chris vs. the arctic

chris: 72 // the arctic: 47

Oi Oil!

Bush gave his big speech yesterday and remarked that the U.S. is addicted to oil. Well, if the U.S. is a self-confessed addict seeking rehabilitation, Japan is the twitchy junkie curled into a fetal position in the corner of the bathroom. This country uses oil like it's going out of style. (Which it is.)

Proof 1: Home insulation does not exist, so everyone is forced to buy litres and litres of heating fuel to keep their houses warm in the winter. I have personally used 80 litres of kerosene since November.

Proof 2: Everything is wrapped in plastic, including the individual cookies inside a bag of cookies. Apples are separately placed in styrofoam mesh and then wrapped in plastic wrap. I mean everything.

Proof 3: Many people in Japan have no qualms with leaving their cars idling as they shop in grocery stores, read comic books in convenience stores, or eat dinner in a restaurant. Just yesterday, as I walked past a gas station, I noticed a woman filling up her car while it was running! Needless to say, I started running. TURN OFF YOUR CARS JAPAN! IT'S NOT THAT COLD!!

Japan is going to be the first country to fail if it doesn't adopt new technologies in the next decade. Full-stop.
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On February 02, 2006, Blogger OSB said:

I agree with you to a degree, but at least the Japanese pretty much all agree that the environment should be protected. Other countries aren't there yet.

Japan also done more to get people to use alternatives. Just take the train to Kanazawa and you'll see windmills on some of the hills.

Japan will probably be one of the LAST countries to feel an impact, with the US being the last, since they can both AFFORD expensive fossil fuels.

It is going to be those small places, like the mighty Republic of Palau, that will feel the effects first and most.    



On February 03, 2006, Blogger laceylala said:

There is no way japanese people using one small heater or their kotatsu use as much energy as it takes to heat an entire house in Canada all day every day...that's why the houses in Japan are freezing. The packaging is insane..Korea has the same packaging but you can't get a plastic bag for free in that country, I had no idea how to ask for one so I was always in need of plastic bags, you think if i bought 7 items at a grocery store they might offer me one for sale....but still way better than getting 2 frigging plastic bags for 2 items at a combini just because they are different temperatures.    



On February 03, 2006, Blogger Chris said:

OSB, I agree with you about Japanese people caring about the environment (if only in an aesthetic way).

However, I doubt Japan will be able to afford the fuel in the future. It's economy is based on manufacturing and export of oil-dependent products (cars, electronics, etc.). It has no domestic source of petroleum. Since it's entire economy is driven by importing foreign oil, it is at the whim of OPEC and other oil-exporting countries.

Although, if OPEC can't sell it's oil to countries like Japan, it will just lower it's prices... Or keep it for itself.

Either way, the oil won't run out for a while yet. There are billions of barrels of unconventional oil lying around.

(Yay discussions!)    



On February 03, 2006, Blogger OSB said:

I think we agree; we're just not agreeing that we agree.

The coming crisis will most definately hurt material resource-poor Japan, but it will hurt resource, human-capital, and infrastructure-poor countries first. It will also hit them harder.    



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