Prop 87 Interview

I was interviewed yesterday by reporter Marc Strassman from Etopia News. There is a brief story, including a link to the interview, at:

California Politics Today #631

The interview went in a lot of different directions (not just Prop 87), and it lasted for almost an hour. It went pretty smoothly for the most part.

I misspoke on at least two occasions. Once, Mr. Strassman asked about Peak Oil, and said that most studies suggest that it will happen by 2010. I told him that I didn’t think it would be that soon, but I mentioned that the Hirsch report warned that we would need to begin preparations 20 years prior to the peak, and we are certainly within that time frame. However, to be certain, I don’t think peak oil is 20 years away, and it is possible that it will hit us by 2010. I didn’t mean to be dismissive of the possibility that we will peak by 2010.

The other occasion was near the end of the interview. I was asked about the possibility of an initiative like this coming to my state. I said something like “hopefully we can point to the failed initiative in California as a reason not to do it.” That didn’t come out right. I don’t want it to fail, I just don’t think it will do anything to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. I think other options would have been better. And if it plays out like I think it will, I don’t want to see my state wasting money like that.

Finally, yeah I know it’s a blurry picture. It’s the only one I had handy.

One thought on “Prop 87 Interview”

  1. Robert
    Thank you for your informative article, I am a former investor in Xethanol (Sold my shares at around $10) I have been reading everything I can find on Xethanol, and now am of the strong opinion that the company is a sham. However I am still miffed by the company’s reference to proprietary technology. This quote is taken from their web site under the News section:

    “Xethanol Acquires Advanced Biomass Gasification Technologies, Inc. from UTEK
    Acquisition Includes Exclusive Worldwide License to Assist in Integration and Commercialization of the Technology

    NEW YORK & TAMPA, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–June 14, 2006–Xethanol Corporation (OTCBB:XTHN), a biotechnology driven ethanol company, and UTEK Corporation (AMEX:UTK;LSE-AIM:UTK), a specialty finance company focused on technology transfer, announced today that Xethanol has acquired Advanced Biomass Gasification Technologies, Inc. (ABGT), a wholly owned subsidiary of UTEK, in a stock transaction.
    ABGT holds the exclusive worldwide license for MicroGasification technology developed at the Energy and Environmental Research Center (EERC) at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks. The MicroGasifier produces syngas from carbon matter. Syngas drives a portable, power generation system that provides energy solutions for companies and municipalities with simultaneous waste disposal and power needs. Xethanol and EERC are mutually funding a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) to further apply the MicroGasifier in the production of ethanol. EERC will perform system integration of the MicroGasifier for customers.”

    To a lay person this sounds very plausible, but shouldn’t their be some record of this license or a patent filing if it existed? In your opinion does the above technology have any merit? Also Xethanol is quoted as saying this in the Fortune Small Business article 2/3/06:

    “Xethanol will use a recently discovered form of yeast to ferment various types of garbage into ethanol. It has obtained rights to the process from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, where a scientist discovered that a yeast in the intestines of a type of beetle can convert plant-based waste product into ethanol.”

    The question that arises is, why would the U.S.D.A. give the rights to this process to Xethanol and not other companies? It does not make sense.

    Perhaps your expertise in these areas can shed some light for others.

    Thank You
    J.G. Philadelphia

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