Free Markets, Free People


Imagine a president who puts the needs of the country before a political agenda

Jeffery Folks at American Thinker begins his article with:

Imagine a president who gets behind drilling, welcomes the cutting-edge technology of companies such as ExxonMobil, and offers generous 15-year tax breaks to ensure that new drilling projects move forward.  That’s the kind of energy policy America needs in order to achieve energy-independence.

I’d love to imagine that.  In fact and unfortunately, we have a president who does exactly the opposite. 

If you want someone like Folks is wishing for, you’ll have to go to Russia:

Unfortunately, it’s not Barack Obama who’s behind those positive energy policies; it’s Vladimir Putin.

As Russian president-elect, Putin has made it clear that he intends to open his country’s arctic and Black Sea regions to drilling.  The potential is so great, and the necessary investment so immense, that even Russia’s giant state-run oil companies, Rosneft and Gazprom, lack the resources and technology to proceed.  So, with Putin’s blessing, Rosneft and Gazprom have entered into joint-production agreements with Exxon, Italian major Eni, and other Western companies.  The stakes are huge — not just for these companies, but for the Russian economy.

The arctic and Black Sea fields being jointly developed by Rosneft and Eni contain an estimated 36 billion barrels of oil equivalents.  Those under development by Rosneft and Exxon, which may ultimately require an investment of as much as $500 billion, contain estimated reserves of 36 billion barrels in the arctic Kara Sea fields alone.  (Total recoverable arctic reserves have been estimated at 134 billion barrels of oil equivalent but will likely go higher as exploration proceeds.)  In addition to the arctic and Black Sea fields covered in the Exxon and Eni agreements, president-elect Putin has expressed an interest in the possibility of joint ventures to develop vast Siberian tight shale formations.

The US has an incredible amount of natural resources including huge reserves of oil and natural gas.  We’re already the number 3 oil producer in the world.  And guess who actually leads the world with recoverable fossil fuel reserves?   Yes, that would be the US.  Imagine an energy policy that made extraction of that fuel a priority?  With aggressive exploration and drilling (as well as approval of the Keystone XL pipeline) we could have a 92% secure liquid fuel sources by 2030.  Not to mention, in a time of high unemployment, a jobs bonanza.

But what do we get? 

Not that, that’s for sure.   We instead get a president who talks about an “all-of-the-above” energy policy while his actions belie his claims.  He’s turned lose a executive agency (EPA) on the fossil fuel industry that has already been slapped down numerous times by the judiciary for over-reach.  Drilling and permits on federal land have gone down dramatically.

In an oil market that has seen supplies tightening and prices going up, his administration has done everything to keep it that way.

And voters aren’t happy with his performance at all.

If this is going “Forward”, I’d hate to see backward.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

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13 Responses to Imagine a president who puts the needs of the country before a political agenda

  • I propose a new term: REALITY Energy, as opposed to “Clean (delusional) Energy”. Carbon-based fuels WILL be our reality for both the present and future. IFFFFF the market produces innovations that displace them…swell.

    • @Ragspierre The problem the “greens” face is that we are not running out of carbon based energy anytime soon. Not that they would be happy if solar and wind actually worked, they don’t want anything that works.

      Near here, in the Mojave, they are now working on solar plants, at least in the planning stage. The only reason the “greens” are not doing everything to defeat such efforts is because they are conflicted and still feel the need to push such efforts since the success of solar is very much in doubt, and they need an alternative to carbon.

      Of course there are things like nukes, but they long ago decided those are beyond the pale.

    • @Ragspierre I kinda like “Delusional Energy”, it sums up the “all of the above (not)” plans to use unicorn farts, algae and spinach derivatives rather nicely.

    • @Ragspierre And now there is a study that says wind farms make the terrain nearby warmer. It goes to show that the trade offs are never as simple as they look at first glance.

  • I’m going to HAVE to imagine such a President at least until January of next year.

  • According to the CBO, in 2011 renewable energy accounted for $16 billion of the estimated budgetary cost of federal energy-related tax preferences, when the oil industry received just over $4 billion in subsidies (http://1.usa.gov/H1h80R).

    What is the price of gas near you?

  • And now there is a study that says wind farms warmer the terrain nearby. It goes to show that the trade offs are never as simple as they look at first glance.

  • We we get “Forward to Perdition”

  • Bruce,

    Excellent points throughout. We need to be doing much more to secure our energy and send positive market signals that will put downward pressure on the markets that largely determine consumer prices. As you know, domestic energy production can stimulate the economy and create more than 1 million additional jobs by 2030.

    I noted that at the recent AFL-CIO Building and Construction Trades Conference the president didn’t mention the Keystone XL pipeline in his speech. On the one hand, the president inveighed against Congress for not passing job-creating legislation and vowed executive action. On the other hand (and here’s the major disconnect), the Keystone XL waits only on the president. That truly shovel-ready project would put hundreds of thousands of Americans to work, including steel workers, pipefitters and other related trades. I wrote more about the elephant in the room here: http://energytomorrow.org/blog/keystone-xl-put-workers-to-work-mr-president/#/type/all

    Mark, EnergyTomorrow.org

  • I suppose you would prefer a president who got us into Iraq for his and Dick Cheeney’s purposes, designed to increase his and his friends’ and colleagues’ oil interests.

    • Which talking points memo did that come from? That’s so old and disproven I’d have to assume you’re not on the update list.

    • I can only marvel at this idiot’s willingness to pwn himself.