We need another government agency

bentley
brooklands

#1

Well, that’s what a former CEO of Shell Oil said today in an interview. He thinks we need an independent federal agency modeled after the Federal Reserve. He contends that we have no coherent energy policy, even though 8 presidents and 19 congresses have claimed to work on it. Whoever shows up with the most money has their way. What do you think?



I think he makes an excellent point. When asked about the free market, he wondered what free market the interviewer was talking about. There certainly is not one in energy, and never will be one again. The last time there was a free market in oil, JD Rockafeller destroyed it by dstroying the comepetition and buying them up. That’s how Standard Oil was formed 100 years ago. I think he makes a good point. And a Big Oil CEO, no less.


#2

Um, isn’t that what the “Dept. of Energy” is for?


#3

Newt also suggested that we need another Government agency (come on is there more than one “Newt”)Newt’s suggestion does away with one and creates another,the suggestion,eliminate the Environmental Protection Agengy and replace it with the Environmental Solution Agency.


#4

In theory that is what the Dept of Energy is for, but without having any “teeth”, there is little or nothing that they can do in this regard.

The reality is that the US has no energy policy, despite the claims of multiple administrations, just as the CEO of Shell Oil said.

I question whether we need a new agency, but we definitely need a comprehensive energy policy–for the first time.


#5

The Secretary of the DoE does exactly what the President tells him to. If he doesn’t, he will be fired. That is not the case for the Chairman of the Federal Reserve. It is an independent agency; not controlled by Congress or the President. There are checks and balances for the Fed, but it is very difficult for politicians to meddle in its affairs.


#6

The Fed is better refered to as a “quasi” government agency. It can be audited by Congress (as some are currently calling for)


#7

An organization like the Fed cannot be completely on its own. But for the most part it has done a good job. And I would not clasify the financial market meltdown as a problem with the Fed. Congress just wants to audit them to deflect critisism of their own poor choices leading up to the meltdown. Sadly, it seems that Congress can’t be trusted with complicated, expensive decisions. They just don’t seem capable of handling it. What ever happened to statesmanship?


#8

The world is putting more cars on the road all the time ( China and India the most ). There is no political solution that is going to give us cheap energy again.


#9

What could possibly go wrong?


#10

Famous last words


#11

We need another government agency

…like we need a hole in the head.

I was waiting for CSA to respond, so I could agree with him and create bipartisan harmony. Where are you CSA?


#12

Toss my vote in for another vote against yet another bloated, inefficient, and corrupt government agency.

The word “independent” sounds good on paper but in reality that indpendent agency will be nothing more than a bunch of stick puppets being controlled by outside influences. It would be no different than countless other independent agencies, committees, investigative bodies, etc. who all have an axe to grind or an agenda.

On the surface I’d agree with the CEO but I just don’t think “independent” and government will happen.


#13

But the Fed isn’t corrupt, bloated, or inefficient. That’s the other politcally managed agencies. And that’s the point. We already have a DoE that doesn’t really work for this purpose. We don’t need another one.


#14

That was a lot of the point of the discussion. The retired Shell CEO said that mainland China would make sure that domestic oil reserves would be exploited so that they would not have to pay street prices for oil. Much of the discussion centered around exploiting US natural gas reserves and eventually turning methane into an alternative to gasoline. Not a replacement, but an omnipresent alternative. If you wait for Exxon to do it, the conversion may not happen for dozens of years. We have 120 years of known methane reserves. Why not take advantage of them now? It starts with fleet services, and eventually moves into the general population. Some public bus systems use methan now, but it could be expanded to trucks and corporate car fleets.


#15

It would not be an error to call me a “documentaryaholic”, that is I find documentaries on just about any subject very interesting. I think I have a good ability to discard or reject mere propaganda. That being said I am most affected when the subject matter is the “how and why” concerning the last financial meltdown. There is some pretty nasty stuff out there that has nothing to do with the current or recent financial problems faced by our country and I search for some reason why the financial documentaries affect me the most.It certainly not that I am insensitive to the problems faced by previous generations.


#16

What’s this nonsense about China ‘not having to pay the street price for oil’?? They’re already importing MORE oil than they produce (sound familliar?). Why would Shell guy say such a thing?

http://www.eia.doe.gov/cabs/china/images/2010%20oil%20production%20and%20consumption.gif

And be careful what you ask for. To think the government would be smarter in these complicated choices than the market is very risky. Should we have some clear direction and policies? Sure, but everybody’s idea of the ‘right’ policy is wildly different.


#17

I don’t know about that. I’ve been hearing some pretty convincing evidence for doing away with the Fed. It isn’t just lunatics like the Ron Paul getting behind this cause anymore.


#18

Yet another government agency will do nearly as much good as calling for another meeting at the office does.


#19

Much of the discussion centered around exploiting US natural gas reserves and eventually turning methane into an alternative to gasoline. Not a replacement, but an omnipresent alternative. If you wait for Exxon to do it, the conversion may not happen for dozens of years. We have 120 years of known methane reserves. Why not take advantage of them now?

If you want private industry to invest heavily in alt fuel, what about price guarantees? I mean, at current oil prices, many alternatives become attractive, but few firms will be willing to “bet the farm” on unproven technology that becomes undesirable should oil prices fall.

This could cost some $$, but seemingly less than those associated with creating a whole new gov’t agency.

Along with that, how about gov’t motor pool contracts that specify a certain % of vehicles to be alt-fuel? Creating the demand to spur the investment in infrastructure.


#20

If you want private industry to invest heavily in alt fuel, what about price guarantees? I mean, at current oil prices, many alternatives become attractive, but few firms will be willing to “bet the farm” on unproven technology that becomes undesirable should oil prices fall.

You have just pointed out one of the main reasons alternative energies won’t replace oil anytime soon. The same oil cartels that can demand $100+/barrel for their oil also have the power to flood us with cheap oil everytime we get serious about driving fuel efficient cars or develop alternative energy.
You won’t see alternatives displace oil unless there is a breakthrough that makes it so economical that it’s not worth pumping oil out of the ground for its energy.