Thursday, December 15, 2011

We are the New Saudi Arabia

No, we're not going to start caning people (although I could think of a few public figures who richly deserve it).  We won't be punishing women for leaving the kitchen and driving, or charging them with sorcery.  We certainly won't follow Saudi Arabia's footsteps by killing homosexuals or funding Islamic terrorists.

We are the new Saudi Arabia, only with blessedly liberated women, loud and proud gay people, and pork BBQ.  We are sitting on top of a bountiful cornucopia of energy:
How vast are these resources? Here are some numbers:

Coal Resources
  • The United States has 486 billion short tons of recoverable coal. This is enough coal to provide 464 years of electricity at today's current rate of coal consumption.
  • While this is an incredible amount of coal, it is actually a very conservative estimate. This is because the estimate does not include Alaska's coal resources and Alaska holds more coal than then entire lower 48 combined.
 Oil Resources
  • North America has nearly 1.8 trillion barrels of recoverable oil. That is twice as much as the combined reserves of all OPEC nations.  
  • In oil shale resources alone, the United States has 1 trillion barrels of oil. This is nearly four times as large as Saudi Arabia's proven oil reserves. But due to regulations, these resources are essentially locked up.
Natural Gas Resources
  • North America holds 4.2 quadrillion cubic feet of natural gas. That is enough natural gas to satisfy the United State's current natural gas demand for 575 years.
  • This is more natural gas than the combined proved natural gas reserves of the next five nations (more than Russia, Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkmenistan combined). (Debunking the Myth)  
Imagine you've been driving a little crapbox of a car that gets poor gas mileage, is expensive and only works half the time.  If that's all you had, you'd just have to live with it and be thankful for what you've got.

Now imagine that a much better vehicle had been available all along, for a cheaper price, better gas mileage and ironclad reliability.  Imagine that the government had been keeping this vehicle a secret from you. You'd be pretty upset, wouldn't you?

Well, that's what government is trying to do to us with energy.  We are spilling over with oil, natural gas, and coal, yet the green corporatists insist on cramming down our throats wind, solar and battery powered toy cars that catch fire.  Worse, these immature technologies are unreliable and much more expensive than their time-tested rivals.  Forcing them upon a free and prosperous people requires government intervention!

That's what the green agenda is all about:  Tax and restrict and regulate and harry the fossil fuels industry until it is just as expensive as the green dreams.  If you can't gain the pinnacle on your own merits, just drag everybody else down to your debased level.

That is the difference between capitalism and socialism.  Capitalism raises a society up through competition.  The "Robber Barons" lowered the cost of lighting our homes and traveling as they competed for our business.  Socialism levels everybody flat in the name of equality.

We need to kick Obama and the Pelosicrats to the curb before they destroy the nation.  We have cheap and abundant energy; we'd be crazy not to use it.

25 comments:

Always On Watch said...

We are spilling over with oil...

And my winter heating bill (oil) is climbing and climbing -- now at over $700/month for a small house with thermal windows and the thermostat set at 65.

Silverfiddle said...

Why do so many East Coast homes use oil or electricity for heat? That's so expensive!

Here in Colorado almost everyone uses natural gas. Our heating bill may get up to $150 in the coldest months...

Always On Watch said...

Silverfiddle,
The original furnace here was coal. It was converted to oil in the 1950s. At that time and for a long time, heating with oil was inexpensive. Moreover, it was super efficient (hot water radiator heat, not forced air).

We didn't even had natural gas access on our street until the 1980s.

I've recently checked into hooking up to natural gas. The cost = between $7000 and $10,000.

I envy you your low heating bill!

Jack Camwell said...

Well, I don't really mind that we're holding off on our reserves. We know that fossile fuel and coal are finite resources, so when the rest of the world runs out, it will be nice to have something to fall back on.

And make no mistake: fossil fuel will be the primary mode of energy until every last bit of it is gone. We won't likely see the technology that replaces it until it's gone, because there's billions of dollars dependent on that industry.

Ducky's here said...

Ah, the Institute for Energy Research.

Exon Mobil was a founder and the Koch's are a big funder. The last word in objectivity.

I would be a little circumspect, Silverfiddle.

Silverfiddle said...

Show us the other side, Ducky.

The underlying point remains. You can quibble about the numbers, but we've got a lot of fossile fuels, and we'd be stupid to abandon them for green pipe dreams.

We should use them while scientists and engineers work on bringing down the cost of new technologies.

Fredd said...

At least there is minimal comfort in knowing that these energy sources are not evaporating while we are forced to use foreigner's oil before our own.

And once we kick these interlopers (aka Democrats) to the curb, we can begin in earnest to harvest our own energy.

Ducky's here said...

How much of these presumed reserves are tar sands and what are the costs of extraction?

Are we certain that fracking isn't going to have negative effects on the water supply?

Is there any reason we shouldn't hedge our bets and invest in renewable energy rather than assuming we can just go on burning coal? Even China isn't so cavalier.


AOW, look into new windows. I figure close to a 8-10% return per year on my replacements. Not too bad.

bunkerville said...

If we just had a GOP candidate with courage to take down the greenies with some reality testing. Optimism is what we so badly need from one of them. Instead, doom and gloom.

Anonymous said...

Good morning, Ducky,

You ask good questions, and I quite agree that making every effort to find replacements or at least a significant supplement to fossil fuels is a worthy pursuit.

I only wish we could get the stupidly acrimonious domination games of left-right politics out of it, and turn the problem over to [presumably rational and objective] scientists to deal with in strictly realistic, apolitical terms.

When I read about all the vast coal reserves we have lurking beneath the surface, I get excited at the hope we might really have the means at hand to wean ourselves off Middle Eastern Oil, but I also feel consternation at the hideous effect liberating this resource might have on our national landscape. Who in his right mind would want to live in a world that looked like Butte Montana?

It might surprise you to learn that I favor the use of smaller, more fuel efficient cars, and a general tightening of The National Belt when it comes to energy consumption. We have been stupidly wasteful in that regard, and common sense says it's time to stop. I have heard for many years that "they" developed car engines that could get at least 50 or more MPG, but for some idiotic reason fail to implement the superior technology and make it readily available.

That said, I remain vehemently opposed to increased regulation and tighter Central Control of resources. Forcing citizens to use 1.5 gallon toilets and spiral fluorescent light bulbs by making alternatives illegal and unavailable is despotic.

I've been using the compact fluorescent bulbs since they first appeared, and have expanded their use to every lamp in the house, because I LIKE them. They do what they promise to do -- burn out every 3 to 5 years, and they do save energy. Nevertheless, I bitterly resent being told I MUST buy them whether I want to or not.

If a product is good, it WILL sell itself. There's no need for coercion. "Build better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door," and all that.

Aesthetics, however, are very very very important. A purely practical, efficient, utilitarian world would be ugly and unspeakably dreary.

Frankly, if it were up to me, I'd favor a return to The Outhouse. My grandparents and great uncles and aunts used them, and they lived in perfectly beautiful homes filled with hand carved solid mahogany, oriental carpets, high quality upholstery, Chinese porcelain, Sterling silver, good oil paintings, beautifully detailed woodwork, molded plaster ceiling adornments and all the rest of it surrounded by well kept gardens.

They heated with coal, cooked on cast iron wood or coal stoves, pumped water from their own artesian wellhead installed at the kitchen sink, refrigerated with blocks of ice, grew their own vegetables, tended their on fruit trees and berry patches, and generally lived a far healthier, happier, more active life than most of us do today with all our machinery and electronic gizmos that keep us isolated in virtual reality and rooted to the spot.

~ FreeThinke

Chakam said...

So, we're waiting on what, exactly? I mean, if we have these resources why aren't we breaking free from bondage to a nation of boy-lovers and women-abusers?

Oh, sorry, I forgot. President Obama is a liberal, and Congress is full of idiots. Gotta keep appeasing the Sheiks. Wouldn't want to offend them and have them wage a Jihad on us.

Jersey McJones said...

Oil is a globally traded commodity. We could extract all of our natural reserve and it would barely make a blip on the market. This fact has nothing whatsoever to with liberals or "Green Energy." This is about international capitalism.

We can not produce enough fossil energy to satisfy our needs, and still have water to drink and air to breath. Period. Anyone who says otherwise is ignorant, crazy, or a liar.

JMJ

Silverfiddle said...

Jersey. Yes it is a globally traded commodity, but locking up contracts on this continent reduces what we have to import. That is the point. And we are self-sufficient in natural gas and coal.

And go check official government statistics. Proven reserves alone are much more than just a "blip." Check you facts next time before you pop off.

Infidel de Manahatta said...

It's sickening really. All our natural resources and we can't develop any of them because of our progressive/green/enlightened/liberal elite.

But what do they care. They can always fly around the globe lecturing us on our 100-watt light bulbs.

Ducky's here said...

You can quibble about the numbers, but we've got a lot of fossil fuels, and we'd be stupid to abandon them for green pipe dreams.

-------------

The quantity of reserves doesn't matter? Interesting. Nonsense but interesting.

Abandon fossil fuels? Look, take the Frank Luntz act over to Fredd's. He'll believe that utter nonsense. Don't try to sneak it by a leftist.

There is absolutely no way fossil fuel can be abandoned but there certainly can be simultaneous development of alternatives.

liberaldude said...

What a liar. The picture you used is from the UK.

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/off-the-scale-winds-send-turbine-engine-up-in-flames/

Finntann said...

Rolls eyes

Silverfiddle said...

liberaldude: Please tell us what the lie is. Your incoherence is more impenetrable than normal.

@ Ducky: ... there certainly can be simultaneous development of alternatives.

Yes there can be... By the private sector. Government money is stupid money.

Anonymous said...

REPUBLICAN DEBATE on FOX at 9:00 PM EST

If you want to see Newt Gingrich drawn, quartered and kicked into the gutter, now's your chance.

EVERYBODY in the Republican Establishment is gunning for him -- as they do ANYONE who pulls into the lead.

It's clear the GOP Establishment does NOT want to oust Obama.

I wish the Ass from Texass and Ricky Ritardo would get wise and have the decency and good sense to drop out.

~ FreeThinke

Silverfiddle said...

FT: Dwarf fights are immoral. I'm watching Emmit Otter's Christmas with my second-grader.

Jersey McJones said...

"Jersey. Yes it is a globally traded commodity, but locking up contracts on this continent reduces what we have to import. That is the point. And we are self-sufficient in natural gas and coal.

And go check official government statistics. Proven reserves alone are much more than just a "blip." Check you facts next time before you pop off."

Silver, do you have any idea how many years it would take to produce this reserve? Do you have any idea how dirty just the extraction would be alone? Let alone reverting to 19th century energy economics and smoggy environment?

Really, man. Did you live in the friggin' high mountains all your life?

I grew up in the NYC area. I remember having to roll up the windows in the car because of the smells and smog and fumes and gases. Sometimes the rain was so acidic, you'd have to cover your hair and eyes - and it was far worse in the cities during the Industrial Revolution. Do you want to go back to that?

Really???

This is just a silly argument.

JMJ

98ZJUSMC said...

Silver, do you have any idea how many years it would take to produce this reserve?

I don't know about Silver, but I know sitting on our hands, doing nothing, is working out real well. Don't you think?

I grew up in the NYC area. I remember having to roll up the windows in the car because of the smells and smog and fumes and gases. Sometimes the rain was so acidic, you'd have to cover your hair and eyes

I grew up in Chicago. I must have missed all of that.

and it was far worse in the cities during the Industrial Revolution. Do you want to go back to that?

Personally, I'm sitting on a 1972 Vista Cruiser that I retro-fitted with a coal stove bought surplus from Ft. McCoy, WI. Once we start mining coal big-time, I'll look like a British Battlecruiser at Jutland. I can't wait.

Since technology hasn't advanced any since the late 1800's, I guess that steam powered Yugo I restored for a second car will be a stylin' ride.

Living in the city doesn't seem to have done anything for your perspective on technological progress or efficiency. Perhaps, you should try the mountains sometime.

Ponder this:

A 2010 whatever, with the engine running, puts out less pollution than a 1975 Mustang II parked in a garage, engine off.

In the meantime, I'll be waiting for my solar powered calculator to get me to work. Maybe I can take a sick day or two.

Silverfiddle said...

Jersey: What the Marine said.

Technology has advance somewhat since the 19th century.

Teresa said...

Excellent post Silverfiddle!

dmarks said...

FreeThinke said: "I wish the Ass from Texass and Ricky Ritardo would get wise and have the decency and good sense to drop out.

Come on. You can do better than this Hate speech is not cool. Whatsoever You have put yourself in the same league with those who bash Obama by using racist variations on his name. Or you put yourself in the same league with the current administration which referred to the mentally disabled as "f***ing retards".