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2 Feb 10 2011 @ 8:24am by Matt Smith in Biofuels, Crude Oil, Global Energy, Natural Gas, Random

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As incredulous as it seems, ‘Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo’ is in fact a grammatically valid sentence in the American English language. This was brought to my attention by a colleague, and it set me off thinking about incredulous things in the energy complex. So here are ten random energy incredulosities:

1) The average person uses the energy equivalent of 228 tons of coal in their lifetime – and has a carbon footprint which would fill half the NY Giants Stadium. 

2) Total consumption of oil products in the US (gasoline, diesel, heating oil, etc) is currently 19,100,000 barrels a day. That’s 221 barrels a second.

3) Powering a car for a single year using ethanol would require 11 acres of corn, space that can be used to feed at least seven people. (full piece here).

4) The EIA revised up its recoverable natural gas shale estimate by 72% in its 2011 Annual Energy Outlook from the previous year from 480 Tcf to 827 Tcf (to give some perspective, current consumption is approx. 23 Tcf/year).

5) Capturing the methane from 18 cows could power a household in the US. 

6) Saudi Arabia produces approximately 12% of the world’s oil (over 10,000,000 barrels a day), while their proven reserves are 266,000,000,000 barrels.

7) China consumes approximately 3.5 billion tons of coal a year.

8) Using pedal power, it takes 3 cyclists to power a television, 11 cyclists for a vacuum cleaner, 14 for a microwave, 17 for a washing machine, 24 for an oven, and an astonishing 70 cyclists pedalling at full-pelt just to power an electric shower.

9) The US consumes about 100,000,000,000,000,000 Btus per year (100 Quadrillion Btus), which is approximately 20% of the world’s total consumption.

10) The world’s largest burrito was made in La Paz, Mexico, last November, and measured 2.7 kilometers long. Now that burrito took a lot of energy. Adios!

2 Comments on this post:

  1. Becky Escobar says:

    Using pedal power? Maybe my husband, Joe, should help out more at home! (He got the most miles in HikeKY by pedalling)

  2. Matt Smith says:

    Take it easy on him, Becky – trying hooking him up to the TV before moving onto the more energy-intensive appliances!

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