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Subject:  Re: Green Fleet Downturn Date:  7/28/2012  11:54 PM
Author:  TAC888 Number:  53 of 66

Sorry I didn't see your post sooner. Here's what I'd say to the politics around the Navy and USAF tests:

1. The pentagon is spending $510 Million on various biofuel efforts. Solazyme has received $12 Million (so far!) of this amount... so the "Solazyme is in bed with the Dems" stuff seems overblown.

2. Detractors from the initiative don't seem to acknowledge that economies of scale comes with scale--buying a tiny drop of the Navy's annual fuel requirements won't be enough to make a dent, but as providers ramp up, costs will fall. This specific purchase from Solazyme was about 0.3% of their annual requirement, not enough to move Solazyme's needle.

3. Why is the military doing this, anyway? Is it an intentional misuse of taxpayer money? Kickbacks? Some sort of Obama conspiracy? Or is it because energy security and independence is a good idea? Month after month I contemplate buying a hybrid, though I think they're mostly ugly at present. Not because I expect to save money... not because I think one car will save the environment when over my car's lifetime 100 people in Asia will buy cars without catalytic converters... rather, because I want a way to send less money to people who want to destroy our way of life. I dunno, maybe that's just me. I'm sorry if it's not PC to say so but so be it.

“If you look at the reasons we’re doing it, we’re not doing it to be faddish, we’re not doing it to be green, we’re not doing it for any other reason except it takes care of a military vulnerability that we have,” Mabus says at a news conference in the Nimitz’s hanger, noting that the Navy got stuck with a billion-dollar bill in May because of rising oil prices. “We simply have to figure out a way to get American made homegrown fuel that is stable in price, that is competitive with oil that we can use to compete with oil. If we don’t we’re still too vulnerable.”

-U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus

I must grant that the most immediate way to solve this problem is to drill domestically... but all that does is defer the exact same problem. And besides, wouldn't it be a wonderful thing if the USA became a net exporter of petroleum, resulting in money flowing in, forever, instead of the other way around? With biofuels, there's more to send abroad:

Anyway, these folks at Solazyme are doing lots and lots above and beyond biofuel, so please check it all out. My wife ordered from Sephora last week and got an Algenist sample, that was a nice surprise.
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