On the state senate floor, U.S. Sen. Mike Enzi, a Republican, recalled the 1970s oil embargo. “The price (of gasoline) went from 25 cents a gallon to $1 a gallon overnight. … That’s where we’re going to be with energy if we don’t start developing our own energy,” Enzi told Wyoming lawmakers.
Wyoming coal — in terms that coal is one of Wyoming’s powerhouse economic drivers — is likely to continue to lose its share of the U.S. utility market to natural gas due in large part to huge operational successes in tapping shale gas reserves, a phenomenon that has changed geopolitics and the world energy picture. And rather than pull anthropogenic (man-made) CO2 from coal-fired power plant stacks for carbon sequestration, oil and gas drillers will instead chase after natural geologic reserves of CO2 to fuel a burgeoning enhanced oil recovery industry due to the high price of crude oil.
Exporting a modest percentage of domestic oil and natural gas to high-paying markets overseas would likely be very good for our economy. Our Wyoming coal producers certainly intend to increase their export of American coal to Asia. Bu without a national energy policy, and left to the winds of geopolitics and international markets, how can we expect that America’s domestic coal, oil and natural gas will actually serve our “energy independence” interests?
When it comes to energy development, it’s crystal clear where Wyoming’s governor and its congressional delegation stand; Wyoming is open for business, and most any environmental concern can be satisfactorily addressed through “new technologies” — not by limiting development.
And these new technologies are only available so long as there’s a business-friendly atmosphere, that’s why it’s important to hold the line on taxes and overly-burdensome regulation, according to Wyoming’s Republican Gov. Matt Mead.
To take fracking away from the oil and gas industry would be like taking shovels away from coal miners. It doesn’t make practical sense. Fighting to protect our health and our air, soil, land and wildlife shouldn’t stifle the technology that provides us not only electricity and transportation fuels, but also the building blocks of laptops, iPhones and 7-ply tires.