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Comment: Re:Divest of Electrical Use Too? (Score 3, Informative) 208

by RugRat (#46944205) Attached to: Stanford Getting Rid of $18 Billion Endowment of Coal Stock

Does this mean Standford will divest itself from the use of electricity too? Or is this just a hypocritical publicity stunt?

Stanford receives electricity from two sources -- Cardinal Cogen, an onsite natural gas cogeneration unit, and PG&E. Neither of which use coal.

Comment: Re:Carbon and fuel taxes (Score 2) 577

by RugRat (#44106119) Attached to: Obama Reveals Climate Change Plan

Rarely have I wished to have mod points as much as I do now to mod parent up.

Pollution is an externality. By not internalizing the cost (through a revenue-neutral tax), we are subsidizing the polluter. Yes, level the playing field and let the market figure it out.

At $24/ton CO2, the price of electricity (100% coal) would increase $0.024/kWh. For natural gas derived electricity, $0.013. Assuming a fuel mix of 50% coal, 25% gas, 25% CO2 free, then that's an increase of $0.015, assuming no market-based substitution. And if revenue neutral, that money would be returned to tax payers.

Perhaps someone can explain why we should continue to subsidize coal?

Comment: Re:No (Score 1) 503

by RugRat (#38463932) Attached to: Tesla Motors Announces Prices For Their Upcoming Models

You clearly would not be a candidate for this car then. This is a luxury sports sedan. Generally luxury sports sedans get well below 25 MPG.

I'd also suspect, if your electricity is $0.18, then your gas is likely higher than $3.50.

It also appears that the Tesla roadster gets 4 miles / kWh and some super-efficient electric cars are above 10 miles per kWh. So yes, the calculations are very sensitive to the inputs.

As a matter of policy, I'd prefer to see the (US) government get out of the business of subsidizing oil and picking winners and let the market produce whatever the consumer demands. I think we'd see a lot more people (in the US) driving cars like yours -- 45 MPG.

Comment: Re:No (Score 5, Informative) 503

by RugRat (#38461826) Attached to: Tesla Motors Announces Prices For Their Upcoming Models

Perhaps the most important question is what is the all-in cost per mile of operation and how many miles to I need to operate it annually for it to make financial sense. For a SWAG: Assume $0.10/kWh, 3 miles/kWh, or $0.033/mile for electricity, vs. 25 MPG, $3.50/gallon, $0.14/mile for gasoline. Effective difference of $0.10/mile. At a US average annual distance of 12,000 miles, the fuel cost difference is $1,200. Electric vehicle advocates also suggest that you save another $200/yr on oil changes, oil filters, etc.. If you assume an average ownership period of 10 years, that's a $14,000 savings in OpEx. Of course, currently the car is more expensive, you're limited (slightly) in range, and there are (currently) limited number of places where you can fast-charge (15-20 minutes full charge).

Since when do Slashdot readers bet against technology?

Comment: Re:Here's The Thing. (Score 1) 413

by RugRat (#38166752) Attached to: Climate May Be Less Sensitive To CO2 Than Previously Thought

On what do you base your assertion that [insert climate action] will wreck the economy?

From a passionate moderate standpoint, I think the scientists have done a better job demonstrating a causal relationship between our CO2 emissions and climate change than the skeptics have done in demonstrating that doing anything about climate change will wreck the global economy.

Comment: Re:Fact-based solutions already exist (Score 2) 737

by RugRat (#37601608) Attached to: Should Science Be King In Politics?

Regarding (b), a less expensive (administratively speaking) would be to apply the tax at the point of extracting the previously sequestered carbon. In this manner, there are fewer inspectors required and orders of magnitude less complexity for the market.

The most compelling implementations of this that I've heard are to make it revenue-neutral and phase it in slowly. Ultimately however, a price still needs to be determined. In the US, the analysis I've seen suggests that given our fuel mix, a $15/ton CO2 tax would result in ~6% increase in electricity prices assuming no fuel switching. If phased in slowly to permit technology improvements and fuel switching, it should be much less.

Image

Survey Shows That Fox News Makes You Less Informed 1352

Posted by samzenpus
from the fair-balanced-and-simple dept.
A survey of American voters by World Public Opinion shows that Fox News viewers are significantly more misinformed than consumers of news from other sources. One of the most interesting questions was about President Obama's birthplace. 63 percent of Fox viewers believe Obama was not born in the US (or that it is unclear). In 2003 a similar study about the Iraq war showed that Fox viewers were once again less knowledgeable on the subject than average. Let the flame war begin!
Medicine

One Night Stands May Be Genetic 240

Posted by samzenpus
from the getting-in-your-genes dept.
An anonymous reader writes "So, he or she has cheated on you for the umpteenth time and their only excuse is: 'I just can't help it.' According to researchers at Binghamton University, they may be right. The propensity for infidelity could very well be in their DNA. In a first of its kind study, a team of investigators led by Justin Garcia, a SUNY Doctoral Diversity Fellow in the laboratory of evolutionary anthropology and health at Binghamton University, State University of New York, has taken a broad look at sexual behavior, matching choices with genes and has come up with a new theory on what makes humans 'tick' when it comes to sexual activity. The biggest culprit seems to be the dopamine receptor D4 polymorphism, or DRD4 gene. Already linked to sensation-seeking behavior such as alcohol use and gambling, DRD4 is known to influence the brain's chemistry and subsequently, an individual's behavior."

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