Archive for the ‘energy policy’ category

(How To) STOP High Gasoline Prices

June 3, 2008

I was in the airport terminal several weeks back in San Antonio eating a sammich and this half-drunk lately stumbles off the plane and plops down a couple seats away. She’s got a nice young man by the arm showing him off all proud like (with good reason). He’s one of our Iraq vets coming home to start his life in the work-a-day world he’s helped to preserve. Hooyah! I greet the guy. Tell him how proud we are of him and his service.

Conversation turns to what I do. Me? “I’m in the energy business.” What part? “Oil.”

Little miss half-to-the-wind starts laying into me like Jackie Chan. OMG! Of a sudden I’m Bush’s lackey, yada yada. What am I going to do about oil prices? Here’s where I get quiet. Stone dead silent. My close friends and family know when I’m quiet I either don’t have anything to say or I’m pissed to the nth degree. (On this matter I had plenty to say). 10-second rule lapses…

“Ma’am. Where are you from?” California. “Your gasoline bills ARE high. Here in San Antonio I talked with the cabbie. He paid $3.29 a gallon today. Not bad. In Tulsa it was $3.20.” WOW! “Want to know why?” Uh huh… “We have refineries close by. We have a little more friendly tax situation than you do in California. It all adds up… these little things.” Yeah, still, YOU’RE driving the prices up. Probably intentionally. This young man went to war for Bush’s oil. (SILENCE)

“Ma’am, whether he did or whether he didn’t is for history to decide.” Now SHE goes silent… this is about to get fun…

“Have you adjusted how much gasoline you purchase? At all? Since the prices have gone up?” No. Not really. No.

“OK. Follow along… When bananas, eggs or milk go up in price and you don’t like it do you just buy them anyway?” No. Well, sometimes.

“Fair enough. And what eventually happens if enough people feel the same way as you on that price and don’t buy? It adjusts down again doesn’t it?” Yeah, normally.

STOP BUYING GASOLINE! It’s simple supply and demand. Enough of us stop it for whatever reason by whatever method and prices will come down. WE decide if we buy or not. The oil companies and refineries don’t. You bring enough alternates like CNG, hybrids or whatever to market… gasoline prices will straighten out. Better yet, get more efficient, gas powered engines legislated. 83% of the energy in gasoline is NOT converted to forward motion. Change THAT equation and you change the whole game.”

This time it was silence. But, it was stunned silence. Golden.

Price of Oil & Telecommuting

November 8, 2007

Oil very well could see the $100/barrel mark this winter. As a result I’m hoping and urging you to contact your representatives in congress to rally for a telecommuting bill. I’ll be blogging a great deal on this topic over the next year (an election year by the way).

When/if that happens most sectors are going to see corresponding lift in their costs of doing business and consequently the end consumers will foot the bill. Anything being shipped from here to there (shipping, air, boat…) is transported with some kind of fuel be it gasoline, jet fuel, etc. I can’t tell you the number of invoices I’ve seen these past three years with “fuel surcharge” as an additional item for approval.

Most people’s salaries don’t keep pace with this COLA (cost of living adjustment). There’s usually one raise a year and that probably falls short of keeping pace with both the new costs of living and the merit raises we all hope to be earning.

So, I’m seeing a situation where, in order to keep energy prices in check… telecommunting could easily be the thing to ease the pressures on the refineries, help green the balance of things a bit, and with the right incentives/quotas/whatever you want to call them… could tip a whole new element of the playing field heavily in favor of good ole’ home flavored tech sector driven economic gains like we saw in the late 90’s.

Support a telecommunications provision within the US Energy Policy. Contact your representatives in Washington today.