Bush Urges Dems To Lift Offshore Drilling Ban– More: Pelosi Lashes Out Against Oil Companies …Update: Dems Say "No"
There is a reason that energy prices are skyrocketing in this country.
Over the past 30 years:
Democrats have blocked the development of new sources of petroleum.
Democrats have blocked drilling in ANWR.
Democrats have blocked drilling off the coast of Florida.
Democrats have blocked drilling off of the east coast.
Democrats have blocked drilling off of the west coast.
Democrats have blocked drilling off the Alaskan coast.
Democrats have blocked building oil refineries.
Democrats have blocked clean nuclear energy production.
Democrats have blocked clean coal production.
Over the past 30 years Democrats have created “No Zones” for US energy exploration and development:
(Republican Senator Craig put together this map.)
As Americans pay more for gas than ever under this Congress–
Democrats continue to vote against energy development and exploration.
President Bush called on Congress Wednesday to open U.S. coastal waters to oil and gas development by lifting a 27-year-old ban on drilling off the American coastline, and allowing states to decide whether to permit production off their shores.
Blaming Democrats for stalling, Bush said, “Congress must face a hard reality. Unless members are willing to accept gas prices at a today’s levels, or even higher, the country “must produce more oil, and we must start now.”
Bush spoke from the White House Rose Garden. He took no questions.
Bush also renewed his call to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration; he also said oil shale development and new refineries are needed.
“For many Americans, there is no more pressing concern than the price of gasoline. … Every American who drives to work, purchases food, or ships a product has felt the effect,” Bush said.
Bush admitted his proposals “will take years to have their full impact” but he said that rather than it being an excuse for delay, “it’s a reason to move swiftly.”
The drilling moratoria have been in effect since 1981 in more than 80 percent of the country’s Outer Continental Shelf. It was instituted to protect tourism and lessen the chance of oil spills reaching popular beaches.
Predictably, Speaker Nancy Pelosi blasted Bush and oil companies:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi responded with a statement blasting the president.
“The president’s proposal sounds like another page from the administration’s energy policy that was literally written by the oil industry(?): give away more public resources to the very same oil companies that are sitting on 68 million acres of federal lands they’ve already leased,” Pelosi said.
Speaker Pelosi is, of course, misrepresenting the facts about the oil companies sitting on 68 million acres.
GOP.gov has the facts.
UPDATE: Here are the president’s comments from the White House website:
In the long run, the solution is to reduce demand for oil by promoting alternative energy technologies. My administration has worked with Congress to invest in gas-saving technologies like advanced batteries and hydrogen fuel cells. We’ve mandated a large expansion in the use of alternative fuels. We’ve raised fuel efficiency standards to ambitious new levels. With all these steps, we are bringing America closer to the day when we can end our addiction to oil, which will allow us to become better stewards of the environment.
In the short run, the American economy will continue to rely largely on oil. And that means we need to increase supply, especially here at home. So my administration has repeatedly called on Congress to expand domestic oil production. Unfortunately, Democrats on Capitol Hill have rejected virtually every proposal — and now Americans are paying the price at the pump for this obstruction. Congress must face a hard reality: Unless Members are willing to accept gas prices at today’s painful levels — or even higher — our nation must produce more oil. And we must start now. So this morning, I ask Democratic Congressional leaders to move forward with four steps to expand American oil and gasoline production.
First, we should expand American oil production by increasing access to the Outer Continental Shelf, or OCS. Experts believe that the OCS could produce about 18 billion barrels of oil. That would be enough to match America’s current oil production for almost ten years. The problem is that Congress has restricted access to key parts of the OCS since the early 1980s. Since then, advances in technology have made it possible to conduct oil exploration in the OCS that is out of sight, protects coral reefs and habitats, and protects against oil spills. With these advances — and a dramatic increase in oil prices — congressional restrictions on OCS exploration have become outdated and counterproductive.
Republicans in Congress have proposed several promising bills that would lift the legislative ban on oil exploration in the OCS. I call on the House and the Senate to pass good legislation as soon as possible. This legislation should give the states the option of opening up OCS resources off their shores, provide a way for the federal government and states to share new leasing revenues, and ensure that our environment is protected. There’s also an executive prohibition on exploration in the OCS. When Congress lifts the legislative ban, I will lift the executive prohibition.
Second, we should expand oil production by tapping into the extraordinary potential of oil shale. Oil shale is a type of rock that can produce oil when exposed to heat or other process[es]. In one major deposit — the Green River Basin of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming — there lies the equivalent of about 800 billion barrels of recoverable oil. That’s more than three times larger than the proven oil reserves of Saudi Arabia. And it can be fully recovered — and if it can be fully recovered it would be equal to more than a century’s worth of currently projected oil imports.
For many years, the high cost of extracting oil from shale exceeded the benefit. But today the calculus is changing. Companies have invested in technology to make oil shale production more affordable and efficient. And while the cost of extracting oil from shale is still more than the cost of traditional production, it is also less than the current market price of oil. This makes oil shale a highly promising resource.
Unfortunately, Democrats in Congress are standing in the way of further development. In last year’s omnibus spending bill, Democratic leaders inserted a provision blocking oil shale leasing on federal
lands. That provision can be taken out as easily as it was slipped in — and Congress should do so immediately.
Third, we should expand American oil production by permitting exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, or ANWR. When ANWR was created in 1980, Congress specifically reserved a portion for energy development. In 1995, Congress passed legislation allowing oil production in this small fraction of ANWR’s 19 million acres. With a drilling footprint of less than 2,000 acres — less than one-tenth of 1 percent of this distant Alaskan terrain — America could produce an estimated 10 billion barrels of oil. That is roughly the equivalent of two decades of imported oil from Saudi Arabia. Yet my predecessor vetoed this bill.
Bush was terrific.
This ought to go over really well–
Watch the Democrats and the radical environmentalists in their fold implode on this news today.
Jammie Wearing Fool has the latest jingle: “Drill Now. Drill Now. Drill Now.”
UPDATE: Democrats say “NO.”