Gas Prices - Social Anxiety Forum
View Poll Results: What is the best way to address high gas prices?
Stop filling the Stategic Petroleum Reserve 1 3.45%
Open up U.S. refineries 1 3.45%
Drill in the Outer Continental Shelf and/or ANWR 0 0%
All of the Above 7 24.14%
Other 20 68.97%
Voters: 29. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 05:52 PM Thread Starter
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Gas Prices


Question taken directly from the 2008 Annual Questionnaire sent by my U.S. Congressman. (I ran out of my own ideas.)
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 06:06 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Other: develop new technologies.
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 06:09 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


"Other".

Government shouldn't get involved in setting/adjusting gas prices, unless it's determined gas prices are being manipulated.

Responding to the questions directly, I believe the government has already stopped buying for the strategic reserve, as per an act of congress. I could be wrong about that.

There's a limited supply of oil in Alaska, and it's not the horn o' plenty some would have us believe.
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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 06:16 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


"Other"

We should invest in more earth friendly ways of fueling our vehicles and machinery. Of course our government (republicans) are all for oil companies and would rather deplete the earth of every ounce of oil before taking the next step.
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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 06:23 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Gas Prices


Quote:
Originally Posted by OneIsALonelyNumber
There's a limited supply of oil in Alaska, and it's not the horn o' plenty some would have us believe.
True, it's not the Saudi Arabia of the North, but adding modestly to domestic supply I'd deem better than simply ignoring a domestic oil supply just because it's not "big enough".
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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 08:27 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


All of the above.....

Set a time limit to any additional drilling - make it a deadline to produce new and known technology. That way, we phase out the additional domestic pumping, while transitioning to the new vehicles (the future Chevrolet Volt of 2010 looks like a pretty cool car).

For instance, additional oil for 2008, but that addition decreases each year for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 - each year having a status check on automobile manufacturers.
2013 - big status check - cars are to DEFINITELY see a marked decrease in dependency on oil, or they will be forced to reduce the number cars of those failed models produced. Depending on percentage of passing cars, oil refining should be back to 2007-2008 levels (a.k.a. shut off the tap). If not enough cars are passing - find out what is wrong - maintain the 2013 level of production for 2014 and descrease it again for 2015, where the checks return.

The program I work on is supposed to be phased out with a new program in its place - gradual transition over a period of years, though.

*This should be the turning point

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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 08:30 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraShy
True, it's not the Saudi Arabia of the North, but adding modestly to domestic supply I'd deem better than simply ignoring a domestic oil supply just because it's not "big enough".
This is pretty close to my position on the matter. The problem with gas prices is that nobody really knows what the problem is. Everybody has a theory (Middle East instability, big oil companies, Peak oil, etc), but nobody really knows for sure.

My thinking is that the problem lies in OPEC. They get a huge kick out of sticking it to the United States and have a huge financial incentive to do so through higher prices. As long as they have us by the balls, there is nothing we can do about it. If, however, we start drilling in our own areas and flood the market with oil it would both 1) drop the price and 2) decrease the amount we buy from them, the OPEC guys may realize the importance of the U.S. market and that it isn't something they should take for granted. Since so much of their economy is based on oil, it may not even take that much to do it.

It's probably just a fantasy of mine, but hey, it's an interesting thought

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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 08:44 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Some of this recent increase is due to the weak dollar and the increased demand for oil from outside the US. Not sure what we can do about increased demand from asia, for example, but things could be done to strengthen the $, which buys less and less imports (oil) every day. Those "things" have consequeces, though (hurting exports/jobs) so maybe we need to tap Alaska.
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 09:06 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Drilling in Alaska would buy us a few years time. It isn't a solution really worth speaking off as it is really grasping at straws. Moreoever, I have to wonder if lower gas prices would be a good thing, as I see people simply driving their SUVs more to take advantage of short term drop in gas prices. What we could do is use multiple alternative energy sources. It doesn't have to be one of them. it could be a mixture of wind turbines, solar panels and its variants, geothermal energy, and nuclear power where other energy sources would fail to provide all the energy we need in certain areas. I know solar panels would work quite well in Utah. My home could probably be powered by it and an electric car as well (especially in the late spring, summer, and early autumn months. We don't have to make it a widespread "all solar panels and nothing else" solution, for example.
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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 09:15 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


That's why I said it's a temporary solution. I definitely don't want to drill all the time from now one, but what we have is there for emergencies. This is one of those times.

Part of this mess is political. If we start using alternative fuels, then we start using less Middle East oil. They get poor, then they come after us! It would give the bin Ladens of the world fodder for their [email protected]

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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 09:23 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


stop exporting Gas and rely on continental reserves.




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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 09:25 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Quote:
Originally Posted by millenniumman75
That's why I said it's a temporary solution. I definitely don't want to drill all the time from now one, but what we have is there for emergencies. This is one of those times.

Part of this mess is political. If we start using alternative fuels, then we start using less Middle East oil. They get poor, then they come after us! It would give the bin Ladens of the world fodder for their [email protected]
That's the thing though. Higher oil prices could very well provide the motivation we need to make a change in what energy sources we use. Americans are so used to using gas that they're going to remain apathetic towards change as long as they can still afford to fuel their gas guzzlers. Drilling in Alaska and lifting the off shore bans on oil refineries and whatnot, I believe, would only prolong this apathy. Just look at what Americans did when a oil crises hit in the 70's. They started driving cars that got more mpg. Once the oil prices lowered, Americans went crazy buying useless gas guzzling vehicles. I think people would just take advantage of lower gas prices to enjoy their gas guzzlers for a bit longer. They'd justify this with a "my single car won't make a difference" attitude.
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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 10:03 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Not if the plan was well publicized. The additional oil is temporary and the car manufacturers are under the gun to produce better cars. We've had the technology; we've just never used it.

I miss my Metro, but it wasn't the most stable car built. It wasn't made for all the highway driving I do.
My Mustang is VERY sturdy - and I'm getting 25mpg! But, I know that my next car will be more fuel efficient.

I only buy American-based cars, too. That's props to my pops (he was an engineer for GM - I miss him, too).

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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 01:11 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Gas Prices


Quote:
Originally Posted by Atticus
Some of this recent increase is due to the weak dollar...
That's certainly part of it. Back in 2000 the Euro traded at an all time low of $0.83. This year a Euro has gotten to around $1.58, so the value of the US $ has dropped by nearly 50% in just the last 8 years. If an oil exporting nation wants to make as much money (in real terms) as they used to they will be charging more simply to make up for the fact that they are being paid in dollars that are worth far less than they used to be. Much of this decline in the dollar is a result of massive borrowing from other nations to finance King George's misadventure in Iraq.
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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 01:22 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Gas Prices


millenniumman75, like many, suggests further government mandates. Mandates for higher fuel efficiency. Mandates for alternative fuels & hybrids.

It makes zero sense to me why the public suddenly goes wild for more government mandates when the price of gas reaches an all time high over $4. This is exactly when the free market has the most incentive to figure out ways to make more efficient vehicles. Clearly, there is far more incentive now at $4 for the free market to take action than there was in 2000 when gas went for $1.25 or so.

Are government mandates for people too stupid to figure out on their own that driving a 5,000 pound SUV with a 350 hp V8 might be a poor idea? I think even the dumbest members of society get the point when they pay $120 at the gas pump and don't really need legislation to tell them to buying something more efficient.
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post #16 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 08:56 AM
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Re: Gas Prices


drill in alaska and until theres a better substitute found

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post #17 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 02:31 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Nuclear power plants + improved public transport plz.

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post #18 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 04:23 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Gas Prices


Quote:
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Nuclear power plants + improved public transport plz.
I agree with the first part of that idea. Nuclear power is by far the lowest cost power source there is. Wisconsin Energy's CEO stated years ago that he'd like to have built a nuclear plant, but state law prohibits them from doing so. Instead we get yet another coal-fired plant to produce further air pollution & greenhouse gasses (even with the best "clean coal" technology available).

There was a story on the local news last night about how some residents of one Wisconsin community are not at all happy with the wind turbines that had been put up to help meet a state mandate that a certain percentage of electricity be produced from renewable resources. In WI that means wind as we sure don't get enough sun for solar. Critics find wind turbines to be hideous monstrosities. And, of course, wind power costs more so we get to pay higher energy bills. Gee, thanks state government for raising my utility bill. How would you like to screw me next?

As for public transportation, one side says if you build it they will come. The other side (that I agree with) says there is no point in building more as very few want it. I regularly see empty county busses and highways crawling along with only a driver in each vehicle, giving me the impression that people don't much care for public transport -- and this is even at $4 gas!
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post #19 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 07:19 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


Nuclear energy has the rather huge problem of storage and waste.

Most storage vessels for the waste are temporary, a viable long term solution has yet to be found. It will be around for THOUSANDS of years....

Wind power would work great around where I live, lots of canyons near the mountains have constant wind and we also get lots of sunshine here for solar.

Very few people actually NEED an 8 cylinder car or even a 6 for that matter. Most commuters can get by with a 4 cylinder. People need to end their addiction to large SUVs.

Car pooling and public transportation would be great but its hard to get people to come around to that way of thinking. I would love public transportation but live in a very small area where its just not viable.
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post #20 of 44 (permalink) Old 06-19-2008, 07:50 PM
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Re: Gas Prices


I think some people would be comfortable having their a** drilled for oil if it meant they didn't have to walk to 7-11 for their Big Gulp.
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