Yesterday I was listening to my usual NPR station morning show , "The Morning Edition" when they threw a news tidbit where a former Big Oil Executiv, John Hofmeister (former Shell Oil CEO) now representing a politcal action group devoted to energy policy, stating that we can expect to see $5.00 a gallon oil by the end of the year.
At the time I heard this I am thinking he just using fear tactics to create a more willingess to drill in the Gulf. But I may of been wrong.
After listening and watching a little more in depth interview on NPR Energy in Review I now think he is just saying yes the price of oil will be going up but what he is more afraid of is actual shortfalls in meeting energy needs (hydrocarbons) distract us from developing alternative energy. He has come out with a book that promotes development of alternative energy and creating a quasi-federal organization similar to the FED to oversee and implement energy policy. This Federal Energy Commission would oversee the development of alternative energy and better management of our energy supplies (hydrocarbon and nuclear). The ideal is to prevent a company like Enron did in manipulating energy supplies to create a artificial crisis.
Hofmeister may very well have a good ideal but he also said something also very significant. He said that in the current political climate in Congress he does not see anything like what is needed to come out. Because of that with the shortfalls in oil productions and increase demand from the US and other countries like India and China we can expect $5 a gallon by the end of the year.
So, are we being held hostage to allow further drilling in the Gulf. Yes!
But who is to blame? I don't think we can point fingers at responsible parties without realizing we are looking into a mirror. It was our unwillingness to give up our big gas hogs for something a little more fuel efficient. It was our unwillingness to invest in development of alternative energy. It was our unwillingness to see the need to invest in good conservation practices that has put us in this situation of being held hostage.
As Pogo has said "We have met the enemy and it is us"