Obama’s energy plan: drilling tires; Flashback: Obama on your shoulder!
posted at 4:35 pm on July 30, 2008 by Ed Morrissey
Want to get an idea why Democrats have no clue on energy policy? Take a listen to Barack Obama explaining how we can get an extra 12 million barrels of oil a day. We can pull it out of thin air — literally:
There are things you can do individually, though, to save energy. Making sure your tires are properly inflated — simple thing. But we could save all the oil that they’re talking about getting off drilling — if everybody was just inflating their tires? And getting regular tune-ups? You’d actually save just as much!
Er, no it couldn’t. The Green River oil shale formation could produce at least 800 billion barrels of oil alone, enough for over 100 years at our current rate of consumption (20 million barrels per day). Would inflating our tires eliminate every single drop of oil we use? Of course not! Nor would it save any significant amount at all. Tire inflation could improve gas mileage by about 3%, which would relate to about 600,000 barrels of oil a day at the most absurdly optimistic extrapolation.
Maybe the Democrats could use a tune-up on energy policy. It looks like they’re still stuck in the 1970s, with tired, worn-out points and bad timing. On energy, Obama is your father’s 1973 Oldsmobile.
Update: Tune-ups? Most cars today don’t require tune-ups for the first 100,000 miles. Some automotive mechanics recommend them every 30,000 miles, but it’s hardly the 5,000-mile requirement it used to be twenty-five years ago.
Jim Geraghty has calculated the potential savings, and comes up to 6 million gallons of gasoline a day (not a year as I originally wrote). He’s also working off of an assumption of 10% improvement rather than 3%, which seems very high. Has anyone noticed a 10% improvement in their gas mileage by pumping up their tires, ever? On the other hand, we could be pumping millions of barrels of oil a day if Congress would stop blocking domestic oil production.
Update II: Geraghty’s calculation comes to about 330,000 barrels of oil a day, but at 3%, it would make it closer to 100,000 barrels of oil a day. That’s not much of a dent in 20 million barrels of oil a day, 12 million of which we import. I’d say we’d do much better by drilling and keeping our tires inflated.
On the other hand, what does this scolding recollect? Obama On Your Shoulder!