Last post on Apr 01, 2013 at 9:05 AM
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#707 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [gagrice]
by steve_ HOST
Feb 08, 2013 (4:29 pm)
Hard to believe that the stations in Anchorage and Fairbanks don't have it for carbon monoxide reduction purposes. Surely they still aren't using MTBE? Is there a "cold start" exemption? Ah, sounds like Frank Murkowski may have killed it.
Fairbanks gets that nasty ice fog and they don't call the big city Los Anchorage for nothing. The state is even going after wood burners in Fairbanks. Where's Xwes?
#708 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [steve_]
Feb 08, 2013 (4:38 pm)
Probably has to do with the high cost of shipping Ethanol to the state. Fairbanks does get pretty bad in the Winter with all the cars running. I never noticed it bad in Anchorage. Of course I lived at the top of Rabbit Creek Rd. most of the time. And then way up the Eagle River valley for only a couple years. MTBE was only a problem when stored in underground tanks if memory serves. It got into the ground water and killed everyone in the vicinity.
#709 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [gagrice]
by steve_ HOST
Feb 08, 2013 (4:42 pm)
Gee, too bad all the Delta barley farms went bust; they could have switched to corn and supplied it locally.
#710 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [steve_]
Feb 08, 2013 (5:23 pm)
season is too short for corn. That is why they grew barley. You can make alcohol from barley. But what a waste putting it in your gas tank.
#711 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [gagrice]
by steve_ HOST
Feb 08, 2013 (7:44 pm)
The $100 million joke on the taxpayer was that you couldn't grow barley either. Not one of Jay Hammond's better ideas.
The latest blizzard (Nemo?) is bound to make gas prices jump even more. I knew I should have gassed up the other day.
#712 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [steve_]
Feb 08, 2013 (8:03 pm)
All ours are full. Not much chance of a blizzard. Though we are getting hail as I am typing. Snow just 1000 feet higher than I am. Our gas is always high because everything in CA is more expensive. Except oranges and avocados.
#713 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [steve_]
Feb 11, 2013 (12:01 pm)
Actually, you can grow barley, and pretty well at that, but the problem back in the 1980's is that they hadn't developed a strain of barley that was suited to the northern climate. Now, we have such a variety (Sunshine Barley), developed right here at UAF.
As with corn, it isn't that barley couldn't be grown here, it's that it couldn't be grown reliably from year to year. An additional issue with Delta is that the bison herds, which are of the plains variety, love open areas (as opposed to forest, which is what is native to the Delta area) and they love barley. So, you can see where this is going....
Be that as it may, it would be a complete travesty to use any crop harvested in this state for something as inefficient as ethanol production. The growing season is short and food is a precious commodity.
We get poor enough fuel economy in the winter as it is, the last thing we need is another hit by including ethanol in the fuel. The "smog" we see here in the winter months is primarily due to the temperature inversions, which can be quite severe at times, holding all of the emissions down low to the ground. The vast majority of the contributing emissions are from space heating devices (boilers, stoves, etc). Automobiles used to be a prime source, but emissions from them are vastly cleaner than even as recent as fifteen years ago.
Fairbanks even ended its emissions testing program a few years ago, despite the ongoing winter air quality concerns.
#714 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [xwesx]
Feb 11, 2013 (12:39 pm)
Still a lot of people heating with wood and oil I would imagine. That is not the cleanest form of heat. With our atrocious propane price here I use a lot of wood. Of course that is not cheap this time of year. I bought in the Summer at about half the current going price.
#715 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [gagrice]
Feb 11, 2013 (12:47 pm)
Shoot, if I lived in that area, I'm not sure I would even heat!
Yes, there's a lot of wood burning. Fortunately, the price of oil has encouraged many (most?) folks to keep their heating appliances in top shape, so oil particulates are pretty low. Wood burners are probably the biggest contributor to the air quality problem because it is so easy to burn wood inefficiently, and it is still inexpensive enough that many folks aren't willing to put in the extra up-front investment to increase the burn quality. The same can be said for coal, I suppose, but there is very little coal use here except in the power plants, which are equipped for their fuel source.
We have limited access to gaseous fuels like propane or natural gas, and both are very expensive. There is some use, but it isn't wide spread outside of the city of Fairbanks.
#716 of 795 Re: $4.00/gal is back... [xwesx]
Feb 11, 2013 (1:17 pm)
I remember the propane bills in Eagle River during the winter. Easy $500 per month to heat our big log home. I use a high end Avalon insert in my fireplace here. It is pretty efficient and sealed to keep the particulates out of the house. I would imagine you have hot water baseboard heat. Which is so much better than our forced air furnaces. We have needed heat here since November. At noon today it is 45 degrees at my house. A full 20 degrees below normal. Of course the liars at the NWS will post their in the sun figures. Our home is well insulated which helps. We have used the heat more this year than AC. I think we turned on the AC maybe 10 days all summer long. Which was the coldest July ever recorded.