Originally Posted by fishweewee
You can blame him for having no coherent energy policy.
The complete aversion to anything carbon short changes all of us.
We could have spent the last few years gearing up our cars, for example, for compressed natural gas. The Obama administration could have streamlined the EPA regs to encourage the development of natural gas burning passenger car engines. It costs something like $150,000 to submit one engine design to the EPA for review. And then it takes forever to get it approved.
Why natural gas? Because we have a metric $hit ton of it and it's CHEEP. Distribution wouldn't be all that hard.
Yes, it's carbon, but it's cleaner burning than gasoline.
It would be an interim solution to take some of the pressure off of petroleum demand - we could, for example, reserve the use of diesel and other refined crude products for commercial trucking, mass transit, airlines, and the military.
Gotta love ideology.
Further to what you are saying about natural gas...
Emissions from the Combustion of Natural Gas
Natural gas is the cleanest of all the fossil fuels, as evidenced in the Environmental Protection Agency’s data comparisons in the chart below, which is still current as of 2010. Composed primarily of methane, the main products of the combustion of natural gas are carbon dioxide and water vapor, the same compounds we exhale when we breathe. Coal and oil are composed of much more complex molecules, with a higher carbon ratio and higher nitrogen and sulfur contents. This means that when combusted, coal and oil release higher levels of harmful emissions, including a higher ratio of carbon emissions, nitrogen oxides (NOx), and sulfur dioxide (SO2). Coal and fuel oil also release ash particles into the environment, substances that do not burn but instead are carried into the atmosphere and contribute to pollution. The combustion of natural gas, on the other hand, releases very small amounts of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, virtually no ash or particulate matter, and lower levels of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and other reactive hydrocarbons.
Natural gas, as the cleanest of the fossil fuels, can be used in many ways to help reduce the emissions of pollutants into the atmosphere. Burning natural gas in the place of other fossil fuels emits fewer harmful pollutants, and an increased reliance on natural gas can potentially reduce the emission of many of these most harmful pollutants.
We have enormous reserves of natural gas, opinions vary, but one considered but conservative estimate by the Rand Corporation runs to 400 years worth of energy requirements at existing consumption.
I'm not leveling the blame for lack of development at just this administration, this ridiculous energy ideology has spanned multiple administrations of all political persuasions and there seems no remedy in sight.
Since there seems plenty of stimulus dollars flowing, why not put a few billion into subsidizing conversion of the US domestic vehicle fleet, as well as building out filling stations across the nation.
LNG vehicle technology is stable, developed and has been in use across the world for decades. It is widely, and successfully used in the US for metropolitan buses.
Funding an initiative such as this would mean jobs and lot of them. Not just manufacturing the technology, but also flow through to fitters and maintenance folk in small towns right across the nation
The payback would be relatively immediate and run into significant long term benefits.