1 September 2005
Put me down on the side of saving as much of New Orleans as possible.
But if it's not possible, here's a suggestion from Hatless in Hattiesburg, who is not actually in Hattiesburg and for all I know might actually have a hat:
Allow petroleum refineries to be built on the sites of the military bases closed by the BRAC commission;
Relocate all hurricane refugees to the abandoned housing around these bases, and give them jobs at the new refineries (or in other support businesses).
Which, says H/H, solves three problems at once.
Addendum: A proposal from Engine of the Future to simplify the task of the refineries:
We can temporarily lift the EPA regulations on all of these different fuel blends. We can do it for gasoline and diesel. Others if need be. We do this nationwide, and do it for a known, extended period of time. Fear and uncertainty is causing the "market" (that's "traders in Chicago", not us average consumers) to drive these extreme price jumps. Putting a plan into action that the "market" can count on will ease those fears and relieve the uncertainty. We lift these EPA regs for two or three years.
That gives the refining industry a known time to work with. "The market" too. All operational refineries would now be able to run larger batches and be able to ship that fuel wherever it's needed. Think that's a bad idea? Well, the EPA thinks it's a good idea, sort of.
"B-b-but what about the environment?" I hear you cry. Yeah, you'll really miss that MTBE, won't you?
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» Rethinking the Rebuild from Dan and Angi have something to say
Should we abandon New Orleans? No, we shouldn't, but we should rethink the rebuild. It makes no sense to rebuild generic houses, fungible apartment blocks, gas stations and strip malls below the gulf, below Lake Ponchartrain, and below the frea......[read more]