Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Is a CNG Car in Your Future?

Compressed Natural Gas or CNG for short is becoming a viable option for people in search of lower their cost of transportation and providing a clean alternative to the pollution from gasoline engines. CNG vehicles have been around for a while. Many trucks and buses throughout the world run on CNG.

The problem for the everyday consumer is where do I get CNG to refill my vehicle. Great news regarding this has been made. For homes with who have natural gas, there are conversion kits to allow for home refueling safely. In California and Arizona, CNG refilling stations are becoming more available so that when you are away from home you can fill up.

CNG conversion kits for cars are an inexpensive way to convert your gasoline engine to run on CNG. Some car manufacturers such as Honda already have a Civic that runs on CNG without going through the conversion. It was specifically designed to burn CNG from the factory. CNG cars kits not only convert gasoline engines to run on compress gas but still have the capability to run on gasoline as well.

Even though the heating value of CNG (also known as its energy content) is significantly lower than that of gasoline, compressed natural gas has excellent octane properties. Using high compression rates ratios in CNG cars as it sole fuel source improves the combustion efficiency.

CNG car kits are required to be certified by the EPA. So if you are looking for an aftermarket kit, make sure you read the labels that the kits have met the stringent EPA testing to be certified. Remember, compressed gas is combustible which is why you want your gas tanks, lines and delivery system to meet these standards. If your kit has been certified by the EPA, then you should be able to use CNG safely.

You may find this interesting. CNG refueling requires the transfers of natural gas to be under pressure which means it can be set up as either slow-fill or fast-fill. Just what does that mean? Slow-fill is pretty cool because you can drive it into your garage and provided you have setup correctly, you can refill your car there. Slow-fill generally uses overnight refueling and uses less costly refueling station equipment than fast-fill. Fast-fill refueling time (normally a service station) is only slightly longer than than when you use gasoline to fill up your tank.

Lots of research is under way to improve the use and mixture of CNG. Presently, CNG vehicles apparently are designed to run on an expansive range of methane content. Consider that in the near future manufacturers may design vehicles that can support detailed higher methane contents. If this happens, it opens up a whole new way for producers and marketers of CNG to have the flexibility to develop and blend fuels suitable for those specifications. You could even produce methane for a location and climate. This would give retailers the flexibility to fine-tune fuel dispenser labels accordingly, depending upon the time of the year.

Is a CNG vehicle or CNG car conversion kit in your future? The current price of gasoline even though the world price of oil is beginning to recede, is still a viable option to those current high prices. The clean burning of CNG in areas where auto pollutants are a problem makes CNG a reasonable alternative.

CNG Cars - The New Mahindra Renault Logan

The New Mahindra Renault Logan CNG Cars
Give yourself the Green Advantage

 The 1.6 ltr Mahindra Renault engine is ideal for CNG Cars. It is built for a longer life and gives fantastic mileage without loss of power.

 The Logan CNG Car Kit is provided by Landy Renzo of Italy, a global leader in CNG Technology.

The Logan has the biggest boot amongst all sedans. Even when fitted with a CNG tank, it has enough space to bring home as much as you need to. It beats all corners as far as leg room and head room go. The seat is quite easily the widest in its class and comes fitted with three headrests.

The Logan CNG Cars are as easy to maintain as its petrol variant. And to prove that, the Logan 2 year warranty remains uncompromised on the CNG Logan.

Drive on:
The Logan CNG Cars tank has a storage capacity of 12 Kg which means you can drive long distances without worrying about refueling.

Comfort maximized:
Ergonomic seating, coupled with a suspension that literally irons out the bumps on the road, makes even the most strenuous drives comfortable. The Renault engine in the Logan is specially designed to make city driving hassle-free and smooth. It handles both heavy traffic and the freeway with equal ease.
Go Green with the Logan CNG Cars and watch the rest of the world go green with envy.  Presenting the CNG Logan

It is time to go green with the Logan CNG Cars. It cuts down on running costs and is also environment friendly. It runs on green fuel so it can put green money back into your life.

Run On Green, Save On Green
The Logan’s ability to stretch your Rupee on the road is already legendary. Logan CNG cars build the legend further with an astoundingly low running cost of only Rs. 1.25/km. So now competitors are left far behind on the road, and you’re left with a fatter wallet too.

Run Green, Stay Green
Your bank balance is not the only beneficiary of the CNG Logan’s virtues. Along with running costs it also cuts down on emissions, keeping the world the way we all like it. Green.

Mahindra Renault
Mahindra is India’s first and foremost manufacturer of utility vehicles. Renault is a world leader in automotive technology and the only automaker to have eight cars with the maximum 5 star Euro NCAP rating. One brings a reputation for quality, durability and reliability while the other brings world beating experience on the F1 circuit, along with an emphasis on innovative, safe and environment friendly technologies. Together they are Mahindra Renault. A partnership that has successfully launched the Logan and won numerous industry accolades in the process.

Lpg/cng Cars Can Reduce Pollution

Increasing fuel price and pollution are the major concern in with today’s auto industry. We can neither stop using car and other automobiles to solve this issue. What we can do is to think of other options that will not only lighten our pockets but also reduce the pollution control to a larger extent.

Government is taking initiative to protect our nature, in certain states they have introduced LPG version of fuel intake and made it a mandatory for all the public transport vehicles. Government should ensure that all the public transportation should run on either on LPG or CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) across the country.

Various Indian car makers are also rolling out with both LPG and CNG version. Some of CNG version cars are Ford Ikon Flair a dual-fuel variant that can run both on petrol and CNG, Mitsubishi Lancer, Chevrolet Optra and the cars with LPG versions are Maruti’s Omni and WagonR Duo, which is receiving a very good response. Hyundai is also preparing come up with its LPG version for Santro soon. Tata motors are also expected to join the race and will be launching it LPG variant shortly but presently they offer authorized CNG kit fitment with their dealers for their ‘Indica’ and ‘Indigo’ model.

But there are some issues faced with the LPG/CNG users that prevent others from opting for the LPG/CNG kits. Some car owners are not well versed with the knowledge of converting a car into LPG and fall prey to officials of Transport Department by paying huge some of money as fine. Some kits are authorization like lack of warranty, safety features leading to the poor performance of the vehicle as well as blow up your car.

One should be extremely careful while opting for a LPG/CNG kits, make sure that you visit an authorized dealer with a legal certificate with numbers and other details as the same will be verified by the checking officer The authorized dealers fit the equipment and issue a certificate giving the numbers on the kit and other details. The car owners have to take their vehicle to the Transport authorities and show them the certificate issued by the dealer. The officials verify the same and make an affirmation in the RC book.

Comparing LPG with CNG

LPG version is always the first choice as it is easily available compared to CNG due to it limited availability and can be found only in 42 cities. LPG is also cheaper and easy to store than the CNG. This means that CNG is the best option for the commercial vehicles whereas; LPG fits perfectly in every sense to private vehicles.
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Natural Gas Powered Cars in Da House!!!!

The Arab Oil Embargo happened in 1973, and today we are still as dependant on oil as ever.  The point being that after 35 years we are pretty much in the same position; freaking out about oil.  Now technology is playing catch-up at an exponential pace.  The different alternative fuel cars out there are beginning to gain momentum.  There are Hybrids, Ethanol powered, Vegetable Oil powered, Battery powered, and Natural Gas powered car roaming the streets.

We know that the U.S. consumes 21 million barrels per day of oil.  As a country we produce about 4.86 million barrels and Import the rest from other countries.  Unfortunately our usage exceeds our production.  And as far as reserves go we are number 11 on that list.  But there is another fuel source that is hardly talked about.

The United States has the 4th largest natural gas reserve in the world (  So why are we as a country still so reliant on oil?  Beats me….we use natural gas to cook our food, dry our clothes, and heat our bath water.  It would seem logical to use compressed natural gas (CNG) to power our automobiles.  But alas; there must be some unwritten agreement out there against natural gas powered cars.  Well there is at least one automaker with an open mind!

Honda continues to be the only Automobile manufacturer to sell a natural gas powered car on U.S. soil. “Only about 1,000 of the more than 300,000 Civic subcompacts that Honda sells every year in the USA are the natural-gas GX version (” That’s a tiny number of CNG cars.  The negatives must outweigh the positives…..Right……Wrong!!!!

Here are some of the advantages of a natural gas powered car.

1)      Natural gas powered cars get as good as gas mileage as the regular gasoline powered cars, and in many cases the MPG is better.  The Civic GX gets up to 39 MPG on the Freeway!
2)      Price per gallon is cheaper. On average…..natural gas is much cheaper than regular gasoline.
3)      The little Honda Civic GX produces fewer emissions then the Toyota Prius; making it the cleanest internal combustion engine on the market today (

Now it’s time to air the negatives associated with natural gas powered automobiles.

1)      CNG cars are a couple thousand dollars more expensive than their counterparts.  It does cost money to be on the cutting edge of technology!  On average the GX is only 2 grand more than the Hybrid.
2)       The trunk space is slightly smaller due to the natural gas tank and associated parts.
3)      There are not very many gas stations around that sell CNG.  In fact gas stations across the nation are well behind those that sell E85 or other biofuels.

So now the negative really do not look that bad.  And couple that with the fact that there are huge rebates available when purchasing a CNG car; and hybrids really do not look like our saving grace.  And of course I have save the biggest and best news for last!  Honda has invested some cash in a Canada based company called FuelMaker Corp. which sells natural gas refilling stations for your home.  Now you don’t have to worry about finding a station in the real world.  And the best part is that it costs a measly $1.25 per gallon (!  I cannot wait to buy one of these CNG cars….as soon as I sell my Hummer….any interested buyers?
Thomas Rosquin

Green Cars - A great push for the environment

Often, there is a change in people’s purchasing style that creates different benefits that were not the initial intention.  This is the case with the change in people’s attitudes toward more efficient green cars that are filling the streets.

With gas prices rising the past year after peaking at $4.00, may people are flocking to high MPG  vehicles and getting out of their gas guzzling SUVs.  The side benefit to this change in vehicle demand is the addition of many green cars on the street.  Green cars like hybrid vehicles, compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles and electric vehicles (EVs) have a definite benefit to the environment.

Higher MPG cars like the Honda Fit & Civic, the Toyota Corolla and Yaris, and the Ford Focus are also considered green cars.  They all get above 30 MPG and also emit extremely low levels of  pollutants into the air.  In fact, these vehicles with their catalytic converters are some of the greenest cars in history.

Hybrid vehicles have become a badge of honor for environmentalalists.  These green cars like the Honda Civic Hybrid & Insight, the Toyota Prius, and the Ford Escape Hybrid also have very low emissions due to the addition of electric motors to a small gas engine.  These cars average over 40+ MPG with the Prius coming in at 50 MPG.

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) cars, such as the Honda Civic GX are the lowest pollution emitting vehicles on the road.  These green cars get only decent gas mileage but the cost to fill up a CNG car is very small because of the price of natural gas.  The  issue with these vehicles is access to CNG filling stations in the local areas.  But that is changing. CNG filling stations are popping up all over because of the demand for CNG cars.

Electric Vehicles (EVs) are the latest addition to the bunch.  EVs are the greenest of all the cars available today.  They add an electric motor and battery to a transmission which offeres excellent performance.  When technology ages, the price of these green cars will drop dramatically, and with the growing battery technology, the distance these cars will be able to  travel will also get better.

As fuel prices have increased over the past year, the side benefit has been an increase in demand for higher MPG vehicles.  These green cars are much more efficient with less pollution for the environment.  This proves that people must be hit in their pocketbook in order for change to occur.

For more information on green cars, visit Clean Green Earth or Green Cars

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

War in Iraq, George W. Bush

Accomplished? On May 1, President Bush triumphantly proclaimed the end of combat operations, and he did it with a theatrical flourish.  Attired in a Navy flight suit, the former Air National Guard trainee (Bush had actually cut short his flight training to participate in a political campaign) landed ceremoniously on the deck of the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln off San Diego.  Bush emerged from the plane under a banner stretched across the carrier's super structure. "Mission Accomplished" the banner exulted. "We have difficult work to do in Iraq," the president said. "Parts of that country remain dangerous...The War on Terror continues." But, he went on, "In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed."

But a growing opposition thought otherwise.  Rumsfeld had assured Bush that the war could be fought on the cheap.  Once the productive Iraqi oil fields were up and running, they would more defray the costs of the war and the occupation.  (As of spring 2008, Iraqi oil production was still below prewar output.)  A streamlined military force brandishing high-tech equipment would be all that was needed.  American forces could be reduced and hand off the job to Iraqis.

When Lieutenant General Eric Shinseki, the Army chief of staff, told Congress that "something in the order of several hundred thousand" military personnel would be needed, Rumsfeld was outraged.  The Army's top officer was hounded into retirement.  The Pentagon leadership pointedly refused to attend the customary retirement ceremony.

And Americans were dying.  Bremer and the CPA, mostly made up of young and inexperienced recent college graduates but with impeccable political credentials, holed up in the heavily fortified and protected area of Baghdad, the Green Zone.

Beyond, chaos and danger reigned.  Snipers picked off individual soldiers.  Roads were sown with mines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), which were designed to blow up and destroy the unprotected undercarriage of military vehicles when they passed over.  Personnel carriers were only lightly armored, another money-saving policy.  Besides, heavy armor was unnecessary, it was thought, with Iraq conquered and the population friendly.  Troops took to fashioning their own armor from scrap metal or persuaded families back home to provide it to them.

The Bombing of a Shrine. When Baghdad fell, Saddam Hussein was nowhere to be found.  As the coalition rounded up other former government leaders on their "Most Wanted" list, the supreme leader's whereabouts remained a mystery.  Then, seven months after his statue fell in December 2003, a disheveled and filthy Hussein was discovered cowering in a tiny subterranean dugout -- a "spider hole," his captors called it -- near his birthplace of Tikrit.  The all-powerful dictator who once had thirty-seven palaces was living in a few cubic feet underneath a mud hut.  Bush immediately went on television to trumpet his capture, "I say to the Iraqi people, 'You will not have to live in fear of Saddam ever again.'"  But elsewhere, there was little to crow about.

Even the commander of U.S. ground forces acknowledged that a "low-key, guerrilla-type war" was underway.  Suicide bombers blew themselves up in marketplaces, city squares, offices, buses, and crowded streets, often taking as many as 100 fellow Iraqis with them.  In one horrifying instance, 140 Shiites enjoying a Shia festival were blown up.  Terrorist explosives reduced to rubble one of the most treasured shrines of Shia Islam, the Golden Mosque of Samarra with its gleaming dome, setting off a countrywide wave of violence between Sunnis and Shiites.  Trying to quell the rising insurgency that was morphing into a civil war.  U.S. troops fought pitched battles with Shiite militia in the teeming Sadr City district of Baghdad.  A month later, they were fighting Sunni insurgents for the city of Falluja.

Misled by the Iraq National Congress's belief that Iraqis were united by their hatred of Hussein, American leaders had vastly underestimated the long standing enmity between the rival Muslim factions.  Meanwhile Bremer had undertaken to exterminate root and branch all vestiges of Hussein rule.  He outlawed Hussein's Baath party and barred all members from the government payroll, even low-level clerks and drivers who had joined the party simply to protect their jobs.  "DeBaathification" eliminated much of the trained bureaucracy and brought normal government function to a standstill so that even mailing a letter became difficult.

Another Bremer edict disbanded the Iraqi army.  Four hundred thousand angry trained soldiers were suddenly turned onto the streets with no jobs or income, to demonstrate or bitterly join the insurgency-where, at least, they would be fed. 

The army was the only organization that could bring any kind of order to the country and perhaps stop the widespread looting, Bremer's predecessor, an appalled General Garner noted.  "You can get rid of an army in a day, Jerry," he told Bremer.  "It takes years to build one."  (Bremer was to claim afterward that he didn't disband the army; it had simply "dissolved." And he said he took his action only after consulting the Pentagon.)

Despite these setbacks and growing antiwar sentiment, Bush was elected for a second term in 2004 and promised to prosecute the war until "victory."  After the election, Powell went to the White House and submitted his resignation.  He had, he insisted, always intended to serve only one term.  Bush made no effort to keep him.

"We had a good and fulsome discussion," Powell said in a press briefing afterward.  "We came to the mutual agreement that it would be appropriate for me to leave at this time."  Washington interpreted that as diplomatic double speak for "We aired our disagreements in loud and angry voices."

Where are those WMDs? The bits of broken crockery that the "Pottery Barn Rule" had predicted continued to accumulate.  David Kay, named to head a diligent search to find those hidden weapons of mass destruction, failed to turn up a single specimen after two years of looking.  Nor could he uncover any evidence of any advanced plans to develop them.  The best he could document were a few vials of anthrax powder kept in scientists' home refrigerators as souvenirs after the first Gulf War.

The aluminum tubes said to be designed for enriching and weaponizing uranium were actually for use in unforbidden short-range missiles.  The deal to buy yellow-cake uranium from the African nation of Niger, mentioned by Bush in his State of the Union address, was a hoax.  No evidence could be found of supposed meetings in Prague between Al Qaeda operatives and Iraqi diplomats.

Then came the revelation -- with graphic, almost stomach-turning photos -- that American soldiers had mistreated and tortured prisoners in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison.  The Congressional cry to take the troops out grew to a roar.  Democratic candidates swept the House and Senate in the 2006 elections.  With Bush's popularity sinking to the low 20s in the polls, other Republicans stumbled over each other in haste to distance themselves from the president.  Rumsfeld was finally fired, and the Iraq Study Group, an elite panel of Washington wisemen co-chaired by former Secretary of State James Baker, normally a Bush acolyte, deemed the Iraq situation "grave and deteriorating."

Instead of withdrawing troops, however, a defiant Bush increased them.  The "surge" of 30,000 reinforcements announced in 2007 was supposedly to allow the shaky, Shiite-controlled Iraqi government time and cover to solve contentious issues--such as sharing oil revenue and regional autonomy--and to train a viable army.

"As they stand up, we will stand down," Bush repeated, almost like a mantra.  In the new army's first test of standing up, Prime Minister Nouri Kamal al-Maliki ordered an attack on Shiite militias in the port city of Basra.  More than 1,000 recruits deserted or fled the battlefield and had to be rescued by U.S. troops and airpower, with a ceasefire brokered by Iran.

Meanwhile, the country that Bush still insisted was the front fine in the "war on terror" lay in shambles, along with the lives of twenty-five million citizens.  Except for the Kurdish-held north and the "Green Zone" headquarters of the coalition, no part of the embattled nation could be considered secure.  (Later, in the spring of 2008, incessant rocket attacks shattered the supposed safety of the Green Zone.)  Cities cleared of resistance by coalition offensives frequently fen back into chaos when the troops moved on.  Historic Baghdad, the fabled city of flying carpets and Arabian Nights, was a nightmare of suicide bombing, IEDS, and ruins, with one million impoverished residents in 'Sadr City,' a Shiite enclave and a law unto itself.

More than one and a half million Iraqis, by official estimate, had fled, most of them huddled in squalid quarters in the unwelcoming cities of neighboring Jordan and Syria.  Another estimated two million were displaced within the country, fleeing wrecked homes to crowd in with relatives or live in makeshift tent villages.  Much of the educated population of what had once been the most developed country in the Middle East had decamped, including 12,000 of the country's 34,000 physicians.  Living conditions for those remaining were abysmal. Whole neighborhoods were without adequate sewage or water.

In July 2007, U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker told Congress that most Iraqi cities had electricity only one to two hours a day.  On the fifth anniversary of the war, the nation's electric grid was still producing less than 5,000 daily megawatts of power, less than when the war started.  Iraqis faced a scorching summer when  11,000 megawatts would be the daily minimum.  In oil-rich Iraq, oil to power generating plants was in short supply.  The bulk of it was being shipped abroad, the Iraqi government's only source of revenue.  And an estimated 35 percent of the population was unemployed.

The repeatedly fought-over city of Falluja, west of Baghdad, was a classic example of the war's devastation.  Once a thriving city of 450,000, its surviving population was estimated in 2007 at fewer than 50,000.  Eighty percent of the buildings had been damaged in the fighting; half of them were completely destroyed.  Half of the homes were gone.  Those that remained were largely without water, electricity, or sewage.  There were no operating schools.  Buildings had been stripped by looters, including floor tiles and window frames.  Once Falluja had been known as "the city of mosques," with more than 200 glittering temples of worship.  Only 60 remained intact.

The estimates of "collateral damage"-the Pentagon euphemism for civilian and noncombatant casualties-varied wildly.  In 2007, the Iraqi Ministry of Health gave a low figure of 151,000 Iraqis killed from war-related causes between February 2003 and June 2006.  A survey published in the British medical journal Lancet estimated 600,000 "excess" deaths-those above the normal attrition of population-for the period 2003-2006.  An Opinion Research Bureau report estimated the war had caused 946,000 to 1,033,000 violent deaths.  In one survey, researchers asked individual Iraqis if they had a civilian relative or friend who had been a war casualty.  Eighty percent of those interviewed said yes.

One unlamented casualty was Hussein.  After a tumultuous trial marked by raucous shouting at the judges of the special tribunal, the onetime strong man was unceremoniously hanged for 'crimes against humanity' on December 30, 2006.  Reactions predictably ranged from cheering to anger.  And yet the fighting went on.  And on.

In December 2005, Bush at last admitted that some intelligence on which the war had been fought was "wrong."  But so what?  Bush insisted that the war was worthwhile and the decision to bring down Hussein was "the right thing to do."  He would have made the same decision even if he had known more.  Powell, the obedient soldier, kept silent while writing his memoirs and giving motivational speeches.  But in 2007, he finally apologized for the United Nations speech.  "The intelligence I was given turned out to be inaccurate," he told Barbara Walters.  "That will always remain a blot on my record."

The Historic Record. In 1971, Henry Kissinger asked Chinese foreign minister Zhou En-lai the historical impact of the French Revolution of 1789.  "Too soon to tell," En-lai responded.

In the lame duck months of Bush's presidency, in the midst of an election campaign, and with his popularity ratings cratering, by En-lai's reckoning, it is at least 200 years too soon to assess Bush's impact on history, and especially the Iraq invasion.

But writers, historians, politicians, office-seekers, and the world are trying already to size up the eight Bush years.  Some contend that Bush is simply "an amiable dunce" (as Clark Clifford dubbed Ronald Reagan), readily manipulated by Vice President Cheney, former Secretary Rumsfeld, and his political Svengali Karl Rove.  They say Bush is a president out of the loop, whose priorities were cutting brush on his ranch in Crawford, Texas, and getting a good night's sleep.  Many Europeans share that view and believe Bush has destroyed the world's trust in the United States--trust that will take decades to rebuild.  Others regard the Bush administration as visionary-the first to recognize an impending "clash of civilizations," and begin to prepare America for it.  And meanwhile, to fight a preemptive war before the terrorist enemy got stronger.

How will the decision to invade Iraq be judged 50, 100, 200 years from now?  How will Bush's record be written in the twenty-third century?  Where is Zhou En-lai when we need him?

The above is an excerpt from the book Failures Of The Presidents: From The Whiskey Rebellion And War Of 1812 To The Bay Of Pigs And War In Iraq
by Thomas J. Craughwell with M. William Phelps
Published by Publisher;  September 2008;$19.95US/$21.95CAN; 978-1-59233-299-1
Copyright © 2008 Author

Author Bio
Thomas J. Craughwell is the author of several books, most recently How the Barbarian Invasions Shaped the Modern World (Fair Winds Press, 2008) and Stealing Lincoln's Body (Harvard University Press, 2007). He has written articles on history, religion, politics, and popular culture for the Wall Street Journal, American Spectator, and U.S. News & World Report. He lives in Bethel, Connecticut.

Journalist, lecturer, and  historian M. William Phelps is the author of eleven books, including his most recent, Nathan Hale: The Life and Death of America’s First Spy (Thomas Dunne Books, 2008). He lives in Vernon, Connecticut.

Oil Prices and War

Oil prices are going up, up and up. They are expected to go up to 200 Dollars a barrel. Every one of us who thinks about this has different perspective. Consumers blame the government for allowing the prices. Some blame the oil producers while others blame the users for rampant consumption. How about the Iraq war and oil prices?

I have not been able to find out the amount of oil that is consumed in the war in Iraq everyday. Similarly the peacekeeping efforts in Afghanistan must be consuming lot of oil everyday. Why does the US not stop the war and save oil so that prices can come down? US government has huge resources and can buy oil at any price to continue with the war. But what about an ordinary citizen- how is he/she going to survive?

India and China are being blamed for increasing oil prices. Imagine what will happen when other countries become prosperous. The whole of Africa is waiting for prosperity. Lot many South American and smaller Asian nations are waiting to grow. What will happen to oil prices when these countries begin using more oil?

Clearly the aim should be to use less oil and develop other energy sources. Gone are the days of oil guzzlers. And most importantly the war must be stopped to save oil. Has any estimate been made about the oil consumed in the World war Second? Why do not we stop exporting democracy to other countries and take care of our citizens first?

The world leaders do not act for the good of the ordinary person. They only promise to do that during elections. After the elections get over the leaders act to satisfy their own ego and prove to the world that they were right. This causes most misery in the world. Unless this senseless war is stopped oil cannot be saved.

Oil Spills? Come On - Can’T That Be A Thing Of The Past?

We now have oil tankers with dual hulls but they don’t make all of them have it because too much money. They could have another boat in front dragging lines or something to make sure the tanker behind it won’t hit anything, but again too much money. There really is absolutely no reason for an oil spill! Why can’t we make these companies use dual hull barges and make them use a second boat to make sure that it won’t hit anything? Am I missing something is there really another reason why a tanker should ever spill oil?

Oil Pollution: A Major Concern Affecting the Environment

The spilling of either refined or crude petroleum into the environment is one ecological disaster that unfortunately often happens these days. Almost every passing day we come across reports stating accidental spills from ships which lead to destruction of precious underwater plant and animal life in the vicinity. Not only do fish inside such murky waters get affected, very often birds which depend on the area for their food, also get affected. There have also been instances when the coral reef has been badly damaged due to oil pollution. Fortunately marine toxicologists are working overtime nowadays to tackle the problem and come out with solutions.

2,000 Penguins Killed in Southern Brazil Oil Spill

Approximately 2,000 penguins were recently found dead in two southern Brazilian states, victims of an oil spill from an unknown source. Hundreds of other animals have been found covered and debilitated in the oil. The surviving animals were in such bad state that additional veterinarians and biologists from other parts of Brazil have been sent in to help in the recovery effort. Approximately 30-40 animals per day are being cleaned in a very time consuming process. Feathers covered in oil cannot keep birds warm and dry. The oil also weighs the birds down to where Penguins can’t swim and sea birds can’t fly and as a result, they drown or freeze to death since it is currently winter in the Southern hemisphere. As of yet, the ship responsible for the spill has not been identified.

War On Drugs

If we are really winning the war on drugs, then why does it continue to grow? It seems we hear about so much drugs being found yet even more is still being distributed. Are we really getting the big drug places in Columbia and other countries or are we being given token factories to make it look like we are making a difference?

Drugs? Health? Money? Life!

Drugs are very harmful for people who eat it. If people trying to taste them, you will be found of them.

Although people know the drugs are bad for their health, they still smoke them, because what? Because they feel comfortable by the drugs.

Many people don’t believe they will be found of drugs if they taste them, so, some of the people who taste it are found of them, this is the bunch of people who likes the drugs.
Drugs take a large amount of money. People maybe rich before they smoke drugs, but, they would become poor if they smoke too much drugs, drugs are like the God of Death, who comes to reduce the life of yours. You will reduce the lifetime if you smoke too much drugs, you will be unhealthy. So, people shouldn’t smoke drugs.

If you want a longer life, DON’T SMOKE DRUGS!

War on Drugs or a War on Race?

The failed so called "war on drugs" is an issue that is being ignored by our presidential wannabes. This "war" has always targeted minority groups and produces astounding statistics. More than 70% of those incarcerated for drug offences are Black or Latino. More astounding is the fact that the African American community is estimated at 15% of the national drug users, yet make up 37% of the arrest! While our current President is busy making new wars here, there and everywhere – maybe the next President should be thinking about dealing with some of our current "Wars" before claiming a new one.

The War on Drugs and the Victims

Many countries around the world are fighting a battle against the problem of rampant drug abuse. Increased policing has resulted in many major victories in the worldwide war on drugs. Many countries have also come up with stricter laws in order to stop this menace. Although a lot of things have been done in order to stop drug abuse, a lot still needs to be done. The problem is always growing engulfing a large of victims, thanks to the powerful drug mafia. The key to winning the war on drugs and saving the victims of drug abuse therefore lies in gradually eliminating the drug mafia in different parts of the world.

World War Between Two Religions


World war is already on and it is going on very slowly. But everyone of us knows that the next world war shall be between two religions. Causes may be different, but two religions shall fight. There is no proposal or target before the warring groups that they shall fight and they shall finish one religion. It is impossible and it is also impossible that one religion shall be victorious and shall be writing off the other religion from this world.

We, the people of the world are having day to day information that one groups has turned terrorist and other groups is on the defensive side and is trying to save itself because this terrorist groups never discloses the place where they shall burst and what shall be the type of attack. In spite of all security arrangements, these terrorist groups are attacking and achieving the purpose for which they had decided to join these suicide-squads. These groups have entered every country and they are getting shelter, local information, boarding and lodging and even arms are supplied to them. When they execute their plan, they are given help in hiding themselves and that is the reason, in spite of all security arrangements, these terrorists groups are not being eliminated from the world.

A new type of imperialism is coming forward. There was a time when a trading company entered India and in due course, they could occupy the whole of India and it is on record that they ruled India for one complete century. Now some Muslim countries are on target and there could be hundred and one excuses on the basis of which there shall be attacks and there shall be new governments which shall be run by local people under remote control system. This new type of imperialism is coming forward and they are having the whole of this world as their target. From where they shall start and what shall be their ultimate aims shall be clear before the world within the next two three years and there are chances that some allies shall be controlling the whole of this world and all countries may turn administrative units.

In Iraq we had been told that hundreds of people had been killed and when the allies attacked to set the things right, they also killed innocent people. The people who were earlier in power have been given punishment for their crimes against humanity, but there is none to give punishment to those who too killed thousands of people and none could institute a criminal case against the invaders. This is not justice and the people of the world must realize that all those who kill innocent people must get punishment. But here we have entered an era of ‘might is right’ and now this system shall go on and shall take firm foundations in the world. The weak countries should be ready because they shall be slaves once again though in a direct manner or in an indirect manner.

The world war has started and next step shall be before us within the next two three years when the allies shall be attacking Iran. Some people have started that the allies might be having to establish their imperialism, but some people are telling us that the allies are having an eye on the oils. This doubt has not been declared as false and therefore, it could be one of t he cause of the world war ahead. But all the small countries must be aware of this advancing new imperialism and they must be ready before actual war because this world war shall be more dangerous and deadly and it at all it comes and actually executed with all the arms in hand, we shall be finishing at least half of our population and the people who shall not die shall wait for their death like those who could survive after attack on Japan cities.

None on earth could stop this emerging world war and therefore, we all should be ready to face this world war shall be surpassing all the world wars fought hitherto. And this world war shall be between two religions. The whole people in each groups shall come forward and shall take part in this world war.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Oil, Chávez, War and Terror

A half century ago, Juan Pablo Perez Alfonso, the Venezuelan who started OPEC, said, "Ten years from now, twenty years from now, you will see: oil will bring us ruin . . . Oil is the Devil's excrement." Hugo Chávez, who was an infant when those words were spoken, is now learning their truth.

When Chávez took over Venezuela in 1999, the oil price was under $10 a barrel, which he was able to help spike to $147 by July, 2008, a rise coincident with his oil hegemony in Latin America and political alliances with Iran and Russia to oppose "the evil empire" of America and its "Devil" President George W. Bush.

But by the first days of 2009, the Devil's excrement has hit the fan, so to speak, as oil dipped to $30 a barrel in Caracas, where it must be $90 to balance the budget. Consequently, the power of Chávez has been visibly shaken but it would be a huge miscalculation to count him out.

Often underestimated as a foolish showboat, Chávez has monopolized Venezuela's oil, money, and power for ten years running. His oil price strategy was effective until only a few months ago and it might work again in 2009 -- to short the market of oil supplies, while spurring prices with theatrical threats of war or oil cut-offs.

Since 1999, Chávez has personally shorted the market by over 2 million barrels per day. Instead of increasing Venezuelan production from 3.6mbd in 1998 to the planned 5mbd for today, he reduced production to 2.4mbd, which reduced world oil supply just as China and India were coming on line with new demand.

By getting Ali Rodriguez, his co-conspirator in a 1992 coup attempt, appointed president of OPEC, Chávez pushed oil producers into his price-gouging strategy and soon had OPEC also shorting the market (Previous to Chávez, Saudi Arabia had tamped down the price hawks in OPEC).

But his most astounding achievement was spiking the ìpolitical risk premiumî paid for oil through threats of war, which can be found by searching for the words "Chávez + War + U.S." in Google, where no less than 7,300,000 stories pop up for review. When oil approached $70 a barrel in 2006, Saudi Energy Minister Ali al-Naimi opined that the war talk accounted for 40% of the oil price. The price of oil has little to do with supply and demand, as al-Naimi saw it.

Wall Street doubts about al-Naimi's analysis shattered as the oil price soared over $100 in March of 2008 coincident with threats from Iran about developing nuclear weapons, wiping Israel off the map and closing the Gulf of Hormuz (where 15mbd are shipped every day); plus threats from Venezuela about cutting off U.S. deliveries, buying $4 billion of Russian weapons to thwart an imagined U.S. invasion, and threatening war against U.S. anti-drug activities in Colombia or if the U.S. did anything provocative toward Bolivia, Nicaragua, Cuba, Iran or Hamas.

In May, 2008, the oil guru Arjun N. Murti of Goldman Sachs predicted a "super spike" where oil would pierce $200. In July, when oil hit $147, Wall Street thought he was right. But he was not. When a Commodity Futures Trading Commission report showed in September, 2008, that speculative bets by index funds didn't push oil prices up, the power of Chávez's oil price gouging strategy was clear but ignored: Wall Street and Washington had already turned toward a much larger looming crisis with the banks and the worst recession since the 1930s.

The global recession of economic activity cut the legs out of the oil price which sank $100 in 100 days to about $40 a barrel by the turn of the year. This put Chávez in a huge quandary. He's got to get the price up to the $80 level or suffer huge consequences in Venezuela where he employs every other person in the country. If Chávez loses the referendum in March that allows him to run for president for life, things could get dicey for him in Venezuela.

Barack Obama, who has other things on his mind, is all Chávez is thinking about. Obama, Chávez says, is the same as Bush, so the war to destroy capitalism and U.S. power must go on. Chávez, who is more heavily armed than anyone outside the Pentagon on this hemisphere, wants a confrontation with Obama to build his support back home -- the same trick Fidel Castro has worked with ten American presidents in a row.

When Israel began bombing the Gaza strip, Chávez joined his strategic partner, Iran's Ahmadinejad, in defending Hamas and condemning Israel and its supporter, the U.S.  But this time, the threat to cut off oil flowing through the Gulf of Hormuz and oil flowing from Venezuela to the U.S., upped the price by only a few dollars a barrel and only for one day.

The unknown factor is whether the one unused weapon in the arsenal of Ahmadinejad and Chávez will be used before they are ousted. That is the weapon Fidel Castro invited to Cuba in 1962 and which almost caused a nuclear war. Can Obama deal as effectively with Ahmadinejad and Chávez as Kennedy dealt with Khrushchev and Castro in 1962? That, as Joe Biden predicted in the campaign, may be the "test" Obama will face from Chávez.

The Myth of the Oil Crisis

There are some things most people today know about oil.

  • Global oil output is going to plummet
  • Prices are going to rise forever
  • The transition to alternative energy will be long and painful
  • There will be more ‘oil wars’ and industrial civilization may collapse
  • Oil and gas will cause catastrophic climate change

The problem is that these ideas are wrong. Oil ‘ran out’ first in 1885, and perhaps another five times since then. Every time, new finds, new technologies and changes in oil use confounded the pessimists.

Oil prices above $140 per barrel seem to encourage the growing belief that we are approaching ‘peak oil’ and that supply cannot increase any more. But what has changed since 1998 when oil cost $10 a barrel? Just that a long period of under-investment in new energy supplies collided with rapid growth in Asia (and, easily forgotten, the USA). It takes years to turn the energy super-tanker around, to develop new oil fields, even though there is plenty in the ground.

There is a real debate over how much oil the world holds. But ideas of a vast conspiracy involving some mix of OPEC, the US government and ‘Big Oil’ to exaggerate oil reserves are fantasy. Official figures are, if anything, somewhat under-stated, and, as recent massive finds in deep water offshore Brazil show, new exploration frontiers still exist. Out-dated environmental moratoria in the USA could be lifted to yield more domestic hydrocarbons. New technologies continue to wring more out of old fields. Most importantly, ‘unconventional’ oil sources hold many times the volumes of conventional oil - from the famous Albertan ‘oil sands’, to fuels from natural gas
, coal and plants, to ‘cooking’ oil out of shales that hold trillions of barrels in the USA alone.

So there is no need to fight ‘resource wars’ to ‘secure’ oil. Invading oil-rich countries is vastly expensive and makes oil supplies less, not more, secure. The Middle East is a growing part of the world economy, not a nest of terrorists, desperate to cut off oil supplies in order to bankrupt themselves and invite vengeance. Propping up dictators in return for energy ‘favours’ is not a valid long-term strategy either. The West, China, India and the oil exporters will gain far more from co-operating on energy, than following the mirage of ‘energy independence’.

Should ‘we’ invest massively to move to a renewable energy system? Well, we already are -- $100 billion in 2006 alone, and not only in the West, but in China, India, Brazil and other rising powers. It’s hard to grow renewable energy any faster. Renewables are clearly a key part of powering the future, and of fighting global warming, but oil (and gas, and coal) are going to be the main sources of energy for decades to come. Capturing the carbon dioxide from fossil fuels, and storing it underground, is entirely practical and should be a major part of climate change policy. Renewable energy and hydrocarbons are not enemies -- we need to use them both.

So the ‘end of oil’ is not imminent -- neither is the collapse of industrial civilization. Even if oil supplies started declining, we could fill the gap with improved efficiency and new energy sources. It’s neither necessary nor desirable for us to go back to some ‘Year Zero’ of pre-modern society. Oil will never ‘run out’; it will be replaced, probably decades hence, by something better. That is the best and most positive reply to fears about the ‘end of oil’.

©2008 Robin M. Mills

Author Bio

Robin M. Mills is an oil industry professional with a background in both geology and economics. Currently, he is Senior Evaluation Manager for Dubai Energy. Previously, he worked for Shell. Mills is a member of the International Association for Energy Economics and Association of International Petroleum Negotiators. He holds a Master's Degree in Geological Sciences from Cambridge University.

Fighting Wars Over Oil?

Did we really only help Kuwait because of oil? Do we really fight in wars over oil? What will happen with humanity if and when we are ever free from our dependence on oil? Will we let countless millions die and say - "It is not our concern"?
Another Persons War

While we’re all focused on Bush and his mad drive for Middle Eastern oil, a character with just as much imperial desire is pushing to secure their own oil supply. Venezuela is one of the major oil producers in the world and has had an internal battle driven by Chavez to nationalize all the oil. Now that it is all under governmental control, this oil is being leveraged as a weapon against uncooperative governments. So when will this charismatic and aggressive ruler starts looking at moving into the neighboring areas with his newly purchased guns and ´copters?
Plans on Making Fuel from Water

The very thought of making fuel from water is something that was confined to sci-fi movies or novels till recently. These days though with the rapid advances that science has made plans on making fuel from water are being researched by scientists from different parts of the world. Hydrogen, which forms a major part of the atomic structure of water, is being increasingly looked upon by today’s scientific community as an answer to the needs of an alternative fuel to gasoline. Although the research into making fuel from water is still at a pretty nascent stage, it could dramatically change our lives for the better if were to become a reality.

The Three Main Types of War-for-Oil Conflicts that May Occur

The types of war-for-oil conflicts that we will likely see are as follows:

There may be conflicts between oil-importing nations and oil-exporting nations when a powerful oil-importing nation deems an oil-exporting nation to have an "unacceptable" political regime. For examples, the current conflicts in Iraq and to a lesser extent, Afghanistan. Iran and Venezuela are potential targets for future US oil wars. Note the never-ending US rhetoric against both countries.

Conflicts between consuming nations are a great possibility. Using their large piles of US dollars, China has been locking up long-term oil contracts in Central Asia, the Middle East and elsewhere. Saudi Arabia, interestingly, has given almost all of their recent long-term oil contracts to China rather than the US. As you can imagine, this has bothered some US-based oil companies.

Civil wars will occur within oil-producing nations to gain control of power and resources. This was the case in Venezuela several years ago and more recently in Nigeria and Iraq. It is increasingly likely to occur in other Middle Eastern nations in the future, as the totalitarian governments supported by the West (in exchange for favorable treatment on oil supplies) begin to lose control over those they rule.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A study on Activity of Titas Gas Transmission & Distribution Company ltd. (TGTDCL), Bangladesh( Part-4)

2.5.5 Operation [10].
Inspections of operational works are:
 Co-ordination of pigging programs
 Cathodic protection readings
 Foreign crossing inspections
 Daily reading as required
 Co-ordinate R. O. W. surveillance

2.5.6 Maintenance and repair [10].
 Pump and compressor preventive maintenance and repair
 Pipeline repairs
 Valve maintenance and repair

2.5.7 Inspect the pipeline integrity programs 

Pipeline integrity programs are very important part of both pipeline operation and maintenance procedures. There are several functions that are required to form a complete pipeline integrity program, such as:
 Schedule pressure testing programs
 Annual river crossing profiles
 Pipeline coating assessment programs
 Depth of cover surveys
 Internal inspection surveys [10].

2.5.8 Inspection the Preparation for Welding

Safety regulations require the welding operation be protected from weather condition that would impair the quality of the welding. Before beginning the welding, welding surface must be clean and free of any material that may be detrimental to the welding. Also, pipe sections must be properly aligned for depositing the root bead. Specifications require that carbon steel with carbon content in excess of 0.32% must be preheated for welding. In some cases; steel with lower carbon contents must also be preheated. When steels with different preheated temperatures are being welded, the higher preheat temperatures must be used to weld the seams. Preheat temperature must be monitored to ensure the proper temperature and maintain that temperature during welding.             

Qualified trained welders must be employed for welding operation. TGTDCL has it’s own welder grades specified as Titas grade-A, B, C.  For high pressure pipeline a welding procedure specification (WPS) is established and suggest to follows these procedure strictly. Welding conducted as per the welding procedure and must be tested to ensure the WPS requirements fulfilment. Welded joints are inspected visually, mechanically and by using non-destructive test (NDT) methods. Mechanical test includes tensile test, nick break test, macro tech test, etc. Test results are to be documented and record the procedure of welding operation [1-2].

2.6 Inspection and Testing

Pipeline welds must be inspected visually to ensure the performance in accordance with the welding procedure and the welds are acceptable under the appropriate specifications. In the United States, to comply with provisions of 49 Code of federal regulation (CFR), non-destructive testing is also required on welds made on a pipeline that will be operated at a pressure that results in a hoop stress of 20% or more of the specified minimum yield strength (SMYS). There are two exceptions to this non-destructive testing requirement. Non-destructive testing is not required even though hoop stress will exceed 20% of SMYS if
·         the pipeline has a nominal diameter of less than 6 in.
·         the hoop stress will be less than 40% of the SMYS and the number of welds is so small as to make such testing impractical.
Non-destructive testing must be performed according to written procedures by specially trained personnel.

Radiography (X-ray) is the most widely used method for testing pipeline welds in non-destructive method. In radiography, a picture is made on a sensitized film by exposing the film to X-ray. Defects in the weld, such as cracks, porosity, or slag inclusions, appear as spots or lines on the developed film.

A study on Activity of Titas Gas Transmission & Distribution Company ltd. (TGTDCL), Bangladesh( Part-3)

2.5 Standard Inspection Methods:

2.5.1 Material procurement inspection
2.5.2 Visual inspection
2.5.3 Design inspection
2.5.4 Construction inspection
2.5.5 Operation
2.5.6 Maintenance and repair
2.5.7 Inspect the pipeline integrity programs
2.5.8 Inspection the Preparation for welding

2.5.1 Material procurement inspection
During pipeline construction materials are inspected visually and mechanically for their physical, dimensional defects and design accuracy. Materials are pre-qualified / inspected as per international standard during procurement [1].
The most common standards are:
 American Petroleum Institute ( API )
 American National Standard Institute ( ANSI )
 American Society of Mechanical Engineers ( ASME )

2.5.2 Visual inspection
Visual inspections are important in welding jobs for construction of pipelines. Cracks, incomplete penetration, burn-through, undercut, unequal leg length, and other imperfections in the test welds shall be assessed in accordance with the applicable requirements. Undercuts adjacent to the final test weld bead on the outside of the pipe shall not exceed 1mm in depth. The test welds shall have a neat appearance. Imperfections detected by visual inspections must be into consideration and take corrective measures.

2.5.3 Design inspection
The requirements for design inspection of pipeline construction project are:
 Fluid flow capacity
 Design pressure for each segment of pipeline system

°                       External pressures and loadings
°                       Ambient influence
°                       Temperature
°                       Location of Class
2.5.4    Construction inspection
Inspection of pipeline construction based on:
°                       Pre-construction activities
°                       Construction activities
°                       Post-construction activities

Pre-construction activities
Inspections of pre-construction activities of pipeline are as follows:
°                     Route selection
°                     Legal surveying and land acquisition
°                     Pipe hauling
°                     Equipments and vehicles

Construction activities:
Inspection of construction activities is very important for pipeline operation and integrity. When any pipe manufacturing defects are detected during installation inspection, the defective portion of pipe shall be repaired by the applicable pipe manufacturing standard or specification or cut out as a cylinder or where necessary replaced with another pipe that meets the design requirements. Inspection shall be performed by the experienced personnel. Inspection for piping defects shall be indentified immediately prior to the application of any field coating and during lowering in and backfilling operations. Pipe and component shall be inspected for defects. Such inspection shall include but not necessarily be limited to inspection for flattening, ovality, straightness, pits slivers, cracks, gouges, dents, defective weld seams, and defective field welds. Bends shall be inspected for conformance with the free from buckling, cracks, and other evidence of mechanical damage. Where the pipe is field coated, inspection shall be carried out to determine that the cleaning/coating machine is not creating defects in the pipe. Coating shall be inspected immediately before, during and after pipe installation. Faults in the coating shall be repaired and re-inspected. Plant-applied coatings shall be inspected immediately after field-bending to confirm that the integrity of the coating has been maintained. Where applicable, each pipe shall be visually inspected prior to welding for defects in its lining. Inspection of field and shop welds is in accordance with the applicable requirements of clause 7 [9]. Inspection of pipe portion repaired, replaced, and altered shall be made before it is backfilled. Where necessary and as appropriate, non-destructive inspection of piping shall be performed using one or more of the following methods:
(a)        Radiographic inspection of welds in accordance with the applicable requirements of clause 7.
(b)        Ultrasonic inspection of welds in accordance with the applicable requirements of clause 7.
(c)        Ultrasonic inspection of pipe
(d)       Electrical inspection of protective coating
(e)        Inspection using internal inspection devices and
Other methods are below:
°                     Stringing pipe
°                     Welding
°                     Coating
°                     Ditching
°                     Crossing
°                     Lower-in
°                     Backfilling
°                     Compression and pump station
°                     Pressure testing
°                     Clean-up and restoration    [10].

Post-construction activities
After the pressure test has been completed, it is then necessary to displace the test median from the pipeline and purge the system with sweet natural gas or an inert gas such as nitrogen to make the system ready for operation.

Seismic Energy Dissipation Devices

Seismic Energy Dissipation Devices