Originally Posted by SI51
I'm not sure if this has been stated, I have not read the entire thread. Some simple math and statistics puts this into perspective as to the effect this will have on the world's crude oil supply. Here's the math:
800 barrels per acre per year
43,560 square feet per acre
1 barrel per 54.45 square feet each year
960,000 barrels per year at 1200 acres
4,000,000 barrels per year at 5000 acres
In 2009, the US consumed 18,810,010 barrels per day. If they wanted to match this, they'd need 8,582,067.0625 acres at full production annually.
Clearly, this is a long way off from having a real impact on our oil price, simply because, in comparison, it is not producing nearly enough in order to have a noticeable impact. However, this also depends on how quickly 1 barrel can be produced. The frequency of which a barrel can be produced has a larger impact than amount per year. This is because, when compared to extracted crude oil, it will matter more if one of these barrels can be produced faster and cheaper than 1 barrel can be extracted from the earth.
If they want to compete, that is what they have to focus on.
Obviously not a solution, but 8,582,067.0625 acres isn't completely unfeasible. That's less than 13,500 sq miles which, granted, is a lot. But divided throughout the states, and on undeveloped tracts of land I could foresee us one day getting 1/3 to half our oil from a source like this.
In any case it all sounds good on paper at least. In all honesty, it would probably just serve to prolong our dependence on oil and cause prices to stay reasonable as we continue to suck the planet dry.
On the upside, creation and usage of massive Joule plants would equate to jobs and some degree of energy independence (something that obviously cripples the US currently)...
Originally Posted by Ironcobra
no such thing as free energy...huh...its this type of thinking that keeps man on fossil fuels, what is cold fusion or rodin coil for example? am i missing something?
Completely agree, but sadly our whole infrastructure - as dilapidated as it is - happens to be based on fossil fuels for transportation/energy. There's really no decent solution at this point.Edited by SamuelL421 - 6/4/11 at 3:00pm