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Archive for Thursday, April 9, 2009

Billionaire pushes domestic energy plan

Energy magnate T. Boone Pickens and former Sen. Bob Dole were at the Dole Institute for a town hall-style event Wednesday where Pickens discussed the nation’s energy future.

Energy magnate T. Boone Pickens and former Sen. Bob Dole were at the Dole Institute for a town hall-style event Wednesday where Pickens discussed the nation’s energy future.

April 9, 2009

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Pickens pushes domestic energy production at town hall meeting

A billionaire who made his money in oil is asking Americans to turn away from foreign petroleum. Enlarge video

Kansas Senator Sam Brownback, former Kansas Senator Bob Dole and Oklahoma energy magnate T. Boone Pickens were at the Dole Institute for a town hall meeting Wednesday.

Kansas Senator Sam Brownback, former Kansas Senator Bob Dole and Oklahoma energy magnate T. Boone Pickens were at the Dole Institute for a town hall meeting Wednesday.

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Do you think America can decrease its dependency on oil?

Yeah, of course I do. All we got to do is drive smaller cars and start getting more solar energy.

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When billionaire T. Boone Pickens talks, people listen.

Pickens, author and bankroller of a plan to wean America off foreign oil during the next decade, brought his campaign Wednesday to Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at Kansas University. The visit drew a capacity crowd of 525, with organizers forced to turn people away from the town hall-style event.

Among those allowed in were Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., and the institute’s namesake, former Sen. Bob Dole — two political power brokers who are confident that if anyone can get his message into both the national consciousness and Washington establishment, it’s Pickens.

An energy bill should be moving through Congress this year and enjoy bipartisan support, Brownback said.

Such a bill, he said, will ride the foundation set by the “Pickens Plan,” which calls for America to generate electricity from domestic renewable resources, such as wind, and use natural gas to fuel large trucks and other vehicles.

Pickens’ plan calls for replacing more than a third of the county’s oil imports and helping boost the fortunes of all Americans, including folks in Kansas.

“We’ve been addicted to cheap oil,” Pickens said, who also backs the use of clean coal, ethanol, biodiesel and any other domestic resource. “It’s pretty much like dope: It’s cheap, and we continue to want more and more and more of it. … The only way to get off of it is to get into our own resources.”

Brownback said that Kansas could be a leader in providing wind energy, provided the country can figure out how to create an energy grid to transport such power to the customers who need it.

“We can be the Saudi Arabia of wind,” Brownback said.

State Rep. Tom Sloan, R-Lawrence, said that such transmission lines would cost $1.5 million per mile, and that the real debate would emerge over where the lines would be located and who would make those decisions.

That may be difficult, he said, but at least people are discussing the possibilities now.

“He’s moving the whole process forward,” said Sloan, who serves on the House Energy and Utilities Committee.

Pickens answered questions from the audience and signed copies of his book “The First Billion is the Hardest.” The billionaire who made his money in oil and other entrepreneurial pursuits shrugged off jabs about Oklahoma State University’s past efforts to lure Bill Self away from the KU basketball bench and over to their shared alma mater.

“You can’t talk to Bill Self while you’re here,” Brownback told Pickens, drawing applause both from the crowd and a smiling Pickens.

Dole noted that Pickens had the drive — and the money — to push for a national energy plan, something politicians have spent decades failing to accomplish.

“If I’d stayed on message the way Boone stays on message, we might be in a presidential library today,” Dole quipped.

For more information about Pickens’ plan, visit PickensPlan.com. The Dole Institute has posted video of the town hall presentation online, at DoleInstitute.org.

Comments

madmike 5 years ago

OK Merrill, out of curiosity, I clicked onto your link and I wasn't disappointed. As usual, it was a partisan left wing website. Go figure!

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true_patriot 5 years ago

Brownback said the energy plan would "ride the foundations" of the Pickens plan? What a joke.

PIckens is an extreme latecomer to the discussion and I haven't heard a single new idea that wasn't already firmly a part of the alternative and energy renewal movement for years, except maybe for an irrational ramping up of taxpayer spending on infrastructure that would allow Pickens to maximize profits on his large natural gas holdings for the next several decades.

While natural gas could play one of many short to medium transition roles, we need to put the brunt of our efforts into renewable sources.

If PIckens brings people out that would normally not be interested in one of the most pressing issues related to the stability of America and the entire world, then I do think that's a positive. But once those people are brought out in the light of day, they need to be gently educated that oil-man Pickens didn't originate or innovate in the least, much less build any sort of foundation for the movement.

You can always count on Brownback to utter cheesy pandering inanaties that fly in the face of science or political reality, that's for sure, laugh.

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The_Voice_of_Reason 5 years ago

"You'd think the ignorant would spend three minutes watching a video where Boone Pickens says he believes global warming is real"

I would think the moron would know that some people tell lies and half truths to make money......

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jaywalker 5 years ago

Morons. He has money, so he's only in it for money. Oh my God, a billionaire will make more money?! How sad to you have to be to believe that the rich are all evil, that they're only in it for themselves. In this case, who gives a shiitake mushroom? Isn't this what half of you all have been clamoring for? Alternative energy? Sorry it wasn't the greasy misanthrope at Wild Oats that came up with the plan and actually has the gumption and resources to do something about it. Man, Lawrence has really become a sad town, and my alma mater is disappointing me.

"At least Pickens has a plan” (translation: at least Pickens has a billion dollars). "

Brilliant. Lord knows, billionaires are usually idiots. Duh, duh duh dumb duuuummb!!!

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RedwoodCoast 5 years ago

I wonder how the comments would read if Pickens wasn't a billionaire.

"At least Pickens has a plan" (translation: at least Pickens has a billion dollars). It's almost like he actually gains credibility from his financial status.

Humans and the crazy stuff we do...

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TacoBob 5 years ago

One of the first arguments out of the chute is that the person who makes the suggestions will stand to make a lot of money.

Most everyone in the game is out to make some money. Non-factor, too simplistic to bring up. It would be silly for someone to push an idea and not invest in it at the same time (i.e. have holdings in the said industry). Judge the ideas on the merits.

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logrithmic 5 years ago

"Pickens doesn't give a rip about global warming, he pretty much said so in his town hall yesterday, I know, I was there."


You'd think the ignorant would spend three minutes watching a video where Boone Pickens says he believes global warming is real. (See my post at 2:49 p.m.)

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XD40 5 years ago

Windpower does not pay for itself unless the government subsidies continue. We need nuclear electricity generation. Further, we should be exploiting our vast hydrocarbon resources. We should be exploring and drilling close offshore and on public lands while developing the oil shale in the Rockies. And, Obama should keep his campaign promise on clean coal technology. We are the Saudi Arabia of coal.

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none2 5 years ago

(continued)

I don't really know what may be the correct direction for the country to go. These articles tend to say we need to go back to before deregulation. However, on the flip side, that would mean that alternative energies would have less growth potential as an industry. For instance, wind generation in western Kansas would only be used to the extent to meet needs in western Kansas. It wouldn't matter if you lived in Colorado or eastern Kansas. If those areas don't have wind, then they would have to use other alternative energy solutions or keep with traditional fossil or nuclear sources of power.

So in summary, read all you can about the topic. It is way more involved than one might think. Don't let your politicians make any decisions that you don't agree with or don't understand.

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none2 5 years ago

I wonder why the transmission lines cost 1.5 million per mile. That just doesn't seem right. Of course maybe they plan on burying the lines which adds to the cost -- thought it means less chance of damage due to storms. Of course, I don't know what the risk is with buried lines in flood or earthquake zones.

While trying to investigate, I did run into this pdf which seems to be against long distance transport lines.

http://www.allianceforresponsibleenergypolicy.com/Transmissionlies.pdf

I've always assumed the lines are necessary, so this was somewhat a surprising counter opinion. I'm not saying I agree with everything, but it was a good reading. I have always hoped that if they did put in transmission lines, they would first make sure the areas that provide the energy, get priority. Just like the TVA (Tennessee River Valley Authority) made that part of the south bloom, any transmission lines, and electrical generators (such as wind farms) should first benefit the area of origin. If they build transmission lines, the most logical place is western Kansas. There are many transmission grids currently in the US, but most tend to think of it as 3 large divisions in the continental US & Canada: eastern interconnect, Western Interconnect, & Texas. Kansas is part of the eastern interrconnect. If they wish for more connectivity, western Kansas, the Oklahoma panhandle, and the Texas panhandle are the logical locations

You can read about this and see a map @: http://www.aip.org/tip/INPHFA/vol-9/iss-5/p8.html.

I was looking for a map when I came across that second URL, but even that URL is rather against all this push for more transmission lines. I knew something about what was going on, but not being aware of some of the details means there is a lot more to debate before deciding what to do. In general, in the 1990's the government deregulated Electricity. However, separating the grid from the plants (generators) of energy was something that the grid "as is" wasn't designed to handle. Before deregulation grids and plants were on a closed system with limited access to other grids and their plants. Those limited connections were for time of emergency. However, now the desire is to get energy from any power provider. Thus the transport of electricity (the grid) becomes even more important. However, realize that there are consequences to transporting electricity such as dealing with more resistance (omhs) and surge issues become a bigger deal.

(continued)

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superduper 5 years ago

Currently you can't make electric cars fast enough to make a difference. The quantity necessary to put a dent in foreign oil is massive. His plan is limited in that he wants to get the biggest users of diesel converted to natural gas. I think this includes 18wheelers, farm and construction equipment. This is a relatively easy retrofit to the vehicles and some infrastructure to get the natural gas to trucking depots is already in place. Once the price comes down on electric and the efficiency of solar generation improves we'll move to that and use natural gas for other uses. Investing in natural gas is a short term solution but I believe it will help bridge the gap.

As for cars for the masses, The US has yet to produce a viable electric vehicle. Sure Tesla is making strides but at 50k for the cheapest models it just won't work...yet. Importing existing electric vehicles doesn't seem like a good option either. The big 2/3 auto makers need to quit F*&^ing around with the pie in the sky ideas and get down to basics. Look at what Europe and Japan are doing. They both far outclass us in efficient vehicle technology and how to get it to market. Oil has just been so cheap and the big guys have been so greedy that nothing has been done. Well, it's time.

IMHO

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The_Voice_of_Reason 5 years ago

Pickens doesn't give a rip about global warming, he pretty much said so in his town hall yesterday, I know, I was there. His main goal is to power America by using OUR resources. He said and I quote "I don't care what we use to create energy as long as it's American." I commend his efforts in bringing down the petro dictators around the world, but I don't think that natural gas is the answer, or even the bridge to the answer. We had electric cars over a 100 years ago, and that's where I think we need to be.

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logrithmic 5 years ago

Post at 10:47 a.m. "the global warming hoax as nothing more than a way to stick to the masses...."


As can be seen from this interview with Pickens, even Pickens believes in global warming:

http://online.wsj.com/video/pickens-shares-his-view-on-global-warming/3ACAAC7C-B1DF-4AF0-90E3-8E1D3DF8B3E0.html

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a_flock_of_jayhawks 5 years ago

Nancy Boy says... "That's all I'm sayin'."

And the fact is, just because you say it definitely does not make it true. Or are you being facetious again? One can never tell. Most of your posts sound very much like an overweight, conservative talk-radio host who is the new leader of the Repub party.

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Ray Parker 5 years ago

Sulfates, which come primarily from the burning of coal and oil, scatter incoming solar radiation in the atmosphere and have a net cooling effect on climate. Over the past three decades, the United States and European countries have passed a series of laws that have reduced sulfate emissions by 50 percent. While improving air quality and aiding public health, the result has been less atmospheric cooling from sulfates. So if you want less melting of the polar icecaps, you should burn more coal and oil - even though global warming ended in 1998. See science page http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090408164413.htm

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Tom Shewmon 5 years ago

I see I struck a chord with a few of the forum far-left zealots. What has Al Gore done beside get awards from the elitist left and get filthy rich? He's done zero to actually cure his global warming, probably becuase it's nothing but a hoax. I'm saying Pickens at least is moving forward with a plan, instead of fearmongering and milking Americans and pandering to the looney left environmental extremists. That's all I'm sayin'.

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logrithmic 5 years ago

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

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XD40 5 years ago

This is just so much leftist environmental bunkum designed to keep you poor and dumb. Its like CFLs -- turns out they may require more energy than the enviro-weenies claim:

http://hardware.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=09/04/08/2125250&art_pos=3

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logrithmic 5 years ago

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

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edjayhawk 5 years ago

The last time I checked the President has a plan and won't be able to push it through because of Republicans like you Nancy Boy.

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staff04 5 years ago

Tom....Pickens "plan" is just talk until there is a legislative vehicle. I don't expect you to understand the difference between a "plan" and what can actually be implemented, but I feel like I haven't picked on you enough in the last couple of days.

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couranna1 5 years ago

Pickens may be on the right track but he is a self serving individual who bullies folks to get what he wants. And I must agree if brownback like it I must wonder what is up. brownback is a loser and a puppet with bushie gone he needed a new master

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Tom Shewmon 5 years ago

At least he has a plan, not just all talk like the Democrats, who are really good at punishing us monetarily for all things energy/global warming related. Two prominent Dems, Teddy Kennedy and Dianne Feinstein, in the midst of the Democratic Party's apparent furor to shift to renewables, have blocked wind farms: NIMBY stuff. The Democrats see the energy dilemma and the global warming hoax as nothing more than a way to stick to the masses, whom they loathe.

Again, at least Pickens has a plan that seems at least to be a step in the right direction. Of course, this does not satisfy the desire of the far-left who just want to see everyone live the way the deem fit and/or live more in a third world environment with no special privilege or access for person A any more than person B or C or D...............

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Richard Heckler 5 years ago

Car power batteries last quite a while and can be recycled for re-use.

Let's get on with wind,solar and hydro power for cleaner and cheaper sources of energy. The technology is here today for our benefit.

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Richard Heckler 5 years ago

Taxpayers can take stock of how the federal government spent each 2008 income tax dollar: 37.3 cents went towards military-related spending (military and military-related debt), while environment, energy and science-related spending split 2.8 cents.

The Military Cost of Securing Energy

According to a new report from National Priorities Project (NPP), the United States is spending between $97 and $215 billion dollars annually on military action to defend access to oil and natural gas reserves around the globe.

The Military Cost of Securing Energy provides a critical analysis of the military cost of defending U.S. energy concerns overseas. The report estimates that the military spends up to 30 percent of its annual budget to secure access to energy resources internationally.

http://www.nationalpriorities.org//Energy_Security/Energy_Priorities

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Moderateguy 5 years ago

You guys should do a little research on the environmental impact of the batteries (both making and disposing) before you put all your eggs in the magical electric cars and trucks basket. That's not to say that a better battery system can't be designed. It just not currently viable.

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ArumerZwarteHoop 5 years ago

That’s all we need, to become dependent on a new cartel that can manipulate prices. Invest in the grid and electric cars, this gives us many options for power nuclear, wind, hydro, coal, natural gas, hydrogen ect. The best part is one cartel can’t jerk the consumer around.

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parrotuya 5 years ago

Great! Another billionaire looking for a new angle to get rich at the expense of the public. I truly hope he dies of a heart attack before he does anymore damage. Ditto for our conserva-hard senators.

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logrithmic 5 years ago

Picken's plan is not "progressive." He wants us to convert our automobiles from oil, a fossil fuel, to natural gas, a fossil fuel. Both are finite and will be depleted within the next centruy. Therefor this part of the plan is a ridiculous waste.

The guy has also not been forthcoming with the fact that he will make tons of money on this since he has huge holdings in natural gas:

http://www.fwbusinesspress.com/display.php?id=8264

From link:

"In the past six months, Pickens has invested in dozens of natural gas industry companies, from producers to service companies, including XTO Energy Inc., EOG Resources Inc., Halliburton Co. and more, according to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings. It’s estimated his oil and gas industry holdings account for about 73 percent of his overall portfolio."

http://jay1949.wordpress.com/2008/07/09/t-boone-pickens-joins-the-drill-not-crowd-why/

From link:

"T. Boone Pickens is one the founding partner of Mesa Petroleum, one of the United States’ leading producers of natural gas. Pickens is also heavily invested in oil futures. He heads BP Capital Hedge Fund, which has $4 BILLION on the line, according to a recent report published by Reuters."

It should also be noted that the largest proven reserves of natural gas are in Russia and Iran. Yep, two countries that have adversarial interests to ours. Here's the data:

While I applaud Pickens for his push on wind energy, I believe that the proper way to make use of this energy is to use electric transportation. With Tesla introducing a vehicle that will get 300 miles to the charge, and with many more electric vehicles in the hopper to debut in the next two years, we should be well on our way with this transition to clean transportation.

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Godot 5 years ago

So much for using natural gas to wean ourselves from depending on foreign sources for energy:

"The world's largest natural gas company, Russia's Gazprom, has after years of attempts finally gotten a foothold in the U.S., the world's biggest gas market."

http://www.cnbc.com/id/30133292

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flux 5 years ago

Never trust a man named T-Boone.....You think he got that rich by being compassionate

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jaywalker 5 years ago

"When you see Pickens and Brownback and Dole together - that should be enough for anyone to know things are not on the level."

Early leader for dumbest line of the day.

Bozo's right about the trucking industry, but oil will not be completely eliminated from our society and for such industries will probably remain the energy source. Making all cars transform to natural gas, electricity, and or hydrogen would be more than enough to significantly lower vehicle emissions and leave semi's alone to oil.

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edjayhawk 5 years ago

Logrithman is exactly right. Natural gas is also expensive to transport which means is it that much more cheaper then oil?

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Practicality 5 years ago

Although no fan of Brownback myself,

I support the plan. It seems like a realistic solution to a growing problem in our nation. T-Boone and Dole are alright in my book.

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Chris Ogle 5 years ago

“We can be the Saudi Arabia of wind,” Brownback said


That's right.... you do talk , and talk... and talk..... Mr. Brownback, or should it be Brownnose.

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Moderateguy 5 years ago

The main difference with the natural gas is that it's one of OUR natural resources instead of one of THEIR natural resources. What would you rather run our transportation network on? Magic pixie dust and unicorns? Fuel cell technology isn't ready yet, and the wind doesn't blow all the time. Mr. Pickens is proposing using natural gas to create a bridge to get to the other side.

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bd 5 years ago

????? like he really needs the money, he is correct in the fact that our country does not have a real viable energy policy! When the oil and coal runs out we will all be in big trouble!

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years ago

The cost of new infrastructure for long-distance truckers in the natural gas part of his plan is not worth it just to exchange one non-renewable fossil fuel for another. Using natural gas could make sense for local fleet vehicles in large metropolitan areas where fewer fueling stations would be needed.

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logrithmic 5 years ago

Natural gas is not an answer. Fossil fuels are not the answer. Pickens has substantial holdings in natural gas. We do not need the taxpayer to pay to make Pickens even richer. When you see Pickens and Brownback and Dole together - that should be enough for anyone to know things are not on the level. Pickens doesn't tell you that the largest holdings of natural gas are in Iran and Russia. Why go to natural gas when you could have pollution free electric cars being charged by the wind power he proposes?

God bless!

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lounger 5 years ago

Boone is on top of it! Too bad it had to come with Brownbacks involvement...

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