The Cost of Energy Use

Suppose the price of energy reflected its cost? It seems that the way we all make money is to extract oil and avoid the cost of using it. Almost everything in our economy involves applying energy to something. The “profit” we live off of seems to come from passing along the costs to the future.
I’m talking about global warming mostly, the cost of putting CO2 into the air. Nuclear energy costs a lot but that cost is really just the expense of containing the radioactivity — we pay that cost today but we don’t really have to. Nuclear would be cheap if we didn’t pay for shielding and cooling towers and just released the radioactivity into the air, the way we currently release CO2 into the air.
Suppose there was a law that said for every part CO2 you put into the atmosphere, you have to take out 3 parts? The PRICE of a oil or coal would then reflect the COST of so may years of putting CO2 in the air… but the climate change problem would start getting better. Imagine purchasing big solar-panel-powered machines that extract carbon from CO2…
Discuss.

m4s0n501

13 thoughts on “The Cost of Energy Use

  1. Are you aware of what Brazil’s doing? I think CBS is going to have a segment on this in tonight’s news. They’ve switched almost entirely to ethanol and are about to be completely energy self-sufficient. Low tech — farming and distilling, kinder to the environment, and didn’t even take them all that long.
    Seems like the “third world” is getting ahead of us in many interesting ways.

  2. But, but, but ethanol takes more energy to produce than it supplies. That’s not necessarily bad — portable fuel can command an energy premium for its ease of use. My understanding is that it is only cost-effective when fossil fuels are scarce/very expensive. Which of course they will be everywhere soon enough. But ethanol (and everything else available) really sucks as a protable fuel, compared to refined bubblin’ crude.

  3. Ethanol doesn’t have to use lots of energy to produce, it’s just fermented corn. If you use highly mechanized methods and fertilizer, that’s where the energy cost is.

  4. In Brazil they’re using sugar cane. So the by-oroducts are sugar, which they both use and export, and the fibrous stuff, which they can feed to cattle — and use as fuel to run the distilling plants. No waste. Cattle poop is great fertilizer.

  5. Again, some of you liberals are posting without knowing what you’re talking about. Please show credible evidence that ethanol takes more energy to produce than it supplies. Please show credible evidence that ethanol is not a viable alternative fuel source.

  6. I just said ethanol IS a viable alternative. I just said it does NOT cost more to produce than it provides. Your reading comprehension is poor. Were you home-schooled, or what?
    Also I’m pro-nuclear energy. That’s the same thing as what Bush calls “nukular” by the way, so you can be for it and still get your troll check.

  7. Wow, such arrogance…..
    I was actually referring to the anonymous post. And as is my history, I have no problem calling you out by name when challenging you on your flawed thinking. Keep your ego in check please.
    I was objecting to the following (oh, and check your reading retention while you’re at it):
    ‘But, but, but ethanol takes more energy to produce than it supplies. That’s not necessarily bad — portable fuel can command an energy premium for its ease of use. My understanding is that it is only cost-effective when fossil fuels are scarce/very expensive. Which of course they will be everywhere soon enough. But ethanol (and everything else available) really sucks as a protable fuel, compared to refined bubblin’ crude.’
    Posted by: Anonymous at March 28, 2006 04:12 PM

  8. How do you know anything about the politics of “anonymous”? Anonymous did not “post”. Anonymous commented.
    You’re really way off the deep end, sick.

  9. Anon,
    Your argument is about the definition of post/comment? Seriously? Is that all you’ve got?
    Pathetic!
    Oh, and just what about ‘Posted by: Anonymous at March 28, 2006 04:12 PM’ don’t you understand?
    If you want to play silly little games of definition, even your own blog labels with, ‘Posted by.’

  10. And back to the point, I wasn’t objecting to anyone’s politics, I was simply challenging some unsubstantiated claims. I called for qualification. You liberals never seem to practice substantive debate.

  11. Again, some of you liberals are posting without knowing what you’re talking about.
    And back to the point, I wasn’t objecting to anyone’s politics, I was simply challenging some unsubstantiated claims.

  12. This silly “you liberals” stuff, to someone posting as “anonymous” really makes you look bad here. I’m the onoy one here who you KNOW is a liberal, and I said we should use ethanol and nuclear.
    So be careful, you might not be getting your troll bonus this week.

  13. The only one looking bad here Dave is you. Your troll bonus is silly. As I mentioned, I really didn’t care what you stated, I was challenging unsubstantiated claims.

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