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The Coming Gas Crisis

Fifty miles off the coast of Nantucket, 250 feet beneath the Atlantic, lies the RMS Republic and her secret treasure. As soon as Republic sank, rumors spread of a precious cargo, but the ship has kept her secrets intact for over a century, until now. Life-long treasure hunter Martin Bayerle joined Connie Willis (email) for all four hours to discuss how he has devoted the past 35 years of his life researching the shipwreck and proving the existence of her reputed cargo of 150,000 American Eagle gold coins, a bounty worth a billion dollars in today’s economy, and his quest to recover the it on his second attempt at the Republic.

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The Coming Gas Crisis

Show Archive
Date: Sunday - March 27, 2005
Host: Art Bell
Guests: Open Lines

Art Bell led off a night of special Open Lines by reading from an article titled The Long Emergency in which James Howard Kunstler ponders America's problematic fate when it runs out of its cheap gas supply. Art then posed a number of questions for callers to consider, which included:

  • Do you believe the oil crisis is real or a conspiracy?
  • At what pump price would your current lifestyle be unsustainable?
  • Would you steal or kill to feed your family?

Callers were split on whether the oil crisis is genuine or contrived. People said would they would start to be adversely affected when gas prices reached $4 a gallon, on the average. And most callers asserted that if society broke down into a Mad Max scenario, they would be willing to steal or kill for the survival of their families.

Stephanie, an organic farmer from Southern California, detailed that the majority of foods are produced using petroleum and that the average item travels 1,400 miles before arriving at a store. Accordingly, she's made landscaping precautions to guard against future theft at her farm.

Another caller suggested that the problem is that our refineries are in disrepair, and unable to process needed amounts of gas. Callers from Canada and France cast a critical eye on the United States, implying that not enough was being done here to deal with the crisis. A film producer living in Paris said they had adapted to higher prices there (currently $7 a gallon he estimated) and that in many metropolitan centers, people must leave their vehicles at the periphery and take rapid transit into the city. Europeans were also making a strong effort towards using biodiesel and electric as well as investigating zero point energy possibilities, he added.

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