Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Drill Baby...Oh Crap!

This graphic, which I picked up from Ecogeek.org, which, in turn picked it up from Architecture 2030, puts the projected positive impact of offshore drilling into perspective. Offshore drilling will not bring back the halcyon days of sub $1.00 a gallon gasoline.

The US's energy situation is, in my opinion, the single most important issue that we face as a nation. If we can achieve energy independence through alternative energy and reducing the domestic demand for petroleum, the US would not need to involve itself in the business of foreign oil producing nations for the sake of securing the nation's energy needs.

I like the addiction metaphor for America's situation with oil. We crave it like a junky craves their fix. 

I think back to college when a friend of mine, who was one of the most addicted smokers I've ever known would suffer nicotine withdrawal. One time in particular, my friend came into the room that we were hanging out in frantically. He asked if any of us had any cigarettes. None of us did. I offered him one of my cigars.

Plan B kicked in, he went straight for the ashtrays and picked out a few cigarettes that had a bit of tobacco left in them and he smoked them.

Most people who have been addicted to something have a similar story. Addiction makes people do stupid things. 

Breaking an addiction is painful and challenging. Most addictions are to things that are unnecessary. Our energy situation is not that simple. 

The solution that I want to see is to provide superior alternatives to fossil fuels. That's the only way that clean energy will gain popular support. The new energy must be cheaper, cleaner, safer and more readily available than our current supply.

1 comment:

Brian said...

I guess I'd say that we need to open up drilling in all of the US. If there is oil to be pumped it will still help lower the price of oil.

I think hoping the US gets away from oil is great but in reality we can't replace the existing infrastructure over night. If we quit oil cold turkey how will we get products to market? Cart and buggy? What do I do with the 30K car I bought two years ago?

If you want to quit an addition you need to reduce dependency in steps. The government needs to force companies to require all cars sold in the US use x% renewable energy. Then over time you increase the percentage for renewable fuel.

The fact is we will be using oil for at least the next 10 to 15 years. Why not open up drilling in other locations? No one really knows how much oil is out there until we start drilling.