DrumBeat: January 3, 2008

Oil breaks $100 as U.S. stockpiles drop

Oil prices broke above $100 a barrel for the first time on Thursday after a U.S. government report showed a steep slide in crude inventories in the world's biggest energy consumer.

The surge in oil prices into the triple digits has darkened the economic outlook in the United States, already battered by a housing crisis and credit crunch, and could threaten growth in big European energy consuming nations.

"Oil prices have been increasing significantly. Now if this high level of prices is maintained then it will have an impact on the economy," European Commission spokeswoman Amelia Torres told a news briefing.

U.S. crude climbed 47 cents to $100.09 a barrel by 11:57 a.m. EST, breaking Wednesday's record high of $100 even. Brent crude rose 45 cents to $98.29 a barrel.

IEA Chief Says Oil May Rise to $150 on China Demand

Oil prices may rise to as high as $150 a barrel because of booming demand from India and China, according to the director of the International Energy Agency.

"In a very high growth scenario in China and India it may move up to $150," Nobuo Tanaka said in an interview in Paris today. Those countries "are consuming energy in a very, very substantial way."

..."Suddenly the lower-level price age may be over and we are now in the age of very high energy prices," Tanaka said.

ASPO Newsletter - January 2008 (PDF)

897. In Memory of Ali Samsam Bakhtiari
899. Major Oil Companies pass peak
990. Living through the Energy Crisis
991. Marketing Peak Denial
992. Comments on an article in the Sunday Times of December 16th 2007
993. Reporting More
994. Brasil Analysis Updated
995. Zero-Sum Future
996. New US policy to cut oil consumption
997. Financial Times comments on the US Situation
998. The Pope addresses the Energy Issue
999. Data for 2007

From $1.80 to $100 in 37 years

Key milestones in the price of crude oil since 1970. On Wednesday, the price of a barrel of light sweet crude, the benchmark oil price in New York, broke through $100 for the first time.

- 1970: The official price of Saudi crude oil is fixed at $1.80 a barrel.

Crude inventories down 700,000 barrels in latest week: API

Crude inventories fell by 700,000 barrels to 297.7 million barrels in the week ending Dec. 28, the American Petroleum Institute reported on Thursday, according to Moody's Economy.com. Distillate stocks rose by 4.7 million barrels to 133.7 million barrels in the same period, while gasoline stocks gained by 6.9 million barrels to 212.9 million barrels, the API said.

French Finance Minister: Happy Strong Euro Offsets Rising Oil Prices

The strong euro is helping the French economy at a time when the price of oil has touched $100 per barrel for the first time, French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde said Friday.

"We often complain about the strong euro when it weighs on our exporting companies," she said at a press conference. "I see for once that the strong euro is making our raw materials purchases cheaper."

Oil at $100: How will it affect me?

QUESTION: How will $100 oil affect the prices I pay for energy?

ANSWER: Higher crude prices will almost certainly drive up the cost of refined products, although the gasoline pump may not be the first place consumers see prices rise.

Gazprom critical of energy measures, offered by European Union

A new package of measures in the energy sector, suggested by the European Union, “puts many questions, to which there are no replies so far”. This idea was stressed by Gazprom board deputy chairman Alexander Medvedev in an interview which was published by the Paris-based Tribune newspaper on Thursday.

Analysis: Venezuelan oil production down

Venezuela's oil industry shrank by more than 5 percent in 2007, according to the Venezuelan National Bank, raising concerns the Venezuelan government is not investing enough of its petroleum wealth in the sector.

Oil production was off 5.3 percent in 2007 from the previous year and contributed $3.14 billion to the country's gross domestic product, down from both 2006 and 2005 when the sector accounted for a reported $3.38 billion.

Humanizing revolution

If President Hugo Chávez dreams of turning Venezuela into a Cuba with oil, the Venezuelans who oppose him have discovered the perfect antidote: the student movement.

Sinopec to Focus on Foreign Asset Acquisition through 2010

China Petrochemical Corp., or Sinopec Group, the country's second-largest oil company by assets, will emphasize acquisition of foreign oil and gas assets in the coming years to 2010 to build the company into an international oil major, its general manager Su Shulin said in a posting on its Web site Wednesday.

China Looks to Coal Bed Methane

As the Chinese economy grows at double-digit rates, satisfying the country's energy appetite is a top priority for President Hu Jintao and his government. While China's oil companies and their search for partners in places like Sudan commands most of the attention in the West, coal is of much greater importance to China than oil.

U.S. Department of Justice Signals Possible Appeal of Royalties Case

The Department of Justice took a step last month toward appealing a court ruling that limits the government's ability to collect billions in royalties from companies pumping oil in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico.

The Future of the Quik 'N Easy Meal

My own observation is that in many cases, it is harder to learn to eat and preserve what you grow all the time than it is to grow it. That’s even truer as we begin eating less common foods, or moving towards a truly local diet. We are making an enormous change in our diets, and in our society as a whole. Food is more than fuel – It is culture, love, happiness, comfort, a part of who we are. How we eat and what we eat is part of our identity – far more than what we grow. We are about to change our identities in a profound way. And at the root of this transition is the question of time – the quick and easy 3 hour meal requires someone to be around to cook it, watch over it, check on it. With a majority of households working hard to make ends meet, we encounter a bind – we could make ends meet better if we didn’t have to buy our food at restaurants, but cooking quickly and sustainably requires knowledge, experience and the time at least to learn how to do it. Most often, it requires someone at home.

Fantasy fuels: Saying goodbye to cheap, plentiful gasoline

When I was a kid, my father told me stories about an inventor guy in the 1930s who was going to end the monopoly of the big oil companies by creating a car that ran only on water and some sort of pill he would throw into the tank.

You can bet Big Oil wouldn't stand for that, so they "moidered" the upstart before he could provide relief to drivers suffering from gas prices approaching 10¢ a gallon.

My father knew even then that the story was an urban legend, but the idea of inventing an alternative automobile fuel that any schmo could draw from the kitchen faucet has undeniable appeal.

Ancient Warming Caused Huge Spike in Temps, Study Says

What started out as a moderate global warm-up about 55 million years ago triggered a massive injection of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere that sent temperatures skyrocketing, a new study says.

The finding suggests that today's temperature rise may just be priming the planet for a carbon belch of epic proportions.

Chinese shrug off $100 oil, but Beijing must beware

Oil prices at $100 a barrel mean little to Chinese consumers insulated from the global rally by cheap fuel prices, but the latest market peak should sound a warning to Beijing over its disjointed energy policy.

China's leaders extolled the virtues of energy efficiency at every turn last year, but refused to do the one thing that would immediately curb demand -- lift the caps on gasoline and diesel prices, a move they fear would feed already-high inflation.

Strains caused by the widening gap between international and domestic markets may become unmanageable if oil prices stay in three-figure territory, but Beijing may struggle to escape from the vicious cycle its policies have created.

Uganda: Fuel Crisis is Big Lesson for Us

Within hours of violence erupting in Kenya following the country's disputed polls, an unprecedented shortage of fuel and subsequently the rise in fuel prices rocked the country.

By yesterday, the queues at fuel stations had more or less disappeared, not because supplies had been restored but because many motorists had exhausted their reserves running from one station to another where they were told they could get a few drops.

Rwanda: Fuel Crisis Imminent Violence in Kenya Continues - Official

Rwanda has not experienced any shortages of petroleum products but should the violence in Kenya continue unabated - the effects will spill over, senior private sector official said on Wednesday.

According to Mr. Emmanuel Hategeka - Executive Secretary of the Rwanda Private Sector Federation, Rwanda has sufficient fuel reserves at the moment that may run out anytime soon because there are no imports coming in, the state broadcaster reported.

Ukraine's Naftogaz faces bankruptcy, Eurobond concern

"I was shocked by the information given to me by the new Naftogaz head. The company is facing bankruptcy," Tymoshenko said after meeting Dubyn, whom she appointed after taking over as premier in December.

"The company's credit-debit liabilities show that the financial health of the company is not ensured."

She also said the country's underground reserves did not belong to Naftogaz but were in the hands of "criminal shady structures".

PetroChina delays refinery, petchem unit to end '08

PetroChina will defer the start-up of a new 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) refinery in China's remote northwest by almost a year to late 2008 due to building problems, two company sources said on Thursday.

Australia: Extra power eases electricity supply crisis

PERTH may be spared blackouts today after Western Power said it had found extra power to replace capacity lost to a gas-plant fault.

Western Power spokeswoman Miriam Borthwick said 385 megawatts of additional energy had been obtained from various sources.

She said residents also had heeded the warning to keep a lid on their energy use, which was issued after an electrical fault at Woodside's Karratha Gas Plant yesterday dramatically cut gas supplies, affecting 20 per cent of the state's power generators.

Australia not out of the woods with gas crisis

Western Australians will have to minimise energy consumption for at least 24 hours as they wait for gas from the North West Shelf to reach power stations.

Gas supplies have been dramatically reduced because of an electrical fault on Wednesday that caused the shutdown of Woodside Petroleum Ltd's Karratha plant.

Conoco's results hurt by refining margins

The energy company says its fourth-quarter results were supported by higher oil, gas prices but slipped on lower refining, marketing margins.

Plowing, road salt eating up budgets

Salt is one of the most heavily used compounds in global manufacturing. Demand in rapidly growing countries, such as China and India, combined with the costs of fuel for shipping it, have translated into eye-popping price increases. Boxford and 18 other local communities, from Merrimac to Manchester-by-the-Sea, that buy salt together in a consortium have weathered a 36 percent price increase since 2004. And that was on top of a 25 percent hike the year before.

Symposium: The World Is Not Enough

In the last issue of The National Interest, David Victor argued that the threat of resource wars is overplayed and overblown.

...Now we hear from Victor’s critics, Thomas Homer-Dixon, Michael Klare, Sherri Goodman and Paul Kern. They tackle him on everything, from climate change to the impact of oil shortages and the mass spread of disease. Victor has the last word.

Peak oil is here; we must act

With oil nearing $100 a barrel, I’m writing to announce that the all-time peak of global petroleum production is behind us. It happened in 2006. Once on the downhill slope of the oil production bell curve, supplies will decline about 3 percent annually.

Sustainability analyst Lester Brown released an update recently that ran through the figures: “After climbing from 82.9 million barrels per day in 2004 to 84.15 million barrels per day in 2005, output only increased to 84.8 million barrels per day in 2006 and then declined to 84.62 million barrels per day during the first 10 months of 2007.” Unless some new production comes online soon, the numbers indicate that the peak indeed occurred in 2006.

Just not enough oil to go around

Another year, another record oil price. The immediate reasons why the price of a barrel of oil jumped $4 to $100 yesterday were a cold snap in North America and unrest in two important producing nations: Nigeria and Algeria. Beneath the surface, however, the key fact about oil has not changed, and it is an uncomfortable fact: there is not enough being produced. Or, more precisely, there is not enough spare capacity in places such as Saudi Arabia to prevent regular price spikes. It is why $100 oil no longer looks like an aberration, but the norm for a while yet.

German institute DIW sees oil prices doubling within 10 years

German research institute DIW sees oil prices doubling to 200 usd per barrel within the coming 10 years, DIW's head of department for energy, transport and environment Claudia Kemfert told Berliner Zeitung.

'Oil reserves are becoming scarce, and that will drive up prices further,' Kemfert told the newspaper.

Oil price passes $100 a barrel for first time - close to 1980 all-time real dollar high; Price was at $10.72 in December 1998

A combination of increasingly difficult to access new oil resources as huge older fields face depletion; more success for the oil cartel OPEC in controlling supply; a surge in demand from Asia in recent years; increasing interest from market players in investing in oil futures and subsidies for consumers in many countries in the Middle East and Asia in particular, has underpinned the price.

Political Peak Oil: Price Spikes to $100 on Nigerian Unrest

This is peak oil.

No, it's not that we've pumped up every drop of crude oil that million-year-old plankton provided for us. Not necessarily. This isn't geologic peak oil. It's political peak oil.

FPTV: The Future of Oil

Are we running out of oil? FPTV speaks with Vijay Vaitheeswaran and Robert L. Hirsch about their conflicting views on the future of the world's greatest addiction.

Uganda: Fuel Prices Double As Stocks Run Out

Escalating fuel shortage in the country compounded by hoarding triggered by sensational speculation have more than doubled the price of petrol overnight as black marketers pocketed staggering profits in roadside sales.

Pakistan: Loadshedding duration enhanced to 10 hours

The country Wednesday faced additional power shortage of 1000 MW following the tower blown-up incident in Hub accumulating the demand-supply gap to 4000MW and resulting in enhancing the loadshedding period to ten hours, it is learnt.

Sources concerned told The Nation that the electric distribution companies, which had been made independent with respect to managing the demand-supply gap at their own, were forced to move on to effect over 10-hour loadshedding especially in rural areas.

Trees absorbing less CO2 as world warms, study finds

The ability of forests to soak up man-made carbon dioxide is weakening, according to an analysis of two decades of data from more than 30 sites in the frozen north.

The finding published today is crucial, because it means that more of the CO2 we release will end up affecting the climate in the atmosphere rather than being safely locked away in trees or soil.

Climate Change: Northward Ho?

Dan Bloom thinks it's time to figure out how to build self-sustaining cities in the polar regions because climate change will eventually make most of Earth uninhabitable.

These polar cities may be "humankind's only chance for survival if global warming really turns into a worldwide catastrophe in the far distant future," Bloom told IPS.

China closes over 10,000 coal mines in last three years

China closed 10,412 coal mines in the last three years amid efforts to improve workplace safety and to check extravagant use of natural resources, the country's top industrial safety inspector said.

Truckers push for national idling laws

"It is the most frustrating scenario you could imagine," says Todd Spencer, executive vice president of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, which represents 159,000 truckers and small trucking firms. "The federal regulations say a driver must stop to sleep after X number of hours. How many people could sleep in their car when it's 96 degrees or 14 below without the engine running?"

Investment in clean energy topped $100 billion for first time in 2007

Despite the global credit crunch in 2007, new investment in clean energy industries like wind and solar power rose sharply to break through the $100 billion barrier for the first time, a research group, New Energy Finance, said Wednesday.

Uganda: The Fuel in Human Excreta

HUMAN excreta and urine are now an asset to farmers because they are a cheap source of biogas energy. The two offer the best biogas followed by pig and cattle dung.

Green units profitable, says builder

For the most part, the houses on Marla Circle in Tyngsborough look like a typical snapshot of suburbia. The architectural style is Colonial or Greek Revival, blending with the New England feel of the town. Porticos and porches stretch outward into fertile lawns from clapboard buildings. Only the solar electrical panels on their roofs stand out.

Contrary to a longstanding perception among developers that building green homes is not financially feasible, Carter Scott, who built the development, says the subdivision is proof that developers can be environmentally sensitive - and make a profit.

Saudi Aramco Delays Production Start From Khursaniyah

Saudi Aramco, the world's largest state- owned oil company, delayed the start of production from the 500,000 barrel-a-day Khursaniyah field and said it will meet market demand with existing spare capacity.

"Should the need arise prior to the completion of the project, Saudi Aramco stands ready to meet market demands with ample spare capacity, including 1 million barrels of Arab Light crude," the company said in an e-mailed statement today.

Khursaniyah will commence "upon completion of commissioning activities," Saudi Aramco said.

The project, which was scheduled to start in December, will produce and process 500,000 barrels a day of Arabian Light crude and 300 million square cubic feet a day of natural gas, according to Saudi Aramco.

Tom Whipple - The Peak Oil Crisis: Diesel

Now there seems to be a new problem developing: diesel for the great machines that grow our food, bring us stuff, take away our garbage and do nearly all the chores needed to keep our civilization running. If you think about it for a few minutes, you might conclude that a diesel shortage would be worse than a gasoline shortage. If the availability of gasoline gets tight, we can all cancel recreational car trips, play dates for the kids, and form commuting or shopping carpools. For the sake of some inconvenience, we could cut gasoline consumption by a whole lot.

It’s not the same with diesel however. Two farmers can’t jump on a tractor and plow both their farms at the same time. Most of those 18-wheelers barreling down the interstate are either full or on the way to be filled. One trash truck picking up in two neighborhoods at the same time doesn’t work either. In short, it is going to be a lot harder to conserve on diesel fuel, which for the most part does vital work, than it would be to conserve gasoline for our personal transportation.

Consumers likely to shake off rising cost of oil

With oil at the once unfathomable price of $100 a barrel, consumers can expect the cost of filling their gas tanks, heating their homes — in fact, the price of most everything — to also keep rising.

Still, analysts don’t expect record-high prices by themselves to send the economy into recession, simply because expensive as oil is, energy doesn’t consume as big a chunk of Americans’ budget as it did decades ago.

OPEC may raise output at Feb 1 meet: Indonesia OPEC gov

OPEC may decide to increase oil output at its February 1 meeting in Vienna if supply is not sufficient, Indonesia's OPEC governor told Reuters on Thursday.

Maizar Rahman said that OPEC has the capability to increase production by 500,000 barrels per day, and warned that oil prices could climb even higher.

Oil, Gold Hit Records

Jeff Rubin, the CIBC chief economist who first called for US$100-a-barrel oil back in 2005, says that sustained oil prices above US$90 already show that the market is paying much less attention to how demand from the world's largest economy will affect the price of oil.

"The growth in global crude demand is not coming from the United States and is unlikely to come from the United States in the future," Mr. Rubin said.

$100 OIL: Crosses Line After Yrs Of Diverging Demand, Supply

Analysts and industry experts caution that there are always unknowns with any long-term energy forecast, but many have become confident of the notion that there is now a higher long-term "floor" for oil prices. The major oil companies are making investment decisions based on whether projects make sense at $40-$50 per-barrel, as opposed to $20-per-barrel a few years ago, said Cambridge Energy Research Associates Chairman Daniel Yergin.

"Whatever the floor is, we're certainly in a new era as far as oil prices," Yergin said.

Without endorsing the notion of "peak oil," some leading oil companies have begun describing petroleum resources as increasingly constrained. These include ConocoPhillips (COP) and Chevron Corp. (CVX), whose chief executive, Dave O'Reilly, declared famously in 2004 that "the time when we could count on cheap oil and even cheaper natural gas is clearly ending."

Nigeria: Governor: I'll arrest militants' parents

The governor of one of Nigeria's oil-rich states said Wednesday he planned to arrest the parents of suspected militants to deter attacks on oil installations and government buildings.

Sustainable growth is the key to our future

NO DISCUSSION of sustainable consumption can ignore the concept of “peak oil”. This is the situation where we reach the maximum possible rate of oil exploitation.

Then, as oil becomes scarcer, so its price rises, with all manner of implications.

The environmental consequences of using up our precious oil resources are already severe.

But the social effects might have even a greater impact on our lives.

Fossil Fuels and GM Performance

If you read my editorial relating to peak oil back in the November 2005 issue, you know that it has been over 50 years since M. King Hubbert, a Shell engineer, correctly predicted that oil production in the US mainland would peak by 1971. And as the US, and developing countries like China and India, use more and more oil at the start of a new millenium, the future looks grim for fossil fuels. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to hear what the old-timers say about 50-cent gas, look at the current prices over $3.00, and realize that supply and demand has come into painful effect.

That said, where does that leave us, the hot rodder? In 12 years, will this can of race fuel being dumped into my 10-second Turbo Buick be too expensive to buy due to the depletion of fossil fuels?

Co-founder of UN climate panel dies

Bert Bolin, a Swedish climate scientist and co-founder of the Nobel Peace-winning U.N. panel on climate change, has died at age 82.

As early as the 1950s, Bolin produced research about the circulation of carbon in nature that remains relevant to the debate on climate change. He played a key role in communicating the dangers of climate change and served as the first chairman of the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change from 1988 to 1998.

Alaskan sea drilling plans criticized

The federal government will open up nearly 46,000 square miles off Alaska's northwest coast to petroleum leases next month, a decision condemned by enviromental groups that contend the industrial activity will harm northern marine mammals.

Australia looks to GM crops after scorching 2007

Australia's agriculture minister on Thursday hailed genetically modified crops as a means to help farmers combat climate change, as data showed 2007 was the country's sixth hottest year on record.

Nature and man jointly cook Arctic

There's more to the recent dramatic and alarming thawing of the Arctic region than can be explained by man-made global warming alone, a new study found. Nature is pushing the Arctic to the edge, too.

There's a natural cause that may account for much of the Arctic warming, which has melted sea ice, ice sheets and glaciers, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Nature. New research points a finger at a natural and cyclical increase in the amount of energy in the atmosphere that moves from south to north around the Arctic Circle.

But that energy transfer, which comes with storms that head north because of ocean currents, is not acting alone either, scientists say. Another upcoming study concludes that the combination of both that natural energy transfer increase and man-made global warming serve as a one-two punch that is pushing the Arctic over the edge.

Regarding the delay in the Khursaniyah Project, posted uptop. BTW, the 500,000 bpd increase is a projected increase. It is going to be interesting to continue to compare actual production rates versus projected rates for the various mega-projects that are projected to be coming on line.

Published on 20 Mar 2005 by EnergyBulletin.net.
Aramco Projects: A Closer Look
by Greg Croft

The Khursaniyah Project involves three oil fields; Khursaniyah, Abu Hadriya and Fadhili. These fields are considered small fields in Saudi Arabia although they are respectably large by North Sea standards. Production at Khursaniyah began in 1960 and reached 200,000 barrels per day in 1980. Oil is present at five reservoir levels in the Khursaniyah Field, which produces Arab medium crude. Production of Arab light crude at Abu Hadriya began in 1961 and reached a peak of 105,000 barrels per day in 1971. The field has oil at six reservoir levels. Production of Arab extra light crude at Fadhili began in 1963 and reached a peak of 55,000 barrels per day in 1977. There are two oil reservoir levels at Fadhili. The proposed project will add 500,000 barrels per day of productive capacity in 2007. To add this much production from those three fields will require simultaneous, intensive development at all reservoir levels.

Another day, another lie from Saudi Aramco. Million barrels of spare light crude production to tap into, indeed! Sounds like they are ready to drain their 'strategic petroleum reserve tank'.

Ah well,I guess I'll go contemplate climate change at our neighbourhood, outdoor, naturally frozen, hockey rink. It's -23 Celsius here in Canada's capital this morning. I and other community volunteers were pouring the water on (no drought in these parts) until the wee hours last night and I'm off to try to get a thick enough ice surface to survive next week's big melt when temperatures are rumoured to be heading up to plus 10 Celsius. I remember when the great white north was the great white north, heh.

Was skating on the canal cancelled last year because of warm temps ?

I went a few years ago and there was ice but it was melting so fast the surface was covered with a couple inches of slush...

In the end a new record for consecutive days open was almost set last winter. Nonetheless, the season was short, beginning on January 26 and closing in early March. Historically, the season would be broken up by at least one mid winter weather event, thus the 'reachability' of the consecutive days record. Not so long ago, many people looked forward to skating off the New Year's Eve hangover on January 1st. Another story for the grandkids.

Skating on the Rideau Canal (8 kilometres cleared and flooded regularly) at the break of day is one of life's great experiences. Hopefully,you will get another chance. You can check out ice conditions by calling a number available at this website:


Oil Trades Near $100 as OPEC Officials Say They Can't End Rally


I’m sorry if this article was already posted.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is unable to counter the rally, Libyan and Qatari officials said today…

Tanaka (IEA executive director) said he disagreed with OPEC that the strength in prices isn't because of demand and supply fundamentals. ``The supply-demand situation is a basic determinant to the direction of the price,'' he said. ``The current level of spare capacity and the current level of stocks is showing that the market is quite fragile.''

Is this finally an admission to Peak Oil or at the very least the lack of spare capacity that Saudis supposedly have? If you read into this and start asking why they cannot increase capacity IMO makes this a huge story. I’m surprised the futures are not up more, maybe waiting for today's inventory report.

I can't help wondering if they're breaking it to us gently. That report yesterday saying they would hit the wall in 2037, for example. I suspect they know there could be problems well before then, but saying so would panic the markets. Even 2037 caused a lot of concern, as reflected in yesterday's price spike.

Wonder how much of their cash is going to buy into replacement energy systems for the future.They could probably buy controlling interest in any systems.

At that point will their cash be worth anything?

bruce from chicago,I own some of that cash :>) You being a tradesman yesterdays post from those looking for govt standards on energy in buildings is that there is none except from local areas.I read a couple of months ago that builder on a national level were hashing out what is or isn't green.Builders have been able to hang a tag of energy efficient for better sales but compared to what I've worked in some that were supposed to be energy efficient and took a wall plate off and the wind coming in could blow your hat off.Pathmann Paints in Palatine and Lake Zurich are the only two outlets in the US for nano tech coating that insulates.

Yeah, there are some real scumbags out there building some inferior buildings. They usually have crews of illegal Polish, Mexican, and Irish immigrants slapping them together. I seen a new condo unit going up in the Bridgeport area a few months ago that was built by a Polish crew and Oh baby!, what an example of a shoemaker job. Probably wont stand for twenty years. The building inspectors are all paid off, as is everyone else. My present home is a modular house. Cabinet work is shitty. Plumbing is garbage. Electrical needs to be upgraded. But the basic structure is built very well and is tight as a drum and energy efficient. Today I’m working on putting in a non-combustible floor and back wall for my new wood stove. Propane is a killer economically. I'll have to look into that paint. Thanx.

In 1976 when I was twenty something I set down at a lunch counter next to a 50 something guy that had foreman on his shirt.I asked him what he was building and his exact words were "Our future with the materials we're using now there will be major repair work, they won't last 40 yrs" his is spot on I'm leaving right now to go work at a multi family unit that was built about 5 yrs ago it coming apart like a cheap suit.The dirty little secret of the housing bubble.Good for you and for me.Take care....

My house was built in 1927 but it also has a 1989 addition, the plumbing from 27 is fine that from 89 is falling apart.

Reminds me that I recently bought a new toilet lock part for a 30 year old standard door. I did not fit, the standard had changed to 8 mm thicker doors.

I have been a structural steel inspector{highrise}20 years,and have watched a lot of building done.Its done to code here in Portland Ore.
I have found here that men will build the best they know how,IF THEY ARE PAID PROPERLY.

Bottom line.You get what you pay for.You cover your ass by hiring people like me to make sure you do.If you hire someone to build,you had better do your homework,Or like anything else in life,you will get burned.
I know of damn little paid off building inspectors in my area .The one I did know of was paid buy a "deal"on a house...and it cost him his career,reputation,ect.It cost the contractor his ability to work in Portland Ore.Shoddy work is not tolerated in this area.

That doesn't mean that the crackerbox residential construction is a "good",longterm investment.You should understand that these are designed to last as long as the mortgage.

I built my house framed in 6'tubesteel,on 29yards of concrete,with 4'x36'pierpiles under each of 14 columns.I have r-50 walls,w/8'dead air in each wall.A standing seam 50 year 30-70 zinc-alum roof.As I am able to hammer a nail,cut a board w/a saw,I built my own house.I am NOT a contractor,I subbed out the stuff my back couldn't handle like sheetrock.
It cost me $28,000 to build.
Anyone who takes there time,and can read a book,can build a efficient,comfortable house.You do your research,and decide what you need,and what you can afford.I have wanted to have a stone exterior....no maintainence besides a little pointing once every 10 to 20 years,but the cost,sweet christ the cost.
I have collected rock the last 5 years.
This year I found a deal on 12 yards of "small" boulders for 450 bucks.This load may make the stucco base...turn to stone...soon

I have found here that men will build the best they know how,IF THEY ARE PAID PROPERLY.

This is why unions and proper training are so important, so that workers are paid a proper wage and benefits in accordance with their skill. I’ve been a member of the Chicago District Council of Carpenters Union for 34 years, fist as a cabinetmaker, and later as a shop and field carpenter. We make sure our skills are up to date, and have a training center in Elk Grove village to keep these skills up to date. We take pride in our work, and welcome anyone to our brotherhood that is willing to uphold the standards of high craftsmanship.


retur USA to Native Americans
( who is illegal immigrant NOW )



reasoning is futile, but comfort yourself by observing that anti-immigrant postings invariably display low intellectual quality.

Doesn't matter what age you live in: An economy heads south and the government looks for scapegoats to assign blame.

Unfortunately history also shows that it's consistently an effective tactic for manipulating the lower classes.

Duhhh! Yoo gott me peged perfektlee!

They already own the "replacement systems".

The future is Shock Doctrine.

Note that "their cash" is going into weapons systems and private security.

At least we now know what the absolute limit is. So it has to be between 2005 and 2037.
PO is no longer speculative.

the PPT is obligated to buy anything and everything to keep
the status quo.

Later in the day, Nobuo Tanaka was interviewed on Bloomberg and here's the direct video link:


Oil Trades Near $100 as OPEC Officials Say They Can't End Reality

The collection of articles is all over the map. Homer-Dixon pointing out that DOH! climate matters - that the wealthy are looting everyone else and "everyone else" is getting uppitty, etc....

China shuts down as many coal mines in 2007 as it executes people in 2007. 10 thousand - what to make of that? 10 thousand executed by the state. Even in "Brave New World" they had their own island. Lethal injection or a bullet - I guess with 10 thousand the price matters.

DOJ hints it might appeal adverse decision in royalties case? Oh please, kick the football.

Road salt eating budgets in my hometown area.

The footprint is too big; it's very simple. Next?

cfm in Gray, ME

"Tanaka of IEA Says oil may rise to $150 on Asian Demand : Video"

I don't see a way to link to the vid, the link is currently at the bottom on the main bloomberg.com page. Check it out if you like video better than text.

An incredible revelation. He must've used the word 'suddenly' about 10 times. Suddenness happens I suppose....

Still the part bout dissagreement with OPEC being able to stem the demand tide and the openness about possible near-term $150 oil...quite revealing

RE: Nigeria Governor: I will arrest militants parents

Pretty damn sick if you ask me. Probably enrage the militants even further!

Next weeks Nigeria headline: Nigerian governor assassinated! =O

Bring my family into the game and suddenly it gets real bad for his troops people too I bet...This ones getting ugly fast

Hornet's nest alert:
How about your average Palestinian family's house being razed for crimes committed by their kid? Think that engenders any long-term hard feelings?

It doesn't take a brain surgeon to hear what the old-timers say about 50-cent gas

Old-timers? 50 cents? I had a driver's license when gas crossed 40 cents per gallon in the early 70s. As a kid I remember gas occasionally falling under 20 cents a gallon (in Pennsylvania).

I'm not THAT old, dagnabit! And I'll pummel with my cane anyone who says I am.

What did you drive during the Civil War, grandpa?

Prepare to feel the wrath of the most gentle pummeling you will ever experience! >=D

Hey I'm only 24 and gas was just 98 cents out here in Eastern Iowa when I started driving. How much was I making an hour back then? $8.25 washing trucks. How much does that same job pay now? $8.25 an hour =)

For those of us known as Baby Boomers, World War II is Ancient History. We didn't live it as our parents did. I recall gas prices in the $0.25 during the 1960's and even sold a car (a 1968 Camaro Z28) in 1970 when gas prices hit about $0.35 a gallon for super high test. At the time, gasoline was my second largest expense, as I was driving about 25,000 miles a year commuting in California.

E. Swanson

Ever regret selling the Z28? They are very rare as there were not many made and they're now worth a bundle of money. One of my best friend’s neighbor has one. Die hard gearhead, would probably sell his family before he got rid of that car. I wonder what hell do with it ten years from now?

Well, yes and no. I really regret trading the 1964 Malibu with the 4 speed and the 327 to get the Z28. The Malibu was a much better handling car after I switched the rear springs to some from a station wagon that I had cut down 1 coil, giving more rear roll stiffness. The Z28 only did 10 mpg, fast or slow and was not very good going around corners until I changed the front geometry and switched to radials. The tight fender wells would not allow tires larger than stock. As far as speed goes, my 1990 Ford Taurus SHO with the 3.0 litre Yamaha engine that I bought for $1200 a few years ago will probably run as fast (not that I will ever find out) and can still get 30 mpg at 70 mph on the freeway...

E. Swanson

Do you mean Datsun 240Z? I think that sucked. Front end heavy, oversteered at 90mph. It sucked. You're head is three feet above the pavement and there is 6 feet of hood ahead of you. Stick that out between the stone walls at the end of the driveway. And it wasn't the Portsmouth bridge swaying in the wind, but the car. Fast but unstable. My 1959 Caddy wouldn't beat it out of the gate, but would come up damn fast behind it - and blow by stable with the AC and 8track running. Plus the requisite hitchhiker going to Woodstock.

That 59 Caddy was my first car. Bought it from a state cop in MA, along with two others for spare parts. Funny thing about those serial numbers.

cfm in Gray, ME

Well, if we are getting into bragging, my grandmother was born in January 1884, only a year or two after the car was invented (internal combustion engine powered vehicle). She remembered the Boar War, was 18 when Queen Victoria died, 35 when she received the vote, and 60 at the end of WWII. Died in 1984. She certainly saw some changes in her life.
BTW I am 45 and my daughters are 4 and 5. If everybody bred as fast as my family, we wouldn't be in this mess.... :)

Edit: got my numbers wrong !

Ralph, I'm 66 and my maternal grandfather was born in February 1863,
and his father (my great-grandfather) in 1821.
This was only 6 years after the battle of Waterloo; Beethoven and
Schubert were both still alive.
My mother's family come from the rural UK county of Norfolk, where in
the past it was not uncommon for men to marry/remarry whilst in their
seventies, resulting in people living today whose great-grandparents
were born in in the late 1700's.
I can recall an elderly gentleman whose grandfather was held aloft so
that he could see the Duke of Wellington's victory parade which was
held in London after Waterloo.
The past is not so remote as we sometimes think.

Gasoline $.199 at the corner station in San Francisco, Aug 1971. Lowest I ever saw. I wonder how that compared to the average wage or the minimum wage at the time? Almond Joy candy bar was $.10, so by that measure, gas is more expensive now.

Driving cross-country from Indiana toward california in the summer of '70, managed to fill up for 16.9 cents per gallon at some no-name station, must have been a refinery nearby. Even at the time I figured it was the cheapest gas I'd ever see again.

The car DID run funny for awhile afterwards.

Gas cost 13.9 for Gulftane [ Gulf Oil's cheapest blend ] back in 1969. It was a ' gas war' The taxes on the pump said 12.4 cents / gallon. Back in Western New York. I remember burning off a set of tires in one night. Only took 1 and 1/2 tanks of gas.

These are the good old days

Favorite vehicles of all time, one ton duallies. LOL.

What did you drive during the Civil War, grandpa?

Well, it's been so long I don't remember the exact make & model, but I'm pretty sure it had a 1 HP powerplant, 4 on the floor, and genuine leather surfaces.

That is so close to what my son (now 42) asked me when he was in the fifth grade. With him, though, he was serious.

That's nothing. I'm just old enough to remember "gas wars", where two or more gas stations located close to each other in high-traffic areas would keep under-pricing each other. Sometimes the price would drop to single digit territory for a while. Hard to imagine now.

When I was 7 or 8 (1957) I recall passing the (Pre-Chavez) Citgo station on the way to the grocery store. My mama remarked about the "gas wars" between Citgo and Service Distributing (Charlotte, NC). The "gas war" price? 17 cents per gallon!

I remember 17 cent gas when I first started to drive in the 50's.

Yet Eisenhower was able to pass a nickel a gallon tax to build the Interstate Highway system !

If 17.9 cents was before the tax, that would have been a 28% tax.


I remember how angry I was when gas went over 40 cents a gallon.

Back in 1957 that wouldn't have been a Citgo station - it would have been Cities Service. They changed their name in the mid-60s.

I can recall gas at $.249 in the early 60's (little town in Mississippi far from refineries or competitors). BUT, that was a silver quarter.

This afternoon the melt value of a silver US quarter is $2.78, not so far from the present price for a gallon of gas. As Simmons says, oil is still way to cheap!

I don't have any of that gas I burned, but I still have some of those quarters : )

Errol in Miami

I can recall $.19 a gallon at the Venture store but still had to push my VW into the station a few times because I was too short of cash to fill up before absolutely necessary. I was earning $.75 an hour at my job. This was in the early 70s.

When I started driving in 1968 in Oz, with $1 I could get a gallon of petrol (Imp = not US), a packet of Marlboro and a bottle of beer and still have 2 cents over for a box of matches. My girlfriend (now wife) and I would head for the beach. A cuddle, a swim, a smoke and a beer all for less than a dollar. Priceless really.

Senior citizen's [45 days younger than Saddam] father was born in 1888.

Senior citizen was on sabbatical leave in computer science at the Univeristy of Illinois in 1972-73 after buying new gas guzzling Ford F250 4x4 at the time of the first gas crunch.

Senior citizen went to work for Sandia labs 1980 at the start of the Iraq/Iran war.

Senior citizen, who has known about peak oil since 1956, was very concerned in both 1973 and 1980 that we were entering a time of diminishing oil.

But it didn't happen either time.

Senior citizen is optimistic about future energy to November 2008, that is.

Provided WWIII doesn't start before November 2008.

To that end, senior citizen is working to get these unfortunate matters settled peacefully.

It is probably no exaggeration to state that this 20th century version of the "Trojan horse" is quite likely the greatest sting in modern history.

We have the viz.

Let's ALL hope for success!

There was a DX station on the corner near my house growing up. Their product was marketed as "Super Boron". And Shell was selling TCP as an additive -- all of them had ethyl in 'em. I think you needed the Borax or TCP as a detergent to scrub lead residues from your valve stems and leave them along the road where they belong :)

They'd occasionally have gas wars and the price would decline to below $0.25/gallon.

And I believe the same hillbillies that are denying AGW now, were ranting about the EPA forcing removal of ethyl from their mix back then.

Letting the facts do the talking is a good way to avoid being the messenger.Politicians do not like giving bad news,so if a spokesperson for wyz company gets the "credit"so much the better

Demand destruction, Pakistan-style, reported by Barnett Rubin at icga.blogspot.com:


I called a friend in Lahore this morning. The obstacles are not just that electoral materials (possibly including those prepared for rigging) were destroyed in the rioting. The country's infrastructure is under severe stress. In Lahore there are only 7 hours of electricity a day, and water pressure is also reported to be unreliable (I know those of you in Kabul may not feel their pain). Optic fiber lines were cut in Sindh, blacking out telecommunications for a while. The front page of Dawn online yields the following: There has been massive damage to the country's rail network. Fuel is in short supply, and the shortages are likely to get worse. The stock market and the currency are both crashing. Government ministers are charging "foreign elements" (i.e. India) with organizing the riots, a useful excuse for martial law.

Is there a baseline to go with this report? How much electricity did they have a year ago? Is there any trouble related to hydro?

That could get insanely bad faster than we can imagine if they're blaming India ... anything to distract from internal dissent, even if it leads to a nuclear exchange.

6000 mw shortfall by summer.

Not including riots.

More important:

75% of all NATO materials go thru Karachi.

Natives could get restless wondering why they're starving
and this train of supply is snaking thru their community/country.

Same with Basra/Baghdad BTW.

Pakistan soon to be cold and dark

The electricity shortage that currently fluctuates between 1,000 and 3,000 megawatts is likely to worsen in a few days because of problems of transporting furnace oil and diesel through the railway system and other means.

Petroleum Ministry sources told Dawn that Pakistan State Oil (PSO) has sought federal government’s permission to invoke force majeure clauses of its fuel supply agreements (FSAs) with independent power producers (IPPs) because of its inability to meet fuel requirements because damage caused to railway tracks and fuel-carrying bogies was much more than originally believed.

The sources said that the PSO had written to the government that the railway authorities had informed them that they would not be in a position to repair the damaged infrastructure in less than 20 days.

The sources said prolonged disruption in the movement of fuel oil could also lead to shortage of other products because of 20-25 per cent reduction in capacity utilisation of refineries.


Prices must increase until either demand destruction takes place, or enough money is generated for additional power generation. This idea of cheap electricity for all must be abandoned.

Also, time of use metering with a real-time usage monitor must be used instead of this "by the kilowatt hour" nonsense. Time, actual KW consumption, combined with KWH consumption metering.

No worries, Goldman rides to the rescue by installing Walking Eagle as queen of the world by decree.


So Naomi Klein's "Shock Doctrine" is at work.

Not enough resources for Democracy. We'll just have to do away with that luxury altogether for awhile, eh folks?

This is the way the political elites now do away with democracy even while pretending to fight to make the world safe for democracy.

Meanwhile, the USA electorate is sleepwalking into the same kind of trouble. First, control will be implemented simply by promises to protect us from becoming like another Pakistan. That will work for awhile.

Eventually, the promises will be retracted, and dissenters will be blamed for the troubles.

As explained by George Carlin (language warning)

Great video.

Eventually, the promises will be retracted, and dissenters will be blamed for the troubles.

Beggar are you saying...

"The illusion of freedom [in America ] will continue as long as it's profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater."

~Frank Zappa

Ah Frank. Is there anything he didn't peg? Miss him so much. He would be having a field day with the way things are today...

RE: Sustainable growth is the key to our future

The title says it all. The concept of "Sustainable Development" has been morphed into "Sustainable Growth", which is not a solution. What we think of as "Growth" is the problem, not the solution. The Earth's many life support systems can not continue to function if human activities continue to spread over the landscape, replacing the natural ecological systems. The author's notion of sustainable development sounds like an easy, guilt free "self-sufficiency", implying that things can continue more or less as before. But, as the author points out, the Welsh are now consuming several times the quantity of resources compared to the average per capita amount for all the Earth's peoples. Sustainable Growth simply isn't possible.

E. Swanson

You hit the nail squarely.The growth has to end,and the search for the most effective become the goal.Scaring up that last 1/2 of a point to see just how much efficiency can be squeezed out of system/product


Doctor says;

"I have some good news and some bad news.

The bad news is you have a brain tumor.

The good news is we believe we can maintain sustainable growth."


I thought the punchline would be "The good news is it's a growth opportunity."

What about Sustainable Contraction? Not much historical experience to go by. While growth can be almost steady, contractions are usually lurching and destructive affairs, much as the housing bubble seemed almost graceful on the way up but, well, we'll see how it lands.

Much as we fantasize about economic management, the system we have mostly evolved with little planning. 'Negative growth' just isn't in the toolbox. Devised systems may not work.

I am amused at how people I talk to can't imagine housing prices at levels they were just a half decade ago despite the fact that their wages haven't moved significantly. The collective memory is so short and selective.

Imagine a sustainably contracting souffle. The best you might get is a sort of crepe

Difficulties from Negative Growth, I was watching "How stuff is made" on one of thoses Educational channels and I watched candie being made, Cookies, other food, other things.

MASS produced. A factory pumping out 100,000 lbs of candy a day with 3 employees running it.

Soda, Millions of cans per day I'm sure. I can remember a small local soda bottler when I was growing up and it had a machine that did one quart bottle at a time.

None could scale down. Not their processes, Not their equipment, Not their distribution systems.

Negative Growth will be VERY hard. Home Cottage industries would have to be multiply very quickly if even possible.

Samsara EXCELLENT point!! I love the "How It's Made" series but it's really "how it's made using as many machines as possible" lol. There's as little hand labor as possible, none of the processes could be scaled down to home or village scale, although it is interesting to see how things are made for us by our corporate-machine overlords....

And shows showing how things were done 100+ years ago aren't popular because it's too boring for the American populace.... Those are the ones I've like to see. I'd like to see one on making shoes, starting out with simple mocs you can wear around the house and working up to classic brogans.

Yep - power down would be an ideal solution. Doubt it'll happen in a mass planned way, but we can at least plan for it on an individual level to some extent.

Check out the 6 minute video on NYT titled Unlikely Victims of Housing Slump... this is where we're heading folks. And this is high end development. They say nothing about what's driving the homebuilders bankrupt - other than the 'general deterioration of the real estate market.' Sorry, don't know how to link to it. It's stories like this that will begin to drive home the "unsustainable growth" lesson. Real experiences from people who didn't see it coming. Oh my.

I was in Spirit Lake, Iowa over the New Years. Drive to the northeast corner of town and there is a four story tower with eight condos per floor right on the edge of East Lake Okoboji. A sign that says "10% discount for the first eight sold". They're listed at $399,000. This is the style of building without outdoor staircases (What were they thinking? Summer homes only?) and I walked all four floors ... the three units with lights on must have had timers, because they were empty and many doors weren't even hung yet.

The town has 5,500 people and there are five hundred vacant homes. This is after the rental conversions for the construction crews working the ethanol plant build in Superior, Iowa, and all of the guys doing the wind farms to the north and west of the city. This is a seasonal community with maybe 10% - 15% of homes being summer dwellings for the well off, but even so ... that vacancy rate is just too high.

Strange days, people, strange days. Everything we know is wrong and 2008 is going to show us just how wrong that can be.

Couple of weeks ago was talking to lawyer friend who is on city council of Jonestown TX, a city on the north end of Lake Travis (Austin). Asked about activity out there and he said the number of applications for building permits is way down. I recently closed on a sale of rental property and I thought we might not get the end of year closing date. Drove to the title company and asked about Dec 28. She flipped the calendar to that week - no appointments. Pick a time, any time. Hell, we closed a day earlier.

Thanks for the link...

While we're on the subject of real estate, both of my parents died recently and left me and my siblings a house with a lot next to it (our garden). We were a family of 11 so it's a large house. 5 bedrooms, 3.25 baths, full basement with dirt floor, a well and a closed-loop geothermal HVAC system. Large, mature pecan trees, carport and workshop. All this in a small agricultural/ranching town with rail, 35 miles west of San Antonio.

Right now I think it's listed for 186K, but as we all know real estate is going down and so will the price of this house. It was originally a 1 story house with really high ceilings. Later my dad dropped the ceilings, put in stairs and created 2 bedrooms and bath. Sloped ceilings, small windows... spent many a hot summer night up there... and cold winter ones too!

So, if anyone knows someone interested in, what I consider, a good post peak home, send 'em my way, por favor.

Oh, there are 14 acres behind the house available too. Currently planted in coastal bermuda grass with ag exemption.

Maybe I should contact the couple in the NYTimes article ;-).

Here is one we can link to and it highlights one of the original suburb builders, a trendsetter...Leavitt...The people putting down deposits, boomers wanting to retire at a Leavitt community in Murrels Inlet SC (abutting Myrtle Beach) have lost their money, or are in the process, and the blame for failure of home builders across the South East is placed on...FLORIDA??? Yep, according to a Leavitt attorney all the problems with failing home builders are the fault of the Florida housing meltdown.

'First big U.S. home builder to fail in current slump leaves trail of victims'


...snip...'Paul Singerman, Levitt's bankruptcy attorney, said that as the real estate market in Florida went into "an absolutely unprecedented and catastrophic downturn," the builder's customers across the Southeast became victims. "There is a bad story, an unfortunate story, about every customer that placed a deposit," Singerman said.

Seasons is less than a quarter finished. About 90 buyers have paid a total of $3.47 million in deposits for houses in varying stages of completion, ranging from all but done, like the Costanzos', to unadorned dirt.

Another 90 houses are occupied, but many of these residents are, if anything, even more unhappy than the depositors. Levitt sold them on a community where everything would be taken care of. Those assurances mean little now.

"I can't believe we're dealing with Levitt & Sons," said Nancy Harth, 59, who moved in last March. "It feels like a start-up company'...snip...

'The first big home builder to fail in the current slump, Levitt's collapse illustrates how the turmoil in real estate is spreading far beyond subprime borrowers who cannot pay their mortgages. Levitt had a fabled brand, decades of experience and enthusiastic customers with good credit, but that was not enough to save it'...snip...

'Now the Robertses, like the Costanzos, are full of uncertainty. They sold their Long Island home a year ago in preparation for their move to Seasons, and bought $10,000 of new furniture. With their Seasons house unfinished, they have been living in a trailer they own in the Poconos. The furniture is in storage in South Carolina'...snip...

We've just seen the closing of the brackets on the post WWII suburbia interlude.

Levitt... you sure it isn't Leave-It

Lemme get this right...

They sold their Long Island home a year ago...

They didn't close on a Florida disaster... (Assumed since the thing isn't built yet.)

They live in a trailer they own in the Poconos...

They sound like the luckiest retirees in Long Island!

How about, simply, sustainable living? Sustainability requires that nature not be harmed and is to be maintained indefinitely for future generations. If growth could be maintained under those circumstances, I would be highly surprised. In any event, we are rapidly destroying the natural environment upon which our economy is dependent. Sustainability will require radically less consumption of our natural resources. Unless we are talking about psychic income, as proposed by Governor Jerry Brown of California back in the 1970s, growth is only possible at the planet's and our peril.

Further, just sustainable living is not possible without, also, a radical reduction in the population.

Because for the most part, sharing the wealth is anathema to our capitalistic society, we must ever rely on growth to distribute additional income to the masses. This is a fundamentally flawed system as there is never enough growth to satisfy even most of the population. Redistribution of wealth will lead to less need for growth. Let the process begin.

Soon we will be producing our own fuel by digestive action:


Hear, hear. No growth is sustainable. Wm. Catton's "Overshoot" is the definitive work on this from an ecological perspective. Al Bartlett's talk on exponential growth covers it quite well from a pure mathematic perspective.

here is a four letter word more than 2500 years old and says it all: 知止不殆

Re: Shaking off the rising cost of oil

I had been trying to get myself to use public transportation more in the last part of 2007 but various circumstances didn’t allow me to – but starting in 2008 I finally made good on my promise and took the bus to work (approx. 55 miles each way). I took a Trailways for the first 50 miles then transferred to a city bus to take me the final 5 miles to the office park. The round trip price for a ticket was approximately double what I’d pay in gasoline in a day but factoring in wear and tear on the car and the ability to avoid personal interaction with the myriad of NASCAR wannabes, I consider the cost to be a bargain… All told the experience was quite simple and relaxing – the only down side being that I chose to try this experiment on the coldest day of the winter so far (I’d guess wind chills were running about 20 below this morning).

One additional observation – the most difficult part of the trip occurred once I reached my office park. The city bus stop was located several buildings away from where my office is located. So I set out walking from the bus stop, carrying my backpack and I thought I was back hiking around the Catskills – I may as well have been walking into the wilderness – the office park appears to be set up to be absolutely unwalkable unless you want to slog through the foot and a half of snow now covering the landscaped areas surrounding the buildings. I don’t even really remember seeing whether there were sidewalks paralleling the roads – but if they do exist there certainly is NO priority in keeping them clear – they are not shoveled out at all. You either drive around this office park or you don’t go anywhere (or you walk in the road and dodge the NASCAR drivers like I did)…

Oh and one other stat: both the Trailways and city bus were less than 1/3 full capacity for my entire trip. This surprised me a bit – thought there might be more demand than I observed…

OK Here's my addition to this meme.
In the winter of 2006 I took the bus from the western burbs of Toronto (a metro area of around 5 million people total) to the northern burbs. The total distance is a little over 20 miles.
To do this I had to get four separate buses.
Though the price is cheap ($2 some each way) the hassle is big. Especially in winter.
That said, I still did it because I am a combination of a cheap bastard and peak oil aware so I wanted to make sure I could do it if I have to.

So anyways: I had a wait of around 10 minutes first thing in the morning (6.45 or so) to get the first bus. (So I had better be dressed well for it : it gets to -30 and sometimes -40 with windchill). I then get off at the downtown depot and wait for another bus. This is around 7.15.
I have about a 10 minute wait in the cold again. Then I get off at the side of the highway where I wait for the other city bus (who, luckily, accept the transfer coupon - i.e. I don't pay again).
Unfortunately the linkage is erratic and depending on weather I can be anywhere from 15 minutes to 45 minutes. Assume it's 45 minutes, again waiting in the freezing cold.
Next it drops me off at the mall, which is about say 4 miles from work. I have to wait here about another 20 minutes and the bus then deposits me right at the front of my office. I have to wade through snowbanks, driven up by snowploughs, as it obviously hasn't occurred to anybody that there are (crazy) people like me who want to get the bus/walk to work.

So I get there just after 9am for a total trip time of around 2.5 hours.
This is including close to an hour and a half freezing my nuts off outside. (Though I'm exaggerating a little, because I bought a Canada Goose Arctic Expedition jacket which kept me nice and toasty apart from my face that is).
Doable, but to be honest, only if you have to.
So, here's hoping for the continuation of the bumpy plateau instead of the back end of the depletion curve.

It seems clear that the biggest structural challenge is going to be 'How to live closer to your work' than one of 'How to do a 55 mile Multi-route commute.'

In lighting design, I'm confronted with the 'inverse square rule' at every turn, where your light energy falls of as a square of the increasing distance from the source. It seems to me that travel requirements probably follow a similar formula, considering the multiple gains of shortening your required commute time.

Bob .. Working in the Basement, but thinking about how to get some sunlight channels to brighten up this dungeon! (plus, 6deg F in Portland, but very sunny and bright.. SOLAR HEAT!!)

It seems clear that the biggest structural challenge is going to be 'How to live closer to your work' than one of 'How to do a 55 mile Multi-route commute.'

That's what I'm calling "the Big Shuffle", beginning right about now.

this is why it's hard to predict if the suburbs will be bad or not. how close to the the majority of people's jobs are all those suburbs? how close are they w/in relation to other cities. a suburb in-between two cities or w/in a triangle of cites is not bad. lots of chances for people to switch houses to be closer to work.

I would not want to live 1 hour outside a city with not job centers in-between.

Man no kidding! It looks like I'm going to have a "forced vacation" of the 4 or so cold months here, too cold to ride the m/c into town but at least there's not much of any work. Especially impulse purchase stuff like flipping a buck to a street musician or having someone sketch your portrait.

Honesty, as long as I'm going to do stuff like that for a living, it may make sense to bite the bullet and get a small place in town. A room in a "hippy house" or something. That 60-mile round trip commute into town would cost what an apartment or room in town would cost, in gas alone. And that's assuming 60 miles per gallon. Not counting in maintenance, depreciation, etc which comes into play with any vehicle.

Choices.... choices.....

jokuhl, re: Sunlight channels to the basement, have you looked at solar tube lighting?

How many millions of people with far less income & education than most of us, with no internet access & no time to post to blogs like TOD, have to put up with this sort of thing all the time - EVERY DAY?!?!? What is an interesting experiment or adventure for some of us is a horrible daily reality for untold and increasing numbers of less fortunate folks.

Thanks for the compassion, WNC:
There's too little of it going around these days. I hope we can think about and plan to do better than merely lifeboating ourselves, or there will surely be nothing of our civilization worth saving in a few generations.
You can't KILL your way to PEACE;
You can't IMPRISON your way to FREEDOM;
And you can't TORTURE your way to JUSTICE.

"You can't KILL your way to PEACE;
You can't IMPRISON your way to FREEDOM;
And you can't TORTURE your way to JUSTICE."

Good one nelson.

That one goes up on the "wall of worry" at my shop.

Reminded me of The Fugs' Kill for Peace (1967)

Oil treads water ahead of expected draw on US crude stocks

'Relying on speculative pressures to keep commodity prices high regardless of fundamentals is a mug's game, as shown by the dismal performance of copper since early 2006.'

Did he just compare copper to oil? O_o

People are detached from reality. Many are used to the fact that in electronics prices are always falling (or more performance for the same amount of money) and believe that everything (including oil/energy) will get cheaper and cheaper in future.

There's a sort of religion in the US and in fact in "Western" society, that has as its central tenet that things will get better and better. I'm not sure what the philosophers call it, Materialism or what, but the roots are very deep. It goes back at least to the Renaissance. The idea that you work harder, you get ahead, you build a better crossbow or a better plow. You build a better mousetrap and the world beats a path to your door.

This religion is just not true. More stuff as it turns out does not make people happier. More work does not make people happier (although a lack of purpose can make them feel miserable). And things have stopped getting cheaper, hell it's something like $5 for a little Tootsie Toy car.

I've been having a feeling that as soon as oil comes close to 100 somebody sells it down (even if it means loosing money doing it) Somebody is manipulating prices? There is nothing magical about 100$ mark and with current volatility we should be going over and under it. I am not saying that oil should be over 100$ persistently, but there just seems to be enormous resistance close and at 100$ mark.

If true, the physical market will ultimately push the paper market up. Spot prices for two grades of crude oil--Tapis and Louisiana Sweet--are solidly above $100.

Actually, resistance to landmark prices is a commonly observed phenomenon in many markets. There's no deep dark conspiracy behind it. If you believe in "buy low, sell high" (and you're pretty stupid not to), then approaching a seldom- or never-reached benchmark will be seen by many as a selling signal.

But after a while spot pricing comes into play.

As the inventory continues shrinking, price discovery
morphs into market market manipulation.

Gotta love this comment:

"The problem is not shortage of supply," Hojjatollah Ghanimifard, international affairs director at the National Iranian Oil Company, told Reuters on Thursday. Iran is OPEC's second-largest producer after Saudi Arabia.

"I think the main problem is outside the oil market. Too much liquidity is available," Ghanimifard said. "A big part of it is in the paper market of crude oil."


I think he is saying that the US$ is becoming worth less as the quantity of the paper increases.
Our problem is two fold. Supply of oil is constrained while the supply of US$'s worldwide is huge.
I'm trading my US$'s for gold, oil and other real items as fast as I am comfortable doing. This trade has been working very well for me for the past 3 years.

CNBC is running the oil price constantly (and highlighted) on it's roll-over odometer style price update. Trading is currently in a relatively narrow range (or at least since I've been watching it for the past hour or so). I guess they want to be ready for 10:30 AM when the petroleum summary is released. Is today the day NYMEX front-month closes above $100?

I'm not in my office today but I did put in that I thought there would be another draw on stocks and that we'd probably end up between $101 and $102 if it shows that today (barring the start of WWIII).

Everyone's expecting a huge draw, so I doubt the report will push prices up (unless it's really, really bad news).

If it's good news, prices may drop, though.

Summary of Weekly Petroleum Data for the Week Ending December 28, 2007

U.S. crude oil refinery inputs averaged nearly 15.4 million barrels per day during the week ending December 28, up 164,000 barrels per day from the previous week's average. Refineries operated at 89.4 percent of their operable capacity last week. Gasoline production moved higher compared to the previous week, averaging nearly 9.1 million barrels per day. Distillate fuel production fell last week, averaging nearly 4.3 million barrels per day.

U.S. crude oil imports averaged 10.0 million barrels per day last week, up 204,000 barrels per day from the previous week. Over the last four weeks, crude oil imports have averaged 9.7 million barrels per day, or 180,000 barrels per day more than averaged over the same four-week period last year. Total motor gasoline imports (including both finished gasoline and gasoline blending components) last week averaged nearly 1.2 million barrels per day. Distillate fuel imports averaged 326,000 barrels per day last week.

U.S. commercial crude oil inventories (excluding those in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve) dropped by 4.0 million barrels compared to the previous week. At 289.6 million barrels, U.S. crude oil inventories are in the lower half of the average range for this time of year. Total motor gasoline inventories increased by 1.9 million barrels last week, but are in the lower half of the average range. Both finished gasoline inventories and gasoline blending components inventories increased last week. Distillate fuel inventories increased by 0.6 million barrels, and are near the lower limit of the average range for this time of year. Propane/propylene inventories decreased by 1.7 million barrels last week. Total commercial petroleum inventories decreased by 7.3 million barrels last week, and are in the bottom half of the average range for this time of year.

Holy crap. That's double the drop they were expecting. Traders were expecting a drop of 1.7 to 2.2 million barrels, and got 4 million.

Though there was a build in gasoline. And Cushing looks okay.

Looks like it's the east coast that's having problems.

If watching Bloomberg /CNBC, you just saw a coordinated "bum's
rush" on the Market.

From Catherine at mlimplode forum:


The scariest thing I have ever read is that 38% of all investments are now tied to mortgage backed securities. Pension funds, mutuals, 401...............If you have a 401 and you read this article and you don't get your money into CD's today you are crazy. If you have over 100,000 in one bank account at ANY BANK you are not insured (think that is still the number) split the accounts."

Based on this:



Because of this awareness, the sage frequently seems neither to lead nor follow, and often seems to do nothing, for that which he does is done without guile; it is done naturally, being neither easy nor difficult, not big or small. Because he accomplishes his task and then lets go of it without seeking credit, he cannot be discredited. Thus, his teaching lasts for ever, and he is held in high esteem.-tao te ching

Check out the 4 graphs at this site along with accompanying short descriptions. This one is well worth the read...

Will The Truly Efficient Market Please Stand Up?


...snip...' Can Fed and global central bank actions act to repair non-bank financial sector balance sheets and spark credit cycle acceleration anew? Yes or no? In very simple terms, THIS is the issue of the moment, the issue over which global credit markets seem quite concerned. The asset backed security markets have been the primary vehicle by which non-banking sector credit creation has mushroomed, and now that at least a meaningful portion of this mushroom cloud has turned toxic, where to from here? From maybe $250 billion in outstanding asset backed securities in 1990, we're now looking at a $4.3 trillion market. Quite interesting, and as you'll see in the chart, current cycle annual rate of change in ABS growth peaked in late 2005. At the exact time the now clear in hindsight US residential real estate cycle of a lifetime topped out. Oh well, it's not called the asset backed securities market just for laughs, right?'...snip...

'over the last eighteen years, the girth of the asset backed markets, propelling non-banking system credit creation, has grown from roughly 4% of GDP to over 30% today. Likewise, the asset backed markets made up roughly 9% of total US financial sector leverage in 1990 that has grown to a 27% level today. Asset backed markets important to the US economy vis-à-vis the greater expansion of the credit cycle over the last decade and one half? No, not important, simply crucial'...snip...

'But thanks to data from our friends at the Fed, we can see just how fast “confidence” in asset-backed paper is evaporating. Cutting to the bottom line, the most important point of what you see below is the continued deterioration in asset backed commercial paper (ABCP) outstanding. Yes, the very same vehicles financing far too many CDO and SIV ventures. Since the peak in ABCP outstanding in the summer, it has been a literally uninterrupted twenty-week (through 12/26) deterioration in ABCP outstanding. Total ABCP outstanding now rests at a level last seen in the third quarter of 2005. Fed discount and Funds rate cuts have done absolutely nothing to stop this contraction. Remember, ABCP has been crucial to funding CDO and SIV investment positions for years'...snip...

'As we stand here today, we have four discount rate cuts and three Fed Funds rate cuts under our collective belts, but many a credit market relationship rests at a level of deterioration below what was seen in August of this year. In many respects, credit market conditions are worse today than before the Fed and global central banking friends began their current monetary easing cycle adventure. As we've stated a number of times, the basic credit market problem of the moment is not liquidity per se, it's solvency and ongoing deterioration of collateral values underpinning mountains of in place leverage originally built on faulty forward collateral value growth assumptions. So will Fed Funds rate cut numero quatro, most likely to be handed down this month, be the silver bullet to change current credit market circumstances? Or will yet another rate cut ultimately prove as truly ineffective as the last three, heightening in investor perceptions the thought that the Fed is quickly burning through precious monetary ammunition while completely missing the most important target - the credit markets? Either way, we're all going to find out in relatively short order.'...snip...

Yes. Most important.

Note "late 2005" BTW. Noted here at TOD when Oil Peaked.

Like the Spanish Empire, who monetized all tax receipts for the next
100 years to get immediate credit. It's no accident that the Tulip Bulb Mania
resulted from this.

And that the John Law/South Seas/Mississippi Land Schemes followed
England and France trying to do the same things as the Spanish.

"The ugly side to this story is horrendous mortgage fraud at every conceivable level."

The rot starts at the head.

CNN banner:

Oil backs away from $100-barrel after mixed picture on U.S. inventories.

Haha...were we really expecting anything less :P

But, on the reality side...

Another drawdown of TOTAL inventories of 7.3 Million barrels...1 MMBPD +/- change.

Crude down 4 Million barrels!

And, everyone is to believe it is all speculators and 'too much liquidity' (see Iranian Official drumbeat above).

IF the intent is to CONFUSE the public, they are succeeding.

Meanwhile, Gasoline prices jumped 3 cents a litre overnite in TO.

Not a big deal (in my books), but Joe driver apparently doesn't agree, all over the news this AM already...complaining about 1.06/ltr.

Jeff Rubin(CIBC) is getting praise for being so prescient...Jeff, good on ya, keep reading TOD. ;)

I have two questions:

1. How much will refineries play with their inventories at end of year for tax purposes? Ie, will we see a build next week as the first week of the new year?

2. CNBC just reported gasoline use was down YOY, yet this inventory report said it was up 0.1%. What gives? Are they just lying or are there multiple measures of gas usage out there?

they're lying.

Full court press is underway.

The only demand destruction the US has experienced has been Katrina.

There's also this, from a Bloomberg story (http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=acRCwnk03Ab8&refer=home)

Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp., the largest U.S. energy producers, gained after the Commerce Department said a 16 percent jump in demand at refiners helped boost factory orders by three times the forecast rate.

A 16% jump in demand at refiners?

Feelin' a little inflammatory this morning ... Mexico as a failed state meme on DailyKos.


Too bad they kicked me off for talking about Israel and 911.

Love to contribute.


"This is about profit and control. In fact, a syndicate has had control of the White House since the Ole Gipper took one in the ribcage in a close call with the Grim Reaper in 1981."

Your dollars no good anymore at the Taj Mahal. I wonder if they take VISA?


Sure, but now VISA has a heft charge for currency conversion

Are you wondering how far banks will go to retain liquidity (your money) as long as possible? Banks are scrambling to raise cash as more bad assets are forced back onto their books...and they dont trust each other...So do not assume that they will trust you...or treat you in a manner that most depositers would consider 'fair'...

'Consumer Smarts: Check's in the bank, but has it cashed?'


'STEVE GUILING deposited a $550 local check in a quick-drop box at a Washington Mutual branch in Seattle. Assuming the money would be available the next business day, he began making purchases.

Three days later, Guiling said, he received a letter from WaMu saying his bank deposit had been held for more than a week because of "repeated overdraft activities."

In the next few weeks, he made two more deposits of $400 each at the ATM. Each time, he received a notice from the bank saying it planned to hold the deposits for a week.

Guiling said he was traveling and didn't check his mail, so he continued to withdraw money from his account. The purchases went through, so Guiling didn't think much of it. Later he discovered he had been charged multiple overdraft fees at $32 a pop. His total bill: $680 in overdraft fees.

"I wouldn't have overdraft activity if they put my deposit (in)," Guiling said. "I think I have plenty of money in my account. You don't realize until many days later that your money hasn't posted into that account'...snip...

Washington Mutual is infamous for this policy. I used to bank with them. When I sold my building in Chicago in December 2005 I deposited a $160,000.00 certified check from a local institution in my account which they held for fourteen business days. Since the time overlapped the Christmas holidays I could not get my money for almost three weeks. I closed my accounts and told the snide obnoxious branch manager not to be surprised when WaMu went belly up in a few years because of the housing market.

We keep seeing all these articles posted about this or that company going belly up and shutting down. We need to remember that this isn't always bad news -- many of these outfits DESERVE to go belly up.

Bad news for the average Joe Employee, I'm sure. But they didn't have much of a future there anyway. Time to swallow the medicine and move on. Sooner rather than later may turn out to be a blessing for them in the long run.

The thing that really infuriates me are the CEOs with the golden parachutes drifting away, clutching in their hands their megabuck rewards for their criminal incompetence and sociopathic egotism.

And these same CEO’s keep on getting hired by other corporations regardless of their track record. I saw this all the time in my business. Some knucklehead on the strength of his “resume” would get hired, within two years lose clients left and right, make bad business decisions, and sometimes drive the company into insolvency. These characters would pop up again and again with different companies and for some reason they keep getting hired. It seems the one thing they are good at is shifting the blame to others or making sure nothing is traceable to them. Grrrr!

They are an aristocracy a-borning.

It's like becoming co-chairman of the PPP in Pakistan when you're a 19-year-old college student in England. Note the kid added "Bhutto" to his name to make it official. There will be positions waiting for Jenna and Barbara Junior too. "Senators Gone Wild!"

I've been nipped by this one, too - changes at U.S. Bank. I have one customer that has no way to pay but by wire but for everyone else I'm taking the check, going to their bank, and cash is still accepted where I go.

I don't know if we'll see bank runs as we're not savers any more. I think its more likely we'll see a spiral of credit card write offs coupled with people who've actually got a little cash doing what I do - spreading it between several institutions and keeping more cash in hand than previously.

This is interesting...


CNNMoney.com asked the leading presidential candidates 6 questions we think are central to the country's twin energy challenge: Satisfying growing energy demand while reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.

As expected, none of the leading politicians, Democrat or Repuglican, has the guts to raise taxes on transportation fuels (I would include diesel and jet fuel too). Capping CO2 emissions is a no-no for the Republicans. Looks like we're screwed.

E. Swanson

No Ron Paul?

Diesel shortage? I guess I'll have to change my plans for buying the 2008 Jetta Diesel - maybe a Prius instead.

You can homebrew your own biodiesel. Of course there will come a day when used vegetable oil is so in demand that it will become scarce too, I suppose.

January 3, 2008

The full results mentioned in the graphic will be posted on MySpace.com/Impact later.

Isn't it ironic how Rupert Murdoch (News Corp - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/News_corp) owns both Fox and MySpace, but yet Fox is censoring who they are allowing to participate in this Sunday's Presidential debate?

The results of this MySpace Primary Vote speak volumes... you gotta love how News Corp is attempting to control who we are able to vote for. Is Democracy still alive, or have the corporations already taken over?

If you're not registered to vote yet, do so through MySpace (MySpace.com/Impact) or MTV (RockTheVote.com). Enough is enough.

Ron Paul is more sought after on the nets than Paris.....

OMG!!! like, say it isn't so, like noooooooo wayyyyyyyyy.

serious traffic. bigger than DOG. oops did I spell that backwards.

the forums etc

Yet all polls show him (if they show him at all) at 6 to 9%. BS

If elections were online RP would win by a landslide (and then be ass ass in eighted)

Other than that I can't wait to see who wins.

From the Wall Street Journal :

Oil Hits $100, Jolting Markets

Big article with lots of graphs and info.

I'm beginning to think WSJ gets it.

There's fear in that coverage. They've left out the obligatory free-market-and-technology propaganda.

I urge all TOD'ers to read this story. It would make a good lead for tomorrow.

Agreed. There is fear.

No mention of peak oil explicitly but observe the last paragraph:

Driving this power shift is geology. Major new finds in North America and Europe have been rare for two decades. Western oil companies now control only about one in 10 barrels of the world's proven reserves. As the Western giants struggle to find fresh oil, the Aramcos of the world are only likely to rise in importance in the years ahead.

I would also add they offer good coverage of the impact of high prices on the 3rd world.

When oh when oh when is the MSM gonna publish a graph of world oil production?
I mean the day you see this in the MSM will be the day the world begins to wake up:
Hellooooo, it's been 3 years now!

The WSJ is really two papers, the reporting side and the op-ed side. As a long-time WSJ reader, from what I can tell the two sides are quite separate. Yes, the reporting side gets it, as evidenced by today's cover story. But the op-ed side does not get it, yet. This editorial is from Friday's edition:

Oil and the Dollar

... But perhaps the biggest factor has been largely overlooked: the decline in the value of the dollar.


We aren't saying that supply problems and an increase in relative demand haven't played a role in oil's rise. Cambridge Energy Research Associates estimates that "aggregate supply disruptions" reduced oil supply by almost two million barrels a day in late 2007, which isn't helping prices. But the high price of oil is not a vindication of theorists who say we are confronting "peak oil."

A report issued this summer by the National Petroleum Council and energy experts across the spectrum concluded that "the world is not running out of energy resources," though it conceded that "there are accumulating risks to continuing expansion of oil and natural gas production from the conventional sources." Daniel Yergin of Cambridge Energy notes that in the energy markets "most of these risks are above ground, not below ground." By that he's referring to the tendency of politicians to intervene in the energy markets in any number of harmful ways. We'd offer barriers to drilling in Alaska and on the Continental Shelf as Exhibit A and B in this country.

Other than the paragraph in the quote, there is no mention of declining crude inventories and stagnating production.

Very interesting.

some parts are already happening:

From the article:

John Heimlich, an economist for the Air Transport Association, predicts that if oil stays where it is or goes higher, airlines will identify their worst-performing routes and then cut the number of flights assigned to them, substitute smaller planes or cancel the routes.


Airline to terminate London link

The airline will suspend the service from 29 March
Airline bmi is to terminate its daily return service between Inverness and London Heathrow because of a lack of bookings.


Wow, the December 31 DrumBeat is a link on the WSJ story page! Under Blogs at the very bottom.

Hi all,

Long time lurker, first time poster.

Been PO aware for 2.5 years and psychotically aware for 8 months.

My best friend sent this to me late last night and figured someone here might make a better explanation of it.

I love this forum. Keep up the hard work. It isn't all for naught.


Panamax freight index hits record

The Baltic Exchange's Panamax freight index hit a fresh record high this morning on strong demand for coal, iron ore and grains and mounting port congestion in Australia.

The index, a measure of global dry commodity demand for typical 80,000 tonne cargoes, jumped 98 points to 6,575.

The index, closely watched by traders and economists, began hitting fresh highs last week after dipping from a peak in May.

Analysts said Asian demand for commodities, especially into China, and port congestion at Australian export terminals was behind the latest move.

"Coal demand is very strong and there's a lot of port congestion. We've also had a lot of short period (time-charter) interest for the second half of this year as charterers have sought to cover themselves against another spike," said Peter Norfolk, an analyst with Simpson Spence & Young in London.

"Everything is strong," he said, referring to steel, coal and grain prices, indicating firm demand.

He said the fresh record high suggested global grain demand was remained very robust despite the cycle having passed the peak Latin American export season.

Freight costs for panamaxes, which mostly carry grains but also haul minerals, are now averaging $US53,000 ($A61,826) a day on time charter - almost six times their level in 1998 and 1999, when prices were ravaged by the Asian economic crisis.

It means China hasn't bitten the bullet yet.

We need a charismatic leader who can take this exact message to the people of the United States:

Are EVs the Ultimate Weapon Against Terrorism?


But there is one idea that is garnering increasing support from hawks and doves alike; our nation will be safer when everyone starts driving electric vehicles. EVs will increase our self-sufficiency by allowing us to use domestically-produced energy to fuel our automobiles. A dramatic decrease in our demand for foreign oil would cut off the cash flow to terrorist organizations bent on the destruction of our society. Since EVs can run on renewable power sources, widespread use of them could eliminate the threat of global warming, which would eliminate the associated threats of natural disasters and the political upheaval such disasters would create.

No doubt about that wes, we should electrify our rails AND our cars. People in the burbs could drive their EV to the train station then take the electric rail. People in the city could simply take the rail to work. :)

In addition, not sure if this story was covered before but what an amazing technological discovery at Stanford!


Can you imagine a Electric Car with a 500-1000 mile range! oh my, exciting times!

Can you imagine a Electric Car with a 500-1000 mile range! oh my, exciting times!

I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that the US vehicle fleet is less fuel efficient than it was 20 years ago despite the improvements in technology.

I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that the US vehicle fleet is less fuel efficient than it was 20 years ago despite the improvements in technology.

I'm not. gas prices went down so nobody cared how many MPGs their car got, they just wanted power. more power means less fuel efficiency.

GM Drops V-8 Engine on Rising Fuel Prices, Regulation (Update4)
By Jeff Green

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- General Motors Corp., the world's largest automaker, canceled a $300 million program to build an advanced V-8 engine for luxury vehicles, citing rising oil prices and tighter U.S. fuel economy restrictions.

``We have seen a declining demand for V-8 engines as fuel prices have risen,'' GM spokeswoman Sharon Basel said today. New requirements for carmakers to boost average mileage 40 percent by 2020 also figured in the decision, she said.

GM is trying to shed its reputation for gas-guzzling vehicles as it loses sales to Toyota Motor Corp. and its fuel- sipping Prius, a gasoline-electric hybrid. Eight-cylinder engines, used mainly for high-performance sedans, large pickup trucks and sport-utility vehicles, get lower mileage than conventional four- and six-cylinder engines.


that's a symptom of peak oil

Also of the Jevons Paradox

I recently heard (unconfirmed) that the average car in the US today gets worse gas mileage than the Model T!

But then, cars have never sold on economy alone. What percentage of US car sales consist of Kias, Hyundais, Toyota Yaris, Honda Fit, and other cheap, useful cars?

Just curious, and I’m asking this question because I don’t know the answer despite trying to look at production numbers from Google, if every car were suddenly EV, would there be enough lead for all those batteries?

it would come from wherever lead is going to now but just into cars. where did all the batteries for cordless power tools come from? where did all those batteries for laptops come from?

So you're saying that increasing the demand of lead very significantly would place no burden on the mining industry? Let me guess from your previous posts - the market will handle it.

the market will handle it, who else would?

1. mines will increase production because of higher prices and will open new mines.

2. the price will go up so present lead will be used more efficiently and we'll steal demand from other uses. higher prices also should bring in scrap lead.

where did all of those batteries for laptops and cordless power tools come from?

"1. mines will increase production because of higher prices and will open new mines."

But what if there is no more to be produced, and no more new mines to be opened?

You seem to have a religious belief in the ability of the market to make something from nothing.

The market is fairly good at what it's good at, but making something from nothing is not one of those things.

The market is not reality, and technology is not energy.

1. the market is reality, that's why oil hit $100.

2. are they mining lead this year or not? are they opening any new mines this year or not? if your scenario of no more to be produced and no more new mines will be opened, well that's a big problem.

You seem to have a religious belief in the ability of the market to make something from nothing.

straw man.

technology is not energy.

technology is the better use of energy.

"straw man."

No, not a straw man. As we enter the reality of the end of cheap energy, "The market will handle it" is a null statement, whistling in the dark, akin to any other religious belief. The market has worked OK based on a massive subsidy of cheap oil.

Yes, they're still mining lead, simply because there is still more lead to be mined. Indeed, there will be more lead to be mined, right up until there isn't. At that point, the market can not make more lead, no matter the price.

It's a straw man because I never said you could mine something that's not there.

if the market won't handle, what will?

here is your market:

GM Drops V-8 Engine on Rising Fuel Prices, Regulation

"GM Drops V-8 Engine on Rising Fuel Prices, Regulation"

What that is, is a late reaction (and indicative of the short-sightedness of the market) to something that should be rapidly changing the entire structure of our society. Leaving market forces to change our society in the face of PO will probably lead to a rearview mirror reactionary bunch of uncoordinated changes that will leave a few people well-off any many more scrambling for the scraps... All hail to the market!!

technology is the better use of energy

That is a purely religious statement;

Jevons' paradox states that technological improvement leads to the use of more energy. Whether using more energy is better is purely a matter of belief.

These days, many people start to doubt your faith-based worldview. With a look at the threat of energy scarcity, how could they not? And what will become of technology in a world of less energy? Jevons implies that technology will move backward. That seems the only reasonable outcome. Technology depends on abundant and cheap energy, certainly once it's built a Tainteresque web of complexity.

1. the market is reality, that's why oil hit $100.

At least you did not claim it was a free market.

laptops and cordless tools use non-lead batteries - and are too expensive right now to put into cars on a large scale

a surge in lead battery use in China is already putting a strain on the world lead market

you seem to have a tough time understanding that market forces cannot function in a normal manner in a resource constrained world

how would you price the last tree on Easter Island? - your sacred "market" would put a price on it and chop it down, and yet, then there are no more trees, no way of growing more trees - now what does the "market" do? find a neat techno alternative to trees at the last minute? - or start a long slide down that ends in eating other people?

your faith in the market is misplaced at best - there ISN'T a free market, and I don't think outside of idiotic libertarian circles anybody actually wants one - funny that the semi-socialist economies of Europe are actually doing a better job of peak oil preparation, global warming mitigation (see France's nuke program combined with rail, Germany's embrace of solar and wind, Russia's electrification of rail) - and all while providing universal healthcare for their populations, than anything seen in the US where entrenched big business spends it's time and $ bribing, I mean DONATING $ to campaigns of politicians in order to maintain price supports for dumb things like corn ethanol - THAT is your "market" at work...and based on the recent energy bill, that is what the market will continue to pursue

your faith in the market is misplaced at best

GM Drops V-8 Engine on Rising Fuel Prices, Regulation

You assume a lot of things about me in your last paragraph. I know that European healthcare is a better model than ours, for instance.

The entire point of worshipping the free market is the smug satisfaction of seeing those you consider inferior suffer more than you. Remember how fast white conservative Americans in Michigan turned against the free market in automobiles when they lost their jobs to the Japanese? It's happening again - to the point where Ron Paul must separate free trade from free markets to oppose NAFTA.

Free enterprise = white male straights on top. Otherwise: "Those slants can't be better than us Good Americans! They must have cheated!" "Those gangsta NBA players are animals - they don't deserve to drive in Bentleys!" "The Jews and queers in New York/Hollywood are getting rich selling filth!" "Only white people contributed to America's wealth! The Mexicans are parasites!"

A libertarian is a Buchananite who hasn't lost his job to a gook yet.

Exactly! Capitalism has never existed without a strong state to enforce it's policies.
A libertarian is a repug who likes to sell dope, and have the Gov enforce the rules of "free trade" (prevent other people from making rules that benefit them)

I know economists prefer "the vision" rather than actual numbers, but FWIW here's a front of the envelope calcuation for lead (which may not be the battery technology desired) using google-numbers:

600 million cars in 2001( http://hypertextbook.com/facts/2001/MarinaStasenko.shtml ).

EV1 apparently had is 18.7kWh of lead acid batteries, lead acid battery is ~ 35Wh/kg (
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Motors_EV1 ).

So each car has ~ 530kg of "battery" (how much of the mass is lead? don't know.) So 3.2 x 10^9 kg of "battery" for all cars in world to have this capacity.

Apparently 4 x 10^9 kg of lead mined in a year
( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lead#Production_and_Recycling )

So it's taking almost all the lead mined in a year. (As in all calculations I've almost certainly made a mistake in the maths somewhere :-) ) Presumably the lead mined is already being used for other useful purposes, so it's presumably requires doubling mine output.

As pointed out, consumer electronics don't use lead but more expensive metals like lithium or nickel. Presumably if you knew which metal makes most suitable car batteries you could do a similar calculation.

1. Lead is certainly not being used for useful purposes, not for the price that lead will eventually fetch.

2. not all cars will immediately be swtiched

3. batteries will be more efficient so we need less of thems

also don't forget that the lead in those batteries is completely recyclable.

On this one item I agree with you. It's silly to compare lead, lithium, steel, etc. to oil and go looking for a 'peak'.

For that matter, phosphorus and potassium should be common as well. It's just our own stupidity that we flush them down the sewer instead of recycling.

As has been mentioned on other threads, there are externalized costs of dispersal when resources are mined from their aggregate state and distributed in small amounts over larger regions. Recycling is the last and least effective of three R's.

One thing that you might not have considered is that while something like 3.4 million tonnes of lead are mined each year, almost 8 million tonnes of lead are produced each year, the difference being the amount of lead that is recycled.

The two main uses of lead are for lead-acid batteries and for ammunition. While the latter is a consumptive use with little recycle potential, a very large percentage of the lead content of all the lead acid batteries sold (at least in the US and Europe) is recycled. In addition to economics, environmental considerations are also responsible for the high recycle rate of lead-acid batteries.

This is a very significant fact when it comes to the question of whether a massive conversion of cars to electric power is feasible. Once a large initial infusion of virgin lead is made into the automotive fleet, then a very high percentage of that lead (probably on the order of 90%) will be used over and over again via lead recycling. Thus, the additional amount of lead that would need to be mined would be the amount needed to make up for attrition and process losses in the whole battery production and recycling train. While this amount would be significant, it would be nowhere near the amount needed if you assume a one-time consumptive use of the lead.

While lead recycling obviously requires energy, it is probably quite a bit less energy-intense than smelting virgin lead from the ore (as is the case of most metals).

All true, although the energy costs of lead smelting are very much lower than those for most other metals, because the lead-sulfur bond is quite weak compared to say, the aluminum-oxygen bond in aluminum ore. (Puffing on a blowpipe, you can even smelt lead sulfide ore in a candle flame.) The major arguments that favor lead recycling are its toxicity and the limited supply of new ore, whereas the major argument in favor of aluminum recycling is the very high energy cost of producing it, from ore that is common and dirt cheap.

I just stumbled across a link to the page of the person that fell victim to damnatio memoriae (If I remember) www.trendlines.ca and he appears to have reduced his expectations a bit, too (He has a nice graph, though "oil left for 500 years", not that I would not agree...).

RE: ASPO's Bakhtiari obit

Finally somebody in the movement publicly acknowledges that there is considerable mystery over his demise.

He contributed greatly to early ASPO Conferences, but evidently came under pressure to distance himself in recent months. The circumstances are not known but there is no evidence to suggest that he was suffering from ill-health.

Suicide or murder?

For those who don't know, the Iranian authorities are rough customers.

A middle-aged female Iranian-Canadian journalist was killed in prison in Iran a few years back.


Yes, they are rough. She had escaped the dump, she had Canadian citizenship, so she went back to try to help fix (expose) the problems of the dump. She paid the price for her Iranian patriotism/belief that her homeland could be salvaged. If she had embraced Canada fully (the country that saved her butt) and turned her back on that dump she would be alive right now. Gitmo is set up exactly for people like her-IMO the moral of the story is that if you are lucky enough to find a great place/life when you are fleeing a lousy one, don't look back.

What happens when we run out of great places from our shortsightedness and greed?

Meanwhile, Iran is rebuilding Iraq, while America quietly closes down its reconstruction programs - but not Guantanamo, which I haven't heard Prime Minister Harper condemn lately. I guess lousy is relative.

Then again, many, probably most of the people who've died for their Country/Family, etc.. probably did so never knowing if their sacrifice met with or added to success.

We're surrounded by a 'Sacrifice is for Fools' mentality. I'm sure there are always a few who know that it is a petty and shortsighted view of things.


Gitmo is unconstitutional.

The V/POTUS is guilty of treason.

And yet, lover of the Consitution , Ron Paul has not gotten behind impeachment.

I heard that he died of a heart attack. You don't need to be suffering from ill health to die suddenly from one of those.

You just know Peak Oil is going to be a total disaster when you see absurd official quotes like this being regurgitated:

In a high-growth scenario, oil import prices will rise to $150 a barrel by 2030 in nominal terms, or $87 a barrel in inflation-adjusted 2006-dollar terms, the IEA said in its Nov. 7 World Energy Outlook Report.


$87 (2006) in 2030? Unbelievable isn't it? This is the official vision of the future. Still zero motivation to make significant changes. How can you understand the threat of peak oil and not be a 100% doomer when this is what the people in charge are saying? I mean, when the going gets tough, how can you expect these fools to respond in a remotely wise way? There is no wisdom! Our biggest flaw: We don't insist on having the wisest people in charge.

I just hope there are aliens out there filming us for a channel of intergalactic 'Reality TV' (Survivor: Earth) and we are the funniest thing on. I mean they would be pissing themselves laughing that a tool like GWB could be President of the most powerful country on the planet.

Its not about transport Guys/Girls or moving closer to work Its about foooooood. Light rail smart car's are going to be meaningless if your earning less than your food bill is costing.....

This is one of the best sites on the web with some of the smartest people posting but I am still surprised at the lack of awareness about where the real problem lies.

Peak oil = Peak food. with climate change thrown in for good measure.

I purchased a farm about 4 years ago. Low input (grazing), high rainfall, great underground water. But it is still scary how much energy this place uses and I am have been trying to minimize all these inputs.

Growing food is a skill that takes time to learn you cannot wake up tomorrow and go grow vegetables, Preserve food etc. Even mustering stock.

I just returned from an overseas trip Northern Greece where up in the hills they still Shepard there flocks. We have lost this skill. I muster my stock using dogs as apposed to cars and bikes but this has taken forever to learn and I am not even close to being happy with my dog training skill. Note Real dog training is nothing like the rubbish they show on TV or city dog obedience classes. But I am light years ahead of all the other farmers in the region who will be unable to even round up there stock if they cannot use fossil fuel. My place will have no trouble feeding all my family and friends even without fuel BUT it currently feeds 10x that.

I am trying to make a point here but am failing to convey it very well.

Don't worry about how your going to get to work in a city worry about how you are going to be able to eat.

Light rail, smart cars are going to be a waste of time.

Move closer to a food production areas and learn some usefull skills.
Here in Australia the average age of a farmer is 60 with very few younger people staying. This will change soon Note the price of Wheat. Currently in the first world food is almost free.

I expect FOOD prices are going to be the big headlines in the next few years....

When thinking peak oil,


"Don't worry about how your going to get to work in a city worry about how you are going to be able to eat."

- or, worry about whether that city job will still be there, or pay anywhere near as much. Which, if you think about it, is saying the same thing: that the true necessities (such as food) will be scarce enough to become much more expensive relative to other items, and relative to normal pay for most kinds of work. Meaning we'll have less to spend on non-essentials. Meaning non-essential jobs will keep on evaporating. Etc. After this vicious loop unwinds, let's hope we can at least eat enough to survive.

And no, we won't be replacing our SUVs with EVs at that point.

And no, we won't be replacing our SUVs with EVs at that point.

won't be or you hope we won't be? we're already replacing SUVs and work trucks. we can replace SUVs even at the height of the crisis. SUVs will go off the road but more may go off the road than the number of EVs that come on the road. or someone trades in 2 SUVs for one EV. or neighbors trade in their cars for one EV.

Peak oil won't be felt all at once. we'll be feeling it for years.

The question is, Who's going to buy those SUVs that have been traded in?


somebody will or they will find other uses for them or scrap them. that just means there will be cheap SUVs available out there. people will buy them for short commutes, for snow plowing or some other use we can't think of at present.

And one of those 'other uses' for SUVs that nobody wants may be insurance money.

In the US during the worst of the oil panics of the 1970s some insurance companies were reporting a suspiciously high rate of large gas-guzzlers mysteriously catching on fire.

I suspect, though, that a great many of the SUVs formerly owned by suburban housewives will find downstream use as commercial vehicles, such as for tradesmen and contractors. This could actually increase the amount of gasoline consumed by the national SUV 'fleet', as these people tend to put more mileage on their vehicles than people who use them personal transportation. Overall, it won't make much difference because in such cases the SUVs would be substituting for full-size pickup trucks, which get about the same mileage.

there will be cheap SUVs available out there. people will buy them for short commutes, for snow plowing or some other use we can't think of at present.

My bet is housing.

I have noted that the able bodied Swiss population during WW II was drafted for weekend food production (except winter). They took the trams and rail-lines (often with bicycles aboard as well) to the end of the line for city trams and to semi-rural stops on the train and then walked/bicycled to labor intensive crops. Potatoes, vineyards, beets, cabbage, carrots, wheat, etc.

Rural agriculture dependent upon long distance oil transportation has it's own set of problems.

If corn was feed to people directly instead of animals, we could avert starvation even with significantly reduced food production. Add orchards in many former shruburbs, grazing in others and more intensive cultivation of urban spaces (see WW II Switzerland) and I am less concerned than you are.

Best Hopes for Changing Food Culture and Cultivation,


If corn was feed to people directly instead of animals, we could avert starvation even with significantly reduced food production. Add orchards in many former shruburbs, grazing in others and more intensive cultivation of urban spaces (see WW II Switzerland) and I am less concerned than you are.

I had the same sort of idea for USA/Europe but would say additionally that in India/China where people eat mostly vegetarian the problem will be very serious. They have little spare capacity left to cut out when the system breaks down. As they hav lots of people serious mass starvation could occur like after WWII considering global drought and shortages with horading in countires with surplus for fear of future poor harvests.


Food? Food?

If you think that the subject has not been raised many times here on TOD then your wrong.

Several, not many have tried over and over to raise this issue quite clearly but ...BUT we are lost in the huge background static.

That static consists of unending treatments of very very highly detailed analysis's of everything else...yet I recall very recently some did create key posts on the subject of food,awell done for the effort then. This guy above must not have read them.

I do believe that the mass of those here are scared to even consider the topic and therefore tend to not want to discuss it openly for its
outcome is very real and it spells ""*(DOOM)*"".

For all the Amurkans who are fatassed and sassy ......rant part that was here was deleted in disgust...nuff said.

Is there hope for this country? No , except for those who can live on a whole lot less. The chubbies won't even get started.

airdale-5'10" and 170 lbs. 34" waist

Is there hope for this country? No , except for those who can live on a whole lot less. The chubbies won't even get started.

airdale-5'10" and 170 lbs. 34" waist

Airdale, I think you need to lay off the cheeseburgers. :-)

RR-5'10" and 151 lbs. 31" waist

5'10" and 151 lbs. 31" waist...

RR, you need to get out of the office. Move some hay.

Then again...maybe you'll be the first starve when TSHTF.

Still remembering Donal's hilarious "peak date" personal:

Male Doomer ISO Female Doomer
for discreet relationship after TSHTF.
Must have own food, water & ammo.
Edible pets OK.
No skinnies.

Seriously, if we do face a situation where food is scarce, the "bad genes" that currently make people obese and raise their risks of diabetes and heart disease may prove to be life-saving.

The Pima Indians, for example. Something like 50% are obese and have diabetes. Likely because they faced frequent famines in the past. They now have a "thrifty gene" that helps their survival when food supplies are uncertain, but is deadly in the current time of plenty.

The native Hawaiians are another group prone to obesity, likely because of food scarcities in their past.

RR, you need to get out of the office. Move some hay.

Dude, why do you think I am 151 lbs? Not from sitting in the office too much. :-)

I always figured RR for lean and mean. Kudos.

I left the USN with a waist of 29" , which matched my pants linseam of 29" and weight of 125 lbs.

But when one reaches the over 55 age and has acquired his beer gut then try as you might its very hard to get rid of and if you do it just comes back but you fight like the devil to not go any higher and so far I have been winning at that.

What you do is get a pair of suspenders and live with it and realize the extra is just good padding for your precious organs, light up some good Rocky Patels, lay in some fine alcoholic beverages and eat good food but consume wisely and hope to make it past 70.

69 has some rewards but I find them to be hard won.

airdale-memories are what you savor at my age and I always tend to get lazy in the winter and maudlin as well...

a seven letter word from the same old (2500+ yrs) source: 圣人为腹不为目

I skim the site for 60 seconds and realize that the content is not "Peak Oil Debunked" as labelled, it is "Die Off Debunked" (as a commenter to the site noted), in fact, the guy admits that possibly crude peaked in 2005.

From JD's post from his blog:

It turns out that, aside from grains (wheat, rice, corn),

My, my, my, that's a pretty big hunk of the food harvest. One that could not be done by manual labor. Believe me, I have used a scythe on a field and it is not fun. JD also neglects that while many crops are HARVESTED by hand, he does not say how the fields are planted, tilled, fertilized, etc. And I suppose the crops are carried to market by hand and on bicycles. Cherry picking facts indeed. Without mechanized agriculture present food production to feed our present population is impossible.

Actually embedded in that link is a link on elctrified farm equipment as well.

lots of excess hands doing nothing useful in the service sector could manage it on a seasonal basis I think.

Russian oil output rises in 2007, exports stagnate

Russian oil output edged up in December to bring the year-on-year growth to 2.3 percent, but pipeline exports from the world's No.2 oil supplier edged down in 2007 as oil firms sent more crude for domestic refining.

All additional barrels produced were sent to domestic refineries as Russia's current tax system encourages exports of refined products rather than crude oil.
It also often makes more profitable sales of refined products on the domestic market, where demand for high-quality gasoline and diesel is increasing being spurred by the rising number of modern cars.

Preliminary Russian data show that December, 2007 Russian oil exports were down 6.7% relative to December, 2006.

WT: Wow. You have been all over this one for a long time.

"We" (as in, as usual Khebab did the heavy lifting) have the net exports paper pretty much done. It will probably be posted on Graphoilogy in a day or two.

Lone trader 'seeking fame' caused $100-a-barrel oil


An independent trader 'seeking his moment of fame' caused oil prices to hit unprecendented levels of $100-a-barrel yesterday following a single deal.
The buyer, who was trading on his own money bought 1,000 barrels of crude oil from a colleague, which is the minimum allowed.
Strangely, he then sold then back almost immediately, making a loss of $600

Whoa! Am I the only one whose universe has come unraveled?!?

...or unthreaded

Maybe someone looking at todays Nikkei http://www.nni.nikkei.co.jp/CF/FR/MKJ thinks about his universe, too...

Indeed! They are getting hit. But my comment had to do with the temporary lack of threading on the oil drum. Thankfully the problem has been fixed.

No. SuperG is fooling around with something tonight.

It's still unthreaded for me.

"Whoa! Am I the only one whose universe has come unraveled?!?"

Nope, GW Bush is not having much fun either:

Bush Ponders Move to Bolster Economy

WASHINGTON — President Bush said Thursday that he was considering whether to propose a stimulus package to shore up the economy, the clearest indication yet of a growing concern inside the White House over rising oil prices, the subprime mortgage crisis and the possibility of recession.

“I’m concerned about people losing their homes and paying a lot for gasoline,” Mr. Bush said in an interview with Reuters.
Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

I noticed that too. It's a free for all in here! TSHHTF!

And meanwhile, one of the greatest role swaps in industrial history:


My how the worm has turned! :-)


Those will be some nice tatas!

Hello TODers,

While you were sleeping:

TOKYO (AP) -- Japanese stock prices plunged Friday to their lowest finish since July 2006, losing ground after jittery trading on Wall Street amid concerns about the U.S. economy and rising oil prices.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei stock index lost 616.37 points, or 4.03 percent, to finish Friday's half-day session at 14,691.41 points on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The close was the index's lowest since it posted 14,500.26 points on July 19, 2006.
Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

I hope I am not repeating this as I'm relatively new to TOD

Arabian saying

"My father rode a camel, I drive a car
My son travels by plane
His son will ride a camel.."

Thoroughly enjoy the intelligent musings and reply's. Its a damn shame most are oblivious to the oncoming 8 wheeler semi.....

I read today that Merrill is going to write down a far larger amount than expected, $15-20 billion. 1/2 its capital!!! Can anyone confirm?
How will that effect their Capital Adequacy Ratio. Wouldnt surprise me to see this lowered soon 'only TEMPORARILY of course' so we don't
start the domino effect.

Hello, lairdd, and welcome to The Oil Drum. In the upper right corner of the web page is a box that contains quotes that change on each page refresh. I see the Saudi Arabian quote frequently, and it bears repeating.

According to CNN Money, Merrill Lynch took an $8 billion writedown in 07Q3, and some analysts estimate a $10 billion writedown in Q4. And The Deal says that writedowns due to CDOs may total $10 to $15 billion when Merrill Lynch reports earnings next month.