I was surfing a Chinese news website early this morning (Chinaview), you know, ’cause I was awake, and I have a hard time finding real news from our “free” press, anyway, I found this cool article on the Top 10 Amazing Holes in the Earth. This picture caught my eye. It seems that while drilling for natural gas in 1971, the brilliant Russian geologists and miners in the former Soviet Republic of Turkmenistan (yeah, I had to look it up too) made this hole when the rig collapsed. Being the Earth conscience people that they are, they let the gas burn rather than have it escape into the air…it is poisonous you know.
So this hugantic campfire, in exactly the middle of nowhere, has been burning untold millions of cubic feet per year of natural gas since 1971, and I’m supposed to worry about my light bulbs. Umm, can somebody contact Al Gore? Surely he can come up with a 10 year plan to put this fire out.
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Al Gore was on another talking heads program (link here), this time with Alan Murray of the Wall Street Journal. I decided I was going to hold my breakfast down and watch the video. Right out of the gate he states that it is possible to convert our carbon based energy production to…well, something else, in 10 years. A single decade, are you kidding me? The repaving and widening of I-95 through D.C. took longer than 10 years..and the road was already built! Maybe he plans on visiting Loompa Land and picking up some Oompa Loompas to get the job done. Hey, don’t laugh, it could happen.
“The enormity of the climate crisis” triggered my next gag reflex. What on God’s Green Earth is he talking about. The climate has been warmer in the past. The climate has also been cooler in the past. So what! We’re still kicking. In fact raising the temperature, and CO2 levels will actually help humanity through increased food production. Right now are planet is starving for CO2. A couple of degrees warmer would also put far more water vapor into the air, which would mean more rain and therefore less drought – again helping to increase food production. Not that it is going to be warmer any time soon since our planet has been cooling for the past decade or so. So Al, you’re darned right I’m not ready to hear the phrase “planetary emergency” in an “accepting way”. The world’s growing population needs food. Oh that’s right, I forgot you would like the population to shrink to some arbitrary number of lucky souls.
“Expensive carbon based fuels”. Urrp – I’m sorry, that was this morning’s waffle. Name an energy source that is cheaper than coal to the end user…(insert sound of chirping crickets here). Wind and solar are no cheaper than coal in their initial cost…they already exist. It is in harnessing the energy that produces the cost. We have coal coming out of our…well let’s just say it’s abundant. So is oil, so is methane. And we are not “hostage to carbon based fuels” we are hostage to foreign governments (who don’t like us) to obtain our supply. Not because we do not posses our own resources, but because we’d rather let them suck it out of their ground and buy it. This, of course, is never a good idea. Depending on the resources of other countries allows us to be dictated to by those countries. They also get to set the price, hence the “roller coaster” of oil prices. The “declining rate of new discoveries” is another flat out lie. We have discovered more oil in the last 20 years than we have burned in the last 100. Go look it up. And the higher costs of new discoveries is directly tied to increased regulation.
Boone, I’m with you in most respects. We need to get off foreign oil. But not oil totally. Your natural gas idea for heavy vehicles is brilliant. Al is setting up a straw man argument, coupled with the Democrats refusal to let us drill our own oil, to say that getting off foreign oil means we need to convert to non-carbon fuels. We needed to do this back in Carter’s day, and so far, no politician has had the stones to pull it off.
And Gore, stop using the word consensus. Science does not work by consensus, politics do. And, you’re right, if we spend zillions of dollars combating CO2 levels destroying the world’s economy in the process, future generations will look back and ask “what in the world were you thinking?”
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