From the frontlines, the news is good. First, consider the recent report on just one of America’s great shale fields, the Bakken. Oil producers are now developing a formation below the Bakken, called the “Torquay” (or “Three Forks”) formation. On just the U.S. side, the new field promises to increase the estimated amount of recoverable oil by nearly 60%. And it promises to increase Canada’s potential by as much or more.
In sum, the new discovery could produce several billion (yes, billion with a b) additional barrels of oil for North America.
One oil company reports that it is now looking at a 7-month payback time for investments, much better than the standard 12- to 15-month payback standard in the industry.
This buttresses the information in the second report that America will maintain its newly won status as the world’s biggest producer of oil. The U.S. overtook both Russia and Saudi Arabia this year in total oil production, thanks to the fracking/shale rock revolution.
Specifically, when you count in oil and other hydrocarbon liquids separated from natural gas, America’s current daily output of over 11 million barrels per day has now put it out front.
And remember, the U.S. became the number-one natural gas producer four years ago.
This energy achievement comes after being written off as a post-Hubbard-peak production loser, from the years of the effete Jimmy Carter onward. Feckless Jimmy considered America just an energy corpse, and he whimpered for mercy at the hands of the oil-rich Middle East potentates.
Thanks to North Dakota and Texas, fracking operations are moving America toward energy independence.
The total American oil output should max out at 13.1 million barrels per day in five years, according to the International Energy Agency (the IEA). The IEA projects that America will then lose its top producer spot around 2030.
But again, that is assuming we don’t find any new major sources of oil and natural gas – and we have proven far more innovative and resourceful than the naysayers have hitherto allowed for.
So on the home front, the war for American energy independence is going well. But it faces a treacherous fifth column, viz., the so-called Americans who blindly oppose the fracking revolution – the environmentalist extremist Gaia-worshipping neo-pagan elites.
Several recent reports bear on these perfidious fifth columnists. First is the report by the head of NATO, secretary-general Anders Rasmussen, that Russia has been funding the mendacious Big Lie anti-fracking campaign by the major environmentalist front groups. He notes:
One might add that obviously Russia wants America to cease fracking as well.… Russia, as part of their sophisticated … disinformation operations, engaged actively with so-called … environmental organizations working against shale gas — to maintain European dependence on imported Russian gas.
This announcement caused howls of outrage and heated denials from the Gaia gangs like Greenpeace and Frack Off, a British anti-fracking activist group. But as the report cited above notes, the Russians have been planting phony “research” in environmentalist publications since 1979 at least, when they planted a report that nuclear war would lead to massive climate change in the journal AMBIO (to try to stop American missiles being put in Europe).
Former Russian spy chief Ronald Rychiak explains Russia’s motives with pluperfect clarity:
Does anyone doubt that if the Russians have been funding European environmentalist extremists to stop fracking, they are doing it here as well?[Russia’s] demographics are awful … and its population … could conceivably be under 100 million by the middle of the century. It lives almost wholly by selling oil and gas (and uses its leverage with gas to threaten its neighbors …). But the recent discoveries of shale gas … could deal Russia a heavy blow.
And does anyone doubt that if the Russians are funding anti-fracking propaganda to keep America weak and dependent upon foreign oil, the oil-rich Arab states are doing the same? If so, he should consider a couple of recent reports.
First was the news that Hollywood celeb Matt was seemingly unaware that his 2012 anti-fracking propaganda flick, Promised Land, was funded in part by wealthy individuals in the United Arab Emirates.
Second, and more damning of the Hollywood Gaia group, is the recent sting conducted by the amazing Project Veritas, headed by plucky journalist James O’Keefe.
O’Keefe arranged a meeting between film producers Josh and Rebecca Tickell (who were joined by a couple of environmentalist activist actors) and a member of his team of undercover journalists. The undercover journalist posed as a member of a wealthy Mid-Eastern family. The imposter, who called himself “Muhammed,” purported to offer the Tickells to fund an anti-fracking movie.
The fake Muhammed told the Gaia-loving producers he wanted to keep the source of the funding secret, and to this they readily agreed – even after the Muhammed imposter said that his goal was to keep America dependent on foreign oil. “Muhammed” bluntly says to Tickell, “My client’s interest is to end American energy independence; your interest is to end fracking. And you guys understand that?” To which the ultra-patriotic Tickell replied, “Correct. Yes, super clear.”
Of course, the real problem is not the nauseating enviro-insects in Hollywood, but the nauseating enviro-insects in the Obama administration. Obama and his billionaire enviro-backers have used the EPA to wage war on the coal and fracking companies and the Department of the Interior to cut off huge swaths of land from development, and they have dramatically curtailed land on coastal leases for oil and gas production.
The capstone of this madcap anti-American-energy-independence policy is the administration’s continued blocking of the Keystone XL pipeline, a project that the administration’s own State Department has ruled is environmentally safe. The project would bring oil down from our closest ally, Canada, relieving our country from all imports from the Middle East, a region filled with countries that hate America and are happy to fund our destruction by terrorists.
Here, alas, the fifth column is having its way. The news from Canada is that the Canadians are looking intensely to send their oil riches to other nations besides the U.S. The Canadians send us a prodigious amount of oil. Their oil sands alone contain reserves of upwards of 4 trillion (that’s trillion with a t) barrels of oil, more than Saudi Arabia. Canadian oil sand production has increased by nearly three fourths in just seven years and is projected to hit nearly 4 million barrels per day in about a decade. And the U.S., despite its burgeoning oil and gas production, still relies heavily on Canada for one third of the net 8 million barrels a day it imports. Indeed, 99% of the production from western Canadian oil sands now flows to the U.S.
But now, the Canadian oil producers are moving quickly to find easier ways to export oil abroad, seeing the resistance in America to utilizing their oil. For example, TransCanada Corporation is planning to build in maybe 4 years a 2,800-mile pipeline to connect western Canada to east-coast refineries in Quebec and New Brunswick. This pipeline will deliver 1.1 million barrels of oil a day for shipment overseas.
And Peters & Company projects that another 1.1 million barrels a day will be shipped by railroad to new terminals for shipment overseas.
We can easily win the war for American energy independence and national security, but only by exposing the environmentalist fifth column for what they are.
Gary Jason is an academic philosopher and a senior editor of Liberty. His new book, Philosophic Thoughts, is available from Peter Lang Publishers (and through Amazon).
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