We are bastards.
By “we,” of course, I’m talking we in “the media.” It’s not you. It’s me. Rather, it’s not me (I’m not Good Morning America now, am I?) — it’s my lazy-ass industry.
Drill Here, Drill Now? You’ve likely heard. What of it? Try: It means absolutely nothing when it comes to pump prices — at least not until 2030 or later. You’ve not heard?
Both the data and the failure to inform you about it have been certified and quantified.
It appears that in all the hundreds of times mainstream news showmasters blathering inside the Golden Box known as TV mentioned expanded drilling proposals (coming at us from all directions these days), they virtually never cite data from the U.S. Department of Energy clarifying WHAT THAT DRILLING WOULD ACTUALLY ACCOMPLISH.
Happened once. On CNN.
That’s what a report by Mark Weisbrot and Nichole Szembrot just published by the Center for Economic Policy and Research found out. Feel informed yet?
So, there’s some numbers for you. You can enlarge the chart above by clicking on the image, or read the whole report (PDF).
I’m one of these here no-goods, so you know what I did: I skipped straight to the conclusion.
Major media outlets provided daily repetition of the false claim that expanded drilling in environmentally sensitive zones would significantly lower gasoline prices. At the same time, these outlets failed to report the official data from the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Agency, which showed that these claims were false. There can be little doubt that this reporting had a significant impact on public opinion, and contributed to the widespread misunderstanding reflected in polling data. In so doing, the major media exerted a very significant influence on an important matter of national policy. The media have most likely changed the debate and political climate in a way that would not have been possible if they had simply reported the most important official data, thereby showing that the central claim in this debate was false.
Here’s the DOE report on drilling and gas prices.
The projections in the OCS access case indicate that access to the Pacific, Atlantic, and eastern Gulf regions would not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices before 2030. Leasing would begin no sooner than 2012, and production would not be expected to start before 2017. Total domestic production of crude oil from 2012 through 2030 in the OCS access case is projected to be 1.6 percent higher than in the reference case, and 3 percent higher in 2030 alone, at 5.6 million barrels per day. For the lower 48 OCS, annual crude oil production in 2030 is projected to be 7 percent higher—2.4 million barrels per day in the OCS access case compared with 2.2 million barrels per day in the reference case (Figure 20). Because oil prices are determined on the international market, however, any impact on average wellhead prices is expected to be insignificant.
Uh, Drill Why?
Maybe someone dear to you needs good information beyond the “Drill Here” mantra. You may want to forward this since, like, CNN obviously isn’t up to the job.