BEHRENS: 2022 – The Year Of Energy Heroes And Zeroes

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Larry Behrens Contributor
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It was an all-too-common refrain in 2022: “This hasn’t happened since Jimmy Carter was president.” Terms such as “supply chain” and “energy crisis” evolved from esoteric textbook terms to everyday nightmares facing American families. In 2022, we had to relive the worst parts of the late 1970s and it was even worse for us because we didn’t even get a good Star Wars movie out of it.

Consider: We endured the highest gas prices ever, the worst inflation in over a generation and now home heating bills are soaring with no end in sight. Combine all that with ongoing sticker shock at the grocery store and it’s a dreary outlook. 

Adding insult to injury, it was all avoidable. 

Perhaps in no other year since the late 1970s have Americans become more aware about the role energy plays in our society. The link between the rising cost of diesel fuel and the increased cost of a loaf of bread is clearer to more people. Energy touches every facet of our life. Literally. So, when energy prices go up, so does everything else – regardless of how many carbon offsets one purchases.

The extreme eco-movement pushing its green agenda at all costs is responsible for the costs squeezing American families. They’re adding more zeroes to the price tags of everything under the sun, so let’s call them energy “zeroes.”

Some of those energy zeroes include John Kerry, the unelected, unconstitutional and yet extremely empowered “climate czar” in the Biden White House who did tremendous damage to America’s energy workers this year – and worst of all, he’s accountable to no one. Kerry refused to give the public or Congress answers. The Boston Herald wrote, “John Kerry is being called out for his display of ‘cowardice’ for ducking questions.” 

Next on the zero list are the Climate Art Destroyers, those hard-to-miss lunatics who have been making a mess all over museums across the globe. This group of extreme activists ruins famous pieces of art by throwing food and paint at them. They most famously threw cake at the Mona Lisa because saving the planet means priceless art must be defaced. It’s a twisted logic that makes sense to no one but their cult.

Finally, there is President Joe Biden.  Perhaps no occupant of the White House has done so much to erode American energy independence so quickly than the current commander-in-chief. In 2022, he begged Saudi Arabia for more oil, cut a dirty deal with a dictator in Venezuela and leased the fewest acres of U.S. land for oil production since Harry Truman. He drained the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to new lows while delivering the highest gas prices in history. The whole time, Biden never accepted responsibility for his failures and instead decided to blame COVID, Russia, oil companies and everyone else under the sun for his own failures. Now, American families are struggling through Biden’s colossal energy disaster — all entirely manmade.

It’s the holiday season, so enough of the doom and gloom. Thankfully, there were some heroes to counteract the zeroes.

Remember John Calipari, the head coach of men’s basketball at the University of Kentucky, who heralded a dedicated coal miner in the crowd during a scrimmage? Calipari said, “My family’s American dream started in a Clarksburg, WV coal mine, so this picture hits home.” He later treated the miner and his family to a VIP experience.

Then there’s Gina Reinhart, an Australian energy leader who donates millions to sports and non-profits in her home country. In 2022, when members of the Netball Australia team refused to wear a logo as a protest of fossil fuels, Mrs. Reinhart took back her $15 million donation. Her fearless commitment to an industry which employs millions worldwide and not letting eco-bullies get away with more lies is worthy of admiration.

Or the five West Virginia coal miners who rescued a couple stranded in their electric vehicle last fall. According to reports, the couple from Washington, D.C. were in their electric vehicle when it ran out of power. The coal miners kindly pushed the helpless car to their mine where it could get a recharge – from the “fossil fuels” that EV owners are hellbent on destroying.

Lastly and most importantly, we have the 18 million American fossil fuel workers. These men and women work on Christmas, New Year’s and every other holiday in 2022 and 2023 to ensure your home has reliable power to keep temperatures warm and the lights bright. Eco-groups will continue to demonize them and destroy their jobs, yet American energy workers will continue to do their critical work so that everyone, including eco-hypocrites, have enough power.

Those are some of the Heroes of 2022. Sadly, their influence is blunted by elitists pushing the climate agenda — a.k.a. energy Zeroes. 

Thankfully, as we turn the calendar to 2023 more Americans are waking up to the real costs of embracing the climate cult. Here’s hoping by this time next year, the Heroes come out on top.


Larry Behrens is the Communications Director for Power The Future, a non-profit that advocates for America’s energy workers. You can find him on Twitter @larrybehrens or you can email him: larry@powerthefuture.com.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.