Gas Prices

I have no idea how high gas prices will go or how long they will remain high.

“High” is a relative term. Shouldn’t gas prices reflect the environmental damage from both the horrendous destruction of the land and water from fossil fuel extraction and the many and extensive damages from burning fossil fuels?

What I find fascinating today is hearing so many people saying if gas prices go much higher, they will walk or take public transportation! Exactly what should have been done decades ago. I always thought there should have been high government gas taxes to try to drive this behavior modification.

Thinking of the impacts on those who are impoverished, this population tends not to have personal automobiles. Are already using public transportation. Similar to food subsidies there might be a need for something similar for transportation.

Most of us have gotten used to remote video/audio conferencing because of the pandemic. If gas prices remain high or go even higher, that will probably result in a return to that. It is likely even more people will work remotely.

This has the potential to significantly reduce fossil fuel emissions.


I love this story about Barry Lopez.

How could we convince lawmakers to pass laws to protect wilderness? Lopez argued that wilderness activists will never achieve the success they seek until they can go before a panel of legislators and testify that a certain river or butterfly or mountain or tree must be saved, not because of its economic importance, not because it has recreational or historical or scientific value, but because it is so beautiful. His words struck a chord in me. I left the room a changed person, one who suddenly knew exactly what he wanted to do and how to do it. I had known that love is a powerful weapon, but until that moment I had not understood how to use it. What I learned on that long-ago evening, and what I have counted on ever since, is that to save a wilderness, or to be a writer or a cab driver or a homemaker—to live one’s life—one must reach deep into one’s heart and find what is there, then speak it plainly and without shame.

Reid, Robert Leonard. Because It Is So Beautiful . Counterpoint. Kindle Edition.

We can’t put a price on beauty. I hadn’t thought of it this way, but if we believe in preserving beauty, wouldn’t it have been amazing if we demanded any resource mining could not be done if it harmed the beauty?

Instead, there are hundreds of square miles of filthy pits from tar sands extraction. Instead, the tops of mountains were blown off.

Instead, the fossil fuel industry receives billions of dollars in government subsidies. How insane is that? Environmental and Energy Study Institute

Likewise, a price cannot be put on all the damage done by burning fossil fuels.

And there is the incomprehensible situation of an energy returned on investment of only 3:1 for tar sands mining. The unit of energy it takes to extract tar sands produces only 3 units of energy. In other words, it takes almost as much energy to mine tar sands as the energy produced. Unbelievable.

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