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    Robert McFarlane: Open Fuel Standards Are Critical to Fighting the Peak Oil Catastrophe

    by Adam Taggart

    Friday, February 25, 2011, 9:47 PM

"Well, I wish I had a more hopeful answer for you. You've nailed it. We really are very likely to face either a disruption violently [by terrorism] or a political decision by OPEC to change the price of oil to $200 to $300 per barrel and literally destroy the global economy."

So predicts Robert McFarlane in today's interview, which focuses on current U.S. energy policy and the risks it faces. Mr. McFarlane's many decades of public and private service in both the Middle East and global energy markets make him uniquely qualified to opine on the merits (or lack thereof) of the energy strategy that the U.S. is pursuing.

He sees the U.S. as committed to a foolish "monopoly-fuel" system that leaves it dependent upon and dangerously vulnerable to the actions of external players, including those hostile to U.S. interests. And as the impacts of Peak Oil begin to be felt, he believes it is a near certainty that our country – along with the global economy – will experience great shocks which we have no plans currently in place to address sufficiently. The solution lies in creating a viable market for alternative fuels, which is in our power to do, provided we can muster the political and civic will. And do so quickly. 

Click the play button below to listen to Chris' interview with Robert C. McFarlane (runtime 34m:39s):

[swf file="http://media.PeakProsperity.com/audio/robert-mcfarlane-2011-02-25-final.mp3"]

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In this podcast, Robert and Chris discuss:

 


How we can change from our current flawed policy (i.e., rely heavily on oil imports and go to war every seven years when our interests are threatened) without having to wait for new technologies to save us. We have the technologies we need to become energy self-sufficient; what we need is the national conviction to apply them (e.g., biodiesel, ethanol, methanol, gas, electricity). Consumers can then decide at the pump which one(s) to use. Once enough government-funded infrastructure is in place, private capital will begin to fund the system, as investors are able to see a market-driven mechanism for receiving a return on their investment.

As with our recent interviews with David CollumJoe SaluzziJim RogersMarc Faber, and Bill Fleckenstein, Robert ends the interview with advice for the listener, including contacting your representatives in Congress, expressing your concerns, and asking them to vote for the "open fuel standard." Doing nothing is a mandate for the current monopoly system.

 


 

Robert C McFarlane served two tours of duty in Vietnam, then held positions as Special Assistant for National Security Affairs under President Ford and National Security Advisor & special representative to the Middle East and under President Regan. After his reitrement from public service he founded Global Energy Investors a developer of energy infrastructure projects in Asia and South America, and Energy and Communications Solutions LLC which focused on projects in Russia, Turkey and other emerging countries. He serves currently as Chairman of McFarlane and Associates Inc, a consulting firm focused on advancing techonologies in the national and homeland security domains. He now dedicates much of his time to peace-making efforts in the Middle East and reducing US dependence on foreign oil.

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86 Comments

  • Fri, Feb 25, 2011 - 11:11pm

    #1
    P20Man

    P20Man

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    Viable market for alternative fuels

    “We have the technologies we need to become energy self-sufficent; what we need is the national conviction to apply them.”

    Like http://www.Plastic2oil.com

     

     

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 12:09am

    #2

    dps

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 27 2008

    Posts: 150

    This is what we need to

    This is what we need to write to congress about.  I think it should have been bolded above, so I’ll do it here:

    open fuel standard

     

    … dons

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 2:47am

    #3
    buenijo

    buenijo

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    Modern Steam Car is the best solution

    A compact and powerful external combustion automotive engine would be unmatched with respect to multi-fuel capacity. This is a viable solution that is unfortunately all but completely ignored and/or misunderstood.

    A modern steam car would see many advantages over existing technologies:

    – It would drive as an automatic, but require no clutch or transmission.

    – Fuel economy would be similar to conventional gas cars during highway driving, but much higher during city driving.

    – The use of varied fuels would not affect the performance or the efficiency of the engine, and the engine could use these different fuels without any modifications. It could even use them simultaneously. Furthermore, the fuels require far less refining as compared to internal combustion engines. This will lower costs as a large portion of these costs is tied up with the capital and energy required in the refining process. Lowering these costs may also lead to some fuel options becoming economical viable.

    – The emissions would pass the most stringent smog standards with no emissions controls equipment required, meaning no costly and complicated catalytic converters, fuel/air sensors and delivery components, or computer controls.

    – The weight and bulk of the system would be no greater than conventional gasoline automotive systems in use today.

    – They are inherently quiet without using noise suppression equipment

    – They do not require oil lubrication. Modern steam systems can be water lubricated.

    See Cyclone Power Technologies for an example of a modern automotive steam system currently in development:

    http://www.cyclonepower.com

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 2:49am

    Reply to #2
    dennislamason

    dennislamason

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    Open Fuel Standard

    Chris MartensenFirst off,  I am impressed that you interviewed such an incredible guest, the man is an integral part of the United States recent history.
    Sadly though, I am shocked and surprised that Mr. McFarlane supports such flawed legislation. The Open Fuel Standard is at best a poorly thought out first step. Any solution that involves Ethanol or Bio-Diesel, is merely the result of the agricultural industry attempting to gain market share from the petroleum industry. Niether industry has America’s best interests in mind.
    One must remember when former Washington D.C. insiders speak publically, they have an agenda that represents corporate interests. The only question one should have, is which corporate interest Mr. McFarlane is currently representing. Given Mr. McFarlane’s repeated comments regarding Ethanol and Bio-diesel, I think it is obvious his consulting clients are Cargill, ADM, etc.
    Now for the objective truth:
    The first step must be use of our natural gas reserves period. These reserves are plentiful and will buy the needed time for the country to solve the longer term problems associated with Peak Oil. There is no easy approach, all solutions have merit,  but any mass solution that involves agriculture is a poorly thought out concept at best. While cellulosic ethanol sounds good, the simple truth is plant matter requires water to grow… lots of water, and lots of petroleum to harvest and process.  I am fairly certain you and your readers are aware of the long term issues surrounding population growth and water requirements.  That water would be best used to grow edible crops not automotive. (Assuming one is looking out for the entire country, as opposed to large agricultural interests)
    If you want freedom from the Middle East, use natural gas, it is that simple.
    While I applaud Mr. McFarlane’s service to our country, I am curious as to why he ommitted the only real near term solution, namely domestically produced natural gas. While natural gas is not the only long term solution, it is without a doubt the best near term solution. Mr. McFarlane seemed to gloss over that fact, and I thought I should point it out .
    For the record, I have no consulting clients and I represent only the best interests of the American public.
    Dennis Lamason
     
     
     
     

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 3:39am

    #4

    Robert Gardner

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 68

    An interesting and

    An interesting and informative podcast. One subject came never came up though and I guess it may have remained in the background out of respect for the guest. That subject is EROEI. Some of the ‘fixes’ mentioned in the conversation are not viable due to very low EROEI. I am glad, however, that you pointed out that what we have is a predicament as opposed to a problem.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 3:41am

    #5

    Tycer

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    Posts: 206

    Nice first post Dennis.

    Nice first post Dennis. Welcome.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 3:54am

    #6

    Arthur Robey

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 03 2010

    Posts: 1814

    The fragile mind.

    I like McFarlane. Nothing clears the sinuses better than being shot at.

    My mind raced like an explosion of squirrels up various topics while listening to the interview. I will now round them up.

    I felt your frustration at the obtusness of the Herd.  What we have here is Cognitive Dissonance.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_dissonance

    We have to find out how the Brain works. Here is a good place to start.http://www.amazon.com/Master-His-Emissary-Divided-Western/dp/030014878X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1298691139&sr=1-1 “The Master and his Emmissary.”

    How to reduce a tome to a sound bite?  You have two brains. One deals with the gestalt, and one with linear logic. (Men build airships. I am a man. Therefore I build airships.)

    Now the upshot of the way the wetware works is that unless Reality is experienced by the Gestaldt right brain it cannot be intergrated into the Logic of the Left.

    So, given this reality, I shall now attempt the impossible.

    The answer is not chemical burning. Chemical burning is so yesterday. We have to make use of the Weak and Strong Forces.

    “18 hours * 16 kWh = 288 kWh = 1,037 MJ. That is the amount of energy in 26 kg of gasoline (7.9 gallons). Given the size and weight of the device, this rules out a chemical source of energy.” from http://www.lenr-canr.org/News.htm

    Oh well. 

    I tried.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 5:37am

    #7

    Arthur Robey

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 03 2010

    Posts: 1814

    Cyclone Power

    @Buenijo.

    Your Cyclone Power Technologies and my Low Energy Nuclear Reactions are a marriage made in heaven.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 6:39am

    #8
    Brainless

    Brainless

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 09 2008

    Posts: 76

    Now move shops and offices

    Now move shops and offices close to where people live and you won’t need a car most the time. Cuts gasoline usage by 90%. When everyone starts swiching to natural gas, then that will peak ina few years and then we are back to square one.

    I moved to Thailand and am now staying in Bangkok. I have everything i need within a 500m radius, that includes school, park, shopping, work (from home office), sport center etc.. Still Bangkok is a city with continuous traffic jams and sometimes complete deadlocks. Why? I guess people like to stay inside their car and spend 4-5 times as long to travel the same distance as i do walking, sure it is warm outside, but at least 5 degrees of that can be contributed to the cars running their airconditioning non stop. Still more than 90% of the people living here don’t have a car, so the 10% is poluting the air and jams public transport for the other 90%. It is just silly. For me a gradual rising price to at least 500$ a barrel oil seems the only way to force us going forward.

    Back in my own country The Netherlands everyone is starting and finishing work at the same time causing again major traffic jams. A 10 minute drive is then at least 1.5 hour. Solutions to solve that are easy but are never implemented. You wonder why? I am convinced everyone is afraid of change, even when it makes your live better.

    What i think needs to be done is take out the car for the home to work, home to shopping , home to school etc travels. Everything around us is build to be reached by car only, that is just stupid. Start with that and save lots of fuel countering the effect or rising prices. The oil that is still available is much to usefull for other purposes then just dragging a block of steel from one place to another.

     

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 7:31am

    #9

    thatchmo

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 333

    I second Dennis (Welcome!)

    I second Dennis (Welcome!) and Brainless.  As much as I could grant McFarlane his status due to his actions, which are considerable, I just don’t see his suggestions being that relevant to our main predicament.  Transportaion fuels are crucial right NOW because of our screwed up system- one person, one car, out-of-season fruits available year ’round from halfway around the world, etc.  Don’t forget all the tires and brake pads, air filters, miles of highway that constantly need maintenance, etc.  I’m sorry, but I just don’t see another alternative fuel system as being a game-changer, at least not sustainably…..On the other hand, maybe not sending the billions of $$ overseas for fuel WOULD a game changer that may address the main prediciment- economic- though TPTB getting wealthy now  will continue to amass more with a new fuel system economy. I’m thinkin’ live-work situations and a decent mass transit system and localized food production. Too many people wanting too much energy- and goods, and food- from a fixed system.  How will Robert’s ideas address that long-term?  Did I mention climate change?  Aloha, Steve.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 8:40am

    #10
    Pandabonium2

    Pandabonium2

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    Spot On Dennis

    It is reflective of industrial culture that the focus so often seems to shift from how to live within natural energy constraints to “how do we keep the cars going?”.   There are much more serious consequences to deal with, and besides, the cars are a major part of the problem.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 11:19am

    #11

    LogansRun

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 304

    Doesn't anyone know who this

    Doesn’t anyone know who this scumbag is!!???  Anyone?

    First:  He’s a CFR Member (this should tell you everything, but some are more dense than others)

    http://www.cfr.org/about/membership/roster.html?letter=M

    Second:  Was the man behind Oliver North in the Iran Contra Affair!

    http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/293519/Iran-Contra-Affair

    Third:  Has attended Bilderberg

    http://www.muckety.com/Robert-C-McFarlane/12378.muckety

    Having this man looked at positively on this site makes me sick.  Anyone that knows anything about the above organizations, knows that membership is NOT for the betterment of mankind!  I question the agenda of this site.

    [Moderator’s note: This post is a violation of the forum rulesIt reads as a direct personal attack against an invited guest, and fails the “dinner table” test spectacularly.  Corrective action with the user has been undertaken.]

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 11:44am

    #12

    George Karpouzis

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 114

    LR:The fact that someone

    LR:

    The fact that someone from these organizations is talking about peak oil is a big deal.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 1:56pm

    Reply to #11
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 965

    ?

    [quote=LogansRun]Doesn’t anyone know who this scumbag is!!???  Anyone?
    [/quote]
    Just what I read in The Nightgale’s Song.  Hard to get a complete read on him from there.  He was presented like the others … as a flawed human being, just like all the rest of us.  I didn’t get the sense he was a terribly bad guy.  Accurate or inaccurate?  I often wonder how many CFR members and Bilderberg attendees are malevolent vs. misdirected.  Some, there’s no doubt, are not good people.  Some, I think, just get swept along by the position and the power, not fully understanding the really big picture.  

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 2:14pm

    Reply to #11

    Tycer

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 26 2009

    Posts: 206

    We've been taken over, Ahhhhhh!

    [quote=LogansRun]  I question the agenda of this site.
    [/quote]
    OMG! Dr. Martinson’s been co-opted AAAARGGH ! RUN FER THA HILLS
    LR, Thanks for pointing out McFarlane’s ties to the uninitiated. Don’t fret, we’ve not run amok nor joined the CFR.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 3:41pm

    #13
    alexros

    alexros

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    Where is the solution?

    I agree that we are in the begiinning stage of a huge energy crisis.

    I was listenning to the proposed ‘solution’ and kept wondering if Mr. McFarlane is fully informed. Food prices are already rising in this country while the EPA has just allowed 15% of etanol content. Maybe his proposal is to cut forests to produce etanol? Brazil is cutting forests ‘succesfully’ for many years…

    Agree with Dennis here, but want more details about natural gas usage in cars.

    Sadly, but I don’t see other options except major investments to alternative enrgy sources.

     Alex Rosin

     

     

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 4:04pm

    #14
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Posts: 27

    Evil SOB

    I started to write a long-winded response to this before I read Logan’s Run’s, and am glad I can bag most of that.

    Let’s just say I’m very skeptical that someone who spent his career destabilizing the world, promoting terrorism and projecting US empire on the unwilling has suddenly had a late-life conversion and is now interested in “peace making.”  It’s a lot more likely he’s doing what all the rest of the retired “made men” of discredited administrations do, and that’s peddling his influence for the benefit of high-paying vested interests.  That this site would give an obvious shill like this a platform to do so lowers my estimation of the critical judgement of its owners.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 4:32pm

    #15

    DurangoKid

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 53

    So, McFarland is a ratbag. 

    So, McFarland is a ratbag.  To be a sucessful ratbag, one must have a good idea of what’s what and who’s who.  Of course what one does with that informations is telling, but that has little bearing on the veracity of the data.  McFarland is an insider and insights to insiders, especially from the horse’s mouth, merrit attention.  He has operated in the instituitons of power and knows how they work and who the key players are.  Yes, he’s trying to turn a buck on that information, so he’s just like all the others.  We need to handle him as one would a rattlesnake.  Like it or not, rattlesnakes are an important part of their ecosystem.  You can’t really describe their habitat without including them.  Just remember they’re also full of venom.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 4:58pm

    #16
    rxstacey

    rxstacey

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    I 2nd LR

    check out “lindsey williams on alex jones” on youtube

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 5:03pm

    #17

    LogansRun

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Mar 18 2009

    Posts: 304

    What I don't like

    Obviously you have to listen to the troll.  And with this, dissect what’s truth from what’s “agenda”.   But understand, this guy doesn’t do anything without an agenda to support his croney buddies. 

    What I’m having a problem with, is that the site is giving this guy a forum to spout his views in the first place.  Why is the site looking for views from someone with his past?  Personally, this guy shouldn’t be given the chance on this forum to forward his agenda, no matter what the subject is.  He’s shown from his past, that he’s evil. 

    This person is the exact opposite (morally/ethically), of what CM.com is supposed to be about.   

    Just my opinion.  Everyone doesn’t have to agree, nor approve.  But I think everyone needs to think about this issue. 

    [Moderator’s note: This post is a violation of the forum rulesIt reads as a direct personal attack against an invited guest, and fails the “dinner table” test.  Corrective action with the user has been undertaken.]

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 5:31pm

    #18
    stevekane111

    stevekane111

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    McFarland interview

    Thanks for this interview, Chris.  You successfully required RM to play ball in your park without conceeding any of his grandiose visions of the future.  If we are going to change the discussion, more if we are going to have a discussion, about planning for the future we are going to need to draw the defenders of the realm into situations where reality is the measure of progress not the capitalist agenda.  It would not be reasonable to expect RM to morph into a realist based on one CM interview but the mere fact that he did not run off when Chris used the dreaded words “peak oil” is a victory for the cause.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 5:33pm

    #19
    Doug

    Doug

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 01 2008

    Posts: 1375

    No one was more outraged at

    No one was more outraged at the orgy of criminality and bloodshed that was Iran-Contra than I.  Many of the participants should still be in jail, perhaps including McPharlane.  But, I would suggest that even psychopathic murderers have a good idea or two rattling around in their heads.  I actually subscribed to Foreign Affairs for a number of years, and found the articles well informed and scholarly for the most part.  So, I’m not willing to reject someone’s ideas and perspectives just because he/she was a member of CFR.

    I don’t know the relative merits of Open Fuel Standards, but I certainly think they should be considered on an objective basis and not be rejected because of who presents them.  If nothing else, CFR members tend to be pretty bright folks.

    Doug

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 5:47pm

    #20

    Moderator Jason

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    Posts: 24

    This is our dinner table

    Hello everybody,

    Recent inappropriate comments on this thread require me to make some statement about the purpose of these threads.

    Chris refers to himself as an “information scout,” and this site serves to provide access to a range of views and opinions surrounding energy, economy, and the environment.  It is the essence of informed decision-making that intelligent persons will seek out and consider the views of a wide range of people on a given topic.  Once received, these diverse views may be analyzed in light of their factual accuracy.

    The purpose of this site is not to search only for guests who cleave to the “party line”, and proceed to publish only those views.

    Robert McFarlane devoted his time and energy to discussing his views seriously with Chris.  He is a guest at our inclusive dinner table.  If any user wishes to comment on the factual basis for his views about energy, then that is why these forums exist.  But any user who wishes to “boo” and “hiss” a guest away from our table simply because they disagree with them seriously misunderstands the purpose of this site.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 7:24pm

    #21
    twessels

    twessels

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    Mr. McFarlane is only partially right...

    Yes, the U.S. imports between 65% and 70% of its oil but Europe, Japan, India and China also import substantial amounts of the oil they use. Therefore, disruptions to oil production, refining and distribution will affect more that just the U.S. Americans have a false sense of security regarding the continued availability of plentiful supplies of oil because the political leadership of this country has lied about oil depletion going back to President Nixon. President Carter might have been the only president who really grasped the nature of the oil depletion problem and he got voted out of office in 1980. Comments about hostile interests and their goals are just speculation designed to induce fear rather than understanding and are only suitable for political propaganda. New energy-related technologies are not going to “save” us from the irreversible decline in global net energy. The U.S. “energy policy” up through President George W. Bush was having $20/barrel oil. National conviction like technology is not a source of energy. Bio-fuel alternatives will never be produced in the quantities needed to replace current oil use. Mr. McFarlane should have a conversation with Dr. David Fridley (Post Carbon Institute and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) on the subject of bio-fuels and be disabused of the idea. We are already using 37% of our corn production to produce ethanol, which is a net energy loser. In a world of hunger how can anyone justify using corn to run automobiles? The “solutions” to our energy predicament are more radical than anything Mr. McFarlane and perhaps Mr. Martenson are prepared to talk about publicly. The political class will never have that conversation with the American people either because peak oil = peak capitalism = end of economic growth.  Their only response to the situation will be to start WW III. How could it possibly be otherwise?

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 8:02pm

    #22

    Thomas Flower

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 21 2009

    Posts: 5

    Interviews

    I really enjoyed the interview with David Collum. He seems genuine.

     

     

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 8:08pm

    Reply to #13

    Damnthematrix

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 09 2008

    Posts: 1132

    Where is the solution?

    [quote=alexros]I agree that we are in the begiinning stage of a huge energy crisis.[/quote]
    I’ve come to realise that we are not so much heading for an energy crisis as one of over consumption…..
    Mike

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 8:11pm

    #23

    thatchmo

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 13 2008

    Posts: 333

    Thanks Jason.  Appreciate

    Thanks Jason.  Appreciate the “tune up”.  I like the “dinner table” analogy.  Aloha,Steve.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 8:28pm

    Reply to #21

    Damnthematrix

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 09 2008

    Posts: 1132

    There are no solutions to Peak Everything..

    [quote=twessels]Yes, the U.S. imports between 65% and 70% of its oil but Europe, Japan, India and China also import substantial amounts of the oil they use. Therefore, disruptions to oil production, refining and distribution will affect more that just the U.S. Americans have a false sense of security regarding the continued availability of plentiful supplies of oil because the political leadership of this country has lied about oil depletion going back to President Nixon. President Carter might have been the only president who really grasped the nature of the oil depletion problem and he got voted out of office in 1980. Comments about hostile interests and their goals are just speculation designed to induce fear rather than understanding and are only suitable for political propaganda. New energy-related technologies are not going to “save” us from the irreversible decline in global net energy. The U.S. “energy policy” up through President George W. Bush was having $20/barrel oil. National conviction like technology is not a source of energy. Bio-fuel alternatives will never be produced in the quantities needed to replace current oil use. Mr. McFarlane should have a conversation with Dr. David Fridley (Post Carbon Institute and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) on the subject of bio-fuels and be disabused of the idea. We are already using 37% of our corn production to produce ethanol, which is a net energy loser. In a world of hunger how can anyone justify using corn to run automobiles? The “solutions” to our energy predicament are more radical than anything Mr. McFarlane and perhaps Mr. Martenson are prepared to talk about publicly. The political class will never have that conversation with the American people either because peak oil = peak capitalism = end of economic growth.  Their only response to the situation will be to start WW III. How could it possibly be otherwise?
    [/quote]
    Hi twessels, and welcome to the fray…..  in my opinion, your post on this thread so far is easily the wisest.  What I want to know is, did Chris fill this guy in about the ERoEI of his proposed “solution”?
    Some of the proposals on this thread, like steam engines (not picking on anyone in particular or any one single idea) leaves out the fact that the problem is population….  there are so many people wanting to drive cars today (and growing like topsy in China) that it doesn’t matter which technology you may wish to put under the hood, it will end in tears because it still is over consumption.
    I personally know someone who made a gasifier for his car.  He actually drove it from QLD to Canberra (Australia) and back several years ago on firewood!  That’s 1500 miles at least.  But he made it abundantly clear to me that if we all started doing this, all the trees in the country would be cut down in no time.  The fascination with driving automobiles is stunning.  Get over it though…..  I’m starting to think very few of us will be driving anywhere within five years, and maybe a lot less if there’s a revolution in Saudi Arabia.  The looming crisis isn’t so much about oil as it is about over consumption and Limits to Growth.  I would’ve thought anyone who’s seen the CC at least once would frealise this…..
    Mike

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 8:52pm

    Reply to #3
    kirktim

    kirktim

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    Cyclone Power Systems

    buenijoThe Cyclone engine looks promising.  Are you affiliated with the company in some way? 

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 10:09pm

    Reply to #20
    jerryr

    jerryr

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    Our dinner table?

    While I don’t want to chase anyone away, I do wish that Chris Martenson had revealed and discussed MacFarland’s background as a CFR member, Bilderberger and Iran Contra criminal.  It seems to me that if these issues were not discussed in the interview (and I haven’t listened to the whole thing) it was quite the missed opportunity.Moderator Jason, is it your goal to prevent anyone else from discussing these aspects of MacFarland’s career in this forum, provided it is done in a civil matter?

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 10:18pm

    #24

    nestor_andreu

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    Bicycles are great...

    …if cities are prepared for them. Using cars just to move people around is very inefficient (unless maybe if the car is full). If walking or going by bike is impossible, then it is preferrable to use public transportation. Which means cities must have a good public transportation network. If not, then small scooters are usually enough to move around. Unless of course one has to carry bulky things.

    Cars are not bad by themselves, they are currently being abused. Also, as someone already said, cities must be designed to minimize energy used for daily transportation.

    Concerning the interviewee, I’d say that his notable past should have been explicited from the beginning, although it is quite clear to me from its references cited by Chris that he is quite mingled with the system (in all its pejorative sense). It is anyway interesting to see how such people react to the questions posed here. It is also surprising to see them around here. But hey, even Chris used to be vice president of such big pharma as Pfizer.

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  • Sat, Feb 26, 2011 - 11:46pm

    #25
    mike4cox

    mike4cox

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    The energy we waste = the largest oil well in the world.

    Take a look at LLNL energy flow charts.  By design the US rejects over 60% of our fuel as waste heat.  Denmark rejects about 6%.  The difference is about 54%.  Oil and coal make up about 54% of our fuel input.  Adopt the Denmark model and we do not need oil or coal.  Look at Denmark District Heating and start with the link to history.  Denmark became energy independent in 1998.

    Also look at the water flow charts at LLNL energy flow charts.  You will see we use almost as much water throwing away energy (cooling thermoelectric power plants) as we do for irrigation.

    38% of fuel in Denmark is biomass and garbage.  New York is hauling its garbage to Ohio and South Carolina.

    Denmark mines the smoke stacks for various metals.  And as Chris points out, the smoke stacks may be richer ore that our remaining mines.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 1:17am

    #26
    jimmylee

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    McFarlan's Multi-Fuel Requirement Not Practical

    I was disappointed in the podcast interview with Robert McFarland. His idea that we should all write to Congress demanding they pass legislation requiring cars and light trucks be able to burn gasoline, ethanol, methanol, and bio diesel is a dangerous idea. First, its the kind of law politicians love because it allows them to claim to have “done something” but it forces the auto makers into a technological corner trying to comply with an impossibly expensive regulation. If the auto makers fail, the politicians can blame them for not trying hard enough. Remember how GM tried to build an electric car to meet a “zero emissions” mandate by the state of California. It was a disaster and GM took the blame for the fact that an electric car that would only go 9 miles under adverse conditions was not acceptable to most motorists. Toyota decided not to even try to build a “zero” emissions car, but instead to develop a “low” emissions car and came up with the imminently practical and profitable Prius. Ironically, GM’s patriotic attempt to try and comply with the California law contributed to their ultimate bankruptcy.

     

    A spark ignition (gasoline) engine will not burn diesel or bio-diesel because the octane rating of diesel or bio-diesel fuel is much too low. If you build a spark ignition engine with low enough compression ratio that it will get by on diesel fuel it will be very inefficient. This means a multi-fuel engine must be a compression ignition (diesel) engine. Diesel engines are heavier and more expensive and making a diesel engine suitable foe gasoline and/or ethanol or methanol is a challenge because of the high cetane rating (explosiveness) of these fuels under the high pressures in a diesel engine as well as the fact that they do not lubricate the fuel pump like diesel fuel does. The US Army’s 2 ½ ton truck has a diesel engine that will run on gasoline, but it’s only recommended for limited use in an emergency.

     

    McFarlane states that Brazil uses light car and light trucks that run on any combination of gasoline or ethanol, but the the ethanol situation in Brazil is totally different than in the US. They produce ethanol from abundant sugar cane and burn the waste (bagasse) to generate energy to run the ethanol plants. Therefore, they produce ethanol with a net energy gain. In the US we produce ethanol from corn, whereby we use as much energy in planting, fertilizing, watering, harvesting, drying, shipping, and distilling the ethanol as we get back out of it. Using over 40% of our corn corp for ethanol leads to higher food prices world-wide. This is tragic for the world’s poor and ironically has contributed to the rebellions in Middle East, leading to lower oil production and higher oil prices. The ethanol mandate is a truly tragic piece of political fool-heartyness.

     

    McFarlane states that cellulose ethanol is just around the technological corner. This is not true. I have friend who is knowledgeable in cellulose ethanol technology and he says we’re not even close. Have you ever wondered why all the world’s plants use cellulose as their structural building block when there are hoards of hungry microbes and larger animals who would love to eat it (cellulose passes right through cows and other herbivores without breaking down)? Cellulose is exceptionally difficult to break down, and that’s what what must be done to produce cellulose ethanol. If you expend more energy breaking down the cellulose than you get out of the ethanol produced what’s the use.

     

    McFarlane needs to catch up on technical details on what he’s recommending before he gets people to swamp Congress with demands for legislation requiring multi-fuel vehicles.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 2:06am

    #27

    Tom Page

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    I appreciate the variety of

    I appreciate the variety of guests and opinions presented at this site, and objective, scientific analysis of their views.  One can learn a lot whether they agree with a particular view or not. 

    The possibility brought up by RMof an oil supply disruption due to hostile actions, aside from predictable declines in production rate, seems like another risk which I hadn’t previously considered much.  Another good reason to just get  used to using a lot less energy!

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 3:02am

    #28
    David Collum

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    Just some thoughts...

    Just a reminder, although I post under “Thomas” I am DC mentioned above. (Thanks for the support you guys provided.)

    Aristotle noted that an educated man can entertain an idea without necessarily endorsing it. I think it is amazing that Chris got RM to do the interview. As a reminder, Paul Craig Roberts worked with Reagan as well and he is a cult hero of those who worry about abuse of power. (Wikipedia would have told anyone interested who Robert was, so ignorance of his past is no real excuse.) 

    The CFR is (may be) misunderstood. There are something like 20,000 members–the Who’s Who of geopolitics. There are also some very impressive fellows, including noted Austrian economist Ben Steil, Sabbastian Malaby, and the always whacky Amity Schlaes.  It has been said by someone very close to me and part of the CFR that, although everybody who comes into the CFR has an agenda, the CFR itself is relatively non-partisan. Its goal is to get these guys talking about geopolitically profound issues. (That may be a little idealistic, IMO.) Although it should be looked at with a wary eye, the CFR may be less than it is cracked up to be. 

    With that said, I was relatively confident that the single message had an underlying agenda. Didn’t seem all that well hidden. The comments above about Brazil being very different than us seem appropriate to me. I am not particularly optimistic that biofuels will have a place in the future, except as an inefficient source of liquid fuels. What makes peak oil so disquieting to me is that I am not very confident that adequate substitutes are on the distant horizon. 

     

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 3:33am

    Reply to #3
    buenijo

    buenijo

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    Reply to Kirktim about Cyclone

    Hi Kirktim. I am not formally affiliated with the company. I have only followed their work with great interest over the last several years, and I am an investor. If you are interested to know more about their engine systems, then feel free to ask. I can likely answer your questions. For now, just know that theirs is a serious effort to bring steam power back for small and medium scale applications. They have the tools and the talent to do it. Also, as far as I can tell they’re doing things the right way by cutting no corners… that is, by not making the same mistakes that others have made in the past in trying to bring back steam power.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 4:15am

    Reply to #21
    buenijo

    buenijo

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    Automotive Fuels

    I agree that most biofuels in limited production today are simply a very bad idea… particularly corn ethanol. But I am optimistic about the prospects for biofuels derived from algae, and also ethanol using the Coskata process (bacterial fermentation of ethanol from CO and H2 generated from direct biomass gasification… or coal gasification). Natural gas may be used as a transport fuel. Coal may also be used as a transport fuel directly in external combustion engines like the Cyclone (it has already been fueled by coal dust with a propane pilot flame). A coal slurry can also be used in an external combustion engine. Oil can be derived from coal using a process currently in use in South Africa. Battery electric cars are fine for small passenger cars that see limited range… otherwise, I think they’re too costly to be a viable solution.In my opinion, fuel oil made from algae and used in modern steam cars is the best solution long term. Algae oil has a very high energy density, and it can be burned perfectly in a modern steam automotive system with no refining at all (collected straight from the cracker that lyses the cell walls releasing the oil). I say keep biomass and coal around for stationary power generation… but these power plants should be downsized and decentralized so the waste heat can be put to use as much as possible.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 4:18am

    Reply to #25
    buenijo

    buenijo

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    Wasted Heat

    I agree. What we need to do is decentralize power generation to the point where most of the waste heat can be put to productive use in water heating, water distillation, space heating, and adsorption air conditioning. Steam systems are ideal for this purpose.Check out the Waste Heat Engine by Cyclone Power Technologies that is designed to capture heat from various industrial processes to produce electricity. Also, the steam exhaust (which is primarily saturated water in this engine system) from this system can be easily put to use in the heating applications discussed above. Saturated water/steam is an excellent medium for transferring heat. In fact, many cogeneration systems use waste heat to first produce saturated steam before putting the heat to use.
    Also, Cyclone is developing a biomass fueled 10 KW power plant for residential use that used the Waste Heat Engine. The system can be operated for extended periods at very low power to make the most of cogeneration. It can easily provide all of the electricity, space heating, water heating, and air conditioning (using an adsorption chiller… see sortech.de). It could use wood pellets, wood chips, or even natural gas. Might be a good use for junk mail too, or lawn clippings.
     

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 12:54pm

    Reply to #21
    David Collum

    David Collum

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    Spam Alert

    Enough with the pump job.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 1:20pm

    #29
    Yossi Jackson

    Yossi Jackson

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    Mr McFarlane is on the board

    Mr McFarlane is on the board of Myriant Technologies, Inc. (Myriant), a privately-held, biotech developer and manufacturer of renewable bio-based chemicals.  He was also the main architect of the ‘Star Wars’ defence initiative which proved to be unworkable, incredibly expensive, and rather mad. He doesn’t appear to have a very good record at predicting workable and reasonable future technology. Furthermore he has a vested interest in promoting biotech fuel. Both these facts should be borne in mind when listening to this podcast.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 4:05pm

    Reply to #2
    coolhand

    coolhand

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    methanol/ethanol ideas v. ecological issues

    Ethanol is currently providing us with ~8% of our gasoline, but uses 40% of our corn crop.  This says nothing of the amount of water used on the crops themselves, & then in the processing of the ethanol in a time where falling water tables/water shortages are becoming more of an issue.Even if you use methanol or biomass or biodiesel, won’t this really chew up massive quantities of food supplies & water that could be better used elsewhere?
    Or there an implied, unspoken message from Mr. McFarlane that “it’s too late in the game re: Peak Oil to worry about what inflating food costs will do to all the other countries.  We need to take care of Americans.”
    It’s not lost on me that a Machiavellian solution to Peak Oil, if you are sitting in the American seat at the global table, is to simply burn up all your excess food supplies as fuel.  This will not only reduce dependence on foreign oil, but as we have seen in the last month, prove to be a very effective means of cutting emerging market demand & governments from power through starvation.  Interestingly, that is what may currently be going on.
    As a human being, I don’t like the thought of that, but it is “a solution” in the strictest sense of the phrase.  Any thoughts?  

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 6:01pm

    #30

    Thomas Flower

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    McFarlanes biofuel views

    Yossi,

     Your post was worthy and your point is valid. Thanks for sharing. pass the prune pudding please…dinner is not over with our guest yet.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 6:33pm

    Reply to #2
    jerryr

    jerryr

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    McFarlane's arrangement with Sudan & Qatar

    Early in the interview, Chris and Robert discuss McFarlane’s involvement as an “honest broker” between the Sudan government and the Darfur rebel leaders.  Chris says this is “incredible work”.  However, the Washington Post has documented that this arrangement was initiated by the Sudanese government, which then arranged for Qatar to pay McFarlane’s consulting fee, simply to create the illusion that McFarlane is a disinterested third party.  The story also mentioned that McFarlane lobbied various US officials on behalf of Qatar and Sudan, without registering himself with the State Department as an agent of a foreign government.  Qatar is one of the more liberal Islamic states, but it is run as an autocracy under Sharia law, and it is also a key OPEC member — exactly the sort of government McFarlane is constantly warning us about in the interview. 
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/09/29/AR2009092903840.html?sid=ST2009093000189

    McFarlane said he became interested in Sudan during an interfaith trip to the region with members of Congress in 2007, and he has done consulting work in southern Sudan since then. In November 2008, McFarlane recounted in an e-mail, he was approached by a former business partner, Albino Aboug, on behalf of Sudan’s government.
    “Albino asked whether I was willing to discuss with senior representatives from the Khartoum government how to foster negotiations between Khartoum and the Darfur rebel groups and also how to move toward renewed diplomatic negotiations between our countries,” McFarlane wrote. “I agreed to do so.”
    In early January, Aboug and McFarlane met in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, with Babiker, who is currently stationed as a Sudanese diplomat in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; it is unclear whether a Qatari representative was present, and McFarlane declined to provide details. The Qatari Embassy in Washington did not respond to telephone messages.
    What followed was a month-long exchange of e-mails and documents between McFarlane and Babiker, culminating with McFarlane’s contract with Qatar.
    [….]
    During this time, Babiker was in regular communication with senior Sudanese intelligence officials about McFarlane, the documents show.
    The documents suggest that the parties were keen to avoid public links between McFarlane and Sudan, with McFarlane stressing the need for a third party such as Qatar.
    Yet an Arabic-language memo from Babiker to an unidentified Sudanese superior on Jan. 25 refers to the need to “provide the necessary money for the activities of the group,” according to a translation. A week later, McFarlane sent an electronic copy of the proposed contract with Qatar to Babiker “for your consideration” before it was signed, the documents show.
    McFarlane also drafted a letter from Qatar inviting himself to the contract signing, then sent the language to Babiker to pass on to Qatar for approval. The final contract was signed in Doha, Qatar’s capital, on Feb. 9 with Sudanese officials present, according to the records.
    McFarlane, whose salary under the contract is $410,400, according to a fee schedule sent to Babiker, said he has “no basis for assuming” that Sudan is funding any part of the contract.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 7:11pm

    #31

    Aaron M

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 790

    Podcast

    RE: Strategic Oil Reserves

    Anyone have any information on what pace of consumption this is based upon?

    My thinking is that if planning is “projecting” a 6 month supply based on rates of consumption of say, 1995, leadership might end up with a nasty disaster on their hands. 

    RE: Caliphate

    I suggest people educate themselves on this topic. CFR or not, it’s no joke. The crisis in Europe, specifically France, Britain, Netherlands and Denmark is showing what happens when people refuse to take part in established legal systems that hold them accountable. If they are allowed to establish their own (Sha’ria), they can’t be held criminally liable for any crimes committed against non-Muslims (Kafirs). 

    Not my idea of a bright future based on the priniciples of Classic Liberalism I hold dear… The exact opposite, in fact. Think “Inquisition”.

    RE: Open Fuel Standard

    I think several posts became wrapped around the axle on the issue of Methonol/Ethanol.

    If the open fuel standard allowed cars to burn those – in addition to Biodiesel – as was stated, this would actually address many of the serious concerns I have personally, regarding shortages and the maintanance of mobility.

    I see biodiesel as a great interim approach to fuel shortages. Not only can you still it yourself with the proper equipment, it’s significantly cleaner burning and would help take the burden off an already stressed fossil fuel market. 

    This podcast was timely for me, I’ve been researching which would be the “best” diesel vehicle to purchase over the last few days, and think it’s time to start a thread on the matter.

    Cheers, and thanks very much for an excellent interview with a very insightful guest.

    Aaron

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 11:26pm

    #32

    Chris Martenson

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    Luckily, as intelligent

    Luckily, as intelligent adults, we can each decide to take what we will from any given source.  My approach is to listen to everyone, even (especially?) if I disagree with them because that’s how I learn things that I may not have known.

    My purpose in interviewing Mr. McFarlane was to get his views as a former NSA on the current geopolitical situation as it relates to risks to the flow of oil from the middle east.  I learned things for which I am grateful, feeling like I got something of a glimpse into how a high level player in the power game is viewing the world. Whether I agree with their assessment or not is utterly besides the point for me, the value is in accepting that this happens to be the way they see the world.

    And, as you will see in my upcoming book, I hold an especially dim view of biofuels, but since the purpose of the interview for me was the geopolitical situation I chose to let several contestable points about biofuels slide.  

    As always, take what you will and leave the rest.

    Finally, we are going to run interviews and guests with whom we may entirely, thoroughly, and completely disagree because we want to avoid building an echo chamber.  This is a time to remain limber and vigilant.

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  • Sun, Feb 27, 2011 - 11:56pm

    Reply to #32
    David Collum

    David Collum

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    Just to repeat...

    major kudos for getting RM to do the podcast. If you can get Gaddafi, that would be cool as well. (I am being facetious but not sarcastic.)

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 12:36am

    #33

    KugsCheese

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    Posts: 845

    Contradictory Goals

    Are we missing the obvious?   Congress dictates more and more safety features which add considerable weight, then it dictates inceases in MPG on the order of 35%.   We definitley don’t have scientific minds in Congress.   Why have vehicles become so heavy?   Is it because fat Americans like fat vehicles and want 100% Collective Safety (which is actually less Personal Safety)?

    As for getting off oil, it seems hybrids and nuclear fission power power would be the way forward, but we have the anti-Nuke Religion in the USA saying Nukes are too dangerous though France seems to mind just fine generating over 70% of its electricity from nuclear fission power plants.

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 12:55am

    Reply to #32

    nickbert

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    Posts: 263

    Next guests?

    [quote=Thomas]major kudos for getting RM to do the podcast. If you can get Gaddafi, that would be cool as well. (I am being facetious but not sarcastic.)
    [/quote]
    Heck, while we’re wishing for points of view different from our own, I say we do it big time and get a Bernanke interview.  Seriously…. I would love to see Chris interview him.  How he answers and what he says (or probably more likely, what he doesn’t say) might give a better indication of the Fed’s true degree of confidence in their current course.  I think what ultimately happens with the currency and economy (and by extension, to us) is very much determined by how far the Fed goes, and whether they’ll stick to their guns until the bitter end or if they eventually get cold feet and give in to pressure.
    So Chris and Adam, let us know how that Bernanke interview request goes
    – Nickbert

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 2:37am

    Reply to #32
    jimmylee

    jimmylee

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    McFarlan's Interview and Reality

    The interview with Robert McFarlane was conducted like all Chris Martenson interviews where the guest is probed for his ideas and then given sufficient time to explain himself and flesh out those ideas. Unlike most TV hosts, Chris doesn’t cut his guests off every 10 seconds and jump in with his own thoughts. I also like hearing from people with various viewpoints. In addition, Robert McFarlane is a high profile individual who has been around the seats of power for a long time. You don’t get to be the National Security Adviser or get invited to the CFR and Bilderberg Group meetings by being a nobody. 
    But, this is what makes listening to McFarlane so terrifying. How can he hang out with the movers and shakers of the world, yet have so little knowledge of how things actually work from an engineering standpoint. I get the same feeling when I watch members of Congress propose ideas which violate the laws of chemistry and physics. For instance in June 2009 the House of Representatives passed a bill that would require the US to reduce green house gas emissions to a level 83 percent below that of 2005 by 2050. This would put our per capita CO2 emission below those of emitted around 1875, before the introduction of electricity, the internal combustion engine, the airplane the motor car and indoor plumbing. They had no idea how such an amazing feat was to be accomplished but they passed a bill requiring it.
     
    With what’s going on the Middle East I wouldn’t surprised I we are into gas rationing by summer. If that happens the crazy ideas will be flying. We can’t afford to waste time chasing chasing after “success is just around the technological corner” ideas like McFarlane’s. In the Middle Ages alchemists thought turning lead into gold and development of an elixir to prevent aging were “just around the corner”.
     
    We have all kinds of energy technologies that actually work. We’ve got massive amounts of natural gas in the US which only costs around $4.00 per 1,000,000 Btu, whereas bulk gasoline costs around $2.75 per 125,000 Btu (making natural gas 5.5 times cheaper) and Clean Energy Fuels Corp (CLNE) can convert existing gasoline vehicles to natural gas right now.
     
    The Europeans have converted much of their car fleet to modern diesel engines. Anybody who’s been to Europe and driven one of these high torque cars with a 5-speed knows how much fun they are to drive. Here is a list of 25 of them that all get at least 64 miles per gallon in combined driving. Compare that to the pathetic 22 / 33 city / highway mileage with an American standard transmission 4-cylinder gasoline Accord or Camry, and don’t forget you get less mileage with ethanol blended into your gas. We could start importing them next week and building them here quicklyn if the our goverment would cooperate. http://www.bovinebazaar.com/deisel.htm
     
    The Germans were making coal into motor fuel during WWII. The South Africans improved the process during the 1980’s and the Chinese are building massive coal-to-oil plants right now. The US is the Saudi Arabia of coal. Too bad we can’t use existing technology it to make it into motor fuel.
     
    The rest of the world is engaged in a nuclear power plant building boom, lead by China. Electricity from existing US nuclear power plants costs less than 2 cents a kWh, but instead of building more nuclear plants we are building windmills to produce tiny amounts of electricity for 15 cents a kWh which is of little practical value anyway because it’s intermittent and unreliable and we’re building solar arrays to produce even more tiny amounts electricity for 30 cents a kWh which are also intermittent and unreliable. The US developed nuclear power 50 years ago, but now we can’t get a new plant past the catch-22, Rubik’s cube, quagmire maize erected by our government.
     
    The latest OECD Programme for International Student Assessment report compared 15-year-olds in 70 countries. US students ranked 14th out of 34 OECD countries in reading, 17th in science and 25th in math. This may may help explain why President Obama made a trip to Arcadia Florida in 2009 for the commissioning of the “largest photovoltaic solar facility in the nation” that can produce on average about 5 megawatts of electricity, equal to about 0.0046 as much as decent sized nuclear plant. Or how Congress people can describe $61 billion a year in spending cuts as “massive: and “Draconian” when $61 billion amounts to 0.017 of the federal budget. Maybe it also explains why Americans like Robert McFarlane can talk so well, but struggle with scientific and engineering realities.
     
     
     

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 3:10am

    Reply to #32
    koyaanisqatsi

    koyaanisqatsi

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    Speaking of adult thinking...

    Shall we explore what it means to develop our thinking skills?  I can think of a few rules of thumb; certainly others can add more:–Small minds talk about people. Average minds talk about things. Big minds talk about ideas.
    –Where a man stands on any issue depends on where he sits.
    –Nobody is ever completely right or completely wrong. 
    –It is often worthwhile to understand another person’s view, even if you completely dissagree with him.

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 3:54am

    Reply to #32
    jerryr

    jerryr

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    Posts: 46

    Not at my dinner table!

    [quote=cmartenson] Whether I agree with their assessment or not is utterly besides the point for me, the value is in accepting that this happens to be the way they see the world.
    [/quote]
    I’m having trouble with the idea that we really learned anything about how McFarlane sees the world.  He is obviously disingenuous, describing his role in Darfur as an “honest broker” when in fact Qatar was recruited to pay for his mission on behalf of the Sudanese government.  Some probing questions about this might have brought out the hypocrisy in McFarlane’s arrangement, and perhaps discovered exactly what he is doing for Sudan, but instead McFarlane’s view was taken at face value.
    If McFarlane is dishonest about his role in Sudan (as he also withheld information from Congress about Iran Contra, resulting in his misdemeanor criminal conviction in 1989) then why should we believe he is telling us the truth about his views about Islamic states, OPEC, the geopolitical situation, Peak Oil, or biofuels?  It’s just as likely that he is feeding us an intentionally crafted deception, and that his true beliefs and agenda are very different.  Again, a few questions about the EROEI of biofuels, the amount of farmland required to replace world oil consumption, or the incestuous relations between the US, the Saudis, and other Islamic dictatorships (as exemplified by McFarlane’s $410,000/yr consulting contract with Qatar) might have been very revealing.
    Based on his record, McFarlane is not a guest that would be welcome at my dinner table.  A meetup with him would be more analogous to a wrestling match, a situation indeed calling for “limber and vigilant” energy, rather than complacent acceptance.
    Chris, I found myself wondering if McFarlane placed any advance limitations or ground rules on the lines of questioning that he was willing to tolerate in order to do the interview?
     

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 4:09am

    #34
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Me too!

    Well, I called him a worse name than Logan’s run did, so I guess I should be banned, too.

    My objection was not that I disagree with his ideas, or that I don’t like what he stands for as a human, though both of those are certainly the case.  It was that Chris gave him a forum to promote his agenda without giving the necessary background for judging that agenda.  You can’t assume that everyone understands that a title like “Chairman of McFarlane and Associates Inc, a consulting firm focused on advancing techonologies in the national and homeland security domains”  means “lobbyist for major energy and military-industrial corporations.”  McFarlane and his ilk sell their influence to the highest bidder, regardless of the actual merits of the ideas being promoted by the bidder.

    One might have been excused for thinking that Chris endorsed the ideas, given the banner headline for the interview.  McFarlane is a master of (mis)communication.  He knows that most readers won’t read an entire article, a lot will just read the first few paragraphs, and a fair number won’t get past the headline.  That one has got to have made him proud.  He probably forwarded it to his clients.

    Hey, I love this site, and am thankful for all I have learned here.  I also regret the intemperate language used: there is never an excuse for that.  But I honestly think Chris blew this one.

    And I want to thank Logan’s Run for doing us all the service of being the first to break the ice by criticizing what was, before that, uncritical acceptance.

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 8:32am

    #35
    timple

    timple

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    Please, please provide an xml rss feed for these podcasts!

    Great informative post Chris – but to listen I have to download this to my pc then transfer to my Nokia – possible but fiddly. If you simply enclosed the attachments properly in the xml feed then standard podcast programs (like I have on my Nokia) but also available on all other platforms could download automatically when you post new interviews!

    I have only found this one http://feeds.feedburner.com/ChrisMartensonBlogs?format=xml and it does not enclose the podcast properly. If there is an alternative I am sorry for the comment but please let me know where it is!

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 11:22am

    #36

    debu

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 39

    Disappointed

    This interview with Robert McFarlane is the first content on CM.com I have been disappointed in, indeed deeply so. McFarlane’s policy presciptions are seriously flawed, his understanding of our energy plight is superficial at best and his geopolitical “analysis” amounted to little more than wog-bashing.

    I am all for being exposed to different viewpoints on this site and elsewhere.  However, the views of the likes of McFarlane and others of our ruling elites who have failed us so spectacularly are unfortunately inescapable because the MSM provides a platform to them and them alone.   There is no need for CM.com to do so too.

    CM’s time and our time would be better spent interviewing figures who have more to offer both in terms of intellect and integrity.

    A very poor showing

     

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 12:55pm

    #37
    The Albatross

    The Albatross

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    Are Hydrocarbons [inc Oil] Really Fossil Fuels???

    Interesting interview and some fiery comments. 

    Here is my assessment.

    Synopsis:    Statements that we are beyond Peak Oil entirely hinge upon the claim that Oil = Fossil Fuel.

    For e.g.The Energy Story

    There are three major forms of fossil fuels: coal, oil and natural gas. All three were formed many hundreds of millions of years ago before the time of the dinosaurs – hence the name fossil fuels. The age they were formed is called the Carboniferous Period. It was part of the Paleozoic Era. “Carboniferous” gets its name from carbon, the basic element in coal and other fossil fuels.

    8501818

    The Carboniferous Period occurred from about 360 to 286 million years ago. At the time, the land was covered with swamps filled with huge trees, ferns and other large leafy plants, similar to the picture above. The water and seas were filled with algae – the green stuff that forms on a stagnant pool of water. Algae is actually millions of very small plants.

     

     

     

    As the trees and plants died, they sank to the bottom of the swamps of oceans. They formed layers of a spongy material called peat. Over many hundreds of years, the peat was covered by sand and clay and other minerals, which turned into a type of rock called sedimentary.

    More and more rock piled on top of more rock, and it weighed more and more. It began to press down on the peat. The peat was squeezed and squeezed until the water came out of it and it eventually, over millions of years, it turned into coal, oil or petroleum, and natural gas.

    Source:  http://www.energyquest.ca.gov/story/chapter08.html

     

    The problem with this is that;

    1.     Are we to believe that old growth forests — dinosaurs included — were buried under over 7 miles of rocks etc, and then “turned” into oil – as this 2007 news release explains?

    ExxonMobil announced on Wednesday, April 25, that its subsidiary Exxon Neftegaz Limited has completed drilling of the Z-11 well, the longest measured extended-reach drilling well in the world. It is located on Sakhalin Island at Russia’s Far East and is part of Exxon-led Sakhalin-1 oil and gas project. The record-setting well has a total measured depth of 37,016 feet (11,282 meters) or over seven miles, Exxon said in its official press release.

     

    Source:      http://www.huliq.com/19627/exxon-drills-world-s-deepest-well-at-its-russian-sakhalin-1-project

     

    2.    Professor Kutcherov and researchers from the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm have reported in the Science Daily that they have proof that oil does not require squashed dinosaurs & their fodder, or indeed any other vegetable material.

    Abiotic Oil

    The abiotic oil formation theory suggests that crude oil is the result of naturally occurring and possibly ongoing geological processes. This theory was developed in the Soviet Union during the Cold War, as the Union needed to be self sufficient in terms of producing its own energy. The science behind the theory is sound and is based on experimental evidence in both the laboratory and in the field. This theory has helped to identify and therefore develop large numbers of gas and oil deposits. Examples of such fields are the South Khylchuyu field and the controversial Sakhalin II field.

    In its simplest form, the theory is that carbon present in the magma beneath the crust reacts with hydrogen to form methane as well as a raft of other mainly alkane hydrocarbons. The reactions are more complicated than this, with several intermediate stages. Particular mineral rocks such as granite and other silicon based rocks act as catalysts, which speed up the reaction without actually becoming involved or consumed in the process.

    Experiments have shown that under extreme conditions of heat and pressure it is possible to convert iron oxide, calcium carbonate and water into methane, with hydrocarbons containing up to 10 carbon atoms being produced by Russian scientists last century and confirmed in recent US experiments. The absence of large quantities of free gaseous oxygen in the magma prevents the hydrocarbons from burning and therefore forming the lower energy state molecule carbon dioxide. The conditions present in the Earth’s mantle would easily be sufficient for these small hydrocarbon chains to polymerise into the longer chain molecules found in crude oil.

    Source:     http://www.viewzone.com/abioticoilx.html

     

    3.    Is this recent off-planet discovery, by the Cassini spacecraft as it orbits Saturn’s moon Titan proof positive of Abiotic Oils.

    Titan’s Surface Organics Surpass Oil Reserves on Earth
    02.13.08
     

    Artist concept of terrain on Titan

    An artist’s imagination of hydrocarbon pools, icy and rocky terrain on the surface of Saturn’s largest moon Titan.
    Image credit: Steven Hobbs (Brisbane, Queensland, Australia).

     Saturn’s orange moon Titan has hundreds of times more liquid hydrocarbons than all the known oil and natural gas reserves on Earth, according to new data from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. The hydrocarbons rain from the sky, collecting in vast deposits that form lakes and dunes.

    The new findings from the study led by Ralph Lorenz, Cassini radar team member from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Md., are reported in the Jan. 29 issue of the Geophysical Research Letters.

    “Titan is just covered in carbon-bearing material — it’s a giant factory of organic chemicals,” said Lorenz. “This vast carbon inventory is an important window into the geology and climate history of Titan.”

    At a balmy minus 179 degrees Celsius (minus 290 degrees Fahrenheit), Titan is a far cry from Earth. Instead of water, liquid hydrocarbons in the form of methane and ethane are present on the moon’s surface, and tholins probably make up its dunes. The term “tholins”was coined by Carl Sagan in 1979 to describe the complex organic molecules at the heart of prebiotic chemistry.

    Cassini has mapped about 20 percent of Titan’s surface with radar. Several hundred lakes and seas have been observed, with each of several dozen estimated to contain more hydrocarbon liquid than Earth’s oil and gas reserves. The dark dunes that run along the equator contain a volume of organics several hundred times larger than Earth’s coal reserves.

    Proven reserves of natural gas on Earth total 130 billion tons, enough to provide 300 times the amount of energy the entire United States uses annually for residential heating, cooling and lighting. Dozens of Titan’s lakes individually have the equivalent of at least this much energy in the form of methane and ethane.

    Source:      http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/cassini/media/cassini-20080213.html

    Before jumping to the emphatic, irrevocable & ‘ask-no-questions’ conclusion that Oil = Fossil Fuel, perhaps we should focus on whether this is a fact or just a theory — especially when we have so much economic, political and military needs/reliance on securing uninterrupted supplies at a fair price.

    cheers

     

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 2:21pm

    Reply to #37

    jturbo68

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 87

    Abiotic Oil

    [quote=The Albatross] 
    The problem with this is that;
    1.     Are we to believe that old growth forests — dinosaurs included — were buried under over 7 miles of rocks etc, and then “turned” into oil – as this 2007 news release explains?

    ExxonMobil announced on Wednesday, April 25, that its subsidiary Exxon Neftegaz Limited has completed drilling of the Z-11 well, the longest measured extended-reach drilling well in the world. It is located on Sakhalin Island at Russia’s Far East and is part of Exxon-led Sakhalin-1 oil and gas project. The record-setting well has a total measured depth of 37,016 feet (11,282 meters) or over seven miles, Exxon said in its official press release.
     

    Source:      http://www.huliq.com/19627/exxon-drills-world-s-deepest-well-at-its-russian-sakhalin-1-project
    Before jumping to the emphatic, irrevocable & ‘ask-no-questions’ conclusion that Oil = Fossil Fuel, perhaps we should focus on whether this is a fact or just a theory — especially when we have so much economic, political and military needs/reliance on securing uninterrupted supplies at a fair price.
    cheers
    [/quote]
    Here we go again with the abiotic oil …Hopefully we start finding a bunch more of it soon.
    There are Mountains and Canyons on the earth that are miles in height and depth.  It is certainly possible for surface features to be lifted or sunk by 7 miles.  Those formations are created via plate tectonics, similarly to the folding of the continental plates that buries the organic matter which created Fossil Fuels.
    John
     
     

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 4:56pm

    Reply to #37

    Dogs_In_A_Pile

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 811

    More Questions Than Answers

    [quote=The Albatross]Interesting interview and some fiery comments. 
    Here is my assessment.
    Synopsis:    Statements that we are beyond Peak Oil entirely hinge upon the claim that Oil = Fossil Fuel.
    <snipped>

    Proven reserves of natural gas on Earth total 130 billion tons, enough to provide 300 times the amount of energy the entire United States uses annually for residential heating, cooling and lighting. Dozens of Titan’s lakes individually have the equivalent of at least this much energy in the form of methane and ethane.

    Source:      http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/cassini/media/cassini-20080213.html
    Before jumping to the emphatic, irrevocable & ‘ask-no-questions’ conclusion that Oil = Fossil Fuel, perhaps we should focus on whether this is a fact or just a theory — especially when we have so much economic, political and military needs/reliance on securing uninterrupted supplies at a fair price.
    cheers
    [/quote]
    Albatross –
    Perhaps we should reexamine why we have so much focus on the economic, political and military need  to secure uninterrupted supplies – at any price?  The US already consumes almost 25% of the world’s current daily oil production.  We use 17-20 million bpd out of 85 million bpd produced.  Do the math, 25% of the world’s oil production going to 3% of the population?  And we have the stones to bitch about $4 a gallon gas?
    I deliberately cut out the section above because it is a pretty clear indication of the myopic view our beloved real life rocket scientists at NASA have.    The “Proven reserves of natural gas on Earth” are denominated in US energy consumption.  Why?  What point is the author trying to make?  Besides ‘Last Man Standing’?

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  • Mon, Feb 28, 2011 - 11:43pm

    #38
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Censorship?

    What happened to the post that followed mine last night?  It was a little rough on Chris, IIRC, but it made some of the best points I’ve read in a long time.

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 12:47am

    #39

    Moderator Jason

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    Censorship?

    Chris read it.  Afterward, I invited the user to re-post his comment in more constructive and emotionally neutral language.  He has declined the invitation.  However, I can requote the post in neutral terms myself:

    [quote=12trees]

    Chris,

    I thought about this for several hours before deciding to jump in.  You are [ . . . ].  I am ashamed for [unhelpful and highly emotionally charged langage ] [. . .] . . . sickening.

    First, we have a shortage of conservation, not of energy.  Our energy system is designed to waste most of the input, in order to maintain cash flow for corporations and sheiks.  General Motors had Burt Rutan design a 100 mpg car in the early 80’s, and all three automakers produced working diesel/electric hybrids delivering 70 mpg+ with Federal subsidies under Clinton.  The Prius was an inferior knockoff of that taxpayer-purchased success.  GM could import 50 mpg Opels from Europe, or produce them here — it should simply be required by law.  We could cut our energy use in half, getting down to the per capita level of Japan, with little effort and no new technology.   It just takes talking about the real issues and honesty in government, the one and only thing that we are short of.

    All McFarlane’s group is asking for is continued waste from a more diverse system of supply.  This makes money for the financial system in particular as they play a million different streams of futures speculation and derivatives.  Status quo, only more so.  For you to give that clear deception the credibility of your good name is — really unspeakable.

    Logan’s Run would be an honored guest at my dinner table any evening.  He, a loyal contributor to this site who has participated in so many discussions, is worth a thousand [ . . . ] like McFarlane.  I watched Daily Kos kick everyone off who wanted to have Cheney impeached, and now it is a steady stream of mindless safe babble, supporting an Obama right or wrong party line and therefore worse than useless.

    Washington’s Blog is honest, courageous, and controversial.  I expect nothing less of you Chris.  This is the real world and it is ugly. [/quote]

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 1:11am

    #40
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Thanks!  I thought the

    Thanks!  I thought the second paragraph was worth being read, even with the invective that preceeded it.

    I still don’t know what Washington’s blog is, though.

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 1:21am

    Reply to #37
    The Albatross

    The Albatross

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    Why do you Write-Off Abiotic Oil so Quickly??

    [quote=jturbo68][quote=The Albatross]
     
    The problem with this is that;
    1.     Are we to believe that old growth forests — dinosaurs included — were buried under over 7 miles of rocks etc, and then “turned” into oil – as this 2007 news release explains?
     
    Here we go again with the abiotic oil …Hopefully we start finding a bunch more of it soon.
    There are Mountains and Canyons on the earth that are miles in height and depth.  It is certainly possible for surface features to be lifted or sunk by 7 miles.  Those formations are created via plate tectonics, similarly to the folding of the continental plates that buries the organic matter which created Fossil Fuels.
    John
    [/quote]
    John — you are completely writing off the current science – including the Cassini findings and Swedish research. 
    Why would you fiercely defend a position that Oil = Fossil fuels??  It was only 400 years ago that people implaccably believed that the Earth was flat.
    Look behind the hypothesis – who benefits if everyone rolls over for the Fossil Fuel Line — the oil companies! 
    How do they justify raising prices??  Pedal the myth that fossil fuels are harder to find and more expensive to extract!!
    How do they coerce citizens into a state of fear??   Keep releasing media interviews that the west my find its economic lifelines shut down because of political tensions in the Middle East.
    Why do this??   Because it prepares people for a possible conflict with any threat to supplies.!  Just another conflict that costs lives, money, resources for heartbreak in the homelands.
    I have provided sources for both sides of the argument — where are yours?
    Remember Patton’s analysis — it is never the “masses” who provide the leadership or blaze new trails — it is always those who think for themselves…….
    cheers
    [/quote]

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 2:09am

    #41

    jrf29

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    Okay, let's not write off abiotic oil

    Albatross,

    I propose that it’s not necessary to argue about how oil is generated.  Sure, let’s say that oil has an abiotic origin.  Maybe oil is generated by the breakdown of organic matter.  Maybe both.  Maybe neither.

    However oil gets there, we’re using it up faster than it’s being made.  

    The world oil supply is nothing but a giant collection of individual oil fields.  And every oil field that has been tapped long enough has eventually dried up.  The oil country in Pennsylvania, where the first oil was discovered . . . we’ve pumped it dry.  Most of the fields in Texas have become unproductive.  All of these thousands of individual fields are in the hands of private owners who can tell you what happens to old fields.

    The entire point of the 3E’s is that modern economy requires an exponential increase in energy inputs.  A steady (even abiotic) supply isn’t good enough.

    So even if we assume that oil has a steady source of repleneshment (like trees, or fish, or topsoil), that’s not good enough.  Our use of energy is exponentially increasing, and must continue increasing if we are to avoid economic convulsions.  If there is an abiotic source to oil, it’s not exponentially increasing along with our consumption.  That spells trouble.

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 2:28am

    Reply to #40

    SagerXX

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 11 2009

    Posts: 400

    re: Thanks

    [quote=green_achers]I still don’t know what Washington’s blog is, though.
    [/quote]
    There is a Washington’s Blog here:  http://www.washingtonsblog.com/
    This is a person who contributes to ZH under the avatar George Washington.  But if that’s the same one you’re thinking of, I cannot say.

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 4:07am

    Reply to #41
    The Albatross

    The Albatross

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    Abiotic Oil vs Interview with Robert McFarlane

    Excellent points jfr29 — my reason for posting was not to add another E [ Excuse ] to the thread, ie Oil = Abiotic — therefore — we can Exponentially Extract more.My point — If Robert McFarlane tells us that Oil = Fossil Fuel, and this is not true — then all analysis that follows is also not true. 
    Enter the USSR  — Further confirmation of the science behind Abiotic Oil;

    In the 1950’s the Soviet Union faced ‘Iron Curtain’ isolation from the West. The Cold War was in high gear. Russia had little oil to fuel its economy. Finding sufficient oil indigenously was a national security priority of the highest order.
    Scientists at the Institute of the Physics of the Earth of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Geological Sciences of the Ukraine Academy of Sciences began a fundamental inquiry in the late 1940’s: where does oil come from?
    In 1956, Prof. Vladimir Porfir’yev announced their conclusions: ‘Crude oil and natural petroleum gas have no intrinsic connection with biological matter originating near the surface of the earth. They are primordial materials which have been erupted from great depths.’ The Soviet geologists had turned Western orthodox geology on its head. They called their theory of oil origin the ‘a-biotic’ theory—non-biological—to distinguish from the Western biological theory of origins.

    They argued that oil is formed deep in the earth, formed in conditions of very high temperature and very high pressure, like that required for diamonds to form. ‘Oil is a primordial material of deep origin which is transported at high pressure via ‘cold’ eruptive processes into the crust of the earth,’ Porfir’yev stated. His team dismissed the idea that oil is was biological residue of plant and animal fossil remains, as a hoax designed to perpetuate the myth of limited supply.

     
    Source:     http://oilgeopolitics.net/Geopolitics___Eurasia/Peak_Oil___Russia/peak_oil___russia.html

    Following their a-biotic or non-fossil theory of the deep origins of petroleum, the Russian and Ukrainian petroleum geophysicists and chemists began with a detailed analysis of the tectonic history and geological structure of the crystalline basement of the Dnieper-Donets Basin. After a tectonic and deep structural analysis of the area, they made geophysical and geochemical investigations.
    A total of sixty one wells were drilled, of which thirty seven were commercially productive, an extremely impressive exploration success rate of almost sixty percent. The size of the field discovered compared with the North Slope of Alaska.  By contrast, US wildcat drilling was considered successful with a ten percent success rate. Nine of ten wells are typically “dry holes.”

    Not only has this alternative explanation of the origins of oil and gas existed in theory. The emergence of Russia and prior of the USSR as the world’s largest oil producer and natural gas producer has been based on the application of the theory in practice. This has geopolitical consequences of staggering magnitude.

     
    Threat Assessment — If it is determined that closure of the Straits of Hormuz is an extreme-level threat, then we need to prepare for such eventualities.
    We must follow the Russian Science that put them into First Place and remove/reduce the implied threat of oil choke points to the west. 
    Bottom Line:   Robert McFarlane – in his former role with access to highly classified Intelligence — must know about these Soviet efforts. 
    Why??   Because when the USSR turned from Oil-Poor to Oil-Rich, you can bet that this had massive strategic implications and that Western Intelligence services wanted to know why!.
    So — why would Robert not act in a transparent manner and tell Chris and the team about this???  After all, it is not a state secret anymore, is it?? 
    Answer:    Because he is pushing another agenda.!!
     
    Back to your comments jfr29 — I also agree with your further analysis, we cannot continue along the path of wanton use/abuse of Earths resources.
    Where does this leave us??
    We must put much more research & effort into responsible, sustainable, innovative and continuing development into systems & technologies that enable us to thrive and survive. 
    However, we will never move forward if we blindly follow everyone who rigidly directs us toward absolutes such as Oil Must Come from Fossil Fuels.!
    The Russians have been onto this for years – time to drop the subterfuge!!!!

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 4:36am

    #42

    Aaron M

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 22 2008

    Posts: 790

    A few problems

    Albatross,

    If this were true, you’d think that the first thing that would happen is a reasoned rationing of the resource. The 3R’s.

    Russia, and it’s oil conglomerants (Yukos, et al) have not done anything of this sort. In fact, they’ve acted in a way that would seem “counter-intuitive” to a revelation of this magnitude when they invaded Georgia some years back to secure the oil and natural gas pipelines in that nation.

    Further, the composition of Petrol (http://www.petroleum.co.uk/composition/) is largely carbon with trace elements of nitrogen, hydrogen and oxygen. This would give unrefined petrol  a significant bouyancy when compared to other silicate and metallic composites – even under pressure and mass – as the elements are significantly lower in atomic mass than Si, Mg, Fe, et cetra. (http://quake.mit.edu/hilstgroup/CoreMantle/EarthCompo.pdf)

    I’m extrapolating to a large degree here – because my field I generally apply these principles ot the atmosphere, but geology has some similar principles… at least from the chemical perspective.

    Another thing to consider is the K/T event displaced megatons of mass – laying carbon underneath other, more dense elements – those mentioned above and others, of course. This paints a very plausible picture of carbon being ’tilled under’ and continous layers of strata being deposited and redeposited via floods, eruptions, earthquakes and other natural processes. It seems plausible that oil could be abiotic, but the thesis is just not as scientifically palatable as plain ‘ole fossil-carbon based oil – which to me makes a good deal more sense, since the chemical conditions to create oil as we know it exist autonomous of the abundance of carbon.

    When you introduce the K/T event, it makes perfect sense.

    Cheers,

    Aaron
    (not an expert)

     

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 6:04pm

    #43
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Posts: 27

    We're going to be deep in

    We’re going to be deep in the olduvai gorge of future history and some dead-enders are still going to be asserting that it’s all a hoax.  Better not to get caught up in arguments with people who base their beliefs on fantasy, and to get on with the preps.

    I do notice these things always pop up when there’s a serious discussion under way that might cause some to question the power structure, though.  Maybe I’m just being paranoid…

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  • Tue, Mar 01, 2011 - 6:51pm

    #44

    Aaron M

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 22 2008

    Posts: 790

    Question - Green Achers

    Green Achers, 

    I agree for the most part with JRF above – it doesn’t really matter, because either way, we’re using it faster than it’s “growing back”. 

    As you said, onward with preparations.

    Cheers,

    Aaron

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  • Wed, Mar 02, 2011 - 3:26am

    #45
    look_at_it_this_way

    look_at_it_this_way

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    Regarding the McFarlane interview

    Greetings. This is my first comment here. I have watched the Crash Course. Robert McFarlane is high on alcohol. Let me clarify. He touts open fuel standards that would allow us to make a choice about what we put in the fuel tanks of our vehicles. A couple of those things being ethanol and methanol. However, the Crash Course points out that the generation of alcohol based fuels is break even at best, and some say the energy return is negative. So I am left feeling that McFarlane doesn’t “get it”. Does anyone else see this disconnect?

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  • Wed, Mar 02, 2011 - 8:00pm

    #46

    Damnthematrix

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 09 2008

    Posts: 1132

    ASPO talk in Sydney yesterday

    For general interest, here’s a commentary on Bruce Robinson’s (Convenor of ASPO Australia) talk yesterday, at the prestigious 6th Annual Excellence in OIl & Gas Conference

    The conference was attended my many of the well-known Australian oil & gas industry identities,  and some senior government officials.  Between each of the major keynote speakers (of which Bruce was one), an opportunity was given to CEO’s of junior and emerging Australian public exploration companies to present their wares.   Their not-so-hidden agenda was to “talk up” their share price and attract more potential investors. 

    Myself and Ian McPherson of ASPO were honoured to accept complimentary registrations that Bruce made available.   Considering that the cost was $1,795 per attendee, this was a generous gift.  It included the opportunity to meet new & old contacts, to enjoy a fine lunch, and to participate in the 6PM “networking drinks” in the grand hallway of the Sydney Exhibition & Conference Centre, Darling Harbour.   

    Bruce’s talk started at 3:30PM in the large auditorium.  His style of delivery  – with regulation dark suit & tie – was appropriate for the corporate culture that pervaded the conference.   Bruce had a lot to cover and did not waste any time, as he warmed up to a rapid point by point synopsis of the current peak oil world view.  There were plenty of good “sound bites” and interesting new ways of seeing things (some drawn from ASPO’s Prof.  Aleklett, I suspect).  I believe the oil & gas professionals would each take away several “new angles” or insights, implanted into their consciousness, or if not, in their sub-conscious.

    Bruce started with what he called his “oil radar”.  The topical reference to WikiLeaks seemed to grab people’s attention.  He moved on to make a point about the disparity in government messages in relation to peak oil and climate change. Lines were thrown in on Katrina and the GFC.  The message that preparedness should be mandatory, and good policy for governments, given the information available, came through clearly.  Contrasted to that was a graph showing how ABARE has consistently – and one wonders whether wilfully – put on its rose couloured glasses when preparing oil price forecasts.  I would not be supprised if Bruce was now that organisation’s bête noire

    There were flashes on the screen showing leading media headlines from the Financial Review, and opinion makers such as Richard Branson, Bakhtiari and the US Joint Forces Command. These reinforced the view (no doubt shared by many of the attendees) that peak oil thinking was now well and truly mainstream.  The Noah story was a simple and persuasive analogy that communicated Bruce’s long standing public advocacy of preparedness.  The political risk of high petrol prices was mentioned, and the flashing on the big screen of media headlines “Peak oil: petrol to hit $8 a litre” (the CSIRO study) was a good reminder.  Reputable demand/supply charts were depicted behind the speaker, such as the Macquarie Bank publication, to show that peak oil was now far removed from fringe group thinking.  The downslide of the world’s big fields was presented  – North Sea, Canterell, Prudhoe Bay, and OECD, US, Norway.   Politically brave were his comments that quoted sources indicating that the IEA was a cartel to counter OPEC and strongly influenced by the US, to shore up Western economic confidence.        

    That takes us to only half way through the talk.   I have found you can download the entire presentation from http://www.aspo-australia.org.au/References/Bruce/Robinson-Syd-Mar-2011-EOG.ppt.  It is worth taking a look at it and passing it on to others.

    To summarise the last slide, I wrote down “FEE”.  Acronym for Frugality, Efficiency and Equity.  That seems to sum up what I understand Bruce has been advocating to government for a long time, in response to ASPO thinking.  I feel intuitively that the problems of peak oil (and peak everything) must be addressed, sooner or later, by more austerity, or living happily with less consumption, like we used to in the 1950s.   Ironically, that value-laden message was not really consistent with the values that came through from the junior CEOs, whose purpose and direction was most certainly to win favour from shareholders by finding more of the black gold.  

    Towards the end of the conference, during a wait for the next speaker, the conference chairman decided to fill in the time by asking for a show of hands about peak oil. I cannot remember the exact distribution between those who believed the big rollover was starting to happen now, and those who believed the downturn would happen sometime in the next decade.  But it was clear to me that the majority in the room would not have disputed much of what Bruce was presenting.  

    This show of hands on peak oil probably emulated the famous 2005 APPEA conference where over half of the ~1200 assembled oil industry execs – in a show of hands – believed peak oil was real and on the horizon.  When the chairman asked finally whether anyone in the room believed world oil production would continue to grow forever, one brave exec put up his hand.  This created (maybe intentionally) some amusement for the audience.  My feeling, having spent 40 years in the oil and gas industry, is that most intelligent executives are aware of the charts that peak oil activists have read.  After all, the world’s leading industry periodical – the Oil & Gas Journal – had a major article by Kenneth Deffeyes in 2002, Colin Campbell in 2003, and Samsam Bakhtiari in 2004. The difference, though, may be one of attitude, not knowledge.   To generalise, the oil company CEOs are busy having fun with the thrill of the chase, making money and serving the market god.  Coupled to this is the corporate culture that seems to discourage political controversy.  Therefore they may be happy to leave it to others like Bruce to make political waves about a complex problem.  That is why I thought Bruce’s lecture was significant and chosen wisely by the conference organisers.  His talk was more than just about reinforcing the common knowledge.  It was about changing attitudes.       

    Written by a member of my Running on Empty Oz Yahoo group http://groups.yahoo.com/group/roeoz/

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  • Wed, Mar 02, 2011 - 10:18pm

    #47

    sofistek

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 557

    Disconnect

    look_at_it_this_way,

    Yes, I see the disconnect but it goes further than that. Why is Chris talking to someone who thinks there is a solution? And why do so many comment here mention that word, “solution”? Chris is clear, in his crash course, that what we face is a predicament and predicaments have no solutions, they only have responses. So this whole subject is badly conceived. We even have abiotic oil proponents here. I would have thought regular visitors here would have realised that the next 20 years will be nothing like the last 20 years. It’s not just a matter of finding an alternative energy source or even just conserving a bit more. Our whole civilisation is teetering on the brink and cannot be saved; we need to think about new ways of living. This is absolutely critical. So, everyone, stop believing that there is a solution; there isn’t!

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  • Wed, Mar 02, 2011 - 11:08pm

    #48

    sofistek

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    Posts: 557

    Predicament

    I finally listened to the podcast and am a little dismayed. Robert McFarlane clearly (to my mind) believes that if only all cars and trucks could run on a variety of fuels, the predicament becomes a problem and can be solved, then we’ll all continue with our lives as normal. Chris did point out that we have a predicament, not a problem, but didn’t drive the point. McFarlane believes we have a problem, not a predicament.

    Why didn’t Chris pull McFarlane up on his optimistic 17 years to change the fleet to flex-fuel? If it takes 17 years to change the fleet, it will take a lot longer than that to get all cars and trucks able to run on flex-fuels, unless that is the only type of new vehicle you can buy from tomorrow. And how does he know that all of these technologies can scale up? When the US uses twice the energy than the total production of plant biomass of that nation each year, then it’s clear that anything based on biomass isn’t going to work and definitely won’t work unless economic growth is halted. McFarlane talked about that guy using no gasoline, but ignores the fact that enough oil is used int the construction of the car and truck to power the vehicles for up to several years.

    Why is Chris even talking about energy in isolation? Yes, nothing happens without energy but this is a predicament. We need to change everything, not just energy, to move to a sustainable society. Discussions about our future should not be confined but wide ranging.

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  • Wed, Mar 02, 2011 - 11:23pm

    #49
    plato1965

    plato1965

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    Posts: 86

    The fact(?) that Robert

    The fact(?) that Robert McFarlane doesn’t *get* it.. (or pretends not to)  is still quite useful information.

     Is it just me.. or was it eerily like

     Buck Turgidson..

     

     

     

     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZV_lIwmz5E&feature=related

     I was disappointed with his responses, as I’m sure many of you were.. but.. hey no harm in tryin’ … ™

     LR et al  , the Alex Jones fanbois,… get ye to infowars.com.

     

     If you think less of Chris for giving him a chance.. meh.. 

     Honi soit qui mal  y pense… ™  –

     

     http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honi_soit_qui_mal_y_pense

     

     

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  • Thu, Mar 03, 2011 - 2:03am

    #50

    nickbert

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    Posts: 263

    The way I look at this

    The way I look at this is to not to take Robert McFarlane’s proposal as “the answer”, but rather see what nuggets of value I can find from it.  In this case, I don’t buy the idea of multi-fuel vehicles as something that will be any permanent solution, but rather as something that might aid in a smoother transition from our current way of life to a more sustainable one.

    While I like the idea of multi-fuel vehicles, the open fuel standard I don’t care for much.  I can understand the good intention behind it as he describes it, but I see the spectre of “unintended consequences” hovering over such a bill.  I cringe when I think of lawyers in Congress playing engineer and setting specific technical targets, getting their only advice from either auto industry lobbyists or lobbyists with unrealistic expectations and little technical background.  Here’s my proposal…. how about we set up a competition similar to the Ansari X-Prize for developing multi-fuel vehicles?  The idea would be to offer cash rewards for any company that can successfully develop a multi-fuel vehicle that can meet a predetermined group of requirements.  If the car companies don’t think it can be done and don’t bite, the taxpayers don’t lose a dime.  If the car companies try and fail, the companies accept the loss and the taxpayers don’t lose a dime.  The only time the taxpayer would pay for it is when a proven product that meets the requirements is developed.  Robert Zubrin in one of his books (Entering Space) proposed the same thing for further space exploration goals and technologies to boost private-sector involvement and accelerate the development of a space-based infrastructure.  I don’t see any reason why it can’t be applied for multi-fuel cars too.

    The one potential drawback I see is if a bailed-out car company is involved…. the taxpayer could end up on the hook for failed attempts by a Too-Big-To-Fail automaker.  Still, I would like to see the idea explored further.

    – Nickbert

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  • Thu, Mar 03, 2011 - 8:35am

    Reply to #50

    sofistek

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 557

    Drawbacks

    There is another potential drawback: that it gives people “hope” that we aren’t in a predicament (as Chris keeps trying to point out and keps failing) and simply have problems to solve, perhaps by having competitions for the solutions.

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  • Thu, Mar 03, 2011 - 5:36pm

    Reply to #50

    nickbert

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 263

    Re: Drawbacks

    [quote=sofistek]There is another potential drawback: that it gives people “hope” that we aren’t in a predicament (as Chris keeps trying to point out and keps failing) and simply have problems to solve, perhaps by having competitions for the solutions.
    [/quote]
    I think in a crisis we’re going to see unrealistic hope attached to a number of ‘miracle solutions’ no matter what we do; if they do so here, at least this one gives some manner of increased resiliency while society is forced to adapt.  It wouldn’t solve the liquid fuels shortage, but it could alleviate the harsher effects by allowing substitutes for limited transportation.  The idea wouldn’t be (in my mind anyway) to ‘replace’ gasoline, but to allow for a gentler transition and limited personal transportation.  The majority would still feel the pinch of higher prices and/or shortages, and driving multi-fuel vehicles (or even just knowing it’s an option) forces us to think deeper as individuals and communities on where and how we get our energy.  Without some short-to-mid-term resiliency in our current transportation options, the probability of a systemic infrastructure collapse increases, crippling the ability to expand mass transportation infrastructure or even maintain the limited one we have here in the U.S.  I too favor putting most of our effort in rail and other lower-energy mass transportation options, but I can see how this would be a worthwhile secondary effort.  And if some amazing breakthrough happens to come about and revolutionize low-energy personal transportation, great!  I’m not counting on it, but if such a thing can exist this might help bring it about.
    Of course now I thought of another (potential) drawback myself…. there’s the possibility that the corn ethanol lobbyists hijack the process and make it part of some grand corn ethanol program.  Not a super high probability IMO given the increasingly negative reputation of corn ethanol, but I’m not going to underestimate the cowardice, greed, or stupidity of those elected and non-elected officials making the decisions.
    – Nickbert

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  • Fri, Mar 04, 2011 - 9:33am

    Reply to #50

    sofistek

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Only as part of a wider plan

    Well, yes, if this was part of a wider plan to change our living arrangements then there might be some merit in it but I didn’t get the impression, at all, that McFarlane was thinking in those terms. And now you are even imagining a revolution in personal transport though I hope you wouldn’t see such a revolution as allowing business as usual to continue.Actually, I doubt flex fuel vehicles would do much, as most would simply fill up (or the equivalent) with whatever is the cheapest. Provided no fuel is subsidised in any way and all external costs are internalised, I’m not sure McFarlane’s idea would have the intended effect.

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  • Sat, Mar 05, 2011 - 2:21am

    Reply to #43
    The Albatross

    The Albatross

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    Dead-enders and Hoaxes - Nice Try

    green_archers — interesting comments — rather than put forward any explanation, rational rebuttal, or contrarian proof — you resort to the ancient strategy of simplistically labelling anyone who does not fall into lock-step with your pre-conceived ideas, as deadenders.Perhaps you should put more effort into research, rather than dish up fawning accolades…..  here…….let me help you…

    September 26, 2009
    PROOF! Oil is not dinosaur soup
    By Dr. Jerome R. Corsi
    Scientists create hydrocarbons in lab, supports abiotic oil theoryMore bad news for those who believe oil is dinosaur soup or the residue ofancient decaying forests was produced when a team of internationalscientists published earlier this month in an international scientificjournal that fossils of animals and plants are not necessary to generatecrude oil or natural gas.In a paper published in Nature GeoScience titled, “Methane-derivedhydrocarbons produced under upper-mantle conditions,” three scientists fromthe Geophysical Laboratory of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, D.C.,the Lomonosov Moscow State Academy of Fine Chemical Technology and the RoyalInstitute of Technology in Stockholm produced ethane, propane and butanefrom synthetic chemicals in the laboratory setting.Using laboratory conditions designed to replicate the heat and pressureconditions of the earth’s upper-mantle, the scientists demonstrated “thatthe synthesis of hydrocarbons heavier than methane can be produced byabiotic processes in the upper mantle.”

    This new research adds to the mounting scientific evidence that theprevailing biological theory of the generation of oil is and always has beennonsense.

    Source:       http://coralvillecourier.typepad.com/community/2009/09/proof-oil-is-not-dinosaur-soup.html
     
    Let me help you with a little more research …………..
     

    As a result, seven production oilfields were discovered, the largest of which is known as White Tiger, which is on the continental shelf of Vietnam. The main reserve of the White Tiger oilfield is “concentrated in fractured granite basement that is unique in the world oil and gas production practice.” Western oil companies typically expect to find oil only in sedimentary rock. Generally, Western oil companies refuse to drill unless they find “source rock” – sedimentary rock that contains oil the petro-geologists believe derived from decaying ancient biological debris, dead dinosaurs and pre-historic forests. That the Soviets and the Vietnamese have found oil in granite structures is revolutionary, unless, of course, you think from the perspective of the deep, abiotic theory.
    From the granite basement offshore Vietnam, the White Tiger oilfield produces almost 280,000 barrels of oil a day. A second oilfield, known as Black Lion, currently produces 80,000 barrels of oil per day, but within three years PetroVietnam expects to increase that output to 200,000 barrels per day.
    The White Tiger oilfield is at a depth of 5,000 meters (approximately 3 miles), of which 4,000 meters (about 2.5 miles) is fractured granite basement. How can the “Fossil-Fuel” theory possibly explain finding oil at these deep levels in granite rock?
    A survey of worldwide oil exploration in fractured basement formations is maintained on the website of GeoScience, a U.K. consulting firm specializing in ultra-deep oil and natural gas exploration and production. The GeoScience compilation further documents that the oil found offshore from Vietnam is being found in bedrock structures that are volcanic in nature:

    Granites constitute the basement in the central part of White Tiger and predominate in the basement of the Dragon field. They also occur in the basement of the White Tiger northern block, together with microcline, hornblende-biotite and biotite-granodiorites. Microcline, hornblende-biotite and biotite-granodiorites also occur in the basement of the Bavi and Big Bear structures.
    The basement rocks of the southern Vietnam shelf contain very large oil accumulations.

    Read more: Oil in bedrock granite<BR>off Vietnam’s shores http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47673#ixzz1FgeVJGUc

     
    And this is where you come in green_archers……………

    Craig Smith and I, in writing “Black Gold Stranglehold: The Myth of Scarcity and the Politics of Oil,” have found that anyone advocating the abiotic, “Deep-Earth” theory of the origin of oil is going to invite nearly hysterical attacks from diehard supporters of the “Fossil-Fuel” theory.
    Read more: Oil in bedrock granite<BR>off Vietnam’s shores http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47673#ixzz1FgfFUP40

     
    Source:     http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47673
    As I stated in my earlier posts — McFarlane has omitted telling you anything about abiotic oil — he definitely had security clearance to access such vital intelligence, yet he has chosen to throw his weight behind western oil oligarchs  — who in turn — only want higher prices……
    So next time you are happily filling your car up with increasing higher priced fuel — and paying huge amounts in food prices  [ + increased transport costs ]  keep telling yourself that abiotic oil is just a fantasy….
    Happy motoring……..
     

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  • Sat, Mar 05, 2011 - 9:35pm

    Reply to #43

    sofistek

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 02 2008

    Posts: 557

    Not from dinosaurs

    Well, anyone who uses that kind of headline is not worth reading. Most oil was formed from unimaginable amounts of tiny sea creatures, not dinosaurs. No one denies that oil may be formed by other means but that’s not what most of the oil we use originated from. Part of the evidence is where the oil is found, in or near geological formations that would be expected, given it’s origins. As someone else said, even if there is some abiotic oil, it clearly isn’t being formed at a prodigious rate, otherwise reservoir after reservoir would not be reaching peak and declining. Indeed, we’d probably have oceans of oil, if abiotic formation had been going on for billions of years.Please get real. There is no point telling us about abiotic oil – it won’t save the planet, in any way whatsoever.

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  • Tue, Mar 08, 2011 - 7:07pm

    #51
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Posts: 27

    Hey, albatross, do you think

    Hey, albatross, do you think you’re the first person to bring that theory around here?  That  no one around here has investigated those claims?  No, I’m not going to get into a long-winded debate every time some breathless advocate of a theory that is not supported by any credible evidence, and which wouldn’t make any difference if it were.  I’ve also given up on arguing with people who ‘think climate change is a massive conspiracy of almost every climate scientist on earth, that evolution is a trick of the devil, or that the earth is flat.  I’ve got better things to do with my information seeking and processing time.

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  • Tue, Mar 08, 2011 - 8:36pm

    Reply to #50

    nickbert

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jan 14 2009

    Posts: 263

    eliminating single points of failure during transition

    [quote=sofistek]Well, yes, if this was part of a wider plan to change our living arrangements then there might be some merit in it but I didn’t get the impression, at all, that McFarlane was thinking in those terms. [/quote]
    I don’t either.  That doesn’t mean we can’t take the idea and adapt it to our own expectations and goals, though.
    [quote] And now you are even imagining a revolution in personal transport though I hope you wouldn’t see such a revolution as allowing business as usual to continue. [/quote]
    No, actually I don’t expect any such revolution in personal transportation that would keep things the way they are.  I will however allow for the possibility of something that may provide opportunities for limited personal transportation using the in-situ resources available and being less reliant on long supply chains (of either energy or materials).  Even with that said I’m not counting on it, and am still planning with the assumption that mobility via personal motorized transportation will be greatly reduced or largely unavailable (depending on what you’re using) and advocating to anyone who’ll listen to plan accordingly. 
    [quote]
    Actually, I doubt flex fuel vehicles would do much, as most would simply fill up (or the equivalent) with whatever is the cheapest. Provided no fuel is subsidised in any way and all external costs are internalised, I’m not sure McFarlane’s idea would have the intended effect.
    [/quote]
    I don’t see flex fuel doing much to help the economy or making fuel cheaper either, no matter how ideal the situation (no subsidies and such).  Again, the value I see in multi-fuel vehicles is taking our societies away from single points of failure and a less abrupt transition to lower-energy consumption.  The stresses and pressures from high prices and shortages will still be there to influence changes in behavior, but the idea is to keep the rate of change from overwhelming our ability to adapt. 
    – Nickbert

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  • Wed, Mar 09, 2011 - 4:17am

    Reply to #51
    The Albatross

    The Albatross

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    So - Why Not Share Your Info Seeking & Processing Results??

    Again — you miss the point — however, I am still to see any meaningful input with the relevant scienctific research, including links as to how you arrive at your assessments.Whilst we await further developments from the Cassini space-probe about “Methane Rain on Titan,” – perhaps you may yet give us your thoughts on the answers to “What Next?” for a world with limited, affordable & easily extractable oil?
    cheers

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  • Wed, Mar 09, 2011 - 5:47pm

    #52

    Aaron M

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 22 2008

    Posts: 790

    RE: Why not Share?

    Albatross,

    I’m not sure if you intended your post to come across as blatantly disrespectful as it does, but if so, please check the attitude.

    I for one resent the following statement:
    [quote]however, I am still to see any meaningful input with the relevant scienctific research, including links as to how you arrive at your assessments.[/quote]

    Are you the arbitor of what is “relevant”?
    Are you saying that the research presented all over this forum is invalid because you didn’t get a debate sized and fitted to your posts here?
    Are you considering the other points of view, or have you made up your mind? 

    I presented principles, links and information for discussing the counterpoints to your presented data – and you ignored it. So please don’t say “I am still to see any meaningful input with the relevant scienctific research“, because you have failed at presenting relevant scientific research. All you have done is presented articles that commensurate with your beliefs.

    That is not doing research, it’s citing research if you do it properly, which you didn’t.

    So we can say you have not done research either, but picked  tidy articles that look as if they’re supporting your position, when in fact, the only one that does is “Viewzone”. Does that sound scientifically credible?

    DId you read the paper regarding the “Abiotic Theory”?

    The article states “Scientists Prove Abiotic Oil”. That’s a bold claim. So I read the paper.

    It goes on to state the bio-chemical processes involved in gas formation and speculates that because most oil reserves are found near plates in the earths mantle, that oil must come from the interior of the earth. This is called speculation, not proof because it’s not “proving” anything – it’s a thesis paper presenting “food for thought” through conjectural and speculative observations mixed with some high level mathematics and physics. It’s not implausible, but proving and showing possibility are two seperate things.

    No one “found” the algae that “create” oil. No one “Observed the process” of oil being created abiotically.
    Your article just took cogent and practical set of observations and pronounced the issue solved.

    You should more carefully scrutinize your sources, and more politely consider what others say.
    Also, “SEARCH” is your friend. Top right.

    Cheers,

    Aaron 

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  • Thu, Mar 10, 2011 - 12:22am

    #53
    green_achers

    green_achers

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    Posts: 27

    Thanks, Aaron.  I could

    Thanks, Aaron.  I could have been more polite, but it was never my intention to debate the issue.  As I indicated, the issue of abiotic oil has been debated in many forums, including here, and I have no interest in it at this time.  I wasn’t talking to Albatross at all at first, but commenting on how the subject had been diverted away from the appropriateness of giving a documented criminal and influence peddler a venue to spread his propaganda.  I was also commenting on the need to keep our eyes on the ball not be turned by diversions that are unlikely to change anything of importance, when we would be better off sticking to our preps.

    Whether that’s a well-heeled lobbyist promoting wasteful fuel alternatives or a someone who just stumbled upon the concept of abiotic oil doesn’t matter.  We all have to be able to exercise a healthy filtering ability to all of the noise out there.

    That doesn’t mean that I’m not open to a divergent voice if the source is credible.  The Oil Drum and Stuart Staniford are two places I go to to read diverse educated opinions on the scientific and technical aspects of our situation.  I come to this forum to catch very diverse opinions on the economic, financial, and to some extent, policy aspects.  I find John Michael Greer, Dimitri Orlov and Sharon Astyk  great sources for historic and a practical perspectives.  They and a few other sources are a pretty broad group, and some, like the Oil Drum and Stuart, are not strangers from airing contrarian positions.  I suspect if there is anything to this or some other claim, it will be discussed with insight and clarity on one of these forums by someone I have learned to respect.

    I can’t devote the time or have the background to conduct primary-source research on every tangent that comes across the screen.  I have enough of a science background that I can form pretty good personal opinions based on secondary sources, but I have to be able to apply an educated filter to the process.  Having a poster show up with 2-3 posts breathlessly pumping the latest techno-fix to our well-documented problems is not likely to get a friendly response.

    You did well to refer him to the search function.

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  • Thu, Mar 10, 2011 - 7:23am

    Reply to #52
    The Albatross

    The Albatross

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    Fossil Fuel Theories...step by step to Conflict

    Aaron – I will explain;1.   My comments were not directed to you – [see para 3] – neither do I claim that “all research on this forum is invalid.” – on the contrary, I have been a forum member for some time now, and I appreciate Chris, his team and their sentiments…..neither am I some “breathless new member fixated on my own theories…”
    2.   My concern is that we are all being pushed toward extremely risky political, economical & military strategies by Big Govt and their minions.
    3.   In this particular topic – Robert McFarlane’s interview includes these words — “……Critical to Fighting the Peak Oil Catastrophe.”
    4.   My research leads me to reject such absolutes like Oil = Fossil Fuel & Peak Oil Catastrophe.      Why??         Because of dogma like this;
           a)  Source:    http://www.ecokids.ca/pub/eco_info/topics/energy/ecostats/index.cfm
           b)  Source:     http://www.discoveringfossils.co.uk/fossilfuels.htm
           c)  Source:     http://www.eia.doe.gov/kids/energy.cfm?page=oil_home-basics
           d)  Source:     http://www.jfcom.mil/ — paper entitled “The Joint Operating Environment – 2010 — JOE 2010”
    5.   Even the US Energy Agency is filled with statements that oil comes from fossil fuels.  In source (d) The JOE 2010 paper, elaborates further –> Peak Oil –> middle east holds most oil  –> choke points –> Straits of Hormuz –> immense threat to Western Economies…….
    6.   Therefore future events may well be triggered by the fossil fuel lobby – the implication being that if oil shipments are stopped at critical choke points, then we should prepare for economic argageddon or war.
    7.    This means that we have education, economic and military websites mutually supporting the fossil fuel myth.  Yes – I call it a myth – [see para 11 below] 
    8.    There is ample proof that we are all being indoctrinated by not just lies about fossil fuels, but as John Williams from Shadowstats.com informs us — every govt statistic is also a lie.

    9.     No one “found” the algae that “create” oil. No one “Observed the process” of oil being created abiotically. Your article just took cogent and practical set of observations and pronounced the issue solved.

     
    10.   I do not pronounce the issue solved at all – however other govts [such as New Zealand] appear to be moving away from the “fossil fuel” theory;
             Source:    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1011/S00025/new-zealand-defence-white-paper-2010.htm
     
    11.   The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA published in 2002 the details of the Russian-Ukranian abiotic theory, dedicated to Nikolai Alexandrovich Kudryavtsev – who first enunciated the theory;
             Source:    http://www.pnas.org/content/99/17/10976.full
    12.    If we all keep following the rest of the crowd, we may find ourselves channelled down the path to yet another major war.
     
    I don’t wish to see more wars based upon false theories — does this clarify my position?
     
    @ green_archers — thankyou for the references — I have also visited The Oil Drum — but none of the others – more homework now..
    cheers
     
     

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  • Wed, Jun 22, 2011 - 6:51am

    Reply to #1
    SPAM_christopher21

    SPAM_christopher21

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    Joined: Jun 22 2011

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    <a

    <a href=”http://www.zigwheels.com/newcars/HM~Mitsubishi”>HM-Mitsubishi</a>

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  • Wed, Nov 02, 2011 - 11:21am

    Reply to #9
    SPAM_Luis C

    SPAM_Luis C

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    fuel-saving vehicle

    With rising gas prices, even people who don’t care so much about being green are finding less gas-guzzling options. The eco-friendly people, won’t also walk everyday or rely on public vehicles because some countries don’t have reliable public transit. Luckily there are plenty of options for fuel-efficient cars. Mazda intends to reveal its brand new Takeri concept at the Tokyo Auto Show in late November. The car will feature a creative regenerative braking system. The brakes will power the car’s electrical functions and thereby conserve fuel. Article resource: New Takeri concept car hints at next generation Mazda6
     

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