There’s big press lately about the methane-release study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and led by good people at the University of Texas. From the headlines you’d think things are looking up for the fracking industry, but upon closer inspection, it’s clear that is not the case.
What manufacturer in China isn’t polluting? China does have environmental laws and regulations on the books, mind you, but obviously there’s no enforcement and no incentive to follow them. Just as obviously, products are far less expensive to manufacture when pollution controls are not a factor. Ring that register!
The Keystone XL project is in the news again today, with Obama saying he won’t approve it if it will lead to further global climate change. That’s just about a no-brainer, since we need to produce, refine and burn fewer hydrocarbons, not more. But it’s as good a rationale as any to can this turkey. And this is some really bad stuff: news stories I’ve seen of late have led to a closer examination of it, and it’s not oil like we think of oil.
Basically, this material is some really heavy crude, so heavy that it won’t flow unless it’s mixed with some real bad actors. It’s actually called Diluted Bitumen, or Dilbit for short. (This is getting pretty close to Dilbert, and you can bet there’ve been a fair number of Dilberts working on this thing.)
I never knew there were so many phobias, until I found The Phobia List. It’s a loooong list. A few samples:
Androphobia- Fear of men.
Apeirophobia- Fear of infinity.
Chorophobia- Fear of dancing.
Gynephobia or Gynophobia- Fear of women.
Hamartophobia- Fear of sinning.
Mycrophobia- Fear of small things.
Novercaphobia- Fear of your step-mother.
Nucleomituphobia- Fear of nuclear weapons.
Ophthalmophobia- Fear of being stared at.
Tachophobia- Fear of speed.
Zemmiphobia- Fear of the great mole rat.