Gilbert Placencia

Gilbert Placencia Broadcast Network

Title: Oil: The ‘Missing Link’ in the climate change debate


Gilbert J. Placencia graduated from the University of Washington, School of Law, in Seattle, Washington, following undergraduate studies at the University of Southern California, School of Public Affairs. He has specialized in automated litigation database design and management for over 25 years, including multiple environmental actions involving both on-shore and off-shore oil well/refinery compliance with EPA regulations. He recently founded “Earth 9-1-1 Broadcasting Network,” a non-profit start-up to establish a cable/webcast channel dedicated to reporting environmental news, primarily out of concern over the paucity of coverage by mainstream broadcast outlets. He has held one patent relating to water conservation, and pending applications relating to seismic resistant structures.


Oil, like water, has been a resourceful companion to humankind almost since recorded history. Ancient cultures, at first mystified how to use the pools of undrinkable liquid, soon discovered myriads of ways. It could be: thickened to cover dusty roads; hardened against pounding cart wheels; thinned to a slippery state, and thinned further as clear as olive oil. And they discovered that it could be burned.
Modern man discovered it could spark an Industrial Revolution. Surely, without oil, there would be no ‘history,’ as we know it. The miracle of oil also brought hope to lift humankind - by enabling employment, housing, and increased food production. As plentiful as water, modern man drank it like wine. The promise swiftly delivered the expected hope – but with an unexpected, yet not unanticipated, consequence: the emergence of 8 billion lives.
The search today for oil is no longer a matter of progress, but of survival. Arguably, the matter is also one of existence itself, as humankind has discovered additional consequences: the combustion of oil, and its mineral form of coal, emits carbon dioxide into the atmosphere essential to all life. The crux of the current, vehement debate centers on whether the volume of emissions is alone sufficient as the ‘causal’ factor in the climate changes, global warming, sea-level rising, oceanic warming being witnessed today.
Offered here is a ‘missing link’ in the debate, analysis and modeling: Oil is Earth’s natural insulator against its fiery core, and lubricant underlying tectonic plate movement. Thus, oil drilling, extraction, and depletion thereof, are significant, unaccounted for, factors in the climate changes and tectonic tumult we are witnessing today.