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December 29, 2008

Gas Just Plain Costs Less


Tom Kloza of Speaking of Oil points out the obvious. We are paying less than half of the price of gas we were paying “167 days ago,” and it probably will go lower.

But some other multi-year records could be broken before the NFL playoffs conclude. The low nationwide price for the decade is the $1.0769 gal average compiled on December 18, 2001. I think that record will remain intact. But other benchmarks could fall. Gasoline last sold for less than $1.60 gal countrywide on January 23, 2004. It last sold for less than $1.50 gal on the first day of 2004 when the price averaged $1.4842 gal. The last time it sold for less than $1.45 gal was December 31, 2002.

But, gasoline price is fickle.

Filed under:Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends,Gas price | by Pump Girl @ 8:00 pm | 

December 26, 2008

Second Thoughts on Frosty The Coalman


When we were little (back in the olden days) our grandparents had a coal furnace. We loved to see the coalman come and send all that coal down the coal chute. In winter it was even better because we could search around the chute and find eyes for our snowmen. Not so sure what kids think these days. Are Frosty’s eyes charcoal briquettes? hmmm

But we digress. Some did not see the humor in the Frosty the Coalman carol. In fact, someone even said:

“This is the most cynical ploy that I’ve ever seen from the industry. It’s worse than Joe Camel selling cigarettes,”

Oh well, so much for that ad campaign. It was pulled. We thought it was cute :)

Filed under:Energy,Fumes | by Pump Girl @ 8:15 pm | 

December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas From Clean Coal


Don’t know how we could have missed this. Holiday season and all. NPR to the rescue!

Here’s the new carol from the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity: “Frosty the Coalman.”

Filed under:Energy,Fumes | by Pump Girl @ 10:53 am | 

December 23, 2008

What The Industry Thinks Of Obama’s Energy Team


We have Steven Chu, Energy Sec., Lisa Jackson, EPA, Nancy Sutley, Council on Environmental Quality, and Carol Browner, energy czar. Not an oil (wo)man in the mix. This is a horse of a different color. They want to cap greenhouse gasses, and move to renewable fuel.

What does the energy industry think?

There’s a bull’s eye painted on coal. It’s Chu’s “worst nightmare.” Nuclear energy & oil – the crystal ball is murky. Obama & team not clear on exactly where they stand, but Chu thinks nuclear must play a significant role in the nation’s energy portfolio.

Big Oil may lose some tax breaks, but they might get to drill in more parts of the country. With gas prices down, oil is out of the limelight for the time being.

Natural gas burns cleaner than coal and has the scale to provide power while we wait for renewables to mature.

Kevin Book, a senior energy analyst at the investment bank Friedman, Billings, Ramsey, said the Obama long-term energy plan has been described to him roughly as such:

Renewables like wind and solar will begin to displace coal from the electricity generating market, with solar panels mounted on the roofs of nearly all big buildings.

Electric cars will become widespread, and car batteries will be used to store excess electricity or as a source for more electricity when it’s needed. A computerized electrical grid will handle the electric flow, drawing it from batteries to buildings, or vice versa, when needed.

But before any of this can happen, the nation needs to become much more energy efficient.

“We’re going to change how efficiently we use electricity – forever,” said Book

Filed under:Alternative Energy,Energy,Presidential Election | by Pump Girl @ 8:27 pm | 

December 22, 2008

Gas Down to $1.66/gal


Calculated Risk reports that gas has fallen to $1.66/gal.Gas Price

See the graph. Gas prices are now close to the 2000-2003 price range.

Is this a good thing?

From Calculated Risk last week, looks like no.

For the U.S. economy, I think there are two points worth repeating: 1) this decline in oil prices will significantly reduce PCE for gasoline, oil and other energy goods – and provide a stimulus for U.S. household to either save more, or spend more on other items, and 2) the oil price decline will also impact investment in domestic oil production (also foreign oil production, but that doesn’t direclty impact the U.S. economy).

Filed under:Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends,Gas price | by Pump Girl @ 12:47 pm |