posted by Beachcoma
Hydrogen is not the way forward. At least not for now. Unless it's produced by bacteria or algae: Don't Call it Pond Scum; It's a Hydrogen Factory.
An in the meantime, while they perfect that technology and lay down the infrastructure, I'm endorsing biodiesel produced from algae: Pond Scum and
I do not mean to denigrate any (honest) effort to develop alternative fuels. I am against some of them like Archer Daniels Midland - ADM - who are
scamming the taxpayers with ethanol. But for Senator Dole’s earmarks, there would be no ethanol on the American market today. It would have died
quietly on its own DEMERITS. But by shrewdly playing on our fears and lack of good knowledge, ADM has cost US taxpayers 10s of 100s of millions of
dollars. And is going strong in 2007.
Ethanol has one very useful quality. It will not pre-ignite. This allows race car engines to run very high compression ratios. When ethanol is mixed
with nitroglycerine the fuel thereby gains power for racing cars. The downside is that ethanol contains about 26,000 btu per gallon and gasoline
contains about 34,000 btu per gallon. Mathematically speaking, ethanol has about 76% as much energy as gasoline. In a car race, that means 1 or 2 more
pit stops when burning ethanol over the gasoline burring cars. A no-no.
For sure not all America's corn is used to make ADM ethanol. But, between 1995 and 2003, the US Department of Agriculture paid corn growers $37.3 b.
A giant subsidy. But ALL the ethanol ADM makes uses corn subsidized by US taxpayers. They get to pay for it TWO times. The ethanol.
Production capacity of ethanol is being expanded with tax credit money and should reach 8 billion gallons a year by 2010. So how much is 8 billion?
In 2005, the US consumed 134 billion gallons of gasoline. 8 is 6% of 134. So, if ADM (and others) reach their goal, they will “replace” 6% of
When ethanol is mixed with gasoline, it changes the evaporation rate in gasoline unfavorably, which then requires a different refining process. We are
already refining 45 different blends of gasoline around the country. Each blend must be kept separate from the other blends. All of that means
separate pipes, tanks and trucks. If we add ethanol, we may have up to 90 blends. And UP goes the price at the pump.
Last, researchers have shown that if you add in the underlying energy consuming processes - tilling the field, planting, fertilizing, harvesting,
storing, transporting, processing and finally, blending, then you have invested MORE than 26,000 btus into each gallon of ethanol making it a net
So far, all the efforts at replacing fossil fuels have fallen far short of the hopes or promises. For the production of electricity, like it or not,
we are going nuclear. France is already 100%. We are at 10% but with 80 new plants in the planning stage, by 2040 we will be well past 50%. We still
have no way to dispose of the spent fuel, most of it is stored at the plant site waiting to be taken out to Nevada.
Taxpayers need to be watchful as there are efforts afoot to put the cost of the 8o power plants squarely on the backs of long suffering taxpayers as
part of the National Security Plan. Then, after “you” have paid for the plants, they will “sell” you the electricity for about 10-12 cents a
KW. That’s called screwing you "going and coming!" But, what the hey? How much money did you send your congressman last year?
You can bet
the Nuclear Power Industry sent them 10s of millions. Don’t we really have the BEST Congress money can buy?
CFR. Campaign Finance Reform.
NO private money allowed. Taxpayers pay for it all including primary campaigns. It would be the best investment
in democracy we could ever make! Guys like Ron Paul would have the same shot as Hillary Clinton. Hmm? Is that what you really want?
Data from an article by Robert Bryce found at slate.msn.com...
[edit on 9/11/2007 by donwhite]