what is the best cleaning chemical for hard to remove grease form detailed wooden cabinents?

What is the best cleaning chemical for hard to remove grease from detailed wooded cabinets?

Question by katita   |  last reply


How do you take off paint on plastic scale models without chemicals??

I messed up on painting a model car and I don't want to use paint thinner and if I sanded it off it would ruin the plastic...

Question by HoyJaPaTa   |  last reply


Avoid using PVC

I see a lot of projects that use or re-use different grades of PVC pipe due to its easy use and availability. Free or cheap PVC seems to be a good material choice for those who lack the tools and skills needed for metal or wood work. I suggest that builder rethink this choice. Exposure to PVC is dangerous to your health. Fumes and dust from cutting, drilling and accidental burning or overheating PVC are known to cause cancer.A few points:PVC production is the largest use of chlorine gas in the world.Chlorine production consumes enormous amounts of energy.Chlorine production causes mercury pollution. Hazardous by-products are formed throughout the PVC lifecycle.By-products of PVC production are highly persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic.PVC is extremely difficult to recycle.PVC is one of the most environmentally hazardous consumer materials ever produced.source: http://www.healthybuilding.net/pvc/ThorntonPVCSummary.htmlDifferent grades of PVC have different melting points, flash and glass temperatures. At 70-80 Degrees C (~150 F), most grades begin to soften and degrade in performance. This should be taken into account when building projects that involve any kind of direct or indirect heat, including hot water, etc.(I've edited this post to contain more useful information)

Topic by toxonix   |  last reply


How do I clean a 55 Gallon Plastic Drum that contained Industrial Grade Detergent?

I picked up three free 55 gallon plastic drums after seeing them posted on craigslist.  I was inspired by the compost tumbler and rain collection instructables, and I was looking to build my own.  However, the plastic drums contained an industrial grade detergent used in food and beverage processing facilities.  Two of the barrels were FiChlor Foam HD and the other contained Liqualin CC.  Do you think I could clean these out enough to make them safe for these projects?  Would the chemicals have leaked into the plastic? For rain collection, I was going to use the water for flushing my toilet, so it wouldn't be for watering a garden, and definitely not for drinking.  For the compost, would the chemicals remaining in the plastic leak into the compost?  And then would any plants exposed to that compost die? I really appreciate some feedback on this.  I've read most instructables on here that involve 55 gallon plastic drums, and the recommendation is to use Food Grade containers.  I'm just disappointed about the possibility of not being able to use the ones I picked up because they contained a detergent.  The containers are marked as "Corrosive" and "Do not reuse this container unless it is first professionally cleaned and reconditioned."  This is definitely a bad sign. :( Thanks guys, Eoin Here's some information I found from the manufacturer, Chemetall: Safety and Handling Precautions: Oakite FiChlor Foam HD is a highly alkaline chlorinated material containing sodium and potassium hydroxide. Direct contact causes irritation of eyes and skin. It is harmful if swallowed. Avoid contact with eyes, skin and clothing. Wear safety goggles, rubber gloves and other protective clothing when handling. Wash thoroughly after handling. Avoid breathing vapors. Use only in well-ventilated areas. Do not take internally. Liqualin CC:  Heavy-duty, low foaming, non-silicated alkaline liquid for use in CIP systems or spray washing stainless steel processing equipment in beverage and food plants.

Question by eoingrosch   |  last reply


What is the chemical reaction between hydrocarbon and sodium hydroxide?

I was wondering what is the chemical reaction between hydrocarbon and sodium hydroxide when they react with each other. I can not find it on the internet that's why I asked y'all. Thanks

Question by charlotteferriols   |  last reply



Will fleece bleach successfully, or do bleaching chemicals react with the fabric? Answered

Will ordinary fleece fabrics de-colour if you use ordinary house-hold bleach? Will the fabric survive intact? Will ordinary hot water be sufficient to clean the bleach out of the fleece?

Question by Kiteman   |  last reply


What type of energy are our thoughts?

After reading lemonies instructable on frequently asked questions ( i really enjoyed the chapter on energy ) ive been thinking about what our thoughts are.The brain works in a bio chemical manner but what exactly are the actual thoughts? Are they energy at all?

Question by afridave   |  last reply


Can anyone help explain this strange chemical smell from our laundry room and basement?

We had discovered a very strange kind of chemical smell coming from our laundry room and the very same strong smell from the basement sort of linking toward the hot water tank. I had done laundry last night and started to smell it when I woke up the next morning. We are worried if it is something harmful. Could this be something from the hot water tank or something else? Please help!

Question by allnet2005   |  last reply


What could this horrible chemical smell coming from the laundry room? Could it be plumbing?

I just bought this money pit of a house....I had this horrible smell coming from the laundry room. I bought new appliances and as soon as they removed the old ones the smell was gone. The new ones are hooked up and the smell seems to have returned. It's not as strong as it was before, but it's back none the less. I was hoping that the smell went with the washer but sadly it has not...I am wondering if it could be something in the drain? If it were the pipes wouldn't the entire house smell each time I used the water??

Question by sherie   |  last reply


is it ok to compost in galvanized metal containers?

Will galvanized metal containers leach chemicals into composting material intended for garden use

Question by    |  last reply


What could be causing a chemical smell (like a flea collar) in my room ?

I am a single mom of 4 and i had a portion of my lung removed last year so i really feel like i need to figure this out. We have a small dog but we have no flea collar in this apartment but that's exactly what we smell. We only smell it at my desk by my computer which is by a window in the corner next to common wall with neighbor which also shares a wall in the master bath. The common wall has painted paneling. I am a very clean person and this is really making me worry.

Question by AprilK2   |  last reply


algae+ chicken manure how to get rid of parasites and bugs, and bio diesel?

Ok so i was wondering if any of you algae growers out there have ever tried fertilizing with chicken manure and if you have found the gross bugs/ parasites/ oil crap on top/gross things, and how you got around that i tried boiling the manure in water for ten minutes to kill the stuff but it didnt seem to work? ok so ive heard of the chemical way of making bio diesel but is there any way to make bio diesel or bio gasoline or bio ethonal without nasty chemicals from the oil straight from the algae press. Im 16 and my parents dont want me to have harsh chemicals nor do i have the money to go buy them. thanks

Question by zaronas   |  last reply


Greywater reusing

Hello everyone some time ago I started some research about greywater reuse because I understood that it can be very helpful for everybody after some research Icame up with a concept wich is like this:1-the water enters a container after going through a filter wich gets larg particles2-it goes through a ceramic filter for smaller particle for smaller particles 3-A RO filter gets the chemicals and super-small-particles4-A container with a UV lamp wich kills the bacteria But there are some problems1-I cant be sure about the water quality2-I am concerned about the chemicals in detergents

Question by Electronic guy   |  last reply


'abstract' wood burning.

Not sure if this should be posted here, Outdoors or Square Pegs, but it's art related so I'll ask here. I once saw a how-to video, I am 90% sure is was on this site. but there is a chance it wasn't. I would like help finding it again. From what I remember, the person showing off had: a car battery, a long needle,  plank of wood and some chemical. the process I remember was (but may not be 100% accurate): 1. (s)he painted on a layer of chemical (or acids) on the wood 2. stabbed the needle on the wood 3. connected the battery to the needle 4. turned the battery on. it then made some elegant, fancy patterns, like a bare tree, or a lightning bolt. lots of 'branches' and paths were burned into the wood (without manual intervention. it was 'natral'). like a chemical reaction. if anyone has the name of this technique, or a video/instructable/guide, I would really appreciate a link. Thank! EDIT: solution found: it's called "Fractal Woodburning" (go on youtube for some videos). I should have known, I love fractials! you need: saline wood needles and a high-voltage power source. and patience.

Topic by tidb1t   |  last reply


how to do black oxide at home?

 I have some machined steel parts I would like to black oxide to prevent rust and to make look nice. I would like to know the chemicals involved to make the immersion bath for room temperature black oxide.

Question by high05   |  last reply


Boring brass spittoons. What to do?

I have 2 very boring old brass spittoons I'm converting into planters. Is there chemical compound or something else I can apply to the brass to change the appearance?  I'd like to jazz them up without using paint. Any ideas?

Topic by bajablue   |  last reply


is it possible to water proof a book so as to be able read in the rain?

I am wondering if it is possible to water proof a book so that it can be read out in the rain or mayhaps the shower. I thinking some sort of chemical bath of some sorts.also i might add that shoulden't harm the book in any which way or direction.

Question by smartish   |  last reply


It is safe to use treated lumber to build a compost box? Answered

I would like to build a compost box but I want this box to withstand termites, carpenter ants, rotting and weather. I am thinking about using treated lumber but I worry about preserving chemicals leaking to the compost pile and effecting the decomposition process of composting.

Question by blkhawk   |  last reply


plexiglass glue adhesive

I've been hunting for an adhesive or glue to build projects out of plexiglass.  The clear plastic available in many local hardware stores.  Talking to the stores I have been directed to purchase glues that they stock, but these never provide me with the bonding I am looing for.  I suppose what I am looking for is a chemical weld similar to what you get working with pvc and the glues available for those water tight seals.

Question by cgibson   |  last reply


Why are guys so territorial?

Ok why is it that guys flip out when they see their girlfriend even looking in the direction of another guy? its not like he owns me, so why do i get the cold shoulder every time i talk to another guy? Its not like im gonna run off with another guy so why cant he just get over it? Lolz, Are guys chemically wired to guard their girl?

Question by hannah16   |  last reply


How can I transfer an image onto a wine bottle? Answered

I want to hand engrave a wine bottle with my Dremel but can't seem to find a way to transfer an image onto it. I don't want to go the stencil and chemical etching route. I haven't been successful sliding the print of the image inside the bottle and doing it that way either. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Question by Nos4ah2   |  last reply


how do I kill the weeds in my backyard?

We moved into a new apartment and now that the weather is nicer (we live in Texas) we finally ventured outside to discover the weed farm growing on top of what used to be a nice grassy backyard.  How do we restore the lawn without using too many chemicals?  This is our first time actually having a yard, being city folk, so we're totally clueless!  Halp!

Question by jeanbean39   |  last reply


Is oogoo (DIY Silicone Putty) Oven-safe?

Hello! I have a question for people who use oogoo, or generally DIY silicone molding putty made from 100% silicone caulk. I want to cast oogoo molds of lego bionicle masks with polymer clay, but my issue is I need to keep the clay inside the mold in order to prevent any kind of warping, as most of it is spread a little thin (1-2mm thickness) and I don't want to end up warping it even in the slightest. Is oogoo or cured 100% silicone caulk oven-safe as long as it's within the specified temperature range? (I already know most DIY silicone putties aren't food-grade.) The silicone caulk I'm using is GE all purpose silicone I, mixed with corn starch, acrylic paint, and baby oil. The back of the tube says that it should not be used on surfaces that will exceed 400F/205C. The polymer clay I plan on using is cured at 110C, so I don't think it'll be a problem, but I'm worried exposing the silicone caulk mold to high temperatures will cause it to release some harmful chemical compounds. I looked up an MSDS sheet for GE silicone, and they had a generalized one stating exceeding the maximum temperature will cause the release of formaldehyde. Since I plan on baking these in our kitchen oven, I wouldn't want harmful chemicals contaminating a space where we cook our food. Also, if baking isn't an option, since the polymer clay is spread thin, and cures close to 100C, would curing it in boiling water be an option? (That way any water soluble chemicals would remain contained while the clay hardens.) All help is appreciated!

Topic by SixFootBlue   |  last reply


I want to make Compost from a 55 gal plastic barrel that contained "Built Liquid Alkali", if washed will it be usable? Answered

 I recently acquired a couple of blue plastic 55 gallon barrels in the hopes of making my own rotating composter(s) and upon doing some reading via I-net found a lot of people saying "Only use food grade plastic barrels".  The barrels contained "Built Liquid Alkali", which is a silicated alkali builder designed for when combining with laundry detergent it makes for better soil removal and improves whiteness retention. Cautions read: Industrial use only, may cause burns, keep away from eyes mouth and skin. The first aid instructions are to use plenty of water to flush or wash affected area(s), leading me to believe that this is water soluble. I am hoping that possibly using OxyClean or some other suitable cleaner that I can make these barrels usable for what I need them for. If anyone has knowledge on this chemical and can provide some insight it would be most appreciated.

Question by WV_Kokamo_Joe   |  last reply


Anyone Know About Green Wood Stains

I've been thinking about redoing a bass guitar and I was looking into different stains when I came across this environmentally friendly wood finishing stain.  So this stuff is hugely more expensive than most products out there and I really don't know much about it.  And there really isn't that much information on it so  I was hoping someone on here might have some experience using some of this stuff.  Would this stuff work better than the chemical stains or is it just more expensive because its organic?

Topic by aninjaturtle   |  last reply


Etching, staining, or wildly coloring plastic

I own too much plastic, that I use regularly, but want to decorate. Is there a SAFE method to chemically or otherwise "mottle" plastic with colors? Not looking to use paints, as those will just peel off. I know that plastics react to some solvents and such, but is there anything that you could 'wash' plastic with that would just outwardly alter the appearance? If I could get an "oil on water", or even just a "camo" sort of effect, that would be wonderful! (I tried searches for what to AVOID using around plastics without risking such an effect, but can't get the right search parameters...) Thanks for any ideas! I'd really prefer not to have to throw stuff out.

Topic by Dragon Maze 


Anyone know of a persulfate-free method to dye brown hair blonde?

I'm allergic to persulfates, which are the chemicals in hair dye that strip the hair of its natural color.  I found this out after I had my hair professionally dyed, broke out, and went to the dermatologist.  I know that peroxide can also lighten hair, but I was hoping someone had good techniques or experiences with that or a similar persulfate-free lightening method.  My hair is very short so I'm not worried about breakage.  Normally I would just let something like this go, but as it turns out, I look really good as a blonde ;)

Question by buffalauren   |  last reply


Clear vinyl film sticking together

We have a problem with 2 layers of plastic/vinyl film sticking together. When we purchase this product it comes in 48" X 150' rolls and has a kraft paper that separates the layers while on the roll but when we use this stuff we have 2 layers about 3/8" apart after a time due to heat contraction or sitting something on the 2 layers it meets and will not easily pull apart. Is there any chemical or product of any type we can apply that would remove its ability to stick together. If you have a solution please keep in mind there can not be any residue as this needs to stay crystal clear.

Question by energywisemfg   |  last reply


Anyone know or sujest a way to clean out the paint inside a cfl bulb?

I want to clean out the inside glass of a CFL bulb to make a bubblier. Using a small tube to pump air & water threw the glass bulb.I've tried waiting a day, soaking in soapy water, I tried using a pipe cleaner, (broke the glass), I tried pulling a string with tissue paper, (broke again). Is there a chemical I can use to brake up the paint in the bulb, so I can clean it out with running water later. At the moment I'm trying soaking in peroxide or rubbing alcohol. If that doson't work I'm going for acetone next. After that I'm out of ideas.

Question by elkaddalek   |  last reply


I have quit energy drinks, cold turkey. Now I sleep a lot more....

My goal was to save money, and lose weight. It's working on both fronts, but now, other aspects of my life are being effected. I find myself constantly tired, focus is slipping easily, and I'm much more irritable than before, which is quite a feat I was hoping it was just a chemical dependency, but I'm almost 2 weeks without now. Safe to say, I'm viewing this as an addiction. I get in light exercise all through the day, I eat healthy and light (and often), but still feel fatigued... Any non caffeinated suggestions on how to boost energy?

Question by poi_pai   |  last reply


Is Ikea the only place that recycles incandescent light bulbs as well?

CFL bulbs need to be recycled properly due to mercury content, and there are many places: Park districts, hardware stores, Ikea, etc. that recycle CFL bulbs. However, I haven't found any place that recycles incandescent bulbs, I searched online and they say, they don't contain any toxic chemicals and can be thrown in trash and not curbside recycling. However can't the glass be reused to make new bulbs? I am sure they can reuse the glass, and the filament is probably too hard to recycle but the glass could be. I know Ikea recycles incandescent bulbs as well, but why aren't there any other companies that do? Also LED bulbs, I guess dead LED bulbs can either be returned to manufacturer if it has warranty, or in electronic recycle.

Topic by ADRIANT28   |  last reply


Green isn't all that green after all

While the color green has been the hue of choice for environmentalists and companies wishing to show that they care about nature, making a product green is actually toxic. Due to the difficulty of making a green dye and all the chemicals that are used, it contaminates anything it touches. So when a product is simply putting some green to make it look a little more nature-friendly, it's actually making things worse. Yay! From the NY Times: Take Pigment Green 7, the commonest shade of green used in plastics and paper. It is an organic pigment but contains chlorine, some forms of which can cause cancer and birth defects. Another popular shade, Pigment Green 36, includes potentially hazardous bromide atoms as well as chlorine; while inorganic Pigment Green 50 is a noxious cocktail of cobalt, titanium, nickel and zinc oxide. The Toxic Side of Being, Literally, Green

Topic by fungus amungus   |  last reply


Colossal (to me, anyway) Compost Kerfuffle

[warning: contains some rant-like content]I am so angry that I can't see straight. My apartment building has a Community Garden, which is good. Our rules and guidelines which are especially emphatic about keeping the gardens all natural and organic, and chemical and pesticide-free. To this end, there is an "Approved Garden Products" list specifying the chemicals and fertilizers that may be used in the gardens. The list includes "Walt's" brand organic fertilizer, "Cedar Grove" compost, and six product made by Miracle-Gro.I had two 4' x 5' plots in the Community Gardens last year, which I heavily amended with the compost from my worm bins. I submitted a request to have an organic fertilizer mix that I have on hand added to the approved list, but the only response I received was another employee telling me: "I emailed Jane (not her real name) about it, and she emailed back to tell to you that Walt's is the best one to use." I should have followed up on this, but was too angry and aghast to speak to Jane about it immediately, and later never did get around to grasping that particular nettle.This year I'm doing just one 4' x 5' plot. I dug in some compost on Sunday, and on Tuesday I received the following letter (all names have been changed for internet purposes):Dear Ms. Gorfram,I wanted to follow up with you regarding an email I received about "homemade" compost that you may be using in your garden.The garden agreement has specific items that can be used in the garden, unless you are using a combination of those ingredients, your "homemade" compost hasn't been approved yet. If you would like to submit the ingredients of your compost for review we can take a look at it and try to get it on the list as well. In the mean time please use only the Cedar Grove compost or any other product on the approved list.We appreciate you help in this matter.Sincerely,Jane Doe,Property Manager(Spelling and punctuation very much hers, very much verbatim)She insulted my compost. She accused me of violating the gardening agreement. She is demanding that I list every last darned thing that I ever put into my compost and submit it to her for approval. She appears to be confusing my compost with the fertilizer that I asked to have added to the approved list. She either does not necessarily believe that I do make my own compost, or she is misusing quotation marks to indicate emphasis. ...She insulted my compost!Not wanting to alienate the manager of my apartment building by telling her that she is a slavering ignoramus who does not know the difference between compost and fertilizer, I responded with the following:In re: your letter of June 9, 2009Dear Ms. Doe,Perhaps there is some misunderstanding about my use of soil amendments in my Community Garden plot.The compost that I use in my garden plot contains no chemicals or pesticides. It is made entirely from vegetable waste from my kitchen and garden, to which I add water and locally native earthworms. It is my understanding that this sort of bulk organic matter does not need to be reviewed for the Approved Garden Products list. In answer to a related question asked at the July 15, 2008, Community Gardener's Meeting, John Galt (n.b. Jane Doe's boss) said, "As long as it doesn't contain pesticides or chemicals, you don't need to tell us about it."The email your letter refers to may have been in regard to my August, 2008 request to have "Dr. Earth Organic 7" fertilizer added to the Approved Gardening Products list. For your convenience, I have attached a new copy of the information about "Dr. Earth Organic 7" and its ingredients that I submitted with my request. I look forward to receiving approval of "Dr. Earth Organic 7" for use in the Community Gardens, or a statement of your reasons for denying this request, soon.Thank you,Evelyn Q. GorframAm I nuts? Should I be this mad? Should I tell her to take her 20 square feet of soil and suggest where she might put them? Should I demand that we duel at dawn unless she publicly retracts her dread insults to my compost?

Topic by Gorfram   |  last reply


Recyled rubber dolls paint, dye ?or varnish

I'm at the point of ripping my hair out with this one. Once apon a time I bought used doll and dyed them with RIT dye and got some great colors to use in various projects...(yes, my house is a bit on the creepy side). Lately, the dolls I have been finding, wont take the dye....maybe a new kind of rubber? Anyway, I want dolls that are blue. I painted a few with water based paint and then varnished them...several coats and they look pretty good but some of them flacked off...frustrating. I stripped those and bought some alcohol dyes and added that to varnish and painted them 5 days ago, putting a fan on them...cool color, but the varnish wont dry on the rubber and is now a tacky mess. Any chemistry geeks out there that can figure out a better way to get this "new rubber" to take color ? I am going to use some plastics spray paint as a last resort but I really want them to be durable and not flack or easily scratch...can I varnish over plastics spray paint...will there be another noxious chemical disaster if I spray plastics paint over rubber....help ?

Topic by krex   |  last reply


Heating Element for DIY Melting Point Apparatus

Hi Everyone, this is my first post on this site!  I am seeking advice to help me construct a home-made melting point apparatus (M.P.A).  A melting point apparatus allows it's operator to determine the melting point of a chemical sample by heating it in a controlled fashion and noting the temperature when the sample melts.  I have most of the design made up in my head, but I'm not sure as to how I can obtain the proper heating element.  The heating element I am seeking is an emulation of the M.P.A.s heating elements in my school's chemistry lab, which look like this: a metal block (about 3cm tall by 2cm deep by 3 cm wide) with vertical holes bored into the face with a pane of glass pressed against said holes so a glass capillary tube (containing the sample) can be slid into the bored hole and viewed through the glass pane as the sample is heated by the metal.  Another hole is bored into the metal, adjacent to the sample hole, for a thermometer.  So again, my question is do you have any suggestions as to where I could by a heating element like this?  Or, any suggestions on how to build one?  I have a jewelry shop at my disposal so I can probably bore any holes myself.   Any suggestions will be appreciated, thanks!

Topic by Das Horse   |  last reply


8 Reasons you'll rejoice when we hit $8 a gallon gasoline

This article in MarketWatch written by Chris Pummer mostly matches my opinions. My favorite is #2Here is the text:SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- For one of the nastiest substances on earth, crude oil has an amazing grip on the globe. We all know the stuff's poison, yet we're as dependent on it as our air and water supplies -- which, of course, is what oil is poisoning.Shouldn't we be technologically advanced enough here in the 21st Century to quit siphoning off the pus of the Earth? Regardless whether you believe global warming is threatening the planet's future, you must admit crude is passé. Americans should be celebrating rather than shuddering over the arrival of $4-a-gallon gasoline. We lived on cheap gas too long, failed to innovate and now face the consequences of competing for a finite resource amid fast-expanding global demand.A further price rise as in Europe to $8 a gallon -- or $200 and more to fill a large SUV's tank -- would be a catalyst for economic, political and social change of profound national and global impact. We could face an economic squeeze, but it would be the pain before the gain.The U.S. economy absorbed a tripling in gas prices in the last six years without falling into recession, at least through March. Ravenous demand from China and India could see prices further double in the next few years -- and jumpstart the overdue process of weaning ourselves off fossil fuels.Consider the world of good that would come of pricing crude oil and gasoline at levels that would strain our finances as much as they're straining international relations and the planet's long-term health: 1. RIP for the internal-combustion engineThey may contain computer chips, but the power source for today's cars is little different than that which drove the first Model T 100 years ago. That we're still harnessed to this antiquated technology is testament to Big Oil's influence in Washington and success in squelching advances in fuel efficiency and alternative energy.Given our achievement in getting a giant mainframe's computing power into a handheld device in just a few decades, we should be able to do likewise with these dirty, little rolling power plants that served us well but are overdue for the scrap heap of history.2. Economic stimulusNecessity being the mother of invention, $8 gas would trigger all manner of investment sure to lead to groundbreaking advances. Job creation wouldn't be limited to research labs; it would rapidly spill over into lucrative manufacturing jobs that could help restore America's industrial base and make us a world leader in a critical realm.The most groundbreaking discoveries might still be 25 or more years off, but we won't see massive public and corporate funding of research initiatives until escalating oil costs threaten our national security and global stability -- a time that's fast approaching. 3. Wither the Middle East's cloutThis region that's contributed little to modern civilization exercises inordinate sway over the world because of its one significant contribution -- crude extraction. Aside from ensuring Israel's security, the U.S. would have virtually no strategic or business interest in this volatile, desolate region were it not for oil -- and its radical element wouldn't be able to demonize us as the exploiters of its people.In the near term, breaking our dependence on Middle Eastern oil may well require the acceptance of drilling in the Alaskan wilderness -- with the understanding that costly environmental protections could easily be built into the price of $8 gas. 4. Deflating oil potentatesOn a similar note, Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recently gained a platform on the world stage because of their nations' sudden oil wealth. Without it, they would face the difficult task of building fair and just economies and societies on some other basis.How far would their message resonate -- and how long would they even stay in power -- if they were unable to buy off the temporary allegiance of their people with vast oil revenues? 5. Mass-transit developmentAnyone accustomed to taking mass transit to work knows the joy of a car-free commute. Yet there have been few major additions or improvements to our mass-transit systems in the last 30 years because cheap gas kept us in our cars. Confronted with $8 gas, millions of Americans would board buses, trains, ferries and bicycles and minimize the pollution, congestion and anxiety spawned by rush-hour traffic jams. More convenient routes and scheduling would accomplish that.6. An antidote to sprawlThe recent housing boom sparked further development of antiseptic, strip-mall communities in distant outlying areas. Making 100-mile-plus roundtrip commutes costlier will spur construction of more space-efficient housing closer to city centers, including cluster developments to accommodate the millions of baby boomers who will no longer need their big empty-nest suburban homes.Sure, there's plenty of land left to develop across our fruited plains, but building more housing around city and town centers will enhance the sense of community lacking in cookie-cutter developments slapped up in the hinterlands. 7. Restoration of financial disciplineFar too many Americans live beyond their means and nowhere is that more apparent than with our car payments. Enabled by eager lenders, many middle-income families carry two monthly payments of $400 or more on $20,000-plus vehicles that consume upwards of $15,000 of their annual take-home pay factoring in insurance, maintenance and gas.The sting of forking over $100 per fill-up would force all of us to look hard at how much of our precious income we blow on a transport vehicle that sits idle most of the time, and spur demand for the less-costly and more fuel-efficient small sedans and hatchbacks that Europeans have been driving for decades. 8. Easing global tensionsUnfortunately, we human beings aren't so far evolved that we won't resort to annihilating each other over energy resources. The existence of weapons of mass destruction aside, the present Iraq War could be the first of many sparked by competition for oil supplies.Steep prices will not only chill demand in the U.S., they will more importantly slow China and India's headlong rush to make the same mistakes we did in rapidly industrializing -- like selling $2,500 Tata cars to countless millions of Indians with little concern for the environmental consequences. If we succeed in developing viable energy alternatives, they could be a key export in helping us improve our balance of trade with consumer-goods producers. Additional considerationsWeaning ourselves off crude will hopefully be the crowning achievement that marks the progress of humankind in the 21st Century. With it may come development of oil-free products to replace the chemicals, pharmaceuticals, plastics, fertilizers and pesticides that now consume 16% of the world's crude-oil output and are likely culprits in fast-rising cancer rates.By its very definition, oil is crude. It's time we develop more refined energy sources and that will not happen without a cost-driven shift in demand.

Topic by Keith-Kid   |  last reply