Savidge Spin: NBC Reporter Agrees With Green Fears About New Oil Discovery
Leave it to the Today show to find the negative side of good economic news. Reporting on the discovery of the largest oil discovery in the Gulf of Mexico, NBC's Martin Savidge admitted that "environmentalists might have a point," in worrying, "the discovery will hardly make a dent in America's reliance on foreign oil" and "it might cause Americans to stop conserving."
The following is the full segment introduced by Ann Curry:
Ann Curry: "Now to Today At the Pump and a major oil discovery in the Gulf of Mexico. The average price of unleaded gas, nationwide, is now $2.72 a gallon according to the AAA. A steady drop over the last few weeks but drivers everywhere are wondering if the price of gas will drop even further with what could be the largest domestic oil find in 38 years. NBC's Martin Savidge has more on the potential of this new find. Hey Martin, good morning."
Martin Savidge: "Good morning, Ann. There is no question that this discovery is generating a lot excitement but it's going to be a long time before that black gold makes it to a refinery like this one to become gasoline for our cars. It's the biggest oil discovery in the Gulf of Mexico ever. And possibly the largest in America since Prudhoe Bay in Alaska back in the 70s. A test well called Jack II. It's 175 miles off the coast of Louisiana and oil companies say it could hold billions of barrels."
[John Richels, Devon Energy: "There are some estimates that say that, that this could, this trend, in the industry could hold up to 15 barrels of oil potentially."]
Savidge: "If true that would boost America's oil reserves by 50 percent but if that has you dreaming of a return to cheap gas any time soon, keep dreaming."
Pete Ricciuti, Tulane University: "It's not gonna help you get to the, the grocery store any cheaper. This is oil that's gonna take six to 10 years to get to the gas pump. So it's affect on the short term basis is really pretty minimal."
Savidge: "At the earliest experts say it will be 2010 before the oil makes it to the pump and because it's so deep, over 5 miles down in the Gulf, just getting it up could cost billions."
Paul Siegel, Chevron: "We've got a lot of exploration left to be done here and this is very good news for us."
Savidge: "And the optimism reached Wall Street. The price of a barrel of crude dropped and oil stocks rose. But others say the discovery will hardly make a dent in America's reliance on foreign oil and environmentalists fear it might cause Americans to stop conserving."
Jim Presswood, Natural Resources Defense Council: "The way to break our addiction to oil is not by getting more of the stuff we're addicted to but rather finding alternative sources of fuel."
Savidge: "And the environmentalists might have a point. You see as a nation we consume 5.7 billion barrels of oil every single year. That means this discovery as big as it is by itself would only last the country less than three years. Ann."