[ExI] Whatever happened to peak oil by 2020?

spike spike at rainier66.com
Wed May 8 15:29:59 UTC 2013



From: extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org
[mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of Adrian Tymes
Subject: Re: [ExI] Whatever happened to peak oil by 2020?


On Wed, May 8, 2013 at 5:07 AM, Eugen Leitl <eugen at leitl.org> wrote:

>>.One does not simply synthesize gasoline</boromir> Particularly,
if you want to fill a large gap almost overnight.  Eugen

>.Look into costs and time and material and energy input
for a plant, then multiply by the number required.


>.Would you happen to have a convenient source for said costs
and time?  A quick search didn't find any, but I may have used
the wrong terms.  Adrian


I found this paper from the journal Hydrocarbon Processing.  It is a bit
scattershot and surface-y, but has some interesting cost data in there:




I am watching a football stadium being built a couple miles from my yurt for
the 49ers.  If we can build a structure of that magnitude in a couple years
(the stadium, not my yurt), then we can build Fischer-Tropsch plants in a
similar timespan.  Yes I know that line of reasoning is as loose as a bucket
of bolts, but I do fail to understand why anything like this would
necessarily take a long time to do, assuming we get the hell on it now, when
conventional energy is cheap and abundant.


I will buy into part of Eugen's reasoning, the part that would wipe the
Alfred E Newman grin off of even my own optimistic face: if we wait too long
to start, then there isn't enough energy to build the energy conversion
facilities.  The results will be horrifying.  But I would suggest we do a
lot of stuff that is extravagantly wasteful now, such as football stadiums.
Then as energy becomes more scarce, we let those go first.  This calls
attention to shortages, perhaps far enough ahead of the crisis to avert
catastrophe.  For instance, in a coming age of shortage, the audience for
football becomes small enough that the enterprise fails to break even.  Then
we have the stadium as a source of raw materials: we can take it apart and
recycle the steel rather than mine iron ore for instance.



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