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Thread: Drought = Less Ethanol?

  1. #16
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beckgr View Post
    ...
    Nat Gas, indeed with have infrastructure issues, conveyance, etc. But man, on a BTU basis I'm just personally surprised we don't we a lot more chatter, or effort of money being spent there. I'd like to try and convert an old pickup to NG and see what happens.
    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    ...
    Getting NG service to or thru an existing neighborhood is pretty much a joke. In my case, I need to pay $7500 to run the line past my neighbors 60-ft wide lot.............if I want NG. Then I start paying for new furnace and heat pump.....mo money, mo money.....
    An example benefit meets the micro and macro economics any product must over come when a secondary choice option. My observation on infrastructure and convenience as an observation not a value judgment.

    Quote Originally Posted by bikerfish1100 View Post
    for those concerned about the shift to E15, the AMA has an action page to support a proposal to limit ethanol %.
    http://capwiz.com/amacycle/issues/al...18221&queueid=[capwiz:queue_id]
    No matter what you think of the AMA they have learned how to mobilize their base and providing the ways for their membership to respond. There are lessons to be learned there but that is another thread...

    As important and effective these types of efforts may or may not be they are rearguard responses at the tactical level. Until the same base and more involve themselves in a informed discussion at the strategic level , then make a similar campaign to the people at that level of implementation we will be fighting rearguard actions. In Fly Over Land we have been trying to have that type of discussion for forty years with varying success.

    I'm not surrendering but God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; the tools, shop manuals and support to maintain my Roadster and wisdom to know to stay out of ethanol threads.


    I do fairly well until I get to the last clause.

    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

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  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mika View Post
    I'm not surrendering but God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; the tools, shop manuals and support to maintain my Roadster and wisdom to know to stay out of ethanol threads.
    In a day when we can not agree on our level of taxation and public spending, arguing about something as peripheral as ethanol content like arranging deck chairs on the Titanic
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  3. #18
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    In a day when we can not agree on our level of taxation and public spending, arguing about something as peripheral as ethanol content like arranging deck chairs on the Titanic
    Being of many minds myself (at least four - Me, Myself, I and the other guy inside my helmet) it is easy to agree with your comment on first blush. My problem is that after we resolve those issues (what ever that means) how we arrange those deck chairs now impacts the water quality, land and lives we lead at that time.

    Keep in mind Don Quixote is my avitar and I am prone to quixotic adventures.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mika View Post
    Being of many minds myself (at least four - Me, Myself, I and the other guy inside my helmet) it is easy to agree with your comment on first blush. My problem is that after we resolve those issues (what ever that means) how we arrange those deck chairs now impacts the water quality, land and lives we lead at that time.

    Keep in mind Don Quixote is my avitar and I am prone to quixotic adventures.
    While humorous at one level, the recent drought issue and the conflict between the river barge operators and the water / agriculture / wildlife / recreation management agencies is classic. In an earlier day, the electricity produced at some of the higher dams in the upper reaches of the water shed would also have been a factor. It's ironic that most of the infrastructure which regulates the rivers was at least designed during the 1930's and the construction completed by early 1960's, at the latest.

    Think of the possibilities, if we unleashed our creative talent on resolving the issues we have with the current system?
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  5. #20
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    While humorous at one level, the recent drought issue and the conflict between the river barge operators and the water / agriculture / wildlife / recreation management agencies is classic. In an earlier day, the electricity produced at some of the higher dams in the upper reaches of the water shed would also have been a factor. It's ironic that most of the infrastructure which regulates the rivers was at least designed during the 1930's and the construction completed by early 1960's, at the latest.

    Think of the possibilities, if we unleashed our creative talent on resolving the issues we have with the current system?
    Much of my life has been spent in the Upper Mississippi basin, the Red River basin or the Missouri basin. The infrastructure you reference is the current infrastructure that is continuing to be built or revised. Rural electrification out here did not come as part of the 30s TVA type projects but a much more local/regional ad hoc basis. Long before electricity the upper Mississippi powered the turbines that ran the mills making flower for the nation and rivers like the Wisconsin has long been called the hardest working river in the nation have been used. Much of the infrastructure was designed for flood control in mind to allow navigation, irrigation with power as tertiary objective if at all.

    I wish it was a question of resolution. Rather it is an on going process of managing use and changing demands. Ethanol or cornflakes the increased demand for row crops increases run off. This run off is part of what is increasing the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. It is an international issue in that the Red River Basin drains into Canadian waters impacting them. Part of what drives that is the demand for sugar beets.

    I grew up in a camping family that instilled a silly ethic in me. We camp, hike, enjoy power sports and more. We use the land and resources. At the same time we were taught to do our best to leave our campsite in as good or better condition than we found it. It gets harder and harder to do that while meeting the demands of right and left coasters for food, cattle, industrial agricultural products, grow and refine exportable products and more to offset all the BMW parts we buy. In US terms my corner of Fly Over Land has been at it since Zebullon Pike and his expedition set up camp in 1804 on Pike Island, part of the river of I frequently walk.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

    St. Paul Pioneer Press , Minneapolis Star Tribune

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    "Think of the possibilities, if we unleashed our creative talent on resolving the issues we have with the current system?"

    I agree with the statement however in my belief system. Human intellect perhaps one of the strongest survival tools of humans for problem solving has been replaced by economics. A byproduct of "civilization". So sad.
    Anthony S.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sloride View Post
    "Think of the possibilities, if we unleashed our creative talent on resolving the issues we have with the current system?"

    I agree with the statement however in my belief system. Human intellect perhaps one of the strongest survival tools of humans for problem solving has been replaced by economics. A byproduct of "civilization". So sad.
    We always have the choice......economics of the moment or the future.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mika View Post
    Much of my life has been spent in the Upper Mississippi basin, the Red River basin or the Missouri basin. The infrastructure you reference is the current infrastructure that is continuing to be built or revised. Rural electrification out here did not come as part of the 30s TVA type projects but a much more local/regional ad hoc basis. Long before electricity the upper Mississippi powered the turbines that ran the mills making flower for the nation and rivers like the Wisconsin has long been called the hardest working river in the nation have been used. Much of the infrastructure was designed for flood control in mind to allow navigation, irrigation with power as tertiary objective if at all.
    Tour the Connecticut river valley thru New England, you'll find the same story. The testing flume at Holyoke MA was the primary test turbine research facility prior to WW1.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mika View Post
    I wish it was a question of resolution. Rather it is an on going process of managing use and changing demands. Ethanol or cornflakes the increased demand for row crops increases run off. This run off is part of what is increasing the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. It is an international issue in that the Red River Basin drains into Canadian waters impacting them. Part of what drives that is the demand for sugar beets.
    We are dealing with a similar issue with the Susquehanna River and the Chesapeake Bay. While much less expansive than the Mississippi, the Susquehanna drains an area densely populated with dairy farms that feed an immediate metropolitan population.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mika View Post
    I grew up in a camping family that instilled a silly ethic in me. We camp, hike, enjoy power sports and more. We use the land and resources. At the same time we were taught to do our best to leave our campsite in as good or better condition than we found it. It gets harder and harder to do that while meeting the demands of right and left coasters for food, cattle, industrial agricultural products, grow and refine exportable products and more to offset all the BMW parts we buy. In US terms my corner of Fly Over Land has been at it since Zebullon Pike and his expedition set up camp in 1804 on Pike Island, part of the river of I frequently walk.
    I caution you on casting the problem as one solely of market demand or "pull" for product. In many cases, it's also issues arising from a desire to limit expenses to increase profits. In most aspects, our food costs have dropped for several decades by lowering production costs and corporate consolidation. We get cheap food with little diversity and of mediocre quality. In addition, we don't really like the people employed to manufacture it. Sometimes, you just have to say there's a better way to do things..........maybe more expensive, but better.
    Last edited by 36654; 02-17-2013 at 10:59 PM.
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    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    Totally agree the it is not just "pull". Keep in mind many of the ethanol plants mentioned in the original post are owned by farmers and coops. We debate enlightened self interest v self interest issues all the time. As to the quality of food it is a bad and as good here too. Picking on the R&L coast seems a fair contrast for all the hot air about greedy farmers some vent at times.

    Some of those guys have been my riding partners.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

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    please qualify-"we don't really like the people employed to manufacture it" ? I don't know how to feel about that one...
    "If I had my life to live over, I'd dare to make more mistakes next time...I'd relax,I'd limber up... I would take fewer things seriously...take more chances... take more trips...climb more mountains...swim more rivers...eat more ice cream." Jorge Luis Borges at age 85.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kantuckid View Post
    please qualify-"we don't really like the people employed to manufacture it" ? I don't know how to feel about that one...
    From fruit and vegetable harvesting to meat packing, US agribusiness, its profit margins and our low prices are dependent on folks that are paid the lowest possible wage. We like the profits and the prices, but we really don't want to live near the people that live at the economic level that can support those outcomes. When they live in our neighborhood, we have to face the reality that we are probably sliding down the ladder too........
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    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    I decided not to comment on that line in my previous response because I was concerned about the answer for a bunch of reasons. I was right, so let me respond and try to take this back to the core topic of ethanol.

    Population and brain drain is a problem in F-O-L. "India" for rural businesses is the competition for jobs and talent with F-O-L is seen as our urban centers of population and the R&L coast. At the state levels, ethanol is seen as a way to create jobs and perhaps more importantly bring money into the state in the form of increased crop prices, FTEs, wages paid and the multiplier impact they may have. These in do have a ripple effect in the communities that is much more apparent than in urban settings with more diversified economies. Often the goal is to stabilize communities long before anyone talks of growth.

    Take your own number for how much corn was put to industrial use. 39% was given earlier by a poster. Even if you take a mix position like mine allowing for ethanol production as a component in gas blends while doing away with the "ethanol making us energy independent" portion you are going to significantly decrease that figure. Given the crop dependent nature of some growing regions and the farming version of retooling costs and lag time for change over to new crops, markets and pricing. If you cut the number in half people in urban settings would be screaming about the jobs lost.

    Many in F-O-L have hitched themselves to the ethanol star and now shale. After all how else are we going to afford soap and water, paint for our houses let alone Sunday goin ta meetin clothes so you guys won't be afraid of us when you ride through. Some day we may be able to afford dentists and edgeamakation so you all will even talk with up insteadun at us in the official Fly Over Land coffee shop.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

    St. Paul Pioneer Press , Minneapolis Star Tribune

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mika View Post
    Many in F-O-L have hitched themselves to the ethanol star and now shale. After all how else are we going to afford soap and water, paint for our houses let alone Sunday goin ta meetin clothes so you guys won't be afraid of us when you ride through. Some day we may be able to afford dentists and edgeamakation so you all will even talk with up insteadun at us in the official Fly Over Land coffee shop.
    F-O-L had best hope for oil in that shale. If it's only gas...........the price is too low. In PA the future is here....the NG drillers have more at-risk by not drilling on signed leases than they'll make on the gas.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    From fruit and vegetable harvesting to meat packing, US agribusiness, its profit margins and our low prices are dependent on folks that are paid the lowest possible wage. We like the profits and the prices, but we really don't want to live near the people that live at the economic level that can support those outcomes. When they live in our neighborhood, we have to face the reality that we are probably sliding down the ladder too........
    Interesting assessment. As I live in a county that has at one time been listed on a "10 poorest counties in the USA list" how does that carry over to me? FWIW, even in a "poor place" it's possible to live a rich & rewarding life. Down the road from me(as in real close) there are many persons living in poverty and it sure doesn't pull us down. Interestingly there are Mexicans working at the sawmills all over my area, long ways to travel to do the work the gringos don't want! There(at least he used to work there a year or so ago) is an MD from India that worked at a mill in Morehead,KY recently. My neighbors frequently work for minimum wages or slightly above as thats the level of factory work that is attracted to eastern KY.
    While I get the bad neighborhood notion( really, I did work in juvenile treatment & corrections and know what the dark side involves) its touchy stuff to suggest that some people are better than others to live around based on their economic level. No, I'm not angry just making my point that money doesn't make a neighborhood. One of my early jobs was to be a caddy at a country club from 5th grade on into college. It was an interesting exposure to people that had far more money than at my house and we were not at all poor. Some were OK, some not at all. Having lived in "Appalachia" since 1973 I find the same thing here-some OK , some not at all.
    Signed, sliding down the ladder?

    Now back to ethanol & the drought...
    "If I had my life to live over, I'd dare to make more mistakes next time...I'd relax,I'd limber up... I would take fewer things seriously...take more chances... take more trips...climb more mountains...swim more rivers...eat more ice cream." Jorge Luis Borges at age 85.

  15. #30
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    F-O-L had best hope for oil in that shale. If it's only gas...........the price is too low. In PA the future is here....the NG drillers have more at-risk by not drilling on signed leases than they'll make on the gas.
    I thought the discussion was more than F-O-L's best hope for oil. It is part of a national discussion of many topics. But I guess we will leave it at cheap food, no ethanol, bad wages making us undesirable neighbors while being greedy money grubbing agribusiness monsters.

    Knew their was a reason I considered that ethanol thread 12 step program.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

    St. Paul Pioneer Press , Minneapolis Star Tribune

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