Mitt Romney released an energy plan yesterday that some outlets report sets a goal of energy independence by 2020. That’s not quite right. The goal expressed here is “North American energy independence” by 2020, and when you consider that one of our biggest if not our biggest energy trading partner is Canada, and that Mexico ships a fair bit of oil as well, that really says very little.
The white paper shifts back and forth between “North American” energy independence and just “energy independence,” seeking to blur that distinction. But one of the key elements of the plan is a “North American Energy Partnership,” which mainly consists of approving the Keystone XL pipeline and any other pipelines Canada and Mexico want to build. There’s also a whiff of the idea that we should gouge Canada and Mexico and purchase their oil at a discount. The white paper makes this outlandish statement that “America still imports more oil from OPEC than it does from Canada and Mexico,” when OPEC consists of practically every oil producing nation on Earth, with much greater capacity than the two North American countries, and yet it’s STILL pretty close, with the US getting 37% of its oil resources from Canada and Mexico, compared to about 50% from OPEC.