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Morning Bell: Supply Matters
Posted By Conn Carroll On August 6, 2008 @ 9:21 am In Ongoing Priorities | Comments Disabled
Political experts across the country keep asking why Barack Obama continues to conspicuously fail to cross the 50% threshold against John McCain despite the fact “Democrats enjoy the most favorable political winds since at least 1976 .” It may have something to do with the fact that the top issues on voters’ minds this year are energy and the economy , and voters just are not buying the left’s solutions.
Look closely at the laundry list of plans the left has put forward (from both Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s House and Barack Obama’s campaign): higher taxes on oil companies, new restrictions on oil commodity markets, forcing oil companies to drill where there is no oil, releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, free money for everybody, increased fuel efficiency mandates, increased infrastructure spending, government investments in electric cars, etc . What do all of these “solutions” have in common? None of them increase our energy supply.
The latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) numbers show the U.S. currently has 986,000 megawatts  of capacity to supply the nation’s demand for electricity. EIA predicts that over the next 20 years, the U.S. will need another 292,000 megawatts  to keep the economy running. To meet that demand, EIA sees 54% and 36% of that new capacity coming from coal and natural gas power plants. Currently, solar, wind and geothermal power contribute only 1% of our nation’s energy . There is simply no way these sources can produce enough electricity to meet the energy needs of a growing U.S. economy.
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is telling reporters that the left has just recently “found our sea legs ” on the energy issue. Schumer’s favorite new tactic: “a new theme portraying GOP support for drilling as a giveaway to big oil companies .” Like all the other tactics the left has tried on energy, this one also does nothing to increase energy supply. But Schumer does have a point, the United States needs a lot more than more oil drilling to meet its energy needs. But only conservatives are offering solutions that include more energy.
The plans coming from John McCain and congressional conservatives have their differences (McCain still does not support drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge), but they both share one thing in common: they take an “all of the above ” approach to expanding U.S. energy supply. Many conservatives are less than impressed  with McCain’s arbitrary target of 45 new nuclear power plants (we prefer a free market approach to reviving the nuclear industry ), but at least McCain is paying more than lip service  to nuclear’s future.
Obama’s energy plan calls for “1 million Plug-In Hybrid cars” by 2015. Where does he think these cars will get the electricity needed to run? We suggest he start looking in all the federal lands that his environmental allies have restricted from natural gas production. The EIA estimates there are 83.9 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in these areas alone .
Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News Blog from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org
URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2008/08/06/morning-bell-supply-matters/
URLs in this post:
 Democrats enjoy the most favorable political winds since at least 1976: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0808/12334.html
 energy and the economy: http://www.pollingreport.com/prioriti.htm
 higher taxes on oil companies, new restrictions on oil commodity markets, forcing oil companies to drill where there is no oil, releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, free money for everybody, increased fuel efficiency mandates, increased infrastructure spending, government investments in electric cars, etc: http://www.barackobama.com/pdf/factsheet_energy_speech_080308.pdf
 986,000 megawatts: http://www.eia.doe.gov/neic/infosheets/electriccapacity.html
 Currently, solar, wind and geothermal power contribute only 1% of our nation’s energy: http://www.eia.doe.gov/cneaf/alternate/page/renew_energy_consump/table1.html
 found our sea legs: http://www.cqpolitics.com/wmspage.cfm?parm1=5&docID=news-000002931778
 all of the above: http://www.gop.gov/energy/americanenergyact/
 less than impressed: http://www.foundry.org/2008/06/19/the-costs-of-not-allowing-nuclear/
 free market approach to reviving the nuclear industry: http://www.heritage.org/Research/EnergyandEnvironment/bg2149.cfm
 lip service: http://www.foundry.org/2008/06/25/obama-pulls-back-on-nuclear/
 83.9 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in these areas alone: http://www.heritage.org/Research/EnergyandEnvironment/wm1990.cfm
 further consolidate state control: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB121798058478615151.html?mod=hpp_us_whats_news
 New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/06/world/middleeast/06soldier.html?ref=todayspaper
 black list: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0808/12330.html
 $10,000 per person: http://www.laobserved.com/archive/2008/08/obama_fundraiser_in_switz.php
 New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/06/us/politics/06bundlers.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&ref=todayspaper&adxnnlx=1218017693-GsIfRnktclOhG38QyTpcGQ
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