Committee Approves Legislation to Increase North American Energy Production and Create Jobs
WASHINGTON, DC - The House Energy and Commerce Committee, chaired by Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), today approved legislation to create jobs and reduce our dependence on OPEC oil. The North American-Made Energy Security Act (H.R. 1938) passed the committee with bipartisan support by a vote of 33 to 13.
The North American-Made Energy Security Act, authored by Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE) and Mike Ross (AR), will expedite a final decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, a project that would allow millions of barrels of Canadian oil supplies to flow into U.S. markets. Specifically, the legislation would require the president to issue a final Presidential Permit decision by November 1, 2011.
Completion of the Keystone XL pipeline would bring 1.3 million barrels of oil per day to U.S. markets -an amount that greatly exceeds the 30 million barrels the president plans to release from our emergency reserves. According to a Department of Energy report, this pipeline will bring enough oil online to essentially eliminate our oil imports from the Middle East.
In addition to securing access to stable and affordable oil supplies, the Keystone XL pipeline will create thousands of American jobs. Construction of the pipeline expansion is estimated to directly and indirectly create more than 100,000 jobs.
"The question is simply whether we will partner with our northern neighbor and use this oil to essentially eliminate our dependence on oil from OPEC nations, or if we will force Canada to find other customers, like the Chinese who are hungry for energy supplies," said Upton. "This project has been delayed long enough. It's time to make a decision, and this bipartisan bill will make it happen."
"Earlier today, the Administration announced it was tapping into the Strategic Petroleum Reserve due to unrest in foreign nations. I find it frustrating that it would seem our U.S. energy policy is to get heavy crude from Venezuela - hardly a friendly nation - while continually delaying heavy oil from our North American neighbor," said Terry. "Our bill is simple. Set a schedule, coordinate that schedule, and execute a decision process. Further delays could cost our nation in terms of job creation and energy security. We cannot afford any more delay."