Fossil Fuel Survialist Guide for the Sane

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Richard S.
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Post Mon. Jul. 20, 2009 8:24 pm

This post is not specifically about anthracite coal but the ongoing effort to demonize fossil fuels in general. I hate to sound like a conspiracist but there is an ongoing effort to spread a lot of misinformation and falsehoods. It comes in many forms and from many sources including where you would expect people to check their facts. The mass media is a prime example but it creeps into everything. The most vocal of them all the poster child Al Gore is reaping millions of dollars and profits from this and also has the potential to make hundreds of billions.

I've been following the Global Warming debate...err sorry, Climate Change debate now that it's actually getting cooler and the energy bill that was recently passed for quite some time now. I've read literally hundreds of documents, opinions and other articles. As the "War on Coal" continues to gather steam the best way to fight ignorance is with facts. I'm going to share with you a lot of things I've learned. Typically the people who support this bill or the anti coal crowd are ill informed and will continually cite bogus information or things that have little truth. The fact is most of them know very little about this issue and are simply repeating what they have heard elsewhere. The people behind this push have the moral ground, no one wants pollution but we also need factual information to make informed decisions. Arm yourself with factual information and you make yourself a formidable opponent when debating this topic.
  • A Starting Point
    George H. Bush proclaimed he was going to be the environmental President. From his administration came some of the first major legislation to combat pollution. Acid Rain, Lead and other things were the large topics of the day. The Clean Air Act was passed in 1990, it's ironic that most people on the Global Warming side of this issue will often complain about people ignoring the science when the very catalyst for where we are at today did just that. In 1980 Congress commissioned a study on acid rain that ultimately cost $600 million dollars over a ten year span. This study was to define and shape some of the language in the the Clean Air Act regarding acid rain. Once completed since the findings did not fit the politics it was dismissed and according to the following article ultimately destroyed the career of one scientist who helped author it. Ever wonder why you won't here anyone speak up? Read the story of Ed Krug why. The following excerpt is from a very long article.
    Some people don't like what Edward Krug has to say about acid rain. That was apparent when he spoke at a seminar on the subject last April in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Krug, a soil scientist who had helped conduct a 10-year federal study of acid rain, spoke with some expertise. He told his audience that he and his fellow researchers on the National Acid Rain Precipitation Assessment Project had determined that acid rain was an environmental nuisance, not a catastrophe.

    It was a message that environmentalists didn't want to hear. One woman hissed at him, "You need to take a reality check."

    Unfortunately for Krug, she isn't the only one who doesn't like his ideas. Congress ignored NAPAP's findings, and when Krug tried to point out that the federal government is forcing utilities to spend billions of dollars to solve a problem that doesn't exist, a federal agency did everything in its power to keep the media from listening to him. Krug's research has upset the plans of some of Washington's most powerful bureaucrats, and they aren't happy. Because of them, the 44-year-old Krug has experienced numerous reality checks.

    Krug is respected in his field. His mentor, John Tedrow, a world-renowned soil scientist at Rutgers University, says that Krug borders "on genius." Krug has developed an internationally accepted theory on lake acidity. He has published in prestigious scientific journals. He organized the Acid Rain Symposium at an annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He has served as an adviser to two directors of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. But today, because of politics, he cannot find work in his field.

    After Krug appeared on 60 Minutes to talk about what his research for NAPAP revealed about the relationship between acid rain and acidic lakes, the EPA branded him a scientist of "limited credibility," called his statements "outlandish," and said he was "on the fringes of environmental science." The Agency, under pressure, later recanted those accusations.

    After he published an internationally praised acid-rain assessment, the EPA organized a scathing secret review that other scientists called a "sham." The producer of the 60 Minutes broadcast says the EPA attempted to discredit Krug while CBS was preparing the story. The EPA denied the charges.

    Why did this happen? "He was," a colleague says, "a bit immature in the area of political science."

    Source: ACID TEST by William Anderson Published in Reason Magazine, January 1992
  • The General Misconception of Increasing Air Pollution
    False and no where near the truth. This may be a surprise to most people but the most common air pollutants associated with burning fossil fuels other than Nitrogen Dioxide have been decreasing since the 70's despite increased power generation, more cars and more buildings all using more energy. This is according to the EPA:

    Annual emissions estimates are used as one indicator of the effectiveness of our programs. The graph below shows that between 1980 and 2008, gross domestic product increased 126 percent, vehicle miles traveled increased 91 percent, energy consumption increased 29 percent, and U.S. population grew by 34 percent. During the same time period, total emissions of the six principal air pollutants dropped by 54 percent. The graph also shows that between 1980 and 2007, CO2 emissions increased by 32%.

    Source: EPA: Air Quality Trends
    EPA: Latest Findings on National Air Quality: 1999 Status and Trends
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  • Asthma
    Over the last two decades there has been an ever increasing amount of asthma, environmentalists have seized on this and will point to fossil fuel burning as the culprit. This section has specifically followed the above one as it shows we have decrease in air pollution and in that same time frame asthma has increased. Perhaps we need to burn more fossil fuels? Of course I'm kidding and I'm not medical doctor or scientist but trying to make a connection between fossil fuel burning and asthma certainly has no correlation with what the facts on air pollution are.

    I have my own theory that it's been caused by modern building techniques that have been implemented over the last few decades that would coincide with the increase in asthma. Buildings of today are much more efficient but that efficiency traps everything inside the dwelling. You also have kids spending more time inside than you did in the past.

    For those of you concerned about asthma and using coal in your home most of the forum members here that have this affliction have suggested using coal has improved their situation as crazy as that sounds. There is medical study that has the same conclusion. See this KB article for more information: Asthma and Coal Heating
  • Using the Word "Pollutant" to Describe CO2
    CO2 of course has continued to rise of with our increased use of fossil fuels. Keep in mind many will try and demonize it and put it into the common category of pollutant. CO2 is not a pollutant but a greenhouse gas and a very important part of the environment. When you look at the big picture even as a greenhouse gas it's a paltry amount when compared to the mother of all greenhouse gases water vapor. Should we call water a pollutant?
  • The Misuse of Imagery
    We've all seen the pictures of the smoke stacks belching smoke. There's one directly above in the image from the EPA. What you may not realize is that is not smoke but water vapor. Let's take this image for example that one poster made the unfortunate mistake of posting within a discussion I was involved in on another forum:
    edit:Image has been removed
    It was posted with the exclamation "those aren't clouds" which ironically is exactly what they are and it took a lot of convincing before he wanted to believe me. We have two types of stacks in this picture. The dominant one in the front and same ones behind it are cooling stacks which produce nothing but water vapor. The skinny stacks to the right would be the ones used to vent the gases from firing coal and since wet scrubbers are used in many coal fired power plants that is most likely all water vapor as well. It's ironic but in the case of the stacks on the right it's pollution control that is being depicted as pollution.

    I went and tracked down the source of the image. The photographer of this image actually used a setting on the camera that will make details such as you have here with black on white stand out. That is why the top of the cooling stack that is producing nothing but water appears to be so black. Not only is it false representation of coal plant by trying to pawn it off as pollution but we have an image that was purposely manipulated to produce the most dramatic effect possible. Here's a quote from the photographer:
    the smoke looks bad (and even worse due to the HDR processing)
  • Subsidies
    This is often thrown about that fossil fuel sector receives massive subsidies, it does as do all other forms of energy we use. Personally I think they should drop all subsidization but that's for another topic. The one document that I'm aware of that gives a very good overview of subsidies is a 2007 report produced by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) which is an arm of the Department of Energy. This report is compilation of different subsidies given to different energy sectors for the year 2007.

    So let's delve into this document shall we? :) In 2007 energy subsidies to all sectors totaled an estimated $16.6 Billion dollars. This document breaks this down into an overall category and then has two other breakdowns for electricity and another for liquid fuels (gas, ethanol for vehicles). Firstly I'll list the totals for all that can be applied to these specific fuels. Keep in mind the net generation from renewable resources is a relatively small percentage of the overall total.
    1. Table ES1
    2. Coal, Natural Gas, Petroleum & Nuclear
      • $6.718 Billion
    3. Renewables
      • $4.875 Billion
    Source: Federal Financial Interventions and Subsidies in Energy Markets 2007
    I'm not going to list every sector, see the document for the full breakdown. Here's the subsidation specifi to sectors for electricity generation.
    • Table ES5
    • Coal
      • Net generation in billion kilowatthours: 1,946
        Subsidization : $854 million
        Cost per megawatthour of generation $0.44
    • Refined Coal
      • Net generation in billion kilowatthours: 72
        Subsidization : $2,156 million
        Cost per megawatthour of generation: $29.81
    • Nuclear
      • Net generation in billion kilowatthours: 794
        Subsidization : $1,267 million
        Cost per meggwatthour of generation: $1.59
      • Net generation in billion kilowatthours: 1
        Subsidization : $14 million
        Cost per meggwatthour of generation: $24.34
    • Wind
      • Net generation in billion kilowatthours: 31
        Subsidization : $724 million
        Cost per megawatthour of generation: $23.37
    Source: Federal Financial Interventions and Subsidies in Energy Markets 2007
    First we'll tackle the "Refined Coal" category as that has the largest subsidy. They don't exactly define what refined coal is but as best I can gather it's coal that has been processed like K-Fuel which has much lower emissions when burned in existing power plants. They mix it with coal and it lowers them significantly. As I understand it this transformed coal is quite similar to anthracite. None the less if this subsidy dropped off the face of the planet since it generates such a little amount of energy it's really insignificant in the grand scheme of things.

    The largest producer of energy is of course is coal, as you can see it receives a little more than wind generation. What is significant is because electricity produced by wind generation is so small the cost per megawatt is staggering. The average home consumes roughly 1 megawatt per month so if all their electric came from wind you would have to add $24 to your bill compared to the 44 cents coal gets.

    Even if we combine both the coal and refined coal subsidies together it's still doesn't amount to much per megawatt. About $1.50

    I'll throw the subsidies in here for liquid fuels simply because the subsidy for ethanol is so out outrageous. I'm not sure if the subsidy the farmers receive for growing the corn itself is also included, the document doesn't specify.
    • Table ES6.
    • Natural Gas and Petroleum Liquids
      • FuelConsumption(quadrillion Btu): 55.78
        Subsidization : $1,921 Million
        Subsidy per million Btu: $0.03
    • Ethanol/Biofuels
      • FuelConsumption(quadrillion Btu): 0.57
        Subsidization : $3,249 Million
        Subsidy per million Btu: $5.72
    Source: Federal Financial Interventions and Subsidies in Energy Markets 2007
    As you can see ethanol received the most subsidization of any sector. This of course would be because of the huge farming lobby. 19000% more than the oil.
    EIA: Federal Financial Interventions and Subsidies in Energy Markets 2007
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  • Radiation
    Radiation in coal and fly ash? Certainly there is as there is radiation in everything. The claim often heard is "Coal ash is more radioactive than nuclear waste." This claim first started making the rounds after this article coincidentally titled "Coal Ash Is More Radioactive than Nuclear Waste" was published in Scientific American and online site supposedly about science. Frankly they and the author should be ashamed of themselves for using such an inflammatory and deceptive title.
    By burning away all the pesky carbon and other impurities, coal power plants produce heaps of radiation

    The popular conception of nuclear power is straight out of The Simpsons: Springfield abounds with signs of radioactivity, from the strange glow surrounding Mr. Burn's nuclear power plant workers to Homer's low sperm count. Then there's the local superhero, Radioactive Man, who fires beams of "nuclear heat" from his eyes. Nuclear power, many people think, is inseparable from a volatile, invariably lime-green, mutant-making radioactivity.

    Coal, meanwhile, is believed responsible for a host of more quotidian problems, such as mining accidents, acid rain and greenhouse gas emissions. But it isn't supposed to spawn three-eyed fish like Blinky.

    Over the past few decades, however, a series of studies has called these stereotypes into question. Among the surprising conclusions: the waste produced by coal plants is actually more radioactive than that generated by their nuclear counterparts. In fact, the fly ash emitted by a power plant—a by-product from burning coal for electricity—carries into the surrounding environment 100 times more radiation than a nuclear power plant producing the same amount of energy. * [See Editor's Note at end of page 2]

    Source: Coal Ash Is More Radioactive than Nuclear Waste By Mara Hvistendahl December 13, 2007
    The editors note that was added a full year after publication of this article:
    *Editor's Note (posted 12/30/08): In response to some concerns raised by readers, a change has been made to this story. The sentence marked with an asterisk was changed from "In fact, fly ash—a by-product from burning coal for power—and other coal waste contains up to 100 times more radiation than nuclear waste" to "In fact, the fly ash emitted by a power plant—a by-product from burning coal for electricity—carries into the surrounding environment 100 times more radiation than a nuclear power plant producing the same amount of energy." Our source for this statistic is Dana Christensen, an associate lab director for energy and engineering at Oak Ridge National Laboratory as well as 1978 paper in Science authored by J.P. McBride and colleagues, also of ORNL.

    As a general clarification, ounce for ounce, coal ash released from a power plant delivers more radiation than nuclear waste shielded via water or dry cask storage.

    Source: Coal Ash Is More Radioactive than Nuclear Waste Page 2 Editors note
    As a general clarification to the author of this article they should be informed their title could just as easily have been "Dirt more radioactive than nuclear waste" under these circumstances and in fact should be a of greater concern. According to the USGS fly ash contains very little radioactivity. The uranium levels are slightly above that of granite rock which is used for kitchen counter tops and is right inside the home. For the average citizen the dirt beneath your feet is the greatest concern because of greater exposure to radiation through Radon gas.

    The graph to the left shows the uranium concentrations in fly ash, the pie chart to the right shows the average exposure to radiation by source. Coal ash falls falls under "other" and accounts for less than 1% of the radiation exposure a person living in the US can expect.

    Radioactive elements in coal and fly ash should not be sources of alarm. The vast majority of coal and the majority of fly ash are not significantly enriched in radioactive elements, or in associated radioactivity, compared to common soils or rocks. This observation provides a useful geologic perspective for addressing societal concerns regarding possible radiation and radon hazard.

    Source: Radioactive Elements in Coal and Fly Ash
    USGS: Radioactive Elements in Coal and Fly Ash
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  • Mercury

    When you burn coal it does emit mercury into the atmosphere, coal fired power plants are the single greatest source of human created emissions within the U.S. Borders. Having said that power plant emissions contribute less than 1% to the global pool to the EPA.
    • Mercury emitted from coal-fired power plants comes from mercury in coal, which is released when the coal is burned. While coal-fired power plants are the largest remaining source of human-generated mercury emissions in the United States, they contribute very little to the global mercury pool. Recent estimates of annual total global mercury emissions from all sources -- both natural and human-generated -- range from roughly 4,400 to 7,500 tons per year. Human-caused U.S. mercury emissions are estimated to account for roughly 3 percent of the global total, and U.S. coal-fired power plants are estimated to account for only about 1 percent.
    • EPA has conducted extensive analyses on mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants and subsequent regional patterns of deposition to U.S. waters. Those analyses conclude that regional transport of mercury emission from coal-fired power plants in the U.S. is responsible for very little of the mercury in U.S. waters. That small contribution will be significantly reduced after EPA’s Clean Air Interstate Rule and Clean Air Mercury Rule are implemented.

    Source: Fact Sheet - EPA’s Clean Air Mercury Rule
    Less than 1%, should that be repeated? Yes it should, coal fired power plants in the U.S. account for less than 1% of the global pool. We need to consider this on a global context. The strict environmental legislation here is more beneficial to others. Not that this is bad thing but if you want to address mercury it has to be done globally.
    The U.S. is the third largest emitter of anthropogenic mercury although its emissions, estimated to account for roughly three percent of the global total, are far lower than emissions from China, the largest source globally. In the U.S. and globally, coal combustion is the largest source of anthropogenic mercury emissions. (United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), The Global Atmospheric Mercury Assessment: Sources, Emissions and Transport (PDF), Geneva, 2008) (44 pp., 6.8M, about PDF).

    EPA has estimated that about one third of U.S. emissions are deposited within the contiguous U.S. and the remainder enters the global cycle.

    Source: Mercury Emissions: The Global Context
    According to this graph found on the EPA website globally mercury comes from three major sources; natural, new emissions from human activity and mercury that has been remitted from previous human activity.
    Natural sources of mercury—such as volcanic eruptions and emissions from the ocean—have been estimated to contribute about a third of current worldwide mercury air emissions, whereas anthropogenic (human-caused) emissions account for the remaining two-thirds. These estimates are highly uncertain. Land, water, and other surfaces can repeatedly re-emit mercury into the atmosphere after its initial release into the environment. Much of the mercury circulating through today's environment is mercury that was released years ago. The pie chart below shows that anthropogenic emissions are roughly split between these re-emitted emissions from previous human activity, and direct emissions from current human activity.


    Mercury Emissions: The Global Context
    Is a mercury a concern? Certainly but again when put into context the arguments again amount to fear mongering and grossly out of proportion to what the facts are. You're more likely to be exposed to mercury from a natural source than a power plant.
    EPA: EPA’s Clean Air Mercury Rule
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  • The Rising Oceans

    Factual but would it surprise you that the statement the oceans are falling would also be true? The perception is that oceans are rising at an alarming rate and we're all going to have beach front property soon. The earliest historical records I have found are available on NOAA's (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) site. Let's take a look at the historical record for The Battery, New York which goes back to 1856:

    The mean sea level trend is 2.77 millimeters/year with a 95% confidence
    interval of +/- 0.09 mm/yr based on monthly mean sea level data from
    1856 to 2006 which is equivalent to a change of 0.91 feet in 100 years.

    Source: Mean Sea Level Trend: The Battery, New York
    I'm no scientist and my eyesight isn't as good as it was when I was younger but I'll swear what I see here is a steady increase since 1856 without any significant deviation? Seems to me the rise in the sea level at this particular station would be normal given we have the same pattern over nearly the last 150 years. Now someone could argue that this graph show the beginning of the industrial age and I would counter that the use of fossil fuels has increased exponentially in this time frame yet we see a steady increase.

    As I already mentioned it might surprise you the sea levels are dropping and that is the case, also on NOAA's site you can find graphs with dropping levels such as this one from Stockholm, Sweden:

    The mean sea level trend is -3.94 millimeters/year with a 95% confidence
    interval of +/- 0.35 mm/yr based on monthly mean sea level data from
    1889 to 2003 which is equivalent to a change of -1.29 feet in 100 years.

    Source: Mean Sea Level Trend: Stockholm, Sweden
    Not only does this graph show them dropping but at significantly faster rate than they are rising in New York. I'm not going to try and explain or justify either of these occurrences, the point of this is to show that the sea is alive and it is both rising and dropping. There is after all ancient cities under many feet of water that were inundated long before the industrial age began and the population of the earth was insignificant compared to what it is today.

This article is not intended to be anti-environmental, my personal opinions on the subject is we need to protect the environment but that protection needs to be done in a practical and prudent manner based on facts. The fact is the use of fossil fuels will never be perfectly environmental friendly, even if you eliminate all emissions you will still have environmental damage through mining, drilling and other activities. In my opinion a small price to pay to maintain our way of life. In the U.S. we have one of the highest standards of livings on the planet in part because of cheap energy produced through fossil fuels, specifically that which is produced from coal. They make our lives prosperous, keep our houses warm and make life generally much easier than what it would be without them. Many people want to change that and take this country down a path which I consider to be quite dangerous which may very well be completely unnecessary. I'll reiterate the purpose of this article is to show that much of the doom and gloom you'll hear in the media when examined closely has little or no factual basis. I hope that I have enlightened some of you and provided you with some information you were not aware of, the drop in air pollution stands out as I was surprised myself that not only has it dropped but by more than a full 50%. Certainly if you are using coal to heat your home you might be coming under fire from your friends, neighbors and colleagues. My hope is that you'll be able to use the information provided to enlighten to what reality is.

I will note this article will be followed up by part 2: "Consensus My Ass" where I will be discussing the biggest sledge hammer the consensus that CO2 is causing Global Warming.......errr sorry Climate Change.

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Post Mon. Jul. 20, 2009 8:48 pm

Richard, sounds like a good topic for Episode 7. Maybe 8, 9, and 10 also :D

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Post Mon. Jul. 20, 2009 10:10 pm

Excellent compilation of truths about coal! Good job Richard!

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Post Mon. Jul. 20, 2009 10:16 pm

Richard, nice post, good read. you may be intrested that this past weekend I attended a h.s. grad. party and the consensus among the recent grads was approx. 60% laughed at the idea of global warming, sorry Al, climate change. The majority did not buy into the current trend and left me with the feeling they thought of the "climate thing" more like a "marketing thing" for selling goods. There is a glimmer of hope out there for the future.

Back to your article, I read a little with regards to climate issues and no one is talking about the fact that we are currently on the upswing (temperature) as we exit the little ice age of 25,000-28,000 years ago. Our planet hit a low temp. back then and a natural progression of warming up is coenciding with the presence of modern man. Through ice core sampling, bogg samplings, lake sediment sampling, etc... scientists have PROVEN the world temps. were greater in the middle ages vs. current temps. And just think not one coal power plant existed back then. Hmmmmmmm. Remember modern meterologly started recording temperature records somewhere around 1874, and the records were not global. So their (modern meterology) data set will show a rise in temp. and then modern scientists draw their conclusions based on the only concrete data set avail..


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Post Mon. Jul. 20, 2009 10:46 pm

Your argument is logical, factual, and coherent.

Unfortunately, none of that matters.

The other side cares not a whit about facts. Those who legitimately buy in to the GCC idea do so based on emotion. The ringleaders push GCC in a naked grasp for power. They know it's BS, they know Cap & Trade is a sham, but they don't care. It's not about saving the planet, and it's not about helping you. It's about them getting more of your money and more control over your life.

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 12:08 am

Very well said!

It's what I wanted to say, but I drink too much & have a bad temper! :lol:

Just to touch on the point of asthma....... As a life-long asthmatic, I know what triggers it, when it will trigger it & how bad it will get. NOBODY can tell me otherwise. Having said that, here are some FACTS: Never once has an asthma attack been brought on by an internal combustion engine. I have been in close proximity to them since I could walk. My grandfather worked on cars since he could walk. Same with my father. As a boy, I would always be at grandpa's garage while he was tuning a vehicle WITH NOT ONE EMISSION CONTROL PRESENT. Garage door was closed because it was 10 degrees outside (only ran for 5 minutes -- we're not that stupid). No attack then, or the thousands of other times I have been in a garage with an engine running.

I also spent 2 years out west: 1 year & 7 months in Phoenix & 4 months in Northern California. First time in my life that I ever saw a brown cloud hovering over a city. Coincidently, it was also the first time in my life that I was able to leave my residence without an Albuterol inhaler in my back pocket!! MY ASTHMA WAS NEVER BETTER THAN OUT WEST, WHERE THERE ARE MORE PEOPLE & MORE POLLUTION!

Those are FACTS. No environmentalist, or doctor for that matter can refute MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCES.

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 2:50 am

Smitty, most of the literature I've read on asthma says its from other causes, it's rare you'll find a legitimate report that says it's from burning fossil fuels. I don't believe they know what the cause is for the recent rise, I'd imagine it being diagnosed more is one reason. Having said that I don't think you need to be rocket scientist to figure out if the air pollution has dropped in the same time frame we have an increase in cases you should probably look elsewhere for a cause.

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 9:26 am

Just wondering how a tree hugger heats their homes? Unless they are totally green( solar or wind) don`t we all consume a fossel fuel?
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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 9:41 am

Excellent question Samhill, I believe you have a few camps where this is concerned. Some can afford their own solar or wind but because of the unreal cost involved their isn't a whole lot of them. There is some others that have simply done what they call "going off the grid" living a simpler life. The last category is where most of them fall I believe, they purchase "Green energy" form the power company. Basically they pay what amounts to a sin tax so they can say the electricity they are using from the grid is green. The sin tax doesn't cover all the costs and that energy is heavily subsidized by everyone. So I guess we can all say we are green. The other place where this argument fails is if everyone wanted to do that there simply wouldn't be enough to go around...

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 9:55 am

Just think if you pay extra for the green energy shouldn`t the power co. run seperate green lines so that your power doesn`t get all mixed up with that dirty energy. Makes me wonder where all these smart people with extra money to throw around got that money? In my case I have to go with what gets me the most bang for my buck since there aren`t that many of them.

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 9:59 am

Wow, awesome information!

Thanks, Richard

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 10:46 am

The earth has been cooling since the day it was created. I do believe that C02 emission have sped that process along. Anyone who denies this with some much supporting evidence has their head in the sand. It's hard to sort through the real facts from facts that are manafactured to make a certain point. I love coal becaue it's cheap but I would rather have my local electrical company supplying me with energy from clean sources. Humans have *censored* on the earth for a long time and I believe we need to find clean renewable energy for the future. We have polluted the ocean, lakes, the air, etc. Even if fossils fuels burned cleanly we would still face the fact that they are non-renewable so once we used them up there is no more. I believe that the technology is out there for a clean America but we need the resolve to make it happen and to stop clinging to old ways.

Great information on the original post but at the end of the day we need clean renewable energy in this country and while we make the transition we should be using natural gas to fuel our cars, homes and to produce electricity. We have huge finds of natural gas in this country but for some reason we are not using gas. Politicians need to get their head out of you know where and stop pushing their own agendas. Politics and special interest groups are crippling this country.
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Richard S.
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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 11:37 am

traderfjp wrote:Anyone who denies this with some much supporting evidence has their head in the sand.
Really? Did you know this all based on unproven models? It's like a domino effect. You have one study that comes to one conclusion. The next scientists comes along and then bases his study on the previous. The issue is that if the previous study was using flawed data or incorrect models everything is flawed. If you look around what you'll find is that many scientists are not arguing as to whether the globe is warming, the augment is to to what is causing it. What we have is a a bunch of unproven models that in many cases can't even follow historical events. Let's look at how much CO2 has gone into the atmosphere in the last 50 years:
Note the scale of this graph is only 1% so we can see something. :o Here it is at 100% scale:
So we're basing global warming on gas that has increased in the atmosphere what appears to be 1/100 of 1% in a 50 year time span. Now that may be significant or might not be but don't you think their might be some other variables involved here? Say like water vapor which in the greenhouse gas world trumps CO2 by many magnitudes? Maybe the sun might be a variable?

Let's suppose for second they are correct, do you think maybe it might be a good thing?

....“His mind is still so open and flexible,” Sacks says. Which makes Dyson something far more formidable than just the latest peevish right-wing climate-change denier. Dyson is a scientist whose intelligence is revered by other scientists — William Press, former deputy director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and now a professor of computer science at the University of Texas, calls him “infinitely smart.” Dyson — a mathematics prodigy who came to this country at 23 and right away contributed seminal work to physics by unifying quantum and electrodynamic theory — not only did path-breaking science of his own; he also witnessed the development of modern physics, thinking alongside most of the luminous figures of the age, including Einstein, Richard Feynman, Niels Bohr, Enrico Fermi, Hans Bethe, Edward Teller, J. Robert Oppenheimer and Edward Witten, the “high priest of string theory” whose office at the institute is just across the hall from Dyson’s. Yet instead of hewing to that fundamental field, Dyson chose to pursue broader and more unusual pursuits than most physicists — and has lived a more original life.

Among Dyson’s gifts is interpretive clarity, a penetrating ability to grasp the method and significance of what many kinds of scientists do.....

Source: The Civil Heretic
So we have guy that worked along side some of the brightest minds of this century, do you think we might at least listen to what he has to say?

The thing is Trader, I don't have my head in the sand, my eyes are wide open. You only need to dig a bit and you'll find plenty of information out there. That's the primary issue, you have to dig for it. The media can care less, they need a crisis to sell and CO2 fits the bill.

Is it a list you're looking for of some really qualified people?
U. S. Senate Minority Report:
More Than 700 International Scientists Dissent Over
Man-Made Global Warming Claims
Scientists Continue to Debunk “Consensus” in 2008 & 2009

This Senate report is not a “list” of scientists, but a report that includes full biographies of
each scientist and their quotes, papers and links for further reading. The scientists featured
in the report express their views in their own words, complete with their intended subtleties
and caveats. This Senate report features the names, biographies, academic/institutional
affiliation, and quotes of literally hundreds of additional international scientists who
publicly dissented from man-made climate fears. This report lists the scientists by name,
country of residence, and academic/institutional affiliation. It also features their own
words, biographies, and weblinks to their peer reviewed studies, scientific analyses and
original source materials as gathered from directly from the scientists or from public
statements, news outlets, and websites in 2007, 2008 and 2009.

The distinguished scientists featured in this new report are experts in diverse fields,
including: climatology; geology; biology; glaciology; biogeography; meteorology;
oceanography; economics; chemistry; mathematics; environmental sciences; astrophysics,
engineering; physics and paleoclimatology. Some of those profiled have won Nobel Prizes
for their outstanding contribution to their field of expertise and many shared a portion of
the UN IPCC Nobel Peace Prize with Vice President Gore. Additionally, these scientists
hail from prestigious institutions worldwide, including: Harvard University; NASA;
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Center for
Atmospheric Research (NCAR); Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the UN IPCC; the
Danish National Space Center; U.S. Department of Energy; Princeton University; the
Environmental Protection Agency; University of Pennsylvania; Hebrew University of
Jerusalem; the International Arctic Research Centre; the Pasteur Institute in Paris; the
Belgian Weather Institute; Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute; the University of
Helsinki; the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S., France, and Russia; the University
of Pretoria; University of Notre Dame; Abo Akademi University in Finland; University of
La Plata in Argentina; Stockholm University; Punjab University in India; University of
Melbourne; Columbia University; the World Federation of Scientists; and the University of
A sample:
“Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can
speak quite frankly….As a scientist I remain skeptical...The main basis of the claim that
man’s release of greenhouse gases is the cause of the warming is based almost entirely
upon climate models. We all know the frailty of models concerning the air-surface

- Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to
receive a PhD in meteorology, and formerly of NASA, who has authored more than 190
studies and has been called “among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years.”
Want some more ? I have library full of information... ohh wait I'm saving that for the "Consensus My Ass" segment of this.

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Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 3:48 pm

I honestly didn't listen to the whole interview but he said that we don't know what C02 will do to the earth and that we need to observe and see what happens. It doesn't matter. Common sense tells us that spewing toxins into the air is not good for the environment. Have you even gotten a wiff of diesel fuel burning or the exhaust coming out of your car. Do we really need an expert to tell us this is dangerous to our environment. We need clean energy and have done enough damage in the past. Facts can be manipulated anyway you want so even though you have all this information I can't determine its validity. 50% of our electricity is from coal. The real energy should go into figuring out how to bridge the gap between fossil fuels and clean energy.

What is your best case scenario? Do u thnk we should keep burning fossils fuels and the heck with clean energy? Should we all start burning bit?
Last edited by traderfjp on Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 8:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Richard S.
Posts: 12734
Joined: Fri. Oct. 01, 2004 8:35 pm
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Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite
Location: NEPA

Post Tue. Jul. 21, 2009 7:56 pm

traderfjp wrote: Do u thnk we should keep burning fossils fuels and the heck with clean energy?
I don't think that's the case at all. I think clean energy is inevitable. Ultimately fossil fuels are a finite source so we need a replacement. At some point in time either fossil fuels will become scarce and the market will demand a solution. Oil is probably not too far off for that. The more likely scenario is someone will invent a way to cheaply harness renewable energy. The current legislation is no way going to spur that one, you're artificiality increasing the costs of one fuel to make another competitive. Once it's competitive what incentive do they have to make it more efficient? If anything it's going to drive the coal industry to produce more efficient and better methods which is a short term goal but in the meantime the renewable energy market which is our ultimate goal does not have that same incentive.

Let's say we have Joe the apple farmer that has bee using tried and true methods for century and he can get an apple to market for 50 cents. John his neighbor invents a different way to farm apples that is much better for the soil but his apples cost $1. If we take 25 cents from Joe and give it to John what incentive does John have to improve his new method?

Greed is enormous driving force in innovation and new technologies, if you take that incentive away the technology is not going to advance such as it would under normal market conditions. Creating cheap energy is enormous prize for someone that can achieve it.
traderfjp wrote: Facts can be manipulated anyway you want so even though you have all this information I can't determine its validity.
All the sources I have quoted for numbers and other information are from US government agencies like the EPA, USGS, and NOAA. That by itself does not make them absolute but I'm not sure where you would go to try and find similar data that can be deemed unbiased. I'm sure in a lot of cases it simply doesn't exist elsewhere.

The one thing I have learned from this debate is you want to make a point your sources better be credible or you yourself lose credibility. Certainly it would be hypocritical of me to be skewering the media for spreading false information on one hand and then doing it myself. I've checked everything myself to determine it's validity and it's good enough for me.

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