The solution to the gas prices.

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Ive been doing a lot of thinking lately and i figured if everyone in the world didn't buy gas for 24 hours gas prices would drop signifigantly. What are your opinions to this?
 

Peachy

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How does not buying gas for a day change aggregate demand? People would just buy twice the normal amount the day before or after.

If you want to change gas prices, buy less gas...forever, and not just for a day. I.e. walk, cycle or take public transit more often, or just don't leave the house if you don't have to. Cut down on electricity use too, because power plants may run on oil-products too.

Peachy
 
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It would be nice if it worked that way, however, in reality, this would only postpone the purchase for 24 hours. Because you are still going to need the fuel.
The way to do this would be for everyone to target just one oil company, (Exxon/Mobil), and not buy from them period. The sales would all go towards another one, but Exxon/Mobil will suddenly find themselves without a customer base. Without any sales for a few weeks or month, they will bow to the pressure and lower prices. In the meantime, the other oil companies will be glad to pick up the extra business.
I know there's a lot more to it than this, but that's the simple version.
 

ballucanb

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I think, boycotting any oil company is not the answer, you need to conserve as much fuel as you can.

keep your car tuned, buy putting a set of plugs in now and then and changeing or just cleaning the air filter, keep the tires inflated a few pounds above specs, the car will ride a little harder, and tires will last a little while longer.

It's not going to save you alot but it will save some, if your car runs better it uses less fuel, they tell people plugs will last for 100K and after they get around 10 or 15K they start to loose power, and you need to use more fuel to move the car.

If you take out the air filter, and just tap it on a clean surface, you will see all the dirt that blocking air from comming in, if you do that regularly, it will save some fuel, also stay away from fram air filters, they don't flow air as well as cheap filters, like pureolator.

The EPA and the Manufactures say my car will do 35 hwy. but driving carefully and keeping an eye on everything else my car does 42 city, I know it works.
 

Klokwork

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The oil companies aren't raising prices just for shits and giggles, hey don't have enough supply. They aren't evil super villains who take money from the poor to fund their production of a baby raping machine. There are no alternative fuels. If the free market can't find a replacement for four dollar gas, there isn't one. There isn't anything we can do besides get more oil. Besides, even without driving, Americans use 5 billion drums of oil a day to heat their homes etc.
 

Chillhouse

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The oil companies aren't raising prices just for shits and giggles, hey don't have enough supply. They aren't evil super villains who take money from the poor to fund their production of a baby raping machine. There are no alternative fuels. If the free market can't find a replacement for four dollar gas, there isn't one. There isn't anything we can do besides get more oil. Besides, even without driving, Americans use 5 billion drums of oil a day to heat their homes etc.
There's tons of alternative fuels. There's just not enough support for them.
 
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Or enough engineers willing to work on the problem, because it would be a drastic change to our energy infrastructure.

Also, the only person you're hurting when you boycott gas stations is the station owner. Oil is used for more than just gas: diesel, plastics, lubricants, thinners, paints, kerosene, etc. Gasoline is just a small part of the oil market. So boycotting gas stations will not harm oil companies.

I'm going to start riding a bike one of these days, when I can find a good model.
 

Jaiden

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The oil companies aren't raising prices just for shits and giggles, hey don't have enough supply. They aren't evil super villains who take money from the poor to fund their production of a baby raping machine. There are no alternative fuels. If the free market can't find a replacement for four dollar gas, there isn't one. There isn't anything we can do besides get more oil. Besides, even without driving, Americans use 5 billion drums of oil a day to heat their homes etc.
Both Shell and Exxon Mobil have posted record profits this year, BP's profits rose by almost half in the last quarter, Eni and Repsol are also showing significantly increasing earnings and it's the same for everyone in the sector. These companies make tens of billions every quarter - they could lower prices and still make huge sums of money, they just don't want to.

As for the original suggestion, I'm afraid a boycott wouldn't work in this market. The way we live makes oil an essential so the companies don't have to worry about demand all that much. People might be able to go for a couple of days but they would have to go back to the pumps in no time. The power of the consumer is very limited in this context, I'm afraid.
 

Tungsten

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The oil companies aren't raising prices just for shits and giggles, hey don't have enough supply.
That's not exactly true. There's plenty of supply. There aren't shortages anywhere. Nobody's lining up for gas. Oil prices have dropped 25% in the past month, and there's certainly not 25% more supply on the market, and demand wasn't curbed 25%. The commodities and derivatives markets are extraordinarily complex, and I think a lot of the run-up in prices is hidden with trading strategies. China and India have been developing their economies for a decade, but the skyrocketing price of oil has been only over an 18 month period.

Nonetheless, I ride my bike to work and on general errands, so I probably only buy 15 gallons of gas per month. So, I'm doing my part.

Also, my sarcasm detector is way off today so I can't tell if you're serious, but the United States daily consumption in all is 20 *m*illion barrels, 70% of which is used for transportation purposes.
 

goodnitesgirl

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It would be nice if it worked that way, however, in reality, this would only postpone the purchase for 24 hours. Because you are still going to need the fuel.
The way to do this would be for everyone to target just one oil company, (Exxon/Mobil), and not buy from them period. The sales would all go towards another one, but Exxon/Mobil will suddenly find themselves without a customer base. Without any sales for a few weeks or month, they will bow to the pressure and lower prices. In the meantime, the other oil companies will be glad to pick up the extra business.
I know there's a lot more to it than this, but that's the simple version.
They would just sell the oil/gas to the other gas retailers and most of the individual stations are privately owned and operated boycotting one brand would only hurt the little guys who run the stations and would not effect the price of oil. Oil is a commodity that is traded globally the only way to reduce the price is to either increase the supply or reduce the demand (and not just for 24 hours)
 

MysteriousVisitor

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The ideal way to lower gas would be for you to not buy gas period. Walk, buy a bike, take public transport. You don't worry about gas prices if you don't need very much of it.
 

Point

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The ideal way to lower gas would be for you to not buy gas period. Walk, buy a bike, take public transport. You don't worry about gas prices if you don't need very much of it.
That's nice for people who live close to work or friends, but there are lots of places that require cars. I don't know of many people who are willing to bike 4 miles in 105-degree weather to reach the store, and then 40-degree weather in the winter. The groceries would probably melt/spoil on the way home too! Biking when possible is cool, and buses work for lots of people, but some of us just live too far away from the city.
 

snydead

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That's a good thought but I still think that the goverment wouldn't lower the price even if no one got gas. The other downside is there are a lot of people that need gas like people who have meetings to go to that are far away and their are Truck drivers that deliver stuff needs a lot of gas, so Either way the economy needs gas. hehe, Why can't we travel by horse and buggy and if that's too slow and you have the need for speed, then add some turbo power to the horses, I mean add a 20 pound bottle of nitrice.

Sorry if i got carried away, I feel silly today. :)
 
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Or if we used different materials for making plastics and plastic by products, instead of this gas by product we use.
 

DLGrif

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On the topic of alternative energy, if the world suddenly found itself completely dry of fossil fuel, the world wouldn't grind to a halt. We would have viable alternative energy within two weeks, and it would most likely be a nuclear design. The reason we don't do that is because at the moment, gas prices are still acceptable, despite our whining and moaning.

Moreover, we are far from running out of drill points. The only problem is that the oil wells we know of are losing pressure. They aren't surging through the pipes as strongly anymore, and in some places you have to suck it out yourself. But even past that, we have untapped oil potential right here in America. Before we give up our internal combustion engines for clean nuclear power, we'd rather spend two or more times the effort chemically treating and extracting oil shale located half a mile underground.

It will be a long time before anybody will have the balls to seriously pursue viable alternative energy to the point that is economically feasible. You can run some cars on pure ethanol, or plug it in overnight at your home, but both options are still more expensive over time than gassing up. The biggest advance we've made so far is in hybridization, which cleverly reduces mechanical friction (aka loss of energy) and double-dips for energy whenever you use your brakes. However, they are still primarily fossil fuel cars.

Environmentalists have failed to scare the nation into switching to clean energy. This may be due to the fact that our overall air quality is quite high, nearly back to (if not better than) the state before primitive coal mines were in place. Emissions regulation works.

In the end, the solution is subtle. As a U.S. consumer, there aren't many ways you can get away with completely boycotting fuel. A literally negligible number of people have the ability to do all of their errands or work on foot or bike. But if everybody did "what they can" as far as reducing fuel use goes, eventually the oil industry would take a hit*. This would cause prices to ratchet up even further, which encourages more people to drive conservatively; this positive feedback will eventually make alternative energy viable by comparison, but it will still require a decade or more of large economic support before enough advances are made to bring the prices of that technology down to what we'd like (the energy equivalent of $2/gal, for example.)


* It is worth noting that while I have taken economics courses, I am not confident enough to actually predict the outcome of certain situations for certain industries with any degree of certainty. Take from my opinion what you will.
 

NEJay

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What are your opinions to this?
A 24 hour gas boycott would have a negative effect of private gas retailers (the gas station owners making a penny per gallon), and not the gas producers.

Regardless, there is no way the entire country could go a day without purchasing any gasoline.
 

Spirit

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Apparently you can run a diesel engine on nothing but cooking oil, no modifications necessary. But if everyone started doing that the price of old cooking oil would shoot up...
 

Darkfinn

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The only way to lower gasoline prices permanently is to end speculation and reduce demand. Consumers are already doing the second part by driving less and buying more fuel efficient vehicles... however it is up to those greedy bastards in washington to do something about the speculation problem. Necessity items like food and fuel should not be up for grabs on the open market like they are. Unscrupulous investors can manipulate these things that society needs to survive and really create a lot of havoc (as we have seen)... it puts people out of work... and drives the global economy into a tailspin.

I do expect the next administration to do something about it.

A 24 hour boycott or a boycott of a single gasoline company would never work. If everyone just didn't buy gas for a day they would either fill up the day before or the day after... it would create a demand surge that would actually raise prices... and if we all just stopped buying from Exxon they can just lower their prices by a few pennies and everyone would flock back to them. That approach was tried back when gas first crossed $2/gal... nothing happened.

I have also heard proposals of a "national day in". A day where everyone stays home and noone drives anywhere... but that wouldn't work either. Americans need to drive and need to spend in order to keep the economy functioning.
 

recovery

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The original idea of the diesel engine was for farmers that could 'grow' and create their own fuel. However, if we all switched to bio-diesel, then there will be less farm land for food. Which In turn, Would bring high fuel and food prices.

Not only is petrol/Diesel, oil, gas and coal is still used for other domestic and commercial/industrial uses for energy. the big one being electricity. Not only is delivering enough juice into the national grid (or the equivalent for the US electricity pylon network), but to regulate when there is allot of electricity needed and when it isn't. As electricity can't really be stored. It needs to be used when its created. So the NEDL has a big room fine tuning all the power created by all the plants, in the UK there are hundreds of Diesel generators on standby waiting to produce in the region of MWatts which can be made available in under 15seconds. Pretty fast if you consider the few problems they'll have. With renewable sources such as wind, solar etc... This will become much more difficult to control and manipulate. Even with nuclear, you can't easily stop them, otherwise your wasting the energy and heating up your oceans for the hell of it.

There are ways to store the energy from the grid by many means, It will help the problem. But it will still remain a bit problem, as you can only hold so much and it will only last so long if being used.

I think, we should be sticking to more efficient means of powering our devices. This is no longer a problem in the past, as most if you buy a washing machine or something, they are usually tested and have a little power rating on the side.
 
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