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Libyan crisis, rising oil price, and over-due realism
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cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 9:40 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote    

Nick wrote:

That's not about to happen in this Parliament as a result of their policy on oil/energy use tho. It may happen, I grant you, but policies you wish to see won't be considered by any government whilst they are electable for a mere 4/5 years.


Yet they are, finally, looking (allbeit in an ineffective, half-ar£8d way) for contingency plans. Not in this parliament? Wait to see what happens if Saudi protestors really kick up a fuss.

Behemoth



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 19023
Location: Leeds
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

It's all labour's fault and the defecit, isn't it?

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 34031
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I'm just waiting til the budget when they make fuel cheaper. Then we'll be able to heat our homes with the excess hot air that will ensue.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Behemoth wrote:
It's all labour's fault and the defecit, isn't it?


No doubt. Although this is as much Labours fault as the Tories. They came to power with promises of a modal shift in transport away from private cars and on to public transport, Prescott went so far as to say that they should be judged failures if they couldn't do this. What we saw was ever more cars, higher and higher public transport costs, and complete capitulation of government to the motoring lobby in nearly every area.

Shane



Joined: 31 Oct 2005
Posts: 3129
Location: Doha. Is hot.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

He did put a bus lane on the M4, though, bless 'im

Shane



Joined: 31 Oct 2005
Posts: 3129
Location: Doha. Is hot.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 10:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

cab wrote:
Mass unemployment, huge inflation and econopmic stagnation are the inevitable result of not planning around this problem. Thats political suicide written as large as you can get.
It's not political suicide though, is it? It's unlikely to happen for at least of couple of decades yet, and that makes it someone else's problem on a political timescale. The current lot will have made their money and got out of it by then.

Shane



Joined: 31 Oct 2005
Posts: 3129
Location: Doha. Is hot.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 11 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

cab wrote:
Some people here have posted suggestions for other things that could and probably should form part of a more coherent strategic plan for handling this problem. What do you think?
I think a sustained high oil price is the best thing, really (not just for my career prospects). If the price of oil is high enough to create a little discomfort, but not completely kill the world economy, it makes economic sense to spend money on researching alternatives. There are some big players out there and they are well aware that the first company that can patent a realistic, readily-produceable alternative to fossil fuels will make a killing for a high oil price.

Incidentally, the government out here is conducting all sorts of feasibility studies into massive solar farms that export electricity, low-energy water desalination, sustainable desert reclamation - you name it, they're looking into it.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 11 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

It appears that the green groups brought in to vet new policy directions think very, very little of the governments plans...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/mar/13/greenpeace-attacks-government-carbon-plan

Shane



Joined: 31 Oct 2005
Posts: 3129
Location: Doha. Is hot.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 11 4:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I would have thought that Greenpeace would be better arguing for a review of speed limits rather than enforcing existing ones. Cars, in general, run at their most efficient between around 50 - 60mph, so all the stretches of national-speed-limit single carriageways that have had their limits dropped to 40 or 30mph over the years will be pushing up fuel consumption no end.

OtleyLad



Joined: 13 Jan 2007
Posts: 2737
Location: Otley, West Yorkshire
PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 11 8:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

The reality is that most drivers zoom along at 80-85mph on 70mph limited roads - whenever I drive on motorways at 70 everyone passes me by.

So a 45mph limit would mean most would drive at 50-60 and be at their most efficient?

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 11 8:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Speed limits aren't so widely ignored (was it over 90% of motorists when surveyed admitted regularly breaking them?) that you can't effectively do much to change behaviour without improving enforcement. To reduce speed limits is only worthwhile if you enforce. This is quite familiar to anyone who knows the completely unenforced (and therefore worthless) 20mph zone in Cambridge.

Shane



Joined: 31 Oct 2005
Posts: 3129
Location: Doha. Is hot.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 11 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Another thing that would reduce fuel consumption would be proper phasing of traffic lights in series. To get from one side of Slough to the other, it's quicker to take a lengthy detour via the M4 than to use the 40mph road that passes through it because you get stuck at every single set of lights. I would imagine that the M4 route, and the stop-wait-start A4 route both use a lot more fuel than covering the short distance at a constant 40 mph would.

Mind you, if they sorted out the lights people may still want to avoid Slough, of course.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 11 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Faffing about with speed limits is worthwile, but its playing about at the edges. The fundamental problem is that we've made transit by anything other than the private car absurdly difficult, we've put gobsmacking public spending in to car infrastructure, and we act like spending 20p on a crap cycle route that doesn't help anyone proves that no one wants to cycle.

This article puts it well:
http://waronthemotorist.wordpress.com/2011/03/14/state-intervention/

Shane



Joined: 31 Oct 2005
Posts: 3129
Location: Doha. Is hot.
PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 11 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

cab wrote:
The fundamental problem is that we've made transit by anything other than the private car absurdly difficult
Agreed

Cobnut



Joined: 29 Aug 2008
Posts: 475
Location: North Herefordshire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 11 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

John Busby wrote a very interesting article in 2002 called “After Oil”, about how we adapt if we are prepared for the inevitable and what happens if we’re not...
http://www.after-oil.co.uk/

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