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Thread: Oil, daylight saving time, and its impact on vehicle usage

  1. #1
    Member Jeff_Rosenberg's avatar
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    Oil, daylight saving time, and the end of cheap transportation

    Associated Press, Apr. 7th

    WASHINGTON - If Congress passes an energy bill, Americans may see more daylight-saving time.

    Lawmakers crafting energy legislation approved an amendment Wednesday to extend daylight-saving time by two months, having it start on the last Sunday in March and end on the last Sunday in November.

    "Extending daylight-saving time makes sense, especially with skyrocketing energy costs,'' said Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., who along with Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass., co-sponsored the measure.

    The amendment was approved by the House Energy and Commerce Committee that is putting together major parts of energy legislation likely to come up for a vote in the full House in the coming weeks.

    "The more daylight we have, the less electricity we use,'' said Markey, who cited Transportation Department estimates that showed the two-month extension would save the equivalent of 10,000 barrels of oil a day.

    The country uses about 20 million barrels of oil a day.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Are we getting that desperate for oil already?

    Where does it go from here? Might we actually start thinking about changing our lifestyles? How are other energy alternatives as compared to oil, costwise? Is the era of cheap transportation over?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Luca's avatar
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    I'm not a trasnportation/energy economist but...

    ...I AM an economist. Oil an the economy built around it is very difficult to substitute, beyond some aprtial emasures. Personally I see the main way forward as biofuel and a lot more nuclear energy but I could be wrong. Even at fairly high densities, and taking all costs intoa ccount, the internal combustion engine is a v. practical mdoe of transport. Burning oil for electricity rpoduction, is maybe less obvious a choice, with expensive oil. Note that when one energy source goes up in price, the otehrs do as well, for obvious reasons.

    If you want to be scared then consider that the IMF thinks we are facing a PERMANENT oil shock and that GOlamn thinks we could see $ 100/bbl next year.

    In terms of changing habits, to some extent it depends on whether the private sector can get the government to reduce its take on hydrocarbon fuels. This is especially true in Europe where oil represents a fraction of the retail cost of gasoline due to taxes (plus the refining/distribution/retailing agains).
    Life and death of great pattern languages

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    Oil refinery capacity is one (1) of the issues related to the problems with oil. If I was an oil company, I would NOT build any new refineries. It would take a few years to get it approved, a few more years to get it built. By that time there will be serious technology breakthroughs on fuel cells, hydrogen, batteries, etc. The new refinery will not be necessary.

    The market, with higher and higher oil prices, will drive this development of new technology. That's about the only good thing about these steep prices.

    Look for them to be even steeper in the next year or so. Ouch.

    Bear
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  4. #4
    Cyburbian iamme's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Bear Up North
    Oil refinery capacity is one (1) of the issues related to the problems with oil. If I was an oil company, I would NOT build any new refineries. It would take a few years to get it approved, a few more years to get it built. By that time there will be serious technology breakthroughs on fuel cells, hydrogen, batteries, etc. The new refinery will not be necessary.
    Bear
    While that's one way to see the high refinery utilization, this really looks more like a product of consolidation in the industry. Obviously a larger distillation complex is more efficient than many smaller ones. After many of the oil companies consolidated they closed many of the smaller refineries to get the economies of scale. (granted, the US having environmental regulations that are tighter than third-world countries' did have some effect) Now, the energy companies are not stupid, just as Enron constricted the flow of energy to California's market, so have the oil companies in the US. The amount of excess refining capability has been declining hand-in-hand with the large oil companies' mergers. Econ 101: lower competition=higher prices.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Ok.....

    Here is what I want to know from you economist types:

    1. If oil in England was $4 a gallon 7 years ago, is it now $8 a gallon??? If not why not....because that's about the level of increase we've seen in this country in that same time period.....

    2. If oil in Gabon was $10 a gallon 15 years ago, is it now $25 a gallon.....same issue.....

    You get my point, same with Canada.....is the price going up a penny (US .01c) a day there too....if not why not......?????

    SOMEONE LET ME KNOW
    Skilled Adoxographer
    I have two emotions....Silence and Rage

  6. #6
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Moderator note:
    Please, please, please, please, please, for the love of God, Jesus, the Virgin of Guadalupe, Moses, Buddha, Mohammed, Ganesh, Odin, Brigid, Cthulu and Dale Earnhardt, use descriptive subject lines outside of the FAC, please. I took the liberty of changing the subject line from "Oil! Oil!"
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  7. #7

    Use your brain.

    Quote Originally posted by The One
    Here is what I want to know from you economist types:

    1. If oil in England was $4 a gallon 7 years ago, is it now $8 a gallon??? If not why not....because that's about the level of increase we've seen in this country in that same time period.....
    No. Common sense tells you it's not.

    When gas here was $1/gallon, the proportion of the cost attributable to crude oil was 30 or 40 cents. When gas here hit $2/gallon, it wasn't because the cost of crude doubled; all other costs stayed roughly the same; the cost of crude in fact more like tripled or quadrupled to $1.30 or $1.40ish. Or, an equivalent increase of $1/gallon of crude.

    In England, when gas was $4/gallon, the extra $3 was extra TAXES. Their fuel taxes haven't gone up (much) since then; so the amount you'd expect their gas to rise is about $1/gallon of crude, just like in the USA. Hence, IF they were only $4/gallon 7 years ago and IF my other assumptions hold, you'd expect $5/gallon, not $8/gallon.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally posted by Jeff_Rosenberg
    Associated Press, Apr. 7th

    WASHINGTON - If Congress passes an energy bill, Americans may see more daylight-saving time.

    .....
    Where does it go from here? Might we actually start thinking about changing our lifestyles? How are other energy alternatives as compared to oil, costwise? Is the era of cheap transportation over?
    How soon we forget. Nixon also did this in 1974 to save energy. The down side were all the kiddies that got killed in the moring by cars while waiting for the school bus in the dark. They ended up recinding the change less than 2 years later as a result.

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