Saturday, November 3, 2007

Jet Fuel and Walter Reed

Hi, PDX and the world!

My former Air Force supervisor Brooks sent me a useful address:

A Recovering American Soldier
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20307-5001

Support a recovering soldier and his/her family by sending some thanks and good wishes their way. Mine will go into the mail tomorrow to WRAMC.

Brooks also forwarded a little video clip of a Russian built Sukhoi 30-MK fighter jet. With vectored thrust and canard surfaces near the nose it can "fly" in almost any attitude. More like an aerobatic helicopter than a fighter jet. All it takes is a lot of kerosene. A LOT of kerosene--which is essentially what jet fuel is.

Made me stop to think how we could really support our troops: cut household fossil fuel and electricity consumption by 25%. Here's a thought. Trucks and trains that transport our goods don't burn much fuel compared to what we ignite daily driving our cars and pickups all over God's kingdom as though it didn't matter. Every gallon of gasoline, kerosene or diesel fuel burned produces somewhere between 20 and 22 pounds of carbon dioxide.

Next thought. In Lincoln, NE where I got my undergraduate degree the football stadium holds around 80,000 people. If every person at the game burns one gallon of fuel to get there, that's somewhere around 1,600,000 pounds of CO2. Just for one game. Granted, some students walk. But many folks drive dozens or hundreds of miles round trip. Still, it's a drop in the bucket compared to the daily combustion in any U.S. town of 100K people, not to mention Portland, Seattle, LA, Atlanta, Dallas-Ft. Worth or Chicago.

Next thought. How would life change if Saudi Arabia came apart and oil went to $150-200 per barrel overnight? Would the job or church you commute to now pencil out if gas went to $7 per gallon? Would your job still be there? Where would your food come from? What would it cost? Could easily happen. Could happen by the time you read this. Pakistan is in the process of imploding before it explodes. Pakistan: nuclear power. Pray for calm. Please pray for calm. And reinvent your life. Soon.

Apart from all that, we know better than doggone well that earth systems and life as we know it cannot withstand a repeat of the 20th century, let alone one worse. So why are we so slow to adjust? Beats me. Totally beats me. What good is a war on terrorism or secure borders when the very life support systems of earth are under deadly assault? All life as we know it depends on those systems. All of it. Only all of it..... Wow!

So why is this so hard to wrap our little heads and hearts around? Maybe our terminology is too small...

Next time: Why I no longer talk about "the environment".

Cards and letters to WRAMC. Remember?

Pastor Roger

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