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A Story from Grist Magazine

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  • rickrise@earthlink.net
    I thought you might be interested in this feature in Grist Magazine: Take a Peak, by Amanda Griscom Little. An interview with peak-oil provocateur Matthew
    Message 1 of 4 , Nov 3, 2005
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      I thought you might be interested in this feature in Grist Magazine:

      Take a Peak, by Amanda Griscom Little. An interview with peak-oil provocateur Matthew Simmons.
      http://www.grist.org/news/maindish/2005/11/03/simmons/index.html?source=daily
    • Mike Neuman
      For those who don t believe we have peaked out already on oil supply, there s really even more urgency to reduce burning oil for the purpose of slowing
      Message 2 of 4 , Nov 5, 2005
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        For those who don't believe we have peaked out already on oil supply,
        there's really even more urgency to reduce burning oil for the purpose
        of slowing accelerating global warming. That is to preserve the
        safety of our climate from catastrophic global warming:
        http://madison.indymedia.org/feature/display/26626/index.php

        Both problems have approximately the same solution however. Simmons
        hits the nail on the head in that respect, but the nail won't sink
        into the American mindset unless the president greases it with a
        speech to the nation. That is unlikely to happen any time soon, of
        course.

        Mike

        Quote from Grist interview with peak-oil provocateur Matthew Simmons:

        There's nothing we can do to solve our problems, but everything we do
        that helps is a bridge to buy us time. Ultimately, we have to actually
        create some new forms of energy that don't exist today. Solar and wind
        are, of course, electricity, so not helpful near-term on the
        transportation front, which is the most intractable part of the
        problem. Biofuels need to be intensely examined, but corn-based
        ethanol is a scam because it requires such intensive oil inputs.

        What about the shift to hybrid engines and, ultimately, hydrogen?

        There are some 220 million cars currently on the road in the U.S.
        alone. The problem with that concept, which so many people think is
        the way you end the energy war, is it will take 30 years to turn over
        the entire vehicle fleet. We don't have 15 or 20 years, much less 30.

        We need to think on a grander scale. We have to find, for instance,
        far more energy-efficient methods of transporting products by rail and
        ship rather than trucks. We have to liberate the workforce from
        office-based jobs and let them work in their village, through the
        modern technology of emails and faxes and video conferencing. We have
        to address the distribution of food: Much of the food in supermarkets
        today comes from at least a continent or two away. We need to return
        to local farms. And we have to attack globalization: As energy prices
        soar, manufacturing things close to home will begin to make sense again.

        --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, rickrise@e... wrote:
        >
        >
        > I thought you might be interested in this feature in Grist Magazine:
        >
        > Take a Peak, by Amanda Griscom Little. An interview with peak-oil
        provocateur Matthew Simmons.
        >
        http://www.grist.org/news/maindish/2005/11/03/simmons/index.html?source=daily
        >
      • Todd Edelman
        ... [...] but the ... YEAH, sure, a greasey Texan could HELP here BUT at the same time there are mid-term elections coming up relatvely soon and if the
        Message 3 of 4 , Nov 5, 2005
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          --- Mike Neuman <mtneuman@...> wrote:
          [...] but the
          > nail won't sink
          > into the American mindset unless the president
          > greases it with a
          > speech to the nation. [...]

          YEAH, sure, a greasey Texan could HELP here BUT at the
          same time there are mid-term elections coming up
          relatvely soon and if the opposition has a united
          voice on this it could also help... I also prefer a
          different metaphor than a coffin for the "American
          mindset"... how about a plant that requires fertilizer
          and water (if only drip-irrigation)?

          ---

          > Quote from Grist interview with peak-oil provocateur
          > Matthew Simmons: [...] The problem with that
          concept, which so many
          > people think is
          > the way you end the energy war, is it will take 30
          > years to turn over
          > the entire vehicle fleet. We don't have 15 or 20
          > years, much less 30.
          YEAH, and the car companies themselves are now saying
          a widespread workable hydrogen scheme cant happen at a
          technical level for 20 years anyway, so this would
          mean at least 50 years if added to the 30 figure...

          [...]Simmons: We need to think on a grander scale. We
          have to
          > find, for instance,
          > far more energy-efficient methods of transporting
          > products by rail and
          > ship rather than trucks. We have to liberate the
          > workforce from
          > office-based jobs and let them work in their
          > village, through the
          > modern technology of emails and faxes and video
          > conferencing. We have
          > to address the distribution of food: Much of the
          > food in supermarkets
          > today comes from at least a continent or two away.
          > We need to return
          > to local farms. And we have to attack globalization:
          > As energy prices
          > soar, manufacturing things close to home will begin
          > to make sense again.
          THE problem here is that the major international
          associations involved in promoting rail
          <www.uic.asso.fr> and public transport <www.uitp.com>
          are going on and on about soaring demand for
          long-distance cargo and personal mobility as
          acceptable symptoms and rights of our supposedly free,
          globalised world.

          Their solution is more freight rail, sometimes
          connected with sea cargo (for example a development of
          the water route from Boston to Norway then by rail on
          to Russia and China) and more long-distance passenger
          rail, especially in Europe, with less priority on
          regional rail... and in the urban context support of
          buses, trams and metro, and cycling sometimes, which
          is fine, but too little support for densification. The
          emphasis is too much on PT trying to cover the same
          distances as automobiles, with surburbanisation not
          portrayed as a negative, but as a challenge for
          sustainability... with sustainable mobility being the
          solution.

          Todd, Green Idea Factory



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        • Mike Neuman
          ... as ... the ... Yes, the problem is that people nowadays expect unlimited mobility. The other problem is they get most of their products from afar, which
          Message 4 of 4 , Nov 10, 2005
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            --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, Todd Edelman
            <traintowardsthefuture@y...> wrote:
            > ...
            > The
            > emphasis is too much on PT trying to cover the same distances as
            > automobiles, with surburbanisation not portrayed as a negative, but
            as
            > a challenge for sustainability... with sustainable mobility being
            the
            > solution.
            >
            > Todd, Green Idea Factory

            Yes, the problem is that people nowadays expect unlimited mobility.
            The other problem is they get most of their products from afar, which
            requires transport, rather than in the past when most products were
            produced locally or the local folks did without them.

            We are now facing an increasingly more tragic and apparent problem of
            global warming, with dire consequences already starting - the heat
            wave in Europe in 2003 which killed 35,000 people; increased
            intensity of hurricanes; increased flooding and drought; melting of
            the Arctic ice cap and the permafrost region; coral reefs
            dying, ... , are all believed to be symptomatic of global warming
            according to the scientists who study such things.

            What most people don't stop to realize is that petroleum oil
            combustion is required for virtually every mile a product gets
            shipped, and for virtually every mile a person travels by car, plane,
            boat and even train (via diesel engines).

            Transportation is therefore key to reducing greenhouse gas emissions,
            and since (motorized) transportation is the U.S.'s largest
            greenhouse gas emitting sector, and since the U.S. is the largest
            emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, it follows that if the
            world is to have any hope whatsoever of averting the tragedy of
            anthropogenic global warming, then the U.S. must begin dramatically
            reducing its total emissions from motorized transportation, as soon
            as theorectically possible.

            Mike Neuman
            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ConserveNOW/
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