Tuesday, December 9, 2014


Non-Maskable Interrupt (NMI)
Back in the days when I designed computer hardware and systems, the NMI was the means for signaling the processor that a condition existed which needed immediate attention.  It was possible to get really tricky with it back in the day.  We used it for emulation when we wanted to have two operating systems coexisting on one machine...but that was another time...
Still, the best way to describe the situation with the Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas North East Direct Pipeline project is to recognize it as a real world NMI.
Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Christmas will all go on for some people...okay, for most people, but I don't think I can "mask" this situation.  It is with me day and night.  There is so much to learn and so little time.
Kinder Morgan has already hired a Public Relations firm.  They have time, money, power and lots of practice stripping whole towns of their property rights and drinking water.  If you don't like a pipeline running through your backyard, think how much worse it is to have them drill wells on your property.
The pipelines and the expansion of fracking operations are tied together.
President Obama has stated that we have enough natural gas to last the United States for 100 years.  That doesn't take into account the fact that the gas is owned by multi-national corporations who want these pipelines and to speed up fracking so they can sell that 100 year supply on the worldwide market as fast as possible.  If the Kinder Morgan NED project is representative, they are producing and selling natural gas at 3 times the US demand.  The 100 year projection is based on a peak in 2040 and an export rate of 15%.  Critics of the EIA projections believe a peak is more likely to occur by 2020. 
Some people think this is a good thing.  It helps our trade balance they say.  Maybe so, but who is paying for it?  Homeowners all over the country now own worthless properties.  Water supplies have been fouled forever.  Instead of leading by example by using energy efficiency, renewable resources, and smart grid technologies, we are building a natural gas dependent infrastructure that could very well hasten the demise of our biosphere...and we are feeding that addiction in other parts of the world too. 
When are the American people going to wake up and see that large multi-national oil and gas corporations drive our wars, write our laws, and pay no taxes?  They don't care about our environment or our people.  They hire slick advertising firms to create a public image and they make settlements with homeowners that include "gag orders."
There are also serious safety and investment concerns with Kinder Morgan: 

From Barrons Online, February 22, 2014:
‘…KINDER MORGAN’S CAPITAL EXPENDITURES in its vast pipeline business is another area of debate. Hedgeye’s Kaiser criticized the company in September for sharply cutting sustaining capex on newly purchased pipelines.
Jefferies analyst Sighinolfi has different concerns. “Every company defines maintenance capex differently, but we struggle to understand how KMP can safely operate the largest portfolio of transmission and storage assets in the industry for just a fraction of its peers’ expenditures,” he wrote last year. Comparing Kinder Morgan with Spectra Energy Partners (SEP), another big pipeline operator, he found that Kinder Morgan was spending about half the maintenance capital of Spectra per mile of pipeline. He has a Hold rating on the Kinder Morgan MLP…’
- Barrons Online, February 22, 2014