Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Peak Oil Resolution Passes Minnesota House

ST. PAUL – Today, the Minnesota House of Representatives passed the Peak Oil Resolution (HF995/SF1948) memorializing the Governor to take action to prepare a plan of response and preparation to meet the challenges of peak oil.

"Global demand for oil is rising while supply is flattening out," said Hilty, Chair of the House's Energy Finance and Policy Committee. “The inevitable, and most likely imminent, decline in global petroleum production provide us with an overdue wake-up call. As policy-makers and private citizens, we need to develop a plan of response and preparation to meet the unprecedented challenges of peak oil."

This resolution is a follow-up to several hearings held by Energy Committee on peak oil. The resolution declares that the State Legislature supports: 1) adoption of a global Oil Depletion protocol, calling for greater transparency, stability and equity regarding access to petroleum; 2) a statewide assessment to evaluate the impact of peak oil on every area of state activity; and 3) recommended funding and direction by the Governor to state agencies for the development of a response plan.

"This resolution will compel us to look at the role of local units of government and starting addressing some fundamental logistical questions that will require considerable planning," said Rep. Hilty. "For instance, we need to start looking at the implications for the economy. Petroleum not only provides more than 95% of transportation fuels, it is also the feedstock for virtually all plastics and petrochemicals. It is literally what fuels the global economy. There is really almost no sector of the economy that will not be adversely affected by the rise in price and decline in availability of petroleum products. Clearly, we need to prepare for our future by investing in alternative energy sources, but it is vital that all of the implications of the inevitable decline in petroleum production and considered and planned for. This is an important first step."

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