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Natural Gas, Oil and the Environment

Updated on April 19, 2012

Let's Quit Buying OIl from Elsewhere


In a letter to my local newspaper, a reader wrote, in referring to cutting global warming, “President Obama can do that by ensuring new cars meet a 60-miles-per-gallon standard by 2025”. I don’t believe a president alone has the legal power to ensure such a standard. Wouldn’t congress have to be involved? And no matter how desirable 60 miles per gallon may be, if the technology isn’t up to making cars get approximately 3 times better average than they do today, her opinion is merely wishful thinking.

On the same page, another letter writer advocates for natural gas. This is much more than wishful thinking - it is what we should be doing. According to T Boone Pickens - whom I believe - there is enough natural gas underground in the United States alone to give this country all the energy it needs for the next 50 years, not only for running our cars but for many other energy needs. Many bus companies and others are already using natual gas. And it burns clean, which should satisfy environmentalists.

Natural gas is not our only alternative. We also have more oil underground and offshore right here at home than the Arabs have in the Middle East. And since so many of them seem intent on destroying us, why do we keep buying their oil instead of drilling for our own?

Could it be because of the undue influence of environmental extremists? I believe in global warming and in protecting mother earth, but I think we need to compromise. Besides, if taking oil out of the ground here is harmful to the earth, wouldn’t it also be harmful to the earth to take it out of the ground on the other side of the world?

Then there is wind power, solar power and power to be harnessed from ocean waves. Whatever is suggested, environmental extremists will tell you what is bad about it.

Wind power will kill birds. The solar power proposed for the California desert will kill the tortoises. Drilling for oil on the north shore way up in Alaska will upset the caribou. I think ways to harness wind power can be done and still mitigate damage to birds. I think tortoises have survived for millions of years and will be able to coexist with solar plants. And there ought to be enough room in the arctic for the caribou to get by fine if we take a small bit of their habitat to drill for oil.

If we keep relying on oil from the Middle East to satisfy our energy needs, maybe Pogo was right when he said “We have met the enemy and he is us.”


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