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  • Guest Blogger: Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA) on Energy Security

    One year ago today, a bipartisan Congress voted to lift the ban on oil and gas drilling off America’s coasts and cleared the way for our Nation to responsibly develop more of our own energy resources, reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and create new jobs.

    Next, the Bush Administration put forward a robust plan that would open up additional areas to drilling on the United States Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). However, immediately after taking office, the Obama Administration threw up a giant roadblock on the path to new American energy jobs. Instead of opening up the OCS for more oil and natural gas production, the Administration enacted a de-facto ban on new offshore drilling by extending the public comment period on the OCS plan for an additional six months.

    The public comment process recently ended on September 21st. The Administration must decide if it will responsibly develop our own resources, only offer up a small area for new production, or continue to completely obstruct new oil and gas drilling.

    As unemployment approaches ten percent, Republicans have regularly reminded President Obama and Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar that expanded domestic energy development would deliver tremendous economic benefits to the American people by creating 1.2 million jobs annually across the country and generating $2.2 trillion in total tax receipts towards the $9.1 trillion Obama-Pelosi deficit.

    But, in light of the recent news that Iran has constructed a second nuclear facility, it’s critical that the Administration also view its current energy policy through the prism of national security. The President and his national security team must be able to implement the strongest, most effective sanctions against Iran and other countries that threaten the safety of Americans, as well as Israel and other allies.

    However, as sanctions are considered against Iran, President Obama and his national security team will likely take into account that Iran controls the Strait of Hormuz, which the Energy Information Administration (EIA) describes as “the world’s most important oil chokepoint due to its daily oil flow of 16.5-17 million barrels, which is roughly 40 percent of all seaborne traded oil (or 20 percent of oil traded worldwide).”

    In the past, when threatened with sanctions, Iran has countered with threats to close the Strait of Hormuz – a move that would threaten the international oil market and spike energy costs.

    When our country has its own rich oil and natural gas resources, we should not have to even think about unpredictable threats from mad men, tyrants and dictators who control access to a significant portion of the world’s oil supply. The American Outer Continental Shelf is estimated to contain 86 billion barrels of oil and 420 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. If the Administration would allow our Nation to fully and responsibly tap into these resources, we could drastically decrease our dependence on foreign oil.

    While the Obama Administration has said it supports all-of-the-above energy development, it has shown zero signs of moving forward with a robust plan for any new domestic energy development on our Outer Continental Shelf. In fact, Secretary Salazar recently suggested that the Administration may not move forward with a new plan before 2012.

    And ironically, while shunning domestic oil and gas development, Administration officials have championed foreign oil production.

    In August, the Wall Street Journal reported that “the U.S. is going to lend billions of dollars to Brazil’s state-owned oil company, Petrobras, to finance exploration of the huge offshore discovery in Brazil’s Tupi oil field in the Santos Basin near Rio de Janeiro.” This massive oil field in the Atlantic Ocean is estimated to contain between 5-8 billion barrels in this single field, making it one of the world’s largest discoveries.

    And in September, Vice President Biden traveled to Iraq to persuade the Iraqi government to develop more oil and create new drilling jobs in Iraq. As one senior American official traveling with the Vice President told the Agence French Press “even one other deal would mean 50 to 60 billion dollars in additional investment in Iraq, 600 million dollars in additional annual revenue, and tens of thousands of additional jobs.”

    Money for offshore oil drilling in Brazil and support for new energy jobs in Iraq? Enough is enough.

    Instead of more rhetoric and double standards, the Administration needs to finally support comprehensive energy development in America. Republicans proposed the American Energy Act, an all-of-the-above energy bill that will reduce our dependence on foreign oil and create green jobs, drilling jobs, manufacturing jobs and nuclear jobs. We encourage Democrats to support this positive alternative. Our economy and our national security depend upon it.

    Congressman Doc Hastings is the Ranking Member on the House Natural Resources Committee.

    The views expressed by guest bloggers on the Foundry do not necessarily reflect the views of the Heritage Foundation.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    19 Responses to Guest Blogger: Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA) on Energy Security

    1. Lloyd Scallan - New says:

      Doc Hastings views are spot on! However, Obama will never allow drilling off or on our coast.

      Within weeks after Obama took office, he (or his minions) cancelled lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana and Texas. This administation told the oil companies to drill on their present leases, where oil or gas may not exist. That fact makes no difference to Obama.

      We all better understand that Obama wants this

      country on its knees. With no gasoline or natural gas, most every industry will be forced to shut down (not to mention transportation). Then Obama will get just what he wants, to declare

      a national emergency so he can completely take over every aspect of our lives.

    2. Gail, Amarillo, Texa says:

      President Obama has no intention of developing energy independence or jobs for the American people. His Secretary of the Interior Mr. Salazar will follow his boss's wishes. The President wants our country on its knees without energy and without jobs. I don't believe that anyone can stop him from putting the country in that predicament because he believes in a one world economic plan and ignores the pain of his own people.

    3. philip says:

      stand up for america drill,DRILL AMERICAS OIL RESERIVES PROTECT AMERICA

    4. mike demas, tampa,Fl says:

      Please go to Floridaoil.org to see what we are proposing here in Florida to get on the 2010 ballot so the people of Fl. can vote on this issue. It is a Constitutional Amendment Petition Form. This addresses the SLA, Submerged Lands Act passed by congress in 1954. The govt. keeps saying we need to get off foreign oil but they won't let us drill!! That's stupid but then that kind of describes our present congress.

    5. Bob Atwood Goldenda says:

      I just want to thank Doc for his work, He is a real sourse of pride for us in the NW. Something is very wrong in America today, Without people like Mr. Hastings I can't imagine how intolerable our government would be.

    6. Rich, Whistler, BC says:

      Rep. Hastings has perfectly explained the situation and the

      solutions. Forward this piece to everyone you know.

    7. Jerry from Chicago says:

      This is what happens when one man controls too much power. When a president's party has a veto-proof majority in the House and in the Senate, he can do pretty much whatever he wants to do.

      It makes absolutely NO sense, to limit our ability to drill for oil off our continental shelf, it makes NO sense to limit our ability to construct additional new refineries and it makes NO sense to continue the halt on development of new nuclear power plants. Mr. Obama thinks it's just fine for Iran to develop nuclear power plants for their electrical energy, despite the fact they are sitting on an ocean of oil, but it's not ok for the U.S.

      The base of Mr. Obama's political power are the the far-left radicle liberals, including environmental extremeists, who would rather see the farms in California's San Joaquin Valley turn into an Oklahoma type dust bowl, just to save a two-inch fish, the Delta Smelt. Tens of thousands of agricultural workers, including farm owners, are without jobs, living off welfare and are standing in food lines trying to feed their families when they once fed a third of the country. California Governor Schwartzenneger, has appealed to the Secretary of the Interior and to the White House, begging them to turn the irrigation water back on to the farm fields. Currently that water is being directed into the Pacific Ocean. Despite the Governor's pleas, and those of 52 mayors of the communities surrounding the valley, and those of the farmers losing their lands and the workers losing their jobs, Mr. Obama and his Secretary of the Interior have chosen to turn a deaf ear.

      These are real life examples of what the loss of checks and balances can do in government.

      For someone who purports to want to help the "disadvantaged", he sure as hell doesn't act like it. This is the guy who signs an $800 billion Stimulus bill that was supposed to put people back to work. So far, the only new jobs that the Stimulous created were government jobs. National unemployment has risen to an average of 10%, in some states, to 15%.

      The unspent balance of that Stimulus bill has not been targeted for repair and upgarding the infrstructure of the country, or to develop domestic oil production, or to build refineries, or nuclear power plants. No, I suspect that unspent balance will be used by Mr. Obama and his Democrat controlled Congress to reward those who vote for Mr. Obama's programs and policies.

    8. dave, dayton says:

      Where can we get more good men like Doc Hastings? I wonder if he'll vote yes or no on thr raise for Congress?

    9. Neal Risedorph, Jone says:

      US domestic oil production today is about the same as in 1947. If oil imports from the Middle East and Venezuela were shutoff coupled with decreasing output from the Gulf of Mexico, the US would grind to a halt quickly. Who gets the gasoline & diesel fuels? Will it be the military or people driving to work or truck & train freight carriers or commercial aircraft. Chaos would take over.

    10. James Colburn says:

      How can we achieve a change in our energy policy? It seems every voice, backed by knowledge of subject, says we must reduce our dependence in foreign oil. And we can! I suppose we must wait for $4/gal at the pump before those in power will do something.

    11. Louis L Cesar F Levy says:

      There is always flashes of light with which man can counter much of darkness. Doc Hastings is certainly one with whom man can capitalize. And we will have him as Member of the Fight Back and Positive Victory.

      Thanks everytime to Heritage.

    12. Dennis, Ohio says:

      Thank you Doc for your efforts. Unfortunately, Obama and his czars are intent on the destruction of this country, our resources, and our wellbeing. There is little to be done unless we vote these people out of office as fast as we can. It may be too late already.

    13. Linda Carlsbad, CA says:

      Why does this administration want us to be dependent on foreign oil? Who are these people who work for this President. They seem so anti-American, they are working for some other country or government. They are working against the American people's best interest. I say Drill here, Drill now, Save Money!Unless this President has given our drilling rights away!China is buying up rights all over the world! Wouldn't that be a slap in the face, would you be surprised?I saw Utah's Senator when he was told they weren't going to approve drilling in Utah. He said, " It took him 6 or 7 years to be approved," they didn't care, they stopped him from drilling. It took money from his state, and jobs from the people. Congress and the President didn't care!What has this President and Congress promised the corrupt dictators we are borrowing money from? Our oil and gas rights?

    14. Jerry from Chicago says:

      One of the many criticisms Mr. Obama had of the Bush administration was that it had no energy policy. Now, after nine months in office, there still is no U.S. energy policy. Unless, of course, the policy is complete dependency on foreign oil.

      Mr. Obama has steadfastly refused to allow the development of nuclear power plants. He has refused to encourage the development of offshore drilling. He has done nothing to encourage the transition from gasoline to natural gas, as an automotive fuel.

      He keeps talking about all the jobs his "clean, alternative energy" is going to create. Well, has anyone seen any of these new "green" jobs?

      Are the airlines, tractor-trailers, trains and automobiles supposed to run on solar panel energy? Are they supposed to run on battery power, or maybe wind power? How far are we away from developing hydrogen as a practical, affordable fuel?

      We need to build new nuclear power plants now. We need to drill for more oil offshore and in Alaska now. We need to build more refineries in the U.S. now. We need to begin a system of transitioning from gasoline to natural gas, as a fuel for cars and trucks now. We have all the natural gas we need here in the U.S. And we need people in the Congress, Senate and White House who have the wisdom and the willpower to make these things happen.

      Mr. Obama is a slave to environmental extremeists in his own party. We can develop our own energy resources and still keep the air and water clean. We have the technology to do this. Windmills may deveop a certain amount of electricty and that's fine. I am not sure at how dependable this energy is, nor how cost-effective it is to produce. Cars that run on battery power? Well, I suppose they are ok, if you don't need to travel more than 30 to 40 miles a day before having to plug into an outlet overnight. And what happens if you lose electricty during a storm for a day or two, or ten? Where do you plug in your battery powered car then? Will solar panels on the top of you car be enough to power your vehicle? If so, for how far? Will they be enough to dependably heat your home in winter and cool it in the summer?

      Until these alternative forms of energy become dependable and cost-effective, we need to rely on energy that is dependable, available and cost effective i.e., oil, natural gas and nuclear power.

      Mr, Obama is not the guy who is going to help us with this. We need to find someone else who will.

    15. Pingback: Skull / Bones » Blog Archive » I would like to hear what Doc Hastings has to say

    16. Pingback: Skull / Bones » Blog Archive » I would like to know what Doc Hastings has to say about this

    17. Crazy10 says:

      This committee, in turn, works with a task force whose members have experience in specific issues to plan annual projects. ,

    18. Chales Stahl Environ says:

      DOC…you old Olympia, WA codger, you forgot the debt before "O" the time before "O". Only the stupid folk can remeber two wars and the $$12 Trillion in debt prior to "obama". Where were you Doc as you spent $$80 billion each quarter to run Iraq, kill 4300 US kids, maim 16000 and kill 500K Iraqi's…time will tell if it was a waste or not…but for now, tell the truth…you ran this country into a hole, both in banking and debt wise….

      DOC, first rule in a hole is to stop digging, call for a ladder dude!!

      DOC you can not fix stupid…but so far you've yet to throw out the shovel.

    19. Jacque Carlo, 8111 H says:

      Hi Doc., Missed your calls, appreciate your call town hall meetings. I wish to ask you to vote to allow the Tax Cut on the rich to expire. I do understand their side, but they do not under

      stand the little mans side. It's been too long since he has been here if ever. Thank you , Doc. for your time and effort.

      Jacque Carlo, Pasco

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