Tuesday, February 26, 2013

XL and I don't mean men's big and tall

I always thought conservatism meant to conserve to be frugal with ones resources. How diametrically opposed the republican party seems to be with that way of thinking. They were the ones who came up with the slogan "drill baby drill". And it's been the U.S. policy to do just that over the last 10 or 15 years. Our oil supply has increased substantially in spite of what they'd have us believe.   But what people fail to realize is that the building of the Keystone pipeline will have risks and potential damage to our environment that far outweigh the benefits.  The initial economic impact will be the creation of some construction jobs and maybe some maintenance positions later but the bulk of the profits will not be seen here in the U.S. but by foreign companies who have a strangle hold on the world's oil supply. I suspect that little if any of this oil will see the light of day in our country but be shipped to ports in China and other developing countries. It is after all dirty cheap oil. And there in lies another problem the pollution generated by burning this oil in China where environmental laws are lax. I can't think of a time when our factories here were required to shut down because the air pollution was so bad. It's estimated that a great deal of our air pollution on the west coast comes from China. One can only imagine what this is doing to the oceans as well. 

Another thing about this oil from what I'm hearing is that it's similar to Bunker C oil. For those that don't know Bunker oil is the crap oil that they use to run the oil tankers. It's about as thick as peanut butter and has to be heated to be used. To do an oil clean up you first have to spray it with diesel to break it down. That is after you've scraped the bulk off. It's a very messy job and takes far longer than a regular spill. 

People fail to realize the long term cost benefits of renewable energy and conservation measures. We see renewable energy projects crop here and there and some are even sponsored by the oil companies but this is just lip service to and a mere pittance of what other countries spend. There is no way we can compete with countries like China with things like solar panels because their labor costs are so low. 

Will it be built? I suspect it will, but it's going to take a bit more legal wrangling as more than one state is involved unlike when they built the Alaska pipeline. If you recall the folks in Alaska got so many royalties that they had no taxes and each resident got a check from the oil companies. I don't think that will happen this time around. The oil companies are just too greedy now.

So as they say (or used to) in the trucking business "Keep the shiny side up and the greasy side down".


billy pilgrim said...

if the oil doesn't flow through keystone then it will be shipped by rail. soon they will be able to ship over 2,000,000 barrels a day by rail. over twice the capacity of keystone.

warren buffet and carl ichan stand to make a lot more money with their railroad ownership if keystone doesn't go through.

Randal Graves said...

Rich clowns control the flow of oil, they'll eventually control the flow of clean water and the best stone for fashioning arrowheads.

BBC said...

Hate to say it but I need gas.

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