Share

Policy: Environment & Energy

Ukraine crisis a teachable energy moment for Obama, but will he learn anything?

|
Opinion,Op-Eds,Barack Obama,Keystone XL,Energy and Environment,Vladimir Putin,Fracking,Oil Sands,Oil Exports,Ukraine

Vladimir Putin's actions in Ukraine provide us a clear view of the fecklessness, folly and utter danger of President Obama's green energy policies to US national and economic security, and the administration's actions prove it.

Secretary of State John Kerry has stopped preaching that climate change is the world's greatest weapon of mass destruction, and the media reports the administration is considering exporting natural gas and releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

Meanwhile, not one voice has been heard calling for shipping the solar panels and windmills the administration champions for the U.S. to Europe or Ukraine.

Neither has Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus mentioned sending the “Great Green Fleet” to the region.

Serious times require serious discussions, and as it turns out, Obama’s energy plan has never been serious. The Ukraine crisis this week shows they know it.

A huge part of President Ronald Reagan's victory over communism was his energy policy, which was based on strengthening the U.S. while driving down the price of oil that provided the Soviets with their only hard currency foreign exchange.

Reagan understood that developing U.S. energy made us stronger at home economically and meant we could afford a stronger defense.

He worked to increase production of all US energy supplies of all kinds, because he understood more energy makes us stronger. That meant more oil, more gas, more coal and more nuclear power. More leasing and permits, not less.

Obama, on the other hand, has chosen a weaker path. Rather than seek lower-priced energy to fuel more American output, he declared it his goal to “make electricity prices necessarily skyrocket” and sicced his regulators on the producers of energy.

His observations on American energy were that “we can't drive our SUVs and, you know, eat as much as we want and keep our homes on, you know, 72 degrees at all times.”

It signaled a return to Jimmy Carter's pessimism, but was in reality an America surrounded by energy whose government was unwilling to turn a shovel to get it.

Obama's war on coal means talk of exporting LNG to lessen Russian influence may be just talk, since we will need that natural gas to replace the coal his EPA seeks to outlaw.

The U.S. has more of the world’s coal than the Saudis have of the world’s oil, which Reagan saw as a strength, while Obama hired an energy secretary who saw coal as his “worst nightmare.”

Meanwhile, Canada awaits a decision about whether Keystone XL is in the U.S. national interest, and Obama's six years of figuring out whether the pipeline is in our national interest has slowed investment in Canada oil sands because of a logjam in takeaway capacity, part of the Green Left's strategy.

Reagan’s pen, unlike Obama’s, would have said been used immediately.

On the day Putin moved in the Ukraine, Obama's Environmental Protection Agency gave notice that it will not allow the largest copper deposit in the world, the Pebble in Alaska, to proceed, a clear signal Obama is only serious about appeasing his friends and funders on the green Left.

His federal leasing policies are stifling production of oil and gas on federal lands on and offshore, even though he seeks credit for all the increased production of energy that he has not been able to stop on non-government lands over which he has no say.

He opposes opening up ANWR’s 10 billion barrels of oil and he has stood idly by while Shell struggles to get permits to drill for more billions of barrels offshore of Alaska.

Along with shutting down coal, he has made our government-controlled oil shale off limits, while his agents are working behind the curtains to attack the shale oil and gas energy bonanza that technology has made possible through fracking and horizontal drilling.

The only war that Obama has shown himself eager to fight is his against the twin evils he sees as carbon dioxide and affordable, abundant energy for America and the world.

Obama’s policies are all about making the U.S. less energetic, at home and abroad. It is fitting that when the rubber has hit the road in the Ukraine, no one in his administration dares suggest that the salvation to aggression in the world lies in the Green Energy future his policies hold in store for us.

It should be a teachable moment for all who study energy, as it is evidently is for those in the Obama administration.

Dan Kish is senior vice president of the Institute for Energy Research.
View article comments Leave a comment