Thanks to new drilling tactics, such as fracking, the U.S. is on the way to being a major oil and natural gas exporter, which means more jobs and money, as well as an over-reliance on fossil fuels for the foreseeable future.
Like it or not, new methods of extracting deep pockets of once-unobtainable natural gas and oil is making America a big player in the oil market. Fracking has been linked to a number of health and environmental hazards, but also has been a huge job booster for a struggling American job market and economy. Eventually though, we’ll have to pay the devil its due.
So now that we have the oil and natural gas, what do we do with it? Well, we export it to other nations for profit of course, which is exactly what some politicians are trying to have happen. Standing in the way are decades-old policies banning the mass exportation of oil, which are almost certainly going to become a campaign issue in the upcoming election.
Critics of exporting American fuel say that such a practice would erode American energy independence by shipping domestic energy to other nations, open the U.S. to global energy disputes, and expand already hazardous oil and natural gas drilling nationwide. Nevermind the fact that gas continue to climb to wallet-squeezing levels nearly every summer. Meanwhile, proponents of exporting American fuel say that the expansion will add good-paying, steady jobs to the American economy.
In the end America is a long way off from energy security. It’s concerning that the focus on American energy is still rooted in oil and now natural gas, but understandable because it is here and available now. Sadly, I can’t help but think that the money poured into research, development, and the political capital used to support oil and natural gas expansion could be put towards a more sustainable American energy solution. But until oil prices reach unsustainable levels, alternatives will have a hard time appealing to consumers.
Source: CS Monitor
Andrew Meggison was born in the state of Maine and educated in Massachusetts. Andrew earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Government and International Relations from Clark University and a Master’s Degree in Political Science from Northeastern University. Being an Eagle Scout, Andrew has a passion for all things environmental. In his free time Andrew enjoys writing, exploring the great outdoors, a good film, and a creative cocktail.