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Welcome to Our World of Energy!

Our World of Energy (OWOE) is a multi-media campaign that has been created to provide an unbiased view of energy, including pros and cons of each source, to the American public. It is OWOE's intent to help inform the public on where the energy that drives modern life comes from, why this subject is important, and how technology is changing the industry to address modern problems such as climate change, scarcity of resources, and environmental impact.

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June 11, 2024

Guest blog by S. A. Shelley: OK, another inciteful blog but that’s the OWOE writing team’s style, gleefully stoking controversy.

The term “fossil fuels” is one of the greatest marketing triumphs that the environmentalists ever adopted. “Fossil” suggests old and outdated, coming from some pre-historic, ancient, way-back, long-ago-dead biologic entities. The uses for fossil fuels also reflect “old” technologies, cooking, training and steam shipping (Fig. 1).

Fig. 1 Using Fossil Fuels from Ancient (left) to Modern Times (right)

Coal is definitely a fossil fuel and you can’t dig in a coal bed without digging up fossils of plants and animals. Oil maybe, but the abiotic origins of oil are just as likely as the biologic synthesis theories. However natural gas (methane) is very unlikely a fossil fuel. In our solar system, we have big planets and moons with significant amounts of methane comprising their atmospheres. Methane is quite common in our solar system and probably the universe. It is quite possible that impact events in the Hadrean or Archean eras could have deposited methane onto the earth.   

Why then is methane labelled a fossil fuel?  For one, methane results from certain biochemical processes. Secondly, methane arises during the decay of organic matter and coal beds often have pockets of methane associated with them. Thus, if coal is fossil fuel, then so too must be the associated methane. Grade school reasoning at its best. Yet a lot of methane also arises naturally in the coldness of space. Finally, in terms of energy transition and climate change arguments it helps if methane is lumped together with those other dirty fuels. Remember however, that compared to coal, burning methane to generate power releases 40% less CO2 emissions than coal per MWh generated. Blend about 10% hydrogen into the natural gas mix, something that can be done using existing gas pipelines and infrastructure and you’ll achieve another 5% reduction in carbon emissions per MWh generated. Doable, right?

But that’s the problem with a lot of politicians and ideologues on both sides of any argument. The goal now is to label something or someone as abhorrent and then run with it. Oppose my ideology, then you are a (pick one): Marxist, Fascist, idiot or patriarchal knuckle dragger. With the intense rhetoric tossed about it becomes nearly impossible then to reason for sensible steps that will move civilization towards a low carbon future. It is, by most politicians, more important to manufacture total consent and quash any dissent than it is to implement truly progressive solutions.

Natural gas is a part of the problem of carbon emissions, but it is also a very important step towards the solution of reducing carbon emissions. Kudos to the Philippines for choosing to build out gas infrastructure including LNG (  Energy Tracker  ;  AP News  ) instead of turning to the much more abundant coal from nearby Australia. Natural gas is the perfect two-sided coin to stoke outbursts from both sides of the energy and environment battle: But this is my position and I’ll stand by it even if I have to slap every Federal Liberal cabinet minister in Ottawa : Stop increasing coal exports (Canada’s coal exports up again in 2023 as government’s promised ban elusive | ) and start increasing natural gas exports to displace coal everywhere possible. Then shut down Line 5.

Vive l’Alberta Libre!

June 2, 2024

Guest blog by S. A. Shelley: The U.S. Federal Government is a huge organization that is staffed by some very bright people. There are also nearly 1,000 advisory committees in Washington, comprising leaders from industry, science and the arts. For the most part, the advisory committees concern themselves with publicly available information and have public meetings, but there are a few which require security clearance and concern themselves with confidential matters of state. These advisory committees are a valuable resource upon which the Federal Government can call to review policies and assist with formulating strategies.


April 1, 2024

Guest blog by Manny Topiques Here are some interesting and somewhat offbeat energy stories that haven’t gotten much media attention over the past year.

Is coal the new future for clean energy? In an amazing new discovery just announced by NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), the Perseverance Rover discovered an outcropping of high quality space coal not far from the spacecraft’s 2021 landing site. Using its rotary percussive coring drill, the rover was able to penetrate approximate 6 meters below the planet’s surface to confirm that this outcropping was the surface exposure of a large deposit of anthracite space coal. Further exploration on future missions will be required to determine if this deposit is native to Mars or the remains of a meteor that impacted the surface in the distant past.


March 19, 2024

Guest blog by S. A. Shelley: Change is inevitable unless you’re well established. There is a reason why empires are lost to history, governments are overthrown, businesses collapse, and academia becomes irrelevant. The established organizations or systems could not change fast enough to respond to imminent threats, emerging technologies or changes in consumer habits.  When faced with such challenges established systems, especially governments, harden themselves. In extreme cases you end up with kingdoms such as North Korea. But in most cases, you end up with economically declining and socially irrelevant states like Canada. It is a problem of ossification of thought, of edicts being churned out ever more frequently with worse effects. It applies to everything from healthcare and education to defense and energy policy.


December 6, 2023

T’was the night before separation when all through the Land
The Liberals were dancing, excessive tax revenues in hand.
While the stockings of residents, homeless or not
Were filled with inflation and expenses that came from dumb Liberal thought.

The homeless were nestled where they put their heads
While visions of affordable housing danced in their heads.
And Granny in Cape Breton, her home heated not,
Cursed feebly at Ottawa for the heat pump they brought.


October 25, 2023

OWOE has pointed out similarities between today’s Big Oil and last millennium’s Big Tobacco several times over the years. In September 2022 we published “Don’t Blame the Suppliers, Unless They Are Big Oil” where we shared articles documenting the efforts of the fossil fuel companies to engage in a public relations campaign to sow doubt in the science of climate change by following the playbook of the tobacco industry. And in August 2023 we published “Big Oil Stuns Again” where we addressed the greenwashing that the oil companies are currently engaged in and speculated that Big Oil’s lack of civic responsibility might become legal liabilities in the future, similar to what happened with the tobacco industry. Recent events have made it even more clear that, yes, Big Oil is following in the footsteps of Big Tobacco and is likely to meet a similar fate.


August 15, 2023

Bill Luyties, OWOE Technical Editor: There is no doubt that the world needs oil and will continue to need it for some time while the transition to renewable energy plays out. There is also little doubt that that burning of fossil fuels and associated carbon dioxide release into the atmosphere have contributed greatly to the current crisis that is global warming (see 97% of active climate scientists agree). Examples of the impact on the world’s climate are all around us – from the record-breaking temperatures around the world, to the forest fires in Canada, California, Spain, Greece, and Hawaii, to the melting glaciers in the Arctic and Antarctic and rapidly rising sea levels. So, where does Big Oil fit into this ongoing transition? The last several years have seen Big Oil, which has been the source of much of the public misinformation about climate change, pushing the narrative that they will be part of the solution. How is that going?


July 28, 2023

Guest blog by S. A. Shelley: There are a lot of peculiarities about Canada that foreigners do not understand and residents shamefully ignore. For one, Canada is one of the biggest money laundering countries in the world.  Ask any person on the street about the dangers of corruption and he or she will point to places overseas, oblivious to the extensive graft in Canada. Graft and corruption exist at every government level and in every region of Canada. But the governments choose to overlook these things. Coupled with outright incompetence, Canada does not look good for common folks striving to make a better life.


May 30, 2023

Blog by Bill Luyties (OWOE Founder and Editor): Over the past few weeks, I’ve had multiple articles pop up on my news feeds that proclaim that an EV can cost as much to drive per mile as an ICE vehicle. These all appear to be based on an Anderson Economic Group report titled: Real World Cost of Fueling EVs and ICE Vehicles (2nd Edition), dated April 2022 but apparently not issued until early 2023. One article headline actually shouts: Shocking study finds EVs cost more to fuel than gas cars in late 2022. While I generally feel that the Anderson study did a good job of trying to compare costs, the authors of these news articles ignore most of the study and focus on a single headline-grabbing finding that for mid-priced cars EVs cost about the same as ICE cars when charged at home, but cost more when using commercial chargers (see Figure 1). This may well be true today, but the Anderson study and these articles miss the real point – such a comparison is misleading and almost totally irrelevant for a number of key reasons.


April 1, 2023

Guest blog by Yumusbe Joacquin: Here are some interesting and somewhat offbeat energy stories that haven’t gotten much media attention over the past year.

Wind Turbines Causing Earth to Speed Up

In 2020 scientists noticed that the earth’s rotation had begun to speed up. Historically, the earth has been slowing down, primarily due to the drag created by the gravitation effect of the moon. The International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service (IERS) has been adding leap seconds every now and again to make up for the slower spin (which last happened on December 31, 2016). However, there were 28 days in 2020 where the earth actually spun faster than any time during the previous 60 years. And on July 26, 2022, the earth completed its quickest-ever spin with a rotation that was 1.50 milliseconds less than its nominal 24-hours.