Freeing America from Foreign Oil Dependency
In Presidents’ Obama’s acceptance speech, one of the bold promises he pledged was to see an end to the United States of America’s ‘addiction’ to foreign oil. Judging from his words, it is understandable that he was addressing American’s oil dependency for the sake of the nation’s environment, security and economy. However, his sentiments attracted sharp criticism from all corners as debate raged on whether it was a possibility or impossibility. I beg to differ with US foreign oil dependency policy and tend to think that it will be a matter of being stuck between a rock and hard place.
In as much as the US foreign oil policy offers a leeway to escape from the entrapment of dependency, looking at the issues on the ground would certainly make leaders have a change of heart. It is of the essence to understand the problems that are currently affecting America; and in as much as we are looking at the future, the present still awaits us. This paper seeks to articulate why US foreign oil dependency is not ending any time soon and how alternative measures that are proposed are misguided and ineffective.
One of the ways that was proposed to cut down on the dependency of foreign oil was adopting alternative energy sources. Unfortunately, alternative sources of energy have reached astronomical prices and furthermore they are not cost effective. Even if the government was to streamline, the alternative energy sources, it would cost much more than the expenditure on foreign oil. The reality of the matter is; America has invested billions of dollars in foreign oil industries with the top ten oil exporters channeling oil to the US. A staggering 21 million barrels of oil are consumed in a single day in the U.S. With these statistics the only way the US would become independent from foreign oil dependency would be through shutting down industries and telling people not they cannot drive nor fly (Rusk, 2008). Maybe, foreign oil dependency is not a bad thing after all, because as America buys oil from the Middle East countries, it builds a relationship and unparalleled influence over these countries. And it is through this influence and strong ties that has enabled the US be an economic powerhouse and substantially reduced the threat of terrorism against the US (Fisher, 2010).
The use of ethanol as a substitute energy source had been mentioned, as a move that would cut in on the dependency. However, science has contended that ethanol is rather a lousy alternative for the reason that, it would take additional energy to generate ethanol from corn than the ethanol in due course yields. Research has further showed that would take 11 acres of land to cultivate a sufficient amount of corn to fuel a single vehicle with ethanol for about 10,000 miles. It is needless to say that relying on corn for future energy needs would devastate food production and just when we think we are solving a problem, is when we introduce another one.
Hindrances that are associated with both alternative energy sources and ethanol as replacement for the oil dependency could be overcome through lowering the taxes charged on the equipments that facilitate the production of these energy sources. Additionally, sensitizing more industries to make a change from oil based to the proposed energy sources based.
Rusk, K. (2008). Obama Pledges to End Oil Dependency. Retrieved from http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/politics&id=6359976
Fisher, M. (2010). The Upside of Depending on Foreign Oil. Retrieved from http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2010/04/the-upside-of-depending-on-foreign-oil/38380/