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#34890 - 01/11/14 09:00 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: Bee]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1239
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Bee,

Gasoline was the commodity Ken claimed to be subsidized. You can subsidize it until the cows come home and it is meaningless because the market determines the price people are willing to pay for it worldwide. All you need is a tanker, storage farm and chain of distribution and you too can have ~$2.67/gallon unleaded gasoline. The price can be easily check on commodity exchanges.

It was the Dukes, it was the Dukes.

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#34893 - 01/12/14 01:01 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
willaby Offline


Registered: 10/27/11
Posts: 2
Loc: CA
It amazes me how those with an agenda (on both sides) redefine or manufacture their own "facts". Yes, what "subsidies" do oil companies get, specifics please. I've heard oil companies writing off their capital expenditures (equipment, etc) claimed to be labeled as a "subsidy" but this is depreciation that all companies take and a legitimate expense.

Now, an example of a true subsidy is the ethanol boondoggle, bad for consumers, bad for the environment, bad for engines, yet we can't get away from it. The libs, greenies, Iowa and Archer Daniels like it though.

Back to oil, it is the most taxed product on earth. It is taxed out of the ground (royalties), the high paid employees who work it are highly taxed, it is taxed during transportation, it is taxed at the port of entry, at the pump, fed, state and local taxes. Tax, tax, tax for every level of government. I'm sorry, what were those subsidies again? (please be specific).

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#34894 - 01/12/14 10:48 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: willaby]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7225
Loc: Fresno, CA
From Sept 7, 2011, The Republican Debate at the Reagan Library, former Gov. John Huntsman of Utah said:

Quote:
...reminding the American people that they're not paying $4 per gallon for gas. When you add up the cost of troop deployments, when you add up the cost of keeping the sea lanes open for the importation of imported oil, the bulk and distribution and terminaling costs (ph), it's $13 a gallon, so says the Milken Institute. And I say the American people have had enough.
Text quoted here.

Here's a video of that on YouTube.

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#34896 - 01/13/14 07:47 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By: wbtravis
SN,

Which tax breaks are they and how do the differ from any other business? Tax breaks are not subsidies.

We have a Frankenstein monster of a tax system, which allow politicians to reward their friends allies. I would be very happy with zero corporate tax and a consumption individuals tax...all the games go away. All corporations do is a act as tax collection agency for the government. Only people pay taxes.

Again, what does oil have to do with power generation?

A "subsidy" is, by definition, any monetary assistance, be it a direct payment, tax relief, grant, etc to a particular group. Allowing a $4 billion per year tax break to oil companies is a subsidy. Regardless of how anyone thinks the tax system should be, this is what it is based on the current rules. If you're concerned about the deficit, or about fairness, or about the rich manipulating government, or about subsidizing an industry with tax money, this should concern you.

The oil companies also produce natural gas, which is the prime fossil fuel competition for solar power. So yes, it's related to the solar industry. Just as you're concerned with subsidizing the solar industry, you should be concerned with subsidizing the oil & gas industry (the largest industry in the world). We, the taxpayers are $4 billion per year less in revenue that would otherwise be collected without these special breaks given to the oil and gas industry. The nuclear industry is also highly subsidized with a wide variety of assistance from research to waste disposal. And I agree that ethanol is oversubsidized, which demonstrates the power of agribusiness. A little help would be fine, but it's crowding out other alternatives such as methanol produced from waste.

It amazes how people can be okay with subsidizing large established industries year after year, but if the government wants to help to help kick start a growing industry by helping a homeowner or business put solar panels up, that's communism or socialism or whatever the latest buzz word is.

I think it's fine to help jump start industries that have compelling promise to improve our society such as clean renewable solar energy or high efficiency cars. It's like training wheels until they can grow up into mass production and compete with mature industries. Pretty much every government in the world does this, so we'd be at a disadvantage if we didn't. But these should be temporary, certainly the largest and most profitable companies in the world shouldn't need handouts from taxpayers.

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#34897 - 01/13/14 09:30 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: SierraNevada]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1239
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
SN,

Which tax breaks that differ from any other corporation? This seems to be a question that you or any here seems to want to answer.

I've already stated my position on taxes. I believe corporations should be neither taxed or subsidized. Therefore, I believe in a tax system that is fair to all, not fair to those who are favored by those in power at a particular point in time.

So what are you willing to give up for funding an inefficient, more expensive and not as reliable form of power. Me, I not willing to give up a damn thing. Again, you want to transfer from those who can least afford it to those who can most afford it then complain about the income inequality that your proposal exacerbates...if you are like most of the proponents of this scheme. Are you willing to see jobs go to other states or countries? That is the end result of this scheme.

Alternates time will come when they are the most efficient, least expensive from of power.

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#34898 - 01/13/14 09:38 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: Steve C]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1239
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
What Huntsman said is irrelevant, Steve. Unleaded gasoline is a commodity on an exchange. If the economy goes in the toilet its price will go down, if the economy is smoking it goes up.

Hmmm...who would you rather have protecting the sea lanes or oil supply? Or playing the roll we play? China, Russia or the feckless western Europeans, who could not move troops from France to the Balkans without the help on the US of A.

However, the subject is solar subsidization, not oil, not WW II. At least, that is what I have been told.

What are you willing to give up, for more expensive inefficient power?

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#34899 - 01/13/14 01:56 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By: wbtravis
SN,

Which tax breaks that differ from any other corporation? This seems to be a question that you or any here seems to want to answer.

Several links above describe the well-known $4 billion per year tax breaks given to the oil/gas companies and only to the oil/gas companies. I'm surprised you haven't heard of them before. If you claim that every corporation gets similar tax breaks, then you should provide examples, the burden is on you to show that every corporation gets similar tax breaks.

So it's okay for the oil companies to get $4 billion per year in special tax breaks, and apparently every corporation gets special tax breaks, but the solar industry doesn't deserve any help whatsoever? If that summarizes your position on the existing tax system, and I stated mine above, then let's just agree to disagree then. This is not the thread to discuss alternative tax systems, this is based on current reality.

Back to the South Owens Valley Solar installation, which seems to be economically viable all on it's own - we might see it shimmering in the morning sun from Mt. Whitney some day. Seems like a very promising project to me, one of many new large scale solar projects that are coming on line, under construction or in planning. The solar industry is expanding rapidly. Most people see that as a good thing.

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#34901 - 01/13/14 10:39 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7225
Loc: Fresno, CA
Originally Posted By: wbtravis
What Huntsman said is irrelevant, Steve. Unleaded gasoline is a commodity on an exchange. If the economy goes in the toilet its price will go down, if the economy is smoking it goes up.

Hmmm...who would you rather have protecting the sea lanes or oil supply? Or playing the roll we play? China, Russia or the feckless western Europeans, who could not move troops from France to the Balkans without the help on the US of A.

However, the subject is solar subsidization, not oil, not WW II. At least, that is what I have been told.

What are you willing to give up, for more expensive inefficient power?


I don't understand how it is irrelevant. Sure it is a commodity in its current state -- propped up by the current tax status and the current world order. But outside and above those props, WE are paying significant dollars to keep that present state.

If we had more solar power, more wind power, more electric power vehicles (and yes, more nuclear power, especially Thorium-based), we would NOT need to import millions of barrels of oil and give away billions of dollars to OPEC countries.

And by the way, how is solar inefficient? It's free! Burning gasoline is about the most inefficient use of energy -- 75% is lost in waste heat!

So what would I give up?
1. Paying big bucks to countries with lots of people who would like to see us die.
2. Paying big bucks for the military to ensure that they don't.
3. Lots of ozone and air pollution -- 50% of the air pollution in our state is vehicle based.
4. Worrying that there won't be any oil left in the future for my grandchildren.

I'm really glad there are incentives to move energy use towards solar and wind-power. I wish some of my tax money would be used to further the development of Thorium-based nuclear power. I would much rather see more used for those things instead of being used trying to get more oil at the cheapest rate.

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#34902 - 01/14/14 07:28 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: Steve C]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
Not to pile on to what Steve wrote, but we humans are burning fossil fuels at a rate that is changing the chemical composition of the atmosphere. Perhaps 97% of climate scientists are all conspiring to exaggerate the effects of what we're doing, but maybe not. Even Exxon Mobile, the most aggressive of science denying corporations is changing their tune. Let's not get into an endless debate, just consider what Exxon is now saying:

Exxon Mobile Climate Change Policy

"There is growing recognition that addressing the risk of climate change will require significant efforts by both the developed and the developing world."

"ExxonMobil believes that it is prudent to develop and implement strategies that address the risks to society associated with increasing GHG emissions."

"At ExxonMobil, our strategy to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions focuses on increasing our own energy efficiency in the short term, implementing current proven emissions-reducing technologies in the medium term, and developing breakthrough, game-changing technologies in the long term."

"The Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC 2007) provides an update of scientific understanding regarding GHG emissions, global warming and the risks of climate change, and the way changes could unfold in the future. "

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#34903 - 01/14/14 07:29 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: Steve C]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1547
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
This is great stuff, guys.

So far, my favorites are, not necessarily in this order: "Tax breaks are not subsidies"; "Royalties are taxes": "Oil executives pay big taxes", and "Greenies and libs love corn ethanol".

Oh, and that Exxon is now all the way up to 2007 in its PR. Which they call, hee-hee, "Policy".

_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.
SPOTMe!

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#34904 - 01/14/14 09:34 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: saltydog]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1239
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
I just got done reading an article about our friends, the Europeans. It seems they are more than a bit of upset that they are paying twice as much for the power than we are and it has an economic effect...go figure. They went all in subsidizes worse rather than developing their on continent gas...because the anti-science anti-fracking crowd.

They have decided it is their best interest to open more coal fired plants and mine lignite. Lignite doesn't exactly burn as clean as hard coals but it's widely available on the continents as anyone who has read Adam Tooze's book, Wages of Destruction can tell you...see Herman Goering Works.

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#34905 - 01/14/14 10:14 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: Steve C]
wbtravis Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1239
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Steve,

People make the price of all commodities...taxes and local policies are irrelevant. If there is a glut of any commodity the price goes down irrespective of government policy...it goes up if there is a shortage. It is what people are willing to pay for a good or service.

I like the anti-military stuff but you fail to answer the rubber meets the road question. If not us, who? If we recede from the world stage someone takes our place. Who takes our place in guaranteeing the free flow of basic commodities around the world? Our military spending has been going down for a long time...it's now about 4.5% of GDP.

Let's see if I got this right, we are going to use expensive renewables and this will occur in a vacuum. Energy intensive jobs will not go to China or India, where they burn a bunch of coal...and are adding coal fired plants like crazy, and they don't do diligence when it comes to pollution controls like we do. Kind of defeats the purpose and all this wonderful green stuff.

Again, we are talking NG, coal and power generation, not oil. Oil provides ~1% of power generation.

This oil thingy you are obsessed with...hmmmm...if we do not buy 17% oil, which comes form OPEC nations, it is going to stay in the ground, right? They are not going to get their coin to fund martyrdom operations, right? China and the Euro's are not going to buy what we do not buy. Help me with this.

Let's see, there was this guy called Ehrlich, who said we'd be out of basic commodities by 1985. We were not. Now, you believe your kids will not have oil. It's as anti-science a position as Erlich's. We have fracked out way to essentially energy independence on mostly private lands.

You don't seem too exercised by the loss of employment of your fellow citizens. That is the position you seem to be advocating.

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#34906 - 01/14/14 01:23 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By: wbtravis

People make the price of all commodities...taxes and local policies are irrelevant. If there is a glut of any commodity the price goes down irrespective of government policy...it goes up if there is a shortage. It is what people are willing to pay for a good or service.

May 2013 Headline BP and Shell raided in European commission price-rigging inquiry European commission carries out 'unannounced inspections' to investigate claims prices were rigged for more than a decade.

Oct 2012 Headline Shell and BP accused of collusion in South Africa. A six-company price-fixing racket spanning decades.

Jan 2002 Headline State (Hawaii) settles oil suit for 1%. The $2 billion action over inflated gas prices finally sputters out for a penny on the dollar.

Jan 1993 Headline Chevron, Mobil, Shell Oil to settle price-fixing suit. $151 million settlement involving 10 oil companies.

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#34907 - 01/14/14 01:31 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: SierraNevada]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
The Future is Bright.










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#34908 - 01/14/14 02:38 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: SierraNevada]
KevinR Offline


Registered: 11/03/09
Posts: 578
Loc: Manchester, NH


Interesting graphic. Our generation is small in comparison to Germany, Italy and Spain.

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#34909 - 01/14/14 03:07 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: KevinR]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By: KevinR
Interesting graphic. Our generation is small in comparison to Germany, Italy and Spain.

Siemens (Germany) bought the largest American solar PV manufacture ARCO Solar in 1990. It was later bought by Royal Dutch Shell in 2002 and then acquired by SolarWorld (Germany) in 2006. They're international with manufacturing in both USA and Germany and doing quite well. Germany has seen the light.

Yeah, the US lost it's lead and dropped to 6th place, but more important is the steep growth curve. With growth comes mass production which lowers cost which drives more growth which lowers cost which drives more growth, it's exponential.

And with this growth comes....JOBS. Lots of them.

"The future's so bright, I gotta wear shades." (Timbuk3)

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#34910 - 01/14/14 08:55 PM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
Originally Posted By: wbtravis
Energy intensive jobs will not go to China or India, where they burn a bunch of coal...and are adding coal fired plants like crazy, and they don't do diligence when it comes to pollution controls like we do. Kind of defeats the purpose and all this wonderful green stuff.


"If they don't care why should we?" Yikes!


Originally Posted By: wbtravis
if we do not buy 17% oil, which comes form OPEC nations, it is going to stay in the ground, right? They are not going to get their coin to fund martyrdom operations, right? China and the Euro's are not going to buy what we do not buy. Help me with this.


Keeping our money in the US is a bad thing? Help ME with this.

Originally Posted By: wbtravis
We have fracked out way to essentially energy independence on mostly private lands.


By what I have read/heard, there is not an infinite supply of oil even by way of fracking. PS check out the new earthquate patterns that have suddenly appeared in the hydro release areas, adds a little spice to life!

Originally Posted By: wbtravis
You don't seem too exercised by the loss of employment of your fellow citizens. That is the position you seem to be advocating.


Alas the demise of the buggywhip maker!


I am with Salty on this: am I really reading this all correctly, Dog?? (gonna have to re-name you now that you are a land-lubber)
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#34912 - 01/15/14 12:14 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: wbtravis]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7225
Loc: Fresno, CA
wbtravis wrote:
> People make the price of all commodities...taxes and local policies are irrelevant.

You keep saying that, but I just don't get where you get the irrelevant part. The cheapest ain't always the best.

It is in our (and our government's) best interests to maximize the production of non-fossil-fuel energy sources, especially renewable sources. Erlich may have been off the mark by a number of decades, but he was not wrong. ...unless you align yourself with the "anti-science" people who claim the earth somehow keeps "making" oil.

> Our military spending has been going down for a long time...it's now about 4.5% of GDP.

Yet it is still more than the sum of the 5 next highest spenders:

from List of countries by military expenditures
The world's top 6 military spenders in 2012.


If this country were spending on research, education and infrastructure investment like we do on the military, there would be NO jobs problem.

> if we do not buy 17% oil, which comes form OPEC nations, it is going to stay in the ground, right?

No, the cash stays (and more jobs stay) in this country.

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#34915 - 01/15/14 08:07 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: Steve C]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By: Steve C
It is in our (and our government's) best interests to maximize the production of non-fossil-fuel energy sources, especially renewable sources. Erlich may have been off the mark by a number of decades, but he was not wrong. ...unless you align yourself with the "anti-science" people who claim the earth somehow keeps "making" oil.

Actually the earth will make a fresh batch of oil and gas created by photosynthesis (driven by solar energy) and compressed by geologic tectonic processes (driven by geothermal energy)...in about 100,000,000 years or so. We'll just need to go back to the caves and wait it out, then we can burn it all up again in a few hundred years - exhausting the waste into our atmosphere with no consequences whatsoever. No worries, what could go wrong with that plan?

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#34917 - 01/15/14 10:34 AM Re: Solar Energy [Re: SierraNevada]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7225
Loc: Fresno, CA
SN, you sound like one of those stinkin' environmentalists.   smile

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