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Drilling best way out of oil crisis

Local Commentary

Posted: August 2, 2008 9:31 p.m.
Updated: October 4, 2008 5:01 a.m.
There is a huge debate over drilling for additional oil right now that is confusing at best.

The opposition to this idea seems to say that the additional oil won't meet our entire need quickly enough.
Maybe we should think about it like this:

Say you have 100 homeless in your town, but you only have shelter for 25. Would you not let any use the shelter because you could not satisfy the total demand?

Of course not. You would take 25, and figure out some way to handle the additional load by seeking out donations if those in the town felt that was an important problem to them.

Why would we have a different policy for our energy? True, maybe it won't solve the entire problem today. But for every day you put off drilling, it's another day more until the increased domestic oil is available.

Opponents voice concerns about the environment, as we all should, but let's remember that we have improved both the technology to drill and the techniques for spill cleanup if a spill occurs.

There is a huge resistance to drill on the continental shelf, which is in international waters. Just because we don't drill there does not mean other countries won't.

We still get the environmental risk of a spill without the benefit of the oil. I think most would agree that is just plain stupid.

We ask the Saudis to pump more while we take no action to solve our own problems with our own resources. I am sure the irony is not lost on them.

Opponents say we can't drill our way out of this one, but we also can't conserve our way out. Our country should be working hard on alternatives that may include solar, wind and other renewable energy resources.

And you know what? If one of these technologies has a breakthrough that makes our fossil power obsolete, who cares?

The oil companies are big boys, and if they are willing to take the risk of drilling and it does not pay off, then they pay the price for a bad investment.

I am sure there are a few who would like to see that happen, too.

One thing is for sure: Doing nothing is not moving us any closer to a more secure source of oil.

Jeff Miladin is a Santa Clarita resident. His column represents his own views, not necessarily those of The Signal.


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