Oil Price Hits US$100/Barrel - Don't Panic, Plan
Don't panic, plan
The Green Party is warning that today's record breaking crude oil price of US$100 per barrel is just the first flirtation in what is going to be a long term relationship with triple digits in an ongoing trend of rising oil prices.
The price of oil reportedly surged during the first trading day in the New Year with light sweet crude rising US$4.02 to US$100 a barrel in New York.
"The era of cheap oil has been over for some time. While today's price breaks a psychological limit, the long term trend indicates that oil may not be consistently priced this high until July or August. However, that's very short time in planning terms and it is extremely urgent that we re-examine our budget priorities for roading, public transport and freight," Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons says.
While today's price of US$100 did retreat soon after breaking the record, prices will never retreat back to the lows of just a few years ago.
"While there isn't any need to panic, it is a clear signal that we should be planning for an oil constrained future. This means changing the way we get around, investing in more public transport and better urban design that supports walking and cycling. You only need to look at the major cities around the world that were built before the oil age to see that vibrant, exciting lifestyles are possible without depending on the private motor vehicle.
"If you read my latest Bill to be drawn, Climate Change (Transport Funding) Bill, you'll see a phased programme for refocusing priorities towards more sustainable transport and reducing our reliance on fossil fuels."