Sunday, November 28, 2010

Meanwhile, back in the real economy

While the banksters mount their assaults on sovereign nations, it is easy to forget that even at its worst, these Predations are only a distraction from the much bigger problems like securing the energy supply.  The implication here is that even if we could get folks back to work doing something, that "accomplishment" would trigger an oil price hike that would choke off any economic recovery.
Peak Oil Is Officially Set To Starve The Economy
Chris Martenson, | Nov. 23, 2010, 9:30 PM 
Once a year, the International Energy Agency (IEA) releases its World Energy Outlook (WEO), and it's our tradition here at to review it. A lot of articles have already been written on the WEO 2010 report, and I don't wish to tread an already well-worn path, but the subject is just too important to leave relegate to a single week of attention. 
Because some people will only read the first two paragraphs, let me get a couple of conclusions out right up front. You need to pay close attention to Peak Oil, and you need to begin adjusting, because it has already happened. The first conclusion is mine; the second belongs to the IEA. more
And then there is the problem that if you increase general prosperity, you increase the wealth of the rich (a rising tide lifts all boats).  And the next thing you know, they are making the energy situation worse.  Recently, the Indian environmental minister called German cars "criminal"--which, considering the size and fuel needs of the typical high-end German car and the crowded nature of India, they probably are.
Indian official calls German cars 'criminal'
Published: 12 Nov 10 16:33 CET
India’s Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh attacked German automakers on Friday, saying driving big-engined luxury models from BMW and Mercedes-Benz in his country was “criminal.”
Expressing his wish for better fuel efficiency in India, Ramesh said people should not be encouraged to buy vehicles such as powerful German luxury cars and gas-guzzling sport utility vehicles.
“The luxurious growth of large-size vehicles like SUVs is really a growth of concern, use of vehicles like SUVs and BMW in countries like India is criminal,” he said at a UN function in New Delhi, according to news agency IANS. more
What is even worse, we have barely begun the process of converting out of a petroleum-based economy.  And some of the ideas like biofuels are already looking extremely bad.
U.S. corn ethanol "was not a good policy"-Gore
Mon Nov 22, 2010 12:24pm GMT
  • U.S. ethanol consumes about 40 pct corn crop
  • Impact on food prices "real"
By Gerard Wynn
ATHENS, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Former U.S. vice-president Al Gore said support for corn-based ethanol in the United States was "not a good policy", weeks before tax credits are up for renewal.
U.S. blending tax breaks for ethanol make it profitable for refiners to use the fuel even when it is more expensive than gasoline. The credits are up for renewal on Dec. 31.
Total U.S. ethanol subsidies reached $7.7 billion last year according to the International Energy Industry, which said biofuels worldwide received more subsidies than any other form of renewable energy.
"It is not a good policy to have these massive subsidies for (U.S.) first generation ethanol," said Gore, speaking at a green energy business conference in Athens sponsored by Marfin Popular Bank.
"First generation ethanol I think was a mistake. The energy conversion ratios are at best very small.
"It's hard once such a programme is put in place to deal with the lobbies that keep it going." more

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