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ralou
Everyone knows the downside of fossil fuels. They're dirty, America imports them from countries that don't like us, and it looks like we're running out. But would fully adopting an alternative fuel technology cause problems of its own?

Questions for debate:

Would adopting alternative fuels hurt the world economy during transition?

Would it endanger our security as oil producers lost revenue?

Would people in some countries heavily reliant on oil revenue starve?

Would there be other serious downsides to getting off the oil spigot?


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SWM28WDC
Would adopting alternative fuels hurt the world economy during transition?

Probably, but it doesn't have to. Of course it depends on who's economy you're looking at. Potentially, it could be quite beneficial, as more people are employed in and after the transition, doing the work once performed by oil. I'm not talking about putting hand-cranks and treadmills on everything, but some things that were mechanized will be performed by hand, and many things that used inefficient machines will be replaced by efficient machines and processes.

Would it endanger our security as oil producers lost revenue?

Only if we decide we neet to establish another oil colony. wink.gif

Would people in some countries heavily reliant on oil revenue starve?

They don't have to. Regardless of the status of oil, they've got enough natural gas to desalinize water for irrigation. They all have enough land to grow their own food, if it comes to that, and they decide to share their bit of the earth.

Would there be other serious downsides to getting off the oil spigot?

Every downside i've seen has an upside, or possibly is an upside in and of itself.


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Janus20
QUOTE(ralou @ May 4 2005, 01:06 AM)
Everyone knows the downside of fossil fuels.  They're dirty, America imports them from countries that don't like us, and it looks like we're running out.  But would fully adopting an alternative fuel technology cause problems of its own?

Questions  for debate:

Would adopting alternative fuels hurt the world economy during transition?

Would it endanger our security as oil producers lost revenue?

Would people in some countries heavily reliant on oil revenue starve?

Would there be other serious downsides to getting off the oil spigot?
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Removing fossil fuel from the menu would take $450 TRILLION per annum out of circulation.

The up side is that it would reduce the cost of war to Zero because there will be no excuse for one. Uni profs need not be paid to teach kids how to die as stupid as they are themselves.

The second law of thermodynamics is a MYTH. For 400 years Newton has been marching us back into the Stone Age.

See Quantum theory of Everything
and no amount of Uni howling and wailing will ever make it untrue
A left Handed person
Would adopting alternative fuels hurt the world economy during transition?

Don't quote me on this, but the value of the US dollar has something to do with the oil trade. Getting rid of the oil trade might ruin it...

Switching to alternative energy options, will mean replacing all of our current power plants, which will in turn cost the world a load of money. Thus, the economy will suffer.

Would it endanger our security as oil producers lost revenue?

Yes. Dissatisfaction is the primary cause for violence, and instability (Which in turn creates a situation which favors authoritarian governments over democratic ones). As a result, a poverty increase in countrys which export oil, will likely result in more terrorism.

Would people in some countries heavily reliant on oil revenue starve?

One important thing to ask here is, who is getting the oil revenue anyways? I mean, in countrys like Saudi Arabia it just seems to be centered a small upper class aristocracy. At first glance, this doesn't look like an argument against de-oilization, however keep in mind a collapse of the aristocracy could easily plunge a country into chaos. On the other hand, in countrys like Venezuela, the money does go toward the benefit of the general public. Hence, not using oil could hurt a great deal of the world.

Would there be other serious downsides to getting off the oil spigot?

There two things we can replace oil with: Coal Plants, and Nuclear plants

Coal plants are much more pollutive then oil ones, and they also produce less electricity. As a result, if we build a bunch of them, then you'd better be ready for a lot of smog *cough*.

Nuclear plants don't create pollution at all most of the time, but theres always that occasional "accident", which has the potential of making an area unhabitable for next few thousand years....

All in all, I think oil is our best bet. Sure its not perfect, but pretty much nothing in this world is. (Note: I only mentioned energy sources capable of replacing oil)
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