Why drilling is the wrong answer

2006 US Oil consumption 20,687,000 bbl/day
2006 World Oil production 87,000,000 bbl/day
US Oil production 5,102,000 bbl/day
(Source: DOE)Potential increase from offshore  and ANWR drilling: 3,000,000 bbl/day
Potential decrease in demand from higher fuel efficiency standards:  2,500,000 bbl/day
(Source: Newsweek)

So here’s the deal:

a) Our oil production is a relatively minor part of world oil consumption.
b) Increased exploration and drilling won’t result in more production for at least 5 or 10 years
c) We can get about as much effect more quickly by increasing fuel efficiency standards
d) Not to mention just driving less
e) Not to mention alternative energy sources
f) Oil is a finite resource that has many uses besides burning it
g) We’re going to be sorry if we burn the stuff up now and don’t have it later
h)  We’ll probably find safer ways to extract oil from sensitive places later

So we should spend our time and resources on conservation and alternative energy sources instead of frantically trying to find ways to use up an irreplaceable resource as fast as possible.

Yeah, the Newsweek article cited above presents an argument for more drilling as a stopgap to tide us over.  It’s a shortsighted answer to a long-term problem.  Get a bike.

One Response to “Why drilling is the wrong answer”

  1. K says:

    Couldn’t agree more.

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