Monday, January 03, 2011
Pardon My Gas
I'm wondering if anyone in Congress realizes what our energy policies and roadblocks are really doing to our economy. I've been reading lately that sales of battery powered and hybrid cars are slim to none. Why? They just aren't practical. I was reading an ad this morning where you can go all of 100 miles on one charge. That means I could barely get up to Sandpoint to visit a friend, and back.
How many wind turbines does it require to produce enough energy to supply a town the size of Coeur d'Alene for a year? Where would we put them anyway? And how do we get the power to the grid? How do even more remote places do it? They don't.
Solar panels? The same thing. Not practical when the "sun don't shine". Ethanol for your car gives poorer mileage and is hard on the engine. What's the point other than giving subsidies to farmers. Eat the corn! It's good for you!
I'm not saying these ideas are all bad. I am suggesting we're cutting off our nose to spite our face with technologies that are not yet ready for prime time. If not in this country, certainly nowhere else.
Consider China's up and coming love affair with the automobile. Consider the expanse of that country. To get from point A to point B in a battery powered car is laughable. Forget ethanol, forget solar and wind. Good old gas power is the up and comer.
Third world countries too. As they develop industry it isn't going to be powered by solar or wind but gas, oil and coal.
Hampering the exploration for and development of fields in this country and off shore makes no sense. Isn't it better to use our own? Consider, too, that world market I just outlined. Who is going to supply them? Canada? China? Venezuela? All the gas and oil producing middle eastern countries? Getting rich. Healthy economies. Oil at $90 a barrel. Why? Because they can. And we're stuck with it because we deny ourselves sources of our own.
I hope Congress will be happy commuting on bicycles. Of course it will cut down the length of their sessions which isn't all bad. It will completely destroy what's left of the airline industry. And every other industry that uses oil in any phase of manufacturing - be it an ingredient in a product or a lubrication for machinery.
Unintended consequences. That's what our government policies do best at creating.
For me, I'll stick to our 10 cylinder Ford 250. Driven at a reasonable speed we get reasonable mileage. We get to our destination in reasonable time and safely in a reasonably sized vehicle.
I ride my bike around the neighborhood. What's next? Hair shirts? The only one's around here are on the dogs. Where they belong.