Bush’s offshore drilling proposal

By Reuters Staff
June 20, 2008

President George W. Bush urged Congress this week to end a ban on offshore oil drilling, responding to consumer anxiety over soaring gasoline prices. Bush said opening federal lands off the U.S. coast — where oil drilling has been banned by both a presidential executive order and a congressional moratorium — could yield about 18 billion barrels of oil. That would meet current U.S. consumption for about 2 1/2 years, but it would likely take a decade or more to find the oil and produce it.

The following is a map showing the offshore areas at issue. Click here for a more detailed, high-resolution version from the U.S. Minerals Management Service, which manages the nation’s natural gas, oil and other mineral resources on the outer continental shelf.

 

oil_drill_graph2.gif

More coverage
FACTBOX-Five questions about US offshore oil drilling
Offshore US drilling could help oil cos, drillers

Comments

Demagoguery, Mr. & Mrs. Reader, is a 1648 term that is just as applicable today as it was when first incorporated into the English language some 360 years ago. All politicians somehow feel compelled to practice it in order to hone their “get-elected-any-which-way-you-can” skills.

Mr. McCain does it.

Mr. Obama practices it, although perhaps a bit more subtly than Mr. McCain.

Likewise, the president really gets on with it…I mean 1) “really” as in 2) “really squared”…okay then, as in 3) “really cubed”.

In other words, the president is fast running out of time to make himself relevant by 1) using the sacrifices of Our Sons & Daughters on new foreign battlefields, e.g., within the political boundaries of Shiite Muslim Persia (a.k.a. Iran). Yes, I heard about that also, i.e., that the president now says he doesn’t want his legacy to be as a wartime chief executive only. All I can say is great timing on that one!

So, now the privileged-class and more or less at least 3-times failed oil industry entrepreneur and graduate business school grad is 2) urgently pushing for congressional sanctioning of drilling in offshore oil fields to somehow solve the present and past oil price speculation dilemma created by the aggressive privileged-class trading in financial instruments such as derivatives (e.g., futures, forwards, options et al).

Not only is the U.S. oil price dilemma not necessarily related to oil shortages per se, but the president must know full well that what he is proposing cannot result in even the first drop of crude being pumped from offshore until the president after the president after him is inaugurated. Great timing again!

In the meantime, the privileged-class-owned-and-run energy companies would continue to receive tens of $billions more in middle class tax dollars (from direct income taxes and indirectly from borrowing from the middle class & working class social security trust fund) to subsidize already disproportional privileged-class oil profits…said subsidies to explore for additional crude capacity that we don’t necessarily need…and couldn’t refine even if we had it!

What we do need is more gasoline…and thus more refineries to convert existing crude to that which we of necessity must have in order to make automobiles, trains, planes, tractors, reapers, earthmovers, cranes and other machinery more than simply super-expensive paperweights.

If the president were calling for more refineries over the next 12 months, then I might believe that he is not (for once) demagoguing. Oil exploration is a financial black hole with no real audit trail. On the other hand, a refinery is something that I can “hold in my hand”, i.e., a refinery located in the continental U.S. or Alaska is something tangible and “real to me.”

I’ve also heard that the president is attempting to make himself relevant by 3) calling for the culmination of the Osama bin Laden issue. Great timing yet again!

I suspect that Mr. Clinton was desirous of a third presidential term, consecutively denied to him by 1951′s ratification of the 22nd amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It seems that four consecutive terms of democrat, Franklin D. Roosevelt, was just a bit much for the momentarily republican-controlled 80th Congress that took office in 1947 and then almost immediately proposed the 22nd amendment. Another little item on their agenda was a new presidential succession act which made the Speaker of the House next in line for the presidency after the vice president.

In reality, Mr. Roosevelt did not get a fourth term as president, dying almost immediately after his inauguration in 1945…and leaving Harry S. Truman to serve out FDR’s final term.

I don’t know if Mr. Clinton was looking for a proxy in regard to a third term as president, i.e., when Mrs. Clinton competed for the democrat presidential nomination in 2007-08. I do suspect, however, that folks like Mr. & Mrs. Clinton may have it in their heads that they are intellectually superior, privileged-class shepherds sent from heaven to tend to the great flock of middle class and working class folks like you and me, Mr. & Mrs. Reader. Because of their narcissistic tendencies, such politicians think that they have been denied their providential destiny when they don’t get what they are desirous of.

Of course, most anybody except them sees the nonsense in all of this.

It could be that the president is engaging in a bit of this narcissism too. Perhaps he is in denial of the fact that it is Mr. McCain that Mr. Obama is referring to when talking about a “third Bush term”. Maybe it has slipped the president’s mind that he recently welcomed Mr. McCain to the White House upon the latter’s a priori nomination as the next republican to compete for the office that the president presently occupies.

Incidentally, I was thinking on the day that said White House welcoming ceremony occurred, that one doesn’t usually see that sort of thing until there is a president-elect. I think that both the president and Mr. McCain really jumped the gun on that one.

OK Jack

P.S.
Demagogue (1648): A leader who makes use of popular prejudices and false claims and promises in order to gain or maintain power.

 

Bush has had almost eight years to tackle with the rise in the price of oil. So, what does he do? He calls for off-shore drilling in the heat of a campaign for the White House knowing full well that the price of oil isn’t going to be affected by drilling in the Gulf of Mexico or along the coasts for several years. Alternative sources of energy will also take time. So, they don’t affect the price directly and quickly either.

If he really wants to, Bush can affect a change in price and destroy the power speculators have over the world’s economy. Simply by flooding the nation with oil from the strategic reserve. At least 40% of the price of oil would drop overnight.

Posted by ATHELSTAN | Report as abusive
 

Ken Williamson makes so good points about this on http://www.posterspost.com.

He makes a good case for drilling.

The point is, we have no choice but to drill if we continue driving our vehicles.

Posted by tom | Report as abusive
 

Those advocating the drilling in off-limit locations are simply making a last ditch effort by using the pain at the pumps to gain access. The additional oil garnered will be meaningless to the overall world consumption of oil. It will do nothing to drive the price of gas or oil down. The oil companies want ot make sure that they get their profitteering hands on every last ounce of oil while the getting is good. It will be huge profits to them even though it will do nothing for the world in general. If access is granted by some terrible misstep of man it will simply give everyone the false sense of security that the oil economy is good to go once again and nothing, I mean nothing could be more fatal. For the first time we are making real progress in developing vehicles that are far more efficient than any internal combustion vehicle every could be. This progress, to some extent, is a result of higher gas prices but more importantly it is do to global warming. Bottom line, even if we had all the oil we ever needed and the price of gas was ten cents a gallon we could not continue to pollute the air and adversely affect the climate by using filthy inefficient modes of transportation.

Oil is over. Oil is dirty. Oil is unnecessary for standard types of transportation–passenger vehicles, mail delivery trucks, etc. Yes oil will still be needed in forseeable future for cargo ships, and large construction equipment like bulldozers, but for the most part oil and gas is no longer necessary for commuter cars.

As we convert to a renewable energy economy, with electric vehicles we will find the air getting cleaner. The untold number of tons of asbestos fibers being dumped into the environment from our current brake pads will nearly vanish with the regenerative braking systems of electric vehicles. SMOG will become no more. Bumper to bumper rush hour traffic jams in the millions of cars will emit not a single puff of carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide. There will be no engine noise. It will be the world as it should be, where we use technology to improve the quality of life and the environment rather than the reverse. There will be no more wars over oil resources because even our limited domestic production will be capable of fulfilling our needs for those applications that cannot be converted to the electric paradigm. As for our trade deficit, it will be converted to a surplus as we forgo foreign oil.

Bush’s offshore, protected refuge oil drilling proposal is another attempt to scare the public into supporting an action that has absolutely no basis. It is like Iraq, we did not invade for WMD, nor to spread democracy, or to stop Bin Laden, we invaded as far as I am concerned for the oil. Whether it was to get corporations friendly to the US access, or it was to stop China from cutting a deal with Saddam it was to get control of the oil. I believe it was something along the lines of the latter, regardless it was to make sure that real quantities of oil did not suddenly end up on the market, a market that wants to drive up the price of oil regardless of the common man’s or woman’s hardships. Do you really think that the United States of America could not have tripled or quadrupled oil production in Iraq after 5 years of occupation? What needs to get done gets done. We invaded Iraq, we secured the oil fields as opposed to rare antiquities, and we have slowly, ever so slowly brought production back online and only recently have exceeded post invasion production levels. Again, what needs, or should I say, what they want to, get done gets done!

Posted by ifyouaskme | Report as abusive
 

Instead of “proposal”, you should label it “PANDER”!

 

We need to reduce imports of oil from opec nations for security reasons.If anyone should profit I’d rather it be the rednecks right here at home.We were always told we save our oil reserves for a rainy day,how many bombs have to rain down before we stop funding the jihad declared against us.

Posted by Linda | Report as abusive
 

If you are thirsty you drink some water. If you need oil you drill.There is no quick solution because we have been lazy and stupid and allowed this situation to develope. Drill now, work on the alternatives or do you want to continue this situation for another 30 / 40 years.

Posted by tomh | Report as abusive
 

Its about time…better late then never. Its simple economics supply and demand. Increase your supply relative to demand and your price will adjust. Price reduction will not happen overnight once we start drilling it will take a few years. This is about patience and vision now to a better future. Reduce reliance on the middle east by having a comprehensive energy policy; drill here drill now and at the same time continue to push conservation and continue to push car makers to produce a fleet of vehicles that pushes the envelope for mpg…35, 40. Its about time Bush saw the light..Drill here Drill now ..its simple math and common sense..quit living the 70′s and 80′s

 

To drill is the only answer for the current crisis, at the same time search for the alterinative fuel, because even if we had that fuel today it would take a decade to create the infa-structure to support it.

but don’t kill drilling over the GW nonsense, and China drills today 60 miles off of Fla. coast.

Articals like the one below will do us all alot of good.
Be smart all economys need energy to run and all enconomys enegry rely on fossil fuels most likley always will.

30,000 Scientists Sign Petition on Global Warming
Written By: Diane Carol Bast
Published In: Environment & Climate News
Publication Date: July 1, 2008
Publisher: The Heartland Institute
________________________________________
The claim that the debate about the severity and cause of global warming is “settled science” has taken a beating with the release of the names of 31,072 American scientists who reject the assertion that global warming has reached a crisis stage and is caused by human activity.
“No such consensus or settled science exists,” Arthur Robinson, founder and president of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (OISM), told a press conference May 19 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. “As indicated by the petition text and signatory list, a very large number of American scientists reject” the hypothesis of human-caused global warming.
The institute, a non-profit research organization, first published the names and credentials of about 17,000 scientists in 2001. The current list of 31,072 Americans with college degrees in science includes 9,021 with Ph.D. degrees in various scientific fields.
Robinson said, “The very large number of petition signers demonstrates that if there is a consensus among American scientists, it is in opposition to the human-caused global warming hypothesis rather than in favor of it.”
Added Joseph Bast, president of The Heartland Institute and publisher of Environment & Climate News, “Claims by partisan and extremist organizations such as Greenpeace, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Union of Concerned Scientists that their views represent the ‘consensus’ never should have been taken seriously.
“They are not scientific organizations, and in fact they have long records of misrepresenting science to achieve political objectives,” Bast said. “This should go down as yet another case in which they were caught lying about science.”

‘No Convincing Evidence ‘ The Oregon Institute petition says, in part:
“There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the earth.”
Robinson noted roughly 35 new signatures are added to the petition every day. Signers include more than 40 members of the National Academy of Sciences. Theoretical physicist Freeman Dyson and atmospheric physicist Richard Lindzen of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are among the prestigious scientists who have signed the petition. Frederick Seitz, the first president of the National Academy of Sciences, signed before his death in early March.

Response Muted
For the most part, the mainstream media largely ignored the OISM’s news. That’s not surprising, noted James M. Taylor, a senior fellow for The Heartland Institute and managing editor of Environment & Climate News.
“The mainstream press is driven by alarmism,” Taylor said. “If you have great news–that 31,000 scientists don’t think the world is going to end–the press doesn’t really want to hear it, or share it with their readers and listeners.”
Internet attention to the release–both positive and negative–was more substantial. News sites and bloggers, including FOXNews, EcoGeek, Red Orbit, First Post (United Kingdom), and Enter Stage Right (Canada), wrote about it.
Bast lauded Robinson’s work.
“Art Robinson and the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine have performed a tremendous service for the cause of sound science,” Bast said. “Their petition confirms what international surveys of climate scientists and recent reviews of the literature show: Most scientists do not believe most or all of the modern warming is manmade, that future climate changes can be predicted with accuracy, or that future warming would be catastrophic.
“This petition ought to mark the end of a dark chapter in the history of the news media in the U.S. and around the world,” Bast continued, “a chapter in which they were used by interest groups to advance an anti-energy agenda with very harmful consequences for all energy users.”

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive
 

OK Jack, you are as near sighted as the Democrats you vote for!! It is do to the inaction of the Congress and the Democrat policies pandering to the environmentalists that have prevented the USA from aspiring to energy independence. The President may be late in addressing the problem, but at least he is addressing the problem. No one expects the price of oil to drop overnight if the oil companies are given the permission to drill for more oil. It is a long term goal to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. The fact is the US has more oil than Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Venezuala combined. We have just been restricted from using our own by stupid policies. The Democrats want to socialize everything, including the oil indusrty, as so stated by one female democrat directly to the oil companies. There are things the US can do now and in the future to promote our independence from foreign oil and it is time we started to put them in motion. Just in the middle of May, The Democrats in the Senate voted to make it illegal to process the shale in Mid-west, the largest deposit in the world. If it only provided us with 1/4 of the oil we use per day, it would last-oh 400 years. I am pretty confident we might be able to have alternative fuels by then. You do not want to drill and use our own oil-then what do you propose we do? All ride bikes, use the wind for electricity…Blame the President, simply a cop-out!!
Furthermore, you are right that we do need more refineries, but we also need to build more power plants, specifically Nuclear and Clean-burning coal, but your Democratic buddies have made it so difficult to build anything over the last thirty years, we are far behind there as well.
As far as the war, what many people, in the US and abroad do not understand or choose to bury your heads in the sand, the Radical Muslim Extemeists do not care one tiny bit whether you support the war or not, THEY WANT YOU DEAD!! They continually kill their own people. They have no regard for their own life let alone yours. The President may have made a lot of mistakes and abandoned his conservative principles, but he was not wrong for going to war to protect this nation and its people. I, as many others. do not want to be worried about my and my family’s safety every time we go to the mall.

Let us all get on board and help this country continue to be the great Nation that she is.

Posted by crazydawgfan | Report as abusive
 

Every fisherman in Louisiana who fishes offshore know the best fishing is near an oil rig (man made reef)…this is just a fact.

Posted by Jim | Report as abusive
 

There are some long posts on here from people who sound like they know what they are talking about but really have no clue. I’m a petroleum engineer and this is the real story. The oil price debacle is composed of three main problems: Supply/demand imbalance, speculators, and the falling dollar. The latter two are not in my area of expertise. The short term solution is to increase oil supply and decrease demand. The long term solution is to change over to renewables. Obviously a higher oil price has spurred additional drilling but in areas that have been already well drilled up. The end result, we are drilling more wells but they don’t produce as much. Opening up new areas to drilling would help. Some of these areas Florida and California could be producing in the 1-5 year time frame as there is infrastructure nearby.

Here is my retort to some of the other speculations
1. We need more Refineries: Please look up the Earnings Per Share of Valero (VLO) or Sunoco (SUN). What do you see. They are losing money.Surprised? Why? because they have to buy expensive crude so as to turn it into expensive gasoline. Refining in general has been a breakeven to money losing business for the last 20 years. The refineries did make a lot of money after the 2005 hurricanes because many were damaged. Why would a company build a new refinery now when it is losing money on their old ones?
2. Open up the Strategic Petroleum Reserve: This would be fine but can you absolutely guarantee that the US will not desperately need the oil. What about after a terrorist attack or major hurricane? How long are you planning on leaving it empty? The economy would collapse immediately if our imports were cutoff and the SPR were empty. Then we would have to go to war for oil.
3. Many people think the switch to renewables will happen quickly so we don’t really need oil. There are 400,000,000 cars on the road. The cost to replace each of these with a $20,000 new electric car would be $8 trillion. This makes the cost of the war in Iraq look like pocket change. How many Americans who have racked up credit card dept can afford a new car?
This is why I say increase US oil production to stabilize the price but keep working at perfecting renewable energy of all types.

Posted by R U Kidding | Report as abusive
 

Not only is Mr. Bush trying to make himself somehow relevant at the last minute, Mr. & Mrs. Reader…but there are a few others tinkering around with personal relevancy as well. This is especially true where the issue of skyrocketing oil prices is concerned.

Here are some excerpts from this morning’s NY Times (EMPHASIS added):
“The question of whether speculators are influencing prices is expected to get closer scrutiny this week in Washington, where a Senate committee led by Senator Joseph I. LIEBERMAN, the Connecticut independent and FORMER DEMOCRAT who SUPPORTS MR. MCCAIN, will hold hearings on the price swings in the crude oil market.”
“OIL PRICES RISE After Saudi Meeting.”
“The oil summit meeting here was attended by energy ministers from 35 nations, who convened in a vast ballroom and listened as KING ABDULLAH said he UNDERSTOOD THE PAIN that $140 oil was causing.”

In the first place, the only Americans who are feeling any pain are the middle class and working class (not the privileged class, e.g., Messrs. Bush, Liebermann, McCain…and Obama). If the (Saudi) Arabian monarch understands that pain, I’d like for him to explain what financial pain he has ever experienced in his entire life. Everybody knows that the Saudi royals live a grossly extravagant lifestyle. The only thing that keeps this fellow relevant is the ocean of oil that the Arabian Peninsula floats on, not his kingly and bubbly personality. Mr. Abdullah plays both sides of the fence…as he must.

Likewise, Mr. Liebermann plays both sides of the fence…as he thinks he must. He likes hanging out with Mr. McCain, but he also likes the senate privileges that he enjoys because he identifies with the democrat caucus. He can hold all of the “oil price” hearings he wants to keep his name in the news. He can hang out with Mr. McCain to keep his image in the news. However, as far as I’m concerned he is irrelevant (as a politician). The latter will be more pronounced after November when the democrats widen their majority in the senate…or by some upset, the republicans regain their senate majority.

In the case of Mr. McCain, his political relevancy attaches to his presidential candidacy (not to the policy positions that he has abandoned of late). That’s fair, I think. However, as with his newly found policy positions on oil exploration and automobile mileage standards, he’s saying a lot of things that I don’t think he is really all that serious about…except as handy means of somehow offsetting his foolish campaign position on the losing proposition of keeping Our Sons & Daughters stuck in the bloody sand of SW Asia indefinitely.

Have you seen the polls? Usually I don’t put much stock in polls. However, the ones I’m seeing are making Mr. Obama very politically relevant to everything swirling around us Americans, both domestically and foreign policy wise. It’s not that Mr. Obama is much above 50%. Rather it’s that Mr. McCain is so far below 40%.

So, when Mr. Obama says that he thinks that U.S. oil commodity speculation in London by way of the Enron loophole is what is going on. Well…one tends to accept that as a credible conclusion. Likewise, such unpatriotic speculation is a doable target whose acquisition and severe curtailment would show results in the price at the pump in the short-term…and long-term as well.

On the other hand, the Bush-McCain-Liebermann-Abdullah targets of offshore drilling, automobile mileage standards, oil price hearings & (barely) increasing production from below the Arabian sands are simply not attainable enough to the point of giving me warm fuzzies at anytime in the near future.

OK Jack

 

Let’s stop with all the chest thumbing and advancing of individual political agendas and look at some cold hard facts, not opinions, facts.

We have an ‘energy crisis” for two reasons and only two reasons, we use too much of it and we don’t have enough of it.

There are two entities two blame for the current energy crisis. It has been 35 years, over a third of a century, since the first Arab Oil Embargo. The United States still has No
definitive, comprehensive Energy Policy. First to blame – Congress. Second to blame – You, me, your friends and neighbors – the voters for not demanding that Congress deliver an energy policy and tossing those who didn’t out of office and making it clear to their replacement where we (the public) stand.

An effective national energy policy will not be one it costs you nothing and the other guy pays. An effective national energy policy will have something in it for every one to hate.

The era of the American SUV is gone.

Oil is an international problem and it will take an international, cooperative solution.

Legislation and controls on oil traders won’t fix the problem. The traders won’t go away; they will merely go off shore. Abu Dubai is already setting up an energy commodity trading exchange as we speak to accommodate just that.

Hauling the Chairman of Exxon before Congress to give him a Congressional spanking hasn’t lower oil prices the last six times we did it. It won’t the next time either.

There isn’t enough oil in the Strategic Petroleum reserve to make more that a ripple in the international energy oil market for more than a few weeks. When it’s gone, then what?

There is no quick fix, painless solution. So we would be wise to quit dismissing longer term solutions out of hand as unacceptable because we need a fix now. Its too late for that, we procrastinated too long.

It will be an even longer time before renewable energy supplies a significant part of our energy total supply and it may never provide all of it. It is definitely part of the solution. Solar, wind, bio mass, will all play an important part in our energy future, but good, bad, or indifferent so will oil.

The U.S. reserves off limits for drilling are not insignificant. They are substantial. To keep those areas inaccessible while we send billion of dollars overseas daily is absurd.
That out flow of money also raises trade deficits, reduces the value of the dollar, increases interest rates, and reduces employment levels….. go read Macro Economics 101.
Are a lot of the money flowing off shore goes to support unstable unfriendly governments. It doesn’t make sense to hold U.S. reserves out of reach while we fund every despot in the world instead.

If you are looking for a quick, painless solution you believe in fairy tales.

If you and I don’t demand effective action (eliminating the gas tax this summer and giving the Chairman of Exxon another Congressional spanking are not on the list) on the part of our political leaders and make it known we’ll throw them out of office if they don’t deliver, then we’re part of the problem.

Write your Congressman today. Tell them you want an effective national energy policy and that your not interested in Pollyannaish bullshit, you want a comprehensive, effective national energy policy, one we can all dislike equally because we are all willing to share the pain. If your not willing to share the pain, then quit offering solutions or go back to your fairytale

Posted by John Keller | Report as abusive
 

Republican war spending, massive national debt, market deregulation, and corporate scandal has devalued the Dollar beyond recognition. Demand for oil has risen faster than the supply of oil even with North Dakota and Alaska included in the supply figures. India, China and the other rapidly developing nations are adding to the demand for oil, including US and European thirst for petrol. We are in an Energy crunch combined with the poor management of government which has been under Republican control for the past 20 too 25 years. (Republicans were in control of Congress during Clinton, while they had massive control during 6 of G.W. Bush’s two terms, there was Regan, and there was also Bush Senior’s term of influence) While the Democrats have won back control of the Congress it is only with a slim majority. This slim majority is not enough to end filibusters, or over ride a Party backed Presidential Veto. As well the Republicans have used the filibuster more in the past 2 years than the entire 10 years prior combined. Blaming Democrats for the price of oil is the art of deception. Blaming Environmentalists as the reason why oil is so expensive is the art of denial of the past and the reality of how oil comes to market. Oil has to be bought or traded on the commodities exchange, which is an International Market. This concept that Domestic oil will go from well to pump is not factual. We would have to alter the way oil comes to market through legislation in order for all Domestic oil to remain within the US. I never hear pundits talk about ending the export of US oil to foreign nations. Oil keeps going up, demand keeps going up in the rest of the world while only going down by a few percentage points in the US. The cost of energy is rising while the dollar keeps falling. The Federal Reserve has devalued our dollar further by continuing to print currency and flood the market with loans in order to bail out the US financial market. This has increased inflation and directly devalued the dollar. Oil is traded on the world market in dollars (for now). We are experiencing sticker shock due partly to the fact that it requires twice as many dollars to purchase a gallon of gas while our wages have not increased. Debt and war deficit financing has further devalued the dollar with additional influence from a stagnant or weakening US economy. Supply and Demand is only one of many influences upon why gas is headed to five dollars per gallon. We could subtract over 30 percent of the cost of a gallon of gas by raising the value of our currency, add more percentage points by driving more efficient automobiles, or walking away from gasoline burning engines entirely. Even if we drill off the coast of both coasts and in Alaska, that oil is not required by law to remain in the US for domestic use. All oil ends up on the world market. If we do keep all US oil domestic, it would not be enough to fuel our current or future demand. Has anyone realized that oil, coal, natural gas, even nuclear power is a dead end source of energy (not renewable)? Has anyone thought about the fact that foreign energy suppliers will reduce their output as US companies increase production in order to keep the cost of energy or profit margins elevated? The answer is not more fossil fuel; the answer is the elimination of fossil fuel. We have the technologies now, with more on the way. We need to convert our civilization for compatibility with the new technologies. We must be motivated for the future, our children’s future and act. But we are facing foes that fear change; we face foes that want to continue to profit from antiquated limited forms of energy. We are facing those who wish to use the fear of high-energy costs in order to fuel their businesses need to evade environmental law. This is all about profit motive rather than a genuine concern for the future of energy.

Posted by JohnDavidPrince | Report as abusive
 

It doesn’t matter whether increased drilling will have an immediate effect on fuel prices. No amount of new drilling is going to allow us to continue to consume oil (and energy) at our current rate. We need to drill now because soon we will no longer have the resources to do so. The same goes for building new power plants (using coal, nuclear, and renewables). If we don’t get busy soon, we simply won’t be able to keep the lights on when the Peak Oil curve accelerates and resource nationalism obliterates oil exports. This nation is teetering on the edge of an abyss. Peak Oil will generate a massive worldwide die-off. If we want to preserve at least some semblance of our civilization, we need to act now. We must ensure that at least some level of reliable energy is available when oil production crashes.

Posted by Mike Stamper | Report as abusive
 

It does not matter how the oil gets to market. Simple supply and demand-the more oil in the market, the lower the price. There has not been a new refinery built in this country for many years, a nuclear power plant for 30 years-because of the bureaucratic bs that is in place and the extreme environmental laws that have restricted the ability to do so. The facts are-it does not really matter who is/was responsible for the situation that we are in currently. What matters is finding a way out. Drilling our own oil reserves, building new refineries, new nuclear power plants and developing new technology will alleviate the majority of the issues. We eventually develop new and efficient technologies, but they are not in play at this time. Eliminating fossil fuels is a great idea, but not even close to practical or possible at the moment.

Posted by crazydawgfan | Report as abusive
 

Some of you here deserve a prize for your insights into the oil debate. Yes, we don’t need more oil, we don’t need more gasoline. What we need are more renewable fuels, cheaper flex vehicles that anyone can purchase. and better distribution of those fuels. Here in Georgia there are no ethanol dispensing stations. No sidewalk, no bike lanes except in some rich areas. In other words Georgia doesn’t even have a plan to diminish the usage of fossil fuel cars. The only ethanol we see, go figure, is by those same oil companies. Some, like Shell, Racetrak and others are adding ethanol (up to 10%) to the gasoline they’re selling.

Brazil, a third world country, weaned itself out of using oil. Today, they mostly run on ethanol from a small area in which they plant sugar cane. Brazil produces all the ethanol it needs and then some to export to other countries. How do you figure that? We must be idiots in this USA that can’t even get rid of those greedy oil barons. We need to criminalize use of fossil fuels, then we’ll see what happens.

Posted by elipicayo | Report as abusive
 

Hey, elipicayo,

What do you drive? I guess you will be going to jail witht he rest of us. Brilliant plan. Ethanol is a bust. It will only increase the cost of the commodity they use to produce it. And are you sure Brazil does not use any gasoline-only ethanol?

Posted by crazydawgfan | Report as abusive
 

I would love to drill for oil at home as long as it is used by Americans, refined by Americans and sold in American gas stations owned by Americans and we used the opportunity to change our methods in how we handle oil and it’s many processes. I’d love to see us giving less money to OPEC and other nations as well. But I’m not sure that It will happen that way. A hand full of environmentalists can show up at an energy hearing and stop everything for decades. Over 70% of Americans want the Iraq war to end and what do they get?. A $162 billion war funding for funding “well into the next year”. And now that oil is almost $150 per barrel politicians want to change it and drill at home. I think that it’s been the strategy all along. To wait until the price was right and then open up the tap. Oil is only one resource available in America. Oil is not dangerous and there is no shortage of it at all. People are dangerous and too bad there’s no shortage of that. Simply imposing taxes for ruining air quality, killing nature, and your neighbor hasn’t really been much of any help. Subsidizing and regulating markets have kept any competition out of the game and have allowed companies to pass on costs to the consumer as the gov’t. makes the taxes on the price and reason. There has never been an incentive for companies to better their methods. In fact, when you think of all the means necessary that brings all the products produced with oil to life, you’ll see just how many times the gov’t has taxed and regulated the processes each step of the way. They are controlling this beast very carefully. As more countries stop accepting US Dollars for oil there will be an even greater price to pay. Just like Saddam did and now Iran is doing. Funny how we invade an opec country and the first thing we do is secure the oil fields. Before hospitals, schools..etc we gain control of the oil fields. And 5 years later we are actually paying over twice as much for gas. And not just at home but our military in Iraq and Afghanistan as well. How stupid are we? With so many Americans supporting “Mccains, bushs, clintons, obammas, etc….it will never change. The republocrat’s policies are one in the same and always come out with the same result. Federal reserve banks, “free market” regulations, nation building, voting regulation, corporate regulations, lobbyists, welfare, education, foreign aid, presidential war authorization acts, trade agreements, TRANSPORTATION, and the likes. That web is thick and oil or a product of oil hits every one of them. At the same time it’s hard as heck for new emerging inventors and technologies to come online through the federal “river of styx” . I say… Oil is not the problem. Perhaps if we could convince
some “real” people to run for government offices and actually get more that 30% of Americans out to vote for them , then perhaps we could see some real change swiftly. I’d love to see the alternatives quickly come online. I believe some alternatives will be coming in the near future once they navigate all the federal criminals and give them their share. Remember the Zeppelins from the 30′s ? Those are coming back. Think of the possibilities for transportation of goods and people with one of those. Talk about efficiency, safety and low environmental impact. There are many things we can do. We are crude with our methods right now and we’re allowing a criminal government to quell any chances for a legitimate effort for alternatives to be “freely” and “responsibly” pursued. Demand better representation!

Posted by Jason | Report as abusive
 

I’m not and expert at all on oil and on the surface it seems that drilling for more would work in bringing the prices down. However some of my friends are under the impression that drilling for more here in Florida and in the United States would lessen our dependencies on foreign oil what ever that means. Personally I think once the oil companies get the rest of the leases they are requesting the oil would be sold to the highest bidder after all it is a world commodity and they are in the business of making a profit. Why would they want a lower price and why would I if I own stock in theses companies. I wouldn’t want them to sell it on the cheap at the expense of my retirement fund not growing. We have ourselves a dilemma and all this talk about drilling more here at home will only work if we as mention build more refineries and nationalize the nations oil for consumption here until we develop other sources of energy.

Posted by nathan | Report as abusive
 

Where have the Bush’s made most of their money? In “oil.” Now Bush has always had an inner meaning for everything he has pushed for the last 7 years and hardly anything wasn’t for selfish reasons..Lies and facts are there people..Don’t be sheep…

Now he is pushing for more offshore drilling, which by the way won’t affect our gas prices for many years down the road and then a few cents per gallon, but it would to start putting money in his pocket since he will be out of a job and back into the family business of oil..Wake up, people, besides our refineries can’t keep up now as it is..You think oil comes out of the earth as gasoline?

And what about China, the largest consumers on the planet who literally own trillions of dollars of our paper? They will be at the front of the line offering to buy our oil from our offshore drilling for themselves and do you really think we will hoard the oil until we can refine it…We have never had such a corrupt government system in history and until this Bush term is over, we can’t afford to trust whay they say much more than affording all the high costs across the board after we invaded Iraq and ruined this economy…

The facts are there….

Posted by Kerry | Report as abusive
 

Short sighted. That’s what President Bush was in regard to the Iraq war & that is what he is in regard to drilling for oil in our current protected areas. Years from now people will be wondering why Pres Bush didn’t consider all the ramifications of his actions. There will be environmental repercussions as soon as the first oil spill occurs. People will wonder why gas prices never really went down. It is estimated to take several years to get what is drilled to impact the market & it will be a small amount at that. It will benefit the oil companies that already have netted huge profits in the last year. Oh, that’s right the Republicans are for big business (oil companies). Wake up people, this will not help those of us buying gasoline but continue to line the pockets of Republican’s & their friends (the oil companies). Have the oil companies done anything with all their huge profits to help any of us? No. They don’t want to give back or help the situation. They’ll continue their greedy ways & get as much as they can get. I wouldn’t have such a problem with big business & the Republican’s philosophy if they were at least fair about how they dealt with their wealth. We all know that there is a problem when a CEO makes $16 million a year & then has the audacity to lay off 2,000 or even 1 employee. Let’s face it, big business does not do the right thing when dealing with people, so why should they do the right thing when it comes to our environment? They will abuse our environment to benefit their own bank account just like they do each time they keep all of their perks & then lay off workers. Do not be short sighted when it comes to our environment. Look at the mess we created & are paying for in Iraq & think about what mess will become of our currently protected national environment.

Posted by DM | Report as abusive
 

I have attempted to post a comment here and each time I try the form refreshes the comment or provides an error. Do you think the webmaster could possibly look into the reason this is happening?

 

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