Congress insists in a form of energy resource anorexia: locking up our natural resources as a matter of public policy. Like the eating disorder, the present Congressional dysfucntionality changes the body image from that of a healthy organism to that of a starving skeleton.
Today’s WSJ refers to Congress as $4 Gasbags, and here is a description of their anorexia (emphasis added):
Anyone wondering why U.S. energy policy is so dysfunctional need only review Congress’s recent antics. Members have debated ideas ranging from suing OPEC to the Senate’s carbon tax-and-regulation monstrosity, to a windfall profits tax on oil companies, to new punishments for “price gouging” – everything except expanding domestic energy supplies.
America has plentiful resources:
While energy “independence” is an impossible dream, there’s no doubt the U.S. has vast undeveloped fossil-fuel deposits. A tiny corner of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge contains an estimated 10.4 billion barrels of oil and would be the largest producing oil field in the Northern Hemisphere. Yet the Senate blocked that development as recently as last month. The Outer Continental Shelf is estimated to contain some 86 billion barrels of oil, plus 420 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. Yet of the shelf’s 1.76 billion acres, 85% is off-limits and 97% is undeveloped.
Engineers recently perfected refining solid shale rock into diesel or gas, which may amount to the largest oil supply in the world – perhaps as much as 1.8 trillion barrels in the American West. That’s enough to meet current U.S. oil demand for more than two centuries. Yet as late as 2007, Democrats attached a rider to the energy bill that prohibits leasing the federal interior lands that contain at least 80% of America’s oil shale. The key vote was cast by liberal Senator Ken Salazar from Colorado, of all places.
Will the Republicans, starting with John McCain, wake up and make this the crucial issue of the upcoming election?
Or are going to keep looking in the mirror seeing a skeleton?
Via Maria, Voters Say ‘Drill’ — But Neither Candidate Gets It