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(77,059 posts)
Tue Jan 19, 2016, 01:50 PM Jan 2016

Night of the Living Dead, Climate Change-Style

from TomDispatch:

Night of the Living Dead, Climate Change-Style
How to Stop the Fossil Fuel Industry From Wrecking Our World

By Bill McKibben

When I was a kid, I was creepily fascinated by the wrongheaded idea, current in my grade school, that your hair and your fingernails kept growing after you died. The lesson seemed to be that it was hard to kill something off -- if it wanted to keep going.

Something similar is happening right now with the fossil fuel industry. Even as the global warming crisis makes it clear that coal, natural gas, and oil are yesterday’s energy, the momentum of two centuries of fossil fuel development means new projects keep emerging in a zombie-like fashion.

In fact, the climactic fight at the end of the fossil fuel era is already underway, even if it’s happening almost in secret. That’s because so much of the action isn’t taking place in big, headline-grabbing climate change settings like the recent conference of 195 nations in Paris; it’s taking place in hearing rooms and farmers’ fields across this continent (and other continents, too). Local activists are making desperate stands to stop new fossil fuel projects, while the giant energy companies are making equally desperate attempts to build while they still can. Though such conflicts and protests are mostly too small and local to attract national media attention, the outcome of these thousands of fights will do much to determine whether we emerge from this century with a habitable planet. In fact, far more than any set of paper promises by politicians, they really are the battle for the future.

Here’s how Diane Leopold, president of the giant fracking company Dominion Energy, put it at a conference earlier this year: “It may be the most challenging” period in fossil fuel history, she said, because of “an increase in high-intensity opposition” to infrastructure projects that is becoming steadily “louder, better-funded, and more sophisticated.” Or, in the words of the head of the American Natural Gas Association, referring to the bitter struggle between activists and the Canadian tar sands industry over the building of the Keystone XL pipeline, “Call it the Keystone-ization of every project that’s out there.”

Pipelines, Pipelines, Everywhere

I hesitate to even start listing them all, because I’m going to miss dozens, but here are some of the prospective pipelines people are currently fighting across North America: the Alberta Clipper and the Sandpiper pipelines in the upper Midwest, Enbridge Line 3, the Dakota Access, the Line 9 and Energy East pipelines in Ontario and environs, the Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan pipelines in British Columbia, the Piñon pipeline in Navajo Country, the Sabal Trail pipeline in Alabama and Georgia, the Appalachian Connector, the Vermont Gas pipeline down the western side of my own state, the Algonquin pipeline, the Constitution pipeline, the Spectra pipeline, and on and on. ...................(more)


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Night of the Living Dead, Climate Change-Style (Original Post) marmar Jan 2016 OP
kick, kick, kick.... daleanime Jan 2016 #1
I honestly think we had a fracking war. Gregorian Jan 2016 #2
I think it was a bubble combined with an interal Saudi fight. happyslug Jan 2016 #3
A lot of very interesting information there. Gregorian Jan 2016 #4


(23,867 posts)
2. I honestly think we had a fracking war.
Tue Jan 19, 2016, 02:13 PM
Jan 2016

Combined with lifting Iranian sanctions, and the war against Saudi Arabia has been won. The fallout was that we polluted our waters here. It's just a hunch, but I can't explain any other reason why we would intentionally pollute our land. In this context, the pipelines all make sense, if you're crazy.



(14,779 posts)
3. I think it was a bubble combined with an interal Saudi fight.
Tue Jan 19, 2016, 05:54 PM
Jan 2016

Fracking was a bubble, and always has been. Most of the oil fracked had been known since the 1930s, but till oil hit $80 a barrel NOT profitable to pump. When oil started to climb after 2002, such wells became profitable and thus drilled.

The problem was such wells were only profitable for a short time period, less the five years, but could be made tonpook good on paper. As the high tech bubble collasped in 2002, and then the housing bubble in 2008, fracking remain the only bubble left and money poured into fracking even as the price of oil peaked and then collasped.

The general rule of thumb is that it tajes twice as long for a bubble to burst then to inflat, thus 2002 to 2008 was six years, the oil bubble should not deflate till 2020.

Please note oil prices are expected to go up starting in 2017, as peak oil rises its head once again, that should stop the drop in price, but without peak oil it should be 2020 before we see a bottom for the price of oil.

The second problem is the infighting in the House of Saud. That last time we saw a second generation die out and a third generation move into power was in the 1980s in the former Soviet Union. The Soviet Union traced itself back to Lenin, but when Stalin took over he removed all of the radicals who had helrd Lenin and replaced them with people Stalin trusted. When Stalin died in 1952, those followers were his second generation and like most second general rulers after a founder, they worked together as a group till most of them died of old age. In the case of the Soviet Union that was in the 1980s.

Gorbachev was rhe first leader of the Soviet Union who had never meet Stalin. Gorbachev was thus the third generation of rulers and like most dictatorships, that is when the knives come out. Among second generation rulers, they all survived the founder of their dictatorship, and thus tend to think as survivors, I.e. Argue with each other but no killings. Group think rules. It is the third generation that you start to see true infighting. The Russian intervention into Afghanistan is best understood as the first step of the third generation. The second generation was still on top in the 1970s, but the third generation were already fighting to be on top. The best way to be on top is to win favors with the older generation and when it came to Afghanistan that was easy. Afghanistan had been a Soveit satellite since Stalin, but also a backward kingdom. Stalin never thought making Afghanistan a true Communist statevworth the effort, but the third generation saw it as a way to show how dedicated to communism they were. Thus the intervention, as part of the third generation decided war was a good way to gain support for them in the fight for third generation leadership. The move into Afghanistan ended up being a failure and someone NOT tied in with that debacle ended up the first third generation leader of the Soviet Union. Yeltsin was another third generation leader NOT tued in with Afghanistan.

The fight between Gorbachev and Yeltsin was a continuation of that fight (and ended up in the attempted coup of 1989 by hardliners who opposed both Gorbachev and Yeltsin). The fight ended up in the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The fight continued in the attempted coup in 1992, that coup was put down, but ut was clear Yeltsin gad won, till Yeltsin was replaced by Putin in 2000, but Putin is fourth generation leader, if you count from Stalin, but in reality outside of the three generation problems of most dictatorships.

I bring up the Soviet Union for Saudi Arabia is on the same path as the Soviet Union was on in the 1980s. Like Stalin, King Saud I died in 1952, but his successors were his sons not his underlings. Thise sons lived longer then Stalin's underlings, and were as a whole younger, thus they are only dying off now.

The prior king, King Abdullah, was the son of one of King Saud I's many wives and head of the Saudi Arabian National Guard (what had previously been the warriors of the various tribes of Arabia). The present king, is the full brother of King Fahd, the king before Abdullah and his son is know the Crown Prince and head of the Saudi Arabian Army. Notice tge split, the two largest military forces of Arabia are under the command of two different grandson, who are cousins and have the same grandfather, are the grandsons of two different wives of King Saud I.

Thrughout history you see this pattern, a brutal dictator who does anything needed to gain power, followed by his sons, whi grew up with their father killing people left and right, but when that father dies, rule as a group and the killings stops. The problem is the third generation, whi fight among themselves to gain power. Back stabbing id common, as the second generation dies off, actual killings by the third generation increases. This contnues till one of the third generation takes full control OR the countru dissolves (in the case of the Soviet Union you saw BOTH).

The support if IS in Syria, the increase opposition to aIrab, the intervention in Yeman, the execution of the Shiite religious leader, all show what any third generation does as the second generation dies off, they are better at attacking the enemy then other third generation members. We saw this with The Russian Intervention into Afghanistan in 1979, we are seeing it in Syria, Yemen and the eastern coasts region is Arabia, where both the oil is AND where the Shiites of Arabia are located.

The present king of Arabia is in his 80s, his action appear more to help his children win the fight to rule Arabia after he is gone. Thus the infighting.

Please remember the King of Arabia is selected by the male members of the ruling house, the House of Saud. It is NOT father to son, but which male member has the most support smong all of the males member of that house. Since 1952, succession has been from brother to brother, but they are running out of brothers.

In the 1980s you had one elderly senior Soviet succeeding another senior Soviet leader, till Gorbachev was selected. The last few kings of Arabia have almost followedcthe same pattern, sooner or later the third generation will tske over. The real question will it lead to instabilty as other branches ofvthe family try to undo the election by force of arms, OR will the infighting just intensified as what happened under Gorbachev. Will some one try a coup or will the new leader be brutal enough to stay in power. The invasion of Yemen appears to be driven by interal House of Saud politics notany real military reason. The same with the support if IS and suppression of the Shiites.

Arabia right now is a mess and will get worse, the only real question is how it will get worse and how will that affect Arabian oil exports.


(23,867 posts)
4. A lot of very interesting information there.
Tue Jan 19, 2016, 08:08 PM
Jan 2016

Another thing is how Aramco is talking of an IPO. It make no sense at all. You really have a knowledge of history. Not my specialty at all, but this stuff is really important. I never would have expected to see prices the way they are for any reason.

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