Jun 152016
 

With a rather ridiculous headlie, Robert Scribbler has lowered the bar of believability once again – “Al Gore’s Revenge — Internal Combustion Engines Stink and This Ridiculously Powerful Electric Turbine Truck Proves It“. I suggest you read it.

Wow. A whole 190 miles between recharges. I’m sure that’s an improvement over current models, but seriously? And ‘tanked fuel’. Hmmm, might that be diesel?

I am seriously underwhelmed. More hopium from the Scribbler who has yet to grasp reality on just how much this really means to our greenhouse gas contributions.

An electrical vehicle powered by a battery that is capable of recharging either through regenerative breaking or a wall socket, the Nikola One is already capable of achieving a zero emissions ride.”

Oh really? And just exactly where did all those materials to build the truck come from? Or the batteries? Or the ‘tanked fuel’? Or the recharging stations?

All this and no emissions? Only if you believe in fantasy fairy tales and winged angels.

“But that’s if truckers are willing to stop every 190 miles for a recharge or to put net zero carbon biofuels into its ‘agnostic’ fuel tank.”

Ah, now we get to the punch-line. Stop every 190 miles… Well, that’s doable, I guess. Pretty short run for a long-haul trucker, but doable, sure. Even I like to get out and stretch my legs, but that is a rather short distance for a freight truck (average distance to transport food is 1500 miles and much further for other kinds of products). Let’s see, that’s approximately 8 stops. This is sure to impact it’s efficiency computations, and how often or not the carbon-emitting biofuels are used. Truckers are paid by the mile, not by the hour. They’re also limited on how long they can drive before mandatory stops and rests. 190 miles doesn’t even figure into this current arrangement, which means what you think it means – hey baby, it’s ‘biofuels’ all the way!

And the recharge? Is that “zero-emissions” too? (Nope). And the supposedly zero-carbon biofuel – is that zero emissions? (Nope). It’s the same with the recharging stations and the electricity they’ve obtained from the grid (or even from ‘alternative energy sources’). None of this stuff is zero emissions.

“In all likelihood, most rigs will be refueled for some time by compressed natural gas stations on many long haul routes.”

Well, we all know (if we’ve been paying attention) that natural gas is anything but zero emissions, so I don’t see how this will qualify any of these claims as being truthful or accurate either.

I love the idea of electric vehicles, but not one of them is zero emissions (and never will be if you do the math). They’re quiet, they don’t emit smelly fumes (when driving, but it’s another story when they’re being manufactured or supplied with replacement parts) and they’re simply fucking cool.

I want one myself. But I don’t have any use for the curved 4k TV Tesla is offering (useless). I could silently cruise down the road secure in my delusional belief that I’m helping the planet while maintaining my lifestyle, never the wise to the horrible truth of what is really occurring. But there aren’t any vehicles that could tackle the roads here and there are certainly no recharging stations anywhere around for hundreds of miles (except at home of course – but what about my fishing trips?).

Is everybody aware that Tesla proposes to consume 100% of the world’s lithium supply? What do you suppose this might mean for other industries that require lithium? Like your cellphone? Or your computer? Or what it might mean for the price of lithium? Competition for this dwindling resource is going to create some big problems.

“Though this system does use a fuel tank (which can be filled with CNG, petroleum, diesel or biofuel) to extend the base electrical range, it represents a huge leap forward in the sustainability of long haul trucking.”

Uh, no – it’s not. Sustainability will actually go down as the raw materials required for these designs depletes and their demand goes up. They’ll be highly dependent upon their technological limitations and availability (just the opposite of sustainability). And none of these ‘fuels’ are zero-emissions. They’re all carbon sourced, carbon emitting fuels.

But still, I love the idea of electric vehicles. I just don’t endorse the hype, propaganda and incessant brainwashing on how great they are or how much they’re going to help our greenhouse gas problem much. In fact, there is evidence that the greenhouse gasses emitted are going to go up instead of down.

“If we’re going to tackle climate change, we need to address both long haul trucking and aircraft based fossil fuel emissions.”

Yes, we should. But let’s have some honesty about this, shall we?

The largest sources of transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions include passenger cars and light-duty trucks, including sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks, and minivans. These sources account for over half of the emissions from the sector. The remainder of greenhouse gas emissions comes from other modes of transportation, including freight trucks, commercial aircraft, ships, boats, and trains as well as pipelines and lubricants. (Transportation Sector Emissions)

The larger greenhouse gas problem with transportation is personal vehicles. Tesla’s working on that too, but it’s still unaffordable for most people. Electric freight trucks are a breakthrough for certain, but they’re not going to save the planet.

Vehicle emissions from all sources contributes less to climate change then oopselectricity generation and agriculture (see quote below). So how does this “work” with those recharging stations envisioned every 190 miles? Anybody want to do the math on this one? How many thousands of recharging stations does this actually represent? And what is that going to take in terms of resources and their contribution to emissions?

Tesla is only planning on 55 natural gas fill-up stations by the way (for the entire country) and claiming that these will provide for “millions of gallons of clean natural gas each day.” Liars. Isn’t there a place in hell for such people?

So let me get this straight… A electric vehicle company is going to promote natural gas consumption? And call it clean? Are they by chance involved in the horrible fracking activity going on around the country? I don’t even want to look. Perhaps the good news is Tesla’s only actually received $10 million (not the $2.3 billion claimed). Now you know why I didn’t post a picture with this blog entry – the thing doesn’t even exist. But hey, I still like the idea of electric transportation. I don’t want to see them fail. But I’d also like to have the truth about what they’re offering really means. It’s not a solution and it’s not much of a step in the right direction either.

So what about the claim that transportation contributes to our greenhouse gasses?

(Transportation Sector Emissions) – In 2014, greenhouse gas emissions from transportation accounted for about 26% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, making it the second largest contributor of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions after the Electricity sector.

(Electricty Sector Emissions) – 27% of electricity generated in 2014 was generated using natural gas. Petroleum accounts for approximately 1% of electricity generation. The remaining generation comes from nuclear (about 19%) and renewable sources (about 13%), which includes hydroelectricity, biomass, wind, and solar.

I’ll try and spell it out for you. A ‘zero-emissions’ truck (which isn’t) running on lithium batteries (also not zero emissions) which must be recharged every 190 miles, or using ‘zero-carbon biofuels’ (which aren’t) is supposed to make a substantial difference on human-contribution to greenhouse gasses and global warming (it won’t). But hey, it’s a start – I guess.

Actually, we could do better. We could change the entire paradigm of how we live and how we transport stuff and how much we make and what we demand, and hey! We could even grow some of our own food as part of this new paradigm. But this sort of conversation is rarely in the public space and even rarer among authors and publishers, let alone industry or government. And we sure as hell don’t want to discuss things like population or what sustainability really means… no, we’d rather endorse a war criminal and do everything we can to maintain the status quo while pretending everything is going to be honky dory based on vaporware and empty promises. Pardon me while I puke.

Maybe this really will be “Al Gore’s Revenge” when we all finally start to listen to what the Earth has been telling us for decades and stop paying attention to all the hype and propaganda and phony ‘solutions’ we’re constantly being promised.

But probably not. Hopium is simply easier to accept then face reality. What we’re far more likely to get, no – what we are absolutely certain to receive is Gaia’s Revenge (James Lovelock) as the Earth totters towards the total collapse of the biosphere while we continue to dither around embracing our failed paradigms. Our insistence of “business as usual” is our death sentence.

I wish I didn’t have to write article like this. I wish we could all get on board with reality. I wish that people would wake the fuck up and realize just how deceptive many media sources really are. But I rarely ever get anything I wish for. I rarely even get a thank you. But I don’t care anymore, I’ve got nothing left to lose that I haven’t already lost.

Be careful with what you read these daze. Glassy-eyed hopium isn’t the new crack, it’s the same old crap shoveled since the human ape stood upright and formed a coherent sentence.

Jun 052016
 

I’ve been harping on the ‘false narrative’ off and on for a while now. But what is a false narrative?

A narrative is a story – and like most stories it contains a cast of characters, events, circumstances and a story line. Events that either will (future tense) or have (past tense) taken place. But like all stories, a narrative isn’t the real thing (real life). It’s fiction, the ‘telling‘ of the parts of the story the author wants to share.

The false narrative is a combination of these fictions and non-fictions, truth and deception, inaccuracies or omissions in the story, but it is not the real thing. A narrative is almost always passed off as the real thing, and almost as often, accepted as the real thing, but this isn’t true. A narrative is the ‘telling’ – and a false narrative is also the ‘telling’ inaccurately (omissions). Continue reading »

Mar 292006
 

There is a lot of hype and promise, some of it even real, with regards to alternative energy technologies. Heralded as the next best thing to sliced bread, alternative energy “promises” to replace petroleum dependency and even carbon emissions with something “clean”.

Fact or fiction? You be the judge. Any technology developed requires energy to create the actual hardware. Minerals are mined, the ore is extracted, factories are powered up to processing the metals, silicon and glass required, production facilities are built and manned, the actual hardware is produced and assembled, distribution networks are built, parts and pieces are transported and finally, the entire apparatus arrives at the end of this process and is assembled, tested and finally, switched on.

To produce what?

Power. Electricity. Which in turn is utilized by yet something else. A motor, a battery, a car, an appliance. Something, another manmade creation, is at the end of the entire process saving labor for a human, somewhere.

But at what cost? The hidden costs are almost always overlooked as if they don’t matter, don’t count. And moreover, does alternative energy mean just switching from one type of dependency to another? And what about all of the energy required to mine, extract, manufacture, transport, build and operate the thing? And what about all of the plundered resources that were required in the manufacturing and assembly, including the assembly and processing plants, the distribution networks, trucking and even international shipping themselves?

What exactly are we really gaining here? And at what price?

Technology is being heralded as some of the greatest inventions and “advancements” of mankind. I don’t agree with this assessment. I think technology has become one of our slave masters, making entire continents of people slaves to the demands of technology.

It’s not technology itself that is inherently bad, its how we utilize it and singularily fail to count its actual cost in resource, political and social control, dependency and insatiable demand for further advancement, which is just another way of saying it’s a self-sustaining feedback loop, which will last as long as the resources do.

Technology breeds dependency, dependency upon resources (which require ownership or control), extraction (which requires equipment), processing (even more equipment), manufacturing (production plants requiring even more resources), transportation (more equipment, more resources), and the incredible accumulative energy requirements to make this all happen. It’s easy to see how the dependency and the demands of technology, any technology, creates gigantic resource and energy demands.

Alternative energy technologies are no different. They suffer from exactly these same set of negative characteristics, or rather, we continue to foster these same set of negative characteristics, because we refuse to control the use of the technology and come to understand its true price on human and planetary existence.

Technology also affect all of the rest of non-human world. The extraction of resources seriously disrupts the planetary balance of global ecosystems worldwide. Entire species destructions are the “norm” because of the human demand for technology. The toxic pollutions and wasted dumps generated as part of the extraction, creation, usage and disposal of our technology is now threatening the very survival of all life on Earth. Our land fills throughout the globe are filled with billions of tons of our “technological castoffs”. Our oceans are polluted with it, our groundwater is contaminated with it, even our near-earth orbits are cluttered with it.

And yet there is still no recognition of these simple facts. Increasing complexity and rising dependency on technology, both conventional and “alternative” is the battle cry of the human race. It should be our mourning cry, as we come to recognize that we have embarked upon the wrong path.

The problem with technology should be obvious. Humans, using their technology, have utterly failed to come into harmony with the planet they live on. Instead, they exploit its natural resources to the point of total collapse and depletion, then moving on to yet another unexploited resource leaving behind toxic waste dumps the world over. This cycle of voracious consumption is a cancerous attack upon the very elements of the planet itself and cannot last forever. Eventually, exhausting all known natural resources, humans will wonder in stupid bewilderment “what went wrong?” while they stand among a pile of their own excrement and technological castoffs.

Yesterday, I had to make one of my dreaded day trips into the city. As I looked at all the glass, steel, concrete and paint I saw, I wondered about the process of human evolution and technology. The human body has not kept up with the demands (or lack thereof) that technology has supplanted. We were not meant to sit in cubicles and stare out of windows, excluded and isolated and insulated from our environment. We develop back problems, neck problems and poor posture. Our legs weren’t meant to remain barely used as we cross from chair to coffee pot and back again.

Most of the modern ills of mankind can be attributed directly to the application of technology and how it has been used to “save” us from “back-breaking” labor. But are we really better off? As a species, we are unhealthy, overweight, underexercised and underutilized according to our natural capacity for work and exertion. We are sickly, diseased, tumorous, cancerous, crippled, arthritic and plagued with a whole host of human-induced afflictions.

And this is supposed to be the “good life”. I call foul – I don’t think it is at all. I think we are on the highway to hell and partying like there is no tomorrow, heading ourselves, our planet and our future to ruin.

I don’t hate technology – not at all. I don’t like being a slave to it. I like electricty and what it does for me, but I also like very much being non-electric. The quiet and peace that this brings is unsurpassed by anything that technology offers.

But it isn’t technology that is at fault here – it’s us. It’s how we use it and what we expect of it and the unfullfilled dreams of how technology is going to somehow “save” us. This is exactly the promise that alternative energy technologies are promising yet again. This is a false promise that has been hyped for generations, yet to be realized. Technology cannot save us when it is actively destroying us. How could it be otherwise?

Our job would be to find ways where (and a great big IF) technology could be used for benefit (not just for humans, we are not the only species living on this planet). Right now, unbridled competition and demand for profits is causing the application of technology to be utilized for these reasons – and be damned everything else. This has caused incredible environmental damage and widespread species destruction. There has GOT to be a way humans can live on this planet without destroying everything in sight. If that is not true – then we do not deserve to be here.

That may be the case, although I think not. The rise of civilization and the use of technology, from the simple grinding stone to ICBM’s have overtaken traditional methods of living. The few surviving indigenous cultures today give living evidence that real alternatives exist. But they are considered oddities and the modern world is fast trying to change their “strange” behavior and traditional existence. It is we that need to change. Nothing about modern living is healthy, beneficial, productive, peaceful, sustainable, quiet, calm, contented or tranquil. It is our very way of life that is at fault, as we wrestle with the very elements themselves attempting to forge a better existence.

We have failed, miserably so and it is obvious as hell how far off the mark we are. We insist with our concepts of ownership that we alone have charge of the earth and it is ours alone to determine what is to be done with it. The bacteria would not agree. Nor would the viruses. Even the cockroaches would disagree. And the rats. While we could probably eradicate all life forms on earth, we would leave many of the lower life forms as our successors after we irradiated the place to hell and gone.

And for what? What good does it do mankind to destroy everything he touches? What’s the point? Greed? Profit? Instatiable lust for power and control? This type of behaviour is sickening and ultimately, self-defeating, but it doesn’t affect just humans, but the entire planet and all life forms upon it. Either we learn to control our own selves, instead of trying to control the planet (which can take care of itself as it always has), or it will be the lower life forms that become the inheritors of the earth after we die out from our own stupidity and pollution.

Right now, we don’t deserve to be here. Nothing that humans are doing on and to the planet can justify our existence as being a fully-qualified species living on this planet. Our exploitation of each other, the land, the sea, the plant and animal kingdom and the very elements themselves demonstrates the fact that we are unfit to live on this planet. Alternative energy is only trying to continue this party a little longer. Harsh words, but that’s nothing compared to what we’ve actually done to the place. We’re well on the road to self-extinction, with humans being the last remaining survivor (temporarily) at the top of the food chain while we first devour and eliminate all other life forms. That’s the reality, and that’s the truth.

If we’re going to live here, then we must learn to co-exist with everything else and this will require an entirely new earth ethic, one which does not put humans first. If we’re “first”, then everything else is secondary and that is exactly the kind of thinking that got us into this predicament in the first place.

We assume our “first” placeness because of our concepts of ownership, when we in reality, own nothing. It is the Earth that own us, cradles us, nurtures us and sustains us. But we reject that notion, deeming it ridiculous and archaic. But the reality is very different, humans do not own the earth, nor anything within it. Our attempts to exert ownership and control has now resulting in the rejection of homo sapiens. However, it is not the earth that is rejecting us, it is us rejecting the Earth.

When we abuse and reject that which supports and sustains us, we are in reality rejecting each other, because we are rejecting life itself. Life comes from the earth, not from humans. There is nothing humans can do without the earth. When we destroy the life of the earth, we are in effect, destroying each other as we destroy everything else. The evidence of this fact abounds all around us with our depleted and polluted world, our overcrowded cities, our sicknesses and disease as we attempt to exert greater and greater control and ownership on what isn’t ours.

A new ethic must be embraced, rejecting the old and abandoning what clearly does not work and is only leading to our destruction. This ethic must embrace a new set of ideals and cultural values, which in truth, are not really new at all, but have been long since abandoned by modern man. We have much to learn from the indigenious cultures that have left their faint marks upon the planetary surface, we would do well to do the same.

Alternative energy proposals do not embrace this new ethic, but seek to further the continued “dominance” of mankind over life on earth. The hidden costs to alternative energy development and usage is being deliberately overlooked, but it is important for us to realize that mankind does not need a continuance of his party on earth, but rather a revocation of assumed ownership. We are neither deserving nor worthy to be deemed the rightful masters of this planet. We can pretend otherwise all that we want, but the facts are now clear. Our stewardship is woefully lacking and we are not worthy of the task. the roaches would do better. Alternative energy is one such proposal that falls into this same category of irresponsibility. If we cannot reign in all of our demands upon the planet, coming up with a “clean” energy source will only ensure the continued destruction of the planet and ultimately, oursleves.

We can do better. In fact, we have to. What other real choice is there?