I am amused when I hear my misguided liberal friends in their relentless pursuit of some progressive utopia pontificate about the virtues of ‘green energy’ and the vile shortcomings of ‘fossil fuel’.

Last night I listened to our experience free commander in chief once again extol ‘investing’ in green energy as a key part of building our future. He called natural gas a bridge fuel. I laughed as I already know that natural gas is not a bridge fuel but may likely become our principal fuel in just a few short years.

It’s funny because I can remember the Chicken Little crowd warning us the end times of oil and gas. Mocking us for driving ‘gas guzzlers’ and making us feel guilty for driving the car or truck of our choice. This of course is nothing new and this nonsense was first pedaled by our 39th President in an uninformed and misguided speech when I was in Jr. High School. (yeah I know we call that middle school now so Johnny feels good about himself... whatever, move on)

Walk with me down memory lane of misguided liberals who as they say were clearly on the wrong side of history.

On April 18, 1977 President Jimmy Carter asked TV cameras into the White House for a grim announcement “tonight I want to have an unpleasant talk with you about a problem unprecedented in our history. With the exception of preventing war, this is the greatest challenge our country will face during our lifetimes.” (my God I can still hear the grinding of teeth and the clenching of fists)

The problem so dire? Energy. Or rather, the incredible lack of it and America’s incredibly greedy and wasteful approach to it. (insert left leaning social studies teacher deriding America for using 25% of the worlds oil). Cue the dramatic music and restart Jimmy; “We simply must balance our demand for energy with our rapidly shrinking resources,” He said with total conviction. (I wonder if he knew he was lying through his teeth like the current occupant of the White House or if he was the dumbest ‘really smart guy’ ever... but I digress)  “The oil and natural gas we rely on for 75 per cent of our energy are running out.” Oh my God Chicken Little was right... we will be walking to school and everywhere else!

Carter’s talk as you can guess was poorly received. Americans didn’t appreciate the apocalyptic message, still less his vision for tackling the situation, with its rather condescending demand for a collective show of moral backbone. But this is the really disturbing part hardly anyone questioned his facts. And yet he was about as wrong as he could possibly be. Far from running out, oil and natural gas reserves were, if not inexhaustible, then damned close and for sure unfathomably vast. Nobody knew that then, but they sure do now.

Moreover, as well as bountiful oilfields in North America, Russia, Saudi Arabia and other producers in the Middle East, there are massive, barely tapped reserves in South America, Africa and the Arctic: not billions of barrels’ worth, but trillions. So the planet is not about to run out of oil and based on actual science it probably NEVER will. On the contrary, according to a Harvard University report published last year, we are heading for a glut.

The 75-page study, by oil executive Leonardo Maugeri, was based on a field-by-field analysis of most of the major oil exploration and development projects in the world, and it predicted a 20 per cent increase in global oil production by 2020. That may also be too conservative!

In particular, the report highlighted the deep-water reservoirs in Brazil’s Santos basin, which are thought to hold as much as 150 billion barrels of oil, Venezuela’s “extra-heavy” oil in the Orinoco Belt, estimated at 1.2 trillion barrels, the oil sands in Canada, the Kwanza basin in Angola, and the Bakken and Three Forks fields in North Dakota and Montana, in the United States, which, Maugeri said, “could become the equivalent of a Persian Gulf-producing country” all on their own. And I didn’t even mention the Green River formation that may hold as much as 3.5 trillion barrels all by itself in the American west.

And the reason for this boom? A technological revolution that is transforming the way we both find and extract oil.

One of the greatest advances, and the procedure that’s dominated the headlines in recent years, for both good reasons and bad, is hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. In essence, fracking is a way of releasing oil or gas that is tightly bound up in shale rock, using immensely powerful water pumps exerting a pressure of up to 20,000 pounds per square inch. Fracking was actually pioneered in Kansas in the Forties but it is only recently, thanks to numerous improvements, that it has become economically viable. Oil previously thought unreachable is now within our grasp.

And nobody is exploiting these advances with more enthusiasm than America. In just six years, the number of barrels being produced by the Bakken formation, a unit of shale rock occupying about 200,000 square miles stretching from Montana to North Dakota, has increased 100-fold — from 6,000 a day to 600,000 a day – and made North Dakota the second-biggest oil producer in America, after Texas. The population of the main town, Williston, has tripled in 10 years as truck drivers and oilfield workers (not to mention strippers... lots of strippers) have flocked there from all over recession-hit America. North Dakota has new businesses and new hospital wings, but also an infrastructure groaning under the weight of the influx. There is also a vociferous campaign against fracking by environmental groups who say the technique has the potential to contaminate underground water supplies, cause minor earthquakes and pollute the environment with vast quantities of toxic wastewater. However those claims have come up embarrassingly short on substance.

The truth is this; we have the energy, we have the resources and we have the people who know how to do this safely to make America the biggest energy producer in the world. We can stop squandering our tax payer dollars on failed ‘green initiatives’ and ‘green jobs’ and so on. We can pay 17 trillion in debt and still give everyone healthcare... hopefully a better system but we can.

I look forward to the day that a capitalist, conservative republican can finally get his hands back on the wheel so he can roll over Chicken Little and never hit the brake!