Time has come for Clean Fuels
Many of the articles on The Clean Fuels Initiative downplay the important implications of our degrading climate and suggest our increasing cost of energy at the pump or paying our electric bill is the only concern we should have. Yes, these costs hit our wallet, which is always closest to home. But never mentioned is the cost of dwindling crops due to drought, or the increasing cost of superstorms, hurricanes, tornadoes, and fires. They have grown in intensity during the last few decades due to increasing quantities of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. Here in Douglas County, we had a summer with at least 88 straight days without a drop of rain.
And what about the billions in increased cost of health care, reduced quality of life and rising grocery prices? You don’t think you’re paying for this? You bet you are, through increased insurance rates, taxes and higher prices. Would you rather pay pennies at the pump, or thousands in increased taxes and insurance rates?
Considering those few extra pennies at the pump, the price of gas could be twice as high as it is right now without the 10 percent added ethanol. You’re saving more than you think by having it there. Oregon is neither a producer or refiner of oil, but we have a perfect opportunity to lead in production and increased use of biofuels, bring pump costs down, provide thousands of jobs and keep more than $1.5 billion here at home.
The Oregon Clean Fuels and California’s programs are not merely something that means well, they’re a serious attempt to curb our deteriorating climate, a model other states can follow. It’s time to put aside the excuses, delays and denials. There is no time like the present to fully implement this program.
J. Eldon Bush