Limiting Oil Shale and Oil Sands Leasing Hinders Path Toward North American Energy Independence
WASHINGTON, DC – Energy and Power Subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-KY) released the following statement in response to the Bureau of Land Management’s proposed plan for oil shale and oil sands leasing on Western lands. BLM published its proposal today, which will block off an additional 1.6 million acres of federal lands from leasing.
“This proposal will place further limitations on the exploration and development of our country’s natural resources and is yet another example of how this administration continues to stand in the way of North American energy independence. Allowing safe and responsible energy development on federal lands is a critical step toward reducing our dependence on Middle East oil, but rather than embrace our country’s resources, the president is designating even more federal areas as off-limits. The president is locking up an area that contains about 1.5 trillion barrels of recoverable oil—that’s about as much recoverable oil as the rest of the world’s proven reserves combined. This is after we saw oil production on federal lands decline by an average of 275,000 barrels per day in fiscal year 2011. While other countries like Canada are busy growing their economy by developing their own resources, this administration is busy promoting policies that embargo our own oil from ourselves.”