‘Heads in the Sand – And Proud of It’

By June 6, 2006Energy

Under that title was a great op-ed in the Pulitzer Prize-winning Rocky Mountain News just a few days ago, taking issue with an enviro group — Environmental Action — and their protest of fossil fuel dependence. The editorial says in part:

“Unfortunately, Environmental Action wants no new fossil fuels. Instead, the group demands higher fuel-economy standards, more alternative energy and, of course, expanded mass transit.

In this view, oil and coal are bad. So is natural gas, which until recently environmentalists lauded because it burns cleanly. And nuclear power. These folks seem to have problems with any energy source that sustains contemporary civilization.

But the only realistic way to pursue energy independence is to produce more here. And restricting access to domestic fuels drives up the price. This stifles the economic growth that allows investments that would bring renewable energy to market sooner, too. So an allegedly green policy winds up the enemy of clean fuels…

About one-fourth of U.S. oil and natural gas comes from offshore wells. But Congress and the White House have blocked any new drilling since 1981. The ban lasts until 2012.

Set aside worries about oil spills, and consider natural gas, which supplies 63 percent of the energy used by American households. Platforms can easily be built miles offshore, invisible to beachcombers. And the risks of environmental damage from a gas well failure are negligible; it’s a gas, after all.

Who could possibly oppose a move to tap that clean energy? Short-sighted lawmakers and hidebound greens, that’s who.”

Bottom line is that the Rocky Mountain News pretty much hit the nail on the head.