The Big Fat Oily Lie

Just today President Obama warned supporters that they would likely soon hear Republican calls of “drill, drill, drill” as election season heats up, and but warned that solely relying on new oil exploration would not solve America’s energy woes.

The President exclaimed to his uninformed supporters, “America uses more than 20 percent of the world’s oil. If we drilled every square inch of this country …. we would still have only 2 percent of the world’s known oil reserves.

“If you have got 2 and you need 20, there is a gap.”

Let’s put this myth to bed, once & for all. To be more accurate, I should say, let’s put this lie to bed. He is lying and he knows it. It’s that, or he is the most illinformed world leader on the planet. I’m sure it’s the former.

 

Scarce Oil? U.S. Has 60 Times More Than Obama Claims

By John Merline of Investors Business Daily [emphasis addded]

When he was running for the Oval Office four years ago amid $4-a-gallon gasoline prices, then-Sen. Barack Obama dismissed the idea of expanded oil production as a way to relieve the pain at the
pump.

“Even if you opened up every square inch of our land and our coasts to drilling,” he said. “America still has only 3% of the world’s oil reserves.” Which meant, he said, that the U.S. couldn’t affect global oil prices.

It’s the same rhetoric President Obama is using now, as gas prices hit $4 again, except now he puts the figure at 2%.

“With only 2% of the world’s oil reserves, we can’t just drill our way to lower gas prices,” he said. “Not when we consume 20% of the world’s oil.”

The claim makes it appear as though the U.S. is an oil-barren nation, perpetually dependent on foreign oil and high prices unless we can cut our own use and develop alternative energy sources like algae.

But the figure Obama uses — proved oil reserves — vastly undercounts how much oil the U.S. actually contains. In fact, far from being oil-poor, the country is awash in vast quantities — enough to meet all the country’s oil needs for hundreds of years.

The U.S. has 22.3 billion barrels of proved reserves, a little less than 2% of the entire world’s proved reserves, according to the Energy Information Administration. But as the EIA explains, proved reserves “are a small subset of recoverable resources,” because they only count oil that companies are currently drilling for in existing fields.

When you look at the whole picture, it turns out that there are vast supplies of oil in the U.S., according to various government reports. Among them:

At least 86 billion barrels of oil in the Outer Continental Shelf yet to be discovered, according to the government’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.

About 24 billion barrels in shale deposits in the lower 48 states, according to EIA.

Up to 2 billion barrels of oil in shale deposits in Alaska’s North Slope, says the U.S. Geological Survey.

Up to 12 billion barrels in ANWR, according to the USGS.

As much as 19 billion barrels in the Utah tar sands, according to the Bureau of Land Management.

Then, there’s the massive Green River Formation in Wyoming, which according to the USGS contains a stunning 1.4 trillion barrels of oil shale — a type of oil released from sedimentary rock after it’s heated.

A separate Rand Corp. study found that about 800 billion barrels of oil shale in Wyoming and neighboring states is “technically recoverable,” which means it could be extracted using existing technology. That’s more than triple the known reserves in Saudi Arabia.

All told, the U.S. has access to 400 billion barrels of crude that could be recovered using existing drilling technologies, according to a 2006 Energy Department report.

When you include oil shale, the U.S. has 1.4 trillion barrels of technically recoverable oil, according to the Institute for Energy Research, enough to meet all U.S. oil needs for about the next 200 years, without any imports.

And even this number could be low, since such estimates tend to go up over time.

Back in 1995, for example, the USGS figured there were 151 million barrels of oil in North Dakota’s Bakken formation. In 2008, it upped that estimate to 3 billion barrels, then to 4.3 billion barrels — a 25-fold increase. Now, some oil analysts say there could be as much as 20 billion barrels there.

And USGS in 2002 quadrupled its oil estimate in Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve.

To be sure, energy companies couldn’t profitably recover all this oil — even at today’s prices — and what they could wouldn’t make it to market for years. But from the industry’s perspective, the real problem with domestic oil is that the government has roped off most of these supplies.

The Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act of 1980, for example, put a huge swath of land off-limits to drilling. And in 1982, Congress blocked access to most of the oil in the Outer Continental Shelf. Much of the oil on federal lands is also off-limits.

Obama and others say the industry’s claim about lack of access isn’t true, since they aren’t even using many of the offshore leases they already have. The industry counters that this is misleading, since a company needs the lease before it can determine if any oil exists there — a potentially time-consuming process.

In any case, any attempt to get at these vast new oil supplies is sure to face fierce opposition from environmental groups worried about oil production’s direct impact on the environment, as well as global warming worries.

But given today’s prices, most of the public is willing to expand drilling offshore, in ANWR, and in shale oil reserves, according to the latest IBD/TIPP poll.

“This is not a geological problem — it’s a political problem,” said Dan Kish, senior vice president for policy at the Institute for Energy Research. “We’ve embargoed our own supplies.”

Malkin Beats Me to the Punch

I am a Santorum supporter. Rather than just explaining why I don’t support the other schmoes, I’ve had a request to write an article explaining my support for him.

Well, it appears, I don’t have to. Michelle Malkin has expressed her support for Santorum as well as I ever could.

From Michelle Malkin:

Rick Santorum opposed TARP.

He didn’t cave when Chicken Littles in Washington invoked a manufactured crisis in 2008. He didn’t follow the pro-bailout GOP crowd — including Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich — and he didn’t have to obfuscate or rationalize his position then or now, like Rick Perry and Herman Cain did. He also opposed the auto bailout, Freddie and Fannie bailout, and porkulus bills.

Santorum opposed individual health care mandates — clearly and forcefully — as far back as his 1994 U.S. Senate run. He has launched the most cogent, forceful fusillade against both Romney and Gingrich for their muddied, pro-individual U.S. Senate waters.

He voted against cap and trade in 2003, voted yes to drilling in ANWR, and unlike Romney and Gingrich, Santorum
has never dabbled with eco-radicals like John Holdren, Al Gore and Nancy Pelosi. He hasn’t written any “Contracts with the Earth”, as Newt did.

Santorum is strong on border security, national security, and defense. Mitt the Flip-Flopper and Open Borders-Pandering Newt have been far less trustworthy on immigration enforcement.

Santorum is an eloquent spokesperson for the culture of life. He has been savaged and ridiculed by leftist elites for upholding traditional family values — not just in word, but in deed.

He won Iowa through hard work and competent campaign management. Santorum has improved in every GOP debate and gave his strongest performance last week in Florida, wherein he both dismantled Romneycare and popped the Newt bubble by directly challenging the front-runners’ character and candor without resorting to their petty tactics.

He rose above the fray by sticking to issues.

Most commendably, he refused to join Gingrich and Perry in indulging in the contemptible Occupier rhetoric against Romney. Character and honor matter. Santorum has it.

Of course, Santorum is not perfect. As I’ve said all along, every election cycle is a Pageant of the Imperfects. He lost his Senate re-election bid in 2006, an abysmal year for conservatives. He was a go-along, get-along Big Government Republican in the Bush era. He supported No Child Left Behind, the prescription drug benefit entitlement, steel tariffs, and earmarks and outraged us movement conservatives by endorsing RINO Arlen Specter over stalwart conservative Pat Toomey.

I have no illusions about Rick Santorum. I wish he were as rock-solid on core economic issues as Ron Paul.

And I wish Ron Paul was not the far-out, Alex Jones-panderer on foreign policy, defense, and national security that he is.

If Ron Paul talked more like his son, Rand Paul, about the need for common-sense profiling of jihadists
at our State Department consular offices overseas and if he talked more about the need for strengthened visa screening and airport security scrutiny of international flight manifests, I might have more than a kernel of confidence that he would take post-9/11 precautions to guard against jihadi threats and protect us from our enemies foreign and domestic. But he doesn’t, so I can’t support Ron Paul.

Mitt Romney has the backing of many solid conservatives whom I will always hold in high esteem — including Kansas Secretary of State and immigration enforcement stalwart Kris Kobach, former U.N. ambassador John Bolton, and GOP Govs. Nikki Haley and Bob McDonnell. With such conservative advisers in his camp, Romney would be better than Obama. And a GOP Congress with a staunch Tea Party-backed contingent of fresh-blood leaders in the House and Senate will help keep any GOP president in line. Romney’s private-sector experience and achievements are the best things he’s got going. Only recently has he risen to defend himself effectively. But between his health care debacle, eco-nitwittery, and expedient and unconvincing political metamorphosis, Mitt Romney had way too much ideological baggage for me in 2008 to earn an endorsement — and it still hasn’t

changed for me in 2012.

Lest we forget, this election is not about choosing a showboat candidate to run against John King or Juan Williams or Wolf Blitzer.

It’s not about “raging against” some arbitrarily defined GOP “machine.”

For many grass-roots conservatives across the country, Romney and Gingrich are the machine.

And at this point in the game, Rick Santorum represents the most conservative candidate still standing who can articulate both fiscal and social conservative values — and live them.

Americas Next Great Fuel Source

The United States Navy, the world’s largest single user of marine fuels, burns around 40 million barrels of oil a year. It is busy trying to find a replacement for the dirty, planet killing substance and has pledged to cut 50% of its conventional oil use a year by 2020.

Maybe they should install windmills on every ship, or replace the aircraft carriers flight decks with solar panels.

While both of my suggestions hold merit, the Department of the Navy is instead experimenting with algae oil as a way to wean itself from petroleum.

Drilling for our own oil is evidently out of the question.

It seems our military has not only become a great social experiment but has also become the next laboratory for the green movement.

Industry reports claim that unlike early biofuels, which made transport fuel from food crops, the new “second generation” process uses only plant (crop) waste and does not displace foods which could be fed to people. Nevertheless, immense amounts of feedstock (nutrients) would be needed to produce the algae oil to power the world’s ships.

Maersk, the worlds largest shipping line, estimates it would take the crop waste (feedstock) of an area half the size of Denmark to completely power its ships.

Math time: Half of Denmark is roughly the size of Massachusetts (the whole state), about 16,600 square miles. There are 460 acres in a square mile. That’s 7,636,000 acres for one shipping company. What a deal. The entire proposed ANWR oil drilling site was 1,500,000 acres (3260 sq miles).

Unfortunately crop waste or “residue” is not just waste. It is already being utilized as livestock feed & fertilizer. Thus the name, “feedstock”. So, instead of diverting a primary food source like corn, we deplete a secondary source. Either way, the cost of food goes up. Hooray for more starving people!

Speaking of cost, in October 2010, the US Navy purchased 20 thousand gallons of algae biofuel for a single Naval ship trial.

Jackalyne Pfannenstiel, assistant secretary of the Navy for energy, speaking at the Point Loma Naval Base pier proclaimed, “ This event marks a major milestone in our progress toward a great green fleet”.

How much did they pay for this major milestone, you might ask? Only $424 a gallon. Crack the Champagne!

The cost has apparently come down though. Couldn’t be due to the Navy, the U.S. Energy and Agriculture departments investing $170 million each to fund biofuel development.

By the way, that 20,000 gallons of green crude was supplied by Solazyme, a San Francisco-based biofuel company.

And, just a rumination. San Francisco is in who’s congressional district? Oh, that’s right, Nancy Pelosi. Sheer coincidence. I’m such a cynic.

So, I guess mankind has developed yet another “viable”, cost efficient alternative to the dreaded hydrocarbon.

What’s next, The Matrix?