Energy independence needed now

If the United States achieves energy independence during the next decade or so, it will be no thanks to President Barack Obama and liberals in Congress. They continue to pursue a goal of shutting down coal-fired power plants, and Obama has blocked new sources of oil such as the Keystone XL pipeline.

The danger of relying on other countries for fuel is being demonstrated right now.

Many European nations initially joined the U.S. in objecting to Russia’s intervention in Ukrainian affairs. But now, some of them are backing away from confrontation with Moscow.

Why? Because some European nations depend on natural gas from Russia. That country’s leader, Vladimir Putin, has made it clear he will not hesitate to limit or even cut off gas supplies to foes of his regime.

For many reasons, including fuel prices and flexibility in foreign affairs, energy independence would serve Americans well. But achieving it will require a change in U.S. policy – and the sooner, the better.