Oil and natural gas addicts were shocked by the news yesterday that domestic production would be shut down due to Hurricane Gustav.
NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- Energy producers have shut in approximately 100% of oil production and 95.4% of natural gas output in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, after companies shuttered operations ahead of Hurricane Gustav, the U.S. Minerals Management Service said Monday.
Before the production shut-ins, about 1.3 million barrels of oil and 7.4 billion cubic feet of gas a day was produced in the Gulf.
This 1.3 million barrels of oil represents about 6% of daily U.S. consumption, far too much to miss out on according to some addicts. "Time to break into the stash", one administration official reportedly said with a sigh.
The U.S. government said it was ready to release crude oil stocks from the nation's emergency reserve if Gustav causes a significant disruption.
Some of the junkies were even willing to lower their standards, pumping lower quality product into their bloodstream in order to achieve that blissful high.
It waived environmental quality standards for gasoline in Texas and Louisiana to ensure adequate retail supplies.
Perhaps due to withdrawal, notorious fossil fuel addict George W. Bush and his so-called "Republican" drug gang stepped up their calls for increased domestic production. They are now proposing to give the pushers of this dangerous junk even more (PDF) of our precious coastlines and beautiful outdoor places.
When Congress comes back, they've got to understand that we need more domestic energy, not less; that -- and one place to find it is offshore America, lands that have been taken off the books, so to speak, by congressional law. And now they need to give us a chance to find more oil and gas here at home.
Sounds like some Americans are seriously hooked on the bad stuff. Won't you help them end their addiction?
All jokes aside, yet another weather-related disruption to domestic oil production really highlights the foolishness of the drill everywhere drill always crowd. We know that greenhouse gas emissions increase the frequency and intensity of severe weather systems and we should pin the blame squarely on those who fight to keep us addicted to oil.