Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Gas Prices Are Absurd and so Are We.

I just bought gas last weekend. It cost me $30 to fill up 8.5 gallons, or about $3.52/gal. Gas has since gone up about another ten cents. Yikes. What's even worse than this in my opinion is how groceries also go up in cost due to increased transportation cost. My dirt-cheap-tastes-like-punch-but-is-actually-juice $2.99/gal orange juice is now $3.89/gal. You may say, "Well this isn't a big deal - it's not like drink two gallons of orange juice driving 60 miles home to Layton or anything." However, you might be surprised. I've had to go even cheaper now and purchase frozen orange juice concentrate. How inconvenient.

Here's why they blow though. Yes, the oil companies are screwing you over. Yes Exxon posted upward of a 10 billion dollar profit on the quarter. No Exxon isn't even one of the larger oil companies (Seriously, if you compare the assets of Exxon or Chevron to Saudi Arabia National Oil... it's like comparing Shasta Soda with Coca Cola or Utah Valley University with Harvard.) So yes, you're getting completely raped by oil companies, but you're also laying there letting it happen. Never once saying no or trying to get away from the situation. Then we complain about it as if we're just completely taken advantage of in our innocence. However, the next week we go on a date with the oil company again by going back to the pump and buying $40 more of the precious elixir that we so desperately need and in return get raped again. We're like drug addicts. It's sickening.

Yeah, I understand we need oil. I do too. I get raped buy gas just like any of you. I buy stuff at the store that was shipped by diesel powered trucks. I run a heater when it's cold and take hot showers. This blog doesn't change the fact that I'm completely addicted to hydrocarbons. It's like a crack fix, but healthier. Wait, no, I hate that back. If we look at the long term effects rather than just the fact that oil isn't going to rot my teeth out by next year, the human populations addiction to oil is just as unhealthy as an addiction to crack.

392.40 ppm CO2 was what was recorded in the atmosphere for March of 2011. Basically what that should be is below 350ppm. 350ppm isn't an ideal number, it's a maximum healthy number for the planet above which significant climate changes will occur. It hasn't been below 350ppm since 1987. "Oh, well if it's been above the threshold for 24 years why haven't we seen any effects of it?" Well, you have.

There are all kinds of species that have been going extinct in the last few decades (and before that too, but so much more rapidly as of recent) we just don't notice it because they are more unknown creatures like several species of hyrax, the Baiji River dolphin or the Javan tiger rather than dogs, cats and green iguanas. No, climate change is not a hoax. There is not a single scientific organization in the world who believes that it is and anyone who tells you otherwise is lying. Earth's gradual rise in temperature is removing sea ice and melting polar ice sheets (the ice on Greenland and Antarctica which does effect sea level) causing it to rise. No, not hundreds of meters. Al Gore exaggerates, but a few meters. Enough to displace a tens of millions of people. If you think Katrina was bad... imagine that kind of sea level rise slowly occurring all around the globe over the next fifty years. Temperatures really are rising. Now sure if you email Orrin Hatch with your concern about this he'll shoot you some data about how the average temperatures in 2000 were cooler than they were in 1998, which is true, but this is not climate. However if you throw a 5-year running annual mean temperature, you will see an almost constantly increasing temperature.

I won't bore you with more statistics as I know that if I try to, you'll simply hit the back button on your browser, but yeah. ~$3.65/gal and rising is bad. However the number concerning fossil fuels which is even worse is 392.40 ppm and rising.

Wait, so if gas prices are so terrible, as previously discussed, and by paying this horrific price for an addiction, that we really should not have, we are ruining the planet, why the hell do we do this? It doesn't make any sense. It really is an addiction no different than drugs, porn or cutting. I realize that may sound extreme, but we really are hurting ourselves and everyone around us.

The Earth doesn't care. Thousands of years from now it'll rebound and get back to normal. We're not going to destroy the planet, but we're certainly going to make it a pain in the ass to live on for humans in the long run and the amount we all spend on gas per month sure can make it difficult to buy nice things like 2 gallons of orange juice per week or a new laptop (Yes, this laptop has about had it.)

So please, for your sake and for everyones sake. Support nuclear power, as well as other alternative fuel sources, drive less (use mass transit), if infrastructure in your area supports it buy a CNG vehicle, turn off the lights and don't commute to work in your Ford F350. You'll save money and you'll save the hyrax.

Friday is Earth day. Don't drive, plant a tree. It has to start somewhere, right?

1 comment:

  1. yeah y'all, save the hyrax. They're so freaking cute.