Published February 26, 2012
Back in early 2010, we all heard Congressman Tim Ryan, fresh back from the trip to the Earth Summit in Copenhagen, talking about developing partnerships with green technology companies around the world and encouraging our young people to enroll in programs that will be the “jobs of the future”. The topic of the day was to create vocational programs that would provide the skills needed to fully embrace the technology of reusable wind and solar energy.
So we were all set to embrace the green future, in the midst of a global economic melt down our children were to be prepared to meet the opportunities of this new green technology. Directly after the earth summit, and in response to fears that Democrats would take our guns, our congressman and some other democrats were at a fishing and game club trip sponsored by the National Rifle Association. They were all walking through the beautiful green Ohio woods. And then they spotted a new wild game. All of the sudden they were shooting at some food when up from the ground come some bubbling crude. Oil that is. Texas Tea. Well the next thing you know, ol Tim's a millionaire, his financial adviser said, Tim get away from here, Utica Shale is the place you ought to be. So he loaded up the Denali and bought stock in BP.
In all seriousness folks, the thought of the oil and natural gas industry making investment in our area and creating jobs in the process has the potential to be a very good thing. I see the old broken down steel mills being demolished and piled onto some landfill. The protestors and organized groups have traded the fight against construction and demolition debris landfills, for a fight against earthquake producing brine injection wells. It is true that with all industries and financial fortune, there are trade-offs with environmental protection.
My thoughts are that with enough study and integrity, our politicians, local and state officials can chart a fine course that will allow the oil and natural gas industry to flourish here but only in a way that protects us from its environmental down sides. The Pickens plan, defined by billionaire oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens, states the use of natural gas as a short term fix to our nation's energy strategy. In the long run, the Pickens plan states that wind, solar, and other reusable power will be our solution to the shortage. Therefore, it is also crucial that our government limit the amount of our natural resources that are turned into global commodities. And in tandem, continue the research and development into truly reusable forms of energy and conservation.
I invite you to voice your opinions and ideas on this very important issue for our valley. Do you believe the oil and natural gas should be permitted to continue as is, or should additional regulation and taxation be considered for the larger goal of achieving safe path to national energy independence.