Oil-expert Paula Gordon says...sorry, oil-pundit, um, Y2K-conspiracy theorist, whatever...

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List of Likely Factors Affecting Fuel Shortfalls

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Redeye in Ohio posted a very interesting list of factors that might help explain fuel shortfalls at pub5.ezboard.com/fyourdon...c&index=17

Here are my nominees for some factors that help explain fuel shortfalls. My list is not intended to be definitive. I have not tried to rank order the factors, but my guess would be that Y2K-related embedded systems and integrated systems problems would fall within the top three or four items of any rank-ordered list.

0 Y2K-related embedded systems and complex integrated systems problems owing to the inability or failure of companies to remediate fully, including:

- companies that have tried and are trying to save money by "fixing on failure";

- failure of companies to remediate because the costs were considered prohibitive; and/or

- companies that failed or are failing to remediate owing to the difficulties of finding, assessing, and/or accessing everything in need of remediation

0 Difficulties in maintaining optimal operating conditions of refineries, including problems that can be attributed to working flat out or exacerbated by working flat out and problems that can be attributed to delaying maintenance or that can be exacerbated by delaying maintenance

0 Electric power brownouts and shortages linked in some areas to increases in demand owing to growth in certain sectors of the economy

0 Additional demands placed on refineries owing to newer environmental regulations affecting refinery emissions and vehicle emissions

0 Absence of a national energy policy, including absence of an energy conservation policy

0 Problems involving extraction, refining, and distribution are not being fully acknowledged and are not widely understood; as a result, acknowledgement and understanding of such problems is not being factored into policy considerations

0 Lower than normal heating oil reserves as winter approaches

0 Increased demands for gasoline as a result of the increase in popularity of vehicles that get low miles per gallons

0 Challenges in getting crude oil to refineries and in expanding such capabilities

0 Pipeline problems, including poorly maintained and aging pipelines

0 OPEC strategies aimed at keeping the price of oil at a high level

0 Reduction in the number of refineries during the past ten years placing greater demands on refineries that remain and making it difficult for the remaining refineries to keep pace with increases in demand

0 Low levels of domestic exploration

0 Disincentives to produce when price of oil was low

0 Diminished pool of qualified workers in the oil and gas industry owing to cutbacks when the price of oil was low

0 Unclear national policy on the purpose and use of strategic petroleum reserves and the temptation to use the reserves to serve short term "political" purposes

-- Paula Gordon (pgordon@erols.com), October 08, 2000


I think the last item -- unclear national policy -- has much to do with much.

-- RogerT (rogerT@c-zone.net), October 09, 2000.

As the environmental movement's best known oil analyst, I can say Paula Gordon's thoughts on the tight oil supply and "high" prices are fairly thorough. But they put too much emphasis on Y2K which has not prevented refineries from operating at near top capacity. But, to prioritize factors, let us put non-conservation first, up there with overpopulation which was not mentioned. U.S. overpopulation is added to mostly by immigration (70% of growth). I am not certain if the idea of shortfalls refer to present or future. Future shortfalls will be much worse than anything seen, due to absence of alternatives and the overpopulation of consumers. We use petroleum not just as fuels but as feedstocks for materials and chemicals, such that the agricultural sector will let over a hundred million Americans down swiftly, resulting in famine and chaos. The end of plentiful petroleum is fast approaching early this century. Please see Fossil Fuels Policy Action's/Alliance for a Paving Moratorium's/Auto-Free Times magazine's website http://www.lesscars.org and also http://www.dieoff.org Jan Lundberg President, Fossil Fuels Policy Action

-- Jan Lundberg (alliance@tidepool.com), October 09, 2000.

It is very disturbing that no one is talking about overpopulation in the U. S. as a catalyst for these shortages. People in the U. S. use more resources than anyone.

-- K (infosurf@yahoo.com), October 09, 2000.

-- Buddy (buddydc@go.com), October 10, 2000


I see you are still on your Y2K fishin' expedition CPR. How is that working for ya so far? Any nibbles?

-- It's the Refinery's Stupid! (whadya@mean?.com), October 10, 2000.

Whine, whine, whine....would she like some cheese with that?

She kind of reminds me of the teacher from "Peanuts"; you really can't understand a word she says, but some people (in the case of "Peanuts", it was the kids) follow her to the letter.

It seems that Jan Lundberg gives even the most hard-core "doomer" a run for the money -- "famine and chaos"?. Sheesh.

The only one I see on a "fishing expedition" is Paula Gordon.

-- Patricia (PatriciaS@lasvegas.com), October 11, 2000.

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