In an economy that relies so heavily on oil, rising prices at the pump affect everybody -– workers, farmers, truck drivers, restaurant owners, students who are lucky enough to have a car. (Laughter.) Businesses see rising prices at the pump hurt their bottom line. Families feel the pinch when they fill up their tank. And for Americans that are already struggling to get by, a hike in gas prices really makes their lives that much harder. It hurts. —-Barack Obama, March 30, 2011. Georgetown University
Yes, Mr. Obama. We do rely heavily on oil. We have billions of barrels of it right in this country. If only you would allow us to get it out of the ground. And yes, you did announce today you want to cut our oil dependency by 1/3 yet your de facto drill moratorium is making this impossible. However you haven’t ruled out buying from Mexico, Canada or Brazil. How about putting Americans in the oil industry back to work first? Yet you’ve only issued a handful of deep-water drill permits since the BP blowout last April. IER has this analysis of Obama’s speech today, one salient comment from their website:
“The Obama anti-energy agenda has decreased expected production in the Gulf of Mexico by 360,000 barrels of oil per day. By withholding the necessary permits to produce energy in Alaska, the Trans Alaska Pipeline System is only filled at one third of its capacity. The Outer Continental Shelf holds at least 80 billion barrels of oil— four times as much as the ‘two percent’ the President says we have – but the Obama Administration either refuses to offer those resources for lease or refuses to grant permits to explore for and produce these resources.”
So let me be perfectly clear, a “handful” of permits ain’t gonna cut it. Let’s take a look at what it actually takes to get it out of the ground. You need a lease. You need a permit, an air permit and also a safety permit, and yep those are hard to come-by these days thanks to your work with BOEMRE (Bureau of Ocean, Energy, Management, Regulation and Enforcement). Hey Mr. Obama, I’ve written about BOEMRE so many times thanks to you, I even know by heart what the acronym stands for. From the Institute for Energy Research they provide this handy-dandy diagram:
So it takes round-about 60 leases to start out. Just because you get a lease doesn’t guarantee an oil find. And just like chances are slim-to-none if your neighbor wins the lottery jackpot he probably ain’t gonna share his wealth with you, it’s slim-to-none chances the neighboring oil field who hits the gusher probably ain’t gonna share it with his neighbor either. So these oil and natural gas companies are taking huge risks at their own expense just for exploration.
And yet Mr. Obama. You go on to say this:
Other countries are now exporting technology we pioneered and they’re going after the jobs that come with it because they know that the countries that lead the 21st century clean energy economy will be the countries that lead the 21st century global economy.
We know this failed in Europe. Don’t you know Mr. Obama that “green jobs are the fruit of the poison tree”? It failed in Spain. It failed in Britain. T. Boone Pickens’ windmills failed in that huge ice storm in Texas last January. Are we supposed to fill our gas tanks using the wind of Alec Baldwin’s mouth? Doc Hastings (R-WA) Chair of the House Natural Resources Committee weighed in on Obama’s speech:
While the President and I share the same goal, we have very different ways of getting there. The President wants to decrease imports by telling Americans to use less and to pay more. Republicans want to decrease imports by increasing U.S. production – while simultaneously creating American jobs, raising revenue to help pay down the national debt, lowering energy costs and increasing our energy independence. I hope the President would be willing to work with Congress in achieving his goal to cut imports by unlocking our American energy resources [emphasis mine].
Yes Chairman Hastings. You say it very well, in a nutshell.
Crossposted at Unified Patriots