One Question I Haven’t Seen Answered in the Gallons of Ink Spilled on BP.Posted: June 2, 2010
Can we afford to lose the oil?
That’s something I haven’t seen any news story address.
Plenty of coverage of the environmental catastrophe, as there should be. The environmental catastrophe is unprecedented.
But no one (that I have seen, and I’ve been looking) has answered this question: “If, as seems likely, the oil keeps gushing until August, will we have enough other oil to keep the country running? Do these millions and millions of gallons of oil that we’re losing represent a significant amount of the nation’s oil supply, such that factories will have to shut down, we’ll have to stop driving, and energy prices are going to spike? Or is none of that true—is it instead the case that, colossal as this loss of oil seems, it’s just a drop in the barrel compared to what we have?”
It seems like an important question. It might have a simple answer (“yes, don’t worry, there’ll still be enough oil”), but if so, I’d like to know it. I’m not sure why I’m the only one asking it.