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Author Topic: That pesky $4 gal. diesel has crept into my neighborhood!  (Read 6269 times)
cody
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« Reply #45 on: April 12, 2008, 07:15:29 AM »

As usual, I'm confused, I spent a lot of time reading the material on the congressional hearings in regards to the oil company execs.  One of their justifications to the high profits is that they have high operational costs, thats the part I'm confused about.  Unless I'm mistaken I always assumed that profits were what was left after everything was paid, that profit was up and above operational cost.  In my mind, profit is still profit.  I guess I'm not very smart because I'm also trying to figure out the logic of paying farmers not to grow crops and yet we are importing wheat for the first time in our history, one farmer that we all know and love, David letterman, even got a check from the government to not grow crops, tho in his defense, he did donate it to charity so I guess thats ok then.  Like I said, I'm not very smart but even in my feeble mind some of this doesn't make sence.
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« Reply #46 on: April 12, 2008, 07:19:08 AM »

All this about whatever who you blame the cause of fuel costs gone up and will be going up just because we think our only fuel source is from nonindependent suppliers. Then before we say negative things about our president or whoever....do yourself a favor...read this actual energy consumption and cost report from around the world.

International Energy Price Information
PS…Look for “Graphs of Current International Crude Oil and Petroleum Product Prices” and click on your choice of fuel graphs……you will notice USA customers are paying only half of what world users pay. And yet we are crying for lower prices. Well, keep on crying, because it is not going to happen until USA uses noncrude oil products and farm produce crops.
http://http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/international/prices.html#Fuels


Prices are only double in parts of the world because of taxes.  I looked at the Excel spreadsheet from that website that lists gas prices supposedly excluding taxes and the USA prices are not much less than European prices.

I don't believe the USA price that excludes tax because they have it listed as $3.15.  No way that is correct unless they are using San Francisco prices.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #47 on: April 12, 2008, 07:23:26 AM »

Most of the agreements for farmers not to grow crops are multi year.  I've heard some are up to 10 years. 

The USA had more farmland than it needed until biofuels came along.  Wheat is up because less is being planted due to corn prices.  This year less corn will be planted as farmers plant other more valuable crops so corn prices will probably go even higher.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #48 on: April 12, 2008, 07:32:39 AM »

One of their justifications to the high profits is that they have high operational costs, thats the part I'm confused about.  Unless I'm mistaken I always assumed that profits were what was left after everything was paid, that profit was up and above operational cost.  In my mind, profit is still profit. 

Exactly my thoughts.  Both the oil and pharmaceutical companies defend high profits by saying they have high overhead and many people accept it.  But corporate profits are after expenses.  Sometimes some of it is kept as an asset to apply to growth related expenses the next year, but generally the majority of it is paid to the investors and dividends.
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« Reply #49 on: April 13, 2008, 08:25:23 PM »

Cody,

You are not alone in your confusion.  Count me in, also.

Saw a TV special this past week.  Seems that the "Shuttle disaster" so many years ago qualified a lot of farmers for "DISASTER RELIEF" because they lived in the western half of Texas.  Now those guys got to let their land lay fallow and got checks for doing so.  Those land owners hadn't farmed that land in 50 years but had let "tenant" farmers do so and charged them rent.  The tenant farmers were complaining cause the owner made more money by kicking the tenants off.  This was rice crop country and as you know there is a FOOD SHORTAGE in the world.  Some of this crop would go to offset crops diverted to Bio fuels and yet more of it would go to MAKING Bio.  We are giving tax dollars to BIG FARM LAND OWNERS while the small family farms are getting short shift.  Sound like the OIL Industry and BIG Pharma?  Cody, If this made sense to us it would mean we are one of them.  I'll bet Dave applied for his payment because it would publicize the stupidity of this system and he gave it to charity cause he is that way.  He has more millions than he will ever need.

There is a theory, proved of course, that the more you tax the rich, the harder they work to maintain their level of wealth.  They make their money, in large part, by keeping us busy.  ERGO!  The crop thing proves the reverse is also true.  We gave them a bundle and they stopped doing anything except spending the money.  Those same people think we should stop food stamps cause it corrupts the poor....maybe.  Sure works like that for the rich.

Give them a tax break for making more fuel available.  That would bring down the cost of diesel and legitimize this thread.

Really confused...like most of you,

John
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« Reply #50 on: April 13, 2008, 11:18:52 PM »

I just paid $3.99 a gallon for diesel in Locust NC. Locust is about 25 miles east of Charlotte. I bought my bus in 2004 and drove it home from Virginia Beach. I remember stopping along the way in Norfolk VA for my first fill up at $1.59 a gallon. That is a 150% increase in the price of diesel in less than 4 years. I sure wish my salary would increase at the same rate.

150 Gal. x $1.59 = $238.50
150 Gal. x $3.99 = $598.50  Angry
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« Reply #51 on: April 14, 2008, 05:12:59 AM »

I have been looking into CNG.  Seems that in Utah they pay 63 cents a gallon at the pump!!  Here in California it is ~$2.20 at the pump, and there is only one place that I know of that you can get it.  The airlport where big blue busses are running all over all the time with tanks on the roof!  Oh, and  taxi cab Ford big sedans are running CNG also.  I notice a bus on Craigslist San Francisco right now that uses diesel or CNG.  How is this possible?  Maybe we should convert to CNG and buy fill stations??  Only problem is I have checked these fill stations and find that they cost $6K +/- !!  All credibility of environmentalists is totally gone with this scenario here in Calfornia.  Can you imagine such a price difference in CNG and insane mentality of forcing consumers to put in pumping stations at home in the name of saving the environment?  Force might be a little strong, but when you realize you can make it yourself for ~90 cents a gallon, why would you go to the airport and spend $2.20 per gallon?  To avoid having to buy the fill station of course, but then the deal is off as only airport fueling is bunk.  In Utah on the other hand, there are several stations in Salt Lake, and Provo.  They are buying CNG vehicles and converting big time over there.  Now they are doing something about the environment and shaming the rest of the country!!  Meantime there are plenty of people in our area driving these Priuses that according to what we have read, have been responsible for huge environmental damage from nickle plants in Canada.  The report went on to indicate that it would be less expensive overall to buy and run a Hummer than to be a part of Prius polution!!  It is interesting that as soon as the information came out on nickle, Toyota started running the Prius Stick commercials where we are told that these cars basically act like sticks and disappear back into nature with time!!!  LOL!!  Of course Honda beat everybody to the draw again and has the GX available with a Phil station that you can install at home.  But you have to be willing to part with $26K or so, and in this failed economy, not many are stepping up to pay.  So cheapest way out is to pump your own and convert an existing gasoline unit to be dual fuel and beat the system.  This is what I am trying to do and have one wagon here that I will be working to modify.  If anyone here is into CNG, it would be interesting to hear what you are doing, and ultimately a coach conversion would be fantastic.  I know a lot about this, but am interested in anything more.  Bill T.
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« Reply #52 on: April 14, 2008, 06:49:34 AM »

Isn't the CNG fuel in Utah subsidized?  Prices for CNG in Utah are set on a yearly basis.

On another forum I was reading of a guy living in Utah who bought a CNG Mercury Mystique to take advantage of cheap fuel as he has two filling stations close by.

My experience with CNG was at a fairgrounds and nobody was impressed by it.  Power was down and the tanks needed to be filled twice a day.  The vehicles only traveled at most 150 miles a day, but they traveled at very low speeds with lots of stops and starts plus they idled 10 minutes an hour.

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« Reply #53 on: April 15, 2008, 07:58:53 PM »

Have not read any complaints on CNG groups that there is not enough power or distance.  But you have to have large enough tanks.  Right now they are dealing with 3600# pressure and I have heard they plan to go higher.  Don't know about the rest of you here, but I will be converting one car here to stop this $50 drain every time I fill up this Suzuki GV here!  That is a small unit, and I thought it was going to be a 30 mpg one, but can't get over 20 with it!  I personally think you need to plan for 250 to 300 miles on a fill up, so that is the way I will approach this on a car that I will use locally.  On longer hauls, better to more than double that to avoid a tow!  Up to now my Honda Insight is the ONLY serious oil company killer.  Less than 13 gallons from San Jose to Salt Lake, 65 mph over Donner and 75 to 80 all through Nevada and Utah.  Try to beat that!  You will spend a lot of power making hydrogen to beat that!!  And there are guys who have gotten these things up to and better than 90 miles per gallon!  That would be less than 10 gallons between here and Salt Lake!  I am listening to any reasonable way out of this oil mess.  Meantime doing what I can.  Bill Thomas
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« Reply #54 on: April 15, 2008, 08:16:52 PM »

The particular CNG conversion I was privy to was of quite old engines.  Six old aircraft tugs from the 50s or 60s were converted along with four 1946 Chevrolet heavy duty truck chassis.  The aircraft tugs pulled trailers full of people and the 1946 trucks had the cab and body removed and replaced with seats to haul people. 

A modern vehicle designed for CNG probably isn't so bad for power. 

These vehicles had way more CNG tankage than could possibly fit in a car.  The tanks on the truck chassis weighed enough that they had to go back to dual rear wheels.

I would do CNG in a car if it was as cheap as Utah and I could find a filling station.  Trips of any real distance could be a problem and my only other vehicle is my bus.
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« Reply #55 on: April 16, 2008, 06:30:17 AM »

Well right now we are looking at carbon fiber tanks, and 3600 psi technology.  CNG is almost half the price of a gallon of gas if you buy it here locally at the airport.  And about 90 cents per gallon if you hook up to your house natural gas line with a home puming station.  Trick is to have enough tank to do 400 miles with my Citroen wagon, and on a coach 1,000 miles.  Each day oil goes up, makes it more sure that oil will disappear as a fuel sooner than so called experts expected.  I can now go further on a gallon of gasoline than anyone else here unless they have the same unit.  I have gone to Salt Lake City from San Jose California on less than 13 gallons of gasoline with my Honda Insight.  Try that with a Prius.  LOL!!  And 65 mph over Donner Summit and 75 to 80 mph all through Nevada and Utah.  Unaffected by plowed air from semis, and excellent comfort for such a small car!  Truly incredible!  But here is the crazy truth.  The '04 is more fuel efficient when it comes to consumption per mass!  And of course the '04 has to bow to the typical freight train that beats all!  A clue in all of this is tire pressure or rolling resistance including air resisitance.  Air resistance on a train is probably not a factor, but rolling resistance sure is and it would be interesting to know what the total on a typical frieght is.  Individually per wheel it must be very low.  Too bad we didn't have track instead of highway, but then we couldn't pass anyone.  By the way, where did we go wrong by not building all vehicles like trains?  Simple diesel generator with electric wheel power??  Probably transmission unions would no allow it?  Seems to me we could do well with our coaches set up this way.  Careful engineering would probably keep weight down and we could easily make them hybrids as we use dynamic braking to recharge battery banks.  Fun to think about this and if someone here has the cash and wants to work with me on this, I would love to do it.  Tired of air conditioning business and would love to get into something more intersting.  LOL!   Bill Thomas 
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« Reply #56 on: April 16, 2008, 10:27:43 AM »

Bill, I saw a company last week that runs a fleet of the CNG buses.  He said the only downside is that you have to replace the plugs quite often and they aint cheep.  Otherwise he was beeming ear to ear!
Jack
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« Reply #57 on: April 16, 2008, 03:19:51 PM »

Saw a news report today that said oil prices were being kept high by the futures speculators, and that true demand should continue dropping and that we should expect some relief from these prices in fall 2008 to early 2009. Guess we'll wait and see. But for today its up at the pump again $4.37 xxx.


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« Reply #58 on: April 16, 2008, 03:49:36 PM »

Tom, I heard a report the other day that said demand is down in the US, which should make it go down...but demand in China and other parts of the world was us...therefore making us continue to pay more.
Ours just hit $4.059 in NC today!
Jack
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« Reply #59 on: April 16, 2008, 04:44:57 PM »

Tom, I heard a report the other day that said demand is down in the US, which should make it go down...but demand in China and other parts of the world was us...therefore making us continue to pay more.
Ours just hit $4.059 in NC today!
Jack

That right there is what worries me.  China and India are just coming online with petroleum use and they have over ten times our population.  No matter how much we cut back, world wide total consumption will continue to climb.  Everybody in the U.S. could drive a hybrid, all freight could be hauled on coal fired trains and all oil furnace heated homes could switch to other fuels, and the prices would probably continue to rise.
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