Maximize oil, natural gas

President Obama continues to dismiss oil as "the fuel of the past" as he makes unapologetic election-year pitches for his alternative energy industry policies. One thing President Obama never leaves out of a speech on energy and gasoline prices is "the U.S. only has 2 percent of the world's oil supplies..." This is an assertion used by the president, anti-energy groups and other elected officials seeking to increase Washington's control over our economy. The truth about U.S. and North American energy supplies is they are sufficient to meet all of our needs for generations, and the president and others know it because the government's own reports admit it.

Despite President Obama's intentionally misleading claim, the president's own administration released a report which reveals that the U.S. has 26 percent of the world's technically recoverable conventional oil resources. The U.S. Geological Survey's newly released assessment confirms that America's technically recoverable conventional oil resources are 26 percent of the world's supply, and this doesn't include oil shale, tight oil and heavy oil resources. Moreover, the assessment shows that the U.S. holds almost 30 percent of the world's technically recoverable conventional natural gas resources, without including our massive supply of shale gas. The U.S. Geological Survey Report comes on the heels of a non-partisan Congressional Research Service finding that America has the largest endowment of oil, gas and coal resources of any country in the world. Regrettably, many policymakers do not understand these facts or recognize the vast energy potential in the U.S.

Since President Obama took office, he and his administration have done everything in their power to stop fossil fuel usage including a carbon tax proposal, proposals to increase federal regulations, delays in permitting, infrastructure permitting denials and proposals designed to create capital starvation for drilling. All of these actions are designed to result in higher costs at the pump for the consumer. At the same time, there are billions of dollars in subsidies being given to solar, wind and other alternative sources of energy.

We cannot stay trapped by policies driven by a zero-sum game philosophy for energy that says we must have less oil and natural gas so that we can have more of something else. The Energy Information Administration predicts the world will need 45 percent more energy in 2035, and the U.S. will need 16 percent more. To get there, we need more energy of all types and we must abandon policies that pit one resource against another.

Perhaps we are living at the beginning of the age of fossil fuels, not its final decades. President Obama may wish that we had only 2 percent of the world's oil so that he could force us into his alternative energy policies, but the truth is clear. The longer our nation waits to develop our oil and natural gas resources, the longer we wait to improve our energy security, create new jobs and pay down our debt. Clearly, now is the time for us to move forward with exploration and development of more of our own oil and natural gas resources.



Cross is president of the Kansas Independent Oil & Gas Association.

Disturbing plan for the Windsor

The Windsor Hotel controversy reminds me of a mansion we saw that a rich family had lived in that featured late 1800s architecture. We took a guided tour and saw all the stained glass, beautiful stairways, furnishings, trim work, canvas-covered walls, etc. It really had the "Wow" factor. At the end of the tour, we saw the kitchen. It had been "redone" by the son-in-law of the couple. He had updated the kitchen with cabinets that were popular during the time he resided there. The kitchen got an "Oh" response and it was not a good kind of "Oh." I'm sure the son-in-law wouldn't like the legacy he left and leaving so many people so unimpressed.

The Windsor is one of Garden City's greatest assets. It adds to the history, identity and character of the city. It would be difficult to put a price on that. It was unbelievably disappointing to read about the proposed plans for the building. Garden City and the area have a bright future. Maybe the proposed plan is the best that could be done for now. If it is it's a shame. I'm sure a lot of work went into the proposal. A lot of people dream of a return of the Windsor to the way it used to be or at least close. Why sink so much money into an apparently misguided plan that would need to be torn out and redone later? Why not come closer to what people want now? Disturbing the building in such a drastic way is heart-wrenching.

I had a chance to explore the Windsor in the early 1970s when some of the furniture was still there. It was breathtaking.


Garden City