Four-plus-dollar gasoline is forcing Americans to realize that we need increased domestic oil production to meet our ever-growing demand for affordable fuel. But even if the greens lose the political battle over drilling offshore and in places like the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, they nevertheless are way ahead of the game as they implement a back-up plan to make sure that not a drop of that oil ever eases our gasoline crunch.

The Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council, or NRDC, successfully pressured the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to block ConocoPhillips’ expansion of its Roxana, Ill., gasoline refinery, which processes heavy crude oil from Canada, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

The project would have expanded the volume of Canadian crude processed from 60,000 barrels per day to more than 500,000 barrels a day by 2015. After the Illinois EPA had approved the expansion, the green groups petitioned the federal EPA to block it, alleging ConocoPhillips wasn't using the best available technology for reducing emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides.

Apparently, the plant's planned 95 percent reduction in sulfur dioxide emissions and 25 percent reduction in nitrogen oxides wasn't green enough. NRDC’s opposition is quite ironic since ConocoPhillips and the activist group actually are teammates in the global warming game. Both belong to the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, a coalition of eco-activist groups and large companies that is lobbying for global warming regulation.

So even though ConocoPhillips is aiding and abetting the NRDC to achieve the green dream of absolute government control over the U.S. energy supply, the enviros still are in take-no-prisoners mode, refusing to allow the expansion of a single refinery.

Imagine what the rest of us can expect from the greens.

Meanwhile, in California, green groups are working through the state attorney general’s office to block the upgrade of the Chevron refinery in the city of Richmond. The $800 million upgrade essentially would expand the useable oil supply by permitting the refinery to process lower-quality, less-expensive crude oil.

California Attorney General, ex-Gov. and climate crusader Jerry Brown claims the upgrade will produce an additional 900,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year. But Chevron says the upgrade actually will reduce the emissions by 220,000 tons.


http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,366004,00.html