Mar 062011
Authors: Collegian Editorial Board

In a matter of weeks, gas prices across the country, including in our humble Choice City, have shot through the roof.

The increase in oil prices is blamed on the political upheaval throughout the Middle East, particularly in Libya where popular unrest has broken into a full-out civil war in many of the country’s cities. But violence in Libya shouldn’t be hitting us in the face here in Fort Collins.

Libya produces fewer than 2 percent of the world’s oil and accounts for less than 1 percent of U.S. oil imports. Despite its underwhelming share of the market, it has driven the price of oil up to more than $100 a barrel.

But production disruptions in Libya can’t account for skyrocketing prices. Speculation on future prices based on fears about the regions future can; so can gas companies deciding to use the Middle East unrest to gouge customers.

The rise in gas prices based on speculation and bottom lines should highlight clearly that it’s high time for the U.S. to end its addiction to foreign oil.

By pursuing new domestic sources of energy and by refining and encouraging the use of clean-energy technologies, the U.S. can start weaning itself off foreign oil. Doing so would have two, readily apparent positive impacts.

First, we’d limit the ability of speculators and profiteers to impact the price of gas today in Fort Collins.

Second, we’d reduce the power oil-controlling tyrants have over U.S. foreign policy and loosen the grip of lunatics like Moammar Gadhafi.

Domestic energy policy and availability should dictate Fort Collins’ gas prices. The time for moving toward energy independence is now.

 Posted by at 1:59 pm

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