While the world burns Trump declares energy independence
The 2019 United Nations Emissions Gap Report confirms what everyone knows. We continue burning fuels and plan to burn much more. We are betraying our children every day. The U.S. Administration has gone rogue. Our leaders have declared war on Americans, making false claims every day.
We have an existential emergency. Nothing could be more important than to put out the fire. We have to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8 percent per year from 2020 to 2030, reach net-zero emissions by 2050, and then pull more carbon dioxide out of the air than it emits thereafter to avoid irreversible warming beyond a 1.5°C increase in temperatures over pre-industrial levels. We are running out of time and there is no excuse for waiting to act.
The world is rushing for a 3°C global temperature spike with wider-ranging and more destructive climate effects
We are on the wrong path to a safe future. Unless we act now, climate system changes will be permanent, and extreme weather events will be unavoidable.
The illusion of energy independence
Energy independence is an old idea dating back to the 1973 Arab oil embargo. The fear of running out of gas fueled the idea of making our own.
Energy interdependence is a better goal where countries buy and sell commodities for mutual benefit. This is a win-win proposition. Mutual respect is the basis of multilateral trade, long-standing friendships, and peace. This is nature’s way where everyone plays a role, gives and takes in harmony.
War on Americans and the climate
The October 23, 2019 White House fact sheet “Ending the War on American Energy and Delivering a New Era of Energy Dominance” claims that Donald Trump:
- Ended the war on energy by rolling back “excessive” regulations, like the Clean Power Plan, and the Stream and Wetlands protection rule.
- Pulled out of “the fraudulent, ineffective, and one-sided Paris Climate Accord,” that would have cost Americans billions of dollars and put millions of jobs at risk for no meaningful reduction of emissions.
- Opened up federally owned land and offshore areas for energy exploration and production and opened up the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge for energy companies.
In other words, Trump has sold Americans’ future, health, and peace to oil & gas. This is to pay for the 2017 tax cuts for the rich and make the U.S. economy look good, to get reelected.
Federal ban on fracking
Fracking has spread all over the land and oceans, deep water fracking is especially hazardous as proven by the Deepwater Horizon.
The best way to ban fracking is a total shut down of operations. Fracking has morphed from destructive extraction to a devastating unregulated monster. The horizontal shaft has grown from 600 ft. to 10,000 ft. with multiple wells per pad and multiple shafts per well at different depths.
America First offshore energy strategy
The U.S. sells drilling leases for federal land and deep-water fracking. These revenues go to the U.S. Treasury. Who pays for pollution and destruction?
On August 21, 2019, the Interior’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management announced that a region-wide Gulf of Mexico Lease generated $160 million for 151 tracts covering 835,000 acres in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
Too much oil
There is a glut of oil and gas in the world and giant new traditional liquid deposits have been discovered. Last month, Iran announced a massive new oil field with more than 50 billion barrels of oil. Guyana, a small South American country neighboring Venezuela, found recoverable reserves of 14 billion barrels of oil and 32 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
The recent destruction of Saudi Arabia oil facilities proved weapons do not stop enemy drones and the overproduction of oil kept prices untouched.
We need a winning climate strategy. Please join a December 6 Climate Strike near you. Join us at 11:15 a.m. in front of the Eureka Springs Courthouse. Handmade signs and open minds are welcome.
Dr. Luis Contreras