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The March 22 article “U.S. oil output is up, but so are prices at the pump” overlooked important points:
1) Analysis of the recently published 10-K reports of major and midsized oil companies shows that overall, oil reserves are not being replaced by discovery. Thus, world oil reserves are decreasing because of depletion.
2) The easy-to-extract conventional oil in the world is being depleted. It is much more difficult and costly to extract nonconventional oil, such as shale oil. (For instance, from BP’s 10-K: “Meeting growing demand for secure and sustainable energy will also present an affordability challenge as the availability of easily accessible fossil fuels slowly diminishes.”)
3) Political tensions in the world still affect crude pricing. At least half of Iran’s exports are shut in because of sanctions on the country’s nuclear development program. Development of Iraq’s oil resources suffers from political instability and poor governance. Libya, Egypt, South Sudan and Nigeria all have had reduced crude exports caused by political instability.
4) Most people who are feeling pain at the pump could save at least 20 percent on their gasoline bills by purchasing smaller vehicles having better gas mileage; by driving at or below the posted speed limit, and by limiting fast acceleration (jack-rabbit starts) from a stop.
Joan Strobel, St. Paul
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To moms in minivans: Some multitasking kills
If I die in a car crash, I’m convinced it will be due to a mom in a minivan on the phone. I see them every day! I know that moms have long prided themselves on multitasking — making lunches, folding laundry and chatting on the phone at the same time, but this is different. Thousands of people die every year because of distracted drivers, and it seems that women, more than men, are talking on the phone while driving. Come on, ladies, be responsible! Are you prepared to explain to the mom of the person you injured or killed why that call was so important?
Susan Armstrong, St. Paul
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I’d pay a buck a stamp for Saturday service
In reference to “Saturday mail delivery may continue” — why not? And why not raise the cost of a stamp from 46 cents to $1 to compensate? We have someone come to our door, pick up a belonging of ours and deliver it clear across the country to a recipient of our choosing. Even a dollar would be a steal.
Ralph Cook, Champlin
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.