Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 74 total)
  • 185 cubic metres per second
  • Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Full Member

    The rate at which the world burns oil.

    I’m currently reading Andri Snær Magnason’s book “On Time and Water” which is about climate change and the melting of glaciers.

    One of the striking figures is this one, which in terms of a waterfall looks like this:

    The Dettifoss waterfall in Iceland

    On top of that we’re burning 600kg of coal for everyone on the planet annually.

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    So you know there’s a problem, how much of it are you? And what can you do to be a less of a problem?

    The heating threads on this very forum demonstrate how reluctant people are to use alternative energy sources and less polluting solutions because they cost more and are posibly more difficult/complicated.

    Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Full Member

    The fundamental problem is that the most polluting option is often the cheapest, easiest one.

    With reference to heating threads – if you have mains gas then that is almost certainly going to be the cheapest, easiest way to heat your house, so that is what 99% of people will choose.

    The only way that is going to change is if the consumption of fossil fuels is priced in such a way that it takes into account all of the environmental cost, so filling your car with petrol/diesel is fine, but will cost £500 for 50 litres. Flying to Dubai on holiday is allowed, but will come with a fuel surcharge of £5k per seat. Heating your home with oil fired heating is ok, but it will cost 10x as much to fill the tank.

    If that happens then people will start to make decisions that reflect the fact that if we carry on as we are then by the time our grandchildren are getting old:
    the seas are going to have risen by several metres, flooding many settlements
    large parts of previously cultivated land will become desert
    the collapse of many ecosystems will have taken place

    People will not do it “for the good of the planet”. They will only do it when it makes sense for them and their families.

    Premier Icon retro83
    Free Member

    The only way that is going to change is if the consumption of fossil fuels is priced in such a way that it takes into account all of the environmental cost, so filling your car with petrol/diesel is fine, but will cost £500 for 50 litres. Flying to Dubai on holiday is allowed, but will come with a fuel surcharge of £5k per seat. Heating your home with oil fired heating is ok, but it will cost 10x as much to fill the tank.

    I agree but how do you get the Canadians, Saudis or Americans to do that? They’re using 3-4 times as much as us per capita. Need some kind of global agreement but I can’t see it ever happening. Hopefully the EU can do something on it as part of their trade deals.

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Full Member

    I’m of an age where I’ve been pouring petrol and diesel into vehicles for about 45 years. It was only a couple of years ago that I actually thought about what 50 litres of fuel actually looks like. You know, imagine a 50 litre container on your driveway/Street, and then how about how far that actually took me. Then multiply that by how many times I’d have to refill that container each year. Visualising the volume actually did have an effect on me. My annual mileage has plummeted from a high of 30k miles per year to less than 3k now.

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    by the time our grandchildren are getting old

    By the time our children getting old and whilst sea level has only risen slightly the other points are here and now and accelerating.

    We’re about to find out what happens when the Arctic sea ice goes, it’s been getting thinner and the next step is much reduced extent. Lots of water where there once was sea, you think the weather is crap now… .

    Syria has lost so much agricultural land that war or no war there’s little point anyone staying there. Much of the African north coast lost its population to desertification when there were no CO2 emisions, just poor land mangaement. In SW France farmers are changing crops in response to changing climatic conditions already.

    I could write pages of this but it’s not going to change anything, the advice on the heating threads will still be dominantly “gas” and “if you insulate an old house you’ll have problems with damp”. The information to the contrary is out there, people prefer to ignore it and burn fossil fuels.

    Premier Icon drnosh
    Free Member

    Its interesting that a lot of commentators think its an age thing to poo-poo climate change.

    I had a discussion with my son last night (30 years younger than me)

    He was just of the opinion that nobody will want to take up electric vehicles, for example, because they are too expensive.

    I could not get him to understand that part of the purpose of yesterdays announcement is to generate jobs in ‘new industries’.

    It will be the motor manufacturers challenge by innovation etc to get the price today (Tesla c. £80K) down in 10 years to £25K, an average car price that is ‘affordable’, or the manufacturer goes out of business, probably to be taken up by another.

    Just think of the potential new jobs creation. He could not see that argument.

    Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Full Member

    People don’t ignore the advice – they just do the maths and find that the cheapest, simplest thing to do is burn fossil fuels.

    If there was only a small difference in price and convenience then a lot of people would choose the green option. Battery powered cars are approaching that point, and for many users have already reached it.

    The fundamental problem with building the environmental cost of things into the price is that the only mechanism to do it by is taxation. Who is going to vote for a party that pledges to massively increase the price of almost everything?

    Premier Icon paul0
    Free Member

    It was only a couple of years ago that I actually thought about what 50 litres of fuel actually looks like. You know, imagine a 50 litre container on your driveway/Street, and then how about how far that actually took me.

    That same visualisation strikes me in the opposite way. In a modern vehicle a 2 litre bottle of fuel will transport 5 people and a bunch of gear almost 50km. Hydrocarbons have an impressively high energy density, one of the reasons they are proving to be hard to displace.

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    In the case of a good number of petrolhead anti-eco posters on this forum it’s not even a matter of cost, it’s a philosophy. The know they don’t need a huge SUV or 400bhp estate, they know it’ll pollute more, they know it has less interior space and is less practical they know it costs more, but they want it and hell they’ll buy it if only to piss out of the greens.

    This was a contribution to the house thread

    Before the green wash get here. Based on what you have another gas boiler

    It’s provocative, anti-green.

    There are some well-formed thinking responses:

    Insulate, draught proof then consider how to heat the property, although be careful with old buildings. Seek expert advice, you can use a wood fibre insulation (Stieco is a brand I have come across the most) that is then lime rendered.

    but the majority of posts on car and house threads on here could be summed up as “bollocks to the environment”, and this is a cycling forum.

    It’s not just cost it’s a mindset, willful sqandering to impress a peer group with a same values, or lack thereof.

    Premier Icon andy5390
    Full Member

    I think the price of EVs is going to be the biggest sticking point when it comes to buying new. Charge times and range will fade from the decision making process, as they improve and  (most) people realise how little they need a car for.

    ATM the price difference between a new Pug 208 petrol/EV is around £12k – £16.5k vs £28.5k according to What Car.

    That’s not a small difference

    Premier Icon HoratioHufnagel
    Free Member

    Where will people actually charge them? Most people don’t have off-street parking, especially in cities.

    Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Full Member

    Compared with solving the problem of dealing with the whole of London (and every other coastal city) being underwater I think that installing charging points in the street will be a minor issue.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    It’s not just cost it’s a mindset, willful sqandering to impress a peer group with a same values, or lack thereof.

    Maybe they’re just trolling you? After all you do tend to pontificate 🤔

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    ATM the price difference between a new Pug 208 petrol/EV is around £12k – £16.5k vs £28.5k according to What Car.

    Concentrating on the purchase price rather than life time running costs to the owner is an example of anti-green propaganda. Are you quoting with or without goverment incentives?

    Check out the Electric car thread on this forum and you’ll find that many owners may little or nothing to charge and have lease deals that are very competitive.

    Of course it’s even better if households can reduce the number of cars they own as well as reducing use and changing to electric because if ever we a to reach the carbon neutral staement of Mrs May us prols are going to be in busses, trams, train and on bikes.

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    Maybe they’re just trolling you? After all you do tend to pontificate

    Oh I know they are, but it’s not just me, they are trolling the whole of society. Even when I’m absent they’ll pick on whomever is defending the green cause.

    Are they really buying that diesel thing to annoy me, or install that radiator in the glass conservatory to annoy me. I’d be flattered if they were but I think their statement is to the people they know in real life rather than some anonymous bod on a bike forum.

    Premier Icon bonni
    Free Member

    According to someone on 5live yesterday (from Vauxhall Cars, I think), the economics of EVs are getting much, much better. Therefore, the initial cost has to be factored with overall mileage economy and maintenance to do a fair economic evaluation. If I recall correctly, recharge Vs refill costs per mile are about 7x more for diesel over electric. This guy also reckoned there were very few maintenance costs associated with EVs.

    When I have visited some countries, like Russia, Kazakhstan and Colombia, for example, their reliance on coal and (heavy) oil is so great and their reserves of these resources are so significant, that I do wonder how on Earth they will manage to reduce their reliance on them. When you factor in that average people in most countries (the non-G7 ones) don’t change their vehicles unless they can’t fix them anymore, it is difficult to see a big uptake anytime soon, outside of the affluent parts of the big cities.

    Premier Icon jimmy
    Full Member

    Its almost unfathomable. How many millions of years it took to “produce” all that oil, coal, gas (ie sequest all that carbon) vs how quickly we’re spewing it back out is the current thing in my head that scares the bejesus out of me.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    Therefore, the initial cost has to be factored with overall mileage economy and maintenance to do a fair economic evaluation.

    Not unless something creative happens with financing. You don’t buy your petrol car and a lifetime’s supply of petrol all in one go. So whilst an EV might be cheaper in the long run if you can’t find the cash for one right now, then it’s not happening.

    Premier Icon nickewen
    Free Member

    Aye, it’s hard to get your head around the fact that in a relatively microscopic period of time we’ve absolutely trashed our planet, and I agree it is very scary. I just can’t see a way out of it. I think about the climate emergency almost daily.

    On one of the other threads someone said that it was a privilege to be in a position to worry about such threats (or something along those lines) when some people have such immediate and short term worries about the next rent payment or putting food on the table. I hadn’t thought if it in those terms before and it does make me understand that just to be worrying about it, I am in a very fortunate position.

    Technology is a wonderful thing and if we look at the advances in medical science it truly is a wonder, and living standards have improved dramatically compared to 150 years ago, but at what cost?

    I try and do my bit but it just feels like pissing into the wind. I’ve changed a lot of things in the last 12 months but there is still a ways to go for me personally.

    Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Full Member

    It’s interesting how we tend to fixate on cars in threads about “going green”. They are only a small fraction of our energy use (10%?), but we devote a disproportionate amount of energy to thinking about them and ways of making them greener.

    Premier Icon bonni
    Free Member

    molgrips: agreed, but there’s a lot of people that pay for cars (and bikes) using finance. If EV running costs are lower, perhaps repayments could be higher. I’m no expert, but I know that people in finance can be fiendishly creative.

    Premier Icon wobbliscott
    Full Member

    Think that waterfall is the one off the opening sequence in Prometheus isn’t it?

    Hopefully the EU can do something on it as part of their trade deals.

    Not sure the EU are to be held up on a pedestal on this one. Germany’s disastrous energy policy saw them not only increase their use of fossil fuels (double ours for similar population), but made it more expensive for their population and increased their dependancy on Russian gas, so a disaster environmentally, economically and politically. Not holding out much hope for the Italians or the Eastern European nations. The scandi nations were always cleaner, but only because they have an abundance of hydro electric resources so why wouldn’t they be – and Norway needs to export their oil and gas to feed their sovereign wealth fund, so don’t want to consume it themselves But happy for others to consume it for them… so motivations are not due to climate change so they can’t claim the moral high ground on this. The French are showing the way with Nuclear, but people are ignorant about Nuclear so don’t like it and discount it.

    The UK is doing our bit…almost 50% of our energy is from clean/renewable sources and increasing, people are insulating their homes at an alarming rate, acres of solar panels popping up on house roof’s and in farmers fields and there is hardly a view in the whole of Scotland where you can’t see a wind farm or off the NE coastline, and by 2030 we will only be able to buy EV’s or Hybrids so our CO2 emissions are on the way down.

    Does require the big fossil fuel burners to move the needle though – US, India, China and Russia are almost 60% of global CO2 emissions.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    Re: EVs – do the cost models take into account  the battery replacement after 7-10ish years?

    The total cost of ownership for the consumer for the products lifespan is not the same as costing up the building of it, running it etc. I’m yet to see this detailed level of comparison. Does it exist?

    Premier Icon andy5390
    Full Member

    Concentrating on the purchase price rather than life time running costs to the owner is an example of anti-green propaganda.

    Anti green, really? I can only speak for myself with any certainty. My running costs for my current car – Citroen C1 – are around £600-£700 per year. Includes “tax” insurance, MOT, servicing and petrol. That’s been pretty consistent over the 8 years I’ve owned it, and it’s got a few more years left in it.  At that rate, it’ll take 18+ years just to recoup the price difference.

    You may be in a position where an extra £12k doesn’t matter, and seriously, good for you. But many people aren’t, and even with all the best intentions in the world, they aren’t going to be stumping up that extra money.

    Hopefully (though I somehow doubt it) EV prices will come down to what the fossil burners would have been when the ban comes in

    Premier Icon paul0
    Free Member

    Concentrating on the purchase price rather than life time running costs to the owner is an example of anti-green propaganda

    No it’s not. Up-front cost is pretty important when you’ve got to find the money from somewhere!

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    The main people that need to be persuaded aren’t those into bangernomics. It’s the new buyers. I was replying to a comparison between two new cars posted by someone else.

    Even if you are into bangernomics you should be comparing second-hand electric prices and running costs with the ICE equivalent. If you want a commuter and a second-hand Leaf will do it on a charge make that comparison, not with a new electric. Though if you check out the cost of leasing and running a Leaf you might find the up-front cost and running costs are in budget.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    How much is a set of batteries for an old Prius or Leaf or Zoe?

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    Without a good public transport system cars are going to be here for a long time

    Premier Icon airvent
    Free Member

    It’s notthe cost as such that ours me off alternative fuels it is the cost uncertainty. People like their life expenses to be predictable and easy to plan, and novel fuel sources are not that.

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    If it’s an old Zoé the battery will be on a lease so you get a new one when it’s down to x percent of capacity. A new battery for a Leaf depends on how much you can get for the old one for example:

    https://hackaday.com/2020/10/23/battery-swap-gives-nissan-leaf-new-lease-on-life/

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    ElShalimo
    Full Member
    Re: EVs – do the cost models take into account the battery replacement after 7-10ish years?

    I see your point, I drive a knackered old diesel which is probably destined for scrap once im done with it. Realistically the least environmentally costly way for me to get arround at the moment.

    But does the cost of £1.08 diesel at ASDA at the moment take into account the need for a new planet in 7-10 years time. Hyperbole, of course but not by a huge ammount.

    Premier Icon finephilly
    Free Member

    I used to work at a big yellow digger company, manufacturing massive generators, purely for standby power on oilfields. Most likely, these machines were never used. All this expense, materials, manufacturing and shipping them out to Saudi, for what?

    The thing that cracked me up most was the strict rules about recycling a few kilos of cardboard every week. Like that matters!

    The green economy rhetoric is just another fashion statement from a bunch of muppets who have no clue about the environment and want to be cool. I don’t believe a word of it.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    If we could re-frame the wider conversation into “how can we make revenue from providing well designed, well thought out green solutions?” then things will improve.

    At the moment the big companies haven’t quite worked out how to monetize climate change .. That time will come though. Soon, hopefully!

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    molgrips: agreed, but there’s a lot of people that pay for cars (and bikes) using finance.

    Yes. How about government 0% loans for EVs? Or a govt lease plan that’s really good value? Or pre-tax?

    How much is a set of batteries for an old Prius or Leaf or Zoe?

    We have an old Prius, it had a battery failure. They fail cell by cell. I bought a cell for £30 from ebay, but had another failure – turns out I’d replaced one where you have to replace pairs. The garage charged me £450 for a full diagnostic and four cells, which is a bit steep, but they said they’d halve that if any more went.

    A reasonable bill, for sure, but I’ve had the car for 14 years and the total repair (excluding consumables and service) bill is now at £850. First £400 was fuel related not battery.

    The green economy rhetoric is just another fashion statement from a bunch of muppets who have no clue about the environment and want to be cool. I don’t believe a word of it.

    Some of it is, some isn’t.

    Without a good public transport system cars are going to be here for a long time

    Absolutely this.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Without a good public transport system cars are going to be here for a long time

    Exactly.

    The ‘REDUCE’ comes first. Better insulation before a new boiler. Fewer car journeys, more biking and walking. Local food, and don’t water waste it.

    We’re not addressing the basic issues yet – but arguing that electric is better than a diesel.

    Premier Icon CountZero
    Full Member

    Re: EVs – do the cost models take into account the battery replacement after 7-10ish years?

    Depends on a number of things – Teslas new battery tech being introduced with the S Plaid next year is being promoted with a 2 million mile lifespan, which basically means well beyond the likely life of the car itself, and the batteries can then be upcycled into domestic power storage units, or even put into another car!

    Premier Icon finephilly
    Free Member

    You need a stronger commitment to pubic transport for any reduction in oil usage. Look at the difference in China/India when everyone stopped riding bikes to work.

    There are limiting factors to renewables, such as the transmission costs from a windfarm will go up as they are placed further away from cities and it’s never sunny in the UK so solar panels are a waste of time.

    In reality, you have to build new nuclear power stations atm to satisfy the kind of demand we have, or reduce consumption.

    Premier Icon finephilly
    Free Member

    Surely everyone has seen this cyclist powering a toaster:

    Just gives an idea of the immense amount of energy required to perform a basic task!

    Premier Icon Edukator
    Free Member

    it’s never sunny in the UK so solar panels are a waste of time.

    Dear me, have a look at the PV threads on this forum and check out the production figures people are getting.

    Where did you get your information from, finefilly? Please post a link.

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