Tags: energy | crisis

Congress Must Solve Energy Crisis

Wednesday, 07 May 2008 12:34 PM

By E. Ralph Hostetter

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Congress Must Act!

The Founding Fathers in their wisdom provided that one section of the U.S. government be established to provide the closest access possible for the people of the nation.

On the adoption of the U.S. Constitution, that became Section 2 of Article I, the U.S. House of Representatives.

As additional protection, the term of office of members of the House of Representatives was set as the least of any elected office holder, just two years.

The people would not have to wait six years, as in the U.S. Senate, to turn out what may be considered an undesirable representative.

The entire U.S. House of Representatives will be facing election in November 2008.

The United States is importing more than 60 percent of its oil from foreign countries, many unfriendly, particularly Venezuela.

America’s economic energy lifeline could be severely damaged with moderate changes in our oil imports.

Gasoline prices at $4.00-plus per gallon were being reported in several states today. Crude oil has already topped out at $122 per barrel as of May 7. The possibility of $200 per barrel oil prices is predicted by year’s end.

The U.S. Congress must step forward and become accountable for solving what could become a national catastrophe.

At least one congressman, Dan Young, R-Alaska, ranking member of the Committee on Natural Resources, has taken action to remind his colleagues in both parties of the harmful, rapid rise of energy costs and, further, that "Congress is doing nothing to ease the pain at the pump."

The response to that challenge is silence. Congress just sits there as if dumbstruck.

While it might be difficult to find something positive that Congress is doing, most certainly the negatives are everywhere:

1. Congress is not acting to open ANWR's 30-year, 1-million-barrels-a-day supply to reduce America's imported oil dependency.

2. Congress is not acting to develop a process to begin reclaiming what could be some 2 trillion barrels of shale oil that underlies an area from the Canadian border through Montana and Wyoming to the state of Utah. Canada has set an example by reclaiming millions of barrels of oil from its tar sands deposit, principally in Alberta.

3. Congress is not permitting the exploration and development and drilling of new gas fields necessary to provide the cleanest of all America's fossil energy sources.

4. Congress is not supporting the development of clean coal so necessary in reducing the carbon dioxide output of our coal-fired electrical generating plants.

5. Congress likewise is not emphasizing the development of nuclear power, the safest, cleanest and most economical power-generating source of all time.

6. Congress is saying no to energy exploration in 85 percent of the U.S. outer-continental shelf.

7. Congress is against energy exploration in the U.S. intermountain West.

8. Congress is objecting to more hydropower energy.

9. Congress is saying no to 90 percent of energy that runs America's powerful economic engine.

Congress has been working against the best interests of the American public for too many years.

Unless the American public takes control at the next November election and demands an energy commitment from each congressional candidate, the U.S. economy as we know it may not survive.

E. Ralph Hostetter, a prominent businessman and agricultural publisher, also is a national and local award-winning columnist. He welcomes comments by e-mail sent to eralphhostetter@yahoo.com.

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