More stupidity from governments and media

So, I’m making my rounds with news sources today, and I ran across this.  Police Departments Powering Up With Propane .  I’m already thinking to myself, “oh boy, another story about how we’re saving the world and lowering our dependence on foreign fuel.”  But, I go to read the details.

The lead para…..”America’s police aren’t just fighting crime these days, some are helping in the fight for independence from foreign oil. And they’re saving a few bucks in the process.”   So, I nailed it.  It goes on to talk about how propane is cheaper than gasoline and how the conversion of gasoline engines to propane engines cost $5,800 but they’re trying to train their mechanics to do it themselves so the cost will only be $4000.  It continues to talk about how Greenville, SC has a fleet of about 100 such vehicles and how other agencies are driving them, too.  It also talks about most of our propane is domestically produced.  Story quotes 85%, other sources have it at about 90%. 

So, what’s wrong with this?  Well, I could break it down to energy generated by different fuels, or even talk about the properties of propane and how its much more dangerous than other fuels (its heavy as a gas and tends not to dissipate).  But, that isn’t the problem.  The problem is what the story didn’t state, but implied.  The implication is this could be an effective alternative for this nation’s dependency on foreign fuel.  Well, let’s look at that.

Propane is made by one of two processes.  Either by the refinement of oil to gasoline or natural gas processing.  Both require propane be extracted from the fuels.  These 3 sentences tell us all we need to know.  Obviously, using the propane from the oil refining won’t help us in our dependency of foreign oil, because oil is necessary for the process and we have to make gasoline or heating oil to get it!  So, that approach would be ……. well, stupid.  So, let’s look at the other, getting it from natural gas.  The DOT says there are “Approximately 300,000 vehicles in the U.S. are fueled with LPG.”  According to RITA , there are 256,046,950 motor vehicles(things with tires that drive on the roads) alone.  So, if we only increase our NG production 1000 fold, we may have enough propane to fuel our nation’s highway transportation.  Well, we’re not going to do that anytime soon.  It isn’t a viable solution to our oil dependency.  It isn’t scalable. 

So, if we increase our propane use for transportation, we’ll create a shortage elsewhere and thus drive the cost of propane up, eliminating the savings by using propane.  Other than grilling, what do we use propane for?  Those of us that live in a rural area without access to NG use the stuff for heating.  Be sure to write Greenville and other asinine government entities and thank them for making an already expensive heating fuel even more expensive and creating a hardship for people already suffering from this economic crisis that we’re in.  People such as my brothers.

This is just one of the continuous vapid thoughts about our fuel and energy discussion.  Ideas such as this propane for auto fuel does nothing more than create hardships elsewhere and does nothing to address our energy and fuel needs.  We need to stop doing this crap!  Propane should be used for heating where NG isn’t available.  NG should be used for heating and cooking and only as a supplement in electricity production to meet peak load demand.  We need to quit planting the whirly-gigs and sun beam absorbers because we’re driving the cost of NG up for the people that need it for heat and cooking.  Propane is already expensive enough.  We need to quit pouring our food down fuel tanks because its driving the cost of food up!  If we want to eliminate our dependence on foreign oil, do the obvious thing and start drilling our own!  And most importantly, quit screwing over our fellow citizens in our quixotic quest for a viable alternative fuel.  At the very least try something that at least has a theoretical chance of success.

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10 Responses to More stupidity from governments and media

  1. Latitude says:

    ….damn, stop making sense
    First thing I thought was LP is a byproduct of refining. It’s cheap because they can make more than the demand…..increase the demand and you know the rest

    We’re royally screwed right now…on almost all fronts

    • suyts says:

      Yeh, it pisses me off these pinheads don’t consider the implications of their actions. My brother, who lives on the line my utility serves, has seen an increase of about $100/month on his electric bill. (cost+extreme cold and hot) And now as winter is about to set in, we’ll see the propane cost go up because people are using it for stuff other than heat. He’s damned if he does, he’s damned if he doesn’t.

      Its as if this nation has lost its knowledge of the advantages of uniformity and purpose. I’d rather have only one fuel/energy concern (oil to gasoline) than the myriad of energy/fuel/food concerns we’re causing in our rush to find something different than oil.

      What’s worse, its that we’re setting ourselves up for some more industry crashes. At some point, people are going to realize food goes on our plate and not our fuel tanks. So, then what happens to the farmers that ran out and bought higher capacity combines with corn headers? What happens when we realize whirly-gigs and sun beam catchers aren’t the answer. Well, the primary industry would crash, but that’s no big deal because its mostly Chinese and Germans, but the nat. gas industry will suddenly see a slowdown in demand. Gas wells will be shut off and the people who’ve come to expect the royalties check will loose that source of income and we’ll repeat with another round of higher unemployment, land foreclosures and a large downward force on our economy.

      When I think of this madness, its kind of like a burr right in the gluteal fold. 😡

      • Latitude says:

        You just need to remember three things….
        conservatives don’t poll
        Fox is the number one news channel
        75% of this country did not vote for obambi

        ………that’s the only thing getting me though this

      • Latitude says:

        touches tip of nose with finger………………
        spot on…and for some reason we keep rewarding bad behavior

  2. Latitude says:

    Here’s one you’ll love….because you were the one that made me think of it
    I’m looking to see how many times they’ve changed satellites, frequency, formulas…..etc
    They like to brag that they are constantly “improving” their science….
    …that’s openly admitting they are “changing” it

    Yet, computer games are based on trends……..

    Take sea ice. What they measured 30 years ago has no relation at all to what they measure today.
    Yet, that automatically null and voids a trend line………..

    • suyts says:

      lol, yeh, I was thinking of that, too. I recently saw where a soon-to-be launched satellite was bragging about a 10 fold increase in accuracy and I remembered other satellites making the same claim. Well, if each generation had a 10 fold increase in accuracy, the early satellites weren’t very accurate. So, yes, we have no clue as to how much ice there was via satellite measurements. But, it gets repeated as its gospel.

      • Latitude says:

        Here’s a kick in the pants…..
        The whole early problem was reading melt ponds as open water instead of ice….
        So they up the frequency each time….which has a higher resolution….which reads more melt ponds as more water……
        Then they resort to flying drones over the ice, trying to figure out… to figure how much is really water and how much is really melt ponds. They try to do that by color……

        Then they hand enter a percentage….and that percentage is a constant all year……

        Of course, each time they up the frequency it plays in their favor because it’s reading more melt ponds or leads…….as water

        Is the ice really going down….or are the satellites just reading more melt ponds?

      • Latitude says:

        “a 10 fold increase in accuracy”

        That’s a higher frequency…..which has a higher resolution….which reads more melt ponds and leads as water
        They are probably down to ~ a 5ft square now

        But, point is, climate models are programmed with trends….
        You can’t get an accurate trend when you are constantly “improving”/changing everything.

        Their trend is false, every thing they do to “improve” it, shows more water and less ice than before…..

  3. Mike Davis says:

    You bring up Propane! I was considering living on the road as a snow bunny, traveling with the weather like my sister does. I wanted a Home Base, which led me to buy property in Tennessee. While selling my last home I lived in my fifth wheel and then moved back here to get the property set up as a place to return during spring and fall but traveling during summer and winter. Having a propane refrigerator, water heater, heat, and a gas generator to supplement my solar lighting and other electrical needs. I found it cost more to live in a 300 sq ft mobile structure than a 3,000 sq ft home. Even when I was hooked up to local power in a RV park.
    By the time I had electricity on my property I decided not to travel. In 2007 TVA increased the price of electricity by 25% due to upgrades required by the EPA and the provider is talking about renewables also.
    It cost me more for propane than for electricity in my last house. But that house was built to the latest “Best” energy standards in 2003.
    For fifteen years I bought, occupied and sold homes. Constantly upgrading until the last one was on a golf course and just under 3000 sq ft for two people! It was supposed to be a retirement home but was not a life style I wanted to live and circumstances changed!

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