Opinion

Editorial — Tweet starts oil panic

A man sends a Twitter message in Cairo and now we’re paying around $1.26 for a litre of regular gas.

The current tumult in the Middle East, sparked by the so-called Twitter Revolution in Egypt, is prompting fear-mongering by commodities speculators and boosting the bank accounts of major oil companies.

Egypt is a middle-of-the-pack supplier of the world’s oil. Its daily production of about 680,000 barrels ranks it 29th amongst oil producers. That’s 11 spots below Libya, but eight higher than Yemen, 25 higher than Tunisia and 44 higher than Bahrain, the other countries where citizens, emboldened by the successful occupation of Tahrir Square, have been marching against the status quo.

Combined, they produce less oil per day than Canada, ranked sixth at 3,289,000 barrels, and less than a third of the daily oil production of the United States.

In fact, the U.S., the world’s biggest consumer of oil, gets less than 20 per cent of its imported supply from the Middle East. Some key delivery points have more oil than capacity to move it. Refineries have cut back operations because of the oil glut.

But never let reality get in the way of a good old speculative panic. Some analysts say if the current Middle East unrest continues, or spreads to more countries, the price of a barrel of oil could reach new heights, surpassing the records set three years ago, the last time we were paying this much at the pump.

As gas goes up, so goes the price of food and everything else we consume that gets to us by truck, train, plane, or is manufactured with plastic.

It’s almost enough to make you want to curl up in a corner with the lights off, Twittering on your iPhone.

—Burnaby News Leader

(Black Press)

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

What to do with school boards?
 
Haz-Mat called to Aldergrove border crossing
 
Coal train detours will continue until Jan. 15
Update: Husband charged in death of woman killed in Newton home
 
Mission Arts Council sets up gallery downtown
 
COLUMN: Surrey is a one-party fifedom
Jon Stewart, Obama, Elizabeth Warren sound off on American government shutdown
 
COLUMN: Choose wisely Nov. 15
 
COLUMN: Oh, the headlines that might have been

Community Events, November 2014

Add an Event


Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Nov 18 edition online now. Browse the archives.