By Seth Grossman, Executive Director
After years of debate, South Jersey Gas still can?t build a vitally needed pipeline through the shortest, cheapest, and safest route. This is yet another example of how dysfunctional government in New Jersey has become. Once again, the main culprits are aggressive ?progressive? Democrats and cowardly Republicans.
We need cheap, plentiful, and reliable energy to enjoy safe, comfortable, and civilized lives. When humans had nothing but sun, wind, wood, and farm animals for energy, we were helpless against cold, storms, heat, and lack of rain that often made life miserable, and caused hunger and death by destroying crops and food supplies.
Natural gas is the cheapest, safest, and most abundant source of energy in America right now. The biggest supply is in eastern Pennsylvania, just over one hundred miles away. We desperately need that energy here in South Jersey.
Our biggest sources of jobs and income are tourists and gamblers. Neither can exist without cheap, abundant, and reliable electricity to power air conditioning and electric lights and amusements in the summers. New Jersey now has the third highest electric bills in America, and high electric bills were a major factor in causing several Atlantic City casinos to close during the past ten years.
More than 2,000 years ago, the ancient Romans build aquaducts to bring water in from mountains hundreds of miles away. Why shouldn?t we build a much shorter and less intrusive underground pipeline to bring in needed natural gas?
For the past 50 years, our schools, colleges, media, and Hollywood pop culture have saturated us with the idea that every source of energy we need to be safe and comfortable is ?unsustainable? and bad for the planet. First, they convinced us that scarce natural gas was the only clean and green fuel available. They convinced us that nuclear power was too dangerous, coal was too dirty, and oil was bad because spills killed birds, and it caused us to get into wars in the Middle East.
Most of their arguments are nonsense. Nuclear power plants in America, including Salem and Oyster Creek have proven to be remarkably safe. New methods of burning coal and oil have given Americans the cleanest air and water in the world.
Carbon dioxide, the gas we exhale when we breathe, is not a poison. Green plants can?t live without it. Climate has been changing for billions of years. Every lump of Pennsylvania coal has images of tropical plants that once lived there. Boulders and beach sand all over New Jersey are evidence of ice sheets that covered our state just 10,000 year ago.
The latest arguments against a natural gas pipeline to Pennsylvania are even more ridiculous. They say a natural gas pipeline might leak and poison water in ?the Pinelands?. However, any third grader understands that if a gas pipeline leaks, the gas escapes into the air?it does not mix with water.
Another argument is that a natural gas pipeline might cause forest fires in ?the Pinelands?. Most South Jersey residents know that it would be pretty hard for a gas pipeline underneath a paved road to start a fire. If so, we would not have so many gas pipelines under the paved streets of almost every town in South Jersey. We also know that there are major fires caused by lightening in ?the Pinelands? every few years anyway, which is why they were known as ?the Pine Barrens? for so many years.
The more we hear these fake arguments, we must understand that more and more, the issues raised by environmentalists have nothing to do with the environment. However, they have everything about advancing a ?progressive? political agenda. The key to advancing that agenda is making more and more Americans poor, divided, and angry at each other.