The United States of America has an Ugly Problem...
It's a problem that poses a daily threat to our National Security, our Economy and our Environment. It continues to erode our future and it impacts our nation daily at every level.
The problem is our nation's dependence on foreign oil.
As the American economy has expanded over time, our addiction to foreign oil has also increased and today it is a crisis that undermines our independence, weakens our economy at every level and compromises our nation's security.
According to The Pickens Plan, in 1970 The USA imported 24% of our oil. Today that number is 65% and growing.
The sudden dramatic oil increase that we felt in the summer of 2008 caught everyone's attention and brought to light the problems of foreign oil dependency, however as the prices have decreased our dependence on foreign oil has not. Every American may have breathed a sign of relief when prices settled back into the $30 per barrel range in late 2008 and early 2009 - however, it has already reached back to over $70 per barrel in 2009 - proving that the price is volatile and unstable and most importantly - out of our control.
When prices at the gasoline pumps exceed $4 per gallon, the impact touches everyone from the average American family to the small business owner to the CEO of a major corporation. It strains budgets, empties wallets and prices rise on everything that touches oil. Shipping costs, travel costs - even food costs rise as the price to transport items takes a toll.
For our country to depend so heavily on foreign countries to supply such a vital need puts the USA in a dangerous position. We may have declared our independence in 1776 - but our country grows more dependent daily on the world to feed our addiction to foreign oil. The American population comprises 4% of the world's population - and we represent 25% of the world's oil demand.
...and China is moving fast to match and eventually surpass us. As more and more vehicles take to the road in China, and China continues to purchase the US debt - America loses much of our glory, independence and freedom.
What makes matters even worse is the precarious relationships America has with most of the oil-producing nations. These countries are not, have not and most likely will not be "our allies" at any time. Some of them outright hate us.
$475 billion was spent by the US on foreign oil in 2008. $475 billion as American workers are laid off, as businesses close their doors, as our automakers fail, as bankruptcy overtakes our nation. $475 billion that could make a difference in our schools, keep teachers employed, solve healthcare problems.
$475 billion that we need to stay in America. In the next 10 years, this number is expected to reach $10 trillion and will be (as Pickens refers to it) "the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of mankind".
That's not a very good legacy for our future...
What do we need to do about it?
The one positive impact of the high gasoline prices in 2008 was the fact that it drew attention to the problem and garnered tremendous attention. However, the high oil prices contributed to our downward spiraling economy and in a few short months, the economy crisis stole the spotlight and the focus of the American people.
Few people stop to recall the contribution of the oil prices to the economy problems we are still battling today.
As we desperately grasp at ways to stop the crash of the American economy, much of the focus has been on immediate and short term "band-aids" which serve only to slow the decline and do nothing to reverse it. The problems of our economy did not arise overnight and in order to find long-lasting and far-reaching impact, they cannot be fixed overnight.
And once again, oil can play a role.
It was recently revealed that the United States has natural gas resources - domestic resources - which would be the equivalent to a supply even greater than the oil supply in Saudi Arabia. Our automakers have failed as corporations and are beginning to build anew. Job creation is a major focus as many Americans - particularly Americans in the auto industry - are in need of work.
The pieces of the puzzle are all in front of us. The momentum to build a natural gas fueling infrastructure nationwide and to begin converting the automobiles on the road today to run on CNG has never been stronger or more necessary. Millions of jobs could be created from construction to automotive to administrative careers. The movement would reduce our dependency on foreign oil, stimulate our economy, reduce fuel costs to the American public and create jobs for the same people suffering the hardest hits.
It rather seems like an obvious solution, doesn't it?
And that's only a small piece of a large
puzzle. There are hundreds of other energy alternatives - from
wind farms and solar panels which can create energy to power our
homes and businesses...creating even more jobs.
How do we go about it?
As T. Boone Pickens is fond of saying, "We have to have a plan." If we don't have "a plan" then the plan automatically becomes foreign oil.
T. Boone Pickens introduced The Pickens
Plan in the summer of 2008 and in his plan, he outlined the
urgent need to move our transportation fuels to natural gas.
Wise Gas, Inc. is happy to offer you personal consulting, advise or suggestions at any time. We do ask that you first read through the different pages we have created for you under the Education section of this website to have a basic understanding. We have tried to create a place where you can get as much information as possible to avoid lengthy and exhausting hours of research (we did the research for you - free of charge!). While Wise Gas, Inc., as a corporation has definite interests in certain areas of alternative fuel and firm opinions on which options are the best, we have tried to be fair in our discussion of all alternative fuels because ultimately - anything that reduces petroleum dependency is a good thing.
Imagine that the flimsy relationships we have with oil producing countries broke down even further. Imagine that Chavez finally made good on his threats to cut off the US oil supply or that China's demand far outpaced the US demand as more and more of their citizens become drivers. Imagine that our oil supply was suddenly eliminated...
What vehicles would run? A Toyota Prius may rely on battery technology to reduce miles per gallon of consumption - but it's still not going to move on an empty tank. Biodiesel only works when you add the diesel part. Ethanol remains a gasoline additive. In other words, if our oil supply was eliminated - life as we know it would stop. Planes, trains, taxis and buses would stop. Your car would stop. Deliveries would stop. Store shelves would sit empty. Power plants would stop.
It would be nothing short of a national state of emergency unlike anything we have seen.
When you contemplate the American dependency on foreign oil, we often simply think of our own car first and don't put much thought into how far-reaching the implications would be.