In the Jan. 20 commentary “We’re paying less at the pump – and that’s just the start,” the author first rhapsodizes about the ever-increasing amount of oil and gas that’s being extracted in our country, and what good news that is for the economy. Then he takes aim at the “government-imposed barriers” that still get it the oil industry’s way: “… more than half the states in the Union have mandates that force a certain percentage of their electricity generation come from renewables. Quite simply, if these energy sources are cost-competitive, they won’t need mandates.”

If oil and gas actually are cost-competitive, then why are they getting so much help from the government? For decades, the oil industry has enjoyed enormous federal subsidies. It has used its vast wealth to keep down renewables, to deny that global warming is caused by burning fossil fuels, and to fund candidates who would do their bidding.

It also funds organizations (like the Heritage Foundation, which employs the author) that lobby to pass laws favoring non-regulation of fossil fuels.

The oil industry has proven that it has no moral compunctions about how it makes its money or about any of its effects on the environment, and will do whatever it can get away with to increase profits.

This is just another attempt to make the oil companies look reasonable and good for us all. The column’s author, Nicolas Loris, gets a salary for writing PR pieces like this. Do they pay newspapers to print them, or do they get to place this advertisement for free in the guise of an “opinion”?

Claire Prontnicki

Waterville


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