The right wing investment sheets will tell you that we’re sitting on a trillion barrels of oil under the ground in North America. What they don’t tell you is that it’s wax and tar – and hard to process. “Hard,” as in, “dissolves and destroys steel.”
But the thing nobody seems to say is that it’s simply a matter of volume versus use. Let’s look at it like this:
During the oil discovery of the 1930s, a barrel of oil (42 gallons in need of being distilled) could be bought for 30 cents. In fact, oil was so abundant, there were periods of 5 cent per barrel oil. That’s because there was so much of it — and the world didn’t require it. Most of the world’s work was done by hand, or by animal plow.
Sure, the big cities and industrial centers used oil and coal. But most of the world was still rural. That was true until about 10 years (or 10 minutes) ago, as the “economic miracle” of the ’90s insisted that everybody needed a car and to work in an office.
We were under a dollar for a gallon of gas until the US peaked (reached maximum and began to decline) in the early 70s – and well under – in the 20 cent range – for much of that period.
In fact, a whole barrel was under 2 dollars from the 1880s to nearly the 1950s. [LINK]
Some fields produced a return ration of 1,000 barrels for every one invested. Some produced 35,000 for every one invested (the Kern County, California Lakeview Gusher, for example – but much of that – 9 million barrels – was spilled!) [LINK]
The average for the period up to 1940 was 100 to 1.
The Spindletop field in Beaumont, Texas, came in at 100,000 barrels per day after a laborious dig.
“Lucas continued drilling and on January 10, 1901, at a depth of 1,139 ft, what is known as the Lucas Gusher or the Lucas Geyser blew oil over 150 feet in the air at a rate of 100,000 barrels per day (4,200,000 gallons). It took nine days before the well was brought under control. Spindletop was the largest gusher the world had seen and catapulted Beaumont into an oil-fueled boomtown. Beaumont’s population of 10,000 tripled in three months and eventually rose to 50,000. Speculation led land prices to increase rapidly. By the end of 1902, more than 500 companies had been formed and 285 wells were in operation.” [LINK]
But the world did not have a place to use it – so it was CHEAP.
And for every one we used, geologists were discovering six more out in the world’s untapped oil fields.
The Empire State Building was built in 1929 to ’31, during a long period of cheap oil. That’s when we built the big North American cities.
We now get a return on oil of about 11 (for fracking) to 20 (conventional) for every 1 we invest.
“From 1750-1950, the EROEI of oil discoveries was very high. For instance, discoveries in the 1930s had 100:1 EROEIs. That ratio declined to 30:1 by the 1970s. Today, that ratio is at about 17:1 with few recent discoveries above 10:1.”[LINK]
And for every five to six we use, we discover one.
Gas has fluctuated from $2 to over $5 per gallon over 6 years – and is rapidly unstable. (The largest fluctuations occurred within months, not years. Rapid instability is a mark of uncertain sources of oil or gas.) [LINK]
Oil approached $150 a barrel, and was lowered when Saudi Arabia decided to flood the market after the US invested billions (trillions?) in expensive fracking – which needs about 70 to 90 dollars per barrel to be profitable.
We built the world on dollar a barrel oil that came in at a return of 100: 1 (and often at 1,000:1).
And we expect to maintain it at $90 dollar per barrel oil, that gives us an energy return of 11:1.
The average depth of a well has increased to over a mile deep (more than 6,000 ft); and most fields are now in the ocean and are several miles deep. [LINK] This is a very expensive ball game compared with running drills on dry land. But that’s the game of oil – it’s all temporary.
Spindletop is now a grass-covered hill – because like all fields, production declines to an unsustainable rate – that is – no one wants to pay for a pint or two a day of oil by running pumping machinery (that requires far more than is produced).
“Today a flag pole flying a Texas flag marks the location of the wellhead, at Spindletop Park, about 1.5 miles southwest of the museum, off West Port Arthur Road/Spur 93. There is a viewing platform with information placards there, about a quarter mile from the flagpole, which is in the middle of swampland on private land and not accessible. Directions to the site are available at the museum.” [LINK]
What goes up, in oil, always slides back down.
You can begin to appreciate our dilemma.
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
Elon Musk (innovator, inventor, engineer; formerly of Paypal, now of Tesla car company) is asking us to breathe a sigh of relief because soon every home will be running off of a battery – a “Powerpack.” It’s a sleek, iPod, Apple brand-inspired device that can push electrons through your house or business. “Green” energy supporters can breathe a sigh of relief. But I want to ask you to please pause to follow the ‘chain of possession’ or construction.
Ask the questions:
Batteries will run a home. But how? Do batteries generate energy? No – they store some energy. Where do they get the energy? And what are they made of? How many can we build? Are they really “green?” What are they replacing?
Batteries have been made of cadmium,mercury, lead, nickel, silver and other metals. Batteries are formed of rare metals, heavy metals that can hold a charge. These tend to be dangerous, toxic metals. Note one: batteries are toxic. They are formed from toxic materials.
The new batteries are formed from a lighter metal – Lithium.
Is lithium safe and green? It’s better than mercury and cadmium, but it’s not something you can recycle by putting it in a compost pile. It is a toxic metal. [Lithium toxicity]
Lithium takes energy to mine from foreign countries, some of which are not in love with us. (China is third on the list, but has recently bought mines in Australia – the first.) Its supply is, like all rare metals, limited.
Lithium isn’t the only metal in these products. There are other metals – even rarer and more contentious than lithium – that are needed to make batteries – and all modern “tech” devices work. iPods, cell phones, video games, monitors, hard drives, car batteries – all are swimming in toxic rare earth metals.
From the pro-Wall Street site, Motley Fool:
“Do you want cancer with that battery? Recently, the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy undertook a study to look at the environmental impact of lithium-ion batteries for EVs. The study showed that batteries that use cathodes with nickel and cobalt, as well as solvent-based electrode processing, have the highest potential for environmental impacts, including resource depletion, global warming, ecological toxicity, and human health. The largest contributing processes include those associated with the production, processing, and use of cobalt and nickel metal compounds, which may cause adverse respiratory, pulmonary, and neurological effects in those exposed.
In other words, li-ion batteries that contain nickel and cobalt have a significant effect on health and the environment. More specifically, this includes Panasonic‘s automotive grade li-ion batteries, which contain lithium, nickel, cobalt , and aluminum, and a proprietary cathode geometry developed jointly by Panasonic and Tesla — and are currently used in the Model S.” [Motley Fool]
What’s new? Our batteries are just like everything in the American marketplace…toxic. (They could do the same thing for every other thing machined and sold…iPods, iPhones, computers, etc. They’re just nicking the EV industry because they don’t have a blind spot for it.)
For Elon’s batteries, you need more cobalt, graphite (carbon) and copper, and that’s hitting a wall, too. [Limited Copper]
Of course, the “market” will offer new sources:
“The New York Times recently reported the discovery of deposits of gold, silver, copper, cobalt, lead and zinc in the sulfurous mounds that gush hot water from fissures near active volcanic areas on the ocean floor. Seabed mining, however, could cause great damage to fisheries and marine ecosystems, so environmentalists are pushing for more research and mitigation planning before it begins.” [LINK]
With normal results: environmental degradation, poisoning, and political pay-offs.
We also get to destroy Bolivia for having a lot of the stuff:
“Bolivia is primarily known for two things: being the poorest country in South America, and having a president with a terrible haircut. However, it might soon be known for a third thing: lithium. Turns out Bolivia has the world’s largest reserves of the light metal, and according to Foreign Policy, that positions Bolivia as the Saudi Arabia of our carbon-less, battery-powered future.”
I don’t think anyone knows what they mean when they write “carbon-less.” They do know that all life is carbon? That we exhale carbon? That in order to MINE LITHIUM, you have to use GASOLINE, COAL and NATURAL GAS? (No, they probably don’t.)
“In Bolivia, most of the lithium sits in the Uyuni salt flats. Located in the southwest of the country, the Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat, and it contains between 50 and 70 percent of the world’s lithium.
These mineral riches and increasing demand have already set off confrontations between Western corporations that want to mine the precious mineral, and Bolivia’s Socialist president, Evo Morales, who prefers nationalized companies. However, that’s just the beginning of the problems. The Foreign Policy article also warns that while lithium replacing oil as the main fuel source will help the environment, there’s no evidence that changing the place and resource will reduce the conflict between those who have the power, and those who want it.”[Popular Science]
And hold onto your pencils – graphite is about to get more expensive.
“Should Tesla choose to use natural flake graphite, the demand for battery-grade material could go up 154%.” [LINK]
But we’re already making millions of small rechargeable batteries per year. So, now, Elon’s company is going to build a few thousand, or a hundred thousand, or several million big ones. Or maybe 2 billion (that’s one of his postulated goals.)
So, you buy one and put it in your home. What now? Where do you plug it in?
How do you overcome your “gridded” house? or, do you just run wires everywhere from Elon’s battery? And plug his directly into the grid to be charged?
That means that Elon’s new batteries are going to be charged by the existing electrical supply. Unless you living under a windmill or are one of the rarest houses with a solar panel array strapped to your roof (which cost you tens of thousands of dollars) – you’re getting your electrons from “the grid.” That is, from the power plants and transmission lines already in existence. The kind that went out all over the Northeast in 2003 when a tree knocked down a wire. [Fragile Grid]
Yes, THAT grid. The one that is in such disrepair that it’s a series of total disasters away from a very effective population reduction scheme. (Just knock out power in any northern skyscraper city in mid summer or mid winter for a week – and voila – you’ve significantly reduced the population. Now call the buzzards and rodents and bacterial plagues.)
Yes, our grid is a disaster – and we’re now going to use it to charge our homes? To run off of a battery?
One: Coal. At 39%, we use burnable carbon rock. Yes, black, heavy, polluting coal provides the largest volume of United States (and probably world) electricity. You can’t replace that in a week or even two decades with windmills. And you don’t have to. If we conserved – we’d have a century or two (or more) of electricity from coal, and could build a steady supply of windmills to boost it. But we don’t conserve, and we don’t plan. (Here’s to Elon Musk for at least THINKING ahead to a better degree – if not an especially realistic degree.)
Second runner up: At 27%, we keep the lights on by burning natural gas. Natural gas is set to peak and run out in this half and perhaps to probably within this quarter century.
And we’ll get less warning. Gas peaks and disappears faster than oil, because it gives LITTLE warning at the well and mine that it’s about to fizzle out. Oil seeps – it’s a slow-moving liquid. Gas penetrates and flows out in an instant. It’s a gas and doesn’t creep into pores in rock – it evaporates upward and is either caught or lost. In fact, through most of oil drilling history, natural gas was simply BURNED – flamed at the well site or refinery.
Burned natural gas – used for cinematic excitement.
Third at 19 to 20% of our national electric power is? It’s radioactive, man!
Yes, nuclear. Safe! Clean! Green nuclear!
Or, not. A nuclear power plant is a city’s worth of concrete, electrical wiring and steel that you’ll throw down the hole, never to be used or recycled. The fuel is deadly and will be so for a quarter of a million years. The “new nuclear” that’s always promised is always just a “few years away.” It’s the world’s most expensive, dangerous way to boil water. Think Fukushima. Chernobyl. And the leaky spots all over the map where nuke plants sit on water.
And whoever is next – because soon we’ll have “floating” nuke plants to power the processing of heavy oil, shale and tar drilling and mining! Yes, we’ll use NUCLEAR to power OIL DRILLING. [Floating nukes]
I know! It’s a great idea. What could possibly go…wrong….(oh, bother.)
But the “market” will demand that “we” get “into nuclear” on an increasing basis as a “gap filler.” So, it shall. Say goodbye to more and more life on earth. Enjoy it while you can. And just so you know, this thing we call “the market” is mentally ill, narcissistic, psychotic and anti-social. It does terrible things in the name of its own glory. There’s nothing it can’t justify with a pen stroke.
Fourth: at 6% – Hydropower – that is, dams. But the big rivers are already dammed – and much of them damned for it, for the environmental and social problems they’ve created.
Then holding at a 4% and .4% respectively, Wind and Solar. Why so little? Because:
We haven’t invested, because they are not oil, coal or gas. IE, they are intermittent, expensive to build, expensive to upkeep, and non-transportable. You can’t take a “gallon of wind” and make your truck fleet run. You’ve got to build incredibly expensive batteries from toxic sources…(and I understand that Elon’s vision is to make them more affordable through mass production – but wait for the Lithium price hikes to shine some reality in its face).
As it goes, wind is a far better energy producer than solar – but the metals that make the giant magnets in the rotors that make electricity also come from rare earth metals. Yes, those same rare metals imported from poisoned mines in countries which do not love us. The largest such mine in inner China should make all worshipers of “An Inconvenient Truth” cry and beg for a return to coal, so grisly is the offense against nature and life from these rare earth “tailings” lakes.
Solar is so dogged by problems at this point, that it’s looking like a nice way to invest a few ten thousand dollars that you hope will one day be paid off by a reduced electric bill. Spain – Europe’s sunniest country – made a headlong dive into solar, and is now is suffering a cost and return issue that it didn’t anticipate. [Spain’s Solar Issues]
The technology is touchy and expensive -and it doesn’t fit well with the long-haul system of coal and gas burning to make steam to spin a wheel – yes – that’s how we make electricity. Burn something, boil water, make steam, create pressure, turn a turbine – hit a donkey in the rear – it pulls a wire through a magnet – and voila! Electricity. More or less (minus the donkey – but you get the idea. This is a physical process, not Harry Potter magic).
They’ll keep jiggering the technology – using concentrated solar reflectors to heat water to make electricity. This model – a solar water boiler – is a much better idea than photovoltaic cells – more straightforward, and much less to go wrong. Plus it fits with the current grid better.
But it’s still off and on. And we’re still be talking about the country’s Sun Belt versus the American Northeast. But with water decline as it is across the Southwest, building big solar installations may be a genuine waste of time – if we take a forty or fifty year view.
So, what’s clean and clear about batteries? The hooting crowd at Elon’s talk seem to imagine that we’ll be able to continue to live an iPhone existence when we’re scrambling to keep the lights on. They’ve got a hard reality facing them – as do we all. Because we can’t all run on batteries now.
Batteries are a good idea – but they will remain a boutique market – just like electric cars. They will be used – perhaps town halls, Whole Foods, Apple Stores and other upmarket buyers will showcase their nifty battery packs. And some of the wealthier, loopier or more independent home-owners will try it. But in the end, we’re still draining the same coal, oil and gas system to make it work.
One more time: In the end, we’re still draining the same coal, oil and gas system to make it work.
And while I know batteries and solar will be a target for new investment, it’ll also be a place for people to fight wars – for the rare metals: either in trade wars, sanctions, embargoes, or other dirty dealings…or plain wars of acquisition of areas rich in the rare metals.
You can see that we’re hardly “saved” by a battery-powered world. So, why bother?
The Hidden Message
The presence of this “new” technology (it’s not new, it’s just a new deployment of batteries) is a stand in for something else: It’s just another way of saying: THE CHEAP OIL that built the 20th Century (drum roll)….
One more time.
We. Are. Running. Out. Of. Cheap. Flowing. Oil.
What we’re going to be left with in this very quarter century are the dregs; sulfuric, toxic sludge that we’ll eek out of Canada and Venezuela. The incipient (within 10 years, if we’re lucky) loss of MOST natural gas – which is, again, the MAJORITY of electricity in much of our world – should be foremost on our minds.
“The reality is, there is only one true gas formation in the U.S. that is increasing production, and that’s the Marcellus. Every other single shale gas play is now in decline.” [Oilprice.com]
What are we going to REPLACE electrical PRODUCTION with?
Batteries are storage – make no mistake – THEY ARE NOT AN ENERGY SOURCE. People have a hard time grasping this essential reality. They are a storage device.
It will be argued that they can fit, hand in glove, with a “new solar economy.” But solar is not coal. It is HARD to attach expensive, touchy, sensitive glass and metal panels by long, long wires to an existing grid that’s used to carrying electricity from generators that spin from steam produced by burning coal or gas. [Solar Woes]
Because we can ship and deliver coal and oil – by truck, train or pipeline – and burn it on an even schedule. Solar is a sometimes; it’s on and off again, as is wind. Coal is an always. Gas is good in some locations, but is hard – very hard – to ship. Coal rolls by train. Sunlight comes and goes daily.
What we have to be prepared for is a world that goes DARK at night and CONSERVES energy all day long. The market will want you to believe that we can avoid the cycles of nature – if we just INNOVATE enough. But reality begs the question…follow the chain of custody. Where do we get the batteries. The energy for them. The delivery of energy along a grid. The production of solar for a hundred MILLION homes? Somehow operating smoothly?
Better to think this way:
We should be investing in LOCAL electrical systems that have some INDEPENDENCE from the national GRID but connection to a NEIGHBORHOOD.
Not an individual HOME – but a connected group of dwellings with a large, central heated, cooking and eating area.
And after a few (or a dozen) big emergencies – I suspect that pockets of people will.
In the meantime:
Diesel Generators can run on ALCOHOL that you can make AT HOME, in barns, in backyards or in the town hall. You can do it in collectives. You can brew it from corn, grasses – or better yet from HEMP.
Hemp is a better solution to local energy production than “batteries in every home.”
Shared group or neighborhood shared kitchens, food forests and gardens are a better solution to how we use the energy we have than trying to continue the notion that we’re all going to have the Leave it to Beaver house – powered by a battery storing a little bit of solar.
The Future Is Not Clean, Green And Independent. It Is Muddy, Dirty And Communal
We are going to be grungier. We’re going to be dirtier. We’re going to be growing food and producing materials locally to make our communities stay alive — if we’re going to have communities at all.
We can even use biomass, trash, and other cellulose products into alcohol, which work in many robust diesel engines to generate movement, which can generate electricity (if hooked up to a generator), or run a bus, small truck, car or tractor. But we’re not going to be doing it as a hobby after our 9 to 5 job and commute.
We’re going to be doing it as a function of staying alive in a community.
My bet is this:
The future is local food production.
The future is local alcohol production.
The future is diesel engines that will go for 300,000 to a million miles before giving out. (How many months – or couple of years will you get from a battery? A solar panel? A windmill?)
The future is LOCAL. I know it’s not what people WANT to hear. But the world of everyone riding the sky on jet planes for concerts and getaways is about to be over in this quarter century. As oil prices rise, you will see the return of the “jet set,” the privileged class who can pay anything for a jaunt – while the rest of us ride together, and lobby hard for our trains to be kept up and made more reliable.
It’s going to take everyone a long season – maybe a decade – to finally understand this concept.
But the idea of “business as usual” (but powered by batteries) in the image of the richest days of cheap, flowing oil – are OVER in this country. This part of the dream is coming to a close. No matter how much people want to hope, pray, clamor or proclaim that something that can, in a sweep of magic – SAVE US ALL.
“Batteries will save us! Solar will save us! It’ll be a difficult transition, but we’ll be living in a clean, high-tech world!!”
I’m not betting on it.
But, ask yourself – what are we being saved from?
From having to relocalize and GROW OUR OWN FOOD?
Do we really need to be SAVED from such a thing?
For you to consider:
A good diesel generator and the ability to produce fuel locally from plant materials – HEMP, HEMP, HEMP, LEGALIZE, LEGALIZE, LEGALIZE – would do as well or better for ALMOST EVERYONE on EARTH – than a battery that can hold a little expensively produced electricity from a distant solar, wind or NUKE plant.
“Hemp biodiesel is the name for a variety of ester based oxygenated fuels made from hemp oil. The concept of using vegetable oil as an engine fuel dates back to 1895 when Dr. Rudolf Diesel developed the first diesel engine to run on vegetable oil. Diesel demonstrated his engine at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1900 using peanut oil as fuel. Hemp biodiesel come from the pressing of the hemp seeds to extract the oil. Hemp biodiesel can be made from domestically produced, renewable oilseed crops such as hemp. With over 30 million successful U.S. road miles hemp biodiesel could be the answer to our cry for renewable fuel sources. Learning more about renewable fuels does not mean we should not cut back on consumption but does help address the environmental affects of our choices. There is more to hemp as a renewable fuel source than you know.”[Hemp Fuel – it’s limited, but it’s reliable, and it is truly renewable – no heavy metals required.]
The future is DIRTY, as in “Hands in the dirt.” The future is LOCAL.
Once you understand the basic economics of energy – follow the production line – this kind of “magical vision” announcement gets easier to analyze.
PS. Elon Musk says we can be free of … whatever he thinks we’ll be free of … in the United States, if we can install 160 Million of his new battery. Let the Lithium, copper and cobalt wars begin.
PPS. Elon’s factory isn’t scheduled to be in operation till 2017, and not in full production till 2020. Five years….that’s a lot of time in a volatile oil and metals market….
I’m writing the book now… GO GROW A GARDEN!! Happy May.
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
Yesterday in a cafe, while doing taxes, I talked to a man who claimed to be a scientist (he was actually a cardiologist). I said I was writing a book about oil decline, and the need to relocalize food growing and almost all elements of culture.
He waved his hand and said, “You’re stuck in the old paradigm! Solar power is going to replace oil; it’s going to be the greatest paradigm shift the world has ever seen.”
I asked what the technology was. He said it wasn’t here yet. It would get here through “science.” I asked what that meant – because we use oil for movement of vehicles, planes, for fabrication of plastics, pesticides and chemicals, and even fertilizers.
I said there were no working models today of such a device from “solar,” and besides, solar panels requires oil and coal to work and be fabricated. I said, “Solar provides less than .05% of national energy use. That means 99.9% of what we do is not powered by solar.”
He waved his hand at me again. “Two Nobel Prizes,” he said. “That’s how fast it’ll shift.”
I pointed to the busy road outside, fifty cars went by every two minutes. “There are a billion of those in the world…Internal combustion engines. Cars and trucks. They make everything we do work.”
“I know all your arguments,” he said. “You’re stuck in the old paradigm!”
“But what’s the mechanism? I mean, how do we get from here to the future – you have to have a bridge, or you’re not talking about reality.”
“That’s your reality – that’s your worldview,” he shot back.
“Well,” I said. “I think that’s a religion.” He didn’t say anything, and I continued. “Religion is a belief that you can’t demonstrate to be true.”
“Say that again?” He looked puzzled.
I repeated myself. “Religion is a belief in something you can’t demonstrate to be true.”
“Well, maybe, maybe it is,” he nodded to himself. “But I HAVE to believe it.”
I widened my eyes a little. He collected his used lunch container, tossed it in the trash can, and left.
I had asked him for papers, names, leads, companies, anything – and what I got was “science will save us.”
Religion is a story that most people accept, in order to reject most of it, and hold onto a few kernels.
Science is a religion, too, because most large scientific beliefs require great faith, and provide great foolishness.
Reality is a story that most people reject in order to hold onto their internal religion.
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
Human beings came about in foraging groups. We did not have to think more than a half-day ahead most of the time. Maybe a day. We wandered with the moments, the seasons, driven by our stomachs and skin temperature.
This is what we are at root and at base. This is why we can’t say no to things that taste good (that are bad for us), or to things that feel good (that have disastrous consequences). It’s why we can’t put down the beeping, flashing cell phone. Because we’re creatures of “now,” of immediacy. Now, give us something with a 250,000 year “danger zone,” like nuclear power – and we’ve killed ourselves.
It is not in our species to understand consequences that last more than a few minutes. We are a fifteen-minute monkey.
That’s what drives our culture – Wall Street – a fifteen minute window of chemical excitement resulting in the world being destroyed, trade by trade.
We’re a truly doomed species when we have tools that overwhelm our limited capacity to understand their use.
Plant food trees now. Plant food. Grow food.
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
The future of energy is not in your hands – but it should be! On today’s show (3/27/16), I’ll tell you why planting food trees in your town is a better bet than waiting for big government plans for “next generation energy.”
I’m digging into the oil patch and reporting on the worldwide declines in the energy markets in preparation for my new book and speaking/garden-activist tour. The book’s working title is “This is All Temporary,” a reminder to snap out of iPod-land and to value food growing and local resilience as more important than George Clooney’s fake marriage troubles and Paparazzi-friendly wedding pictures.
But wait – did I say “oil declines?” Aren’t gas prices lower than ever? Why, yes they are! So, why worry? (Because these prices are more short-term than the attention span of a school kid on Cocoa Puffs.)
Due to the instant-gratification market mentality of Wall Street, we’ve been flooded by expensive fracking oil — sold on the cheap. The stuff which cost a hundred dollars per barrel to pull out of the ground is being sold at significant losses to compete with oil supplies coming from cheaper, traditional, non-fracked wells from other countries. Yes, we’re losing in order to “be number one.” Go figure…
The major revenue loss has caused fracking to come to an abrupt slowdown in the U.S., dropping 75,000+ jobs over two months, and pulling up over 600 drills [LINK]. Not that I mourn a slowdown in fracking – but the reality is, fracking was the only thing keeping U.S. oil production out of the dog house.
Will they get back to fracking? Only if the price of buying oil matches the cost of pulling it out of the ground…
Consumers balked at $100+ per barrel oil, ie, four to five dollar per gallon gas at the pump a few years ago, and the “economy” – that fictional concept that all things must incessantly grow (like a cancer) to be successful – ratcheted down. Which, for some reason, is “bad.”
Yes, it’s “bad” to actually inhabit the space you live in rather than “living” vicariously through cable TV! It’s “bad” to stop spending hundreds per week on shipped-in Monsanto-land “phood,” and to instead grow food locally! And it’s awful to give up your single-passenger car and instead share rides! And community interests! Bad, I tell you, bad!
So, what’s the solution? Will we conserve? Thereby extending our oil allotment for a century, rather than decades? No! Why would we ever bother thinking prudently about something like energy!?
So, what’s next? How about…”renewables?” We’ve only been ignoring those for a century! Now let’s start to pay attention! And who’s in the lead? Will it be solar? Wind? Recycling?
With a few states decreasing coal burning (a little) and others increasing both solar and wind, greenies can give a slight cheer – but the small volumes of electricity they’re generating won’t save the oil and growth-dependent economy of the United States from a severe oil downslope. LINK
Meanwhile, China sees the writing on the oil wall and is doubling down on wind, solar and…NUKES! Yes, nuclear power – which the mainstream greenies see as “GREEN!” for “emitting less CO2.” But is nuclear power “Green?” Is it even “CO2 friendly?” Not hardly! We’ll explore why on the show – but have a look at the standard industry selling point for why to build a nuke plant:
“Construction of a new nuclear power plant will provide a substantial boost to suppliers of commodities like concrete and steel and manufacturers of hundreds of components. For example, a single new nuclear power plant requires approximately:
• 400,000 cubic yards of concrete—as much concrete as was used to build the Pentagon
• 66,000 tons of steel—the same amount used to build the Empire State Building
• 44 miles of piping
• 300 miles of electric wiring—enough to stretch from Boston to Philadelphia
• 130,000 electrical components.” NEI.org LINK
Each plant a Pentagon, Empire State Building, 44 miles of pipes, 300 of wires and 130,000 bits of electronics. If you’re worried about CO2, you can be assured that heating limestone for concrete, mining iron and nickel and bending a sky-scraper’s worth of steel, plus the hundreds of miles of electrical wire and machined parts – all require a hell of a lot of “CO2-emitting fossil fuels” to be burned, baby burned. (Well, maybe we can rely on hydroelectric dams! What’s the worst that could happen?)
But maybe “new nuclear” will come to the rescue? Not hardly, if years of hold-ups and set-backs are to be accounted for.
Speaking of CO2, China is exporting its steel-making to other countries, like South Africa and Thailand, to “comply” with “CO2 caps.” So what difference does it make? Hey Al! I thought Carbon was “sewage” and “poison?” How did the Gore-texed Daily Show army convince the world that this “deadly poison” could be “traded” to make the problem go away?
In the U.S., the future of nuclear is dour – because it’s so damned expensive compared with EVERYTHING else. Here, some old nuke plants are having their lifespans extended with “replacement parts,” (because radiation even kills steel), while others are being shut down early (for the same reason). But China is building nuclear reactors all over their massive country – 30 new ones by 2020. (But, we’ll see.) In the meantime, they’re also exporting them: They’ve already built two (and counting) reactors in Chashma, and have six more slated for Karachi, a city of 20 million in an earthquake zone in Pakistan. From Oilprice.com:
“Still, for a city that is no stranger to cyclones or earthquakes, a natural disaster could spark a nuclear catastrophe. Any sort of emergency situation would be a nightmare because of the power plant’s proximity to the megalopolis of Karachi. With only a few dozen fire trucks on hand, a handful of public hospitals, the capacity of the city to respond to such a situation is uncertain. “You couldn’t even dream of evacuating Karachi,” Pakistani nuclear physicist Pervez Hoodbhoy told the Post. “The minute an alarm was sounded, everything would be choked up. There would be murder and mayhem because people would be trying to flee.” LINK *
What’s a concerned citizen to do? Here’s my strategy: Start planting food, fruit and nut trees, shrubs and bushes – as household and neighborhood projects. Don’t wait for the government to apologize for getting it all wrong. And don’t leave a neighbor behind…
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
[Correction – on the RSB show, I was in error on the number of firetrucks in Karachi – I said there were “a dozen firetrucks,” misreading the line “a few dozen” in Karachi. See the excellent article (and many more) by Nick Cunningham of Oilprice.com – my new favorite web news source: LINK]
California’s drought has kept me up for days reading about water use. I’ve learned what I already knew – and it’s the reason I stopped eating big animals 24 years ago. A number rising to half of all California’s water goes to cows. And it’s more than that, because you’re not just counting the roughly 2,000 gallons per pound of flesh you need to push through a cow to produce a pound of edible beef – you’re including in the alfalfa grown to “grass-raise” the “happy cows” sold to Whole Foods shoppers, not just the unhappy factory-farmed holocaust cattle ground up for fast food chains.
You can find it in big articles in big publications: we’re spilling California’s stolen water into cattle – not people. Humans use about 4% of it. None of this is news. I knew it when I was 19. How? Was I prescient? No, I was reading John Robbins “Diet for a New America,” and Jeremy Rifkin’s “Beyond Beef,” which listed the same cattle and pig rancher’s data – that is, big herbivores drink a ton and poop a ton. Straightforward stuff – it’s not tortured data. It’s alimentary canal biology.
But the topic led me to one of my least favorite discussions: global warming. Or, global temperature change. Or, anthropogenic global … whatever it is this week.
So, I’ve been up for two days reading about global temperature – and weather. Note – they’re different things, aren’t they?
“Nobody knows nothing.” is about all I can say.
• Antarctic ice? The Al Gore machine said it would all be gone! Is it? No, it’s increasing at present.
• Arctic ice? There is less. But wasn’t it all supposed to be gone? And weren’t there supposed to be 50 million climate refugees by…5 years ago?
• Is it warming? Uhm. Yes? Sort of? Sometimes? Unless it’s really cold and a more terrible winter than…ever. But maybe that’s because we’re in a warming trend coming out of the “Little Ice Age?” Who knows!
• Is the ocean absorbing CO2? Yes? Sometimes? More than was believed? Send cash, we need more research?
• Do 97% of scientists agree? No. Not really. Maybe. On some things. But, really, not most.
• And hasn’t there always been climate hysteria? Well. Yeah, apparently there has. Quotes.
Also revealed: The Sun plays a more important role than “initially thought!” What? The SUN? Gasp! Say it isn’t so!
Yeah, the Sun. Driver of all things, giver of all things, God of all Gods. The bringer of life in our little corner of the cosmic playpen.
And this is why I never bothered with the fake debate. Because NASA scientists live in the 17th Century when it comes to understanding outer space. Theirs is a Newtonian world – a gravity-only universe. But the universe is electromagnetic – and if you discount the most powerful forces in the universe when modeling any motion – you’re always going to be wrong. (I cover electric universe and the Big Bang fiction in Ch.9 of my book, “Official Stories.”)
Also of note: recent massive CO2 increases do not reflect in weather or temperature. Why not?
Because weather is driven by the Sun. Unless – and boy, it’s a greasy pole – it’s not. Because solar activity – at least by some models, readings, estimations – (jeez – is anything here REAL?) – the Sun nicely correlates global temperature change – forever and ever, but there is a divergence over the last 25 years. (According to some, but not other graphs, models, articles, publications, websites and vicious online debates. Ugh.)
So, maybe it’s CO2!! And we’re back to the beginning.
CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Just like water. Yes, water! Of which there is an endless, salty, increasingly radioactive supply. But it’s hard to – impossible – to know to what degree CO2 affects temperature.
Now, about weather – you know, hurricanes, tornadoes, raining days and Mondays… these generally aren’t agreed by sober climate readers to be caused by “global warming.” That’s more of a newscast attention grabber. But – again – the recent blizzards in Boston are “caused by global warming!”
Because… the ocean might be a bit warmer. By some readings and models. (But not by others. Ugh. I’m tired and I want to go home!)
What’s clear is this: the politics overwhelm the discussion immediately. The Left Wing has never met a worldwide sex-virus-weather disaster that it didn’t IMMEDIATELY fall in love with. Yes, “Global Warming spreads HIV.” Look it up. It was a headline during Hurricane Katrina. (This is why so many do not give a damn what liberal media reports).
And the Right Wing? Oy vey. So in love with capitalism that nothing else really matters. If they’re on the right side of the debate sometimes, it’s an accident of greed.
Okay. Does CO2 “cause” global…something? Well.
I mean. Uhm. “Maybe a little?” is the recent compromise position – from both sides.
And the plans to “reduce” CO2? They all favor some meaningless, marginal reduction – that wouldn’t dent what they assert is the ’cause’ of all – warm..cool…dry…snowing…
Right. And that’s another issue. Everything – every possible shift of a nose-hair on planet Earth is blamed on…. CO2. But it doesn’t line up most of the time. When it does, I guess it impresses – but turn the page, and the data (whoever, whatever, however it’s collected – and tomorrow it’ll be contradicted) finds the opposite.
Then, the adjusters come in: when it doesn’t seem to work, other “interfering” issues are called into play. So, now, there are “interferences!” And it’s “complex!” And even a little “muddy.” (But why, if CO2 is the primary mover of all things, high and low?)
It’s like vaccines: they’re “life-saving,” (except that they kill a lot of people and harm many more – and also, you can get the disease – or worse – that we’re vaccinating against….but it’s Science! Don’t be a denier of science!”)
Or, it’s like HIV and AIDS. “HIV causes AIDS” (but HIV tests don’t work, AIDS drugs kill people – and send cash, we can’t figure out how it all works. But it’s serious! Trust us! We’re in charge of life and death!)
I’ve been down this road before, and I know something about modern science.
HIV, vaccination, HPV, Global Warming, et al: these are modern religions; panic and death cults.
And if the “science” of CO2 were any good, serious or sincere, the military would be called out to take everyone’s car keys, and we’d all be forced to grow food locally, till we liked it.
And we’d get used to it. And weather would go back to being – crazy – which is what it’s always been…
I mean…hasn’t the weather always been pretty freaking crazy? Isn’t that the first thing people talk about when they meet? “How’s the weather?” “Pretty crazy!”
My hunch is and always has been that “global warming” is a proxy stand-in for another, more real, serious and important discussion – that of global resource depletion: from oil, coal and natural gas, to phosphate, rare earth metals and even drinking water…
I mean, check out this headline from the Financial Times:
“Discoveries of new oil and gas reserves dropped to their lowest level in at least two decades last year, pointing to tighter world supplies as energy demand increases in the future.”
Uh. Yeah. And we’re talking about CO2 – like we’re going to have a choice.
Don’t worry about CO2. Fight to end factory farming in your state. That’s the best use of your energy. Water for people, not cows.
One more time:
Water for people. Not cows.
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
Energy, water and food are all on the decline. With the imminent surrender of California to “reality” (aka, it’s a desert, everybody, and it always was!), food in the U.S. is about to become very expensive – give it months to a year. As an exodus from California pushes populations up in other cities and towns, “jobs” (aka, meaningless work that you do for meaningless currency) will be scarcer than they already are.
In the next presidential administration, the government (Federal and States) will institute “Green corps” programs that are really farming and labor camps, to “transition the economy” from one of infinite Chinese slave labor to that of local American serfdom.
As this is happening, the International banking syndicates (like the Bank for International Settlements) will negotiate the dollar out of the de facto position as the thing people use to buy oil – aka – the petrol dollar. It will probably put gold and silver back on the map as the means to buy oil. When it does, the dollar will be worth, perhaps, the paper it’s printed on, and not much more.
I give that a year or three after the first big decline in American fracked gas and oil (2016/17). This depends on a number of variables, including how long we can maintain the 140 million barrels of oil per year to run the gun that we point at the world. (That’s our military, and that’s what it uses. Remember, all commercial and civilian sectors use 19 million barrels – per day.)
As this is happening, fake enemies will be manufactured by world governments to push back against the international banking strategy, and international wars with old enemies and new – and old friends – will be declared.
And the stupid, ignorant masses will rally for a fight for “freedom” and national identity. And millions – tens and probably hundreds – will die everywhere. Which works out fine for the elite, who know that there are too many of us on Earth, and know that they can’t convince anyone to just use birth control or engage in family planning (that would be, gasp, inhuman!) Because we’re all so so special and unique and individual! Yay! So, now we get to be cannibals.
These brutal wars will suck dry much of the remaining oil, and the United States and its fading allies will only be able to lose – as world oil declines in production (which has been happening since 2005, despite the small, temporary bump from fracking).
The U.S. will be knocked back into – if we’re very lucky – the early 20th Century, as infrastructure dwindles and food has to be grown locally. But more likely, we’ll be facing the 1700 and 1800s again.
Many places will leap-frog backwards further, right into the Middle Ages, and lapse into banditry – like that of the ancient Khanate (Genghis and Kublai) and Attila (that saucy Hun), as stealing, raiding, plundering and violence are easier for some than gentle, generous, patient, tolerant, practical, communication-based town-building.
It’ll happen slowly, inexorably, but, it’s where we’re headed.
There are no solutions except: Grow your food, and make sure your neighbors are, too, and theirs, and theirs, and theirs.
You don’t have to like each other. You just have to protect each other. The first step is making food a local commodity. Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
It’s Liam with a message of… disaster! It’s Collapsifornication!
California has a year of water left, says NASA, at current usage rates. The rationing, price-hikes, price-gouging, ruination of livelihoods, businesses and economies begins now! Get there early for a front seat: it’s collapse, everyone. That’s the starting bell! Don’t miss a second of the carnage.
Yes, California, a desert forced to grow food for the entire country by plundering the wealth of its reservoirs and using them up in just decades; California and its shining jewel Los Angeles, dusty city in the desert valley, brought to life by stolen water from the Owens Valley decades ago – is now ready to begin its final act. It’s collapse, everyone! And it starts when an actual necessary ingredient for life – no! Not iPods – but water! declines inexorably.
The satellite imaging, combined with the withering reservoirs is telling everyone that the jig is up. At current rates of use, California has a year of water left.
But what are current rates for? Watering lawns? No, not really.
Take this report from the generally “Pro-GMO-Science” Alternet – even they can’t hide it:
“According to a 2012 report by the Pacific Institute, only 4% of California’s water is used by individuals. An astounding 93% of California’s water goes to agriculture; and most of that 93% is misused or wasted”
Drive down Interstate 5 in the middle of summer in 100-plus-degree weather and you will see huge sprinklers spraying water in the middle of the day and fields being flooded in the process, losing huge amounts of water to evaporation. Very few crops and very little acreage is watered with drip irrigation in California compared to other arid regions of the world.”
California agriculture also concentrates on growing the thirstiest foods derived from animals, mainly beef, dairy and eggs. One pound of animal protein requires 100 times more water than producing one pound of grain protein. Producing one pound of beef requires 2,500 gallons of water, compared to 100 gallons for a pound of wheat.”
Humans drink less than one gallon of water per day”
A cow drinks 23 gallons per day—and we have 5.5 million of them.” Read the rest.
Get it? That’s not too subtle for you, is it? Hey, that’s why I became a vegetarian 24 years ago: water and land use in California. Seriously. Me, yours truly. These were the arguments that convinced me to not eat giant, stupid, water-sucking, flatulent, river-polluting ungulates. I know, call me crazy! Call me un-American! But I gave up COWS. Because cows suck up most of California’s water.
Cows, pigs and the rest of the factory farm. All over So. Cal, up and down route 5 going in and out of LA.
How’s this possible?
ONE MORE TIME for those of you who just came in:
Cows guzzle around 2,000 gallons of water – and eat up to 20 pounds of grain and feed – per ONE POUND of edible beef flesh.
And so much of the FEED that goes to satisfy these unhappy heifers is the Monsanto-land garbage from the Ogallala-fed states. Or, it’s alfalfa grown in the California desert! So, it’s a double suck of water.
Let the Games Begin!
First thing – rationing. They’re doing it in Brazil! Another beef-crazy country. Sao Paolo is, like Los Angeles and San Diego, in a non-stop drought. And they’re cutting water services drastically. But will industry have to pay the piper?
You can bet that rationing will begin – and target the consumer first! Yes, private residences and individuals in small neighborhoods will be fined, fined, fined! Neighbors will turn on neighbors! Local businesses will die. The cost of running a shop will skyrocket due to water price gouging. But big cattle industry? Oh… not so fast!
Now comes the fight: the cattle industry doesn’t care about your water. They don’t care about tomorrow. Like oil companies and war machines, they just care about sales. And they’ll bend every worn-out Americana cliché to do it. You’ll see an offensive push back against people who suggest that factory farming should LEAVE California – same as they did to OPRAH WINFREY when she brought up the issue in the 1990s. They almost wrecked her – and she’s NEVER talked about it again.
And with energy running low, what will ditzy Californians do most?
Stop funding the cattle industry? Demand that factory farms close down?
No, no, no! Don’t be PRACTICAL!
Calicrazies and movie execs want their free water! What about the ocean? Surely we can DRINK THAT! After all, Israel does! Sure it’s toxic, expensive and requires abundant electricity! Sure it produces absolutely toxic waste! WHO CARES! It’s … futuristic-sounding!
But where will we get the energy?
What’s more Hollywood than hoping that NUCLEAR POWER can turn the ocean into a sweet, sweet beverage!
And if we’re not getting our energy from nuclear, then I guess it’ll have to come from all of that free Fracked Oil they’re pulling out of Inglewood!
But wait, not so fast!
Richard Heinberg, of the Post Carbon Institute, bought and examined data from thousands of drilled wells and did a hard, sane data analysis. He says frack oil peaks in 2016; he’s not being hyperbolic – he’s just damned concerned. That is – we’re not gonna have that, either. Read it.
So, what’s the message? What’s the “take-away?” The lesson and moral of the story?
I guess it’s this: Exodus. Collapse. And…
Soylent California, if they’re not extremely careful! And they won’t be. We never are, are we?
Liam Scheff is author of Official Stories, a reverse textbook to all the fibs you were taught in school; his current project and next book is “The Oil Alarm” all about the collapse we’re just beginning to soak up, coast to coast.
The drought in California is noticeable as soon as you step outside your apartment; the air is dusty, the air at a distance is a brown cloud, the earth is pure dryness; the soil yellow-brown, the leaves look like they’re holding their breath for a hard rain and turning slightly dingy in the process. Everything is on the verge of turning a last shade of pale green before yellow takes over the landscape.
But inside your apartment, you’d have no idea. The faucets run, there is no limit to how much water you can use; showers are easy and refreshing; baths, too. Washing dishes continues apace. Golf courses are in full swing. Swimming pools are full. And the major water users, the factory fields in the Central Valley, are pumping out fruit and vegetables to the world, while the factory farms on Route 5 pump out cow effluence and cow flesh to the country. Both take inordinate amounts of water. (Cattle are the worst, sucking up a thousand-plus gallons per edible pound of flesh, followed by pigs, chickens, and then crops at a distant fourth, at dozens of gallons per edible pound of food.)
That water isn’t coming from the sky; it’s being siphoned through massive diesel pumps, sucking the deep-earth reservoirs beneath the continent, beneath the valley; the valley that is sinking even further (in a move the geologists call “subsidence.”)
There are articles and propositions to deal with the endless pumping of groundwater, drying up underground super-lakes, diminishing the liquid hundreds of feet, so that the soil collapses and valley floors sink downward. The water being pulled out by massive diesel engines is not recent rainwater; it’s ancient liquid accumulated over many thousands of years – some of it is much older – and like its sister in the center of the country, the Ogallala aquifer – there is no possibility, not even an ‘end of the movie miracle,’ that can restock what took tens of thousands of years to create.
It’s the cows. But it’s also the pistachios and the almonds. Not a few – but tens of thousands of trees, monocropped, bees brought in on a fertilizing raid from all around the country. These trees are water hogs, and they are one of California’s true money crops. Try to take these fruits out of the basket of the California economy and you’ll see blood in the streets in protest.
Then there is the rest of the Central Valley, which, since the time of Steinbeck’s “East of Eden,” has grown from a source of local vegetables, to a State-wide resource, to the ‘green basket’ to the nation, providing broccoli, carrots and summer greens all year long, deep into the dead of winter in Georgia, Washington and Maine. In fact, I’ll challenge you to go to every supermarket in your town and find carrots that were NOT grown in California.
Why does the entire country have to eat carrots from California? (Don’t they grow anywhere else?) We do it because oil was cheap, dirt cheap – cheap as carrots! Cheaper, even. And oil powered the diesel engines that hauled and shipped products, goods and food, across the country on trains and flatbed trailer-trucks.
California was forced to grow food for everyone, by virtue of its diesel pumps sucking the last blood out of the soil, and because shipping was cheap, and because oil flowed from Texas (once upon a time), then Saudi Arabia (for 10 more minutes)… we all eat carrots from California.
Water Awareness? Too Little, Too Late
Now the water is running dry. Towns are disappearing; you can see the reports in the mainstream press. People are having to evacuate long-held properties (or pay a million dollars for massive pumps to inflict one last wound before abandoning), because the water has been sucked out of the earth to hundreds of feet beneath what was once there, and what took tens of thousands of years to put there.
This isn’t a problem with a colored-ribbon solution. The end of this story is the evacuation of the American West. You can kid yourself and tell yourself that this kind of thing couldn’t happen; that a once-desert would be returned to desert; that most of the 18 million inhabitants of the granite dust-bowl called “greater Los Angeles” would have to return home to Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Asia, Europe, South America and Africa and wherever they came from to seek fame and fortune.
Look up: “drought, california, central valley, aquifer, pumping” for a long list of anxious, hand-wringing articles about the issue. You’ll see the full-color spreads of dead fields being invigorated with some of the last stolen water this State (and this country) will get. What you won’t find are solutions. That’s because there are none; not really. Not like we want there to be – a techno-fix. A bit of clever tool-making to bring us out of another near-miss.
Nope. What we have this time is something we’re not used to in post-WW2 America. It’s something called a “limit.” It can’t be overturned by vote; no ‘awareness’ campaign will solve it; it’s not erasable by act of contrition or other good deed.
Dust Bowl 2.0
The end result here is a loss of a cheap supply of food to millions – to hundreds of millions of people. And when the Ogallala follows suit in the coming decade (and it is), then the center of the country, once a “dust bowl,” will return to being prairie, and not farm-land. And then, everything changes, everywhere, and forever.
One of the two great illusions of the 20th C. is that we solved the terror of the dust bowl era – drought, pestilence and erosion – by implementing better farming techniques. What didn’t. What we did was to stick ten thousand deep straws into the underground fresh-water ocean in the center of the country, which we’ve steadily drained over 60 years. We’ve used more than half of what’s been sitting for millions of years, all in half a century. We’re not getting it back, anymore than you can put Fukushima back in a cement capsule. Some things are forever.
And when we hit a dry, sucking sound in the Midwest, then the monstrosity I call “Monsanto-land” dies a hard, rapid death, and billions of people don’t have the food (or non-food) they relied on in this land of plenty. Food stops coming from the Midwest. It stops being shipped from California on its daily schedule. And we’re left staring at our local suburban development, office parks and malls. Which are, by the way, not edible.
Plant A Garden Now, Before Zombieland Arrives
I’m not exaggerating, though I am trying to rouse you from slumber. We’re going to have a food disaster in the next ten years – or sooner – based on long-term water usage patterns, and our total reliance on mono-cropped monster-crops.
My advice? Start planting your lawn now. Learn “Permaculture” techniques. Pick up a permaculture course in your area. Go to meetup.com and join, or start a group.
And get ready to tell your homeowner’s association to go “frack” itself. Because in order to not starve to death, we’re all going to have to start using our lawns for gardens, despite what the local scolds say about “resale value” and green Monsanto lawns.
In the end, that sounds like a good thing. But you’re going to have to fight for it, because people are deaf, dumb and blind to this concept of a natural “limit.” You’ll have to make it part of your job, as someone who is awake and aware, to do your best to teach them.
And then there is the issue of bottling water for profit – but that’s another story, and the truth is, it’s not a tenth of the problem, though the press will begin to grab at all the low-hanging fruit to ‘solve’ the problem.
Liam Scheff is the author of “Official Stories,” and is working on his new book about the tribe of humans, our sex lives and social networks, and the changes we’ll be faced with in a declining energy culture.
You are free!To fall in love and then bind yourself to a mortgage locked into a suburban half-floor for the rest of your life and never experience that surge of feelings again that made you fall in love before you had a chance to ask yourself if the feeling of falling in love was something that was worth building a business partnership or child-raising business upon or it was just a passing whim meant to light your soul into flame to create a higher dance of passion which drives you to new creative discoveries – but no matter because now it’s doused and locked into a suffocating glass cabinet where you can see the flickering ember slowly die which makes you resent your partner and hate yourself because all you really want sometimes is to be a little freer and to go out on the town again and dance and sing like you used to but grown-ups don’t do that because God said so or Jesus or Vishnu or Shiva or someone or the Government and we all have to follow the rules or what would happen?
You are free! To be equals in a relationship, both getting into cars which you have to pay for over a 10 year period until they fail and you have to do it again, so that you can fill them with oil by-products paid for by Middle Eastern dalliances with imperial occupation stacking the bodies higher and higher – but we need the gas so what are you gonna do – and drive to the cubicle where you stare into an eye-numbing series of figures that have to do with somebody selling somebody else something that you claim to care about and represent and everyday you pray the boss is sick and the building burns down and you can just go to an island and smoke ganja and make music with your many friends and sometimes husbands and or wives – but it doesn’t happen so you drive home and you sit in traffic breathing carbon monoxide and listening to Terri Gross lie to you about something that isn’t really happening in the world that you know you’re supposed to care about and you might have to pretend to care about at the next dinner party when you get together with all the other prisoners of the half-floor apartments that eat half of your budget while food that you can’t taste that’s filled with plastic and pest control products eats the other half – and you cram it into your mouth and go to bed and don’t have sex and don’t even touch for the memories it jostles in you of when touch lit you aflame.
You are free! To go to the doctor who will peer over his fat face through the all-knowing eyes of whatever medical journal article is getting funded this week and tell you that if you’d just take the injection you’ll be safe against the galloping snail trots that are sure to be going around soon because Terri Gross said it on NPR, but you’re depressed about something God knows what it is so why don’t you try this new pill? It’s a fantastic new pill it has very few side effects and you can moderate those with this fantastic even newer pill so why not try both? It’s all covered by ObamaCare which you pay the third half of your paycheck to.
“The correct term for “conspiracy theorist” should really be “conspiracy analyst.” Most of the people who are skeptical of official stories are, in fact, analyzing conspiracies in an attempt to understand what really happened and what took place behind closed doors.
This book will open the minds of those who still have the cognitive capability remaining to grasp it. (Sadly, the injection of mercury into babies in the form of vaccines has damaged so many brains across America that many people are now cognitively incapable of rational thought.)”
Hear, hear. Mike Adams is a hero – you might not know that. You might not understand why some of us do what we do. Or how bloody hard it is at times. And how often we’re miserably attacked by absolute phonies and cowards for trying to tell a little bit of complex reality.
You might not know how hard it is to fight, every day, to tell the buried, derided truth – call it “suppressed good evidence” – about medicine, science, food, health, governmental scams and malfeasance. It’s bloody exhausting. Nobody thanks you. You don’t make money. You just try to tell the truth of what you can dig up that industry hasn’t buried.
So, I’m deeply deeply grateful for Mike’s time and energy in looking at and understanding my book. A book I do love and am proud of, because it does what I wanted it to do: it helps you loosen the bolts of academic brain-freeze, of predigested Orwellian narrative, of patsy-by-proxy news items, of quasi-religious pseudo-scientific, pro-industry, anti-critical thinking, blame-the-victim-not-the-pesticide “explanations” for the messy petroleum-soaked world we live in. And it’s got more than a few laughs in it, because…isn’t that why we’re here on Earth? To laugh, and love and be kind.
And that list of things that are hard to do, Mike does that, every day. He runs big networks. None of us know how hard that is, how demanding. I couldn’t do it. You couldn’t do it. But he does it. And so does Ty Bollinger, and Robert Scott Bell, and Joni Abbott and others whose names you know and don’t know. These are good people. I’m very fortunate to know them and count them as friends.
What we don’t understand (because we don’t see the road leading from antiquity to the present) is that what we call “Scientists” are actually priests to the god of petroleum.
Everything we do, eat, touch, see, taste, have, wear, share and think we love is made of, covered by, sprayed with, machined by and delivered on the back of the GOD of energy we call Oil.
Twenty million barrels per day in the U.S. Ninety million in the world.
One barrel is worth about 7-8 years of you or me going to a day job and digging ditches.
The human species never had this kind of power, not in 200,000 years.
All of our chemistry, all of our medicine, all of our ‘science,’ our seeds, pesticides, fertilizers, skyscrapers, water systems, air-conditioners, refrigerators, freezers, trucks, supermarkets, amusements, diversions, entertainments, music and art – today – is made of oil.
There is no ‘science,’ there is only petroleum propaganda, and its priesthood.
This week, the Yakuza and debt-asylum otherwise known as TEPCO has begun, in full force, its destruction of the world, via an increasingly dangerous and heavy radiological spill and run-off in coastal Japan (which is attached to every other Pacific coast by virtue of the salty pond between America, Hawaii, China and Australia).
Yakuza, you say? Well, Who works at Fukushima?
“A former yakuza boss tells me that his group has “always” been involved in recruiting labourers for the nuclear industry. “It’s dirty, dangerous work,” he says, “and the only people who will do it are homeless, yakuza, or people so badly in debt that they see no other way to pay it off.” Suzuki found people who’d been threatened into working at Fukushima, but others who’d volunteered. Why? “Of course, if it was a matter of dying today or tomorrow they wouldn’t work there,” he explains.”
“It’s because it could take 10 years or more for someone to possibly die of radiation excess. It’s like Russian roulette. If you owe enough money to the yakuza, working at a nuclear plant is a safer bet. Wouldn’t you rather take a chance at dying 10 years later than being stabbed to death now?” (Suzuki’s own feeling was that the effects of low-level radiation are still unknown and that, as a drinker and smoker, he’s probably no more likely to get cancer than he was before.) ” LINK
So, get it? I think you do. Let’s move on.
Add to that fun-zam-o the Japanese history of murdering citizens with industry (and covering it up (just like Americans)):
“Minamata’s rolling hills and striking beauty contrast with its brutal history. Chisso Corp. discharged methylmercury into Minamata Bay from 1932 to 1968, poisoning the city’s food supply. People who ate local fish developed Minamata disease – a debilitating condition in which they lose sensation in their hands and feet, can no longer run or walk without stumbling or falling and have difficulty seeing, hearing, speaking and swallowing. Many of the afflicted died.”
“For years, Chisso refused to take meaningful action to limit mercury poisoning from its emissions. Later, with the aid of the Japanese government, it split into two parts to limit its financial liability to Minamata disease victims. Though thousands of people suffered crippling illnesses, no independent, systematic health study of the Minamata region was ever conducted, so the total number of sickened people remains unknown.” LINK
Get it? Yes, I think you do. So, let’s have some predictions…
Barring alien intervention (which a great many people seem to want to believe in presently):
1. Life in and around the Pacific (where currents bring Fuku radiation first and strongest) will either quickly or more slowly die. LINK
2. Secondarily affected areas in the Pacific will see increased cancer and illness of all kind. This is not avoidable.
3. Rainfall is evaporation from the sea – so the radiation will easily spread inward to all coastal regions in the Northern hemisphere adjacent to the Pacific, and beyond.
4. If the buildings collapse, if fuel is spilled, burnt, or fissions, the problem will compound by unknown factors and many areas will have to shelter indoors for weeks or months to avoid the strongest contamination.
But moving from the most affected areas would be very wise.
The Southern Hemisphere (S.America, Africa) are the safest continents. Ironically, as they have been so used as servant nations to the ‘western’ world.
So, which are the areas first affected?
West Coast Canada, U.S., Seattle, coastal Oregon, Northern California…
Then So. Cal.
What is the jet stream pattern annually? What can be charted, seen, expected, predicted?
The human species will be much smaller in 50 years. In 40 years. And even in 30 years. And in a worst-case scenario, in 5 or 10. In the meantime, it’s going to be a pox on both our houses.
Ya veremos. On verra. (We’ll see.)
Prescription: West Coast? Move inland. Everyone else? Grow hemp. Grow cannabis. It’ll help, and it certainly won’t hurt. LINK
The Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) has decided to go forward with its plan to destroy the northern hemisphere and everyone in it by removing the 1,530 fuel bundles from the damaged building #4 of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant. Each rod bundle consists of dozens of smaller ‘mixed-oxide’ fuel rods containing both uranium and plutonium, which can fission in the open air if they clang, clash, are dropped or have lost their protective coating. The good news (for Satan and his minions) is that they have lost much of their protective coating. They have also suffered a degradation of the boron wafers that absorb neutron emissions and keep them from spontaneously fissioning. (A hell of a way to boil water, ain’t it?)
If you’re wondering why or how this kind of insanity could take place on a peaceful, blue planet, let’s say it’s because the people in charge are sociopathic maniacs (ie, they believed nuclear power was safe to begin with). For more, please follow the burning red dot on the horizon, or keep up with Enenews.com for up-to-the-hour reports.
And don’t forget to check out “Official Stories,” because we’re going to need good books to read in the radiological holocaust.
Liam Scheff, “the conspiracy realist” and “investigative comedian,” is a journalist, author, artist, radio host and stand-up lecturer on the contemporary myths of science, politics and culture.
– Nutrasweet Magnate Donald Rumsfeld and a Former U.S.(CIA) Soldier
Syria: We Don’t Need No Stinking Badges by Liam Scheff
The following is an excerpt from Official Stories, detailing the reality of now. Invasions of seven countries in the Middle East in 10 years, as per Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld and the rest of the PNAC signatories. And Barack Obama:
In 2004, Wesley Clark, another generally honest General, with an only slightly amusing name, ran for president. He was a good soldier. He followed orders and did the dirty business of war. But, he believed in the principle that war is fought to preserve liberty – not to suppress it.
By 2007, after 7 years of the Bush Doctrine, he’d seen more than even his conservative streak could bear to suppress. And he spilled his guts in a speech to a press club in San Francisco. It went like this.
In 1991, Wesley was a one-star general. He’d just come back from the Iraq invasion. They didn’t “get” Saddam. They left that old CIA-trained-and-funded warlord in power. Was it a mistake? (It was a mistake for Americans to be in Iraq in the first place. Where do all empires go to die? The Middle East).
Clark was in the Pentagon and decided to look in on Paul Wolfowitz, who was undersecretary of Defense for Policy. Wolfowitz is a Zionist Jew – one who believes that…Oh, should we do this quickly? In the first chapter?
Oy vey. Fine. Alright. Zionism. It’s a fundamentalism; in other words, it’s a philosophy which reads as literal a group of ancient religious texts or principles. In this case, that Yahweh promised a certain bit of property to the children of Israel, so that’s how it’s going to be now. Fundamentalisms aren’t particular to Judaism; all religions have one or more. Fundamentalist Christians believe that a Jewish rabbi (“Yeshua” or “Jesus”) will come back to destroy all the wicked people and bring the good ones to eternal bliss, or a kind of cloudy place in the sky (sorry, it’s not my myth, I lean East.).
Fundamentalist Muslims believe that, well, if they kill someone in a holy war then they go to heaven which is filled with a lot of virgins. Girls, I assume. Which I don’t really understand, because if you want to have good sex, experience is what you’re after. Twenty-seven and above, you know? But really, thirty-two and older.
And so on. Every group has its fundamentalism. And some have many. Orthodox Jews, for being fundamentalists or Biblical literalists, aren’t all Zionists. But Zionism is an orthodoxy, a literalism. And it goes like this:
“We will have the real estate promised to the children of Israel. We are the chosen people. No one can oppose us. We are the children of God. And if you don’t like that, we’ll invade your country, use tactical assassinations, missile strikes and nuclear bombs.” (The nukes are, so far, only a threat, thank goodness, but the rest is real). So, where Zionism and politics meet, you’ve got a way of thinking that gives into a pretty vicious, self-righteous imperial stance; just like Manifest Destiny, or the edict of Julius Caesar. It’s not new, it’s typical.
Shaka Zulu practiced a similar “join or die” method of conquest. Just like Attila, Genghis or the British Raj. I’m not just picking on Zionism. I’m acknowledging it. It’s an active form of imperial thought. I think it hides behind the flag of Judaism. I think a lot of Jews aren’t quite up to the task of seeing it yet; that a spiritual practice is a very different thing than an imperial policy.
But, I digress. Back to Wolfowitz. He’s a Zionist. Ardent pro-Israel, in the sense of, like I said, God-given right and if you oppose us, you die. Not that Israel shouldn’t exist – only that it should probably let others exist too. But, that’s for other books to argue. Right. Focus. Paul Wolfowitz. Zionist.
So, Wesley says to Wolfowitz, “Sir, you must be pretty happy with the performance of the troops in Desert Storm?”
And Wolfowitz says, “Yeah, but not really. The truth is we should have gotten rid of Hussein, but didn’t. But we learned that we can use our military in the Middle East and the Soviets won’t stop us. We’ve got about 5 or 10 years to clean up those old Soviet client regimes – Syria, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Iran – before the next great superpower comes on to challenge us.”
Good soldier Wesley was confused: “The purpose of the military is to start wars and change governments?” He asked himself, “We’re gonna start conflicts? It’s not to deter conflict?”
Ten years later, just weeks after 9/11, now five-star General Wesley Clark is back in the Pentagon, this time talking to Donald Rumsfeld. Do you know Donald? He’s a chemical mogul, Secretary of Warfare (or, “Defense”) and bringer of Nutrasweet. His pals call him “Rummy.” He’s in his normal fugue state, making sense to no one but himself, wrinkling his forehead, squeezing his temples and pulling the strings of power, while distracting you with his bird-like hands. Wesley says to him, “Am I doing okay on CNN?”
And Rumsfeld says, damn it, we don’t need no stinking badges. He says, “Nobody’s gonna tell us where or when we can bomb, nobody. I’m thinking of calling this a floating coalition.”
Wesley goes to talk to an officer from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who says, “I want you to know, sir, we’re going to attack Iraq.” Wesley says, “Why?” Officer: “We don’t know.” Wesley: “Did they tie Saddam to 9/11?” Officer: “No, but they think they can attack states and they want to look strong.”
Six weeks later Wesley returns and asks the officer, “Are we still going to attack Iraq?” The officer says, “Sir, it’s worse than that. I just got this memo from the Secretary of Defense’s office. It says we’re going to attack and destroy the governments of seven countries in five years. We’re gonna start with Iraq and then we’re going to move to Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran.”
Now, look over your shoulder. 9/11 led to an invasion of…Saudi Arabia? Where 15 of the hijackers came from? No, too powerful. We can’t destabilize our number one totalitarian oil supplier.
No, “we” (not you and me, but the people who steal our tax money to give to teenagers to go kill people elsewhere) invaded Afghanistan. Former Russian Satellite. Iraq. Former Russian Satellite. Libya. Syria. What’s next? Iran. It’s Wolfowitz renewed. Wolfowitz in action – which makes sense, because Wolfowitz was part of the planning committee in the 1990s. Something called the “Project for a New American Century.” But we’ll get to that.
Proposition: We’re doomed, and we more or less deserve to be.
We’ve done ourselves in. Our food, our water, energy, culture – everything about us is reeking of imminent death – or, at least, of strenuous, aching decline. I’ve named the five harbingers of our forthcoming expulsion from Eden 2.0. See if you agree…
1. Pesticides. They came about when we mechanized, demon-spawn (or just slowly suicidal by-product) of the Oil and Gas industry. We’ve made fields of identical crops, stretching for miles that would be tinder, goop and rot if not for these chemical condoms, whose noxious fillings we’ve swallowed since birth and called “food.” We’ve killed ourselves, our immunity, our guts, and
2. The Bees. We’ve killed billions of them with chemicals, pest and fungus poisons, with cell-phone towers scrambling their magnetic heads (and ours). And we rape them – we manually impregnate the queens, rending them only semi-potent and short-lived. And we poison them – our crops are all
3. GMOs, which kill bees and kill us, and of course require lots of
4. Oil and Gas, to grow them. In fact, our entire way of living in the Western, civilized world requires oil and gas. Nothing we do is oil-free. Most people would be so lost without the luxuries afforded by gas and oil that to go without them for 24 hours would leave most Americans pleading for death, as they had to share, share work, share food, share skillsets, share housing, and share
5. Farming. Less than 2% of American citizens grows 100 percent of the food here. They do it by John Deere Diesel, Monsanto Glyphosate Round-up, Agent Orange version 2, and Gasoline as fertilizer. What animal can survive this onslaught? Do we dare kid ourselves that this is a permanent arrangement?
(No, it’s not a permanent arrangement.) Back to 1. We’re poisoned. Because of 4. Back to oil, back to the top.
Half of the human race, I wager, will be gone within 40 to 50 years. And I think the decline will continue after that.
If we haven’t scorched the surface and waterways with nuclear waste, the remaining couple billion may find a more sustainable way of being, of living, simply by lacking the one resource that drove our particular collection of madness to new heights: Oil.
When it runs so low that civilization must return to a previous century, we may find that we can survive ourselves, a little longer.
It won’t be pretty, and much of it might look like Dickensian London – so be careful where you settle in the new world.
Hot Damn! Did you know that there are funny people running round who think that radiation is safe and harmless? Yes, even the nuclear kind. No, really!
So, let’s look at data and questions that arise when examining the field of nuclear fission:
How many millisieverts per hour can a human being tolerate without cooking?
How many are being delivered at Fukushima?
How much cesium is being found in fish?
How has the number changed?
Where are the nuclear cores at Fukushima?
What is the protocol for digging out a red-hot nuclear core from the earth?
Is there a protocol?
What has the response of the nuclear industry traditionally been to accidents and incidents?
Why is enriched uranium and plutonium dangerous, from a technical perspective?
What is a decay particle?
What is Cesium, Strontium, Tritium, Barium?
What are Alpha, Beta, Gamma particles?
These are data-gathering questions, not cult of personality wishful responses (any Galen “let’s eat uranium” Winsor fun-fans in the crowd? (Let’s stick with the data, not to be a drag, but to understand what’s happening.)
How many millisieverts per hour can a human being tolerate? And how does anyone know this? Let’s look.
Here’s an answer, not from Galen the uranium-eater. Gee, it’s kind of technical and requires reading and thinking. Hang in there, Ann Coulter:
“Radiation today is mainly released in abrupt exposures, so researchers mostly know about the effects of absorbing a given quantity in a very short time frame. At about 0.5 sievert to 1 sievert, the effects of radiation sickness can be felt. A portion of the red blood cells are temporarily wiped out, and sperm in the testes are deprived of their ability to fertilize an egg until they are recreated. Mild headache and loss of focus temporarily occur.
In exposures ranging from about 1 to 2 sieverts, permanent effects begin. Most people experience mild nausea, sometimes accompanied by vomiting, which lasts for about a day. A feeling of general illness persists for a week or two.
For levels of radiation more intense than this, bad things happen. For every additional sievert past 1, the chance of death within 30 days increases by about 15%, adding to a base rate of around 10%. This means that about 25% of all people die within 30 days of exposure to 2 sieverts, around 40% of people die after exposure to 3 sieverts, and about 55% of people die after exposure to 4 sieverts. At 6 sieverts, the death rate is 90%, which increases quickly to 100%. The primary causes of death are internal bleeding or immune system failure that rapidly gives way to lethal infection. Hair is lost, people are rendered sterile, bone marrow is destroyed, and recovery can take years and may never be complete.” LINK
Summary: .5 to 1 sievert ‘wipes out’ some red blood cells and sperm. 1 to 2 sieverts vomiting, illness, some ‘permanent effects’ begin. More intense past 1: chance of death within 30 days increases by 10%. 40% of people exposed to 3 sieverts die, 55% exposed to 4, and so on.
So, what is a sievert compared to a millisievert? Let’s look!
Okay. Wow, this IS complicated. Here goes:
Frequently used SI multiples are the millisievert (1 mSv = 0.001 Sv) and microsievert (1 micro Sv = 0.000001 Sv). The conventional units for its time derivative is mSv/h. Regulatory limits and chronic doses are often given in units of mSv/a or Sv/a, where they are understood to represent an average over the entire year. In many occupational scenarios, the hourly dose rate might fluctuate to levels thousands of times higher for a brief period of time, without infringing on the annual limits. The conversion from hours to years varies because of leap years and exposure schedules, but approximate conversions are:
1 mSv/h = 8.766 Sv/a
114.1 micro Sv/h = 1 Sv/a
Conversion from hourly rates to annual rates is further complicated by seasonal fluctuations in natural radiation, decay of artificial sources, and intermittent proximity between humans and sources. The ICRP once adopted fixed conversion for occupational exposure, although these have not appeared in recent documents:
8 h = 1 day
40 h = 1 week
50 weeks = 1 year
Therefore, for occupation exposures of that time period,
How complicated. Complex. I doubt Ann Coulter is keeping up.
Let’s have a go.
A millisievert is a very small portion of a sievert – a thousandth (.001). One Thousandth. 1,000 millisieverts per 1 sievert, in that case. Which sounds great – because.. you don’t want to accumulate Sieverts.
On the other hand – these do accumulate per day and per year.
More confusion! A day for radiation people isn’t “A DAY.” It’s EIGHT hours. How bizarre.
So, 1 human day, for radiation people is actually “THREE Days!” Weird. Nice how they get around reality with that one…Okay, let’s do their math:
ONE millisievert per HOUR equals… TWO SIEVERTS per year. (Or…8.766, depending on which line you’re reading!)
Ah-ha, now we’re in danger level. Two sieverts. Hmm. Based on one tiny millisievert per hour. And what is leaking at Fukushima?
And take your calls. Call in: 646-568-1021 / Toll Free – 877-456-7631
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Leaking? Who’s leaking? Corium? What’s that? Pacific Ocean fishing? Lawsuits across the Pacific Rim? And more…
And – Fracking Frackholes! Texas towns running out of water. Homes go bust, owners can’t move, sell or burn for insurance money!
COLLAPSE? Or Contraction?
Will the United States implode?? Or will we Learn to STOP, DROP and ROLL – and realize the trouble we’re in? Will we learn to manage ourselves into an economic and cultural CONTRACTION that stabilizes our oil-fall?
Peak Oil? I thought it was a “myth!?”
No, not a myth – but a breaking reality. Yes, the reality of oil is that we’re not producing more oil year by year – we’re producing LESS, despite breaking the country with Frackholes. But we’re USING more and more.
What’s the inevitable equation? (Use more, have less. Produce less, use more… Let’s subtract…then divide… and…) Shoot! We’re losing!
Even ol’ Dick Cheney knew it in 2000, when he held a secret (FOIA-revealed) energy policy conference, high-lighting the map of Iraq and all its oil reserves. (Remember 2000? Before the permanent occupation of the Middle East??) Me, neither.
“Last July, after appealing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for NEPDG documents, Judicial Watch won a small victory with the release of seven pages of NEPDG documents.
• A detailed map of all Iraqi oil fields (11% of world supply);
• A two-page specific list of all nations with development contracts for Iraqi oil and gas projects and the companies involved,
• A detailed map of all Saudi Arabian oil fields (25% of world supply)
• A list of all major oil and gas development projects in Saudi Arabia,
• A detailed map of all the oil fields in the United Arab Emirates (8% of world supply),
• A list of all oil and gas development projects in the UAE.
In their austerity, the documents scream of what [the national energy meeting] NEPDG was debating. If 7.5 million barrels per day of new oil production was to be secured from any place there was only one place to get it – the Persian Gul.
All told, including Qatar (firmly under US control and the home of headquarters for US Central Command) and Iran, the Gulf is home to 60% of all the recoverable oil on the planet.
Not only would these oil fields have to be controlled, billions of dollars in new investment would be required to boost production to meet US needs, simultaneously denying that same production to the rest of the world where demand is also soaring.”
In the essay, I cite the early 2001 paper, “Strategic Energy Policy Initiatives for the 21st Century,” from the Rice University think tank under Bush Sr’s man, James Baker‘s policy Institute. The paper was republished in Foreign Affairs and formed the BASIS for the Iraq War, and the pre-text for staging the 9/11 events:
Ignore the bits about the protest (or read and remember it), then go to the quotes. Tell me, does it SEEM like they didn’t KNOW we were running out of CHEAP, good oil?
“For many decades now, the United States has been without an energy policy…
“…The world is currently precariously close to utilizing all of its available global oil production capacity, raising the chances of an oil-supply crisis with more substantial consequences than seen in three decades…
“…These limits mean that America can no longer assume that oil-producing states will provide more oil…”
“…The American people need to know about this situation and be told as well that there are no easy or quick solutions to today’s energy problems… ”
“…[The] government will need to increase its vigilance and be prepared to deal with sudden supply disruptions. The consequences of inaction could be grave…”
“…The situation is, by analogy, like traveling in a car with broken shock absorbers at very high speeds…”
“…There are no easy, overnight, and politically attractive solutions to the country’s or the world’s infrastructure and supply problems…”
“…There is no place at home or abroad where enough oil or gas can be developed fast enough to moderate prices in the next six to twelve months…”
“…There is no cost-free way to allow unrestricted energy use and simultaneously safeguard the environment…”
“…There are no overnight solutions to the energy supply and infrastructure bottlenecks facing the nation and the world…”
“…U.S. energy independence is not attainable…”
“…As it is, national solutions alone cannot work. Politicians still speak of U.S. energy independence, while the United States is importing more than half of its oil supplies.”
“Indeed, the US imports almost a million barrels of Iraqi oil a day…”
“Over the past year, Iraq has effectively become a swing producer, turning its taps on and off when it has felt such action was in its strategic interest to do so…”
“Bitter perceptions in the Arab world that the United States has not been evenhanded in brokering peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians have … given political leverage to Iraq’s Saddam Hussein to lobby for support among the Arab world’s populations…”
“The United States should conduct an immediate policy review toward Iraq including military, energy, economic and political/diplomatic assessments…”
“In some measure, concessions will have to be made that will impinge on certain local environment goals, states rights, Middle East policy, economic sanctions policy, Russia policy, and hemispheric and international trade policy…”
“So, we come to the report’s central dilemma: the American people continue to demand plentiful and cheap energy without sacrifice or inconvenience. But emerging technologies are not yet commercially viable to fill shortages and will not be for some time. Nor is surplus energy capacity available at this time to meet such demands.”
“Indeed, the situation is worse than the oil shocks of the past because in the present energy situation, the tight oil market condition is coupled with shortages of natural gas in the United States, heating fuels for the winter, and electricity supplies in certain localities.”
“Energy infrastructure can be rebuilt and expanded rapidly only if the government actively facilitates private-sector decision-making and investment…”
“It is equally important that the public understand the environmental and public-health consequences of unfettered energy consumption. The government should take a leadership role in fostering such understanding…”
SOURCE: “Strategic Energy Policy Challenges for the 21st Century” Report of an Independent Task Force Sponsored by the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy of Rice University and the Council on Foreign Relations, March 2001.
We live at the peak of the petroleum age, digging up every square mile of land for a little more oil. We’re ruining our water, soil, air and land – but we won’t stop. We’ve got a looming nuclear disaster staring at us across the Pacific, but we don’t want to talk about it. And just on the other side of the oil peak, we’re fearing a steep decline in the energy that’s built our society.
Our world has metamorphosed and metastasized because of the surfeit of nearly “free energy” given to us by oil in the 20th Century.
What will the future of energy look like? How can we figure our way out of this mess today? Can we? How do we build a society that isn’t based on the total destruction of our environment? We’ll search for answers together on “The Liam Scheff Show.” Listen| Follow on Facebook
At the Peak or Just Getting Started?
What is peak oil? What is oil, in any case? How much do we use? Can we do without it? What happens when it goes away?
What about alternative hydrocarbon sources? Or alternative energy? What about nuclear power? (Fukushima, anyone?) Can these replace oil? In the automotive sector? Construction? Heating? Manufacturing? Mining? Commerce? Food production?
These are questions that all of us really should be asking – but aren’t. We’ll ask them here.
Watch “A Crude Awakening” for a detailed, thoughtful look at the problem.
Watch “Peak Oil And Economic Contraction” for an excellent overview of oil and energy.
Watch “There’s No Tomorrow” for a colorful, bracing summation of all related data.
1. How Much Human Energy Is Contained in One Gallon of Gas?
From Dr. David Pimentel:
“That is, the 38,000 kcal in one gallon of gasoline can be transformed into 8.8 Kilowatt hour, which is about 3 weeks of human work equivalent.(Human work output in agriculture equals 0.1 HP, or 0.074 Kilowatt, times 120 hours.)”
He, of course, is accounting for the energy lost in the process of converting the gasoline into usable energy.
Calculated excluding the energy lost in the conversion process are as follows:
1 Gallon of Gas equals 125,000 BTUs
Source: US Department of Energy
3,400 BTUs equals 1 Kilowatt hour
Source: US Department of Energy, Bonneville Power Mgt.
1 Gallon of Gas equals 37 Kilowatt hour
(125,000 BTUs in a gallon of gas divided by 3,400 BTUs in 1 Kilowatt hour)
1 Gallon of Gas equals 500 hours of human work output
(37 Kilowatt hour in 1 gallon of gas divided by human work output in agriculture of .074 Kilowatt equals 500)
Of course, there is some wiggle room with this number. Construction work, for instance, might yield a slightly different number. The size and physical condition of the person performing the work would also make a difference.
2. How Much Human Energy Is Contained in One Barrel of Oil?
1 Barrel of Oil equals 5,800,000 BTUs
Source: Louisiana Oil and Gas Association
1 Gallon of Gas equals 125,000 BTUs
Source: US Department of Energy
1 Barrel of Oil thus contains the energy contained in 46.4 gallons of gas
(5,800,000 divided by 125,000 equals 46.4 )
1 Gallon of Gas equals 500 hours of human work output
Source: Calculations Done Above.
1 Barrel of Oil equals 23,200 Hours of Human Work Output
(Energy equivalent of 46.4 gallons of gas per barrel of oil x 500 hours of human work ouput per gallon of gas equals 23,2000 hours)
3. How Much Energy is Used to Construct a Car?
I. Calculations as Done By Matt Savinar:
The average car will consume during its construction 10 percent of the energy used during its lifetime.
Source: “Automobiles: Manufacture Versus Use,” published by the Institute for Lifecycle Environmental Assessment;
How many barrels of oil does it take to equal the energy consumed during 10 percent of a car’s lifetime? Let’s see:
In the US, the average car has a median lifetime of 17 years. (Source: Matt Creenson, Associated Press: “Is This the Beginning of the End?” )
On average, a car will consume 750 gallons of gas per year.
17 years x 750 gallons of gas per year equals 12,750 gallons of gas consumed during the median lifetime of an American car;
1 gallon of gas equals 125,000 BTUs;
12,750 gallons consumed x 125,000 BTUs per gallon equals 1,593,750,000 BTU’s consumed during the median lifetime of an American car.
1,593,750,000 x 10 percent equals 15,9375,000 BTUs consumed during the car’s construction;
159,375,000 BTUs consumed during construction divided by 5,800,000 BTU’s in one barrel of oil equals slightly more than 27 barrels of oil. Twenty seven barrels of oil (42 gallons of oil per barrel) contain 1,142 gallon of oil.
II. Calculations As Done by Michael C. Ruppert:
Michael C. Ruppert, editor of From the Wilderness and author of Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of The American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil, has estimated the construction of the average car consumes 42 barrels of oil. In a private email (reprinted with Mike’s permission), he provided the following calculations per observations:
“When discussing 100 mpg vehicles one must absolutely figure in the amount of energy required to make these “new” vehicles. I have good numbers showing that it requires 12 percent of all the hydrocarbon energy a vehicle will use in its lifetime just to make the vehicle in the first place (ore mining, raw material transport, paint, electricity, etc . . .”
“And this does not factor in the hydrocarbon energy required to make the non-existent factories that make the vehicles in the first place. National Geographic told us last June that there are 7 gallons of oil in every new tire. These net-energy costs are crucial to avoid making some painful mistakes and possibly dangerous assumptions.”
“Assuming 25 gallons per wk of consumption over about 15 years (average vehicle life expectancy) that is 19,500 gallons of gasoline for a vehicle lifetime. 12 percent of that is 2,340 gallons of gasoline equivalent to make the vehicle in the first place. These are fixed costs that won’t change as you make higher-mileage vehicles.”
“This country has almost 250 million vehicles on the road. So we’re looking at 585 billion gallons of gasoline equivalent to make these new ‘theoretical’ cars. Assuming a 1:1 conversion from oil to gasoline (It can’t be that efficient) that’s roughly 13.9 billion barrels (42 gallons per barrel) of oil just to make these cars.”
“Is there 13.9 billion barrels of crude lying around anywhere for this process to even begin? Not hardly. There’s no elasticity anywhere and this process would require taking oil supplies away from existing use to implement. Remember, you haven’t even built the factories yet. Where does that oil come from?”
It’s the theme song of today, boys and girls. It’s…
What’s happening out there? No nuclear emergency YET – but Pennsylvania wants YOU to know that it cares:
“The Department of Health will provide free potassium iodide tablets Thursday, Aug. 8, to Pennsylvanians who live, work or attend school within a 10-mile radius of one of the state’s five nuclear power plants.
Potassium iodide, or KI, can help protect the thyroid gland against harmful radioactive iodine when taken as directed during radiological emergencies. Individuals should only take KI when told to do so by state health officials or the governor.” LINK
Hey, PA – good luck with that iodine – and those four nuclear power plants. Vermont, you’ll want to get your pills ready, too, because Vermont Yankee’s looking dicey!
“So far, only malfunctions on June 14 and July 11 have been reported to the public by the NRC. Entergy reported only two malfunctions in its formal report to the NRC on Friday.” LINK
Hey, Let’s Travel!
“Japan TV reveals cover-up of radioactive ‘black rain’ data — “This is really surprising” — “I feel nothing but resentment” LINKVIDEO
“Tokyo Electric Power Co. has reported finding radioactive cesium levels in underground water at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant that is eight times greater than what it recorded right after the accident.” LINK
They don’t have to – nobody’s paying attention.
But, we can wrap it in a bow and make it pretty:
“There are three ways to decommission nuclear reactors, said Ishikawa. One is immediate dismantling. Another, used at the wrecked Chernobyl plant in Ukraine, entombed the whole building in concrete. The third is cocooning used at Hanford. Entombing and cocooning cost less than immediate dismantling as it reduces the expense for handling and moving highly radiated material, Ishikawa said.” LINK
Hey, what’s say we get the Fuku Out of Japan! Hello Texas! What’s a-happenin!?
“Construction officially begins Tuesday on the Pantex Renewable Energy Project, which will use the energy stored in Texas Panhandle winds to help power one of the key facilities in the National Nuclear Security Administration’s weapons complex.
The wind farm will consist of five 2.3 megawatt turbines located on 1,500 acres of land east of the Pantex Plant. Pantex is the primary site for the assembly, disassembly and maintenance of the nation’s nuclear weapons stockpile.” LINK
Goal: To convince world governments that NOW is the time (now is far past time) to deal with Fukushima as an international event. Everyone in the world has a stake in trying to fix this disaster. We’re not doing it. We’re waiting for an earthquake or structural damage to topple Building #4.
Building 4 was severely damaged in the earthquake/tsunami of March, 2011.
That building has 460 tons of nuclear fuel sitting on the 3rd and 4th floor of a weakened structure.
“The storage pool in the No. 4 reactor building has a total of 1,535 fuel rods, or 460 tons of nuclear fuel, in it. The 7-story building itself has suffered great damage, with the storage pool barely intact on the building’s third and fourth floors. The roof has been blown away. If the storage pool breaks and runs dry, the nuclear fuel inside will overheat and explode, causing a massive amount of radioactive substances to spread over a wide area. Both the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and French nuclear energy company Areva have warned about this risk.”LINK
As of today, radioactive water is leaking into the Sea. LINK This isn’t a bake-sale for a toy company. This isn’t a good-will gesture for those less fortunate.
If we, the human species, don’t address this issue, our future will be flecked and sprayed with radioactive material, worldwide. (It already is to a real degree – ‘we’ have exploded thousands of nuclear bombs in ‘tests’ worldwide. See below.)
The 460 tons of fuel is hardly the only fuel there – the lower storage pools at ground level contain even more – and all of it needs to be dealt with.
We are TWO YEARS into this horror, and Japan is unable to do this alone. They should not have to. The reactors come from General Electric, Toshiba and Hitachi; the push to nuclear comes from the United States, and the massive use of energy worldwide to power our 100 times energy-wasting society is all of our responsibility.
Start the ball rolling up the hill. Talk about this with everyone you know. There will be more events in future with focused letters and projects to get world military – the only ones who can do this – involved.
Liam, you pessimist! You don’t believe in free energy?
Well, no. No, I don’t. I’d be very cautious about wishing for such a thing, given how human beings use the expensive energy we have now.
Don’t get me wrong, I embrace the search for new energy sources – but I’m realistic and honest about how we live today: we live in an oil bubble. New sources of energy like solar, wind and water-splitting technologies are being embraced as a means to produce – not oil – but electricity.
Electricity runs buildings, fans, pumps, houses and computers. It does not run? Cars, trucks, most trains (in the U.S.) or large shipping vessels – that’s all oil. Twenty million barrels per day in the U.S. Ninety million worldwide.
Once more. Twenty million barrels per day here in Los Estados Unidos. (Say it, repeat it, swirl it around in your mouth – Twennty Milllliiooonnneee). Each barrel containing 5.8 million BTUs – a measure of heat. 5.8 million BTUs is about equal to you going to a 9-5 weekday job everyday and doing labor – for the next 8-11 years. Twenty million barrels of 8 years of work. Per day.
Ninety million. Per day. Worldwide.
The magnitude of our dependency cannot be overestimated.
Planes, Trains, Automobiles
About 98% of all transport is — OIL. That’s all of the cars that zoom, the trucks that bring your apples, the ships that carry iPads. Everything in the grocery store came grace à the internal combustion engine. Oil. Gasoline.
We can’t run that on electricity. We can’t replace the entire U.S. and world truck, car and boat fleet with electrical motors that run on electrons. We can’t scrap 800 million ONE BILLION CARS and start all over again. Because 1 billion is about the number of cars on the road, all build around the internal combustion engine. This device is the artificial heart of our modern world. It runs on exploding gas. That’s how we’ve built this society. You can’t replace it – not even with hydrogen batteries. LINK
But, Can’t We Replace It All With Hydrogen Batteries?
No, aren’t you reading? Jeez! Okay, look:
About 40% of our electricity comes from coal. We burn coal to boil water to make steam to make the turbine turn. That hits the donkey in the backside, which pulls the wire – and that makes electricity. (Well. Everything but the last bit.) That’s 40% – a lot of coal. LINK
What about the rest? We, in the ‘green and safe’ U.S. get 20% of electrical power from nuclear power plants. Radioactive, “hello Fukushima” power plants. So, that’s… just… freaking… wow.
We generate a great deal (close to 30%) from natural gas – which comes from? Oil drilling.
So, not only does 98% of all transport rely on oil 30% of electrical production come from drilling for gas. (See the importance of oil yet?) The rest from hydroelectric (7%), with a tiny bit from wind, geothermal and solar. LINKLINK
But Can’t We Just Replace It With Free Energy?
Are you on drugs? Je…No! We can’t just replace it with free freaking energy. Man! Alright, one more time.
Any new source of electricity will have to replace an increasing volume of the coal and gas that we burn per day:
“68.7% of China’s electricity comes from coal. The USA consumes about 14% of the world total, using 90% of it for generation of electricity. The world uses 6,743,786,000 short tons per year. Or, 18,476,000 short tons per day, worldwide.” LINK
“In 2006, US electrical generation consumed 1,026,636,000 short tons (931,349,000 metric tons) [per year] or 92.3% of the coal mined in the US.” LINK
But that’s 2006 – let’s catch up:
“Coal use is soaring because demand for electricity is soaring. Between 1990 and 2010, global electricity production increased by about 450 terawatt-hours per year. That’s the equivalent of adding one Brazil (which used 485 terawatt-hours of electricity in 2010) to the electricity sector every year.”LINK
Are we still hoping and wishing? “Free energy” has to replace an increasing volume of:
1. 18.5 million tons of coal per day.
2. 30% of U.S. electrical production from gas.
3. 98% of our transportation from oil.
Are We Free Yet?
No, not yet. We’re not there yet, campers. We’re not even on the map. What is the largest source of energy in the future??? The answer is? Using less energy. Massive conservation coupled with efficiency.
We, the combined “we“-ness that we talk about when there’s a great, big franking problem – “we” COULD run a world on 40% of the energy we use today, in a non-growth re-localized economy, with better food, better air and water – And we could still be civilized, leave the lights on, operate trains, buses, and electric bikes and share-cars.
But, won’t Wall Street let us?
Slaves to the Slave Market
Here’s a new idea in ‘water-splitting for hydrogen’ coming from the University of Colorado. They want to use solar energy (focused mirrors) to heat water infused with metals, to separate hydrogen from steam, and store it in batteries. “Want to” is the operative word here. This isn’t a working model – it’s a schematic. They want to raise money to do it. But here’s what they say about that:
“Despite the discovery, the commercialization of such a solar-thermal reactor is likely years away. “With the price of natural gas so low, there is no incentive to burn clean energy,” said Weimer, also the executive director of the Colorado Center for Biorefining and Biofuels, or C2B2. “There would have to be a substantial monetary penalty for putting carbon into the atmosphere, or the price of fossil fuels would have to go way up.”
Investors, anyone? Not while there is a ‘fracking revolution’ underway. But, does it work? Not yet. Read the description, looking for the conditional verb tense “could, would.”
“The CU-Boulder team has devised a solar-thermal system in which sunlight could be concentrated by a vast array of mirrors onto a single point atop a central tower up to several hundred feet tall. The tower would gather heat generated by the mirror system to roughly 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit (1,350 Celsius), then deliver it into a reactor containing chemical compounds known as metal oxides, said CU-Boulder Professor Alan Weimer, research group leader.”
Devised, not built. So, if you see “free energy” on the web, apply this basic rubric:
Does the inventor have a working model?
Can it be scaled up to meet energy needs at current levels? At what level?
What are the hidden costs in building such an exotic item?
Will the “market” accept it as a competitor for what we’re already using (and using up)?
Devils and Details
Don’t get me wrong – I like any new idea that works to create electricity. What I don’t like is when we stop paying attention to how much trouble we’re facing.
We’ve got to pay attention to the details – because oil, gas and coal are all limited resources. But we act as though they are not, and we’re — YOU — are not doing enough to talk about it to the people you know.
You. Me. And everyone else. It’s up to … you. Not “we,” not “us.” But each of You. I’ll keep doing my part to be the loudmouth – you keep talking energy.
What if The Government Invested in Alternative Energy?
Well, we’d be German, in that case. The Deutsche government is throwing all its substantial brain power, and money, at the looming issue, and is now powering over 20 percent of their grid with solar and wind.
“Germany’s renewable energy sector is among the most innovative and successful worldwide. The share of electricity produced from renewable energy in Germany has increased from 6.3 percent of the national total in 2000 to about 25 percent in the first half of 2012. In 2011 20.5% (123.5 TWh) of Germany’s electricity supply (603 TWH) was produced from renewable energy sources, more than the 2010 contribution of gas-fired power plants.” LINK
They’ve just innovated a battery that keeps 85% of its charge over a 25 year period:
“After 10,000 complete charging and discharging cycles, with a complete charge and discharge cycle per hour, these lithium-ion batteries still retain more than 85% of the initial capacity. This means that an electric car with those batteries could be fully charged every day for about 27.4 years and still be going strong.” LINK
The lesson: nothing in this world is free. We have to work for what we want – and we’d better be DOING that work now. Or we’re all going to be sitting around on our frack-holes, with a head full of pretty ideas about a perfect future that never came.
“Workers in white protective suits are using shovels and buckets to battle an oil spill that is spreading along the coast of a Thai resort island and could reach the mainland.” LINK
Oh, yeah. This, too:
“Dangerous levels of radiation from the crippled nuclear reactors have effectively forced us to stop our mushroom cultivation and reduced our farming income almost 80%,” Watanabe told IPS. LINK
“One of its biggest headaches is trying to contain radioactive water that cools the reactors as it mixes with some 400 metric tons (441 tons) of fresh groundwater pouring into the plant daily. Workers have built more than 1,000 tanks to store the mixed water, which accumulates at the rate of an Olympic swimming pool each week. With more than 85 percent of the 380,000 metric tons of storage capacity filled, Tepco has said it could run out of space.
The tanks are built from parts of disassembled old containers brought from defunct factories and put together with new parts, workers from the plant told Reuters. They say steel bolts in the tanks will corrode in a few years. Tepco says it does not know how long the tanks will hold. It reckons it would need to more than double the current capacity over the next three years to contain all the water. It has no plan for after that.” LINK
Happy Festivus, Humanity.
Oh, here’s a ray of hope. If we decide to allow plants…to grow. LINK
Unspent nuclear fuel sitting on the 3rd and 4th floor of a shaking building already damaged by tsunami-earthquake trauma?
Why, yes. That 460 IS a troubling number.
Four-Hundred-Sixty tons. (Metric? Short?) if we mean “ton” as in “2,000 pounds,” don’t we mean…. 920,000 pounds? Of radioactive fuel? (hmm. 460 times 2,000…. carry the 1…..line up the zeroes….)
920,000 pounds? Of nuclear fuel. I mean, correct me if they’re using a different meaning of “ton.”
So, 460 tons of nuclear fuel, which, if allowed to fall or become uncovered will…ignite? Sending deadly – as in, “we’re gonna kill ALL of you” radioactive rain, air, earth, sea and sky down upon everyone in its path?
Hm. Sounds like an Exciting Movie!
Maybe just a little toooo exciting, don’t you think?
But this was 2011! It MUST be different Now!
“The storage pool in the No. 4 reactor building has a total of 1,535 fuel rods, or 460 tons of nuclear fuel, in it. The 7-story building itself has suffered great damage, with the storage pool barely intact on the building’s third and fourth floors. The roof has been blown away. If the storage pool breaks and runs dry, the nuclear fuel inside will overheat and explode, causing a massive amount of radioactive substances to spread over a wide area. Both the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and French nuclear energy company Areva have warned about this risk.” LINK
But that was last year! It MUST be different NOW!
TEPCO President Naomi Hirose said Friday that the company delayed acknowledging contaminated water was leaking into the sea even though obvious signs of leaks were detected in May because officials were waiting until they were certain there was a problem before making such a “major announcement.”
“Rather than proactively inform the public of potential risks, we retreated to negative thinking and tried to gather more data to ensure there was a problem because it was going to be a major announcement,” Hirose said. “We’ve been trying to reform, but we repeated the same mistake. Obviously, our effort is not enough. We are really sorry.”
TEPCO last detected spikes in radiation levels in underground and seawater samples taken at the plant in May. The company says the contamination is limited to just near the plant, but the extent of the contamination is unknown. Most fish and seafood from along the Fukushima coast are barred from domestic markets and exports. LINK,LINK
But. But. But! But… But I wanna keep living in a fantasyland! Can’t anybody else just take care of it? Puh-puh-puh-Puhlllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeze?
Greetings fellow prisoners servants of her Majesty, the Fed and all ships at sea! It is I, Liam, your humble narrator for this jaunt on Mr. Oil’s Wild Ride.
Do you understand that when I say, “We are going to destroy civilization in the next 30 years,” I’m not intending to be hyperbolic or dramatic. I am simply describing an ongoing ‘project.’
Welcome to the new normal, fellow Earthlings.
Oh, but, look, I’m just a clucking hen. It’s all fine:
“A drilling rig that caught fire late Tuesday after a natural gas well blew out about 55 miles off the coast of Grand Isle could continue to burn in the Gulf for several weeks while response crews work to permanently shut in the well, but the drawn-out drama is not expected to have devastating, long-term consequences, several industry and environmental experts said Wednesday.
“At this point, I think it appears to be of no threat to the environment or to human life or to sea life for that matter,” Jefferson Parish President John Young said about the burning rig.”
Shucks, see? It’s FINE!! Hey! Let’s light the whole world on fire. It’ll be fine! No big deal!! Got your COREXIT ready?? It’s like WHITE OUT!!
A couple of months, no a quadruple couple of months of deeeeep immersion — and I’ve got the title for my new project. It required a sea-change, a complete surrender to the topic – and I’m quite metamorphosed for it. (Because it’s all about energy.)
Energy – it’s what the world lives on, it’s what we’re chasing, and its pursuit is why we’re destroying our world so thoughtlessly.
Can we change? Maybe. Not easily. Not all. Not all at once. Not entirely likely. But. Some of us will. And I’d like to be useful in that change.
So follow the LINK. “The Energy Show,” and stay tuned for a new blog announcement.
The FBIbook page will be updated with new shows, video appearances, a new radio broadcast (currently working out a 2 hour show, looking for network and sponsors), and new publications….
Share the info, tell your friends. Energy is the present and future of the world. If we don’t figure it out, it’s surely going to do us in….
Thanks for being friends, CIA informants, FBI moles, and fans.
Newsflash: Fukushima is our slow-burning Extinction Level Event.
“Like reactor four, reactor three had spent fuel rods sitting inside a cooling pool beneath the twisted steel and rubble. Remotely-operated cranes are being used to try and pull away the debris, but it is a painfully slow process. “”We need to remove the broken and damaged fuel and safely isolate it. This work will take 30 to 40 years. Even during the process we should never release any radioactive material into the surrounding environment.” LINK
“The sight of steam rising is worrying because it means somewhere inside the reactor building water is boiling, says the BBC’s Rupert Wingfield-Hayes in Tokyo. The badly damaged reactors are supposed to be in what is called “cold shutdown”; the temperature of the cooling water inside the reactor should be well below boiling point. “
“On Monday, Tepco said the plant was likely to be leaking contaminated water into the sea, something that has been suspected for some time, but previously denied by the company. Outside experts have long suspected that the damaged reactors are leaking water, because of the very high levels of radioactive cesium still being found in samples of fish taken near the plant. ” LINK
I’d move to France…if they didn’t have more nuclear power there than anywhere in the world. I wonder if I can learn to speak Penguin? I understand Antarctica is nice, this time of year.
No, really. This will fail at some point and… then, goodbye life, in any of the ways we knew it. Really. Pack a bag, lightly.
Do you think I’m kidding or being dramatic? They’ve got nuclear fuel sitting in a rickety 3rd floor in an earthquake zone. Facing the Pacific ocean. And they will for 3 decades, according to their schedule.
We have officially eclipsed our mandate.
“My Son Will Ride A Camel” – The Magician of Oz, Oil Peaks, Nukes and Fracking the World
by Liam Scheff
In the past week I have twice been sent a slick advertisement masquerading as a news story – but it’s a press release from an LLC (limited liability corporation) inviting investors to “Frack Australia.”
It begins like any sales job: “Dear Proud American. Scientists estimate there could be 233 billion barrels – $20 trillion dollars worth of unconventional energy waiting to be extracted from the Arckaringa Basin, [Australia]. This is an opportunity for you to stake your claim in this once-in-a-lifetime discovery.”(Inspiring, huh? Makes you check to see if your wallet is still in your pants.)
A quick check of recent “scientists estimate” in the oil biz takes you to the Caspian Sea “discovery” of the late 1990s. There were “200 billion barrels” of oil – about 6-7 years of world use (minus, of course, the cost of pulling it out, refining and transporting it, etc) – in the former Soviet territory. Exxon, BP and other drillers jumped in, and the U.S. soon made it possible to put a pipeline through Afghanistan to haul the riches out. (How did we do that? We invaded the country – remember? 9/11, the man in the cave – no? Nothing? Think about it, it’ll come to you.)
Some discovery wells were dug, at great expense, and the region was revealed to be not one continuous field but a group of separate pools, netting something on the order of 13 billion barrels of oil, plus a lot of natural gas – a nice find for Russia and Azerbaijan – but not a world-wide investment. Exxon and BP pulled out and the “Find of the Century” was no longer so attractive. At that point the U.S. military moved on to Iraq, leaving behind a few Opium Guards and forgetting about “the man in the cave” for another 9 years – which lets you know what we’re chasing in the Middle East.
All That Glitters
Here it is from Dr. Colin Campbell, petrogeologist and co-founder of ASPO, the Association for the Study of Peak Oil:
“Then East of Baku, the world’s ancient oil capital, there’s a narrow belt which is the delta of the old Volga river, a narrow belt that runs eastward towards Turkmenistan, and this has delivered some nice offshore fields, but nothing to make any huge difference to the world, and ExxonMobil has now pulled out, which is never a good sign. […]
Later on they found the most enormous offshore structure, 200 miles long by 50 miles wide which looked rather like this Tengiz discovery. If this had been full of oil, it might have contained 200 billion barrels, making it the world’s largest oil field.
So there was a great deal of hype about this, and you can picture back in the think tanks of America,and the foreign service departments and the military planners, all of these people seeing this great gem sitting out there in the Caspian, and their interest shifted to how to get the damn stuff out. […]
However, they have now drilled three wells in this huge Caspian field, and they find that far from it being a single huge structure containing 200 billion barrels as they had hoped, it is made up of different individual reefs, also very deep, also high sulphur, and the latest estimates are it’s only got between 9 and 13 billion barrels! Well 9 and 13 still is a very nice oil field, there’s nothing wrong with such a thing, but it isn’t going to make any real difference to world supply, and in fact BP and StatOil who were partners in the venture have now pulled out, which is never a good sign. So I think the conclusion is that the Caspian was a kind of chimera, a hope that was not materialized.” LINK
Back to Reality
So,’Not all that is promised by investors or speculators is real,’ is the lesson. Not in cars, oil or marriage. Or, if that’s not enough, let’s note that the Bakken shale of North Dakota, home of America’s new ‘shale gas renaissance,’ is seeing a depletion rate in its wells that should stop any long-term investor cold: A 50% to 90% depletion rate in well production – in the first year, on average. Even the pro-market goons see the writing on the wall:
“But whether in a year or three, and whether after reaching that million-barrel mark or not, North Dakota’s Bakken boom will soon plateau. That, my friends, is simply the nature of resource extraction – the Bakken bounty just can’t last forever.” LINK
And less romantically:
“THE BAKKEN PONZI GAME: The Bakken output declines are slowly coming into the open. A tremendous growth in new wells is required to overcome the naturally high depletion rates… Watch the propaganda play out as shale oil production falls off a cliff unless the drilling managers keep increasing more wells. There will be natural limits as the project advances. They will exhaust the fertile areas.” LINK
“A year or three.” “Ponzi game.” This is not your grandfather’s 40-year ready-steady oilfield. As they move from well to well, drilling 10s and 100s of thousands (and they do), they’ll burn through an entire region in 5 to 7 years. Then they’ll move to new territory (like your front yard). This is ‘scorched earth,’ not sound, sustainable ‘blue chip’ investment.
Back to Oz
Australia is mostly a barren hot desert climate with sparse water. Fracking requires an average of 4 million gallons of water per well, per fracking, to produce gas and oil.
“In each fracking, 2-9 million gallons of water mixed with sand and chemicals are forced through the well into the formation at high pressure to fracture, or crack, the shale. Roughly half the fracking fluid remains in the ground. The rest of it (1,000,000 to 4,000,000 gallons) comes up out of the well and is considered industrial waste and must be disposed of. Each well may be fracked up to ten times during its productive life.” LINK
You tell me how it’s going to go. I produce the first incidence of anti-fracking revolutionary insurrection to take place there.
Hot and Bothered
The press release makes its email-directed pitch by claiming that the news of a great shale development in Australia has got the Saudis anxious. The truth is, the Saudis don’t care. What comes out of a fracked well is a chemical disaster compared with the light, sweet crude, ready to be pumped worldwide, that flows from the riches of Ghawar and the other Queen oilfields of the desert.
What does have the House of Saud worried is closer to home – their big producers are lagging, and it is entirely likely that the massive fields have peaked in their production, and are now in a permanent decline.
“Aramco [the Saudi oil company] would not be able to stop the rise of global oil prices because the Saudi energy industry had overstated its recoverable reserves to spur foreign investment. He argued that Aramco had badly underestimated the time needed to bring new oil on tap.”
“In a presentation, Abdallah al-Saif, current Aramco senior vice-president for exploration, reported that Aramco has 716bn barrels of total reserves, of which 51% are recoverable, and that in 20 years Aramco will have 900bn barrels of reserves.
“Al-Husseini disagrees with this analysis, believing Aramco’s reserves are overstated by as much as 300 billion barrels. In his view once 50% of original proven reserves has been reached … a steady output in decline will ensue and no amount of effort will be able to stop it. He believes that what will result is a plateau in total output that will last approximately 15 years followed by decreasing output.” LINK
The fields are over 40 years old – they can’t keep producing forever, of course, and the Saudis have a little riddle, in different variations, which explains this always-understood reality: “My father rode a camel, I drive a car, my son flies a jet plane, his son will ride a camel.”
Green and Glowing
To deal with the declining and expected further diminishment of oil, the Sauds are investing in at least two kinds of non-fossil fuel energy. One makes a lot of sense – solar power.
Wail Bamhair, the project manager of the Saudi Arabian team that visited the US’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory last week, said that “Saudi Arabia is determined to diversify its energy sources and reduce its dependence on hydrocarbons. Renewable energy isn’t just an option, but absolutely necessary. We have the means to build renewable energy, and we need to do it.” LINK
And one is scary as hell.
Saudi Arabia plans to construct 16 nuclear power reactors over the next 20 years at a cost of more than $80 billion, with the first reactor on line in 2022. LINK
At least, I suppose, they’re not fracking – yet. But you can’t say the same for Los Angeles.
“CO2 Friendliness” is used by the nuclear energy industry to sell its very toxic products. “No CO2 emissions!” is the ad line that makes plutonium sound ‘green and good’ to environmentalists. And some well-known environmentalists have taken the bait (calling Steward Brand!)
The argument: Carbon dioxide, something we breathe out and plants breathe in (to make the oxygen which we breathe in, to make the CO2 that we breathe out (and they breathe in…you get the picture))…is bad. No – is WORSE than anything, ever, in the history of the universe. Or world. Or both. Worse than radioactive cesium, xenon, iodine or plutonium (ie, the ‘fun’ molecules that come out of nuclear fission).
But the CO2 argument gets them in the door: We don’t pollute!* (*with carbon dioxide), except when we mine, forge, ship materials, and construct our plants, which are as big as the Pentagon and Empire State Buildings combined! Each one! That’s good, they say, because it ‘builds the economy!’
Construction of a new nuclear power plant will provide a substantial boost to suppliers of commodities like concrete and steel and manufacturers of hundreds of components. For example, a single new nuclear power plant requires approximately:
* 400,000 cubic yards of concrete—as much concrete as was used to build the Pentagon
* 66,000 tons of steel—the same amount used to build the Empire State Building
* 44miles of piping
* 300 miles of electric wiring—enough to stretch from Boston to Philadelphia
* 130,000 electrical components.
Source? Them! They say it. No, really! And they claim to be ‘carbon free!’ I know! Like cement, steel, copper and more cement, steel, copper and heavy metals and rare earths are… free! Of CO2 or otherwise. What a bunch of kooky kids, huh?
No Free Lunches in Engineering or Radioactivity
Of course, nuclear power is not CO2 free. It’s massive. It’s a behemoth, bestriding the land. And we’re not even talking the mining and processing of uranium. There’s a dream job, huh? Ouch. Don’t plan for retirement, it’ll come early.
So, why do they get away with advertising their CO2 friendliness? Answer: Because YOU let them. You, out there with your smug, environmentally-conscious, leaf-colored Macbook-carrying, citizen of Benetton shabby-chic, tight-trousered fashionistas and metrosexuals! You fakers, you. “You let them get away with this!” I say, in mock anger and disgust. Or, who knows, maybe it’s real. But let’s get beneath the surface.
CO2 is Bad. CO2 is Good. CO2 is Irrelevant.
Who can sort this out for me? I’ve never been overly hung up or impressed by the CO2 argument (as the cause of all temperature shift) because:
The data is so screwy, all over the place, and… it opens itself to ridicule so easily:
Study: “The earth would have warmed faster in the last two decades had there not been an unexplained rise in the amount of carbon dioxide being absorbed on land, scientists believe.” Scientists have discovered an “abrupt increase” since 1988 in the uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2) by the land biosphere, which comprises all of the planet’s plant and animal ecosystems…the breakthrough had taken scientists “completely by surprise”…[study] explains how much CO2 is absorbed by plants and animals, with some of the CO2 then being passed from plants into the land.” [End study excerpt]
Ecologist Dr. Moore pulled no punches in commenting on the new study: “These people are either completely naive about the relationship between CO2 and plants or they are making this up as a way of deflecting attention from the lack of warming for the past 15 years.” Moore is the author of the book, “Confessions of a Greenpeace Dropout: The Making of a Sensible Environmentalist,” in which he exposes the green movement and explains why he left the organization.
Moore continued: “We should challenge them to admit that CO2 is the most important nutrient for all life on earth and to admit that it is proven in lab and field experiments that plants would grow much faster if CO2 levels were 4-5 times higher in the atmosphere than they are today. This is why greenhouse growers pipe the exhaust from their gas and wood heaters back into the greenhouse to increase CO2 levels 3-5 times the level in the atmosphere, resulting in 50-100% increase in growth of their crops. And they should recognize that CO2 is lower today than it has been through most of the history of life on earth.
Well, it’s an angry quote, but… true or not true? Is it simply facile? Are the comparisons between now and “most of the history of life” incorrect? Is it irrelevant that plants grow faster in high CO2? Is the real argument – how does the atmosphere respond?
CO2 is Not the Droid You’ve Been Looking For
Let me offer this as a concept: the primary driver of weather is not carbon dioxide, oxygen, nitrogen or methane. The primary driver of weather is? The Sun, which is not a nuclear bomb in space, but an anode (receiving node) in an electrical system:
“The driving idea is that there is a linear relationship between CO2 increase in the atmosphere and global temperature. The fact, however, is that temperature has constantly gone up and down. From 1850 to 1970, we see an almost linear relationship with Solar variability; not CO2. For the last 30 years, our data sets are so contaminated by personal interpretations and personal choices that it is almost impossible to sort up the mess in reliable and unreliable data.” Link.
It’ll be a lot to wrap your head around if it’s new to you, but take in what we do know and can observe. The Sun is infinitely hotter (well, much, much hotter) on the distant outside than on or beneath the surface (beneath, visible in Sunspots).
The Sun is hottest above the surface in the corona, where it’s 10 million degrees plus, versus the surface, where it is? Five to six thousand degrees. Why so hot in the solar atmosphere?
Because the Sun is heated from the exterior by the flowing currents of charged particles (plasma) coursing onto it. it is the collecting point – anode – in a galaxy-wide plasma electrical system – as are all stars.
Sound furry? Well, this is testable, observable and resilient, unlike “nuclear bomb in space” mythos, which leads to 100 unresolvable ‘problems’ with the mainstream hypothesis.
(Go do the reading before arguing endlessly with it – it’s in my book in Ch. 9, or free on the web: “electric sun hypothesis.”)
Yes, yes, you are hearing correctly. That is, indeed, what I’m saying: we get most of the sciences wrong, most of the time, as they evolved from 18th and 19th C. pre-existing religious notions. Back to outer space and you.
The Earth is a recipient of heavy plasma, electron and neutrino hammering – it’s also in the umbilical system of the Sun, as are all the planets, which demonstrate polar influx from solar plasma currents. Link. Link.
The Sun is the Major Driver – of Everything.
Weather, climate, mood ring results – it’s the Sun, the great, glowing “Son” of the heavens. The Alpha and Omega. The beginning and end. So obvious it lights your world, heats your skin, and makes the surface of this wet, rocky orb glow green with viney life.
On the other vine, CO2 and climate change predictions are, well…all over the freaking map. Search “climate change predictions, failures,” and you will discover an encyclopedia of fubar, from critics from all corners, deep outside to deep inside the mainstream.
So…help a guy out. Explain it to me. CO2 is or is not important in weather. Extend it to methane. (Methane? I’ll buy that as a heat-capturing gas – it’s flammable and being released by the ton from fracked wells).
Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?
PS – first one to call me a ‘climate denier’ loses the integrity race, the ability-to-communicate race, and the help-a-brother-out-with-a-fair-question prize.
Watch Who You’re Calling Anti-Environment, Bub
I like early 20th C. civilization, town squares, public cafés, stone buildings, public gardens, Southern European architecture and human-scaled urban design. I do not like skyscrapers, New York City or Los Angeles. I like pumped water but I do not like fluoride. I like electric lights, but not everywhere, all night long. I do not love or really even like most industry. We could all live without plastics, if we learned to regard items as “valuable” and kept them for a long time.
I do like boats, trains and the ability to travel, but I do not like planes. (Yes, we all love the speed, but not the experience). I do not like cars. I do not OWN a car. I owned one ONCE, 20 years ago, for 3 months. I eat low on the food chain. Very. No big animals, no animals of any sort, presently. (Why does that matter? Because animal agriculture uses more land and water, consumes more grain, and produces more methane and, yes, CO2, than any other industry. So, figure out where you fit into that scheme.)
In sum, according to the rules that YOU have set out in the world, oh environmental elite — I am a better person than you are.(In the scope of Al-Gore approved behavior – never mind how he actually lives, of course).
You’ve heard the arguments. You have the question. Now, it’s up to you. Help a brother out! CO2 or not CO2?
The Choice Will Be Yours, Mine and Ours. Divided We Stand, United We Fall: Solar, Wind, Oil, Coal, Nuclear.
The arguments pile up in disorganized, swaying towers, in colonies and countries of data – kilowatt hours and gigawatt years, energy returns and investments, environmental damage done and reversed, savings procured and promised, spending subsidized and renewed, calories and kilojoules burnt, dissipated and evaporated — all in search of the glorious solution that will save us all, from a problem most of us don’t even know exists. (Or is it that we won’t consciously admit it?)
Oil, once flowing at 100,000 barrels a day from wells in Texas, the Caspian and Saudi Arabia, has now become an obstinate trickle in some locales, and almost all the old glory fields are giving less – and less and less. They are intoxicating their once “light, sweet crude” with sulfur and contaminants that are plaguing our civilization’s life blood.
We’ve built this country out of the power of oil and coal. We’ve spent 50 plus years, since the end of WW2, building an urban, metal-crowned, suburban sprawled juggernaut, a nation devoted purely toward innovation in the cosmetic and consumer realm; to comfort and notions of progress, where progress equaled “new, faster, more,” for a promise of eternity.
But, maybe it’s not so. “Oil is running out? What? – only Chicken Littles would say such a thing! We’ve got more oil, more gas, more coal than…well, anyone on Earth!” Or, so say the sellers of shale to the Wall Street Journal.
And in a sense, they’re right. We’re not running out – just running lower. What once came at bargain prices for little work from abundant wells is now giving slowly, forcing petroleum companies to look to the dregs as though it were polished and cut diamonds, ready for sale. But it’s not. It’s thick, sludgy, contaminated petroleum; bituminous tar, degraded or not wholly formed coal, and gas that is procured by destroying land and drinking water – soon for millions around the country. A permanent scar for a temporary Wall Street victory. But, ain’t that America?
But this isn’t a lecture on fracking. You can watch “Gasland 2″ for that brutal lesson. And I’m not trying to turn you into Rachel Carson, though it wouldn’t be a bad idea if we all decided air and water mattered more than cable TV and iPhones.
This is the dividing line. It is where we now live, and what we will all soon be sold. Sold and fighting over.
Never Get A Tattoo In A Bad Mood
The reality of cresting and declining oil supplies has so sufficiently dawned on the money and policy makers in this world, that they’re now having to plan for the big shift. “The Big Shift” is what we may call it – the period in which the collective “We” of America realize that we do, indeed, share towns, villages, cities, waterways, farmland, roads and services – because all of them stop working as we’ve been told they’re ‘guaranteed’ to.
When the abundance of cheap, easy-to-access fuel is gone, and we’re in a half century of mining for messy tar, we’ll find the promise of a consumer society doesn’t really hold up. We will see prices continue to increase; we’ll see shipments of long-distance goods falter. We will see the cost for fuel and electricity increase – in spurts or shocks. We’ll get used to a higher price point – for everything. It won’t happen all at once – it’ll happen in upward slides, punctuated by bursts and shocks. Soon, we’ll be praying for the ‘slide,’ and against the ‘shock.’
It’s happening already – but we don’t talk about it as oil or fossil fuel. We talk about jobs, security, banking fraud, bailouts and corruption. But under the Roman veneer of Senatorial bad behavior is the creeping reality – this civilization cannot run without cheap, abundant, flowing oil. Petrol. Gas. Plastic. Goods from slave labor. That is what we are now. A-more-icans. Amoral-icans. We don’t see it so it doesn’t exist, but the world runs on cheap oil and slave labor. That’s who we are – or, what we’ve become.
I’ll Take What’s Behind Door Number Two.
With energy needs expected to be met by hard, politically explosive investments – fracking, tar sands development, Middle-Eastern occupation – those in the energy sector are looking for an out. Solar? A trickle of electricity! Only good for homeowners – one at a time, or small businesses. Wind? Who wants a windmill spinning around above your town? You can’t run an economy on those things!
Or, can you? Denmark and Germany are giving a try, pushing these renewable electrical generators to new heights. But they don’t replace petrol. They might be on par with coal or natural gas for electricity soon. They’re not free. Making the machines costs steel and rare metals. Sure, they don’t pollute after the initial investment, and there’s no fuel to feed – just sun and wind – but let’s face it. You can’t run New York or Los Angeles, or Wall Street on that sort of thing.
At least, that’s what they’ll say – so they’ll look elsewhere to find their energy winner. It was to be expected – it’s long been their go-to warhorse. Beaten, aged, in poor health – but here it comes again.
They have no choice, they’ll say. None of the pretty, green energy plans that we want to put in our lawns and on our roofs, not solar, geothermal, biodiesel or ethanol – not corn nor soy nor wind nor rain – will replace the loss we can expect to face as world economies grow and eat up more coal and oil, year by year, as the everlasting growth curve of 20th C. economics demands.
Nothing will suffice. Nothing will feed the rapacious appetite of the ferocious beast that is “the economy.” And if we do not have oil, we will have…nothing. The lights will go dark. The streets will be empty. The dogs will run in packs in suburban ghettos. Or, something like that. (They will try to scare you – and they will succeed).
We need a superman. A super-duper-man! We need…(have you got it yet? You been around long enough? Ah, there she is, glowing green in your eyes…)
Nuclear Power. (Ring the gong, shake the tambourine, cue the brass band!) Yes, nuclear power. We need it to make this little fantasyland called Western Civilization work.
This is what they’re going to sell to you, and how they’re going to do it. But now that you’re wise to it…well… what? Surely they’re ignoring something – surely they’re greedy and only want more money? Surely. But they’re also right.
This Ain’t No Party, This Ain’t No Disco
This bauble that we, the corporation of the United States of America, with its subsidiary factory nations of China, Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, Eastern Europe, India, Bangladesh, Ukraine – and many, many more – this thing we have built, this cathedral of neon light, pornographic plastic and all-you-can-puke fast food – this magisterial 20 story cruise ship headed for Las Vegas with stops at Babylon and Oblivion – cannot stand. Ne functionne pas. Does not exist.
Not without such an abundance of GigaWatts of energy that keep cars rolling, trucks shipping, the 55th floor lit at midnight, Wal*Mart open at 2am. No, we don’t work without the energy of oil, coal and natural gas, circa 1989 import volume. But we’re losing it. And here’s where the massive disaster called “nuclear power” comes back in – to save us, once again, as it promised to do so many times before.
Boiling Frogs, Encore Une Fois
Nuclear power is the world’s most expensive, dangerous method of boiling water. The radioactive material is plunged into liquid, steam is produced, it turns the paddle, that makes the generator turn, and electrons course down the wire. A lot of electrons. A massive dose of electricity. It does work, when it works.
Nuclear power is generally “safe,” from an operating point of view. That is, out of the 400 plus reactors around the world, only a very small percentage have ever had significant problems. The problem is, we know all of their names. We can’t forget them.
Nuclear power uses radioactive material, breeds it, enriches it, and makes more in the process of burning it for heating H2O. It is, in sum, a constant perfect disaster, waiting to happen – and thanks to a great deal of tight-jawed, white-knuckled discipline, the problems are fewer than those that occur in the petroleum drilling and shipping arena. But a little problem in a nuke plant is a world-class catastrophe.
(Are you saying the names in your head yet? Go do a websearch for “cancer and deaths from nuclear accidents” for a start). What you’ll find might horrify you. It also might horrify you, for a different reason.
“We Don’t See Dead People”
The people who push nuclear power like to say amusing things like, “There were no deaths from the Fukushima incident,” by which they mean, “No one was crushed by a boulder during the multiple nuclear meltdown nightmare that remains quite unresolved on the coast of Japan, bleeding into the sea and blowing westward.” Which is true. No one was crushed by a truck which tipped over carrying a drilling rig, or a windmill blade.
The funny math they’ve done though, is to exclude all increases in spontaneous abortion, fatal cancer, unexplained severe illness, thyroid and blood cancers, and any other predictable effect of radiation poisoning which occur in the area. It’s always up to independent “Doctors for some sort of freaking sanity” group to do the data collecting, after which the ‘Nuclear PR Agencies’ pay some other happy PR firm (masquerading as a medical journal) to dispense with the data and throw just enough internet smog at it so that it confuses the issue. And the dead are buried, the world has another disaster – and we all ‘move on.’
And that’s nuclear. In its defense, it provides 20 percent of our U.S. electricity, and about the same in Britain. France is closer to 80%, having dared themselves to get out of coal a long time ago.
Nuclear Power Stinks, Says the Nuclear Power Industry
But we’re smarter than the French, and would never buy into an 80% nuclear-for-electricity program. I mean, we’ve got about 65 of these plants running in the country as I write, with 104 reactors in them, producing 20% of our refrigerator and Wii-energy (that’s electricity, y’all). To push that to 80%, we’ll multiply by…oh… (let’s see. Times five would be 100, so we’ll take…four! Four times 65 is…). Right. Two-sixty. Or thereabouts, to bring us to France’s level of “energy freedom.” Each plant requiring – according the the nuclear spokespeople – a “Pentagon’s” worth of concrete, an “Empire State Building’s” worth of steel, and “300 miles” of wiring. For each one.
That’s not “free” by any means, nor is it cheap. And it all costs – not dollars, but energy: oil, coal, mining, shipping, refining, foundries, assembly. In other words, we’re going to be asked to build some 200 equivalents of the largest military and commercial buildings and skyscrapers, to produce electricity, for a couple decades, maybe more, maybe less. Maybe there’ll be an accident.
Screw It! Let’s Build One!
“But that’s the old nuclear!” shouts a voice from the sidelines. Who is it? It’s Kirk Sorensen – former NASA tech, doing hard sales and rainmaking for the “new nuclear,” which uses a liquid salt in the tank, and not water. (Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor, or LFTR “lifter” is the model he’s pushing). Kirk is a lot of fun – in the first 20 seconds of his spiel, he’ll tell you that old nuclear stunk. Sucked. Was piss-poor. Dangerous, wasteful, useless. It used about 1% of its fuel, created radioactive waste, and — what were we thinking? Nuclear? We must have been freaking crazy!
But now there’s the “new nuclear” of thorium. Sure, it’s radioactive! But it’s LESS radioactive. Sure it’s dangerous – but it’s much less so, because it’s liquid and can’t (as far as we know – and we don’t, not really, because we’re not operating any of these things presently) melt down.
And maybe it is better, and maybe it is fluffier, cuddlier and will let us run our world, just as we are – or, without the petrol, but with plenty of cheap, “clean” electricity to make our lives glow and green.
And Now A Word From Our Sponsor
That’s where we are. We cannot pull together enough voltage from solar, wind and every other smaller-scale, locally-gridded renewable (sun-and-earth-powered). We can’t. You can write a hopeful treatise about power and energy efficiency, but somewhere, deep in your beating brain, you know it. We can’t keep this afloat with a smaller, if friendlier, cleaner, happier, stream of electrons. We’ll have to downsize.
And that’s where they’ll get us. More than half of us. We don’t want to hear this message. Or, we’ll hear it, know it’s true, and choose… the unknown, untested, investment-happy “new nuclear.”
And maybe it’ll all work out. Maybe we’ll build 1,000 of these reactors over the next 40 years. Maybe we’ll work the kinks out 20 years into the process. Maybe we’ll end up with a few surprises – a few leaks, ruined waterways, broken towns. Shoot – that’s the price of progress. Gotta break a few eggs, etc.
Turn Your Head and Cough
I’m not telling you that LFTRs won’t work. I’m sure some will, I’m sure some won’t. Shoot – I don’t even know if they’ll get off the ground. There are no large-scale working models, and perhaps no examples of what could be expected. It’s all golden promises at present. They’ll raise money, do the building and testing, and then we’ll see.
In the meantime, wind and solar are doubling and tripling their market shares, going into mass production, thus lowering the cost of builds and installation. Which is kind of cool. Exciting, I mean, because that’s what I want. I want to be off the grid, out of the machine-state, and not running around in a nuclear nation.
What do you think a nuclear nation is going to be like? It’s a high-tech security jumble-fuck. You think freedom of transport and travel is a bit touch-and-go now? Just wait till the every block thorium sensors are put in place. Yeah, go ahead, tell me I’m wrong. The “new nuke” people advertise it – “Thorium and its radioactive byproducts are easily detectable!” Yeah – with a thorium detector.
What can I tell you? Get ready to bend over and grab your ankles, brave new worlders.
What I am telling you is that this is where the dividing line will appear. The people who think that this America is what we all signed up for – that this mentally-addled, pharma-sucking, videodromed culture-less society is our highest calling – who only see the golden heights yet to be climbed by hostile takeover and daring investment…I’ve got your market ticket, and it’s “new nuclear.”
Me, I want to move to a town, far away from the new nukes crowd, and build some windmills, solar panels, and dig a few food forests out of the damaged land. I want to reclaim this place for a future that doesn’t need a promise of ‘eternal growth’ to feel okay about itself. It won’t be perfect, but at least it has a chance of existing. Does the “new nuclear” appeal to you? It might – for a few minutes. But it smells like something to me. Like a sales job for a product that’s reached the end of its line.
How do we get more people to care, with energy and emphasis, about the reality of oil, fracking, and major cultural and economic change?
A. We tell them their lifestyle is at risk.
B. We tell them their health is at risk.
C. We tell them their cost of living is going to triple within 10 years.
D. We excite them about the possibility of saving money with high-tech eco-saving building material, housing designs, products, etc.
E. We scream, “You’re all going to die, you fucking morons!” as loudly as we can, over and over again, while showing pie charts of diminishing oil, increased fracking, tar sands pollution, oil spills, oil train derailments and explosions, and piles of dead, burnt bodies from the smoking remains of the 20th Century?
F. We don’t. Fuck ’em. They’ll either be or be eaten by the marauding hordes.
G. We keep it light and funny. After all, nothing can fix the problems we face, and we might as well be having some fun.
Will Technology Save Us? Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute Says, “Try It!”
Rocky Mountain Institute – dreams of banana trees in Arctic Colorado in the middle of winter; of super-efficient houses needed nothing but a few solar panels to be fully-inhabitable year-round in all weather. Cars made of woven carbon, light as a couple of books and more crash-proof by far than steel. All made ethically, without slave labor, by guys and gals who measure thrice, using all available, human-scaled data – and cut once, and oh-so-well. Ah, what a wonderful, comfortable world!
Yes, I do enjoy Amory Lovins – but where, in his world view, is the talk of Peak Oil, World War Z, Hurricane Bertha, Chicken Megadeathdemic, and the rest of our cultural fixations? He seems to think that we will get out of oil use, use locally-generated energy, and still find a way to drive light electric cars? And have an economy?
It gives you a little hope, doesn’t it? If it’s overstated, and it probably is – it is at least immensely valuable as a tool for individual communities to REBUILD and RESTRUCTURE themselves, separated from a binding national grid, from Washington. It is also a damned important series of How-To’s for industry – which uses the bulk of all energy in the world.
Here’s the spoon-fed version for the Sesame Street liberals at Huffing Ton’s Post-its. What is nice about Lovins here is the absence of rended garments and wrought knuckles over carbon dioxide. Instead, “We’re going to fix things by doing things better, with less toxic pollution of every kind, and less waste,” becomes the motto.
Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactors. Say it fast, three times!
I have promised friends and listeners that the nuclear energy parade would, despite unimpressive performance in the first half, be back – with some new tricks, moves and even players. And here it is!
Nuclear power is again, the “safe! free! eternal energy source” – encore, une fois. So, I’m looking. I found this chunk of optimism selling a rain-making…er.. monorail… er… Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor – which apparently has no problems at all, and will power us to a Golden New Age of iPodness. Witness his sweaty glory:
That’s Kirk Sorensen, who looks like a nerdly Viking, and talks like a ‘rainmaker.’
But digging into the data, one finds that even the CIA factbook (wikipedia) has its niggling doubts – like, it’s a radioactive machine that produces radioactive waste, with little in the way of a working model, and a host of ‘challenging technical hurdles.’ (see “practically impossible” in dictionary). (And no, that’s not what that word means. It means pestering, persistent, lingering. And if Tupac can say it, so can I).
But, it also claims to be an improvement over other “breeder” reactors, which use a molten salt that can explode violently when mixed with air or water. Which is pretty sci-fi, I’ll grant you. Kind of, “Wow, that really got out of the lab?” And, yes, some of these have been built.
Here is a slightly more adult version of the sales job:Google Tech Talk Link. More adult, but not entirely honest. “Nuclear power has no CO2 footprint,” is the first lie. Not that I bother much with CO2, but building a nuke plant is like building a small city’s downtown. It do cost money, y’all. More importantly, it requires huge allotments of coal, oil, natural gas, concrete, steel, lead, other metals, and oh, right…radioactive material to be dug out of the ground by slaves in other countries who die horrible deaths. But, you know. It’s also ‘carbon free!’ say the cheerleaders.
Note, the Google Tech Talk above was given in 2008, and India has taken the baited hook. I mean, why built a thermal solar panel in a sun belt? Let’s be radioactive about it! [Breeding India] But around the world, most countries that have tried, have stopped their research programs. Or, “programmes,” as they say in London.
But Japan, always on the hunt for energy, built a ‘breeder’ reactor some time ago. Right on an earthquake zone. No, not that one! Yes, another one! Here’s a film about that.
So, we’re on our way to never having to worry about anything again. Oh, except… right. Back to the ‘limitations of the device.’ Let’s have a scratch. Here are a few of the problems, directly from the Government interns who write the Wikipedia:
Mothballed technology. Only a few MSRs have actually been built; those experimental reactors having been constructed more than 40 years ago. This leads some technologists to say that it is difficult to critically assess the concept.
Startup fuel. Unlike mined uranium, mined thorium does not have a fissile isotope. Thorium reactors breed fissile uranium-233 from thorium, but require a considerable amount of U-233 for the initial start up. Currently there is very little of this material available.
Loss of delayed neutrons.
Waste management. There is also a need to manage the waste, which is still very radioactive, even though it is hazardous for a shorter period.Decommissioning costs are uncertain.
Noble metal buildup.
Limited graphite lifetime.
Graphite causes positive reactivity feedback.
The solubility for plutonium is limited.
Potential proliferation risk from reprocessing.
Proliferation risk from protactinium separation for some specific designs.
Proliferation of Neptunium-237.
Neutron poisoning and tritium production from lithium-6.Corrosion from tellurium.
Radiation damage to nickel alloys.
Long term fuel salt storage issues. If the fluoride fuel salts are stored in solid form over many decades, radiation can cause the release of corrosive fluorine gas, and uranium hexafluoride.
Development of the power cycle.
Developing a large helium or supercritical carbon dioxide turbine is needed for the highest efficiency designs.
So, not the kind of thing you can put in your yard and make electron salad. But, look. It’s newish. Kind of. And I’ll be fair, dig in and try to unpuzzle the game, which is clearly afoot. Watson.
And remember, we’re talking about this because? No, there is no such thing as “peak oil! We’ll never run out! We’ve got enough fracked shite to last 1,000,000 years! So fill ‘er up!! That’s why we’re mining for radioactive material! Because it’s…F-U-N!” Ah-ha! ha! ho. ha. hum. Ahem.
“Fracking will give us energy independence!” goes the drumbeat. But is it true? A sober analysis of what’s really in the rocks comes up with a number much closer to 10 years of fuel – not 20, 50 or the 100 once advertised. [Link]
But isn’t 10 years of fuel worth digging some holes? I doubt it. Fracking destroys water tables, air quality and local land. It’s a messy, dangerous and endlessly toxic method of grabbing some remaining dirty oil and gas out of shale rock.
Fracking requires forcing metric tons of clean water through deep, horizontally-drilled well holes – these are beneath and in the water table. This water is filled with sand and 600 chemicals, gelling agents, fire-retardants and other carcinogens. The water is not reclaimable – it has to sit in toxic pools on the surface, or bleed back into the rock. [Link]
The gas that is released finds its way into drinking water, rivers, streams, lakes and ponds. The 600 chemicals do, too.
Being against fracking is not political – it’s biological. Being for it is not economical, unless economics is measured without recording the human sickness and death it causes.
The Why of Fracking
We live in the era of the decline of cheaply, easily-available light, sweet crude oil. The Middle East is on the decline. Texas peaked its production way back in 1970. The short-term grab at ‘fracked’ oil and gas has about a 10 year – maybe – lifespan – and it will leave very large, densely populated areas of the country with ruined water, land, and, in the short term, ruined air.
There is no ‘market-driven’ way out of the change that is required to keep us from running low on light, sweet crude. The fact that we’re digging into sulfuric tar and miserable shale and calling it “oil” only makes my point for me.
We have oil in the country that remains – and I’m sure we’ll use it, until we can’t breathe, see, drink – or live in many places.
But, it’s a big, last swig from a poisoned cup. Meanwhile, some of Europe and South America is getting the message – building windmills, solar arrays and reclaiming once lost thermal waste. We cannot live forever in the “endless growth, Wal*Mart, autobahn society” – but we can live with electricity in a moderate, non-growth, non-car, but probably much happier, more creative society.
This isn’t a short-term solution to anything – except the human species. It’s not a short-term argument, either. This is where we now live – in the permanent decline of what we’ve always had. What we now take for granted as a permanent state – and what we will have to live without: cheap oil. We may have some mini-gluts in the next 10 years from fracking; we may draw more from Iraq, but the reality will not be lost on those losing land, homes, drinking water, health and life to the ‘new normal.’
Get ahead of the curve and start planning for the end of a certain way of life now – and the beginning of another. If we want to have some comfort during the great transition, we’d better be building windmills wherever they’re useful, solar where it’s effective – both thermal and electric – and increasing every measure and method of reduction of energy use.
I know we won’t, as a group – but as individuals, in our towns and villages, we’ll out-think the unthinking petrol-driven marketplace, and demonstrate a wiser brand of existence to the frightened mob.
Fracking is a world-wide disaster – and the press and petrol giants are playing mental footsie with the public to get them to relent. Witness the business press playing at ‘fairness,’ ‘class warfare’ and ‘down with the rich’ all to sell a short-term boondoggle:
“The rolling country south of London is called the stockbroker belt for the residents who pay 50 percent above the U.K. average to live in pristine villages. The advent of shale oil under their lawns may shatter the idyll.
Two areas of Surrey and Sussex hold 700 million barrels of recoverable shale oil, or more than a year’s supply for Britain, the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates. The advent of drilling near mansions in the Wessex and Weald basins may widen the nation’s shale-energy debate, which has focused on gas in northwest England, hundreds of miles from London.” [Link]
We’re being asked to feel pleased that the wealthy old gray men will have to give up their ‘posh’ estates to give Britain oil.
The numbers: 700 million barrels. “Not 10 day’s worth of global supply – but a year’s worth” in Britain. (Right! No – not right. “Estimated.” Now, knock it down to half, and down to half again, after estimated becomes ‘recoverable’ and the energy used to recover it is expended.)
So, a few ‘bloody’ months of shale oil and gas. To DESTROY the greenery south of London.
700 million barrels – more like 200-300, if they’re lucky – because estimates are always, always, always overstated – by 50 to 90%. See America’s “100 years of shale gas” lie, for example.
“If you investigate the origin of this supposed 100-year supply of natural gas…where does this come from? ….[I]f you go on and you actually read the report…what they’re saying is that if you pin this thing down where there have actually been some wells drilled that have actually produced some gas….the gross resource from shale is probably about 7 years worth of supply.” [Link]
But, they’re selling it to the Brits, aren’t they?
Announcement: There will be no talk of “free energy” on my pages. It’s as fanciful (and based in a position of psychological denial) as “clean coal, clean nuclear and clean fracking.”
No denial-based tech here. Post no bills. Reality is: we’re facing the end of the era of cheap, readily-available fossil fuels. That’s where we live. Star Trek is not a documentary. We will have no Warp drives. We have no replicators.
We will have to suffer, to work, to, once again become managers and tenders of land and animals, workers of wood and stone, builders with brick and concrete.
There will be no alien technology suppressed by governments, released just in time to save our arses from our own destructive species’ personality.
The claim should make you unbuckle your shorts. Saudi Arabia is the world’s leading producer of flowing Texas T. Light sweet crude. The stuff empires are made of. The US produces about 2% of the world’s actual “oil.” So, what the frock are they fracking talking about? (Hint.)
This comes from a report by the energy czarists, the IEA – but what’s hidden? It’s not ‘oil’ as we know it. It’s tar sands, oil shale, and other incredibly toxic brews:
“This is entirely due to the shale and gas revolution. North America as a whole will become a significant net exporter.”
By blowing up every glen and mountainside hoped to have some sticky tar rock beneath it and destroying every water table in each such zone.
In other words, it’s a run off the cliff, not just a walk. Here’s the big clue:
“If all this turns out to be wishful thinking, the world is stuffed. The biggest “new supply” over the next quarter century is energy efficiency. That is worth a Saudi Arabia and a half. Allegedly.”
Right, so we’re back to conserving. Which Americans do not do. Hence the ‘panics,’ like the Boston disaster of yesterday. We’ll have more panics to make us stay home, I predict. But based on their past performance, I think it’s a guarantee.
More than that – we’re going to go back to doing what made the Nazi state so great: turning coal into ‘oil.':
And that’s how the US learned to be energy independent!!!!
Oh, and China. Fucked? Because? Right… they use coal for everything! And coal… destroys… water tables.
Some 65pc of China’s water use is for irrigation, and 23pc for industry – mostly in coal production. Notice how much of the coal industry is in areas with water troubles.
Non-renewable aquifers are being depleted very fast. Under the latest five-year plan China is diverting rivers equal to the Tigris and Euphrates combined to supply the dry belt.
And, for the record, “I see dead people. Everywhere. Soon.” Don’t get me wrong. It’s not that I want to. But people and animals and lead and arsenic don’t really go together very well. Not like this:
PS. For the ‘stay after class and talk to the professor’ students —
Look at WW2 through the eyes of Oil. Suddenly everything – From the Germans in Russia, to Rommel in the desert, to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, to the concentration camps make sense: the conquest for power needed to be supported by an ever-widening supply of oil on the ground.
Nothing about modernity makes sense if you subtract oil. It’s all a kind of madness. Add oil and the lens focuses.
It’s always been about energy. And that, my fellow earthlings, is where we’re living, dying, and destroying ourselves.
The Conspiracy Realist versus Conspiracy Theorists! It’s a hot time on the PsoNick Aitchison show (Type 1 Radio Lounge) out of sunny Brighton, England battling out the Judy Woods concept of 9/11. Liam Scheff isn’t buying it – he’s detailed the 9/11 story in “Official Stories” Ch 4. But the crowd battles back with their arguments of energy devises and unknown Tesla machines. It’s a hot, hot, HOT conversation!
The talk then shifts gears to an exploration of the various conspiracy ideas of HIV and AIDS, and Liam weighs in with his 10 years of front-line research into the topic, featured in his book “Official Stories” (Ch 6). Then to Shakespeare, and finally Big Bang (MYTH!) and the Electric Universe (REALITY!)
Thanks to all for the opportunity and nice give and take!
Open a science textbook, and you will be greeted by this notion:
“First there was nothing…which exploded, or expanded, and became everything.”
This is called “big bang theory.” But it is not a theory. It fails the tests of what a true ‘science’ demands – it is not testable, reproducible or observable in experiment. It fails its own predictions.
It is, in sum, not a scientific idea. It is, in fact, a myth. And it sits in the throne at the head of the sciences – the Queen of the Sciences – astronomy. This rotten idea oozes downward through the layers of science beneath it – physics, chemistry, biology – covering all of what remains in dreck and confusion.
Why does a myth reside where a science should live? Why is there a “big bang theory?”
How does an idea come to be? Ideas come through people. Let’s ask the question: “Who invented ‘big bang’ theology?”
Answer: Georges Lemaître – a mathematician, and a priest. A Monseigneur, in fact, in the Catholic Church. A man who came to his vocation with a pre-existing script, a prior myth or story operating in his conscious and sub-conscious mind.
“First there was nothing…then there was everything.”
But why do we believe that there is such a thing as a ‘beginning’ of the universe? Can we see a beginning? Or do we simply desire a beginning of the story?
We are a story-telling species. All stories have a beginning, a middle and an end. The desire to know all parts is so great in us that we don’t mind creating the parts we cannot see or fathom, out of whole cloth.
Big bang theory is a model that cannot be tested – but for the sake of story-telling, it works perfectly. It is Genesis, remade with with just enough mathematical filligree:
“First there was darkness on the face of the deep; The Lord said, let there be light, and there was light, and it was good.”
“First there was nothing, which became everything.”
Now, what’s really happening out there in space?
The Madness of Gravity
In the 17th Century, Isaac Newton proposed that an invisible force held the moon to the Earth, and the planets to the Sun. “Isaac, you’re crazy,” said his peers. “There is no invisible rope holding the moon to the Earth! That would resemble magic – and we are men of math and logic.”
And then Newton correctly described and predicted the trajectory of the moon around the Earth – and named the force that held it there – gravity. And his peers said, “Hurrah! Of course there is an invisible force holding the moon to the Earth, and the planets to the Sun!”
But Newton was clear in his thinking – “I frame no hypotheses,” he wrote, as to the cause of gravity. He observed the force, but did not know the source. And he did not pretend otherwise.
The Weakest Possible Notion
The force of gravity is weak – surprisingly so. You, grasping a cup or pen in front of you, can overpower the force of the entire planet on the object, and lift it in defiance of gravity. If you could build a stairway as high as the Earth’s atmosphere, (and you had a pressurized, oxygenated suit), you could walk out of the planet’s grasp.
Gravity is a weak force – it falls off quickly between two large bodies – at the square of the distance in inversion. Two distance measures becomes not half as weak, but one quarter the strength. Four becomes one sixteenth. 2 – 1/4. 4 – 1/16th. 8 – 1/64th, and so on.
Three quarters of a century later, the kindly Professor of Königsberg, Prussia, Immanuel Kant, built a ‘thought experiment’ based on Newton’s concept of gravity. Kant (and his peer Pierre LaPlace) decided that the solar system must have accumulated by the weak force of gravity, acting on dust and gas in an empty space.
Dust and gas, pulled together by a force that falls off with exponential weakness, forming ever-burning plasma fires in the sky, and the planets that circle them – is this testable? Is it reproducible? Is it observable?
Newton, Kant, LaPlace all lived in the era before humans put lightning in a bottle. Before electricity. Their model of the universe and solar system was limited by what they did not know – the electrical force.
– Left – An artist’s rendition of how the galaxy formed. Dust swirled around and became planets. This is NASA’s current best scientific theory. Right – Immanuel Kant, NASA Engineer
Plasma – You’re Soaking In It
The universe is not made of nothings which explode; it is made, as are all things in it, of material – charged particles. Atoms and molecules which lose and gain electrons, and trade in them, creating electrical flow; and magnetic currents in space.
There are names for these currents, these rivers of plasma – Birkeland currents, Langmuir sheaths, double layers, magnetic pinches – all properties of charged plasmas, which are visible in the shape and energy signatures of nebulae, quasars and galaxies.
The universe is not an empty dead thing, it is not a hollow nothing in which ‘gravity’ exerts its weak force on objects, calls upon ‘black holes’ and ‘dark matter,’ and other make believe monsters invented by astronomers to make what doesn’t work – ‘big bang theory’ – make some semblance of sense.
The universe is powered electrically – the universe is an electromagnetic plasma, with more current running through a tiny fragment than we have figured out how to generate on earth in our modern era.
– Electrical currents in space
The electromagnetic force is exponentially stronger than the force of gravity, and it doesn’t emerge from large super-objects in space; it’s carried in the plasma current. The EM force is, at its maximum, about 10 to the 39th power stronger than gravity. It is a thousand trillion trillion trillion times stronger. Even in a dispersed plasma, where particles are far apart, the EM force is exponential magnitudes stronger than gravity.
It is the EM force which pulls stars together, and powers the electrical currents flowing through space. The EM force does more than attract, however, it separates, forms layers, divides, creates cell walls; it holds streams apart into distinct currents and cellular structures – precisely as today’s most powerful telescopes are able to see throughout the universe.
So What’s The Hold Up?
NASA scientists, who should delight in these discoveries, instead turn an icy shoulder to the electric universe, and remain dutiful servants to the 17th and 18th Century wind-up gravity models they inherited from Newton, Kant and LaPlace.
You couldn’t wake them if you tried – so it is up to all of us to do the work for them. Learn about plasma, the fourth – and most powerful state of matter. Read about the electric universe. Ask yourself the questions:
What are stars? Planets? Galaxies? What is weather? How are planets born? How do they develop, grow, change? How does it all work?
Ask questions… open your mind, expand your thinking, and read on…