Effects of extreme high fuel costs ...

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by kengrome, Jun 8, 2008.

  1. kengrome
    Joined: Jul 2006
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    kengrome Senior Member

    Lately I've been theorizing about the potential consequences of extremely high fuel prices:

    Will the ever-increasing cost of fuel become so high that exhorbitant international shipping prices might make foreign-made products too costly to import? If so, will this spur a new age of local 'micro-factories' that produce products for regional sale, possibly destroying the competitiveness of the huge factories we see now in China that make products in tremendous volume for the entire world?

    Will these high fuel prices discourage travel to such a degree that people stop driving and flying all over the globe all the time because they simply cannot afford it any more? If so, will communities become more close-knit because mobility is hindered by economic reality?

    Imagine a world where fuel costs 1000 dollars a gallon and you have the same income as now. Will you still drive to work ... or will you use a bicycle, or a horse, or walk? Will you still work 20 miles away in the city, or will you become a farmer and work in your own back yard?

    In this day and age most people have likely never considered such limitations. Fuel for human mobility has always been 'cheap enough' for practically everyone their entire lives, at least in developed countries. But what if only a very small percentage of the wealthiest people on Earth could afford it? How would the lives of the rest of us be different in this new world?
     
  2. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    A return to the pre industrial era? with electricity! City States! and everybody stays at home, bloody good idea!! back to small local economies and equally small tribes - bring it on!!
     
  3. masalai
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    masalai masalai

    Loss of access to epoxy and fibreglass boat-building materials, Dacron fibres and other sailcloth, sheets, plastic 20 litre water containers & clear plastic hoses..... Heeeelp?
    Better use of alternative sources for power - solar photovoltaic panels, better batteries?
    Pluses and minuses - but on the whole, hopefully a better society...
     
  4. tinhorn
    Joined: Jan 2008
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    tinhorn Senior Member

    I agree, although I haven't spent a whole lot of time pondering the issue. The short-term impact will hurt, but I don't see a whole lot of downside to scaling back a bit. It might put the reins on "corpocracy".

    It WILL affect my ability to buy resin, as malasai pointed out, and retired people who like to drive around the country will have to park the land barge, but maybe we'll see fewer throw-away goods in the future.

    If employers ever wake up, we may see more telecommuting, too.
     
  5. Knut Sand
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    Knut Sand Senior Member

    Resin will be expencive.

    But right now we burn it, for practically no use, We wrap around 1300 kg of steel, around 1 person to get him to the job... That's a waste of recourses, a smaller car, cheaper to build, cheaper to run (both with regard to the environment/ Euros). Fill it with 2-3 persons....

    Or as Tinhorn also mentioned telecommunication (meetings).

    Air tickets should be much more expencive, in my opinion...:p

    As a start, we could ge a price of fuel up around 2,5 euros...? It will not stop people, but I surely believe we could use some second thoughts regarding our way of spending pretty much unrewnewable recourses.

    Should not start this...I've work todo today.... Don't get me started...:rolleyes:
     
  6. Guest625101138

    Guest625101138 Previous Member

    That may be true in Europe but grossly understates the situation in North America. A typical run-about car is more like 2500kg. Petrol costs less than USD4 per gallon in USA or CAD1.30 per litre in Canada. Still much cheaper than countries that levy taxes on fuel. Canada and US can still afford to run monster 4WD pick-ups for every day use.

    Rick W.
     
  7. Knut Sand
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    Knut Sand Senior Member

    :eek:

    Scare 1; typical 2500 kgs....

    Scare 2; 4 dollars?/ Gal = 5,8 Nok/ ltr; We have a price of approx 2,2x that (12-13 Nok/ ltr).... (And still it doesn't slow down the use in a significant way...).

    :confused:
     
  8. tinhorn
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    tinhorn Senior Member

    It's well over $4 a gallon now in my area. I bet we see $5 by the end of summer. Thing is, it wasn't always this way. Gasoline WAS a cheap consumable, so we simply consumed it. One person per car, SUVs, driving just for the fun of it. Peak oil? Who ever heard of it?!

    I bet most people are completely unaware of the overall situation - they think it's nothing more than oil company or OPEC greed. Heck, a few months ago, I was one of them.

    A hundred years ago there were as many steam and electric cars as gas. Gas isn't our only option for transportation. Still leaves that whole resin problem, though.
     
  9. masalai
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    masalai masalai

    Do I need to lie about my age? to remind all owners of "high powered vehicles", that it wasn't so long ago that a motor vehicle had to be preceded by a man walking in front, waving a red flag, to warn the reins-man on the "horse and buggies" that a device was approaching that may cause the horses to go berserk in panic....

    Those slower times may be very close..., build a stable and buy a couple of quiet bullocks to haul your 2.5 tons of useless metal...
     
  10. tinhorn
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    tinhorn Senior Member

    It's been done:
     

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  11. masalai
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    masalai masalai

    Yes but, where is the man walking in front with the red flag? - Oh no noisy engine He he he.....
     
  12. charmc
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    charmc Senior Member

    Brian,

    So you've had first hand experience of the guy with the red flag walking in front of your infernal combustion monster? Got to admit, you look good for your age. :p :p
     
  13. charmc
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    charmc Senior Member

    Better planning, maybe not eliminate driving, but eliminate stupid driving across town for a pack of whatever. Cutting back on both speed and nonessential trips could reduce US auto fuel consumption by 30-40%. Phase out the gas guzzlers and cut another 15-20%. That's before any alternative fuel technologies kick in. Powerboaters throttle back, enjoy the beauty of the sea as more than a watery highway to get to the fishing spots or picnic grounds at flank speed.

    We in the US have been overconsuming for way too long. Packaging is an integral ingredient in marketing and a major user of plastics and paper/cardboard. Tiny items are sold in packages 5 - 6 x's the size of the item, then packed in plastic single use bags, creating massive amounts of trash.

    Maybe scarce and costly oil will help us change our world view to one of stewardship, seeking harmony and a smaller impact. Paddling with hands or feet, rowing, sailing, and power cruising in a lightweight narrow mono or multi hull with an engine 1/4 - 1/3 the average power of today's recreational boats ... equal or more satisfaction without as much fuel consumption.

    Many will feel a loss of entitlements ... hopefully more than a few will see the opportunities. In some ways it could be a better quality of life.
     
  14. Meanz Beanz
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    Meanz Beanz Boom Doom Gloom Boom

    Yes, yes, yes get rid of all that damn packaging.... it only makes me curse the manufacture anyway.

    Scooters and small cars... I'm a fan already... the family car is a Honda Jazz, seriously its as big as we need, been expecting silly oil prices for a while.... gunna setup shop scrapping big blingy 4wd's soon :D (SUV's)...

    I reckon we will see more small scale diesel electric on boats.
     

  15. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    Ban the 20th Century! a return to the 18th would be about right! (plus of course all dem forreign devils would be back were dey belong and Britain would rule the waves again!! Much better!! Of course Mas would have to put his 'bracelets' back on but hey that ain't no bad thing!!
     
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