On the nuclear question I refer you to my comment in reply to John Rawson about
nuclear technology. There is however another heavy element capable of being
used in nuclear reactors and that is Thorium232. To the best of my knowledge
this element has not been exploited at all by the nuclear industry to date, but
proposals have been forwarded from time to time. Uranium was the original
element of choice because of the ease with which it could be changed
into a weapons-grade material either U235 or Pu239. Thorium does not lend itself
to weapons manufacture so easily. However the world's Thorium reserves outweigh
the Uranium reserves by a factor of about 10, and it can be used as a fuel in
nuclear reactors. The technology to do so is available now.
Personally I view nuclear power
supplies with mixed feelings. It can supply immense amounts of energy properly
utilised, but will always leave us with a radioactive waste disposal problem. It
is also limited to areas of limited seismic activity, because no one has yet
been able to design a nuclear reactor that can withstand a Richter scale 9,
Mercali Intensity 12 earthquake. I don't believe that is possible. Nuclear
reactors in New Zealand, for instance, would be some type of suicide pact
With respect to to
present "energy crisis" I simply observe that most of the oil being used is
being consumed by very few countries in which Western Europe and North
America figure very prominently. Globally this is unstable, < 30% of the
world's population simply cannot continue to hog the world's energy
supplies of oil without expecting heavy retribution from everyone else. They are
able to hog this supply simply because they control the world's money supplies.
Eventually the bubble will burst with dire consequences for those
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, June 07, 2006 5:33
Addressing your first
point, where you rightly take issue with my
rather sloppy and incomplete
>"... the economic growth necessary for the system to
>the availability of energy supplies to maintain
>It's an article of faith of monetary
>If replaced by plants utilizing the breeder
>existing reserves will last some 100 million
Although it is of course true that there are immense amounts of
and other non-renewables available my point is that - even
the emissions point to one side - we have essentially reached
limit in terms of the LEVEL of production of energy. eg in barrels
oil or equivalent/day to feed higher levels of economic
The febrile state of the energy market, with unprecedented
volatility, is evidence of that. I believe that within 1 to 3
we will see a major "meltdown" in the energy markets as
speculative positions taken by hedge funds and investment banks
Simply put, William, unlike the LTCM debacle,the Fed
cannot print oil
to bail the market out.
As for alternatives, you
are clearly more optimistic than I about the
capability of nuclear energy,
and particularly the availability of
uranium supplies, where I bow to your
knowledge and expertise.
Clearly uranium is much more plentiful and
easy to extract than I was
aware, and fast-breeder technology cheaper, more
sustainable than I thought.
But my argument in favour of
renewables and against nuclear is a
simple economic one based upon total
cost of ownership over time.
Virtually any renewables project eg tidal,
hydro, wind (and possibly
some new solar technology) is "self-funding"
simply by selling a
proportion of its future production at today's price
(or maybe a
discount). This is so, because its input is free.
is not the case for non-renewables or nuclear, where oil/gas etc
uranium costs are high and getting higher, with no upward limit.
course most proponents of nuclear simply ignore the costs
decommissioning and waste disposal - after all that is someone
So if an "asset-based" model (which capitalises the
total cost of
ownership over time)is used instead of the existing
economic model for energy then renewables simply wipe the
You should get your head around investment
in productive assets using
forms (such as Trusts or LLP's/LLC's) other than
it will be time well spent.
your next point I remind you of this one, which you
>I would be interested to know exactly what it is
>William has against the principle underpinning
that those who have exclusive private use of
>a "Commons" - such as Land
- should compensate those
Do you have an answer to
>"There are now entire generations with no prospect
>ever owning a property because prices have inflated
append it below. It contradicts explicitly your assertion above.
in the UK, William, a small country with a mature and inflated
market where I doubt whether you would find more than 1% of
who disagreed with my statement.
As you well know, the article was
written in the US about the US
market about six months ago and before
several more rises in the Fed
rate. You are obviously a lot more sanguine
about the future of the
US housing market than I am.
The current US
speculative housing bubble will deflate to a level at
which prices are
supported by property rentals. Hopefully that will
not be too painful a
My point is that it is simply not necessary to borrow to
property when you can occupy it indefinitely and/or invest in
using a simple new legal tool, the "Land Partnership".
that borrowing from credit institutions is both sub-optimal
You don't, which is your privilege.
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