Monday, September 22, 2008

Palin, McCain wrong about Alaska’s energy output

United States Presidential candidate John McCain and his Vice Presidential running mate Sarah Palin have been telling American voters that Alaska produces 20 percent of the nation’s energy. Because of this, of course, she’s uniquely positioned to help pull the United States out of its current energy crisis.

The problem is, Alaska doesn’t produce 20 percent of the nation’s energy. It only produces 3.5 percent according to FactCheck.org and
a report at New Scientist.

In an interview with ABC’s Charlie Gibson, Palin said, "Let me speak specifically about a credential that I do bring to this table, Charlie, and that's with the energy independence that I've been working on for these years as the governor of this state that produces nearly 20 percent of the US domestic supply of energy."

But what’s one (Alaska’s contribution to US energy) have to do with the other (getting us out of our energy dependency trap)? As New Scientist’s Catherine Brahic so cleverly pointed out, “Before he took office, George W Bush was governor of Texas, the largest energy producing state. Yet after eight years of presidency, the country faces a severe energy crisis.”

(Image of Alaska oil pipeline by
Ryan McFarland)

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.