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David Letterman sums up fracking

David Letterman sums up fracking

(2:04) David Letterman shares his thoughts on fracking and greedy oil and gas companies.

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Guest: Bootc (1604 days ago)

Ha ha ha ha, that's funny

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Ha ha ha ha, that's funny

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Guest: (1604 days ago)

Hilarious, unless, of course, you happen to be one of the folks whose main water supply is now contaminated with heavy metals and other, un-named poisons. Once the aquifer is polluted, that's it; you can't pump it clean. That's hysterically funny.

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Hilarious, unless, of course, you happen to be one of the folks whose main water supply is now contaminated with heavy metals and other, un-named poisons. Once the aquifer is polluted, that's it; you can't pump it clean. That's hysterically funny.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1604 days ago)

From my understanding, and you can correct me if I'm wrong, it's impossible to contaminate drinking water because the number of layers of rock between the drill site and the drinking water. There has not been a single confirmed case of the contamination that you speak of. The only two times water was polluted was when there was a surface spill of chemicals but that was completely irrelevant of the fracking process -- it was an accident of the surface not during the fracking process.

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From my understanding, and you can correct me if I'm wrong, it's impossible to contaminate drinking water because the number of layers of rock between the drill site and the drinking water. There has not been a single confirmed case of the contamination that you speak of. The only two times water was polluted was when there was a surface spill of chemicals but that was completely irrelevant of the fracking process -- it was an accident of the surface not during the fracking process.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (1604 days ago)

You may be right, but contamination does occur. According to Scientific American, almost 50% are the result of drilling operations. LINK Preventable in theory, but not in practice. Greedy oil and gas companies will always cut corners in their relentless pursuit of profit. No fracking = no drilling operations. Same goes for surface spills.

But fracking is a bad idea for much bigger reasons. Any economic gains are wiped out many times over by the cost of climate change. Adapting while trying to stabilise the climate is very very expensive.

Climate change costs $1.2 trillion a year. Every year that we fail to change our old ways (burning dead plants for energy) $500 billion gets added to the bill - and the chances of avoiding runaway global warming dramatically reduces.

Fracking dangerously delays the day we reach zero carbon emmisions - a day that we need to reach asap if we want to survive as a species.

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You may be right, but contamination does occur. According to Scientific American, almost 50% are the result of drilling operations. LINK Preventable in theory, but not in practice. Greedy oil and gas companies will always cut corners in their relentless pursuit of profit. No fracking = no drilling operations. Same goes for surface spills.

But fracking is a bad idea for much bigger reasons. Any economic gains are wiped out many times over by the cost of climate change. Adapting while trying to stabilise the climate is very very expensive.

Climate change costs $1.2 trillion a year. Every year that we fail to change our old ways (burning dead plants for energy) $500 billion gets added to the bill - and the chances of avoiding runaway global warming dramatically reduces.

Fracking dangerously delays the day we reach zero carbon emmisions - a day that we need to reach asap if we want to survive as a species.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1604 days ago)

Would you agree that burning the natural gas they get from fracking produces less CO2 than when burning oil? If you do agree, then don't you think that these companies are successful in reducing CO2 which seems to be your ultimate goal.

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Would you agree that burning the natural gas they get from fracking produces less CO2 than when burning oil? If you do agree, then don't you think that these companies are successful in reducing CO2 which seems to be your ultimate goal.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (1604 days ago)

Burning natural gas does produce less CO2 than oil, but the jury is out on the fracking process as a whole.

That aside, if there was no urgency, I'd say sure, let's take our time and let a few billionaires make a few more billion polluting our planet rather than turning to clean energy asap for our energy needs.

But each year cost an extra $500 billion, and the misery for many millions of people battling for survival all around the world. And of course there is the very real risk of trigerring run-away global warming, the consequences of which are unthinkable.

I think we need a global agreement that all fossil fuel sales will be illegal from say... 2040. Even if in 2040, the law is not enforced, or it's delayed, leading up to 2040 would have seen massive changes in where investment went. A simple law like that would focus the minds of big business and budding entrepreneurs, and spawn a second industrial revolution - converting a fossil-fuelled powered planet to eletricity.

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Burning natural gas does produce less CO2 than oil, but the jury is out on the fracking process as a whole.

That aside, if there was no urgency, I'd say sure, let's take our time and let a few billionaires make a few more billion polluting our planet rather than turning to clean energy asap for our energy needs.

But each year cost an extra $500 billion, and the misery for many millions of people battling for survival all around the world. And of course there is the very real risk of trigerring run-away global warming, the consequences of which are unthinkable.

I think we need a global agreement that all fossil fuel sales will be illegal from say... 2040. Even if in 2040, the law is not enforced, or it's delayed, leading up to 2040 would have seen massive changes in where investment went. A simple law like that would focus the minds of big business and budding entrepreneurs, and spawn a second industrial revolution - converting a fossil-fuelled powered planet to eletricity.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1604 days ago)

Your law idea would be a huge tax burden on the poor. They are barely able to finance their lives now and you want them to buy a new car that runs on a different fuel?

I think grandfathering old technology is fair and make a law that all new products manufactured after a certain date must use less fossil fuels. Fortunately, congress has already thought of this in 1975 and passed the CAFE law.

New cars are being manufactured with E85 engines that means they can use up to 85% ethanol, a bio fuel that also creates less CO2. Many of the cars produced just a couple years ago have trouble with 20% ethanol.

In February, Phase 2 of the Department of Transportation and The EPA fuel efficiecy for medium and heavy duty vehicles was announced.

Similar issues with coolants for air conditioners caused the government to mandate that new machines must use a more environmentally friendly coolant. This means only the old machines use the bad freon and will eventually stop working and need replacement. Then, the new machines will take the new gas.

Te government is trying to help but I think not producing any oil in 2040 is an unreasonable burden on the poor and middle class people that can barely afford their current car payments.

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Your law idea would be a huge tax burden on the poor. They are barely able to finance their lives now and you want them to buy a new car that runs on a different fuel?

I think grandfathering old technology is fair and make a law that all new products manufactured after a certain date must use less fossil fuels. Fortunately, congress has already thought of this in 1975 and passed the CAFE law.

New cars are being manufactured with E85 engines that means they can use up to 85% ethanol, a bio fuel that also creates less CO2. Many of the cars produced just a couple years ago have trouble with 20% ethanol.

In February, Phase 2 of the Department of Transportation and The EPA fuel efficiecy for medium and heavy duty vehicles was announced.

Similar issues with coolants for air conditioners caused the government to mandate that new machines must use a more environmentally friendly coolant. This means only the old machines use the bad freon and will eventually stop working and need replacement. Then, the new machines will take the new gas.

Te government is trying to help but I think not producing any oil in 2040 is an unreasonable burden on the poor and middle class people that can barely afford their current car payments.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (1604 days ago)

That's all well and good, but it's way too slow. The timetable we have to stabilise the climate is dictated by physics, not politics. We will either rise to the challenge, or perish.

I don't see why converting a fossil-fuel powered civilisation to clean power should be a burden on the poor, in fact, the opposite. Everyone has 15 years to change their vehicle. When they do change, they will change to an electric vehicle. The demand for electric vehicles will skyrocket and capitalism will do what capitalism does best - supply that market. The task of "rewiring" the planet is big enough to be a 2nd industrial revolution, with all the economic benefits industrial revolutions inevitably bring.

Climate change is such a huge problem that we need the world to come together, in the same way that nations come together at times of war.

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That's all well and good, but it's way too slow. The timetable we have to stabilise the climate is dictated by physics, not politics. We will either rise to the challenge, or perish.

I don't see why converting a fossil-fuel powered civilisation to clean power should be a burden on the poor, in fact, the opposite. Everyone has 15 years to change their vehicle. When they do change, they will change to an electric vehicle. The demand for electric vehicles will skyrocket and capitalism will do what capitalism does best - supply that market. The task of "rewiring" the planet is big enough to be a 2nd industrial revolution, with all the economic benefits industrial revolutions inevitably bring.

Climate change is such a huge problem that we need the world to come together, in the same way that nations come together at times of war.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1603 days ago)

"should be a burden on the poor" Have you priced any battery operated cars lately? Have you noticed how expensive one of those are compared to gas cars that can go the same distance? A Tesla is too expensive at $75k for the 265 mile (426 km) range model. The Nissan Leaf is the world's top selling car but has a max distance of 200 km using NEDC methods and only 135 km using EPA methods with a 100% charge. It takes too long to charge so you cannot just stop by a station like a gas station and charge up to continue your trip. If you plan on going to work and back and nothing else, it might work but that's not the only thing people use their cars for.

Electric vehicles use toxic chemicals in those batteries so you'll be substituting CO2 with a different toxin. The batteries do not last forever and they are expensive to replace. It's not a practical replacement for a gas combustion engine at this time. Maybe some day in the future cars like the Tesla will be affordable and they will have charging stations all over the country and you can charge in 10 minutes or less. Until then, I don't see traditional cars going away.

I wonder what those airplane engines will run off once you ban fossil fuels. What about cargo ships? Think they will make battery operated ones?

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"should be a burden on the poor" Have you priced any battery operated cars lately? Have you noticed how expensive one of those are compared to gas cars that can go the same distance? A Tesla is too expensive at $75k for the 265 mile (426 km) range model. The Nissan Leaf is the world's top selling car but has a max distance of 200 km using NEDC methods and only 135 km using EPA methods with a 100% charge. It takes too long to charge so you cannot just stop by a station like a gas station and charge up to continue your trip. If you plan on going to work and back and nothing else, it might work but that's not the only thing people use their cars for.

Electric vehicles use toxic chemicals in those batteries so you'll be substituting CO2 with a different toxin. The batteries do not last forever and they are expensive to replace. It's not a practical replacement for a gas combustion engine at this time. Maybe some day in the future cars like the Tesla will be affordable and they will have charging stations all over the country and you can charge in 10 minutes or less. Until then, I don't see traditional cars going away.

I wonder what those airplane engines will run off once you ban fossil fuels. What about cargo ships? Think they will make battery operated ones?

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MyName MyName (1603 days ago)

Comparing the cost of an emerging technology with an established technology is not a fair comparison, as you probably know.

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Comparing the cost of an emerging technology with an established technology is not a fair comparison, as you probably know.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1603 days ago)

It is fair to compare the costs of the two technologies when you tell the poor people that they are forced to replace their fossil fueled car with an electric one. It is completely acceptable if you give people a choice so the rich can invest in the emerging technology first and as the price comes down, it may become more competitve for others to afford too.

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It is fair to compare the costs of the two technologies when you tell the poor people that they are forced to replace their fossil fueled car with an electric one. It is completely acceptable if you give people a choice so the rich can invest in the emerging technology first and as the price comes down, it may become more competitve for others to afford too.

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MyName MyName (1603 days ago)

I don't know who's forcing who to do what but I just know you're comparing apples and pears.

There was a time when many people owned horses and couldn't afford cars, now it's the other way round.

Times change, costs change.

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I don't know who's forcing who to do what but I just know you're comparing apples and pears.

There was a time when many people owned horses and couldn't afford cars, now it's the other way round.

Times change, costs change.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1603 days ago)
Latest comment:

It was WalterEgo's idea to force everyone to buy an electric car.

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Latest comment:

It was WalterEgo's idea to force everyone to buy an electric car.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (1603 days ago)

We would have 15 years to find solutions, for example, maglev trains could replace the bulk of air travel, huge container ships could be nuclear powered... etc.

The point is that future investments will be in clean energies, with very little, if any, in fossil fuels. Capitalism will do the rest.

Otherwise, what is the alternative? Every year hotter than the one before. Much of the US will be a dust bowl like in the 30s, only forever as far as the human species is concerned.

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We would have 15 years to find solutions, for example, maglev trains could replace the bulk of air travel, huge container ships could be nuclear powered... etc.

The point is that future investments will be in clean energies, with very little, if any, in fossil fuels. Capitalism will do the rest.

Otherwise, what is the alternative? Every year hotter than the one before. Much of the US will be a dust bowl like in the 30s, only forever as far as the human species is concerned.

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guest123456789 guest123456789 (1603 days ago)

It would take longer than 15 years to create a single maglev train to go from LA to San Francisco. Besides, trains were around before cars and planes but more people use cars and planes than trains for obvious reasons.

Nuclear powered ships is okay in your opinion? As far as I know, the only nuclear powered items are government owned because of how dangerous the material can be if put in the wrong hands. Iran and North Korea would love to get their hands on that technology and we forbid it but you want all the ships to be powered this way? Unreasonable.

" Every year hotter than the one before. " Not true. Even though CO2 levels continue to rise as it has every year before it, there has been a 16 year period without any rise in temperature.

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It would take longer than 15 years to create a single maglev train to go from LA to San Francisco. Besides, trains were around before cars and planes but more people use cars and planes than trains for obvious reasons.

Nuclear powered ships is okay in your opinion? As far as I know, the only nuclear powered items are government owned because of how dangerous the material can be if put in the wrong hands. Iran and North Korea would love to get their hands on that technology and we forbid it but you want all the ships to be powered this way? Unreasonable.

" Every year hotter than the one before. " Not true. Even though CO2 levels continue to rise as it has every year before it, there has been a 16 year period without any rise in temperature.

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WalterEgo WalterEgo (1604 days ago)

If such a law was in place, there wouldn't be any new fracking because it would not be profitable. Instead there will be a huge demand for clean energy, which will suck in all the investment and drive a global economy.

The bonus is that we stabilise the climate a bit and experience less heatwaves, droughts, floods, crop failures, superstorms, mass migration... etc.

What's there not to like?

ReplyVote up (156)down (192)
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If such a law was in place, there wouldn't be any new fracking because it would not be profitable. Instead there will be a huge demand for clean energy, which will suck in all the investment and drive a global economy.

The bonus is that we stabilise the climate a bit and experience less heatwaves, droughts, floods, crop failures, superstorms, mass migration... etc.

What's there not to like?

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