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Diversify Energy

Diversify Transportation Energy

Action: Pass Amendment 51 to S.2372


Life requires energy. Cheap oil is finite. Economies powered by cheap oil are terminal.

Diversifying Massachusetts’ from a 100% dependence on foreign oil can be accomplished by 2025 by combining well understood efficiencies and safety with the on-demand service of the Internet to build the Physical Internet®:

  • Freight railroads average 476 ton-miles per gallon. Moving a ton to move a person in cars and buses is 140 times less efficient.

  • Morgantown’s Personal Rapid Transit network has delivered 110 million oil-free, injury-free passenger-miles since being built as a solution to the 1973 Oil Embargo.

  • Private capital will invest about $60 billion over the next 10 years to pay for Energy Diversification to recover as profits about $9 billion/year of the $15.7 billion/year that traffic costs the people of Massachusetts.




Passing Amendment 51 to S.2372 sets the stage for Hyperloop, JPods and other transportation innovators to invest $60 billion over the next 10 years to build the solar-powered Physical Internet in Massachusetts:

  • By 2020, gather 3 gigawatt-hours per day of solar energy to displace about 40% of Massachusetts oil-powered car traffic. This is about 600 miles of urban networks. Such networks will reduce congestion making it much safer to ride bikes.

  • By 2026, gather 30 gigawatt-hours per day to solar-power 85% of Massachusetts mobility needs. This is about 6,000 miles of Hyperloop, JPods, ET3, Taxi2000, and other networks combined with self-driving vehicles, bikes, and other options.

  • Create thousands of jobs building the Physical Internet®.

  • Recognize that US Oil Production is depleting at the rate of 1 million barrels per day (mb/d) per year. This is equivalent to the energy loss of a 1973 Oil Embargo every year.

  • Recognize, as in 2008, EIA and US DOT are failing to warn the people and state government of the risks of much higher gasoline prices.


  • Recognize that rising gas prices and rising unemployment are correlated with depleting oil production and the Law of Supply and Demand.

  • Recognize that rising gasoline prices between 1998 and 2008 forced people to use their mortgage payments to buy gasoline to commute to their jobs until foreclosures nearly collapsed the economy in 2008. This pattern will repeat by 2020.

  • Recognize that Massachusetts was founded while energy self-reliant and powered within a solar budget.

  • Recognize that Massachusetts’ 100% dependence on foreign oil has required oil-wars since 1991 to secure oil supplies.

  • Recognize China and Saudi Arabia are implementing multi-trillion dollar “Post-oil Era” efforts to diversify their economies away from fossil fuels.

Background data supporting passage of Amendment 51 to S.2372:

Amendment 51 to S.2372 and S.1837 support anyone building sustainable mobility networks.

  1. Why private capital will invest $60 billion to pay for Energy Diversification.

  2. What is practical.

  3. How transportation is the catalyst for changing energy systems.

  4. Why the near collapse of 2008 will recur by 2020.

1. Why private capital will invest $60 billion to pay for Energy Diversification

Traffic costs the people of Massachusetts approximately $15.7 billion/year:

Approximately $9 billion/year of traffic costs can be convert to profits and customer savings. To earn those profits, private capital will invest about $6 billion/year to pay for Energy Diversification.

Operating costs and pollution by transport mode per passenger-mile are graphed below (MassDOT and US DOE data).


It is very expensive to move two tons to move a person. JPods converts the energy and pollution costs into value with 500 pound vehicles that move non-stop from origin to destination in a network of horizontal-elevators™.  Examples of converting costs to value:

  • For each car passenger-mile replaced by JPods, 35 cents is saved to pay for retooling.

  • For each bus passenger-mile replaced by JPods, $1.43 is saved to pay for retooling.

2.  What is Practical

In 1910 Thomas Edison observed:

"Sunshine is spread out thin and so is electricity. Perhaps they are the same. Sunshine is a form of energy, and the winds and the tides are manifestations of energy.”

“Do we use them? Oh, no! We burn up wood and coal, as renters burn up the front fence for fuel. We live like squatters, not as if we owned the property.

“There must surely come a time when heat and power will be stored in unlimited quantities in every community, all gathered by natural forces. Electricity ought to be as cheap as oxygen...."

In addition to the 10x conversion of costs to value, the Net Energy (useful energy per unit of energy required to get that energy) of solar provides a 6x greater value. The Net Energy of solar is approximately 20:1; wind is 25:1. In the 1930s the Net Energy of oil was 100:1. As oil fields depleted, this Net Energy has decreased below 5:1. Fracking oil is less than 3:1.



Solar collectors mounted over JPods rails gather about 5 megawatt-hours per mile per day, or about 25,000 vehicle-miles of power per mile per day. Within 3 years, private capital will invest $6 billion to build 600 miles of solar-powered mobility networks, capable of gathering 3 gigawatt-hours per day. By 2026 networks such as JPods and Hyperloop will likely invest $60 billion to displace 85% of oil/coal-fired infrastrastructure.


The Physical Internet®, networks such as JPods, Hyperloop, ET3, etc., build on the success of Morgantown’s Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) network built as a solution to the 1973 Oil Embargo. Links are provided for:

3. How transportation is the catalyst for changing energy systems

Throughout history, transportation has been the catalyst for changing energy systems. Someone:

  • Paddled a raft, then built a waterwheel.

  • Sailed a ship, then built a windmill.

  • Rode a horse, then harnessed the horse to a plow.

  • In the 1860s railroads were the catalyst to shift from biofuels (hay and wood) to fossil fuels.

  • Solar powered mobility will cut the cost to solar-power buildings with energy storage.



This graph illustrates how railroads created a stable market for fossil fuels, allowing costs per barrel to drop from $100 per barrel to $20. As JPods networks are built, costs will decrease for solar collection and energy storage across all uses.


4. Why the near collapse of 2008 will recur by 2020

Four forces are combining to create a crisis by 2020:

  • US Oil Production is decreasing at the rate of one 1973 Oil Embargo per year.

  • The Law of Supply and Demand will cause unemployment to rise with gas prices.

  • Oil companies are broke, many in bankruptcy, and cannot restart fracking.

  • Political instability in Venezuela, Turkey, Syria, etc…. could collapse the oil supply chain at any time.

US Peak Oil was in 1970 (official EIA data link). Peak Fracking was in June 2015. As supply decreases at 1 million barrels per day per year, this depletion is equal to about one 1973 Oil Embargo per year. As supply decreases, prices increase to curtail demand. Supply outages will become chronic. At some point panic will set in; the current “just-in-time” trading of oil will shift to keeping a “just-in-case” supply on-hand.



Gasoline prices are excellent forecasters of unemployment two years later. Life requires energy. Less affordable energy, less life (left graph). Gasoline prices ratchet, but on average increase at 7.3% since US Peak Oil in 1970 and 14.1% since China and India started competing for foreign oil in 1998. Recommend watching Energy Economics.


The delay between rising gasoline prices and unemployment is explained by the way labor applies energy to build momentum into the economy; a couple of years are generally required for the harm of high prices or benefits of low prices to manifest.

Life requires energy. Employment requires affordable energy. Cheap oil is finite. Life powered by cheap oil is terminal.

The monolithic dependence on a strain of potatoes in Ireland in the 1840s resulted in the Potato Famines. Mass migrations resulted. A similar mass migration is occurring in Syria today as their monolithic dependence on oil collapsed into Oil Famine and war in 2012. As nearly occurred in 2008, by 2020, Massachusetts’ monolithic dependence on foreign oil will collapse.


5. Constitutional protections against Climate Change and Oil-wars.

Federally mandated oil-burning highways and coal/gas-burning electrical monopolies are the cause of Climate Change and oil-wars.

The Constitution specifically protects against the consequences of such monopolies by prohibiting the Federal government from taxing to provide “internal improvements”. Here is a link to five Presidential vetoes of “internal improvements”.

Here is a clip from President Buchanan’s veto:

"For more than thirty years after the adoption of the Federal Constitution the power to appropriate money for the construction of internal improvements was neither claimed nor exercised by Congress. After its commencement, in 1820 and 1821, by very small and modest appropriations for surveys, it advanced with such rapid strides that within the brief period of ten years, according to President Polk, "the sum asked for from the Treasury for various projects amounted to more than $200,000,000." The vetoes of General Jackson and several of his successors have impeded the progress of the system and limited its extent, but have not altogether destroyed it. The time has now arrived for a final decision of the question. If the power exists, a general system should be adopted which would make some approach to justice among all the States, if this be possible.

What a vast field would the exercise of this power open for jobbing and corruption! Members of Congress, from an honest desire to promote the interest of their constituents, would struggle for improvements within their own districts, and the body itself must necessarily be converted into an arena where each would endeavor to obtain from the Treasury as much money as possible for his own locality. The temptation would prove irresistible. A system of " logrolling " (I know no word so expressive) would be inaugurated, under which the Treasury would be exhausted and the Federal Government be deprived of the means necessary to execute those great powers clearly confided to it by the Constitution for the purpose of promoting the interests and vindicating the honor of the country.”

Here is a clip from President Polk’s veto:

“A proposition was made in the Convention to provide for the appointment of a "Secretary of Domestic Affairs," and make it his duty, among other things, "to attend to the opening of roads and navigation and the facilitating communications through the United States." It was referred to a committee, and that appears to have been the last of it. On a subsequent occasion a proposition was made to confer on Congress the power to "provide for the cutting of canals when deemed necessary," which was rejected by the strong majority of eight States to three. Among the reasons given for the rejection of this proposition, it was urged that "the expense in such cases will fall on the United States and the benefits accrue to the places where the canals may be cut."

During the consideration of this proposition a motion was made to enlarge the proposed power for "cutting canals" into a power "to grant charters of incorporation when the interest of the United States might require and the legislative provisions of the individual States may be incompetent;" and the reason assigned by Mr. Madison for the proposed enlargement of the power was that it would "secure an easy communication between the States, which the free intercourse now to be opened seemed to call for. The political obstacles being removed, a removal of the natural ones, as far as possible, ought to follow."

The original proposition and all the amendments were rejected, after deliberate discussion, not on the ground, as so much of that discussion as has been preserved indicates, that no direct grant was necessary, but because it was deemed inexpedient to grant it at all. When it is considered that some of the members of the Convention, who afterwards participated in the organization and administration of the Government, advocated and practiced upon a very liberal construction of the Constitution, grasping at many high powers as implied in its various provisions, not one of them, it is believed, at that day claimed the power to make roads and canals, or improve rivers and harbors, or appropriate money for that purpose. Among our early statesmen of the strict-construction class the opinion was universal, when the subject was first broached, that Congress did not possess the power, although some of them thought it desirable.”


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