Reid’s moratorium move

Apparently Nevada Sen. Harry Reid wasn’t busy enough interfering with Henry Paulson’s efforts to save the U.S. economy Thursday. He also found some time to try and deepen our problems by extending a moratorium on domestic energy production.

The senate’s top Dem on Thursday moved to extend the federal moratorium on oil shale development that was scheduled to expire Tuesday. No one joined him in this announcement; he just said — through his aides — that we would be hearing more on this. Apparently, Reid hasn’t heard or doesn’t care that America is also in the midst of a significant energy crisis that needs to be addressed.

This paper believes that responsible domestic energy development should proceed — even if it must happen in our own backyard. At the same time, we acknowledge that the oil shale in question lies beneath one of the most beautiful places on Earth and its natural resources must be protected from damage. That may or may not be possible, but with a federal moratorium in place, it’s not even up for discussion.

Allowing the moratorium to expire simply allows government to adopt regulations for responsible energy development. It does not mean any schedule for drilling is set into motion or has even been approved. It simply allows the issue to be considered. Extending the moratorium essentially nullifies the possibility.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, Colorado is home to around 1 trillion barrels of potentially recoverable oil. Compare that with Saudi Arabia’s 267 billion barrels of recoverable oil. It makes little sense to send our oil money overseas when we have such a vast resource at home.

Anyone, such as Harry Reid, who believes recovering that resource should not even be discussed shouldn’t be a leader of the U.S. Senate — particularly during a time of crisis.


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