Advertisement

Archive for Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Pickens’ energy plan worth considering

July 29, 2008

Advertisement

An inept, polarized Congress appears incapable of passing significant energy legislation this year despite the powerful political incentive provided by $4 gasoline.

Of course, we're talking about the same body that took more than a decade to come up with a seriously overdue upgrade of vehicle fuel economy standards, finally approved in December.

Our underperforming "leaders" in Washington are being shown up by an 80-year-old Texan who is far more fast-acting and quick-thinking.

That's T. Boone Pickens of Dallas, the billionaire hedge fund manager and one-time Amarillo independent oilman who made the covers of national magazines in the 1980s as a "corporate raider" (a term he hated) by pressing major oil companies to be more accountable to shareholders.

In a brief video viewable at www.pickensplan.com, Pickens outlines his ambitious new energy plan. While it faces tough hurdles, it's more coherent and potentially significant than anything Congress has adopted this year on the energy front.

Here, in a nutshell, is Pickens' idea to help free the United States from its increasingly burdensome reliance on imported oil, an expense he puts at a staggering $700 billion annually.

America should harness the breezes in its central "wind corridor" running from North Dakota to Texas, so that wind power generates at least 20 percent of the nation's electricity, a level the U.S. Department of Energy claims could be achieved by 2030. Wind power currently generates only 1.5 percent of electricity, but is growing by leaps and bounds.

Achieving the 20 percent goal for wind power would free up much of America's natural gas supplies (now used in electricity generation) to power vehicles ranging from cars to buses. Freeing natural gas to fuel vehicles would slash gasoline consumption and therefore reduce our need for oil, from which gasoline is made.

The result could be a 38 percent reduction in oil imports, shrinking our annual tab for foreign crude by roughly $300 billion, says Pickens, who presented his plan last Tuesday to a congressional committee. He wants Washington to provide financial incentives to help make it happen.

Pickens is putting his money where his mouth is. He's spending $58 million to publicize his plan. He's bought a natural gas-powered Honda Civic GX. He's the largest shareholder in Clean Energy Fuels, which supplies natural-gas powered fleets such as buses and taxis.

Pickens' Mesa Power is the lead investor in a massive $10 billion project to build the "world's largest wind farm" - 2,700 giant turbines in thinly populated Gray, Roberts, Hemphill, Wheeler and Carson counties in the Texas Panhandle.

Pickens' energy plan would face enormous obstacles. Skeptics doubt that wind power can ever account for 20 percent of electricity generation, noting that in places such as West Texas, the wind often blows little on torrid summer days when power is most needed.

Others stress that conversion of natural gas to widespread vehicle use would require an enormous and costly network of natural gas fueling stations.

Those are realistic concerns. But wind power is growing dramatically, getting relatively cheaper compared with fossil fuels and could benefit from future technology gains.

There's also little doubt that considerably more vehicles could be fueled by natural gas than the 142,000 nationally that Pickens says now use it.

He describes his plan as only a "bridge" to help America meet its energy needs over the next 20-plus years while transitioning to new technologies such as totally electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

At the least, his plan represents laudably innovative thinking and a plausible strategy for reducing our reliance on foreign oil. Compared to what Congress has accomplished this year on the energy front, Pickens' plan is pretty impressive.

Jack Z. Smith is an editorial writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. His e-mail address is jzsmith@star-telegram.com.

Comments

Robert bickers 6 years, 7 months ago

"Pickens is putting his money where his mouth is. . . He's the largest shareholder in Clean Energy Fuels, which supplies natural-gas powered fleets such as buses and taxis."This should read "He's trying to put your money where his mouth is." T. Boone Pickens has never done anything altruistic. From his "philanthropy" to his corporate raiding (a term that fits all too well), the man is out to make a buck.He's also completely ignoring the reports stating that we have a far greater oil supply than natural gas supply, based on equal usage. All that gas is going to burn through pretty fast, shooting prices to unimagined heights, and netting Pickens a tidy profit.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 7 months ago

It really doesn't matter what the Europeans are doing with nuclear. That still doesn't make it any cheaper, or safer-- witness the serious contamination in France very recently. The zero tolerance for technical and security breakdowns required for nuclear will never change, and it will never be achieved. Nuclear is russian roulette, and for those who play, eventually the chamber will be loaded and fired-- but it will likely bankrupt tax and ratepayers long before that.

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Phil Minkin 6 years, 7 months ago

Why is it when Pickens talks I hear a voice saying "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain" or "I'm from the oil business and I'm here to help you".

tolawdjk 6 years, 7 months ago

It was my understanding that the Pickens plan wasn't moving the entire US fleet to nat gas, but focusing more on changing those portions of it that use diesel...trucking, port fleets, constructions, etc., etc. I could be mistaken about that because every version of the plan I have found to date is fairly light on specifics.The difference between Gore's "plan" and Picken's "plan" is that the Picken's plan uses proven, available, off the shelf technology. Sure, it requires it to be expanded on a broad scale and requires large capital investments to work, but it isn't waiting on guys in white lab coats to invent anything.Gore, on the other hand, still needs battery development for electric cars, still needs technology to develop a smarter electric grid to allow for the massive electrical pull required by everyone plugging their car in, potentially at times where the grid is already running at peak.And what is this crazy notion that in order to be a good plan, it must come from a saint? Sure Pickens stands to make money off his plan if it works. No one would listen to a guy who planned to bankrupt anyone who followed him. In all the talks I have seen Gore put on, not once have I seen him slide his bankroll into the pot and say "I'm in." He does a lot of "we need to" and "we should requires" but never have I seen him say "we need to do this, and that is why I am personally doing that".Pickens is at least putting his money where his mouth is.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 7 months ago

Bozo, since Daytrader was unable to provide a response to my comment about nuclear plants in Europe, perhaps you can: If nuclear power has all of the problems that you and others say it does, why are there so many productive nuclear plants in Europe? While we have stagnated in building nuclear plants, why have Europeans regularly touted the advantages of it over other methods of generating electricity?

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

Some of us work for money, Some of us have our money work for us. Right now I am rich from something that is free. Doesn't matter if wind is left or right, from France or America. Wind blows, wind makes energy, energy makes money. And it cleans the environment, not pollute it. So while the rest of you argue over Gore vs. Pickens, oil vs nuclear, doodle dee vs. doodle dumb I am checking my investments because I want to trade my 30 footer and get a 47 ft. custom made Italian sailboat. This baby is sweeeeet. And it's powered by the wind as well, how fitting.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 7 months ago

"France gets most of its energy from nuclear energy and the French are not exactly known for their great courage."France has also had some serious nuclear contamination in the past few weeks.The simple fact is that nuclear power requires zero tolerance for technical or security breakdowns, which is impossible to achieve. Other technologies have no such requirements.And the other simple fact is that nuclear is incredibly expensive-- despite all the hype, unless those costs can be shoved down the throats of rate and taxpayers, there will be no resurgence in nuclear power. It just can't compete.

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

Anonymous userjust_another_bozo_on_this_bus (Anonymous) says:It really doesn't matter what the Europeans are doing with nuclear. That still doesn't make it any cheaper, or safer- witness the serious contamination in France very recently. The zero tolerance for technical and security breakdowns required for nuclear will never change, and it will never be achieved. Nuclear is russian roulette, and for those who play, eventually the chamber will be loaded and fired- but it will likely bankrupt tax and ratepayers long before that.Where I live we do have the choice to pay for Wind/ solar, hydro, or nuclear electricity. Nuclear is the cheapest however most of the people prefer to pay for wind or hydro which is why central Europe has so many wind farms. (wind price is catching up on nuclear) Spain and Italy will soon have mostly Solar and anybody that has a river has hydro. It would be interesting if America was giving the same opportunity what it would choose.

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

logrithmic (Anonymous) says:Congrats Day Trader. I enjoy my canoe too: A pleasant way to tour a small lake. I find it great when self interest and common interest merge.Yes its so much more enjoyable than a power boat, which I find to be as boring as driving a truck in a big field. I love it when the wind is kicking and your holding on for dear life wondering how much more she can take. Then be able to cook diner and enjoy a bottle of red on the water. Perfecto!

cato_the_elder 6 years, 7 months ago

Bozo, it doesn't matter what the Europeans have done with nuclear power? Are you serious? While I certainly have no desire to emulate them on anything in particular, from your response I can only conclude that you believe that Europeans are mistaken in relying on nuclear power as they do. Am I correct?

Satirical 6 years, 7 months ago

Hey daytrader....Do you want to invest in my new clean, safe, and renewable energy idea?

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

Thank you T. Boone. An oil man who knows the real solution is not through drilling. American energy independence must come from alternatives and renewables. Oil is sooo last year.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 7 months ago

Yes, they are mistaken. The German government had been planning to decommission all of their plants and build no more, although I think the current government has backtracked on that.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 7 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

Man, so culturally deprived I missed a solitary and somewhat obscure reference. I feel awfully sad. But perhaps I should not bother, arguing with the Zhou Wang of the ljworld boards.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 7 months ago

"Neither has Cheney, as you claimed above."This is very misleading. Cheney was CEO of Halliburton, which is in the business of providing oil field services. Cheney was (and is) indeed an oilman.

staff04 6 years, 7 months ago

"Not sure why the left-wingers (read: the vast majority of people in this country whose political beliefs lie to the left of engagehorn/arminius/jeez I can't remember there are so many different screennames) in this country are afraid of nuclear energy."We aren't afraid of nuclear energy, we are afraid of people who think like you:http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2008/jul/29/suspects-note-cites-liberal-movement-church-attack/?printer=1/

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

RestoreReason (Anonymous) says:"Does anyone else get the impression that DayTrader23 is the Tommy Flanagan of this forum?"Errr. . . the jazz musician or the Irish actor?

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

Anonymous usercato_the_elder (Anonymous) says:Bozo, since Daytrader was unable to provide a response to my comment about nuclear plants in Europe, perhaps you can: If nuclear power has all of the problems that you and others say it does, why are there so many productive nuclear plants in Europe? While we have stagnated in building nuclear plants, why have Europeans regularly touted the advantages of it over other methods of generating electricity?-----------------------------------------------Sorry I didn't see this post.Most of Europe as Bozo pointed out is trying to shut down and find energy in places other than nuclear, my wife remembers as a child that one year because of a leak in Poland, they could not eat fresh vegetables or drink milk in Central and Western Europe for one full year, Germany and most of Europe has been scared of nuclear ever since which is why they are leading the world in alternative and renewable energy sources, that and no one had a military large enough to bully its way for cheap oil. So the socialists who gave us free health care (I have never had to wait for an appointment) is also trying to make our power supply clean and friendly as possible. Damn those evil socialists, looking after the health of its people, who do they think they are?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 7 months ago

"while clean, safe, effective nuclear power"This is the hype, but at this point in time, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, there is no approved plant design, with major problems in coming up with one. Costs for bringing new ones on line are unknown, and at this point, unknowable. All of the plants now under "development" are only able to do so because utilities have got state governments to give them blank checks, payable by rate and tax payers. Even with those blank checks, it'll be at least ten years before any new nuke comes on line, but given that Wall Street has absolutely no interest in investing in them at this point-- it will likely be much longer than that.

TopJayhawk 6 years, 7 months ago

There's a friggin' machine shop in Topeka that is converting regular p/u trucks-for themselves- to electricity. They say they are plugins, and all they are doing is mating fork-lift parts to the trucks. They run for about 70miles on an eight hour charge, they have three now and it costs about &75.00/month to keep all three running. If a local machine shop can do this, then why can't Detroit. I don't remember the name of the shop, it was in the Cap-Journal about a week ago. They did say if people would like one, they will do it for the public. I think they said they just hook up the traction motor to the transmition, and you just drive and shift gears like normal.

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

RestoreReason (Anonymous) says:"Where did you spend the late 1980s?"In Elementary School, mostly. "The Morgan Fairchild reference should have made it obvious."Well, there might be an argument or two out there that your perception of what's obvious and what's not is open to suspicion.

TopJayhawk 6 years, 7 months ago

And I agree with whoever said all houses will have wind generators in the near future. We used to all have T.V. antenneas on our houses when we were kids, why not a windmill?

Satirical 6 years, 7 months ago

I am not an energy expert but after listening to a representative from a wind power company he said there are three current problems with wind power production.(1) Supply and Demand. There are not enough wind turbines being built in order to meet the high demand. Pickens had to jump through a lot of hoops and pay much more than they are worth in order to get as many wind turbines as he needed (most of the turbines he purchased are on backorder). (2) Transferring the power from the windy areas to where there is demand for it. There is not enough infrastructure in western Kansas to get the energy from where wind power is produced most efficiently to where it is needed.(3) Enormous short-term investment for possible small long-term benefit. Once the wind turbines are up and running it is relatively cheap, however getting to the point is extremely expensive and maybe cost prohibitive. Not only are the turbines extremely expensive because the demand is much higher than the supply, and the infrastructure to tranport the energy could cost billions; but also, in order to get these mammoth wind turbine parts to the installation site often requires building brand new special road with a specific gradation not currently built.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 7 months ago

"Wind power" is nothing short of ridiculous as a practical source of energy, while clean, safe, effective nuclear power has been stifled forever in this country while our citizens have foolishly allowed themselves to be brainwashed by the Jane Fonda crowd. Hey, Daytrader: What do you think of the multitudinous nuclear plants all over Europe, where you live? Your socialist compadres over there don't have any problem at all with nuclear plants, do they? Socialists of America, unite! You have nothing to lose but your coal-fired plants.

enima18 6 years, 7 months ago

Just wanted to comment on bozo's statement that nuclear power cannot be safely used because of technical and security issues. There is a great example to the contrary and that is the US Navy which has been using nuclear power on moving platforms for nearly 60 years. There have been no nuclear accidents in the Nuclear Navy's entire existence. So it definetely is possible for nuclear power to emerge as a dominant energy source.

Satirical 6 years, 7 months ago

staff04..."It's like arguing that a company that makes asphalt isn't in the paving business, or that lumber companies aren't in the construction business."Umm... lumber and construction are two separate industries. You can use lumber for more than construction, and asphalt can be used for something other than paving. Your logic would make a pencil manufacture liable if someone used that pencil to murder someone.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 7 months ago

Daytrader, according to the European Nuclear Society, as of April 2008 there were 197 nuclear plants operating in Europe, with 13 under construction in five countries. Sorry that you're in such a minority over there with your chic socialist pals - it probably helps you, however, to take five and relax with your 30-foot sailboat, soon to be replaced by an Italian one - but it does disturb me to see that you like to "cook diner" (sic) on your boat - I worry for your guests, and trust that your socialist leanings have not regressed to cannibalism.

Brent Garner 6 years, 7 months ago

Agnostick:In an apparently deleted post Daytrader made reference to some of his European assoicates who were selling back to the utilities electricity made via wind turbines. He cited figures suggesting 100% profitability. IF that is indeed true, and if THAT takes into account ALL the costs associated with the wind turbines, then we all NEED to know more about whatever it is that Daytrader and his company are doing. That is why I asked the pointed questions.About 20 years ago I looked into wind turbines, photovoltaics, and even solar ponds. I read lots of literature and even visited some sites were some of these were in operation. At that time, the estimated pay back period on a turbine ranged, based on size, cost, etc., from 7 years to 15 years. They were also NOT inexpensive. Photovoltaics, at the time were producing electricity at a cost of around 50 cents/kwh. Not competitive. Solar ponds were then only highly experimental. In fact, the only really working model I found was one built by the Israelis in the area of the Dead Sea. As I said, that was 20 years ago. I know that technology has advanced since then, so if there has been some breakthrough that now makes wind power, solar power, etc., competitive with the typical fossil fueled power plant (rates in the range of 15 cents to 20 cents per Kwh) then I want to know about it.

Satirical 6 years, 7 months ago

Rather than a wind turbine at everyone's home (may not be an option for people in inner cities), why not just make a stationary bike that produces energy for your home by pedaling? I figure this will solve a couple of our nation's problems; obesity and energy. They should also make a mini-version so you can get some use out of your kids when they are being hyperactive. "if you want to watch TV you have to ride your bike for 30 minutes." Maybe this plan will also cut down on the amount of TV kids watch : )

TtownKUlivin 6 years, 7 months ago

"It was my understanding that the Pickens plan wasn't moving the entire US fleet to nat gas, but focusing more on changing those portions of it that use diesel:trucking, port fleets, constructions, etc., etc. I could be mistaken about that because every version of the plan I have found to date is fairly light on specifics."This is absolutely right, he is only trying to reduce our dependency on foreign oil by 40%. Within 5 years this can happen from using natural gas, that is a HUGE drop off from the almost 70% we get from imports now. It's not as if he has JUST thought about this, back in the 70's he was warning oil companies and U.S. leaders about the danger of continuing our use of foreign imports. So there you go. He invested 300 million of his own money to the research of wind power. That's putting his money where his mouth is. He's not trying to get rich from oil anymore, but when wind power is recognized as a very real practical use 15-20 years down the road he will get rich off of that. As far as the natural gas idea, that comes from the biggest oil company in the world. Some Russian company has already installed natural gas units ALL over Europe. Russia is always ahead of the curve when it comes to energy.The ultimate idea should be to throw all energy ideas against a wall and filter them out over the coming years to see which are actually plausible instead of fighting between which one is the best. It's only wasting time. Do it!

supertrampofkansas 6 years, 7 months ago

"Your logic would make a pencil manufacture liable if someone used that pencil to murder someone." SatiricalHuh? How do you go from products for oil and gas - oil production, lumber - construction, asphalt - paving, to pencils - murder. You might want to try that again Satirical. I think someone has a bad case of the "illogical Tuesdays"Halliburton is an energy company that provides technical services and products for oil and gas exploration and production. Asking how many oil fields Hallibuton owns is indicative of a slimeball mentality that would put Bill Clinton to shame.

staff04 6 years, 7 months ago

RR, now you're just making yourself look silly.It's like arguing that a company that makes asphalt isn't in the paving business, or that lumber companies aren't in the construction business.

supertrampofkansas 6 years, 7 months ago

Jonas,Your response to RR should have been more along the lines of "Yeahhh I was thinking the same thing about you RR!""Yeahhh thats the ticket!"(Think Jon Lovitz from SNL)

staff04 6 years, 7 months ago

"Your logic would make a pencil manufacture liable if someone used that pencil to murder someone."Huh? No kidding lumber and asphalt are used for other things. Halliburton does other things than service the oil industry too. It doesn't mean that they aren't in the construction, paving, and oil businesses, respectively, which is what your pal Kevin is trying to sell...

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

Yay, another cato "I know you are but what am I?" rejoinder!!

supertrampofkansas 6 years, 7 months ago

Jonas,Agreed. It is an obscure reference. In fact if you watch old SNL episodes, most references are pretty obscure since its humor is mostly about events happening at the time it airs. Nothing cultural about me. I just happen to be an old SNL junkie living in obscurity.

Brent Garner 6 years, 7 months ago

Daytrader23:Perhaps you would be so kind, since you state your are financing and profiting from wind power, to give an example of a specific model of windmill/wind turbine and show us the complete cost(land, equipment, maintenance, etc.) and then compare that cost with the savings and calculate how long it would take the owner of said wind plant to recoup his/her investment. Please also include in your calculations the life expectancy of the windplant you use in your calculation. Also, please indicate the cost / kwh of the electricity generated especially if said electricity is being "sold" to the grid.I would be most interested in seeing the outcome.

Brent Garner 6 years, 7 months ago

Agnostick:First, I was not attacking Daytrader. He made what sounded like a credible claim and I wanted more information. Second, unlike Daytrader who states that he is involved in the wind power industry, I am not involved in the oil industry, nor the coal industry, nor the production of electricity. While you are attempting to cast me as an ignorant person who's opinion doesn't matter, I might ask you what your level of expertise might be? I asked my question genuinely wanting to know. You asked your's genuinely seeking to attack and discredit. There is a difference.Third, I am sure there are those who can provide the information you are demanding of me. IF I can locate such a person I will provide you the information you have demanded. However, given the tenor of your posting I doubt very much that it would matter as your mind is already made up and not open to any other data or information on the subject. My mind, at least, is open on the subject. If windpower has indeed progressed to the point that Daytrader is stating, then perhaps many of the "kinks" have been worked out of the system. For the record, I am all in favor of clean energy, but I want clean energy available on a basis that will not force us to live like a 3rd world country. I like being able to run the air conditioner. I like being able to turn on the lights when it gets dark. I like being able to store my food in a refrigerator which will keep it cold and preserve it for me. I do not want to have to give up any of these things just to make some "green fascist" happy. Daytrader was suggesting in one of his posts that such was possible. Therefore, I asked for more specific information. Perhaps you should check your politics before you start blasting away. You might come across a bit more intelligently.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 7 months ago

How many oil wells does Halliburton provide services to?

TacoBob 6 years, 7 months ago

A couple of points:Go Electric!! Okay, shift consumption to electric - how do we generate all this power? Huge uptick in demand. Coal, nukes, wind (not feasible yet), what?Nukes, not proven safe, etc. etc. Tell that to France. Go nukes. Start building now.Solar. Gore commented that there is enough energy hitting the earth every day to supply.....don't remember the details. Okay, so we get all this energy. One problem - no effective way to harness it! Someday, maybe, but not here, not now. No solution that I am hearing. Research, cool. But not the answer now.Oil. Dems are all for drilling - except where the oil is. Drill now, protect us 10 years out - yes, do it now so we fix future issues. Someone wise on this board stated that there are two times to plant a tree - NOW or 10 years ago. We don't have any viable alternative fuels NOW. So do something while we pursue the ultimate answer. I think everyone gets it now, vs. the 70's where we got lazy again. The green movement is way too strong - if we get lazy again, then forget it. Too much momentum to go green to turn back - and there is money to be made. It is guaranteed now......so get on with it.There is an alternative answer out there, but do something NOW to protect us against the future until we get something better. Look at the reduced oil consumption we have already seen in the US, without really trying. It will only get better.All these alternative fuels look promising but you can't make them work on a large scale now or 10 years from now. So make the smart move and use what you have and find the replacement. Parallel effort. Is that so hard???Drill and pursue alternatives with hybrid vigor!!!

tunahelper 6 years, 7 months ago

nuclear power is the way to go.wind is undependable, unless algore is talking.hahaahahahahahahahahhhhaaahhahahahaha!I crack myself up!

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

supertramp: I enjoyed the SNL with Murray and Ackroid, Belushi, etc., but I haven't followed it with much diligence. I'm more of an anime junkie myself.

staff04 6 years, 7 months ago

"Halliburton is not an oil company.""I merely blow up the liberals' dishonest arguments."disingenuous adjective lacking in frankness, candor, or sincerity; falsely or hypocritically ingenuous; insincere:

Brent Garner 6 years, 7 months ago

Before we get all excited about Mr. Pickens' idea, lets see the details. To date no one that I am aware of has been able to show a reasonable rate of return on wind energy. What I mean by that is that the payback period on wind generators is nearly 10 years, at least the last time I looked. Also, I want to see how his plan deals with wind variability and how it relates to the reliability of the system he proposes.

Godot 6 years, 7 months ago

Pickens appears in front of Congress to talk his book and they buy it. One of the richest men in the world convinces Congress, and Democrat Governors such as Sebelius, to give him taxpayer subsidies for an investment that, with government support, will make him even richer, and all the little men and women fall in line.If Pickens' plans were so great, he would not need to go before Congress to beg for taxpayer support. If his plan were economically viable, he would implement it as quietly as possible so as to avoid Congressional restrictions and intervention.The only reason Pickens is bringing this so-called energy plan to Congress is because he knows that, without billions of taxpayer dollars to prop it up, it is a loser.

tolawdjk 6 years, 7 months ago

And thus Godot quoth:"Pickens appears in front of Congress to talk his book and they buy it. One of the richest men in the world convinces Congress, and Democrat Governors such as Sebelius, to give him taxpayer subsidies for an investment that, with government support, will make him even richer, and all the little men and women fall in line.If Pickens' plans were so great, he would not need to go before Congress to beg for taxpayer support. If his plan were economically viable, he would implement it as quietly as possible so as to avoid Congressional restrictions and intervention.The only reason Pickens is bringing this so-called energy plan to Congress is because he knows that, without billions of taxpayer dollars to prop it up, it is a loser."Oh give me a break already. What form of energy in the US -isn't- subsidized by taxpayer money? Why does Exxon and BP howl everytime someone mentions increased taxes or removing protections put in place when oil was less than $20 a barrel? Ethanol, coal, solar, wind, natural gas, nuc...everyone of those sectors has some person in D.C. begging and pleading to some lawmaker for some piece of legislation to pass, or to prevent someone elses legislation from not passing, and none of them have turned down "free" money from the government to make thier lives easier.Your posturing is nothing more than a strawman bitch and moan fest. Any national energy policy is going to make someone, somewhere, rich, unless of course you are advocating for somekind of dogmatic socialist position. Are you really a closet socialist Godot?Picken's has a plan. That is more than 535 members of Congress have been able to come up with. Yeah, he stands to make a buck if it works. I personally wouldn't want to trust anyone whose plan caused them to fail. Does it have faults? Yep. Would it need more work? Undoubtedly. But its more than anyone you, me or Jim Bob voted for has come up with to date.If you don't like it, fine, come up with an alternative. Or work on this one to make it better. But sitting around and bitching about crap isn't going to solve a damn thing.

Daytrader23 6 years, 7 months ago

bkgarner,Here is a link to all the info you needhttp://www.windenergy.com/index_wind.htmI don't know why my post was deleted. Eventually all windmills pay for themselves through the savings in your monthly bill, these systems are tied into the grid so you still have power when there is no wind, however when you produce more energy then you are using then your meter from the utility company turns backwards and you can either use it later or sell it to the utility company. Also a lot of our sales comes from people who have houses way out in the sticks and need their own electricity, they normally buy a kit that includes solar as well. Again everything depends on how much wind is in your area. Here is one of our best selling millshttp://www.windenergy.com/products/whisper_500.htmHere is a video demonstration of our new skystreamhttp://www.skystreamenergy.com/skystream/how-skystream-works/skystream-in-motion.aspx

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

That was, of course "wash it's hands of it." Was it's hands of it sounds quite of existential, though.

jonas 6 years, 7 months ago

"The only reason Pickens is bringing this so-called energy plan to Congress is because he knows that, without billions of taxpayer dollars to prop it up, it is a loser."At this point, it's fairly safe to say that any energy plan will be a loser without taxpayer dollars to prop it up. Too much need for change, too little certainty of profit, so the private sector will was it's hands of it, even if it's needed. Kind of like environmental plans and policies.

JHOK32 6 years, 7 months ago

At least somebody is trying to do something.....raise awareness if nothing else. As far as Congress doing nothing, lets not forget that during the 80's we had a Republican President AND a Republican Congress who did nothing about drilling in the U.S. Now McCain has the audacity to run TV ads blaming the high price of gas on Obama of all people!!!! Did we not just have 8 years of a Republican President, who happens to come from an oil family, a VP who ran a big oil company, and a Republican Congress from 2000 - 2006, under which time the price of gas doubled!!? Did we not just invade a country, (which just so happens to have the third largest oil reserves in the world) & kill 4000 of our kids doing it, for "WMD's?" It took 100 years for gas to get to $2 a gallon and 8 years under Bush to get to $4 a gallon........do the math!!!!! Bush inherited a surplus budget (thanks to the Democrats) he will leave his predecessor with a whopping 500 Billion dollar debt for you & I to pay for! (& our grandkids). Where did that $500 Billion dollars go? Think about it! CNN announced today that Exxon-Mobil received a whopping 44% increase in profits last year, but only 14% was returned to share holders......do the math!!!!! Thank the Republican greed machine the next time you fill up your tank!

humblecommentator 6 years, 7 months ago

I happened to be in Topeka today for his speach. He says he is for all solutions involving American enterprise. Since we are shipping 700 billion dollars, many of them borrowed from abroad, to both friends and foes; how can this be bad?

Commenting has been disabled for this item.