Letter to the Editor: Gas crises could have been avoided

Published 4:15 pm Sunday, May 11, 2008

By Staff
There is obviously no magic solution to the current gasoline price crisis. Although virtually everyone-especially politicians, are complaining of our predicament, this situation has been developing for at least the past 25 years.
In 1985, U.S. domestic oil production was at just over 9 million barrels per day. Today, daily production is just under 5 million barrels. Yet, the environmentalists and global warming crowd do not acknowledge that their claims of warming due to pollution has taken place during this era of more than 50 percent reduction in crude production. (source: U.S.Geological Survey)
Scientists with the U.S.G.S, as well as other agencies, have calculated that the Anwar wilderness of northeast Alaska alone holds an incredible 200 billion barrels of crude! Economist with the U.S. Office of Management and Budget calculate this supply is adequate to fuel 60 million cars in the U.S. for 12 years. Sounds like a fantasy doesn't it? We all know that the environmentalists have been successful in blocking drilling in the Alaska terrain.
Critics say if we started extracting the crude tomorrow, it would be ten years before we would see an effect on prices at the pump. Wouldn't it have been a blessing to have a congress ten years ago with vision and foresight that would have stood up to the “tree hugging” environmentalist and approved exploration of the Anwar reserve ten years ago? Just picture how such strategic planning would have averted the current crisis resulting in a strengthened economy and a more secure future.
At some point this nation must face the music that we cannot have it both ways: appeasing those who feel some caribou in Alaska is more important than stable oil prices and freedom from the dependence on foreign oil. We should all rise up and convince our congress where our priorities lie. An election year is the ideal time to voice our feelings.
James W. Anderson
Talladega, Al 35160

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