This week we’ll keep pressing Congress to open up domestic supplies of energy so we can begin to bring down the soaring costs of all types of fuels. As we’ve said in this space many times before, the poor and seniors, those on a fixed income, those trying to make ends meet every month will have the enviros to thank for higher energy bills this winter. Why? Because thanks to a handful of radical environmentalists, our energy policy has been held hostage: No nuclear plants built, no oil exploration, no natural gas exploration, no more coal. Guess what happens if you shut off supply, and demand increases? We’d be right about where we are. This ain’t rocket science.
Here’s a great backgrounder on ANWR. It’s a solid effort by our own Keith McCoy. It is really eye-opening, chock-full of — God forbid — facts. Yikes! We thought it might be nice to inject some facts into this debate. Among them are:
— First and foremost a reminder that Alaska is almost twice the size of Texas. The drilling footprint for ANWR is a fifth the size of Dulles Airport.
— If we look at the mean calculations of 10.4 billion barrels of oil, ANWR would supply every drop of petroleum for the entire state of Arkansas for 144 years, Missouri for 71 years or South Dakota for 479 years.
— The caribou herd in the North Slope has increased from 5,000 in 1977, at the beginning of oil development, to 27,000 in 2000. Alaska Fish and Game has published the most recent census showing the population is now more than 31,000. If exploration interferes with migration or calving, the Department of the Interior will shut it down.
— Sen. Walter Mondale said in 1973 — when the Congress approved the building of the Alaska Pipeline — “It has always been my position that we need Alaskan oil and that this oil should flow to the lower 48 as soon as possible, consistent with environmental safeguards and the greatest benefit for the entire country.” That pipeline has carried as much as 2 million barrels a day from Prudhoe Bay. For twenty years it has provided as much as 20 percent of our domestic production.
Write your Member of Congress. Tell them to get on the stick.
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