When it comes to energy and the environment, the United States ranks a clear number one among the world’s nations. Not only have we increased our energy production, courtesy of fracking, to the point that we are the world’s pre-eminent energy power, we have, at the same time, reduced our pollution and our CO2 emissions (if you think that matters) more than any other country. So when it comes to energy, the U.S. is the undisputed champion. This video by my friend Mark Mathis of the Clear Energy Alliance tells the story beautifully:
It is instructive that both our explosive growth in energy production and the decline in CO2 emissions have been driven by the fracking revolution. Fracking is a technology that was developed and executed by private companies with the cooperation of a number of states. The Obama administration was saved, arguably, by the fracking revolution, but that administration had nothing to do with it. On the contrary, if Obama had figured out a way to block fracking, he likely would have done so.
One of Obama’s worst lies, in my opinion, was his frequent assertion that the U.S. used 25% of the world’s energy, but had only 3% of the world’s petroleum reserves. As I wrote on this site many times, Obama must have known that this was a lie. The word “reserves” in most of the world means oil, real or imagined, in the ground. In the U.S., the word “reserves” is defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission. It has little to do with the actual amount of oil and gas that we possess under the ground. Rather, it measures only the resources that are 1) available for development under current law and regulations, and 2) can profitably be developed at current energy prices.
Why did Obama mislead the American people on energy? Because his party’s patrons made enormous investments in wind and solar energy, which are absurdly unreliable, inefficient and expensive energy sources compared with oil and gas. But the magnates of those subsidy- and mandate-dependent industries, like Tom Steyer, called the tune in the Democratic Party, and the Obama administration fell into line. The result would have been disastrous for the American people, but for the frackers’ end run around federal policy.
So let’s celebrate the fact that today, America is number one, both in energy production and in emission reduction.