Published: Tuesday, Aug. 6 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT
I agree with this letter. Prof. Andrade was off-base when he blasted the U for
offering a petroleum engineering degree. Petroleum has been a great benefit to
mankind, and will continue to be for the foreseeable future. Yes, let’s
continue to research other energy sources, but none of them will be ready for
prime time (reliable, abundant, convenient, economical) for many more years.
The reality is that solar and wind are booming energy sources -- Iowa gets
almost 25 percent of its electricity from wind, and many other states,
including Idaho and Colorado get about 10 percent from wind.Solar is
the next emerging source. In Silicon Valley, solar is commonplace and the new
Apple Complex (and many other new headquarters for high-tech firms) are all
being designed to be powered by renewable energy.As for nuclear, the
two new plants being built in America (Georgia) are coming to you by Obama
stimulus money, and the ongoing subsidies to keep the "lights on" from
nuclear to manage its waste for time an eternity -- not the mention the
Fukushima-style risks it poses -- makes it a non-starter for America's
future.I will agree with the writer that petroleum education is
needed for the next decade, but a savvy college student will need to think about
his/her next 40 years if petroleum is really where to put one's career
aspirations.Check out the Tesla -- electric vehicles are the future.
40% of petroleum is used in non-fuel products.(practically everything) You
would not have any solar panels, windmills or Teslas without petroleum. We need
the U of U program.
Baron ScarpiaPetroleum is used for the manufacture of so many
products that no wind power or solar power can duplicate. No matter how much we
change our energy needs to alturnative energy, the need for oil out of the
ground will likely always be necessary for technological development. And I
doubt that airplanes and particularly jet engines can run on anything other than
liquid petroleum. I doubt the Tesla jet is on the way.
petroloeum is the technology of the DIRTY PAST.the university should be
offering advanced degrees in the creation and development of alternative energy
sources. wind, solar, geo thermal.
You're an engineer? How can you make a statement that solar and wind
require investment in power lines that make them impractical? To state the
obvious, coal powered electricity required investment as well. I assume you
consider that impractical as well?To state the obvious again,
rooftop solar decreases the load and investment needed in power line
transmission. All the wind turbines I've seen were on farming lands that
were already near power lines and roads. Nobody that's pro
renewable energy insists it must be 100% of our energy needs. That's a all
or nothing logical fallacy perpetuated by conservatives. Although, reality will
make sure that only renewable energy is available in the future anyway.Poor engineering evaluation. Your conservative rant is debunked.
Baron ScarpiaIt's a good thing that "solar and wind are booming
energy sources". But that still doesn't mean we no longer need people
educated in petroleum engineering. Try operating a Boeing-747 on solar or
wind. Try manufacturing almost any component we have in modern society without
petrolium. Try growing any crop we currently have without petrolium based
fertilisers, harvesting equipment and processing equipment, much less the
problem of getting it to market without petrolium.It's good
that we are developing alternatives for some needs. But we need people like
Joe and the radical environmentalists to realise that we will probably always
need petroleum engineers. Even if every house and every vehicle, and ever
factory, and every military machine, and every piece of farm equipment, no
longer needed petrolium. Even if we never combusted another ounce of
petrolium... It's used in lubrication, manufacturing, it's needed as a
backup when it's dark and the wind isn't blowing. It's needed
to manufacture the batteries we need to make wind and solar feasible. It will
always be needed (just in lower quantities).
To "the old switcharoo" it is very easy to say that wind and solar are
impactical.Nuclear power plants average 90% capacity. Wind power
averages 25% capacity.You can also look at it from a land use point
of view. Nuclear power plants produce more power per acre than wind or solar
currently are capable of producing.Nuclear, coal, and gas receive
less than $2 in incentives from the government while wind and solar get up to
$25 in subsidies.You can look at the environmental effects of wind
turbies which chop up more birds per year than the Exxon Valdez killed in that
accident. Or you can look at the noise pollution that the wind turbines
cause.Wind turbines slow the wind near where they are located. This
has 2 effects. First it heats the land in those areas, and second it makes it
so that wind pollinated crops don't pollinate as well.SOmething
the wind power industry doesn't like to point out is the fact that you
still have to buy a redundant fossil fueled power plant that is running in and
idle mode to power the system when the wind is low.
Let's face it. Obviously the technologies of wind, solar, thermal, ect.
are going to be part of the worlds future energy needs. But is is extremist
nonsense to believe that in 10 or even 25 years from now, petroleum needs for
energy will be gone. Liquid fuels from what I can see will be necessary for
decades if not centuries to come. So, go ahead and be a petroleum engineer.
You will probably have better job security than the people at Solyndra did.
good luck making plastic out of solar energy.good luck making
lubricants from wind trubines.good luck making asphalt from
@happy2bhereclearfield, UTAnd I doubt that airplanes and
particularly jet engines can run on anything other than liquid petroleum.9:00 a.m. Aug. 6, 2013======== All Boeing jets -
Commercial AND military - are currently FAA certified to fly on Bio-fuels.AlGas in particular [Algae based].And rockets have been flying on
liquid Hydrogen and liquid Oxygen for over 40 years now.At least the
US Military and airline operators are smart enough to figure out that we
can't simply rely on cheap Middle Eastern oil to win wars or stay in
business.It's too bad civilians listening to AM hate radio
can't see that far down the road either.
To "LDS Aerospace Engineer" they may be certified to fly on Biofuels,
but the cost of some biofuels is so much more than petroleum based fuels that
they are unusable.For example, last year the Air Force was paying
$59/gallon, compared to the $4/gallon for conventional fuel.The
other problem with the renewable fuels is that you are burning food for the more
cost effective options. The soy based fuel is running $59/gallon, while the
algae based fuel is over $400/gallon. At the cost for the biofuels, you
won't be able to afford driving to work or going on a business trip.
@RedShirtUSS Enterprise, UTAlGal RedShirt is an algae based
fuel.Do you eat algae?BTW - Who needs a $ Trillion
weapon system when if you can't even get the fuel to run it on?
@RedShirtUSS Enterprise, UTFor example, last year the Air
Force was paying $59/gallon, compared to the $4/gallon for conventional fuel.============ Currently Algal is $2.8/L[~ $11.20 per
gallon]Jet Fuel is ~ $4.00 per gallon -- BUT that is with Government
subsides.Cut out the subsides like Europe does, and AlGas is cost
competitive.BTW - With sufficient production and infrastructure,
AlGas has the potential of costing LESS than $1 per gallon.But go
ahead, live in the Dark Ages. We don't want nay-sayers in the future
To "airnaut" And where are you going to grow all of the algae? You
can't pollute natural water ways with it, so you will have to cover up farm
land with algae tanks and ponds. Now tell us where are you going to get the
water to produce sufficient algae?The bigger question is do you have
$4000 to fill up your fuel tank with algae based fuel? Even at $11/gallon, do
you have $110 to fill up your honda civic each week?Actually there
are no subsidies going into the production of jet fuel. The petroleum industry
pays the government billions of dollars in taxes, royalties, and land leases.
Only somebody who is ignorant of the government policies on mineral development
would think that the oil industries get any subsidies.Europe does
not have the subsidies, they have high tax rates on fuel. According to
Time's article "Think Gas is High? Try Europe" the cost of fuel in
Europe is due to taxes. They found that 70% of the price of fuel is taxes. If
you remove the taxes, their fuel would cost the same as ours.
Is there a climatological analog to the Salem Hypothesis?
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