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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Rejoices At Negative Oil Prices

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez rejoiced at the news that U.S crude oil prices had dropped into negative territory earlier this week, tweeting “You absolutely love to see it.”

In the tweet, which she later deleted, Ocasio-Cortez also wrote: “This along with record low interest rates means it’s the right time for a worker-led, mass investment in green infrastructure to save our planet.”

Ocasio-Cortez is perhaps the most vocal opponent of the U.S. oil industry in Congress, along with Bernie Sanders, and she was also the author of a Green New Deal that envisaged a shift to a completely renewable energy future. 

Some analysts have estimated that this shift would cost tens of trillions of dollars.

Oil prices turned negative yesterday, with West Texas Intermediate falling below minus $37 a barrel as traders scrambled to ditch their May delivery oil contracts to avoid actual delivery that would have come at a steep cost as free storage space shrinks.

However, Ocasio-Cortez’s joy at this price development may be both ill-timed and misguided. As Senator Ted Cruz tweeted in response, “Which part of the millions of blue-collar workers losing their jobs & small refineries closing their doors forever is what you ‘love to see’ (per your deleted tweet) @AOC? Asking for those in Texas & across USA whose livelihoods (ability to put food on the table) are AT RISK.”

Premium: Oil Storage Nears Its Limit

But job loss aside, Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez appears to be confused about the relationship between the fossil fuel industry and the renewable energy industry. The nature of this relationship is striking: when oil is cheap, renewable energy reaps no benefits because consumption of the cheap commodity increases.

Granted, right now, we are in a unique situation when oil is cheap because there is no demand for it and the supply is too high. However, demand for electricity, including from renewable sources, is also down because of the lockdowns. Solar and wind industry representatives even warned of massive job losses in their industry because of the pandemic. In other words, the renewable energy industry is also in trouble—it’s not just bad old oil. And this trouble, along with the 22 million workers that lost their jobs over than last four weeks alone, will make her mass green investment vision particularly challenging to materialize.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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  • Damon Antonio on April 22 2020 said:
    The thoughts these people have of a perfect world without oil is delusional. Yes, it is good to see world oil consumption down due to the pandemic and people are still getting by but we all still need it for now and decades ahead. Does this congresswoman realize it is her own country that is affected by negative oil prices. Russia and China want nothing more than to see the USA decline to become a post super power.
  • Gregory Knekleian on April 22 2020 said:
    This is like the reverse of Peak Oil. But it attacks the infrastructure and recovery rate. This could just be a blip on the oil price radar, but Trump and the Strategic Oil reserve can only make maybe 40 or 50 billion dollars by selling oil at higher prices when it rebounds tops. Probably a lot less which won't recover bailout dollars needed to help people. This is not the big news, the big news is the cost to replace 25 percent of the oil usage, was spent on the bailout. I calculate that it would take 3 Trillion to replace the oil industry with a comprehensive plan which I sent teasers and suggestions to the White House when Trump was elected. This could have been an opportunity missed. It would not have taken the POTUS the entire $3 Trillion to do this all at once, but over time, as the plan would have taken time. It would NOT HAVE USED "renewables" however. It would have replaced and hit the oil industry getting rid of exploration and gathering of oil which is about 60 percent of their market. The fossil fuel industry, both oil and coal would have to be transitioned to the new energy source and means which would usher in a "new realm" of energy which would have several side effects, all GOOD and get rid of many of the major issues of the green crowd and even things like water shortages. All as happy by products. This would have been a great opportunity to transition the workers over to a new economy and the loss of oil could have been timed to remove the US need for almost all fossil fuels within about ten years. But we didn't do that. Trump said, the wall will be paid for by Mexico. Yes it would have Mr. President had my plan been looked at by the White House. Trump lost the chance to be the greatest president in 300 years, that means in the past and the future, had he done realistically what Ortez claims the green/and/delusional crowd can do. He could have done it with a phased in plan that would have ironically protected our borders as well and helped Mexican economic growth. But he didn't do it, or his staff botched getting the message to him. I just want to state that the ELITES know that there is a solution. At least some of them do and the can't make the transition in an orderly way. Because it will affect the nature of the world and the "old system" and they can't allow that. So we will limp along and continue perhaps through many years and hit a "REAL PEAK OIL EVENT" eventually and maybe some black swan die offs as well - Before the world wakes up and gets off fossil fuel. We won't do it the easy or planned way, because it's just to hard. The real transition to a real future, will likely come from somewhere else. And we will see it and wonder why we missed it. What did the Corona Virus start? It started a cycle of greed, and perhaps even over-reaction with quick moves to "STOP THE VIRUS" at all costs. And as a happy side effect we may have Just Lost the Banking system for quite some time, or will when they foreclose on all the homes of workers told to stay home. The 08 crisis will look like a mortgage comedy if the banks get their way and they must to survive. So that can cause the banking system to collapse, and of course many other ripples and even people taking revenge on the banks could happen. Trump is in up to and above his eyeballs on this one. We are in really deep trouble now as far as I can tell. I think we have to open up the economy again and take the death rate. And I think the death rate will be 6 million dead over one year for the USA and that is acceptable compared with a 20 trillion bailout to pay everyone to produce practically nothing at all. That is the only option now. Hope the virus death rate is merely 4 times at most the death rate of the 2017-18 flu season and let perhaps 5 million US citizens die and just take that hit. We aren't going to stop the spread rate anyway. It's way more contageous than we knew, but that means less deadly as well so we need to take the hit.

    I wish this could be an opportunity to transition in a smart way off oil and fossil fuels. If Trump did it right 3 years ago we'd be on our way there already and not even worry about the loss of oil revenue because we'd be transitioning the grid and fossil fuel systems and have high speed rail by now and all kinds of better things and a better more workable economy. But Trump apparently didn't get the memo and take it seriously from me. So he lost and we lost. Did the world deserve this loss anyway? We probably don't deserve to fast a rapid advance anyway. So we get what we all deserve. Being greedy we reap greed, showing not only no mercy but protecting the status quo we will get that, the status quo greed factor that everyone partook of in the 08 real estate crash. The randomness and sniper like death threat from secret carriers of the Corona Virus unfortunately destroyed or will seem to destroy our economy. And the public now is for keep closed lose it all.
  • Grant C on April 21 2020 said:
    AOC and economists around the world have stressed the dead end and dangerous future fossil fuels present. Countries around the world are already taking drastic actions to get away from fossil fuels NOW.
    We see people mocking AOC using laughable examples and talking points all the time. Especially Ted Cruise.
    At the end of the day, facts exist, and she is right...again!
  • Mark Potochnik on April 21 2020 said:
    First of all we warned you to divest of fossil fuels.
    Jim Cramer said fossil fuels were uninvestable.
    Way back in 1994-now RethinkX and Tony Seba warned of peak oil in 2020.
    See his videos on Youtube. His predictions are almost spot on.
    Although it was speeded up by the virus. Possibility of one more rally, but I believe that is it.
    We will see if anybody does the production cutback.

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