The Obama Energy Plan: Less Energy; Fewer Middle Class Jobs
President Obama’s Interior Department recently proposed a new five-year plan that lays out what he thinks should be done with America’s energy resources on the valuable outer continental shelf (OCS). In addition to the President’s decision to hold up the Keystone XL pipeline and its 20,000 middle-class jobs, the Administration’s new energy exploration plan continues three years of Obama policies that restrict energy production and job creation.
President Obama’s Plan Reinstates a Moratorium
The plan, covering 2012-2017, restricts lease sales to areas with existing leases and exploration, and cuts half of the lease sales included in the previous plan.
Less than three percent of offshore ares will be available for energy development.
A moratorium on oil and gas production in the Atlantic and Pacific OCS effectively puts 14 billion barrels of oil and 55 trillion cubic feet of natural gas off limits.
Other Countries Are Already Drilling Next to U.S. Waters
As President Obama continues to restrict access to offshore energy reserves, Canada is currently drilling near Maine, and Russia is drilling near Alaska. Mexico is pursuing a deepwater well within 25 miles of U.S. waters in the Gulf of Mexico.
Six foreign companies are actively exploring for oil and gas north of Cuba, some within 60 miles of Florida.
This Is Just the Latest Obama Move To Delay Offshore Energy Production.
The Obama Interior Department delayed and eventually abandoned the proposed 2010-2012 lease plan, which included 31 new oil and gas lease sales.
President Obama enacted a six-month moratorium on all deepwater oil and gas permitting in 2010, followed by a “permitorium” as new permits were delayed by additional bureaucracy.
President Obama cancelled leases in the Western Gulf of Mexico and the Virginia OCS, which would have generated much-needed jobs and tax revenue>. Virginia officials strongly support offshore production, which could produce 15,000 jobs and add $3.2 billion annually to the state’s economy.
Energy Production in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska Will Decline
President Obama’s six-month moratorium and the slow pace of new permitting in the OCS will reduce domestic energy supply over the next several years.
Compared to 2010 levels, daily oil production from Alaska is expected to drop 10 percent by 2012, and production in the Gulf of Mexico will drop 12 percent.
Federal revenue from offshore lease sales dropped from $9.5 billion in 2008 to $36 million in 2011--down 99.6% in three years.
New Energy Production Would Create Jobs and Raise Revenue
Since 2003, domestic production of oil and natural gas has accounted for one out of every five new private sector jobs.
The oil and gas industry could create 1.4 million new jobs and raise $800 billion of additional government revenue by 2030 if the appropriate policies are enacted, including opening additional areas of the OCS to energy production.