40 years of oil left?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Blue Velvet, Oct 22, 2007.

  1. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

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    #1
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/oil/story/0,,2196435,00.html

    Sobering news for a Monday morning...




    Surely, this is what conflict in the Middle East is about, a Western land-grab for diminishing resources, particularly as Russia seems to have enough of its own.

    Once upon a time, the future was a better place...
     
  2. dops7107 macrumors 6502a

    dops7107

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    #2
    Absolutely, even the Americans admit this now.

    It's a sad fact of limited resources - I wish politicians would wake up and start thinking in terms of energy rather than money all the time.
     
  3. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #3
    It's not even about global warming any more. We're running out of what powers us fast and that's the end of it.

    Guess I'll never own a V8, or maybe I should say "run a V8".

    Oh bugger.
     
  4. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    #4
    You can always yoke it to a team of horses... :D
     
  5. bartelby macrumors Core

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    #5
    Of course you will. A lot of places sell this:
    [​IMG]
     
  6. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #6
    It seems kind of absurd that anyone is spending big money developing new super airliners, tankers and ships etc. They'll all be grounded soon enough :rolleyes:
     
  7. miniConvert macrumors 68040

    miniConvert

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    #7
    Not a fun read at all :(

    If these figures are to be believed then the vast majority of folk here will see this change in its entirety in their lifetime. If that's not a scary thought then I don't know what is.

    I absolutely hate the idea of the worlds armies battling for natural resources. Could it really happen? Well, I guess so, given that it looks like the wars have already begun.

    Generally I'm for national independence and autonomy, but this sort of thinking does make me ponder whether the UK would have a better future if it forged tighter ties with Europe now. Not that a strong Europe would be safe from fragmenting, but perhaps it would result in a fairer distribution of the continents resources and help prevent any one country striking out on its own.

    It's a grey day outside of my UPVC windows. Perhaps I'll accelerate a little more gently in the Vanquish from now on.
     
  8. bartelby macrumors Core

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    #8
    We'll be back to sail power for our holidays!

    Imagine:

    A two week holiday to NYC. You set off, you arrive and you turn back.:(
     
  9. Badandy macrumors 68040

    Badandy

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    #9
    Of course oil is a finite resource, but they have been saying we're about to run out of oil for the last 50 years.

    And hey, we have lots of coal in the United States.
     
  10. iBlue macrumors Core

    iBlue

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    #10
    There's got to be another (better) way. Meanwhile I'm sure texan oil pricks can milk it for all its worth. :rolleyes:
     
  11. miniConvert macrumors 68040

    miniConvert

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    #11
    I still hope that the increasing price of oil will make it financially viable for massive companies to invest massive amounts of money in finding energy alternatives. There's a massive desire to be environmentally friendly at the moment and, while that's great, I think it may be limiting innovation. We may even have to accept that whatever comes next, if anything, may be worse for the environment than current fossil fuels have been.

    Still, we have some greenish technology in its infancy. Perhaps 40 years of money and science will be enough.
     
  12. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

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    #12
    There’s always the possibilities of renewable sources of energy – not a complete solution perhaps but at the very least it might help take some of the pressure off fossil fuel stocks. Every little helps, surely?

    There are a couple of proposed wind farm sites in this area, but naturally the nimby types are up in arms and are petitioning against them left, right and centre... :rolleyes:
     
  13. bartelby macrumors Core

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    #13
    I really like wind farms. I think they look cool.

    We decided about last month that the next home improvements will be photo voltaic panels and a little wind turbine.
     
  14. dops7107 macrumors 6502a

    dops7107

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    #14
    You see, this is what concerns me. Soon enough, it aint gonna be solely about money. There's a reason oil "costs" more - there isn't enough of it - i.e. energy - for what everyone wants. So that should mean energy is only used for crucial things, which is what a market should do. But in order to get cleaner energy off the ground, what we really need to do is invest energy, not money. Everyone's still talking cash. Especially disregarded is energy in vs. energy out. All the money in the world won't solve that problem.
     
  15. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #15
    I was pleased to hear that BT are spending £250m (US$500m) on renewable energy to generate 25% of the power they use. Apparently BT are the largest single user of power in the UK, lapping up 1% of all power generated.

    Still, a quarter of a billion just to generate a quarter of the power they use. Gives a horrible indication of just how expensive this stuff is :eek:
     
  16. phungy macrumors 68020

    phungy

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    #16
    40 years should give us enough time to convert to alternative power right?
     
  17. miniConvert macrumors 68040

    miniConvert

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    #17
    I'm not sure I understand...

    ...we should pay scientists with oil instead of money? :p
     
  18. bartelby macrumors Core

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    #18
    Tesco (boo hiss) have actually done something good. They're starting to transport goods via canal!
     
  19. Queso macrumors G4

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    #19
    The ironic thing about people fighting over this particular scarce resource is that it takes up a lot of the scarce resource in the fighting itself, sort of a downward spiral.

    Of course if we start looking for solutions now, we can stretch that 40 years out by a few more decades. Diesel engines, which power virtually all of the ships of the world, run on just about anything, even vegetable oil if necessary. Maybe if we all go vegetarian we can use all the land currently occupied by the meat industry to grow rapeseed. That ought to make the mineral oil last a little longer.
     
  20. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #20
    And I think I heard they're putting solar panels on the enormous flat roofs of their enormous stores!
     
  21. bartelby macrumors Core

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    #21
    :eek:

    Hey now!
    Let's not go insane about this!

    There's enough Tesco stores round here to power the city!
     
  22. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

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    #22
    If we all went vegetarian, wouldn't the land used by the meat industry have to be used to grow more vegetables :confused:
     
  23. dops7107 macrumors 6502a

    dops7107

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    #23
    Not quite - though money is, essentially, transferable work/energy. I buy food so I don't have to grow it.

    What I'm saying is by the time oil becomes so expensive that we think seriously about non-essential travel and power cuts at non-peak times, perhaps all the easy "cheap" oil has been used. This means that finding enough to build all the wind turbines, photovoltaics, tidal barrages and dealing with nuclear waste will be non-viable - both energetically and economically. If it comes to the point where we are still reliant on fossil fuels for things like transport, but we're using more energy to get it out of the ground than the fuel itself supplies, we're going downhill. We need the infrastructure to generate that energy while we can still make it.

    Some, but not all of it. One less energy conversion step (Sun -> plants vs Sun -> plants -> cows) means less energy is wasted, so we need less land for the same amount of food.

    Of course, we don't have to become all-out vegetarian - just eat less meat, say once a week if you heavy-duty carnivores can face that! :p
     
  24. miniConvert macrumors 68040

    miniConvert

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    #24
    Thanks, I'm with you now.

    I'm so for the vegetarian thing. I know it'll be really hard for us all, but come on, we can do it! Oops, I forgot, I'm veggie already... you can do it!
     
  25. Queso macrumors G4

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    #25
    Nope. The Vegan Society explains why.
     

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