Skip to comments.IER head: Navy’s biofuels test ‘squandering’ taxpayer dollars
Posted on 07/10/2012 5:21:03 AM PDT by thackney
The head of the Institute for Energy Research today beseeched congressional leaders to investigate Navy Secretary Ray Mabus decision to conduct test exercises using expensive alternative fuels this summer.
Thomas Pyle, president of the industry-funded IER, said the move shows the Obama administration is squandering limited national defense dollars on a political agenda.
With huge reductions in resources for national defense already under way, wasting taxpayer money on biofuels costing ten times as much as conventional fuels makes no sense, Pyle said in a letter to the heads of the House and Senate oversight and defense committees.
Pyles letter comes amid heavy congressional criticism of the planned Naval green fleet test exercises, set to begin with an aircraft carrier and other vessels later this month in the Pacific Rim.
In preparation for the carrier strike test, the Navy spent $12 million buying 450,000 gallons of alternative fuels. That works out to just under $27 per gallon, but as noted by Reuters, the final cost is about $15 per gallon after blended 50-50 with petroleum.
Such alternative fuel purchases would be banned in the future under legislation that passed the House of Representatives earlier this year as part of a Department of Defense authorization bill. That measure would bar the Defense Department from buying biofuels that cost more than conventional fuel.
For the biofuels industry, Mabus plans to wean the Navy off conventional supplies create a potentially lucrative marketplace, powering the Pentagons ships, planes and tanks. Supporters note that while the cost of advanced biofuels may be high now, those would drop along with a ramp up in production and demand.
“This just confirms that many Flag Officers (Admirals and Generals) have devolved to cajoneless cowards under the Hussein Regime!”
“This just confirms that many Flag Officers (Admirals and Generals) have devolved to cajoneless cowards under the Hussein Regime!”
This is the same BS that the promoters of the corn ethanol boondoggle have been saying for years. However with hundreds of ethanol plants operating all over the corn belt, the cost of ethanol is still tied to the price of corn and ethanol production could never be commercially viable without government subsidies and tax breaks from planting the seed to the gas pump. With a major drought in the corn belt this summer corn prices will soar and the ethanol lobby will be howling for even more government bailouts and subsidies.
Soon the nobama minions will replace the military tanks with converted Volts. There is no end to their stupidity and corrosiveness. The only end will be when they are thrown out of their positions and placed permanently in prison.
The MSM went bezerk when they found out that Halliburton was charging the Army about $8/gal to deliver diesel fuel to front-line troops in Iraqi war zones. There were numerous MSM stories about how the government was being overcharged.
The US Military is the key driver of new technology, and indirectly America’s future wealth. That’s because the military is usually the only customer willing to pay the initial price. When integrated circuits were first invented they cost $1,000 each. The first customer was the military which used them in a new bomber. Now similar ICs cost pennies. A viable biofuel is certainly possible and will likely involve open ocean grown genetically engineered algae. The military is certain to be the first customer. Yes, the military funds a huge number of expensive technology flops, but every failure is one step closer to hitting the jackpot. While windmills and solar could never fuel our mobile military, algae biofuel is extremely promising.
Tree huggers don’t care about cost it’s all about the political agenda and Obama owes them too.
You got that right!
Had the opportunity to top off my tank at a station near Lake Murray in South Carolina that offered ethanol free gasoline.
Half a tankful was all that I could squeeze into my SUV. Just HALF!
512 miles to get home. always have to make a stop to refuel at about 360 miles.
This time, I got 460 miles out of the tank!
CAFE is continually raising the mileage but also demanding we use crap for fuel which shortens the MPG of vehicles.
As I was refueling, I remembered a recent NCIS episode where one of the agents is gushing about a Navy jet fighter using bio-fuel as the wave of the future or some such BS.
Then I thought to myself, wonder how long a jet fighter can stay up with crap for fuel? If my car gets a reduction in mileage this drastic, how much extra fuel is going to be needed, and extra pilots needed, to maintain the requisite number of aircraft aloft to protect a carrier group?
Our service academies should be closed down as they no longer serve the purpose of training officers to execute their duties in the best interest of accomplishing a mission and more importantly the lives of their subordinates.
And speaking of NCIS, it is now on my "Turn-this-crap-off-list" with their constant pandering to the liberal agenda. It was thoroughly disgusting to watch an episode where Special Agent Gibbs, supposedly a former Marine Gunny, helped a homosexual, who had been recruited by another homosexual(who was murdered-can you say hate crime?), to get into the Corps.
Navy Takes Biofuels Campaign Into Uncharted Waters
Since 2006, the Defense Logistics Agency has procured more than 36 million gallons of ethanol-and-petroleum blends for the military. The Navy in September ordered an additional 150,000 gallons of algae-based fuel from San Francisco company Solazyme. The new agreement is seven times the size of the initial 20,000-gallon contract awarded last year. The Navy is paying big bucks for these fuels.
The service consumes an average of 1.2 billion gallons of petroleum each year at a cost of $3 billion about $2.50 per gallon. The service paid Solazyme $8.5 million to provide just 20,000 gallons of algae-based fuel
$425 per gallon.
At that rate, it would cost the Navy some $142.8 billion for the 8 million barrels of biofuel needed to meet its 2020 goal.
Camelina-based fuel is a bit cheaper but still more expensive than petroleum. In September 2009 the DLAs defense energy support center paid Montanas Sustainable Oils $2.7 million for 40,000 gallons of camelina-based fuel. That comes to about $67.50 per gallon.
You sir are comparing apples and oranges.
What kind of liberal arts major logic is this???? Those stupid bio-fuels cost $27 per gallon. Period! Taxpayer money flushed down Obama's crapper.
Yeah we all know the military is an early adopter thus an early funder for technologies but it makes no sense at this point for them to be buying vastly uncompetitive bio fuels. Algae to oil schemes will never produce fuel at a reasonable price. They are lab experiments pure and simple that scientists pimp because they can wrangle Federale grants & funding meaning mo mo mo jobs for scientists doing make work. Welfare for scientists same as the 2 billion the Feds spend on rigged global warming research each year. Another welfare scheme for scientists
A big theme for DARPA research these days is the death of the supply line. They want to kill it. They want to kill the supply line. How? By developing the technology to create the materials for a base on the spot. DARPA is investing a lot in 3D printing. As well, the pentagon is investing in biofuels.
Why this big desire to kill the supply line?
I was at an energy committee meeting in the Sam Rayburn building on capital hill in Washington DC a couple weeks ago.
Someone asked the people on the dias what the cost of fuel was for soldiers in Afghanistan. The answer that came back was that soldiers are driving around their humvees with gasoline that costs $300 a gallon. Why this huge cost? Because the gas has to be freighted long distance with all kinds of toll takers along the way (either the russians or the Pakistanis.)
If they could grow the fuel on the spot — then even gas that cost $30@ gallon or even $100@gallon would be much cheaper.
But the biofuel industry is a new industry. Like any other, as they get economies of scale and hammer the chinks out of the process—the price of the fuel will come down.
John McCain when he came out against these biofuel purchases was not serving his country well.
What would he know. After all, navy nuclear carriers bring their own fuel with them and desalinate their water in the deep ocean as they pass over.
the Navy spent $12 million buying 450,000 gallons of alternative fuels. That works out to just under $27 per gallon, but as noted by Reuters, the final cost is about $15 per gallon after blended 50-50 with petroleum.
So if regular petroleum was 3 dollars a gallon then
two gallons of blend would cost 30 dollars or 15 per
gallon for something that you could get for 3 dollars
a gallon. Sure, makes sense, buy in bulk, think of
the money you save! /S
And people wonder why we are going broke.
This is the stupidest f’ing logic I’ve ever heard. Sounds like something a lobbyist would try to bilk the tax payers out of.
Look it up: all the chemical energy in petroleum originally comes from saltwater algae. The original oil industry ran for thousands of years. It involved an indirect method of harvesting saltwater algae called whaling. It was highly profitable although the ancient technology didn't scale well.
We could replace all our current petroleum needs using less than 2% of the ocean surface. The vast majority of Earth's sun, water, and "farm land" resources is ocean. Pursuing genetically engineered saltwater algae as the main replacement for petroleum seems completely obvious.
This is the stupidest fing logic Ive ever heard. Sounds like something a lobbyist would try to bilk the tax payers out of.
Really? What’s stupid about killing the need for a supply train and reducing costs?
I’m just telling you, that this is what the Pentagon is planning on.
Here’s how DARPA is doing it with clothing.
Here’s DARPA doing the same thing with vehicles.
Same as man has very little to do with global warming. We are a factor but a very puny one when it comes to CO2 output. You are making the same mistake. Duplicating natures process to make oil from algae will take trillions upon trillions upon trillions dollars of exotic apparatus, bulldozers, drying ponds etc etc. Man cannot deal with these colossal to the nth degree inputs, these colossal to the nth degree masses the way nature can over millions and millions of years
What you propose is much smaller project than digging up Mt Everest and reassembling it in New Delhi India. Think in terms of mass mass mass multiplied by millions x millions of years plus heat and pressure...This is how nature turns algae into oil
These algae projects are a bonanza for cynical scientists to milk billons in Federale funding from the idiots in Congress whom are mostly liberal arts majors and affirmative action women and blacks without an ounce of common sense science education in them
You are making the same mistake. Duplicating natures process to make oil from algae will take trillions upon trillions upon trillions dollars of exotic apparatus, bulldozers, drying ponds etc etc. Man cannot deal with these colossal to the nth degree inputs, these colossal to the nth degree masses the way nature can over millions and millions of years.
Actually the technology is much much closer to being ready for prime time than you know. But much of the best work is not government funded. In fact, imho a russian investment house is helping to fund the best one which imho is Joule energy. They have a production plant in New Mexico currently that expects to produce diesal for 1.20 a gallon and when they scale up to volume — they say they can get production costs down to .60 a gallon. They’re backed by the best brains in the biz. Here’s a google search of them.
Joule energy might have something good going on. I went to your link. Their method does not involve processing, drying out millions of tons of goopy messy algae. We shall see
Critical comments on joule
Comments were negatively speculative just as the article was positively speculative.(see below) Best to hold off judgement until there’s more data available later this year or early next.
Joule says its systems could produce 15,000 gallons of diesel and 25,000 gallons of ethanol a year on an acre of land, for as little as $20 per barrel-equivalent of diesel and 60 cents per gallon of ethanol.
Since 2010, the company has been operating a pilot plant in Leander, Texas, where it is testing ethanol production. It plans to break ground this month on a larger-scale demonstration facility in New Mexico, with a goal of beginning commercial production by late 2012 or early 2013.
“Scalability and efficiency are open questions, but the concept is great,” says Darlene J.S. Solomon, chief technology officer at Agilent Technologies Inc. A -0.54% and an Innovation Awards judge.
Yeah its the methodology that looks like its a winner.
This article gives the real implications of Joule which are altogether huge—if true.
btw much bigger in the energy sector is what’s happening with thorium. The background on that story is just stunning.
|US NAVY $44/gallon BIOFOOL|
|US AIR FORCE $59/gallon BIOFOOL|