. “You have people rushing the boat. Everyone wants to get in at the same time. They’re panicking. Water is rising.”

    Here’s a salient comment from a Reddit thread on the tension that you will live with being a person with resources in a damaged area:

    I was in Georgia during Hurricane Matthew. Once the water started to go down the looting began. The roads hadn’t opened up yet and the only people around were the preppers who stayed and those who couldn’t afford to leave. When there is no power and clouds overhead, it is very dark. Unbelievably dark.

    You better believe looting happens. You can try your hardest to dry out your possessions and defend your home, but there were thugs driving around during the day casing the neighborhoods to see who has generators and what houses are unoccupied.

    It is terrifying to sit at your window in complete darkness knowing there is someone outside trying to steal your possessions and wondering what is going to happen when you open the door to scare them away.

    (Source

    What’s truly astonishing is that the vast majority of people seemed to have no preparations in place.  No extra food.  No thoughts to even filling up a bathtub with extra water.  No communications besides their cell phones, no plans of any sort, and no idea what to do.

    Reports are piling in of people faking 911 medical emergencies just to get an evacuation response.

    Apparently it hadn’t occurred to them that there weren’t 3 million emergency responders on call to respond instantly to their own unique and immediate needs.  It’s not just a snowflake generation, it’s a snowflake country.

    Many lessons being taught here.


    Update #1 (8/29 1:10 pm):

    Right on time…3-4 days into a crisis like this and people get hungry.


     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 8:28am

    #20

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Brazos at astonishing 59 feet!

    The Fort Bend OEM has issued the following list of affected subdivisions and communities that need to be ready for flood conditions ranging from minor to utterly disastrous:


    Update at 1:25 pm 8/29:

    This community isn’t even listed on the above table.  Best to add it I guess.  

    Flooding looks pretty deep (i.e. bad):


     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 9:04am

    #21

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Government = Moral Hazard

    Here’s a great comment about the Columbia Lakes levee breach.

    (Source)

    The place never should have been developed in the first place and wouldn’t have been if private insurers were the only ones available.

    So homes were build right in a flood plain, an insufficient levee was placed around the development and the government now holds the bag on the mortgages.  

    And by “government” I mean taxpayers.  And by “taxpayers” I mean you and your loved ones.

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 10:12am

    #22
    Michael Frome

    Michael Frome

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 20 2011

    Posts: 90

    assistance idea

    cacteam.com

    http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com/cac-teamresponding-to-harvey

    This is a thing I sent off this morning to do what I can

     

    Re: CAC – want to help – air miles + amazon stuff

    Hi Steven,

    Want to help more w/ CAC push, re Harvey, past cash donation on the way…

    I have 62838 air miles from Alaska Air.
    I need full name, gender, birth date, departure airport and
    (approximate) flight date/time(s) to make one or more flights happen.
    DFW one-way tickets “cost” 12500 miles on the budget flights, so 25k
    miles for any round trip.  I’ll cover the taxes & fee crap.  Bags are
    extra, but fairly big carry-ons are no additional charge for people.
    Can’t fund bags.  They can be paid for at airport ticket counter.

    If you have people that want to be on deck but need air fare,
    or
    you have some people that have a place inland they can stay with
    relatives or what have you, but can’t get there

    I can help with a few of them with this.

    Also, if you have a list of amazon crap that could be drop-shipped to
    Jack’s ranch or wherever for pickup and distribution, I and maybe others
    could execute on a “wish list”.
    You would have to update this with NEEDS/NEEDS FILLED columns pretty
    regularly so your ship-to point does not wind up with 10,000 D cells and
    no diapers for instance.

    Let me know,
    Mike

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 10:15am

    #23

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Long Term Power outages now on the table

    Center Point Energy just tweeted this cryptic but worrying information:

    I’m not sure the word “planned” is appropriate.  :/

    “Managed” might be a better fit.

    But this was what I was talking about in the outages section above.  Long-term power outages are likely to cause all sorts of havoc on the recovery efforts.

     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 11:16am

    #24

    scotthw

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 16 2008

    Posts: 24

    Preps to Houston

    Oy ve is right, I live in Central Texas and as Harvey approached and everyone around me was running around getting ready my wife asked “What do we need to do ?”  My reply was “Nothing, we are ready”.  She smirked and didn’t say anything else. She quit questioning my prepping a year or two back and now this makes it real.  Anyway we received  only a glancing blow (a mere 5.3 inches of rain and a yard full of twigs), and now get this:

    The disaster relief informal network is in full swing and I am sending some of my preps back to Houston.  I can hear it now “Wow, someone sent us a water filter instead of bottled water!  And with instructions too!”

    I have had (another) talk with my daughter about a backup power supply for their well, maybe it will get done this time. 

    Anyway I would not have been prepared or able to give advice and direction without the likes of PP, Survivalblog, et al.  Thanks to everyone, community rocks!

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 12:17pm

    #25

    GerrySM

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 20 2017

    Posts: 16

    BBC Nails it

    From the BBC today:

     

    There’s a well-established physical law, the Clausius-Clapeyron equation, that says that a hotter atmosphere holds more moisture.

    For every extra degree Celsius in warming, the atmosphere can hold 7% more water. This tends to make rainfall events even more extreme when they occur.

    Another element that we can mention with some confidence is the temperature of the seas.

    “The waters of the Gulf of Mexico are about 1.5 degrees warmer above what they were from 1980-2010,” Sir Brian Hoskins from the Grantham Institute for Climate Change told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

    “That is very significant because it means the potential for a stronger storm is there, and the contribution of global warming to the warmer waters in the Gulf, it’s almost inevitable that there was a contribution to that.”

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 12:30pm

    Reply to #19
    Rich Zeh

    Rich Zeh

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 29 2017

    Posts: 1

    Looting

    I wonder where all the food warehouses are located?  Most of the time industrial and warehousing is in the cheapest, i.e. most flood prone area of town.  So, nothing is coming into the city, how long before the food is out for 4 million people?

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 4:18pm

    #26

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1839

    Houston Humor

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 5:06pm

    #27

    pinecarr

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2008

    Posts: 1085

    This can't be good

    “Giant Chemical Plant In Crosby, Texas Warns It Is In “Real Danger” Of Exploding”, @ http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-29/giant-texas-chemical-plant-real-danger-explosion-arkema-warns

    A chemical plant in Crosby, Texas belonging to French industrial giant Arkema SA, has announced it is evacuating workers on Tuesday due to the risk of an explosion, after Tropical Storm Harvey knocked out power and flooding swamped its backup generators. The French company said the situation at the plant “has become serious” …

    And:

    The plant, which produces explosive organic peroxides and ammonia, was hit by more than 40 inches of rain and has been heavily flooded, running without electricity since Sunday. The plant was closed since Friday but has had a skeleton staff of about a dozen in place. Following the flood surge, the plant’s back-up generators also failed.

    According to the plant’s website description, it “produces methyl mercaptan, ethyl mercaptan, dimethyl sulfide (DMS) and methylmercapto-proprionaldehyde (MMP).”

    Our products are key ingredients in the manufacture of biodegradable herbicides, pesticides and animal feed supplements. These products are also used in the production of pharmaceuticals, photographic chemicals and circuit boards. Ethyl mercaptan is primarily used as an odorizer for propane gas. The strong odor that ethyl mercaptan adds to propane makes gas leaks easier to detect, protecting homes and businesses. MMP is used in the production of methionine, an essential amino acid and a key component of poultry, swine and ruminant (cattle, sheep, etc.) feed.

    The threat emerged once the company could no longer maintain refrigeration for chemicals located on site, which have to be stored at low temperatures. The plant lost refrigeration when backup generators were flooded and then workers transferred products from the warehouses into diesel-powered refrigerated containers.

     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 5:58pm

    #28

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    By the time...

    Now I’ve seen everything.

    By the time you see white caps on an interstate, what could possibly be left in life?

     

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  • Tue, Aug 29, 2017 - 6:12pm

    Reply to #28

    pinecarr

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2008

    Posts: 1085

    That's just surreal!

    A taste of things to come?

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 2:16am

    Reply to #26

    blackeagle

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 16 2013

    Posts: 221

    re-Houston humor

    Give this task to the army, not the average Joe.

    This is exactly what has been done in 1980 in El-Asnam (The city has been completely destroyed by an earthquake). The army was sent there to help, and every looter caught by them, was executed. Quick, cheap and most importantly very convincing.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 4:15am

    Reply to #26

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1436

    U loot, we shoot

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 5:08am

    #29

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    The Sun Is Out In Houston, But It Isn't Over

    As I checked the recent news and especially the Twitter feeds the people of Houston are understandably thrilled that the rain has stopped and the sun is out.

    Already the headlines are about “healing from Harvey” but I should point out that this is premature.

    The flooding is still on the rise for many communities, not least of which remains the very center of Houston where the latest graph of the Addicks reservoir shows this (from 1:30 a.m. CDT, the most recent update):

    (Source

    That has not even leveled off yet and seems to have some room yet to run.  So inflows still exceed outflows.

    In a Tuesday afternoon press conference, the Army Corps of Engineers said that the pool elevation at Addicks had risen to 108 feet and is expected to peak at 110.4 feet. Barker is currently at 100 feet was expected to peak at 104 feet. 

    (Source

    God forbid a breach happens somehow because that would send a wall of water through Houston that would be above and beyond any damage seen so far.

    For now, officials are saying everything is fine, which is good news.

    Lindner wanted to emphasize that there was not a breach in the dam on the north end of Addicks, as some people believe. “The integrity of the dams is in fine shape….there is no potential damage to the north end.”

    Engineers will continue to raise the gates of dams slowly. Currently, the water in Addicks will flow at 3800 cubic feet per second and 3500 cubic feet per second for Barker. The goal is 4000 cubic feet per second is expected to be reached today. 

    (Same source as above)

    The water from Addicks is now flowing over the emergency spillway, [edit: I’ve since discovered, the spillways are not where the water is leavings from, it’s an unplanned breach to the north] which is a very long concrete affair and seems unlikely to fail.

    (Source

    Of course, this is exactly like the Oroville dam spillway and we are about to find out if it was designed and built properly.  These spillways are probably designed to handle short-term events, with a defined amount of water flowing over.

    For example, because engineering costs money and things eventually get replaced anyways, the decision might have been made to design it for a 100 year event where the water topped out at 102 feet and a flow rate of X.

    Right now this is a 500 or a 1,000 year event and the water is going to top out at 110.4 feet with a flow rate of Y and then come down slowly over many days.

    Then, even if the design and construction of the spillway are able to manage the overtopping flow rate after all, there are other considerations such as the debris in the water.  I cannot verify the integrity of this anonymous comment made on Reddit, but it seems like a reasonable concern:

    I work for an agency but I can’t say which because I am not allowed to speak officially.

    Those spillways are meant to withstand short events.  Water wins even when steel re-enforced concrete is concerned. I’ve seen some estimates the dam has about two hours and some say it could go as long as 12. It’s not particularly relevant because at this point the full flow of the tributaries is leaving so the downstream areas will be inundated. The only thing that may likely be prevented is a catastrophic failure that creates an instantaneous flood. Anyone downstream from there should be leaving no matter what. They are no longer safe.

    The 2-hour estimate was from a rather cynical engineer who doubts the spillway was maintained or even constructed properly because they are viewed as absolute last resorts that never happen. It’s taken 49 inches of rain to get to that point.

    The 12 hours was an engineer who was trying to factor in debris in the water and the destruction of the spillway itself below to top. Once the lower spillway is damaged it deteriorates quickly and moves back to the overflow top. He believes its likely within 12 hours that will occur because the water flow is neither steady nor has it had time to clear of debris.

    Water entering the reservoir contains a large amount of floating material because rain is still actively falling and levels are still rising. If this had been an upstream geographically removed from the damn, the amount of debris reaching and flowing in the spillway would be greatly reduced. This is an active event that is increasing in severity.

    He was also considering the fact that its likely at this time that the reservoir itself is filling with debris raising the bottom significantly. This lowers the ability of the reservoir to allow abrasive material to settle. The longer the rainfall occurs over the immediate area, the more abrasive and destructive the water will become. His estimate was that beginning at 12 hours the risk of failure is likely and it goes up steadily after that. He doesn’t believe it will hold the 24 hours required for the localized rain to stop.

    (Source

    So it seems that this situation needs to be monitored and that even though the sun is out and it’s stopped raining, it ain’t over yet.

    If the Addicks and/or Barton dams breach, Houston’s center will receive a very large blob of water that would be many feet on top of what’s already there.  Perhaps 10 to 15 feet by some estimates.

    Yes, the sun is out and it has stopped raining.  No, it isn’t over yet but I understand that the attention span of the MSM and nation has already been breached.   So we’ll keep monitoring ourselves.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 6:25am

    #30

    Chris Martenson

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    Gasoline price spiking (up another 7% today)

    I’m still reviewing a very complex and rapidly changing energy situation as a result of HArvey, but for now we can just look at gasoline futures and understand that a major situation is underway.

    This is astonishing:

    I think it’s entirely possible that actual shortages and rationing could result.

    This is especially true in the Northeast which is so heavily dependent on the Colonial pipeline.

    Buy gas, and consider storing some if you can.  Remember, not int he garage.  Keep your stored gas somewhere besides the structure in which you live.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 7:40am

    #31

    Snydeman

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    The Problem with Oroville...

    …is that Oroville Dam narrowly missed becoming a major catastrophe. Now, that was a good thing for anyone living downriver of that dam, since they missed the devastation that would have wrought.

     

    However, I would assert that the media, and public in general, are taking the danger of failure of the two dams in Houston far too lightly. The interesting thing about a crisis averted is it reduces the chance of people responding with adequate attentiveness to similar crises in the future. It’s as if the media I’m reading takes it on faith that these dams will hold. After all, Oroville held, right? 

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 8:04am

    Reply to #31

    Chris Martenson

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    Dam failures in Houston still a possibility

    Snydeman wrote:

    …is that Oroville Dam narrowly missed becoming a major catastrophe. Now, that was a good thing for anyone living downriver of that dam, since they missed the devastation that would have wrought.

    However, I would assert that the media, and public in general, are taking the danger of failure of the two dams in Houston far too lightly. The interesting thing about a crisis averted is it reduces the chance of people responding with adequate attentiveness to similar crises in the future. It’s as if the media I’m reading takes it on faith that these dams will hold. After all, Oroville held, right?

    I guess it’s something like that.  Perhaps it’s a case of “well, New Orleans got toasted and the country just printed up money and carried on, so we will with Houston too.”

    Only in business terms new Orleans is a national cost center and Houston is the production facility.

    There’s no comparison between the two.

    There remains a very non-zero chance of dam failure in Texas here.  That should be national news.  My local paper has Harvey buried in the front section, on page 6. 

    It’s over.

    But it’s not.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 9:37am

    Reply to #31

    Snydeman

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    cmartenson wrote: Only in

    cmartenson wrote:

    Only in business terms new Orleans is a national cost center and Houston is the production facility.

    There’s no comparison between the two.

    As a teacher who has taught in both independent and public education, I can assure you that part of the problem is that a good half of Americans probably couldn’t tell you why there is no comparison between the two. Much less define “cost center” and “production facility.”

     

    cmartenson wrote:

    There remains a very non-zero chance of dam failure in Texas here.  That should be national news.  My local paper has Harvey buried in the front section, on page 6. 

    It’s over.

    But it’s not.

    Same here. Let’s just hope that those responsible for allowing people back into their neighborhoods understand that. I’ll not put money on that hope, though.

    -S

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 9:45am

    #32

    Larry Frisa

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    Addicks Emergency Spillway

    In looking over the past few posts I see that the Addicks reservoir is to peak at 110.4 ft and that the gates on the primary spillway are open which will reach a max flow today of 4,000 cubic feet per second. But, I don’t see at what level the water will be going over the emergency spillway (shown in Chris’s post #38 above.). Has the clock already started on the 2-24 hour time span given in the Reddit post or will the emergency spillway not be used because the 4,000 cfs will prevent it? Sometimes I miss the obvious so excuse me if that’s the case. 

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 9:52am

    #33

    Chris Martenson

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    Port Arthur now flooding badly

    No, it’s not over.  Not by a long shot.

    This tweet just came through this morning:

    This is happening because while Houston was getting all the press, Harvey landed again to the east this morning and dumped absolutely stunning amounts of rain on these smaller communities and cities like Beaumont and Port Arthur.

    Here’s that exact address on Google maps, and then the street view during drier, happier times.

    That’s really striking for some reason.  Seeing all those dry houses absolutely flooded.  Ugh.

    They are even having to evacuate the evacuation center there:

    And finally here’s Harvey making (his final) landfall this morning and showing exactly why these already swamped communities are now struggling with the additional 10 to 20 inches of rain they just got.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 10:00am

    Reply to #32

    Chris Martenson

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    Already spilling over

    Mr. Fri wrote:

    In looking over the past few posts I see that the Addicks reservoir is to peak at 110.4 ft and that the gates on the primary spillway are open which will reach a max flow today of 4,000 cubic feet per second. But, I don’t see at what level the water will be going over the emergency spillway (shown in Chris’s post #38 above.). Has the clock already started on the 2-24 hour time span given in the Reddit post or will the emergency spillway not be used because the 4,000 cfs will prevent it? Sometimes I miss the obvious so excuse me if that’s the case. 

    It’s been surprisingly difficult to get a solid answer to the question “what’s the mean sea level height of the Addicks and Barkers spillways?”

    So far I’m stumped but I’ll keep searching.

    In the meantime, we know they are already flowing over as of Tuesday for Addicks and Wednesday for Barker:

    Houston dam spills over for the first time in history, overwhelmed by Harvey rainfall

    Aug 29, 2017

    HOUSTON — One of two major flood-control reservoirs in the Houston area began spilling over for the first time in history, despite efforts to prevent such “uncontrolled” overflow the day before, officials said.

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers confirmed Tuesday morning that water was spilling from the north end of the Addicks Reservoir, which has been overwhelmed by extreme rainfall from Hurricane Harvey. Officials said they expect the Barker Reservoir, to the south of Addicks, to begin overflowing similarly at some point Wednesday.

    A Harris County Flood Control District meteorologist said the overflow from the reservoirs would eventually flow into downtown Houston.

    And this is with another 2.4 feet of rise on the way….so there will be several feet of ‘sheeting’ over the breaches of these dams unless my math and physics are really bad.  

    I say ‘breaches’ because apparently the water is *not* going over the auxiliary spillways, but over some other, lower points elsewhere.

    I’m no dam engineer, but this doesn’t seem optimal:

    “These are not your typical dams; these are unique because of the type of terrain we have,” Long said, referring to Houston’s relatively flat plain.

    The Addicks and Barker reservoirs each have a main spillway and two auxiliary spillways. Water hadn’t breached any of those spillways, but instead was overflowing through a slightly lower point on the north end of the Addicks Reservoir.

    Oops.

    That sounds pretty bad.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 10:29am

    #34

    Chris Martenson

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    Nation’s largest refinery shuts down

    Nation’s largest refinery shuts down

    Explaining the spike in gas prices today is this:

    Nation’s largest refinery shuts down as Harvey floods Texas; gas prices rise

    Aug 30, 2017

    The largest crude oil refinery in the United States has shut down due to flooding from Tropical Storm Harvey.

    Motiva Enterprises’ Port Arthur plant, which has been in operation more than 100 years, stopped operating Tuesday night.

    Motiva Enterprises has a crude capacity of over 600,000 barrels a day, supplying gasoline and diesel to thousands of retail outlets under the iconic Shell and 76- brands.

    Energy industry intelligence service Genscape said the refinery was using its safety flare system on Tuesday night.

    Flares can be a signal of the shutdown of a unit or units at a refinery.

    The flaring triggered messages on social media of a fire at the refinery, but Motiva confirmed there was no fire at the plant.

    A return to service is contingent upon recession of flood waters in the area.

    Well, truthfully, restarting will be contingent on a lot of things, namely the amount of damage done by water, the amount of damage done by the shutdown itself (apparently these are tricky things to shut down and then restart), and how long it takes to restore power.

    Already we know that power may not be restored to some coastal areas for quite a while.  According to American Electric Power they cannot provide “ETAs for power restoration for customers in the hardest hit areas of Rockport, Port Aransas, Fulton, Woodsboro, Port Lavaca, Lamar and Bayside.”

    Here’s the location of the plant:

    That’s not too far from the poor woman’s house seen a few comments above.  

    If this plant is down for any extended period of time, there will be gasoline shortages resulting.  It’s not too early to begin thinking about operating under a regime of extended shortages…?

     

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 10:34am

    #35

    Chris Martenson

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    More Port Arthur Info

    This is what an out of control emergency looks and sounds like in the news.   Good luck everyone living there, be safe and be smart (and please don’t wait to be rescued if you are able to take care of yourself).

    JEFFERSON CO., Texas (FOX 26) – The National Weather Service has issued flash flood emergencies for parts of Southeast Texas, including Beaumont and Port Arthur.

    KFDM-TV reports the situation in Port Arthur is dire as homes were expected to fill with rising floodwaters and residents unsure of how to evacuate the city.

    Jefferson County Sheriff Zena Stephens tells the station that county resources cannot get to Port Arthur because of the flooding and some residents have gone into survival mode.

    Mayor Derrick Freeman said on his Facebook page that the “city is underwater right now but we are coming!” He also urged residents to get to higher ground, but avoid becoming trapped in attics.

    Meanwhile, many residents evacuated to the Bob Bowers Civic Center.

    But by Wednesday morning, the Civic Center was flooding with hundreds inside and with nowhere to go.

    Port Arthur police later announced that the Carl Parker Center is accepting citizens seeking shelter, but there are no supplies at the facility.

    Residents and their loved ones in other areas continue to post to social media, out of desperation, the dire situation they’re under.

    The Jefferson County Office of Emergency Management announced at 3:35 a.m. Wednesday that rescue efforts will resume at daylight.

    Deputy Marcus McLellan told FOX 26 the city’s 911 system has been inundated with calls.

    (Source

    This is very serious still.

     

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 1:19pm

    #36

    Chris Martenson

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    Addicks update

    First, here’s the most recent reservoir level as of 3:45 pm CDT.

    There was a seeming flattening and even a decline, and the a sudden jump and a flatline.

    So I am guessing their measurement device is dodgy or broken.  At any rate, the last measurement value was 109 feet.  

    Next, they are saying that the “uncontrolled releases” have stopped around the Barker reservoir (no word on Addicks, so I’m guessing no news is bad news) which leads me to assume that sand bags or some other remediation efforts have been applied and been successful.  Details are thin right now:

    HOUSTON – Some 3,000 homes near Addicks reservoir and 1,000 homes near Barker are inundated due to water release, Harris County Flood Control District meteorologist Jeff Lindner said Wednesday morning.

    Uncontrolled releases are no longer expected around the Barker reservoir, the Harris County Flood Control District said Wednesday afternoon, but water releases will continue for days.

    Both reservoir outlet gates are open and releasing storm water into Buffalo Bayou, but pool levels may continue to rise. House flooding is occurring in adjacent neighborhoods, and roadways that run through the reservoirs are underwater.

    “The good news is we are getting very close to the peak at both reservoirs,” Lindner said during a press conference.

    An area of the levee eroded on Wednesday morning, according to the Harris County Flood Control District. Officials said a breach is not likely, but possible. This occurred in the area where water is pumped out of the Cyprus Creek/Inverness Forest subdivision.

    A portion of the levee eroded after water came over the top of the intake system. Several agencies are trying to remedy the situation by bringing sand to the area.

    (Source)

    So a breach remains possible, but not likely, according to officials.  Who would probably never say anything different even if they were scrambling like mad to avoid a breach.

    That, at least, is the learning from Oroville.  Best not to trust official statements because those are geared more towards preventing panic (or official embarrassment) than providing useful data to the public.

    Maybe TX officials and associated Federal agencies are playing differently in TX than the CA/Oroville officials, but I wouldn’t count on it.  

     

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 1:26pm

    #37

    thc0655

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    "No way to stop" imminent explosion and fire at chemical plant

    https://www.reuters.com/article/storm-harvey-arkema-idUSL2N1LG229

    Arkema’s North America chief executive said on Wednesday the company has no way of preventing chemicals from catching fire or exploding at its heavily flooded plant in Crosby, Texas. 

    The company evacuated remaining workers on Tuesday and Harris County ordered the evacuation of residents in a 1.5-mile(2.4-km) radius of the plant that makes organic chemicals. 

    Richard Rowe, who is chief executive of the company’s North America unit, told reporters the company expects chemicals on site to catch fire or explode within the next six days. He said the company has no way to prevent a fire or potential explosion near the plant that is swamped by about six feet (1.83 m) of water.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 1:26pm

    #38

    Chris Martenson

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    Harvey Lessons Learned

    Everyone should have a plan in place before a crisis hits.  

    These are not things you want to have to return home for days later.

    Those are part of every prepared person’s go bag routine.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 1:34pm

    #39

    thc0655

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    Navy destroyer collides with building in Houston

    As if the city of Houston hasn’t seen enough tragedy due to catastrophic flooding from Hurricane Harvey, things took a turn for the worse today after a U.S. Navy ship collided with a building in the downtown area.

    The ship was identified as an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer belonging to the Navy’s 7th Fleet.

    It was unclear why the destroyer was not able to see the building and take evasive action, or why it was over 20 miles inland and trying to navigate through a major metropolitan area.

    “I had climbed up on my roof due to dem risin’ flood waters, when I saw a big ship sailin’ down the street,” said Georgia Brown, a resident who witnessed the incident. “I says to myself ‘Oh Lawdy, someone’s done come to rescue us!’ and then it sails right past my house and smack straight into that yonder building.”

    This marks the fifth collision incident this summer for destroyers from the Navy’s beleaguered 7th Fleet, following incidents involving the USS Fitzgerald, USS John S. McCain, and the USS Ted Kennedy.

    The Navy declined to comment on the cause of the collision, citing an ongoing investigation, although it did say the captain had been promptly relieved of his command.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 2:33pm

    Reply to #37

    Chris Martenson

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    More on the Imminent Arkema Chemcial Plant Expl.

    thc0655 wrote:

    https://www.reuters.com/article/storm-harvey-arkema-idUSL2N1LG229

    Arkema’s North America chief executive said on Wednesday the company has no way of preventing chemicals from catching fire or exploding at its heavily flooded plant in Crosby, Texas. 

    The company evacuated remaining workers on Tuesday and Harris County ordered the evacuation of residents in a 1.5-mile(2.4-km) radius of the plant that makes organic chemicals. 

    Richard Rowe, who is chief executive of the company’s North America unit, told reporters the company expects chemicals on site to catch fire or explode within the next six days. He said the company has no way to prevent a fire or potential explosion near the plant that is swamped by about six feet (1.83 m) of water.

    Here’s some more information that adds to the story:

     

    The Arkema plant in Crosby, Texas, some 25 miles northeast of Houston, was evacuated late Tuesday. Working with authorities, the company also urged everyone within a mile and a half of the plant to evacuate, and shut down a stretch of Highway 90 that runs alongside the plant, which produces organic peroxides for things like acrylic-based paint.

    “We have an unprecedented 6 feet of water throughout the plant,” Arkema’s North American operations Chief Executive Rich Rowe said in a teleconference Wednesday with reporters. Mr. Rowe said that the plant lost primary power and two emergency backup power sources, which led to a shutdown of “critical refrigeration needed for our materials.”

    He said that means those materials “could now explode and cause a subsequent and intense fire,” and added that “the high water that exists on site, and the lack of power, leave us with no way to prevent it.” Mr. Rowe said about 300 people in all have been evacuated, but said it wasn’t a mandatory evacuation, so he’s not certain whether the 1.5-mile radius around the facility is currently devoid of people. He said it is mostly a rural area, so there are “a limited number of homes” within the area.

    Mr. Rowe said local officials told him the water level in the area could actually continue to rise over the course of the next three to six days, and as such Arkema, which is based in France, believes the chemicals will start to degrade well before that happens.

    (Source – WSJ)

    Here are a couple of things I take from that.

    1.  Apparently there’s intense flooding 25 miles north and east of Houston.  This gives us a sense of the extent of the flooding.  Further this tells us that this disaster is still wildly underappreciated by the general populace of the US, the MSM, and my Twitter and FB ‘friends’ who are still msotly talking about other things.

    2. The waters are still going to rise for an extended period of time, three to six days more, and that’s important info.

    Here’s a map of Crosby TX whee the Arkana plant is located:

    My conclusion is that if we are hearing about this one plant’s imminent explosive troubles, how many “non exploding plants” are we not yet hearing about which are in similar trouble in terms of operational damage?

    A betting person would guess that the Arkana plant represents the tip of the iceberg in this regard.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 2:45pm

    #40

    Chris Martenson

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    A great summary of the economic impact

    The economic impact of Harvey is going to be extreme.  I predict it will be much larger than Sandy or (especially) Katrina.

    Why?  Because of the immense size of the Houston economy and because of the ripple effects associated with the various supply chain and feedstock disruptions that have yet to be tallied but are surely already in progress.

    Here’s a great summary to chew on:

    The Houston metropolitan area, with a population of well over 6 million, has nearly five times the number of people as the New Orleans metropolitan area. More significantly, Houston has more than five time as many jobs as New Orleans, 3.06 million to 578,000. And they tend to be well-paying jobs.

    The Houston metropolitan area gross domestic product in 2015 was $503 billion, compared with $78 billion for New Orleans. For any retailer or large e-commerce company, the Houston region likely represents close to 3 percent of annual sales.

    Houston, America’s fourth-largest city, has a massive, diversified economy.

    Sure, New Orleans sits near the mouth of the mighty Mississippi River and is an important entrepôt and site for export of raw materials, agricultural commodities chemicals, and petroleum products.

    But Houston is a larger, busier, and far more important node in the networked economy.

    Economies derive their power and influence from their connections to other cities, countries, and markets. And Houston is one of the more connected. It is one of the global capitals of the energy and energy services industries. The Johnson Space Center has 10,000 employees. Houston is home to the headquarters of 20 Fortune 500 companies and the massive MD Anderson Cancer Center.

    The two airports, George H.W. Bush Intercontinental Airport and William P. Hobby Airport, combined handle about 55 million passengers annually, about five times the number that Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport does.

    Yes, there’s a degree to which consumption and other economic activity that is forestalled or foregone during a flood is consumption and economic activity deferred. And cleanup efforts tend to be additive to local economies.

    But in today’s economy, a lot of value can easily be destroyed very quickly. With only a small portion of the housing stock carrying flood insurance, billions of dollars in property will simply be destroyed and not immediately replaced. People who get paid by the hour, or who work for themselves, won’t be able to make up for the income they’re losing a few weeks from now. Hotel rooms and airplane seats are perishable goods—once canceled, they can’t simply be rescheduled. Refineries won’t be able to make up all the time offline—they can’t run more than 24 hours per day.

    And given that supply chains rely on a huge number of shipments making their connections with precision, the disruption to the region’s shipping, trucking, and rail infrastructure will have far-reaching effects. If you’re a business in Oklahoma or New Mexico, there’s a pretty good chance the goods you are importing or exporting pass through the Port of Houston.

    (Source – Slate)

    A lot of good points in there.  It’s helpful to think of airline seats and hotel rooms as ‘perishable goods.’  Once forgone, they cannot be recouped.

    Houston may represent ~3% of any given chain’s national sales.

    The impact on hourly workers and the self-employed will be profound in many cases, especially given the huge number who are already living paycheck to paycheck.

    But it’s the interconnected, supply chain ideas that are probably the most important.  Also the hardest to appreciate or predict.  We’ll just have to wait and see.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 3:50pm

    #41
    ezlxq1949

    ezlxq1949

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    How much of Houston is not flooded?

    A few thoughts and questions.

    Anybody got any stats on how much of Houston is not flood-affected? In terms of numbers only and ignoring for the moment the human tragedy in all of this, for the nation’s 4th-largest city, the total number of affected properties doesn’t seem huge. Am I wrong?

    That said, yes, the repair bills will be massive. Whoever said that repairing the damage will boost the economy is not entirely wrong. Were the funds being used for anything else anyway? How long the day of reckoning has been postponed is anyone’s guess.

    Chris observed that in his local newspaper Harvey news is on page 6. Not surprising; compared to Katrina this is a slow-moving disaster and the death toll seems much smaller. Seems. One wearies of the MSM making something lurid when maybe it’s not.

    I’ve been reading the stories about the total lack of preparedness on the part of so many people. Not surprising; the MSM have been telling us for years that everything is ship-shape, no need to worry, just keep buying the stuff and life will be good. Prepare? Prepare for what? Good lessons here for we PP folk.

    Seems to me that the weather system has in effect dropped a colossal bomb on Houston. We are so puny.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 4:07pm

    Reply to #39

    Michael_Rudmin

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    THC, snopes that article

    That article was from a military parody site. 

    There might have been a few clues, including “duffleblog” being the source, the dialects written in the extreme into the quotes, and a few other things.

    On a different note, I have some thoughts about the houston problem….  I’ll reply to Chris’ posts.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 4:27pm

    Reply to #41
    dryam2000

    dryam2000

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    ezlxq1949 wrote:A few

    ezlxq1949 wrote:

    A few thoughts and questions.

    Anybody got any stats on how much of Houston is not flood-affected? In terms of numbers only and ignoring for the moment the human tragedy in all of this, for the nation’s 4th-largest city, the total number of affected properties doesn’t seem huge. Am I wrong?

    I lived in Houston for 10 years.  Worked at Johnson Space Center a couple of years & went to med school there.  Lived all over the city, and know it well.  Those were the days I ran 50 miles a week.  I distinctly remember Houston is extremely flat from all those years of running.  Thus, I’ve got to believe very few areas have been completely spared.  I suspect property damage is going to be unbelievable.  Not only are there 6.5 million people in the Houston metro area,  Land area wise, Houston is larger than New Jersey & almost as large as Massachusetts.  Btw, the Texas Medical Center in Houston is the largest medical center in the world.

    Many disasters are sprints.  This disaster is going to be a long, drawn out marathon.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 4:28pm

    Reply to #40

    Michael_Rudmin

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    Joined: Jun 25 2014

    Posts: 836

    The economic what?

    Chris, regarding the economic impact, didn’t we just hear about banks being told not to mark to market bad energy debt?  True or not, it is true to form:  the moral hazard being considered less important than not crashing the economy today.

    In line with that, I now note that the insurance companies are prepping for “we won’t pay”.  In which case, the banks will have a lot of walk-away non-performing debt.  Yet they likely won’t mark to market, so these properties are likely to sit empty for some time. 

    That, in turn, is going to fuel a very high cost of living for employees of companies that choose to stay… which in turn should force a mass exodus from Houston by the companies (long term) and some serious hits (short term).

    Yet maybe I’m wrong.  Maybe Houston, being very libertarian about their growth plan (no zoning, for example!) will recover quickly:  people will pay for their own recovery, having the assets they need when they need them, and the Houston economy there will boom.  We’ll see.

    What do I look for as an indicator?  If the housing market crashes — because indeed the value of the land crashes after a severe flood — then I expect things will look horrid, and actually be really good.  If, on the other hand, the housing market holds its value, then I expect that in fact the economy has been shut down completely in order to serve the needs of the Economy.

    In that case, I expect companies to get out of Houston as fast as they can.  But also in that case, I expect that those who can provide housing alternatives, will do very well.  Look for suburbs of Houston that *didn’t* get hit to boom.

    Just waiting and watching…

     

     

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 4:42pm

    #42

    Poet

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 20 2009

    Posts: 976

    Gird your loins... Hurricane Irma is forming

    Irma expected to be hurricane by week’s end (August 30, 2017)
    “What worries meteorologists is that the storm will track very close to a latitude and longitude in the tropical Atlantic that historically proved a turning point for threats to the islands and the U.S. coast. It’s also not yet clear whether the high pressure system, or a low pressure trough, will win out in a tug of war over which direction it takes.”
    http://www.miamiherald.com/news/weather/hurricane/article170153002.html

    Poet

    Image of Tropical Storm Irma

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 5:03pm

    #43
    dryam2000

    dryam2000

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    Joined: Sep 06 2009

    Posts: 241

    Pollutants

    I suspect the environmental impacts of the flood will be minized and somewhat covered up, not unlike Fukushima but on a smaller scale.  Before the flood, Houston was already one of the worst cities for general pollution & carcinogenic pollutants.  There are an unbelievable amount of chemical companies and refineries in the area.  When I lived there in the 1990’s I saw several locations which were abandoned due to hazardous waste, including some abandoned neighborhoods near abandoned jet fuel plants.  All this flooding is going to spread pollutants all over the place.  It only takes small amounts of some of these pollutants to cause problems.

    On another topic that other people have already written about, having nearly 7 million people in a place like Houston is not viable because of its susceptibility to Hurricanes & flooding.  This is the exact reason evacuating was not a real option for most people.  What happens when just 2-3 million people start evacuating north out of Houston to escape a Hurricane?  When this very thing happened in 2005 105 evacuees died in the process even though the Hurricane completely missed Houston.  The highways became huge parking lots from the massive congestion.  Many people ran out of gas stuck in traffic.  Gas stations ran out of gas. People were literally dying of heat stroke while stuck on the interstate.  It was a mess.  Had there been an evacuation order for Harvey there would have been catastrophic consequences.  

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 6:22pm

    #44

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 4505

    48,700 damaged homes, 17,000 w/ major damage

    Here’s our first estimate of the damage.  I suspect these are very preliminary.

    The Texas Department of Public Safety said 48,700 homes in the area have sustained flood damage, including 17,000 with major damage and 1,000 that were destroyed.

    The state estimated that 700 businesses had been damaged.

    (Source)

    This gives us a sense of the scale.

    Not nearly as many as Katrina. 

    Aug 26, 2016 – Housing damage. Katrina damaged more than a million housing units in the Gulf Coast region. About half of these damaged units were located in Louisiana.

    In New Orleans alone, 134,000 housing units — 70% of all occupied units — suffered damage from Hurricane Katrina and the subsequent flooding.

    (Source)

    Of course, economically speaking, homes in Houston are probably a lot more expensive than those in NO, so…we’ll just have to wait and see still.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 6:49pm

    #45

    GerrySM

    Status Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 16

    Kerru Lutz podcast

    Hey Chris, heard you on the Kerry Lutz network. Nice interview, always good when you are on yes

    In case you did not already know it, the host is a climate denier over there. He wrote this to me:

     

    So you’re obviously right and all the climategate emails, the recent official from the EPA who admitted he was forced to lie about the stats, the hockey stick fraud as exposed in climategate emails, the medieval warming period, the mini-iceage, etc., all a reflection of exact science. I’m beginning to understand now. What about the fact that other planets have heated and don’t have people warming things up, at least not that we know of? 

    What about the fact that we’re now facing a cooling period, which of course is man induced? But if memory serves me correct, we used to call it Global Warming, oops, now it’s climate change. 
     
    I bring opposing voices, that doesn’t make me anti-science. In fact you need to take a look in the mirror and see anti-science staring you back in the face. At best there is a consensus, backed up by government force and intimidation. But science doesn’t work by consensus. In fact the great advances in science come when the consensus is proven wrong as it has been so many times before. 
     
    I won’t be so bold to claim that man has no effect upon climate, not provable now, only that things like volcanoes, heating of the oceans by vents on the floor and the activity of the sun, especially sun spot cycles, have much more to do with it than release of co2 gas by man. 
     
    Based on that logic, you obviously believe that cow farts are a major contributor to climate change. Why would we be having cold winters and major rain in California that was never supposed to happen?
     
    I know it’s difficult challenging people like this, but AGW is the elephant in the room. Unleash yourself, Chris, and don’t hide what you know to be true.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 7:09pm

    #46

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    THE ACOE Tries to Appease

    https://www.texastribune.org/2017/08/29/q-why-houstons-reservoirs-arent-going-fail/

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 7:23pm

    #47

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 106

    and this one in May

    http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/over-15000-american-dams-threaten-human-lives-180962415/

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 7:31pm

    #48

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    And this one from 2012

    http://www.houstonpress.com/news/if-the-addicks-and-barker-dams-fail-6594886

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 7:47pm

    #49

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    Additional Harvey Woes

    Harvey shuts down major fuel pipeline supplying East Coast (CNN Money)

    Quote:

    American energy supplies have suffered another blow from Tropical Storm Harvey.

    The Colonial Pipeline, which carries huge amounts of gasoline and other fuel between Houston and the East Coast, is shutting down after Harvey forced the closure of refineries and some of the pipeline’s own facilities.

    The pipeline has two main lines that together transport more than 100 million gallons of gasoline, heating oil and aviation fuel as far as the New York harbor each day.

    Its operator said the line that carries mainly diesel and aviation fuels will stop running Wednesday evening, and the line for gasoline, which is already operating at a reduced rate, will be suspended Thursday.

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  • Wed, Aug 30, 2017 - 9:28pm

    #50

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1839

    Write your SSN on your left forearm before evacuating

    A co-worker tells me that a public service announcement to Houston residents included that advice that driving out of Houston right now is impossible as roads are flooded.  Anyone still there is there for the duration.

    They further advised that anyone who insisted on driving out now first write their name and SSN on the inside of their left forearm with indelible marker before starting the trip.  This would help clean up crews identify the bodies trapped in cars…..

    Yikes!!

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 3:14am

    #51

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1436

    Reality on the ground

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:03am

    Reply to #49

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    This is a really, really big deal - fuel shortages?

    Time2help wrote:

    Harvey shuts down major fuel pipeline supplying East Coast (CNN Money)

    Quote:

    American energy supplies have suffered another blow from Tropical Storm Harvey.

    The Colonial Pipeline, which carries huge amounts of gasoline and other fuel between Houston and the East Coast, is shutting down after Harvey forced the closure of refineries and some of the pipeline’s own facilities.

    The pipeline has two main lines that together transport more than 100 million gallons of gasoline, heating oil and aviation fuel as far as the New York harbor each day.

    Its operator said the line that carries mainly diesel and aviation fuels will stop running Wednesday evening, and the line for gasoline, which is already operating at a reduced rate, will be suspended Thursday.

    Every day this remains shut in 100 million gallons of fuel does not reach the east coast.  The article tries to soften the impact by quoting someone who says that there are other means – trucks, trains & barges – for moving fuel but…let’s be real.

    The reason that the pipeline isn’t flowing?  The product isn’t being made.

    So…..what are those trucks, barges and trains going to be filled with?

    Next, just how many trucks, barges and train cars is 100 million gallons?  At roughly 10,000 gallons for a fuel truck, that would be 10,000 truckloads…daily.  That’s quite a convoy.

    But, again, that only applies if there’s fuel to put in those trucks.

    Today I’ll be interviewing Jeffrey Brown, creator of the land export model for oil exports, because I think that same model is useful for understanding the stocks and flows of the gasoline/diesel distribution system.  Plus he knows a lot about the petroleum industry in general.  

    Let’s be clear…the scale of Harvey is enormous…roughly 135 miles of coastline strewn with petrochemical plants and refineries has been swamped.  My prediction is that over the next week awareness of just how critical that blow was will be appreciated by more and more people.  

    In the meantime, if you live on the east cost, fill ‘er up! (and  maybe store a little too).

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:10am

    #52

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Local gasoline shortage in TX

    Already there are local shortages, probably related directly to local distribution issues more than a general refining and supply issue, but this provides a clue as to what the future may hold elsewhere.

     
    QuikTrip, which operates 135 stores in North Texas, plans to stop selling gasoline at roughly half its stores this weekend, spokesman Mike Thornbrugh said.

    Summary:

    Day 1:  Everything is fine

    Day 2:  Everything is not fine

    Something these people in Houston discovered upon finding rationed store hours and limited goods even in stores that had not flooded:

    Katy Mitchell, 43, said that while her neighborhood had not flooded, the storm kept her from leaving her house before Tuesday. She waited in line to try to pick up some staples. “I am hoping to get some coffee, some half and half,” she said. “My husband wants vanilla ice cream, and hopefully some dinner food.”

    Mitchell told HuffPost she’d heard of a few other grocery stores that had opened for limited hours. But another woman interjected that the other stores were pretty picked over, too, and had long lines.

    Elaine Loebe, 57, said she’d tried another store on Tuesday, to no avail. “I got there and they were kicking people out,” said Loebe.

    “People don’t grasp the severity of it,” she continued. “We’re so used to in America, especially Texas, to have everything readily available. Like if it’s 2 in the morning and, ‘Oh my God, I need something,’ you go get it.”

    (Source

    People are shocked when they want “normal” and discover that normal isn’t on offer at present.  

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:12am

    #53
    alischowe

    alischowe

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    Joined: Jan 10 2009

    Posts: 2

    Barker Dam

    More mandatory evacuations for the area south of Barker were ordered early today.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:25am

    #54

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3109

    gasoline futures

    As always, my instinct is to watch prices.  Here’s what Hurricane Harvey looks like through the lens of the gasoline futures contract – RBOB – which is deliverable in New York Harbor.  I’m guessing prices will anticipate any shortages that might appear (in New York!) – what with big money being very well connected – but then again…

    http://www.cmegroup.com/rulebook/NYMEX/1a/191.pdf

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:35am

    Reply to #54

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 4505

    Gasolinne - check the front month

    davefairtex wrote:

    As always, my instinct is to watch prices.  Here’s what Hurricane Harvey looks like through the lens of the gasoline futures contract – RBOB – which is deliverable in New York Harbor.  I’m guessing prices will anticipate any shortages that might appear (in New York!) – what with big money being very well connected – but then again…

    http://www.cmegroup.com/rulebook/NYMEX/1a/191.pdf

     

    Dave,

    I think we should be looking at the front month, which is September.  That’s where any anticipated shortages would show up.  The downstream expectation most are holding is that these disruptions never last more than a month.  

    This is what we’re seeing now.  The Oct contract is trading at $1.68.

    But September is over $2.  So the market is already signaling where the trouble lies and for how long.

    We should be looking at the Oct contract for early clues that this disaster might have more legs…if it really begins to spike, then we should be anticipating something larger in terms of disruptions.

    The crack spread is also widening here and that means large profits for functioning refineries.  So track the prices of those companies for a tradable idea.

    Putting on my “they are fiddling with all prices because they think that’s their job” hat I’m wondering if the NYFed trading desk in Aurora is busy selling gasoline contracts to try and keep the prices down?  If so, we’ll get to discover what happens when a real and necessary commodity isn’t rationed by market prices, but by Fed prices. 

    Prediction:  disastrous shortages.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:43am

    #55

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    TX Fuel Shortages Spreading...

    My FB feed is beginning to light up…

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 5:05am

    #56

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3109

    great catch chris

    We had a contract roll a week ago, so the “front month” (by volume – that’s how “continuous contract rolls” are done) is actually V7.  But today, U7 (September) is more representative even though the trading volume is lower, since deliveries will occur shortly: settlement for U7 is today, delivery occurs from Sep-9 thru Sep-28.  http://www.cmegroup.com/trading/energy/refined-products/rbob-gasoline_product_calendar_futures.html

    Wow.  Looking at my trading app at today’s prices…I see RBU7 up 7.5% – 14 cents – today alone.

    RBOB is the price of unleaded gas delivered to NY Harbor.

    Fun fact #1:  US has about 24 days of gasoline at nomal consumption rates.

    Fun fact #2: Houston refineries taken offline total about 12% of total US refinery capacity.

    Fun fact #3: it takes 10 days travel time to get from Rotterdam to NYC at 14 kts, which is supposedly the speed of a tanker.  I’m sure the collection of old sea dogs at the site will weigh in about clearing port and load/unload times… https://sea-distances.org/

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 5:38am

    #57

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 481

    Fancy numbers versus average Joe math

    I don’t have the kind of knowledge of this market to enter the convo at the level Dave and Chris are operating, but what I DO know is I told my wife to stop off at our local gas station in Maryland to fill her tank. The price was $2.30 at the pump at around 4pm. She took my kids out to soccer and filled my car up at 7:30, when the price was $2.53. That’s .23 cents inside of three hours.

     

    That’s all I need to know. 

     

    Of course the psychological impact of rapid price increases may cause people to begin “stocking up,” which in turn hastens the arrival of shortages because it places an extra drain on supplies at the very moment that inventories can not be easily replenished. People here aren’t panicking yet, but I’ve noticed some nervousness on my Facebook feed beginning to emerge.

     

    Interesting times indeed. We may, finally, have our true black swan landing.

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 5:50am

    #58
    PaulJam

    PaulJam

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 04 2016

    Posts: 69

    more developments

    The chemical plant has caught fire, and CNN has a headline about Beaumont running out of clean water.

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/31/us/harvey-houston-texas-flood/index.html

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 6:01am

    #59

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    return on investment

    Pennies from heaven

    It’s raining (petrochemical) men

    We place half the nation’s oil refining capacity in a spot now  damaged by oceans warmed by all that oil refining capacity 

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 7:03am

    #60

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 4505

    US Senator Urges Release of Gasoline from SPR /facepalm/

    If you had any worries before about effective US leadership, you should now be positively terrified.

    In a letter to President Trump on Wednesday, Sen. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) said the Energy Department should release oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) “to help consumers and mitigate upward pressure on refined product markets.”

    “An immediate release of gasoline or crude oil, if also warranted, from the SPR would help protect consumers from price spikes at the pump and tame any market speculation that could be unduly affecting markets and harming consumers,” Markey wrote.

    (Source – the hill)

    Ummmmm….there’s no gasoline in the SPR.  

    It doesn’t store well.  That’s why there’s none there.  A US Senator should absolutely know this…but especially one that sits on these committees:

    Doh!

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 7:20am

    #61

    Larry Frisa

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2009

    Posts: 44

    Russia/China

    I’m wondering what Russia and China are thinking with a hit to the US economy and fuel production crippled.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 7:49am

    #62

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    strategic preserves

    it’s more of a jam up than a jelly tight

    I think they “released 500,000”

    but that’s into a system that uses 20 million a day? 

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 7:57am

    Reply to #62

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Addressing the wrong problem...

    dcm wrote:

    it’s more of a jam up than a jelly tight

    I think they “released 500,000”

    but that’s into a system that uses 20 million a day? 

    🙂

    The bigger issue is that the US is not facing a crude problem, but  gasoline problem.

    Not only is there plenty of crude, but it has nowhere to go, what with the refineries being shutdown and all.

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 8:32am

    #63

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    11am DOE Report

    https://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2017/08/f36/Hurricane%20Harvey%20Eve

    “Six refineries had begun the process of restarting, which may take a several days or weeks…depending whether they have been damaged”
     
    (and the train tracks are in a bit of a mess)

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 9:52am

    #64

    Larry Frisa

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2009

    Posts: 44

    More on the Crosby Chamical Plant

    Here’s more info on the chemical plant in Crosby. There were two explosions this morning but it appears that 6 more trailers could explode. This is from the Arkema statement updated at 12 EST today.

    http://www.arkema-americas.com/en/social-responsibility/incident-page-2/

    On Monday, temperature sensitive products were transferred into 8 diesel-powered refrigerated containers where they currently reside.   We evacuated the ride-out crew on Tuesday for their safety.  As of today, most of the refrigeration units have failed due to flooding.   The site itself is now completely flooded and inaccessible except by boat.  In conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security and the State of Texas, Arkema has set up a command post in an off-site location near the plant.   
    Arkema and governmental authorities are monitoring this closely.  It will take time for the low-temperature product to degrade, ignite, burn, and disperse.  DHS reports indicate that the water around Crosby will crest in the about 5 to 7 days.  Unfortunately, until the water recedes, Arkema and governmental authorities have concluded that there are no further actions at the site that can be taken safely. 

    The most likely outcome is that, anytime between now and the next few days, the low-temperature peroxide in unrefrigerated trailers will degrade and catch fire.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 10:19am

    Reply to #60

    Rector

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 07 2010

    Posts: 321

    Good Grief.

    Buffoons.  Both parties – all levels.  Just wait till “The Rock” is running against Ted Nugent in 2020!  This is what collapse looks like.

    Rector

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 10:25am

    Reply to #60

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 4505

    Any updates Rector?

    Rector wrote:

    Buffoons.  Both parties – all levels.  Just wait till “The Rock” is running against Ted Nugent in 2020!  This is what collapse looks like.

    Rector

    How are you doing Rector?  I’m just as interested as everybody else in catching an update from you.  Have the relatives moved in?  Can you find fuel?

    I just finished a podcast with Jeffrey Brown (of ELM fame) and he’s all the way up ion Dallas reporting that the fuel outages started there yesterday.  Places with fuel have hour long lines.

    The Governor, for some odd reason, hasn’t even issued a voluntary “please no unnecessary driving or filling” statement yet.

    I guess that lapse will be followed by either a mandatory decree of some sort or simply a shoulder shrug when people complain about no fuel being available.  

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 10:43am

    #65

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    The Other Floods...

    TX has captured a lot of my local attention, but the other floods are far worse in scope and scale of human impact and misery.

    I don’t even know how to make sense of numbers that large, or floods that have to mapped on a globe or shot from a satellite  to fit them all into a single picture.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 11:49am

    #66
    Shivani

    Shivani

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    Posts: 9

    Harvey geoengineered?

    Anyone here with the actual expertise to be able to comment on whether the movement of this storm, or others, can be managed by geoengineering?   http://www.geoengineeringwatch.org/engineered-climate-cataclysm-hurrican

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 11:50am

    #67
    Shivani

    Shivani

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    Posts: 9

    Harvey geoengineered?

    Anyone here with the actual expertise to be able to comment on whether the movement of this storm, or others, can be managed by geoengineering?   http://www.geoengineeringwatch.org/engineered-climate-cataclysm-hurrican

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 11:54am

    #68

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    ...and not a drop to drink

    Bangladesh has water problems coming from everywhere

    https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/the-unfolding-tragedy-of

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 12:11pm

    #69

    Larry Frisa

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2009

    Posts: 44

    More Strain on the Fuel Supply

    Looks like Harvey continues to shut down fuel supplies in it’s path.

    Colonial Pipeline says it plans to shut down a key line that supplies gasoline to the South due to storm-related refinery shutdowns and Harvey’s effect on its facilities west of Lake Charles, Louisiana.

    The Georgia-based company said in a statement that it expects to shut off the line Thursday. The company had already closed down another line that transports primarily diesel and aviation fuels. The pipeline provides nearly 40 percent of the South’s gasoline.

     

    http://clarksvillenow.com/local/gas-pipeline-that-fuels-tennessee-to-shut-down-due-to-harvey/

    I’d expect the Tennessee shutdowns to be done more carefully, and with a bigger margins of error, since they’ve seen what happened in Houston.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 1:58pm

    #70

    LogansRun

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Mar 18 2009

    Posts: 304

    Gas is rising rapidly here

    Northern VA, the local stations raised their prices as I was filling up my vehicle and 10/5 gallon fuel tanks with diesel.  One station went from $2.49g to $2.64g, and the other went from $2.59g to $2.79g.  If you’re wondering, they’re not within eyesite of each other.  Gas went up the same %’s.

    On a side note:  Mt. Weather has had HEAVY auto and helo traffic over the past 72 hours.  I’m talking 6-10 helo’s a day (Pentagon/Marine Helo’s) and lines of auto’s to go up the hill in the 200-300 auto’s every morning.  Normal is about 20-30.

    Cheers!

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 1:58pm

    Reply to #60

    Rector

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 07 2010

    Posts: 321

    Update

    Happy to report that the Houston family had non-catastrophic damage from the flooding.  Though they were trapped on all sides by high water, they were lucky and didn’t have to evacuate.  Now they are focused on fixing what needs fixing with Dad (the cop) gone constantly (fighting the looters).  We all figured out that if you wait until your home is flooded (or close) you may not be able to evacuate because the roads are flooded.  This has been a recurring theme in our many conversations with friends throughout the area.  Need a boat or an earlier decision.

    Speaking of boats – I found what I wanted but they had all been allocated for part of a big push for boats for use in the flood zone.  The only thing available were ski boats at $12K – not exactly what I had in mind for an evacuation option.  There had been a run on boats for rescue operations, etc and there was very little left for sale.  Additionally, I found out you have to register and license a boat – which takes time – and the system was backed up a bit.  When the dust settles, I’ll pick up my 17′ boat that I have paid for.  Just goes to show that by the time you figure out what’s in short supply – it doesn’t matter how much money you wave around – you’re not getting what you need.

    The fuel “shortage” seems to be building steam.  Gas is up .25 per gallon and I have noticed a bit of a pick up in people filling up “just in case”.  This is going to become a self-fulfilling prophecy I believe.  Thank God our inventory was high before this started.

    Interestingly (since I am in the construction business) I started front loading my orders for drywall, shingles, flooring, etc. for projects that I have already started.  I am building a medical center and have just discovered that drywall is being allocated as EVERY BUILDING FROM CORPUS TO HOUSTON(!) is going to have to be repaired, wired, painted, etc.  Someone knows they will be needing a LOT of drywall in the coming months.

    I cannot fathom how many millions of tons of wet carpet, drywall, and insulation will be reinstalled in the coming years.  Every worker, roofer, tile setter, etc. has their eyes on Houston.  I expect a surge of illegals heading north east to rebuild the entire coast.  The magnitude of the task is overwhelming from the perspective of a contractor.  

    Worse, I suspect there will be substantial impacts to the community banks and insurers who are looking at assets that are now uninhabitable and are of dramatically lower value as collateral.  Why would a small business owner keep making payments on an uninsured and destroyed building when it isn’t able to operate for lack of working electricity?  There won’t be enough value to underwrite a reconstruction loan and no cash flow to keep the doors open.  I see a major federal bailout being required – but it will take so long that job losses will undoubtedly result.  Once that starts the payday loans, subprime auto notes, and Netflix memberships will follow.  We are a big country with a lot of money – but this is going to hurt.

    As Irma spins in the Atlantic – I’m not waiting around to see where she is headed.  I’m starting the top off sequence. . .

    Thanks for asking and I’ll let you all know if anything interesting happens on our end of the world.

    Rector

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 2:14pm

    Reply to #70

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1436

    Got a guess for more Mt Weather traffic?

    Logan’s Run? Anyone? Something else coming (something preplannef)?

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 3:30pm

    #71
    Sharsta

    Sharsta

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 12 2009

    Posts: 39

    Irma

    Yes Chris, you said this disaster is still unfolding…….

    Resources across a very wide area could be stretched rather thin, depending on where Irma goes next week.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-31/rapidly-intensifying-hurricane-irma-sets-its-sights-us

    http://www.tropicalstormrisk.com/   

     

     

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 3:42pm

    Reply to #39

    blackeagle

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 16 2013

    Posts: 221

    navy destroyer????

    This is photoshopped!!!!!

    Look at the reflection of the boat in the water and the dark tower…..

    or am I missing something? like it is the best time to joke?

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 3:52pm

    #72

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    Could Irma reach 180 mph winds

    https://twitter.com/MJVentrice?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 3:54pm

    #73

    Larry Frisa

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2009

    Posts: 44

    No Gas Shortage, it's only logistics

    At least that’s what the state says.

    Station have been running out of gas in Dallas and Austin. Here’s what the officials have to say about the shortages. This is the first time I’ve seen that there are 15 refineries which are affected.

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — Gasoline prices in Texas could rise by 35 cents a gallon due to the effects of Hurricane Harvey. But the head of the agency that regulates the oil and gas industry in the state says there is an adequate supply of gasoline to meet the demand.

    On Thursday, Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton said people “have no need to fear shortages.”

    Sitton says the current issues with gas stations running out of fuel is because people are rushing to gas stations to buy fuel, which is causing a run on gas — basically a vicious cycle.

    “People are taking their gas cans, their Suburbans down to the gas station,” said Sitton. “Even if we had all of the refineries running, we’d still be having this issue.”

    Currently, there are 15 petroleum refineries that have been taken down or running at a reduced capacity. That includes the nation’s largest, the Motiva Refinery in Port Arthur.

    The state agency acknowledged that the biggest problem right now is logistics: getting the gasoline from fuel terminals to service stations due to transportation challenges resulting from Harvey.

    “Virtually every gas station is refueled by a truck,” explained Sitton. “A truck goes to a distribution terminal, that gets their gas from pipelines. That truck moves on regular intervals.” Sitton gave an example of a gas station that usually sells around 10,000 gallons of gasoline in a week, but when everyone shows up in 24 hours to buy the fuel on hand, it could be several more days before the station gets refueled.

    Sitton believes this situation will be resolved in the next three to four days. He wants to urge everyone that if you can go a few days without gas, you shouldn’t be worried.

    Railroad Commission Chair Christi Craddick reemphasized that the state has gasoline. “So, don’t run out and fill up you tank. You’re OK. What we are now seeing is companies as well as the logistics world look at is how you get it from the refinery through the pipes to the truck, to your local gas station.”

    “We will continue to see a price increase I think for the next several weeks, if not a month or more. Ten cents, to, I’ve seen as much as 35 cents predicted. A lot depends on what happens as soon as we get refineries back up.”

    source

     

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 4:12pm

    #74

    CleanEnergyFan

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 29 2012

    Posts: 104

    More detailed info from PP than from our local Houston news

    ·        Its amazing the information that is available on this site about Hurricane Harvey that  is so pertinent to our neighborhood.  I hadn’t checked into the site for a few days due to busy with helping some neighbors who were evacuated as well as retrieving my son who had been  stranded for 3 days on the other side of Houston (did it by dirt bike which turns out is very useful in an event like this…I could get through areas that some big trucks could not).  While at home we had been listening primarily to the local news coverage and they spent a lot of time with all the rescue efforts with some updates on river levels but I had seen no coverage whatsoever about the dam characteristics which Chris went into here.  I now know how the folks near the Oroville dam felt…didn’t realize when listening to that podcast it would be applicable in our area in just a few short weeks.  My wife’s mother and stepfather had to be evacuate by boat Tuesday because of the Addicks reservoir release…we wondered why they were releasing water (they were never told it was because the dam may break).  Certainly nobody I know is aware that the Addicks dams is one of the worse dams in America…that is amazing that we were not aware of that.  Meanwhile our house (which is actually located right next to the Sienna subdivision which you mentioned had a mandatory evacuation and which is now largely flooded) has been completely spared due to its height above sea level which is slightly higher than Sienna and some adjoining neighborhoods like nearby Sugar Land & Fort Bend subdivisions which are all affected by the Brazos river flooding and dependent on the levees to protect against flooding (but which are only rated for the 100 yr flood level of 58 ft).  They are now calling this an 800 yr flood event.    A very useful site (which I only learned of couple days ago) is: https://www.distancesto.com/elevation.php  At this site you can enter your home address and it will give your site elevation (not including  slab).

    ·        Regarding the comments about looting…I have not seen or heard of any of that. Not sure where that might be occurring but I can assure you it is not at all common.  However, Houston took on a lot of the Katrina evacuees after New Orleans flooded and many of them stayed…a number of them were also victims in this flood as well.  If anything this event has drawn the community closer together with lots of neighbors helping neighbors (as well as an amazing number of out of town folks who came to help)….it almost seems like we have more people who want to help than who need help. 

    ·        A lot of the flooding is a result not only of historic amounts of rainfall but also the amount of housing development that has occurred which reduced the available land for absorbing water…additionally the soil here is mostly clay gumbo which does not absorb water easily.  The mayors and city council of Houston and surrounding communities are very pro-development because of the increased property tax base it provides.  I am on our homeowners HOA board and we recently had to sue the city (Missouri City) which had previously annexed our neighborhood (in order to gain the additional property tax base) because they were trying to add high density housing directly adjacent to our neighborhood, where it had previously been zoned for low density acreage lots, which would definitely make the flooding problems worse.

    One surprising thing is how well the supply chains around here stepped up to the challenge.  There were some food shortages immediately before the floods as well as gas shortages as folks hurried to top of tanks but after that the stores restocked (especially the HEB stores and Walmarts too I understand).  I was surprised at the number of stores and convenience stores and gas stations which remained open…people did their best to  keep things supplied.  Power outtages have also been addressed by Centerpoint Energy at a surprisingly quick manner (although my business is still without power due to transformer outtages and we are running on emergency generators). 

     

     

    ·     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 5:06pm

    Reply to #60
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 882

    omigosh

    That was too funny!  Thanks for the laugh.

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 5:23pm

    #75

    suziegruber

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 03 2008

    Posts: 128

    Before Harvey, Houston Sought Funding to Mitigate Floods

    But Congress Refused

    After the Tax Day flood, which left 16 dead, Green introduced a bill to fund $311 million for the Harris County Flood Control District. That bill stalled out in the House Budget Appropriations Committee and never came up for a vote. (Committee Chair Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J., did not return requests for comment.)

    The federal funds provided in the bill could have jump-started flood mitigation projects in Houston that had already been approved by the Army Corps of Engineers. Those projects had languished for years, even decades, because the federal share of their budgets was never appropriated by Congress.

     

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 6:46pm

    Reply to #41
    Mohammed Mast

    Mohammed Mast

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 17 2017

    Posts: 112

    New Jersey

    As far as I know Houston is almost 600 sq. miles. New Jersey is almost 9,000 sq. miles. Houston Is not Larger than New Jersey. Massachussets is over 10,000 sq miles. Rhode Island is the smallest  state at 1,500 sq miles. In reference to post number 56

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 9:17pm

    #76

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1839

    Gas cans

    It looks like these metal 5 gallon gas cans are pretty highly rated on Amazon.  $32.

    I was very interested to hear what Tom said about a dirt bike being a good way to get around in an emergency situations.  You can cut through tight places and go over and around irregular terrain.  (As long as the gas supply holds out….)

    And gas stabilizer:  PRI Fuel Stabilizer

     

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  • Thu, Aug 31, 2017 - 9:27pm

    #77

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1839

    More Storm Humor

    From the Seattle Times graphic.

     

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 12:25am

    Reply to #76

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3109

    dirt bikes

    So I have an dual purpose on/off road bike (suzuki DRZ-400) that I bought with an eye towards this specific use.  I picked it up used about 8 years ago for $3000.  New, its about $7500.  I really enjoy riding it – parking is especially easy, and in conditions of heavy traffic, lane-splitting (while occasionally exciting) is really helpful too.

    The bike itself is relatively light (300 pounds), and the previous owner retrofitted it with an aftermarket plastic gas tank (4 gal, instead of 2.5 gal) giving it an extended range.

    The primary issue I’ve had is the electronic ignition & electric starter.  If you let the bike sit for a few months, the battery will run down, unless you have it on a trickle charger.  Even then, batteries only last 2-3 years.  If I had it to do over again, I’d get a bike with a kick starter.  They’re more work, but the primary problem I’ve had with the bike be gone.  (Failing that – learn how to push-start a 300# motorcycle – a useful skill on its own.)

    Otherwise – I could easily get 200 miles on the bike on one tank.  That said – I’d be tired at the end of the trip.  They are substantially more work than driving a car.  For me at least.

    If I were really fleeing some situation, and traffic was all stopped up, and I was weaving through the traffic, I’d be extremely concerned that some desperate citizen would try to take me down and swipe my bike “to save his family.”  Extremely concerned.  Maybe that’s my paranoia showing.

    I’d prefer side roads, and I’d also want body armor.  Just in case.  Riding a bike, you’re quite vulnerable.  Its way too easy to drop it just in normal situations.

    Plus they’re noisy.  Make sure you have a bike that’s a four-stroke.  They are quieter.

    Also, you need gloves, a sturdy jacket & pants.  And did I mention body armor?  Last thing: a GPS navigator.  They make them for bikes.  Mount it on the handlebar.  Mine is removable.  They’re easy to swipe.  You can get all sorts of after-market maps to download to the navigator.  Topo maps might be useful too, especially if you are going off road during your exodus.

    And if you really want to ride in the mud, you probably want to practice.  Its not easy.  Did I mention bikes are very easy to drop?  Good news is, if its in the dirt, you aren’t likely to get hurt too badly – you just end up bouncing into the brush at 10-20 mph.

    What’s more, a bike can’t go up hills that a 4WD jeep (in low gear) would have no problem crawling up.  You need to learn what’s possible, and what’s not – at your skill level, I mean.  Hitting rocks or gulleys in the (dirt) road – at speed  – will bounce you right off into the brush, especially on a hill.  Learning during a stressful event is not recommended.

    I did my learning on the dirt fire roads surrounding (then) NAS Miramar in San Diego.  I have no idea what the legality of that was, but it was a great playground at that time.  At one point I ran into a big burned out area – I later found out it was the impact area of an F-14. Big burned area on a hillside, lots of melted aluminum blobs all over the place.  (Pilot bailed out safely).  No big hole though, so it probably wasn’t a real crash site.  🙂

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 2:10am

    Reply to #70

    LogansRun

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Mar 18 2009

    Posts: 304

    thc0655 wrote: Logan's Run?

    thc0655 wrote:

    Logan’s Run? Anyone? Something else coming (something preplannef)?

    Not in this instance IMO.  Since they moved most of FEMAs strategic planning into MT Weather from D.C./Arlington, this is pretty typical for a storm of this magnitude.  Very similar to the goings on during and after Katrina, but in Mt Weather and not downtown.  Although the amount of auto traffic is probably 30% higher than I’d expect.  

    The Helo traffic is another story.  They usually indicate a Homeland Security situation that is being integrated with the military in some way.  Marine Huey’s and Ospreys aren’t flown by Homeland Security personnel but Mt Weather is supposed to be only Homeland Security oriented (yeah right).  So seeing 1 or maybe 2 “Military” aircraft going in there is fairly normal, 4-6/7 is highly abnormal.  

    Ill keep y’all posted.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 3:28am

    Reply to #70

    Rector

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 07 2010

    Posts: 321

    Getting Ready for North Korean War

    Russians just moved civilians away from the 25 mile border with NK.  Maybe we are getting ready – Trump always talks about the element of surprise. . .

    Rector

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 5:30am

    Reply to #70

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    But...that's not the current narrative

    Rector wrote:

    Russians just moved civilians away from the 25 mile border with NK.  Maybe we are getting ready – Trump always talks about the element of surprise. . .

    Rector

    On Monday morning, as the really bad Harvey news was being digested, the opening futures for the S&P 500 were down -15 points.

    But then a miracle happened, the very first two minutes of cash trading saw an enormous spike upwards.  “Somebody” was buying S&P futures hand over fist and selling the crap out of an entire suite of volatility ETFs (VIX, etc).

    The rest is hsitory…for the remainder of the week the S&P powered back up over 50 points and back near all-time highs.

    And what was the narrative “they” were pushing the whole time?

    This:

    Dollar rebounds, stocks gain as N.Korea missile fears recede

    Um.  Say what?

    This is still the “narrative” that they are trying to use to make sense of the stock market rebound vs. just saying what’s more likely true; the central banks and their proxies dumped massive amounts of liquidity into the correct vehicles to get stocks moving back upwards again.

    Because otherwise this is the actual news about NK during this week of steadily rising stock prices:

    North Korea Fires Missile Over Japan – The New York Times

    Trump says ‘all options on table’ after North Korea missile launch

    Putin warns US, North Korea tensions on verge of ‘large-scale conflict

    US flies bombers, fighters in show of force against N.Korea – CNBC.com

    South Korea drops eight heavy bombs on border with North Korea 

    South Korea holds live-fire drills that simulate destroying North Korea’s 

    As always, what I see here is central banks so afraid of any decline in stocks, no matter how slight, that they are willing to dump whatever amounts of new liquidity is necessary to keep stocks from falling.

    I could be wrong, but that fits the data far better than the stupidly false narratives being put forth by the media to “explain” the movements in the world’s main stock indexes.

     

     

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 5:43am

    #78

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1436

    Everybody's pitching in

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=35&v=YIijRj9D_r0

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 6:01am

    #79

    dcm

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 14 2009

    Posts: 106

    Every Newspaper is The Onion Now

    Perhaps it should read

    “Central Bankers Fire Missile over Japan”  

    “Trump says all options are on the table – except his own”

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 7:37am

    Reply to #76

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Too Expensive Sand_puppy

    sand_puppy wrote:

    It looks like these metal 5 gallon gas cans are pretty highly rated on Amazon.  $32.

     

    I don’t know Sand_puppy…that looks awfully expensive. [Warning: sarcasm alert]

    After looking around I found that plenty of people in the affected areas of Texas have discovered all manner of cheaper alternatives.  

    I think the above gentleman is correct to use kitchen garbage bags as the safety lids.  Open buckets do tend to slosh after all, so he’s clearly thinking ahead.

    /sarcasm off

    Okay folks, do *not* try this at home!

    This behavior, while falling squarely into the hoarding category, is profoundly unsafe.  

    One saying I’m fond of is “it won’t be the economic crisis that harms people, but their reaction to it.”

    We can say a similar thing here; “it won’t be the gasoline shortage that harms people, but their reaction to it.”

     

     

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 7:47am

    #80
    Uncletommy

    Uncletommy

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 03 2014

    Posts: 514

    There is science to explain this behavior

    If you ever have wondered why Donald Trump became President of the U.S. or why MSM seems to have captured the vast majority of American minds or why people use plastic bags as lids for pails of gasoline; perhaps the attached video might explain it. In our “oil saturated world of convenience”, we have, quite simply, forgotten how to think.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 11:12am

    #81

    Grover

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 15 2011

    Posts: 691

    Harvey's Texas Rain Footprint

    If you’ve wondered how big Harvey’s footprint would be if placed over other areas of the country, this article is for you. Here are a few examples … Grover

    http://www.chron.com/news/local/article/Maps-show-what-Harvey-s-weekend-impact-would-look-12161601.php

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 12:15pm

    #82

    CleanEnergyFan

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 29 2012

    Posts: 104

    Add Dirt Bike and 55 Gal Drums & Stabilizer to Prep List

    To SP #102, I had bought the dirt bike less than a year ago after thinking about how hard it is to get around Houston during an evacuation (even without the flooding the gridlock can make quick movement impossible).  I bought a used Honda 150F (small enough that my 14 yr old daughter could drive it…she loves it).  This proved to be a GREAT way to get around Houston during the flood.  It handles deep water pretty well but more importantly you can pull it out if it gets stuck (as mine did as I tried to traverse a mud-filled street).  I was able to pull this out by myself and continue to find a better route across Houston.

     

    The dirt bike also allows you to go completely offroad when needed to go around obstacles (note the towing chain which is strapped to the gas tank to help me pull our stuck truck out of a ditch which my son had been driving).  Regarding gas, I had ordered 2 x  55 Gal Epoxy Coated Drums along with a Stainless Steel Drum Pump and to insure long term storage I had ordered  PRI-G Gas Stabilizer and PRI-D Diesel Stabilizer about 2 months ago as part of my preps (wanted this as backup fuel for vehicles and generator but also calculated this was enough fuel to get our truck to Costa Rica if we ever needed to drive there..its a 25 hr drive from Houston to our vacation/bugout spot in CR).

     

    Very happy not having to think about going to a gas pump for next few weeks.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 12:30pm

    #83

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    More Gas Hoarding in Texas

    This really displays a very profound sense of self-interest.  

    Yikes!

     

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 1:51pm

    Reply to #76
    DennisC

    DennisC

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Mar 19 2011

    Posts: 101

    Darwin Award Nominee

    Hopefully he made it home OK, doesn’t smoke, and has a (really) big funnel.  Probably not the sharpest knife in the block, kind of like some of our Congress critters it would seem.

    Otherwise, I suppose he might have “blow’d up real good”.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 2:03pm

    #84

    Rector

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 07 2010

    Posts: 321

    This Requires No Comment - But I Can't Help It. . .

    If you can’t tell, this man was filling a 30 gallon trashcan (!) in the back of his truck with gasoline.  Friend of a friend took this photo in Allen Texas (North of Dallas).  I can only imagine the severity of the injuries that will befall our idiotocracy in the first 90 days of the collapse.  God help us all. . .

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 2:28pm

    #85

    pinecarr

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2008

    Posts: 1085

    Fear-driven gasoline shortages in other cities near Houston?

    Does anyone know from 1st or 2nd-hand experience if Dallas and San Antonio are feeling a squeeze on gasoline as well?

    Tanker truck drivers are being given the option of working extra shifts to get more gasoline and diesel to market amid social media-fueled rushes that left some gas stations without any fuel.

    Hurricane Harvey shut down refineries and pipelines but many are coming back on-line a week after the storm passed but more than 100 gas stations in San Antonio were left without fuel on Thursday and Friday after on-line rumors of a shortage caused a rush by panicked consumers. [bold mine]

    With three out of San Antonio’s six fuel storage terminals out of gasoline and diesel, Coastal Transport Co. lead dispatcher Beau Jay told the Business Journal that the company’s tanker truckers are traveling to terminals as far way as El Paso, Midland and Waco to get fuel for local gas stations.

    Reference: https://www.bizjournals.com/sanantonio/news/2017/09/01/tanker-truck-drivers-working-extra-shifts-to-get.html

    And:

    Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton spoke to WFAA on Thursday, assuring Texans the temporary gas shortage is due to consumers placing too high of a demand on the resources available.

    Ironically, according to Sitton, the fear over a gasoline shortage is causing one to occur. When refineries shut down during the storm, residents took that as a sign that gas may be scarce in the coming months. To stock up ahead of the shortage, people raced to the pumps.

    In the aftermath of the storm, it has become harder for suppliers to truck in more gas. Even Dallas and San Antonio are feeling the pinch.

    “There’s plenty of gasoline,” Sitton insisted in his interview with WFAA. “This will subside.”

    Reference: http://www.icflorida.com/news/is-there-a-gas-shortage-what-you-need-to-know/601854449

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 3:19pm

    #86

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    Re: Hoarding

    Texts from several different family members indicating gas stations are dry in San Antonio and looking for gas out past the city limits.

    Quote:

    Any ideas on where to get gas right now? Preferably on the NW side of town angry?

    Quote:

    Can’t get auto gas in SA. All the stations are sold out.

    Green handles indicate diesel fuel. So some hoarding of both diesel and gas seems to be occurring.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 3:55pm

    Reply to #85

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Really dumb, or purposely ignorant

    pinecarr wrote:

    Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton spoke to WFAA on Thursday, assuring Texans the temporary gas shortage is due to consumers placing too high of a demand on the resources available.

    Ironically, according to Sitton, the fear over a gasoline shortage is causing one to occur. When refineries shut down during the storm, residents took that as a sign that gas may be scarce in the coming months. To stock up ahead of the shortage, people raced to the pumps.

    Okay, there are some simple truths about gasoline stockpiles and inventories that the TX Railroad Commissioner really should certainly know about.

    Here’s what he said in that interview (linked above):

    “So, yes, that’s a lot,” Sitton said. “However, we have 230 million barrels of gasoline in storage in the United States right now. So if that three million barrels of refined capacity stayed offline for an entire month that would be 90 million barrels that wouldn’t be produced. That would be less than half of what we have in inventory.” And Sitton said that shouldn’t even be a concern.

    Sure, if you look at it completely wrongly, that would be correct what he said.  An entire month of offline production would represent 50% of total inventory by his math.

    However, much of that “inventory” number quote (230 MB)  by the EIA represents gasoline that cannot be used.  It’s in a pipeline, or keeping a storage tank minimally full.  Yes it exists, and, no, it cannot actually be used.

    How much of that 230 million barrels is available for use?

    The WSJ got it right in an article yesterday:

    The amount of gasoline stockpiled in the U.S. stands at about 230 million barrels, as refiners spent most of the summer running their plants at record rates. But not all of it can be withdrawn.
    It’s hard to draw supplies lower than 200 million barrels without seeing tanks in certain parts of the country run out or some pipelines not be full enough to operate, said Adam Sieminski, former head of the U.S. Energy Information Administration and current energy and geopolitics chairman at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

    Yes, there’s 230 million barrels, but it’s hard to draw down past 200 million barrels without running into trouble.  So the actual working storage is 30 million barrels.

    Now when we use the TX RRC’s own math we find that there’s only about 10 days of working inventory at the current levels of refinery shut downs.  

    Where the TX RRC said that with 3 MBD gone we’ll have only burned through half the inventory in a month, the truth is that it is 100% gone in just ten days.  See the difference?  /s

    Worse, the gasoline is not readily available to any point in the country.  If the TX region runs past its minimum inventory number it really doesn’t help if there’s extra in Maine or Alaska, or California.

    The Tx RRC should, and I mean really should, be familiar with all this.

    So, it’s either he’s just dumb or being purposely ignorant.  The former is unfortunately all-too common in positions of authority, and the latter happens when officials don’t want to be honest with the public because they think it’s their job to not sow concern among the public.

     Maybe that’s fair, but then one should also be instituting rationing or really working hard to convince people that they should be conserving right now.

    But spreading ridiculously false or misleading information is really a very bad idea in this day and age.  We have this thing called the internet.

     

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 4:06pm

    Reply to #84

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 481

    Rector wrote: If you can't

    Rector wrote:

    If you can’t tell, this man was filling a 30 gallon trashcan (!) in the back of his truck with gasoline.  Friend of a friend took this photo in Allen Texas (North of Dallas).  I can only imagine the severity of the injuries that will befall our idiotocracy in the first 90 days of the collapse.  God help us all. . .

     

    wrong perspective, Rector. See, I’m GLAD there are Darwin Award winners who will take themselves out within the first few days…leaves less chaff the rest of us will have to deal with.

     

    Ok, that was dark. I only wish I had f**ks to give at this point, but frankly if a person is going to self-select out, I won’t stand in their way.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 4:48pm

    Reply to #85

    pinecarr

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2008

    Posts: 1085

    Thanks Chris and T2H

    Thanks for that additional information from your relatives, T2H.

    And thanks for pointing out the mis-information from the TX Railroad Commissioner, in the article I’d linked to, Chris!

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 5:57pm

    #87

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    Latest from a friend (San Antonio)

    Quote:

    “I’m near downtown and every gas station I go to is dry.”

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 5:58pm

    #88

    CleanEnergyFan

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 29 2012

    Posts: 104

    Texas ATV

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 6:31pm

    #89
    robie robinson

    robie robinson

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 25 2009

    Posts: 859

    Ain't nobody...

    …got a settled mare?

    love the Texas atv!

     

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 7:27pm

    #90

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    "No shortage" and "please stay calm" - The Authorities

    More gas heads to market as some refineries come back on-line (San Antonio Business Journal)

    Quote:

    Despite rumors on social media and disruptions caused by Harvey, DeHaan said there is not expected to be any gasoline shortage in Texas or the U.S. Current reserves and refineries that remained open are expected to hold until the other refineries come back on-line.

    The state’s top oil and natural gas regulator, Railroad Commission of Texas Chair Christi Craddick, even took to Twitter on Monday to dispel online rumors of gasoline shortage that created long lines at gas stations in the Rio Grande Valley.

    “Please stay calm and do not perpetuate rumors,” Craddick said. “There is currently no shortage of gasoline in Texas due to Harvey.”

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 7:32pm

    Reply to #90

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 481

    That settles it.

    You can’t be sure if something is true or not, until someone official denies it. The more vociferously they deny it, the more true it is.

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 8:24pm

    #91
    Dkieke

    Dkieke

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 04 2013

    Posts: 18

    Gas in Austin, TX

    I just flew into Austin and all but one station I passed on the way home from the airport was out.  Not sure how many stations I saw, probably 8-10, but they were all on major roadways.  I filled up at the “country” gas station by my house on a smaller farm-to-market road.  Every pump had a car filling and one waiting, and this was 10:30pm in a rather sleepy area.  

    I’ve seen massive amounts of similar stories from FB friends and family in the area as well.  It’s definitely a strange experience to see in real life.  I lived in Detroit during the 2003 Northeast blackout and that was eye-opening and quite formative in my preparedness, but this is starting to feel a bit like that too.  The weekend will be interesting to see how people handle things.  My wife has brought up concerns about the UT football game tomorrow as well.  It could get mighty interesting when up to 100,000 people have driven into town and can’t fill up to drive back home…..

    Good luck out there,

    David

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 8:27pm

    #92

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    "Please stay calm"

    If ever there was a clarion call to immediate action it’s the utterance of these three words.

    Roughly 72 percent of San Antonio gas stations out of fuel as panic continues (mySA)

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 11:09pm

    #93

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    Gas Tracker & Current News Links

    Gas Availability Tracker (GasBuddy.com)

    San Antonio as of 9/1/2017:

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  • Fri, Sep 01, 2017 - 11:09pm

    #94

    Time2help

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 08 2011

    Posts: 2225

    DFW & Austin

    Dallas / Ft. Worth

    Austin

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 3:26am

    Reply to #5

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    EXXON PHOTO BS

    Aloha Chris! Just an FYI! That Exxon photo you are spreading showing $8.76/gallon price is total BS! I know because I drive by it. Notice the Independent Bank sign? That station is a new gas station under construction and is not even open yet. That price has been stuck on the sign for weeks before Harvey hit. Whoever is spreading that sign is spreading a lie. You really think someone is gasoline gauging by 400%?

    Beware of assigning real moral value to everything you see. My experience here is that 98% of people I see and the businesses here are giving 125% to make life better under these dire circumstances.

    Please do not feed the “evil oil company” mantra too much or we’ll end up like Caracas!

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 3:36am

    #95

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    An Update on TX Gas From Platts

    The key to avoiding further shortages will be the Houston area refineries, especially the Motiva (Port Arthur) plant, which may be offline for another couple of weeks.  But every effort is being made to get everything running again.

    Here’s the latest:

    “US Gulf Coast refineries and ports were in the process of returning to service Friday, as the industry continued its recovery efforts following Hurricane Harvey. While roughly 2.9 million b/d to 3.9 million b/d of Texas refining capacity remained off-line, Valero was looking to resume full operations at its Corpus Christi and Three Rivers plants in several days, while Citgo said it was restarting its Corpus Christi plant.

    Roughly 2.9 million b/d of Texas refinery capacity remained down Friday, or 16% of total US capacity.

    Assuming that the plants in partial shutdown or returning are at 50% of capacity, that would put the figure at roughly 3.9 million b/d, or 21% of US capacity.

    Colonial Pipeline, the biggest US refined product pipeline, continues to pump products east from Lake Charles, Louisiana, despite problems with its facilities in Texas resulting from Hurricane Harvey. “Deliveries will be intermittent and dependent on terminal and refinery supply,” the company said Thursday. Colonial is aiming to restart pumping of gasoline and distillates from Houston and Beaumont, Texas, from Sunday. The Colonial system runs from Houston to Linden, New Jersey, and supplies about 60% of the incoming supply of gasoline into the Atlantic Coast. Colonial has the ability to ship 1.37 million b/d of gasoline on its Line 1 and 1.16 million b/d of middle distillates on Line 2.

    Harvey’s impact on the US Gulf Coast has already delayed millions of barrels of oil product cargoes bound for Latin America, and fostered worries about further delays and increasing prices. Mexico, a large buyer of US Gulf Coast refined products, has turned to refineries along the Canadian and US Atlantic Coasts for fuel supply. A source with knowledge of Mexican imports said the country has been looking to purchase gasoline “everywhere” and that it still needs more imports to satisfy its supply needs.”

    So it’s going to be a few more days of “gasoline panic” at least.

    My hope is that a few more people wake up to their near complete dependence on a system that could break down, as just demonstrated.  Far too many will simply breath a sigh of relief when everything begins to flow again and be no better prepared next time.

    How do we reach them, now, while they are still open to the idea that sometimes things don’t go smoothly?

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 3:40am

    #96

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    And from the President of Exxon Mobil Refining

    This from Exxon:

    Hurricane Harvey was an historic storm that hit my city of Houston and communities throughout this region especially hard. Family, friends and neighbors are struggling to recover from the record rains. Americans nationwide are also feeling the impact, including at the pump.

    The U.S. refining industry, centered on the Gulf Coast, was hit hard, too. Flooding forced us to shut down our Baytown and Beaumont refineries that manufacture gasoline and other fuels. Other companies have had to shut down major refineries in the region. I’ve been in this business for more than 30 years, and I’ve never seen anything like it. The impact of this hurricane has been unprecedented.

    But so has been the response. Americans are rising to the challenge, going above and beyond to help each other in a time of need. The images we’ve all seen of the destruction are heartbreaking, but images of fellow Americans helping one another are inspiring. It’s that collaborative spirit that will help the Gulf Coast rebuild even stronger than before.

    Our nation’s oil and gas industry is hard at work as well. At ExxonMobil, we’ve had to temporarily shut down some operations, but we haven’t stopped working. Just the opposite. My team is working around the clock to bring everything back on line as quickly as we can and get fuel to drivers that need it.

    Our refining company is headquartered in Houston, so many on my staff are under a lot of stress at home dealing with hurricane damage. Some have seen their homes flooded, their cars swept away, and their lives upended. It’s a real testament to their commitment and compassion that, despite the personal hardships, they’re showing up for work each day to get the job done. They’re also lending a hand to the clean-up and recovery effort in their communities, and donating to the Red Cross and other charities. I’m really proud of our entire team.

    To help meet Americans’ fuel needs in the wake of the hurricane, the current challenge we face is mainly a logistical one. Worldwide, there’s still more than enough supply to meet demand. But the storm has temporarily disrupted local and national supply lines. Not all the fuel is where it needs to be. We have to quickly reroute trucks and tankers to get supplies from more distant locations to places that previously relied on the Gulf Coast refineries.

    And that’s exactly what we’re doing. We’re going the extra mile to reconnect the dots and move fuel quickly and safely. For example, our Baton Rouge refinery, which was spared the full brunt of the storm, remains fully operational, and is beginning to supply new locations throughout Texas. We’re going overseas for help, loading up fuels made at our refineries in Europe and shipping them to the United States. At the same time, we’re restarting operations in the region as soon as we safely can. Earlier today, we were able to reopen our South Houston and North Houston fuel terminals, important hubs that should enable drivers in the area to fuel up again soon.

    Going the extra mile takes a little extra time. Not all service stations will have all the fuel they need right away. But we’re making real progress, and expect the situation to improve soon. In the meantime, drivers can help by not “panic-buying.” Topping off your tank is one thing; stockpiling fuel is another, and puts unnecessary stress on the system. We can all help each other if we don’t go overboard.

    I’m confident our region and country will bounce back. So will America’s refining industry. Working together, we can withstand one of the worst hurricanes in history, help families get back on their feet, and get our nation moving forward again. I know I speak for the entire ExxonMobil family when I say we won’t stop until we do.

    (Source)

    Maybe this guy should run the Tx RCC too?  Very reasonable statement.

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 3:56am

    Reply to #9

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    THE IMPOTENCE OF BEING EARNEST

    Aloha! Wilde accusations based on BS …

    From the Sydney article you link to. Apparently in 1817 scientists knew global warming was coming to Houston! Back when only 9mil lived in the entire USA! 

    Given that BS then I guess Beijing and the Industrial Revolution are to blame as well!! Oh, and lets throw in Kilauea Volcano too!

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 4:01am

    Reply to #90

    pinecarr

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2008

    Posts: 1085

    Hmmmm....

    -Guess it’s a little harder to print gasoline out of thin air (to prop-up the official happy line).

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 4:22am

    #97

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    GAS HUH?

    Aloha! Even with Harvey I can’t believe anyone in the USA deserves to complain about gas prices!

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 4:35am

    Reply to #83

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    WATER 2

    Aloha Chris! As you might have noticed even in Kalapana, Hawaii where there is no shortage of water there is still water hoarding. Down by the Painted Church there is a free to the public water fill up faucet for those who have no home or no county water or are just too poor. The limit is 50gal per fill up yet go there any day and you see 200gal containers on trucks getting filled.

    Our farm is on county water and part of that water cost I get billed for is that “free water” with the 50gal limit!

    Gas … water … food … money … drugs … sex …

    Human nature has no bounds!

     

     

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 5:37am

    Reply to #11

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    NOT LONE STAR FOR NOTHING!

    Aloha! Groovy mahalos and agree with Retor and Chris!

    We’re all Boy Scouts here motto in tow BE PREPARED!

    I live in Texas now. I also live in Los Angeles part of the year and Hawaii more of the year than Los Angeles. I used to live in Texas, more precise The Heights, which is Houston, back in the 1980s. I had a duplex in The Heights and a house in Galveston(45min drive south of Houston) also.

    Disasters I have endured: Sylmar quake in California 1971, Hurricane Alicia Galveston,TX in 1983, Loma Preita quake San Francisco 1989, Hurricane Iselle Hawaii 2014 and now Hurricane Harvey 2017.

    Long term Houstonians will recall Hurricane Alicia sucked the plate glass windows out of the Hilton and nearby high rises back then! Quite a mess in the downtown area. Huge flooding and storm surges too. Galveston was wiped out. But now Alicia is a distant after thought now! 

    Who remembers global warming causing Loma Preita or Hurricane Alicia?

    Every one of those natural disasters I was involved in brought out the best in people. The human based disasters bring out the more seedy side of humanity, like the LA Riots in 1992! Besides there’s no Antifa Navy in Houston.

    One of the things I first noticed in the 1980s about Houston is how many foreigners and US migrants from other states came there. That trend has continued since then because people go where the jobs are. In the 1980s my friends in Houston were mostly from Texas and other states but also Australia, Philippines, Mexico, Columbia, Venezuela, UK, Israel. Houston is not the redneck hick town a lot of America thinks it is. Neither is Texas in general.

    My point is that Houston has had a lot of influx from outsiders who have never lived here so they do not know the potential hazards. Not many study flood zones and watersheds much less hurricane history and meteorology prior to purchasing a home. Most people look at the loan and interest rates and the school district and crime and the commute! BING … BANG … DONE!

    Obviously nobody cares about real risk and logistics or else there would not be 20mil people living on the San Andreas Fault! North Ridge(LA) and Loma Preita(SF), both in California where the expert scientists live! Humans like to roll the dice!

    Yes, roll the dice … but if I lose I want someone else to pay! So they buy insurance!

    During Hurricane Alicia I was a private investigator in Houston, TX working for Equifax and after the hurricane insurance companies hired me to inspect hurricane damage claims. That was a year long job! But the insurance companies got busy before I even filed a single report pushing the Fed and State politicos to get claim payments down to $0.10 on the $1! How? The time tested old “threaten to leave” tactic! Like the Financial Crash in 2008 caused by the TBTF banks the TBTF insurance companies do the same. The TBTF banks in 2008 threatened Congress on the second go around and it worked! Here take $770BIL and don’t go to jail then give yourselves raises and donate to the Clinton Foundation! Congress is corrupt but it seems the most corrupt still LIVE WELL AND PROSPER! We’ve been governed by a most elite Kakocracy for decades now. The best Kakocracy your money and mine can buy! Like they tell you in AA … “All your best thinking got you here!”

    To me the impending cost will be another TBTF crisis!

    At what point do we learn there is no free ride and you can wear cuffs with a $12,000 Armani pantsuit at the same time? Or are we the next Caracas?

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 12:46pm

    #98

    Larry Frisa

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2009

    Posts: 44

    The Great Gas Panic

    A little humor for your day.

    Thursday was the worst day in Dallas and Austin. Yesterday was better as more stations were receiving gas deliveries. Of course, the question is, can they keep us supplied as the refineries come back on line? I hope all those people who came to Austin for the first home UT football game are able to get enough gas to return home.

     

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 1:51pm

    #99

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1839

    Trekking across the post-apocalyptic landscape

    Thank you Tom and DaveF for talking dirt-bike escape logistics.

    First, I must admit, that I have absolutely no idea what I am talking about.  But, aside from that problem, I do read a lot of post-apocalyptic novels and in my imagination I had traveled thousands of miles, rescued fair maidens and dispatched all manner of evil men who prey upon the weak and defenseless.

    🙂

    Ideally, get to where you want to be just before the disaster.  If not possible, then in the first 3 day grace period while people are still well fed and haven’t figured out “this is the big one.”

    Take your stuff there and cache it before hand, so it is just you and a minimal pack.

    Ways to travel.

    1. Dirt bike–quick, carry a single person cross rugged terrain 20 – 40 miles in just a few hours, noisy, easy to capture and easy to stop with a cable or trench across the road.  Get the hell away from the crowds and stay out of lines of cars at a standstill.  Very hard to wear a heavy pack while riding–center of gravity is high.  If you don’t wear your pack and you abruptly come upon trouble (like an ambush) and must lay down the bike and run into the woods, you lose all of your camping gear.  Limit of distance to the size of the gas tank.  Can carry a siphon hose to take gas from abandoned cars (provided that they are NOT abandoned because they are out of gas).

    2.  Horses–most flexible in rural terrain.  Horse carries packs on the horse itself, not on the rider.  No problem leaving the road way if ambush spotted.  If food is available along the way fuel problem solved (in the correct season).  Hands are free to work rifle, though shooting from horseback will make horse bolt, so you’d better jump off the horse before shooting.

    3.  Walking.  Travel at night.  Stay off roadways.  Ambushes happen on roadways. Cut through fields and brush.  Back roads, animal trails.  Everyone you meet will want to kill you and take your stuff.  You will have to kill them first.  (Except for damsels in distress, they are OK)  No noise, slow and quiet.  Avoid detection.  Campfire destroys your night vision and the smell of cooking food announces your location. (Cook food just before leaving camp for the day.)  Don’t cook near where you sleep.  Works best with a small number of people–take turns on watch, not much noise.  No chatter along the trail.  No lights.  Look over the terrain with binoculars before going out into an opening.  Send one scout around each corner first.  Add a hunters game cart to carry larger supplies and if the terrain is not too rough.

    4.  Bicycle with pull behind trailer.  If the terrain is not too dense with hostile people and you can safely ride along the roadway, this is pretty efficient.  Small pack on your body incase you must abandon bike and trailer suddenly.  Hard to shoot from a bicycle, both hands used to control the bike.

    Big priorities:

    Finding water, filtering and storing it.  Gotta carry a backpacking water filtration device so you can drink from a puddle.  

    Shelter when rain, snow, wind and cold weather.  A tarp and paracord  is a good start.

    Food.  You can burn 4,000-5,000 calories per day when exercising in cold weather.

    Good shoes, moleskin.

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  • Sat, Sep 02, 2017 - 7:36pm

    Reply to #99
    Yoxa

    Yoxa

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 20 2011

    Posts: 286

    What about a tricycle?

    Quote:

     both hands used to control the bike.

    Consider an adult tricycle, perhaps, instead of a bike plus trailer?

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  • Sun, Sep 03, 2017 - 5:34am

    #100

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Homes damaged now assessed over 185,000

    The damage estimates continue to climb, as expected.

    (Source)

    The size of Harvey was extraordinary in terms of its breadth and rain intensity.  We’ve never seen anything like it in recorded history in the US, and such a thing has never happened to such an economically concentrated area before.

    So predicting greater-than-initially-expected costs is the safe side of the bet.

    I guess we’d have to go back to the destruction of a city during a war to see a similar impact, but rain and bombs are very different in how they go about ruining things, so we really will have to wait and see.

    This next week will be packed with new findings and ‘unexpected’ effects.  

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  • Sun, Sep 03, 2017 - 7:48am

    #101

    Barbara

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 15 2009

    Posts: 28

    Summary of Recorded toxic releases.

    Here is a list of the deliberate chemical releases from planned shutdowns.  

    https://newrepublic.com/article/144606/harveys-hidden-side-effect

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  • Mon, Sep 04, 2017 - 7:07am

    Reply to #101

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    EATING CAKE!

    Aloha! Here is a photo of another polluter the EPA needs to get after as it has been spewing 2,000 tons of toxic gases into the atmosphere since 1983!

    Kilauea Volcano

    That New Republic news story measures Chevron pollutants in pounds. Kilauea Volcano measures pollutants like sulfuric acid in tons per day for the past 34 years! Ever been to Kalapana Hawaii or any of the other islands?

    WE WANT OUR CAKE!

    While the EPA and California movie stars and elite politicians crucify the State of Texas as a “polluter” they bask in the glory of their $20mil mansions in Malibu or their $15mil Hamptons Summer Homes! There are consequences to having cheap oil and gas, but there is nothing on Earth that does not have total 100% pollutant free energy. If you think it is solar then think again! Got to Silicon Valley Solar Toxics report and their scorecard on the solar manufacturing companies polluting the Earth and using Third World exploitive labor to do their mining. Then start contemplating the landfill and incinerator issues when all these new solar panels need to be discarded.

    I suggest if environmentalists want their cake and they want to eat it to then they need to either cut their own consumption by half or allow drill rigs and  open pit mines in their backyards!

    We ask communist China to sign the Paris Plan but then we demand full consumption rights in the same breath! This is what Huntington Beach, CA used to look like 100 years ago before we exported all our pollution to Third World countries and attained the new “Holier Than Thou” eco award! 

    Globalism today is nothing but “out of sight-out of mind” Third World exploitation. The same exploitation the British Empire was doing for 500 years!

    There has never been a time in human history when there was no 1% or 99%!

    Given that some of those Texas refineries provide 25% of America’s jet fuel and gasoline perhaps look in the mirror if you want to complain about deliberate chemical releases from forced shut downs. Either that or start walking and swimming on your next family vacation to the Bahamas! Al Gore … that means you too! 

     

    By the way here is a photo of a road that is fifteen minutes away from that Kilauea Volcano photo above …

     

     

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  • Mon, Sep 04, 2017 - 8:21am

    #102

    kaimu

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 20 2013

    Posts: 161

    KILAUEA VOLCANO MATH

    Aloha! Kilauea Volcano spews 2,000 tons per day toxic gases into the atmosphere over a 34 year period.

    MATH

    2,000tons x 365days = 730,000tons per year

    730,000tonsper year x 34years = 24,820,000tons since 1983

    A little more than the 100,000 pounds Chevron did during Harvey!

    Now lets add all the global active volcanoes toxic gas tonnage over that same 34 year period and see what we got!

    https://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/fs169-97/

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  • Thu, Sep 07, 2017 - 10:50am

    #103

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4505

    Mosquites after Harvey

    This looks like hell to me:

    https://gfycat.com/TenseQuerulousJohndory  (Click on image below, or link to left to see a GIF of the image)

     

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  • Thu, Sep 07, 2017 - 12:39pm

    Reply to #103

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1436

    Permethrin treated clothing

    We recently sent some of our hiking clothes (pants, shirts, socks, hats, neck gator) to be treated with permethrin to repel ticks and mosquitoes while hiking (under normal conditions, not like the hell in the gif above). My wife currently holds the US record for southernmost case of Lyme disease (southernmost part of Everglades National Park) and has more recently had one of the other diseases ticks can impart to humans that doesn’t show up on Lyme tests.  I am a mosquito magnet.

    Anyway, we got our hiking clothes back from https://www.insectshield.com/shop.aspx and tried them out under normal conditions.  Sitting still, we watched mosquitoes buzz around our clothes but very, very few even landed.  The few that landed immediately took off again as if they had landed on a hot stove.  I would trust them to repel mosquitoes in the above conditions, but would definitely get the netting for the head as seen above.

    https://www.consumerreports.org/insect-repellents/permethrin-treated-clothing-mosquito-bites/

     

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  • Thu, Sep 07, 2017 - 1:55pm

    #104

    KugsCheese

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 01 2010

    Posts: 821

    Lyme Disease

    There is recent evidence that most lyme disease is due to immune system deficiency (Antibody Sub-Class blood test by Quest Diagnostics).   Over the last six days I have partly rebuilt by gut microbiome resulting in the best GI functioning for me since well before my 2014 cancer surgery using Dr Zach Bush’s ‘Restore’ product.

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  • Fri, Sep 08, 2017 - 6:00am

    #105

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 481

    Gut problems

    We’ve used “gut shot” from Mom’s Organic Market, and my wife brews her own Kambucha from a S.C.O.B.I.E. Both seem to do a good job of helping our bodies restore their own natural intestinal flora and fauna, especially after using anti-biotics. Not sure if that would help with overall immune health, but the more she and I learn about the complexity and ecosystem of the body, the more convinced we are that natural homeopathic remedies offer better long term solutions than pharmaceuticals. We’re pretty convinced that most chemicals we produce today that go into our food, clothing, and homes are probably more a cause of our un-health than anything else, and that the pharma industry is more a part of the problem than the soluton…but that’s just a gut feeling rather than a statement backed by evidence, since neither of us are experts on the industry, nor chemistry.

     

    In other news, Houston and the other affected areas are no longer in it, at least locally. Everything must be hunky-dory down there now!

     

    /smacks head

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