Oil Trade Group Challenges Environmentalists: Enough Talk, Try Actually Living Without Fossil Fuels

One of the more prominent among the manifold idiocies of the environmental left is the idea that oil is evil. Recently, according to a press release from the Western Energy Alliance, a non-profit trade association representing more than 450 companies engaged in exploration and production of oil and natural gas in the West, more than 400 groups converged on the White House to demand we keep fossil fuels in the ground.

They did this, of course, while waving signs made of plastic and having driven or flown in fossil fuel-powered vehicles to Washington. And probably while drinking from plastic or aluminum water bottles, or while sipping an extra-soy-macchiato latte, all of which require fossil fuels to produce. These are the same sorts who tried to block offshore drilling in the Arctic by blockading a harbor with kayaks and canoes made of plastic.

To shine light on the idiocy, this week the WEA challenged people who insist that oil is evil to live a full seven days without using fossil fuels. To any who would accept the challenge, they would find this is impossible.

Said WEA president Tim Wigley:

Environmental groups have actively promoted ending fossil fuel consumption. The problem is the average person doesn’t understand where things come from.


Taking these groups at their word, we created the Challenge to show that oil and natural gas products are not easily dispensable. In fact, it’s quite the contrary; fossil fuels make modern living possible. They power our economy and provide the basic feedstock used to manufacture smartphones, clothing and medicine and make our world safer, healthier and more convenient.

Indeed, the world the environmentalists imagine best describes a post-apocalyptic movie. Said Gene Koprowski, director of marketing for the Heartland Institute:

This idea of going without fossil fuels for a week -- wasn’t that the premise of the Mad Max series of films, a post-apocalyptic world where fossil fuel was scarce to non-existent?

Think life without a car to drive or fuel to heat your home is pleasant? This is just dumb. It’s not pleasant. It is like living after the apocalypse.

There are electric cars available from Tesla and other manufacturers today. But to generate power for the batteries for these cars, the owners hook up the car to an electrical outlet ... and rely on energy churned out by the coal-burning power plant down the way.

They can’t escape from fossil fuels, these electric car makers. There are lab-based alternatives to fossil fuels for the production of plastics and fibers, etc., but to my knowledge, these are not commercially viable presently.

Nearly everything we wear, eat, or use has fossil fuels in the supply chain somewhere. Even the carpets most of us walk on are made of synthetic fibers. To most of the environmental left, food magically appears in the grocery store,; iPhones and other modern conveniences are conjured by Technology Gnomes in the middle of the night, rather than having been manufactured using toxic processes.

Perhaps the problem is that environmentalists can't see the overseas plants which make their gadgets -- but they can see the oil rigs.