So today John McCain is posing for a photo-op on Chevron’s Genesis spar, a drilling platform about 150 miles off the Louisiana coast and giving a talk about the importance of expanded offshore drilling. He was actually supposed to do it a little while ago, but…
Bad weather and, more significantly, an oil spill in the Mississippi River scuttled McCain’s planned trip last month. (emphasis mine)
Is this irony lost on everyone involved?
Apparently not on McCain, who delivered some remarks on the vital importance of domestic oil production.
“[Senator Obama] has said it will not ‘solve our problem’ and that ‘it’s not real,’ McCain noted of his rival in remarks prepared for delivery. “He’s wrong, and the American people know it. This platform we are at today sits above a field of 160 million barrels of oil, and is capable of producing on a daily basis 55,000 barrels of oil and 72 million cubic feet of natural gas.”
Well, it’s not news to anyone that expanded drilling won’t solve the problem, but I thought it might be fun to do some basic math to see just how “real” McCain’s example is. Ready?
Ok, so the Chevron platform John “Battler of big oil” McCain references “is capable” (whatever that means) of producing 55,000 barrels per day. Sounds impressive right? Well, according to the EIA, which provides official statistics of U.S. energy consumption, our average daily import in 2007 was 13,468,000 barrels of crude.
So basically, the daily output of the Chevron Genesis amounts to .004% of daily oil imports. I’ll say that again: .004% of daily imports alone, which means it’s even less when we consider it in terms of total daily barrels. Of course, I recognize this isn’t the only domestic source of oil, but figured a little bit of straight talk might help put things in perspective.