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Oil shale's time

Published May 15, 2010 6:00 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2010, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Steve Black, senior legal adviser to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, told the Unconventional Fuels Conference in Salt Lake City that oil shale is "not ready for prime time" ("Salazar aide: Oil shale not ready for 'prime time," Tribune , April 29). Many bristled at the statement. One attendee from the oil shale industry stated that the federal government is currently standing in the way of oil shale development by refusing "regulatory guidance" and denying access to federal lands that contain the richest oil shale deposits.

Oil shale may not yet be ready for prime time, but the same could be said for renewable energies. Salazar recently approved the Cape Wind project in Massachusetts, which will produce expensive electricity, use 24 square miles, impact tourism and wildlife and receive massive subsidies.

This project is not "ready for prime time" either, yet Salazar favors it.

We don't criticize the Cape Wind decision; America needs all the energy it can get. Salazar should instead also be a partner in oil shale development, fostering a regulatory environment that supports private investment and research into this 2 trillion-barrel American resource.

Curtis Moore Executive director, Environmentally Conscious Consumers for Oil Shale

Grand Junction, Colo.