Nationalize oil operations — that’ll get industry’s attention

I don’t know a fraction of what Capitol Hill insiders know about price gouging (article, “Lawmakers’ blood pressure rises with prices at the pump,” May 16), but this much is for certain: At the same time the cost of crude was dropping, the price of gas was rising. Not only that, according to Moody’s, Americans now are paying $1,000 more per year for gas than they did in 2001.

If Congress wants the price of gas to drop, then members must be willing to do something extraordinary, even radical. The only way to get the Chevrons, Exxons and Shells of the world to sit up and pay attention is to nationalize their operations.
What has happened is that oil companies have shifted their profit centers from the upstream sector (as in drilling)
downstream to refining. At the pump, retailers are limited to an average profit of about a nickel a gallon.

With gas prices on the rise again, is there anyone out there who doubts that $4 a gallon is coming this summer? My guess is my friends in the oil exploration business are praying this happens; however, most Americans aren’t.

So here’s to you Mobil, BP and everyone else in the oil business. Your unprecedented refining profits are the root cause of the recent congressional hearings. If you need help understanding what I’m telling you, it is spelled nationalization.

~From Denny Freidenrich, Laguna Beach, Calif.


Keep ‘Cape Wind’ out of Nantucket Sound

I am in favor of H.R. 2337 introduced by Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.), as it is a bill that supports observance and enforcement of important federal laws that provide endangered species’ protections. The California Energy Commission estimated 1,700 to 4,700 birds die each year by flying into whirling turbine blades or being electrocuted by transmission
lines that thread through the 50,000-acre Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area.

Greg Butcher, the National Audubon Society’s Director of Bird Conservation, has stated, “The fear is that with all the new wind farms rolling out, there is a new Altamont being created today. The exact reasons for the improvement are a matter of debate, but collisions seem far fewer when wind farms keep out of major flyways and give a wide berth to rich prey sites like
Altamont and attractive bird habitats such as wetlands.”

Nantucket Sound is within the eastern U.S. migratory bird flyway. It is a nesting foraging and staging area for federally endangered birds. It hosts the largest concentration of over-wintering bald eagles in New England. Substantial numbers of federally endangered sea turtles and protected marine mammal species are present. Nantucket Sound is also an Essential Fish Habitat, with federally regulated finfish and shellfish populations. …

Nantucket Sound is a place for “Cape Wind” to keep out of, as it is a major flyway and certainly a wetland.

~From Barbara Durkin, Northboro, Mass.