Right on, Mayet.
Between methanol, ethanol, hemp, and quinoa, we could solve a good 90% of the energy and food requirements of the world today (localized and
Many use the argument that methanol is derived from drilled crude as a deterrent. However, methanol can be produced VERY quickly in large amounts
using various forms of biomass gasification. The mixing of a few additives to reduce fuming can help with toxicity issues.
Ethanol, our ol' PGA buddy, can also be used for fuels.
Hemp has all the hydrocarbons we need for most of the plastics we currently rely on crude for, and is continuously renewable.
Hemp has high nutritive value as well, most of the plant being edible, is a complete protein provider, and it can be grown most anywhere...why is it
illegal again? Oh yeah, tobacco and cotton...hmmm....
Well, quinoa isn't illegal (yet) and it is, if anything, more prolific than hemp. Again, everything that's said about hemp can be said for quinoa.
It even grows in cold climates and upper mountainsides... And the grain is quite tasty.
There's really no need for us to be dependant on oil AT ALL right now.
There are already people converting existing vehicles for the use of methanol and ethanol, including parts that resist their corrosive effects.
Biodiesel is a shoe-in. I've seen estimates that biodiesel can be made small and large scale for as little as $1.50 a gallon. Hmmm...
So, why do we need ANWR?
Whatever the reason, I'm not sure we should break out the "environment" as a reason. I find it hard to believe that the drilling and use of crude
is all that "damaging" to our environment.
Reason? Consider: The rot and decay of all carbon-based lifeforms on this planet produce carbon di- and monoxide, water, and other free variables.
Crude oil is the many-million-year product of buried, decaying lifeforms. Had these not been buried for millions of years, they would have re-entered
the cycle of the Earth's biosystem. While the re-entry of this carbonation may assist in other natural changes (such as global warming, and
eventually an ice age, perhaps), it is by no means the sole cause.
I would be more afraid of an approaching:
than a direct threat on our environment.
Maybe we're beyond trying to reverse the problem. Perhaps we should be worrying about surviving the effects. If any of the above happen, and God
forbid all of them at once, we're all going to feel the effects in a big way. We're not going to be worrying about the friggin caribou, or the nice
fragile ecosystem we're disrupting. And no doubt, people at that time are going to be pointing at the oil companies and governments, blaming them
with their last volcanic-ash laden dying breaths.
Big question: How many of us use alternate fuel, or actually pursue it on a personal level. I'm looking into biodiesel for immediate personal use,
with methanol as an eventual goal, but I know I still drive a gasoline automobile.
Bottom line: If you, personally, are not willing to directly do something about the issues you voice, how can you really place blame on anyone but