362 million: That's how many barrels of foreign oil we imported in June.
That's about 25 percent of the world's oil demand, and it is used by just 4 percent of the world's population.
When we first began the Pickens Plan, I created a white board presentation explaining how America can reduce its oil imports using domestic resources. I recently updated that presentation; to see it here:
When then-Senator Obama accepted the nomination for president, he pledged to end our dependence on oil imported from the Middle East in ten years. That was two years ago, so we can still meet that goal if we act now.
According to the June oil import numbers released by the Department of Energy, we are still importing approximately 12 million barrels of oil per day and spending about a billion dollars a day to get it. About 70 percent of that oil is used as a transportation fuel even though we have our very own resources here that could fuel our vehicles. It just doesn't make any sense that we continue to send money abroad when we can keep it in our economy and in our wallets.
For example, we can reduce our need for OPEC oil by half if we convert our national fleet of 18-wheelers from imported diesel to domestic natural gas. We have 8 million heavy-duty trucks using about a third of all oil used for transportation, and rotating them from diesel to natural gas would save about $100 billion from being sent to OPEC. It would also kick-start an entirely new natural gas vehicle industry in the United States, which would equal jobs at all levels of production.
I've said from the beginning that we need a bipartisan, American plan to use our domestic resources - natural gas, solar wind, ethanol, and hydro, to name a few - to move us away from the need to import 5 million barrels of OPEC oil per day for use as a transportation fuel. We've got the resources to do it and just need to get an energy bill over the finish line.
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-- T. Boone Pickens
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