No “All-of-the-Above” Energy Strategy
Simply put, government energy policy is critically important to job creation and economic recovery. Policy miscues now could delay recovery for years.
A recurrent theme in President Obama’s speeches the last couple years is that he’s pursuing an “all-of-the-above” energy policy. He isn’t. Not even close. Never has. Probably never will.
The latest data proving it comes from the Congressional Research Service (CRS):
“U.S. Crude Oil and Natural Gas Production in Federal and Non-Federal Areas“
– Marc Humphries, Congressional Research Service, 2/28/2013
President Obama is pursuing a narrow-minded, renewable top-heavy energy policy that, at the same time, actively suppresses development of much needed resources everywhere else.
It’s not that we don’t need to develop renewable energy; we most definitely do, but in this delicate economy it must be done responsibly.
Rhetoric vs. Reality
In a major speech on energy policy the President said:
When it comes to oil production, under my administration, America is producing more oil today than at any time in the last eight years… we’ve got to have an all-of-the-above strategy that develops every single source of American energy
– President Obama, Nashua Community College, 3/1/2012
Obama re-emphasized his implied fossil contributions at this year’s State of the Union Address:
After years of talking about it, we’re finally poised to control our own energy future. We produce more oil at home than we have in 15 years
– President Obama, State of the Union Address, 2/12/2013
As always, the statements are factual. Oil production is up. And, we definitely need a comprehensive energy strategy geared toward energy independence.
But, as common with this President, its misleading. Obama claims credit for increasing oil production when, in truth, his administration has prevented it. The administration has purposely and actively suppressed domestic oil and gas production where it has authority.
According to the Congressional Research Service:
CRS research shows domestic oil and gas production is up. It just as clearly shows that, under Obama, oil and gas production is DOWN on federal lands where the government has authority.
Despite a golden age in domestic natural gas production, federal land production decreased 33% from 2007 through 2012. Despite increased domestic oil production, federal oil decreased 4%.
All oil and gas increases were on state or private lands; not federal. The oil rig increases shown since 2009 are on state/private lands, not federal. The federal government has all but shut down federal lands to new domestic oil and gas development.
CRS data also shows that applications for permits to drill (APDs) on federal lands dropped to less than half the number there were in 2006. Most APDs expired without production or even exploration.
The EIA’s early release of the 2013 energy outlook reports that fossil fuels supplied 83% of all U.S. energy consumption in 2011.
EIA forecasts fossils will still supply 79% of U.S. energy in 2040!
Any energy policy that does not understand that sober reality and leverage cheap fossil energy right now in a down economy is… welll… just plain dumb!
Obama’s energy policy ignores that reality.
The President documented his Administration’s energy policy in this document:
“Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future” – White House Energy Policy, 3/11/2011
Reading the blueprint confirms exactly what Barack Obama articulated long ago:
New EPA regulations today are helping to bankrupt coal-fired electric plants, just like candidate Barack Obama predicted back in January of 2008. A private-sector driven natural gas revolution, however, is making it feasible.
Obama’s own words, EPA actions, energy investments and the latest CRS data confirms that Obama energy policy is nowhere near “all-of-the-above”.
In 2011, renewables accounted for just 9% of U.S. energy consumption after 10s of billions invested. Fossil fuels will still account for 79% in 2040. The EIA says it’s impossible for renewables to replace fossil fuels any decade soon.
Even putting Keystone XL aside, unless we adopt a cost-saving energy policy taking advantage of this nation’s existing resources, then job creation and the general economy will suffer.