Bob Graham, co-chair of the Presidential Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling, has a must-read op-ed in the St. Petersburg Times.
After months of expert testimony and analysis, the former governor and Senator from Florida has a blunt message for Americans:
This is a wakeup call to the American people. Why are we drilling in deeper and inherently more risky offshore locations? The United States is consuming about 22 percent of the world’s daily extraction of petroleum while it sits on top of less than 1.5 percent of the world’s proved reserves. If we “drill baby drill” in an attempt to go totally independent, and if our thirst for petroleum continues at its current level, the United States will drain its remaining proven domestic oil reserves by 2031.
If we stay at our current 48 percent domestic and 52 percent imported oil, that date will only be extended to 2068. Unless we develop and sustain a national energy policy which will fundamentally change our petroleum addiction, the only choice our generation will have is whether to leave to our children or to our grandchildren an America totally dependent on foreign oil producers for its national security, economy and way of life.
Our current energy policy is selfish and myopic, an unsustainable approach to generating short-term wealth for ourselves at the expense of the health and well-being of our children and grandchildren and countless future generations, particularly when you add in climate change to the energy security and peak oil impacts. In short, it is a Ponzi scheme that must inevitably collapse.
I trust we will learn the lessons of Deepwater Horizon better than that.
He had me until that last line. When you put the deniers and the pushers back in charge, the addicts have little chance.