Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Dreaming of energy independence
San Fancisco Chronicle ^ | 8/7/5 | Debra J. Saunders

Posted on 08/07/2005 8:57:14 AM PDT by SmithL

I HAVE a dream: President Bush pushes through a grand compromise -- he bucks Big Oil and Detroit by raising automobile fuel-efficiency standards, while enviros grind their teeth and support oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

That dream was interrupted Thursday by U.S. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman, who was in San Francisco to speak at the Commonwealth Club. He arrived here just as Congress passed a 1,745-page energy bill that doesn't do much to improve fuel efficiency but has billions of dollars in tax breaks for energy companies.

I've clung to this dream because raising fuel efficiency would reduce American demand for oil, while opening up ANWR would increase oil supply. Both measures would make America, which imports 58 percent of its oil, more energy independent.

Bodman, however, wasn't too interested in pushing hard for four-wheel fuel efficiency. The administration is concerned, he told me in an interview, about "the unintended consequences of increasing the CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standards on light vehicles" -- to wit: that higher CAFE standards could cause manufacturers to make lighter, and hence less safe, vehicles.

To my CAFE/ANWR proposal specifically, Bodman responded, "Your trade-off -- Does it make sense? Sure, you get A, and you give up B, and does that sort of thing make sense? Well, if you were going to make the change that you suggest, first of all you'd have to add an additional feature if you're producing vehicles that are just as safe or safer." (In other words, first you've got to call for measures that can impede fuel efficiency.)

The mechanics of legislation also get in the way. Congress had a chance to call for oil-conserving CAFE standards but failed. Don't think it is because Democrats didn't get what they wanted: Labor-loving Dems don't want

(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: anwr; cafe; oilindependence

1 posted on 08/07/2005 8:57:15 AM PDT by SmithL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: SmithL

I would go read the rest of the article, because I think I might agree on some points with the author, but...

...I always feel as if I need to wash my keyboard after visiting the SF Chronicle.


2 posted on 08/07/2005 9:00:51 AM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL

"I HAVE a dream: President Bush pushes through a grand compromise -- he bucks Big Oil and Detroit by raising automobile fuel-efficiency standards, while enviros grind their teeth and support oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. "


Apparently opium dens are still legal? What a pipe dream!!


3 posted on 08/07/2005 9:27:36 AM PDT by Blzbba (For a man who does not know to which port he is sailing, no wind is favorable - Seneca)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL

Just think of the fuel savings if only we'd stop illegal aliens from crossing the border.


4 posted on 08/07/2005 9:29:55 AM PDT by mtbopfuyn (Legality does not dictate morality... Lavin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
I have a dream Debra - you're a [Expletive Deleted] idiot.

CAFE standards are exactly why people are paying $2.40 a gallon for gas.

5 posted on 08/07/2005 9:31:50 AM PDT by Extremely Extreme Extremist (If there was a problem, yo! I'll solve it!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mtbopfuyn

Wow, proof that any thread can be turned into an illegal alien thread within four posts!


6 posted on 08/07/2005 9:34:18 AM PDT by Dog Gone
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
The administration is concerned, he told me in an interview, about "the unintended consequences of increasing the CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standards on light vehicles" -- to wit: that higher CAFE standards could cause manufacturers to make lighter, and hence less safe, vehicles.

Well, as one who started driving in the '70s, in vehicles dating from the '60s and before, I would have to agree about the net effect of the CAFE standards.

Before anyone fires up the flames, keep in mind that crash survivability in the older vehicles, were one to install air bags, seat belts, and the other modern safety doo dads would be likely to be far better given the greater structural integrity of those older vehicles. I remember children getting in trouble for jumping on the car because they would scratch the paint!

7 posted on 08/07/2005 9:38:29 AM PDT by Smokin' Joe (God save us from the fury of the do-gooders!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
Might be good idea to stop NE libs from burning oil to heat their houses first.

How about CAFE for jet planes, boats, large trucks too?

How about forbidding the use of oil for electrical power?

Oil should be saved for chemicals and cars.
8 posted on 08/07/2005 10:38:23 AM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
Might be good idea to stop NE libs from burning oil to heat their houses first.

How about CAFE for jet planes, boats, large trucks too?

How about forbidding the use of oil for electrical power?

Oil should be saved for chemicals and cars.
9 posted on 08/07/2005 10:39:57 AM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL

When the Bobby Kennedy Jr. enviro-whacko crowd throws their Left-leaning weight behind constructing the Cape Wind project and all start driving hybrids, maybe I'll listen (just a little).


10 posted on 08/07/2005 10:56:53 AM PDT by DTogo (U.S. out of the U.N. & U.N out of the U.S.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: John Jamieson

And electrical generation should be 100 percent coal. Zero natgas.


11 posted on 08/07/2005 11:09:38 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Scratch a Liberal. Uncover a Fascist)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: Smokin' Joe

We continue to refuse to face the simple fact that we have killed and seriously injured tens of thousands of people with CAFE standards. There are far better ways but so far, big oil/big ethanol, big environment-as-a-fundraiser and big government have done a waltz to subsidize the problems rather than make any actual attempt to solve them; witness the Department of Energy. What have they done?


12 posted on 08/07/2005 11:18:17 AM PDT by AmericanVictory (Should we be more like them, or they like us?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Eric in the Ozarks

Don't forget nuclear.


13 posted on 08/07/2005 11:23:02 AM PDT by kenth
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
amazing.....not one single referance to nuclear power.....which would help drop the price of oil through the floor if we started building nuke power plants.

I'd like to see us exceed france and get nuke power to supply around 85% of our energy needs.

14 posted on 08/07/2005 11:23:09 AM PDT by Sonny M ("oderint dum metuant")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mtbopfuyn

What about all that gas we'd burn chasing after them?


15 posted on 08/07/2005 11:23:40 AM PDT by kenth
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: SmithL

" he bucks Big Oil and Detroit by raising automobile fuel-efficiency standards.... "

Naaah won't happen.
The Japs would dominate the automobile market quickly...


16 posted on 08/07/2005 11:30:59 AM PDT by traumer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
ANWR apparently has the ability to provide 1 million barrels a day for some years. 1 Mb/d

US consumption is about 20 Mb/d.

World consumption is nearly 84 Mb/d

World production is nearly 84 Mb/d

17 posted on 08/07/2005 11:31:42 AM PDT by RightWhale (Withdraw from the 1967 UN Outer Space Treaty and open the Land Office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Eric in the Ozarks

Can coal production be ramped up and coal plants be built fast enough to meet the comiong deficit? Can we afford the investment? Same for nukes, can we get them up and running soon enough to avoid a disjunct in energy production? Can we afford to build the plants in time?


18 posted on 08/07/2005 11:34:21 AM PDT by RightWhale (Withdraw from the 1967 UN Outer Space Treaty and open the Land Office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: AmericanVictory
The crying shame is that durability and structural integrity have been sacrificed on the altar of mileage.

Instead of building vehicles which can last for decades, we build throwaway vehicles which must be recycled and replaced.

Does that really save energy in the long run?

I have not seen anyone factor in the energy cost of replacing those vehicles every few years.

All our vehicles are '82 or older and still running fine.

19 posted on 08/07/2005 11:42:40 AM PDT by Smokin' Joe (God save us from the fury of the do-gooders!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: RightWhale

Ideally production should run apace with consumption or more storage would be required; take out the politics and we could return to a more self-sufficient system.


20 posted on 08/07/2005 11:48:57 AM PDT by Old Professer (As darkness is the absence of light, evil is the absence of good; innocence is blind.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Smokin' Joe
I have not seen anyone factor in the energy cost of replacing those vehicles every few years.

Aluminum production and other industry such as copper production takes about 30% of our power generation in the northwest. There is some recovery of the metals in cars, but new metal production is needed anyway because there are more and more vehicles. There are about 220 million in the fleet and the number is still increasing.

21 posted on 08/07/2005 11:49:56 AM PDT by RightWhale (Withdraw from the 1967 UN Outer Space Treaty and open the Land Office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Old Professer

To continue along the lines of anticipating future numbers, the 84 Mb/d may be very difficult to increase. Consumption would, of course, not exceed production.


22 posted on 08/07/2005 11:54:43 AM PDT by RightWhale (Withdraw from the 1967 UN Outer Space Treaty and open the Land Office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
CAFE standards are exactly why people are paying $2.40 a gallon for gas.

And $20,000 for a tomato can to drive around in! 

23 posted on 08/07/2005 12:12:02 PM PDT by Allosaurs_r_us (I can't use the cell phone in the car. I have to keep my hands free for making obscene gestures)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: RightWhale
Private companies could build 100 650 MW plants in the next three years. Plans are on the shelf, best available technology, ask the AFL/CIO if they're interested in providing labor...
The main problem is the NIMBY syndrome.
24 posted on 08/07/2005 12:14:30 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Scratch a Liberal. Uncover a Fascist)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: Eric in the Ozarks
Exactly! Big trucks should be natural gas. SUV's and small trucks should be turbo diesel. Oil should be reserved for cars. Economic forces will prevail .... no need for gov interference.
25 posted on 08/07/2005 12:22:24 PM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Smokin' Joe

Had you bought a hybrid in '82, you would have replaced the $4,000 battery 2 or 3 times?


26 posted on 08/07/2005 12:27:06 PM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: RightWhale
Supply depends on the price. $60 a barrel will produce a glut in a few years.
27 posted on 08/07/2005 12:30:33 PM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Eric in the Ozarks
I see a lot of nuc power being built in northern Canada. Big trade surplus problem with Canadians coming!
28 posted on 08/07/2005 12:33:33 PM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: RightWhale
Consider:
1 55 mpg hybrid + 1 0.0 mpg SUV = 27.5 mpg average.
2 60 mpg hybrid + 1 0.0 mpg SUV = 40 mpg average.

Both require all the world's fuel +!?

CAFE very strange math.
29 posted on 08/07/2005 12:39:32 PM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: John Jamieson
The '82 is my Harley. It would have been tough to fit the battery on it. I live in North Dakota, and would have had to heat a garage in order to keep the hybrid batteries from being ruined or having their lifespan shortened by our winters, which typically have temps of -30F or colder.

As it is we have to plug in engine heaters at night (and during the day, some days) during the winter to keep from damaging engines due to the cold. I doubt that I would only have had to replace the batteries 2 or 3 times since '82.

My daily driver/work vehicle is a '75 van with 282,000 miles on it.

My wife will part with her '78 Lincoln when they pry it from her cold, dead fingers.

30 posted on 08/07/2005 9:13:12 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (God save us from the fury of the do-gooders!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: SmithL

CAFE standards have caused more fuel to be used than if they had never been enacted.


31 posted on 08/07/2005 9:18:28 PM PDT by B Knotts
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: B Knotts
CAFE standards have caused more fuel to be used than if they had never been enacted.

That's counter-intuitive. Would you care to explain that?

32 posted on 08/07/2005 9:28:02 PM PDT by SmithL (There are a lot of people that hate Bush more than they hate terrorists)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

To: SmithL
CAFE standards, like many/most government regulations had unintended consequences.

They caused the end of the full-size station wagon, and more-or-less, the full-size sedan. People wanted large cars, so they began buying trucks, which later became SUVs, once the manufacturers caught on. The end result was more, not less, fuel used.

33 posted on 08/07/2005 9:38:07 PM PDT by B Knotts
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: B Knotts

Thanks


34 posted on 08/07/2005 9:38:57 PM PDT by SmithL (There are a lot of people that hate Bush more than they hate terrorists)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: Smokin' Joe

I did some consulting in northern Canada. They told me it would be -40. I asked F or C? Doesn't make any diff they said, the two scales cross there!

It was -40!


35 posted on 08/07/2005 10:16:45 PM PDT by John Jamieson (Hybrids are a highway around CAFE, that's all they're good for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: John Jamieson
The other fun one is -54F. I have noticed the NWS never has reported colder than that in ND--or WY when I worked there. (It is where mercury becomes solid.)

On the one job an elderly lady 4 miles away reported an unofficial static air temp of -60F, and we had a 40 mph wind. THAT was cold. (-146 wind chill, from a US Army chart.) Thank God an Indian friend had given me an old Air Force parka, it saved my bacon...

36 posted on 08/07/2005 10:23:24 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (God save us from the fury of the do-gooders!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson