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Re: SC41

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May 05, 2007 10:09PM
http://www.energyandcapital.com/articles/military-fuel-renewable/420

The Next 'Greatest Generation'

That's it . . . the Pentagon has officially smelled the coffee on peak oil.

They're not talking efficiency improvements or pilot projects anymore. Oh no.

Now they're singing a much more plaintive tune:

"We have to wake up. We are at the edge of a precipice and we have one foot over the edge. The only way to avoid going over is to move forward and move forward aggressively with initiatives to develop alternative fuels. Just cutting back won't work," said Milton R. Copulos, president of the National Defense Council Foundation and an expert on the military's energy needs.

Wow. That's pretty straight shootin' there, Tex.

According to a new study by defense consulting firm LMI, the dwindling availability of oil, plus its rising costs, makes the U.S. military's operations "unsustainable in the long term." ............

....................A Desperate Dependence

For one thing, the sheer scale of the military's dependence on oil is absolutely immense.

The Department of Defense is the largest single energy consumer in the country.

More than half of all the cargo moved by the military is just fuel. And of the material transported on the battlefield? Fuel accounts for about 80 percent. That's a lot of effort just to move fuel around.

The cost is another major factor. The Air Force alone spends about $5 billion a year on fuel, followed closely by the Navy and Army.

The military's energy costs have doubled since 9/11. Costs are going up so fast and so high that they're worried about being able to afford weapons.

And the cost of having the U.S. military protect the oil supplies of the Persian Gulf . . . yes, even protecting the ones who want to blow us up . . . is around $44 billion per year.

That's just the security cost, folks.

We import about 800 million barrels per year of black gold from the Persian Gulf. Divided into $44 billion, that works out to slightly less than $55 a barrel. When oil is trading on the open market for around $65!

If those protection costs weren't externalized onto the U.S. military (your tax dollars at work!) but priced into the world market, I reckon that would put oil at around $120 a barrel.............

...........But there is another factor that's probably the most worrisome of all. Rumsfeld's push to reduce the military's footprint by closing far-flung bases and transforming it into a network of small, agile task forces has had an unfortunate consequence: everything now has to travel greater and greater distances.

Which means a growing, not declining, thirst for liquid fuels.

"The U.S. military will have to be even more energy intense, locate in more regions of the world, employ new technologies, and manage a more complex logistics system," according to the report. "Simply put, more miles will be traveled, both by combat units and the supply units that sustain them, which will result in increased energy consumption."

Combined with nonstop advances in war machines, this trend has led to a sixteen-fold increase in the amount of fuel consumed per soldier per day since WWII.

And according to the report, the trend has been sharpening: In 2006, the fuel intensity per solider was double that of the previous year!

No wonder the report pulled no punches in its recommendations. This is a serious and urgent situation.............

There is no current alternative energy in a position to match the scale of what hydrocarbon energy has provided the US military complex, in its ability to project itself across the world. The drag of imminent diminishing oil and gas supply will change the landscape of all countries military power. Those with access to energy will gain strength, those that don't, will become weaker. Thus the motivation behind Bush and crews desperate ( not moral ) moves from 9-11 to present, to try and use US military might to try and position itself to keep the energy flowing, to maintain the huge military machine, and US power and position, for the greater benifit of the rich elite that run this country. The general american citizen is just appreciated by men such as these as cannon fodder for thier wars, and bodies to run the wheels of commerce that bring thier vast fortunes.
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