Everybody is being impacted by steeply rising energy prices.
American families are being hammered with massively escalating energy costs, impacting everything throughout the supply chain. Modern society is built on abundant, low-cost energy, but things are rapidly changing. And members of the public are desperately seeking answers.
In a free market economy, prices result from the intersection of supply and demand. Too much supply will result in decreased prices, and not enough supply will cause prices to increase. Producers will act to maintain a supply/demand equilibrium to provide goods, satisfy needs, and make their effort worth it at the same time.
The energy problem goes so much deeper. High energy prices are the result of years of regulatory signals to the fossil fuel industry that they are on their way out, despite the fact that no real alternative solutions exist that can maintain modern quality of life.
What is the Biden administration doing?
Those signals were accelerated on the first day of the Biden administration, when he cancelled the Keystone Pipeline. The President then went on to halt new oil and gas leases on federal lands and waters, including leases in New Mexico and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and created new barriers for other energy project permits. He also rejoined the Paris Climate Agreement, which will result in onerous new regulations, delays, and cost increases.
President Biden has created new bodies, headed by unelected bureaucrats, charged with creating even more energy regulations. And his plan to Build Back Better includes new taxes on natural gas, petroleum, home heating, and manufacturing. The WH is also tightening standards for particulate matter and ozone, likely tightening them to unachievable levels.
If all that isn’t enough, the EPA has issued a final rule to phase out a common, inexpensive refrigerant. This policy is a de facto tax on air conditioning and refrigeration. Good luck in the hot summer months after this policy hits. If you aren’t able to identify a pattern here, you’re simply not looking.
Many of these policies are taken directly from the Democrats’ Green New Deal. They’ve restricted supply, discouraged investment, and resulted in pushing up the cost of available fossil fuels.
Are solar and wind, or hostile foreign regimes, the answer?
The Biden Administration is claiming that fossil fuels can be replaced by solar and wind.
But are these clean-energies practicable? As we learned last winter during the big freeze in Texas, wind and solar as energy sources are unreliable. We saw the same with electric cars. In the West, Midwest, and rural areas throughout America, is any of this really workable? Let’s not also forget the power plants that produce the energy needed to charge those electric cars need baseload power provided by fossil fuels.
As more countries around the world attempt to modernize, the greatest good we can do would be to allow the people of those nations access to the same types of cheap efficient energy that has built our economy and way of life. Our knowledge of how to produce low-cost, plentiful fuel and power has never been greater. The world has hundreds of years' worth of deposits and there is no technical reason why we cannot meet rising demand. But our ability to act on that knowledge is strangled by anti-fossil fuel policies.
Extinguishing fuel production in the U.S. only makes us dependent on foreign production. Why would extracting oil from Saudi Arabia be less harmful to the earth than producing it in Texas? I remember a time when we all agreed that dependence on bad foreign actors for our energy production was not acceptable. And we absolutely cannot deny that most of the other nations that supply petroleum are traditionally our enemies, or at least, are not our friends. Iran, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Russia …
What IS the answer?
So what is the solution? Even more than supply lines, national security should be most important. Ultimately, what other smart alternative is there, but to return to U.S. oil production until the time that a viable alternative is available and driven by market demand?
The difference between the McCormick reaper and the John Deere tractor is the gasoline engine. At the risk of sounding a bit hyperbolic, if we don’t want to return to the pre-industrial age, we need to get back on board with petroleum and nuclear power, too.