As our cries of Big Oil “ripping us off” diminish due to oil prices plummeting and gas price at the pump falling, our economy still falters as industry after industry pleads before the government for ‘bail-outs.’ The Mortgage Industry, Banks, Wall Street and the Auto Industry have lined up for ‘bail-outs’ as some within their ranks failed and closed shop.
Billions and Billions of our tax dollars are being handed out or are pending for disbursement to struggling industries on the brink of bankruptcy. Job loss and unemployment rise accordingly as we all face uncertainty in our lives and an unknown untested president perched to take over the Oval Office.
As dire as our economic circumstance is, we have at least one major industry appearing as if they could help ‘bail-out’ America, instead of begging for tax dollars to stay afloat. Big Oil!
That’s right, the Oil Industry, the companies we all love to hate when gas prices rise and so many feel are ripping us off at the gas pumps, and who we just ignore as prices fall to acceptable levels, seems uniquely poised to help ‘bail-out’ America, if only we allow them.
Recently, the American Petroleum Institute commissioned a study from ICF International on the economic benefits to America should they be allowed to explore and develop energy sources in the ‘off-limits’ areas of ANWR, the Rockies and in offshore areas still under the drilling moratorium.
We have survived another generated crisis from OPEC, which helped immensely in crippling our economy this year; we undoubtedly will see another in the future if Iran or other member nations unfriendly to America gets their way on oil production.
While we work towards energy independence with alternative fuels, we remain at the mercy of OPEC in meeting our minimum energy needs, which is a massive cost to our economy, spending energy dollars in their countries instead of our own.
Strategically, we are weakened as our defenses depend on foreign sources of energy while we allow untold amounts of resources to languish under our own soil, just sitting there, waiting to be used.
In the immediate time, though, our economy continues to falter as we seem to have run out of sources to raise more revenue and jobs dry up. This does not need to be.
Findings from the API Study shows us,
Development of America's vast domestic oil and natural gas resources that had been kept off-limits by Congress until recently could generate more than $1.7 trillion in government revenue, create thousands of new jobs and enhance the nation’s energy security through royalties, bonus bids and taxes.
The study estimates that the development of all U.S. oil and natural gas resources on federal lands could exceed $4 trillion over the life of the resources.
Our Natural Gas production could increase by the equivalent of 61 percent of the expected natural gas imports in 2030.
API issued a Press Release on December 8, 2008 directing the public to the study. From that release we read,
“This study underscores how the oil and natural gas industry can enhance America’s energy security and help solve our economic problems by increasing production of our nation’s vast oil and natural gas resources. The U.S. oil and natural gas industry supports more than six million jobs, and more drilling for oil and natural gas will mean more energy for America, more well-paying jobs, and trillions of dollars of much-needed revenues that will help federal, state and local governments pay for critical services.” (API President and CEO Jack N. Gerard)
At a time when we have far leftists and scare-mongers as Al Gore trying to frighten the nation with his Reality Coalition attacking another energy source, Clean Coal Technology, we are left with limited energy sources that not only affect our ability to defend our nation, but takes a huge bite out of our economy by sending Billions in energy dollars to foreign nations, often unfriendly to us.
Viable alternative fuels are still under development and America has energy needs that must be met. We are in a lose/lose situation as long as we allow both energy and economic sources to sit idle, left unused.
Tapping our own resources and environmental protection can be balanced, API has been striving towards that for some time. Returning balance to our economic needs can be largely met too by tapping our own resources and rebuilding jobs for Americans in America.
Although I am no fan of the incoming president, he is facing a severe economic challenge and America’s needs must be met, not cast aside.
Big Oil, those people we American’s love to hate, are uniquely positioned to help achieve both economic and energy needs, if only we allow it.
Contact your Senators and Congressman/woman today. Tell them you support developing our own energy and getting back to solid economic footing.
If we are to remain a free nation, we must become more independent.