ABC Radio National: Friday Talkback - Australia's Dependence on Cars

Discussion in 'Australia and New Zealand' started by cfsmtb, Aug 3, 2006.

  1. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

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    Podcast now available of this mornings talkback:
    http://www.abc.net.au/rn/lifematters/stories/2006/1704827.htm

    It's the new BBQ stopper - how much are you paying for petrol each week? How fuel-efficient is your car? Are you going to ditch the 4WD for a hybrid car and make the kids ride their bikes to school? Can you really afford your second car and does anyone have a bus timetable?

    Even Prime Minister John Howard said this week spiralling fuel prices was the most worrying aspect of his political career because we love our cars. And yet governments seem reluctant to commit fully to a comprehensive transport system as a viable alternative.


    Guests

    Professor Peter Newman
    Director of the Institute for Sustainability and Technology at Murdoch University, Perth

    Tony Davis
    Author, former Journalist for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian.

    John Chapman
    Executive Director Motor Trade Association South Australia

    John Pittenreigh
    Owner Epic Cycles Brisbane
     
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  2. In aus.bicycle on Fri, 4 Aug 2006 16:57:41 +1000
    cfsmtb <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > Podcast now available of this mornings talkback:
    > http://www.abc.net.au/rn/lifematters/stories/2006/1704827.htm


    There's a link to the murdoch sustainable transport centre. Looking
    around there I found
    http://www.sustainability.murdoch.edu.au/casestudies/Euro_Field_Trip/eft2002-ch-4.pdf
    (link here because it's wrong on their website) which is part of a
    report on a European trip, this chapter is "how bicycles are
    encouraged".


    Zebee
     
  3. Euan

    Euan Guest

    cfsmtb wrote:
    > Podcast now available of this mornings talkback:
    > http://www.abc.net.au/rn/lifematters/stories/2006/1704827.htm
    >
    > It's the new BBQ stopper - how much are you paying for petrol each
    > week? How fuel-efficient is your car? Are you going to ditch the 4WD
    > for a hybrid car and make the kids ride their bikes to school? Can you
    > really afford your second car and does anyone have a bus timetable?
    >
    > Even Prime Minister John Howard said this week spiralling fuel prices
    > was the most worrying aspect of his political career because we love
    > our cars. And yet governments seem reluctant to commit fully to a
    > comprehensive transport system as a viable alternative.
    >
    >
    > Guests
    >
    > Professor Peter Newman
    > Director of the Institute for Sustainability and Technology at Murdoch
    > University, Perth
    >
    > Tony Davis
    > Author, former Journalist for The Sydney Morning Herald and The
    > Australian.
    >
    > John Chapman
    > Executive Director Motor Trade Association South Australia
    >
    > John Pittenreigh
    > Owner Epic Cycles Brisbane


    That was interesting. Shame it cut out before the opposing view was
    fully heard.

    I was a little surprised at how clean bio-fuel was reported to be. I
    can't see bio-fuel being that scaleable though.
    --
    Cheers
    Euan
     
  4. TimC

    TimC Guest

    On 2006-08-04, Euan (aka Bruce)
    was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    > I was a little surprised at how clean bio-fuel was reported to be. I
    > can't see bio-fuel being that scaleable though.


    I don't know how many times I've heard Joyce being told that ethenol
    isn't the answer, yet time after time he keeps coming back "ethenol in
    petrol is the silver bullet!!111!Elevene!!"

    --
    TimC
    ``Hello, my userid is root and if you feed me caffeine, nobody gets hurt.''
    -- AdB on ASR
     
  5. Donga

    Donga Guest

    Euan wrote:
    > I was a little surprised at how clean bio-fuel was reported to be. I
    > can't see bio-fuel being that scaleable though.


    Brazil can run a large proportion of its cars on ethanol. This supports
    a huge sugar industry. The Brazilian motorists are held to ransom
    though. The program was introduced with massive subsidies. When the
    world sugar price is high, sugar gets diverted from ethanol production,
    so the motorist gets squeezed. Right now the world sugar price is very
    high, and I don't doubt that it's connected to the high price of oil.
    Our own sugar farmers are probably a little less enthusiastic about
    biofuels right now - although they know how it all travels in cycles.

    The farmers will love a biofuels program - gives them more reason to
    exist. You'd be right to be cynical about the enthusiasm of
    conservative politicians and what they are not telling you about what
    it will really cost.

    While talking about "clean", it's not only the burn itself - look at
    the whole production chain.

    Donga
     
  6. On 2006-08-05, Donga <[email protected]> wrote:
    > While talking about "clean", it's not only the burn itself - look at
    > the whole production chain.


    Amen. Anybody that tells you nuclear power is greenhouse-clean (to point
    out another misleading statement) is either badly misinformed, or wants
    to mislead you. Hint: how do they mine the uranium? How do they enrich
    it? How do they transport it from place to place? (All of which doesn't
    even begin to cover the radiation issue ...)

    --
    My Usenet From: address now expires after two weeks. If you email me, and
    the mail bounces, try changing the bit before the "@" to "usenet".
     
  7. In aus.bicycle on 4 Aug 2006 20:20:58 -0700
    Donga <[email protected]> wrote:
    > The farmers will love a biofuels program - gives them more reason to
    > exist. You'd be right to be cynical about the enthusiasm of
    > conservative politicians and what they are not telling you about what
    > it will really cost.
    >


    Isn't there some problem with how much land and water and transport is
    needed to fill even a small proportion of demand?

    Zebee
     
  8. Trevor_S

    Trevor_S Guest

    cfsmtb <[email protected]> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > Are you going to ditch the 4WD
    > for a hybrid car


    Getting a hybrid is asnine, get a small economical engine eg common rail
    turbo deisel would be my choice, if I was so inclined.

    > and make the kids ride their bikes to school?


    That would be good to see, interesting in the days or yore we all rode, or
    went by Bus, ("all" as in I didn't know anyone in my circle of friends at
    school that was driven to school in a Car)

    >Can you
    > really afford your second car and does anyone have a bus timetable?


    Second car ? I have a motorbike and I cycle, wife has a Car, even she is
    talking about getting a scooter, wonders will never cease that she is even
    talking about it, I have my doubts about her actually taking the steps and
    getting one, she does carry alot of "crap" about for work though.

    --
    Trevor S


    "Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth."
    -Albert Einstein
     
  9. Euan

    Euan Guest

    Zebee Johnstone wrote:
    > In aus.bicycle on 4 Aug 2006 20:20:58 -0700
    > Donga <[email protected]> wrote:
    >> The farmers will love a biofuels program - gives them more reason to
    >> exist. You'd be right to be cynical about the enthusiasm of
    >> conservative politicians and what they are not telling you about what
    >> it will really cost.
    >>

    >
    > Isn't there some problem with how much land and water and transport is
    > needed to fill even a small proportion of demand?


    That was my first thought when thinking about scalability. I don't know
    anything about it really though. Hmm, maybe I should spend some time on
    Dogpile tonight.
    --
    Cheers
    Euan
     
  10. In aus.bicycle on 05 Aug 2006 07:10:20 GMT
    Trevor_S <[email protected]> wrote:
    > That would be good to see, interesting in the days or yore we all rode, or
    > went by Bus, ("all" as in I didn't know anyone in my circle of friends at
    > school that was driven to school in a Car)


    Not in primary school that I can recall, but once I moved 50km from my
    highschool I couldn't ride anymore :) Most of the time Mum drove me
    on her way to work.

    Then we moved only about 20km and I took bus and train. Way cooler
    than having your parents about!
    >
    > Second car ? I have a motorbike and I cycle, wife has a Car, even she is
    > talking about getting a scooter, wonders will never cease that she is even
    > talking about it, I have my doubts about her actually taking the steps and
    > getting one, she does carry alot of "crap" about for work though.


    I haven't owned a car since <thinks> about 1988. I got rid of it
    because I wasn't using it, it hadn't even been parked at my house for
    a year...

    If I had to carry a lot of stuff, or was doing a lot of travelling for
    work so that on wet days it might be hard to be appropriately
    "professional" while dripping all over someone's machine room, I guess
    I'd need a car, but as none of that applies it's the motorcycle (and
    now the bicycle as well) for me.

    Zebee
     
  11. BrettS

    BrettS Guest

    Donga wrote:

    > Euan wrote:
    >
    >>I was a little surprised at how clean bio-fuel was reported to be. I
    >>can't see bio-fuel being that scaleable though.

    >
    >
    > Brazil can run a large proportion of its cars on ethanol. This supports
    > a huge sugar industry. The Brazilian motorists are held to ransom
    > though. The program was introduced with massive subsidies. When the
    > world sugar price is high, sugar gets diverted from ethanol production,
    > so the motorist gets squeezed. Right now the world sugar price is very
    > high, and I don't doubt that it's connected to the high price of oil.
    > Our own sugar farmers are probably a little less enthusiastic about
    > biofuels right now - although they know how it all travels in cycles.
    >
    > The farmers will love a biofuels program - gives them more reason to
    > exist. You'd be right to be cynical about the enthusiasm of
    > conservative politicians and what they are not telling you about what
    > it will really cost.


    Something to consider about bio-fuels: In the aftermath of the cyclone
    Larry vs QLD banana plantations drama, can you imagine an ethanol
    dependent Australia following a bad cyclone in Nth QLD? Imagine the
    screaming when the price of ethanol jumps from $1.50/l to $12.00/l
    overnight!

    --
    BrettS
     
  12. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

    Joined:
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    Oh goodie, just what Australia's thin ancient soils don't really need, more broadacre crops.
     
  13. Mike

    Mike Guest

    Stuart Lamble wrote:

    > Amen. Anybody that tells you nuclear power is greenhouse-clean (to point
    > out another misleading statement) is either badly misinformed, or wants


    While there is significant fossil-fuel use in the mining of uranium, and
    especially the construction of nuclear plants, total greenhouse
    emissions per kW.hr are still much less than for fossil fuels,
    especially coal.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1595894,00.html
     
  14. On 2006-08-06, Mike <[email protected]> wrote:
    > Stuart Lamble wrote:
    >
    >> Amen. Anybody that tells you nuclear power is greenhouse-clean (to point
    >> out another misleading statement) is either badly misinformed, or wants

    >
    > While there is significant fossil-fuel use in the mining of uranium, and
    > especially the construction of nuclear plants, total greenhouse
    > emissions per kW.hr are still much less than for fossil fuels,
    > especially coal.


    I don't dispute that. What I *do* dispute is the assertion that nuclear
    power has *no* greenhouse emissions. I similarly dispute assertions that
    wind, solar, and hydro have no greenhouse emissions, because of the
    energy cost of constructing the plant in the first place.

    IOW: let's compare the entire cycle, from plant construction through
    fuel mining through spent fuel disposal. Then, and only then, can we say
    "technology X is cleaner than technology Y".

    --
    My Usenet From: address now expires after two weeks. If you email me, and
    the mail bounces, try changing the bit before the "@" to "usenet".
     
  15. Bean Long

    Bean Long Guest

    cfsmtb wrote:
    > BrettS Wrote:
    >>
    >> Something to consider about bio-fuels: In the aftermath of the
    >> cyclone
    >> Larry vs QLD banana plantations drama, can you imagine an ethanol
    >> dependent Australia following a bad cyclone in Nth QLD? Imagine the
    >> screaming when the price of ethanol jumps from $1.50/l to $12.00/l
    >> overnight!

    >
    > Oh goodie, just what Australia's thin ancient soils don't really need,
    > more broadacre crops.
    >
    >

    Much of Australia's ethanol comes from wheat processing by-products, not
    necessarily from fermentation of sugar-cane sugar.

    That's the bonus about ethanol... as long as you can find a good yeast
    to break down a complex sugar source you're on your way. If we lose a
    heap of sugar cane we could still make ethanol from a variety of other
    sources.

    --
    Bean

    Remove "yourfinger" before replying
     
  16. Terryc

    Terryc Guest

    Mike wrote:
    > Stuart Lamble wrote:
    >
    >> Amen. Anybody that tells you nuclear power is greenhouse-clean (to point
    >> out another misleading statement) is either badly misinformed, or wants

    >
    >
    > While there is significant fossil-fuel use in the mining of uranium, and
    > especially the construction of nuclear plants, total greenhouse
    > emissions per kW.hr are still much less than for fossil fuels,
    > especially coal.



    But it does nothing to reduce the prolifigate energy use that
    contributes to global warming. No, I am not talking about carbon dioxide
    and other gasses that create a greenhouse effect. I am talking about the
    fact that the population load on the earth is now four times greater
    than in 1900 and all those air-conditioners, washing machine,
    dishwashers, clother dryers, home entertainment packs in every room,
    etc, etc all pump out heat that has to go somewhere.


    Further, this doesn't take into consideration the societal cost of
    keeping uranium and more importantly the products of uranium out of the
    hands of terrorists. Look at the wars that oil has produced. Imagine
    what it is going to be like when everyone is arguing over uranium.

    And let's not mention the cost of safe(rotflmpo) nuclear waste disposal
    that will have to exist longer than any civilisation has in the past.
     
  17. In aus.bicycle on Mon, 07 Aug 2006 10:19:00 +1000
    Bean Long <[email protected]> wrote:
    > cfsmtb wrote:
    >>
    >> Oh goodie, just what Australia's thin ancient soils don't really need,
    >> more broadacre crops.
    >>
    >>

    > Much of Australia's ethanol comes from wheat processing by-products, not
    > necessarily from fermentation of sugar-cane sugar.


    Umm.. wheat's a broadacre crop. And if the demand goes up then the
    incentive is there to try and farm more marginal land including clearning,
    divert more water for irrigation, exhaust soil by much fertiliser and
    no lying fallow and so on.

    Zebee
     
  18. TimC

    TimC Guest

    On 2006-08-07, Terryc (aka Bruce)
    was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    > Mike wrote:
    >> While there is significant fossil-fuel use in the mining of uranium, and
    >> especially the construction of nuclear plants, total greenhouse
    >> emissions per kW.hr are still much less than for fossil fuels,
    >> especially coal.


    Much, if you mean a factor of 3. See
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1595894,00.html
    cite presented earlier.

    > But it does nothing to reduce the prolifigate energy use that
    > contributes to global warming. No, I am not talking about carbon dioxide
    > and other gasses that create a greenhouse effect. I am talking about the
    > fact that the population load on the earth is now four times greater
    > than in 1900 and all those air-conditioners, washing machine,
    > dishwashers, clother dryers, home entertainment packs in every room,
    > etc, etc all pump out heat that has to go somewhere.


    The ten terawatts (1e+13 watts) or so that come from all heat output
    (all electricity going into any electrical, gas, etc device will, in
    short order, become heat. Damn that stupid second law of
    thermodynamics) is nothing compared to the approximately 7e+16 watts
    that the Earth absorbs from sunlight (assuming 40% albedo).

    > Further, this doesn't take into consideration the societal cost of
    > keeping uranium and more importantly the products of uranium out of the
    > hands of terrorists.


    Oooh, those big bad terrorists.

    > Look at the wars that oil has produced. Imagine
    > what it is going to be like when everyone is arguing over uranium.


    There's not enough uranium to worry about anyway. It will be a rather
    short war if we have to fight over it.

    --
    TimC
    "How much caffeine do you consume on a daily basis?"
    "Dependink on how you mean? Liquid, solid or gas? " -- Pitr/User Friendly
     
  19. Mike

    Mike Guest

    Terryc wrote:

    > But it does nothing to reduce the prolifigate energy use that
    > contributes to global warming. No, I am not talking about carbon dioxide


    Terry, where did you get that idea? It is plausible, but please
    check the numbers.
    Human energy use is utterly minuscule compared to natural sources
    ie nuclear decay underground, and solar radiation.

    > and other gasses that create a greenhouse effect. I am talking about the
    > fact that the population load on the earth is now four times greater
    > than in 1900 and all those air-conditioners, washing machine,
    > dishwashers, clother dryers, home entertainment packs in every room,
    > etc, etc all pump out heat that has to go somewhere.


    Indeed all that waste is a major problem, but not because of heat pollution.

    > Further, this doesn't take into consideration the societal cost of
    > keeping uranium and more importantly the products of uranium out of the
    > hands of terrorists.


    Please don't buy into that propaganda from Bush and Howard. Sovereign
    states remain a far bigger threat. (N Korea!)

    > Look at the wars that oil has produced.
    > what it is going to be like when everyone is arguing over uranium.


    OK, I'm imagining. What is your point? I will probably agree.

    > And let's not mention the cost of safe(rotflmpo) nuclear waste disposal
    > that will have to exist longer than any civilisation has in the past.


    Terry, don't you think it a bit impractical to try and discuss so many
    difficult issues at once? It does not make for good rational debate,
    which is what the world sorely needs.
    You cannot seriously expect to learn anything by changing the subject
    so quickly. Since you were so wrong about the first two points, maybe
    you might question your other assumptions. Unfortunately, I have no
    simple answers for nuclear proliferation, or waste disposal, though
    i believe the latter can be dealt with.
     
  20. Mike

    Mike Guest

    TimC wrote:

    >> Mike wrote:
    >>> While there is significant fossil-fuel use in the mining of uranium, and
    >>> especially the construction of nuclear plants, total greenhouse
    >>> emissions per kW.hr are still much less than for fossil fuels,
    >>> especially coal.

    >
    > Much, if you mean a factor of 3. See
    > http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1595894,00.html
    > cite presented earlier.


    Yes, presented in the same post :)
    I link to the guardian, as it probably has more credibility here than
    industry figures, which are far more optimistic.

    All energy source have major problems.
    I just hate all the bullshit scary stories that are spread in place of
    intelligent consideration. Be it Big Oil, or the looney fringe.
     
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