Energy is the bedrock of our economy and our prosperity (and our security). While I am seriously against pollution, I am also seriously against hobbling our energy industries in a competitive and unfriendly world. Plentiful, affordable energy is the source of progress and happiness. Ensuring this supply while ensuring the least detriment to our environment is my goal. Government's role should be to set safety and clean operating standards, not meddle in the Free Market.
I am in favor of the Keystone Pipeline to increase our energy supply and create jobs, and at the same time the fostering of clean energy – if it can stand on its own in the marketplace. Let the free market and private investment lead the way! Energy dependence on foreign sources means being held hostage by unfriendly, anti-American countries. Energy independence means America stands strong and beholden to no one – and it means JOBS for the middle class.
We are a lucky country; we have our own plentiful reserves. Despite the extraction of 185 billion barrels since 1944, we now have 70% more oil reserves today than then. The U.S. Geological Survey previously rated the Bakken shale deposit in North Dakota as containing 150 million barrels. Today, experts think it could have over 20 billion. Researchers at Rice University conclude that the U.S. could have 2 trillion barrels of recoverable oil, enough to meet current demand for 285 years. American crude oil reserves are already greater than Saudi Arabia’s, and the U.S. lead will continue to expand.
Alternate and renewable energy sources are looking more and more exciting. They are not ready for prime time, but there is enormous promise on the horizon and I can’t wait! However, I do not believe our government should engage in clumsy, wasteful “investments”, like the disaster of Solyndra. I have great confidence in our scientists and our private sector to bring us new sources of clean energy as the market demands and requires it.
Meantime, there is plenty we can do to foster the most efficient use of traditional energy sources, without hobbling our industries. For instance, there are seven clean coal technologies currently deployed and improving all the time, which will permit the responsible use of this cheap, abundant source of energy.
Holbrook Energy Tip: If you’re building a house or need to re-think your heating system, please look into "split system" heat pumps. The technology has advanced rapidly, and will save you money and help our environment.
Holbook Energy Tip: If you're considering an electric car, please look into the source(s) behind that energy. Here in Maine, our electricity is quite clean, with 2/3 coming from renewables, including hydroelectric. In other parts of the country, your car is running 40% on coal.