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OFFSHORE DRILLING CHOICES (Reinhard)
The Oregonian ^ | July 31, 2008 | David Reinhard

Posted on 07/31/2008 8:43:07 AM PDT by jazusamo

A few weeks back I spoke with U.S. Rep. John Peterson, and the Pennsylvania Republican told me about one House Democrat he almost persuaded to vote to expand oil and natural gas drilling in the nation's outer continental shelf.

This Democrat would vote for the bill, he told Peterson, if Peterson could assure him that lifting the decades-old ban on offshore drilling would not lower U.S. gasoline prices.

That's right, Peterson's Democratic colleague wanted to keep gasoline prices high to encourage conservation. I didn't pass this along in a June 26 column on Peterson's legislative efforts, in part because he wouldn't name his colleague. I was uneasy about using the Republican's story about an unnamed Democrat's affection for high gasoline prices, though I think there are folks who don't mind somebody else's pain at the pump if it leads to ending our nation's oil "addiction."

I pass it along now for two reasons. One, Democratic congressional leaders seem determined to stop even a vote on legislation to increase domestic oil and gas drilling. They're ready to send Congress out on summer vacation with no break in sight for U.S. energy consumers. Two, a Democratic senator was bold enough to make plain in public what her more politic, no-drill colleagues won't: Worrying about increasing domestic oil and natural gas supplies to meet demand is so yesterday.

On Bloomberg TV's "Money and Politics," Washington Sen. Maria Cantwell was asked if Senate Democrats would do anything to increase U.S. oil production to lower gas and natural gas prices.

"Oh, we definitely want to move beyond petroleum," she replied.

"And so there will be a supply-side proposal offered by the Democrats, and it will include everything from battery technology to making sure that we have good domestic supply . . . moving faster on those kind of things, like wind and solar, that can help us with our high cost of natural gas."

Yes, supplies that are years away from becoming adequate, practical alternatives to oil and natural gas. Supplies that won't help drive down oil and natural gas prices for a long time to come. Supplies that will definitely move us beyond petroleum but not without a lot of state-imposed pain for U.S. consumers.

That pain comes in the form of policies that manufacture scarcity.

How so? Right now, thanks to the ban Congress has passed each year since 1982, 85 percent of the outer continental shelf off the lower 48 states is closed to U.S. gas and oil exploration.

Conservative estimates for the outer-continental-shelf reserves come in at 8.5 billion barrels of oil and 29 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, though there may be far more -- 86 billion barrels of oil and 420 trillion cubic feet of gas, according to some -- since the government has not allowed modern measurement there in three decades. This drilling moratorium might have made sense in an era of $1-a-gallon gasoline or even $2-a-gallon gasoline. But at $4-a-gallon or perhaps $5-a-gallon gasoline? Shouldn't Congress, at least, have a debate and a vote on this?

Maybe not if you've already decided we need to move beyond petroleum, or hope sky-high gas prices will force Americans out of their single-occupancy vehicles and onto buses and bikes. But there are plenty of Americans who understand that Cantwell's alternatives are not yet ready to take the place of oil and natural gas in their lives or our economy.

Although opening up the outer continental shelf would send an instant signal that we're going to do all we can to tap our own resources going forward, ending the drilling ban isn't an immediate fix to high gas prices or the coming winter's heating bills. So what? Isn't leadership looking out over the next decade and putting plans in place to address the future?

We need to worry about the summers and winters five, 10 or 15 years from now -- and be practical about doing so. Wind, solar and other alternative fuels are energy sources of the future, too. Unlike oil and natural gas, however, they're by no means proven, practical technologies capable of replacing petroleum in our economy.

The fact is there is no immediate fix. Clearly, oil speculation isn't a big part of the problem. It's worth noting that oil and gasoline prices fell dramatically last week -- and early this week -- as Cantwell and Senate Democratic leaders tried to ram through an oil-speculator bill and prohibit even a vote on increased domestic production.

Crafty speculators as the root of all our oil ills?

Yeah, so crafty that they're manipulating prices downward.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Editorial; Government
KEYWORDS: congress; drilling; energy; environment; gasprices; reinhard

1 posted on 07/31/2008 8:43:07 AM PDT by jazusamo
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To: jazusamo

High Gas Prices=Increased Tax Revenues to States and Federal Govt=Democrats Love This


2 posted on 07/31/2008 8:47:29 AM PDT by nikos1121 (The first black president of the US should be at least a "Jackie Robinson.")
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To: jazusamo
2 things come to mind.

1- the Dems need high oil and gas prices in order to restore a population to the same cities from which the productive Americans fled because of said same democrats pee-poor policies that drove them out in the first place.

2- Dem's/lib's/greenie-weeinie’s are always talking about alternative energy (solar, wind, etc) being the answer fore our nations future needs. BUT has anyone yet found out what “alternative” energy is going tom power airplanes for flight???

3 posted on 07/31/2008 8:50:21 AM PDT by MCCRon58 (Freedom does not mean you are free from the consequences of your own freely made decisions.)
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To: nikos1121

Yes, there was an article recently about states complaining that gas tax revenues were decreasing due to people driving less miles. Looks like they’ll have to raise gas taxes again if people conserve.


4 posted on 07/31/2008 8:52:41 AM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: MCCRon58

Alternative energy is not going to replace the use of oil for manny many years if ever and like he pointed out in the article, the RATS want us to feel the pain.


5 posted on 07/31/2008 8:58:44 AM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: nikos1121
Isn't leadership looking out over the next decade and putting plans in place to address the future?

No. Their long run is their term of office and if something doesn't produce results for them within that time frame, they have no interest in it. How else can you explain Queen Nancy's power-hungry, ego maniac statement earlier this week? It's all about her.

It's worth noting that oil and gasoline prices fell dramatically last week -- and early this week -- as Cantwell and Senate Democratic leaders tried to ram through an oil-speculator bill and prohibit even a vote on increased domestic production.

I wonder how much of that price fall is due to proposed legislation. My guess is zero. Speculators can operate in markets untouched by US laws. The real explanation is Bush's statement that he favors increased exploration and drilling in federal lands and OCS. If Pelosi would get off her power trip long enough to get in touch with the American people, she'd see that simply reducing the permitting process for exploration, drilling, power plant and refinery construction would send the price of oil through the floor. She has made it abundantly clear, however, that she will not even let the topic be discussed. I hope you people in CA throw her out on her ego...and the same for Harry "Income Taxes Are Voluntary" Reid in NV.

6 posted on 07/31/2008 8:59:11 AM PDT by econjack (Some people are as dumb as soup.)
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To: jazusamo
I have a dream that, by being on the wrong side of this issue, the socialist Democratic party of America will collapse after suffering ignominious defeat in November.

I just hope it's not a pipe dream.

7 posted on 07/31/2008 9:00:01 AM PDT by Flycatcher (Strong copy for a strong America)
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To: jazusamo

How come no one ever asks the Dem’s, “Would you be willing to be hooked up to life support powered by a wind generator”??


8 posted on 07/31/2008 9:01:36 AM PDT by MCCRon58 (Freedom does not mean you are free from the consequences of your own freely made decisions.)
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To: econjack
The real explanation is Bush's statement that he favors increased exploration and drilling in federal lands and OCS.

I firmly believe that to be the case, it was too much of a coincidence.

9 posted on 07/31/2008 9:06:24 AM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: Flycatcher

I have that dream also and believe it’s getting closer to being a reality.


10 posted on 07/31/2008 9:07:42 AM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: jazusamo
Every American needs to ask one simple question in November.. “Will you vote to allow drilling our own oil?” If they answer no, vote against them...

Imagine how quickly we could rid the country of the democrap party

11 posted on 07/31/2008 9:54:04 AM PDT by Beatthedrum
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To: jazusamo
Alt. energy =scam (period)

Oil will be replaced about as soon as we get our flying cars Popular Science Mag. promised us by 1999, back in the 60's.

Not for hundreds of years if ever will a better energy storehouse than a gallon of gas be produced.

Now, efficient us of same, that's the story.

12 posted on 07/31/2008 12:12:53 PM PDT by norraad ("What light!">Blues Brothers)
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To: norraad

Actually... the reason we don’t have flying cars is because of Democrats and ambulance chaser lawyers. They pretty much killed off most US general aviation makers in the 60s-80s.


13 posted on 07/31/2008 12:22:28 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: norraad
Now, efficient us of same, that's the story.

Exactly...Alt. energy will have a place but for transportation petroleum fuels will power us most effiently for a long time.

14 posted on 07/31/2008 12:34:48 PM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: jazusamo

Gads.

efficiently


15 posted on 07/31/2008 12:36:41 PM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: jazusamo
My very dear freepers a message from Florida. After doing some research for one of my students from The United States Air Force Aeromedical evacuation Squadron I found some interesting facts about a company that has been drilling off the coast of Cuba.
Here is the letter with all the data in it:Dear Mike: I just did a lot of research after I finished the invoice I was working on for my electrical contracting business.

Here's the story. While the Chinese are busy building a off-shore Oil Rig and learning how off the cost of Mexico a little known secret has pooped out for my ancient formally nicotine stained lip from my pipe. The situation is a company called SHERITT INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION of Toronto Canada. They have been drilling and producing 60,000 barrels a day 1/2 mile off the beaches with slant drilling. That is the technique that Sadam used as justification for invading Kuwait ( Desert Storm ) The US Geological Survey estimates there are 4.6 Billion Barrels within a 1/2 mile of the beaches in Cuba and the Canadians have found it. So they are shipping it to South America and its being refined in Brazil and sent back to Cuba while the Cubans are busy building a refinery on there Northwestern Coasts. They estimate 14 months for the refinery to be completed. 2 years for exporting the gasoline to other locations.........................................Who knew. Simple the MSM and there lackeys the democrats have lied to us. They have been drilling since Oct 2002 and it is producing and the Castro Brothers are laughing there asses off..............................................................................

Source energy and capital . net

16 posted on 07/31/2008 1:28:25 PM PDT by straps (Off the coast of Florida is enough oil and natural gas to take care of us all for 50 years.)
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To: straps

..laughing a$$es off, with full knowledge & protection from the Democrats.


17 posted on 07/31/2008 1:37:59 PM PDT by norraad ("What light!">Blues Brothers)
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To: straps

Thanks...I’m sure the RATS would rather have Castro and his cronies benefit from that oil than Americans because it would delay or stop the whack job enviro movement here.


18 posted on 07/31/2008 1:50:09 PM PDT by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.org | DefendOurTroops.org)
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To: thackney

Do you have info on this ? ,,,TANKS...;0)


19 posted on 07/31/2008 6:02:26 PM PDT by 1COUNTER-MORTER-68 (THROWING ANOTHER BULLET-RIDDLED TV IN THE PILE OUT BACK~~~~~)
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To: 1COUNTER-MORTER-68
Sherritt has been producing oil from the South side of Cuba, Onshore. They do own some offshore blocks offshore on the Florida side but no drilling will start there until 2009.

http://www.sherritt.com/doc08/subsection.php?submenuid=operations&category=operations/oil_and_gas_cuba

Cuba Postpones Drilling The Strip ‘Til 2009
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2002821/posts

20 posted on 08/01/2008 4:55:03 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

(hat tip)...;0)


21 posted on 08/01/2008 8:30:52 AM PDT by 1COUNTER-MORTER-68 (THROWING ANOTHER BULLET-RIDDLED TV IN THE PILE OUT BACK~~~~~)
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