Kelcy Warren is a co-founder of Energy Transfer, and together with his company, he has been working on improving the public image of oil and natural gas.
Energy Transfer recently put out a video that helps to highlight why petrochemical technologies are important, and it makes some powerful points.
The video shows a couple going to the hospital, but when they arrive, the place is empty. There is no equipment and no help to offer, and while this might seem dramatic, the point is quite true. Modern healthcare runs on petroleum products.
As Kelcy Warren is trying to emphasize, modern hospitals need fossil fuels in order to run. The vast majority of healthcare facilities get their electricity from natural gas power plants. Even when that isn’t the case, hospitals maintain powerful diesel generators that can keep the electricity running in the case of a power outage or natural disaster.
Yet, that’s only the beginning.
Hospitals are outfitted with petrochemicals as well. Oil and natural gas are pivotal in the production of plastics and similar products, and without those products, we don’t have modern healthcare.
Safety equipment is largely made from plastics. This includes gloves, protective sheets for beds, wrapping that keeps instruments sterile, and a whole lot more. Without these petrochemicals, a hospital visit would be substantially more dangerous.
On top of that, plastics are essential for the production of many aspects of hospital equipment. If you have ever been in a hospital, you may have seen monitoring devices for blood pressure, heart rate, oxygen saturation, and more. Plastics make up critical components of all of these devices. Without petrochemicals and the fossil fuel industry, healthcare monitoring goes back almost a hundred years.
And there’s still more.
Many medications that are essential for saving lives are manufactured using petrochemicals. Titrated medications require plastics for mixing and storage. Plastics are involved in the tubing and injection technology that delivers intravenous medication. IV bags themselves are made of plastic. If you have ever taken a pill for your health, it was probably in a plastic bottle.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that plastics are a driving technology that is essential to every aspect of healthcare. Without them, life expectancy plummets and healthcare loses much of its ability to help people.
Here’s the even stronger point that Kelcy Warren is making.
This is just one industry. Healthcare needs plastics, but so does the rest of the world. Petrochemicals are essential to your daily life. Your toothbrush is probably plastic, and your toothpaste is almost certainly in a plastic container. You need plastics for home appliances like refrigerators and dishwashers. Your food is stored safely with plastics. Your computer and phone need them. TVs, furniture, and even plumbing all rely heavily on the value of plastics.
This is as true in every other industry too. Plastics make up critical components of all kinds of technology. Petrochemicals are used across manufacturing, and without them, the modern world as we know it grinds to a halt.
If Kelcy Warren and Energy Transfer can convince you of anything, it’s that the world still very much needs petrochemicals.
Learn more about Energy Transfer Partners and Kelcy Warren here: https://video.pbsnc.org/video/ceo-kelcy-warren-energy-transfer-partners/